Ferndale School District Prioritizes Early Learning: Personnel changes will support increased focus

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The Ferndale School District is making a big investment in its youngest learners. The District is bringing on new staff to support students in grades Pre K through 3rd grade – school years that are key to future success.

“The research shows us that the process of graduation really starts in before Kindergarten,” says Ferndale School District Superintendent Dr. Linda Quinn. “We know that if we invest time and resources in our early learners, those investments will pay dividends down the road. It is the right thing to do for each of our kids and for our community.”

What does that for the Ferndale School District? It means that the equivalent of five additional certificated teachers will be hired to support K-3 grade levels. The new teachers will be assigned to Eagleridge, Cascadia, Skyline, Central, and Custer. Depending on need in each building, the positions may be used to add a classroom or to support students in the areas of literacy, math or social and emotional learning.
 
The increased emphasis on Early Learning also means elevating the leadership of our Early Learning programs to an administrative position.

The new Principal of Early Learning will be Mr. Mark Hall, a familiar face in the Ferndale School District. Mr. Hall currently serves as the Executive Director of Teaching & Learning. Beginning July 1, 2019, his office will move from the District Office to the North Bellingham Campus. He will oversee the Developmental Preschool, Jump Start Kindergarten, Kaleidescope Play and Learn, coordination with local daycare providers, and Ferndale Family Connections. He will also continue as Principal of Beach Elementary on Lummi Island.

Mr. Hall says, “This is an exciting opportunity for Ferndale and I am honored to take the lead in this area. I expect the next few years to have a lasting impact for our youngest learners.”

A strong body of research exists regarding the short-term and long-term effect of Early Childhood Education. Indicators show connections between quality Early Childhood Education and success in future years. 

As part of the change, the District has posted the position of Executive Director of Teaching & Learning to take over the other responsibilities that Mr. Hall will be leaving behind – the primary one being overseeing the learning program in the District’s five large Elementary Schools. That posting is available here.