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Santa Fe Trail USD 434



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Superintendent Newsletter 3 11 2022

Dear Parents, Patrons, and Staff,

We want to wish all Students and Staff a Great Spring Break! The weather forecast looks much improved so if you are staying in the area, get outside, relax, and have fun.

At their regular meeting this past Wednesday, the Board of Education repealed the Mask Mandate on buses for our district effective immediately.

We wanted to share with you our purpose, planning, and preparation efforts to help all of our students show what they know and are able to do on the upcoming 2022 Kansas State Assessments, also known as the Kansas Assessment Program (KAP): These assessments will begin after spring break.

To begin, the information we receive from the Kansas State Assessments is very important to our school:

  • We are able to take a snapshot of what each student knows and can do.
  • We can determine where we can improve as a school to better meet the needs of our students.
  • We are able to look at between-year results to see if students are achieving and growing academically and then provide additional support to students as needed.
  • These assessments are aligned with our Kansas Standards in the tested subject areas, which helps us to evaluate how well our school is doing to prepare our students for success using our locally developed curriculum.

Students in grades 3-8 and grade 10 will complete both the mathematics and English Language Arts (ELA) assessments this year. These assessments are relatively brief and consist of two testing sessions each. Additionally, students are scheduled to complete the following assessments:

  • Students in grades 5, 8, and 11 will complete the Science assessment.
  • Students in grades 4, 7, 11 will complete the History, Government, and Social Studies assessment.
  • Kindergarten through 12th grade students who receive targeted English language acquisition support also qualify and will complete the KELPA:
    • KELPA stands for the Kansas English Language Proficiency Assessment
    • For students who qualify, this test measures what students know and can do through reading, writing, listening, and speaking measures.

The Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) provides testing “windows” each year for us to have students complete these important and informative assessments. This window allows us the flexibility to assess students within a specific range of dates. Students will complete these assessments as follows:

  • Math, English, and Science between March 21st and April 29th
  • KELPA (for English language acquisition students) between January 31st and March 11th

We are required to administer these assessments to all eligible and applicable students, and we are planning and preparing to do so with student success at the forefront of our considerations. To help students be at their best, we are planning for the following proactive measures when we have our students complete these assessments:

  • These tests are not timed, and students will not be rushed to complete them during their sessions
  • Students will have access to various supplies and manipulatives we provide during their sessions
  • Classroom environments will be set up for best test taking practices
  • Partner with families to get their students a good night sleep and healthy breakfast

If you have any questions about the 2021-2022 Kansas Assessment Program, please do not hesitate to let us know. You may reach out to your students' teacher or building administrator.


Congratulations to Lilly Graham--The National Honor Society and NASSP are happy to announce that a member of your school's NHS chapter, Lilly Graham, has been selected as one of this year's NHS Scholarship Semifinalists, and will receive a scholarship award in the amount of $3,200!   (She is one of 600 students in the United States to receive a scholarship from NHS.)

Congratulations to the girls’ basketball team and Coach Kramer.  They had a great season this year and qualified for the state tournament for just the 10th time in school history.  They suffered a tough loss to Hugoton but battled them tough.  The Lady Chargers finished the season 19-5.   

            ~Patrick Graham

Shout Outs

Students from OAC, CAC, and SFTHS will be representing Trailhands Wrestling Club at the 2022 Kansas State Wrestling Folkstyle Championship Tournament this weekend at the Stormont Vail Events Center in Topeka. Please click on the list to see students competing in this event.  Trailhands State Qualifiers 2022  Good luck to these boys and girls! 

Congratulations to Ashley Fawl for beginning her Building Principal Endorsement classes through Fort Hays State University!  We are proud of you for continuing your professional learning! 

National School Social Work Week is marked every first full week of March to celebrate school social workers across the nation and appreciate their work in helping students achieve academic success. Thank you Maggie Mead, our district social worker, for all that you do to support our USD 434 students. 

            ~Lorle Bolt

Torie Peck, Jen Molloy, Kathy Alcorn for covering classes and doing whatever we need them to do! We couldn't do it without you!

OAC Behavior SPED team for being rock stars with all of our kids and keeping smiles on their faces even on really rough days : )

All the district's SROs for keeping all the buildings safe and everything they do for the kids, especially Ms. JACKIE : ) 

Emily Morris for ALWAYS having a smile on her face and a positive attitude! 

Nurse Dusty for going above and beyond for the students' needs! 

Karen McVay, Reanna Crumpton, Scott Adams and Zach Johnson for helping with lunch duty whenever we need it!

Erin Metsker for just being simply AMAZING

            ~Megan Reynolds

Shout out to Kaitlyn Ball! She is a caring and hard-working individual. Her passion for serving this community and taking care of students is very clear. Thank you for being a part of our team at SAC!

            ~Amy Potter

Shout out to Faith Flory who has taken on the leadership role at the preschool this year!  She puts out a wonderful monthly newsletter, communicates frequently with staff and families, and prioritizes opportunities for preschool professional development and program growth, and much much more. Thank you, Faith!  

~Janine and the Scranton Team

Quote for the Week:

‘We are all unique and created for a purpose bigger than ourselves. Don't get caught up comparing someone else's purpose with your own.”

            ~Jon Gordon

Have a Great Spring Break,

Jim Lentz, Superintendent