May 27, 2016

Post date: May 27, 2016 12:37:33 PM

Dear Parents,

I apologize for the two weeks in between updates. It has been a busy time at DES. As I am writing this to you, almost all students have completed their SBAC and NECAP testing, There is a sense of relief throughout the school. As I mentioned earlier all of the students and staff are to be congratulated for their hard work and efforts. We have received some preliminary results and so far they are showing improvement. As I mentioned these are only preliminary results, but they are providing the feedback we were striving for.

We had a small Memorial Day assembly today for about 15 minutes to simply remind students why they have the upcoming long weekend. We discussed why Memorial Day was formed, said the pledge of allegiance, listened to Taps and heard some poems written by fellow students. It was a great opportunity to reflect on our many freedoms.

As we are moving forward through to the end of the year I would ask you to take some time to reflect on where your child(ren) have come as learners and people. Each year brings about so much change in children, but we sometimes fail to notice it since we are so focused on the day to day. I know with my two school age boys there have been some subtle and not so subtle changes. My oldest has become quite the mathematician and can rattle off his multiplication facts in his sleep. My kindergartner is reading and is becoming quite the little scientist. I could not say these things in September of this year as these skills were just emerging. I know you will find some of the same qualities in your own children. It would be a great exercise if you were able to take some time and have a conversation with your child about this.

As I am taking some time to review the calendar, it is clear that we are almost there. This brings about sheer excitement in students and, most often, sheer panic in teachers. We are at the point where we need to make that final push to ensure for curricular fidelity and students are at that point where they can see summer. It is a fabulous juxtaposition where youthful excitement and adult reality often intersect.

I also wanted to take a moment and let you know where we are with our math committee work. The math committee has visited three different school districts to view three different programs. We went to Franklin to see Go Math, Merrimack Valley to see Envisions and the Oyster River School District to see Eureka. On Wednesday we will be presenting our findings to the school board. If you are interested in learning more, but are unable to make it to the board meeting, we will have the PowerPoint uploaded after the meeting. It has been a wonderful journey for these educators. I am very proud of their work and their ability to put student learning first before anything else. I trust you will see the same ethos if you are able to review the presentation.

As a quick reminder,we have some important dates coming up. We have our annual spring fling on June 16th. The last day of school will be June 17th. This is our annual step up day when students will meet their new teacher(s) as well as having an early release time of 12:15. Our annual spring concert will be held on June 9th at 6:00 pm. Due to some scheduling conflicts, this is an all school concert. The kindergarten promotion ceremony will be held on June 15th at 1:00 and the 6th grade promotion ceremony will be held on June 15th at 7:15.

In closing, I hope you are able to take some time this weekend to spend with family and friends. It looks to be a hot weekend with some potential storms, but certainly great Memorial Day weather. I also hope you are able to take some time to reflect as a family why we have Monday off.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact your child’s teachers or any of us in the office.


Owen Harrington