Skip to content

Archive for Topic: 'Education'

A Mom’s Reflections on the First Day of Kindergarten

I knew the day would come when I would send my daughter, who was once my little 5-pound peanut, off to kindergarten. That day has arrived.

Today, with hundreds of other parents, I dropped off my daughter, Melayna, for her first day of kindergarten in West Des Moines schools. She was all smiles with her new haircut and dress, but I could tell she was nervous because she was wide-eyed and fidgety. She posed outside the school with her best friend, Lauren, for pictures. Then we found her teacher, Ms. Hirsch, and she sat and patiently waited with her classmates until everyone had arrived and they could go to their classroom. (more…)

Topics: Education

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

WDMCS School Board Aug. 13 Meeting Summary

The West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education held a regular meeting on Monday, August 13, 2012, and took the following action:


Topics: Education

Tags: , , , , ,

New District Website

From day one of taking the webmaster position it has been a goal of mine to give the current district website a face-lift. After a couple of years of investigating, setbacks and many conversations it  became a reality of School/Community Relations, the Technology Department and myself to give the current district website not only a face-lift, but a complete redesign of look, feel, purpose, and structure. After a year of planning, a year of working out the details, and Request for Qualifications (RFQ) we have contracted with a local firm, Flying Hippo, to redesign the district web site, including Community Education and the individual school sites. This project is funded by Microsoft Settlement funds.

Topics: Education

WDMCS: “Way Better”

Well, we are here; the school year has ended. It seems so long ago that I introduced myself to you back in an August edition of the Informaline.

Being still relatively new, I am often asked whether Iowa/West Des Moines is “what I thought it would be.” My response is always, “It is way better than I thought it would be.” (more…)

Topics: Education, Superintendent

Tags: , , , , , , ,

School Lunch Prices to Increase 10 Cents

Students who wish to each school lunch will pay $.10 more per meal next school year. The new lunch prices were approved by the West Des Moines Community Schools (WDMCS) Board of Education Monday, June 25, 2012. (more…)

Topics: Education

Tags: , , , , , ,

Facilities Fees & Online Facilities Software Approved

The West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education held a regular meeting on June 11, 2012, and took the following action:

  • approved the 2012-2013 Facility Use Fee recommendation with the following proposed increases – $5/hour increase for cafeterias, community rooms, auditoriums at Stillwell, Indian Hills and Rex Mathes, and conference rooms at the LRC, $10/hour increase for the Stadium and $5 per hour for Stadium lights, $1/hour increase for the Building Supervisor fee, which is charged to all community users. For the full list of fees, please see PDF page 45 of the board packet;
  • approved an agreement with Distributed Website Corporation to provide web-based software solutions for the Community Education department, specifically included is the implementation, training, and hosting of rSchoolToday Facilities Scheduler for a total cost for year one of  $9,015 and a subsequent year cost of $3,300 for Facilities Scheduling; (more…)

Topics: Education

A Voice Raised

The voice of Valley High School student Samantha Greer rang out during the West Des Moines Community School District Board of Education meeting on May 14, 2012.

She wasn’t speaking on a specific board issue; she was singing.

The Watchman’s Daughter” by Samantha Greer


Topics: Education, School Board News

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Outstanding Accomplishments in the WDMCS – May 2012

The Board of Education of the West Des Moines Community School District is pleased to recognize the outstanding accomplishments of district students and staff.



With 16 sets of twins, Valley Southwoods set a Guinness Record in the category of Most Sets of Twins in the Same Academic Year at One School. The twins are Hanna and Julia Anderson, Quintin and Mason Barr, Megan and Hannah Baysinger, Hannah and Noah Clark, Jade and Logan Davis, Roman and Giavanna Dean, Hunter and Carson Feldman, Anna and Samuel Freihage, Jacob and Jeffrey Goetz, Emma and Sara Goff, Cole and Logan Harvey, Emily and Allison Kacer, Joseph and Joshua McVey, Cole and Cory Mullins, Kaylee and Kyle Olson and Kayla and Lauren Phalen. 


Stilwell seventh grader John Mahoney won the 2012 Iowa National Geographic Bee and will represent the state at the National Geographic Bee at Washington, D.C., May 22-24. Indian Hills seventh grader Abbie Kigin was also a semifinalist and competed at the state competition.

Valley senior Luchang Wang and Walnut Creek senior Melissa Richards were named to the Des Moines Register Academic All-State. (more…)

Topics: Education

Board Approves 2012-13 Staffing Proposal

On Tuesday April 24, the West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education approved the superintendency’s revised proposal for 2012-13 staffing. The proposal was approved on a 6-1 vote, with Carroll voting no.

The approved proposal is publicly available at

Other Action Items

  • held two executive sessions as provided in section 21.5 (1) (e) of the open meetings law to consider whether to expel a student; reconvened into regular session; voted to expel two students through the end of the 2011-12 school year.
  • Held an executive session as provided in section 21.5 (1) (i) of the open meetings law to evaluate an individual whose appointment, hiring, performance or discharge is being considered.

Above is an informal summary of the actions of the West Des Moines Community Schools Board of Education at recent meetings. This is provided as a service to district staff and the public. This is not the official minutes of the board meeting, but a quick rundown of action taken, not necessarily in chronological order. Official board minutes must be approved by the board per Policy 212.1 and then are posted on our website (

Topics: Education, School Board News

Tags: , , ,

WDMCS tax rate, tentative teacher agreement approved

On April 9, 2012, the West Des Moines Community School District Board of Education approved the 2012-13 certified budget and tax rate of $13.30, which remains the lowest in the metro area. This compares to the 2011-12 rate of $13.85. The board reviewed the certified budget during a workshop on March 12 and held a public hearing during the April 9meeting. More information and the March 12 PowerPoint presentation is available at (more…)

Topics: Education, School Board News

Tags: , , , , ,