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Happy New Year

posted Mar 3, 2013, 4:15 PM by Waterville School   [ updated Mar 3, 2013, 4:16 PM ]
Parents, community, students and staff:

It is the first day of 2013 and I have many emotions as I am reflecting on 2012. The one constant emotion is the pride that I feel for Waterville School and the Waterville community.  

January 2012:  The first month of 2012 found us focused on work to align curriculum/teaching with new state standards, with an emphasis on Math. We worked together as we continued focusing on the new Teacher Principal Evaluation (TPEP) Pilot work. Paul Katovich and his levy committee found creative, effective ways to share district needs with our community, in preparation for the February levy votes. The annual Chili/Oyster Stew & Art Auction was another resounding success, thanks to a fantastic volunteer crew headed by our PTO.  The month ended on January 31 by honoring our Senior Boy and Girl of the Year at the Chamber Banquet.  

February 2012:  The Waterville community once again showed their support for our school by passing both the M & O levy and the Capital Project Levy!  The Missoula Children’s Theater returned to town and wowed audiences as they showcased our amazingly talented kids!  

March 2012:  Waterville’s School Improvement Team continued their work; analyzing data, looking at district needs, and building our SIP on the Leader In Me foundation.  Students in grades 3-12 began state assessments.  Classified employees were honored throughout the week of March 12.   

April 2012: Following spring break the first week of April, students continued state high school biology and math assessments. Prayers went out to Mr. VanWinkle after he received sad news about his health.  

May 2012:  Tabatha Mires officially earned her Administrative credentials from Heritage College after a year long commitment to late nights of studying, long weekends away at classes, and “on the job” training.  Waterville School is blessed to have her as our 7-12 principal!   Mr. and Mrs. VanWinkle continued to be in our thoughts and prayers. 

June 2012:  The Class of 2012 received their diplomas and the well wishes of our community at graduation on June 2.  8th graders were promoted to high school on June 7.  Waterville School was awarded a “Leader In Me” foundation grant, and we made plans for all staff summer professional development. Teacher Diane Petersen and students presented the “Literate About Biodiversity” project at the Governor’s Conference in Ellensburg on June 10. On June 11, students left for the summer and on June 12, construction crews began roof demolition! 

July 2012:  A short summer school program was planned, developed and taught for students in grades 4-8 by teacher Angie Dieshl.  Construction on the new roof and the fire protection sprinkler system continued.  Office staff took some much deserved time off and Principals attended a 4 day Leadership Conference in Seattle. 

August 2012:  Summer school and construction continued.  Principals attended professional development for TPEP.  School offices opened in mid August for orientation meetings, registration, and the beginning of high school volleyball and football practice.  “Leader In Me” staff training was held August 27 – 31 and the Shocker football season began. 

September 2012:  Students returned on September 5.  Work on curriculum, TPEP, the new Common Core standards, and our leadership model began again in earnest!  Students at all levels applied for student leadership jobs; elections were held and interviews took place.  Leaders were everywhere!  Thanks to Kimberly Gormley, new murals and signs appeared around the buildings to create an environment that highlights a culture of leadership. 

October 2012:  Crisis Management Team began work to update our district plan.  3 board members and I attended the WASDA conference in Spokane.  The Lighthouse Team met weekly (at 7 am) to plan the December 18 Leadership Day and spread the vision.  Staff continued to work on Common Core, TPEP, “Leader In Me” and Math alignment.  Students continued to fill leadership roles around the district. 

November 2012:  Leadership Day planning continued.  Thanksgiving break gave us time to reflect on the important things in life – health, family, friends . . . . On November 28, hundreds of people came to see (and hug) Mr. VanWinkle at an Open House co- hosted by Orondo and Waterville School districts. 

December 2012:  On December 18, Waterville’s first ever “Leadership Day” was a huge success, with over 100 students from grades Kindergarten through 12th grade participating in leadership roles!  Christmas break began on December 19.   

On December 26, Mr. VanWinkle lost his battle with cancer and we lost an amazing friend.  Our hearts and prayers are with Mrs. VanWinkle and the family. He touched so many people and we will never forget him.  

It is with a heavy heart but with much hope that I wish you all a Happy New Year!  Waterville School recognizes your support, understands your high expectations, and honors your vision for the kind of school we can become.  We pledge to work hard to meet our mission of “Creating Leaders Who T.H.R.I.V.E.” – trust, honor, respect, integrity, valor and evolving excellence. It is an honor to work with the Waterville staff and students and to live in a community that supports all aspects of our children’s education in such a positive way!  

Cathi Nelson, Superientendent/K-6 Principal 
Waterville School District