Files & Forms Archive

Friday, September 1, 2017

Principal's Post

Greetings, Mustang Families!

It has been a wonderful first few weeks of school! By now, you have had an opportunity to
attend Back-to-School Night(s), and have, hopefully, settled into the rhythm of the school year.

Manzanita is an incredible school community, and we remain such a place through our
continuous efforts at improvement. At our September 1 FFO Meeting, I shared an overview of
our School Improvement Planning efforts, which I will summarize for you here.

Catalina Foothills School District’s Strategic Plan consists of three large “Deep Learning Goals”:

1. Reduce the gap between current and desired student academic achievement;

2. Raise the engagement of students so they are highly motivated to set and achieve
increasingly challenging goals for deep learning;

3. Partner with families and community to achieve our strategic priorities.

Within these goals, each school is tasked with creating 5-6 annual plans. At Manzanita this
year, these plans include:


Strategy: Build the capacity of Gr. 3-5 teachers to effectively plan and implement rigorous
mathematics instruction.
Action Plan Involves:
Gr. 3-5 collaborative planning and unit design, with an emphasis on fractions.


Build the capacity of teachers to implement the eight (8) essential elements of project-based
learning (PBL) in order to engage students in a deeper level of learning.

Action Plan Involves:
Providing professional development to a new cadre of teachers
Teachers implementing PBL units


Build the capacity of students to develop and utilize self-regulation skills in academic and social

Action Plan Involves:
Mindfulness Training - in partnership with the Mindfulness Education Exchange

        5th Grade - 8 lessons
        4th Grade - 3 “refresher” lessons (since they had a series of lessons last year in 3rd grade)
        Professional Development - 10 hours of PD to 20 teachers (Mindful Mentors)


Build the capacity of teachers and students to utilize systems thinking tools (Change Over Time,

Action Plan Involves:
Faculty participation in the Waters Foundation Systems Thinking Institute (Sep. 28-29)
Professional Development - 10 hours of PD to 17 teachers (Systems Thinking)
Collegial Observations


Increase the frequency and quality of interactions between home and school to improve
student learning.

Action Plan Involves:
Implementing Bloomz
Implementing K-5 Student Led- or Involved- Conferences
Continuing to administer Report Card Reflections