Students in Jolene Massuch's Professional Baking class learn how to use the new espresso/coffee machine. Serving coffee and baked goods in the Bake Shoppe at Watertown High School are all part of the great learning experience in Family Consumer Sciences. Watertown Unified School District has strong programming in Career and Technical Education to ensure students are college and career ready. Read more.
Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterMarch 2015 
In This Issue


Dear parents, students, friends and neighbors,


It is hard to believe that spring is just around the corner. Spring is a time of renewal, and after this long winter, I think we are all looking forward to a little renewal!

We are excited to kick off our strategic planning process this spring. A community survey will be delivered to your door in April. Please share your input on the work going on in the Watertown Unified School District and the next steps we will be taking to continue moving our district forward. The WUSD has made significant academic gains in the past five years, from increased graduation rates, to exceeding expectations on our state report card. We look forward to continuing this progress! We need your feedback to ensure it is collaborative and representative of our staff and family input.

I am so proud to share that Riverside Middle School's athletic program has received a grant for more than $8,000 from the Justin J. Watt Foundation. This grant will cover uniforms and equipment for every athletic team at RMS. I appreciate the efforts of Tim Gifford and everyone who helped prepare this grant. Our RMS Panthers are so lucky!

Thanks to everyone who attended Trivia Night to support the WUSD Booster Club again this year. We had more than 1,200 participants, and we raised more than $25,000 to support our student athletes. Jody Naatz and everyone who helped make this event successful did a fantastic job. 

There are so many exciting events coming up this month: 

  • Watertown High School spring play, "Smash," at 7:30 p.m. March 6 and 7 in the WHS auditorium. Tickets are available at WHS.
  • National Honor Society Induction Ceremony, Tuesday, March 10
  • District Solo Ensemble, Saturday, March 14
  • MORP dance, WHS, Saturday, March 21 

It is an exciting time of year! 



-Cassandra Schug

Superintendent, Watertown Unified School District

A.E. Bentzin Memorial Speakers Program
Stafford to speak on STEM 

Douglas Stafford, PhD, director, Milwaukee Institute for Drug Discovery at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, will speak to Watertown High School students on Friday, May 15 about STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). The presentation is part of the A.E. "Mike" Bentzin Memorial Watertown High School Assemblies Program, which offers high school students the opportunity to learn from thinkers, researchers and advocates, with special emphasis in the areas of science, arts, technology and mathematics, as well as the humanities and social sciences.
Douglas Stafford, PhD

The A.E. Bentzin Memorial Speakers Program is designed to extend students' view of the world and broaden their horizons for future possibilities. Through the speakers program, students learn about opportunities for careers, and hear from individuals about accomplishments, experiences and work that has had a constructive impact on the world.

Dr. Stafford has more than 20 years of experience working with biomedical product companies. He is an inventor with more than 12 biomedical patents, has formed numerous public and private research collaborations, and participated in the development of several entrepreneurial businesses.

Distinguished Alumni Award: Nominate a graduate

Nominations are now being accepted for the Distinguished Alumni Award. Developed to provide our current students and community with a vision of the outstanding legacies of Watertown High School, award recipients will likely serve as role models for current students and offer the opportunity to celebrate the successes of those who have graduated from WHS. 

Calling all kindergarteners: It's registration time

Watertown 4Kids
Did you know the Watertown Unified School District offers community-based four-year-old kindergarten? Watertown 4Kids is a half-day, four-year-old kindergarten experience based in our community daycares and preschools. Children work with licensed teachers in a play-based curriculum to learn pre-literacy and pre-math skills based on the Wisconsin Model Early Learning Standards. Space currently is available at Gingerbread Preschool, Great Expectations Early Learning Center, Jefferson County Head Start, Mary Linsmeier Preschool and St. Bernard's Preschool. For more information, please contact the Educational Services Center at (920) 262-1460, ext. 3208.

Five-year-old kindergarten 
Applications are now being accepted for five-year-old kindergarten, for children who turn five before Sept. 1, 2015. Pick up the registration paperwork at any elementary school or at the Educational Services Center, 111 Dodge St. For more information, contact any elementary school.  

Developing People and Partnerships
National School Breakfast Week: March 2-6
 Tami Reynolds and Sue Trepte serve up green eggs and ham in honor of Dr. Seuss' birthday and National School Breakfast Week. 

The School Breakfast Program plays an important role in promoting healthy eating habits in children and combating childhood hunger. Studies have shown that students who eat breakfast have improved grades in reading and math, better classroom attentiveness, and decreased absences and tardiness.

During National School Breakfast Week, we not only celebrate the importance of the School Breakfast Program, but also Dr. Seuss' birthday (March 2), by serving green eggs and ham at all of our elementary schools. Yum!

High school students benefit from career and technical education training

CareercollegereadyDid you know career and technical education increases graduation rates and improves academic performance through meaningful experiences? It also enhances the quality of student education, engaging and preparing students for career and post-secondary education, and giving all students leadership opportunities in their fields and communities. 

Watertown Unified School District has strong programming in career and technical education including: 
  • Family Consumer Science (Parenting, Childcare, Textiles/Clothing, Food Science, Culinary Management and Nutrition/Fitness)
  • Certified Nursing Assistant
  • Agriscience/Natural Resources (Veterinary/Animal Science, Plant Science, Natural Resources and Agricultural Mechanics)
  • Technology and Engineering Education (Project Lead the Way, Skills USA, Graphic Communications/Manufacturing/Woods Construction)
  • Youth apprenticeships and co-op work release
Career and technical education programs provide students with a school-to-career connection. These programs are the backbone of a strong, well-educated workforce, which fosters productivity, innovation and entrepreneurship in business and industry, and contributes to America's leadership in the global marketplace.

For more information about the WUSD career and technical education program, contact Watertown High School at WHS at (920) 262-7500.
Staff spotlight: Jalissa Booth and Daisy Kylmanen

Jalissa Booth grew up in Sussex, Wis. She graduated from University Lake School in Hartland, where her mom still teaches, and UW-Stout. 

Jalissa Booth
"My mother and my second grade teacher, Judy Buenger-Smith, who passed away of leukemia when I was in high school, inspired me to become a teacher," Booth said.
Her favorite part about being an art teacher in the WUSD is that she works with people who are passionate and enthusiastic about helping shape young minds. "I love the collaborative atmosphere and how my coworkers embrace and incorporate art into their everyday classrooms," Booth said. "I also really enjoy having bosses who embrace my creative spirit and allow me to do amazing things with my students, like the 6 x 8-foot mosaic mural that will be installed next month at Webster Elementary School. A mural for Lebanon Elementary is my next task!"
When asked to share a favorite school success story, Booth proudly talked about a fifth-grade student who had a major issue with truancy. "After allowing her to join art club, she has only missed one day in the past month," Booth said.  
In her free time, she enjoys mountain biking and spending time with her new niece, Aria.

When her students and colleagues talk about her, Booth hopes they smile and say how fun and easy she is to work with. Since she's only in her third year of teaching, Booth feels it's a bit daunting to offer advice, but believes it's important never to forget the reason you got in to teaching. She also shared a favorite quote:
"They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel."
-Carl W. Buehner

Diane "Daisy" Kylmanen grew up on a farm on the north side of Watertown and has lived or worked in Watertown her entire life. She's had a lot of different jobs but said working for the school district has been her favorite. She served as a substitute teacher briefly before being offered a position as a special education paraprofessional at Lincoln Elementary School, where she worked for 15 years. The last five years at Douglas Elementary, she has worked in many different grades.
Daisy Kylmanen

"One of the things I love about this job is that you really feel like you are making a difference as you watch the children grow," Kylmanen said. "The teachers at Douglas are so happy to have support. I really feel like I'm part of the team."

She hopes students think she's a friendly teacher who engages them in a fun way of learning. "I believe it is so important to smile and share a laugh daily," Kylmanen said. "I think my coworkers can depend on me to take charge in a situation and be flexible to handle any task given." 

Kylmanen said it is such a joy to see students she has worked with out in the community, grown up and succeeding. She remembered one student in particular who was so shy and withdrawn that he barely talked. "Years later, I saw his name in the program at a high school concert," she said. "Sure enough, not only was he there in front of all those people, but he was singing. I felt so proud of him!"

Kylmanen used to say she didn't really have a job, she just got paid for doing something she loved. "I had a kindergartener ask me once, 'Mrs. K, why do you have so many wrinkles?' I said, because I smile so much!" She credits her cheerful attitude for her nickname. "It just fits me," she said. 

She especially enjoys helping with PTO-sponsored activities at Douglas. "Seeing and interacting with the students and families outside of school is so rewarding," Kylmanen said. 

In her spare time, she enjoys baking, knitting, trying a variety of new crafts and planning family gatherings. "Having a husband who supports me and understands the joy I feel in giving to others is just the icing on the cake," Kylmanen said. "I love sharing my life with my family, and my Douglas family." Her advice? "Choose a career that drives your passion, and you will be blessed with a life of love and happiness."

Teacher Appreciation Week: May 4-8

Thurgood Marshall observed, "None of us got where we are solely by pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps. We got here because somebody bent down and helped us pick up our boots." 

Teacher Appreciation Week is May 4-8. It's a great opportunity to thank a teacher who made a difference in your life! This week represents a special time to recognize the work of the individuals who have chosen to educate our children. Please take time to call, or send him or her an email or card. 

More often than not, we remember the people who helped us pick up our boots, and frequently, one of those people was a teacher.

Spring break: Mark your calendar

Spring break is Monday, March 30 through Friday, April 3. Mark your calendars, and hope for sun and warm temperatures.

Meeting the Needs of a Diverse Population
Alcohol and drug abuse prevention committee formed

A committee of teachers, parents, students, administration and community partners has been meeting monthly to study local data, prevention and intervention programs in order to ensure the district is giving students the necessary tools to make positive choices. The committee currently is working on a needs assessment to guide recommendations.  

The committee will also identify evidence-based or research-based programs and practices that could positively impact students.  Committee members plan to present findings and recommendations to the school board later this year.  

For more information, please contact Ann Rumpf or Sara Dood at Watertown High School, (920) 262-7500.