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.”

The West Des Moines Community Schools are an incredible system of schools, providing an amazing number and variety of opportunities for our kids. Thank you for your support in making that possible.

Looking back on the year, it is difficult to ignore the challenging and sad events that we experienced. This spring I learned more about the strong passion our parents have for our programs as we went through the staffing reductions and how to make improvements to that process in the future. Then there are the broader community issues:  we continued to address bullying in the halls of our schools and are looking at ways to partner with the community to deal with this troubling issue and we have mourned with the families who have suffered the loss of two teens in our community due to suicide.

Through these tough times, I have seen such outstanding professionalism and such deep care for our students and their families from our staff. It is through this caring environment and the success of our students, I truly find joy. I have witnessed outstanding teaching in so many of our classrooms. I have had the privilege of attending outstanding musical concerts; I was able to join the junior high orchestra and Chinese language students on a trip to China in March; and I was able to be part of a State championship football season.

West Des Moines has much to be proud of in its schools. You, the parents, are a big part of making that so. I genuinely wish you well this summer. I pray you are able to rest, relax and enjoy the time with your kids. I know my summer will be better now that wife has joined me here is West Des Moines. I appreciate your patience with us as we have worked through our challenges this year. I look forward to welcoming your children back in August.

Enjoy this special time with them. They grow up fast.

Dr. Peter Ansingh, Superintendent