Phone: 320-329-8368 x1303

Email:

Degrees and Certifications:

Bachelor of Science - Southwest Minnesota State University Master's degree - Southwest Minnesota State University Administrative - Saint Mary's University, Mpls

Mrs. Hagen

Elementary Principal at Renville County West School District

Renville, Minnesota

Creative, dedicated, lifelong learner strives to instill in others the desire for increased knowledge,willingness to collaborate, and flexibility to adapt to new trends.

I was raised by hard working parents who grounded me in strong morals and the value of education in life.  Both had a strong work ethic and were extremely resilient. I work hard to exemplify those same morals, strong work ethic, and continued resiliency in my day to day life activities. I was a classroom teachers for 17 years, most of them teaching in the middle grades.  During my classroom years, I taught students in grades 4 through 8 on four different campuses which were, at the time, part of what has now become Renville County West.  I have raised my children in this community and am committed to all of the children in all of our communities that comprise RCW.  I am in my tenth year of adminstrative work. 

I have been a part of the ever changing dynamics in education and witnessed the impact of many changes in education; changes including funding, accountability, licensing and course offerings. Some changes, often associated with changes in government leadership, have resulted in a sense of frustration by parents, teachers, students, and community members that it's just not the way it used to be.  I've worked through outcome based education, profiles of learning, and the development of state standards. There have definitely been differences in each of the educational platforms that we have faced over the years. There have also been similarities in platforms.  One thing that we can be assured of is that education is always evolving.  It should be!  In education we must always challenge ourselves to be intolerant of status quo. We must be daring enough to take risks and evaluate the benefits or, in some cases, downfalls associated with such risks. Upon such evaluation we can then take appropriate action to make adjustments that turn failures and downfalls into learning, which provides its own benefits. Our key focus, however, must not be on how to keep things the same, but to identify and focus on what works and is best for each student. 

We are an evolving community with academic concerns that we need to address. Here at RCW we have work to do! Recent release of proficiency scores on state math and reading assessments has shown our students to be stagnant in academic growth. While some of our practices have worked in the past with our students, we have a need to make some adjustments in order to promote greater growth. You may learn more about our school's performance at this link:MN report card. We have hard working staff members who value and want all of our students to grow in their academic, social and emotional learning. We stress over the load we bear in improving our students' performance on state assessments while also addressing their increasing social and emotional needs. Education is a right of all of our students, not a select population.  Thus, we will continue to work hard to support the academic growth of all of our students.

Our teachers have identified all of the essentials standards to help focus their instruction and to inform you, as parents, and students of the learning targets for their courses. We encourage you to investigate these standards more at MN State Standards. Teachers will be evaluating regularly, benchmark data and other forms of evidence that demonstrate student levels of understanding.  Based on such data analysis teachers will adjust instruction to best suit students' needs. Our emphasis will be on demonstrating mastery of standards, not simply completion of assignments. Evaluation may not be in the form of a letter grade, but in the form of feedback and how to make improvements. Not all children will demonstrate mastery at the same time. But all will have the opportunity to demonstrate growth throughout the year through multiple assessment opportunities.    

As parents, you are your child's first teachers. We ask that you promote the value of education to your children by challenging them, encouraging hard work and different thinking, and by encouraging and rewarding second (and third) attempts. As a team we want to promote to our children that there is more than one way to demonstrate understanding and there is an intrinsic reward for giving your best effort in all that we do.  We will reinforce those habits and provide research-based, effective instruction with a guaranteed and viable curriculum based on the state standards within a safe and supportive environment.  We look forward to partnering with you and your children to grow our students to their greatest potential. 

Yours in education 

Gina Hagen. RCW Principal