A Safe, Responsible learning community
Our Universal Expectations
Allow Personal Space-Be Respectful-Care for the Community-Do Your Best
MRS Vision Statement: “MRS will be a welcoming and supportive community. Students will learn in a positive and respectful school that meets their diverse academic, social, and emotional needs resulting in motivated and dynamic life-long learners.”
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Mr. Morton and Mr. Ham speak at Rotary
photo credit: Harman Clark
Miller’s Run School – U.S.D. #37
Serving the student, families and communities of Sheffield and Wheelock, VT
A Safe, Responsible, Learning Community
January 2, 2017
Dear Miller’s Run School community:
Having completed my first six months as principal, I’m pleased to report on what we have been doing here at Miller’s Run School:
First and foremost are our students. Our enrollment, compared to where we were and anticipated to be last June, is up 20 students. We still have room for more in most classes, and this gives us the opportunity to engage in multi-grade activities, such as physical education, music, and art. This gives our young learners the opportunity to share ideas and experiences with Miller’s Run scholars who are older and younger than themselves and outside of their typical peer group. I have seen students, who are reserved or perhaps even struggle with their peers, step into leadership and mentoring-type roles when given the opportunity to work with younger pupils. This pays off with increased self-esteem, improved academics and positive behavior for all individuals involved. Furthermore, we have an intentional multi-age program, that we refer to as the Ambassadors, where middle school students help elementary students in reading, writing, math, and other projects, daily during the Enrichment block. This strengthens the knowledge and leadership of the Ambassadors and simultaneously allows teachers to work with small groups, either for remediation, review, or extension of current curricula. In the fine arts department, the students have a rotating art exhibit in my office. We are also making progress in our music program, recently acquiring and rehabilitating donated instruments (which we are still accepting!) and launching our school band instrument lessons. While not every day is perfect, I believe we are making gains as a learning community, both in academics, relationships, and behavior.
Second, we have an excellent staff! Due to resignations we filled a number of support positions last summer. Each new addition to our staff is an asset to our school community. From student support to staff collegiality to professional flexibility, our support staff is great! Our teaching faculty continue to work on Universal Design for Learning (UDL) training. UDL is based on ideas gathered from the study of architecture. As new public buildings are built, they are designed to allow everyone to access the building--universal design. Taking this idea into the school setting, our faculty and staff are in the second year of learning how to reach the students “at the edges,” students who may not be engaged in learning, have trouble taking in new material, who may struggle to demonstrate what they do know or who need to stretch their thinking to levels beyond the curriculum. Our faculty and staff continue to study this topic with in-depth, half-day workshops with a consultant, several times each year. Additionally, we use the UDL lens in our all-faculty meetings, grade level meetings, and educational support team meetings, as we work together to help each learner at Miller’s Run succeed.
Third, with our physical plant, the entire roof has been completed, though we want to add heat tape to minimize ice damming. We have rented a storage unit for collecting recycling and storing equipment. With a grant from the Vermont Community Foundation in honor of Mr. Rashid, the students built an “amphitheater” that we use as an outdoor classroom behind the school.
Fourth, we are working on twenty-first century communication! Besides using email, online documents, video conferencing, and student learning programs, we are also now on Twitter! You can access our Twitter account using #MillersRunVT either with your own account (where you can “follow” us) or without any account, just search using the handle above. We are actively working to keep our website up-to-date at http://millersrun.cnsuschools.org/. Stretching back to the 20th century, we regularly update our physical sign at the end of the driveway with upcoming events.
Finally, I am personally grateful for the opportunity to serve our community as principal of Miller’s Run School. While the challenges are great, and I end up asking for a lot of help and direction, I have truly enjoyed my first six months on the job. I look forward to our continued growth and improvement in the years to come.
Patrick L. Ham, Ed.M.
“MRS will be a welcoming and supportive community. Students will learn in a positive and respectful school that meets their diverse academic, social, and emotional needs resulting in motivated and dynamic life-long learners.”
Staff at Miller's Run have each selected "one word" that
represents their experiences and goals for this school year.
Here's what they came up with!
Miller's Run School Calendar
see Athletics tab for basketball schedule
Miller's Run Community Garden in the news
Miller's Run School Friday Finale
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