Good News From Our Schools

Posted on November 3, 2017

District Nationally Recognized by ACT and Renaissance Learning

Both ACT and Renaissance Learning were extremely impressed by Helena Public School District’s postitive gains. They published two stories that went out for national publication.

This is a testament to the quality of teachers, support staff and administrators we have in our district.  They have all been working extremely hard as a team and to help all learners.  We no longer leave anyone behind; our PLC framework allow teachers to focus on the individual needs of each child and to implement laser focused instructional strategies targeted for maximum success for every style of learner.

To read these stories, please follow the links below.

ACT Helena

Renaissance Learning

Posted on November 3, 2017

Jefferson Elementary: Flexible Seating

Jefferson Elementary Flexible Seating:  It is hard to sit in a desk all day and to keep focused on learning. To help kids Jefferson Elementary educators have sought ways to give students more flexibility to choose what works best for them. These seating options have immediate benefits; using excess energy, increased motivation and engagement, improving student’s core strength and posture. And… the kids love it!

Posted on November 3, 2017

Broadwater Songs

Broadwater Songs!

By Broadwater Elementary

Posted on October 27, 2017

Jefferson Elementary: Unity Day

October 25th is National Unity Day and students and staff are celebrating!! Unity Day is a day in which students and school staff come together to celebrate kindness, acceptance, and inclusion. We  care about our school being safe and supportive. Unity Day is a day everyone can come together – in schools, communities, and online – and send one large ORANGE message of support, hope, and unity to show that we are together against bullying and united for kindness, acceptance and inclusion!

Posted on October 24, 2017

Hawthorne: Thespians in the Making

Hawthorne Elementary School students take part in a movement exercise Monday afternoon during a tryout for a Missoula Children’s Theatre production of “Treasure Island.” The Missoula Children’s Theatre visits schools across the state each year, teaching students performing arts and producing a play with students. The Hawthorne Elementary production will have showings on Saturday at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

Article and photo, courtesy of the Helena Independent Record

Posted on October 18, 2017

Kessler: Mrs. Ratzlaff

Mrs. Ratzlaff at Kessler Elementary gets a “One Class at a Time” Grant. Congratulations!!!

Posted on October 18, 2017

Jefferson: Student Council

Jefferson Elementary School has a strong Student Council.  This year we had a record number of 3rd, 4th and 5th graders run for office. Our 2017-2018 Jefferson Student Council Candidates did a GREAT job on their speeches! CONGRATULATIONS to our 2017-2018 Jefferson Student Council Officers: President – Jacque O., Co-Vice-Presidents (We had a tie!) -Laine F. and Margot M., Secretary – Sam F. and Treasurer Hadyn G.! Also a BIG Congratulations to all of our extraordinary young leaders for running a positive campaign! WE ARE PROUD OF YOU!!!

Posted on October 17, 2017

Broadwater’s Mrs. Sue Sweeney: National Distinguished Principal

Broadwater Elementary School’s very own Principal was named 2017 National Distinguished Principal for Montana! She was recognized for her amazing work in Washington, DC. Congratulations Mrs. Sweeney, we are so proud of you!!


Posted on October 17, 2017

CHS Monitoring Mussels

Capital High School biology students were part of a zebra mussel monitoring project at Canyon Ferry Lake Reservoir and Upper Holter Lake Reservoir this week.

The sophomore biology class collected data on environmental conditions in the lake and collected water samples for environmental DNA analysis. They also learned about the spread and prevention of invasive species.

Read full story from the IR here.

Also, see KTVH’s story here.

Photo courtesy of the Helena IR

Posted on October 4, 2017

2018 Montana Teacher of the Year

Helena teacher Melissa Romano selected as 2018 Montana Teacher of the Year

Divide and Shields Valley teachers are 2018 finalists

After learning she had become the 2018 Montana Teacher of the Year, Melissa Romano had to get back to work.  She was preparing for an event at Four Georgians where she teaches.  According to 2017 Montana Teacher of the Year Kelly Elder, it is just an example of what makes Melissa such a successful educator.

“She goes out of her way every day to contribute to her students and her colleagues to make her school a better place to teach & learn,” said Elder.

Each year, the Montana Teacher of the Year program recognizes a teacher who exemplifies the best in the teaching profession.  It is the highest honor a Montana teacher can receive.  The program is sponsored and administered by the Montana Professional Teaching Foundation, based in Helena.

Melissa Romano and other teachers nominated for Montana Teacher of the Year go through an exhaustive application process. Three finalists were chosen for interviews, which took place on Sept. 23rd. This year’s selection committee included representatives from school organizations, fellow educators, parents, and students.

As the 2018 Montana Teacher of the Year, Melissa Romano will serve as an ambassador for public education, represent Montana in the National Teacher of the Year program, and attend several national events along with the other state teachers of the year.
Melissa Romano began teaching in 2004 after ten years working as a nanny, exploring her passion and love for children.  Watching a child’s face light up as they play and discover the joy of learning something new inspired her to become a teacher, where she strives to create those experiences every day for her students.

This past year Melissa became one of 130 select teachers nationwide to share lessons on BetterLesson, a website creating a year’s worth of classroom-ready math lessons.  Additionally, she worked as a BetterLesson Science Master Teacher and is currently working as an instructional coach delivering personalized professional development to teachers nationwide.

Global Connection: Romano shares, “Ensuring that my students are connected to the world around them and able to display empathy and compassion to those in their world is extremely important.  Students who experience other cultures and develop skills in a connected world are better prepared to be productive, kind, and world changers.  I aim to bring the world to my students by extending student learning through field trips and hands on experiences, using technology as a tool to compare our community and state to other parts of the world, and by emphasizing the act of giving to others”.

Parent, Maureen Boyle, who wrote in support of Romano’s application, shares, “She is a teacher who deeply cares about her students and works to build an environment of great respect both in and out of the classroom.  She brought out a fierce love for math and inspired my daughter to continue to push herself.  My son loved her instruction of his favorite subjects of science and writing.  I am grateful that both of my children had the opportunity to work under Mrs. Romano’s tutelage”.

Finalists: This year’s other two Teacher of the Year finalists are Judith Boyle, an elementary teacher at Divide School in Divide; and Judy Vincent, a first-grade teacher at Shields Valley Elementary School in Wilsall.

Teacher of the Year Celebration: Melissa Romano, Judith Boyle, and Judy Vincent will be honored at a celebration on October 19 in Missoula. The Montana Professional Teaching Foundation sponsors the celebration in conjunction with the annual MEA-MFT Educators’ Conference.

The Montana Professional Teaching Foundation, based in Helena, works to enhance the teaching profession and promote quality education in Montana. The Montana Teacher of the Year program is one of several projects sponsored by the foundation. Others include:

*   Karen Cox Memorial Grants to help teachers who pay for classroom resources out of their own pockets
*   National Board Certification & Candidate Support
*   Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics & Science Teaching
*   Jim McGarvey Scholarships


Recent News from all Helena Schools