Summer Principal’s Report to SB

30 Aug

Here is the text from Underhill’s Summer Principal’s Report:

Summer 2011


Despite the absence of 500 students, Underhill School has been a busy place this summer.  Typical summer facility improvements include maintenance and cleaning by our diligent custodial staff.  The building looks great, complete with base boards that match throughout the building and newly painted walls.  Additional measures have been taken to comply with the Department of Labor’s recommendations including two eye wash stations at various points throughout the building.

Perhaps our most significant infrastructural improvement is one which cannot be seen.  Students, parents and staff will now be able to access wireless internet throughout the building at any given location, even the modular classrooms.  This particular upgrade will be beneficial for Underhill as each teacher seeks to frame their classrooms around 21st Century teaching and learning, consequently effecting students’ learning experiences


Twenty four teachers and the building administration chose to attend the 21st Century Learning Academy.  The academy provided an opportunity for teachers and staff to deepen their understanding of the digital native and their academic and instructional needs.  Participants submitted an assignment  that assessed their current depth of knowledge.  Instruction for the two day academy, August 15 and 16 for Underhill staff, was personalized based on this information.  We look forward to seeing creativity and innovation flourish throughout the year as a result of this academy.


Extended School Year

Hilary Paro, Karina Cosgrove and a strong team of  paraprofessionals worked from July 5th through August 11th, Monday through Thursday each week, in room 2.  The team collaborated with various team members to provide necessary support for their students’ progression toward their individual goals.

Summer Reading is Cool

Approximately 35 1st and 2nd grade students participated in Underhill School’s Summer Reading is Cool program two days per week from 9-noon from July 5th to July 28th.  The program’s goal is to reinforce the development of reading and writing skills, thereby enhancing opportunities for success during the school year.  The program was organized by our reading specialists Karen Murray and Nancy Dupont.  Teachers, Mrs. Devereaux, Ms. Whittum, and Mr. Marino, instructed the students.

A special thank you is in order to Clark and Donna Karolian who donated a sum of money that was used to purchase books for this program’s participants.  The students were able to take the books home as their own in an effort to foster the love of reading.

Ready for Success

This three-week summer program, July 11th through 28th 9:30-11:30, offered 34 newly enrolled kindergarteners who have no preschool experience an opportunity to acclimate themselves to school routines and procedures.  Teachers, Mrs. Pawlusiak and Ms. Cuture, provided a variety of literacy activities to introduce books and build a solid foundation for these emergent readers.

RtI Training

Reading specialist Karen Murray, kindergarten teacher Maryann Boucher and Drew Bairstow represented Underhill School at Advanced RTI Leadership Implementation Training with Shannon Harken & Amelia VanName Larson.  The two-day event was held in Concord on July 7th and 8th.  The training focused on practical tips and applications for schools and districts in the early stages of implementing a three-tier Response to Intervention system.

ESOL Summer School

Mary Lou Donohoe received a grant for the second year in a row from the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation to fund an ESOL summer program.  10 students participated in hands on and exploratory literacy activities throughout the 4 week program held at Cawley Middle School from July 5 through 28th.

The incoming kindergarten students were introduced to the Imagine It! letter names and sounds with their poems, and older students participated in an Eric Carle author study.  Every student attended every session of the summer program, one testament of its success.


District administration collaborated to create a district wide common assessment schedule.  This will allow for more valid measures.  New to this year is a fall administration of NWEA’s MAP test for grade 2, a winter administration of math NWEA for Kindergarten, and a Spring NWEA administration for K-2.


In June and July teachers from grades K-2 met in grade level teams and collaborated with teachers from throughout the district in aligning the writing and grammar pieces of the Imagine It Reading Program with the Common Core State Standards.  Adjustments were made to assured writing topics, prompts and rubrics to reflect the CCSS.   Grammar topics to be covered in each grade level were also adjusted to reflect CCSS requirements.  Grade K-2 teachers also looked over the assessment plans they  are currently using in Language Arts and made adjustments as necessary to align these plans with the CCSS.  Additionally , kindergarten teachers developed enrichment units to implement with students who need an extra challenge.

One Response to “Summer Principal’s Report to SB”

  1. Ralene St. Pierre September 8, 2011 at 6:01 pm #

    Hi Drew-
    I enjoyed watching Nash and Matt role play a teacher and administrator work through understanding of 21st Century learning. As an administrator who is charged with guiding teachers, I want to make sure our staff understands that this is a journey. We are all learning, and we will probably learn much from mistakes we make. However, if we do not try, we will not move forward. We are all in this together. I hope we can lean on each other for support with ideas, feedback and even venting anxiety. Maybe we can have some support groups? (I, for one, would be in a technology anxiety group!)

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