Hamilton’s kindergarten registration to begin soon

Kindergarten registration for children who will attend the Hamilton School District in the 2012-13 school year is set to begin in January. There are several kindergarten options for 4- and 5-year-olds. An optional half-day program for 4-year-olds is available to children who turn four years old on or before Sept. 1, 2012. The district offers parents the option of choosing full- or half-day programming for children who will be five years old on or before Sept. 1, 2012.

Required at registration are the child’s original birth certificate and immunization record. Proof of residency is required when the first child in a family registers in the district. Forms may be downloaded from the district website at www.hamilton.k12.wi.us/district/enrollment.

Also suggested is a list of emergency phone numbers and information if a child will be picked up or dropped off at a location other than home. Children are welcome to attend, but the child’s attendance is not necessary.

Following are three ways to register children for kindergarten in the Hamilton School District.

  • 4K program – Registration is at Willow Springs Learning Center where the program is offered. Willow Springs registration hours are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Jan. 23-Jan. 27, with extended hours until 6:45 p.m. on Jan. 25.
  • 5K program for children currently enrolled in the Willow Springs 4K program – Registration forms containing child’s current information will be sent home the week of Jan. 30. Parents will update information on the forms and choose half- or full-day kindergarten for 2012-13. Parents of current Willow Springs 4-year-old kindergartners are not required to complete registration at their home school.
  • 5K program for children who are not enrolled in the Willow Springs 4K program – Registration is at the school the child will attend in 2012-13. Registration at Lannon, Maple Avenue, Marcy and Woodside elementary schools will be Jan. 30 – Feb. 3.

Hours are:

– Lannon Elementary: Monday through Friday, 9:30 – 11 a.m. and 1:30 – 3 p.m. Extended hours on Wednesday from 4 – 6 p.m.

– Maple Avenue Elementary: Monday through Friday, 9 – 11 a.m. and 1 – 3 p.m. Extended hours on Wednesday, 4 – 6 p.m.

– Marcy Elementary: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. with extended hours on Wednesday from 4 – 6:30 p.m.

– Woodside Elementary: Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. with extended hours on Wednesday from 4 – 6 p.m.

Following are locations and phone numbers for each school.

  • Willow Springs, W220 N6660 Town Line Rd., Menomonee Falls (262) 255-6190;
  • Lannon, 7145 N. Lannon Rd., Lannon (262) 255-6106;
  • Maple Avenue, W240 N6059 Maple Ave., Sussex (262) 246-4220;
  • Marcy, W180 N4851 Marcy Rd., Menomonee Falls (262) 781-8283; and
  • Woodside, W236 N7465 Woodside Rd., Sussex (262) 820-1530.

Hamilton schools contribute to community during holidays

Hamilton School District students, staff and families showed appreciation for the needs of others during the holidays by contributing to charitable organizations and extending acts of kindness within the community and beyond. Following is a summary of activities at each school.

Willow Springs Learning Center

Willow Springs Learning Center four-year-old kindergartners and their families contributed generously to the Sussex Food Pantry this holiday season. They participated in a service project, “Making Wishes Come True,” that resulted in more than 350 gifts that will be distributed through the Sussex Food Pantry to local families.

In addition, the Willow Springs staff raised $300 to assist a family in need.

Lannon Elementary School

Lannon Elementary School students, families and staff members collected 50 new hats, gloves and mittens through its Hat and Mitten Tree and donated them to Parents Place in Waukesha.

A barrel of gently-used coats and boots was donated to Sussex Outreach Services and 154 items were donated to the Sussex Food Pantry.

The school also honored veterans with a special ceremony in November and created a large handcrafted banner that was delivered to the Veterans’ Administration Hospital in Milwaukee.

Maple Avenue Elementary School

Maple Avenue buddy classes in first and third grades earned money by doing extra work at home. A record total of $823.09 was raised and used to purchase items for children served by the Sussex Food Pantry. They contributed items including 49 board or card games and puzzles, 100 miscellaneous toiletries and 55 hats, gloves, mittens, socks and pairs of boots.

Maple Avenue staff members sponsored four families providing gifts, books, games, educational toys, clothing, gift cards, snacks and holiday décor for family members. Also, school staff worked with Kohl’s department stores corporate offices to sponsor two additional families for a total of six families sponsored.

Each student in a fifth grade class was responsible to plan, organize and carry out one act of giving in November and December. Students were asked to think of a Maple Avenue staff member who had a positive impact on their life and, on their own time, meet with that adult and offer their time as a service project. Some students did one-time volunteer activities, while others returned and offered their services weekly. Some plan to continue offering their assistance throughout the year. The students completed brief write-ups that were posted above their lockers to share with others. The activity helped students appreciate the value of their time in providing service to others.

Marcy Elementary School

The entire Marcy student body made cards to send to soldiers. Students also collected candy and toiletries to ship overseas.

One kindergarten class collected food for the animal shelter. Two other classes collected mittens.

First grade is collecting food for the Sussex Food Pantry. The goal was to collect to 150 items and students have already brought in more than 450. 

A second grade class donated food to Sussex Outreach Services. During their winter party they made placemats to give to area senior centers for their holiday dinners.

Third grade made birthday bags for the food pantry filled with cake mix, candles, frosting and homemade cards from the students. 

Fourth grade classes conducted a food collection for Sussex Outreach Services.

The fifth grade collects money to support Heifer International in the month of December. The students choose which animals they would like to donate, and this sustainable gift supports families around the globe. In the past, students have donated goats, sheep, llamas, chickens, honeybees and more.

Marcy staff raised more than $500 for the Sussex Food Pantry. This money was raised through Jeans for Charity.

Woodside Elementary School

Students of Service, or SOS, teamed up with the Christmas Clearing Council, a local organization supporting underprivileged families of Waukesha County, to sponsor 13 local families. Students earned money by completing service jobs at school and at home, and used that money to purchase gifts for their family from a provided wish list. Students also wrapped gifts and created holiday cards for their family. Parent volunteers, staff members and students also helped deliver the gifts directly to the families.

Templeton Middle School

Students from 7 Gold, 7 Red, 8 Blue and grade 6 Spectrum made cards for wounded soldiers at Bethesda and Balboa hospitals.

Students and staff collected $2,500 for the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight program to send five veterans to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Student Council members decorated a tree at the Milwaukee County Zoo.

Student Council sponsored a joint campaign with Girl Scout Troop #2752 to collect hats, mittens and scarves for Sussex Outreach Services.

In computer class, grade 6 students wrote letters to Marines and sent non-perishable items such as soap, shampoo, gum, etc., with the letters.

Templeton staff members were involved in several activities to support families in need. They sponsored a family and provided gifts, holiday decorations and a Christmas tree. They also collected a Christmas tree, holiday lights, ornaments and holiday decorations to donate to another family. In addition, staff members coordinated a holiday campaign to collect money for the Sussex Food Pantry.

Hamilton High School

Hamilton DECA took holiday presents to first grade students in Milwaukee. They visited the first grade class at Gaenslen Elementary School. Each first-grader received a gift bag from a DECA member who then spent about an hour with the first-graders, playing with their gifts and enjoying holiday refreshments.

Spanish Club adopted two Hispanic families (with seven children total) through the Christmas Clearing Council of Waukesha County. Students in all Spanish classes donated a total of $1,542.06 to purchase gifts for the families including winter jackets, clothing, toys, books and gift cards. Spanish Club members wrapped the gifts and the officers delivered them to the families.

Communication Arts 10 students helped the Student Council with a letter- and card-writing drive for troops in Afghanistan who are away from loved ones during the holiday season.

Hamilton School Student Council adopted two families through the Christmas Clearing Council of Waukesha County. Both families are single-parent households; one with three children the other with one child. Student Council members joined together to shop, and then students met to wrap the gifts. Gifts were delivered to the parent of each family by the advisor.

Student Council also sponsored the annual No Shave Novembeard campaign during November. Hamilton males pledged to go unshaven during November. Each participant obtained sponsors, usually other students, who pledged an amount for each day the young man does not shave or a flat donation at the end of the month. Proceeds were donated to Pancreatic Cancer Research.

Club Action raised $950 with Rock Fest this year and donated some of the money to Red Cross for Japanese tsunami relief efforts. The remainder of the money went to support recycling at the school. Food items for the Sussex Food Pantry were collected at Rock Fest. A book drive collected gently-used children’s books for the Next Door Foundation which provides books to Milwaukee-area children in poverty.

Freshman Seminar sponsored an 11-year-old boy and an 8-year-old girl through the Christmas Clearing Council of Waukesha County and bought items on a wish list provided by their mothers.

To help people who are less fortunate and in the spirit of the German Martin’s Day tradition, the Hamilton German Club collected more than 500 gently-worn sweaters and other clothes and donated them to Red Door Clothes, which distributes them to Waukesha County families in need.

The National Honor Society (NHS) donated 800 half-gallon bottles of 100-percent juice for needy families in the Milwaukee area. The juice and $2,000 went to support the Hunger Task Force. NHS members then went to the Hunger Task Force to help them with their day-before-Thanksgiving HOG Food Drive, sponsored by the HOG radio station. More than two dozen students spent the day unloading approximately 25,000 pounds of donated food from cars and trucks. Because people were in the spirit of giving, they also donated several hundred dollars that day to NHS students who then forwarded those funds to the Hunger Task Force.

Hamilton Library’s “Snowflakes of Hope” program collected items for families in need. Club members of A Novel Idea Book Group, Project Caring and Caring Kids accepted donations for the Sussex Outreach Services and Project Concern in Cudahy. They donated sweaters, scarves, hats, gloves, mittens, toiletries and gently-used clothing.

Offices A, B, C, Publications and Health Room – High school staff members adopted two families in lieu of exchanging gifts with one another providing them with many items to brighten their holidays including wrapped gifts of toys, games, clothing, personal items, household goods and gift cards for families in need.

District staff members

Staff members throughout the district adopted families in lieu of exchanging gifts with one another. They provided gifts of toys, games, clothing, food, personal items, household goods and gift certificates for numerous families in need of support.



December 19, 2011

Chapter 220, multicultural activities report presented

In the past five years, all Chapter 220 Program students eligible for graduation at Hamilton High School have graduated. It is a statistic that reflects the success of the program, considering that the graduation rate for students enrolled in Milwaukee Public Schools is about 50 percent.

School Social Worker and Chapter 220 Program Coordinator Erica Bova-Brown reported on her work with multicultural initiatives and Chapter 220, a voluntary integration program that brings Milwaukee Public Schools students to suburban districts.

A total of 108 Milwaukee residents attend the Hamilton School District through the program. Some 70 percent of them in scored in the advanced and proficient level on state standardized reading test while 60 percent were advanced and proficient in mathematics. Bova-Brown presented additional data about the involvement of Chapter 220 students in ACT testing, Advanced Placement and honors courses, and school athletics and activities.

She went on to describe the academic supports, interpreter services, economic supports, extracurricular involvement, transportation services, school activities, guest presentations and field trips that are aligned with the district strategic plan’s goals of promoting high achievement and learning for all students.

Bova-Brown said that while the graduation rate is 100 percent, it is based on only about 20 Chapter 220 students each year. School Board member Gerry Schmitz said the district should not minimize the fact that it has a 100-percent graduation rate for students in the program. Each one of the Chapter 220 students have graduated and have gone on to make something of themselves, Schmitz said.

School Board member Lynn Kristensen agreed.

“Back in their home school, their chances (of graduating) would only be about 50 percent,” Kristensen.

High school makes progress in site plan

Hamilton High School Principal Candis Mongan gave School Board members an update on the school’s progress and next steps for continued success. The school’s site plan goal is to apply 21st century learning to maximize students’ potential in the global community. Two interventions to support that target state that students will:

  • take an active role in their learning to develop personal and social responsibility skills essential to contribute to their communities; and
  • demonstrate effective communication for a range of purposes in diverse environments.

The Hamilton Site Planning Committee discussed how the structures of Response to Intervention (RtI) integrate into the high school’s plan. The committee also reviewed data the highlighted the school’s demonstrated growth and accomplishments including:

  • an increase of students who plan to attend a four-year university from 55.1 percent in 2006 to 65 percent in 2011;
  • improvement in each area of the Pride Factor Survey – culture, motivation, performance and recognition;
  • an increase in number of administrator classroom walk-throughs;
  • the second highest ranking for WKCE scores in reading and language arts among Waukesha County high schools;
  • an all-time high for number of Advanced Placement exams taken and meeting  the Challenge Index; and
  • embedding of professional development by empowering faculty with the responsibility for department goal-setting and demonstrating professional development initiatives with peers.

To continue making progress toward its site plan goals, the school will:

  • continue to build an integrated staff development program that incorporates the site plan goal and two interventions;
  • make necessary modifications to the curriculum and instructional practices based upon ongoing analysis of local and state standardized student assessment results;
  • examine profile data, standardized test scores and anecdotal survey data to measure progress;
  • align department plans with current site plan interventions;
  • fully develop RtI structures that meet the needs of all students;
  • align all curricular areas with common core standards; and
  • determine an avenue to measure when all site plan goals and interventions have been met.

Mongan said the site plan continues to stretch teachers and challenge students in a supportive environment. School Board members approved the school’s site plan update and complimented high school staff for the school’s successes.

“I know everyone is working really hard, and it shows,” said School Board member Debbie Briggs.

Kristensen said that she was struck by reaction from high school staff last year when the school had its highest ACT score in school history.

“You were still looking for ways to improve,” she said to Mongan. “Every decision that is made is kid-centered and I feel very good about the direction we are going.”

School Board member Mike Hyland noticed when attending a Hamilton Parent Advisory Group meeting that Mongan listened to parent comments and took notes so that she could share reaction with the committees working on proposal. He said it was clear that parents appreciated that staff were listening to their concerns.

Personnel news

In personnel business, the School Board approved the resignation of Marcy special education paraprofessional Amanda Szymaszek.

Woodside plans January music events

Woodside Elementary School students will be involved in numerous musical activities featuring professional musicians during January as part of its involvement with Arts in Community Education (ACE), a component of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra’s education program. They include:

  •  “Pangaea” a program for third-graders – Jan. 10 from 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. in the Large Group Area. Two performers will play Afro-Caribbean percussion and steel drums.
  •  “Conductor” a program for kindergartners – Jan. 17 from 12:15 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. in the Large Group Area. Francesco Lecce-Chong, resident conductor of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra, will explain the role of a conductor and will have the kindergarten students practice a conductor’s motions.
  •  “Last Gaspe” a program for fourth-graders – Jan. 31 from 10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. in the gym. A violin and piano duo will involve all the fourth-graders in dancing to European and North American folk dances.

Woodside is one of 22 schools in the Milwaukee metropolitan area participating in ACE, which is nationally recognized as an exemplary model for arts education. ACE at Woodside is funded by Woodside’s Home and School organization and by Woodside parents. Heather Cheslock and Rose Frohna are the music teachers at Woodside, located at W236 N7465 Woodside Road, Sussex.

Hamilton student chosen for All-State Women’s Choir

Hamilton High School senior Rebecca Borowski was selected a member of the 2012 All-State Women’s Choir, a musical ensemble of 100 outstanding high school students chosen by the Wisconsin Choral Directors’ Association. Borowski and other members of the choir will experience an exceptional repertoire of choral literature under the direction of Carroll University Choral Director Kristina Boerger.

The All-State Women’s Choir will come together for two days in January to learn and perform repertoire that will be presented at a concert beginning at 5:30 p.m. Jan. 14 in Carroll University’s Shattuck Auditorium. Tickets are $5 at the door.

Borowski is an active member of the Hamilton Concert Choir and A Cappella Choir. She has also participated in show choir, solo and ensemble events, and held lead roles in the school’s annual musical. In addition to her in-school music participation, Borowski participates in a local German singing and dance group that performs throughout the community and surrounding areas. Her exceptional talents and dedication to choral music have earned her a spot in this select ensemble.

Hamilton announces November students of the month

Hamilton High School students representing 11 curriculum areas were selected as students of the month for November. They are:

  • Hannah Lebiecki, applied engineering and technology;
  • Grace Devine and Nicholas Patterson, social studies;
  • Erin Geszvain, business education;
  • Sean Thompson and Monica Greene, communication arts;
  • Ainara Martinez-Berasategui, art;
  • Emily Poenitsch, mathematics;
  • Shanna Mogden, fitness education;
  • Victoria Schulze, family and consumer sciences;
  • Amanda Frey-Klug, world languages;
  • Sam Kivimaki, music; and
  • Guangyuan Guan, science.

Students received a certificate and a pin for their accomplishment.



Hamilton students named GMC Fall Scholar Athletes

The Greater Metro Conference (GMC) has named the following Hamilton High School students Fall 2011 Scholar Athletes:

  • Uma Avinash and Elizabeth Dorsey – tennis;
  • Bryan Kristensen – cross country;
  • Dieter Schmidt and Brandon Hagenow – soccer;
  • Emily Blackwell, Natasha Cornejo, Lydia Salus, Sarah Werner and Valerie Prusak – swimming and diving;
  • Leah Stapelman – golf;
  • Jennifer Janusz – volleyball; and
  • Matthew Canales, Daniel Herriges, Matthew Judson, Mitchell Mason, Mitchell Nitschke and Nicholas Patterson – football.

Coaches nominate student-athletes who:

  • earned a minimum 3.5 cumulative grade point average;
  • participated in at least 75 percent of the team’s varsity matches; and
  • have at least sophomore standing.

These student-athletes serve as a great example to others demonstrating combined academic and athletic success.


December 6, 2011

Enrollment, staffing studied

Unless state law changes, the Hamilton School Board will have to make next year’s staffing decisions by the end of January. So School Board got their first look at enrollment projections for the 2012-13 school year in an informational report presented by Human Resources Director John Roubik.

The district started out the school year in September with 4,635. That number increased to 4,644 by the end of November. Projections for next year show enrollment at 4,714 students, a 1.7 percent increase over the start of this year.

In his written report Roubik noted that administrators will monitor the potential for legislation that would allow school districts until the end of April instead of February to send out preliminary nonrenewal notices. State law now requires final notice of nonrenewal no later than March 15. School districts have asked legislators to change the final notice to May 15 so that staffing decisions can be made using more reliable information.

Technology purchases approved

School Board members approved replacement of 260 desktop and 10 laptop computers at a total cost of $131,661 — a $60,000 saving over last year’s purchases. The district annually replaces a portion of its computers so that none is more than five years old. This year’s purchase was made earlier in the school year to avoid expected higher prices resulting from flooding in parts of the world where computer components are manufactured.

Instead of replacing machines with one model, the Informational Technology Department chose three different desktop Hewlett-Packard models ranging in price from $314 to $651 and will place them based on usage. The district will continue to reuse its existing flat panel LCD monitors.

The School Board also approved $92,830 to implement the third and final phase of its physical network infrastructure upgrade. Information Technology Manager Ryan McMillan reported that the multi-phased implementation plan has been a fiscally responsible way to upgrade and maintain the network so that network speeds increase and can sustain the latest technology.

School Board member Lynn Kristensen complimented the Information Technology Department for making wise decisions. She said she was grateful that staff paid attention to how the technology would be used and saved the district money.

School Board President Gabe Kolesari asked if the district would have to purchase a different system in the future when students bringing their own devices such as laptops, smartphones and tablets. McMillan said the backbone of the network was designed to support a bring-your-own-technology (BYOT) concept. When that time comes, McMillan said the district would need to invest in its wireless network so that schools had greater density to support devices, but it will be able to use the current network.


District strategic plan progresses

Progress of the district’s Strategic Plan from its inception 21 years ago was the topic of discussion among the School Board. Four strategic plans have provided direction for the school district since 1991.  Human Resources and Organizational Development Director John Roubik gave an overview of the Nov. 29 Strategic Plan update. The team concluded that each strategy is on schedule and the work of each action team should continue.

The timeline for strategy #6, which deals with 21st century skills of financial literacy, employability skills and technological literacy, was adjusted so that financial literacy assessments will not be required until 2012 when curriculum updates are finalized. Also, the action team for Strategy #2, which is working on quality assessment practices, recommended disbanding the Assessment Leadership Team (ALT) because most members of that team are working on the intervention, screener and datawall committees for the Response to Intervention (RtI) initiative. The action team indicated that the RtI committees were doing the same work as the original ALT committee.

External facilitator for the strategic planning process, John Koehn, presented an analysis of the district’s practices against criteria for high-performing organizations as suggested by national bestselling business author Jim Collins. Committee members reacted to the analysis.

School Board member Gerald Schmitz reminisced about the first Strategic Plan which helped set a course for the district when it was deficient in almost all the state standards. He said it will take the commitment of a new group of people to carry on Hamilton’s tradition of strategic planning.

Current strategies indicate that the district will:

  • ensure rigorous, relevant curriculum and innovative instruction to support maximum achievement for each child;
  • engage and empower students, differentiate instruction and ensure continuous progress for each child by implementing quality assessment practices;
  • focus professional development on the knowledge and skills staff need as they educate student to thrive in an inter-connected, global community;
  • utilize effective communication practices to promote understanding, support and involvement of our families, community and staff;
  • create learning environments that nurture social and emotional development an respect for our diverse world; and
  • integrate and assess 21st century skills in the areas of financial literacy, employability skills and technological literacy.

Willow Springs site plan presented

The goal of Willow Springs Learning Center is stated as:

“Students will be enriched in a unique, well-defined and articulated four-year-old kindergarten program.”

Principal Margaret Tackes, Ed.D, described the year’s accomplishments. She noted that staff:

  • implemented a 4K-to-5K transitional program that included 4-year-olds visiting their home schools in May ;
  • developed a snack program for Willow Springs students to help practice skills they will need in their elementary school cafeteria;
  • helped students develop a finer skill set in greeting, personal problem-solving and tattling-versus-telling;
  • investigated behavioral systems for younger children;
  • held an evening in-service for daycare providers to bridge transitions and support of appropriate early childhood education; and
  • created a parent book club built on the premise of faculty book studies.

Among the future plans, Tackes said the school will investigate Response to Intervention strategies, further develop transitional opportunities, establish additional assembly programs that focus on interpersonal skills and look into a “fill-your-bucket” program.

School Board member Deborah Briggs said she was impressed that more than 25 parents would participate in a book group.

“What a wonderful school,” Briggs said. “It is such a great place for these children.”

Personnel committee

In personnel business, the School Board:

  • approved the retirement request of Hamilton Assistant Buildings & Grounds Manager Steve Pehowski; and
  • increased the contract of Hamilton German teacher Ryan Grusenski from 83 to 100 percent.

Hamilton one-act play awarded All State

The cast and crew of Hamilton High School’s one-act play, “Tracks” by Peter Tarsi,  received an All State Award at the 2011 State High School Theater Festival at UW-Whitewater.

“You and your school should be extremely proud of your drama program and the accomplishment of this entire cast and crew who represented Hamilton High School in such an outstanding manner,” wrote Wisconsin High School Forensic Association Executive Director Chuck Malone.

Members of the production were Grace Thompson, Elizabeth Fricke, Megan Heitman, Amy Walsh, Anna Joll, Jaclyn Weiss, Alex Magoon, Zachary Weis, Andrew Cronin, Gabriel Kuenn, Brooke Schounard, Elizabeth Schounard, Sree Karri and Alexander Klingbiel.

Hamilton communication arts and theater teacher Erin Brigham advised the student production.


Hamilton High School selects poster winners

Hamilton High School announced the winners of its American Education Week poster contest.

Alyssa Cardini, grade 11, took first place and received a $100 savings bond. Yer Xiong, grade 10, took second place and received a $50 savings bond, and Morgan Land, grade 10, took third and received a $25 savings bond.

The theme was “Great Public Schools: A Basic Right and Our Responsibility,” and the winning posters are on display in the school cafeteria. The contest is open to students enrolled in art, technology, business and graphic design classes. Winners were selected by school office staff and administrators.

American Education Week was founded in 1921 by the National Education Association to raise public awareness of the importance of education. This year’s American Education Week was November 13-19.

Hamilton High School is located at W220 N6151 Town Line Road, Sussex.