SCHOOL BEAT Rockford Public Schools Enters its 128th Year by RANDY SELLHORN President, Board of Education Dear families, faculty, staff and friends of the Rockford Public Schools: It’s an exciting time of year as we prepare for another school year! Rockford is entering its 128th year. Can you fathom the commitment it takes to endure for 128 years? Our schools are filled with great people who are eager to press on with the academic opportunities and traditions that have served our students so well. At the same time, with new leadership in some of our buildings, those schools will be the better for changes that have been made in the administration of those schools. In what we have done in the past and in what we will do in the future, your role as our supporters and advocates cannot be underestimated. Rockford Public Schools (RPS) values our community on all levels. We pride ourselves on making available learning opportunities for our children and recognize that education is by no means exclusive to the classroom. Nonetheless, the academic side of our mission is of great importance. We are fortunate that all of our faculty and staff members are committed to each child’s success. Our faculty, support staff and administrators have demonstrated great support for our students and community by agreeing to contract changes that will help us continue to provide nearly the same level of classroom opportunities we had in previous years. The well-documented struggles we have with funding from the state will require some changes, but they have been minimized by the contracts negotiated with our employee unions. RPS is a great value. The administration, faculty and staff, the parents, the Board of Trustees, and our legion of alumni all have a role to play in maintaining this great reputation of excellence. For all of us the lifeblood of our school is our students! The incoming class of 2012 is poised and ready to take their place as the senior students in a motivated student body. We also welcome our kindergarten students, the class of 2024—all of whom are eager to become Rams! It’s going to be a great year, and I look forward to speaking with each of you in the coming weeks!
Rockford Board of Education
Valley View fifth grade science students took advantage of windy and warm spring weather to construct and fly kites as part of a science unit entitled, Forces and Motion. Pictured with an original designed box kite are Autumn Flachs, Jacob Nawrocki, Gage Blick, and Jonathan Walston.Valley View fifth grade science students took advantage of windy and warm spring weather to construct and fly kites as part of a science unit entitled, Forces and Motion. Pictured with an original designed box kite are Autumn Flachs, Jacob Nawrocki, Gage Blick, and Jonathan Walston.
School election Tuesday, May 4 With Charles Boekeloo stepping down after over a decade on the Rockford Board of Education, there will be at least one new board member elected Tuesday, May 4. Along with incumbent David Keller, two other men, Jason Clauser and Timothy Lewis, have thrown their hats in for consideration. Keller has been a Rockford resident for 20 years and has three children in the district. He is a graduate of Cooley Law School, works as an attorney and is married to Deb (Saladin) Keller, a Rockford graduate. Lewis has lived in the district 16 years and has been a police officer for 24 years. He is married to Karen and the couple have three children in the district. Lewis has also served as the President and Vice President for the Kent County Law Enforcement Association over the past ten years. He is currently the President and represents 178 members of the Sheriff Department, sits on the executive board for the Police Officers Association of Michigan and works as a business agent. Clausen has been a resident of the district for four years. He and his wife Holly have two children, both in Rockford schools. Clausen is also a fire fighter in Algoma Township, and serves on the Alpine Township Planning Commission. He is a mental health social worker. “I’ve been involved in several organizations in the Rockford area,” said Lewis, when asked why he wanted to serve on the board. “I have been a union officer for over 15 years and I stand up for people’s rights.” “With the state of the economy and that funding is being reduced we need to find a new way to do business and we need more people that are not afraid to make difficult choices. Our students and teachers need protection. I feel that with my experience dealing with other government entities and elected officials will help me excel on the School Board.” Keller provided the following comments regarding his desire to continue to serve on the board. “I have four years of board experience behind me now, I have over 100 combined CBA and Education credits relating to board of education training. “I’ve been involved with many positive programs and changes […]
The Rockford Board of Education issued the following summary of Superintendent Dr. Shibler’s performance evaluation, conducted on Monday, Feb. 22, 2010: Dr. Shibler is in the midst of his 21st year as Superintendent of the Rockford Public Schools. In the face of unprecedented financial constraints, he has again pursued and helped achieve his goal for the district of continuous improvement. The Education YES! grades for the district were all A’s for the fifth consecutive year. Student performance in academics and co-curricular activities continues to be exemplary. He maintains his role as an instructor for future educators and facilitates others on his staff to do so as well. The district has an unusually strong relationship with our surrounding community due to his skills as a liaison. Perhaps his most visible accomplishment, apart from his customary activities as superintendent, is his outstanding performance as chair of the KISD grassroots network. Legislation has been influenced and even initiated by him in Lansing. It is remarkable that he has accomplished all of this while spearheading a successful non-homestead renewal election. Dr. Shibler’s professional skills are second to none. Both generally and in a number of specialized educational fields, he is recognized as an expert on a local and statewide level. His philosophy of education can be summed up quite simply: Whatever is best for kids trumps all other factors. He is very professional and admired throughout the state. He is a phenomenal leader as evidenced by the number of individuals, both in his peer group and in the general community, who gravitate to his views on educational issues. Even if one conflicts with his position, he or she comes away with renewed respect for him. He is in almost constant demand as a spokesperson for education in West Michigan because he is extremely articulate, both orally and in his writing. Upon facing a new challenge, he is quick to perceive its parameters and pursue an effective approach to overcome it. He can be quite creative in his actions, with a voracious attention to detail. It should be noted that all of these attributes do not cloud his overall common sense that has served our district well. Dr. Shibler’s management style includes extensive and effective delegation of authority. As an […]
Two Rockford Public Schools board trustees’ terms are set to expire on June 30, 2010 Charles Boekeloo has served as a board trustee since 1998 and has announced that he will retire upon completion of his third term in June. David Keller was first elected to the board in 2006 and has declared his intent to seek re-election at the May 4, 2010 election. Individuals interested in seeking election may contact their local city/township clerk or the Kent County Clerk to obtain nominating petitions. The deadline to file petitions with the Kent County Clerk’s office is 4 p.m. on February 9, 2010. For information on how to seek election, you may contact your city or township office, the Kent County Clerk’s Office (www.accesskent.comp), or the office of the Assistant Superintendent of Finance at the Rockford Public Schools (616-863-6555). If you have questions or would like information about what is involved with serving on the Board of Education, feel free to contact Superintendent Shibler at 616-863-6557.