Every three years KPBSD schools get to make a
presentation to the School Board. Last week Mountain View
Elementary made our presentation to the board.
We focused on the School Board adding “social and
emotional well-being” to its school culture goal this year. This
addition recognizes the fact that even with physically and
emotionally safe buildings, we still need to help students acquire
the social and emotional capacities to function at their peak and
take full advantage of the exceptional personalized learning
opportunities our teachers make available to them.
We feel the Board adding this goal validates our long-term
work in this important area. In fact, it is the purpose behind one of
our School Development Plan Goals this year. Our Personalized
Learning goal for this year encompasses student reflection and
ownership. We realize that successful, high-level student
reflection and ownership can only be achieved when a student
has the social and emotional skills to do so.
Our presentation highlighted two of our schools successful
ongoing positive school climate programs: kindness counts, and
positive responses to conflict, and then went on to describe Mind
Up, the new to the district, social emotional learning curriculum
we are implementing.
Students played a key role in our presentation. They
described in depth the components of our Positive Responses to
Conflict Program and drove home our Kindness Counts culture
with an amazing dance routine to the music of Kindness is a
Muscle choreographed by kindergarten teacher Cindy Thomas.
The video of our presentation to the School Board can be
found on the Mountain View Elementary Facebook Page.
Throughout late Fall, local news sources have confirmed that we are
experiencing brown bear sightings later than usual. Bears have been
observed near the buses, on the playground, and even in the classrooms!
Players from Kenai’s very own Brown Bear hockey team are actively
volunteering in a variety of settings throughout Mountain View.
As an active part of our community, the Bears have a specific focus on
advancing learning and building connections with our students. They are
working diligently with our teachers and administrators to ensure that they are
supporting instruction where they can. The players are engaged with our
students on the playground in a “controlled fun atmosphere.” The most
popular activities include running around the playground, four square,
basketball, and hanging on the bars together. They are also seen during
lunch, in multiple classrooms teaching reading groups, working on persuasive
writing pieces, helping students sharpen their math skills, painting with Pre-K,
and learning about the brain with 3rd and 4th graders! Who knew that a four
square game at recess would involve conversations about geography and
how amazing our brain is? Notable quotes from students have included,
“Don’t let your amygdala take control! Your prefrontal cortex is in charge!” and
“If you’re from Canada, isn’t that the same as California?”
We would like to thank the Kenai River Brown Bears for spending time
within our school community. Go Bears! Aside from working in our building,
there are opportunities to see them out on the ice for the next several weeks:
Youth Night/Fill the Net-Everyone 12 and under get in free,
Adults get a $5 ticket with food shelf donation
Student ID Night- Get in free with your Student ID
Elementary Night- Elementary Students get in for free!
$1.00 ticket night!
Mountain View Teachers strive to meet the diverse
learning needs of our students. Students do not all learn at the
same pace for each new skill taught and our teachers work hard
to help each student maintain pace with the grade level
curriculum. Some students may need additional teaching while
others may move forward quickly. This varies from student to
student on each concept taught. Our teachers do an amazing job
juggling all these variables.
When students who were absent because they were sick
return to school, teachers have to adjust their day to help that
student catch up. That is part of the job and teachers accept
that as reality. However, when the number of absences are too
great the system breaks down and the learning for all students is
Anything you can do to improve your student’s attendance
would be greatly appreciated and benefit not just your child but
his or her class as well. Obviously, you should keep your child
home when they are sick. However, maybe those three-day
weekends or trips to Anchorage could wait until there are
vacation days. Maybe those family vacations could be planned
around the school calendar. Missed the bus or car didn’t start,
bring your student to school as soon as possible, better late than
not at all. Schedule those student appointments on non-school
days or after school. If you must schedule appointments on
schooldays, send your child to school for whatever part of the
day that you can.
The list of how you can help improve attendance is long
and I know that sometimes you “gotta do what you gotta do” but
any help you give us to increase overall attendance would be a
big help to teachers and increase learning for all students.
You may have seen the above logo on banners, buttons, stickers and posters
throughout our school this month. The message is clear as to the behavioral
interactions we place a priority on here at our school. While respect is often
the “go to” theme for school-wide expectations, our staff feels that kindness is
indeed a step up in this area as it reaches a deeper emotional level.
We specifically teach and recognize kindness whenever we can. Kindness
lessons can be found specifically in teacher’s lesson plans at the beginning of
each semester. Having all students, staff and families utilize positive responses
to respectfully resolve conflict has long been a staple our schools Strategic
Plan. Kindness is promoted in all interactions.
Multiple researchers have shown that students who learn kindness and
empathy are more likely to acquire the fundamental skills to build the strong
relationships that are one of the most vital and durable sources of well-being.
When these relationships are built between teacher and student the perfect
environment blooms for teaching and learning.
Next week we will be having our second safety closure drill for the school year. The district requires that schools conduct a safety closure drill each semester. Please click on the link above for more details.
The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District has contracted for the last two years with Hanover Research to do a Student Climate and Mindset Survey of all 3rd through 12th grade students. In basic terms, the survey seeks to find out students attitudes about their community, their school and themselves. Students are given a series of statements and the choice to agree to them very much, a little bit, or not at all.
Highlights from the Survey
The following percentages are the total of 3rd -5th grade students who agreed a little bit or very much to these statements:
I care about my community…99%
I think it is important to participate in community service…97%
At this school, students are encouraged to do their very best…99%
The school is a welcoming place for students and families like mine…97%
Adults at my school treat students with respect… 97%
I have the ability to respect others opinions even if they are different than mine…97%
I have the ability to get along with students who are different then me…93%
I can learn how to solve tough problems…96%
I can do well on tests even if they are tough… 96%
When students see another student being picked on they try to stop it…90% ***
***While this percentage is statistically sound, this is an area where we will work to improve
We are empowered to see that the Hanover Survey results shows that our open enrollment, Neighborhood School Philosophy has created a climate where a diverse group of students feel positive about their community, their school, and their abilities.
As Kenai’s Neighborhood School, Mountain View Elementary is proud to be Kenai’s only, open enrollment, public elementary school. As such, we have approximately 500 hundred diverse students come through our doors each day. Did you ever wonder just how many staff members it takes to meet the safety (emotional and physical) and academic needs of those children?
Our general education class size, determined by KPBSD pupil-teacher ratio policy, average about 23 students each. It takes 20 teachers to staff those classrooms. However, that is just the tip of the iceberg; the total number of teaching and support staff at Mountain View is 64. Where do all those other staff fit in the puzzle?
Adding to the number of certified teachers in the school is a music teacher, PE teacher and librarian. To help non-special education students who are struggling we also have certified teachers in positions as an interventionist and a reading teacher. Also contributing to the certified staff is a principal and vice principal. A portion of our staff is dedicated to meeting the needs of our special education students. We have 3 “structured” special education classrooms where high-needs students spend the majority of their day. In addition, we have 4 special education classrooms that support special education students who spend the majority of their day in general education classrooms, including our gifted and talented program. We also provide speech and occupational therapy for those special education students who require it. Total special education staffing is 7.5 certified teachers, 17 aides, 1 psychologist and 1 occupational therapist.
Of course, students need to eat so there is a kitchen staff of three, and to keep our school looking as awesome as it does takes a custodial staff of 3. With 500 kids there are bound to be quite a few “owies”, sicknesses and health issues so a nurse is a necessity. As you can imagine there is a ton of paperwork and records so we have a secretary for that. And, since somebody has to run the whole show we have a head secretary.
In addition we have 5 student support personnel from the Kenaitze Youth Services and a certified tutor from the Kenaitze Yaghanen Youth Program. We are fortunate to have the staffing to be a full service, inclusive school. We are also fortunate to have students and families that contribute to making Mountain View a place where kindness counts and all students feel welcome and can achieve success
Hello Staff and Parents,
There will be a district site council meeting on October 30th, 2018 at the Kenai Central High School in the Library. It will start at 6PM. This will be a budget meeting, so lets try to have a strong showing in support of our schools
Mountain View Elementary has gradually adopted the motto of KINDNESS COUNTS as we sought to identify the unifying influence for the actions of our students and staff. I found out this summer that kindness also pays.
In late June, I received a call from a Carrs/Safeway representative asking me if I could participate in the grand reopening of the Kenai Carrs/Safeway and accept a monetary grant they wanted to award Mountain View Elementary. Our school had not applied for a grant, no amount was mentioned during the call and I agreed to go to the ribbon cutting ceremony and presentation a couple days later.
To make a long story short, when I went up for the presentation Mountain View was recognized specifically for its community service efforts, its work with its students on positively responding to conflict, and its kindness initiatives throughout the school. I was then presented with a check for Mountain View Elementary in the amount of ten thousand dollars!!!
What an honor it was to be the face of Mountain View and represent all of our staff and students for the positive culture they have created at our school. We are working with our Site Council and staff on how to best utilize this money in ways that build strong, positive and kind relationships amongst everyone who spends time in our school and to provide opportunities for our students to go out into the community and do the same.
Hello parents, we’re getting ready for the new year here at Mountain View.
Some important dates coming up.
Monday August 13th – Registration for new kids
Tuesday August 14th – Registration for new kids
Friday August 17th – Class lists posted on the front doors at 4PM
Monday August 20th – Meet the teacher night from 5-6PM
Tuesday August 21st – First Day of School!
Monday September 3rd – Labor day, NO SCHOOL