Gearing up for a new school year in Braham

Gregory Winter, Superintendent
Braham Area School District

It seems like yesterday I was writing the end of the year article and now we are doing all of the final preparations for the start of the new school year.

There are a number of major projects that are in the process of completion before the start of the school year. Our two roofing projects will be completed by the first week in August. Our district WiFi project has been completed. All staff, students and guest will have access to a very robust WiFi system. The carpeting project has started and should be completed by mid-August. There are many other minor projects that have been completed or will be completed by the start of the school year this fall.

At the elementary this year we will be implementing our new reading curriculum. Our elementary staff and administration went through a selection process along with some pilot testing of different types of curriculum. This updated curriculum will create a consistent format in our K-6 grades that will further enhance our reading curriculum. We are very excited about the new curriculum and will be checking the progress of the implementation throughout the school year.

The biggest change at the elementary this year will be our new elementary principal. We are very pleased to have Jeff Eklund take over the leadership in our elementary. He is a graduate of Braham Area Schools and brings with him a great deal of experience as a teacher in several different schools.

Earlier I mentioned the WiFi system that is now in place in both the elementary and secondary schools. We have already been using some of the tablet type devices, namely, the iPad in our classrooms. The WiFi system will allow for more mobility throughout the building for student use of these devices. At the secondary level, a couple of courses will be using these devices as the primary source of curriculum and research in the classroom. We will continue to look to the future of technology in the classroom and see how these devices can best be used to educate students and prepare them for the job market of the future.

The secondary level will be finishing up the last year of the School Improvement Grant (SIG). We have been very pleased with many of the initiatives that we were able to implement with the use of the SIG. In this last year of the SIG, we will be doing a final analysis of the programming and personnel that were implemented with the grant. It is our hope that many of these programs can be sustained following the end of the grant.

Last spring I mentioned in my article the implementation of the new system of accountability called Multiple Measurements Rating (MMR). Just recently, the AYP scores have been released and I am very proud to announce that both our elementary and high school made our goals and made AYP. Congratulations to our students, staff, parents and our community for supporting our schools and enabling our students the success they experience here at Braham Area Schools.