August 14, 2018
Friday Letters (pdf)
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From Ms. Powers

Newsletter -- June 12, 2018

Dear WRS families,

Report Cards with Next Year’s Teacher Named
Please look inside your child’s folder/backpack for her/his report card.   The report card reflects the growth that your child has made this year. Based on my analysis of the Fountas and Pinnell Reading Benchmarks, the Primary Number Operations Assessment and the STAR assessments, we have much to celebrate!  I’m so proud of our students for their dedication to learning each day when they enter our school and for working together to create a respectful environment that allows ALL students to do their best work! Please note that your child’s teacher for next year is listed on the report card.  Look in your child’s backpack for the report card and the school calendar for next year!

New Staff Members Hired at W.R.S.!
As most of you know from the newsletter that I sent a couple of weeks ago, we have several staff retiring or moving on from W.R.S.  I want to take time once again to thank the following people for their years of dedicated service to the Hartford School District and the children at W.R.S.:

Melissa Hecsh- retiring: Mrs. Jessica Christian will take Ms. Hecsh’s position

Diane Langley- retiring: Ms. Michelle Farrell will take Mrs. Langley’s position

Joyce Leamy - retiring: Ms. Laura Kapushinksi (soon to be Laura Maggiolo-she’s getting married this summer!)

Tom Wetmore- retiring: Miss Julia Pinkava will take Mr. Wetmore’s position

Rebecca Taber- retiring: Mrs. Michaelynn Bouthillier will take Mrs. Taber’s position. (She goes by “Mrs. B.”)

Jennifer Wellman: Ms. Wellman has accepted a new job! A new candidate will be announced soon, I’m awaiting approval by the HSD School Board

While we will all miss working with the staff who are moving on to new things, be it retirement or a job elsewhere, we also welcome our new staff!

5th Grade Celebration- Wednesday:
Each year we hold a 5th Grade Celebration for our students who will transition to the Hartford Memorial Middle School next school year.  I’m so proud of our fifth graders for their ongoing work ethic, for being dedicated students, for the daily acts of kindness shown towards each other and for consistently helping out our younger students.  I am confident that these students will enjoy and thrive in middle school and that they will continue to demonstrate acts of kindness daily. We have so many talented students in this group and our staff always  enjoys hearing about our W.R.S. students’ accomplishments as they move through the HMMS and HHS and beyond. As I always say, “Once a White River School kid, always a White River School kid!” We often have W.R.S. alum stop by after school to reconnect with staff.

In our intimate ceremony, we show a slideshow created by Mrs. Flanagan that shows each 5th grader over time (if he/she has attended W.R.S. over time.)  The students each receive a certificate and their “formal wear” consists of a specially designed t-shirt that many of them ask their classmates to sign.  (Sort of like we once did with high school yearbooks!)

Positive Achievements Acknowledged @ W.R.S.:
While most of you are familiar with our School-wide Behavior Plan, many of you are not aware that many students throughout the year are referred to my office with a “Positive Office Referral” for demonstrating tremendous effort at school and progress or growth over time.  When this happens, the student and I call the parent and the student explains how she/he earned the certificate which will hang on the bulletin board by the library for about one month. I saw a rise in the number of students referred to my office for demonstrating persistence or growth over time as the year progressed.  I can tell you that assisting the children in calling a guardian/parent to share each child’s accomplishment and hearing the response of the parent called, is extremely rewarding! On a daily basis students at W.R.S. earn stickers that say, “ I was caught being___________ at W.R.S.” We removed the word “being good” and left a blank so that staff can be more specific about the good act.  Perhaps it was “being persistent” or “being caring” or “being helpful”. It is great fun to watch all of the adults ask our kids how they earned the sticker and to listen to the student describe why!

Recommendations for Summer Activities
Sometimes parents ask educators what they can do in the summer with their child.   I believe that our students “give it all they’ve got” when school is in session and I don’t believe in sending home packets of busy work.    The best way to help children maintain skills is to make sure that they read or are read to daily. I know that book lists were sent home. We are fortunate to have so many libraries in Hartford, I encourage you to check them out this summer! Here are a couple of other websites that are helpful in finding quality literature for your child to enjoy.

PBS Summer Reading

Association to Library Service to Children

Results of W,.R.S. School Community Survey
I’d like to thank those of you who were able to complete the survey that I shared a few weeks ago.  In total, there were 50 responses. Please following this link  to read the results.  

Our W.R.S. Leadership Team will analyze these results when we reconvene next fall and we’ll use this information as we consider ways to continuously provide systems and opportunities for our students.

Upcoming Events:
June 13th - Last day of school and 5th grade celebration for students and staff

Sincerely,

 

Sheila C. Powers
Principal

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