H.G. Olsen Elementary is proud to welcome 65 new students to the 2007-2008 school year. The new students who have arrived are joining pre-kindergarten through fifth grades, and have found Olsen Elementary to be a very warm, welcoming school.
The elementary enrollment at the end of school last year was 227 students, and even with 65 new students, our enrollment is holding at 241 students. Why? We sent a large fifth grade class up to Brundrett Middle School last year, and the pre-kindergarten classes coming in this year only total 28 for both morning and afternoon sessions. The pre-kindergarten classes from last year were very small, so this year's kindergarten classes also are small. We are lucky that all the puzzle pieces fit nicely and class numbers are balancing well. This year we have three large grade-levels: first, second and fifth grade each having 40 students at this time. Whew!
By now you have met the new faces at Olsen Elementary: Devan Rasnick, our new first grade teacher, and Cindy Drake, who is a certified teacher working with first and fifth grades. Welcome, ladies!
Something else new at Olsen Elementary is co-teaching in our fifth grade classes. Both classes are fortunate to have the regular classroom teachers and the resource teachers in the classrooms together for all content areas. With just one week behind us, the teachers are very excited to be co-teaching. This is another effort to bring all students up to grade level. The students are responding positively and working cooperatively to master the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills. Cooperative groups build strong relationships and increase higher-level thinking for all students.
Employment requires people who can work together, share ideas, and compromise to achieve a common goal. Olsen Elementary is answering this call as Brundrett Middle School did last year. Our thanks to the BMS teachers for showing us the way! Thanks also to Gayla Wiggins, our special programs and curriculum director for her innovative teaching ideas and to our school board and superintendent who support us in doing what is right for kids! Together we are going to make it a great year.
Sylvia Buttler is principal at H.G. Olsen Elementary School.