Evanston Middle School

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A MESSAGE FROM THE PRINCIPAL
 
 
Principal Newsletter
February 2019
 
Well I hope that all of you are staying warm and toasty in your homes and at work with these surprisingly cold temperatures! Well, I guess it should not be so “surprising” since we are living at 7000 ft and are in the heart of winter here in Evanston, right!? We all love it though or we would not be living in the beautiful Inter-mountain West!!! Look at it this way, we have the sunshine with the cold and are not over 50 below zero w/ windchill, like the poor souls in the Great Lakes region have been dealing with.
 
Enough about weather! Let’s get caught up on what is happening here at Evanston Middle School. Over the past month, students have had the opportunity to assess their skills in Reading and Math, with the seventh grade also testing on Writing. The assessment is similar to the end of year assessment they take called the WY-TOPP which measures what the students have learned throughout the school year. The assessment is an Interim WY-TOPP, and was used by the students and teachers to determine what they had learned, what they needed some help on, and what they were doing well at. We were pleased to see that from the previous interim they had taken, most of the students showed improvement. Even better, it was great to see that a large percentage of our students moved from being non-proficient to being proficient in those subject areas. With additional instruction and intervention, we expect to see that even more of our students will be proficient in Math, Reading and Writing by the end of the year.
 
One of the things that I would like to talk about this month is the subject of bullying and harassment. As a school staff, we are working hard to prevent this from occurring in our school. However, we are not immune to the problem and realize that we must do even more to ensure that our students feel safe and are not subjected to such negative influences. I would like you all to know that we are taking such steps through honest and open communication with students, parents and staff. Our counselor, Mr. Kent, recently surveyed the entire student body and asked them about their experience with bullying and harassment here at EMS. Sadly, almost a quarter of our students indicated that they had been bullied or harassed at some time during their time here in school. Other questions were asked about the bullying and harassment and from this information, Mr. Kent developed an assembly where he presented his findings, talked about the different types and definitions of bullying and pleaded with the kids to be kind and steer away from the negativity that results from being cruel to one another. Examples of positivity, standing up for what is right and solutions were discussed at each and every grade level. A challenge was also given to all of the students to come up with some things that they can do each day to be kind, serve and make others as well as their own days better. The students were then asked to share their commitments with both Mr. Kent and me by email. I have received several emails, and it made my day to read their kindness goals then to respond to each student about the goals they had set. I look forward to seeing more emails, but even more importantly, the fulfillment of their goals here in school and throughout the community.
 
Thank you all for entrusting us with your most precious commodities, your children. Please encourage your students to be the difference and be kind to everyone. We commit to doing all we can to make EMS a better place, a safer place, a place of refuge from life’s storms. Please let us know if there is anything else we can do to make this the norm here at Evanston Middle School. Have a great month!!!
 
Mr. Christenot
EMS Principal