Principal's Newsletter

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Hickory Point Happenings Week 32

Hickory Point Happenings

Week 32- April 22, 2019

In this edition:

  • Class placement process

  • PBIS Update

  • Earth Day

  • Important dates

Class placement process (Final posting)

Dear Hickory Point Parents,

The class development process is incredibly elaborate and carefully planned each year in an effort to promote a nurturing culture for learning and a positive rapport between the children and the teacher. We have three primary goals when developing class sections:

1.     Ensure that each child’s academic needs are met.

2.     Pair each child with another student or groups of children for social-emotional success.

3.     Consider teacher styles.

The class sectioning process involves multiple school personnel who consider numerous factors while maintaining an efficient schedule that meets the needs of all our students. This process takes countless hours and goes through multiple iterations over the course of many months. Some factors in the process include:

  • Maintain the district class size of 17-22 with comparable class sizes across the grade levels

  • Balance the number of boys and girls in a class and across the grade level

  • Ensure the needs of students who receive support are aligned with the schedule of the grade level and support personnel working with them. This includes the following teachers:

    • Special Education teachers

    • Speech and Language teachers

    • English Language Learner (ELL) teachers

    • Reading Support teachers

    • Math Support teachers

  • Review peer dynamics (students who work well together)

  • Create groupings of children in both math and reading so there are comparable abilities in the classroom for collaboration

School principals often receive many parental requests for children to be placed with specific friends. As you can imagine, this becomes an impossible task while trying to place children in an environment that best meets the needs of all children we serve. Given the complexity of scheduling, we cannot accept specific friendship requests or teacher requests by name. Should your child have specific needs that we are not already aware of, or if there is a known reason to separate children, it is a good idea to send a reminder email message to the principal. While parents sometimes want their child to be with a close friend or a specific teacher, it’s not always in your child’s best interest in the classroom environment. Ultimately, we share a common goal to place children in a classroom where each child thrives both academically and socially. We are committed to developing class sections with each child in mind while balancing the complex variables listed above. The lists are developed and reviewed over time and by many staff members. Through our elaborate and multi-step class development process, it is our intention to place our students in an environment where each child has a happy and successful school year.

Thank you for your support and understanding.

For your children,

Maureen Deely and Meggan Buchanan

PBIS Update

Research shows that when behavior expectations are clearly established and taught at home students are likely to follow expectations at school. Here are a few steps to help you support your child’s social behaviors and competencies.

  • Clearly communicate expectations and talk about what it looks like if your child(ren) is/are following the expectation at home.

  • Children need teaching and interactive modeling to learn behavior skills. They do not know the skills unless they are taught the skills. Show your child what success looks like.

  • Recognize your child for following expectations. Provide specific feedback so your child knows why he or she is being recognized.

  • Provide specific feedback if your child does not follow the rule or expectation.

If you would like to learn more, please see parent training resources at Thank you for supporting our work with your child.

Earth Day is Monday!

Monday, April 22nd is Earth Day. Please wear green on Earth Day. We will be continuing our composting efforts in the lunchroom. There are many ways to help protect the earth and to reduce our carbon footprint. The following is a list of things we can all do to help the environment:

  • Recycle - Energy saved from recycling one aluminum can is enough to power your television for 3 hours!

  • Refill your plastic water bottles.

  • Turn out lights if you don’t need them.

  • Walk, ride a bike, don’t drive.

  • Use less paper – paper comes from cutting down trees in our rainforests. The rainforests are the earth’s natural protectors from global warming.  We need our trees!

  • Reuse shopping bags at the grocery store.  Bring bags with you. Avoid plastic bags as much as possible. Recycle plastic bags by returning them to the grocery store collection bin.

  • Stand in awe of a tree, find a picture in a cloud and walk barefoot in the grass!

School is not in session on Friday, April 19th. Enjoy the weekend.