The Boeckman Buzz

November 5, 2023

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A Note from Principal Sage

BMS Families,

This past week, we had the opportunity to meet with our Parent Ambassador group. During our discussions, the group expressed their interest in supporting our learners and staff by planning enjoyable events throughout the school year. They've got some winter season ideas in the works and will be sharing more details soon.

For those who have already completed a Community Tiger Stripe for one of our staff members, we appreciate your efforts. Community Tiger Stripes are now available as a quick way to acknowledge the contributions of our staff members. You can send a Community Tiger Stripe by clicking here.

Looking ahead to the upcoming week, we're excited about our first 8th-grade band concert on Monday and the first field trip for 7th graders to the Science museum on Friday.

We are lucky to have such great educators at BMS! Congratulations to both Tory Techau and Ashley Mattei on being nominated for Teacher of the Year. Congratulations to Tory for winning Teacher of the year! There is more information below on both of these exceptional educators.

Please read below for some important information on the upcoming referendum.

Thank you for your ongoing support for Boeckman!

-Joe Sage, Principal

2023 Farmington Operating Levy Referendum

2023 Operating Levy Referendum - PLEASE VOTE!

As you likely know, the Farmington Area Public Schools Board voted to schedule a referendum election for this fall. It is vital for all district parents, preschool parents and community residents to learn about the ballot question and vote in the election. One way to learn more is to watch these short informational videos explaining the ballot question, the tax impact, and more:

There are three ways to vote in the election:

  • absentee voting which began on September 22 and continues to be available

  • direct balloting or early voting which began Friday, October 20; and

  • at your assigned polling place on Tuesday, November 7, between 7am and 8pm.

More information about the levy proposal and how to vote is on the district website at Thank you for your continued support of Farmington Area Public Schools.

Teacher of the Year!

We are thrilled to recognize Tory Techau and Ashley Mattei as outstanding nominees for Teacher of the Year. Both of these educators have shown exemplary dedication to their learners and a passion for teaching that has had a profound impact on the BMS learning community.

This week, it was announced that Tory Techau was the winner of Teacher of the Year! Tory's commitment to education, innovative teaching methods, and unwavering support for learners have set a standard for excellence. We are immensely proud of both Tory and Ashley for their incredible contributions to the world of education.

Please see below for a bio on both Tory and Ashley!

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Tory Techau

When I think about my educational journey, so many highlights pop into my head: amazing teachers I had, projects I created, relationships I built, along with many positive experiences. I was a kid who always loved to play school and thought about being a teacher. My first experience observing an art classroom during my first year in college, was a true ‘ah ha’ moment. I knew I had found my career path as I realized I can share my passion for art with learners of all ages.

I was fortunate to attend St. Olaf College in Northfield, and during my time there I found my way into as many art classrooms that I could, so I could work with the different learners. Whether it was standing in front of the classroom or working with a learner one on one, I loved sharing my passion for art. When I entered student teaching, my first placement was at a middle school. I wasn’t sure what to expect, as many adults often see the middle school years as the hardest years to work with. However, thinking back to my positive experiences in school, 7th grade was one of my favorite years of school. I walked into my student teaching experience with curiosity and left with excitement. I quickly realized that working with middle school learners was my jam. Their energy, creative thinking and their uniqueness intrigued me and motivated me to be the best teacher I could be for middle schoolers.

I started teaching in Farmington in 2006 at Farmington Middle School East. A couple of years later I moved over to Boeckman Middle School and have been teaching 6th - 8th grade art ever since. I have dedicated my career to building relationships, helping middle schoolers grow to be the best versions of themselves, and making art accessible to all learners. I firmly believe that whether or not you like art, you can walk away from my classroom with the accomplishment of creatively persevering through problems and the appreciation of the creative process.

Over the past 18 years, I also had many opportunities to collaborate with my amazing colleagues through team teaching, leading equity professional development, being a FEA union building rep, being on the building operations committee, and being a mentor teacher. I truly have found my calling as a middle school art teacher and my drive and passion for teaching continues to grow each year.

Thank you to my colleagues for your continued support throughout my time in Farmington. I am honored to be nominated for teacher of the year in Farmington.

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Ashley Mattei

Back in 2008, I sat in the same library that I now bring my students to on Fridays, interviewing my Media Center specialist about the library that would open the following year in our new high school. More salient than any other moment in that journalism class, I remember her thanking me for curiously seeking out stories: “Stories build everything we know, and are the way we pass things on,” she said. In my lifetime, I’ve heard few things that prove again and again to be unquestionably true.

At first glance, the title of Teacher of the Year appears to tell the story of one teacher’s impact. However, I hope to pass on the story that every teacher of the year has been shaped by innumerable teachers of their years. When I was a student in this district, my teachers gave me the storytelling tools that would later help me find success in my first career in the advertising industry. More importantly, they gave me the critical lens that helped me understand the impact I wanted to leave on the world: I wanted to engage young people in seeing the value of each other’s stories and the world-changing effects of the stories they produce and consume. I wanted my story to include the work I respected the most: the work of teaching.

Now four years into my middle school ELA teaching career, all spent in the halls of ISD192, I still feel immeasurably grateful for the opportunity I have to meet and learn alongside a diverse bunch of young humans. They are my teachers of the year, using their unique lenses and experiences to open my eyes to stories I have never explored. Designing learning that is worthy of their time and attention is the most challenging, exhausting, and rewarding thing I have ever done. Through our discussions and explorations, and through my observations of their experiences in our classroom, my students have sparked my interest in educational equity, passion for literacy intervention, and belief in the power of compassion and gratitude.

Finally, it is not lost on me how lucky I am to have landed in a place that truly lifts up newer teachers. In my year at Dodge and three years at Boeckman, I have had opportunities to design curriculum, instruct advanced and intervention courses, advise yearbook, be a member of the Equity Leadership Team, serve on the Building Operations team, and teach Tiger Academy. My colleagues have gracefully mentored me through all of my moments of “I can’t do this,” encouraged me to seek out new experiences, such as pursuing my K-12 reading license, and, quite simply, taught me everything I know. I say that I work with the coolest, kindest people without a hint of exaggeration in my voice.

I feel so lucky to work in a community that inspires me each day.

—Ashley Mattei, Language Arts 6, Boeckman Middle School.

BMS New Staff Member Highlight - Robert Hazlett

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Name: Robert Hazlett

Position: Special Education Teacher

What is your hometown: Topeka, Kansas

What information would you like to share about yourself (family, interests/hobbies, college, etc.): Rock Chalk Jayhawk – I am a big University of Kansas basketball fan. I am a fifth generation graduate of KU so my blood runs crimson and blue. I love the outdoors when it’s warm. I love to go camping, hiking, kayaking, and campfires. I also love to travel and experience new places. I have traveled to over 14 countries and want to grow that list even more.

What is something people are surprised to learn about you: I am the only member of my family that doesn’t live in Kansas.

What excites you the most to work at BMS: I love the positive feel and support in the building. I love it when a school focuses on the positives and strengths of a student and help them reach high expectations.

What is one big goal you have for this school year: I want to become a positive and engaged member of the BMS family and get my attendance in without a reminder from the office.

8th Grade Bridging Concert:

The 8th grade band will be playing in a concert on Nov. 6, 2023 at 7:00pm at the FHS Recital Hall.

Students need to arrive at 5:45pm for rehearsal with the High School Wind Ensemble. They can be dropped off at Door #7. They need to wear BLACK BAND SHIRT, BLACK PANTS, and DARK SHOES.

Tubas, Baritones, and French Horns need to bring instruments from home. The concert will start at 7:00pm and end by 8:00pm.

Farmington High School Play

"The Somewhat True Tale of Robin Hood"

Get ready for an evening of laughter and fun as our talented students bring you a Monty Python-style comedy retelling of the classic Robin Hood story!

Dates and Times:

November 17th and 18th at 7:00 PM
November 19th Matinee at 2:00 PM

Tickets are available online now. Secure your seats

Join us to support our students' artistic passion and dedication, considering they’ve been working themselves down to their funny bones making this an unforgettable experience!

We Sure Would like to see you in Sherwood very soon! 😊

Fall Play Tickets

Special Education Advisory Council

When: Thursday, Nov 16, 2023, 6:00-7:15 p.m.

Where: FHS Commons

What is the Special Education Advisory Council?

The Farmington Area Schools Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC) invites any parent or guardian of a child receiving special education services through our district to participate in our meetings and trainings. SEAC members advise and help develop effective, responsive educational services, represent community voices and can support a vision for the future. SEAC is a way to stay informed of district programming and development as well as learn about departmental priorities.

Childcare is available! Please RSVP using the link below:

We look forward to seeing you! Please reach out if you have any questions!

Dana Strop, Director of Special Services

Meghan Dobson, Assistant Director of Special Services

AJ Dubek, Student Services Coordinator

Tara Owens, Student Services Coordinator

Heather Bergstrom, Student Services Administrative Assistant

Notification of Upcoming Survey: Farmington Student Experiences Survey (October 30-November 10, 2023)

In order to learn more about student experiences at school, we will be asking for feedback from students in grades 3-12 via an online survey they will be completing at school during the window of October 30-November 10, 2023.

Linked here is more information, which includes a link to decline survey participation. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Important Dates

Tuesday, November 14th................................8th Grade Jazz Concert @ FHS

Wednesday, November 22nd-Friday, November 24th.........NO SCHOOL

Thursday, November 30th..............................End of Trimester 1

*Details for some activities will be shared closer to dates.

Attendance Line

If a student will be absent, a parent/guardian must call Boeckman Middle School’s attendance line at 651-460-1405 prior to 9:45 AM each day of the absence. We ask that parents/guardians provide the reason for the absence at the time they call. The school determines if the absence falls within the excused or unexcused parameters. If the school does not receive a call from the parent/guardian the day of the absence, the student’s absence is automatically unexcused.

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About us

The mission of BMS, a learner-centered community committed to personalization that nurtures curiosity, to ensure each learner exercises ownership for continuous personal growth to have a positive impact on themselves and their communities through:

  • Honoring uniqueness and valuing diverse experiences

  • Safe and empathetic environments that foster authentic relationships

  • Nurturing joy and well-being

  • Mistakes and reflection as essential components of learning

  • Partnering with our communities