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Santa Fe Trail USD 434



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Superintendent Newsletter 3 25 2022



Dear Parents, Patrons and Staff;

Spring Break has passed and the final quarter of the 21-22 school year is underway. Spring sports have started and we hope spring weather will soon follow.

Next Friday, April 1st there is no school due to Parent Teacher Conferences.

The High School play, RUMORS, will be performed in the Auditorium tonight, tomorrow and Sunday. We hope you will be able to attend and show your support for the fine arts.

Summit Learning

On March 9th a recommendation was made to the Board of Education regarding Summit Learning as an opportunity for students during the 2022-2023 school year. The recommendation made was to end our partnership with Summit Learning based on teacher and administrator feedback about the OPT-IN format.  The OPT-In format is not sustainable with the current number of staff members, challenges with scheduling and class sizes, and additional teacher prep due to Summit and Non-Summit sections. We feel that Summit Learning is only sustainable as an All-In Format.  However, due to concerns this may cause with some families, as we have seen in the past, we felt the recommendation was to move in a different direction. The BOE passed unanimously to move away from Summit Learning, but not without commitment to continued curriculum work across the district and in all content areas. We want to make sure all students are receiving rigorous and rich learning opportunities throughout the district and we will work collaboratively to align all that we do.  If you have questions or concerns regarding this decision please reach out to your building administrators.  

Congratulations and Shouts Outs

Good luck to the cast and crew RUMORS, as they perform at the SFTHS Auditorium Friday and Saturday at 7pm, and Sunday at 2pm.

The weather was not Spring sports friendly this past week, but all 4 sports will be in action next week.  Good luck to Baseball, Softball, Golf, and Track!

Both the boys wrestling team and girls wrestling team's GPA's put them as one of the best 4A schools in the state, putting them each on the KWCA All-Academic First Team in 4A state.

    ~Regan Ericks0n

ACT results just in:

Congratulations to Cody Black for joining the Top 30 ACT club.

Congratulations to Leonato Zwilling for joining the Top 30 ACT club

The SFT Clay Target Team will be participating for the first time on Sunday at the Cedar Hill Gun Club in Baldwin City.  There are 15 athletes participating on the team.

The PowerClub Team will be traveling to Smoky Valley High School on Saturday to participate in the 3A State Power Lifting State Tournament.  Good luck to all!

    ~Patrick Graham

Our JH bands performed masterfully at League Clinics this past week.  Our music programs all-around hand a lot of students in our building with smiles on their faces and joyous sounds coming down the halls.

Our students are kicking off state assessments this week and I am really impressed with how our school team comes together to support our students through this effort.

Our kitchen crew is working really hard to make what we have work well for our students.  We are still dealing with issues on the supply end, and they do amazing things with little prep time and materials.

    ~Lari Jarrett

A special shout out goes to bus driver, Cindy Shively, and our 7th and 8th grade male band students.  Mrs. Shively shared with me these students showed the best group behaviors on a bus that she has seen in her 38 years of driving.  I think it's fair to say Mrs. Shively played a huge role in creating a positive environment which results in positive student interactions!  Way to go, team :)  

    ~Jodi Testa

Thank you so much to all our students and parents who came to conferences!  Our students and teachers have been working hard on Leadership Notebooks, and the students shared those at conferences, which was VERY impressive!

The SFT PTO has done it again! The teachers enjoyed a slice or two of pizza and dessert just before starting a long night of conferences.  THANK YOU!

Shout Out to all the teachers working so hard on our end-of-year activities coming up:  Family Night, Field Day, and some other fun things we aren't talking about yet!  

Shout Outs to Scott Adams, Brooke Cregan, Amanda Diggens, Kaitlyn Mercer, Danielle Gomez, Reanna Crumpton and Lorle Bolt for representing OAC at the MAT-H Curriculum meetings.  They have dedicated much time to meetings and creating a K-12 curriculum to be implemented district wide.

Congratulations to three individuals who are completing Greenbush Cadre groups in the next month or so:  Lorle Bolt - Principal Cadre, Sabrina Grienke - Teacher Leader Cadre, and Reanna Crumption - Literacy Leader Cadre.  The Cadres are made up of folks in Greenbush districts.  They have invested hours in monthly trainings, and are building networks and ideas to share with the OAC staff.  

I want to give a special shout out to Madison Kurtz, the OAC head cook.  Her year has been challenging with lots of menu changes!!  Madison is extra special - she publishes daily menu changes, helps with special events, treats the staff to goodies, and does all she can to support activities - like making 300 field trip sandwiches!  She does all this in the kindest ways, and never seems ruffled.  Madison is an outstanding leader for OAC.

~Vici Jennings

Congratulations to the following Trailhands Wrestling Club students from OAC and CAC for placing at the State Wrestling Folkstyle Championship Tournament at the Stormont Vail Events Center in Topeka. 




Dallas Caylor

8U 40lbs


Delaney Potter

8U 50lbs


Trevor Bolt

8U 61lbs


Dawson Potter

8U 73lbs


Kennedy Portlock

10U 65lbs


Jaycee Wiscombe

10U 80lbs


Tanner Bolt

12U 72lbs


Mackenzie Roberts

12U 100lbs


Kain Tantaros

14U 145lbs


    ~Lorle Bolt

Maggie Meade is our new district wide social worker.  She is behind the scenes doing intensive work with our students and families throughout the district.  Her work is tremendously valuable and supports some of our greatest needs. This new position has already made a significant difference in the lives of our students.  Thank you so much for all you do for Santa Fe Trail!

    ~Faith Flory & Jim Lentz

Shout out to Amy Potter for all of her time and patience working with students.  Her expertise in speech pathology is a valuable asset to our students and staff.  She supports students and staff both inside and outside of the classroom.  Thanks for all you do at Santa Fe Trail!

    ~Faith Flory

1. I want to thank and praise the ENTIRE staff at OAC. It was a crazy week and everyone pulled together with grace and a wonderful spirit of teamwork. They actually do this every day. I am so grateful for each and every one of them!

2. Megan Reynolds. Our school could not function without her. She helps staff and our students with almost everything, in addition to her own busy job. She covers lunch, covers the nursing office, makes sure we all have our stuff together, and still manages to lighten the mood when we are stressed. OAC is so blessed to have her! 

3. Erin, Lorle, Jackie and Vici. They put out fires, tantrums and give our littles and staff the support and love that we all need. Working through lunch, before and after school, just anything to help us be the best we can be.

4. Karen McVay is a miracle worker as a speech pathologist. She always has a smile, a listening ear and a hug for staff and students. She will help out when we are short staffed and most of the time, does so without being asked. She is a treasure. 

5. All of our paras at OAC. District and 3 Lakes. They often have the toughest jobs at the school and they are always willing to do whatever is needed to help our school run smoothly and support our students.

6. Our dietary ladies at OAC are the best. They work so hard to provide the yummy meals, work on special diets and always make sure the kids get an extra sweet treat every now and then. I am so grateful for them. 

7. Tracy, Mark and Matt for all they do to keep us clean and for helping with at least 20 staff requests per day!

8. All our teachers at OAC. District and SPED. For doing the impossible task of not only teaching our kids, but providing emotional support, making sure they are warm, fed, happy and feel loved.

9. I am thankful for Trisha Graham, our district nurse. She never acts irritated when I ask the same questions 5 times a day, always has time to listen, even when her office is swamped, always has our backs and is unwavering in her support of our positions as nurses. She also can make us laugh even in the toughest situations. She is the best.

Also, Sam C and Grace C. They are always willing to help, offer support, listen or lighten the mood when it is stressful. I am so grateful to have them in our district. 

    ~Dusty Rolla

I want to give a big shout out to:
Kayla Chiddix for always pushing kids and motivating them in PE. The relationships she develops with the kids by setting high expectations and holding them accountable is amazing!
Lari Jarrett for always greeting the kids with a smile and a positive attitude. She does a great job setting the tone for having a positive day!
Jodi Testa for always reminding staff to celebrate our accomplishments! It’s a great way to see how far we’ve come this year!

    ~Ashley Michaelis

Quote for the Weekly

“Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical, and expecting more than others think is possible.”
~ Unknown

Have a Great Week,

Jim Lentz

Superintendent of Schools