Wednesday, August 22, 2012

It's Showtime!

What a great frist week of school!  Our staff and students have come back from summer break reenergized and focused on the work that we have ahead.  I've been so pleased with the positive atmosphere at the middle school this year and I'm looking forward to a positive and productive school year.  Over the last week I've walked through over 20 classrooms and I've observed respectful and engaged learning, which tells me that our students have come back to school ready and eager to learn!

At the all-school assembly that we had on the first day of school I talked to students about "Showtime".  I explained that summer break is a time for rest and relaxation, but now that we are back in school it is Showtime and we are all on center stage.  Showtime means that we are on our game.  It means that we strive to do our very best everyday, which means that we are on time, prepared, engaged, and ready to learn.

I also talked about the CMS mantra - Be Safe, Be Responsible, Be Respectful and Do Your Best.  Pretty much everything that happens in school falls under one of these categories, but the key to a positive school climate is respect.  Students need to take care of each other and treat their classmates with respect.  I encouraged students to stay focused and to be a positive force in the school.  But most importantly, students must respect themselves.  All respect begins with self respect and taking care of ones physical and emotional self. I explained that all of the adults in the school are here to help them do that and I encouraged our students talk to an adult if they are having problems so that we can help them work towards a solution.

Last year the middle school focused on the 40 Developmental Assets and we will continue to build on that this year.  In addition to the assets, we are going to focus on helping students find and develop their "spark" - that thing that students are passionate about and ignites excitement in their lives.  For some students it is athletics or music and for others it may be art or friendships.  Whatever the spark may be, we hope to encourage students to pursue and develop their spark at school and we hope to encourage parents to do the same a home.

I look forward to working with all our students and our students parents this year.  I encouraged our students to get involved in extra curricular activities and I would like to encourage our students' parents to do the same.  Beginning in September, CMS will host a monthly Parent meeting and I'm looking forward to a great turn out.  These meetings are a time for me to inform parents about what is going on in the school, educate parents on important topics like digital citizenship, digital reputation, and talking to students about their spark.  It is also a time for parents to ask questions about the school and to give input into how we can improve - we want to get better!  

Finally, I want to thank all of our students' parents for the many ways that they support their students and the school.  Great education does not happen in a vacuum and it is not confined to the walls of the school building.  It is a team effort and I believe that we have an outstanding team in Chadron!

It's Showtime!

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