Archives for February 2015

School Board – March 2

The ISD 423 Board of Education will conduct a regular board meeting on Monday, March 2, 2015 beginning at 5:30 pm in the Council Chambers at Hutchinson City Center.

Click Here for School Board Agendas

Difficult Situations

Teaching Kids to Handle Difficult Situations

By Jill Bridge, School Counselor, Park Elementary

Whether at school, at home or out in the community we are faced with a variety of difficult situations. We don’t have control of what others do but we do have control about how we react to these situations. Even though we can’t control others we can respond to the situation so that the other person understands our point of view regarding what happened. Our first impulse during these situations might be to yell back or say words that are unkind. Remember that we didn’t appreciate what happened so we should respond in a way that we would want people to respond to us. We have to remember the golden rule. If we don’t follow this rule the problem gets bigger instead of smaller which is the goal.

When working with students we talk often about thought bubbles. We have a lot of thoughts that go through our mind each and every day. These thoughts may be nice positive thoughts but can also be negative and hurtful. We have to choose which thoughts should leave our mind and be sent out through our speaking bubble so others can hear it. Choosing wisely on our part regarding the things we have control over (what we say and do) can help us make a difficult situation easier. We have to remember that sometimes a difficult situation can simply be a miscommunication between two people. We may infer the wrong thing about what the person did, said or how they said it.

A great way to teach kids to respond using their words is to have them express themselves using an “I” statement. The thought you are expressing should start by using the word “I” that way you are explaining how you feel about the situation and doesn’t sound like you are blaming others, which would make the problem larger. A general format to follow when using an “I” statement is as follows:

I feel_______ (use a feeling word)

When__________ (explain what happened)

So please ______________ (what would you like to see happen next)

If we change how we think about the situation maybe we can get to know or understand the other person better. Often times people lash out at others because of something that happened in their lives that made them feel hurt. If the situation lends well to helping the other person it is worth a try. Ultimately we want to keep ourselves safe in every situation and sometimes the best response is none at all. If someone is trying to get a rise out of us we shouldn’t feel as if we need to respond we can, walk away, shrug it off and/or go do something we enjoy with people that make us feel good about ourselves. There are going to be difficult situations no matter what stage of life we are in, we should make choices that make us proud of ourselves and that help resolve the problem.

 

Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means.
Ronald Reagan

Powdered Caffeine Alert

Powdered caffeine is causing deaths.

Ingesting powdered caffeine is very dangerous. Teens tend to underestimate the dangers of use even in very small amounts.

A teaspoon of powder can deliver a deadly punch of caffeine and smaller amounts can cause severe health issues.

Click here to learn more about  teaming up to reduce substance abuse.

Opportunity & Value

President Obama’s recent State of the Union speech addressed a pair of initiatives that attracted a great deal of attention. One initiative that he spoke of is the redesign of high schools to offer a more “real-world” education. Secondly, he offered that he was going to push for a free two-year community college education for those that work hard.

President Obama proposes to make community college the new high school. Everyone would get a “free” education through two more years above high school. Some have dubbed this a P-14 initiative, as opposed to our current K-12 system.

The irony of the President’s proposal is that these things are already happening, and have been happening for a long time at Hutchinson HS. Our “real-world” options are broad in depth and increasing in value. Our College 1-2-3 program is increasing exponentially, as well.

In terms of the electives we offer students, we have an unsurpassed number of elective choices as compared to other schools. The number of periods taken by HHS students with a non-core teacher during the first trimester of this school year is 39.7%. More importantly, we are working directly with other entities like the Hutchinson Chamber, Ridgewater, Alexandria Tech and local industry to create even greater connections that move kids from the high school and ultimately, into the work force. Our collaborative work developing career academies in areas such as STREAM, Mechatronics, Manufacturing, SciHI and Business is emerging from this collaboration.

Historically, a great number of those elective decisions are delayed until later in your high school career. This does not work to develop in-depth “real-world” engagement. It is a primary goal of our school to get students involved in career pathway electives from the minute you walk into the building. When this occurs, students will be able to delve deeper into the array of electives to create skills and interest that will be able to be capitalized on by both students and the school. In essence, we are placing equal emphasis on Mathematics and Manufacturing.

Two weeks ago, a recent letter writer (Olmsted-Kohls, 1-14-15) editorialized that schools are obscuring some of the college opportunities available to our students. This is simply not accurate. PSEO and Concurrent options are presented on equal footing to other Honors and Advanced Placement options that we provide. While certainly we promote offerings in our building, we also promote the full gamut of choice to each student. All options are always on the table for each student we counsel.

However, there is a right time for students to take on college options. The reality is that 54% of students enrolling in 2-year schools need to take remedial classes that do not lead towards a degree (Office of Higher Education, 2008). We need to ensure that our students are ready for that next level at the appropriate time, be it when they are 16 years old or 20 years old.

Students at Hutchinson HS find college opportunities through PSEO at Ridgewater, Advanced Placement courses, as well as concurrent college classes from Southwest MN State and Ridgewater offered right at Hutchinson HS. HHS students are enrolled for the equivalent of some 2500 college credits per year, 80% of those attained without ever stepping foot out of the building. Depending on the post-secondary institution, this represents anywhere from $600,000 to $2 million dollars of potential college credit earned per year, and ultimately saved for students and families in the long run. We are at record-high enrollments in these areas and show no signs of leveling off in the near future.

The reality is that high school is no longer the place where you get ready for college. As we move forward, it is the place where you begin your college career. Our old paradigm of the “Senior Slide” is over, where students opt out of challenges as they near the end of high school. Instead, students need to have a clear goal of using the high school as a great place for remediation and enrichment on their journey into post-secondary education and the work force.

In terms of opportunity and value, Hutchinson High School offers a better deal than even the President is dreaming of…and one you don’t need to wait for.  From here, you can get a multi-million dollar world-class high school and early college education for FREE!

HHS 2016-17 School Year Information

On this page, you will find all of the links you’ll need as an HHS student in 2016-2017!

Supplies 16

Naviance

9th Grade Condensed (abbreviated form to help 9th Grade students register)

What does an 8th Grader (parent) Need to Know? (Part I + II)

The following files, recorded on KDUZ 4-10-15, will help students and parents navigate the HS experience next Fall. Take a listen!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulation Kathy Nordby – ISD 423 Teacher of the Year

Teacher of the Year - Photo provided by The Hutchinson Leader

 Photo provided by The Hutchinson Leader – Please Contact Hutchinson Leader for copy – (Kathy Nordby – Center Left)

West Elementary’s STEM Room Teacher, Kathy Nordby, was presented with the Jaycees’ Teacher of the Year Award at the Hutchinson Area Chamber of Commerce Banquet Friday, January 23, 2015.

Congratulations on your well-deserved award, Kathy!  You are appreciated!

 

Hutchinson Public Schools

Hutchinson Public Schools