Friday, February 23, 2018

Responding To School Violence

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families of the 17 victims as well as the community of Parkland, Florida and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where a school shooting had taken place on February 14, 2018. This horrific tragedy and heinous crime has educators, parents and communities asking: "What can be done to prevent these types of things from happening in our schools?" Many constituents are asking their education officials: What is being done to prevent this from happening in their schools?" 

At Colstrip Public Schools we follow a School Crisis Response Plan in order to execute emergency procedures in emergency situations from specific isolated emergencies to major disasters. The objectives of Colstrip school emergency operations program are to protect the lives and well-being of its students and staff through the prompt and timely response of trained school personnel should an emergency affect the school. To meet these objectives, the school has established and maintains a comprehensive emergency operations program that includes plans and procedures, hazard analysis, security audits, training and exercise, and plan review and maintenance. 

In addition to emergency procedures, our district has implemented video surveillance and lock-down technology to secure it's building from outside threats. The staff is trained in first aid, CPR and AED use. The district has also entered into a partnership with the local policy department that provides a School Resource Officer twenty hours a week. Even though the District is prepared, we also need to be preventative.

Probably one of the most significant preventative measures we have implemented is a Quantum Learning concept called Home Court Advantage or HCA. This concept is based on Safety, Support and Belonging. It is a chant our students, K-12 know, but are learning the deeper meaning behind the concept. It isn't enough just to know what to do in an emergency, but more importantly what should we be doing to prevent tragedies from happening. HCA provides a foundation for understanding expectations and actions.

Providing safety, support and belonging to all members of this district is essential to learning outcomes and growth. Abraham Maslow created a frame-work in which people generally move through in order to attain self actualization. Safety, support and belonging must be obtained before a person's full potential can be realized.

HCA is about caring for one another and recognizing basic needs. Basic human needs that surround the human dimensions (see below):
  • Physical: Physiologic needs: breathing, circulation, temperature, food and etc.
  • Environmental: Safety and security needs: housing, community, climate and etc.
  • Soicalcultural: Love and belonging needs: relationships, support, part of a community and etc.
  • Emotional: Self-esteem needs: Hope, joy, happiness, accepting of self.
  • Intellectual/spiritual: Self-actualization needs: thinking, learning, decision making, values, beliefs, fulfillment, helping others.
All basic human needs are interrelated and may require actions at more than one level at a given time. For example, in caring for a person coming into the emergency department with a heart attack, the nurse’s immediate concern in the patient’s physiologic needs (e.g., oxygen and pain relief). At the same time, safety needs (e.g., for ensuring that the person does not fall off the examining table) and love and belonging needs (e.g., for having a family member nearby if possible) are still major considerations.[11]
At Colstrip Public Schools Home Court Advantage is essential in supporting its Core Purpose:
  • SAFETY: Every student will attend a "safe" environment. Students will always be assured that this school is their safe haven from harm's way. Every student's dignity is protected here!
  • SUPPORT: Every student will receive support from every member in this school. We will pick each other up when we are down and will applaud individual and group success. Everyone is a part of this school and everyone will support those in it.
  • BELONGING: Every student is valued in this school! This is our school and our students' home away from home. It is a place of welcome and family for everyone!
 Please know we are working towards perfecting these concepts in our daily work. As we improve, our students, staff and community can be more confident in the safety provided when school is in session.

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"




 

Friday, January 19, 2018

Core Purpose is Served Through New Partnership

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski


School Resource Officer Monty McNearney
The School District has extended an invitation for partnership with the Colstrip Police Department. Together the organizations will address the challenges and opportunities in protecting, supporting and keeping our schools safe.

The Colstrip school faculty, administration and board believe that law enforcement presence will encourage appropriate behavior and choices throughout the school system.  

During this working partnership, the Colstrip Police Department will provide a part-time officer (20 hours per week) as the school resource officer (SRO) through the end of this school year 2017-2018. This is at no cost to the School District. As a guideline, the officer will spend approximately 50% of his/her time in the high school, 35% in the middle school and 15% in the elementary.  

Officer Monty McNearney will serve as the part time School Resource Officer (SRO). With this in mind, we would like to welcome our new partnership with the Police Department as well as Officer Monty McNearney. 

NOTE: These actions and agreements are supported by the District's Core Purpose:
The Core Purpose of Colstrip Public Schools is to effectively focus on learning and growth for all students in a safe, healthy, caring and collaborative environment that ensures each student achieves intellectual and personal excellence, and is well prepared for college and career pathways. 

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"



Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Do You Want to Know Why?

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

The Colstrip Board approved a new Core Purpose. The Core Purpose is at the heart of an organization. It answers the question WHY. It reflects the very reason for our school's existence. It communicates what we are here to do together and what is the business of our business.

The Core Purpose is at the "core" of the golden circle. "Schools that want to produce a healthy learning environment must first and foremost be clear about their collective purpose (Muhammad, Transforming School Culture; p 121).

According to leadership expert Simon Sinek: "People don't buy in to what you do, they buy into why you are doing it."

Colstrip Public Schools does not have a mission statement. It has a Core Purpose statement that is supported by identified Core Values. The Core Purpose is the answer to HOW we make dust!

 
The Core Purpose of Colstrip Public Schools is to effectively focus on learning and growth for all students in a safe, healthy, caring and collaborative environment that ensures each student achieves intellectual and personal excellence, and is well prepared for college and career pathways. 

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"


Friday, December 22, 2017

Holiday Wishes from Colstrip Public Schools

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

On behalf of the Administrative Team here at Colstrip Public Schools, we would like to wish you and your family all the blessings of the Holidays.

 From Left to Right: Middle School Principal Pax Haslem, Superintendent Bob Lewandowski, Assistant High School Principal Robin Nansel, Elementary Principal Aaron Skogen, Special Education Director Debi Smith, High School Principal Mark Ator, District Clerk Joanne Schrupp, Technology Coordinator Ken Rohlf, Curriculum Director Susan Sharkey and Maintenance Director Robert Whitehead.

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"

Friday, November 17, 2017

WINNER WINNER TURKEY DINNER!

By Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

Here is the winner of the "MUST BE PRESENT TO WIN!" drawing for all employees during the first academic quarter (see Let's Talk Turkey for more details).

Our search for excellence has produced over 30 employees that have perfect attendance. First year teacher Mr. Joey Richert hasn't missed a day of work and for that his named was thrown in with over 30 other employees that have accomplished the same task. Mr. Richert is a middle school teacher at Frank Brattin Middle School.

Mr. Richert's perfect attendance put him in a position to win. He not only won the 29 pound thanksgiving turkey, but his students win as well. When I announced the winner to FBMS Principal Pax Haslem, he said he wasn't surprised because "we are all winners in this school!"

Congratulations to all of the staff and employee that have been here everyday! Your dedication make a difference!

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Let's Talk Turkey!

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

Celebrating the success of stakeholders is one of the most necessary things that leadership can do to advance the human condition and change a culture. Some may consider celebrations fluff; rather than an essential element that sets clear expectations. In fact, "there is an emerging body of literature that asserts that human behavior is complex, and that celebration or appreciation for prowess on the job is one of the best and smartest ways to improve worker productivity" (Transforming School Culture, Muhammad, 2018).

So let's talk turkey, and I mean a lot of it. I have been eyeballing a 29 pound turkey at Rosebud Foods, here in Colstrip, for the past several days thinking it would be a great incentive to celebrate and be thankful for our employees that have shown up everyday since the start of the school year. As you may know, that when the regular teacher or employee are absent, productivity suffers significantly.

This Thanksgiving season, the Colstrip School District would like to celebrate and recognize the teaching and staff members that have had perfect attendance at work during the first quarter of the academic year.  We certainly can't give them all a turkey (cost prohibitive), or even mention them by name, but we can put their names into a hat to draw out a WINNER!

The idea behind this celebration, is that YOU MUST BE PRESENT TO WIN! Both students and employees alike will stand a better chance to win and succeed if they show up every day. We will draw and announce the winner before the Thanksgiving Break (November 22-24). Our school district will continue to search for excellence and recognize its findings throughout the year.

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"







Monday, October 30, 2017

MUSIC ALL-STARS

by Robert "Bob" Lewandowski

I just want to pass on some information and congratulations to Robbie Hensleigh and students Chloe Headswift and Jett Harris for being selected for the 2017 University of Montana High School All-Star Wind Ensemble which performs November 10th -12th , 2017 in Missoula, MT.

Chloe and Jett are sophomores at Colstrip High School. This event had nominations from over 90 different high schools in Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming and Canada. This year features guest composer/conductor David Gillingham (Maroon Wind Ensemble) and Dr. James Smart (Silver Wind Ensemble), French Horn Soloist Zach Cooper, and the faculty of the University Of Montana School Of Music. The students will also perform pre-game with the Grizzly Marching Band in front of a home crowd (vs. University of Northern Colorado).

Students will perform in one of two 75-piece ensembles in the 1,100 seat Dennison Theatre and work with Mr. Gillingham in rehearsals, have sectionals and master classes with UM faculty. These students will have the opportunity to hear the UM Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra and Percussion Ensemble.

Congratulations Chloe and Jett! Way to make DUST!

GO COLTS! GO FILLIES! 

MAKE DUST OR EAT DUST!

"Get out in front and stay there!"