Monday, April 20, 2015

Terese Jurgensen, April 16, 2015

Terese Jurgensen
Elementary Principal Grades 2-6; 
Director of Special Education PK-12

Special Education Board Presentation
On Monday, April 13th, I had the privilege to present to the School Board and to community members on our Special Education Services. Not just what we have done this year, because we are very excited about the large numbers of students who have met their goals, but where we are going in our future. We are blessed to have an amazing group of general and special education teachers who are excited about our goals and the direction we are going. Our goals going forward are first and foremost to put student needs first. Going forward, the main bullet points are this:

SCore + More - Students will remain in general education classrooms & receive specialized                      direct instruction in small groups with a special education teacher.
SSocial Thinking Support students who struggle understanding social skills/perspectives of                          others and the social narratives (non-verbal communication). 
SChallenging Behaviors – Teach students the skills (brain-based) to self-regulate, focus,                                              emotional control, respect themselves, peers, & teachers
SSpecialized Direct InstructionClose the Gap & Provide Direct, Skill-Based Instruction
SPost-Secondary Transition Focus - Secondary Students will be enrolled in a class where                            they will receive small-group direct instruction, progress monitor goals and                      have a direct point of daily contact with their special education teacher. 

Power Point of the presentation I shared with 
the School Board on Monday, April 13th

Best Practices in Special Education
I would also like to share here in my weekly update, a video that I watch quite often that inspires me to take our district to a new level in services for special education. Many people are not aware that Iowa has the greatest gap in the nation for students who are in special education and for those who are not. The biggest concern is that in the last three years, in many schools, the gap is getting wider. If you have 10 minutes, this video is well worth your time. It is inspiring!

Near the end of the school board meeting, we were blessed to have a 6th grade student play a trumpet solo to usher in a new program. Mrs. Ringoen is establishing a program to increase the numbers of band instruments we have available at school for students to rent. 
Wonderful job!


Congratulations, Carter 
Outstanding Wrestling Year!
Carter Fousak - 5th Grade Student
Carter Fousak has had an outstanding wrestling year! I first got to know Carter in Mrs. Sorenson's class, where he is an excellent student and well-liked by his teachers and peers alike. I wanted to take this opportunity to give Carter a "Shout OUT!" on my weekly update, because of his Outstanding Year in Wrestling. It is hard to get Carter to talk about himself or even about wrestling, but today when I asked him, "How do you stay so mentally tough to go out and win so many wrestling matches?" He just kind of smiled and shrugged his shoulders and just said, "I don't know. I just go out and do it.... I really like to wrestle." Here is an outline of Carter's outstanding wrestling achievements this year:

  • 2014 Iowa Grade School State Champion
  • 2015 AAU National Champion 
  • 2015 Tulsa National Champion 
  • 2015 Iowa USA Wrestling State Champion
  • 2015 AAU State Champion
  • 2015 USA Wrestling Folkstyle National Champion
  • 2015 Reno World Championships 3rd place. 3400 kids from 46 states, Germany, China, Australia, Canada
  • Member of the 2014/15 USA National Folkstyle team
  • Member of the the 2014/15 World All Star team
  • Ranked #1 in the nation
  • Carter will be wrestling this spring and summer for the Iowa State Triple Crown and National Triple Crown (state and national champion in Folkstyle, Freestyle, and Greco wrestling)
Have a good week!
Please call or email if you 
have any questions or comments!

Terese Jurgensen

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