Informaline—Oct. 2, 2017 Issue

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Important Dates
Oct. 9: Professional Development—No School for Students
Oct. 10-13: National School Lunch Week
Oct. 26: End of First Quarter

Dunnwald Elected School Board President
The West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education elected Melinda Dunnwald as its president and Jill Caton Johnson, Ph.D.  as its vice president on Monday, Sept. 25.

The Board also appointed Dunnwald to serve as the Board’s representatives on the district’s School Community Network, which is a committee of parents, teachers, and administrators. Board member Vicky Poole, Ed.D., was appointed as the Board’s representative on the West Des Moines Community Schools Foundation, and Liz Cox was appointed as the Board’s representative on the Iowa Association of School Boards’ Delegate Assembly.

Learn more about our 2017-18 Board of Education.

How To: Authorizing Google Drive in Canvas
So teachers can easily share Google Docs with students, student Canvas accounts can access Google Drive. As more classes start to use Canvas, some students have had difficulty authorizing their Google Drive in Canvas.

To help students authorize Google Drive accounts through Canvas, West Des Moines Community Schools Online Learning Coordinator Carrie Jacobs has provided a detailed how-to complete with screenshots. Students and families can access these instructions at

If these steps do not complete the authorization, or if you need assistance, please contact Jacobs at 515-633-5159 or

No School for Students Oct. 9 While Teachers Collaborate
Students have the day off from school on Monday, Oct. 9, while teachers spend the day learning and collaborating in a variety of ways to improve student achievement.

Teachers serving students in grades 3-12 will be involved in training with Canvas, our district’s online learning system where course information and resources are stored. Teachers serving students in grades K-2 will be participating in learning around small group reading instruction. In addition, some New Tech project-based learning facilitators will be engaging in learning centered on Echo, the learning management tool supported by New Tech Network, as well as engaging in project development and building professional learning. Some secondary facilitators will also experience a project simulation with the support of community partners from Shive-Hattery and Food Dudes.

Teachers will be able to put their learning directly into action when students come back to school on Tuesday, Oct. 10. Read more about teachers’ Oct. 9 learning.

Join Us for National School Lunch Week Oct. 10-13!
To recognize the National School Lunch Program and the 30 million children it serves every day, the West Des Moines Community Schools will celebrate National School Lunch Week from Oct. 10-13. Families are invited to eat lunch with their children during National School Lunch Week. If you would like to join your child, please call your child’s school to reserve a meal and find out specific meal times. Students will also be able to participate in these activities throughout the week: “I Tried It” Bingo Tuesday, Wacky Meal Wednesday, Throwback Thursday, and Frozen Fruit Cup Friday.

Learn more about how WDMCS is celebrating National School Lunch Week at

Mediacom Denying WDMCS Campus Messenger Emails
Mediacom is blocking families with email address from receiving emails from Infinite Campus Messenger. This includes daily announcements, the “Informaline” newsletter, and other messages from

We have an open ticket with Mediacom tech. support and are waiting for a resolution to the issue. In the meantime, families can add an email address that does not use to Infinite Campus or access announcements and “Informaline” online.

We plan to communicate with affected families using methods other than Infinite Campus Messenger. Please watch the WDMCS Technology Department blog for updates at

Heart Rate Monitors Provide New Data for Supporting Student Health
This school year, students in grades 4-12 have been introduced to a new physical educational technology and curriculum system called the Interactive Health Technologies Spirit System. This new technology engages students in the latest heart rate monitor and assessment technology available today.

The heart rate monitors are worn during P.E. and are designed to help students gain instant feedback on their effort. This program also engages and educates students on a variety of fitness activities that optimize fitness, coordination, and self-confidence.

Data collected through the monitors will assist P.E. teachers and families as they help students develop and attain health goals. Learn more at

You’re Invited to Preschool Palooza!
Please join us at our fifth Preschool Palooza, 9:30 a.m to noon, Saturday, Nov. 4, at Hillside Elementary! Children ages 2-6 will enjoy fun and educational activities while their grown-ups gather information about early childhood opportunities, such as preschool programs and kindergarten enrollment in WDMCS. All activities and snacks are free.

For more information, visit