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Archives for April 2015

School Board – April 27, 2015

The ISD 423 Board of Education will conduct a quarterly board meeting on Monday, April 27, 2015 beginning at 5:30 pm in the Media Center at Hutchinson Middle School.

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Parents are Where the Story Begins


By Cindy Wendorff, Early Childhood Family Education Coordinator

Stable, caring relationships are essential for healthy development.  Children develop in an environment of relationships that begins in the home and includes extended family members and early care providers.  Studies show that children who develop in a context of secure, trusting relationships are:

  • better adjusted when they get to school,
  • do better in school,
  • stay in school longer,
  • become more productive and healthier members of the workforce as adults and
  • are better equipped to support the healthy development of the next generation.

Numerous scientific studies support the conclusion that providing supportive, responsive relationships as early in life as possible enhances future prosperity and can sometimes prevent or reverse the damaging effects of toxic stress (such as extreme poverty, abuse or neglect)  with lifelong benefits for learning, behavior and health.

Psychologists call the relationship between child and parent “attachment.”  The study of these relationships has shed light on the importance of the relationships between parent and child. Children form the basis for their future relationships  on their relationship with their parent,  as well as learning how to parent  for the next generation.

The warmth that parents bring to their children’s lives starts at infancy.  Parents of young children shower their kids with talk and physical touch. These behaviors show the child that others are sensitive of their needs and that parents can be trusted for emotional responsiveness.  As a child grows older, he finds warmth in the parent-child relationship in other ways, specifically in receiving the fulfillment of his emotional needs, whether it is play or intimate conversation.  Warmth in parenting can lead to a cooperative child, who is well-developed socially and emotionally.

One important task that occurs within this relationship  is teaching and practicing self regulation or self control,  which often is a way of keeping children on track in their own initiatives.  Self regulation begins with:

  • Physical regulation: Helping a child recognize physical warning signs that they are losing control, such as clenched fists, headache, stomachache.
  • Emotional regulation: Teaching children to label their feelings.  They can then “own” their emotions and begin to accept responsibility for them.  It’s critical to help them find  ways to calm down so they can move on to the final step:
  • Cognitive regulation: Practicing problem solving and changing their behavior.

From early childhood, the home becomes a school.  To parents of older children, this is obvious, as the dinner table might become the study table.  However, parents’ roles in educating young children start as early as the infant years.  Parents simultaneously educate their children while they strengthen the parent/child relationship.  For example,

  • reading books to your child will strengthen her linguistic development;
  • playing active games will improve her motor skill development; and
  • working on puzzles with your child will enhance her cognitive development.

Young children- and even parents- might mistakenly believe that they are just spending time with their family when they are actually developing useful life skills – social and cognitive.  Parents are continually modeling their own self control and strengthening their relationship with their child!!  A child’s story begins with his parents and extends for generations!!

Wright County Conference

Stay up-to-date on Hutchinson High School activities.

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West Elementary Orientation Video

Check out the West Elementary orientation video.


Powerful Parent Participation

Powerful Parent Participation at IEP Meetings

By: Andrea Fladeboe, Administrative Intern and
Lisa Kraft, Director of Special Services


As a parent you are your child’s first teacher.  Your role as their teacher does not stop once they enter school.  Throughout your child’s education, your participation is of the utmost importance. Research shows when schools and families work together, student learning and outcomes improve.  Positive changes occur in children’s attitudes toward school, their social skills and behavior, and the likelihood that they will take more challenging classes and pass them.  This holds true across families of all economic, ethnic/racial, and educational backgrounds—and for students of all ages.

If you are the parent of a student with special needs your participation in their education is supported by the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA).  IDEA states: Almost 30 years of research and experience has demonstrated that the education of children with disabilities can be made more effective by… strengthening the role and responsibility of parents and ensuring that families…have meaningful opportunities to participate in the education of their children at school and at home.

As a parent of a child with a disability, IDEA ensures your right to participate in all educational decision making. One of the most significant ways you can participate in your child’s education is by attending the annual Individual Education Program (IEP) meeting.  This is the meeting that takes place at least once a year, where the main task is to review the progress your child has made toward their goals, as well as plan their goals for the next year and what related services, accommodations or modifications they will need to ensure progress toward those goals.

The annual IEP meeting is a critical part of your child’s specialized education.  This meeting uses a team approach for sharing information and decision making.  This process can sometimes be overwhelming.  To help you prepare and hopefully minimize any concerns, consider the following questions prior to attending your child’s IEP meeting:

  1. What are my child’s strengths?
  2. What are my concerns about my child’s academic, social, personal development?
  3. What progress have I seen in my child over the last year?
  4. What do I hope and dream for my child? What would I like them to achieve over the next year?
  5. What questions do I have about my child’s special education program?

You know your child best, therefore you are an essential member of your child’s educational team.  The team of professionals working to meet the needs of your child needs your expertise and participation.  Together families and schools can create a positive experience and bright future for all children.

If you have questions about special education and IEP services in Hutchinson Public Schools please feel free to contact your child’s school or Lisa Kraft, Director of Special Services, at 587-2860.  To explore this topic further go to (Minnesota Parent Training and Information Center).

School Board – April 13, 2015

The ISD 423 Board of Education will conduct a regular board meeting on Monday, April 13, 2015 beginning at 5:30 pm in the Council Chambers at Hutchinson City Center.

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Hutchinson Public Schools

Hutchinson Public Schools