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posted: 9/27/2017 2:21 PM

Roselle schools taking steps 'on path to excellence'

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By Melissa Kaczkowski
Inside District 12

Welcome to the 2017-18 school year in Roselle Elementary District 12.

This year we will be laying the foundation for things to come in District 12. Many of you have heard me use the phrase "on a path to excellence" when talking about the strategic plan and the work that we are prioritizing in the district. I would like to share with you some of our celebrations from 2016-17 and give you a preview of what we hope to accomplish this year.

In 2016-17, we devoted a significant amount of time, energy and resources to the following priorities:

• Implemented a three-day STEAM experience at Roselle Middle School and incorporated various engineering challenges into our science instruction;

• Piloted STEMscopes at Spring Hills Elementary in kindergarten through fifth grade;

• Conducted an English Language Arts Curriculum Study Team that studied various ELA programs and ultimately selected the Pearson ReadyGEN and MYPerspectives programs that are in use this year in kindergarten through eighth grade;

• Continued to refine our implementation of math programs in kindergarten through eighth grade;

• Continued to learn about Fast Bridge online assessment;

• Initiated a Parent Advisory Committee;

• Expanded our learning and implementation of Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports;

• Shifted our model for providing special education services to include co-teaching between the general education teacher and special education teacher;

• Conducted a districtwide study team to investigate and develop our plan for supporting students who need academic or social/emotional intervention;

• Updated our facilities assessment and developed a Facilities Improvement Plan to deliver on the promises made during the referendum;

• Approved a three-year agreement with the Roselle Education Association in August; and

• Dedicated the Spring Hills Learning Gardens in August.

For 2017-18, we are very excited to continue to move along the path to excellence by prioritizing the following:

• Implement 12 SMART days during the year that will include professional development and ongoing support around key district initiatives;

• Implement ReadyGEN and MYPerspectives programs in kindergarten through eighth grade;

• Introduce and implement WIN, or "What I Need," in first through eighth grades. WIN is a time when all students can have their individual learning and social/emotional needs met in smaller group settings;

• Introduce and implement Discovery Zone in first through eighth grades. Discovery Zone is our district's version of Genius Hour, a time when students will be allowed to investigate and develop learning projects based on their individual interests;

• Develop and implement a three-day STEAM experience in sixth grade. This year, teachers will be planning and facilitating the full three-day experience;

• Conduct surveys and develop a District 12 Communication Plan; and

• Implement our Facilities Improvement Plan with a tentative construction date of June.

We want to thank our community members for their continued support. We hope many of you will join us for a school board meeting this school year. For dates, please see the district website, sd12.org.

• Melissa Kaczkowski is superintendent of Roselle Elementary District 12. During the school year, her column appears bimonthly in Neighbor.

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