Hello Harmony Families and Community Members,
Here's to another outstanding start to our 2019-2020 school year! As we prepare Harmony Students for the future, Hemet Unified School District Administrators and all schools in our district are in vertical alignment by holding the same three goals to graduating all students; college and career ready; 1) Teaching and Learning, 2) Systems of Support, and 3) Culture and Climate. A College & Career Ready student will demonstrate critical thinking skills, read and write at grade-level and have a strong foundation of number sense and conceptual math. Through our laser vision focus on these three goals, we are in an excellent position to provide opportunities that can influence and change lives because every child matters!
The Harmony Elementary Team of dedicated teachers and support staff are very enthusiastic for this new school year. We are pleased to announce that this year we are implementing Extended Day for our Kindergarten classes. Our school hours will remain the same, however our Extended Day Kindergarten Students will be released 55 minutes earlier each day, Monday through Friday at 2:19 p.m., and on Wednesdays for Kindergarten at 12:18 p.m. and for Grades 1-5 at 1:03 p.m.
Early release Wednesday will continue this school year. Research shows that professional teacher collaboration time leads to increased student achievement. We are dedicating our early release Wednesdays toward professional collaboration and staff development for teachers, administrators, and service providers to create new and innovative ways of supporting students throughout the school year.
We are proud, excited, and prepared to implement a few new programs and effective student organizational strategies this year! First, we are in our second year of the English Language Arts curriculum, Benchmark Advanced. Next, we will be continuing our second successful year teaching students Kindergarten through fifth grade, effective and successful organizational learning strategies through AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination. AVID's mission is to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college and career readiness and success by teaching students organizational skills as well as effective learning strategies. Last, we are looking forward to continuing the implementation of the integration of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math through our STEAM Program. STEAM is an educational approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics as access points for guiding student inquiry, dialogue, and critical thinking. The end results are students who take thoughtful risks, engage in experiential learning, persist in problem solving, embrace collaboration, and work through creative process. These are the innovators, educators, leaders, and learners of the 21st century!
This year we are continuing our implementation of “Perks with Principals”. Monthly meetings have been scheduled for parents to meet with myself and our assistant principal to enjoy a cup of coffee and to discuss the current school activities and to provide an opportunity for parents to learn and have a voice in their child’s schooling experience. We will be offering several family training involvement nights where you can interact with our teachers and your child.
Positive school culture and climate are imperative for an atmosphere conducive for high student achievement. We will be continuing “Pizza with the Principals” this year. Each month, teachers will select two students to eat a pizza lunch with the principals and be rewarded for social and/or academic behavior. Further, a postcard will be sent home to parents to notify and to celebrate the child’s success!
I am truly honored to be the Principal of Harmony Elementary School. I look forward to working with you and your child as we continue on Harmony’s historical path of success in a happy culture, positive and safe learning environment. Please feel welcome to become involved in our school through our many parent involvement opportunities. I enthusiastically welcome your personal visits to school, telephone calls, or emails to discuss any ideas or concerns you may have in support of your child and to promote the ongoing effectiveness of our outstanding school.
Teresa McFarland, Principal