Thursday, March 5, 2009

Ten reasons I would enroll my child at Taylor

Business Week just released their list of the Ten Unhappiest Cities in America. I was surprised to see my old hometown Portland, Oregon ranked #1 as the saddest city in the US. But as I read the summary, I remembered the 222 cloudy days per year, the unending rain, and the high divorce rate and understood. We all love top ten lists so I compiled my list of the Ten Reasons I Would Enroll My Child at Taylor MS. In no particular order, they are:

Reason 1: Small and personal: Compared with our neighboring middle schools west of the river, we have a fraction of the enrollment. With an enrollment of 630 students, we are big enough to offer excellent programs but small enough where I know most of the students by sight.
Reason 2: Positive behavior is supported: The Great Kids recognition is but one example of how we are trying to “catch kids being good”. Our Celebrate Success Committee has been instrumental this year in creating a framework for recognizing student academic success.
Reason 3: Outstanding teachers EA, and support staff: Taylor has great teachers. I have worked in a number of NM schools and we have some of the best teachers in entire state. Our EAs are simply superb!
Reason 4: Strong Parent Teacher and Band Parent Organizations: Our parent organizations are there to serve the school as volunteers whether selling Candy-grams or restocking our uniform pantry. They are selfless in their service of our school.
Reason 5: Small town community feeling: Taylor doesn’t feel like an urban school. To me, it has an almost “Our Town” feeling. I am always refreshed when I drive down Rio Grande and turn toward Taylor.
Reason 6: High academic expectations: Our teachers expect excellence from their students. Toward that end, we are upping our expectations even more next year with the creation of Pre-AP courses.
Reason 7: Strong instructional support: The school leadership team believes our most important task is to support good teaching in every classroom. Our instructional coach, CLC coaches, literacy leaders, instructional council, and grade level teams collaborate weekly to make sure we improve student learning.
Reason 8: Safe well-maintained campus: We aren’t the newest school around but we are one of the best maintained. Our full time campus deputy constantly monitors our campus to ensure safety.
Reason 9: Up-to-date technology: We have invested thousands this year in computers, Elmos, and clickers this year to make sure our teachers have the tools they need to teach effectively.
Reason 10: We are a school on the rise: Sure I am biased but I think we have made and are making changes that will lead to improved instruction and student success in the years to come. Watch us SOAR!

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