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Greetings from the Principal
Our first quarter of the year is complete, the leaves have fallen, our Turkey Day celebration on November 21 is right around the corner, and our 10th graders are taking the WKCE test. The end of the quarter reminds me of how hard our staff works to create engaging classes for our students. Turkey Day reminds me of the importance and value of our community. Unfortunately, the WKCE reminds me of how confusing our system of education can be for many of our students. Our emphasis on testing can confuse students about the nature and definitions of intelligence and learning. A test like WKCE measures student achievement at one point in time and can lead one to believe that intelligence is fixed and determined by the ability to take tests. At the same time, these tests can create the illusion that learning is somehow disconnected from the reality of their lives. At Shabazz, we work hard to create a more dynamic frame for understanding learning and intelligence. We prefer a definition of intelligence created by thinkers who study the mind. In his book, How the Mind Works, Stephen Pinker defines intelligence as the ability to overcome obstacles and solve problems in order to reach a goal. We love this definition of intelligence at Shabazz. I share it with our new students and I share it when our school comes together for our all school meetings. We love this definition of intelligence because it debunks the notion that only some people are intelligent. We have all set goals and worked to reach those goals. Some of our students have overcome problems and obstacles in order to just wake up and make it to school that many of us would have a difficult time even
imagining. All of our students are intelligent, and many, despite how they have performed on standardized tests, are master problem solvers. This flexible and expansive definition also allows us to incorporate our definition of learning. We define learning as growth and change. If intelligence is overcoming obstacles in order to reach a goal, then our goal at Shabazz is for all of our students to grow and to change. We challenge our students to share this goal with the staff and we challenge them to work hard and to take the risks needed to grow and change. We define that growth and change by stating that we want our students to become problem solvers, communicators, thinkers, and acquirers of knowledge. Finally, we challenge everyone in our community to support each other in reaching these goals. If we all share this goal, we can make Shabazz a powerful learning environment. Not only do we share this definition of intelligence and learning with the students, the staff uses it to assist us in clarifying our work that we do together. If intelligence requires a goal, then the only way for a group of people to act intelligently is if we share a common goal. Our shared vision of Shabazz as a safe, dynamic, thoughtful, and engaging learning environment that challenges our students to construct knowledge through disciplined inquiry to produce discourse, products, and performances that have meaning beyond success in school creates the framework for our work together. As a result of our shared vision, we can work together to overcome the inevitable problems and obstacles that occur as we climb the mountain together to reach our shared goal. We believe how we define intelligence and how we perceive learning matters. An inclusive definition of intelligence and a definition of learning framed as growth and change, can make all the difference working constructively with students and staff in building a positive culture around learning and in building a shared vision. What is your goal? Join us at Shabazz as we support each other to solve problems and overcome obstacles so we can grow and change.
Aric Soderbloom, Principal
Please Call to Excuse Absences
Shabazz students are expected to attend school at least 90% of the time. It is not always easy to decide if your child is sick enough to stay home or well enough to be in school. Students will not earn credit in a class if they have too many absences. If you question whether your child should attend, you may call the health office at 204-2109. Please call the attendance line at 204-2441, if your child will be out. The absence will still count toward your child’s attendance percentage, but this will prevent truancy and help the teachers know what’s up.
Thursday and Friday, Nov 22-23 NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving Break Wednesday, Dec 12 Parent Meeting, 6:30 p.m. in Shabazz Library Dec 24 to Jan 6 NO SCHOOL, Winter Break Monday, Jan 7 School Resumes Wednesday, Jan 9 Parent Meeting, 6:30 p.m. in Shabazz Library Wednesday, Jan 16 Theatre Class Performance 6:30 p.m. in Shabazz Library Monday, Jan 21 NO SCHOOL, MLK, Jr. Day Thursday and Friday Jan 24-25 NO SCHOOL Grading/Staff Development Monday, Jan 28 NO SCHOOL FOR RETURNING STUDENTS New Student Orientation
EAST SIDE BARNES & NOBLE BOOK FAIR
The Shabazz fundraising committee is organizing a Book Fair event at the east side Barnes & Noble on Thursday Dec. 6, from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Kelly McCann (Keem's mom) is chairing this event. This is a great opportunity for our friends, parents and supporters to make purchases at the store using a voucher with a percentage of the sales coming back to us. People can also use our voucher number to make purchases on line for one month following the event. Vouchers will be sent home sometime before the event. This is also an opportunity for our students to do poetry readings, or play music. Students from Caroline's English class and Gene's classes will be doing readings and playing music. If you are interested in volunteering for this event please give your name to Donna or Lynn in the office or email Martha at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible. Thank you for your support.
Our school puts a strong emphasis on experiential and service learning. There are many activities that students and teachers would love to do, but are limited by lack of transportation. We continue to raise funds to purchase two vans for our school programming. These vans will allow us to increase and improve our environmental education programs, use many of the fabulous resources Madison has to offer in field trips, and allow us flexibility outside city bus schedules and parent transportation for many of our opportunities. Students have ongoing fundraisers. Community members, families and friends can support this effort by sending a donation to the Shabazz office with 2Vans in the memo section. We will send you a tax deduction donation sheet for your records. All donations are fully tax deductible! We greatly appreciate your support in this endeavor.
The halls are humming and decked out for Turkey Day, Wednesday, November 21, our annual celebration for students, staff, and alumni. We welcome parents, grandparents, guardians, siblings, and other housemates to share the day. Students arrive as usual at 8:45. Students are asked to prepare a food contribution as a part of their first period class. First period teachers will let their students know what they should bring. The first event of the day is “The Great Shabazz Talent Show” in the Sherman Gym at 10 a.m. Visitors sign in at a table in front of the gym and can begin seating for the show at 9:45. Shabazz students will come down with their class about 9:50. After the Talent Show, there will be movies, basketball, face painting, various other activities. Gene will also be holding a raffle for hand made willow baskets to benefit the Community Lunch Program. Feel free to wander around the school and drop in on any activity which interests you. At 1:30 the feast begins in the Sherman cafeteria. Students and staff contribute most of the food. A donation of a dessert or money is appreciated, but definitely not required. If you bring a homemade dessert, please write the ingredients on a recipe card to set next to it. This helps our vegans, vegetarians, and those with allergies. After the feast, school is dismissed for the long holiday weekend. We hope you enjoy the day!
All parents, guardians, and significant adults in our students’ lives are invited to come to our monthly parent meetings. Parent meetings are a great way to network with other Shabazz families and to get involved with the school. Meetings are the second Wednesday of the month at 6:30 P.M. IN THE Shabazz library. The meetings are informal, but informational, and treats are served! The next two meetings will be on December 12 and January 9. Hope to see you there!
WANTED! BOOKS AND GAMES
Denise Aulik, Shabazz English teacher, is seeking the following books by Karen Elizabeth Gordon to develop a new Language Arts Boot Camp class: The Transitive Vampire: A Handbook of Grammar for the Innocent, the Eager, and the Doomed The New Well-Tempered Sentence: A Punctuation Handbook for the Innocent, the Eager, and the Doomed Either paperback or hardcover will do. We are in need of at least 16 copies of each title. Denise is also looking for the following games for her Mind, Body, and Soul class: Legos, Mind-Teaser / Brain-Twister games, Model kits, Etch A Sketches, Retro wire puzzles, Croquet set
MATC Meeting for Students with Disabilities
Sandy Hall, the director of Madison College’s Disability Resource Services, will hold an informational meeting for students with disabilities and their parents on Tuesday, November 27, at 3:30 in the Shabazz library. She will present information concerning available services, applications, deadlines, entrance requirements, financial aid, etc., and be available to answer your questions. This meeting is especially important for seniors and their parents/ guardians, but students from all grade levels who may attend MATC at some point in their future are also encouraged to attend! Please contact Lori (204-2451), if you are planning to come or would like more information.
MATC “Looking Forward” Provider Fair
On Wednesday, December 5, MATC will host “Looking Forward,” its annual provider fair to present information about what services several Dane county agencies and area post-secondary schools provide for students with disabilities.
Vittles with Your Vote
Vittles with Your Vote was great thanks to the support and help of several individuals and area businesses. Thanks and props to Lotte Langer (Angelo's mom), Brian Tennant (Maria’s dad), Tracy at EVP Coffee on East Washington Ave., Sean from Manna Cafe on Sherman Ave., and Fred at Einstein Bros Bagels on Fordem Ave. Also thanks to Grant and Gene for helping staff the table. It was a great day to witness democracy in action, represent our school in the greater community, and to raise funds for our school. Please show your appreciation by patronizing businesses that support us. Thank you!
When Is School Closed Due to Weather?
Dear Families of MMSD Students, When the weather is bad, the Madison Metropolitan School District follows a set of guidelines for deciding if school will be open or closed. With winter weather here, I’d like to review these guidelines with you. The district must make a decision that is the best for all students. We realize, at times, our decisions may not fit with your individual circumstances. Therefore, we encourage and strongly support you in making the decision that is best for your child(ren). You are always the best judge of your child’s health and safety. The process for deciding when schools are open or closed due to snow and/or ice District staff members review the weather conditions beginning early in the morning. They talk with weather forecasters, the City Streets Department, Madison Police and Dane County Sheriff’s Departments, and school district staff to see if all buildings are accessible for students and staff. We also consult with bus companies to see if buses will be able to travel safely to and from school. We make the decision whether to close schools by 6:30 a.m. or earlier, and then communicate this decision to all local news outlets.
How you can find out if schools are closed On days when the weather is bad, listen to any local radio or television station for information about school closing. If during registration you have provided an email address and/or text message phone number in the parent portal to the Infinite Campus student information system, you will be contacted in the morning regarding a school closing. You can also check our Web site (www.mmsd.org). When schools are closed because of extreme cold When the National Weather Service has a wind chill WARNING for Dane County in effect for the time just before the school day begins, we will make a decision if our schools should close. It is quite likely we will make this type of closing decision on the morning of the day in question. If there is a wind chill ADVISORY (and not a WARNING) for the county, schools will likely be open. (Thresholds from National Weather Service) When schools are closed, all activities are canceled When Madison schools are closed for the day, it also means that all activities scheduled in school buildings for that day are canceled. This includes all MSCR programs and all after school programs. Why schools are generally not dismissed early on days when the weather is bad In many of our families, adults work outside the home and they have no child care arrangements available before the end of the school day. However, if your schedule allows and if you feel your child(ren) will be safer at home, you can pick your child(ren) up before the end of the school day. If you do, go to the school office and request that your child(ren) be dismissed to you. We try to keep schools open When schools close, many families have issues with child care. As a result, we try to keep schools open if it’s safe to do so. However, as we stated at the top of this letter, parents can always make the decision to keep their child(ren) at home in bad weather.
Why school starts are not delayed on days when the weather is bad but will improve during the day In many of our families, adults working outside the home are not able to adjust their work schedules or find child care to accommodate a later start. If your family transports your child(ren) to school, we appreciate the extra effort it takes on severe weather days and we acknowledge that the students’ arrival might be somewhat delayed. When schools are closed for other reasons If you have a question about whether schools or a particular school will be closed for reasons other than severe weather, we will communicate via email to those parents/guardians who have provided their email address to us via Infinite Campus – the online student information system. You can also listen to local radio or television stations, go to the school’s Web site. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation For every family which is happy that school is in session on days when the weather is bad, there is another family that feels schools should be closed. The decision to open or close schools during inclement weather brings out some of the strongest community reactions – no matter which way we go with our weather decisions. We appreciate your understanding of the difficulties in making this decision, and your support in helping your child get to school safely on winter days. Please know that we will use safety considerations in making all of our weather decisions. Sincerely,
Jane Belmore, Ph.D. Interim Superintendent of Schools Madison Metropolitan School District
Foundation for Madison’s Public Schools is Sending Madison’s Leaders Back to School
Since 2004, the Foundation for Madison’s Public School’s A Principal Experience (formerly known as Principal for a Day) has built relationships between Madison’s community leaders and MMSD students and staff. This year, Dave Fowler from CUNA Mutual Group served as our school’s “Principal Partner” during the event held on Tuesday, October 16. Principal Partners learn just how much students and staff accomplish in a single day and that the job of a Madison public school principal is both challenging and rewarding. A Principal Experience forges relationships between school and community leaders, laying the basis for new partnerships that support and strengthen Madison’s public schools. It is our hope that Principal Partners take their experiences back to their businesses and adopt the school they visited. The Foundation’s Adopt-a-School program cultivates, nurtures, and sustains partnerships between schools and the Madison community. Adopt-a-School partners provide a combination of volunteer time, in-kind contributions, and financial resources to meet the needs of students. In return, businesses receive a multitude of benefits including an increased sense of pride and involvement in Madison’s public schools and the awareness that they are contributing to the success of our next generation of leaders. If you are interested in becoming a Principal Partner next year or would like more information about the Adopt-a-School program, visit www.fmps.org, email email@example.com, or call any of the office staff at (608) 232-7820.
Want to Reach a Teacher?
Most teachers check their e-mail regularly. To leave a voice mail message call the number below. If it is during school hours, you will reach the office and be transferred to voice mail. After hours, it goes directly to voice mail.
Name Position Phone
Administration and Support Staff
Soderbloom, Aric Chance, Donna Pauly, Lynn , Handy, Kim Kaye, Susan Kirch, Connie Porter, Joel Renz, Amanda Robinson, Tauri Simansky, Anita Wess, Donna
Principal Secretary Receptionist Nurse Social Worker Kitchen Mgr. Psychologist Librarian MSCR Guidance Custodian
204-2443 204-2440 204-2441 204-2109 204-2470 204-2117 204-2470 204-2453 204-2445 204-2450 204-2119
firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Aulik, Denise Banks, Robert Bennett, Lori Delcourt, Gene Evert, Jeff Fee, Peter Goettl, Grant Harvey, Caroline Jones, Katie Kellogg, Colleen Kim, Kathleen Murray, Tina Szpak, Joe Vasquez, Martha
English Science Resource Social Studies Resource Math/Science Math English Social Studies English Spanish Computers Phy Ed/Health Art
204-2469 204-2465 204-2451 204-2460 204-2454 204-2467 204-2466 204-2461 204-2464 204-2458 204-2461 204-2468 204-2455 204-2459
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: (608) 204-2440 Fax: (608) 204-0503 Intake and Attendance: 204-2441 Health Office: 201-2109 http://shabazzweb.madison.k12.wi.us/
Malcolm Shabazz City High School 1601 North Sherman Avenue Madison WI 53704
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