Dear Students and Parents,
Welcome to the 2016-17 school Year. We are excited and looking forward to your return.
To all the new parents and students, thank you for entrusting us with your child’s education. We take this responsibility very seriously and will work diligently to gain your trust and confidence.
To students and parents who were with us last year, we are so glad to see you back. We value the trust you have in our school system. The confidence you continue to place in our school system is valued and appreciated.
The start of every school year brings about new opportunities. I spend numerous hours listening to the needs of our students, teachers and community. These listening sessions have helped guide direction and support for the 2016-17 school year.
We will continue our focus of “Creating a Performance Culture Focused on Student Achievement.” The Cornerstones of this plan are still important to our success:
Safe and Well Disciplined Schools
Rigorous and Engaged Classrooms
Strong Student Support
Well Maintained Facilities
As a community we need everyone’s help in addressing the following:
Safety is always at the top of our list for discussion. We value the basic need of providing a safe school environment. Our discussions lead us to the balance between “safety” and “convenience.” We always intend to stay focused on “safety.” Multiple changes will take place this year regarding safety. These efforts include implementing the Raptor system (a centralized visitor management system), conducting background checks for various levels of employees, updating and implementing preparedness guides, and collaborating with local law enforcement to conduct school accessibility evaluations and active shooter drills.
We value the daily attendance of students and believe attendance is critical to successful academic achievement. Students who meet high levels of attendance perform at higher levels. We have great teachers and staff, and they want to help students succeed. We recognize that students get sick and have other medical obligations, and these instances are understandable and excusable. However, we need your commitment to ensure that students are on-time, don’t check out, and don’t sign out early. This will provide a consistent flow of academic learning.
Maintaining a well-disciplined classroom and school is another important area. We will be focusing on helping students understand the model of behavior conducive to academic achievement. Please review the student code of conduct and discuss appropriate behavior with your child. This will help set the expectation for a positive learning environment. We will continue implementing Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) to reward students who exemplify appropriate behaviors.
As a system we will be building a culture through efforts of KA$H – Knowledge, Attitudes, Skills and Habits. KA$H is a culture that will encompass 21st century skills to be implemented K-12. Students will be introduced to a term, concept, or practice each week, with a culminating activity at the end of each 9-week period. KA$SH will be specialized for age-level understanding and practice. We encourage our community to embrace KA$H and enhance the culture through recognition of students in the community.
Students will continue to see an expectation to integrate technology in their learning. We have been successful in purchasing many electronic devices for our students, and teachers and staff are being trained on how to use technology to engage students in the learning.
I could go on and on about the many wonderful things our leaders, teachers, and staff have planned for our students. Excitement is ringing in the air. Madison and Morgan County are becoming a beehive of activity focused on supporting students. Jump in and help your child take advantage of the many wonderful opportunities which exist in the Morgan County Charter School System.
On behalf of the 471 employees (teachers and staff) we look forward to serving you and your family. It will be our pleasure to welcome your child on August 1.
Dr. James Woodard, Superintendent