The Wawascene was created by Dr. Mark Stock, former Superintendent of the Wawasee Community School Corporation. Due to its local popularity, Dr. Stock has left the blog site to future Wawasee administrators.

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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

CORRECTION OF REGISTRATION DATES

In and earlier post regarding Freshman Orientation, we inadvertently announced the wrong dates for registration:

Registration is set for 12:00-7:00 p.m. Tuesday, August 7 and Wednesday, August 8. We regret this error and apologize for any inconvenience.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

Registration -- What a waste of time and energy! It only proves that Wawasee still lacks the wisdom and foresight to streamline the process by carrying information over from year to year. It's a shame that we spend so much money on technology that will do it when the staff clearly doesn't know how to use it.

Anonymous said...

Why not make it available to register students on line, instead of being at the school for hours? It is just an update of information on the student.

Anonymous said...

or send a sheet home with kids the first day asking for updated information?

Jim Evans said...

In May of this year, Dr. Stock asked community members to provide feedback and ideas that would enhance the registration process. A number of suggestions were made and Dr. Stock then provided that information to adminstrators in June. At that point, the decision was made that given the short time frame it would be difficult to make wholesale changes in the process, communicate those changes to all parents in a timely fashion and have the registration process run smoothly.

Over the coming school year, administrators will be evaluating the registration process. Items they will be considering will include:

a. Whether to streamline the current process or replace the current process with something completely different
b.How best to implement technology in whatever process is used
c.How best to communicate all changes to ensure smooth registration for the next school year

This timeframe will also allow the new superintendent to provide input and direction in the process.

Please feel free to communicate your suggestions to your building principals while the topic is still fresh in your mind so that they can include your feedback as they evaluate the registration process during the upcoming school year.

Alan Frank said...

Just like in your line of work, there are some issues that would need to be resolved to take the place of showing up in person to register students. At the High School, we have sent every piece of paper necessary to register home during the summer in a summer letter. If a family takes the time to complete these forms and come with them ready to submit, the process takes very little time and eliminates standing in lines. Those that come with this information completed go directly to the front of the line and move through quite quickly.

Other items to consider.

At Wawasee H.S. we now have the student's I.D. picture and yearbook picture taken during registration so that we do not take kids out of classes during the beginning of the school year to stand in long lines for pictures.

At the end of each year we have approximately $7,000 worth of obligations that students owe for such things as lost books, broken or damaged items, padlocks not returned, etc. Our experience tells us that if we mail reminders home to collect this we seldom get any type of reply. If we catch the parent at the beginning of the registration line with reminders they usually go see the bookkeeper and work out payment prior to registering. The other option would be to take people to small claims court throughout the year for not paying. I think taking people to court is possibly embarrassing to many and not such a good public relations tactic.

The sheets you are referring to for changes of personal information can also be done quickly. Many do not realize the problem of sending these things home with stduents and trying to get them back. We spend, and in my opinion waste, more time trying to collect these items than all of the hours of registration all together. We send last years home with the summer letter and all the parent has to do if there are no changes is drop off the one sent home at a table. Not a very time consuming stop. Also, not having these be accurate maybe seems to not be so important, until an emergency arises and we are asked why we didn't get ahold of someone sooner because the information we are using is not accurate. Complete accuracy is necessary on these forms.

Don't think for a second that if we felt that there was a quicker way for everyone, and with the same accuracy, then we would do it. Remember we are dealing with a wide variety of people. Many with knowledge and hardware that is considered on the cutting edge, where others still don't have phones or computers in their homes. We owe it to all of them to do our best within reason.

Finally, this probably seems totally unnecessary to many families, but in a time where it seems so hard to communicate and work as a team with parents I personally like getting to talk and visit with parents about their kids, what they did over the summer and what help I might be to increase the chance of school succes throughout the upcoming year.

I hope this might help to at least understand why we may often appear to live in the dark ages.

Alan Frank
Assistant Principal
Wawasee High School

Kathryn said...

I received my package from the high school, reviewed it and its ready for when I go to registration. This makes the whole process go faster. I have never had to wait for "hours" to register my student.

Anonymous said...

Why can't we have frosh registration and orientation at the same time? If you hold it on a different day than the remaining registrations, theoretically you would cut down 25% of the crowd! Or, now here is a novel idea, when 8th graders fill out their schedules for their freshman year, why not get the registration information then? No schedules issued until all information complete?

Beyond the freshman year, parents have to take some responsibility. It's just like when you go to the doctor's office. You don't like to update your information, but if your insurance doesn't get filed and you get the bill, then you get upset. At some point, adults have to take the responsibility to get the information correct.

Anonymous said...

Alan,

I think most people who do pay their bills would rather have those who don't be embarrassed than to be punished for the ill deeds of others.

Anonymous said...

As a parent who has not attended a child's registration at WHS yet, I would like to know how many people had to wait more than 15 minutes in lines that already had their packet of information completed upon arrival at the high school.

Anonymous said...

I did!

Anonymous said...

I worked the WMS registration and several people(myself included) wondered about the magnets with the corporation calendar on them. They are usually handed out at registration, but not this year.They are very handy. We refer to ours often.

Anonymous said...

I, too, wonder where the magnets with the school calendar on them were. I registered at both an elementary and the middle school. They weren't available at either place. If anything made registration worthwhile, it was the magnets. If you aren't going to change the process, please don't take away our reward!

Anonymous said...

Sorry Mr. Frank but the high school did NOT send home all the papers that needed to be filled out. The nurse insisted we needed a paper other than the one received in the mail but I refused to leave the line and start over! And then there were the papers (colored half sheets which cost more than plain white) that the parents and students had to sort through a packet to pull out and sign stating that the student received their handbook.
So not only did I have papers that came in the mail (I'd love to know how much all the wasted papers cost and the postage too) to throw away that did not pertain to my children but I also had another packet I was required to take at the high school and threw most of that away too. Why didn't they just pass out the sheet for the handbooks separately? Not to mention what a joke that was since my children weren't there to sign it.
And then there was the Spanish version of the free books/lunches program paper we all received.....nothing against the parents that do not speak/write English but save your taxpayers some money and figure out which parents really need that paper. It can't be that hard for the schools to know which parents of students that have been registered with Wawasee previously do not speak English. A little common sense could save the taxpayers.

Anonymous said...

As someone who has not lived in this school system my whole life, I want parents to know that most school systems DO NOT require parents to re-register every year. Once students are in the school system, their information follows them.
If it is true that this is the only way to get parents to pay, I am sure that most other schools would follow this procedure,too. Most of the other parents I know simply paid the bills for their students fees and books when the bill came. The fact is if you don't have the money to pay at registration, they still let you register, so there must be some billing method already in place.

Most parents are trusted to pay electrical bills which come in the mail, gas bills, rent, mortgages,etc. What's the big deal about sending a bill and letting the responsible pay and dealing with the rest of those (who I can't believe is more than the cost of all the staff to man registration) on a one by one basis?

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure what the solution is regarding registration but I do know that school personnel has a difficult job. They work all day and then still have to spend hours calling people who are on the records but have not registered. Many move to another corporation or move in and don't bother to notify the school. Those numbers determine class size and the number of teachers needed. Teachers have been added since registration. It would be a disaster if kids just showed up on the first day.

Anonymous said...

I actually thought it was faster this year.

Cherie Martin, WHS Teacher said...

As a teacher, I would like to thank all the students and parents who attended Freshmen Orientation. It was a great crowd! Many staff members were present as well. A lot of valuable information was shared. The students will see this information again on Thursday, but it is really helpful for parents to know it as well.

It was fun to stand in the halls, sign papers saying that students had found our area, and watch the excitement as a student was able to open a locker on the first try. Having the parents walk through the schedules and the locker opening with students is SO much more productive for the students than were the previous tours of "small herds" of giggling students led by upperclassmen. Each student was engaged in the challenge of finding the different areas of the school and locating classrooms.

Freshmen, welcome. We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday. You may forget something the first couple of days. That's okay. Just ask one of us for help. After a few days, you will get it all down.

Anonymous said...

As far as the "cost of staff" for registration, most, if not all, is voluntary. Just an FYI.

Anonymous said...

"Voluntary" is even more insulting -- we require people to serve these hours and call it voluntary! Ridiculous...especially when considering hourly people and those contracted for specific amounts of time. They're being taken advantage of.

Anonymous said...

Have we ever considering talking to the majority of schools in Indiana who have registration for new students only? They must have a solution for all the hypothetical problems we say we will face if we don't have this time-wasting system in place. How about at least the option to register online and pay with a credit card?