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Weekly Update, April 28, 2017
Dear Grinnell Board of Education, Staff, Families and Friends:
Each year during the month of May, we recognize our dedicated teaching staff during “Teacher Appreciation Week”.  I want to thank our Parent Teacher Organizations, community members, Board of Education and staff for reaching out to our teachers and thanking them for making a difference in the lives of our students.  We recognize that “Teaching is the profession that teaches all other professions” (author unknown).  Teachers have the ability to shape the minds of our future, inspire students to think critically, and engage them to solve real world problems.   During this time, I remember what one of my own teachers said to me that inspired me to help others learn, “You have the ability to inspire others not because of the knowledge that you hold, but because of the passion in your heart that you want others to learn” (Silva).  Thank you Grinnell Teachers for all that you do to inspire our students.  
Barb Van Ersvelde
Congratulations to Davis Elementary Music Teacher Barb Van Ersvelde! Barb is receiving an honorary degree from Grinnell College, from her work to develop a Lunchtime Language Learners program to bring foreign language to our elementary students.  (Article detailing program.)  
Above & Beyond
This week we recognized student Julia Chamberland for her work to organize the planting of trees across the high school campus, and staff member Abby Allen for her dedication to both the academic and social/emotional well being of our Middle School Students.  
If you would like to nominate a student, staff or community member that you believe should be recognized, please email the Above & Beyond committee at aboveandbeyond@grinnell-k12.org, providing the individual or organization’s name, and why your nominee deserves to be recognized for going above and beyond.  Thank you!
Virtual Backpack
Don’t miss out on many summer opportunities for your student.  We have lots of new posts on the Virtual Backpack.  Summer Fun to be Done!   
Admin Team Meeting
The administrative team met this past week to finalize the 2016-17 school year action plan, discuss the collaboration with our PLC’s and discuss June training with the AEA, review the PLTW scale up grant, Apple Distinguished application process, Clarity survey dissemination, and much more. This time of year is very busy with many activities, assessments, and final end of the year plans.  I want to thank our administrators for all of their hard work and dedication to our students and families.  
Board Meeting
At the Board of Education Meeting this Wednesday, the Board Appointed CMBA the bid for architect, and we will be moving forward to draw up a contract to bring to the Board May 10, 2017.  Following approval of this contract, the administration will collaborate with the CMBA to engage our teachers, staff and community members to discuss the future of our facilities in Grinnell-Newburg School District.
Professional Development - No School, Monday May 1
This Monday we will commence in Professional Development again.  Among other things, we will hold a third session with our AEA representative reviewing best practice and research prior to piloting literacy curriculum resources for next year.  I have high hopes it will be a great and productive last Professional Development day for the year for our staff.  
Fairview and Bailey Park PD Plan
Davis PD Plan
Middle School PD Plan
High School PD Plan
Little Hawkeye Conference:
This afternoon I attended the superintendent's roundtable discussion with our conference superintendent's.   Our focus for today’s meeting was to review all of the current legislative action during the past few months.  
The tennis courts have finally been completed, and they look wonderful!  Our boys team had the opportunity to play the first match on the new courts this past Thursday, and the girls will get a chance early next week. A huge thank-you to the community for continually supporting all our programs!   
Weekly Update Highlight a School: Davis
There have been great things going on at Davis Elementary in the past few weeks!  Below are some of the highlights.
Earlier this week, we were fortunate enough to be visited by Kami Walters from Grinnell Regional Medical Center and high school students from iSteps (Iowa Students for Tobacco Education and Prevention) program.  They taught our students the importance of staying away from tobacco to be healthy and drug free.  Our students got the chance to learn from some great mentors learn more facts on the importance of this issue.
Our 3rd grade students were visited by one of our fabulous local farmers last week to begin planting for our gardens.  Students have been learning a lot about the planting process and had the chance to experience something they don’t normally participate in.  Below are some pictures from some of the planting demonstration.
Our 4th grade students were visited last week by our friends from the middle school.  Mrs. Harris, Mrs. Van Arkel, and some band students from the middle school came to talk about the benefits of our Music, Choir, and Band programs.  Our kids learned a lot and got to hear how much fun being a part of each program is.  Below are some pictures from their visit!
Upcoming Events: We’ve got a lot going on in the month of May!  Mark your calendars now!
  • May 2:  2nd Grade Civic Center
  • May 2:  5/6  Spring Choir
  • May 3-5:  4th Grade to Y-Camp
  • May 4:  7/8  Spring Choir
  • May 4:  Science Focus Day at Fairview
  • May 4-5:  BP / FV 2nd grade to visit Davis
  • May 4:  7/8th Spring Choir
  • May 11:  5th grade field trip to the DMACC Water Festival
  • May 12:  9th Grade Orientation/HS Activities Fair
  • May 15:  Drake Library Summer Visit to GMS
  • May 16:  5th grade field trip to Diamond Lake
  • May 16:  All-City Band Concert
  • May 17:  Thespian Induction
  • May 17-19:  8th grade Camp-Out at Rock Creek State Park
  • May 22:  Iowa Assessment Recognition at GMRC for GMS students
  • May 24:  7th grade field trip to Red Rock Lake
  • May 24:  Fine Arts Awards Night  
  • May 27:  Take a Child to Work Day for GMS and GMRC
  • May 27:  Senior Awards Night
  • May 28:  Commencement
  • May 31:  GMS Celebration Assembly
  • June 1:  GMS Presidential/Academic Awards Assembly
Have a fantastic weekend!
Janet M. Stutz
Grinnell-Newburg Schools
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