Hello and welcome to this month’s Monthly Update With Monogue! Now that the cold weather has finally thawed and we are all enjoying time spent outdoors, it has reminded us about the importance of mental health and the many ways we can keep our bodies and minds healthy. 

Some of these skills are modeled even in our classrooms! This month we visited our friends at Northside Elementary so we could chat more about the ways they help students calm their minds and bodies to prepare to learn!

Now we would like to share with you a few of the great things happening within our district, but first, we would like to remind families to please complete the 2023 Annual Family Engagement Survey if you have not done so already. The District has worked hard to provide the best possible school environment for our students. We believe that every parent/guardian has a unique perspective on how we can improve as a district. We are conducting this survey because we want you to be involved in helping us shape the future of our District!

Please note that the survey ends on Monday, May 1, 2023, and you will need your student ID number to log in, which can be found on your Infinite Campus portal account. 

We appreciate your feedback!

We are also excited to announce that our MCPASD Dashboard is now available on our district website! As part of our commitment to transparency and open communication, our District has created a dashboard to inform you about our progress in key areas. The dashboard aims to show our families and community the work we do around our Strategy Map. It allows us to track progress, identify gaps, and share our successes. The dashboard will be updated every school year. Currently, we have data from the 2021- 2022 academic year. As a district, we want to see how we progress each year as we strive for continuous improvement.

We would like to congratulate our 2023 retirees! Many of our retirees have worked in our district for over 15 years! We cannot thank them enough for their years of hard work and dedication to our schools. Although they will be missed, we wish them all the best in their next chapter of life! 

We also recently had the pleasure of recognizing over 100 employees during our Years Of Service event! We took this time to formally congratulate and thank our staff for reaching a new milestone, including 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30-plus years of service to our schools. Thank you to all those who attended the event!

We would also like to share a shout-out to our staff member turned author! Congratulations to Clark Street Community School Principal Jill Gurtner who recently authored a chapter in a book titled “ Schools of Opportunity: 10 Research-Based Models of Equity in Action.’ Each chapter in the book is a deep dive into one of the ten Schools of Opportunity criteria based on The National Education Policy Center. Principal Gurtner’s chapter is titled ‘Meeting the Needs of Students With Disabilities in an Environment That Ensures Challenge and Support’ and features a significant amount of data and research based on Clark Street Community School’s curriculum and community. One focus of the chapter explains examples of how success can be defined far beyond traditional test scores. Congratulations to Principal Gurtner on this outstanding accomplishment! 

Lastly, for staff news, we would like to share a big congratulations to our team members as we recently celebrated National Paraeducator Appreciation Day, School Librarian Day, and Assistant Principal Week! We appreciate you for all that you do to make our schools an amazing place to learn and grow! 

We are cruising right along with our My School Story Campaigns! This month, we teamed up with West Middleton Elementary to help them share what makes them unique! Along with a fresh new look to their website, we also worked with students and staff to create a series of videos showcasing their diverse and tight-knit community! Our communications team also created a new welcome brochure for incoming families! Next, we look forward to working with Glacier Creek Middle School! 

Three cheers to Middleton High School Students Sneha Chandrashekar, Sarah Mounajjed, and Mackenzie Sloan for earning the 2023 Herb Kohl Fellowship award! This scholarship is awarded to only about 100 students each year across the state of Wisconsin and recognizes students who have demonstrated academic potential, outstanding leadership, citizenship, community service, integrity and other special talents. Great job Sneha, Sarah, and Mackenzie! 

We are proud to announce that MCPASD has been awarded the 2022 ‘Sustainable Middleton’ Award from the Middleton Sustainability Committee. We received this honor for our sustainable practices at Pope Farm Elementary, including a geothermal heating/cooling system, recycling, composting food waste, and teaching environmental principles using the outdoors as a classroom for our students. I recently accepted the award on behalf of MCPASD at the sustainability committee meeting, and the award will now be proudly hung in the front office of our District Services Center.

All aboard for a field trip! Ms. Shaker's 7th grade class at Kromrey Middle School recently spent Youth Government Day exploring many municipal buildings, including Madison City Hall and the Dane County Courthouse! During their trip, they met with Dane County Executive Joe Parisi, as well as the Dane County Sheriff and his Deputies, who spoke about women in law enforcement and the importance of students being protectors of their peers against cyberbullying. Great job to our students for representing Kromrey Middle School and asking many valuable questions!

A kind 'thank you' is always appreciated, but our Glacier Creek Middle School 5th grade Student Council members wanted to go above and beyond to show our 5th-grade staff how much they appreciate them! Together they created an entire teacher appreciation week! They worked hard to create door decorations for the classrooms and put together gifts for the teachers, including magnets, bookmarks, pens, popcorn, and more. Local Cross Plains community businesses also donated food and treats for the staff. Great job GCMS team! This was an awesome way to thank our teachers for their hard work!

They say it is good to have friends in high places, and we all know that Mr. Peanuts is great at making new friends! His newest pal, Governor Tony Evers, recently called to personally congratulate Mr. Peanuts for being a finalist in the 2023 CINTAS Custodian Of The Year competition! If he wins, he will receive $10,000 cash and  $5,000 in Cintas and Rubbermaid products and training valued up to $30,000. The Top 3 finalists will also win an all-expense paid trip to Las Vegas! Voting for Mr. Peanuts has closed, and now we cross our fingers and wish him the best of luck. We will be sure to share the results when they become available. 

Learning can open up a world of opportunities, including a trip to Puerto Rico! Over spring break, the Middleton High School Music Department had the opportunity to perform an outdoor concert at the popular tourist destination, Fort San Cristóbal in the city of San Juan. During their trip, students also were able to immerse themselves in the culture by visiting historical sites, trying new foods, and exploring the city. What a great way to experience and appreciate a culture beyond your own!

Speaking of travel, our students involved in the Middleton High School Black and Latino Student Unions recently spent spring break touring the big apple! The field trip was a great opportunity for students to learn more about how different cultures have shaped the city over time.  They explored many historical and cultural sites, including Ellis Island National Park of Immigration, the Statue of Liberty, Yankee Stadium, Schomburg Center Research in Black Culture, and many more! We are so grateful to be able to offer opportunities for our students to explore new cultures and ideas!

Congratulations to the MHS Model United Nations Club! They also recently traveled to New York for the National High School Model UN Conference. During their trip, they had the opportunity to hear from Csaba Kőrösi, who currently serves as the President of the 77th United Nations General Assembly, and visit the United Nations Headquarters. Shout out to conference award winners Claudia VanBendegom, Truman McRay, and Crystal Huang. I am so proud of the outstanding opportunities we have for our students to learn far beyond the classroom. 

That brings us to the end of this month’s episode of the Monthly Update With Monogue! I look forward to finishing out the last few months of the school year strong and hope you all are able to enjoy this beautiful weather we have been having! See you next time! Junior Claudia VanBendegom won an Award of Merit in her respective committee, and Sophomore Truman McRay and Freshman Crystal Huang won an Award of Excellence in their respective committee.