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news Morris, 56267

Morris Minnesota 607 Pacific Avenue 56267

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Wow! It’s hard to believe but we are already six weeks into the school year, and time seems to be flying by. I love the fall portion of school as teachers are introduced to a new group of children and begin to see and discern the little things that make each and every child unique.  It also will soon bring the annual opportunity for parents and teachers to sit down and discuss student progress: parent-teacher conferences are Nov. 7 and 12.

Despite our best intentions, no one knows their child better than you do and the information you can share with us is extremely valuable. I would encourage you to utilize the JMC Parent Portal located on the district website.  Here you can check on your child’s grades and attendance. In addition, take a few minutes and write down some of the questions and observations you have related to the 2013-2014 school year. Some thoughts to consider:

• What are some of the key skills and knowledge my child will be expected to learn?

• Are there any special long-term projects I should be aware of?

• What can I, as a parent, be doing at home to help my child be successful?

• What things does your child’s teacher do to meet the needs of the different learning styles in the classroom?

As always, feel free to stop in and visit at any time. This is your school!

1. As many have already heard, Morris Area Elementary School has being recognized as a Reward School by the Minnesota Department of Education. This recognition (the highest possible award given) is based on the Multiple Measurement Rating (MMR) system used by the state to measure school performance. The rating is based on three categories: student proficiency in reading and math, student growth in reading and math, and closing the achievement gap.

Morris Area Elementary scored a 92.27 percent ranking – 33 points higher than 2011-2012. Thanks to our parents, the community of Morris, the hard working staff at MAES, and especially to our students for putting forth their best effort.  

2.  In honor of National School Lunch Week all elementary students will receive a free nutritious snack on Wednesday, Oct. 16. You can still sign up for this program if interested.

3.  Continue to check the school web site for pertinent information. Among other things, September Student Authors from grades 3-6 now have their work published. [First go to the district web site, then click on Elementary Home]

4.  Reminder:  Morris Area Schools will be having an evacuation and relocation drill taking place on Monday, Oct. 14, at approximately 1:30 p.m.  This will be a structured opportunity for our students to practice evacuating off campus and to experience what would happen in the event we were not able to return to school immediately. All students will be walking to the RFC and staff will provide supervision. It is anticipated the drill will last 45-60 minutes. The drill is part of our normal safety planning and helps us sift through potential problem areas in the event of a true emergency. If you would take time to discuss safety planning with your children, it would be greatly appreciated.

5.  Morris Area Schools fully supports military service members and their families. To best provide this support we are asking your help in identifying all military families in our district. Please contact our office by phone or email if you are a current member of the military (Active, Reserve, or National Guard).

6.  Did you know? Literacy is defined as the ability to talk, read, and write, leading to the ability to communicate and learn. Research overwhelming shows that the earlier we start learning these skills the better. Children knowing between 10,000 – 12,000 words when entering kindergarten tend to be successful learners. You can do your part (at any age) by reading to and with your children and asking them questions. If you want to be an over achiever – throw in some writing!

7.  Parents:  As I mentioned in my back-to-school letter, I want to again remind you of the significant change in the collection of fees and fundraising for the 2013-2014 school year.  In the past, every child in grades K-6 has been asked to contribute money or participate in fundraising at some point during the school year. This money may have helped pay for a trip to the zoo, ski event, assignment book, overnight class trip, music and PE supplies, or numerous other “extras” which enhance the educational experience for our students.  You may have noticed that this year we have so far charged ZERO fees and not allowed any fundraising.  Of course the expenses still exist and information will be coming soon asking each family to make a contribution or participate in our one fundraising event for the entire year. This letter will be sent home with the youngest in each family.

Upcoming Events

Oct. 17-18: Fall Break

Oct. 31: Fall Classroom Parties

Nov. 1: End of First Quarter

Nov. 3: Daylight Savings Time Ends

Nov. 7: Parent/Teacher Conferences

    (No School), 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.,

    2 to 5 p.m., and 6 to 8 p.m.

Nov. 8: No School

Nov. 11: Veterans Day Program,

    2 p.m., Elementary Gym

Nov. 12: Elem. Parent/Teacher

    Conferences, 4:30 to 7 p.m.

Nov. 13: Two hour late start

Nov. 28-29: Thanksgiving

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