Housum prepares for move, new programs


By Kelsey Leyva - kleyva@civitasmedia.com



<p style="text-align: right;">Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise <p style="text-align: left;">McCormick principal Craig Housum previews the coming school year, including a move to a new building in November.

Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise

McCormick principal Craig Housum previews the coming school year, including a move to a new building in November.


We asked principal Craig Housum:

What are you looking forward to this school year?

“I’m looking forward to getting to know the staff and students and celebrating even the smallest of accomplishments the kids achieve. That’s my favorite part about being an administrator. It’s not taking care of discipline even though some kids think that. It’s my least favorite part. Watching the kids grow and learn and watching what they’re able to achieve and celebrating those achievements is what excites me the most. Also to see the faces of the kids and their parents and the teachers when we’re in our new building and the excitement that will generate. I think we’re struggling with the post-morale from some devastating cuts to our district and it really hit us hard but we’re going to survive. That was the past and we can’t change those things but we need to move forward because our kids deserve that.”

What do you see as your greatest challenge?

“I would say having the staff be comfortable in their new roles. They’re going to be great. I have no doubt about that but watching them get comfortable in their new roles because there’s a number of teachers doing something they haven’t done in a while or something that’s new to them so watching them become solid teams within their grades. The fact that we have to base our data on what we’ve done as a school and not just the state tests because we’re not going to be getting the results from the state tests until January or February. We’re going to base our data on our progress monitoring and our benchmark assessments to help the kids.”

What message do you have for new students coming into your building?

“It’s a very exciting time for them. Middle school is a fun age for kids. They go through a lot of changes but we have an excellent staff and I truly feel that relationships with the students is key. Relationships with the community is important. That’s where we’ll bring success for each and every one of our students and the school as a whole is becoming one family. And having the kids take advantage of everything we offer at the school.”

What do you want parents to know?

“I want parents to know they are welcome in our school anytime and to be involved in their kids’ education. They can come and talk to me or see me anytime they need to. I’m not a doctor so they don’t need an appointment. I’m here for them and the teachers are here for them too.”

Returning to McCormick Middle School for his third year as principal, Craig Housum is one of the only administrators in the district who isn’t in a new position.

The superintendent, treasurer, elementary principal, and high school principal are all new to their jobs this year. Although Housum is staying in his same role, many things around the school and district are changing.

This is his first year being the sole principal of the junior high.

One of the biggest changes coming up this year is the move into the new McCormick building. Housum is excited for the move and expects it to happen anywhere between Nov. 1 and Thanksgiving.

This year the school will include the fourth through seventh grades. Eighth-graders moved up to the high school this year.

Next year, third-graders will move into the new McCormick, too.

“It’ll be nice because we’ll have grades four and five and eventually third grade on the first floor and grades six and seven on the second floor,” Housum said.

The third floor of the old McCormick building is closed off and sixth- and seventh-graders will be in close proximity to each other. Housum said that’s to get the staff and students familiar with each other before they share a floor in the new school.

Once the students move into the new building, a new project-based learning program called Genius Hour will be implemented schoolwide.

“Once a week the kids will be able to focus on something that they like to do and learn about so the kids get to choose their topic. But it will be aligned with the subject that they’re struggling with the most,” Housum said.

Every grade will also have an advanced language arts and math class this year for students who qualify.

“Our focus is for long-standing retainment,” Housum said of his focus on the Common Core standards.

At the beginning of the year, Housum plans to start a co-op to get parents involved with the school and the district.

“One of my goals this year is to have as much communication as possible with the community, especially going through the move,” he said.

The school will continue its extracurricular activities such as STEM club, K Kids, and student council. Housum said he wanted to continue the successful programs before starting new ones since so much change is already happening in the district.

In the future, Housum hopes to start a junior National Honor Society.

Kelsey Leyva can be reached at 440-647-3171 or @TWE_KelseyLeyva on Twitter.

Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise

McCormick principal Craig Housum previews the coming school year, including a move to a new building in November.

http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/25/2015/08/web1_Craig.jpg

Kelsey Leyva | Wellington Enterprise

McCormick principal Craig Housum previews the coming school year, including a move to a new building in November.

By Kelsey Leyva

kleyva@civitasmedia.com

We asked principal Craig Housum:

What are you looking forward to this school year?

“I’m looking forward to getting to know the staff and students and celebrating even the smallest of accomplishments the kids achieve. That’s my favorite part about being an administrator. It’s not taking care of discipline even though some kids think that. It’s my least favorite part. Watching the kids grow and learn and watching what they’re able to achieve and celebrating those achievements is what excites me the most. Also to see the faces of the kids and their parents and the teachers when we’re in our new building and the excitement that will generate. I think we’re struggling with the post-morale from some devastating cuts to our district and it really hit us hard but we’re going to survive. That was the past and we can’t change those things but we need to move forward because our kids deserve that.”

What do you see as your greatest challenge?

“I would say having the staff be comfortable in their new roles. They’re going to be great. I have no doubt about that but watching them get comfortable in their new roles because there’s a number of teachers doing something they haven’t done in a while or something that’s new to them so watching them become solid teams within their grades. The fact that we have to base our data on what we’ve done as a school and not just the state tests because we’re not going to be getting the results from the state tests until January or February. We’re going to base our data on our progress monitoring and our benchmark assessments to help the kids.”

What message do you have for new students coming into your building?

“It’s a very exciting time for them. Middle school is a fun age for kids. They go through a lot of changes but we have an excellent staff and I truly feel that relationships with the students is key. Relationships with the community is important. That’s where we’ll bring success for each and every one of our students and the school as a whole is becoming one family. And having the kids take advantage of everything we offer at the school.”

What do you want parents to know?

“I want parents to know they are welcome in our school anytime and to be involved in their kids’ education. They can come and talk to me or see me anytime they need to. I’m not a doctor so they don’t need an appointment. I’m here for them and the teachers are here for them too.”