Friday, January 27, 2017

News and Notes 3.14

On Monday I attended our retreat with our Board of Education where we explored the things we do well at WLPS. I wanted to share an infographic highlighting those points of Trojan Pride. Enjoy this visual representation of just some of the reason why it is a great day to be a Trojan.

College Planning Course
As we wrap up another semester, we are also wrapping up the College Planning Course pilot. WLHS is one of 36 schools in the state to participate in this program, which is a collaboration between the Michigan Department of Education and the Michigan College Access Network (MCAN).
As part of the curriculum, students in this elective explored career interests, what they would need to do after high school to pursue that career, created resumes, discussed how to find the right college match or fit, completed college and scholarship applications, the FAFSA, heard presentations from college representatives visiting the class and much more.
As a final project this week, seniors in the two sections of the class presented what college they have chosen and why it is a good fit, what their area of study will be (if decided), what steps they have taken in the admissions process and what steps are left, what activities on campus they are interested in and what their housing and meal plan plans will be. From Washtenaw Community College to the University of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University and beyond, the choices varied. Some students were motivated by price of tuition, particular area of study, chance to compete on an athletic team and proximity to home (whether it be close to home or far, far away).
The research team heading up this project provided the district with the curriculum, lesson plans, assignments and training for our teacher, Kris Klump-Ward, along with a small stipend for participating. As part of the pilot, our students, teacher and administration had to complete a variety of surveys, the results of which will be used to evaluate the effects of embedding college advising into the high school curriculum.
While some students entered the class already having their minds made up, for many of our students having time during the school day for guidance to make educated decisions was very beneficial.  In addition, students didn't miss other classes for college visits, as all admission reps came during the College Planning course. Plus students were exposed to colleges they might not have normally considered. As example, Ms. Klump-Ward indicated a few of our students plan on attending Adrian even though it wasn't on their initial list of colleges they were considering.  
This course was a great addition to the already existing efforts of growing the college-going culture of WLPS, helping the statewide initiative of increasing the percentage of Michigan residents with high quality degrees or credential to 60% by 2025. We look forward to running the second year of the pilot with the Class of 2018.
Snowcoming 2017
Believe it or not, Snowcoming is next week, though I'm not sure Michigan got the memo. Either way, below is a reminder of spirit days celebrated both by at the elementary and secondary level. I encourage you all to come out to the high school next Friday to support our boys teams at the Snowcoming game as well as enjoy the court celebration between the JV and Varsity games. And a friendly reminder to students, the dance will be on Saturday, February 4, 7:30 p.m. Admission is $10 or you can get in free by helping the Student Council decorate Saturday morning starting at 9 a.m. Dress is semi-formal so no jeans are allowed. The doors will be closed and locked at 9 p.m. and no one will be allowed to enter after that time. Students bringing someone who is a non-WLPS student must get a guest pass from the office. Feel free to tweet any Snowcoming questions to our WLHS Student Council @WLHSstuco.
Facebook Live Friday Next Week
In lieu of News and Notes, on the first Friday of every month, I've been doing what we call "Facebook Live Fridays" where I invite a special guest to join me on a bus ride to highlight different things happening in our community and school district. Next week I will have the pleasure of sitting down with our beloved art teacher Mrs. Rea on her very last day at WLHS. Mrs. Rea is heading for retirement, so make sure to tune in next Friday at noon, and join me in showering her with appreciation and well wishes!

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