Thursday, August 17, 2017

It is that time of year again.

Well students and parents, it is that time of year again. Soon the alarm clocks will be signaling the start of another school year. For seniors, it will be your last “first day” and kindergarten it will be your first of many more to come. We are starting a new year with new hopes and dreams and this newness alone cannot bring about transformation. This rebirth must be a team approach. It takes many individuals to participate in the education process and for all to be successful we must strive to do a better job than the previous year.
Ray and custodians have done an excellent job of getting the building and grounds in shape for students and teachers, alike. John has all the buses ready, along with the drivers on their routes. All of the principals are anxiously awaiting the arrival of students.  Secretaries are checking in boxes of supplies and double-checking to make sure we have needed items for the year. Abby and the cooks have menus prepared in order all students can have a balanced breakfast and lunch. For myself, I am overjoyed to be starting another year in the greatest profession, education.
Good luck to all and a big “thank you” to those involved with the start of school. I hope 2017-2018 is the best year yet. Feel free to stop by Central Office, call 319-392-4223 or drop an e-mail to thomas.ward@danvillecsd.org on comments or concerns for the District.

Yours in Education,


Dr. Tom Ward, Superintendent

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Thank you!

Dear Danville Supporters,

It has been a fast seven years!  And when most people feel that the time has flown, it is usually because we have been very busy.  That is definitely true for the Danville Community School District!

There have been many positive changes in academic delivery over the last seven years in the Danville School District.  The decision and implementation of Everyday Math has produced fantastic results.  The early literacy interventions of Really Great Reading, Boost, Blitz, and Blast have supported identified gaps in our students' literacy abilities.  Science Foss kits have brought a hand-ons approach to learning science.  The on-line textbook delivery that many of our social studies classes use today help differentiate reading levels.  The advancement of the Computer Aided Drafting and Welding programs have moved our industrial arts program to near of the top of Southeast Iowa.  The addition of a high school technology instructor was provided learning opportunities in Computer Programming, Web Design, and Networking.  The business department now offers a Personal Finance class based on the financial principles of Dave Ramsey.

Probably the biggest change over the seven years is the expansion of early childhood services the district offers.  We have made an emphasis of expanding the "Creative Curriculum" to the infants and toddlers so these kids are ready for success starting the first day of kindergarten.  The addition of the transitional kindergarten allows "young" students and those that are not quite ready on the first day of kindergarten an extra opportunity for success.  I do believe that the Danville School District will see a higher rate of student success based on these early childhood services.

The majority of the credit for these educational improvements go to the teachers that have either been visionary, been trained, and/or successfully implemented these programs.  The phrase "what is best for students" is embedded within many parts of our school system.  I believe that is one reason why Danville is the "Home of Quality Kids."

The latest innovative changes will start this fall.  Danville will have eleven juniors and seniors participating in ILEAD (Iowa Develop Excel Achieve Develop) where they will work with businesses and community organizations on real life projects and earning core credit.  High school students will also have more concurrent course opportunities with sharing options with New London, and therefore having earned college credit in high school.  I believe both of these initiatives have great potential for student achievement.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve the students of Danville over the past seven years!  I will reflect fondly over my opportunities in Danville and wish the students, staff, and community the best in the future.

Monday, May 1, 2017

2017 Summer School

Dear Danville Supporter,

The Danville Community School District is going to make some adjustments to the 2017 summer school program based on the actions of the Iowa legislature two weeks ago.  When the 2016-17 school calendar was approved, this summer was to be the first year of retention of third graders who were not at level in literacy.  There were requirements for attendance and summer curriculum under the old rules.

Therefore, given that these state requirements were no longer mandated due to lack of funding, the Danville School District is going to make the following modifications to the 2017 summer school program:

1.  Summer school for grades 9-12 will run June 5-30.

2.   Grades 9-12 will have an opportunity for credit recovery on E2020.

3.  Summer school for grades 6-8 will run June 5-16.

4.  Grades 6-8 will participate in a program based on literacy, math, and organizational skills.

5.  Summer school for grades K-5 will run July 31-August 11.

6.  Grades K-5 will focus on a "Jump Start" format for the start of the 2017-18 school year.

The Danville Community Schools believes that extended learning opportunities are critical to the overall skill development of our students.  Despite the state refusing to financially support students who need more opportunities to learn and succeed, the Danville Community School District will provide "what is best for kids."

Thank you for your support of Danville Schools!


Friday, April 28, 2017

Announcement of New Danville Superintendent

Dear Danville Supporters,

The Danville Community School Board would like to announce that Dr. Thomas Ward has accepted to become the new superintendent of the Danville Community School District effective July 1, 2017.

Dr. Ward has received a Bachelor of Science in Education at Northeast Missouri State University in 1975, his Masters of Art in Educational Administration at Lindenwood University in 1999, his Educational Specialist degree at Lindenwood University in 2002, and his PH. D in K-12 Educational Administration at Capella University in 2007.

Dr. Ward began his educational career as a health and physical education teacher in Missouri in 1975.  He became a principal at Iron County in 1999 and advanced to the superintendent position in the same district in 2001.  Dr. Ward is currently in his sixth year as superintendent of IKM-Manning Community School District in Manning, Iowa.

Board President Allan Luers said "Dr. Ward rose to the top of a competitive pool of candidates.  His depth of experience, background of STEM and project-based opportunities, along with his solid financial background and community involvement will continue to move the Danville School District forward with students being the priority."

Monday, April 17, 2017

Danville Superintendent Finalists

Dear Danville Supporter,

At a special meeting held on April 12, the Danville School Board selected four finalists for the next superintendent of Danville Schools from twelve applicants.  Two interviews will occur on Monday, April 24, and also on Wednesday, April 26.  The Board's plan is to decide Danville's next superintendent no later than Friday, April 28.

The finalists are Mr. Larry Achenbach, elementary principal of the Albia Community School District; Mr. John Eyerly, superintendent of the Westfield School District in Wisconsin; Mrs. Stephanie Hubbard, central office administrator of the Bemidji School District in Minnesota, and Dr. Thomas Ward, superintendent of IKM-Manning Community School District.

Thank you for your support of Danville Schools!


Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Update on Superintendent Search

Dear Danville Supporter,

The application process to find Danville Community School's next superintendent closed last Friday, April 7.  Twelve people have applied and Great Prairie AEA is in the process of screening and background checking the candidates.  The Danville School Board will meet in closed session on Wednesday, April 12, to select three finalists to interview.

The three finalists will be interviewed on April 24-26.  Each candidate will be interviewed by five interview groups: administration, classified staff, teachers, parents/community, and the school board.  The AEA will compile summary reports from each of the interview groups on each candidate and present them to the school board at the end of the process.  The school board's plan is to select the new superintendent no later than Friday, April 28.

Thank you for your support of Danville Schools!




Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Brightbytes Survey

Dear Danville Supporter,

The Danville Community School District is conducting a Brightbytes survey on technology use by its students at school and at home.  The survey is for students, teachers, parents, and administrators.  The data collected from the survey will be compared the the last three years of surveys and help set the direction of professional development for the 2017-18 school year.  This will be even more important since the school district will have an instructional technology coach to support teachers next year in being more rigorous and effective in the use of technology in teaching and learning.

Danville needs more parents to take the survey to make the data more balanced between the student and teacher responses.  So if you are willing, I would appreciate you taking the time to take this on-line survey.  The link is:  

https://bbyt.es/QT79C

Thank you for your support of Danville Schools!