Wow, it’s hard to believe the school year is in its final phase. Many of you are gearing up for Awards Ceremonies, AP Exams and final graduation preparations. As you send another class of young adults out into the world, be proud of the work that you and your staff have done to prepare them. Although budget cuts have hurt us, the professionalism in rural public education is still outstanding. It is this professionalism that allows us to continue to turn out well-educated young adults. Keep up the great work.
WiRSA Scholarship Recipients: It is with great pleasure that I introduce and congratulate the five 2016 WiRSA Scholarship recipients. Each of the recipients will receive a $500 scholarship upon successful completion of the first semester of their freshman year of college. We had over 60 qualified applicants for the scholarships and I am so impressed with the quality of students we continue to turn out in our rural public schools. I also want to thank the WiRSA Scholarship Committee for their hard work in reviewing and scoring the applications. (Student bios and pictures will be posted on the WiRSA website in the near future.)
Region 2 – Natalie Gawron – Black River Falls High School
Region 3 – Emily Amundson – Frederic High School
Region 4 – Alyssa Plemel – Niagara High School
At Large – Jessica King – De Soto High School
WiRSA Board of Directors Meeting: The WiRSA Board of Directors will be meeting via Zoom on Thursday, April 28th at 3:15. The Agenda and Directors Report are attached.
ESSA Negotiated Rulemaking Committee Agrees on Testing Issues: If you are interested in the latest report on ESSA follow this link.
School libraries to share $37.7 million from Common School Fund: The DPI this week released information on the Common School Fund – For more information click here.
Whole Grade Sharing Reminder: As undertones of school consolidation start coming out of the Capital, it is important to remind legislators and community members of the Whole Grade Sharing option that was recently passed in the last budget. Whole Grade Sharing (WGS) authorizes school boards of two or more school districts to enter into an agreement to provide for the education of students, in one or more grades from pre-kindergarten through grade 12, by one or the other of the districts. An agreement shall be for no less than a full school year. WGS is authorized by s.118.50, Wisconsin State law prescribes the timeline, so at this time the WGS option can be used beginning in the 2017-18 school year. More information can be found here. It is important to remind legislators of the need to bring back the fiscal incentive, similar to Iowa, that was removed from the budget. I have started some of these discussions and will continue to do so.
Events from this Past Week:
- April 20 – CESA 3 Educator Effectiveness Work Group
- April 21 – Meeting with John Forester
Events for the Upcoming Week:
- April 25 Educational Issues Conference Call
- April 25 Meeting with Kate Meredith of the Williams Bay Observatory – Rural Grant
- April 26 REL Midwest Directors meeting in Oakbrook, IL
- April 27 DPI Rural Advisory Council meeting at Suring High School
- April 28 Meeting with Brodhead School District Administration
- April 28 WiRSA Board of Directors Meeting
Resources and Grant/Scholarship Reminders:
- School Funding Reform
- WiRSA 2016 Conference Save the Date: November 9-10 in Stevens Point “Rural Schools – Creative Best Practice”
- ESEA Information and more information
- ESSA Overview Video – Narrated PowerPoint – This information is also available off the ESEA web page on the DPI site.
- Into the Outdoors – Free Classroom Resources
- Meemic Foundation Grants for Teachers
Have a great week.