With a new superintendent, a new team of administrators and a new set of expectations there's a lot going on in the Ware Public Schools these days!
It all starts with the Ware Way, or our core values and beliefs which are the Six Pillars of Character. The cornerstone of the Ware Way is built upon responsibility, respect, caring, fairness, trustworthiness, and citizenship.
With the Ware Way as our foundation, we're on a mission to build on our strengths to create a continuously improving professional learning community that inspires and prepares our students to become responsible, caring and successful adults.
As we move forward we will preserve what is already special about our schools... Our personal and caring nature that builds important connections and bonds between students and faculty... The energy and drive of our students, faculty and staff for curiosity, learning and teaching ... We have a wonderful foundation to which we will add a more scientific approach of utilizing best education practices and research and data in decision making that will lead to the best possible results and outcomes.
Our mantra is 1) Teaching & Learning, 2) Results Oriented, 3) Claims - Evidence – Impact and 4) High Expectations!
The District Improvement Plan that is in the works and that will be completed this fall will encompass and align each of the school improvement plans and will chart a course for higher expectations and better results in the areas identified for improvement.
Great things are happening and we hope that people will visit www.wareps.org to learn about them, including our Teacher Features, "WARE Are They Now" alumni profiles, and news items like the "Adopt an Instrument" program which has raised nearly $4,000 and secured the pledge of a community member to match these funds to purchase new instruments for our music and band program.
Yes, we have our challenges, and one of the most important challenges is to strengthen our partnership with the greater Ware community and advocate for a "needs-based" budget. The Town of Ware has historically funded the education account below the minimum spending level required by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. These years of underfunding led to cutting course offerings which in turn led to families sending their children to other districts under the Massachusetts School Choice law. According to this law, when children who reside in Ware go to schools in other districts, the Town of Ware loses state aid revenue. Over the past five years, the amount of revenue lost has totaled $4.3 million. This year, the Board of Selectmen, asked me as Superintendent to submit a "needs-based budget" in order to begin to reverse this trend.
A strong school system is good for our children and for our town. Strong schools provide the foundation that our children need to become responsible, caring and successful adults. A strong school system is also an important asset sought by people and businesses considering Ware to live and work. Therefore strong schools are also important for economic development and preserving/enhancing property values. The Ware Public Schools, fueled by the Ware Way, is on the move. We have our challenges but every challenge is an opportunity! Please support the needs-based budget... for our kids and for our community.
Dr. Marlene A. DiLeo in collaboration with Janet Warren
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