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Administrator's Corner

Principal Gonyaw scooping ice cream outside at MCS
Shawn Gonyaw

Shawn Gonyaw

Principal
Greg Bagnato

Greg Bagnato

Associate Principal

Archived Posts

Welcome to the Administrator's Corner. Shawn Gonyaw, Principal of Marion Cross School, and Greg Bagnato, Student Services Coordinator will post their weekly messages here. The intent is to keep you updated on important topics that are happening at school.

These posts can also be found in the weekly Who's Wise Words newsletter, which we highly encourage you to read. We hope you find all this information helpful, informative and fun.  We encourage you to reach out to us with questions and comments.

Regards,
Shawn and Greg


 

Most Recent Post:

Week of January 29 - February 2

Important Dates

Wednesday, February 7 at 6:30pm – Norwich School Board Meeting in MCS Library and via Zoom
Monday, February 19 – Friday, February 23 – Winter Recess, School Closed
Monday, March 11 - Teacher In-Service, No School For Students
Tuesday, March 5  - Voting Day in Norwich, Tracy Hall - 7 AM - 7 PM
Pi Day (Thursday, March 14) at 5:30 to 6:30pm - Family Math Night
Friday, March 15 - Parent/Teacher Conferences, No School For Students

Message from the Principal

Marion Cross School is a place where traditions are valued.  I appreciate that we are able to proceed with traditions that benefit kids and support the curriculum, but are able to let go when these traditions no longer serve that purpose.  In addition, we are able to create and embrace new traditions to help our school, students and community grow.

Having said that, I want to recognize an event and highlight a few that are coming up.  Last week fourth graders performed the Counting on Grace play.  The performance helped students better understand the history of Vermont and the formation of child labor laws in our state and across the country.  This performance is a strong and valued tradition, and clearly supports student understanding of our curriculum. 

First grade is planning another traditional event that is well-loved and anticipated.  This month, they will be hosting the Dinosaur Extravaganza, which highlights learning done during the first grade dinosaur unit.  This event includes collaboration with Mrs. Farwell to incorporate movement and dance, collaboration with Mr. Ramsey to include music and songs, and collaboration with Ms. Eastman to create some pretty amazing dinosaur costumes.  This tradition goes back so long that nobody can even remember the first dinosaur extravaganza!

students outside in the snowstudents in the meadow

Speaking of new traditions, our math coach, Ross McGee is excited to introduce Family Math Night.  With a new math program comes new approaches to teaching kids to think mathematically.  This requires some outreach on our part.  Family Math Night is designed to have fun letting families explore games and activities that they can incorporate into everyday life and support math thinking.

Finally, MCS has a group of staff members who are committed to helping increase our level of understanding around diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.  This group is working to redefine a past tradition.  Traditionally, we would hold an assembly to recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This year we have decided to combine that with Black History Month and look for other opportunities to teach our school community about the work that MLK and many others have done to further DEI+B in our country.  The committee is working with staff and students on this expanded focus.  This is a tradition that will look different in order to become more inclusive.  

We are fortunate to be an organization that values tradition while also appreciating the need to change and adjust based on the current needs of our school and community.  I hope that you will be able to join us for one of our upcoming events and appreciate the value of solid traditions.  

Have a wonderful weekend,
Shawn

Student Services Update

We held our first community group of 2024 yesterday.  These multi-aged groups of 10-12 students meet once a month and, hopefully, nurture relationships that strengthen our community as a whole.  

Yesterday students had a short circle discussion and then went to the forest to play “camouflage”.  Students seem to really like this time.  I was in a kindergarten room and, even though those students knew where their community group rooms were, they could not wait for their 5th and 6h grade buddies to pick them up.

students behind a tree

Have a great weekend,
Greg Bagnato