The 2018-2019 school year is officially off and running! Eleven new staff member joined the Prairie family and on August 16th, we welcomed back over 520 students to officially kick off Prairie’s 50th year. The students are why we are here and it was great to see their excitement and enthusiasm about starting a new year at Prairie.
This year’s district theme is all about empowerment (#empower203). During our opening days of professional development, I spoke with staff about how I want them to feel empowered to take risks and to think outside the box to best meet the needs of all learners. With that, I spoke with staff about doing the same for their students – empowering them to reach new heights, to grow and develop, both academically and social/emotionally, and to foster in each of them a love of learning. I know you will partner with us to empower your child(ren) to do the same.
In addition to getting students settled into the routine of school, several activities, events and clubs got underway during the months of August and September.
Our 5th graders headed to Camp Manitoqua on August 27th and 28th for Outdoor Education. Despite the heat, students (and staff) had a wonderful time fishing, tree climbing, and orienteering to name a few. I am confident many wonderful memories were made during these two days. Thank you to our 5th grade staff, Mrs. Rogers, Mrs. Brotherly-Lamb, Mrs. Mitchell, and Mrs. Ryan for the extra hours spent planning and coordinating this trip. Thank you also to Mr. Jessen, Ms. Wheeler, Mrs. Ramsay, Mrs. Koziol, Miss Gargano, and Ms. Brandes for chaperoning.
We had a wonderful turn out for Curriculum Night. It was wonderful to hear families share so many positive comments about the start of the school year.
Our Fall Social was held on Thursday, September 7th and was a huge success. It was great to see so many families connecting and enjoying the food and various activities. Thanks to the Fall Social committee for organizing such a great event for the Prairie community.
Our gardeners have been busy as Garden Club kicked off. Their green thumbs have not gone unnoticed as the garden is thriving and looking great. Thank you to Mrs. Cieckiewicz, Mrs. Callaghan and Miss Gargano for your support.
Miss Spayer kicked of chorus for our 4th and 5th Talk about dedication – these students get to school at 7:10 AM to share their love of singing. We are looking forward to seeing them perform in December. In addition to chorus, 4th and 5th grade before school sports also got underway under the direction of Mr. Gatenby.
A HUGE thank you to our Home and School and SFCP for all the work you have done, and will continue to do, to make this an outstanding school year. You are an incredible group and the Prairie staff and students appreciate all you do! And on a personal note, thank you for your warm welcome as I assumed the role of principal. I feel blessed to be here and to work with such outstanding educators, the best students in district 203, and you, our dedicated and supportive parents and families. Here’s to a great year!
FOCUS 2020 is the strategic plan for comprehensive improvement between 2014 and 2020, designed in response to community feedback, best practice, and a vision for the future. Ultimately, this blueprint will advance the fulfillment of the district’s mission.
FOCUS 2020’s foundation is the Future Focus Community Engagement process that occurred over the course of a year where hundreds of members from across the community provided feedback to the district leadership regarding areas such as facilities, finances, measuring student success, and programs of study. Learn more about Future Focus by clicking on the specific “Quick Link” to the left of this text.
The Blueprint includes four “Strategic Focus” areas, namely to:
Design and implement effective practices that promote learning experiences for all.
Foster a high-performance culture focused on student learning.
Steward resources effectively to promote student learning.
Effective communication and community relations.
Each Strategic Focus then establishes “Commitments.” These commitments are what the district leadership pledges to accomplish within a distinct timeframe. Each commitment then includes a detailed “Action Plan” which will be accessible by the public upon final draft.
District administrators provided an update on Blueprint Commitments to the Board of Education at the July 27, 2015 meeting. To watch that presentation, please click here.