In the Know: A community dream has become a reality
The start of the 2014/2015 school year is right around the corner and with this fresh beginning there are many new and exciting changes happening in our school district.
As you are aware, a community dream has become a reality with the opening of our new, state-of-the-art high school. A new era will begin with the opening of Alexandria Area High School on Tuesday, September 2. Alexandria Area High School will be home to approximately 1,200 students in grades nine through 12. The facility boasts natural lighting, flexible learning spaces, a technology-rich environment and a 1,000 seat performing arts center that is one of a kind in outstate Minnesota.
In addition, the athletic complex and training facility will rank at or near the top for high school complexes in the Upper Midwest. This facility is truly a point of pride for our school district and the entire Alexandria community.
Beginning this school year, each student in grades nine through 12 will be given a laptop learning device that will truly transform the way teachers deliver instruction and students learn. The goals of the one to one initiative at AAHS are to improve student engagement, personalize student learning and provide equitable technology access for students. The initiative aligns with the district’s strategic plan and comprehensive technology plan.
A change in grade level configuration will greet students at Discovery Middle School this year as ninth grade students shift to the high school and sixth grade students move to the middle school. A middle school designed around a sixth through eighth grade configuration is supported by research and widely accepted as the gold standard for delivering developmentally appropriate middle level education. As a result of this change, sixth grade students will now be exposed to a much broader scope of academic and extra-curricular opportunities than ever before.
Initiatives for students in pre-K through five will include a continued focus on creating personalized learning environments that tailor learning for each individual student as well as a strong focus on skill development in the areas of reading, writing and mathematics. New and upgraded technology will also be available for students in each elementary school throughout the district.
In closing, I would like to thank all community residents for supporting our schools and young people. It is through your support that we have created a school district that is truly extraordinary.
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“In the Know” is a rotating column written by community leaders from the Douglas County area.