Horace Mann

Monthly Newsletter

Mission: To educate and prepare each student to succeed in a changing world.

Newsletter Date:

August/September 2020

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Dates to Remember

August 2020

25th: Elementary Open House

27th: First Day of School

September 2020

4th -7th: No Classes - Labor Day Break

October 2020

13th: Parent-Teacher Conference 12:00 PM - 4:00 PM

15th: Parent-Teacher Conference 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

19th: Parent-Teacher Conference 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

12th: No Classes - Native American Day Observance

13th: No Classes - Inservice

28th: End of 1st Quarter

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Principal Corner

Note From Mrs. Eckstaine


This March we have had a lot of less-than-reassuring news. As a nation, we have found ourselves having to heighten our uncertainty tolerance. Indeed, as we move forward, one of the most important siblings of optimism in our current society, is accepting uncertainty. Rather than avoiding our fear of uncertainty, it can help to get intentional about it. That doesn’t mean trying to eliminate it immediately but creating a little more space to accept and allow uncertainty here and there. It also means thinking about the future in a way that leaves room for best- and worst-case scenarios. When we feel ourselves falling into the trap of catastrophizing, it can help to have some perspective and to examine the things we know and acknowledge as facts. At Horace Mann and across the Sioux Falls School District, even more than teaching your student academic and behavior skills, safety is our number one goal above all else.

It is my sincere hope that as Spring approaches that we will have more facts and information to explore that can make everyone feel more at ease. It feels hard to believe that summer is a few short months away. If you have not already enrolled your child in our HM Summer School Program, I encourage you to do so. Participating in summer school maintains the great foundation of social skills that your child has been working on all year long. Additionally, when your child is exposed to direct reading and math instruction, even for just a few weeks, the gains are tremendous. Our Summer School Program runs from June 8-July 2nd, Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Lunch and breakfast are provided, as well as many extra activities that are not part of the traditional school year, including: a day of horseback riding, a meet and pet with local farm animals, and many other fun and enriching classroom experiences.

Unlike the nine month school year, our Summer School Program allows teachers the time to provide students with specific strengths or needs more ardent and unique instruction. Through this educational investment, students are able to enhance both their academic and social emotional skills. Additionally, it provides your child a great avenue to make and maintain friendships at Horace Mann. Lastly, it helps your child and yourself maintain a steady routine. Maintaining a predictable routine can improve overall health, well-being, and productivity.


The Horace Mann team has already begun planning the activities and experiences that will be part of this year's Summer School Program. As we move forward and begin finalizing, we want to make sure we have an accurate student count. If you have not signed your child up for this great free program, please do so today! You can either call or email Horace Mann, your student’s current teacher, or stop by. As you think about the future,I want to leave with one last fact, you are always welcome at Horace Mann!

Reflection Drives Improvement

By Dr. Brian Maher, Superintendent


Have you ever wondered what Fortune 500 companies do that makes them successful? What puts those businesses at the top of the list for innovation in their industry? The answer depends on who you ask.

But, if you look at the top performers in most industries, it is a safe bet you will notice that some common themes emerge. Some of those themes boil down to an accepting culture where ideas are respected, where work/learning environments are safe, and where decisions are reflected upon as a method for improvement. Public schools are no different.

In April, students, parents, and staff members of the Sioux Falls School District will be asked to complete a survey to help us measure how we’re performing as a school district. We truly want to know things like whether you and your student feel safe at school. Are course offerings appropriate and meeting the needs of all learners? Do adults at the school hold your child to the highest standards and treat all students equally no matter their background?

The survey results are important to us because they guide next steps in the District’s Strategic Plan. This plan - our road map - holds schools accountable for everything from test scores, to attendance expectations, to providing high-quality training to all staff. We measure all points annually and adjust our plans when necessary in hopes of moving the needle positively forward on each goal. Doing so means we’re doing what is best for students.

We know your time is valuable, but we hope you also find enough value in your public schools to carve out a few minutes and complete the short survey when it arrives in your email. If you don’t have an email on file with your school, you can also access the surveys via the school district website: sf.k12.sd.us.

Your input is important to us as we reflect on how we can improve to strengthen our public schools for the good of our community.

#1: Encouraging Good Behavior
#2: Positive Praise
#3: Reasons & Practice
#4: De-escalation

Substitute Teachers Needed

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