Friday, November 29, 2013


As part of the Thanksgiving activities at Eureka Heights Elementary School, pupils were able to choose prizes for good behavior from the school store!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

KINYON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: Class receives $100 from JCPenney and Adopt-A-Classroom

Ms. Polidori's third-grade class at Kinyon Elementary School has joined the Adopt-A-Classroom program.

The class was adopted by JCPenney and awarded a $100 grant to purchase supplies for the classroom. 

Ms. Polidori said that the class is using the money to purchase biographies and autobiographies for the classroom library.

A big "thank you" to JCPenney and the Adopt-A-Classroom program.

To find out more about the Adopt-A-Classroom program, click here.

HAVE SOME FUN: Learn colors and decorate the Christmas tree with Shawn the Train!

For all of you with preschoolers and lower elementary pupils, here's a video that you can have some fun with. 

"Learn Colors And Decorate the Tree With Shawn The Train" is an education cartoon for children in which "Shawn The Train" teaches different colors and decorates the Christmas tree. 

Perfect for the season!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

RANDALL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: Benefit held for Taylor Reading Corps!

Randall Elementary School's recent "Spooktacular" benefited the Taylor Reading Corps to the tune of $425!

The TRC is a non-profit organization that recruits, trains and supervises adult reading mentors for the Taylor School District. The group currently mentors children in preschool, first- and second-grade, and plans on expands into the third grade next year.

These photos were supplied by the Randall Student Council, who made the check presentation to Lori Hill-Sanders, the executive director of the TRC.

Monday, November 25, 2013

MELISSA SKOPCZYNSKI: MDE visits comes just as the right time to put everyone in a mood to celebrate and give thanks!

By Melissa Skopczynski
Truman High School Principal

Happy Monday everyone! The much-anticipated Thanksgiving Day break is almost here. I don't know about you, but I'm ready. A little time off to re-energize the batteries and get ready for the new trimester is well deserved and much needed.

While I try to remember to say "thank you" to each and every one of you on a regular basis, I wanted to do so again as we take time to celebrate and give thanks. Your help and hard work is appreciated.

Last week, the Michigan Department of Education site monitor brought over a team of educators from Robichaud High School (Dearborn Heights) to see all of the great things happening at Truman High School. 

The MDE site monitor is extremely impressed with how Truman has managed to turn things around so much in the past three years. I know this couldn't have been possible with our open-minded and committed staff. 

It was nice to brag about our school, students and community. It was Cougar Pride as its best.

Here are some pictures from Mrs. Dudek's Grammar Gobler!

TOMMIE SAYLOR: Don't let fear prevent you from doing the right thing

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”  
President Franklin D. Roosevelt

By Tommie Saylor
Kennedy High School Principal

Fear is the most debilitating and motivating factor in our lives.  

We follow the rules, obey the speed limit, arrive to work on time and do what we are told because we fear the consequences associated with defiance. From an early age we learn to fear the paddle while respecting the wielder; learn that there is safety in order and compliance; and that following the rules is by far more profitable than breaking the rules.

All of this stokes the fires of fear with our own intrinsic desires to be accepted, valued and cared for.

This fear follows us as we grow older. Much like a ravenous beast, it feeds our insecurities and anxieties, robbing us of our individualistic traits and creativity. Armed with this knowledge, adults use fear to keep teenagers in check, controlled and within the boundaries of social conventions.  Essentially, fear governs our lives from birth to adulthood, protecting us, guiding us and keeping us safe. Then as adults we are asked to set fear aside and adventure outside of our oh-so-familiar comfort zones.

Those who are able to make this transition, able to step away from the warm embrace of their fears, often find success. Those who are not able to make this transition find success to be rather elusive.  

Simply, successful people – leaders and winners – live with the constant bitter taste of fear. It becomes a motivating factor to push forward, work harder and constantly strive for every higher levels of success. Others retreat from fear, content to live their lives in a much more modest fashion.  

We as educators have chosen the former over the latter. As such we must constantly fight against our primal urge of fear avoidance and do what must be done.

A good example of this is parental contacts. 

Let’s face the truth: Calling a student’s parent is not easy. No one wants to make a call to a stranger and tell them that their child has done something wrong or is doing poorly in school. Many of us have yet to make the realization that parents can be our biggest ally or worst enemy when it comes to the education of their children.  

Parents understand that a good education is key to a good life, and therefore become emotionally involved in their child’s education, knowing that their child’s future is at stake.  

So it is understandable that making that phone call home is often not easy, and can be intimidating.  

But, being the people that we are, if we truly believe in doing what is best for kids, I implore you to make the call. If a student is misbehaving in your classroom, make the call. If a student’s grades are beginning to slip, make the call. If a student is displaying some unusual or strange behavior, make the call.

What you as teachers will discover is that parents will highly appreciate the “heads-up.”

You want to make your job easier? Fight against your natural fears and win your student’s parents over by making them a full partner in the educational process through the simple act of keeping them informed. Remember, every day when their student comes home from school, parents have the opportunity to hear a teenage-slanted view of what is taking place in class. Why not add your voice to this chorus?

Remember, their future is in our hands. Making Kennedy the school of choice. Excellence by design.