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Underwood Community Schools

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From the Desk of the Superintendent...

JANUARY 2019 DISTRICT DISPATCH Welcome back to the new year and the beginning of the second semester. Students resume classes on Thursday, January 3, 2019. With winter here, the possibility of late starts, early dismissals, or school cancellations is always with us. Please remember to tune in to the following radio and television stations if the weather appears threatening: KMA (960 AM), KFAB (1110 AM), KNOD (95.3 FM), KMTV (Channel 3), WOWT (Channel 6), and KETV (Channel 7). In addition, our school district subscribes to the JMC Instant Parent Contact System. This automated telephone broadcast service enables school personnel to notify all households and parents by telephone within minutes of an emergency or unplanned event that causes a late start, an early dismissal, or a school cancellation. If you have not signed up for this service and are interested in participating, please contact the principal’s office where your child or children attend. In addition, if you have signed up in the past but have stopped receiving calls, it may be because you have changed your telephone number and the school district is not aware of the change. If you think this might be the case, contact the principal’s office where your child or children attend and make sure your current telephone number is the one on file. During the 1960’s Jacob Kounin completed his basic research on how teachers keep order and maintain student discipline in the classroom. His findings were extended and turned into training materials during the 1970’s. During the 1980’s and 1990’s those findings were successfully field-tested by Carolyn Evertson and her colleagues. The upshot of the research was that good classroom managers actually prevented most discipline problems from occurring by keeping events from escalating out of control. They prevented problems, first of all, by sensible classroom arrangement. High traffic areas were free of congestion and widely separated. Good classroom managers also made sure they had a clear line of vision of all student work areas at all times. They organized their classrooms to have easy access to frequently used teaching materials and student supplies. Finally, they ensured that all students could easily see and hear instructional demonstrations and displays. In regard to the everyday tasks of instruction, good classroom managers clearly identified when assignments were due and the level of thoroughness required. They closely monitored student progress on instructional tasks and gave prompt feedback once assignments were handed in. When inappropriate behavior occurred in class, the good managers always handled the problem promptly, often by simply standing in close proximity to the student in order to monitor him or her, or by signaling a student nonverbally. In short, the good classroom managers were always thinking ahead. While maintaining a pleasant classroom atmosphere, they focused on planning how to organize, manage, and control activities in order to facilitate effective instruction. Please note that there is no school for students on Monday, January 21, 2019. Our teachers will be participating in professional development activities with faculty members from other Western Iowa Conference schools that day.