• Paul Morcone

    In my first school year serving as your principal of Mary J. Tanner School (MJT), I have been enjoying getting to know the students, parents, community members, and working with our team of talented faculty and staff.

    There are so many great things at MJT to help our students succeed academically, emotionally, and socially. Our Academic Intervention Services (AIS) have expanded to better assist our faculty and staff in making informed decisions as to the specific services and instruction necessary to help our students who are at risk of not meeting the grade level standards. We have increased the intensity and duration of time students can receive AIS. This is a multi-faceted effort with partnerships, various consultants, and continuous curriculum mapping.

    School attendance is one of the most important factors to ensure academic success, and success later in life. We have implemented an electronic tracking system to help identify and monitor student absence patterns. We are notifying parents and guardians by sending them letters, scheduling meetings, making phone calls, and other interventions. These communications are to keep parents and guardians aware of their child’s attendance record in an effort to improve student attendance.

    One of our many goals is to foster positive behavior in our students. In turn, we like to recognize and reward them. We are accomplishing this through a variety of Positive Behavior Intervention Supports (PBIS) initiatives. Students can earn “Bee Bucks” for being safe, being kind, and being responsible. They can collect and redeem their “Bee Bucks” to treat themselves to items in our PBIS store. Additionally, the names of students who earned “Bee Bucks” are placed in our “Beehive Jar” and one student from each grade level gets to have lunch with me. Other new PBIS initiatives include the “Golden Spatula” award. This recognizes students who demonstrate the expected and appropriate cafeteria behaviors. We are hosting “No Referral Popcorn Parties” for students who are not referred to my office during the month. Our monthly assemblies recognize the student of the month, birthdays, “Beehive” winners, and more. The culmination of these efforts is to instill consistent behaviors to support home and school.

    Keep up with MJT news by following me on Twitter at @MorconeMJT.