The excitement is palpable around the district as we begin the 2014-15 school year. New State funding to close the achievement gap has arrived and we are embarking on an historic effort to ensure that every attending our school leaves us with college and career ready skills. We are experiencing slow but steady growth in our student enrollment and will be working to define timelines as we look at constructing our next high school in west Roseville. Most importantly, we are retooling our approaches to what and how we teach so that our students are prepared to be able to compete in a global job market.
The district has three priority focus areas this year.
1. Implement the common core State standards – We are in year three of a plan to raise the rigor of our curriculum. The new standards ask students to move beyond memorization and basic understanding of concepts to actually being able to apply knowledge in meaningful contexts. This expectation requires a wide array of teaching strategies and a ramping up of complexity.
2. Prepare Every Student to Compete – Almost 70% of our students are currently college ready when they graduate. Those students have an array of options to choose from as they move on. Our target this year is to do whatever it takes to ensure that the other 30% of our students have similar options. We are employing a range of new intervention strategies to support struggling students and their families. We are also embarking on a major effort to expand the numbers of students who are taking college level Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate courses.
3. Integrate Technology to Accelerate Learning – We purchased 3500 Chrome books last year and deployed them in classrooms across the district. The goal is to increase student engagement and accelerate the learning process. Teachers are being trained to use Google tools, blended/online learning and other approaches to improve instruction.
We have outstanding schools which provide students not just a world class education, but also outstanding extracurricular and athletic programs where they can connect with other students and enhance their skills. We are proud of the teachers and support staff who make all of this happen. And, we are supported by an amazing community who cares deeply about our students and our schools.
If you have any questions about our district or would like to become more involved, I would welcome the opportunity to hear from you.
Ron Severson, Superintendent