I hope your Winter Break has been restful and relaxing. I generally work during the holiday, and it is always odd to see the school empty of students, teachers and staff. It's great when everyone returns filled with renewed energy and spirit.
First semester ends Friday, January 19th, a few short weeks away. Final Exams begin on Wednesday, January 17th and go through Friday, January 19th. For our 9th grade students, this will be their first experience with final exams. For other students, the final exam grade could have a great impact on their semester grades. Attending every class is essential, and reaching out to teachers NOW about getting extra support may be crucial. There are many academic supports available to students at West, and we hope all Regents who need support will take advantage of these opportunities. We have lunch time tutoring, after school Homework Club, and Mission 4.0 in the early evenings for additional support.
To determine how a specific student is doing in a particular grade, use Infinite Campus' Parent Portal; this is a useful tool to start a conversation about your student's grades at any time, but very important now while grades can still be brought up. Please contact the Highland Office at 608-204-3075 if you need assistance regarding this important tool.
We held our 8th annual Respect Retreats with our 9th grade students, sponsored by the Class of 1961. With our partners, Youth Frontiers (a nonprofit that works with schools to build positive communities where students thrive emotionally, academically and socially), we worked with our students over four days (December 12th-15th), with one small learning community at a time (each of our Small Learning Communities - Regent, Van Hise, Highland, and Ash). We had about 20 upperclassmen, who did an amazing job supporting small group discussions and building relationships with our Freshmen. We appreciate the generous support of the Class of '61 and individual donors who made this opportunity possible.
Finally, our Parent Advisory Committee, in conjunction with other interested parents and groups, will be hosting our first Parent Game Night in late February or early March. We hope to use this as a means to build a stronger parent community at West so that our parents have the opportunity to benefit from the same diversity of background and experiences as our students. If you are interested in helping, please join us on Thursday, January 4th from 6:00-7:00pm in the LMC at West.
I want to also thank you for your continued support. Please don't hesitate to contact me with questions or concerns.
Karen Boran, Ed. D.