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Parents invited to chat with school leaders about student experiencePosted by Tosa Schools on 1/3/2019
Pillar Five of the District’s 2018-2020 Equity plan is to strengthen parent and community relationships, through the lens of equity.
One way we’re hoping to do this is through good old-fashioned face-to-face, two-way dialogue. This year we’ve implemented “Parent Chats”, which will occur at all District schools over the course of the school year. The first chats were held at Roosevelt, McKinley, Longfellow and West High School in December. The goal is for school leaders to listen to feedback, hear what they’re doing well, allow parents to share their challenging experiences, and allow time for suggestions or ideas for improvements related to creating equitable learning opportunities and environments. Moving forward, each school will host three Parent Chats a year and will have them planned as part of their school calendar for the 2019-2020 school year.
As we talk about equity, it’s important to know what we mean when we use this word. For purposes of the Wauwatosa School District, equity is defined as a commitment to the empathetic understanding of everyone’s needs and perspectives, even those that differ from our own. Equity is the non-negotiable implementation of professional learning, school policies/practices and the redistribution of power that values all stakeholders and promotes human flourishing.
Learn more about the District's work as it relates to equity by visiting our Diversity & Equity website page.
District Equity Team developing an equity-themed resource guidePosted by Tosa Schools on 1/3/2019
As part of their ongoing work to support the implementation of the District’s Equity Plan, the District Equity Team is developing a Resource Guide that will be available for teachers and principals.
The goal of the guide is to connect WSD educators to a comprehensive database of equity-related resources for activities, events, and information that they can incorporate in their buildings and classrooms. Resources are aligned to each of the five pillars in the District Equity Plan to ensure consistency for the outcomes and goals the District is working to achieve. Each school has also developed its own building-level equity team this year to help address issues that affect student learning and behavior.
College Search and Career Resources on the WebsitePosted by Tosa Schools on 12/6/2018
In addition to Career Cruising, we have a comprehensive College Search page on each high school website. If you have a high school junior or senior, the information on this page could be very helpful. Resources include:
- What to consider when looking for colleges/universities
- Scholarship Opportunities, including new Diversity Scholarships!
- Links to College Application Sites
- Links to Federal Student Aid Information
Where to find the information:
- Go to the "Family Resources" Tab in the Main Menu at the top of the East or West High School Webpage
- Click on "School Counselors/Social Work"
- Click on "Career and College Resources" in the left-hand navigation
New State Social Studies StandardsPosted by Tosa Schools on 12/6/2018
Earlier this year, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction adopted and released new social studies standards for school districts to use in their work with social studies programs. The standards provide a foundation to help identify outcomes for student learning in social studies classes.
The new Wisconsin Standards for Social Studies were developed to strengthen college, career and community readiness by deepening students’ knowledge, skills, and civic engagement. The standards support inquiry as a means for learning and discovery, helping learners see themselves as problem solvers and active contributors to their communities and beyond.
Educators in the Wauwatosa School District have started to analyze the new standards and engage in conversations regarding instructional practices and shifts needed to meet the outcomes of these standards. A goal of our district is to ensure the teaching and learning of social studies occurs in a culturally responsive, culturally supported, learner-centered context, and that our practices account for and adapt to the broad diversity of race, language and culture in the Wauwatosa School District.
Key features of culturally responsive practice in the area of social studies include:
- ensuring students have opportunities to hear multiple perspectives from historical accounts
- learning from primary sources
- seeing individuals and cultures through an asset-based lens
- providing depth of learning within a context rather than surface-level understanding
strengthening individual identity
- creating experiences to trigger empathy not through reenactments or simulations, but rather
- through questioning, critical thinking opportunities, and the use of authentic texts including images, songs, and stories
As a school district, we have started to look closely at our instruction and make changes to social studies learning to reflect these ideas. As a component of Pillar 3 in our District’s Equity Plan we will continue to make these shifts to support meaningful learning and connections that expand students’ knowledge, skills, perspectives, and viewpoints.
Staff, Administrators Participate in Implicit Bias TrainingPosted by Tosa Schools on 12/6/2018
As part of the District's Equity Plan and efforts to create environments where all students feel comfortable and succeed, staff and administrators are participating in several learning exercises including Implicit Bias training. Implicit Bias is the attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions, and decisions in an unconscious manner. They are activated involuntarily, without awareness or intentional control. They can be either positive or negative and everyone is susceptible to them.
The training is designed to help staff and administrators understand their bias, identify when the bias are occurring, and how to interrupt the bias so that we can better understand and help our students.
District administrators are also participating in additional training related to diversity.
New Courses Approved for 2019-2020 School YearPosted by Tosa Schools on 12/6/2018
Students will have four new elective courses to choose from next year. The Wauwatosa School Board approved the following courses during its meeting on Monday, November 26.
ENGLISH: Black Literature -- In this class, students will discover major voices of Black literature, and they will understand how Black literature influences various aspects of society, such as science, history, music and fashion. Students will read a variety of texts that explore themes and issues related to Black experiences. Students will write about, discuss and research these themes and issues, aiming to see how they relate to their own lives.
BUSINESS ED: Advanced Marketing -- Students will collaborate with each other and local businesses, developing skills and understandings related to entrepreneurship. They will engage in hands-on, project-based learning in such areas as marketing research, professional development, customer service and hospitality and tourism. This course will prepare students to ultimately work in and understand the world of marketing, honing their skills as leaders and managers.
FAMILY and CONSUMER SCIENCE: International Cuisine -- The students will be introduced to cooking from around the world. This course emphasizes the cooking methods, eating habits, and cultural characteristics of people in diverse cultures and geographical areas. Students will plan, prepare, and present foods that represent various societies.
TECH ED: Future Makers Capstone -- For students who are interested in solving real-world problems using science, technology, engineering, and math fundamentals, with the emphasis on advanced manufacturing, entrepreneurship and innovation. All students will have hands-on, active-learning opportunities, featuring real-world projects focused on meeting the needs of one or more of the districts business partners and/or the community at large.
AVID -- Students will learn college entry skills, participate in tutor-led study groups, motivational activities and academic survival skills. In AVID, students participate in activities that incorporate strategies focused on writing, inquiry, collaboration, and reading to support their growth academically.