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Northwest Public Schools | December 2, 2021

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Note from the Principal-March

Note from the Principal-March

Parents and Guardians,

Well, February came in like a lion and left like a lion. March has came in like a lamb – much better for my weary old bones. I have really enjoyed these 60 degree days. Third quarter is almost done and we are nearing the end of another successful school year. I am so thankful to be saying that considering all that our students, families, staff and communities have overcame this year. A year ago we were closing doors and now we are getting closer to opening doors back up. Thank you for your unprecedented support over this past year!

It was great to see so many parents at Parent Teacher Conferences last month. We had a 95% turnout rate in K-8. Our attendance has grown a little each year since we began tracking it three years ago. This was by far our best yet!  Thank you so much for coming and hearing about what is happening in your child’s classroom and partnering with our awesome teachers at 1R.

Many of you took time to complete the online survey for us and we greatly appreciate your input and feedback. The 1R School Improvement Team took time to review the data and feedback you provided. One of the positive takeaways was 92% of those surveyed feel 1R is a safe and orderly place for their children. We take pride in the fact you entrust your children to us on a daily basis. Over the past few years we have adopted and implemented the Standard Response Protocols. The district has worked with School Security Services to provide training, develop safety plans, evacuation procedures, and in-depth looks into ways we can enhance safety for students and staff. We have added in building cameras and a new PA system to help with both inside and outside communication. We also recognize we have areas for growth as well and will continue to work on those areas. Again, thank you to all who completed the survey. We had over 80 responses. We value everyone’s input and ideas so that we may continue to provide a high quality education for all kids.

On March 22, the state will be piloting a new version of the state assessments called NSCAS. The state has continued their partnership with NWEA MAPS. They are working on developing an assessment that will be standards based as well as norm referenced. The ultimate goal would be students take this as a replacement to the MAPS assessment. It would still be administered three times a year but would measure growth along with mastery of state standards. The pilot will be in grades 3rd-8th in ELA/Reading and Math. Science will also be piloted in 5th and 8th grades only. Unfortunately, with it being a pilot year, we will not receive individual student data to share with parents. You may hear your child talking about this over the next month as we administer the assessment. Just like any assessment a good night sleep prior to the test, a healthy breakfast, daily attendance and positive support from you will only enhance your child’s success.

As spring arrives, middle school activities will continue to kick off. First up is Mixed Honor Choir. They have begun practice and will have their tour on Wednesday, March 17. Parents you may attend their performance at Northwest High School Auditorium at 3:00 p.m. It will be an awesome show as we have over 70 boys and girls performing!

Middle School Soccer is a new addition this year for our 7th & 8th graders. We will combine efforts with Central Catholic for both boys and girls. Practices will be at GICC west fields. Competitions/Scrimmages will be with Barr, Westridge and Walnut. There will be a parent meeting on Tuesday, March 16th at 5:30 p.m. at Northwest High School in the cafeteria. Practice will begin on March 22nd. We are super excited to offer this new opportunity!

The Middle School Track parent meeting will be on Tuesday, March 16th at 5:30 p.m. in the Northwest High School gym. Track practice will begin on March 22nd.

We will have a MS Quiz Bowl Competition at 1R on Friday, March 19th. This will begin at 12:45 p.m. Cedar Hollow and St. Libory will be joining us for this event – more information to come.

Our 4th and 5th grade will head to Lincoln this year. Our current 5th grade missed out last year due to Covid. In an effort to get them this experience, we will send both our 4th & 5th graders on April 9th. While there are still Covid restrictions in Lancaster County we have made a few adjustments to the schedule. They will still get to visit the capitol. UNL is shut down so unfortunately the experiences at Memorial Stadium and at the museums will not work out, but we were able to make arrangements with the Lincoln Zoo as a replacement. We are just happy to offer this experience back to our 4th and 5th grade students. Teachers will be sending information as we get closer.

PTO would like to thank everyone for a great turnout at the Culver’s Dining Night out. Culver’s will be donating a little over $400 to the PTO. The flower fundraiser will be starting on April 16th. If you need a great Mother’s Day gift, watch for the flyer that will be coming home. PTO is seeking officers for the 2021-22 school year. 1R PTO does so many wonderful things for our students, staff and building. Next year, hopefully we can get the doors opened up for families to come back in for events. Please consider joining and serving in a role so we can offer those events next fall. If you have an interest in serving please contact Britteny Beckstrom, Lisa Allan, Leah Borer, Kelly Olesen or myself. We would love to have you on board with us. Meetings have been via zoom on the first Monday of the month at 6:00 p.m.

Important Dates and reminders coming up:

NO School on Friday, March 5th, 11th and 12th.

Early dismissal for the end of 3rd quarter on Wednesday, March 10th.

Report Cards will be electronically sent via the PowerSchool Portal on March 26th.

Introduction to Kindergarten is April 13th at 6:30 p.m.

1R Spring Concert is Thursday, April 29th

Field Day is Friday, May 7th @12:45 p.m.

On behalf of the staff and myself, we thank you for your continued support. Please follow our 1R Google calendar for the most current events and check out our 1R  Facebook page. If you have questions regarding your child’s education, please do not hesitate to contact the office at 385-6352.

Sincerely,

Mr. Retzlaff, Principal

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