Dear Wayzata High School Community,
Welcome to school year 2015-16! We are very excited to begin another productive year at WHS. I am exceedingly grateful to be serving in the role of principal, and I look forward to working with each of you as we collaboratively find new ways to help our students learn and grow.
Our administrative and teaching staff has been spending much time over the summer reviewing the results of our efforts to help refine our practices. A professional learning environment such as this has been a major contributor to excellent outcomes for Wayzata students over the years. As a result of this work, I would like to share some important information on what you can come to expect from us as we head into the upcoming school year.
First, we experienced a successful 2014-15 school year. We celebrated a number of academic and fine arts accomplishments including: Merit Scholars, AP Scholars, Academic Conference Champions, various state and national awards and recognition of students in Art, Music, Social Studies, Science, World Language, Math and Career and Technical Education. The hard work our teachers are doing is reflected in the academic achievement of our students, and you can come to expect that again this year.
Second, our administration and teaching staff continually work on maintaining a safe building climate and a culture that is conducive to learning; one where students feel a strong connection to their school and the adults who work within it. This becomes increasingly more challenging as our enrollment continues to grow. One of my priorities is to look for new ways to help "big" feel smaller and more personable for our students and their families. Having observed our current student support services for a year, I have decided to move forward with the following structural change to better serve our students and families.
Effective immediately, we will no longer have grade level principals. Instead, we will have student support teams assigned by alphabet to provide a more aligned, consistent and tighter support network for our families, who will stay with their teams for all 4 years. Each team will consist of an associate principal, dean, three counselors and a social worker. Each team will still have access to additional staff and services that will provide the crucial supports our students may need in the areas of chemical, emotional, mental, physical and social health. The Associate Principals have been divided to support families alphabetically in the following manner: Alison Gillespie (A-Hal), Jeff Pawlicki (Ham-Or), and Marian Boyd (Os-Z). It is important to note that your counselor has not changed from years past.
We believe this is a necessary transition in order to tighten our safety nets for students. By making these changes, we will accomplish the following: More consistent and aligned services, stronger school-to-home communication and greater facilitation of support services for our school community. All of our families will be hearing shortly from their respective teams with more detailed information.
Finally, we are looking forward to working with you on what should be another positive and productive school year. Your thoughts and feedback are always welcome! Please don't hesitate to call if you have a question or concern. You can reach me at 763-745-6610.