September 2017 Monthly Update

It’s been a magnificent start to the new school year. Our Willard students are bounding through the doors in the morning, engaged in exciting learning during the day and looking forward to doing it all over again as they board the buses in the afternoon.

On a personal note, as one of the newest members of staff, I can report that the District, Willard staff, parents and the students, wonderfully supported my acclimation. During the interview process in the spring, I began to appreciate the zeal the staff possesses for teaching, the joy the students embrace in their learning and support the parent community invest in the school. I must tell you that these high expectations of excellence have been surpassed. The school is truly a unique and caring community where students are known, partnerships are cherished and learning thrives. Everyday, as I greet the children, visit classrooms or play with students at recess I’m reminded of what a lucky man I am!

September always quickly flies by. It’s an exhilarating month of reconnecting, learning anew and embracing the excitement, which comes with new classmates, teachers and fresh curriculum. We’ve come together on a number of occasions to great new members of the community and to reinforce existing relationships.  I am particularly grateful to Candace Root, Alex Ruhmann and the rest of the PTG for organizing the popsicle meet and greet before the start of the year, the pizza luncheon for new parents, the all-school ice cream party and the welcome back luncheon for the Willard staff. I very much enjoyed meeting parents at these events as well as on Back to School Nights. I’ve received a lot of positive feedback on the value of having the Special Subject teachers speak. I think it’s very important to understand the importance of their work and its impact on your child’s well-rounded learning experience. Lastly, during September we’ve had one all-school meeting at which cross-grade “buddy classrooms” connected to build community, model leadership and sing a boisterous rendition of “We’re Willard”.

October will be another month packed with great experiences for our students. First and foremost, all students will begin their study of Spanish. Each class will have instruction twice a week with Senora Lees. Be on the lookout for her updates on the curriculum and ways in which the Spanish language can be reinforced at home. Additionally, with the support of the PTG, we will be hosting four visiting authors this month. Having authors the quality of Brian Lies (Grade 1 on October 2), Jacqueline Davies (Grade 3 on October 5), Suzy Kline (Grade 2 on October 26) and Gregory Mone (Grade 4 on October 26) speaks to the shared commitment the Willard community has to providing top quality resources and experiences that benefit kids.

Finally, a few reminders and dates to put on you calendar. Dr. Hunter will be hosting a forum at Willard on October 2 from 6:30 to 9:00 in the evening. All are welcome to attend. Picture Day is October 3rd. I’m grateful for all who have already completed the on-line demographic and health forms. If you have not, please follow this link.  If you have forgotten your Aspen password, it can be reset by emailing:

Again, thank you to all who contribute their time and energies to making Willard a truly amazing place for teaching and learning.

Matthew J Lucey