~ Trevor Phipps ~
The New Year represents the kick-off of the final semester in school for local students.
This pivotal semester often brings about new classes, sports opportunities and a chance to improve grades before the year ends. This year is no exception.
Students and parents now have a variety of options to pursue during the semester, some of which have generated much discussion.
On the district’s website, parents and members of the community can watch the Woodland Park School District Superintendent Steve Woolf address the public on a short video series called “Woolf Weekly.” “The thing about our school district is that we are making some changes and I know change is tough,” Woolf said during last week’s episode of the online video series. “But I can pretty much promise that our kids work harder here and learn more here than they will anywhere else.”
During this semester, the school district has launched some new programs to further help their students as well as offer aid and outreach programs to the parents of the community. The spring semester schedule has brought a motivational speaker to the schools, and the district has announced two helpful programs for the parents.
Last week, the Woodland Park High School and Middle School welcomed a special guest speaker Mike Smith to help motivate the students. Smith is a speaker, consultant, and ambassador from a small town in Nebraska that has helped launched multiple nonprofit organizations.
Smith is co-founder of Rabbie Mill which helps empower children by helping them find their passion and build life and professional skills through activities like skateboarding, art and music. Smith was also a founder of The Bay, which is a 30,000 square foot nonprofit skate park and youth outreach center located in Lincoln, Nebraska that focuses on skating, art, music, coffee, and community.
During his speeches, Smith works towards encouraging youth to make a difference by challenging them to get ready for what their generation will bring to the table. “I have stood in front of tens of thousands of young people, and I’ve asked them a question. One simple question,” Smith said during one of his motivational speeches. “That question is: What do you want to be remembered for? What do you want your legacy to be?”
Along with adding a motivational speaker to the spring semester lineup of activities, the school district is offering new programs for adults within the community. Starting this week, an education and discussion series called “Raising Gen Z” will be offered once a month for the next four months at both the high school and middle school.
The series will be focused on how to bridge generational gaps and educate parents on how to better raise their Generation Z children. The meetings will offer education and helpful resources as well as discussion about raising kids in this new generation. For more information on attending these sessions, visit the school district’s website at wpsdk12.org.
Next week, the local schools celebrate National School Choice Week district-wide. The nationwide school choice celebration starts on Jan. 26 and was launched in 2011.
The purpose of the week is to promote all of the types of different schools that are available for students. During the week all kinds of schools open their doors to parents so that they can explore their options and find the right fit for their individual children.
Locally, the school district celebrates the school choice week by offering parents and prospective parents to come into each school to check out the facilities. The school district’s goal is to both retain students within the district and to introduce the schools to new families. Parents of those that are transitioning from elementary to middle school or middle school to high school can get a chance to explore the new schools their kids will be attending the following school year during two open house sessions.
Those wishing to visit the high school can do so on Jan. 27 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Families that have the desire to explore the middle school can attend their open house on Jan. 30 from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Parents that want to check out any of the three elementary schools within the district can receive a tour any time during regular school hours next week.
For more information on what is happening within the Woodland Park School District, family members can watch the superintendent address the community on his “Woolf Weekly” online video series that is produced on a regular basis by clicking on the link offered on the district website’s home page.