Dear Jordan Public Schools Community, Families and Prospective Families,
Welcome to the 2018-2019 school year! In this welcome, you will read about a few of the great programs and attributes of our great district. I hope you will take time to fully explore our website, social media, and get to know our district.
Jordan Public Schools is in its fourth year of its 1:1 technology initiative. All students, teachers, and paraprofessionals in grades 5-12 will receive ASUS rugged style Chromebooks. We will also be in year four of working with a Learning Management System called Schoology. All students in grades 5-12 will continue to have a Schoology account and will be able to submit assignments, interact with teachers, and collaborate with peers. Students will also work with apps such as Nearpod and Kahoot. In addition, JPS is starting its sixth year with Google Apps, allowing staff and students a variety of opportunities to interact. Additionally, students in grades K-2 have access to Chromebooks and iPads. Staff members in grades K-4 also have a 1:1 device to use in order to enhance instruction. Students in third and fourth grade will have access to a Chromebook on a cart at all times. Essentially, this will be a modified 1:1 program for our oldest elementary students.
Jordan Schools continues to implement STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) based Project Lead the Way (PLTW) programming in the elementary and middle schools. Students at our high school have access to PLTW programming through our partnership with SW Metro Intermediate District 288. Additionally, our compliment of College in the Schools, Concurrent Enrollment, and Advanced Placement offerings make our high school very attractive to students who wish to earn college credit without leaving our high school.
Juniors and Seniors at Jordan High School may take advantage of enrolling in one of our four Summit Academy courses. We offer courses in Intro to Education; Multicultural Education and Human Relation in Schools; Business, Marketing, and Economics; and Health Care and Medicine. Our District has partnerships with local businesses, Normandale Community College, and St. Francis Regional Medical Center. For more information about these exciting academy courses where students can earn certification, college, and high school credit, please visit our Summit webpage.
The new Jordan Middle School is entering its third full year of operation complete with "maker spaces" and collaborative areas throughout which make it conducive to project based teaching and learning. Our new Community Education and Recreation Center (CERC) boasts 3 full size gyms, a large four lane elevated track, multi-purpose rooms, and a fully outfitted fitness area.
New in 2018-2019, students will find new collaborative spaces and furniture that mirror our middle school environment at both our elementary and high school buildings. Students and teachers will have the opportunity to interact in flexible learning spaces that are more conducive to today's project based teaching and learning.
During the summer of 2015, our athletic field complex was transformed into a state-of-the-art facility complete with track and field event improvements, a brand new ticket booth and concession stand, and a high quality synthetic turf field. We'd like to thank Ames Construction for their generosity in providing this facility to our students and community. During the summer of 2016 we completed a second phase of field renovations complete with new irrigation at our middle school soccer and football field and a new baseball field with bonus green space for youth soccer and football on the southern portion of our athletic complex. During the summer of 2018, a new set of four tennis courts was installed, complete with new LED lighting, suitable for play at night.
ISD #717 has a tradition of excellence and boasts strong state test scores. Our schools continue to score at the top of all Minnesota River Conference Schools. Our elementary school recently earned the top honor for any Title 1 school in the state by being named a Reward School by the Minnesota Department of Education, and was named a Minnesota School of Excellence in 2017. Our middle school was ranked #4 out of all middle schools in state based on its 2015 Multiple Measurement System rating from the Minnesota Department of Education.
During the 2015-2016 school year, a new strategic plan was developed replacing our previous strategic plan. The plan can be found on our district's school board page. This new strategic plan offers up the blueprints for success and continues to guide us into the future. Together we will build upon the strengths of the district and continually improve the ability of the district to educate all students and prepare them for the 21st Century work force.
I'd also invite you to "Like Us" on Facebook , and "Follow Us" on Twitter or Instagram. We work hard to tell our story and it provides current and prospective families with a nice snapshot of the happenings at JPS.
I welcome your comments, concerns and suggestions. You may contact me using the contact information provided below. Jordan is a special and progressive place to live, work, and learn. I'm proud to be a resident and to be the leader of Jordan Public Schools! Thank you for allowing me to serve the school community.
Matthew M. Helgerson | Superintendent
Jordan Public Schools ISD #717
B.S. in Elementary Education
University of Wisconsin, River Falls
M.S. in Educational Leadership
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Specialist Degree K-12 Principal
Saint Mary's University, Minneapolis
Minnesota State University, Mankato