As we continue to progress with our transitions and reconfigurations for 2020-2021; progress has been made in regards to the elementary facilities and other milestones for our school district. The school board has approved the name for the current elementary; effective the end of this school year, the current elementary school will be named Badlands Elementary School. Our two elementary K-5 buildings in service for 2020-2021 will be Badlands Elementary and Fox Hills Elementary; to clarify and is often asked, the current elementary (Badlands) will be used to its full capacity next year and is not being decommissioned in any way with the new elementary building. The attendance boundary for these two facilities has also been officially approved at the Board level with a minor adjustment from the first proposal. The boundary map is found on our website and will be used to determine the elementary school attended in 2020-2021 for any students entering grades K-5. The school board has also approved the attendance boundary waiver process which will allow for families to submit a waiver to attend the elementary school outside your residence boundary and may be approved if it meets criteria set forth and enforced by the administration. This waiver process will begin later this spring. The naming and attendance boundaries are two significant milestones in this transition process and will lead to other items to be addressed over the next several weeks.
Some of these remaining items are: 1) School Calendar 2020-2021 (to be formalized in March); 2) Assignment and/or hiring of staff for Fox Hills Elementary School for positions required due to the separation and reconfiguration of current grade levels. 3) Signage for Badlands and the Watford City Middle School will be replaced for the new configuration immediately following the school year.
The focus of our administration at this time is hiring for new positions (driven by expected student growth and building transitions) and ensuring we recruit the best possible candidates for our open teacher and administrator positions. The school district is also considering a different approach to student registrations for 2020-2021 which will be communicated later this spring as we provide more information regarding the new building configurations and opportunities for open houses and informational events to coordinate with our transition changes.
February is Career and Technical Education month. To coincide with this recognition, the school district is also evaluating its offerings and preparation of students for their post high school experiences as it relates to career and technical education. We have a significant number of students, which has grown in volume each year, pursuing employment or certificate/two year programs following their high school graduation. The school district has participated with a Workforce Skills initiative for the past two years involving members of business/industry as well as local leaders to expand on our ability to best prepare students for their adult lives and to ensure we are providing the necessary skills for them to be successful regardless of their post-high school pathway. Our school district and partners believe it is important to expand on career and technical offerings and education to ensure students are aware of their options and using their high school experience to best prepare for those adult options. Given the opportunities in work force and the need for skilled workers in our region; the school district believes this is a very important initiative to consider and expand upon to keep our students here and employed, raising families, and contributing to our communities for the generations to come.
How important do you believe is it for our K-12 students to have more opportunities and exposure to specific workforce skills as they work towards graduation from Watford City High School? Would you support a collaborative effort with industry, businesses, and local political subdivisions to offer students educational experiences that are more correlated with a variety of workforce and post-high school opportunities? The school district will be requesting participation in some fashion soon regarding your thoughts on career and technical education and the concept of a more extensive career orientated program that would offer a variety of services in our area. Please consider participating in such events and voicing your opinion on the importance of these skills and opportunities for our students and our region. You can also always communicate with myself or an administrator regarding your views and opinions on this topic.