Black Lives Matter At School Week of Action

Leading off Black History Month, MMSD teachers, district support staff and Madison Teachers, Inc. are mobilizing for racial justice in schools by actively participating in the Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action, Feb 3 - 7. The national Week of Action is a collective effort to purposefully teach lessons and spark classroom conversations centered around racial justice and ethnic studies.

This is the second year MMSD has participated in the Week of Action which aligns with the district's commitment to Black Excellence, aiming to improve the academic, social and cultural experience of Black students.

Leading up to the Week of Action, Jennifer Greenwald, a third grade teacher at John Muir (pictured above/left) and Kerry Motoviloff of Madison Teachers, Inc. were interviewed on the district's Voices of MMSD Podcast series. Listen in and learn what students, teachers and families can expect during this focused week of inspiration and student empowerment on the Voices of MMSD Podcast.

TuneIn: http://bit.ly/2wvf6UK
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2HLwhYG
Stitcher: http://bit.ly/30XN0Qk
iTunes: https://apple.co/2GAUXlr

Order Your Black Excellence Merch

In 2019, the district put out a call for student designs representing Black Excellence. We took the vibrant and unique student artwork that was submitted to display on t-shirts, a water bottle and a tote bag for MMSD families to purchase and wear proudly! Use our online eStore today to get your Black Excellence merchandise and support our schools and communities of color.

Thank You, Counselors!

National School Counseling Week is happening February 3 - 7 with a focus on the tremendous impact school counselors have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career. This month, one of the district's own Capital High School counselor, Marianne Matt, was honored with the Program of Promise Award by the Wisconsin School Counselor Association. This award was only given to seven schools in the state. Marianne is the only school counselor at Capital, and was chosen to receive the award because of her commitment to the academic, social/emotional and career development needs of Capital High students. Congratulations to Marianne, and a BIG thank you to all of the MMSD school counselors. Our counselors play an integral role in student success. To send your child's school counselor a note of appreciation, submit a shout out here.

Bringing Diversity to the Forefront

Check out this video to see how MMSD teacher, Kayte Cunningham, discusses diversity in her classroom in a way that is warm, meaningful and impactful to her students.

Kayte's third-grade classroom at Huegel Elementary is designed to encourage cultural awareness and community among her students. From color posters on the wall of prominent African American artists, activists and accomplished leaders to a classroom library filled with stories and picture books featuring Black and Latino children, families and experiences; Kayte believes it is a teacher's duty to ensure their students see positive images of people who look like them in their learning environment.

Madison Public Libraries hosts local "I Am Jazz" readings

Community organizations including GSAFE, A Room of One's Own and Welcoming Schools are partnering with MMSD and Madison Public Library Thursday, February 27 from 6 - 7 pm for a community reading of I Am Jazz, a book co-written by transgender trailblazer Jazz Jennings about her experience as a transgender girl. The national I Am Jazz school and community readings are an annual event hosted by the Human Rights Commission's Welcoming Schools in recognition of the first I Am Jazz reading in Mount Horeb.

Readings will take place at three library branches in Madison including Alicia Ashman Library, Sequoya Library and Lakeview Library. There will be two readings, in English and Spanish.

Summer School registration begins March 11

MMSD is gearing up for the 2020 Summer School session!

Our mission is that Summer School is part of a year-long strategy that provides critical additional learning time to support students on their pathway to college, career and community readiness. In support of our mission, we are aligning our programming to focus on high quality instruction that is targeted to accelerate growth in key skills.
Below are details regarding the 2020 Summer program.

  • Student qualification: Previously, recommendation to MMSD Summer School was based on grades OR assessments; a student could qualify based on either criterion. The qualification process has been tightened so that students will now be eligible only if they meet both criteria (and are recommended by their principal).
  • Student enrollment: Enrollment is reserved for students who meet dual criteria and is a first-come-first-served basis. Summer School invitations will begin to be emailed and mailed to families on March 4, 2020. Enrollment opens on March 11 at 9:00 am. Register early!
  • Enrichment programming: In an effort to offer high quality, well-rounded programming to students who meet criteria, there will no longer be "enrichment only" programming for students 4K-7. The siblings of students who qualify (if also approved by their principal), may enroll. These students will take enrichment classes only.

Additional Enrichment Resources:

Elementary and Middle School Schedule

  • June 22 - July 31, 2020 (no summer school July 3)
  • Programming, 8:00 am - 12:15 pm, M-F
  • Breakfast and Lunch served

High School Schedule (includes 8th grade Non-promotion)

  • June 22 - July 30, 2020 (Friday, July 3, no school)
  • Programming, 8:00 am - 12:15 pm, M-Th, with the exception of La Follette which is, 7:30-11:45, due to Madison Metro bus.

For More information:
Summer School Website: https://summer.madison.k12.wi.us
Email: summerschool@madison.k12.wi.us,
Phone: 608-663-1914

4K, 5K Enrollment for 2020-21 begins March 2

Enrollment for four-year-old kindergarten (4K) and five-year-old kindergarten for the 2020-2021 school year will be Monday, March 2 from 2 - 6 pm at all MMSD elementary schools. Online enrollment for 4K and kindergarten programming will open on February 24.Enrollment is for families who have NOT previously attended a 4K or early childhood program through MMSD.

Learn more about 4K at mmsd.org/4k and kindergarten at mmsd.org/kinder.

What is an IEP? How does it work? What should I know about it?

Do you have questions about IEP's?
Join MMSD Student Services on Wednesday, February 12, from 6:00 - 7:30 pm at Meadow ridge Public Library, 5726 Raymond Rd, for details on Individual Education Plans (IEP).In addition to hearing from MMSD leaders and support staff, community members will also share their experiences on how their children have been supported in the district.

Speakers include:

  • Joanne Grassman, MMSD's Asst. Dir. of Student Services for High Schools
  • Brian Holmquist, MMSD's Coordinator of Intensive Supports & Critical Response
  • Summer Hillman, MMSD Parent
  • Janice Chestnut, Sun Prairie School District Parent
  • Shenieca Nunn - Parent Advocate

Food will be provided. To reserve childcare, request transportation and interpretation, please contact Janice Chestnut at 608-663-5977, jchestnut@madison.k12.wi.us

News from the Foundation for Madison's Public Schools:Over $11,000 raised last December to support School Endowment Funds!

The Foundation for Madison's Public Schools serves as the go-to partner for MMSD, helping to raise funds and mobilize resources that ensure every school in our district is a place where every scholar can thrive. Our School Endowment funds are just one of the ways we help this partnership flourish.

A Dedicated Fund for Every Public School
The Foundation maintains endowments for each of Madison's fifty public schools. We are proud to be the first district in the nation to roll out a comprehensive support mechanism like this!

Annual income from school endowments is used to support projects and programs not otherwise funded through the core school budget. Decisions about programs to fund are made at the school level by a committee who understands each school's unique needs. Each fall, every school has the opportunity to use their endowments funds in new ways, providing students and educators with the tools necessary for success. In December 2019, 33 School Endowment funds received dedicated gives, totaling $11,778 for the month.

Endowment Funds at Work
During the 2018-19 school year, East High School used school endowment funds to support a Sisterhood Club that promoted and celebrated African American girls' academic achievement. The club met every Friday during lunch, and focused on team building, social emotional support, racial equity, social justice, academic achievement, identity, and college/career readiness. The Sisterhood Club was successful in centering the voices of African American girls and providing them with tools to grow as leaders.

A Broad Range of Support for Our Public Schools
School endowments are just one type of fund managed by the Foundation for Madison's Public Schools to help support the students, staff, families and buildings in our district. We manage over 120 additional funds dedicated to unique initiatives at public schools, or scholarship support to assist students in their academic and professional pursuits. Learn more about all the ways the Foundation supports our public schools by paying us a visit: SchoolsMakeMadison.org, and consider a gift to your school's endowment today!

What is the Census? How does it work? Why should you care?

The census is important to our community. Funding for services like childcare, education, housing, health care, roads, transit, and more, is distributed using information from the census. Political boundaries at the local, state, and federal levels are all based on the total population count - not the number of voters or citizens. That's why we're helping the City of Madison get the word out to as many families as possible.

Not familiar with what the census is?
It's a count mandated by the U.S. Constitution that takes place every 10 years of ALL people living in the United States regardless of citizenship status. As a reminder, the census does NOT ask questions about citizenship and it is confidential. Federal law prohibits the Census Bureau from sharing personal information with anyone, including other government agencies.

When is the 2020 Census? It's coming in Mid-March!

  • Every household will receive in the mail a request to fill out the census form on-line or by phone.
  • The form is short!
  • It has only 9 questions, to be completed for each person living in the household.
  • The census form is confidential.

Please help spread the word and remember to complete your 2020 Census form before spring break! Your time will bring 10 years of benefits to our community. For more info: www.cityofmadison.com/2020Census

See Aurora: Lights of Wonder in the MMSD Planetarium

The northern lights, aurora borealis, produce some of the most amazing scenes you will ever witness in the sky. Most of the time these fleeting, subtle events are hardly noticeable, and photographers share time-lapse images of beauty almost too faint to see with the unaided eye. But occasionally, the aurora can fill the sky and move dramatically fast. Join us to experience amazing real time recordings of auroral substorms that fill the sky and cover our entire dome! You will also learn what causes this spectacle, see beautiful artwork depicting mythology associated with aurora, and explore the current night sky.

Program dates:

  • Monday, February 17: 6:30-7:30 PM
  • Tuesday, February 18: 6:30-7:30 PM
  • Wednesday, February 19: 6:30-7:30 PM
  • Wednesday, February 19: 7:45-8:45 PM

Tickets are $2.50 and available online here, by mail, or at the door. Buying tickets in advance is recommended. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. We accept walk-ins on stand-by for sold-out shows. Tickets are now on sale for our special Valentine's showsfor adult couples.

Community Events/Activities

The events/activities on the page linked below are from local non-profit groups. All activities are for school-aged children and are not sponsored by the MMSD.

View all opportunities and submit yours at mmsd.org/CommunityEvents

Elementary school community events/activities

Middle school community events/activities
High school community events/activities