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Thunderbird Thursday Update
Nov. 17, 2016
BHS Referendum Passes
Thank you to the community members and stakeholders of the School District of Baraboo for your investment in our schools, students, and families.
 
From the start this has been a community-driven process. The focus group that prioritized this referendum was comprised of parents, business leaders, school board members and district staff. They worked collaboratively for months to determine our greatest needs at Baraboo High School. We then took those results to the community thro ugh a spring survey that received nearly 2,000 responses.
 
The community told us to scale back our requests, and we listened. The referendum question that passed tonight is a reflection not just of the importance of that collaborative process, but of our community's support of our Baraboo schools.
 
Baraboo High School is the final destination for every student in our district, and a space where every student will engage, learn and grow before setting out to succeed in the world outside our school walls.
 
We know that the renovations planned through these referendum funds will improve the teaching and learning opportunities at Baraboo High School and positively impact the future growth of the overall Baraboo community.
 
We will continue to engage community members and staff as we embark on the design phase of this project, knowing that the revitalization of Baraboo High School will add to the pride our community has for our hometown. We look forward to delivering on our commitment to the Baraboo community by completing this project on time and within budget.
 
- Superintendent Dr. Lori Mueller
Film Screening Monday at JYMS
The Baraboo School District is pleased to invite our community to a limited screening of  Paper Tigers, a powerful documentary  film that explores the impact of toxic stress on struggling teens and how adults can respond in a way that supports healing and growth.

The  film will be shown at the Jack Young Middle School Auditorium on Monday, Nov. 21 at 7  p.m. The  film is free and open to the public. 
 
Paper Tigers follows a year in the life of Lincoln High Alternative School in Walla Walla, Washington. After radically changing its approach to working with students to incorporate a Trauma Informed Care perspective, Lincoln High School saw a dramatic turnaround in everything from the number of fights to test scores to graduation rates. The school has become a promising example of trauma-informed educational strategies and is a testament to what the latest research on childhood adversity is proving: that one caring adult can change the trajectory of a young person's life.
 
Need more convincing to join us to watch this  film? Visit the  film's website and view their trailer:  www.papertigersmovie.com. This  film is intended for adult audiences.
 
This screening is being hosted by the Sauk County Mental Health Taskforce which is a collaborative effort between the Baraboo, Reedsburg, and Sauk Prairie School Districts. 
 


Free Child Safety App

The  National Center for Missing & Exploited Children  (NCMEC) has launched a free child  safety   app  to help parents and law enforcement when a child goes missing.

The 
app Safety Central , provides the latest news, media, and child  safety  tips from NCMEC. The  app  is designed as a digital child ID kit that allows parents to save children's information, including photos and digital fingerprint images. It also includes a search feature for current missing children.

Spring Assessment Results Available
The Wisconsin Student Assessment System, a comprehensive statewide program designed to provide information about what students know in core academic areas and whether they can apply what they know. Results from the Baraboo School District's 2015-16 assessments are now available.

CLICK HERE to get an infographic overview of the Baraboo School District results for the 2015-16 school year.
High Schools teach Astronomy
Our high school astronomy classes have been visiting elementary classrooms to teach them about the phases of the moon.

The hands-on lesson gives each child a chance to see his or her own "moon" in orbit, and instills wonder and understanding about space.

We are so 
#Barabooproud  of our high schoolers for being such great leaders and teachers!


District Office Open House Nov. 28
Join us for a Baraboo School District Office Open House on Monday, Nov. 28 from 3:30-5:30 p.m.

The new district office is located at 423 Linn Street, directly across from Culver's.

Refreshments will be served. 
Post-Election Conversations with Kids
Courtesy of the National Association of School Psychologists

The 2016 election has been long and fraught with strong emotions. As a nation, we have much to do to heal the divisiveness that has resulted. As parents, caregivers, and educators, we have a critical responsibility to help children and youth feel safe and secure and learn how to engage with others of differing viewpoints in a peaceful, tolerant, and respectful manner.
 
As always, schools play a critical role in this process by creating a positive learning environment for all students. It is imperative that educators facilitate respectful discussions among students and safeguard the well-being of those who may feel at risk. Below are recommendations for how adults can support children and youth in the days and months ahead.
 
Reinforce a sense of positive school community. Establishing positive relationships between adults and students is foundational to safe, successful learning environments. Such relationships are built on a sense of mutual trust and respect. Maintain culturally and linguistically responsive practices and ensure that students and their families feel connected and engaged. We function as a nation only when we have that shared sense of relationship; helping children identify and develop those relationships is vital.
 
Model and teach desired behaviors. We know that adult actions and attitudes influence children. Adults can help children and youth manage their reactions to events in the news and their communities by understanding their feelings, modeling healthy coping strategies, and closely monitoring their own emotional states and that of those in their care. Identifying and redirecting negative thoughts and feelings can help to teach children social-emotional skills and problem solving.

Help children manage strong emotions. 
For many children, the intense discussions, media images, and messages that they were exposed to during the  election  can trigger a range of strong emotions. Some children may experience anger or stress. Others may feel a sense of excitement and hope. Children's emotions often spill over into schools. Help children understand the range of emotions that they are feeling and to learn to express them in appropriate and respectful ways. For children experiencing stress, we can help by spending time with them, encouraging them to talk about their feelings, maintaining a sense of normalcy in their schedules and activities, and providing  coping strategies . Reassure children that they are and will be okay. Many children and youth are aware of the intensity of this election, and some may feel at risk. It is important to reinforce strategies to ensure both physical and psychological safety. Remind adults and students of the importance of supporting each other during difficult times and acknowledge people will have a variety of emotions. If students feel physically or psychologically unsafe, they need to know how to report incidences, and trust that adults will be there to validate and respond to their concerns.
 
Reinforce acceptance and appreciation for diversity as critical American values. Acknowledge that everyone is entitled to their personal opinions but that hateful or intolerant comments about others' cultures, sexual orientations, religions, or races-or any other comments that are meant to hurt or make another feel threatened, unsafe, or unwelcome-will not be tolerated.
 
Stop any type of harassment or bullying immediately. Make it clear that such behavior is unacceptable. Talk to the children involved about the reasons for their behavior. Offer alternative methods of expressing their anger, confusion, or insecurity, and provide supports for those who are subject to bullying. School staff can encourage students to continue to be respectful of others.
 
Help children see other perspectives and value respectful dialogue. Sharing our different points of view and working to find common ground, shared goals, and mutual understanding is the best way to draw strength from our diversity. The very nature of civil disagreement is to acknowledge respectfully the views and experiences of other people and learn from differing perspectives. Adults can start by reflecting on their own experiences and how these shape their interactions and reactions. They can help children to do the same and ask questions of each other, rather than hurl accusations. Adults can create safe spaces for youth to share their feelings and concerns while also exploring how they might feel and act if they were in someone else's shoes. Help students see how words matter, as does how we use them. Teach them to avoid stigmatizing statements and to state their thoughts with opening phrases like, "I believe" or "Have you thought about" instead of "Anybody who" or "No one should."
 
Discuss the importance of respecting our democratic process. Despite the divisive nature of the election, Americans voted all across the country in a peaceful and respectful manner. Our system of government is based on the same peaceful and orderly transfer of power in January. Millions of Americans exercised their right to vote and the system is responding accordingly. This is the underpinning of democracy. Highlight how important it is that all citizens engage in the democratic process, not just during a presidential election, but all of the time and at all levels of government. Discourage students from seeing the election in terms of winners and losers but rather the need to focus on common goals such as creating a strong economy for everyone and finding a path to move forward as one country.
 
Encourage children to channel their views and feelings into positive action. We are all part of the American community and can make positive contributions. Like adults, children and youth are empowered by the ability to do the right thing and help others. Working with classmates or members of the community who come from different backgrounds not only enables children to feel that they are making a positive contribution, it also reinforces their sense of commonality with diverse people.
Registrar at new District Office location
We are excited to announce that you can find District Registrar Kristine Snow at the new Baraboo School District Administration Office at 423 Linn Street, across from Culver's.

Kristine will assist families with registration questions for any grade level, and the new location also offers a private conference room.

To contact Kristine directly to set up an appointment, email ksnow@barabooschools.net or call 355-3950.
Veterans Day Celebrations

Students from across the district celebrated Veterans Day Friday.

An assembly at Jack Young Middle School honored local veterans, while students at Al Behrman decorated a wall with yellow ribbons.

Students in Mrs. Lorbecki's class at Al Behrman celebrated Veterans Day by Skyping with their teacher'
s brother-in-law, Taylor Lorbecki, a Ranger in the Army who is stationed in Savannah, Georgia. The students came up questions to ask him and were able to learn from and thank a veteran first hand! 

Thank you to all who serve! 

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Sincerely,

 

Baraboo School District
#BarabooProud