Message from the Superintendent
May-June 2016

Wow…what a year it has been!

We have gone Full STEAM+ ahead! We are on a journey from now to “WOW”!
The 2015-2016 school year marked the kick-off for the official transformation to STEAM+ for our children, and each day throughout the year our students have experienced meaningful learning firsthand! The STEAM+ approach has allowed students opportunities to apply the skills and knowledge they have learned to real-world, relevant applications and has taught our children how to think, question, discover, and learn.

Thank you for your personal contributions to our Del Mar Schools Education Foundation made by DMUSD parents and members of our community. Every school in the Del Mar Union School District will again be able to provide a high-quality, vibrant STEAM+ educational experience in the 2016-2017 school year as a result of community support and district commitment.

A Peek Into Our Classrooms
Throughout the year, I have had the good fortune of visiting classrooms on an almost daily basis. It is with excitement that I share with you a quick peek into the outstanding teaching and learning occurring in our schools…

Language Arts
Our students continue to grow in their ability to skillfully communicate in all three genres of writing throughout the school year. The use of technology as an effective tool has facilitated greater depth and student-to-student and teacher-to-teacher collaboration among classrooms.

Our teachers dove deep into the new reading standards this year and in August they will begin piloting new English language arts materials. Our teachers’ skill and knowledge in the new standards has provided a solid foundation for a rich, rigorous instructional program in language arts.

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Mathematics
Del Mar’s work in mathematics is second to none and our students are competent, confident mathematicians as a result! A walk through one of our classrooms during mathematics instruction provides visitors with a snapshot into the daily mathematics instructional program. Our students are fearless mathematicians and our teachers continue to flourish in their ability to provide a world-class mathematics program. As we move into next year, our teachers will have the opportunity to continue refining their practice in implementing mathematics through a sound instructional program, meeting the needs of every child.
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STATE TESTING
DMUSD students recently participated in the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP). These statewide tests for students in grades 3 – 8 and grade 11 are intended as an academic check-up in English language arts/literacy and mathematics. These tests were quite different from past STAR testing in many ways, specifically, they were computer based, computer adaptive, and presented realistic context for tasks.

Our district’s sustained laser focus on conceptually-based mathematics and reading/writing in all genres across the curriculum is preparing our students with the skills they need to be successful in subsequent years. When assessments measure what they are intended to measure, we anticipate seeing a connection between those important math and reading/writing skills our children are learning and their performance on district and statewide assessments. The work students are doing now is preparing them to be successful in future years when they experience the SAT and ACT exams in preparation for college and careers.

Summertime Fun!
We hope you enjoy a fun summer with your families! We will be eager to see all of our children on Monday, August 29th! Should you need to contact the district office for any reason throughout the summer, we are here to support you and your family. District Office hours open to the public are 7:30am – 4:00pm daily (Monday – Friday). We can also be reached at (858) 755-9301.
 
Our teachers, support staff, and leaders have dedicated themselves to making each and every day a “WOW!” day for children. We are excited about the remaining days of the school year and proud of our fantastic students and staff!

Sincerely,
Holly McClurg, Ph.D.
Superintendent

Please follow me on Twitter at  https://twitter.com/DMUSD_Supt.
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