Principal's Weekly Message

April 15,  2024

Principal's Message

Dear McGaugh Families, 
We hope you all had a wonderful spring break. We are excited to see you all back on campus tomorrow, April 8th. As you get lunches packed, set backpacks by the door, and clothes laid out for the day, we ask for your help with a growing problem here at McGaugh. Up to this point in semester 2, we had a total of 1,602 tardies. See a detailed outline below. 
175 unexcused tardies +369  excused tardies = ​544 total 
137 unexcused tardies + 314 excused tardies = ​451 total
186 unexcused tardies + ​421 excused tardies = ​607 total
This growing attendance problem leaves the administrative team with over 50 scheduled attendance meetings, with families, instead of visual on campus for students.
One of the most valuable life skills a student can learn with the help of parents/guardians is the responsibility of arriving at school on time every day. McGaugh is making a special effort to ensure that all students fully benefit from their education by attending school on-time. Attending school on-time helps children feel better about school—and themselves. Furthermore, one of the most important times of the school day is first thing in the morning. This is the time when teachers hold morning meetings, define the plans for the day, instructional goals are reviewed and set, and important school and class news is announced.  The whole tone of a child’s school day is set in this first part of the day. Please help us support your child in learning the habit of punctuality to help with greater success at school and throughout life.

The research behind the long-term effects of tardiness:
Loss of Instructional Minutes 
Students who are tardy 5 minutes a day, every day, lose 25 minutes of instructional time a week. Students who are tardy 30 minutes a day, every day, lose 2 ½ hours of instructional time a week. 
Academics and Achievement
Students who are frequently tardy have lower GPAs, lower scores on standardized assessments, and lower graduation rates. Chronic tardiness in elementary and middle school is also linked to failure in high school.
Behavior Problems
In the National Center for Education Statistics 2007 Indicators of School Crime and Safety, teachers surveyed reported that students who are frequently tardy have higher rates of suspension and other disciplinary measures. Tardiness causes students to feel disconnected with school, leading to behavior problems and dropouts.

Important Details to Remember:
Students are considered tardy if they are not in their seats at 7:55am when the tardy bell rings.  Any student who arrives to class after the 7:55am bell must report to the office for a late slip before reporting to class. Please note that at 7:50am the warning bell rings to head to class. Yard duty supervision begins at 7:40am and students can come and be on the blacktop and eat breakfast at this time.
We ask you to partner with us for the last 2 months of the school year to reduce the number of tardies and help ensure a success for all our Sea Lions. 
I am absolutely thrilled to share some wonderful news with you all! Mrs. Michelle Anderson has been selected by our dedicated McGaugh teachers as the recipient of the prestigious McGaugh "Teacher of the Year" award, sponsored by LAEF. This recognition is truly well-deserved, and we couldn't be more elated for her.
Mrs. Anderson is not only a remarkable educator but is also a true example of leadership within our school community and beyond. This year, she graciously assumed the role of LAEA representative for our McGaugh teachers, demonstrating her commitment to advocating for their needs and interests. Additionally, she plays a pivotal role in our Positive Behavior Intervention Supports (PBIS) committee, drawing upon her extensive expertise in behavior management and instructional strategies to foster a positive and inclusive learning environment for all students.
One of Mrs. Anderson's most admirable qualities is her unwavering dedication to supporting others. She generously devotes her time to assisting her colleagues and is always available whenever her guidance or expertise is needed. Furthermore, her influence extends beyond our school walls as she takes on the crucial responsibility of BTSA lead at the district level, offering invaluable support to our new teachers as they embark on their educational journey.
Described by her peers as student-centered, kind, innovative, and hardworking, Mrs. Anderson embodies the qualities of an exceptional educator and mentor. Her leadership, intelligence, and empathy resonate with all who have the privilege of working alongside her. She is truly inclusive and engages with her students and colleagues with sincerity and warmth, making her an invaluable asset to our school community.
Please join me in extending our heartfelt congratulations to Mrs. Anderson on this well-deserved honor as McGaugh's Teacher of the Year, sponsored by LAEF! Let us celebrate her remarkable achievements and the profound impact she continues to make in the lives of our students and staff alike.
For the month of April, the Wellness Initiative is focused on Self-Care and Mental Healthiness.   In a world that continually demands our attention and energy, prioritizing our mental well-being becomes paramount. 
Taking care of our mental health is as crucial as caring for our physical health. It directly impacts our overall well-being, productivity, and the quality of our relationships. In recognizing the importance of mental healthiness, we aim to foster a supportive environment that encourages everyone in our community to prioritize self-care.  Our Wellness Counselors look forward to engaging students on the topic of self-care all month long, through classroom lessons, shared activities, resources, and videos, and also promoting it within our WellSpaces.
Wellness Counselors will be providing lessons to students in grades UTK-5th, to discuss different forms and practices of self-care.  The goal is to help students understand the importance of having a healthy mind and body and how self-care practices can help us now and in the future. In the WellSpaces, we will be implementing an “Affirmation Station” where students can practice their positive affirmations while looking in the mirror. Additionally, self-care coloring pages and handouts will be made available. Parents and staff members will be provided with links to self-care read alouds and additional resources.

Below you will find resources that support the theme that you can utilize at home.
The Reflection in Me SEL Read-Aloud (upper grade):
The Magic of Me SEL Read-Aloud (lower grade):
5 Minute Gratitude and Positive Affirmation Meditation (upper grade):
1 Minute Crab Breaths Belly Breathing (lower grade):

  • 4/9 Project SEEK Meeting
  • 4/10 College Day 
  • 4/10 School Site Council Meeting
  • 4/11 PTA Meeting 
  • 4/18 Open House/STEM Fair
  • 4/19 Parent Education Opportunity “Navigate Conflict and Support Problem Solving” 10:00am @ Lee Elementary
  • 4/22-4/26 Week of the Military Child
  • 4/23 4th Grade Concert
  • 4/26 Week of the Military Child Flag Deck Ceremony
  • 4/29 State Testing Begins



Ms. Wendy Wood, M.Ed. ​

McGaugh Elementary School Principal

(562) 799-4560