Superintendent welcomes students back to school

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Welcome to the 2017-18 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 the Morgan County Charter 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 2017-18 school year.

We have continued to evaluate 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 and 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.”  We will continue to use the Raptor system as our centralized visitor management system.  Greg Thompson will serve as the system’s safety coordinator and will work with all schools to ensure our students are safe.

We continue to value the attendance of students and believe attendance is critical to successful academic engagement and 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 will continue our focus on ensuring students are on-time, don’t check out, and don’t sign out early.  Our focus last year proved worthwhile in improving the district’s academic achievement.  We ask that you help create an expectation of daily attendance.

Maintaining a well-disciplined classroom and school continues to be important.  We will be focused 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 our implementation of Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) to reward students who exemplify appropriate behaviors.

As a system, we will continue building a positive school environment through efforts of – Knowledge, Attitudes, Skills and Habits.  KASH is a culture that encompasses 21st century skills to be implemented K-12.  We have rebranded KASH and will be adding a community interaction. KASH will be specialized for age-level understanding and practice.  We encourage our community to embrace KASH and enhance the culture through recognition of students in the community.

Students will continue to see an expectation of integrating technology into their learning.  We have been successful in purchasing many electronic devices for our students.  Teachers and staff are being trained on how to best use technology to engage students in their learning.  We also have an enhanced, customer friendly web site and have added a new instructional resource management system called Safari Montage. I am happy to report that construction has begun on the new high school and career academy.  While the construction is exciting, please be patient as we work to ensure the project is completed on time and that school continues to happen during this process.  High school parents and students will need to observe new traffic patterns.  Primary school parents will also need to embrace a high degree of understanding as their traffic wait might be affected.  We will all be proud of the new building when completed.Excitement is ringing in the air as we bring in a new school year.  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 teachers and staff we look forward to serving you and your family.  It will be our pleasure to welcome your child on July 31.


Dr. James Woodard

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