MAY 2021

SUPERINTENDENT'S VOICE
Newsletter
Amazon’s Nampa Fulfillment Center celebrated World Book Day on Friday by gifting students at Park Ridge Elementary and Treasure Valley Leadership Academy with more than 1,500 books for their school and classroom libraries.
WALKING AMONG GIANTS
As a little girl, I vividly remember a family trip where we visited northern California. Among the highlights was driving the Avenue of the Giants. This famous road parallels Highway 101 and takes the traveler through the middle of the California Redwoods. This area boasts the world’s tallest trees and some of the world’s oldest trees. It is spectacular. 
 
Redwoods are unique and beautiful trees, some towering over 370 feet high. They are famous for enduring natural hazards including fire, fungi, insects, disease and floods. They also are unique in that they have no tap root, but instead have numerous lateral roots that entwine with other redwoods and create a family circle of sorts. When large windstorms come, the roots of the family provide strength that enables the group to stand firm, with the roots of each tree holding firm to the roots of the other trees. 
 
Before you visit this area, head knowledge tells us that these trees are tall, strong and quite amazing. It is not until you stand at the foot of a redwood grove, however, that their majesty becomes quite overwhelming, and you begin to realize what a gem they really are. Although other forests can be beautiful, the redwoods are majestic. 
 
I have returned many times to this area, as my husband was born along this same coastline. Each time I return and walk among these giants, I marvel again.   
 
This feeling is not unlike the deep respect I have for our staff in the Nampa School District. In many ways they are giants who have sent their lateral roots into the soil of this district, intertwining and becoming stronger, together, to weather the difficult times. Sixteen months ago, these giants weathered a man-created computer system interruption. They adjusted within days and adapted their instruction and communication to reflect low-tech, but high impact, strategies. 
 
Twelve months ago, they were among the first, if not the first, in Idaho to respond to a natural disaster, a world pandemic. In just a matter of days, they adjusted their instruction and communication to reflect a wholly online approach. Nampa School District was one of only a few districts that actually was able to pull off nine weeks of instruction before the end of the school year. 
 
Throughout the 20-21 school year, our staff has expertly weathered the unpredictable changes, twists and turns we have faced. They have handled it with grace, despite criticism. They have worked together (entwined roots) to come up with creative ways to address the learning needs of students. They have adjusted strategies when the results were not as they had planned. They have been diligent at reading the mental wellness of our students and sought ways to address social-emotional needs. 
 
They have transitioned between instructional modalities, added routines and procedures to protect students and staff from the transmission of COVID-19, and were first in line for vaccines when they became available. They have adjusted procedures as transmission has decreased and worked to keep all students in the loop and up to date with their learning. 
 
Yes, they are giants. Intellectually, we know that our staff are among the best. But it is when we walk among them that we truly understand their greatness, their commitment, their passion for what they do. They are amazing. 
 
First-grade teachers who make home visits on Wednesdays to check in with students, share some additional learning supplies, and build strong relationships with families. Math teachers who invite students in on Wednesdays for another take at learning – delivering one-on-one instruction. Middle school teachers who create virtual homework clubs to support student learning after school hours. Elementary teachers who meet daily in morning circles to set the learning for the day and to check in with each student. Nutrition service employees who start their day with breakfast for all, move to lunch preparation and service for students who are in school or who are learning at home, and then prep for afternoon programs, just to do it all again the next day. Teachers and administrators who, as they are diligently working to finish this year well, are planning for summer learning and new programs for next year. 
 
This is the family circle that has entwined roots, built a strong foundation, endured all sorts of hazards and finds itself standing tall today. These are the giants we have the privilege to walk among and call teachers, staff and employees of the Nampa School District.   

These giants and the family circle of trees are strengthened by our partnerships and relationships with parents. In many ways, we have made stronger connections with parents this year as we have had to communicate in a much more intentional way. We owe a debt of gratitude to our parents who have joined the circle, entwining roots together to make a stronger foundation from which to serve students.

We celebrate our teaching staff during the first week of May and our nursing staff during the second week of May. This year, our staff has heard a lot of feedback and words about their intentions, their work, their passion. Honestly, some of it has been negative. Perhaps it is human nature to speak the loudest about things when we don’t agree with or when we don’t like the change. Perhaps, in this week of celebrating education, we could come together to remind the staff of Nampa School District that they are loved, respected and deeply appreciated for their passionate work for students and for this community. 
 
If you want to reach out to a staff member, you can find their emails on our website. Let’s make this week a week of appreciation for those giants of education who have positively impacted the lives of students in this past year, despite the winds, floods, and other challenges we have endured. 
 
Dr. Paula Kellerer 
Keeping it Clean at Central

Second graders at Central Elementary noticed a problem on their playground and after some research, they proposed a solution. They wanted to keep the playground open to the community and our furry dog friends but also wanted to ensure that students could play and run freely in the grass. With the help of Central's Family Community Resource Centers and the district Maintenance & Grounds departments, their vision became reality and they were able to get a dog waste station installed.
NOVA Snack Attack
Courtney Craner’s fifth-grade NOVA students organized a fundraiser and snack collection drive for community centers and schools in need in Boise and Nampa. The kids recognized that being hungry can prevent kids from focusing and doing their best and decided to do something to help. Their Go Fund Me account quickly surpassed $1,200, and a drive-through collection event garnered another $800 worth of snacks.

Student Spotlight – Katie Hebdon
Katherine (Katie) Hebdon, a senior at Skyview High School, has been named one of just six Idaho semifinalists in the 2021 US Presidential Scholars Program. The semifinalists were selected from 6,500 national candidates expected to graduate from U.S. high schools in the year 2021. 

Inclusion in the US Presidential Scholars Program, now in its 57th year, is one of the highest honors bestowed upon graduating high school seniors. Scholars are selected on the basis of their accomplishments in many areas – academic and artistic success, accomplishment in career and technical fields, leadership, strong character and involvement in school and the community. 

A panel of educators have reviewed these submissions and selected 625 semifinalists. The commission on the Presidential Scholars will select the finalists, and the U.S. Department of Education will announce the Scholars in May. 

The Presidential Scholars Class of 2021 will be recognized for their outstanding achievement this summer in Washington, DC, with a Presidential Scholars Medallion. 
Enroll New Students or Register Returning Students for Fall 2021
Enrollment for new students and registration for returning students for fall is now open at Nampa.School/Enroll. To determine which school serves your address, use our Boundary Tool at Nampa.School/Boundary.

If you are enrolling a kindergartner, please note that children must be 5 years old on or before Sept. 1, 2021. Documents needed to register for kindergarten include the child’s birth certificate, immunization records and proof of residence, such as a utility bill. 
 
To open enroll in a school outside your home school boundary, please complete an Open Enrollment Application. Options include any of our traditional schools, NOVA (our online school), or our innovation schools – Union, or Treasure Valley Leadership Academy. We also are offering new middle schools opportunities at UnionPark Ridge and TVLA.
WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!
Several Nampa School District teams, squads and students leaders earned recognition at state and national levels in recent months. Here are a few highlights of their accomplishments. Check your school’s website and social media for more winners.

Cheer
Nama High: 2nd at State
 
Dance
Columbia High: 3rd at State
Nampa High: Grand National Champions; National Champions in Jazz, Kick, Large Military and Small Military
 
Debate
Columbia High: 3rd at State
 
NHS Theatre – Idaho State University One-Act Competition/Tech Olympics
Best of Show for their performance of “Future, Here” – Jasmine Augustine, Kassidee Clayton, Ty Davis, Artemis Jensen, Abigail McClinn
Tech Champions for the Tech Olympics – Sydney Tomaskovich, Alexis Zavala
Best Overall Actor for All Performances – Ty Davis
Star Actor for “Future, Here” – Jasmine Augustine
 
Girls Soccer
Columbia High: 3rd at State
 
Girls Basketball
Columbia High: 2nd at State
 
Volleyball
Skyview High: 1st at State
 
Wrestling
Nampa High: 2nd at State
 
Career and Technical Education (CTE)
 
Business Professionals of America State Leadership Conference
 
Julie Ferdin: Entrepreneurship, 1st Place
Martha Gallo: Presentation Management Team, 1st Place
Xavier Garcia: Presentation Management Team, 1st Place; Advanced Office Systems and Procedures, 3rd Place
Samantha Stevens: Advanced Word Processing, 1st Place, Legal Office Procedure, 3rd Place
 
College of Southern Idaho Welding Competition
Kasey Miller – 1st Place
Cole Pearson – 3rd Place
 
FCCLA State Leadership Conference
Jessica Grover: Professional Presentation, 2nd Place
Laisha Hernandez: Professional Presentation, 3rd Place
Calypso Jay: Professional Presentation, 3rd Place
Denise Merino: Food Innovations, 1st Place
Lizbeth Rodriguez: Teach and Train, 2nd Place
Vanessa Varga: Fashion Design, 2nd Place
Karla Vazquez: Focus on Child, 3rd Place
 
FFA State Leadership Conference
Ag Sales Team: 2nd Place
Katie Hebdon: Prepared Speech, Gold; Sales Presentation, State High Individual Prospecting
Laney Volkers: FFA Creed, 2nd Place
 
HOSA State Leadership Conference
Daniela Banuelos: Home Health Care, 3rd Place
Carlie Bohanan: Home Health Care, 1st Place
Kira Chavez: Nutrition, 2nd Place
Mary Clark: Medical Laws & Ethics, 2nd Place
Gabrielle Cleaver: Dental Science, 1st Place
Reagan Graham: Medical Reading, 2nd Place
Duncan Hamilton: Medical Reading, 1st Place
Airam Malua: CPR/First Aid, 2nd Place
Zack Robinson: CPR/First Aid, 2nd Place
Lizbeth Rodriguez: Home Health Care, 2nd Place
 
SkillsUSA – Construction
Clay Franseen: 1st Place
Turner Simpson: 2nd Place
 
 


The Skyview volleyball team poses with their trophy.
NAMPA SCHOOL DISTRICT
619 S Canyon St, Nampa, ID 83686
Phone: 208-468-4600