Looking forward to another school year

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On Thursday, Aug. 29, the 2019-20 school year begins for students in School District 6. As we open the doors in the present location of Columbia Falls High School for the 60th time, we are excited about our new opportunities and are prepared to continue our long-standing tradition of excellence.

Complementing an already superlative staff of caring professionals are our new staff members: Mary Webb, teaching anatomy physiology and earth science; Josiah Osborne, teaching U.S. history and government; Anna Danley, teaching girls health/PE; and Carrie O’Reilly, teaching special education.

We are offering new courses such as anatomy/physiology, geology of the Flathead, astronomy, sustainable systems, songwriting and advanced guitar. French will be a foreign-language option for the first time in the history of CFHS. Adding to our dual-credit offerings, which number more than any other Class A school in the state, are blueprint reading/intro to CAD, intro to Solidworks/ advanced Solidworks, and Spanish 101/102.

In industrial tech we are excited to have the opportunity to collaborate with Glacier National Park in the School to Park program. Students will learn building trade skills while constructing a fully functional cabin to be transported to the park at the end of the second semester.

We have revised our attendance policy this year at CFHS. This policy is part of a larger effort to improve and encourage consistent attendance.

Key elements of the policy include:

• A requirement that the parent calls in and excuse an absence by 10 a.m. the day following a student’s absence;

• Additional requirements for excused absences beyond the 10th excused absence;

• Systematic intervention process to address unexcused absences and excessive absences;

• Positive attendance incentive whereby a student who has four or fewer absences for the semester and has a C or better in a class is exempt from the semester final if they so choose.

Throughout the year CFHS will have celebrations, drawings, contests and initiatives to encourage students and celebrate their attendance on campus.

We want to emphasize the importance of attendance in determining a student’s high school success and everything that follows.

Through our reflective approach to improving and building on the successes of the past, we enter the 2019-20 school year with great optimism and “Bleed Blue” pride in our students, staff and community.

Thank you to our parents and community for your wonderful support.

To a great 2019-20 school year.

Scott Gaiser

Principal, CFHS

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