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Omaha Public Schools Announces Principal Appointments for New High Schools

Omaha Public Schools announced leaders for the district’s two new high schools, scheduled to open in August 2022.

Pending Board of Education approval, Dr. Carrie Carr will serve as principal of the new high school at 60th and L streets and Mr. Thomas Lee will serve as principal of the new high school at 156th and Ida streets. Those appointments are scheduled to begin in June 2021. Both leaders will continue at their schools through the end of the 2020-21 school year.

Dr. Carrie Carr joined Omaha Public Schools in 2005. She currently serves as principal of Norris Middle. Dr. Carr began her time at Norris Middle in 2017, after serving as a Spanish teacher and high school administrator.

Mr. Thomas Lee has served the Omaha Public Schools community since 1988, first as a teacher, then in various high school administrator roles across the district. He has served as Northwest High’s principal since 2014.

Dr. Carrie Carr

Mr. Thomas Lee

Facilitated by the Omaha Public Schools Human Resources team, the consideration and selection process included a review of qualifications and a panel-style interview with central office administrators, a member of the Board of Education, secondary staff members and families from the new school’s attendance area.

Both Mr. Lee and Dr. Carr have served the students of Omaha with exceptional dedication and leadership, continuing to do so in their new roles.

Omaha Public Schools will begin the process of identifying the next principal for both Norris Middle and Northwest High, keeping staff and families informed of the work to come. 



Be S.M.A.R.T. in 2021

In challenging times, one strategy to help motivate students is to set goals. From choosing classes to planning for graduation, students are constantly working on their long and short-term goals with their school counselor. Families can encourage students by practicing these goal setting skills at home. 

To start, have a conversation with your student about their future and what they want it to look like. These talks help families identify what is important to their student and help the student learn how to focus on their goals. Additionally, the student’s voice gives their goals more value and helps them take an active role in their future. 

Tracking progress toward meaningful goals can give students early wins, giving them greater confidence in their own ability. Looking back at their progress, updating plans and celebrating success can help keep students engaged and on track. 

S.M.A.R.T. goals are a great tool to help students prepare for their future. Students create their own roadmap to success by being Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely, S.M.A.R.T!  

Specific Goals are well-defined and are easy to track your progress. 

  • Non-specific: I want to get better grades. 
  • Specific: To improve my grades, I will spend two hours each weekend focusing on the class I need to work the hardest in, even if I don’t have homework. 


Measurable Goals have an easy way to track your progress toward your goal. 

  • I will get better at English. 
  • I will turn in all my English assignments on time this year. 


Achievable Goals challenge you but are still possible to obtain. 

  • Non-Achievable: I will work to be the tallest kid in my class. 
  • Achievable: I will read at a middle school level as a fifth grader. 

Relevant Goals need to matter to you and have an impact on your future if you want to stay committed.  

  • Non-Relevant: I want to be the tallest kid in my class. 
  • Relevant: I will graduate in the top 20% of my high school class. 

Timely Goals have definite deadlines so you stay focused and avoid distractions or procrastination. 

  • Not Timely: I want to get a job someday. 
  • Timely: This year, I want to improve my NSCAS test scores by three points compared to last year. 

In addition to S.M.A.R.T. goals, below are a few of examples of goal setting activities for elementary students:

Grade 3: Goal Setting Practice

Grade 4: Making a Plan

Two OPS Counselors Earn Statewide Recognition From NSCA

Omaha Public Schools is pleased to announce that two school counselors in our district have earned statewide recognition for the support they provide to students.

Giovanna Zermeno, Norris Middle School, received the honor of Middle School Counselor of the Year. Jacqueline Hotz, Walnut Hill Elementary School, received the honor of Elementary School Counselor of the Year.

Both were recognized by the Nebraska School Counselor Association at the organization’s annual conference this week, which was held virtually this year.

Norris and Walnut Hill surprised Zermeno and Hotz with the news earlier this week. Video of those celebrations are available below.

Our Next In-Person Learning Transition

Dear Omaha Public Schools Families,

Nearly one year ago, we were all about to face the worldwide disruption of this pandemic, the first of its kind in a century. The last year brought everyone more challenges than, at times, we probably thought we could meet. Far too many people faced loss and financial uncertainty. For you, our families, we know it brought unprecedented changes as students learned from home or in the Family 3/2 Model.

Looking back at our first semester and forward to the rest of this school year, we will soon shift to five days of in-person learning for students who wish to attend. Five days of in-person academic, social and emotional instruction will best help our students move forward. Though routines will look different, we will keep responsible operations at the forefront as a local and national leader in school health and safety. 

Our Phased Transitions from Family 3/2 to Five Days Per Week

Students learning in-person will follow the Family 3/2 calendar until they transition to attending five days per week. Dates for the next in-person learning transition are:

  • Monday, Feb. 1 – No school for elementary and middle school students. Half building-based professional learning and half teacher planning day.

  • Tuesday, Feb. 2 – Elementary and middle schools transition to five days in-person per week.

  • Tuesday, Feb. 16 – No school for high school students. Half building-based professional learning and half teacher planning day.

  • Wednesday, Feb. 17 – High schools transition to five days in-person per week

We’ve linked to an updated calendar, here. The only changes reflect our phased changes to in-person learning five days each week.

Remote Learning Program

The Remote Learning Program will continue to be available for families who feel it is best. 

If you would like to change how your student is learning, whether it is in person or through the Remote Learning Program, please contact your student’s school.


Meals2Go will continue to be available. On Monday, Feb. 1, Meals2Go will transition to one day each week (Mondays) with five days of meals provided in the drive-through format. 

Additional Information

We will continue to share our weekly Health and Safety Newsletter with the most current information available. Open communication with our families is important to us. 

We care so deeply about our students and look forward to serving them in school each day. We would all like to see community health conditions in a different place. Our commitment to student success calls us to make this change and we can all support a responsible transition by following health guidelines in and out of school.

Yours in Education,

Cheryl J. Logan, Ed.D.

Estimadas familias de las escuelas públicas de Omaha,

Hace casi un año, estábamos a punto de enfrentarnos a la interrupción mundial de esta pandemia, la primera de este tipo en un siglo. El año pasado trajo a todos más desafíos de los que, en ocasiones, pensamos que podríamos enfrentar. Demasiadas personas enfrentaron pérdidas e incertidumbre financiera. Para ustedes, nuestras familias, sabemos que trajo cambios incomparables a medida que los estudiantes aprendieron en casa o en el Modelo Familia 3/2.

Mirando hacia atrás al primer semestre y hacia el resto de este año escolar, pronto cambiaremos a nuestro modelo de instrucción 100% en persona para los estudiantes que deseen asistir en persona cinco días a la semana. Cinco días de enseñanza académica, social y emocional en persona, ayudarán mejor a nuestros estudiantes a avanzar. Aunque las rutinas se verán diferentes, nos mantendremos responsables a la vanguardia como líder local y nacional en salud y seguridad escolar.

Transiciones por etapas del modelo familia 3/2 a cinco días por semana

Los estudiantes que aprenden en persona seguirán el calendario familia 3/2 hasta que empiecen a asistir cinco días a la semana. Las fechas para la próxima transición de aprendizaje en persona son:

  • Lunes 1 de febrereo – No hay clases para estudiantes de primarias y secondarias.

  • Martes 2 de febrero - Transición a cinco días a la semana en persona para las escuelas primarias y secundarias.

  • Martes 16 de febrero – No hay clases para estudiantes de preparatorias.

  • Miercoles 17 de febrero – Transición a cinco días a la semana en persona para las escuelas preparatorias.

Hemos incluido un calendario actualizado aquí. Los únicos cambios que se reflejan son nuestros cambios por etapas al 100% en persona, cinco días a la semana.

Programa de aprendizaje remoto

El Programa de aprendizaje remoto seguirá estando disponible para las familias que lo consideren mejor.

Si desea cambiar la forma en que su estudiante está aprendiendo, ya sea en persona o mediante el Programa de aprendizaje remoto, comuníquese con la escuela de su estudiante.

Comidas para llevar (Meals2Go)

Meals2Go seguirá estando disponible. El lunes 1 de febrero, Meals2Go pasará a un día a la semana (lunes) recogerán cinco días de comidas en el formato de autoservicio.

Información Adicional

Continuaremos compartiendo nuestro boletín semanal de salud y seguridad con la información disponible más actualizada. La comunicación abierta con nuestras familias es importante para nosotros.

Nos preocupamos profundamente por nuestros estudiantes y esperamos poder servirlos en la escuela todos los días. A todos nos gustaría ver las condiciones de salud de la comunidad en un lugar diferente. Nuestro compromiso con el éxito de los estudiantes nos llama a hacer este cambio y todos podemos apoyar una transición responsable siguiendo las normas de salud dentro y fuera de la escuela.


Cheryl J. Logan, Ed.D.