Home‎ > ‎

Superintendent's Page

SUPERINTENDENT’S REPORT

Susan E. Hodgdon, Superintendent of Schools, SAU #77

September/October 2017

Update – Current Projects

·         NH DOE Important Dates – Caitlin Davis, from the DOE, sent an email in September, noting that Superintendents and Business Administrators had approached her to clarify and publish a calendar of DOE Deadlines as the school year got underway. The first set of deadlines pertained to i4See Submissions that were due. Sandy Lang serves as the local i4See liaison, so we went through the list of Fall submissions to make sure all of those had been submitted. We found that one remained to be certified, and this was taken care of. Next, we’ll address the Beginning of Year, (BOY) submissions; these are due by October 16th.

·         NSLP(National School Lunch Program) Application – I began to work more closely with Cindy Guibord, Monroe’s  Food Service Director, in late August/early September, when  Cindy let me know that the district’s Wellness Policy was out of date. Cindy let us know that we were going to have a team here in March 2018 for an onsite review. In preparation for the review, not only did we need to update the Wellness policy, but the NSLP application had been returned, and that in preparation for the onsite, the DOE also wanted us to be aware of the Procurement process and related documents, and the need for a Code of Conduct. These documents and my meetings with Cindy soon led to further conversations with the DOE and the Director of Food Service Directors collaborative that Monroe participates in. The outcome is that our application has been approved and that there is time to work on other documents prior to the onsite visit.

·         District Strategic Plan 2015-2020 – I’ve been working with the SAU Leadership Team this past spring to assess where we are in regards to the 2015-2020 Strategic Plan with the goal of bringing the Strategic Planning Committee together to share that the goals set in 2015 have been completed and to begin work on a new version of the Strategic Plan. After this span of time, the accepted practice is to review the Mission and Vision as a first step. The Board heard at a workshop with the NHSBA in June about the central role that the Strategic Plan plays in setting School Board goals and, in addition, setting goals with the Superintendent. I am beginning this process in September, with a goal of having a new Strategic Plan in place by late May 2018. Some of you may have received an email from me this week, with choices of dates and times.

·         Supporting Staff with Alternative IV Plans – Another focus for me as we began the school year was to support educators who are working under what we refer to as Alternative Plans in order to become certified. I work with the Certification Division at the DOE, as well as with the educators and their mentors, who provide oversight and support.

Policy Subcommittee – The Policy subcommittee met last month, with a goal of finishing with the Fall 2016 NHSBA list of policies needing revision or the policies that the Monroe School Board needs to add to their policy book.  In addition, we also work on goals that are brought to our attention, such as the Wellness policy I mentioned above. We will begin addressing the next quarter’s goals given to us by the NHSBA. In some cases, we contact legal counsel for their expertise and input.

Joint Loss (Formerly the Safety) Committee – Another project that is about to launch is meeting with the Joint Loss Committee. When we were the Safety Committee, we had too many administrators and too few staff members, so in correcting that imbalance, it took time and patience to find team members and to set times/dates to meet. We’ll be meeting soon. 

Professional Activities

·         NHSAA Statewide Meeting- I attended the statewide School Administrators meeting on Friday, September 8th. Among the topics of interest was the presentation by Lynn A. Karoly from the Rand Corporation, who provided a Research Brief on the economic returns from investing in Early Childhood programs in NH.

·         North Country Superintendents Meeting –The North Country Superintendents met o September 7th in North Woodstock. I hope to attend more meetings of this group this year, to stay current with the issues and approaches that are common to the North Country. These meetings rotate throughout the region. 

·         NCES Executive Board Meeting – Monroe District is a member of this collaborative. They met on September 19th in Gorham.

·         Learning Forward New England Board Meeting –This is a New England regional group that often meets online via a conference call. Their focus is on professional learning standards and they afford me the opportunity to network, access the National Learning Forward organization and its resources. I’ve been a Board member since 2013.

·         Capella University Online Course – Teacher Evaluation and Assessment – I signed up for this online course last spring and just completed the last final this past week. I’ve used and will continue to use the course to better support teacher evaluation and assessment here in Monroe.

·         Title I Regional Meeting- Another professional activity this past month that I took part in was the Title I Regional meeting in Gorham on September 29. Among the important topics on the agenda, as we leave NCLB and move towards ESSA, was to become more familiar with the definition of “evidence-based” practices.  

 

Other September/October Activities Not Mentioned Above

·         Open House – I rearranged my schedule in order to attend Open House on September 28th. The turnout was wonderful and I thought that staff did a wonderful job as well in designing activities to engage family members of all ages.   

 

·         October is National Principals Month – I was delighted to observe Leah as she met with a visiting team last week who were just starting out with PACE. Leah’s leadership and passion about the impact that PACE has had on MCS, the teachers, and especially our students made a difference for this team.

 

·       Respectfully submitted,

 

Susan E. Hodgdon

Susan E. Hodgdon

Superintendent





April 2017  

Superintendent’s Message


School Board

I also want to join the School Board in recognizing Mrs. Paula Geil for her six years of service to the School Board and the community. School Board work is vital to the present and future generations of students, it involves many meetings and decisions, and countless hours of service.

It is also my pleasure to welcome Mr. Greg Collins, our new School Board member, who will begin his service at the upcoming March 20th Board meeting.

 

School Delays and Closure Due to Inclement Weather

This winter has posed many weather-related challenges that we have all experienced whether as a parent or caregiver, as a student or staff member, or as one of those involved with making the decision to hold, delay, or cancel school. In answer to the question: How are inclement weather decisions made? I am providing the essential elements that go into the process below:

1.      When the Monroe School District makes the decision to delay or close school during inclement weather conditions, the decision isn’t made lightly. We take a team approach between myself and the Principal, the latest weather reports, JPI Bus Company, and surrounding schools.

 

2.      Safety of students is the most important factor. When weather forecasts indicate that there will be snow or ice on Monroe roadways, I contact JPI by 5 AM with the current and forecasted road conditions and I recommend that we hold school, have a two-hour delay, or cancel school. Often, I revisit the two-hour delay decision, get updated information regarding conditions, and contact JPI with my decision to hold school or cancel for the day.

 

3.      Once the decision is made and I have contacted the Principal, a message is sent via our Alert Now system to notify staff and parents of the delay or closure. I follow up by calling WMUR and WCAX to post the message on their websites. We also post the decision on the Monroe School Facebook page.

 

4.      Since I usually follow up with JPI by 7AM on whether it is advisable to change the delay to a closure, parents and staff are strongly advised to listen for a revised announcement through the Alert Now system as well as checking the media outlets mentioned above.

 

5.      Monroe school officials take the delay or closure of school very seriously. We factor in student safety both to and from the bus stops during inclement weather conditions for the start and end of the day as well as potential traffic issues on the roadways.

 

6.      Safety of students is our number one priority in making these decisions.



March 20, 2017

Superintendent’s Message

School Budget for 2017-2018

On behalf of the Monroe School Board and myself, I begin this message with a heartfelt thank you to the Monroe School Community for your approval and support of the budget for the coming year. I am grateful to one and all for your support of the funding we needed to continue our vital programs, projects, and initiatives for our students and staff. 

 

School Board

I also want to join the School Board in recognizing Mrs. Paula Geil for her six years of service to the School Board and the community. School Board work is vital to the present and future generations of students, it involves many meetings and decisions, and countless hours of service.

It is also my pleasure to welcome Mr. Greg Collins, our new School Board member, who will begin his service at the upcoming March 20th Board meeting.

 

School Delays and Closure Due to Inclement Weather

This winter has posed many weather-related challenges that we have all experienced whether as a parent or caregiver, as a student or staff member, or as one of those involved with making the decision to hold, delay, or cancel school. In answer to the question: How are inclement weather decisions made? I am providing the essential elements that go into the process below:

1.      When the Monroe School District makes the decision to delay or close school during inclement weather conditions, the decision isn’t made lightly. We take a team approach between myself and the Principal, the latest weather reports, JPI Bus Company, and surrounding schools.

 

2.      Safety of students is the most important factor. When weather forecasts indicate that there will be snow or ice on Monroe roadways, I contact JPI by 5 AM with the current and forecasted road conditions and I recommend that we hold school, have a two-hour delay, or cancel school. Often, I revisit the two-hour delay decision, get updated information regarding conditions, and contact JPI with my decision to hold school or cancel for the day.

 

3.      Once the decision is made and I have contacted the Principal, a message is sent via our Alert Now system to notify staff and parents of the delay or closure. I follow up by calling WMUR and WCAX to post the message on their websites. We also post the decision on the Monroe School Facebook page.

 

4.      Since I usually follow up with JPI by 7AM on whether it is advisable to change the delay to a closure, parents and staff are strongly advised to listen for a revised announcement through the Alert Now system as well as checking the media outlets mentioned above.

 

5.      Monroe school officials take the delay or closure of school very seriously. We factor in student safety both to and from the bus stops during inclement weather conditions for the start and end of the day as well as potential traffic issues on the roadways.

 

6.      Safety of students is our number one priority in making these decisions.


Sincerely,

Susan E. Hodgdon

Superintendent of Schools

NH SAU #77






Welcome Back Message from the Superintendent

 

Dear Community Members, Parents, and Monroe Students,

As we prepare to embark on another year of learning and growth throughout our school community, I want to welcome you to our 2016-2017 academic year, as well as to introduce myself in this first Superintendent’s Message. The school is clean and bright, and ready for the first day of school. A great deal of work was done over the summer, we have finished most of the items on the summer projects list, and are indeed “ready to set sail” on another year of learning and growth. We are fully staffed, educators have returned from summer break, and we’re looking forward to greeting students and their families on Thursday, August 25th.

While I have been here throughout the summer, I’m excited for this new school year and all that we have planned to make it a successful year for every one of our students. To give you an idea of my background, I have worked in a variety of districts in both Maine and New Hampshire over a ten-year span, serving as Superintendent and Assistant Superintendent, and I am impressed with the Monroe staff – their commitment, professionalism, and focus on the importance of meeting the needs of all learners.  It was this combination that first drew me to Monroe.

The mission of the Monroe School District, stated in its Strategic Plan, is one that resonates with my core beliefs. I am energized by the District’s vision of being a leader in collaborative, community-based learning, by providing a strong foundation to ensure individual growth, and to accomplish this through teaching students the habits of perseverance and the importance of diversity are hallmarks of equipping students for life-long success. I plan to guide and support the work identified in the Strategic Plan, knowing the work that went into creating this important document.

Monroe is located in a beautiful part of the northeast, one that offers a variety of recreational activities and a rich history, so I trust that, as summer begins to turn towards fall with the return of staff and students to school this week, you and your family find time to relax and enjoy the remaining days of this wonderful New Hampshire summer. I look forward to seeing everyone on the first day of school and welcome your ideas and input as the school year gets underway.

 

Sincerely,

Susan E. Hodgdon

Superintendent of Schools

NH SAU #77







s