Welcome Eastern students, families, and community!
I am very excited for another wonderful year at Eastern Middle/High School! I want to thank our students, parents, and staff for all of your hard work and patience as we navigated the many difficulties of being in school during a global pandemic last year. The outpouring of support, cooperation, and patience during such a difficult year was beyond amazing and helped make our year a great success despite the many challenges we faced as a district and community.
As we returned to school last year, our primary focus was to meet the needs of our students after being out of school the previous spring by meeting students where they were academically, socially, and emotionally. Our goals were to ensure student safety, assess current levels of student achievement, close gaps that were created by the school closure in the spring of 2020, and provide necessary social and emotional supports throughout the year. As a result, our district and building remained in session the entire year and performed very well on state assessments last spring. Of the 13 tested areas in the middle and high school, 9 ranked first in the county and the remaining 4 areas were second in the county! Additionally, 7 of the 13 test areas were at or above the state average and 4 more were within five percent of the state average. There was much concern regarding state testing due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, but our students, staff, and parents worked very hard and our efforts yielded extremely positive and encouraging results. Additionally, I want to thank and recognize our students and staff who participated in our summer extended learning program this year. 56 middle and high school students completed the extended learning program. In the program, our middle school students received remediation in each of the four core content areas while high school students worked on recovering required course credits. Our 31 high school students were able to complete and recover credits in over 80 different courses, averaging just over 2.5 recovered credits per student! Thank you to our students and summer staff for their hard work and effort to close learning gaps and recover graduation credits!
As we return to school this year, the district and building has placed renewed focus on providing highly effective instructional strategies to ensure learning and growth of all students. Our staff participated in a series of training events on high-yield, data-informed instructional strategies last spring and will be working to implement those strategies this fall. As a district, we have also improved our utilization of technology for gathering data to inform and implement individualized instruction using a multitude of media and assessment platforms. Another key focus in our building this year will be working to return to as much normalcy as possible. There are still many health and safety measures being implemented to ensure the safety of our students (click HERE to view the district’s most current health and safety guidelines), but our goal is to safely return to normal operations as much as possible.
With that in mind, there are several exciting changes taking place in our building this year. In the middle school, the staff and schedule have been realigned to create a three-teacher team at each grade level (grades 6-8) in which teachers have common planning at each grade level and students have more time with each of their teachers. Additionally, we will be implementing a reading recovery program in which struggling readers will receive intensive, individualized and small group instruction each week to help them develop stronger reading skills and move toward reading on or above grade level. In the high school, we will continue to expand our curriculum offerings for students by offering new online credit recovery opportunities and by offering a new Conservation Science course through a partnership with ODNR.
A few things to keep in mind as the school year begins:
Please take time to carefully read and review the Eastern Middle/High School Student Handbook with your child; specifically, the student code of conduct and the attendance policy, which is available at http://www.ep.k12.oh.us/FormsLinks.aspx
Middle/High School student drop-off and pick-up will continue to take place in the visitor parking lot. Students will enter/exit the front of the building using door 6. For safety, please do not drop off or pick up students in the upper parking lot which is designated for student drivers.
Student drivers and drop-offs will not be permitted to enter the building prior to 7:50 a.m.
Thank you for entrusting the Eastern Local School District with the safety and education of your child. I’m looking forward to a wonderful year and please know that my door is always open and I look forward to meeting and hearing from you soon.
Eastern Middle/High School Principal