Learning Supports and Alternatives

To: Michael Green

From: Jake Hall

Date: 11.21.17

Re: November 2017 Board Report

Special Services

In the special education program, our count has increased by a few students and that projection is looking to expand due to the numbers of Child Find students being referred.  Agencies like Innovative Services and Head Start refer a large number of students to Woodland School District to be evaluated for a disability.  Our Special Education Team at Woodland Primary School works extremely hard to connect and meet with families of students from ages 3-5.  Our qualified specialists move forward with screening and evaluating Child Find referrals within 15 school days of receiving notification.

The need to supply the records of Woodland School District children with disabilities has increased due to the needs of our families and agencies, like the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services.  Special Education paperwork is used to help in the qualification process for families requesting financial and medical support.  The Special Services Department of Woodland School District is working daily with the state to provide applicable evaluation and IEP information per parent release of records.  

Working together with these outside agencies is considered a partnership with the ultimate aim of supporting our community and giving every child with a disability access to services.  These services may mean the difference between a child communicating and expressing themselves and a child that screams out in frustration.  I've seen a child learn to communicate through pictures when their words fail them.  I've seen the techniques of caring, dedicated and talented staff in their attempt to show frustrated non-verbal children ways to tell their story.    

LAP Program

The Response To Intervention team at WIS is looking at LAP student progress every two weeks. We are noticing growth in most all of our students. When growth isn’t happening, we make adjustments to the student’s program or implement new strategies. When students meet their goal they are exited from the LAP program.

Title Program

At WMS the focus of our Title Coordinator, Tara, has been on professional development in 3 areas:  mentoring/coaching new staff, facilitating collaboration, and school improvement teams.  In mentoring/coaching new staff, Tara meets and/or observes new staff weekly, discussing instructional strategies, assessment, classroom management and making the most of available resources.  During collaboration, all CORE teachers meet three times a week working on a data cycle:  prioritize essential standards, reflect on current practice, plan for improvement, assess effectiveness.  For school improvement teams, approximately once a month, Tara facilitates the academic achievement team, focusing on vetted best practices.  We are in the process of researching best practice, reflecting on current practices and needs, and sharing learning and an implementation plan with staff.  

English Language Learners/Bilingual Program

Conferences are nearly complete, including those that need a translator.  We are working on communicating with our families who do not speak English by providing staff members with Language Link stickers.  A team member recently went to a workshop, Kate Kinsella, which was very informative.  We look forward to more professional development and cultivating our systems of support.

Family and Community Resource Center

Leslie Mohlman reports that the WSD Family Community Resource Center Coordinator received approximately 62 visits from households needing resources last month.  From October 15 to November 15, we provided 166 resource referrals to outside agencies and gave out 103 basic needs resources.  The food pantries reported 377 individual visits.  Thanksgiving meals were provided tor 116 families.  The goals for the next month are to work on more referrals with our partnership with Love Overwhelming and to ensure our seniors designated as homeless have everything they need to graduate.

K-12 Attendance

WSD school secretaries regularly contact families about truancy to try to encourage attendance and keep accurate records.  Our Truancy Coordinator, Stacy Mouat, works with families and schools regarding students with three unexcused absences, sending home letters and setting up and conducting conferences specific to attendance intervention.  Through Stacy’s work, WSD will file five truancy petitions on students who have reached 10 unexcused absences and has referred 4 families to start in the Truancy Project with regular monthly reviews.  Stacy is meeting with students at the Middle School and High School weekly and working regularly with the Truancy Project partnership.  Stacy conducted several home visits with Leslie Mohlman to try to find solutions with families.   

Transitional Bilingual Intervention Program

Milagros and Maribel have provided translating services for families and students with limited English proficiency during conferences.  Maribel articulated some helpful guidance for our staff in how to conduct conferences with a translator.  Milagros is planning a Bilingual Club Winter Party for December hosted at the Primary School.  The Winter Party is for families and students from the Primary and Intermediate Schools.  Coming back from the Thanksgiving Break, Milagros will continue with the parenting classes as well as Spanish classes for staff on Wednesdays.  

Lewis River Academy

LRA teachers and families were surprised by a last minute, free-of-charge field trip opportunity to go to the Lelooska Cultural Center.  The Director of the center, Mariah Reese, let the teachers know of a cancellation, and the ability to have our school attend on Monday, November 20th.  

LRA teachers invited students, grades 3 through 8, to participate in the art of writing with "NaNoWriMo", National Novel Writing Month, in exchange for having to complete the regular Language Arts curriculum for the month of November.  NaNoWriMo is an exciting guided writing process that can be done on paper or online.

TEAM High School

TEAM High School staff recently attended a regional meeting at Cascadia Skills Center where we focused on Alternative Learning guidelines.  TEAM High School participated in state assessment retakes and hosted students from LRA as well.  We are currently updating and making plans to implement “Classroom Based Assessments” in applicable classes.

As we head into Thanksgiving, we want to say thank you for all the support we receive at TEAM.  Specifically, Leslie Mohlman, who is a great gift, working tirelessly for the students at TEAM.  We can never thank her enough. We are also excited for the opportunity to get support from an outside psychologist, Stacie Crochet.   We look forward to her work and support of our students.

Highly Capable Program

The WMS HI-C group has been working hard on designing and building projects, like bottle rockets and mousetrap powered cars, to prepare for our Science Olympiad season. Currently, the class is looking for Tardigrades in different samples of moss and lichen.  This tiny organism is about 1/3 of a millimeter long and is one of the most extreme animals ever found.  It can survive without water for a hundred years and even the vacuum of space with all its radiation.

K-12 Nurse Services

We continue to work on getting updated vaccination records for newly enrolled students and students who are on conditional status with vaccines. We've also been working on screening new students for hearing and vision, as well as all students throughout the district up for re-evaluation for IEPs.  Our WSD Nurse, Channtel Miller, continues to create new care plans and/or update existing plans for new students or current students with newly diagnosed health issues.


There is so much great work happening day in and day out by caring, skillful staff.  It is an honor for me to learn from them.  I appreciate our supportive Board of Directors and want to thank you for your ongoing support of all WSD students, families and staff!!