Superintendent's Message

 

A Message from the Superintendent

Fall 2018

By Mr. John Zegers

 

Mr. John Zegers     We are approaching an exciting time in the history of the School District of West De Pere. Collectively, our decisions over this next year will shape the school district for twelve to fifteen years as we manage our community growth and enrollment capacities at all of our district schools. As you are well aware of, through countless newsletters articles, school Board meetings, a community survey mailed to every home and community conversations, the Board and the administrative team have decided that a grade configuration change, combined with additional classroom construction at the high school best suits our continually rising student enrollment. The increased growth in the Town of Lawrence, Town of Hobart and the City of De Pere are challenging us to make critical decisions to ensure we maintain quality facilities while protecting our rigorous curriculum standards for all of our students. The School District of West De Pere is thriving as a result of sound financial decisions in the past and present and unmatched community support with an eye on the future. Our school district IS a SCHOOL DISTRICT OF CHOICE because of our rich tradition, sound fiscal management, quality teaching and support staff, and a school Board and community that champions the efforts of our students. 
 
     The administrative team and school Board have been discussing our enrollment growth since 2008 with studies being completed by Applied Population Laboratories, (Madison, Wisconsin) and MDRoffers Consulting, (Madison, Wisconsin). School Perceptions LLC, (Slinger, Wisconsin) completed a summary of survey results which we shared with you in the Winter 2017 Phantastic Newsletter. In addition, district data was presented at two Focus Group sessions to share more information.  Before our grade configuration change was final, four of our administrators completed site visits to eight school districts in Wisconsin that were high performing and have  established K-4, 5-6, 7-8, 9-12 buildings. The Board took action to approve this grade structure at their July 25th meeting. 
 
     The new grade configuration would change Hemlock Creek and Westwood Elementary Schools to K-4 buildings. 4K will continue to be community based at off site partner locations and at Westwood. Our current middle school would serve grades 7-8 and need some minor renovations while a new 5-6 grade building would be built on district owned property adjacent to our current middle school. In addition, renovations/additions would be constructed at our high school and renovations will also take place at Westwood Elementary School.  In order to accomplish this scope of work it will require taxpayer support through a referendum. A referendum schedule is being created now with a referendum date of November 6, 2018. Our community will continue to be informed of the sequence and scope of work at each building by a variety of social media, mailings and open house opportunities on October 17th at the high school and October 25th at the middle school from 6:00 – 7:30pm.  We will be presenting information at school activities, local service clubs, and community events in the near future.  
 
     Please look for our West De Pere referendum logo and read the information we share with you over the next three months. Question #1 on the referendum will be for changes and additions to our grade structure and Question #2 will be for a new multi – purpose facility and outdoor stadium improvements.  
 
     Thank you for your emotional and financial support in the past as we continue to move forward in our quest to provide high quality education to all students in our district. Let’s continue to live our “Vision of Pride and Excellence.” Please vote on Tuesday, November 6, 2018.
 
     If you are interested in learning more about our district referendum or construction plans, please go to our website at www.wdpsd.com. I would welcome your call at 337-1393, email at jzegers@wdpsd.com or stop in and visit our district office at 400 Reid Street. As we move forward together as a SCHOOL DISTRICT OF CHOICE, thank you for your financial support in the past, present and into the future.  As always, let’s continue to live our “Vision of Pride and Excellence.”

The mission of the School District of West De Pere is to create a safe comprehensive educational and social environment for students and staff which will produce life-long learners with the capacity to succeed in the local and global community.