On Monday, Dr. Stephanie K. Siddens, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, visited the Miami Trace Local School District. Siddens was greeted at the doors of the elementary school with handmade signs and a warm welcome from four members of the fifth grade student council.
Justin Lanman, Miami Trace Elementary School principal, Sunny Cummings, elementary school vice principal, and Miami Trace Local Schools Superintendent Kim Pittser escorted Dr. Siddens and her colleagues on a tour of the elementary building.
Dr. Siddens was first introduced to a fifth grade science class being taught by Kelly McClaskey. The students were hard at work with their partnered learning exercise and were very pleased to be greeted by such an important visitor.
The tour continued down the third and fourth grade corridors where Dr. Siddens was introduced to some children and staff members in the hallway.
She was then guided to a second grade English Language Arts lesson instructed by Melissa Steele and Desi Reno. Dr. Siddens observed as the students were learning new words and how to pronounce them.
After that, Dr. Siddens visited Grace Miller’s art room and congratulated the students on the construction of their bald eagles that were made in remembrance of 9/11.
Then, the group moved into Emily Phelps’s music room where Dr. Siddens, Lanman, and Pittser all participated in a marching band activity with the students.
Dr. Siddens was led through the commons areas into the gymnasium to observe Gary Powell and Wilson McCoy, who were instructing the students on the rules of cornhole.
Finally, the tour concluded with a walk down the first grade instructional wing where Dr. Siddens was taken to the classroom of Cortney Brackens, where the students were learning their letters along with the sounds they make and the hand gesture for each letter that is used in American Sign Language. Siddens was very pleased to see how involved the students were in the lesson and how much enjoyment they got from it as well.
Vice principal Cummings also shared with Dr. Siddens the concept behind their reward program in the building, “Panther Bucks,” where students can turn their tickets in for a small prize or save them up for an even bigger prize or drawing.
“You all have a wonderful setting at Miami Trace, and I’m thankful you took the time to organize this visit to share the many things going on in your school,” shared Dr. Siddens as she departed.
Pittser was very pleased with how the day went as well.
“State Superintendent Dr. Stephanie Siddens’ visit to our MT campus was exceptional,” said Pittser. “Most of the visit incorporated a tour through Miami Trace Elementary School, the fourth-largest public elementary in the state. It was an awesome opportunity to share the many teaching and learning experiences that occur in our building.”
Monday was a huge day for the students and staff members of Miami Trace Elementary School that will be remembered for years to come.