...and I say, "it's all right!"
Finally, just in time for Spring Break we have weather that makes me not care how long the lines are at Kimballs...I am willing to wait for a coffee shake...of course, my family is always annoyed that I am "that guy" who holds up the line for everyone else waiting on the shake to be made...but it is delicious :?)
Still, I say, "it's all right!"
With the more regular appearance of the sun comes the wonderful bustle of burgeoning activity as students are anxious to spend more time outside and ready to let loose. Spring break seems to be perfectly planned. The schedules have been swapped around here and there over the last two weeks to accommodate for each grades' MCAS sessions and that always adds an additional twist to behaviors. It also seems to be a bit of irony that the week before our vacation is National Assistant Principal's Week. We were able to honor and celebrate the phenomenal job that Mr. McElhinney does on a regular basis by embarrassing him with well wishes on all of our digital monitors throughout the building, presenting him certificates and filling his office with a healthy number of students struggling with the ability to demonstrate
self-control in the midst of the beautiful weather. Mostly, typical middle school mistakes and growing pains, but occasionally one or two of the delightful 694 cherubs will surprise us with more atypical behaviors. Certainly never a dull moment in the daily experiences of a middle school Assistant Principal and we appreciate Mr. Mac everyday not just during this week!
Whenever I was not overseeing some aspect of the MCAS sessions, I was able to enjoy the appropriate noise of great classroom activities. Figurative language was coming to life in scenes written and performed by the students, laughter and cheers erupting from rooms using games of a wide variety to engage students, mini-field trips throughout the building and around the campus capitalizing on the warmer weather to provide alternative learning environments all allowing students to enjoy the learning process and encouraging them to take more and more ownership of their individual learning. This is indeed a dynamic environment and as the energy builds heading into the spring we are reminded more and more that learning is a very messy process.
As we enter the season of spring fever and social activity begins to bloom, our health department has asked me to share the following message:
In an effort to determine the level of social hosting and underage drinking in Westford, the Westford Health Department has created two surveys for middle school and high school parents. Getting the results of these surveys could help the Westford Health Department receive grants to help eliminate underage drinking parties.
This survey is done through Survey Monkey and when you send this back, you and your answers are anonymous.
Admittedly, the message is a heavy turn from the rest of the update, but while most of our kids are making great choices, it is important to consistently keep the lines of communication open because it is not out of the realm of possibility that even our youngest students are being presented with opportunities to make dangerous choices.
Along the same lines, we have included the following message in the last few updates. This is an incredibly important program and every year they rely on parents of younger students to help support the event to help pay it forward so that the same opportunity can continue to exist for future graduating classes:
LAST NIGHT 2017
Westford Academy Last Night 2017 is the all-night, substance-free celebration for our graduating seniors, which will be held on Friday, June 2nd starting at 10pm. With almost 100% participation, Last Night is a highlight for Westford Academy graduates and a longstanding Westford tradition—this is our 27th year!
From start to finish, It takes over 250 volunteers to make this evening a success. Parents of all students from K to 12, are encouraged to volunteer. We need volunteers before, during, and after the event and the time commitment is flexible. To learn more about how you can help, please see the Last Night website at www.walastnight.org for information about our upcoming volunteer events or contact Volunteer Coordinator Cindy McKeen at email@example.com
I wish you all a wonderfully relaxing spring break!
Dr. Christopher Chew
Stony Brook School
Westford, MA 01886