Educating the Whole Child
Dear School and Community Partners:
The District recognizes that educating children starts at birth and truly never ends. Providing a safe, nurturing, and supportive environment for all of our students puts our kids on a path to lifelong success. It begins with fostering and modeling healthy relationships, while focusing on the social, emotional, and developmental needs first and foremost at the earliest grade levels. Once that foundation is in place, then quality learning experiences can happen. The District is working to make all of this happen in a significant way. Here’s how……..
New Strategic Plan
We spent the entire 2017-18 school year working with consultants and our District Leadership Team to reconstruct a plan that will guide our direction and chart our course for success over the next five years and beyond. We revised our mission, vision, and core value statements to reflect our new pathway. Firmly embedded in this plan are four main goal areas, one of which deals directly with student development and support services. The Goal: By June 2023, the Addison Central School District will have enhanced its student development and support services resulting in the maintenance and improvement of the emotional health and academic performance of all students, Pre-K through twelve.
Opening Day Staff Keynote
We are excited to announce that Dave Pelzer – Author of NY Times best-selling book “A Child Called It” – will be here in the District working with our staff to help assist them in better understanding and helping students overcome real obstacles/challenges. This rare heart-felt program will be given by a man whose life was saved by a system that was criticized by many. Dave’s highly emotional presentation pays tribute to those who have dedicated their lives to making a difference in the life of a child, while at the same time assisting educators in helping the whole child. Dave carefully weaves the story of how his life was saved by teachers, a school nurse, a police department, and social services. This is the perfect keynote for us as we continue to improve our culture, climate, and skill set in helping students in all areas of their lives. The focus will be on stressing the vital importance of advising those at risk on becoming resilient and being accountable. Dave also advises educators not to become overwhelmed. It is important for staff to care for themselves, so they in turn can continue to be champions for our children.
New School Counseling Regulations
The New York State Education Department believes that the amended school counseling regulations will help increase opportunities for all students to be successful. It is important for students to have access to school counselors not only in middle/high school, but in their early years as well to help inspire young children to strive for success and start to consider college and career opportunities. It is equally important to emphasize the positive effects that school social workers, school psychologists, school counselors, nurses, health educators, teachers, and parents can have on student success when they collaborate and work as a team, offering their respective professional expertise to support the “whole child”.
In addition to the regulatory amendments, the Department’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) state plan encourages schools and districts to adopt a “whole school, whole community, whole child” model to promote positive school climate that, in turn, improves student outcomes. Research shows that the whole child approach with an emphasis on social emotional learning will lead to improved outcomes for students. The quality of the school climate may be the single most predictive factor in any school’s capacity to promote student achievement. To support this increased emphasis on educating the “whole child”, we have hired an additional school counselor for the upcoming school year!
Related Areas of Focus
Our Pupil Personnel Services Department is working with outside agencies, specifically ProAction of Steuben County, mainly in the area of resilience. The skill of resilience is a particularly strong focus of ProAction’s mission to build a community of resilient individuals and families who can meet their basic needs, overcome adversity, and ultimately prosper. In 2017, they began a journey to tell the story of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) and Resilience by coordinating screenings of Resilience: The Biology of Stress and the Science of Hope. The movie overviews how ACE’s and toxic stress affect brain development and biological systems, while asserting that supportive relationships buffer this stress and promote resilience. More importantly, brain research suggests that the effects of early childhood traumas and adversity can be successfully treated.
Our entire staff hopes that your summer has been relaxing and enjoyable and has afforded your family the opportunity for recreation, reconnection, and relaxation. Please know that we are committed to providing the very best well rounded educational experience possible and will do whatever it takes to ensure the success of each and every one of our students.
Take care and have a great school year.
Superintendent of Schools