July 29, 2016
Dear Sandwich School Community,
I sent a letter as I began my time here in Sandwich July 1st. I wanted to reach out again to let you know what I have been up to in my first thirty days. It has been a whirlwind of meetings and meeting people from all over the town. But it has also been an invigorating thirty days for me. I am thoroughly enjoying the gathering of information so that I can get a true understanding of what is important to the Sandwich School Community.
I have had the opportunity to spend some time with the school committee in various meetings. We had our first official School Committee meeting as a team on Wednesday July 20th. There have also been a number of sub-committee meetings that have been taking place for budget, policy and the pool. I look forward to more meetings with them and really getting to know each other and what they believe is important for the school district.
I have also been able to meet with each of the individual principals and other department heads. I have learned what work is being done this summer for curriculum, building updates, etc. I attended a workshop with some members of the administrative team about how to support some of our most struggling students. New grade 7-12 teachers engaged in a Project Based Learning (PBL) workshop that I was able to observe. These new teachers (and even a couple of veteran teachers) gave up their own precious summer time to spend three days learning about PBL and how to integrate it into their pedagogy. I also saw a number of teachers and staff working with our youngest students at the summer program at the high school.
What was most special to me was watching a young boy who until this summer has been afraid of the water….and now he is eliminating that fear and get in and learning how wonderful the water is. There is one thing I can assure everyone in town; these administrators and teachers are working extremely hard and have a keen understanding about what is good for education and will do anything that is needed to continue to move the schools forward. I am very much looking forward to working with each and every one of them.
On the town side I have had two different meetings with your town manager, Bud Dunham. He is very intelligent and engaging and has a clear idea of what the town values and has plans to get there. I look forward to the schools continuing the partnership with the town that has been formed and making it an even stronger partnership. I have met the Director of the town’s library, Joanne Lamothe and I had the opportunity to watch Stu Parsons, the Children’s Librarian, running the children’s story time session. Stu is a magnificent children’s librarian. He had them eating out of the palm of his hand. He was teaching them about crabs, and even brought in some live crabs for them to learn more.
Not to be omitted, I have:
- met with the Sandwich Education Association
- met members of the PTA
- been interviewing new teachers and administrators to the district
- attended the “No First Time” event held on July 25th at the gazebo at Wing School
- met our new Director of Facilities, Jon Nelson
The last thing I would like to make you aware of the fact that I will begin using some social media platforms to make the school community aware of what is happening throughout the district. You will find us on:
- Facebook – like us under “Sandwich Learns Together.” This will be an open site for information. You may also sign up there to receive special Sandwich Learns Together news via email.
- Twitter – follow us under “@sandw_super.”
- Instagram – follow us under “sandlearnstogether.”
I want to thank all that I have had the pleasure to meet already. Sandwich is a wonderful town that has so much to offer. I am looking forward to meeting even more of you! Please introduce yourself anytime you see me.