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Grosse Ile Township Schools

The Bridge ~ Linking School and Community

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Grosse Ile Township Schools

Season’s Season’s Greetings Greetings and Best Wishes and Best Wishes for afor Happy New a YearYear Happy New From From Grosse Grosse IleIle Township Township Schools of SchoolsBoard Boardand of Education Education and Administration Administration

Administration Office……...362-2555 23276 East River Road Superintendent: Dena Dardzinski Business Manager/Bldg. & Grounds: Tony Krukowski Executive Assistant: Sharon Warren Student Services/Curriculum: Patti Kilar Payroll/Benefits: Susan Richardson Bookkeeper/Accounts Payable: Shannon Fowler Secretary to Business Manager: Judy Ventro Technology Director: Jennifer Park Technology Assistant: Ryan Moore Receptionist/Secretary: Grace Nashlen Grosse Ile High School (9-12)………..362-2400 7800 Grays Drive Principal: James Stewart Asst. Principal: Terry Flint School Hours: 7:30 a.m-2:30 p.m. Half Day: 7:30 a.m.-11:00 a.m. Grosse Ile Middle School (6-8)..........362-2500 23270 East River Road Principal: Dave Tucker School Hours: 7:30 a.m. - 2:25 p.m. Half Day: 7:30 a.m. -10:55 a.m. Meridian Elementary (3-5)................362-2700 26700 Meridian Principal: Dr. Diane Sanford School Hours: 8:10 a.m. - 3:05 p.m. Half Day: 8:10 a.m. - 11:35 a.m. Parke Lane Elementary (K-2)...……..362-2600 21610 Parke Lane Principal: Dr. Patricia Nordstrom School Hours: 8:10 a.m. - 3:05 p.m. Half Day: 8:10 a.m. - 11:35 a.m.

Dates to Remember Dec. 19 - Jan. 3

NO SCHOOL - Winter Break

Jan. 4

School Resumes

Jan. 20,21,22

1/2 Day High School (Exams)

Jan. 25

NO SCHOOL Secondary Records Day Elementary Prof. Develop.

Feb. 15

NO SCHOOL President’s Day

The Bridge

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage Paid Grosse Ile, MI 48138 Permit #16

Grosse Ile Township Schools 23276 E. River Road Grosse IlE, MI 48138 734-362-2555

THe Bridge Linking School & Community

December, 2009

The Gift of Giving Dena A. Dardzinski, Superintendent As I enter my final months as Superintendent of Schools, I want to say “thank you Grosse Ile” for the many gifts you have provided me. As a school district and community, your support of children and education has been immeasurable. Together we have weathered many “adventures in education” – from the passing of the bond and sinking funds, to construction; from the improvement in our educational offerings, to the maintenance of our excellent academic standards; from the good financial stewardship to the unprecedented budgetary adversity. We have made huge strides in our technological infrastructure, improved our communication system, and are making good our promises to become a 21st century school. As the challenges keep being presented to us, individually and collectively we have the ability to choose our attitudes and how we approach those challenges. Each challenge is an unwrapped gift that has new ideas, new ways of doing things or new opportunities that we might not have pursued unless forced to do so. One of my first written columns when coming to Grosse Ile was on how “together we could make a difference.” That will never change, no matter who is leading the charge. The only way Grosse Ile will manage the hardships and celebrate its accomplishments is through the continued involvement of a caring community. Pulling together for the “good of the group” will help to maintain the high expectations and focus in a sensible manner…putting the emphasis on the proper priorities. Throughout my career, there has been one funding crisis after another. This moment in time presents another unwrapped gift – the opportunity to create a state-wide long-term funding mechanism for public education. Our current system is not working and is not equitable to all children across Michigan. This is our time to get involved, speak up and help to promote a reasonable plan that answers the annual problems we experience. Be watching for how we can help to make the needed changes. Very few things are more important in the lives of children, but also in the health of our State, than a quality educational program. Through the gift of challenges, change will be inevitable. Eric Hoffer states: “In times of change, the learners will inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.” We have asked and been asked to do things differently over the past year. Some of the changes have been easier to accept than others. All of them have been necessary. Grosse Ile and its citizens must continue to be the “learners” and make the necessary adaptations to continue to survive and thrive. As the holiday season quickly approaches, the community and school district have so much for which to be thankful. The biggest attribute and gift we have to offer is our ability to wrap our arms around a challenge and see our way through it. Regardless of who is serving as your Superintendent, Grosse Ile will find the wherewithal to make the right educational decisions. Together…we will get through it all. BUDGET THINK TANK During the months of December and January, the school district will be utilizing the talents, wisdom and knowledge of an ad hoc committee, the Budget Think Tank, to plan for the 2010-2011 school year. This group will refer to the information that was collected during last year’s Budget Action Plan process, gather updated data, and “look fresh” at our financial challenges and opportunities. The Budget Think Tank is a non-decision making committee that will present recommendations to the Board of Education at the end of January on how to proceed with building the next school year’s budget. The agendas, minutes of meetings and recommendations will be posted on the district’s website. INTRODUCING…OPPORTUNITY GROSSE ILE!


After months of planning and collaborating, a new community group is emerging…OPPORTUNITY GROSSE ILE. This citizen group is basically our local form of a Chamber of Commerce, promoting the wonderful advantages our community has to offer and looking for new ways to tell our story (marketing). This initiative was an outcome from last year’s Budget Action Plan to have a joint community marketing effort. A new WELCOME HOME Center is opening very soon in the Victorian Commons on Macomb Street. All businesses, non-profit groups, and community members are invited to help to have information available for newcomers and those looking to get involved with our community. Be watching for the Grand Opening and other ways that you can help to promote our home town and unique island living.

The Bridge ~ Linking School and Community

The Bridge ~ Linking School and Community

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Grosse Ile Township Schools

2009-10 Board of Education Dr. Daniel P. Murphy President Ms. Marianne Malone Vice-President Mrs. Terese Hunter Secretary Mr. William Tuinier Treasurer Mrs. Collie Hooper-Yan Trustee Dr. Gregory Goyert Trustee Mrs. Suzanne Sassack Trustee VISION FOR THE FUTURE The Grosse Ile Township Schools will continue to be an A+ school district that offers the very best educational opportunities to the children of this

On Tuesday, November 3rd, while classmates were sleeping in, 40 student council members prepared to welcome over 100 students from five other schools to G.I.H.S. This dedicated group of leaders was hosting a Fall Training Institute, coordinated by the Michigan Association of Student Councils (MASC) and the Michigan Association of Honor Societies (MAHS). The theme of this conference was “Superheroes” which played off the theme for homecoming and allowed the student council to reuse homecoming shirts and decorations. Delegates from all three Livonia High Schools; Churchill, Franklin and Stevenson, as well as Riverview High School and our own middle school joined the high school student council in a great day of leadership training. The Grosse Ile High School Student Council is an active participant in many of the events coordinated by the Michigan Association of Student Councils. Besides the Fall Training Institute, the high school student council participates in a regional conference in March at Schoolcraft College, the state conference, held at Grand Travers Resort in either late March or early April, an Executive Forum in Lansing in May and Summer Leadership Camp at Albion College in July. Attendees have great opportunities to network, gain new insight and ideas and see the “big picture” beyond the walls of the high school. These conferences are invaluable experiences for the students and we hope to continue our active participation for many years to come. Thank you for the continued cooperation of the community, especially the parents of the student council members. Through their unwavering patience, volunteer time and financial assistance, they are the support structure for this program.

community. The physical environment must support learning in facilities that are safe, developmentally appropriate



able to prepare students for their future. The Grosse Ile Township Schools will continue to be a community focal point of pride.

Our Mission Statement The Mission of the Grosse Ile Township Schools, in cooperation with students, parents, and community, is to teach the knowledge, skills, and behaviors necessary for every student to lead a successful life.

by: Karen Hurley, Key Club Advisor

Leadership Conference Hosted by Grosse Ile High School Student Council

Grosse Ile Alumni Association

They have plans to create a garden around this historic lintel where the 1911 Building once stood.

The Alumni Association was formed in 2009 as a voluntary, non-profit organization to provide a means for Grosse Ile alumni to maintain contact with each other, the community and schools. If you have any interest in becoming a member of the Association or making a donation to the garden please contact one of the Alumni Association Board members. Pete Coan ('53) not pictured, Joan Stickler ('56), Dallas Kelsey ('62), Tammy Taylor ('78), Greg Karmazin ('83), Marc Lafayette ('85), Brian The Grosse Ile Alumni Association Board gath- Clayton ('92), Molly Clayton ('91), Suzi Honered for a photograph around the 1911 Building kala ('95) and Matt Honkala ('95). lintel in front of Grosse Ile Middle School.


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The Key Club wanted to help kids in other parts of the world get the things they need to survive and grow. They had the power to do it and did it quite well. Each teacher received an orange collection box and the teacher who collected the most money by their first hour won donuts. The Club had no idea how much students wanted these donuts. At time of the writing of this article, an exact amount was not available, but can be estimated over $2,000. Mr. Butler’s classes won the contest by contributing $647. Mr. Flood’s fourth hour came in second place with approximately $400. The funds in excess of $2,000 will help Key Club get things like water, education and medicine to the children who need it most. Our efforts show that we believe ZERO children should be without the basic necessities that we often take for granted.

GIEF Supports 21st Century Technology By: Jennifer Park, Technology Director During the 2008-09 school year SMART Boards and document cameras began invading the district’s classrooms. SMART Boards brought curriculum to life, engaged students, and found its way into all curricular areas. Document cameras (ELMOs) allow teachers to project books, objects, student writing samples (supports Collin’s Writing Program), or any other item with ease.

2009 K’Nex Bridge Builders By: Mrs. Bryan, GATES 8 teacher For the past nine out of eleven years, the GATES 8 class has designed and constructed bridges from K’Nex pieces. The object was to use geometry and physics to create a symmetrical bridge able to withstand a substantial amount of weight suspended from the base of the bridge. GATES students typically endeavor projects to challenge them that would normally be accomplished in high school classes. The student-triad teams researched bridge structures and types, formed hypotheses, drew preliminary and final blueprints of their bridge, conducted testing, and compiled a log of development during the construction period.

Because the technology was placed into classrooms where teachers were trained on best integration practices, the technology quickly became a vital tool in engaging and educating students. As more and more teachers began learning about the benefits of teaching digital students with technology, the demand for this technology Many weeks and sore fingers later, the grew. bridges competed in The bond passage in 2006 provided the district with $2.3 million dol- the weight-bearing lars in technology upgrades. The district’s technology foundation is competition. The prior now solid and ready for 21st century classrooms. However, state champion team’s budget cuts placed the district’s technology growth in jeopardy. It bridge (2006) held 90 would be impossible to continue adding vital technology tools to pounds before succlassrooms while the state contemplates large budget cuts to our cumbing to the lead weights. This year, district. that record was broken In an effort to continue moving the district’s technology program for- by the “K”Nextion” team of Lyle Antieau, Nicole Marek, and ward, Jennifer Park, the district’s Technology Director wrote a grant Nick Martinelli. Their bridge held 110 pounds without any sign of to GIEF. The grant, which totals $36,000, was for SMART Boards stress. We ran out of lead weights and room in the bucket to fully and document cameras (ELMOs). The grant will provide each school prove the true strength of the bridge! with at least four SMART Boards and four document cameras. The grant was awarded on November 9th and the technology should begin Other GATES bridge teams are “Puente del Sol” (Kayla McMahon, Renee Scavone, and Alex Moyer), “Harbinger entering classrooms right before the holidays. Bridge” (Missy Coolsaet, Jack Gatti, and Noah Gilreath), Thank you to GIEF for recognizing that technology is not an “extra”, “Grande Ponte” (Olivia Koklanaris, Chad Schultze, and Mitchell but rather a necessary tool of 21st century education. As Karen Roth, Williams), and “The Rainbow V2” (Tony Christou, Joey Lafayretired Curriculum Director stated, “Technology is to our students, ette, and Alissa Rhode). what paper and pencil were to students 100 years ago. Technology is the tool in which teachers use to engage and teach students.”


The Bridge Dec 09  

The Grosse Ile Township Schools December 2009 Bridge.

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