2016-2017 SCHOOL YEAR

Welcome to the William Allen School Family Connection website. 
We use this site to update families about news
 and events at our school.

Dear Families,

It was great to welcome back your children from February break! There were lots of smiling faces walking through the doors with fun stories to share. The weeks between February and April break have a lot of learning that occurs! Please continue to have your child come to school every day and on time (unless they are ill). Remember to call the office if your child will not be in.

Our district has a new pilot “Attendance Procedure” in place. Honeywell notices are now being sent to help notify families when attendance meetings need to be set up with the school. We will continue to send out attendance letters to keep you posted on your child’s attendance. The feedback we have received and the families I have spoken to have been very appreciative of the communication between home and school. Parents, guardians, teachers, and administrators all want the same thing for our kids: Success in school! Thanks for your help

Our school is anxiously awaiting the total of our minutes for our celebration of “Read Across America!” It is our tradition to celebrate the week before February break to encourage students to read over vacation. This year, staff joined in with our students and we tallied our reading for two weeks! Dr. Seuss Truffula trees are tracking each grade level’s progress in the main lobby.

March begins a month of our PACE (performance assessment competency education) tasks for our grade 4 in Science. The task is given in chunks over several days and requires multi-step directions, utilization of hands-on materials, and a written component. Grade 4 will also take the math Smarter Balanced test which is administered on the computer.

We want to continue to be good neighbors at William Allen! If you pick up your child, please do not arrive before 2:50 (grades 1-5) and 2:05 (Kindergarten). Otherwise, we begin to block the road. Thank you for your continued support of our school.

Lynn Allen

Principal

 





*February Updates*

Dear Families, 
Our new year has begun with a lot of learning and activity in our school! The annual Snowflake Social attracted record crowds with 300 participants enjoying music by DJ Bob, dancing, a cupcake walk, and raffles.
Our afterschool enrichment program is filled to capacity and began for students in grades 3-5. The program includes knitting, Zumba, STEM, technology, and board games and is part of our Title 1 programming.  
All students were assessed using the DIBELS, measuring reading skills in January. Kindergarten students are making good progress toward our 90% goal, with 66% of students currently at benchmark. 
Our teachers attended professional development in the area of math and writing this month. They continue to build strategies to incorporate individualized learning through content areas and utilizing technology. Many staff members are piloting "Identacor" a single sign on system with devices. We hope to have this available for students in the future.
Please make sure you have all of your phone information and address information updated with the office. We have had a number of situations when we have been unable to reach families. In the event of an emergency with your child, this would be a serious situation. Thanks in advance for keeping us informed.

Lynn Allen
Principal



*January Updates*


Dear Families,
As a school, we promote kindness with our students on a daily basis and hope that the lessons they learn in school will benefit them and the community as they grow into adulthood. I wanted to share something amazing with you as we begin 2017!
Last month, educators, kids, and families were overwhelmed with kindness and generosity! Firefighters brought us coats and food baskets. A friend of the school bought us dozens of pairs of boots and gift cards. Students from Spaulding High School visited and read to classrooms. People sponsored WAS families in need and parents surprised our Occupational Therapist with special cushions for kids!
I know there is much more I am not even aware of. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank everyone for their generosity and caring to our William Allen School. You have made the holiday season a memorable one for us all.
Principal Lynn Allen



*December Updates*
Dear Families,

 

We welcomed many parents and guardians last month through the doors of William Allen School! It was a great turnout! It is not too late to schedule a conference with your child’s teacher if you were not able to make it last month. Thank you families and staff for your efforts to maintain the home/school connection necessary for student success. To date, 86 % of our students’ parents or guardians have met with teachers. That’s a lot of commitment!

I want to remind you that there is a lot of information posted on our Rochester School District website. Among the information is the 2015-2016 report given to the Instructional Committee of the School Board which includes math and reading data regarding William Allen School. Visit http://rochesterschools.com/, and go to “Our District,” and then click on “Reports” and then go to “Elementary” to get a snapshot of our performance.

December is a busy time for educators and families. This month we look forward to our Holiday Concert on December 13th, at 7pm at SHS and our Band Concert on December 14, at 7pm at RMS. Our PTA will also be entering a float in the Rochester Christmas Parade for the first time in several years and it sounds like a winner! Among all the activities and the long “to do list,” please remember to set time aside to read with your children!

Principal, Lynn Allen                                



*November Updates*


Dear William Allen Families,

October was an extremely busy month full of great activities for our students and families. The Rochester Fire Department brought a truck for our Kindergarten students to learn about fire safety. The PTA hosted its first Family Bingo Night and staff organized a Pirate Family Literacy Night. Both events attracted over 100 participants! It was great to see so many of you in attendance!

November marks the beginning of the holiday season. This can be a very stressful time for children and families. William Allen School is fortunate to have a guidance counselor and family social worker on staff. If your child or family is facing a challenge you want the school to be aware of please do not hesitate to contact one of them. They are often a great resource.

Home and school connections are important to the success of your child. Parent/Teacher Conferences are coming up soon! I hope you have had an opportunity to reserve a spot on Tuesday, November 8th or on our Early Release day, Thursday, November 10th. Your child’s first progress report will be available along with important assessment information. For students in grades 2 through 5, NWEA fall results will also be available. Mrs. Brooks and I hope to see you in the hallways!

Lynn Allen, Principal 







October Updates! 

Dear Families, 

We have finally been able to cool down the school with some refreshing fall air! Students and staff have settled into classroom routines and our PBIS roll-out covering hallway, playground, cafeteria, and bathroom expectations are almost complete.
At William Allen School, we regularly prepare for emergencies through fire drills, secure campus, and lock down drills with students and staff. During the opening weeks of school, we have been introducing and practicing these drills with our students. In September, our staff was trained by the Rochester Police Department in “ADD.” This acronym stands for avoid, deny, and defend in the event of an active shooter scenario. Additionally, we have a school “safety team” that meets to review and update our safety procedures.
All students at William Allen School are part of a multi-tiered system of response to meet academic and behavioral needs. Benchmark assessments are now complete and data has been reviewed by your child’s teacher. “Flex time” has begun daily this gives student’s access to additional reading interventions during the school day.
Our educators remain focused on your child’s education. Our staff are committed to building positive relationships to help reach our goals. Last year, our school-wide goal was reached with 76% of our students reading on grade level by the spring of 2016. We hope to be highly effective this year and surpass 76% next spring. We continue to make steady growth toward the district reading goal of 90%.
Please be sure to mark your calendars for Tuesday, October 11th from 5:30-6:30. William Allen will host our Open House! This is a great time to see what is happening in your child’s classroom and learn about our new reading and updated math program. Our PTA will meet right after at 6:30 with childcare for the kids! Find out about how you can help our school. 

Lynn Allen, Principal



Parents! WAS needs you! We currently have volunteer positions available to help at our upcoming Book Fair and to run our student store once a week. If you have wanted to give back to your child’s school please consider these great opportunities to get involved!  Please contact Mrs. Mirasola in the front office for more information.



The PTA fundraiser wrapped up on September 20th. You will be receiving your orders soon.  Fundraisers help to support our events and activities throughout the year, including field trips, Snowflake Social, and BINGO night! Thank you for helping to support our PTA, school, and most importantly our STUDENTS! The next PTA meeting will follow Open House on Tuesday, October 11th at 6:30pm.  Childcare is provided!


The WAS Book Fair will be held October 3-7th and the 11th during Open House!! If you are unable to attend the Book Fair please feel free to order online at:

http://www.scholastic.com/bf/williamallenelemsch1


Tuesday, October 25th from 5-6:30pm WAS will host the Fall Family Literacy Night! Come join the Bookaneer Crew for some swashbuckling reading fun! More details to follow! 





September Updates! 

Dear Families,

William Allen is off to a smooth opening thanks to the support of you and your kids! Students are happy to be back in school and meet new friends and educators. 

The first couple of weeks of school have been spent learning “The Whiskers Way,” developing classroom and school-wide routines. Tuesday, during our first PBIS roll-out, your children reviewed our code of conduct with Whiskers our mascot, along with characters from the Wizard of Oz! Students are working on building a yellow brick road on our cafeteria wall to the Emerald City. Ask your child how he/she is helping with this! This is our first of many PBIS (positive behavior intervention system) roll-outs for our students.

Arrival and dismissal procedures have been established quickly. Most students are arriving on time, giving them the best start possible to their day. Teachers appreciate families keeping early dismissals to a minimum for important reasons such as doctor appointments. Thank you for keeping the classroom learning environment uninterrupted.

It is important to help set expectations with your child regarding being on time and coming to school every day. As grown-ups know, it is difficult to keep a job when you show up late or not at all! If you are having difficulty with your child’s attendance, please contact our guidance counselor, Melissa Welch or school nurse, Alicia Hopkins. Our district policy outlines a series of steps our school takes if students have chronic tardies or absences.

In addition to learning routines and expectations, William Allen has begun conducting important assessments that help guide our instruction and determine our progress toward district and school goals. The reading assessment DIBELS is almost completed. Currently, we are testing students in grades 2-5 using NWEA in math and reading. Educators will meet in grade levels to review the data including past report cards to help determine how we can best meet student needs.

I want to give special recognition to our PTA and all they do to support William Allen kids! Please consider being a part of this wonderful organization on some level. Classroom field trips, concerts, and student programming are just a few of the ways our PTA helps out. Meetings are once a month on Tuesdays. For your convenience, childcare is always provided.

William Allen was again the recipient of a generous donation of school supplies at the start of our school year! Residents from Bellamy and Watson Fields of Dover put together boxes of supplies for our teachers and bags for our students. We thank them for their continued support of our school. 

Thank you for a great start to the year! The staff all looks forward to working together as a team on your child's academic, social, and emotional growth. This is going to be a great year! 

Lynn Allen, 
Principal

Volunteer Opportunity! 

The Scholastic Book Fair will run from Friday, October 4th through Tuesday, October 11th. please follow the link to sign up for a time slot! 

New Faces at WAS
                Christine Hamann: Secretary                  Kristen Silverman: Gr.2 Teacher
                Lorrie Dodson: Music Teacher               Amy Lemlin: Librarian
                Lauren Parent: Speech Pathologist        Lisa Filmore: Full Time Sub
                Mary Ballard: Para Educator                   Katrina Mirasola: Para Educator
               Catherine Tewell: Para Educator             Beth Wiggins: Interventionist

News from the reading team!
This summer's reading theme was "Treasure a Good Book." We had several students who submitted their reading logs with a school total of over 800 books! These Summer Reading participants will be invited to a special assembly on Friday, September 16th to celebrate their reading efforts and to raffle off some "pirate treasure" to five lucky winners. The "Bookaneer" pirate crew will also be making a special appearance at our Fall Family Literacy Night on October 25th, for some more pirate-themed reading activities for all ages! We hope to see you there! Please remember to encourage your child to read every day by reading to/with them as often as possible!


In the Spotlight!
Elementary Band Open House will be held on Monday, Sep. 12 at McClelland Elementary School for students in grades 4 & 5 interested in joining the band.
Band Lessons: First year (beginner) band lessons will be held on Tuesdays beginning November 15th from 4-5pm at RMS. 

For second year (advanced) band lessons will be held on Thursdays beginning September 22nd from 4-5pm at RMS. 

School Picture Day is on Thursday, September 29th. Order forms will be sent home soon. Please have your child bring their order form and payment on photo day.


PBIS
 Our first PBIS Rollout of the school year was held on Tuesday during a school wide morning meeting. An All-Star lineup including Whiskers, the Tin man, the Cowardly Lion, the Scarecrow, and Dorothy, showed up to encourage all of our students to “Follow the Whiskers Way Path.” This five week rollout will focus on the William Allen Code of Conduct (being SAFE, KIND, and RESPONSIBLE), which include, Playground, Cafeteria, Hallway and Bathroom Expectations. When a student is observed following our school expectations they will be given a “brick” to add to our Whiskers Way Path which is located in the cafeteria. At the end of our rollout, the students will celebrate their amazing behavior with a dance party!

Want to be involved? Ask your child about some playground, cafeteria, hallway, and bathroom rules. And remember to always encourage your child to be SAFE, KIND, AND RESPONSIBLE!



Kindergarten Day! 

Please join us for a special day that is all about our newest and youngest members of the WAS community. You and your child will participate in activities, take a tour of our school, get answers to all of your questions and have time to meet your teacher and classmates. This will be an exciting morning and will wrap up with a hot dog lunch provided by our PTA!  

Date: Thursday August 25,2016
Time: 10:00 am - 11:45 am
Where: WAS