Thursday, November 5, 2015

November 5th, 2015 ~ Director of Student Services

Community Engagement
This week my heart is full of gratitude for our Howard-Winneshiek Community. A community that stretches far beyond the town of Cresco and into Chester, Elma, Lime Springs and Ridgeway. As many may know from our weekly updates, we are focusing on "Attendance Works" this year. It is amazing how our entire HWCSD has reached out and supported this initiative. It is exciting to announce that for the 1st Quarter of our school year we had 219 elementary students with perfect attendance! This could not happen without the parents, caregivers and community supporting student achievement and getting their children to school! What is equally impressive is that our secondary students are also getting to school with a daily attendance average of 97% for the 1st quarter! This is amazing! Finally, I would be remiss if I forgot to mention that several community members are giving their time and talents to be an active member in our Attendance Policy Review Committee. I am still looking for members of the faith community to volunteer, but everyone is welcome! If you would like to be involved in this worthwhile cause the first meeting will be:

Attendance Review Committee Meeting
Wednesday, November 11th
4:00 - 5:30
Everyone is Welcome!
Refreshments will be served!

Community Partnerships
Howard County Special Needs Association

I would like to give a big SHOUT OUT! to the Howard County Special Needs Association, for reaching out and supporting HWCSD this week. I did not know anything about this wonderful group of volunteers until recently. Our own Betty Schmidt, who is an associate in our district, is a member of the group and sent me the following information:

The Howard County Special Needs Association has been a group for the past 25 years. We provide financial and emotional support to anyone who has a special need within Howard County. This can include help with things like special shoes, eyeglasses, special wheelchair attachments not covered by Medicaid, gas cards to anyone undergoing chemo therapy/cancer treatments. We work with HOCA on this. We also supply grocery cards to individuals who have suffered a loss such as a fire, tornado or accident to help them with immediate expenses. We also help with utility bills when there is no other resource available.  

We are funded 100% by donations from the community of Cresco, and Howard County.
100% of the funds stay within the county and are used to help as needed. No one receives a salary or stipend for their work with the SNA. We sponsor two dances a year for individuals with special needs that is free to all attending. Usually we have 75-100 people at our social events. Our community is very supportive of the SNA and extremely generous with the funds that are contributed. Our president is Kerre Foote, Vice-President is Sue Murphy, treasurer, Janis Rockabrand, and secretary, Betty Schmitt.  

Anyone can join our organization that has a passion for helping our neighbors in need. Our annual meeting is held in March of each year at the Grange Hall at CUSB. Everyone is welcome! The date and time will be advertised prior to the meeting.

Special Education 
Tri-State Law Conference

I am excited to share that I will be attending the Tri-State Special Education Law Conference this week, November 5th and 6th in Omaha, Nebraska. I love the law! It helps us as educators to know what is best practice for students, parents and our community. We just completed our Special Education Count for 2015. For our school district we are serving 165 special education students and their families. It is our commitment as the Howard-Winneshiek Community School District to educate and serve all of our students with researched-based strategies in the least restrictive environment. 

I had a teacher and parent comment to me this week, that they are amazed and over-joyed at the incredible amount of growth students are making in the areas of reading, writing and math by being placed in the general education curriculum...the Core + More! We are equally excited about the growth students are making in the areas of communication and social learning challenges by the incorporation of direct instruction in these areas. 

Community from my House!
Happy Halloween!

  I really enjoyed staff & students 
stopping by for Halloween Candy!

Junior High Student Council Dance on 10/30/15

Mrs. Fravel educating students during Cadet Time!

If you have any questions or if you would like to be a part of our ~Attendance Review Committee ~
Please Contact Me
Terese Jurgensen
(563) 929-6344

                      Thank you Howard-Winneshiek Communities for Partnering with us for kids!

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