Northfield Elementary's School Mission for Students
1. Meet or exceed high academic standards in reading, writing, mathematics, science, social studies, physical fitness, the arts and technology.
2. Demonstrate good character through knowledge of positive traits and skills essential to successful academic, professional and personal pursuits.
3. Acquire knowledge and understanding of the world in which they live and demonstrate the skills essential to meaningful participation in a representative democracy.
Dear Northfield Families,
It's been another eventful year for your child, with new milestones. What a privilege it has been to see your children grow up before my eyes.
For all the challenges a Principal faces, I have been fortunate to have had a job that I loved. The NES staff has truly made gains this year in improving the achievement levels of NES kids. The school has found it's footing and is on the right track. Our math program is yielding good results and the reading levels of NES students has shown growth too. The merger of the Northfield School District into the Paine Mountain School District, with Williamstown, presents real opportunities for sustained improvements in curriculum, assessment and instruction. For NES, the shift from big dog in the old WSSU district to a partner with a comparable elementary school should help us improve. The work we've done with Williamstown Elementary in advance of the merger has already resulted in good things for our students at NES. Our new partner brought a different focus and support to our work. We've got better instructional methods and a more comprehensive curriculum.
NES parents can be proud of the emotional support that we offer all sorts of children. This kind of support was once considered an extra. Now we know that children need help working through their problems, no matter how small they may seem to us grown-ups. They need help with social skills and working with others. If they don't have that stuff settled they don't focus on reading, writing and 'rithmetic. The school staff are partners with you in raising your kids and I have loved being both a taskmaster to staff and resident grandpa to so many NES students. We've seen a big decrease in disruptive and aggressive behaviors, it is in the data. For parents whose child was in a scrape or tussle I can say we have truly taken these incidents seriously and done our best to make things right. Keeping the behaviors positive and cooperative for 300 kids who are raised in families with differing expectations is not a task for the faint hearted, but we have given it our best.
I'd like to suggest, after a quarter of a century being a principal, what you can do for your child to help them as a student. More than things or money they need your time. They need you to look them in the eye and be with them. They need structure, you've got to say no. You've got to be the adult, not the friend. Having a time when everybody's devices are off and you are eating a meal together has been proven to be so important in your child figuring out how the world...and your family, works. You deserve this time with your family too, you're busting your back to keep things together and a roof over everybody's head. A half hour of everybody being together for a meal is the payoff for your labors. Insist on it. Years from now it won't be the fig-its, or Xbox they'll remember, it'll be your interest and faith in them that will power them through the rest of their life.
This is the end of one thing and the beginning of another. Thank you for your support and I wish you and your child the best in the coming year.