Our mission is to engage all of our students in rigorous and relevant learning to maximize their unique talents and abilities, and to prepare them for the challenges of the future.
September 2019
Decorated art wall - Get ready for a colorful year!
Sara Babino, an art teacher 🎨at Webster and Lebanon Elementary, shared her talents and created this awesome bulletin board to welcome students to school! It’s these little touches that make our schools so special! #WatertownWay
Dear Parents, Families and Students, Friends and Neighbors,

Welcome back to another exciting school year! All of our schools have enjoyed welcoming our students back this past week to another great year of learning together. It has been a wonderful week seeing our halls fill again with students eager to engage in their learning.

We have many causes for celebration over the summer including another terrific year of Summer School and Camp Invention. We are fortunate to have a strong partnership with the Greater Watertown Community Health Foundation that this year helped support the WUSD with more than $130,000 in grants and strategic initiatives, including support for our Strive for Less Than 5 Attendance Campaign and the Wisconsin Reading Corps tutoring support at Douglas School which will expand this year to include Webster School.

Over this past school year, the WUSD once again received national recognition as a Best Community for Music. Additionally, the WUSD has been recognized again this year for one of the Best High Schools in Wisconsin and the nation per US News and World Report. Watertown High School was also recognized again for being an AP Pacesetter School. Additionally, Schurz School was again recognized this past school year as a Title I School of Recognition. This past year, all of our WUSD elementary schools were recognized by the state as schools that either exceeded or significantly exceeded expectations. The WUSD is truly a place for educational excellence and opportunity for all of our students and families.

The upcoming school year promises to be another great one for our students and families as we continue to work toward our District priorities – enhancing teaching and learning for every child, every day; developing people and partnerships; and innovation. I look forward to seeing you at our many events and celebrations throughout the school year.

Cassandra Schug, PhD
Superintendent of Schools
Upcoming Events
blue calendar icon
  • Sept. 6 ~ WHS Picture Day ~ 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
  • Sept.10 ~ Webster Picture Day 
  • Sept.10 ~ Webster PTO Meeting ~ 5:30 p.m.
  • Sept. 12 ~ WHS Senior Class Picture Day
  • Sept. 13 ~ Douglas Fundraiser Kick-Off
  • Sept.18 ~ Douglas Picture Day ~ 7:15 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
  • Sept. 23 ~ Board of Education Meeting ~ 6 p.m.
  • Sept. 24 ~ WHS College & Career Planning Night ~ 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
  • Sept. 25 ~ Webster Fundraiser Kick-Off
  • Sept. 26 ~ Webster Reading Restaurant ~ 6 p.m. to 7:15 p.m.
  • Sept. 29 ~ Homecoming Week Begins
  • Oct. 4 ~ Homecoming Pep Rally ~ 1:30 p.m. & Football Game ~ 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 5 ~ Homecoming Dance
  • Oct. 8 ~ Webster PTO Meeting ~ 5:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 11 ~ WHS Picture Retake Day ~ 10:20 a.m. to 1:20 p.m.
  • Oct. 11 ~ Lincoln’s Fall Harvest Fest and Book Fair ~ 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Oct. 14 ~ Douglas Scholastic Book Fair Begins
  • Oct. 15 ~ Webster Picture Retake Day
  • Oct. 17 ~ Webster Scholastic Book Fair Begins
  • Oct. 17 ~ Webster Parent/Teacher Conferences ~ 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 17 ~ Douglas PTO’s Harvest Hoedown ~ 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 21 ~ WHS Parent/Teacher Conferences ~ 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 22 ~ Webster Parent/Teacher Conferences ~ 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  • Oct. 24 ~ No School ~ Staff Development
  • Oct. 25 ~ No School
  • Oct. 28 ~ Board of Education Meeting ~ 6 p.m.
  • Oct. 29 ~ Douglas Family Learning Night ~ 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 30 ~ Douglas Picture Retake Day ~ 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m.

See WUSD calendars  to find spring concerts, school events and 2019-20 district annual calendar
Enhancing Teaching and Learning for Every Child - Every Day
Project SEARCH Helps Students with Disabilities Find Career Passions
For many students with disabilities, the future after high school is uncertain. But a school-to-work program called Project SEARCH has been a game-changer for area students including Jabin Rupnow.

Watch this inspiring video about Rupnow's journey from not knowing what he wanted to do after high school to finding his career passion through an internship with the Watertown Regional Medical Center's Buildings and Grounds division. Now this young adult living with autism has what it takes to become a future leader in management.

"He wowed me probably every day," says WUSD Project SEARCH teacher Abby Bamba, who works with skills instructor Cody Kriewald from Bethesda Lutheran Communities. "I’m very proud of who I’ve become," Rupnow says.
New AVID Program Prepares Students for College and Career Success
AVID - Proven Achievement. Lifelong Advantage.
The WUSD is excited to introduce AVID. AVID, which stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a college and career readiness program designed to help students develop the skills they need to be successful after high school. The program places special emphasis on growing writing, critical thinking, teamwork, organization and reading skills. AVID will be implemented at Riverside Middle School and Watertown High School to help all students develop the skills necessary for college and career success. Next school year, AVID will also include an elective class available to students who are seeking additional help and support in developing the skills necessary to experience academic success and planning for the future.
 
Teams from RMS and WHS attended a 3-day training over the summer to learn more about AVID and how to implement AVID in the WUSD. School-wide teams and district-wide teams are meeting to plan and coordinate implementation across our secondary schools. The RMS team includes: Jason Widiker, Leigh Ann Graf, Amy Clark, RJ Dilcher, Joel Kamrath, Steven Frank and Teressa Smail. The WHS team includes Bill Loss, Jessica Scherer, Jenn Pennington, Pam Suski, Alex Schuh, Brian Gerike, Katie Fell and Meghan Davis. The Secondary Director of Teaching and Learning, Erin Meyer, is supporting the work from the District level.
 
Beginning in the 2019-20 school year, Riverside Middle and Watertown High Schools will begin their journey to implement schoolwide AVID strategies. The first phase of this plan focuses on teaching students in grades 6-12 to use the Focused Note Taking Process.  
 
AVID Secondary helps schools develop a culture of college and career readiness for all students across the campus. Next year we will be offering an AVID Elective class offering students daily instruction and support to prepare them for their post secondary path from a trained AVID Elective teacher. AVID also impacts students school-wide as academic strategies like writing to learn, inquiry, collaboration, organizational skills and critical reading (WICOR) are taught in all classes by teachers who have been trained to use AVID strategies in their specific content area.
 
“...[M]ost content area teachers expect students to enter their classes with a clear understanding of how to be academically prepared, study for tests, and develop an effective system for taking notes. AVID teachers, however, explicitly teach these skills and operate under the assumption that these are lifelong capabilities that need to be taught and can always be further honed. Additionally, AVID is focused on the development of the whole child, whereas educators, particularly those at the high school level, are expected to spend the majority of their time teaching and transmitting content knowledge and understanding. While a strong emphasis on content is certainly important and central to the work of teachers, students are likely to improve their performance and be more engaged if more class time is spent on fostering study skills, building academic confidence, and discussing post-secondary options and trajectories. All students can benefit from the types of support AVID provides ( School Community Journal , 2013, Vol. 23, No. 1). 

Stay involved with your secondary student’s learning by asking them about the notes they are taking in class, how they are using them to learn, and the different activities they are participating in throughout their school day. Keywords to listen for are Cornell Notes, graphic organizers, two-column and three-column notes, and interactive notebooks. Ask your students if they can summarize their notes for you!
Innovation
Future Ready - Supporting Student Learning Through Technology
Future Ready Schools - Preparing Students for Success
To develop a Future Ready Student Learning Technology Plan, WUSD formed a planning team in 2018 with members from various areas throughout the WUSD. The team developed a draft plan to provide a proactive, systemic approach to addressing technology needs, using The Future Ready Framework and feedback from the Future Ready assessment. The team planned across seven constructs, called gears, that are symbolic of how technology is interconnected in multiple areas that support student learning. 

Board committees are reviewing the plan in preparation for formal implementation later this year. The planning team’s next meeting is September 25. These efforts will continue to provide the WUSD with a framework to build upon that will involve additional stakeholders to achieve the overall goals.
Future Ready 7 Gears
Gear level teams will be identified over the next four years (2019 - 2023) to further develop and continually refine the overall plan. The seven gears of the framework are:

Seven Gears of the Future Ready Framework:

  • Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment
  • Use of Space and Time
  • Robust Infrastructure
  • Data and Privacy
  • Community Partnerships
  • Personalized Professional Learning
  • Budget and Resources
Developing People and Partnerships
Distinguished Alumni Award Winner: Dr. Anne Liners Brett
Dr. Anne Liners Brett
1968 Alumnus Educates Next Generation of Health Care Providers

Dr. Anne Liners Brett graduated from Watertown High School in 1968. She attributes the success throughout her career to the leadership opportunities at WHS and the skills acquired through Forensics. In addition to extracurricular leadership opportunities at WHS, Anne was the first female Junior Achievement President in Wisconsin. As an extemporaneous speaker competing in Forensics meets while at WHS, she developed the confidence and public speaking skills that have been the foundation of her career.

Additional academic degrees include a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (1972) from the College of Saint Teresa in Winona, MN; Master of Science in Educational Psychology (1974) from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee (UWM); Master of Science in Nursing Administration from the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh (1992) and PhD in Nursing from UWM (1996).

Educating the next generation of health care providers has been the focus of Dr. Brett’s career. She has taught across the higher education continuum from associate degree to doctoral degree programs. Anne retired from full time academia in 2013. She currently is a consultant facilitating new programing, accreditation and organizational improvement in higher education. Dr. Brett speaks across the country and has numerous publications in professional literatures.
Dr. Anne Liners Brett's 1968 High School senior picture
Community service has also been a significant part of Anne’s life including the Hustisford Board of Education (16 years), Richfield Board of Education, Springfield (MO) Board of Education Foundation, Rotary Club, Hustisford HS Forensics Coach, teaching religious education classes at her church and numerous non-profit boards.

Anne and her husband Duane have four grown children and 7 wonderful grandchildren. 

The 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award will be presented during Homecoming festivities the week of Sept. 30 - Oct. 4.
Welcome to Our New Staff!
District-Wide Staff
Stacie Heier
Occupational Therapist ~ Stacie Heier
Sheila Price
Supervisor of Nutrition Services ~ Sheila Price
Anna Ruhland
Physical Therapist ~ Anna Ruhland
Watertown High School
Julia Gibson
Endeavor - Social Studies ~ Julia Gibson
Jamie Sherman
Learning Strategist ~ Jamie Sherman
Brandon White
Physics Teacher ~ Brandon White
Kelly O'Connell
Pupil Services - Guidance ~ Kelly O’Connell
Riverside Middle School
Katie Cashin
ELL Teacher ~ Katie Cashin
Rebecca Eggerichs
Orchestra Teacher ~ Rebecca Eggerichs
Erica Eggert
Grade 6 Dual Language Teacher ~ Erica Eggert
Douglas Elementary School
Jolene Genskow
4K Learning Strategist ~ Jolene Genskow
Jenna Schaak
Speech & Language Therapist ~ Jenna Schaak
Krista Cochrane
Grade 5 Teacher ~ Krista Cochrane
Leah Scheid
Library Media Specialist ~ Leah Scheid
Lincoln STEM Elementary School
Adam Larsen
Grade 2/3 Teacher ~ Adam Larsen
Danielle Rammer
Pupil Services - Social Worker ~ Danielle Rammer
Schurz Elementary School
Kathy Lehman
Principal ~ Kathy Lehman
Marissa Giovannettone
Learning Strategist ~ Marissa Giovannettone
Tony Granick
Physical Education/Adaptive PE Teacher ~ Troy Granick
Amy Kowalski
Grade 3 Teacher ~ Amy Kowalski
Olivia Wolf
Grade 3 Teacher ~ Olivia Wolf
Webster Elementary School
Caitlin McLoone
Learning Strategist ~ Caitlin McLoone
Thank You to Our Veteran Staff!
25 year employees
25 year employees: Deborah Pfeifer, Kathleen Baurichter, Brad Clark, Peggy Hackney - not pictured Diane McCormack and Paul Minning
30 year employees
30 year employees: Suzanne Roth, Karen Sturdevant, Diane Schultz, David Ulm, Pam DeRosier, Tammy Foerster, Lori Wagner - not pictured Linda Neubert, William Surdick and Rusty Tiedemann
35 year employees
35 year employees: Crystal Nelson and Gloria McDonald
Watertown Unified School District | 920-262-1460 |  www.watertown.k12.wi.us