January 2022 Newsletter
Bond Construction Update:
To read up on our current progress, please click here! The following items are the listed projects (current and upcoming) that we will complete through our bond referendum:
New Multi-Purpose Gym
K-8 Main Entrance Updates
K-12 HVAC Updates
New Electrical Boxes at Football/Track and Baseball Fields
New High School Doors/Locks
Americans w/ Disabilities Act (ADA) Compliant Sidewalks
HS Main Entrance Updates
HIGH SCHOOL (9-12)
School issued ipads and chargers
At the halfway point of our school year, I thought it might be a good time to revisit some things as it relates to our school issued iPads.
Please know that these devices can be damaged by extreme temperatures. Students should not leave them in their cars overnight as this could damage the screen and/or battery.
Students should fully charge their iPad every night so that when they arrive at school, they are prepared and ready for the days activities.
Students should be logged into their school issued iCloud account on their assigned iPad. You can do this by visiting: settings, Apple ID, and then logging in using your school email address and password. Doing this will help your iPad function as it should.
At the end of the year, students will be expected to turn their iPad in for inspection. Any damage to the case, device or charger could result in fees to that student. Additionally, students are expected to turn in the same charger that they were issued.
2nd semester schedules
If changes need to be made to 2nd semester schedules, please stop by Mrs. O'Halloran's office as soon as possible. You can check your 2nd semester schedule by logging in to JMC. Please keep in mind that students will have the first three days of the 2nd semester to make schedule changes.
All changes need to be made by the end of the day on Wednesday, Jan. 19th.
Attention All Juniors: Now is the perfect time for Juniors to consider taking the ACT test. While many colleges are not requiring it for college admission, it is still considered for merit scholarships. Students that qualify for free or reduced meals may also qualify for a free ACT waiver. See Cathy Fraker for more information about the waiver. The next testing opportunity is April 2nd. Register by February 25th to avoid any late registration fees. Stop by Mrs. O’Halloran’s office if you need help getting registered.
Do you still have questions about the FAFSA? The Iowa Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators Community Outreach Committee is holding a Financial Aid Roundtable Q&A event on January 25, 2020, at 5:30PM via Zoom. Financial Aid representatives from Southwest Community College, Kirkwood Community College, Grandview University, Grinnell College, and the University of Iowa will be available to discuss FAFSA basics, professional judgments, special circumstances, etc. This event is open to students and/or parents to get their questions answered. The link to register: Register
DMACC CAreer discovery days
Spring Career Discovery Days are right around the corner. Career Discover Days allow students, parents, and educators to explore different careers through hands-on activities and demonstrations. Visit DMACC Career Discovery Days for more information about career exploration opportunities. See Mrs. O’Halloran if you are interested in attending any of these events.
Virtual College Fair Event
MIDDLE SCHOOL (6-8)
Skills for SuCCESS
L-S 7th grade students are becoming more empowered to take ownership of their education through a new exploratory class called Skills for Success. Mrs. Sarah Rybkowski, 6-12 At-Risk teacher, has designed a semester-long course that is designed to explicitly teach skills in the areas of organization, time management, test preparation, communication, and self-advocacy. Each semester, half of the 7th grade students take part in the course.
Mrs. Rybkowski shared, "Skills for Success has been a wonderful opportunity to teach important executive functioning skills that will help students be successful in school and their future careers. Students are given opportunities to apply the skills taught in this class to their daily lives and reflect on them through a portfolio throughout the semester. I am looking forward to continuing to teach this class and modify it to meet students' evolving needs."
As we reach the halfway point of the school year, I wanted to take the opportunity to focus on the importance of school-family communication. With students this age and with the transition from one classroom teacher to multiple teachers, it can be difficult sometimes to know who to contact or when to reach out. As parents, we also want our kids to learn how to be more independent in communicating with their teachers when they have questions or need assistance. Sometimes that desire can lead to delayed parent-teacher communication.
Proactive communication between school and home is very important in helping our students have a successful school year. If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to call or email a teacher, guidance counselor, or Mrs. Bowlin if there is a way we can help your child.
ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (K-5)
Winter Weather Gear
With our winter weather in full swing, we want to make sure the students are prepared for playing outside at recess. Most students are doing a great job of remembering to bring hats, gloves, snow pants, boots, etc. each day. We have been given generous donations of extra hats and gloves that students can borrow when needed. We do not have extra snow pants, boots, or coats, so it is really important for students to have these at school each day.
If your student is in need of winter weather gear and it is difficult for you to be able to provide it, please do not hesitate to communicate with your child's teacher, Mrs. Gunsaulus, or Mrs. Bowlin. We would be happy to work with you confidentially to help purchase these items for your child.
Also, it is amazing how many children have black snow pants and other clothing items that look the same. Please take a few minutes to write your child's initials in their winter weather gear so we can help get misplaced materials back to their owners. Thank you!
On Friday, January 7th, 210 students took part in playing BINGO as part of our winter reading challenge. During our winter break, the students were encouraged to read books in a variety of fun ways and keep track of their reading activities on their recording sheet. Students who completed at least one reading activity were invited to play BINGO.
The students came to the middle school gym, two grade levels at a time and listened to our BINGO Caller, Mr. Dunsbergen, announce the numbers. Multiple BINGO's were awarded before the students were asked to clear their cards in between rounds. Each student who got a bingo was able to choose an item from the prize table.
We also had 181 students who were able to choose a new book at the end of their BINGO game. Students qualified for a new book by completing at least five of the reading challenge activities during winter break. Special thanks to Mr. Dunsbergen, Mrs. Foster, Mrs. Newell, Ms. Ricker, and Mr. DePenning for organizing our reading challenge and leading the students in BINGO!