Wisconsin State Superintendent Tony Evers visited Merrill Area Public Schools Wednesday, spending time at Merrill High School, Washington Elementary School and the district office.
“Just visiting schools is a pleasure for me,” Evers said. “Every time I visit schools it gives me the opportunity to tell stories around the state about the good things that are happening.”
At Washington Elementary, Evers observed a Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) recognition program to celebrate students’ efforts to create a positive school and playground atmosphere. PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) is a program of the U.S. Department of Education that helps schools implement best practices in instructional and behavioral interventions. Washington Elementary has implemented the program school-wide, providing staff with a decision-making framework for improving academic and behavioral outcomes for all students.
At the end of the program he received his own “Paw” award from Principal Paul Klippel.
At the high school, Evers visited with staff and saw innovative work readiness programs. He said he was particularly interested in the collaboration between Merrill High School and Northcentral Technical College on transcripted credits. Students are able to earn college credits while still in high school.
“I believe that is one of the best innovations for high school kids,” Evers said.
Interim Superintendent Don Stevens said he was proud to showcase some positive programs at MAPS during Evers’ visit. Stevens wanted Evers to meet the students impacted by these programs.
“What we really wanted was to do something with the kids, to remember that’s what we’re here for,” he said.
Evers also met with the shared leadership team, a group of teachers who work beyond the school day on implementing Response to Intervention, Common Core State Standards, Curriculum Companion and educator effectiveness.