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.

The Community’s public school is the greatest discovery, and the cornerstone of our democratic society – Horace Mann

Good Morning,
Thank you to everyone that stopped by the WiRSA booth at WASB. It was great to see you and meet many of your board members. Hopefully everyone had a great convention and you were able to take new ideas back to your districts.

Welcome
I would like to welcome Jeff Mangan and Nexus Solutions along with William Yingst and Colfax School District as new WiRSA members.

Congratulations
• Linda Goldsworthy, Social Studies teacher at Rhinelander High School as the recipient of the Global Educator of the Year Award.
• Robinson Elementary School, Laona School District and Phillips Elementary School, Phillips School District for being nominated by State Superintendent Tony Evers for the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program which recognizes overall academic excellence or progress in improving student achievement.

2017 WiRSA Conference Save the Date
The 2017 WiRSA Conference will be held Oct. 30-31 at the Glacier Canyon Lodge at the Wilderness in Wisconsin Dells. Please note the date and location change for this year. Room information and request for presenters will be coming out in the Spring.

2016-17 WiRSA Scholarship Deadline is February 15
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. See WiRSA Website.

Summer Science Camp Reminder – One Spot Still Open
Registration for the 2017 Summer Science Camp. If you would like to participate in the camp and bring students, please complete the following sign-up link. Positions in the camp will be offered on a first-come-first-served basis and a wait-list will be maintained for 2018. Summer Science Camp article.

Impact of Vouchers and Charters on Wisconsin Public Schools
This was a presentation at WASB given by Andrew Sarnow, Green Bay Area; Susan Schnorr, Oshkosh Area; and Bob Soldner, DPI. If you didn’t get a chance to attend the session, I thought you might find the information helpful.

Key Takeaways from the DeVos Confirmation Hearing
Last Tuesday evening, President-elect Donald Trump’s nominee for U.S. Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, spent over three hours testifying before the Senate education committee in the most contentious hearing for an Education Secretary that we’ve seen.
Watch Federal Flash for the highlights and key takeaways from the #DeVos confirmation hearing. #edchat Click to Tweet

WPEN Action Opportunity: Regional Budget Action Workshops!

Are you wondering how to make your voice heard as the 2017-19 state budget is developed? Would you like our legislators to use the budget and unexpected tax revenues to restore funding to our K-12 public schools?

Would you like to connect with local advocates and people who have other budget concerns to have a stronger, more impactful voice in the budget process?

You’re invited to discuss all these topics and more at the Budget Action Workshops being held around the state.

The purpose of the Workshops is to provide information about current budget issues, the budget process in Wisconsin, and what happens at the Joint Finance Committee public listening sessions. You’ll learn how to tell your individual story, you’ll be able to connect with other people who want to get involved, and you’ll have fun in the process.

This workshop is not just for those who plan to testify: it’s for all who wish to make an impact on the budget and beyond, and share with their communities ideas on how to develop a budget that ensures strong schools and thriving communities.

Four regional workshops are planned around the state, and each has a WPEN partner on the planning team and will feature breakout sessions to plan pro-public education budget actions specifically for your region.

Feb. 25 Kaukauna – 9:30 – 2:30
Feb. 26 Eau Claire – 11:00 – 4:00
March 4 Middleton – 9:30 – 2:30
March 5 Milwaukee – 11:00 – 4:00

You can register for the Workshops here 

Space is limited so register soon!

Director Events from Last Week
Jan. 16, Martin Luther King Day
Jan. 17, Ed. Issues conference call
Jan. 17-20, WASB Conference
Jan. 19, Meeting with DCA
Jan. 19, Education Academy Meeting

Director Events for the Upcoming Week
Jan. 23, Senator Strobel on AES
Jan. 23, Senator Larson on Community Schools
Jan. 26, School Finance Network Meeting
Jan. 27, Education Academy Committee Meeting

Resources and Grant/Scholarship Reminders
WiRSA Scholarships
2017 WiRSA Rural Awards
2017 WiRSA Conference save the date – Oct. 30-31 Glacier Canyon Lodge at the Wilderness Wis. Dells
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

Have A Great Week!