WSD Kickoff Event Gathers Anticipation for New School Year

The celebration saw numerous staff and administrative members assemble to discuss plans and get ready for the upcoming year


Alix Queen

Mr. Barnes excitedly sits in the Liberty section for the WSD Kickoff assembly.

Liz Hayes

Gavin Block, Reporter

The Wentzville School District 2022-2023 Kickoff Event took place at Liberty High School in the main gym from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 17. The district’s administrative team as well as teachers from Liberty and multiple of its feeder schools gathered to celebrate the new academic year.

Several individuals gave speeches at the event, but the most prominent speaker was Wentzville’s new superintendent, Dr. Danielle Tormala. She serves as the 19th superintendent of the district and is also the first woman to have the position. She formally was the associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction at the City of St. Charles School District, where she worked since 2006.

“Ever since I was announced in the spring that I was going to be the next superintendent, the Wentzville School District family has wrapped their arms around me,” Dr. Tormala expressed. “They came up in full force to welcome me, to make sure that I would get acclimated to the district and had just been amazing.”

Dr. Tormala mentioned four specific goals that the Wentzville staff and administrative team should try to achieve both this year and in the coming years: improve communication, increase academic achievement, improve school safety, and improve culture and climate.

Major themes brought up by Dr. Tormala were relationships and connections. She said that we should use social media and our platforms to communicate and reach out to new people, as well as put positivity out into the world. She referenced the Michell C. Clark quote, “Negativity is contagious, unhappiness is contagious and fear is contagious, but so is happiness, so is optimism, so is love.” 

Senior Alexis Shuster speaks about her involvement with Liberty’s soccer team. (Alix Queen)

Senior Alexis Shuster also spoke at the celebration.

She stated, “I am so thrilled and excited to be a part of the WSD family, to serve alongside each and every one of you.”

“To me, the WSD is a place to grow,” Shuster said. “It is a place where you can find inspiration and have great experiences.”

Choir and music teacher Carter Datz conveyed his excited anticipation for the school year.

“I’m feeling great going into this year,” he said. “This is only my second year at this school, so I’m really excited to keep trying new things, keep building relationships with students, and make some great music.”

When asked what he is most looking forward to this year, he commented, “I’m looking forward to meeting new kids who love to sing and want to be a part of that.” 

Tina Smith applauds for a speaker during the assembly. (Alix Queen)