Superintendent Updates
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September 11, 2015

Update to Staff

Greetings Andover Staff, 

Hope you had a nice Labor Day weekend and are settling into the school year. 
Tonight is the big AHS vs ACHS football game, 7:00 at the District Stadium. Whether you are a Trojan or a Jaguar, it is a special evening for the district and the Andover community. Tonight's game will be broadcast on cable channel 22 for the entire area so it will be a great way to display all of our talented students! The Andover Chamber of Commerce will also be honoring a Hometown Hero at halftime of the game.

Speaking of talented students, congrats to Hanna Watson of AHS and Grant Karber and Renton Williams of ACHS for being named National Merit Semifinalists. Only 16,000 students nationwide receive this honor and to have three in our district is outstanding! Thanks to all teachers and staff who help prepare our students for success! -- This is just another example of Andover Excellence!! 

The committee that works on our health insurance package met this week and it appears we will see a substantial DECREASE in our premium beginning on Dec. 1. The claims for our group have been low for the last two years and us being "healthier" is paying off with a reduction in premiums! More specific information will be coming out shortly.

Part of the way you can help the health plan is to prevent problems before they arise. Take care of yourself by participating in the Biometric Screenings which start next week. Our participation is at an all time high but there are still slots available! If you haven't already done so, I encourage you to sign up! 

The Board of Education meets on Monday night. As always, you can see the details on BoardDocs beginning Sunday night. Just a few items of interest:

  • Brett White will provide a district enrollment and staffing update.
  • Jill Lachenmayr will review our ACT and Advanced Placement data from last year. As I mentioned two weeks ago, we have much to celebrate in this area. Our ACT scores are up significantly, continue to be the highest of any area public school and our average ACT reading score is the highest in district history. ACT isn't the only area where we are seeing gains as more of our students are talking Advanced Placement classes and scoring well on the assessment. Much more detail is available on BoardDocs.
  • The Board will recognize Susan Mueller, Wheatland and Amber Fetters, AMS as the district's Teacher of the Year nominees! Congrats ladies!

As you know, our bus drivers play a critical role in the safety of our students. It is a tough, but rewarding job. We are currently experiencing a driver shortage so if you know of anyone who would like a part time job, please have them contact our Transportation Department or apply online

Thanks for all you have done to get the year off to such a great start! I've seen so many examples of staff giving that Extra Degree I mentioned at the Opening Assembly. We are fortunate to work in one of the best school districts in Kansas and we are excellent because of the people who work here! We Are Andover!! 
Have a nice weekend. Greg

September 2, 2015

Back to School Update

Greetings All,

It is hard to believe we are finishing our second full week of school. Thanks to all of you for the awesome start! Anytime you invite over 5000 students back to school, with their families, you will have some logistical challenges but all in all, it has been one of the smoothest starts that I can remember.

Earlier this week we received news that our district ACT scores were up significantly last year! As a matter of fact, last year's graduating class had our 2nd highest composite score (23.7) since we started keeping track and the average ACT reading score (24.1) was the highest ever!! Our students continue to perform better than any other public school in the area and are getting close to matching some similar districts in the Kansas City area. Congrats to ALL of you for the work you are doing with our students. How our graduating seniors do on the ACT is one of the many things we have to be proud of in Andover. Jill Lachenmayr and our high school administration will provide the BOE with an ACT summary at the September 14 meeting so you will see more details at that time.

Congratulations to the Trojan Children's Choir, which is a select group made up of elementary students from Cottonwood, Martin and Wheatland, for being selected to perform at the state KMEA convention in February. That is quite an honor and a real credit to the hard work of our teachers and students. A special thank you to Maureen Berry and Julie Linville for your leadership. 
The regional State Teacher of the Year banquet is being held on Saturday, September 12 in Wichita. Congrats to Susan Mueller, Wheatland and Amber Fetters, AMS for being selected!  You will represent us well!

The excitement is beginning to build for the annual AHS vs ACHS football game on September 11. This year the game will be broadcast live on Cox Channel 22. Whether you are a Jaguar or a Trojan, this will be a big night for the school district and the community of Andover.

I've had the opportunity to visit most of the schools at least twice this year and I've got to tell you, the grounds look great, the schools are shining, procedures and routines are established and the classrooms have been busy. Thanks for taking the beginning of school so seriously. You have set the tone for a successful year! Appreciate it!

As always, please don't hesitate to let me know if you have questions or comments. We are truly getting better each day.

Regards, Greg

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