News and notes from Principal Goetz

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Principal Tammy Goetz

Dear Seward Families:

Please join me in welcoming several new associate educators to Seward:

  • Daniel Coleman, working with E-1 students.
  • Flannery Dolan, assisting Lori Sherrell in kindergarten.
  • Kyra Schugt, working with E-1 students
  • Nemo Ali, a bilingual associate educator in middle school.

Khadra Ali has also stepped into a new role as an E-1 associate educator. The funding for these positions came from our Area Superintendent because of our high class sizes.

Seward staff continue their efforts to insure your child(ren) master Minnesota’s education standards. Both our classroom teachers and specialist teachers are working to verify that Seward’s curriculum addresses all standards. In addition, Seward teachers have been selected to help write MPS curriculum materials that will be used district-wide.

  • Children’s House is aligning Montessori to the standards and laying the foundation for future learning by insuring kindergarten students master place value.
  • E-1 is focusing on cultural studies and how they meet the standards.
  • E-2 has made the math standards their priority and have aligned the Montessori materials accordingly.
  • Our middle school team and media specialist, Lindy Frederickson are implementing a variety of differentiation strategies.
  • Specialists, Barbara Rice and Katy Tharaldson, met with colleagues throughout the district to share standards-based lessons. Bill Garner is assisting the Physical Education Department by writing lessons and submitting them to the district. Our ELL teachers and Karen Utter are implementing writing strategies in science. In addition to their work at the building level, Katy Tharaldson, Gretchen Mattson, Katharine Skibbe, Barbara Rice, and Karen Utter were asked by the district to write curriculum for their colleagues throughout Minneapolis Public Schools.

I am extremely proud of the work this staff does for the Seward and MPS learning community. Their work is getting results: I see that 228 out of 290 middle school students made the honor roll. Congratulations to students and teachers for achieving success in the classroom and beyond.

Finally, several parents are asking what the process is for switching classrooms. Please know that both the teachers and the administration take this very seriously for your child’s sake. Seward has a process that was developed in 2008 by the principal, parents, and teachers.

Steps for Classroom Changes:

  1. Parent sets up an appointment to meet with the teacher to discuss issues and to write a plan to implement changes, including a timeline.
  2. Parent, teacher and principal meet to write a process to resolve issues.
  3. Parent, teacher and principal re-meet in 3-5 weeks to discuss changes.
  4. If the decision is made by all parties involved that a child should be moved to another classroom, the child will be moved to one of the three rooms with the lowest enrollment.
  5. If unable to come to an agreement regarding the above issues, other MPS programs will be encouraged.
  6. Teachers and parents will treat all transfers in a professional manner.

I wish you and your family all the best during our winter break!

Sincerely,

Tammy Goetz
Seward Principal