Superintendent's Message - August 1, 2019

Superintendent's Message - August 1, 2019
Posted on 08/01/2019
Dr. Kelly Burhop

Football starts next week which means the first day of school is right around the corner.  During the summer months, the staffing here at the Norwalk-Ontario-Wilton School District is scaled back quite a bit.  If you call the school and there is no answer, please be patient.  The clerical staff starts coming back around the second week of August.  I apologize for any inconveniences.


On the morning of August 29, myself, along with all the school bus drivers will have our annual organizational meeting.  We will review all the incoming 4K students and all the new 5K through grade 12 students.  The bus route, the bus driver, pick-up and drop-off times will be determined at that meeting.  In the late morning or afternoon of August 29, the school district clerical staff will give parents of all new students a call and you will receive all transportation information at that time.  All other parents of students should assume your driver and pick-up and drop-off times will not change from last year unless you receive a phone call.  If you have a student new to the district and register during Back-to-School Night on August 29, please stop in my office and see me to arrange transportation.

Reminders to Parents

Back-to-School Night for the 2019-20 school year is from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 29.

The first day of school is scheduled for September 3, 2019.  The Elementary will attend from 8:00 a.m. to 3:05 p.m., Jr. & Sr. High School hours will be 8:00 a.m. until 3:15 p.m.  The buses will depart the school district grounds after school at 3:20 p.m.

If you drive your child to school, please drive down the second parking lot driveway and drop them off at the crosswalk.  The closest parking lot driveway by the school is for school bus drop-off only. 

New for 2019-20

Currently, five new professional staff members have been hired for the 2019-20 school year.  They are:

  • Angela Funk – Jr. & Sr. High School Principal
  • Niiki Hakala – Grades 5-12 Band
  • Kimberly Hoag – Jr. & Sr. High School LMC Specialist/Jr. High Social Studies
  • Melissa Holen – Hr. High English/Language Arts
  • Holly Nemec – Jr. & Sr. High School Counselor

The School District is still searching for an Elementary ELL Teacher and Jr. High Math Teacher

Alexandria Decker has been hired as the District/Elementary School Administrative Assistant and Jenny Downing and Deb Hemmersbach have been hired as members of the kitchen staff.

Elementary Class Lists

Elementary class lists have been posted.  They can be located in the three community libraries and on the bulletin board outside of the District/Elementary Offices.  Administration has made the decision over the years not to post class lists on-line.  Administration is not comfortable with any person on the planet having access to all the names of our elementary students, how big the class sizes are, and what class they are in.

Student Attendance

With school starting soon, I want to give a reminder to parents on the importance of your child’s school attendance.  There is quite a bit of research out there that supports a connection between student attendance and student academic achievement.  I am quoting a few of the facts I found on the web-site.

  • Poor attendance can negatively influence whether children read proficiently by the end of third grade.
  • By 6th grade, poor attendance becomes the leading indicator that a student will drop out of high school.
  • Research supports that missing 18 days of school (2 days per month) has a negative effect on a student’s academic performance.
  • Students who have improved their attendance rates also improve their academic performance and their chances for graduating.

Please be supportive and engaged in making sure your child gets to school consistently.

A Few Other Things

During the school year, please stay ahead on your payments for food service.  Keeping a positive balance makes things easy.  I just want to remind parents that you can pay on-line with a credit card.

Free and reduced lunch applications will soon be available.  All applications are confidential.  If you feel you may qualify for free or reduced lunches, please fill one out.

The custodial staff is doing a great job in the maintenance of the school building this summer.  I want to Thank them for all their hard work.

 I hope your summer is relaxing and going well.  Have a great week.  I will see you on Back-to-School Night.