Friday, January 25, 2013

Reasons to Celebrate:
At our parent coffee this week I shared several reasons Gold Rush is celebrating. Below are few of the many reasons we believe our school is a great one!

Our Students Achieve!
I was pleased to share a lot of achievement data that confirms our students are achieving at high levels.  Look at just a few of our highlights from the state assessment (TCAP):
·      Gold Rush exceeded in reading and math growth!
·      89% of third graders and 90% of fifth graders were proficient or advanced in reading!
·      Students who scored advanced also grew at high levels!
·      Students in fifth grade made gains of 21% in reading proficiency from when they were in fourth grade.

In addition to TCAP data, I shared that former Gold Rush students scored above the feeder average on a 6th grade MAP math assessment, or the Measures of Academic Achievement, this fall.  Middle school teachers also complimented our students’ ability to question and think critically.

We Work Collaboratively to Support All Students!
As a school we believe that working together allows us to meet all students’ needs. It has been wonderful to watch classroom teachers’ work across their grade levels and with the special education team to create common reading outcomes.  We are looking forward to expanding our conversations with sixth grade teachers so that we can ensure that students make the transition to middle school with ease.  In February, for example, we will be hosting a fifth/sixth grade math articulation!

It has also been wonderful to have parents serve as active members of our collaborative team and we thank you for the support you provide your children.  We are looking forward to providing you with additional ideas on how to support your child in math in February when we host a K-5 parent math night. Please remember if you ever have questions on how to support your child or your child’s progress do not hesitate to contact your child’s teacher.  We value your questions and insight!

We Learn Together!
Teachers enthusiastically embrace the opportunity to learn from one another and from one of the most renown reading experts in education– Stephanie Harvey!  These learning opportunities have expanded how we teach key reading strategies and promote critical thinking in all content areas.  We look forward to welcoming Stephanie back during our next professional development day in February.

Mark Your Calendar:
State of Gold Rush Parent Information Meeting – Thursday, February 7 @ 7PM
Please join me in additional conversations about our accomplishments, our goals and our vision for the future.

Creating Innovators:
While the children were off of school last Friday the teachers were busy learning how to best prepare students for the future.  We dug into Harvard Professor Tony Wagner’s work.  Wagner researched innovators in science, technology, the humanities and the arts and examined what contributed to their success.  Wagner identified critical thinking, collaboration, adaptability, initiative, information analysis, effective communication and curiosity as essential skills.  His book, Creating Innovators, also provides examples of how innovators’ parents provided them opportunities to play and develop their passions and a sense of purpose. Click here to hear Tony Wagner speak about his work.

Well Wishes:
* We wish Penny Jackman, office registra, the best of luck in her new position as nurse at Shy Ridge Hospital.

Volunteers Needed:
* Volunteers are needed for vision and hearing screening on Monday (1/28) and Tuesday (1/29). Click here to help.