As the seasons change from the warmth of summer to the tumult of fall, it is nice to keep in mind the certainty of the seasons. There is a natural and predictable rhythm to the seasons.
Much like the work we all do in our schools, families, and community, there is a cycle we are all comfortable with and traditions we maintain. Parent conferences have just been completed across the district and were very well attended by a record number of students, parents and families. This communication is critical to the success of each and every child and supports the community expectations for our future. We thank all of those who participated in this work.
All too often, it is too easy to look at our circumstances and see the things that are not quite as we would want or that we wish were different, and it is sometimes more challenging to recognize the things we do well and celebrate them publicly. We are so blessed to have so many hard working students and staff to support the needs of all our children each and every day. Our future is in good hands with the quality of our young people and their families.
I would like to celebrate several special achievements within our school district.
Darek Grant, principal at Burley Glenwood Elementary, was nominated and selected as Peninsula Regional Distinguished Principal. The Elementary School Principals’ Association of Washington (ESPAW) has 18 regions throughout the state and Grant is one of 18 Distinguished Principals. The Peninsula Region consists of all school districts from Peninsula School District north to Port Townsend and west to Cape Flattery School District.
Grant is in the running for the National Association of Elementary School Principals’ (NAESP) Washington State National Distinguished Principal. He will be honored and recognized at the ESPAW conference in the fall of 2014. If Grant is selected as the Washington State’s National Distinguished Principal, he will be sent to Washington, D.C. in the fall of 2014 to be recognized at a Department of Education ceremony.
Three South Kitsap elementary schools have recently been designated as the Center for Educational Effectiveness 2013 Schools of Distinction. The annual program recognizes schools that made the biggest improvement in reading and mathematics during a five-year period. Burley Glenwood, Orchard Heights, and Sidney Glen Elementary Schools were three of 99 schools from across the state that earned the award. In addition, only five School of Distinction Awards were awarded to schools within the Educational Service District 114, which includes Kitsap, Jefferson, Clallam, and Mason counties and three were from South Kitsap School District.
This award is given to the top five percent of schools in each level — elementary, middle, and high school — that, as a result of improving their students’ skills, have more students achieving at higher levels on the Measures of Student Progress (grades 3-8).
We have much to be proud of as a community and school district. I continue to be both honored and humbled to serve this district and community.