Dear West Mercer Families,
THANK YOU! What an amazing teacher and staff appreciation you provided for us last week—we appreciate your kindness and generosity (and the great kids you share with us everyday)!
This is a very unique time of the year, we are still busy teaching and working with the AMAZING students we have now but we also are planning for next school year. We can begin to feel a little schizophrenic right about now. This year is even more complicated than usual because we will be saying goodbye to a number of students, families and staff who are moving to new schools as well as welcoming others who will be new to us next year. It is a busy time!
While we are embracing these two sides of our work (current and future), the state has reminded us of yet another side (our past) and has awarded West Mercer with an Achievement Award for our students’ strong test scores during the 2014-15 school year. What can I say, when you pair amazing staff with amazing students, you get amazing results! Congratulations to all!
I know that many of you have questions about our plans for next year. One of the things you may be wondering about is who our staff will be. We do not have FINAL staffing (things can change through the summer), but here is our current list of teaching staff:
· Kindergarten (all full day): Michele Frisch, Claire Phillips, and most likely one more (encourage your neighbors to get their registrations in!!)
· 1st grade: Elizabeth Rosane, Maria Weimann, TBD (interviews occurring this week and next)
· 2nd grade: Gail Calvo, Miriam Finch, Karen Glantz
· 3rd grade: Annmarie Laird, Leslie Scheurich, Lindzie Adamson
· 4th grade: Denise DiPrima, Sherry Isaacs, Rochelle Robinson (new to us, from California with a number of years of experience)
· 5th grade: Julie Langley, Chris Cocklin-Ray, TBD (interviews planned for next week and the following week)
· Highly Capable: David Baxter, Mark Headlee, Kirsten Bourke, Tom Tivnan
· PE: Casey Alin
· Music: Clara Kurtenbach
· Library: Tanya Sylvester
· Spanish: not yet assigned (teachers have been hired but not assigned to buildings yet)
· Art (.5): not yet assigned (teachers have been hired but not assigned to buildings yet)
· Learning Support (.5): Kay Walker
· Resource Room: Nancy Murray
· PLP Room: Linda Wakeman (new to us, from Renton with a number of years of experience)
· Associate Principal (.5): Jill Ravenscraft (new to us, from Issaquah with experience as a Dean)
· Principal: me (Carol Best)
While we would like to be fully staffed at this point in the year, it is not at all unusual for a few positions to still need to be filled (last year we hired 12 new teachers between May and August).
Some changes that we are looking forward to for next year are the addition of World Language to our kindergarten through 5th grade curriculum and the expansion of our art specialist position. We are excited to welcome World Language (Spanish specialists) to our school. The teachers have fully embraced this change and are looking forward to meeting our new colleague and seeing how this addition enhances our already strong academic program. We are also excited that the art specialist position will now be .5 in each building (rather then one position split over 3 schools) and since our school will be smaller, we anticipate more lessons will be delivered in each classroom. Finally, we anticipate that West Mercer will serve around 500 students next year (this is down from nearly 700 this year). This smaller size will mean better sightlines at recess (a majority of our potables will be removed this summer), significantly fewer double PE classes, two lunch periods (rather than 3), and the ability for all of our classes to assemble in one place (the blacktop) during evacuations.
We are certainly looking forward to the positive changes that come with a smaller school, we are still sad at the thought of saying goodbye to treasured colleagues, supportive families and wonderful students. If you are moving on, please know that we will miss you and wish you the BEST year next year!
· School Visitation: May 13th, 9:30-11:00am
· NO SCHOOL-scheduled weather make up day, Friday, May 27th
· NO SCHOOL-Memorial day, Monday, May 30th
· Islandwood (5th grade camp): June 6th – June 9th (4th graders, mark your calendars for next year’s Islandwood dates: June 5th – June 8th)
· Noon Student Release (Report Card preparation): Friday, June 17th
· Field Day: Tuesday, June 21st (K-2 10:30-11:30 and 3-5 1:30-2:30)
· Last Day of School: Thursday, June 23rd
· Students are not allowed to come early (or stay late) to play on the playground. We do not have supervision on the playground before or after school. Some students have been coming as early as 8:15!
· Always follow the drop off and pick up rules and procedures. We will begin to have “friendly reminders” when parents are being unsafe during these times as well as occasional police presence.
Just six weeks left in this school year, please encourage your child to stay focused so that they can get the most out of the lessons remaining!
May 2, 2016 – Families are invited to visit the school their child will be attending in the fall and become acquainted with the building’s layout, operations and opportunities while interacting with school personnel and PTAs.
Come visit your child’s new school on these dates:
For more information contact:
West Mercer, 206-236-3430
Island Park, 206-236-3410
May 23, 2016 - Olympic Cascade Aquatics (OCA) and the City of Mercer Island, partners with the Mercer Island School District in operating the Mary Wayte Pool, were honored for community service on May 20. Read more...
May 19, 2016 - Mercer Island School District voluntarily tested its facilities’ drinking water for lead this month as a precaution, and none of the samples were of any level requiring corrective action. Read more...
May 5, 2016 - Lisa Deen and Jill Ravenscraft have been appointed as associate principals at elementary schools in the Mercer Island School District, Superintendent Dr. Gary Plano announced. The School Board has confirmed the appointments, which are effective July 1, 2016. Read more...
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM Instructional Materials Committee Mtg.
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM MIHS Spring Concert I
9:40 AM - 11:15 AM IP 5th Grade Musical Assembly
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM IP 5th Grade Musical Concert
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM MIHS Spring Concert II
5:00 PM - 8:00 PM School Board Meeting
7:00 PM - 8:30 PM IP 5th Grade Musical Concert