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Thank you to our Sponsors: UW-Oshkosh, National Insurance Services, Culver’s VIP Foundation, Farmers Union, CESA Foundation, Forecast5, PMA, Meemic, Wisconsin Digital Learning Collaborative, Jostens and WEA Members Benefits.

Good Morning,

Happy Thanksgiving week to all our WiRSA members. Please take this time to reflect on all the great things in our lives for which we are thankful. Even when times seem tough, we need to focus on these positive pieces of our lives and know that what we do every day has a positive impact on someone’s life. Relax and enjoy!

WiRSA Conference Handouts:
Many new conference hand-outs and PowerPoints have been posted on the WiRSA website, click on 2016 Conference.

WiRSA Conference Survey:
The WiRSA Board is looking for your feedback. A WiRSA Conference Survey will be coming out in the next week. Please watch for my email and take time to complete this survey. Your feedback is vital in our preparation for next year’s conference.

2016-17 WiRSA Scholarships:
Be sure to inform your Guidance Departments about the 2016-17 WiRSA Student Scholarships. Each member district can submit one student for consideration for the five $500 scholarships given, one for each of the four regions and one at large.

UW-La Crosse School of Psychology Survey:
The School Psychology Program at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse is exploring the possibility of developing an online-only graduate training program in school psychology. We are aware of a shortage of school psychologists in Wisconsin, particularly in school districts in rural or low density population areas. Your feedback will be very helpful. Please watch for this survey later today or tomorrow.

DPI Releases State Report Card Information:
More than 82 percent of public schools and 91 percent of districts earned three or more stars on the state’s 2015-16 report cards, meaning they met or exceeded expectations for educating students. Another 227 schools in the state’s three private parental choice programs submitted accountability
data to the Department of Public Instruction but did not have scores or ratings because report cards require more than one year of data.

Additional information is available on the Department of Public Instruction newsroom website.

“The best partner I have is education.” Craig Culver, CEO of Culver’s Restaurants:
This is an excerpt from Mr. Culver words to the Wisconsin State Senate Committee on Agriculture, Forestry and Higher Education October 15, 2011 – Even though this is from 2011, I think it is important to connect with our business leaders and see if they share this same philosophy and support for education.

As I’ve matured as a businessman, I’ve discovered the best partner I have is education. It took me years to figure that out but, I finally did. Education is my partner in the business world and in all of our worlds, I believe. We at Culver’s have invested almost $2 million dollars in scholarship monies for our student team members and like many other smart businesses we have invested in education and partnered with education in many other ways as well.

If we truly want to grow jobs in our state and America, invest more in education. If we truly want to regain the stature our country had in the past and regain the American dream, invest more in education. Ladies and Gentlemen, education is the answer. It is the answer. Making it more difficult for students, especially in times like this, when it’s tough to get an education that is not the answer. That is not. I challenge you to find a way to lessen the blow to our students and regain what we once had.
AUDIO: Download

Director Events from Last Week:
-Nov. 14, Education Academy Planning Meeting
-Nov. 14, DPI Budget Conference Call
-Nov. 14, Meeting with Susan Wanta from Education Technology Partners
-Nov. 14, Meeting with Katie McCabe, UW-School of Education Research
-Nov. 15, REL Midwest Rural Research Alliance Meeting
-Nov. 15, Teacher Laboratories Markets, UW School of Education
-Nov. 15, Meeting with Representative Dave Considine
-Nov. 16, Conference call with new NREA Executive Director Allen Pratt
-Nov. 17, Legislative Council on School Data Meeting
-Nov. 18, DPI ESSA Interview

Director Events for the Upcoming Week:
-Nov. 21, Education Issues Call
-Nov. 21, Education Academy Planning
-Nov. 22, Meeting with National Insurance Services and WEA Members Benefits
-Nov. 22, WPEN Meeting

Resources and Grant/Scholarship Reminders:
WiRSA Scholarships
2017 WiRSA Rural Awards
School Funding Reform for Wisconsin
ESEA Information and more here.
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

Happy Thanksgiving.