Wednesday, December 16, 2015

MS-HS Open House

On Monday, December 14, the faculty organized an open house to give community members the opportunity to tour the new and remodeled areas in the MS-HS.  One highlight of the night was Mrs. Butzler's dedication of the time capsule that will be preserved behind the date stone.  Below is the text from her speech.

Honoring Legacy
Cultivating Opportunities
Pursuing Excellence

These words are the foundation of Cashton Public Schools.  In the midst of the construction, the move, and getting ready for this dedication, we have found ourselves numerous times reminiscing in the basement of the school.  As we work to “purge” the old, as well as, preserve the past documents and memorabilia that are important to our legacy, we have been sifting through the history of our lives--this school’s life and the life of this community.  In doing so, have been given a glimpse of what life was like throughout the history of our school.  The earliest historical documents that we have found date all the way back to 1860.  What was life like in 1860?  What do the documents that we have found about the early days of our school say about our students, our staff, and our community?

The answer is...the more things change, the more they stay the same.

At the time this school began, Abraham Lincoln was president and the United States was enduring a civil war.  As the years have passed by, this school district has stood the test of time...through the civil war, through the Wright brothers first flight, through two world wars, through the “Kennedy” era, a civil rights movement, space exploration, the invention of the computer, the I-phone, and social media--the list could go on and on with how much things have changed over the years.

However...the more things change, the more they stay the same.

We Value…
Respect, integrity, and character-I am certain the students, staff, and the residents of  of 1860 Cashton valued respect, integrity, and character as much as we do today.
We Value...
Family and community involvement--This community chose to invest, once again in our schools.  Without your support, this construction project would not have been possible.
We Value...
Leadership development
Persistence and work ethic
We Value...
The challenge to grow as the world grows--Our school has most certainly grown and changed as the world has grown and changed.
We Value...
Engaged and healthy citizens
Tradition while looking toward the future
Our rural identity
And...We Value...
Academic Excellence

Once again, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Honoring Legacy--The very values of our school district, honor our legacy--the legacy of the students, the staff, the culture of our schools, and our community.
Cultivating Opportunity--This new building investment, cultivates opportunities for our students that we have never had before--new curricular offerings, the ability to continue to be healthy and engaged citizens.
Pursuing Excellence---As Mr. Bell has said, just have we have for over 150 years, Cashton Public schools will continue to pursue excellence today and well into the future.

Mrs. Muraski’s Desktop Publishing class worked hard putting the contents of this time capsule together last spring--the spring of 2015.  What story will the contents of this time capsule tell about us...about what we value?  Included within it, we have our 2015 Cashton High School Yearbook and a cell phone-- of course.  There are several books including “Harry Potter” and “The Lord of the Rings,” a copy of the Cashton Record, an Algebra textbook, and several other items that will hopefully give our descendants a glimpse into what life was like “way back in 2015.  Will these items tell our story?  One of Legacy, Opportunity, and the Pursuit of Excellence?  Will these items accurately portray the dedicated individuals that make up the students, the staff, the families, and the community that we live in… I truly hope so…. only time will tell.

Community is defined as….1.  ”a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common”--- and 2.  “a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals.”

Back in 1860, way before Hillary Clinton declared that “it takes a village to raise a child,” it is clear that this community was committed, engaged, and proud of our schools.  The legacy of Cashton Public Schools that we work so hard to honor tells us this is so.

Once again, the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Today, in 2015, our community remains constant, committed, and proud of Cashton Public Schools. So...on behalf of our students, staff, and this community, I dedicate this time capsule back to “us”---the students, staff, and community of Cashton, the legacy of who we were, the opportunity of who we can become, and our endless quest of the “pursuit of excellence.”   As Theodore Roosevelt once said, “The more you know about the past, the more prepared you are for the future.”

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

MS-HS Project, November 18, 2015

It has been a long time since I shared an update.  After a long frustrating delay the aluminum panels are finally being installed.  We will spend this winter developing the plans for the final site projects at both the elementary and MS-HS.  Below is a brief recap of the work completed over the last few months.

MS-HS Project

  • Over the past month the bells and paging system became functional again, the column covers in the lobby were installed, the AD office countertops were installed, and many of the final punch list items were completed.
  • The aluminum panels and soffit installation at the front of the school has finally begun.  We are excited for the the exterior to be complete and we are hopeful that it will be done by the end of the month.  
  • The final furniture orders are being organized and will be delivered by the end of December.
  • All of the column covers (existing cafeteria and new lobby) will be painted a matching shade of maroon that will match the wall color in the lobby.  

MS-HS Open House and Dedication Ceremony
The administrative team is planning a dedication and celebration of the MS-HS project completion. The dedication will be Monday, December 14 at 5:30 pm.  The date and time were selected to coincide with the MS-HS Holiday Concert.  We will start with a short dedication in the MS-HS Cafeteria.  After the dedication we will offer tours of the new areas.  Each teacher who is in a new area has volunteered their time for this event.  Coffee and rolls will be served.

The administrative team is also planning a community-wide open house for the start of the 2015-2016 school year.  We are targeting fall fest weekend for this event.  Our vision is that this event  will be a chance for the District to showcase not only our facilities, but also our excellent students and community partnerships.

Final Site Projects
Dan Dreessens from Delta 3 Engineering has completed the preliminary civil plans for the Elementary and MS-HS site development projects.  These plans will be shared with the community and faculty facilities committees over the next couple weeks.  The elementary playground committee has identified their top vendor choice for playground equipment and as started to provide specific feedback related to the type of equipment and site features that will be a part of the primary playground.  Our goal will be to have the proposal to the Board of Education for final approval at the December Board of Education meeting.  The elementary site development is on track for spring-summer 2016 construction.  We are taking a "wait and see" approach with MS-HS project.  The design for the parking lot assumes work to be completed as part of the 2017 Department of Transportation Hwy 33 project.  The DOT recently announced that the project has been delayed.   There is no indication the project will be canceled, however, prior to moving forward with MS-HS parking lot redesign, we want to be confident the DOT project will be completed within a year.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September 22, 2015 MS-HS Project

The MS-HS project is almost to substantial completion.  All expected areas were ready for the start of school on September 8.  In can’t be stressed enough how meeting this deadline would not have been possible without the extra efforts of many staff members.  The last weeks of summer were hectic, but ultimately the main office, lobby, new bathrooms, conference room, fitness center, remodeled classrooms, and parking lot were functional for the first day.  Despite a torrential downpour and a village power outage, the first day was success.  The final LMC construction and installation of bookshelves was completed during the first week of school.  The library and LMC learning areas are now being used by students.

To reach substantial completion the following items still need to be completed:

  • Aluminum panels and soffit installation at the front of the school.
  • Stairwell flooring
  • Column coverings in the main lobby
  • School Store casework completion
  • Final Punchlist Items.

Mrs. Butzler and I have started to plan a community celebration.  The program will include a short dedication ceremony and tours of the high school.   We feel it is important that the project is 100% complete prior to this ceremony.

9-22-15 Entrance
9-22-15 Entrance
9-22-15 Main Office 
9-22-15 Main Office
9-22-15 Cafeteria
9-22-15 Lobby Area
9-22-15 Lobby/Cafeteria
9-22-15 Outer Guidance
9-22-15 Mrs. Butzler's Office
9-22-15 LMC
9-22-15 LMC
9-22-15 LMC
9-22-15 LMC Entrance
9-22-15 2nd Floor Hallway
9-22-15 LMC Entrance
9-22-15 Overlook

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

MS-HS Project, August 18, 2015

The most common question that I have been asked throughout the summer is:  “Are you going to be ready for the start of school?”  Every time my answer has been the same: “Ready enough.”
The project at the MS-HS is nearing completion.  The transformation over the past two months has been remarkable.  The last couple weeks have been particularly productive.  Despite all of the hard work, there is still much that will need to be accomplished over the next three weeks.  We expect that the main entrance, main office, stairwell, hallways, and new bathrooms will be fully functional.  In the unlikely event that there are unanticipated complications, we have a plan in place to start school without access to portions of the new areas.  The new LMC will be completed around September 8, but we are anticipating needing a couple weeks to move-in and prepare for student use.  Our goal is to have the LMC ready by September 22. Al, Gary, and the entire maintenance staff are working with the contractor to make sure that all areas are clean and ready for students.

The exterior panels that will be installed above the brick on the new addition (currently plywood) will not be installed until mid-October.  The panels had to measured once the structure was built.  After measurement it takes about 8 weeks to manufacture and install the product.

8-18-15 School from Street
8-18-15 Entrance

8-18-15 Front of School 

8-18-15 Main Entrance Addition
8-18-15 Main Entrance Lobby 
8-18-15 Main Office
8-18-15 Main Office
8-18-15 Main Office

8-18-15 Outer Guidance Office

8-18-15 Principal's Office
8-18-15 Room 223

Friday, July 31, 2015

MS-HS Project July 31, 2015

7-28-15 Main Entrance Addition
7-28-15 Main Entrance Addition
7-28-15 LMC
7-28-15 LMC
7-28-15 LMC

7-28-16 New Sidewalk

7-28-15 Room 224
7-28-15 Room 223

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

MS-HS Project, July 22, 2015

7-21-15 Main Entrance Addition
7-21-15 Main Entrance Addition
7-21-15 2nd Floor Addition
7-21-15 2nd Floor Addition
7-21-15 Overlook and LMC
7-21-15 Main Entrance Lobby
7-21-15 Main Office
7-21-15 New Sidewalk at Front of School
7-21-15 Overlook/LMC

7-21-15 Room 223
7-21-15 School Store

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

MS-HS Project, July 15, 2015

Major developments over the past two weeks:

  • Water service to the MS-HS has been reconnected with a new meter and pressure booster system.
  • Footings, foundation, and underground electrical and plumbing are complete.
  • 1st and 2nd floor concrete floors have been poured.
  • Steel joist and metal decking for the 1st and 2nd floor is complete.
  • Interior masonry walls are complete.

Major development over the next two weeks:

  • The installation of the roof will begin on July 20.  
  • Exterior brick will be begin no later than July 20.
  • 1st floor gypsum board wall assembly.    

The recent rain has slowed progress.  The project is about 5 days behind schedule, however, the building will be ready enough for classes on September 8th.  Any aspects of the project that are not complete by September 8 will not inhibit the start of the 2015-2016 school year.

Major developments over the past two weeks:

  • Construction of breakout learning rooms and technology closet.
  • Installation of new doors and frames.
  • Painting
  • Ceiling
  • Installation of recycled casework 

Major development over the next two weeks:

  • Carpet and Floor patching
  • Furniture
7-14-15 Main Entrance

7-14-15 Main Entrance 
7-14-15 Main Entrance 
7-14-15 Main Entrance 
7-14-15 Main Office

7-14-15 Main Office from Lobby
7-14-15 Main Entrance Lobby/Mrs. Schmitz's Room