Dear Community,

I am often asked my thoughts on what might be the biggest challenge facing public education today. Of course issues such as funding and school safety quickly, and appropriately, come to my mind. But there is another challenge that we are managing every single day that is becoming more and more impactful in a negative way. The decrease in people entering the teaching profession is very concerning. One ramification of this reduction in the number of newly certified teachers is a significant decrease in the number of substitutes available to fill absences on a daily basis. In addition, some hard-to-fill permanent positions such as Special Education and English Language Learner teachers are are even more challenging to recruit and hire.

Recently, I joined superintendents from across the state at Penn State University for a meeting where this subject was discussed at length, among other important topics. We are not alone. Every single superintendent is also facing a shortage of substitutes and teacher applicants. Every school district is trying varied ways of combating the problem, from hiring outside substitute agencies, to increasing pay rates, to providing emergency teaching certifications to people outside of the education profession with bachelor degrees. The North Penn School District (NPSD) has researched all of these options and has implemented those that make sense to us. I am happy to say that our substitute pool is better than others, but it is still not enough to meet our needs.

I am reaching out to our community, NPSD retirees and others who may be interested in working with children and young adults to consider substituting in NPSD. Although we are doing everything we can to make sure all of our classes are covered, from hiring more subs to asking administrators to cover teacher absences, the challenge persists and we need your help. Retired teachers are eligible, as is anyone with a four-year degree who we can assist in obtaining emergency certification.

Serving as a substitute teacher is not only rewarding because you are working with students, but it is flexible and on your terms. You sub as often as you want, where you want and when you want. To learn more, please contact our human resources department at 215-368-0400.

Curtis R. Dietrich, Ed.D.  
Superintendent, NPSD  
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Inglewood Elementary School Students Cross Social Boundaries at Mix It Up at Lunch Day

Students at Inglewood Elementary School joined more than one million students around the world to help break down social and racial barriers by participating in Mix It Up at Lunch Day. Led by English Language Development teacher Stephanie Levitt, this event encourages students to sit with someone new in the cafeteria for one day, and to incorporate the day into year-long efforts to promote a healthy school climate!
York Avenue Unveils Little Free Library
to Students and Community

The Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization that looks to share the excitement of reading and books throughout the community. York Avenue recently unveiled its second Little Free Library at the school. Led by reading specialist Jessica Stephenson, students at the school and in the community are encouraged to "take a book, leave a book."
Full-Day Kindergarten Monthly Update

Following months of preparation, planning and countless hours of hard work from hundreds of helping hands, NPSD successfully launched its full-day kindergarten (FDK) program beginning the 2019-2020 school year!

North Penn's FDK program has been carefully designed to fit the needs of incoming kindergarten students to learn in a caring, nurturing environment so that each student is educated to their fullest potential. As the school year unfolds, it's been remarkable to see all of these plans come to life each day in the classroom.  We'd love to share these successes with the community!

Each month, we will provide a video update highlighting key components of full-day kindergarten at North Penn. While each activity may take place at different times throughout the day and may look a little different from classroom to classroom, every kindergarten student at NPSD is experiencing these classroom models. This month, we take a look at morning routines and exploration stations.
Now Accepting Nominations for
North Penn Knights of Honor

NPSD is now accepting applications for the next class of North Penn Knights of Honor.

In November of 2018 in the North Penn High School (NPHS) Auditorium, three outstanding individuals were inducted into NPSD's Knights of Honor Hall of Fame. NPSD is now in search of our next class of honorees. For information, guidelines and nomination application, please visit Nominations are due by December 1, 2019. The induction ceremony for selected honorees will be held Friday, March 6, 2020.

New Propane-Fueled School Buses Unveiled at NPSD

NPSD unveiled 14 new cost- and emission-reducing propane-fueled school buses and a propane fueling station at a ribbon-cutting event at North Penn High School in October.

The ribbon cutting ceremony included a live fueling demonstration and remarks from NPSD administrators and school board members and representatives from Amerigas and Brightbill. The event concluded in attendees taking a ride on one of the new propane buses.

Click here to read more.
NPSD's Melissa Froehlich Presents NPSD Best Practices for School Breakfast at International Conference 

NPSD Coordinator of School Nutrition Services Melissa Froehlich was recently selected through a competitive submission process to present at the Association of School Business Officials (ASBO) International Annual Conference and Expo in Nashville, Tennessee.

Melissa's session was titled "Breakfast Beyond the Cafeteria." Roughly 90% of schools that operate the School Lunch Program offer breakfast as well, but overall participation is much lower. When breakfast moves away from the traditional cafeteria-based model to a "grab and go" or alternate delivery model, participation is shown to increase. More students eating breakfast translates into better behavior and concentration in the classroom and can lead to a healthier bottom line for nutrition services. Melissa's session explored alternative breakfast delivery models and how to implement them in districts while confronting common challenges such as labor, equipment, storage, food safety and acceptance. She used the model of the breakfast cart at NPHS as an effective example.

"The premier event for school business leaders," the ASBO conference provided a powerhouse of professional collaboration alongside colleagues who sharpen ideas, share proven solutions, and confirm the value of community.
NPSD Partners with PennDOT and Six Local Police Departments for Operation Safe Stop

As part of Bus Safety Week, NPSD recently participated in the 23rd Annual Operation Safe Stop on Wednesday, October 23 in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) and six local police departments.

On this day, bus drivers were asked to document any illegal passes occurring on their routes during the day, including identifying information regarding the vehicle, and file it with local authorities. Following the event, NPSD and police departments shared their results with PennDOT. Thank you to the Towamencin, Upper Gwynedd, North Wales, Montgomery Township, Lansdale, and Hatfield police departments for partnering with NPSD in this effort to increase bus safety for our students!
North Penn High School Theatre Presents:
Once Upon a Time

November 21, 22, 23 @ 7:30 pm
Sunday Matinee November 24 @ 2:00 pm
Tickets:  $10 Adults, $5 Students

NPHS Theatre and Thespian Troupe 5464 proudly announce the fall show this original work of tall tales, small tales, fun tales and thoughtful tales delighting all ages and coming from many places! Stories like the original Hansel and Gretel from Sub Saharan Africa, tales of Giants and Trolls from the Philippines and Iceland, tales of talking animals, and tales from many cultures are brought together in a night of acting and dance, poetry and song. This is one for the whole family and all ages!

Enjoy this wondrous and magical show that delighted audiences in 2009 when it was first produced!

"This presentation was not only a piece of theatre, it was a celebration of art: theatre, dance, music, storytelling, mime, songs and poetry. What a talented and generous ensemble of artists we have here!"
- Lou Volpe, retired teacher Harry S. Truman High School

Click below for more information and to order tickets!

The Long Road Exhibit Comes to NPSD

The Central Pennsylvania LGBT Center's display of the Long Road exhibit visited NPSD for three weeks in October. The Long Road to LGBTQ+ Equality in Pennsylvania is a traveling history exhibit that chronicles the efforts that activists have undertaken in Pennsylvania to achieve full equality for LGBTQ+ people. It uses case studies of several cities and townships to highlight not just the political struggles, but the personal stories as well. This Long Road exhibit tells these stories through historical narrative, photographs and video of oral history first person accounts of activists involved in the struggles to achieve protection from discrimination.
North Penn Students Host North Penn School Board Town Hall Candidate Debate

The North Penn High School (NPHS) Auditorium was recently the scene of a Town Hall "Q and A" for the NPSD Board of School Directors candidates in the November election to discuss issues in the community and schools.

Twelve school board candidates who vied for six open seats in the November 5 election had a chance to share their views with the community at the Town Hall Debate. The staff of The Knight Crier , NPHS' student-run newspaper, served as debate moderators in a Q and A format that is expected to last about 90 minutes.

The Town Hall was completely student-run. Staff members from The Knight Crier  acted as moderators, timekeepers, narrators, organizers, publishers and coordinators.

The format of the Town Hall was a question and answer session. A staff member from The Knight Crier will provided a brief summary of the topic to give the audience background on the issue in the North Penn area. Questions submitted by community members and generated by The Knight Crier staff were then asked. Topics of discussion included Budgetary Philosophy; Facilities and Renovations; School Environment; Class Size; and Diversity. Following the initial question and answer, the moderators monitored a brief discussion.

NPSD Prepares to Launch New Website 

Autumn is here and the changing leaves remind us how good it feels to let things go! That said, this fall we'll be launching a new website that will look a little different than what users are used to seeing. Keep an eye out for this fresh new look, officially going live on Monday, November 25. We can't wait to show you what we've been working on! 
North Penn News Update from NPTV 
North Penn Television (NPTV) students produce updates on what was happening around the NPSD during the month of October.

Reading is Fundamental (RIF)
Reading is Fundamental (RIF)

NPAAA Lifetime Achievement Award - Susan Capps Morris
NPAAA Lifetime Achievement Award - Susan Capps Morris

Channel Surfing from Half Court!
Channel Surfing from Half Court!