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Welcome to AWSA's bi-monthly newsletter! Below you will find our most recent edition of the AWSA Update Bulletin. Located on the side you will find current and past articles, current events and sponsor information.  

March 26th Edition

School Leadership in Challenging Times

"Let perseverance be your engine and hope your fuel",  H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

School leadership is challenging under "normal circumstances" let alone during a national health emergency.  In your best efforts to serve your students, families, and communities you are stretching your personal and organizational capacity as far as possible. 

Please remember to give yourself the same grace as you give to others and to make a conscious effort to take care of yourself.  Make practical goals for your diet (e.g. banana for breakfast), your sleep (e.g. not less than x hours) and your stress (e.g. what books or movies, will allow you to get your mind off of the Coronavirus for a while).  

Coronavirus Information and Resources

AWSA’s Coronavirus webpage includes announcements, resources, and directions for finding the answers or resources that you need.

Early Childhood Inclusion AND Least Restrictive Environment: It’s Hard to Have One Without the Other

by Jenny Bibler, Early Childhood Consultant, Department of Public Instruction

Sonja is a 3-year-old child who is transitioning from her county Birth to 3 program to the local school district who will be providing early childhood special education services. Sonja will also be attending Head Start beginning in the fall. It is the day of Sonja’s initial Individualized Education Program (IEP) meeting. The IEP team has determined her present level of performance, identified her disability-related needs, developed goals, and determined services. They now begin to talk about the least restrictive environment (LRE) for Sonja’s education. What does this mean for Sonja and her family? The word “environment” makes LRE sound like a place. This article will explore an important reminder for IEP teams to consider when discussing LRE. Specifically, “where” Sonja learns, is only one piece of her early education.

Read more. 

Accelerating Student Growth Through Aligned and Focused Improvement Plans

by Jessica A. Moe, PhD, Division of Learning Support, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, and Wendy Savaske, Education Consultant, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction

How are Joint Federal Notifications connected to continuous improvement? 

Each year, annual cycles of identification are required under two major federal laws: the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).  Every district in Wisconsin receives a Joint Federal Notification packet annually - regardless of their identification status. This data is meant to inform continuous improvement practices at the local level and provides districts the opportunity to engage in continuous improvement by collaborating with statewide partners. 

Read more.

AWSA 2020 Election

The AWSA Board of Directors election will be held electronically from April 15-April 30, 2020. This year, Directors will be elected from Regions 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 10, 11 and 12. Members of each of these regions will be emailed a notification on April 15th with a link to an online ballot listing the candidate(s) for that region. As part of its succession planning, the Board has recruited candidates in each region. 

  • Region 1 (co-director): Mike Roemer, Principal, Reagan High School, Milwaukee
  • Region 2 (co-director): Jennifer Fanning, Principal, Kennedy Elementary School, Janesville
  • Region 2 (co-director): Rainey Briggs, Director of Elementary Education, Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District
  • Region 3: Carmen Burkum, Principal, Fennimore Elementary School
  • Region 7: Cindy Olson, Principal, Washington Middle School, Green Bay
  • Region 8: Adam Dewitt, Principal, Oconto Middle, and High School
  • Region 10: Sue Kern, Executive Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, Chippewa Falls Area Unified School District
  • Region 11: Sara Eichten, Principal, Somerset Middle School
  • Region 12: Dave Scholz, Principal, Phillips Elementary School

In addition, write-in candidates can stand for election by submitting a petition to the AWSA office by April 8. If you have any questions, contact Robin Herring at [email protected] or (608) 241-0300.

Wisconsin Absentee Voting: It's Easy For You To Vote Safely!

With the Coronavirus situation underway, Wisconsin election officials and state leaders are urging residents to vote by absentee ballot in next month's election. To request a ballot online, the easiest way is to sign up at MyVote Wisconsin, https://myvote.wi.gov. Just look for the “Vote Absentee” button near the top of the page. The deadline for registered voters to request an absentee ballot be mailed to you is the Thursday before the election, April 2. However, due to possible delays in mail delivery, we urge you not to wait and to return ballots as soon as possible. If you receive an absentee ballot mailed to you, you can still decide to vote at the polls on Election Day if you haven’t returned it. Your absentee ballot must be received in your clerk’s office or at your polling place by 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Rooted in Love

This video by Mike Smith focuses on what can be gained during the country's healthcare emergency.  Thank you to Jostens for sharing this message for students, staff and our communities.