Riverside Middle School was the site of the kickoff event for the national SkillsUSA Championships for middle schools. Skills USA is a partnership of students, teachers and industry members working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. It provides experience for students in leadership, teamwork, citizenship and character development. 
Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterJanuary 2015 
In This Issue
Watertown Unified School District: Celebrate our success


Dear parents, students, friends and neighbors,


Happy New Year! I hope 2015 finds you and your family happy and healthy. A new year represents a great opportunity for reflection and celebration. I am proud of how our students and staff continue to represent the Watertown community in a positive way:
  • Students at Endeavor Charter School and those in our REACH program, ages 18-21 with special needs, are completing their first successful semester.
  • The national launch of Skills USA for middle school students was held at Riverside Middle School.
  • The Watertown High School Academic Decathlon team is preparing for a run at the state championship.
  • In the first semester of the 2014-2015 school year, our students have shown tremendous growth in their math and literacy skills. 
  • Our students competed in athletics, excelled in co-curricular activities, attended dances and festivals, and performed at concerts, plays and musicals. 
  • Our culinary students prepared delicious meals for prestigious guests, from our Rotarians to our distinguished alumni. 
  • Our students and staff have given back to the community through fundraisers and hours of volunteer time at many events, including Bread and Roses, Rake Fest and Movember.
  • We kicked off our new Talent Development (Gifted and Talented) program, collaborative time at WHS and a new schedule to allow for collaboration, intervention/enrichment and additional math time at RMS. 
  • Students at Schurz Elementary School and RMS have been learning about positive behaviors through PBIS, and students at Webster Elementary School are using their new library media space for learning.
  • Our students at WHS and RMS have once again been able to participate in Challenge Day and Courage Day.

Plan to join us for the Arts, Beats and Eats event on Sunday, January 11, at Watertown High School. Don't miss the opportunity to see and hear great presentations and performances, from visual arts to music performances. You'll also have an opportunity to sample tasty dishes prepared by our family and consumer science students. This festival really has something for everyone.

I look forward to seeing you at our many upcoming events this year.


-Cassandra Schug

Superintendent, Watertown Unified School District

EnhancingEnhancing Teaching and Learning 
Kindergarten: Ready, set, register

Registration for 4-year-old and 5-year-old kindergarten will be 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27, and Wednesday, Jan. 28 at the Watertown Unified School District Educational Service Center, 111 Dodge St. 

To receive your registration packet, please contact:

4K: Cory Dittman, Schurz Elementary School at (920) 262-1485 
5K: Terri Danner, Webster School at (920) 262-1490

To be eligible for 4K, a child must be age 4 on or before Sept. 1, 2015. To be eligible for 5K, a child must be age 5 on or before Sept. 1. 

Please note that 4K registration is a "first come, first served" process. Certain sites and times fill quickly. Registration forms will not be accepted before Tuesday, Jan. 27.

Plan ahead for summer school

Online registration for summer school opens in April, and summer school runs June 22 - July 23. Please plan ahead to ensure your child can enroll in the classes he or she needs:
  • Registration opens for all students: 4 p.m. Thursday, April 9
  • Kindergarten through fourth grade: Scheduling closes Friday, May 8
  • Middle and high school: Scheduling closes Friday, June 12
Starting April 9, courses may be scheduled online anytime. Schurz Elementary School will be open 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on April 9 for those who wish to register in person.

Note that summer school only runs weekdays, Monday through Thursday. Visit the Watertown Unified School District website for more information.

DevelopingDeveloping People and Partnerships
Winter weather preparations: Severe weather cancellation process

Watertown Unified School District uses Skylert to notify parents and staff of cancellations, inclement weather and emergencies.The district also contacts the following television and radio stations:
  • WISN-TV Channel 12 (includes WISN.com, WMIL 106.1 FM, The Brew 97.3, News/Talk 1130, KKKV -V100FM and WOKY 920AM)
  • WTMJ-TV Channel 4 (includes WTMJ-AM 620 and WKTI 94.5)
  • Fox 6 WITI
  • WMTV-TV Channel 15 (includes nbc15.com)
  • WISC-TV Channel 3
  • WTTN-AM 1580 (includes WBEV - 1430AM and WXRO - 95.3 FM)
  • WFAW-AM 940 (includes Lite FM - 107.3 WSJY and Kool WKCH-FM 106.5,)
Every attempt is made to cancel school by 6:15 a.m., but in extreme circumstances this may not always be possible. When the public schools close, parochial schools in the district close as well because all schools use the same bus transportation.
Watertown Athletic Booster Club trivia night

On Saturday, Feb. 21, the Watertown Athletic Booster Club (WABC) will host its 10th annual Trivia Night, featuring the theme, "A Blast From The Past." The event will be held in the gym at Watertown High School. Doors open at 5:30 p.m., and the event begins
at 7 p.m. Participants are encouraged to decorate their tables or dress to fit the theme. 

The event is open to all high school students and adults from area communities. Trivia Night raffle tickets are $10 each for a chance to win $500 or $1,000, and will be sold at most sporting events.

The Watertown Athletic Booster Club has given nearly $50,000 annually to support athletic programs (buses, uniforms, equipment and college scholarships) at Watertown High School. Last year, the event had two corporate sponsors as well as 13 other sponsors. More than 1,200 people participated. 

Reservations can be made through any athlete, or by contacting Jody Naatz, WABC. Please plan to pay for your table in advance. The cost is $10 per person with a maximum of eight people per table. For more information, please contact Jody at (920) 261-1492, (920) 206-2248 (7 a.m. to 4 p.m.) or jody.naatz@yahoo.com. 
Adult School Crossing Guard Recognition Week: Jan. 12-16
Through all seasons, crossing guards keep kids safe.

Stop and thank the crossing guard in your neighborhood this week, during Wisconsin's Adult School Crossing Guard Recognition Week, designed to recognize the contributions of adult school crossing guards who help make sure students travel safely to and from school.

In the program's 43 years of existence, a child has never been struck by a motor vehicle while crossing a Watertown intersection that was monitored by a crossing guard. Currently, there are 15 adult crossing guards who monitor intersections throughout the City of Watertown. Crossing guards for the 2014-2015 school year are Greg Bruske, Shirley Buss, Marlene Butler, Pam Capin, Doug Clemmons, Toni Herschi, Machelle Hoeft, Gloria Jones, Marge Kotur, Don Kreiziger, Dawn Learned, Bonnie Loukota, Felix Padron, Pam Schultz and Laura Zastrow.  

Newly  hired crossing guards receive training on the rules of the road, traffic control and pedestrian safety. Police patrol officers also are assigned to each of these intersections. During an average school week, crossing guards help more than 2,100 individuals cross these intersections. Crossing guards now have highly visible clothing and LED lights that are attached to each of their stop signs. This new clothing and equipment add a higher degree of safety to the program. 

Staff spotlight: Bryan Bremberger and Susan Schnuckel

We hope you enjoy this new feature in Out of the Blue to honor Watertown Unified School District employees who go above and beyond, doing or working on something special in our district:

Bryan Bremberger has taught eighth-grade Science at Riverside Middle School since 2006.
He is a 2005 graduate of Ripon College, Ripon, Wis., where he earned a degree in Biology and a certification to teach grades 6-12. 

"Last fall, I attended a workshop on flipped learning, and it completely changed my life as a professional educator," Bremberger said. "I love working side by side with my students. In my classroom, I am able to talk about science with each student every day. Each day brings new challenges, not only for the students, but the educators as well. However, that is something I cherish about this profession: learning and growing along with the students."

Bremberger's favorite days are when a student has an "a ha moment" and finally gets it. "It takes grit to get through my science class," Bremberger said. "When a student finally sees the fruit of his or her perseverance, nothing makes me happier."

You may be surprised to know that as a former baseball and football coach at Pewaukee High School, Bremberger coached J.J. Watt. "He was, and still is, a remarkable man," Bremberger said.

When students and colleagues talk about Bremberger, he hopes they say he cares. "I care about this school, I care about them, I care about their family, I care about their success," Bremberger said.

Bremberger's advice? "If you keep the student at the center of every educational decision, you can never go wrong." 

Susan Schnuckel, an instructional paraprofessional with the Watertown Unified School District, was born and raised in Watertown, where she still lives today. She describes her husband, three children, two grandchildren and four pets as her own little adventure (or headaches) in life but said at least they keep it interesting. 

"The one thing that most people don't know about me is that I was the mascot of Lincoln Elementary School when I was a member of the cheerleading squad," Schnuckel said. She has been working in the district since 1995, and has worked at two schools, RMS and Lincoln Elementary. 

"I hope my colleagues and students would say that I am always willing to listen, follow directions and go above beyond without being asked," Schnuckel said. One
of the best parts of working for the school district? "The smiles of all the kids that I have met throughout my tenure here just warms my heart."

She described one of her favorite success stories: "I had twin sisters in my kindergarten class one year. When they arrived at school, their previous reading education was not the best. But I was up to the challenge, and after working with them for a month, their reading level was comparable to their peers. The following year, I was blessed to teach their brother how to read. The smiles on their faces were enough to tell me that they appreciated every moment I spent with them."

Schnuckel's advice? "Never take things for granted but always do your best."

MeetingMeeting the Needs of a Diverse Population
Dialogue for Student Success enhances well-being of youth, community

Dialogue for Student Success is a coalition founded in 1995 by Jim Schultz, a retired Riverside Middle School counselor. He developed it to bring together outside groups and agencies to work with the school district on issues affecting youth. Jim always stressed that this group "was not here to shame or blame each other, but to work together."  

After Jim's retirement, Ann Rumpf, Tammy Foerster and Karen Sturtevant took on the task of ensuring this group continued to meet four times during the school year. An advisory board also meets to develop the agenda and arrange for meeting speakers to share information on timely topics. All agencies represented at the meetings have an opportunity to share updates with the group as well. Several high school students now also attend the advisory board meetings and regular group meetings to offer their point of view and give input on topics and speakers.

All meetings are held from 9-11 a.m. at the Educational Service Center, 111 Dodge St. in Watertown. Anyone interested in participating should contact Tammy Foerster at (920) 262-7500, ext. 6601.