Brentwood School District

Brentwood High School » Newsletter


July 20, 2015

Dear Brentwood High School Families,

I hope that everyone is enjoying fun times with family and friends. What an interesting summer weather wise. We experienced record-breaking rainfall totals followed by intense heat and humidity. Whether rain or sun, my hope is that everyone was able to spend quality time together and get plenty of rest.

We are extremely excited to welcome the Freshman Class of 2019 and have them join our already awesome student body. BHS is an amazing school with outstanding students. As one class leaves, we receive a new one that is equally exceptional. We anticipate this group will hit the ground running and look forward to a year full of memorable moments and celebrations.
With the start of school roughly three weeks away our staff is prepared and anxious to get the ball rolling. Students will have increased access to technology this year. We will also be increasing the interventions and supports for our student in academic, behavioral and social areas. With those supports, we will create more opportunities for our students to demonstrate and take active leadership roles in the school community.

Our theme this year will be “Shared Mindset,” which is a natural progression from the work that we’ve done the last two years as a staff with “Growth Mindset.” Our study of growth mindset led us to examine how we praise students and acknowledge effort on a daily basis. Instead of praising students for good work, we now focus on offering praise when students demonstrate grit and perseverance. The goal is to have students equate hard work and tenacity to success. Focusing on growth mindset has also led to a renewed commitment to growing ourselves as educational practitioners understanding that collaboration is truly one of the most effective practices to improve team performance. By working in Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) we’ve researched, implemented and shared effective teaching strategies with one another, which has enabled us to grow collectively as a staff and strengthen our overall school program.

We have several major changes that will go into effect this year. Please review this letter and the contents of this packet in its entirety with your student and pay close attention to the technology update on the third page. We have some exciting things in the works. Enclosed with this letter you will find the various permission forms. Please make sure to review them and return on August 10th.
Staff Information
New teachers begin orientation on Monday, August 3. Support Staff report on the same day and will be ready to assist families. Returning teachers are officially back to work on Thursday, August 6.

We have two new staff members joining TEAM BHS this year:

Cynthia Hood is our new French Teacher. Madame Hood is excited about returning to St. Louis and teaching at BHS having taught eight years at the Singapore American School in Singapore, Asia. Prior to that, Cynthia taught at Visitation Academy, Meramec Community College, and Kirkwood High School. Madame Hood’s educational background includes a B.A. in French Education with a minor in Biology and a M.A. in French Literature. She is currently a doctoral candidate studying French Literature at Washington University.

Natalee Rujawitz will teach Physical Education and Health in a shared position with our middle school. Coach Rujawitz taught one year at Wydown Middle School in the Clayton School District and two years at Westview Middle School in the Riverview Gardens School District. Coach Rujawitz’s educational background includes an A.A. from Rend Lake College, a B.S. in Physical, Health and Driver Education from McKendree University and a M.A. in School Administration from Lindenwood University-Belleville.

When you meet our new team members, please be sure to give them a warm Brentwood welcome!

Registration Information
New student registration will be Thursday, August 6 and Friday, August 7 between 8:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. To schedule an appointment, please call our main number (314) 962-3837 ext.1018.

Back to School Information
On Monday, August 10 we will host our back to school evening for all grades. This event will kick off with our Student Council sponsored Back to School BBQ for families and students at 4:00 p.m. on our campus courtyard followed by Open House from 5-7 p.m. The purpose of Open House is to familiarize students with their class locations and give them an opportunity to meet their teachers.
Please make note of the following informational sessions offered during Open House:
Freshmen Orientation 5:00 p.m. Auditorium
Open House 5:00 p.m. Teachers will be in their classrooms
Post High School planning for 12th Grade 5:00 p.m. Lecture Hall (located in the N. Wing)
Post High School planning for 11th Grade 6:00 p.m. Lecture Hall (located in the N. Wing)
Please note that Lifetouch Photography will be set up and available for students to take ID/yearbook photos any time between 4-7 p.m.

First Day of School
The first day of school is Wednesday, August 12. On the first day, students will attend all A and B day classes for a modified block to become familiar with their schedules and gain an understanding of the school supplies needed for each class. A handbook containing a daily planner and calendar will be issued on the first day as well. The second day of school, August 13  will be a regular four-period A day.

Technology Update
Our high school is committed to staying current and innovative while implementing 21st century best teaching and learning practices. This year we are excited about transitioning to a new technology initiative called, “Bring Your Own Device.” BYOD ensures students have access to their own computer device during the school day and at home. This plan has been in the works for several years. Last summer, we upgraded our wireless network to support an increase in technology devices in our building. To begin the process this year, we will be sending a survey through email to all families. It is very important that ALL parents/guardians complete the survey. Data from the survey informs us whether your student currently has access to a technology device and the Internet at home or if we need to provide him/her a laptop that can be used to access our school’s network with restrictions. Survey data also gives us an idea of the resources and materials necessary to successfully implement the BYOD initiative. As a pilot, two of our three English classrooms will have Chromebook laptops available in the classroom throughout the day. In addition, students that have their own technology device will be allowed to bring them for educational purposes should they chose. The goal for the 2015-2016 school year is for every student to have access to a technology device by the start of second semester.

Food Service
Chartwells will continue as our food service provider. Plate lunches will be $2.60, breakfast is $1.85, and milk is $.40.

Sports and Activities
The first possible practice date for all fall sports is Monday, August 3. A doctor will be available in the high school nurse’s office the morning of August 3 and 4 for those who need physicals. The fee is $25.
Fall Sports offerings include: football, softball, volleyball, boys’ soccer, field hockey, cheerleading, and color guard. If you have any question about athletics, please call the athletic office at (314) 962-3837 ext. 1033.

If you are interested in being a member of the Parent Teacher Organization (PTO), please contact Allison Reed at, Joanne Sivier at or Ed Wright at We would love to have you!

Substitute School Nurse Employment Opportunity
Our district is looking for individuals with experience in the nursing field to serve as a substitute nurse. If interested, please call our Human Resources Director, Steven Rettke, at (314) 962-4507.
In closing, I am looking forward to another school year at Brentwood High School.

What an exciting time to be a student or staff member in our school. I strongly encourage families to set aside time for conversations about the importance of preparing for the rigor and responsibility that comes with matriculating through our learning program. At BHS, we strive to develop responsible citizens that exude confidence and are prepared for a college or career pathway. During your discussion, please also emphasize with your student his or her role in creating a safe, inclusive and respectful school environment. The strength of our school and community is based on our ability to serve and support one another. Every single person is important in making Brentwood High School a special place. I hope your family is as eager as I am to return to school and anxious to make this 2015-2016 school year a huge success. I wish everyone fun times, rest and relaxation as we bring our summer break to a close. See you soon! Let’s have a great year!

With Eagle Pride,

Dr. Edward M. Johnson Jr.