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Grinnell-Newburg CSD

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Weekly Update, August 26, 2016
 
This week has been filled with planning and preparation for our students to return to school.  The administrative team and staff participated in teacher training, open houses, and our first day of school activities.  Other activities included stopping the envelope project at the high school, cleaning up Infinite campus, handing out student computers and visiting with Congressman Blum.    
 
There is always a sense of accomplishment and pride when the busy summer days finally come to a close and students walk through the school doors.  We have had our challenges started up a new student software system and the usual problem solving that comes with it, but overall the start of the school year was a fairly smooth one.  Here are some highlights that took place this week:
 
On Monday I had an opportunity to meet with Congressman Blum at the Chamber Office.   Many Grinnell leaders and business representatives gathered to meet the Congressman and hear about future hopeful strategies in D.C., that will create some movement in our economy and would result in enhancing the overall financial status for the Country.  The Presidential election will obviously impact the future plans.   There was a sense of “wait and see”.  I was able to connect however on a few issues regarding the new special education act and overall funding for our schools in times that we continue to try to do more with less.  
 
Open Houses:  This week our schools hosted open houses for parents to officially welcome students back to school.   
 
On Wednesday, we officially welcomed students to their first day of school.   I had the opportunity to ride the bus beginning at 6:20 am to meet our students who live on the far south/west/east side of the district.    All building principals met each bus at their schools drop off point to review the bus rules and afford all students the opportunity to learn and have a great year.  The students that rode on my bus had excellent behavior.   Again in the afternoon, I rode the far west/north routes.   This  helped me to learn the entire Grinnell district boundaries.   I was lost several times on some of the long country roads, but overall I felt I gained an understanding of where our students are coming from each day.  
 
I participated in an excellent welcome back to school presentation for our new high school freshman.   Our student ambassadors, and the high school staff impressed me as they welcomed our freshman!   There was a lot of energy that day.  
 
Facilities Committee will meet next Monday at 12:00 at the high school to discuss the envelope project, facility audit, tennis court update and the auditorium screen project.   
 
August 31st Board Work Session will begin at 6:00 pm in the Boardroom.  We will be engaged in reflection, planning, and moving forward.   This work session will enable us to develop and prioritize a plan for our district.   
 
Envelope project further details:  At this time I am waiting to hear about options regarding the envelope project.   I will keep you posted once I have further details regarding our options.    FEH provided three options.  Two of them I believe are not the best option, (painting the paneling or dipping the materials).  This is a short-term option.   I think that they need to replace them with a different color.  There was mention of potential costs for brick.  Please know this is an extremely expensive option.   There are some cases where a pre-made brick wall can be installed.   I will be investigating this too.  
 
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.
 
Sincerely,
 
Janet
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Janet M. Stutz
Superintendent
Grinnell-Newburg Schools