The fourth quarter has begun and the end of the school year is starting to look like a reality. We probably all agree the older we get, the faster the school year goes. I suspect some of our students are thinking the school year simply plods slowly along. It might be safe to say we have avoided the inconvenience of having to make up any school days due to inclement weather. Sorry seniors. I realize I am challenging Mother Nature by writing and publishing these definitive words.

This time of year can be challenging for students, parents, support staff, and certified staff. I would like to take this opportunity to share and affirm some fundamental beliefs that govern our school district and our interactions with our students and families. West Burlington Independent School District believes first and foremost all of our students are capable of being successful. It is both the school districts’ and the students’ responsibility to work hard together in pursuit of success. In my service to you, as the West Burlington Independent School District superintendent, I try to follow the following guiding principles so fundamental to all of our students’ success here at good ole’ WB.

You may have noticed the major emphasis WBISD places on literacy. All of our subjects and course offerings are of great importance in our eyes. I think we all agree that literacy is especially crucial to the success of our students and our educational program. We will continue working vehemently on the teaching and learning of fundamental literacy skills. An old saying is pertinent here, “In the early stages of elementary education our students learn to read. At some point around third and fourth grade, our students read to learn.” We see helping students make this transition as crucial in our students’ academic development.

We believe that helping develop well-rounded students is an important aspect of our work as an educational institution. We see math, social studies, science, vocational education, music and the arts, as well as PE as all integral parts of our intentional efforts to educating and developing the total student. Simply stated, our entire academic program is important. Our co-curricular and extra-curricular programs serve the purpose of educating and developing a well-rounded person. We encourage all of our students to be engaged in our academic program and our extra-curricular programs. The key word here is engagement. As a school district we embrace and understand the need to address various barriers a student might have in becoming a well-rounded person who is ready to be a positive contributor to our community and society. The barriers could include being a special needs student, or a student with a 504 plan. Barriers could involve generational poverty or difficult personal circumstances. Whatever the barrier might be, WBISD is here to help all students be successful. WBISD does not make excuses, nor do we lower our expectation of our students. We believe all of our students can and will be successful.

We hope we live by our mantra, ‘Kids First’ each and every day. We have wonderful students, parents, families, staff, community support and board of education at West Burlington ISD. A fundamental belief of the Bridges Out of Poverty work is that relationships are instrumental in developing and maintaining a school culture of collaboration. If we are failing in our efforts to help your student, please contact me at (319) 752-8747, option #3 or email Thank you, and as always……Kids First!