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Rocket Nation,


Welcome to the start of the 2016-2017 school year! The start of a new school year

is always an exciting time, not only for students, but for families and our staff as

well. In this spirit, it is my pleasure to welcome back the students, families and

staff of Unit 7 Schools. We are ready to continue the important work of our school

mission.- The primary mission of Community Unit School District # 7 is to support

the development of academic excellence, developmental responsiveness and social

equity for all students.  Academic excellence expands upon the skills and

knowledge successfully attained in the elementary educational experience with the

goal of preparing students for their success in and beyond high school.

Unit 7 staff will return this year on August 15. As we begin this year, we renew our

focus on supporting the most critical factor impacting student achievement – the

staff who work with our students. In fact, Unit 7 Schools continues to be a leader

in how we support teachers to improve student learning through our work with

enhanced technology and cutting edge curriculum. We will continue to use

resources to model and provide coaching during the day and utilize instructional

teams that support collaboration and development relevant to student needs.

The District will continue to invest in other areas that impact student learning as

well. We maintain our focus on providing a successful start to early learning

through our Preschool program. The skills students learn at this age have become

even more critical as the state has renewed its’ priority on early literacy and

accountability for all schools. As students develop, we will work to not just

maintain, but further refine and develop literacy through multiple mediums,

including integrating technology into teaching and learning through our curriculum

and technology initiatives in grades K-12.

The District continues its’ focus on ensuring our facilities meet our student needs

as well through the development of our District Strategic Improvement Plan:

Preparing for Tomorrow, Today. The Unit 7 Board of Education has put a high

priority on maintaining and enhancing our facilities and a rigorous curriculum to

challenge our student population.

Over 1700 preschool thru 12th grade students will return to school on August 17,

eager for the opportunity to see friends, participate in a variety of sports and

activities and engage in learning. Our staff renews their commitment to unlocking

the potential of every student to help each one become successful in this work.

I feel a renewed sense of excitement for the start of this school year because of the

energy our students, staff, parents and community bring to our school community

and all the possibilities that working together provides. Our school district excels

because of this collective effort, focus and commitment. I look forward to the work

we will accomplish this year.

As always, thank you for your continued support.


Sincerely,


Andrew Larson