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Renton Specials - Renton School District - Aug 29

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Text of Renton Specials - Renton School District - Aug 29

  • High Quality Instruction and Learning for Every Child, Every Day in Every Classroom

    Teachers, principals and support staff throughout the summer have been preparing for the start of another school year. These professionals have been attending specialized training, learning new software, taking college courses, and reading literature on best practices for classroom management, all to be prepared for students as they return to classrooms on Sept. 2, 2014.

    Start of School Schedule: Elementary students in grades 1-5 start school on Sept. 2

    Kindergarten students have a staggered start of school: families will be notified about the start of kindergarten classes by individual schools

    Middle school 6th-graders (only) attend school Sept. 2 All middle school students attend school on Sept. 3

    High school 9th-graders (only) attend school on Sept. 2 All high school students attend school on Sept. 3

    (The staggered start for middle and high school students allow students to get to know the layout of the school, find classrooms, lockers, learn bell times, etc.) WayS familieS can prepare for the Start of the School: Attend your schools meet & greet events or orientation nights to meet your

    childs teachers, tour the school, hear about classroom and homework expectations, and more.

    Find your school bus route and schedule on the districts website www.rentonschools.us.

    Have your child attend school every day: daily school attendance is very important to ensure student learning is continuous so that children dont fall behind.

    Get to know your teachers and stay in contact with them through email and/or by phone.

    Make sure your school has your most recent phone number and email address for regular communication or emergencies.

    Create a quiet space at home for homework free from distractions like TV. Read with your child for a minimum of 20 minutes each day. Ask your school principal to be involved on the school site council, PTSA and

    as a representative on the Superintendents Key Communicator group.

    Ready for another great year of learning

  • Renton School District is proud of its work to be fiscally responsible and accountable to local taxpayers. The district operates on a balanced budget that places emphasis on students, teachers and classroom instruction.

    Through energy conservation efforts, the district has save taxpayers more than $500,000 each year by lowering operating costs by minimizing the use of electricity, natural gas, water, wastewater, solid waste and through recycling efforts.

    Last year, the district saved taxpayers nearly $11 million thanks to action by the School Board to refinance school construction bonds which

    were approved by voters and pay for school and classroom construction and renovation projects. Refinancing the old debt is similar to refinancing a home mortgage, which reduces the amount of interest paid over the course of a loan by taking advantage of historically low interest rates. Renton School District took similar steps to refinance old debt in 1998 and 2003, again saving millions of taxpayer dollars. The money saved is a direct reduction in the amount of property taxes assessed and collected to repay voter-approved school bonds. Voter-approved school bond measures is the only way school districts can raise funding for building new schools and remodeling aging schools.

    These and other financial management strategies has helped Renton School District demonstrate fiscal responsibility, manage our budgets responsibly, and be good stewards of taxpayer dollars. The work has resulted in recognition by the Association of School Business Officials International and the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada, who have presented our district with awards for outstanding financial management and reporting for 10 consecutive years. The awards are among the highest form of recognition in governmental budgeting and reporting.

    Fiscally responsible, accountable to taxpayers

    This school year, the district built its budget to provide free, full-day kindergarten for all students at all elementary schools, increasing access to a rigorous education for more children. This is the first time in district history that full-day kindergarten is provided free of charge for all district families. Additionally, the district expanded the Discovery programthe districts highly-capable programto Campbell Hill Elementary School, making the program available to more students who thrive with additional academic challenges. Campbell Hill will be the third elementary school to house the Discovery program, along with Kennydale and Talbot Hillelementary schools.

    Increasing access to a rigorous education for more students

  • Hundreds of Renton School District students had an opportunity this summer to continue their learning right in their own neighborhood schools. The learning experiences were made possible thanks to financial support from the Friends of Renton Schools foundation, which receives funding from local business and individual donations. Students were engaged in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programs which provided them with opportunities to explore, create, learn and grow. STEM programsincluding robotics camps, science exploration, mathematics enrichment, aerospace, neuroscience and moreallowed elementary, middle and high school students to construct, build, problem-solve and learn how things work, all while engaged in science and mathematics.

    Business and private donations to the Friends of Renton Schools foundation

    help to provide $125,000 to allow the district to offer these summer enrichment programs. Learn more about Friends of Renton Schools foundation and help fund more classes next year, at www.friendsofrentonschools.org.

    Friends of Renton Schools foundation helps hundreds

    of kids attend STEM summer school programs

    More than 100 new teachers were welcomed to Renton recently during the Renton Chamber of Commerces annual New Teacher Breakfast. This marks the 25th year that Renton-area business leaders have hosted the event to welcome new teachers to the district and the community.

    Some of the districts new teachers recently graduated from college, others left industries in the private sector to obtain a teaching degree and enter the classroom. Most new teachers were

    hired to replace those who retired or moved to a district closer to their home. These teachers bring a vast array of knowledge and experience and are excited to begin teaching Renton students and are a welcome addition to the districts professional teaching corps.

    The event was hosted at Renton Technical College, and sponsored by Valley Medical Center, along with King & Bunnys Appliance, First Savings Bank Northwest and Wal-Mart.

    Renton community welcomes new teachers

  • Teachers and support staff are returning to classrooms to find improved technology thanks to the voter-approved technology levy. The technology levy provides funding for classroom computers, teacher training, software licenses and other tech-related initiatives. The summer work included finalizing the process to provide wireless access in every school, repairing and updating teacher computers, working with the curriculum department to ensure technology supports classroom instruction, providing teacher and principal trainings on the use of student-center software, and much more.

    Providing teachers and students with 21st-century technology in classrooms would not be possible without the ongoing support of voters

    throughout the district who approve technology levies. Technology levies end every four years and must be re-approved by voter support.

    Other technology-related summer improvements include:

    CCleaning and reinstalling all data on the hard drives and operating systems for more than 6,000 computers

    Installation of wireless access points in every classroom

    Modernization of 880 computers in libraries and offices

    Provided 1,600 new laptops for teachers and school support staff

    Revising and simplifying access to wireless networks

    New school year brings improved technology to classrooms thanks to voter-approved technology levy

    Its been a busy summer of school construction projects thanks to continued voter support of school construction bond measures. The districts plan to build a much-needed new middle school continues in the north end of the district at the old Hazelwood Elementary site at 6928 116th Ave S.E., Newcastle. The districts fourth middle school is made possible thanks to overwhelming voter support of an April 2012 bond measure which also included improvements at many other schools across the district. Demolition of the old Hazelwood Elementary School (pictured) has begun and construction plan calls for the new 6th- through 8th-grade middle school to open in the fall of 2016.

    Additional construction projects completed this summer include: remodel of the old Spring Glen

    School (2403 Jones Ave South, Renton) in preparation for the new home of the Renton Academy

    program; Lindbergh science laboratory hot

    water supply addition and heating

    and ventilation upgrades; roof replacement at Cascade

    Elementary School; new energy-efficient replacement

    windows installed at Nelsen Middle School;

    new heating unit ventilators installed at Dimmitt Middle School;

    new portable classrooms installed at Campbell Hill, Cascade and Lakeridge elementary schools to accommodate full-day kindergarten classrooms and the placement of Discovery programthe districts highly-capable programat Campbell Hill Elementary;

    several schools had major gymnasium floor refinishing projects;

    Hazen High tennis court and baseball field improvements; and

    several schools had old lighting switched out for high-energy, low-cost LED lighting.

    Voter-approved school construction projects remain on-time, on-budget

    Renton School District | 300 SW 7th Street, Renton WA 98057 | 425.204.2345 | www.rentonschools.us www.facebook.com/renton.schools | twitter.com/Renton_Schools | www.youtube.com/user/RentonSchoolDistrict