May 2015 Principal’s Letter

Sage Canyon ElementaryDear Parents,

It is so hard to believe that this is the last Sage Canyon newsletter for the 2014-2015 school year.  I want to thank you so much for all of your support, communication, and collaboration during the course of this school year. It is truly an honor to be surrounded by such an extraordinary community. As we close out our last month of school, we have several fun events to look forward to including the Hoedown, Field Day, and our annual awards ceremonies. Our awards ceremonies celebrate intermediate students who excel in academics and one student from each class who excels in Art, Music and PE. In addition, each class will choose one girl and one boy to award  our Wrangler Star Award. The students chosen to receive this award embody the traits of our Wrangler Star: Safe, Thoughtful, Accountable, and Respectful. The Wrangler Star Award is voted on by the members of each class and is an award to truly be proud of. While we are proud of and love all of our students, not every student will receive an award during our end of year ceremonies. Our ceremonies are meant to celebrate the year and are an excellent opportunity to bring our students together to share in the celebration of an incredible year. Parents will be notified if a child will be receiving an award so that you can make arrangements to attend.

During our PTO meeting last week, we had a thoughtful discussion about the process for creating class lists and how class rosters are composed. I thought I would give you a little background into this process. In May, current grade level teams will collaborate to form class lists for the following year. Teachers take many factors into consideration including academic needs, social dynamics, gender balance, and many other details carefully observed over the course of the last year. The teachers who know them best as a group try to make sure that they are placed in a cohort that would be most beneficial to the child. They then turn the lists into me and I take into consideration any parent requests for traits of teachers I may have received. A few questions were asked that I thought I would just answer directly as they are important thoughts to consider:

Question:  Why do you not take requests for specific teachers?
Truthfully, sometimes teacher requests can turn into a popularity contest. We have an amazing group of teachers who have a wide range of skill and talent. Sometimes a student can have an amazing connection with a teacher and a parent will have glowing things to say about them to their neighbors and friends. That doesn’t mean however, the children of those neighbors and friends will have the same traits that mesh well with that teacher. We try to personalize the placements as much as possible so that the varied needs of students are matched well with the varied talents of our teachers.

Question:  Will my younger children automatically have the same teachers as my older children?
Absolutely not. For the reasons I mentioned above, the same teacher may not be an appropriate match for younger siblings. My two kids, for example, need very different teaching styles and have only ever had one common teacher. We never assume that siblings have the same traits and always taken into consideration their individual strengths and needs.

Question:  When will we know who our child’s teacher is for the 2015-16 school year?
We will have assignments available in Parent Portal the second week of June. An exact date will be announced as we get closer.

Thank you again for your continued support this year. I cannot tell you how fortunate I feel to be the Principal of such an astounding school community.

Mandy Hill
Principal, Sage Canyon Elementary