“To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” – Donald Laird
In the past few weeks I have had the opportunity to visit the buildings in the District and see the high quality instruction being delivered in the classrooms. Every minute of each period and day being used strategically to provide students differentiated opportunities to reach mastery on content, learn to collaborate with their peers and exhibiting multiple methods to demonstrate knowledge. You are truly dream builders for children.
Each member of the Rock Island-Milan team working together results in our students being successful. From serving nutritious meals, to maintaining a clean environment, to assisting in the classrooms, to distributing medications, to answering telephones; each interaction establishes the climate of respect and trust for students and adults. Everyone must work together to carefully orchestrate a successful day for the school.
Thank you for your comments and questions during my visits. Time appears to be the most precious asset available for us to accomplish our mission. Efforts will be made to free up time for important tasks by streamlining other requirements. For example, the District is researching the use of computer based learning for mandatory trainings. This would allow mandatory training to occur at your own pace. Such a system could free up release time for teaming, grade level meetings, cadres, etc. Even with this adjustment, time will continue to be precious. Continuing consideration to maximize the opportunities for better use of existing time and, perhaps, providing more time is needed.
As this is the last Rock Island-Milan Lines before the fall inter-session I wish to thank you for a great first quarter and wish you a relaxing and enjoyable break!
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
Whatever It Takes!
Becky Morley and Deb Fedderson at Longfellow Liberal Arts received a WIT for planning and presenting the first multi-lingual LAFF (Learning and Family Fun) in the school district. The event was informational for both families in ELL homes and for English speaking families interested in introducing their children to a second language. It was the perfect opportunity for these families to assist the school in a very significant way. The families played and took home a flashcard game involving colors in English, Spanish, Arabic, Burmese, and Karen. AND the parents helped start a multi-lingual library at the school by adding different languages to books. “Thanks to Becky and Deb our school is one of respect and diversity!”
Jeff Duster at Rock Island High School was nominated for a WIT because of our Core Value of Empowerment with Responsibility. Jeff is an excellent teacher and collaborator and is always there when you need him. He teaches social studies but also teaches everything! Jeff has recently started giving guitar lessons to students in his classroom on Thursday’s after school. If students are interested in ANYTHING – he is ready to teach. “It doesn’t get any better than that and others are honored to teach in the same building with him every day.”
Jeff Wendland and Liz Kantner at Rock Island High School received a WIT nomination for Community Satisfaction because of their outstanding collaboration for
this year’s High School Homecoming event! Their organizational skills brought students, staff and community organizations together to make it a time to remember for everyone. There were a record number of entries in the parade and the school was decorated from top to bottom. Their efforts did wonders for spirit not only at the school, but throughout the district!
Wendi Defauw, Paraprofessional at Washington Junior High, received a WIT nomination for Empowerment with Responsibility and making all students a priority at the school. She never becomes impatient or loses her cool with her students in Room 204, and sets high expectations for them when they are interacting with the rest of the
students at WJHS. In Room 204 all students feel welcome and anytime a student needs help, Wendi is there to assist. She goes above and beyond for all of the students at WJHS.
Carol Hawkins, Paraprofessional at Washington Junior High, received a WIT nomination for Empowerment with Responsibility by addressing many issues outside her classroom realm. She helps students with sensitive and sometimes embarrassing issues without batting an eye. The student’s sense of self-esteem is her utmost priority. From helping ELL students gain familiarity with the language, to helping a student with a sensory issue, Ms. Hawkins takes the utmost care in the best interest of the student. She will also help all of the students at WJHS with academics, they only need ask. “We are very blessed to have Ms. Hawkins at Washington Jr. High!”