Volume 14-15 Issue #33
May 22, 2015
Dear Calais Families,
We eased into field trip season this week with two very local excursions. Our first and second grades made the trek to Chickering Bog on Thursday. Students and chaperones alike reported that the group had a great time and was in high spirits, even for the long walk up the hill at the start! Today our third graders are touring Calais. Key stops will include the town clerk’s office and a local cemetery or two where they will put out flags in honor of Memorial Day. Next week we’ve got a big trip to the Montshire and the annual morning at U-32 for the 7th grade book project.
Thank you to those who were able to join us on Wednesday night for our 5/6 Programming Conversation. Damien and Stacey shared information about the current configuration and recent changes to state standards. They then presented some pros and cons for the current configuration and two other models. While they were honest about their preference for one of those models – a small shift in which multiage homerooms and team taught science and social studies would remain the same but then one teacher would specialize in math and the other in literacy – they were also clear that no plans have been made to implement that preferred model. We truly wish to partner with parents in determining what will best meet student needs. If you were not able to join us, please see this two-page overview for the full rundown: 5/6 Programming Update - May 2015. At the end of the document you will find a link to a brief survey through which you can share your thoughts and questions. As before, while this is most relevant to parents of current fourth and fifth graders, we encourage anyone who is interested to participate in the conversation!
This is the final week to complete the Student Strengths, Interests, and Needs Survey. In the past, we have only sent this to families whose children are entering multiage classes (i.e., current kindergarten and fourth graders) as this information is particularly useful when making class list decisions. As we’ve reflected about the ways we partner with families in creating the best possible educational experience for students, it has occurred to us that this information is important for teachers to have each and every year. Accordingly, we are inviting any and all parents/guardians to complete a survey form for each child. This form will be shared with this year’s and next year’s teacher and used to support transition conversations that happen at the end of the school year. If you are planning to submit a survey, we ask that it be returned by Friday, May 29th so we have ample time to consider the information you share. Thank you in advance for helping us even better support your children’s learning!
Finally, we are excited to announce that Cheryl Ecklund has been hired to be our 1/2 teacher who specializes in math next year. She will step in for Randilee Raynor who will be out for a one year leave and has recently spent a day with our current first and second graders. Cheryl comes to us with many years of experience volunteering with elementary students and teaching middle school science. We are looking forward to the contributions she will make to our early grade science and math programming!
Have a fantastic long weekend!