• Re-Imagining Update October 26, 2020

    Posted by Malissa Beecham on 10/26/2020

    What an exciting week for our Re-Imagining Work!

     On Monday, I met with class representatives to create the process we will use to gather student voices in selecting our new mascot, school colors, and logo. We started with a fun “recognize the mascot game” and then talked about what we would like for this process to be. Students wanted to make sure all students, whether virtual or in-person, had the opportunity to share their voice in the nomination process. They then wanted to ensure all stakeholders had a chance to participate in the voting process.  Our current reality pulled on our problem-solving skills; however, we are confident in our plan. 

     On Tuesday, our Re-Imagining Committee met, some virtual and some in person, to continue planning for our transition.  We worked on finalizing our Guiding Principles and using those to work through a protocol for solidifying what they would look like in our various Task Force Groups. We have divided our work into 5 Task Force Groups:

    1. Building the Climate and Culture of our School
    2. Building Design (Interior and Exterior)
    3. Family and Community Partnerships
    4. Authentic, Relevant, Personalized Learning Opportunities
    5. Communications and Public Relations

    Each group worked through a process that helped them visualize what our Guiding Principles would look like in action, our current reality, and what priority steps we will use to prepare for our 2021-2022 opening. 

     One of the groups talked about ways we will take to document our work and progress better. Please be on the lookout for:

    1. Weekly video updates (First week in November) to allow you to learn more about our team at Givens. 
    2. Opportunities to see the unique spaces we are planning for 2021.
    3. Ways you can learn more about offering ideas and feedback. 

     You are probably wondering what our “Guiding Principles” are, but stay tuned to our blog. We will be sharing updates to help you learn more about the shared beliefs guiding our work. With our weekly videos, you will also get a better understanding of the work of each group. 

    Please feel free to add comments or suggestions by clicking on the "Got Questions" button to the left. 

    On this journey together, 

    Malissa Beecham


    Dr. Henry Givens Jr. Elementary 2021-2022

    Re-Imagining Dr. Henry Givens Jr. Elementary School

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  • Re-Imagining Dr. Henry Givens Jr. Elementary

    Posted by Malissa Beecham-Judge on 9/23/2020 9:00:00 AM

    Givens Community Update:

    While we are working through virtual learning, we have also been working towards our transition. As most of you know, Dr. Henry Givens Jr. Elementary School will transition from a lottery school to a neighborhood school for the 2021-2022 School Year. We have taken several steps towards our goal, and we want to keep you informed as we go. We will be using this platform to share information and gather feedback from our community. 


    • I have immersed myself in the Webster Groves Community through various meetings with organizations, community leaders, and community members. I have truly enjoyed learning more about the community we will serve and appreciated hearing their hopes and wishes for our school. I also spent an afternoon doing the North Webster Walking Tour and learned about the rich history that continues to empower the vital work going on in our community. 


    • I also spent time speaking to students, teachers, parents, and school and district staff members to learn more about the school and the work they have been doing here for the last several years. They also shared their hopes and dreams for our new school. One of the school’s most heard characteristics included the family-like feel and intentional ways students, staff, and parents contribute to the connectedness felt by all.


    • Through a survey sent to all addresses within our new boundaries, we gathered feedback from families transferring to Givens. On September 15th, we held our first Re-imagining Givens Committee Meeting and used this data to begin our mission, vision, and values planning. This committee has representatives from each stakeholder group, and they work to communicate with and share information from the groups they are representing. 


    This week we wanted to share some themes that grew from our conversations with stakeholders and our survey. As a committee, we know that our vision and mission’s creation and core values will grow out of our continued work together. We will use these powerful verbs, adjectives, and traits to guide our work. 

    If you have any questions or would like to share feedback, please feel free to email me at beechamjudge.malissa@wgmail.org.


    On this journey together,
    Ms. Malissa Beecham
    Dr. Henry Givens Jr. Elementary School


    Re-Imagining  Givens

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