K-5 Board Report

TO: RSU #74 Board of Directors

FROM: Jean Butler

DATE: March 29, 2023

                                  PreK-5 ELEMENTARY REPORT

At Garret Schenck and Solon Elementary Schools, we welcome the arrival of spring and the shedding of all the winter clothes that took students so much time to get into and out of several times each day throughout the winter. We have taken out the playground balls, sidewalk chalk, and jump ropes to be ready for spring recess fun.

The Community Literacy Team is sponsoring an “Into the Deep” family night for district students in grades PreK-5 on April 13th from 5:00-7:00 PM at Carrabec Community School. Families will enjoy a Subway dinner and then participate in ocean-themed activities such as crafts, knot tying, Escape Room boxes, books, a photo booth, and a virtual reality trip under the sea. A highlight will be tide pool touch tanks brought here by the Chewonki Foundation. Students will receive take-home bags filled with ocean-related activities and items, and one family will win the door prize. Solon School Board member Laura Layman has been a great member of our Community Literacy Team and will help out at this event.. We welcome Board members to stop by and join the fun.

We will be holding our annual Preschool Screening on May 2nd and Kindergarten Screening on May 8th at Carrabec Community School. The screenings include academic tasks (concepts, language, and motor screenings), vision and hearing tests, and a chance for parents to meet with the school nurse. Preschool and kindergarten students also get to meet their teachers for the fall.

A program selection team has been meeting since the fall to research and select a new English language arts program for the K-5 students in the district for next year. Our current program, Wonders, is in its sixth year of use in the district, and the company is not going to continue to support the online resources for this program going forward. Our selection team has reviewed sample programs and participated in zoom meetings with representatives from various textbook companies as part of the process. We are close to making a decision as to a new program for 2023-24 and are currently working out the details of which materials to order and what we want for a professional development plan for our teachers.

To promote health and wellness, Solon Elementary School is holding three Walking School Bus activities this spring. The first took place on March 22nd, and the others will be on April 26th and May 24th. Students and staff will meet at the Solon Thrift Shop at 7:15 AM. Parents will sign permission slips for the bus drivers to drop their children off at that location, and others will drop off their children there. Staff members will walk to the Thrift Shop to meet the students. The walk will start around 7:20. When students and staff arrive at school around 7:40, they will enjoy a healthy breakfast prepared by our cook, Cindy Lawrence.

Solon’s preschool staff Jennie Mirlocca and Amy McDougal are celebrating the Week of the Young Child during the week of April 3-7. On Monday through Thursday, they are inviting students and staff from the K-5 classes to join them in the gym at 2:00 for special activities: Music Monday (a glow stick dance party), Tasty Tuesday (frozen yogurt treats), Work Together Wednesday (a whole school challenge), and artsy Thursday (an open paper mural). On Friday in the gym they will display pictures that families have drawn together.

If you have questions about anything in my schools, please contact me.

Have a lovely spring!