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Principal’s Newsletter – February 2020

If February is a month to focus on love and caring, Hayden Peak is right in step.  This month we are implementing a new strategy for wellness, a “check in—check out” plan for students who might welcome another caring adult to show concern for their well-being.  Managed by our school psychologist, Mr. Stewart, this plan simply allows for students to stop in and say hi to someone in the building at the beginning and end of the day.  There is not a specific agenda that is either social or academic, but students might choose to show a piece of schoolwork they are particularly proud of, or simply have a short conversation, knowing that lots of people care every day that they are in school.  If you feel your child would benefit from this intervention, please call the school and let us know.

Our school currently has a “chronic absenteeism” rate of 37%.  That number includes all students who missed 10 or more days of school last year.  Of course, some absences are enriching; when you take a family vacation and experience new things, vocabulary and context are improved and students learn in ways beyond what school can provide.  Additionally, some illnesses take a few days for recovery, and we don’t want students who feel awful (or are contagious) in the classroom.  However, we do know that students learn best when their attendance is consistent, and we do all in our power to make their time here at Hayden Peak worthwhile.  It helps when you call the school to excuse an illness and make prior arrangements with teachers if you are taking your child out for a planned vacation.  Also, if your child is reluctant to come to school, let us know and we will work to support a reward system that can add some motivation to the already great things happening in class.

As we get to know your children better through this school year, we are keenly aware at how important it is to focus on our students one by one.  We look at lots of data—academic and behavior, growth and proficiency—with lots of acronyms.  We review IEPs and 504s and score PSFs and ORFs.  But it’s the conversations with individual kids that warm our hearts and keep us coming to work each day.  Knowing their struggles and seeing their resiliency is the light and joy of our jobs.  Stay connected with your child’s teachers and us, so we can continue to support each student’s needs, whatever they may be.  Have a terrific month of February!

Jennifer Fisher                                                          Cathryn Ford

Principal                                                                     Assistant Principal

Click on the link below to view/print a PDF copy of this newsletter.

February Principal Newsletter