It has been a busy week for staff. We began this past week with an all day professional development day for certified staff. The survey results from the Pass the Love survey were reviewed, considered, and discussed. At the next session that we meet with the Pass the Love representative, we will discuss the next steps and direction we go with the data. We appreciate the funds our SEAL student group provided to secure this opportunity.
The principals and I attended a professional development day on Tuesday and attended a training at School Administrators of Iowa. We focused on honing our skills as instructional leaders, communicating with staff about instructional growth and culture, and adding tools to our professional tool box. The session was an experience that would rate at the top of the list. We were anxious to implement the learning in our specific school buildings.
Tuesday through Friday were full student academic days for our students and staff. Instructional leadership is one of the top responsibilities we assume as school administrators. Assuming my obligation in this role, I committed some time this week to visit and connect in the classrooms as a district administrator. We have the best students and staff in the state! There is something to be said about our students and their buy-in of Mustang STRONG.
Below are two pictures that show what our teachers are all about. Building relationships with kids.
The pictures show what we do best! Connections with each other!!!
Mrs. Dobson and the 9th grade English class having interaction about their current study of literature and how it relates to them as they work through a personal reflection.
Mr. Ronan spending some time with his cross country athletes.
Enjoy the weekend!
The pandemic and COVID19 continues to be on our radar. We applaud our students and staff for continuing to embrace the mitigation strategies. Our current attendance rates are stable around 96% to 97% daily attendance. We are working hard to keep this trend. Each Friday the weekly COVID19 Dashboard for East Marshall CSD will be updated. The link can be found here.
Academics and learning is in full swing throughout the school district. Soon, parents will be notified of their child’s individual ISASP assessment results from last spring. Once the data is organized and review the information will be sent out to parents. For this initial year, the reports will be hard copies and mailed to parents in the USPS mail. There will be an additional pamphlet in the mailing that explains how to interpret the results. The pamphlet breaks down the details and provides some insight for parents. In addition, school staff will are always willing to assist in explaining the results. As your child’s educator, we are here as a resource and service.
This past week was a very important week for the fiscal health of our school district. October 1st is the official student enrollment count date for annual state funding. Over the next two weeks our district will be working through the data and filing state reports. This week’s enrollment head count will fund next school year’s (2022-2023) expenses. This includes employee salaries, building utilities, and typical expenses.
It has been a great start to the school year. As superintendent, I am always willing to be a resource for parents, students, and staff. Individuals may contact me by phone, email, or at an event. I am, also, willing to schedule an in-person meeting with those who wish to meet in person. I am proud to be a Mustang and value being a resource for our stakeholders.
This past week has been full of student activities. Below are some recent photos of our junior high and high school volleyball contests. I am always impressed to see how well our student athletes and coaches represent East Marshall CSD!
Junior High Volleyball (7th grade)
High School Volleyball (vs BCLUW)
Enjoy the beautiful weekend.
It is always a prideful moment when you see our East Marshall student groups express their talents. Below are a few pictures of the Oktember Fest parade. The band sounded fabulous and displayed a class act performance while representing East Marshall CSD. GREAT WORK Mr. DeFields and the Mustang Marching Band!
We concluded another great week at East Marshall CSD. I wish to extend a Tip of the Hat to our school nurses for arranging for the annual optional flu shot clinic and the optional COVID19 vaccine clinic. We appreciate all that our school nurses do today and every day!
Our weekly absence rate is ending the week at 96.5% attendance rate district wide. This is a very strong number and we need to work hard at maintaining this direction. The students and staff are doing a wonderful job with mitigation strategies.
I arranged my schedule for today so I could have lunch at the middle school. Our kids continue to work hard at being Mustang STRONG. The food was exceptional and the company was even better! Below is a snapshot of my table mates for today.
Middle School Lunch
Middle School Random Photo Shots
Enjoy the beautiful weekend.
Sept. 22, 2021
Dear East Marshall Parents and Guardians,
This letter is being sent to you to inform you of recent updates to our mitigation strategies and this information is specifically about the wearing of masks on school property and events.
We are all aware of the recent attention on the topics of mandatory masks. On September 20, 2021 the East Marshall CSD Board of Education met and discussed this topic during their regular monthly meeting.
One of our main priorities at East Marshall CSD is to foster a safe and conducive environment for all students and staff. With this in mind, we respect the passionate positions that individuals may have in regards to the topic of masks.
The East Marshall CSD Board of Education and school officials have taken time to consider data, health care professional recommendations that includes guidance from the IDPH, and public comments. After in-depth consideration the East Marshall CSD Board of Education made a determination to utilize the spirit of the IDPH general guidance for all illnesses. This guidance, generally speaking, uses the measure of ten percent absence rate related to illness prior to reporting to the IDPH.
Moving forward, the East Marshall CSD will implement the following protocols in relations to making the wearing of masks mandatory. When an individual school building reaches ten percent (10%) absence related to illness the wearing of masks by students, staff, and visitors will be required in that specific building. This expectation will be lifted when the data of absences for illness falls below 10% for fourteen consecutive (14) calendar days. This expectation will be implemented for visitors and spectators of extra-curricular contests, as well.
This process has been implemented immediately. Please have masks ready for your student(s) in the event the school sends notice home to parents that the 10% measure has been met. The school district will work hard to notify parents as soon as possible when masks will be required.
School officials realize the mandatory wearing of masks is a sensitive topic. There has been no easy decision or perfect answer while managing through COVID19. We wish to express appreciation to all of our students, staff, and parents for the positive support as we venture through another school year. Working together as partners in education we can continue to successfully perform and keep our school doors open during a pandemic, as we remarkably did during the 2020-2021 school year.
Always Mustang STRONG!
Today is a great day to be a Mustang!
Yours in education,
The Homecoming Coronation and pep assembly was scheduled for yesterday evening. The events have been rescheduled to halftime of the game on Friday night.
During the parade Thursday evening two of the cars transporting the king and queen candidates had an accident with each other. One of the candidates was transported to the hospital in Marshalltown. The other three court candidates had minor injuries and were released at the scene to their parents. The candidate transported to the hospital was later released yesterday evening.
The East Marshall CSD appreciates all of the support from the EMS organizations and individuals at the scene. The assistance and services is highly valued.
We look forward to continuing the coronation festivities at the football game Friday evening.
Yours in education,
Today is a great day to be a Mustang! Yes, we often say this and it is true! Our students, staff, and families are the best. Below are some photos from the cross country event at South Tama CSD from last night. As I arrived I noticed an awesome showing of East Marshall supporters. There definitely was Mustang support among the crowd. Happy Homecoming week! Below are a few pictures of last night’s event.
A federal judge placed a halt/pause on the state level legislative action in regards to prohibiting mandatory mask usage at Iowa schools. It becomes obvious to each of us that this topic is going to have some debate in the legal system. One may question what it means for East Marshall CSD? East Marshall will continue to monitor our situation and stats. The official kdg-12 attendance rate for last year (2020-2021) was 94.5%. On any given year this is a fantastic percentage of attendance. What does this tell us? It indicates that our mitigation strategies and commitment to mitigation strategies worked. This includes hand washing, wearing of face masks, and social distancing, as often as possible.
Our Return to Learn plan is flexible and can be adjusted at any time. East Marshall CSD will continue to monitor our absentee rates and adjust as necessary. For the short term, we will monitor and make no immediate adjustments to our mitigation practices. This includes the topic of face masks. Again, our Return to Learn plan is designed to make changes and adjustments in short order to meet the immediate needs. With fall and winter seasons right around the corner, we may have to adjust our practices to keep our students and staff healthy. Setting the attendance bar at 94.5% is something we can accomplish with some continued focus.
Photos from the cross country meet at South Tama CSD
This week was full of hustle throughout the school hallways. Classes are now in full swing and the high school college classes through MCC are now in full swing.
As a reminder, all students receive free lunches during the 2021-2022 school year. Students must take a full meal to receive the meal for free. Any extra items or a-la-carte items do cost and must be taken out of the student’s lunch account.
Soon the state legislative session will begin and now is the time to lobby our legislators. We ask for our patrons to reach out to our state legislators and express the importance on school related topics. If patrons have questions about topics to lobby for while communicating with legislators, please reach out to me by sending an email to [email protected] Information specific to East Marshall CSD can be provided so you can share how topics specifically impact our school district. Your active participation does make a positive impact.
Mitigation practices continue to be an important part of the daily routines in the school buildings. We anticipate that late fall and winter will bring the typical challenges to keep ourselves healthy. The COVID19 challenge continues to be with us. We will monitor our data on a daily basis and adjust as necessary. The district’s Return to Learn plan can be found on the district’s website. It has been updated to meet the needs of the 2021-2022 school year. Masks are continued to be highly recommended.
Lunch time is a popular favorite time of day for students. It is a time for students to socially connect with each other and foster relationships. Below are two photos from our high school lunch period. Not only is the lunch period popular with students, but so is the school lunch. Our cooks do an awesome job providing delicious meals.
High School Lunch
As always, today is a great day to be a Mustang!
Enjoy the weekend.
Tony Ryan, superintendent
Dear East Marshall CSD Parents and Guardians,
Well, September is upon us. It is hard to believe that August flew by in a whirlwind and we are in the middle of week number two for the school year. It is great that we are in regular session and activities are in full swing.
As you can see, the Superintendent’s Blog is in full operations mode. I wish to thank Sarah Schutt for taking the lead in organizing the update and I wish to send a Tip of the Hat to all those who provided the troop level support of creating the webpages. It is truly spectacular and an awesome upgrade for East Marshall CSD! Go Mustangs!
Did you know???
I want to share a “Did you know?” moment about East Marshall CSD. East Marshall CSD has a fleet of well maintained buses that run a tremendous amount of miles each school day. Our school district is ranked 17th in the state for the number of miles driven and, also, 17th in the cost to operate the fleet. This includes cost of buses, fuel, salaries, and bus maintenance. The admirable part of the entire transportation fleet is our bus drivers and employees. Our drivers transport over 500 students per day over many miles of country roads and state highways. Now, think about that for a moment. 500 plus kids transported. Twice per day. Impeccable safety records? Absolutely!
A few of our East Marshall CSD finest!
In addition, over the last handful of years the East Marshall CSD School Board has made it a priority to include air conditioning units when purchasing new school buses for our fleet. Four of the newest East Marshall buses have air conditioning rooftop units. Our district uses these buses on our main transportation routes and for extra-curricular road trips. A huge thank you to our school board for committing to forward thinking progress.
Below you can see two or our four buses with rooftop air conditioning units.
In closing for the day, we have had a great first few days of school. Our students and staff are doing awesome things in the classrooms. Mustang STRONG has truly been the theme for the start of the school year.
I plan to update this blog about two or three times per week. I invite you to revisit sometime soon.
As always, today is a great day to be a Mustang!!!
Dear East Marshall CSD Supporters,
In the event of a decision that causes the typical scheduled school day to be interrupted, such as a late start or early dismissal caused by weather-related items, the East Marshall CSD will send out a notice through Iowa School Alerts. Iowa School Alerts is the first media outlet that is contacted in an event of changes to a school day. The alert is sent out by text and email.
It is encouraged that parents sign up with Iowa School Alerts through the following link below. If you have signed up in the past you do not have to sign up again, as long as, you have never unsubscribed to the service. Any parent, student, staff member, or public patron may sign up for the alerts.
You may sign up and register at the following link.
The link is also found on our district website.
It is encouraged that you sign up sooner than later. Looking ahead this week, the weather forecast indicates that we will have to monitor conditions due to the heat. The first day of school is already scheduled as a 2:20 pm early-out dismissal. Decisions for any other early out due to the heat will be made on a day-by-day basis.
In the event of an early out, we encourage families to make a plan for their child(ren) ahead of time so your family is prepared for such decision(s). Having a dismissal plan for your family will assist in a smooth and safe transition from school to home for your child(ren).
As always, feel free to reach out to your child’s school building office as a resource. Again, we highly encourage parents to sign up for the School Alerts notification system.
We are looking forward to the return of students on Monday. Today is a great day to be a Mustang!
Yours in education,