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Weekly Update, May 12, 2017
 
Dear Board of Education, Staff, Families and Friends:
These past few weeks, even though it is the end of the school year, I have reflected upon the concept of “new beginnings”.  I have had the opportunity to experience each day as a new day in the Grinnell-Newburg School District.  Every day has been an opportunity to learn something new about our district, meet new people in the community, and learn about Iowa. It has been such an exciting year to engage with a supportive community, Board of Education and staff.  
 
While I reflect further, and think about Teacher Appreciation Week, I realize that each day is a new beginning for our teachers and staff to have the opportunity to try a new instructional strategy, a new idea, or offer insight that may entice a student to try something new or different.   Our teachers inspire students to take risks and reach for their goals.  Please join me in thanking our teachers for inspiring our students to learn something new each and everyday.       
Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!  
 
Retiring this year:  
We would like to wish all of our retirees well as they say goodbye to their Grinnell-Newburg School family.  They will be greatly missed. We thank you for your service and your dedication to the students and families in Grinnell.   Many celebrations will be occurring over the next few weeks to honor our retirees.   We would like any of our public to join in on the celebration on June 1 at 2:00 p.m. as we celebrate our retirees and recognize years of service of our staff. Each school will also be honoring their own staff.  
 
Retiree’s
Patty Lloyd, 33.5 years of service
Mary Newton, 26 years of service
Betty Niday, 15 years of service
Sally Smith, 34.5 years of service
Bruce Hidlebaugh, 27.5 years of service
Ellie Arsenault, 24 years of service
Margie Laehn, 14 years of service
Carol Hirsch, 10 years of service
Debbie Smith, 24 years of service
Sandy Allen, 30.5 years of service
Jeanne Hanson, 20 years of service
Sally Kriegel, 29 years of service
Elizabeth Hansen, 30.5 years of service
Chris Molitor, 23 years of service
 
Admin Team
This week we gathered together to engage in a hopping administrative team meeting that included two guest presentations.  Our guidance counselors presented a 504 Planning Guide that will enable each school to provide consistency as we prepare 504 plans for students who qualify.  Caleb Elfenbein brainstormed with the administrative team on ways in which the Center for Humanities can support current activities in our schools, such as author visits and other cultural awareness experiences for our students.  We are grateful for this opportunity and wonderful partnership.   
 
The administrative team will also be reaching out to our PLC leaders and coaches for the 2017-18 school year to participate in a vision, mission planning meeting on June 12 from 9:00-2:00 p.m.  This collaboration will be beneficial as we move to continue school improvement and professional development initiatives.   
 
Student Safety walking to and from school:
It has come to my attention that we have students who are choosing to cross busy streets, rather than use the in-town shuttle system provided for all students.  Please know we have a shuttle system provided so that no child should ever need to cross 146 or Hwy 6. This is a safety concern, not only for our students, but also for the cars on the street who are stopping in the middle of the street to allow students to cross.  I would ask parents to talk to your children about being safe and to please require your children to use the shuttle system unless you are picking your student up, or meeting them at the appropriate crossing light to ensure that they cross the street safely.  Safety is a priority for all students and we want to avoid serious injury to our students or any driver.  
 
CEC Meeting:
This past week Principal Sarah Seney and Karen Neal presented the Summer SLICK program to the CEC group at Mayflower.  The CEC voted to donate $2,000 to support the summer program for our students to cover materials costs.   
 
Global Compliance Network:
All staff will soon be getting an email to set up an account in the Global Compliance Network (GCN) system.  This software consists of several modules in which all staff can easily meet the necessary yearly training requirements such as bloodborne pathogen, harassment prevention, proper lifting techniques, and much more.  Staff will be able to review the modules at their own pace.  Further information will be forthcoming.   Please contact your building principal if you have any questions regarding this system.
 
Board Meeting Highlights:
The Board of Education met this past week and approved the GNEA contract.  The contract for our teachers and paraprofessionals will be a two year contract with a 2.1% salary increase.   GNEA and the administrative team will also form a Labor Management Committee that will be used as a vehicle to collaborate on topics related to working in the Grinnell-Newburg School District.  The Board also engaged in discussions regarding the contract with CMBA which we will recommend for approval at the May 24, 2017 Board meeting.   
 
Davis Ag Safety Day at the Fairgrounds:
There has been some awesome learning going on with the Davis Elementary students as of late.  Below are some highlights from the past week!
 
Today, our students were lucky enough to attend Agriculture Safety Day at the fairgrounds in Grinnell.  This event was organized by the Poweshiek County Extension Office.  Students rotated around to stations to learn about different aspects of Agricultural safety.  A special thanks goes out to community partners/businesses who participated in teaching our students important information that is applicable to living in Iowa and the Midwest.  We had leaders from Monsanto, Alliant Energy, Lowery Equipment, Poweshiek County Extension, Poweshiek County Conservation, Farm Bureau, Van Wall, Great Plains, Stan’s ATV, and Great Plains.  Sessions for our students included: Auger safety, PTO safety, Chemical safety, Electrical safety, Lawn mower safety, Animal safety, Tree conservation, Tractor simulator, ATV safety, Tractor safety, and Agriculture sign safety.  Thanks also goes out to Farm Bureau for providing all of our kids with an awesome lunch!  Below are some pictures from the trip!
 
 
 
Our 4th graders attended their annual Y-Camp trip late last week.  Each year, 4th grade students go the YMCA camp near Boone, Iowa and get many great experiences related to Science, outdoor learning, and team building exercises.  We are very fortunate to have many great parent/community volunteers that accompany our teachers to make this a valuable experience.  This is a 3 day/ 2 night trip where our students stay in cabins and get a really unique outdoor experience.  Below are some pictures from this awesome trip!

 
 
Superheroes, Unite!
Please join us for a fantastic production of Superheroes, Unite!, put on by our Middle School.  Performances will be held in the Middle School Mini-Theatre.  Admission is free and open to the public. Donations are welcome with a suggestion of $5 per person.  
Saturday May 13th at 7:30pm and Sunday, May 14th at 2:00pm
 
Please enjoy this Promotional Video created by a GMS student!
Cast of Superheroes, Unite!
 
Director Jeanine Link, Ava Deitrich, Oswaldo Ambrosio and Jarrett Rose.
 
This week our Middle School Boys Track team participated in a Conference Meet, hosted in Grinnell.  It was wonderful to see our students giving it their all on the field.  A job well done.  
 
 

 
Freshman Orientation
This week the High School hosted incoming Freshman students from the Middle School for a tour of the building with Student Ambassadors.  Students also got to visit the Activities Fair.  
 

Upcoming Events: To view all our upcoming events, please visit our website to view the calendar.

  • May 12 --  GHS Spring Choir Concert
  • May 13 & 14 -- Middle School Play, Superheroes Unite!
  • May 16 -- 5th grade field trip to Diamond Lake
  • May 16 -- All-City Band Concert
  • May 17th -- Thespian Induction
  • May 17th --  Davis 3rd Grade to the Grinnell Historical Museum (Rain date the 18th)
  • May 17, 18,19 -- 8th grade Camp-Out at Rock Creek State Park
  • May 19 -- BP Kindergarten to the zoo!
 
There is a lot going on this weekend!  There will be the GHS Spring Choir Concert, Middle School Play Superheroes, Unite!, and many students will be traveling for activities in debate, soccer, golf, and tennis.  Good luck to all our fine students!   
 
Have a great weekend!  New items continue to flood in on the Virtual Backpack, take a look!
 
Sincerely,
 
Janet