Welcome to Webster Hill
A Note From Mr. Wallowitz:
We are beginning the process of creating student placements for the 2016-2017 school year. Webster Hill uses a collaborative approach to making the best possible decisions regarding all children. As classes are organized, the classroom teachers, the special area and pupil service teams, our curriculum specialist, and I are a part of the process and offer valuable contributions. Our priority is setting up all children for success. We value your input and offer you an opportunity to share information you feel we should know about your child and the kind of learning environment in which he or she works best. If you choose to write a letter, it must be completed and returned to me by April 29 (hard copy or email). We consider parent input to be a very important factor; however it is not necessary for all families to write a letter. I must insist that no parent may request a specific teacher. Communication shared after classes have been formed will not be considered. Changes impede our ability to achieve the necessary balance across each grade. Please respect the decisions and insights of the skilled staff in making the best educationally sound placement for your child and for all children.
If you are not already a follower, consider following me on Twitter! @jeffwallowitz. If you are not a “tweeter”, all my tweets appear daily on the front page our school website.
Question of the Month: What does the school do to address bullying?
- 1. Each year, we survey students and get their input on how we can be “bully free”. Students have a different perspective than adults on what a bully is so we use their information to support students and problem solve.
- 2. We have an active and impressive in-house mentoring program to build relationships with potential bullies and potential victims. We don’t wait for problems to arise and then react. We aim to stop problems before they materialize.
- 3. One aspect of being bully free is ensuring that students have a “trusted adult” they feel they can turn to at school.
-99% of students surveyed last year said they had at least one trusted adult they could go to if they ever felt “uncomfortable or unsafe at school”. Well over 90% of students could list at least 3 trusted adults!
-62 different adults were named as a Webster Hill “trusted adult”. Along with the names you might expect (classroom teachers, principal, curriculum specialist, specials teachers, social worker, school psychologist), many names appeared that confirmed my belief that we are a school community that cares and builds relationships with children. Here are some other adults named as trusted adults: the office ladies, our head custodian, SRBI tutors, the nurse, the QuEST teacher, PTO presidents, the building teaching assistants, ESOL team, special ed team, reading team, Mr. Downey (volunteer), para-professionals, and Kidslink staff. It’s obvious that children feel that they have many places to turn to if they feel they need an adult.
4. Bullying is a serious issue with long lasting ramifications. Even one bullied student is too many. We continue to use our district curriculum of Second Step along with Responsive Classroom techniques, PBIS, and our mentoring program to be sensitive to the needs of our students. Our goal every day is to be 100% bully free!
Sabrina Zaffina-Curriculum Specialist
125 Webster Hill Boulevard
West Hartford, CT 06107