November 8, 2021


Greetings Bolts,

Thirteen items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Three staffing updates:

• School Counselor Update – Max Taylor, our Behavior EA, was selected to take over as our school counselor for the rest of the school year. He’s already made great connections with some of our toughest kids and should be a great match for the position and for our school!

The transition plan is for Darla to stay on at Holt through conferences and to use the following Monday to have some closure with students and pass the torch to Max.

• 2.5-hour Title 1 EA Interviews, Wednesday – Let me know if you are interested (and available) in being part of interviews for a small 2.5-hour Title 1 EA Position we’ve created with our remaining Title funds. Interviews will be the Wednesday, 10:10-12:00 in the library.

• CLD EA Vacancy – We’re still waiting on HR to get back regarding their job offer to a candidate to fill Jason’s vacant CLC EA position.

• November Fire Drill, 11/16 @1:10 – Not this week, but next week on Tuesday, November 16th at 1:10 will be our November Fire Drill. Linked here is theBuilding Evacuation Map and the Fire Drill Line Map.

• Conferences Updates & Reminders – Seven parent/teacher conferences updates and reminders:

• Conference Schedules to Office – If you haven’t already, send a copy of your schedule to Melanie.

• Seesaw and Families – Make sure families are signed up with Seesaw Family at conferences. You can see which family members are connected by logging into your Seesaw account and clicking on the ADD families button.



• Resources for Families – Should any families request tutoring, the Eugene Rotary (WEBSITE and FLYER) offers free virtual tutoring and the NAACP (WEBSITE and FLYER) also offers a free in person tutoring program for all BIPOC students. Teachers should NOT suggest tutoring, because that puts the district on the hook to provide or pay for tutoring.

• Allan’s Conference Tips – Parents generally just want to see that teachers “know” their child and care about them. If you can convey that at your conference, usually by sharing a story or two, mission accomplished! My other advice is to start conferences off with “How do things look on your end?” or other open ended question so parents to share anything that’s on their mind, rather than making them wait until the end and possibly running out of time.

• REPEAT: EA Extravaganza, WEDNESDAY – Educational Assistants should attended the EA Extravaganza on Wednesday from 8:00-12:00 via Zoom. See the above link for sessions, times, descriptions, and Zoom links, and see Marlee Litten’s Email for additional details.

• REPEAT: Title 1 Compacts & Conferences – Title 1 Compacts (English and Spanish) should be reviewed with all families at conferences. For the signatures, the teacher and student should sign the form and for parents review the permission section at conferences and then just date the form in the parent signature line that the parents agreed to do their part.

• REPEAT: Wednesday PAHS Lunch – PAHS is planning to provide a big lunch for staff on Wednesday, with enough to be left over for dinner if staff are still working in the building then, so I’ll need to get a head count at Tuesday’s Staff Meeting of how many people will be in the building this day.

• Recess and New Kickball Rules – Linked here is the Recess Equipment and Activity Rules Doc, which is a living document of the most current recess rules. Most recently we added Kickball Rules to the doc, which Kim and I will come around to review with grades 3, 4, and 5. Teachers should email us a good date and time to come in for a 10-15 minute block of time to go over the “official” kickball rules.

• Referral Reminders – When writing a referral remember to:

• Press Hard with a Pen – Minor and Major referrals are on NCR paper, so use a pen and press hard so what you write goes all the way through the three layers.

• No Student Names in Description – Major referrals are sent home to parents, so do not include other student names in the description section. On major referrals, there is a spot on the second page of the NCR paper to include this information.

• List Just One Behavior Type – SWIS, the system we enter minor referrals, only allows for one violation/behavior type, so check off the most egregious behavior if an incident has multiple offense types (i.e. if a student called someone a name and then pushed them, check off just “Physical Aggression”).

• Parent Requests for SPED Eval – Any time a parent requests their child get an IEP or wants them tested, make sure you notify me or our school psychologist, Kelly Kirk, immediately. A legally mandated timeline starts from the moment parents make that initial request.
• Artist in Residence – Our first Artist in Residence, Glass Fusing Fun with Rachell Jarvis, is finally set-up and will be Nov. 29 through Dec. 17. See Lesli’s Email if you have any scheduling requests (though no promises).

• Staff Directory Photos Update? – Anyone hate their picture on the Staff Directory Webpage? Let me know and I can update it with this year’s photo. If you don’t have a photo on the school website, be sure sure to get your picture taken on Picture Retake Day next week on Wednesday, November 17th. BONUS FUN: If you log onto Adobe with your school email and password, you can have some fun removing your school picture background to make some much more fun of backgrounds.


• Language Arts Adoption Updates – If you’re interested, Expeditionary Learning (EL) and Wit & Wisdom are the two curriculums that will be piloted this year. One of them will be adopted for implementation next school year. Linked here is an Adoption Update Email that gives an overview of what’s happed so far in the adoption process as well as a timeline for next steps.

• Franz Bakery Virtual Field Trip – Franz Baker is offering a virtual field trip and will give classes bakers’ hats and a voucher per. If you’re interested, linked here is their Franz Bakery Virtual Field Trip Email, but you just need to email a few dates and time to Jodie Kelly FranzBakeryTours@usbakery.com

• HANDBOOK HIGHLIGHT: Head Injuries – This week’s highlight from the Holt Staff Handbook, is on Head Injuries. See the 4J Students with Concussions Webpage for additional details, including the letter that is to go home with students who’ve had a head injury:

Head Injuries:
• Any students who has incurred a head injury must be sent to the office for evaluation.
• Students should be escorted
• Parents must be informed of any head injuries, even if minor

• Thanksgiving Lessons Reminder  – Here’s my annual reminder about the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. Staff should keep in mind that student conceptions of Native Americans often come from classroom activities around the First Thanksgiving. These conception of Native Americans gained from such early exposure is often both inaccurate and potentially damaging. When planning activities, be aware that what most of us learned in school about the “Pilgrims” and “Squanto” and the “First Thanksgiving” is a mixture of both history and myth. Thanksgiving activities should avoid reinforcing historical myths and should also avoid stereotypes (ie. NO warbonnets!) It’s often best to shift the focus away from the “First Thanksgiving” and instead focus on items children can be thankful for in their own lives and on their families’ celebrations of Thanksgiving at home. Some resources on what to avoid and what to teach can be found at the National Museum of the American Indian, Learning for Justice (formerly Teaching Tolerance), and Education World. This Google Doc links to a ton of read aloud stories, primary sources, site, and other information about Native and Indigenous People. Here is a good article with a Native American Perspective on Thanksgiving as well as one on The True Story of the First Thanksgiving. Also, the 4J Natives Program is available for classroom presentations year-round and can offer an accurate picture of Native American culture.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

November 8 (M)
1st Grade Staff Room Duty
2:30-3:30, Allan to Care Team Meeting (Zoom)

November 9 (T)
3:25-7:35, Parent/Teacher Conferences (Zoom)
4:00-8:00, Holt Night Out Fundraiser – Chipotle Mexican Grill4:05, Allan to Conference (Zoom)
5:30-6:30, 4J Parent Info Session: COVID-19 & Schools (Zoom)
November 10 (W)
No School – Conferences
8:00-12:00, EA Extravaganza (Zoom)8:00-8:00, Parent/Teacher Conferences (Zoom)
9:00-10:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
10:10-12:00, Title EA Interviews (Library)

November 11 (H)
No School — Veterans Day

November 12 (F)
No School — Parent/Teacher Conferences Comp Day

November 15 (M)
2nd Grade Staff Room Duty
Melanie Out – Katie Subbing
Darla’s Last Day
9:00, Allan to Truancy Hearing (Zoom)
4:00-5:00, Allan to All Admin Meeting (Zoom)

November 16 (T)
1:10, Fire Drill
2:45-3:25, Staff Meeting (Cafeteria)

November 17 (W)
Picture Retakes
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
7:00-10:00, School Board Meeting (Zoom)

November 18 (H)
K-3 Vision Screening
K-5 Dental Screening
5:00-6:00, Site Council (Zoom)
6:00-7:00 PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)
4:00-5:00, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Zoom)

November 19 (F)
Regular Day

And remind students about the Holt Night Out Fundraiser at Chipotle this Thursday, 4:00-8:00!


October 11, 2021

Hey Holt Bolts,

Here’s your good news for the week. Teachers and school staff can get a free Thank You Meal starting Monday through Friday at McDonald’s during breakfast hours! The McGriddle is sadly not on the list, but you can get a FREE sandwich with hash browns and a medium coffee. Just show a school ID!

Fourteen items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Three Staffing Updates:

• SPED Classified Changes – SSD partway through last week transferred Ganell from our CLC to Spencer Butte Middle School to work in their Learning Center. Taking her place is a new SSD hire, Dylan Johnson, who is set to start this Wednesday.

• COVID Utility EA (Rosie Lenker) – Our new COVID Utility EA started last week, but I told everyone the wrong first name. I shared her legal name and not her preferred name, which is is Rosie, so please welcome Rosie to the team!

• Potential District Staffing Shifts – Downtown emailed the following to principals on Friday, which sounds like they may be shuffling teachers to balance class sizes:

Variance in class size – We continue to have some large class sizes across our elementary schools and the luxury of some small classes. We will be revisiting building staffing allocations following the impact of the October 18 vaccine mandate to address any teacher shortages or to ameliorate our large classes across the district.

• Leadership Plan Meeting, Wednesday @2:45– This Wednesday at 2:45 in the library, I’ll hold an optional meeting for any licensed staff interested in drafting a third Leadership Plan scenario for staff to consider. As discussed at last week’s Staff Meeting, this plan will separate the Leadership Team from the Leadership Plan, redistributing those 7 days. In this scenario, staff taking on extra leadership duties will be compensated in the Leadership Plan and the Leadership Team will be a voluntary committee, similar to those who volunteer to be on PBIS, Safety or other teams and committees. If you’re unable to attend this meeting, but wish to share your thoughts, let me know before Wednesday. I’ll plan to share the new draft with all staff following this meeting.

• PAHS Potluck Lunch This Friday! – Our fabulous parent group is planning a Staff Appreciation Potluck for staff this Friday, so be on the lookout for some good food to be delivered by 10:00!

• Conference Reminders – Conferences will be Tuesday, Nov. 9th, 3:25-7:25 and Wednesday, Nov. 10th, 8:00-8:00 (minimally in 15 minute blocks), with no school that Thursday for Veterans Day or on Friday for the comp day . Once you have your conference schedule, share a copy of it with the office for when parents call the office forgetting their times. One option for scheduling conference is Calendly, which SJ shared at last week’s Staff Meeting, which will email parents the Zoom links and also reminders of their scheduled meeting time. If you need a translator, let me know the date, time, and Zoom link and I’ll put in a request for a district translator to join your Zoom. Still no answer from downtown if teachers may telework or not during conferences. Jenny and I will also keep you posted if Title 1 Compacts will be a Google Form or paper.

• District Calendar Updates – Three items of note:

• October 15th – Work Day – Now that all building and district PD (not including Data Teams) is paused through at least January, this Friday is all yours for planning and prep. The Tech PD on accessing the pre-made Seesaw and Nearpod lessons at 9:00 on Friday is now optional (watch for forthcoming Zoom links). See the linked District Email and Principal Email for additional details.

• October 18th – Work Day – Teachers are to receive at least 5.5 hours of planning time this day, but I’m not planning to hold any meetings this day unless something comes up.

• November 5 & 19 – Downtown has said Friday, November 5th and 19th, teachers will have an additional hour of prep time to compensate for missed prep time on November 12 and 26. If you’re asking yourself, “Weren’t all PLCs and PDs already cancelled these days?” I was wondering the same thing.

• School Bus PBIS & Positive Slips – Bus drivers have their own version of a PBIS positive slip, which teachers should honor just the same as our Zap Tickets for weekly drawings and such. Below is an example of the Bus Positive Slip.

• REMINDER: Set Up Your Voicemail – If you haven’t already, by this Friday set up your 4J voicemail. See the linked 4J Phone Voicemail Manual or this Quick Start Voice Mail User Guide for how to set it up. If you have questions, please contact Brian at 4jdesktop@4j.lane.edu

• REMINDER: K-5 iPad Cart Survey (and Allan speculation) – If you haven’t already, classroom teachers should complete the K-5 iPad Cart Survey James Grubic sent to all elementary teachers last week, which will help downtown identify what teachers need. What wasn’t said in that email, rumor has it they are considering allowing us to keep iPads at school instead of having kids take them home every night.

• REMINDER: On Time Recess Pick-Up – Teachers, be sure to pick students up on time from recess. Most EAs are scheduled to leave the playground right at the end of recess.

• 4J TAG Updates – If you’re interested, principals and building TAG Coordinators were sent the 4J October TAG Newsletter and an email about Fall TAG Testing. The short version is schools sign up for a testing block and that’s when we test any TAG referrals.

• ELA Adoption Updates – Another if-you’re-interested item, I volunteered to be the Sheldon Admin rep for the K-5 ELA adoption because I’m nosy and like to be in-the-know, so if you’re curious, here is the Adoption Committee Handouts last week. I had a link to the slide show, but that link is no longer sharable. I did grab a screenshot of the four programs being considered, which are ARC Core, EL Education K-5 Language Arts, Wit & Wisdom, and Amplify Core Knowledge Language Arts (CKLA).

• SSD Updates for Principals – One last only-if-you’re-interested item, SSD shared the following SSD Slide Show Updates covering various SPED related topics.

• United Way Ruby Bridges-Hall Event – Save the Date – United Way is organizing a virtual event with Ruby Bridges-Hall, happening 10:00-10:30 on Thursday, October 28th, specifically for Lane County students and schools. There will be a 10-minute presentation, and 20-minute Q&A session led by students. Linked here is the Event Flyer. As you likely know, Ruby Bridges helped launch the desegregation of New Orleans public schools at the age of 6, in 1960. The event theme is “the power of using your voice for racial justice.” There will be more to come soon regarding this opportunity.


• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

October 11 (M)
Indigenous Peoples’ Day
9:00, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

October 12 (T)
2:45-3:25, PBIS Meeting (Library)
4:00-6:00, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Zoom)

October 13 (W)
2:45-3:25, Optional Leadership Plan Meeting (Library)

October 14 (H)
5:00-6:00, Site Council Meeting (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)

October 15 (F)
No School — Planning Day
8:00-2:00, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Roosevelt MS)
9:00-10:00, Optional District Tech Webinar – Pre-made Nearpod and Seesaw lessons (Zoom)
10:00, PAHS Staff Appreciation Luncheon Delivered (Staff Room)

October 18 (M)
No School — Teacher Work Day
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
4:00-4:00, Allan to All Admin Meeting

October 19 (T)
2:45-3:25, Staff Meeting (Cafeteria)

October 20 (W)
7:00-10:00, School Board Meeting (Zoom)

October 21 (H)
Regular Day

October 22 (F)
7:30-8:30, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting (Zoom)


And if you missed it on KEZI last week, Holt is now TV news file footage! They did a story on Oregon ‘Care and Connection’ Campaign Eases Return to In-Person Learning and reused footage from when they came out the first day of school. Check out the video below and feel free to share it with students.

Have a good 4-day week everyone!



October 4, 2021


Howdy Holt Bolts,

The above meme has been floating around quite a bit this past week, but also keep in mind it’s been 3 years since staff have had a normal school year. Don’t forget to take care of yourselves!

Seventeen items of note for this week:

• PBIS Updates – From your PBIS team. Please review to understand process and procedures this year.

• Green tickets given to student for following a rule, showing kindness, etc
• Frequency: A LOT – give these out!!
• Tickets are placed in the red spinner by the teacher
• Name and room number need to be written legibly.
• During weekly announcements on Mondays, Allan will announce winners from the drawing. (2 students from each grade)
• ZAP’S may also be drawn at an Assembly.
• Some ZAPS have an Electra Instant Winner and those students can instantly pick a Prize (see the office schedule below)
• Students are given a menu of choices for their prize (in the office). More info on menu below.

• Given to a class for doing an exceptional job – walking quietly, helping out, listening, etc
• Frequency: as needed but we are trying to earn the prize each month
• Tickets are placed on the Orange You Fantastic wall by teacher (Wall is by the Calming Room)
• When the school earns a particular amount (50 right now) they earn a prize. They are earning an extra recess at this time.
• Sometimes we will work together as a whole school and sometimes by class in which the teacher can choose the reward.
• Allan will announce what prize we are earning and Kim will send out an email to remind teachers as well

• Given to an individual for outstanding demonstration of character that goes above and beyond just following rules
• Frequency: this is a VERY SPECIAL award that is not given all the time.
• Student receives a certificate to go home

• We know that trinket prizes have some impact and certainly bring happiness to students for a short period of time.
• We also know that experiential rewards can have a longer period of positive reinforcement and the district is moving that direction.
• ZAP winners will go to the office to pick out one of these “non-tangible” prizes at the office. PRIZE COUPON You can use this link to show students what they can earn if their name is drawn.
• Ideas for additional rewards are more than welcome
• OFFICE SCHEDULE: 9 AM and 2 PM (Fridays until 12 PM). No more than 2 students at a time.

• Working within the COVID guidelines for tracking and our capacity to provide the Golden Ticket Table, the following is a starting approach that may be adapted as go along.
• The GOLDEN TICKET is a prize option on the PRIZE COUPON list for the ZAP drawing each Monday.
• The GOLDEN TICKET table is available on Fridays.
• The ZAP drawing will include 2 students from each grade who can choose from the PRIZE COUPON list. If they choose the GOLDEN TICKET, they can choose (2) friends to eat with them at the GOLDEN TICKET TABLE on that Friday. They will also be released first to go to recess.
• GOLDEN TICKETS can only be earned this way. We are not able to accommodate other options (like turning in 10 ZAPS) due to the tracking necessary for COVID.

• October 15th PD Update – I shared last week the PD plan for this day was, “Professional Development (5.5 hours), Guest speaker – Race/Equity, SEL Building Specific, Teacher Planning Day” so I asked for details at a last week’s principal meeting and found out downtown got busy did not scheduled a guest speaker and instead are doing a 1-hour district tech webinar and turning the rest of the day over to principals. The ELA adoption committee is meeting, so I won’t be in the building to lead any PD (I’m sure you’re devastated), so the plan for the day will be:

8:00-9:00, Team Collaboration
9:00-10:00, Tech Webinar – Pre-made Nearpod and Seesaw lessons
10:00-12:00, Team Collaboration
12:00-12:30, Lunch
12:30-2:00, Team Collaboration
2:00-4:00, Prep

For collaboration team, teams can choose what’s useful for you; planning lessons for students on quarantine (since TOSAs are no longer providing canned lessons), review the library of pre-made Seesaw and Nearpod lessons, begin looking at fall benchmark data, or other tasks useful to your team. I’ll add this to Tuesday’s Staff Meeting agenda to make sure this plan works for folks. I’ll keep you posted if downtown changes anything.

• Monday Announcements Begin This Week – I’ll do announcements this Monday at 8:00, announcing Zapp Winners, the Pledge of Allegiance, and reminders of upcoming events. We have auditions for student announcers this week, so hopefully we’ll have kiddos doing it soon!

• School Picture Day, WEDNESDAY – Shared earlier, lined here is the Picture Day Schedule. Grade levels have been assigned times and teams should decide who takes which of your grade level spots (or if you want us to choose, we can do that too). A few classes had to be given specific times to work around specialists.

• Quarantine Student Lesson Option– I heard another idea one principal gave teachers for students in quarantine. Since the direction states “Teachers send the essential components of their daily in class learning and activities as a Seesaw assignment.” one school has teachers simply sending that day’s Journeys story and/or activity through ThinkCentral and the LearnZillion video for that day’s lesson. Other options shared earlier are using the TOSA created 10-day lessons, which are good through October 15th (found on the 4J Student Quarantine Extended Absences K-5 doc) or sending out the Monthly Library Choice Board from District Librarian Amy Page.

• Site Council Reps – Our first Site Council Meeting of the year is next week. There are 5 licensed reps and 3 classified rep positions. Rep positions are 2-year terms, though I don’t recall who was on year-one or year-two, but I do know we have at least one classified and one licensed rep opening. There were only two classified reps last year and Kristina was one of the licensed reps. If other reps can let me know if you are on year-one or year-two, we can decide how many open positions we have. Classified reps were Jackie and Lisa. Licensed reps were Geoff, Jenny, Kristina, Leslie , and Liz. I’ll add this to the Tuesday Staff Meeting Agenda as a check-in item.

• Classified Meetings are Back! – I’d originally had these on the calendar for the first Friday of each month, but then took them off when Friday PDs got scheduled on top of them, but since those on pause I’ve added Classified Staff Meetings back to the calendar, though it’ll be the second Friday for October. See a separate email for that agenda.

• 2019-2020 Mandatory Elementary School Bus Safety Training – The state requires all students, even non-bus riders, to receive instructions on bus safety before the end of December 2021. Linked here is a Bus Training Info Sheet (English and Spanish) and Emergency Exits Handout sent to principals, but all classroom teachers need to do is show a bus safety video. There’s the  Newer Bus Evacuation Training Video or the quaint 1990s relic The Safest Way Out. Teachers then let me know the date you showed the video for the report I have to submit to Transportation.

• Walk+Roll to School Day, WEDNESDAY – Get your students pumped for our first Walk & Roll to School Day! All students are encourage to walk, bike, carpool or ride the bus to school. If they live a long way from school, they could try parking a ten minute walk from school and walking the rest of the way. Older students can walk on their own. Younger students will need to walk or bike with an adult. The goal is to reduce traffic and pollution around our school and to promote physical activity for students. Students who ride the bus are doing their part by participating in the biggest carpool of all.

• Staffing Updates – Two staffing updates:

• Kyla Lenker (COVID Utility EA) – Kyla is set to start this Wednesday. She’ll work out of the Calming Room with Kim and Max.

• Emergency Sub Licenses – Classified subs now only need a high school diploma, so if you know of anyone interested in applying for the sub pool, please refer them to the 4J Jobs website.

• TalentEd Professional Goals – There’s been talk by downtown about reducing TalentEd tasks, so I’m going to ask at the principals’ meeting on Monday if licensed goals are required or not. If they are required, I’ll schedule a time for a group of interested teachers to come up with optional building goals teachers can use if they want. Stay tuned.

• Safety Week Feedback – Let me know if you have any feedback that would make any drill we did last week go smoother, whether it’s changing around evacuation lines, flow exiting the building, or anything else.

• 4J Nutrition Services Updates – This Nutrition Services Update was shared with principals in response to last minute menu changes. The short version is there are supply chain issues and menus are having to unexpectedly change when items aren’t getting delivered. The other piece of info is they are not taking any requests from buildings at this time while they sort through their current set of problems (I was one of the troublemakers who last week contacted them about bringing back chocolate milk for kids).

• Student iPads Potentially Staying at School – Principals got fired up last week about having to send home iPads daily and the issues it’s creating. In response, downtown is now looking at how best to address these issues. More to follow.

• Updated 4J COVID Reporting Process – If you’re interested, the linked COVID Reporting Email and Docs were sent to principals and office staff regarding how and when to report suspected COVIC cases. The short version is we report if a student is COVID positive or has been a close contact to someone who is COVID positive, but we DO NOT report if a student has primary COVID symptoms or if a student is taking a COVID test and does not have any symptoms.

• Taking Small Steps Toward Equity – It can be difficult to know how to keep going with equity work, but starting with culturally responsive teaching is helpful in getting past, “Okay, I get it… what do I do now?” See this Edutopia Article for ideas on diversifying explicit the curriculum as well as diversifying implicit curriculum. Making small changes can make a big difference.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

October 4 (M)
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

October 5 (T)
2:45-3:25, Staff Meeting (Cafeteria)

October 6 (W)
Walk+Roll to School Day
8:00-1:00, School Pictures (Gym)2:45-3:45, Asynchronous Content Prep Time
7:00-10:00, School Board Meeting (Zoom)

October 7 (H)
4:00-5:30, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Zoom)
5:30,6:30, 4J Virtual Job Fair (Zoom)

October 8 (F)
1:25-2:25, Asynchronous Content Prep Time
1:30-2:30, Classified Staff Meeting (Library)

October 11 (M)
Indigenous Peoples’ Day
9:00, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

October 12 (T)
2:45-3:25, PBIS Meeting (Library)
4:00-6:00, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Zoom)

October 13 (W)
2:45-3:45, Asynchronous Content Prep Time

October 14 (H)
5:00-6:00, Site Council Meeting (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)

October 15 (F)
No School — Professional Development/Planning Day
8:00-2:00, Allan to ELA Adoption Meeting (Roosevelt MS)
8:00-9:00, Team Collaboration
9:00-10:00, Tech Webinar – Pre-made Nearpod and Seesaw lessons
10:00-12:00, Team Collaboration
12:00-12:30, Lunch
12:30-2:00, Team Collaboration
2:00-4:00, Prep

Have a good week, y’all!



September 20, 2021


Greetings Holt Staff,

Twenty-two items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Five staffing updates:

• CLC Teacher Interviews Monday – Kelsey and I are interviewing a candidate for our CLC Teacher opening on Monday at 2:40 in the school garden if any of you would like to join us. Let me know and I will get interview materials ready for you.

• Behavior Support EA – We had a surprisingly strong pool of candidates and I’ve forwarded a name to HR for hire. Hopefully they make the offer early this week so they can start sometime this week, but I’m predicting they won’t start until next week.

• COVID Utility EA – Just like last year, downtown has decided to staff schools with a 6.5-hour COVID Utility EA. Since this position is so similar to the Behavior EA, HR gave me permission to hire someone from the above pool of candidates we interviewed, we had a strong candidate for this position who I’ve also forwarded on the HR for hire. Fingers crossed they can start later this week, but more likely next week.

• 2-hour Night Custodian – Please welcome Robert Bolden as our newest night custodian. Robert is primarily at Monroe, but when he’s finished over there comes to Holt to help out for 2-hours.

• BEST Coordinator Hires and BEST EA Openings – Our very own Ben Duncan has been hired as Holt’s BEST Coordinator, so congratulations Ben. In my experience, BEST functions better when the coordinator is someone who also works in the building during the day, so I’m glad we were able to get Ben for this job. BEST is tentatively set to start in mid to late October. And speaking of BEST positions, the BEST EA Job Posting was reposted if there are any classified staff members interested in adding 2-3 hours to their day. The posting closes this Thursday, September 23rd.

• Recesses Shorter on Fridays – A reminder that according to the 4J Standard School Schedule, morning and afternoon recesses are 5-minutes shorter on Early Release Fridays. This is noted on the Master Schedule on the supervision tab, but not on the main master schedule tab, which created some confusion around this.

• September PLC Meetings – Downtown has given principals leeway to prioritize building operational needs over starting up PLCs, which I was already planning for one of our PLC dates. The plan for our next to PLC times will be:

• September 22 (W) – Vector (formerly SafeSchools) Training Time Part !
• September 29 (W) – Review & Discuss Leadership Plan Survey
• October 6 (W) – Vector (formerly SafeSchools) Training Time Part 2

• Rain & Smoke Morning Arrival Plan – Kim and I (but mostly Kim) came up with a tentative plan for if we have to let kids inside early in the morning. I’ll bring this to a future meeting for staff approval, but if we HAVE to bring kids in from a downpour, we will put 5th under the covered blacktop area, 4th into the gym through the exterior gym doors, 3rd into the cafeteria through bike cage doors, 2nd into the library though their normal entrance, and K/1 will be seated in the hallway in C and D wings. For smoke days, we’d likely split the gym between 4th and 5th grade. We’re working on EA location assignments, but should have that ready to go soon.

• Curriculum Night – Talking with other principals, it doesn’t sound like many schools are doing a virtual Open House or Curriculum Night Events, instead letting the fall Meet Your Teacher events and sharing class info by email. I think Holt should follow suit, but let me know if I’m reading the room wrong and teachers DO want to hold a Curriculum Night and I’ll add this to a future meeting agenda.

• Artist in Residence – Lane Arts informed me the artist for “Bold & Bright Murals” is not on their roster anymore, but they are reaching out to the “Glass Fusing Fun.” Below is the survey from earlier in the year, but I’ll put this on a future agenda for us to decide our Term 2 Artist. See the Lane Arts Artist in Residence webpage for their complete list of artists.


• Digital Second Step Curriculum – Our online Second Step subscription just got activated this Saturday and I added all licensed staff. Let me know if you did not get an email from Second Step and you wanted access

• iPad Request for Students – If you have a new student who needs an iPad, you do not need to put in a ticket to 4jdesktop@4j.lane.edu. You just need to let the office know which student you need the iPad for and we will check it out through the Learn21 checkout system. For students who have lost or damaged their iPad, they too can get a replacement iPad through the same method. The district policy is the first lost or damaged iPad is free, the second incident requires families cover half the cost, and a third incident families must cover the entire cost. However, I checked with the Tech Department and families who are unable to pay the replacements costs are to be given another without restriction. My hope was that families who continue to lose or damage iPads, we would issue an iPad that stays at schools, but was told that is not what we are to do.

• COVID News – In the first week of school 4J already has one class that’s been on quarantined for two days while they contact trace, so be vigilant about masks and 3-feet. Here are several other updates:

• COVID-19 Case Dashboard – Downtown created a COVID-19 Case Dashboard that tracks the number of positive on-site COVID student and staff cases by school.

• Assigned Seat Documentation – Do know that if a class goes on quarantine, district contact tracers will need to collect seating charts for classrooms, any small groups classrooms or specialists may have (including Title and SPED), and also cafeteria assigned seats. Please have these ready to scan and email at a moments notice.

• Classroom Cleaning Updates – Ritchie shared an email with me that custodians were directed to change their nightly cleaning of student desks and small group tables. This is interesting because it conflicts with what’s on the district COVID-19 Communicable Disease Plan and the COVID-19 Infection Prevention Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols posted on the district website. I’ve emailed the district Custodial Service Managers, but haven’t heard back yet, and I also plan to bring this up Monday’s principals’ meeting, so stay tuned.

On a related note, a few teachers have asked about cleaning desks after m meals. It’s not required this year, as we focus on hand sanitizing instead, but teacher are welcome to clean desks if they choose.

• Chairs Put Up at Dismissal – Kind of COVID cleaning related, It’s best if teachers can have students put chairs up on their desks at the end of the day.

• Quarantine & Tech – I’ve already share this, but In order to respond to quarantine at a moment’s notice, Student iPads need to be traveling from home to school daily. If you need of additional headsets, please submit a ticket at 4jdesktop@4j.lane.edu

• Lessons for Students Quarantine – Principals are supposed to get information on Monday at our All Admin Meeting regarding Seesaw and students in quarantine, but a good tip I got from the BV principal is for teachers to simply send out the Monthly Library Choice Board from Amy Page for students in quarantine, asking them to complete X-number of activities each day.



• Reimbursement Updates – For staff turning in receipts, a reminder that checks are no longer being written by schools and reimbursements go on your next paycheck. Melanie has to submit all reimbursements to Financial Services by the sixteenth of each month, so staff need to give her receipts by the 13th if you want the reimbursement to appear on your next paycheck.

• Air Quality Updates – We had some bad air last Friday and the new 4J standard is when the air quality index rises into the range considered “unhealthy,” with the AQI just over 150:

• Keep outdoor activities to a minimum. Students may eat outside, and recess may be held outside, but activity should be limited—no high-exertion activities like running games. (This is a change given the needs of the current year, instead of requiring indoor recess in this air quality range.)
• We should keep all students inside if AQI is 200 or greater.
• The district monitors air quality conditions to guide decision-making around school-sponsored outdoor student activities using AirNow.gov

• SPED Referral Process – I already shared this with SPED teachers, but SSD emailed principals How to Refer a Student for Special Education if you’re interested in the current process, which is essentially the school team fills out a Referral Packet, gives it to the school psych, who reviews it and gives it to a district referral review team, who make a recommendation, that is brought back to the school team, and then an Evaluation Planning Meeting takes place to decide whether or not to move forward with an evaluation for special education.

• Calendar Request Form (Electronic Version!) – You can still use the paper version of the Calendar Request Form I shared last week, but Gloria made an Electronic Calendar Request Form you can use instead. Be sure to notify Melanie you complete the form after submitting it.

• 4J NATIVES Program – Linked here is info and sign-up forms for the 4J NATIVES Program. There won’t be a presentation at a staff meeting as there has been in the past due to a new coordinator to replace Brenda Brainard has not yet been hired.

• Holt Water Bottle Update – Water Bottles didn’t start getting printed until last week, which means they will should here sometimes the last week of the month.

• K-5 Connect & EOA Update – Downtown has experienced many delays moving forward with the waiting list for K-5 Connect. Families are now being offered slots in the program and they are still taking students from the waiting list at grades where they have room. Families that are contacted on the waiting list have 24-hours to make a decision before they lose the seat. They hope to have this ironed out in the coming week.

• Google Apps Student Permission Form – I know not many classrooms are using Google Apps, but principals got an email from the Tech Department saying for any students who do not have Google Apps permission, we can now get verbal permission from a parent and complete the form for them.

• SSD Scheduling Ideas – SSD emailed principals and SPED Teachers Scheduling Ideas doc for when buildings are short staffed due to unfilled subs jobs or unfilled job postings. Holt is better off than most schools, but we are down two positions right now (a sub for Jason and a 1:1 for a kinder).

• REPEAT: Safety Week, Sept. 27 – Oct. 1 – Safety Week is next week. See the schedule below and see Last Week’s Announcements for details.

• Monday – Directed Evacuation (i.e. Fire Drill) – 1:45
• Tuesday – Lockdown Drill – 8:35
• Wednesday – No Drill or Weather Make-Up Day
• Thursday – Room Clear – Time decided by teachers
• Friday – Earthquake/Fire Drill – 8:35

Please let me know if you do not have a manual or if you have any questions or suggestions.

• REPEAT: Principal Visits to Classrooms – If you haven’t already, let me know a good 10-minute block of time I can come to visit sometime this month to introduce myself to kids and read a book.

• Education Appreciation Days at Autzen Stadium – The Oregon Ducks are hosting two upcoming Education Appreciation Days at Autzen Stadium. They’re offering a 30% off discount for you, your friends and your family. This discount can be used at the October 30th game against Colorado. Go to www.goducks.com and buy tickets using the code “2021EDU”

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

September 20 (M)
Schools can begin 1:1 easyCBM measures
8:30, Allan Reading to Class
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Ed Center)
12:45, Allan Reading to Class
2:40, CLC Teacher Interviews (School Garden)
4:00-5:00, Allan to All Admin Meeting (Zoom)

September 21 (T)
10:20, Allan Reading to Class
2:45-3:25, PBIS Meeting (Library)

September 22 (W)
2:45-3:25, Vector Training (formerly SafeSchools) Training Time
7:00-10:00, School Board Meeting (Zoom)

September 23 (H)
Regular Day

September 24 (F)
7:30-8:30, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting (Zoom)
12:10, Allan Reading to Class
2:30-3:25, ACT Aligned Activity (Email Coming Sunday Monday)

September 27 (M)
Safety Week
Allan turns 50 and gets an AARP Card!
9:00, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
1:45, Fire Drill

September 28 (T)
8:25, Lockout Drill
2:45-3:25, IPBS Meeting (Library)

September 29 (W)
No Drill or Weather Make-Up Day
2:45-3:25, PLC Meetings – Repurposed for Leadership Plan Discussion (Library)

September 30 (H)
Room Clear Drill – Time decided by teachers

October 1 (F)
8:35, Earthquake/Fire Drill
1:30-2:25, Building Based PD – Repurposed for Leadership Plan Discussion (Library)

After a full week of school with all students in-person for the first time since March 2019, those memes about “There’s no tired like teacher tired” never seemed so relevant, but I’m sure we’re building up our stamina.

Have a good week, everyone, and let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.


September 6, 2021


Hey Everyone,

Hope you all had a good 3-day weekend.

Twenty items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Three staffing updates:

• Title 1 EA Updates – Lori Tingue was hired last week as a 2nd grade teacher at Gilham, so instead of reposting for her position, we’ve taken her hours and reallocated them to Annie, Ben, and Iris and have shuffled the EA schedule around a bit.

• Behavior EA Vacancy – Our 6.5-hour Behavior EA Job Posting closes this Tuesday, September 8th, so please encourage anyone you know who’d be good (or even someone who is simply teachable) to apply.

• Classified Sub Shortage – We have one unfilled EA sub job in AESOP are if you know any subs who are available. It’s for Jason Martinez in the CLC while he’s on his parental leave.

• Virtual Meet Your Teacher, WED (KG) & THURS (1-5) @12:00 – The Zoom link is on the Staff and Family Zimbra Calendar. Kinder does theirs on Wednesday at 12:00. Grades 1-5 will be Thursday at 12:00. My plan is to welcome families, have teachers introduce themselves (and maybe name a favorite book to read to students), do a review of arrival/dismissal procedures, what to bring to school, and some covid safety procedures. Next I’ll send people to breakout rooms for 15-minutes, at the end of which I’ll close all breakout rooms, do a short wrap up (GO, BOLTS!), and then I’ll stay on to answer any questions.

• Kinderzone Plans – The Kindergarten Team has already connected with staff where you’ll be helping this day, but linked here is the Fall 2021 Kinderzone Plan.

• Enrollment Updates – At the start of August we were 104 students below our projection of 529, but now we’re around 60 under projection and downtown will hopefully release the 9 kinders on our wait list. Nearly every school in 4J is under projection and we are far from the lowest. If you’re interested, linked here is the District Enrollment as of 09/03/2021.

• Meals Change of Plan – Principals got a message late Friday that 4J is pivoting to eating meals outdoors and that more details are forthcoming. That’s about all I know, meaning we don’t know if this means both breakfast and lunch, for how long we’ll be doing this, what’s the plan when it’s raining, what’s the plan when air quality is hazardous, and not to mention how kindergartners would make it from the cafeteria to the covered play area without spilling their trays. There’s an Elementary Principals’ Meeting Wednesday morning, so hopefully we’ll get additional details then (the day before kindergarten’s first day). Stay tuned.

• Transportation Updates – Schools do not have their morning bus arrival times yet, but 4J’s Find My Bus Stop website is now live for families. I’m planning to call Transportation on Tuesday if I don’t hear from them over the weekend about bus arrival times. More to come.

• Meeting Schedules – Due to the above two items and the “Golden Hour” of prep moved to Fridays and PLCs to Wednesday, on the Leadership Team agenda for Tuesday is to look at revising our meeting schedule. We need to shift our Wednesday meetings to either Tuesday or Thursday (I lean toward Tuesdays). I’m also going to propose we go down to one Staff Meeting a month. Since we’re now meeting twice a week, I figure we can add some business items to those meetings. Also, so that teachers get their guaranteed amount of prep, the length of afternoon meetings may be shortened depending upon when buses arrive and when teacher begin supervision students in the morning. Downtown is requiring teachers get 20-minutes of prep at the start of the day before supervising students. So more to come on this topic as well.

• Tech Updates – Four technology related updates:

• iPads Distribution for New Students – Teachers will give students new to Holt their iPads and chargers on their first day of class. If students new to Holt are coming from another 4J school, they should already have an iPad. Student devices are tracked using Learn21, the districtwide device management system. Brian has a bunch of iPads ready to go. Our plan is to checkout iPads to the new student in Learn21, put a sticky note with their name on it, and give those to teachers to distribute the first day of school. All kindergartners will get new iPads and all 3rd graders will get a new iPad with a keyboard case once they return their 2nd grade iPad (grade 3-5 iPads have a keyboard case).

• Headphones Replacements – Brian has a stash of headphones for all new students as well as for students who lost or broke their headphones over the summer. I’d advise students keep their headphones at school, but teachers may send them home if you choose.

• Seesaw Updates – Justin Huntley and his team were able to go into Clever to activate the Seesaw tile district-wide. This means if a student logins in using their QR code, they’ll be able to see the Clever page and the Seesaw title is back on there. Furthermore, Justin will be setting up our specialist in Seesaw this week.

• EdTech Subscriptions & Tools – If you missed it in the flurry of last week’s tidal wave of PD, here are all of the district purchased EdTech Subscriptions and Tools. Not on the list, we also have a subscription to BrainPOP through December, which is a pretty rad website. Be sure to check that one out and maybe the district will get BrainPOP Jr. and BrainPOP Español if enough people use it. Also, don’t forget GoNoodle Plus is free to educators this school year if you sign-up.


• Missing Classroom Materials Inventory – In the spring, teachers filled out a Materials Inventory Survey. If you have any updates, additional missing materials or or newly discovered excess curriculum materials, please submit an update in the above survey or email me directly with your update. If you need to review what you submitted in the spring, here is the Spring Materials Inventory Results.

• Wear Your Holt Shirt FRIDAY! – The normal spirit day is Wednesday for wearing your Holt shirt, but everyone should wear your new green Holt shirt this Friday for the first day of school where we’ll have all K-5 students in the building!

• Updated School Map – Linked here is an Updated 21-22 Holt School Map of where folks are working this year. Let me know if you spot anything that looks wrong. This doc can also be found on the Staff Google Drive under MISC > Maps.

• Skipped Videos from Friday PD – The COVID Protocols went longer than I’d expected, so I skipped a couple videos at Friday’s Staff Meeting, but if you’d like to watch them or the two documentaries that were mentioned during Learning for All, see below!

“Inside the AC360 Doll Study”

CASEL: SEL 101: What are the core competencies and key settings?

“In the Shadow of Fairview” – Full Documentary (OPB Webpage)

“Crip Camp: A Disability Revolution” – Netflix Full Documentary


• Care and Connection Resources – SSD Collaboration Facilitators put together these Care and Connection Resources for teachers to use with students during the first week of school. Some are a little too worksheet-like for my taste, but there’s also some really good stuff in there worth checking out.

• Color Printing – If teachers need to print in color, please contact Melanie. The office copier is the only one in the building that prints in color, but this printer hasn’t been added to staff laptops because the office copier is often loaded with labels, special paper, or is needed to copy materials for parents waiting to register children and we don’t want large jobs being sent to it. Also try to avoid printing class sets in color unless it’s a for special purpose or event.

• K-5 Connect & EOA – Families who submitted interest in the online pathways have until Thursday, September 9th to confirm they are enrolling.

• Updated District Retention Policy – 4J has unofficially used this process the past few years, but linked here is the updated 4J Grade Placement and Retention of Students Policy. In the past it was simply principal decision, but the new policy makes it more of a team decision, similar to an IEP eligibility process.

• REPEAT: Classified & Licensed Self Assessment & Goals – All staff, both classified and licensed, need to complete a self assessment in TalentEd by September 30th. Licensed staff need to also complete a Goals Development Form by October 30th, which later next month we can develop some optional building goals people can use.

• REPEAT: EEF 2021-2022 Grant Applications DUE OCT 1stEEF Grant Application are due October 8th, 2021. Before submitting grants online, let me know your grant title and idea so Site Council can rank order grant submission (no need to do a full write up for this step). Let me know if you have any questions or care to discuss grant ideas.

• VIDEO: Starting Each Class With A Warm Welcome – One last video I passed over during our PD last Friday is a really good one, so I’m ending this week’s blog to highlight it. Keep in mind that a good welcoming activity is also a proactive classroom management strategy. It builds class community, establishes a sense of shared values, and makes everyone feel included. It can be as simple as a smile and greeting students by name as they enter the classroom, but it makes a HUGE difference. :)


• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

September 6 (M)
Labor Day, No School

September 7 (T)
1:00-2:00, Leadership Team Meeting (Library)

September 8 (W)
Teacher Planning Day
8:00-9:00, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meetin (Zoom)
9:00ish, Optional Q&A Session for Staff (Library)
10:00, Classified Staff Meeting (Library)
12:00-12:30, Virtual Meet the Kinder Teachers! (Zoom)

September 9 (H)
Transition Day – KG First Day
12:00-12:30, Virtual Meet Your Teacher (1st – 5th)
2:30-3:15, IPBS Team Meeting (Library)
6:00-7:00, PAHS Meeting (Zoom) – Checking w/PAHS if they are really meeting

September 10 (F)
Classes Begin for All Students
YMCA After School Care Begins

September 13 (M)
Regular Day

September 14 (T)
2:45-3:30, Staff Meeting (Library) TENTATIVE

September 15 (W)
2:45-3:30, PLC Meetings (Library)

September 16 (H)
Regular Day

September 17 (F)
2:30-3:30, Building Based PD (Library)


Two days to prep for two days of students!


May 31, 2021


Hey Bolts,

I hope everyone enjoyed their 3-day weekend.

Twenty items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Our 6.5-hour Kinder EA, 4-hour EA, and 3-hour EA positions are now posted and close Thursday, June 10th. I’ll plan to conduct interviews the last week of school for these positions. Our 6.5-hour Library position hasn’t posted yet and regarding Katie’s position, HR is not allowing us to post for a second secretary and are only allowing us to post for an 8-hour Office Assistant, but the good news is that Sharon is interested in the position, so we know we have at least one good candidate. Hopefully these positions get posted soon.

Music Teacher interviews will be Tuesday from 1:30-4:00. I have enough volunteers for the committee, but let me know if any of you would like to join. The more the merrier!

• Masks & Vaccination Verification – Please note in the Face Mask & Vaccination Verification Email that staff must continue with current mask protocols until your vaccination status is verified. I’m not sure if that verification will come as an email to staff or if it will come to me first when I pass out the verification stickers to put on your badges (which principals haven’t gotten yet).

• Last Week Plan & Field Day – I shared earlier this linked email with the official plan for the last week of school:

June 14 (M) – Cohort A attends in-person, regular hours
June 15 (T) – Cohort B attends in-person, regular hours
June 16 (W) – Regular Online Wednesday
June 17 (H) – 7:55-10:10, K-4 Async/5th A & B attend in-person
June 18 (F) – 2nd Grade iPad Return, 8:00-2:00

Field Day will be Monday (Cohort A) and Tuesday (Cohort B). Linked here is the Field Day Details. We’ll discuss the plan Wednesday’s Staff Meeting, but I did have some questions about the K/1 and 2/3 times overlapping with the recess and also the K/1 lunch time. I’m thinking we will close the field during field day activities and potentially part of hard play area if we need that for field day. For lunches, I’m thinking we can maybe get classes a heartier snack or maybe schedule a second snack time, and then eat lunch after Field Day, but let me know if teams have a better idea or have any questions. 

4/5 – 8:10-9:10
2/3 – 9:25- 10:25
K/1 – 10:50 – 11:50

• 2021 James Brown Award Nominations – James Brown was one of the first custodians at Bertha Holt. He worked extremely hard to make our school a safe, clean, and beautiful place to be. Throughout his 13 years at Holt, he was a hard-working, dedicated, humble, and kind member of the staff. Each year, a staff member is recognized who exemplifies the characteristics resembling James. We would like your help in awarding this year’s recipient. Use the Google Form to nominate a staff member you think deserves to be the 2021 award recipient.

• Report Card Updates – Downtown has not made a decision how and when these will go home, but word on the street is we will send home report cards with hybrid students Monday for Cohort A and Tuesday for Cohort B, and they will be mailed home by schools for SSO students. There has not been guidance on things like the “completes assignments” line on the report card, whether we consider online work AND in person work or do we focus on in person. My suggestions would be to consider both, using the 1-4 scale accordingly, and then provide any explanation for the grade in the comments.

Four other report card items of note:

When are specialist reports due? The staff agreement according to the Staff Handbook is that specialist reports (PE, Music, Title, SPED, Parent Reports) are due to classroom teachers the Wednesday following grading day, thought that doesn’t work this year since report cards need to go home Monday and Tuesday, so specialists need to make sure classroom teachers have reports by the end of Grading Day. Let me know if anyone has concerns and we can add this to the Staff Meeting Agenda.

Is the Report Card website updated? The 4J Elementary Report Card website has not been updated, but it still has some useful resources including the Report Card Bridge Document, as well as printing instruction and information on Synergy Grade Book. Take special note of the Performance Key for grading students, where a 3 is the target, students consistently meeting grade level expectations (scoring in the 74.88-98.99%) and a 4 represents consistently exceeding grade level expectations (scoring in the 98.99%-100%).

Will there be Parent Reports? I’ve emailed 4J data folks, but haven’t heard back yet.

Can teachers do grading from home? Report card grading day is a regular work day, but HR does allows teachers to work from home if you notify your administrator (me) in advance, but be sure to plan ahead if you need to collaborate with any colleagues on grading. Also, be sure to use this time for grading and not use it to run errands around town. Teachers are highly visible members of the community, so keep in mind public perception. HR has said that if working off-site on grading days is abused, we will not be allowed to continue the practice.

• Journeys Book Collection – Here’s what I’m putting in Monday’s Quick News if you can remind students and families on these dates:

Reading Book Return + FREE BOOKS!

Families may keep the standard school supplies (pencils, crayons, glue, etc.) including headphones, but reading books should returned on the following dates:

Cohort A – Bring books to school Monday, June 7th
Online Students – Bring books to office Wednesday, June 9th, 8-2
Cohort B – Bring books to school Thursday, June 10th

Teachers will let students and families know if there are additional items that need returned.

As an incentive to return materials, students will receive a FREE book purchased by our Title 1 program.

• 2nd Grade iPad Collection – Downtown has decided all students will keep their iPads over the summer, except for 2nd grade, who will different iPads in 3rd grade. They will return iPads after the last day of school on Friday, June 18th between 8:00-2:00. If we get the charger and cord, great! If we don’t, the district is not worrying about it. Downtown will notify families about this, but I’ll also include it in the Quick News.

• Wednesday PD/PLC Time (Antiracism PD) – This Wednesday is the next module in the 4J Antiracism PD. This will begin immediately following the 1:40 Staff Meeting.

• Bus Safety Training – The state still wants schools to cover the annual bus safety training, but downtown says we can meet this rule by simply giving students this Bus Safety Handout, which I’ll send as a Seesaw Announcement to students and families on Tuesday.

• Input on ESSER Funding, DUE MONDAY – If you missed the district email, Monday is the deadline to give input on how 4J should spend ESSER funds. Smaller class sizes and facilities to support those smaller classes are options being considered, so let your voice be heard on the ESSER Survey!

• Staff Photos – I’ve updated our website Staff Directory for folks who didn’t have a photo earlier, but if any of you don’t care for your current photo on the webpage, let me know and I can replace it with this year’s LifeTouch photo. (PS: I had some fun with my picture and remove.bg)

• REPEAT: Fire Drill Tuesday & Thursday @8:30 – Our June Fire Drill is on Tuesday and Friday at 8:30 for each cohort. See the linked Evacuation Lines Map for where classes should line up and that will be it for safety drills for the year!

• Send Me Your Summer Reading Picks! – What are you going to read this summer? What should your colleagues read? Send me your picks and maybe a short description if you want and I’ll share them in my final staff announcements for the year. Another one on my list is The Midnight Club by Christopher Pike. I never read any of his books as a kid, but the director of the smart and incredibly scary Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House is adapting this novel, so I want to read the book first.

• REPEAT: 2021-2022 Class Lists, DUE June 11th – Teams should build 2021-2022 Class Lists for next year by Friday, June 11th. This will give past teachers, specialists, and other staff a week to check lists for any potentially bad student combinations or other concerns. See the linked Class List Directions Email for details, but let me know if you have any questions.

• REPEAT: Papa’s Pizza Fundraiser, THURSDAY – The final Holt Night Out Fundraiser of the year is this Thursday at the Coburg Road Papa’s Pizza. Get your kids excited and make sure they have the flier.

• Flyers for Community Resources – Below are some community resources of note that were shared with counselors and principals:

Oregon Emergency Rental Assistance Program Info File (take a close look, lots of info)
Abbie Lane Rental Listing Flyer (Homes for Good) – please note dates
Looking Glass Parent Support Group (Cafecito en Casa)
BIPOC Support Group through Looking Glass for Young Adults (18-30)
Updated FMR Rental Listings – ENGLISH & SPANISH
Lane County Systems of Care – Tech Resource Flyer
Families Connected (parent advocacy and support)

• District Admin Updates – Buena Vista principal Melissa Ibarra is the new temporary Co-Elementary Director (taking over for Brooke, who is taking over for Cydney as assistant sup, so these are all temporary appointments since Cyd is interim sup and has rights back to her old job) and also Language Immersion Administrator. Jeff Johnson is continuing as Co-Elementary Director and will also oversee Federal Programs (i.e. Title 1), taking over for David Jacobsen, who downtown is not replacing. The new principal at Buena Vista will be Stephanie Randall, who has been the assistant principal at Willagillespie and Gilham. For next year, Gilham is getting a full-time assistant principal (I’ll pitch for the same if our numbers are close) and WillaG is getting a full-time Student Success Coordinator. Lastly, the principal positions for both Adams and Charlemagne are now open. See this email for details as well as for some assistant principal shifts. 

• NYTimes Education Briefing on Retention – Since there’s been a number of discussions regarding retention of students with chronic absences, this New York Times Education Briefing seemed timely. Research on elementary school students during the pandemic provides some support for Chicago’s promotion plan: An analysis by T.N.T.P., a nonprofit that helps districts improve teaching, and the online math platform Zearn found that students whose teachers began the 2020-21 school year teaching them grade-level content in math — going back to fill in content they had missed in the spring when needed — did better than similar students whose teachers started the year by teaching them the material they had missed from the previous grade. This also falls in line with recommendations from the National Association of School Psychologists.

• JUST FOR FUN: Web-Based Music ToyBeepster is a website that lets you make synthesizer music through experimentation. It has four tracks. You can change the waveform, speed, volume, pitch, and scale by clicking buttons. It’s configured in such a way that anything you do produces a pleasant tune. It might be fun to share with students.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the rest of the school year:

May 31 (M)
No School — Memorial Day

June 1 (T)
Scholastic “Virtual” Book Fair Continues
2/3- Staff Room Duty
8:30, Fire Drill, Cohort A
1:30-4:00, Music Teacher Interviews (Volunteer’s Classroom)

June 2 (W)
8:30-9:00, Student Council (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Staff Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Anti-Racism PD, Part II (Library & Zoom)

June 3 (H)
Scholastic “Virtual” Book Fair Final Day
9:10, Allan to Formal Observation
11:00-11:00, Holt Night Out – Papa’s Pizza Fundraiser

June 4 (F)
8:30, Fire Drill, Cohort B
1:00, Allan to Transition Meeting (Zoom)

June 7 (M)
K/1- Staff Room Duty
2:00-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

June 8 (T)
easyCBM Testing Window Closes

June 9 (W)
8:00-2:00, School Materials Collection (Front Office)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Leadership Team Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Learning for All – ACT (Library & Zoom)

June 10 (H)
Last Day for Dynamos
Summer Camp Out 2021! – SPIRIT DAY
5:00-6:00, Site Council Meeting – If Needed (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS Meeting (Zoom)

June 11 (F)
No School – Grading Day
7:30-8:30, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting (Zoom)
9:00-12:00, State Testing – EOA and Make-Up Testing (Locations TBA)
9:00-10:00, Allan to Physical Distancing Monthly Meeting (Zoom)

June 14 (M)
ELD/Speech/Title/Counselor- Staff Room Duty
Hybrid Cohort A – Last In-Person Day
8:10-9:10, Field Day, 4/5
9:25-10:25, Field Day 2/3
10:50-11:50, Field Day K/1
12:45, Kona Ice – Holt Shave Ice Fundraiser! (Hard Play)

June 15 (T)
Hybrid Cohort B – Last In-Person Day
8:10-9:10, Field Day, 4/5
9:25-10:25, Field Day 2/3
10:50-11:50, Field Day K/1

June 16 (W)
Regular Online Wednesday
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Staff Meeting – If Needed (Library & Zoom)

June 17 (H)
Last Day for Students – Early Release
Last Day for 192-Day (most) Classified Staff
7:55-10:10, K-4 Async (Hybrid & SSO)
7:55-10:10, 5th Grade Hybrid Cohort A & B Attend In-Person

June 18 (F)
Last Day for Licensed Staff


Just 12 more kid day!



May 10, 2021


Hi Everyone,

Only three more 5-day weeks this year!

Fifteen items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – No new candidates applied for our Music opening the second round of the Job Expo, so I’m waiting to hear from HR if we get someone from the first round or if we can post the position externally. I also found out on Friday that SSD is placing Melanie Pinto into Cole’s CLC position for next year. Melanie is currently a special education teacher at Coburg Charter and Twin Rivers Charter School. Before that she was a teacher at Chavez. Please welcome Melanie to Team Holt!

FYI – If you’re keeping track, we now we have not only an Ashley & Ashley, a Debbie & Deb, a Jackie & Jacque, a Jeff & Geoff, a Katie & Katie, a Katherine & Cathy, a Kelly & Kelly, a Lisa, Lisa & Lisa, a Liz & Elizabeth, and a Mandy & Mandy, but now we will have a Melanie & a Melanie to add to the list of same-name-staff-members!

• Yellow Day, Tuesday & Friday – Yellow Day is this Tuesday and Friday. Supplies are in the copy room. It’s an easy-to-do flower craft to post on your classrooms windows (facing out). Jacque has books for you too. Dress in yellow on Tuesday and Friday. See the earlier emails for details.

• Earthquake & Fire Drill 5/18 & 5/21 @12:15 – Not this week, but next week we will conduct our May Fire Drill and our one required Earthquake Drill for the year on Tuesday and Friday at 12:15 for each cohort. For the Earthquake Drill, teach students to “Drop, Cover, Hold” meaning drop to the ground (so you don’t fall over), cover yourself by going under a desk (to protect yourself from falling objects), and hold onto the desk legs (so you stay under cover and don’t get bounced out). There are many resource on The Great Oregon Shake Out website, for you to teach students about Drop, Cover, Hold and earthquake preparedness. My plan will be to get on the intercom and make a short announcement about the earthquake drill and will shortly after announce “EARTHQUAKE! EARTHQUAKE! EARTHQUAKE!” at which point students will Drop, Cover, Hold. We will pull the fire alarm to signal when the Earthquake Drill is over, at which point classes should evacuate the building (in a real earthquake, you’d evacuate when the quake stops). See the linked Evacuation Lines Map for where classes should line up for the Fire Drill following the Earthquake Drill, which will run the same as last month. Don’t forget your Emergency Binder!

• Wednesday PD/PLC Time – Downtown asked principals to hold this Wednesday’s PD/PLC time for a potential meeting and/or training. I’ll email staff if we do have something, so continue to hold this time free, but if you do not see an email from me, consider the meeting cancelled. I’d instead suggest staff use this time to complete any outstanding TalentEd tasks (CLASSIFIED: 4J Classified Staff Self-Reflection Form, LICENSED: End-of-Cycle Goals Reflection)

The only other district mandated Wednesday PD dates are 5/25 for part two of the Anti-Racist PD and 6/9 for a “Learning for All” PD (see my announcements a few weeks ago for info on that). I’ll plan to leave other Wednesdays for planning and prep unless something comes up that can’t wait for a Staff Meeting.

• Café Yumm Fundraiser Wednesday – Remind students there’s a Holt Night Out Fundraiser Wednesday at the new 5th Street Market Alley Café Yumm location, 4:00-8:00. 20% of all sale will go to Holt!



• Last Week of School Semi-Update – The Elementary Operations Committee is reconvening on May 14th to discuss and make a recommendation for the last week of school. Elementary principals suggested Monday Cohort A, Tuesday Cohort B, Wednesday a longer online day with both Cohorts (like a MTHF during CDL), and Thursday is a short online day like Wednesdays are now. Stay tuned for a final decision.

• iPad Collection Semi-Update – No official decision has been made on this, but right now downtown is thinking they WILL NOT collect iPads and students will keep them over the summer, which principals were told is what many other 1:1 school districts are doing. Elementary principals had concerns about this, so we’re meeting with the Director of Technology soon. Stay tuned on this one as well.

• 2021-2022 School Supplies Update – Schools next year will not do supply fees or supply lists. Instead, downtown is developing a comprehensive list of school supplies, which the Financial Service Department will work with school secretaries on ordering. If there are specific things schools need that aren’t on this list, that will need to be figured out at the building level (i.e. we pay for it or ask families for a “donation” but not say it’s for school supplies or say it’s a “supply fee”).

• Staff Room Duty Reminder – I’ve added Staff Room Duty to the Staff Zimbra Calendar. Teams should take care of daily cleaning, wiping crumbs off surfaces so the custodial staff can sanitize, wrap up/clean up/throw away food, wipe microwave, and load/start/unload dishwasher as needed.

5/10 – ELD/Speech/Title/Counselor
5/17 – 4/5
5/24 – K/1
5/31 – 2/3
6/7 – SPED/Office/Library
6/14 – ELD/Speech/Title/Counselor

• Holt Staff Dashboard Reminder – Don’t forget about the Holt Staff Dashboard, which we hope has all the varios links staff need. And let me or Kim know if there’s another link you think we s hold add. The dashboard is also permanently linked along the left column of my blog.

• OSAS Opt-In/Out Counts – If you’re interested, linked here is the Number of Students Participating in the 2020-21 State Assessment. Holt is right about in the middle when it comes to the number of families requesting tested, but ‘m still kind of surprised how many wanted testing.

• District Admin Updates – Dr. José Salgado from Mississippi will replace Charis McGaughy as the new Assistant Superintendent for Instruction. The new temporary Assistant Superintendent for Administrative Services will be Brooke Wagner. That position is temporary because this was Cydney’s position and her superintendent position is interim, so she had rights back to her old job, which was left vacant this school year. See the linked email for full details.

• “1000 Hopes” Activity – An optional activity for classes, the 1000 Hopes Art Installation is outside at the downtown Eugene Public Library all May and students are invited to express (on a bookmark sized piece of paper) a hope, dream, prayer, write a loved one’s name, or unburden a sorrow or worry. If teachers would like to do this, let me know and I will have the organizers deliver the papers to school. The papers will be picked up from the school on May 21st, and will be added to the installation. See this email for full details.

• Teaching Elementary Students About the Concept of Injustice – Students gain a rich understanding of civil rights when they build from their ideas of fairness to the larger issue of justice. See this Edutopia Article for age-appropriate ways to teach the concept of injustice.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

May 10 (M)
ELD/Speech/Title/Counselor – Staff Room Duty
10:00-12:00, Darla to Counselors’ Meeting (Zoom)
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

May 11 (T)
Wear Yellow for Yellow Day!

May 12 (W)
8:38, Allan Reading to Class (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, 3rd Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
10:30-11:00, 4th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:00-12:30, 5th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Library)
1:40-2:40, Leadership Team Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Held for Potential District PD
4:00-8:00, Cafe Yumm – Holt Night Out Fundraiser

May 13 (H)
4:00-5:30, Understanding Your PERS Benefits Presentation (Zoom)
5:00-6:00, Site Council Meeting (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)

May 14 (F)
Wear Yellow for Yellow Day!
9:00-10:00, Allan to Physical Distancing Monthly Meeting (Zoom)
11:00-3:00, Allan Testifying for DHS Court Case (Zoom)

May 17 (M)
4/5 – Staff Room Duty
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
4:00-5:00, Allan to All Admin Meeting (Zoom)

May 18 (T)
8:10-11:45, School Pictures – Cohort A (Gym)
12:15, Earthquake & Fire Drill, Cohort A

May 19 (W)
8:00-1:00, School Pictures – SSO Student Drop-In (Gym)
8:30-9:00, Student Council (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, KG Data Team – Tier 3
10:40-11:10, 1st Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:00-12:30, 2nd Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:00-4:00, State Testing Day – Cohort A (Locations TBD)
1:40-2:40, Staff Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Building PD if Needed (Library & Zoom)

May 20 (H)
8:10-11:45, School Pictures – Cohort B (Gym)

May 21 (F)
Online Scholastic Book Fair Begins
12:15, Earthquake & Fire Drill, Cohort B

UNPOPULAR OPINION: Insomnia Cookies are better than Crumbl.

I learned about this one late, but Insomnia Cookies on campus is honoring all school staff through Monday at 3:00 pm with free cookies! Just bring your school ID and get one free cookie OR buy one of anything and get 6 FREE COOKIES! There’s your reward for reading my announcements early in the week. Tell your educator friends!



May 3, 2021


Howdy Friends,

It is Teacher Appreciation Week this week, but I’d like to give a shout out to ALL staff for your hard work and dedication during this awful school year. As strange as it has been to work in schools this year, Holt really does have a pretty great team who’ve made this year go just about as smooth as you could expect during a global pandemic. Go, BOLTS!

PAHS is planning to do some appreciations for staff this week, though their original plan got upended on Friday because of some new Financial Services oversight (since PAHS funds are run through the school, there are limits on buying food for staff), but I do expect there will be some goodies for folks in the Staff Room each day this week.

Twelve items of note for this week:

• Teacher & Staff Appreciation Week! – A note from PAHS…

This week is teacher appreciation week and boy do we truly appreciate you all!

Throughout the week you will receive sweet surprises from PAHS, but we wanted to give students a chance to share their love and appreciation too. Next week at your discretion you can complete this activity on paper or digitally.

In your Mailbox you will find a copy of a “Thank You for being such a great teacher page.” You can choose to make copies for your students and use it as “homework,” a classroom morning activity or make it digital on seesaw and use it as an optional asynchronous activity to be worked on at home.

A touch of time at the copy machine is hopefully worth the messages and heart felt thank you notes that you will receive through this activity.

Looking forward to spoiling you all soon!


Monday: Muffins, bagels and cream cheese, and whole fruit
Tuesday: Table snacks
Wednesday: Candy/Treat Day
Thursday: Coffee and Donut Day
Friday: Potluck Day!


• Staffing Updates – We had a Music and Kindergarten opening at the Job Expo two weeks ago and filled one of the two openings. For Music, we didn’t hire anyone from the first round, so that opening will go the round two. At kindergarten, we hired Robin Vaughan, a longtime kinder teacher at Howard (also a former Holt parent who lives in the neighborhood). She has also taught 3rd grade and worked as a Title 1 Coordinator, so please welcome Robin to Team Holt!

• Leadership Discussion Pause – If you’re wondering why Leadership Planning for next year was not on this week’s Staff Meeting agenda, it’s because HR sent principals an email last week that we are supposed to press pause on any leadership discussions for next year. This is due to the fact the HR and EEA are negotiating revision to Leadership Plans and have not yet come to an agreement. See the above linked email for details.

• Picture Day(s) Sign-Up – Picture Day for Cohort A is May 18th and is May 20th for Cohort B. In-Person Hybrid teachers should sign up for a time on the Picture Day Sign-Up Sheet. There is a separate tab for each cohort. Same School Online students may come anytime between 8:10-12:45 on May 19th. We’re planning to have LifeTouch set up in the gym. UDPATE: Forgot we had a Scheduling Leadership Job Duty. Lindsey will take care of scheduling hybrid classrooms. 


• New Pathway Change Policy – If you missed it in the latest 4J Parent Newsletter, it included a pathway policy change that families can switch from Hybrid to SSO if it is related to health concerns, which can simply be they are concerned about rising COVID numbers. If families do change, they are not allowed to switch back later. Hopefully at this point in the year we wont’ have too many families switching.

• REMINDER: Employee Reimbursements – The 4J Employee Reimbursement Policy requires that expenditures are to be pre-approved by the building principal, meaning check with me first to make sure what you’re planning to buy is reimbursable by district funds. Also, reimbursements are limited to $250 per reimbursement per month. See the above linked policy for complete details.

• National Board Certification Information Meeting – In partnership with OEA, Rebecca Boyd, is holding a 1-hour information session on how to become National Board certified. Sessions are on May 12th & 17th at 4:00 and May 20th at 4:30. If you are interested please reach out to Rebecca at boyd_r@4j.lane.edu and she will send you the link. See the NBCT Flyer for further details and links to register.



• Title 1 Summer School – Jenny will share additional details at Tuesday’s Staff Meeting, but downtown is ready with forms, invitation letters, and seats for schools once they get guidance from the state on summer program capacities. It will be at River Road Elementary, July 26-August 20, 9AM-12PM, with breakfast at 8:40, Lunch at 12PM, and transportation will be included.

• Walk + Roll Seesaw Lesson – There is a month long Walk+Roll Spring Challenge this May. If teachers would like to promote this event, linked here is a Seesaw Lesson teachers can use.

• Schools in Extreme Risk Counties Will Stay Open – A number of folks have asked how Lane County moving into the Extreme Risk category will affect schools. The short answer is it won’t change anything. This is because school districts in Oregon follow separate guidelines compared to counties. ODE doesn’t require schools to shut down when counties see an increase in cases. However, high school sports will see a change in the limit to spectators and players on the field or courts. See this KEZI Article for additional details.

• The Burden of Being ‘On Point’ – Too often, traumatized Black boys’ behavior is pathologized. It’s actually rational. See this Atlantic Article, which seemed timely, given 4J’s renewed focus on antiracism. It is short and packed with implications for practice.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

May 3 (M)
Teacher/Staff Appreciation Week
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

May 4 (T)
12:45, Kona Ice – Holt Shave Ice Fundraiser! (Hard Play)

May 5 (W)
8:30-9:00, Student Council (Zoom)
8:30-11:30, Allan to Elem Pool Interviews (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, KG Data Team – Tier 3
10:40-11:10, 1st Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:00-12:30, 2nd Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Staff Meeting (Library & Zoom)

May 6 (H)
School Nurse Appreciation Day
12:45, Kona Ice – Holt Shave Ice Fundraiser! (Hard Play)
3:00-7:00, Allan to Job Expo (Zoom)

May 7 (F)
School Lunch Worker Appreciation Day

May 9 (SU)
Mother’s Day

May 10 (M)
10:00-12:00, Darla to Counselors’ Meeting (Zoom)
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

May 11 (T)
Regular Day

May 12 (W)
8:38, Allan Reading to Class (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, 3rd Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
10:30-11:00, 4th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:00-12:30, 5th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Library)
1:40-2:40, Leadership Team Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Topic is TBA
4:00-8:00, Cafe Yumm – Holt Night Out Fundraiser

May 13 (H)
4:00-5:30, Understanding Your PERS Benefits Presentation (Zoom)
5:00-6:00, Site Council Meeting (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)

April 14 (F)
9:00-10:00, Allan to Physical Distancing Monthly Meeting (Zoom)
11:00-3:00, Allan Testifying for DHS Court Case (Zoom)

We made it to May and there are only four 5-day weeks left. After that it’s short weeks for the rest of the year.

And don’t forget to pick up your FREE shave ice this week after school on Tuesday or Thursday!




April 19, 2021


Greetings Holt Bolts,

This Wednesday is Administrative Professionals’ Day where we recognize the dedicated work of office staff, and Holt is incredibly lucky to have the AMAZING Katie and Melanie on the front lines for our school. From blood, barf, tears, anger, and occasional life coaching, on top of all the typical office duties you’d expect in an office environment, we have a pair of rock stars in the Holt office looking out and taking care of us each an every day. Thank you, Melanie and Katie!

And don’t forget to give your co-workers some SHOUT OUTS! Spread some good vibes so we can recognize some folks at Wednesday’s Staff Meeting!

Thirteen items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – Two updates. For next year, Ashley Wolf will teach 2nd grade and Candace will move up to 5th grade. And for this year, we conducted interviews for our new CLC EA and I’ve submitted a candidate to HR for them to make a job offer, but I think we’re getting a good one.

• Fire Drill Tuesday & Friday @9:45 – April Fire Drills will be this week on Tuesday at 9:45 for Cohort A and on Friday at 9:45 for Cohort B. Please review fire drill procedures with your class ahead of time. It is okay to tell your class about the drill ahead of time for this first drill, but not for future drills. Also note the were classes will line up on Evacuation Lines Map that was shared earlier. Lastly, bring your updated Emergency Binder with you when we do the drills.

• Update Sub Binders by End of Month – Note that the Sub Binder and the Emergency Binder are two different things. I think some people were using these interchangeably during our fire drill planning. The Sub Binder is a purple three ring binder with some of the same information, but is something teachers should make sure is up to date. We do not have a Wednesday PD on 4/28, so that may be a good time for teachers to update binders. Please have these updated by the end of the month.

• Hybrid-SSO Handbook Updates – Three hybrid updates and updates made to the Holt Hybrid-SSO Handbook:

• Recess Restroom Access – 2/3 and 4/5 students on soft play may use the crosswalk to access restrooms, which minimized contact with students on hard play. K/1 should still walk around using the sidewalk unless supervised in the crosswalk by an adult.

• No Singing in Class – A brief choral response in instruction is permitted, but whole-class singing must take place outdoors.

• Students in Quarantine Must Not Go To Class – Last week 4J had the first students in quarantine show up at school. Lane County Public Health will NEVER allow a student to end quarantine early. No doctor’s note may shorten quarantine. if a student comes to school during quarantine they are to immediately be moved to the Isolation Room and we will immediately arrange to have them sent home.

• Single Desk Updates – There are two sample desks in the main entrance next to the office. There is a a third style desk, pictured below, that is an option. However, we’ve gotten new information from downtown that all purchase made this year need to have the items received by June 30th, which means we’ll need to place our desk order by the end of this week. And another however, Katie and Melanie were told at a Finance Meeting that downtown is going to purchase desks for schools next year, which I’m reaching out to my directors to confirm, because if that’s the case, I’d rather not spend building money.

I’ll add this to the Staff Meeting Agenda to decide on a style if we do end up ordering them this week. Personally, I lean towards the more traditional desk style with a wire book box (they also have clear plastic slider book boxes, like on the samples, and traditional metal book boxes).



• SSO Supply Distribution 4/28 – Wednesday next week on 4/28 is the April Supply Distribution for SSO classrooms, from 8:00-3:00. If you are available to help, please add your name to the Supply Distribution Sign-Up Sheet.

• REPEAT: Announcements Wednesday – Since having kids do announcements is a bit of a challenge this year, I’ll start recording weekly announcements for teachers to share on Wednesdays. The announcements will also include Zapp winners, so I’ll upload the video to Google instead of YouTube to keep student names private. I’ll email a link to the video no later than Tuesday.

• REPEAT: Wednesday PD/PLC Time – Shared earlier, there will be an anti-racism PD (2:40-4:00) immediately following Wednesday’s Staff Meeting (1:40-2:40), which is required for licensed staff and is optional, though encouraged, for classified staff. For any part-time staff wanting to attend, I’m open to trade-time or other arrangements if you connect with me ahead of time.

• 4J “Learning for All” SIA Plan – This has been in the works for a while, but starting next fall, all kindergarten students with an IEP will attend their neighborhood school, with the exception of students in Life Skills. This will be the same for any mid-year move-ins at other grade levels. Since Holt currently has a healthy CLC and LC, I’m thinking we may see fewer students in our CLC program over time, with students no longer being transferred to us from other buildings. This will be a big shift for schools without a CLC, but for schools like Holt, I think this will be a good thing.

• District Admin Updates – Larry Williams, current principal at ATA, is moving to the Ed Center for a district role supporting educational equity and inclusion. AJ Hruby, current assistant principal at ATA, will move into the principal role at ATA next year. See the linked Email for full details.

• Earth Day is April 22nd – Earth Day is annually observed around the world on April 22nd. If you’d like ideas for this day, linked here are Edutopia Resources, Education World, the EPA Website, and Tana’s Earth Day Email, and 4J’s Earth Action Week website.

• Anti-Racism for Second Step – Second Step regularly updates their resources and have added an Anti-Racism and Anti-Bias Resources page . This page has materials ranging from lessons to book recommendations with discussion guides to PD. There’s a lot there and that can be overwhelming, so my recommendation is to look through the Resources for Educators for your own learning and Resources for Working with Students for lessons, discussions, and actions with students.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

April 19 (M)
National Volunteer Appreciation Week
8:00, Allan to Observation Pre-Conference
10:25, Allan to Formal Observation
2:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
4:00-5:00, Allan to All Admin Meeting (Zoom)

April 20 (T)
9:45, Fire Drill – Cohort A

April 21 (W)
Administrative Professionals’ Day
8:30-9:00, Student Council (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Pool Interviews (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, KG Data Team – Tier 3
10:40-11:10, 1st Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:00-12:30, 2nd Grade Data Team – Tier 3
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:00-1:30, Yummy Cookie, Yucky Cookie Assembly Prep (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Staff Meeting (Library & Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – SEL – Anti-Racism Training

April 22 (H)
Earth Day
Take Our Daughters & Sons to Work Day
3:00-7:00, Allan to Job Expo (Zoom)

April 23 (F)
7:30-8:30, Allan to 4JMAPS Board Meeting (Zoom)
9:00, Allan to Observation Pre-Conference
9:45, Fire Drill – Cohort B
10:25, Allan to Formal Observation

April 26 (M)
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

April 27 (T)
Crumbl Cookie – Holt Night Out Fundraiser
2:30-3:15, Allan to Referral Review Meeting

April 28 (W)
8:00-3:00, Supply Distribution – SSO (Front of School)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Pool Interviews (Zoom)
9:30-10:00, 3rd Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
10:30-11:00, 4th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:00-12:30, 5th Grade Data Team (Tier 3)
12:30, Lunch Bunch w/Ms. Darla (Zoom)
1:40-2:40, Leadership Meeting (Library & Zoom)
1:40-2:40, PBIS/IPBS Meeting (Zoom)
2:40-4:00, PD/PLC Time – Sub Folder Prep

April 29 (H)
Regular Day

April 30 (F)
Superhero Day – SPIRIT DAY
2:45-3:45, Allan to 504 Eligibility Meeting (Zoom)

Just 8 weeks to go! Make them count!



March 1, 2021


Hello Team Bolts,

This week is Classified Employee Appreciation Week, where we honor our hard work and efforts by our fabulous classified staff. Without you all, our school could not function and you will be even more important very soon once students return. Thank you, all, for your dedication and tireless work here at Holt!

In honor of your hard work, classified staff should look for some surprises in your honor this week. One you can mark on your calendar is to swing by The Human Bean across from Costco on Tuesday for a free drink of your choice, courtesy of PAHS. Just mention you are a Holt staff member. PAHS is also extending this offer to all staff, both licensed and classified.

Thank you, Holt Classified Staff! You rock!

Seventeen items of note for this week:

• Hybrid Return Updates – Linked here is the Superintendent Email, Brooke’s Follow-Up Email, and the 4J Parent Communication about all the hybrid updates. Here’s my CliffsNotes version:

March 15-19: K/1 CDL stops and this week is an on-site kinder orientation for small groups of students scheduled over the course of the week.
March 15-19: Grades 2-5 will shift into hybrid classes, but will continue following the current CDL schedule.

March 22-26: SPRING BREAK

March 29-April 2: K/1 begins full hybrid schedule with in-person students.
March 29-April 2: Grades 2nd-5th continue with hybrid classes and continue following the CDL schedule.

April 5: All grades in full hybrid schedule with in-person students.

PE/Music and interventionists (Title, SPED, ELD) will follow the CDL schedule through April 2nd and will start the hybrid schedule April 5th.

SSD knows this may cause an interruption to services the weeks of March 15 and 29 for some students, but said we do not need to adjust IEPs or write any PWNs.



• Which Staff Report for On Site Work? – Everyone, minus SSO teachers, will need to work in the building starting Monday, March 29th. We very likely will need to call in other individuals to assist getting the school ready before then, so I wanted give people that heads up now.

If for some reason you are not comfortable or able to work in the building in-person, contact me IMMEDIATELY. We will need to contact HR and begin either an ADA or leave process.

• Hybrid Instructional Options – At Friday’s Optional Hybrid Model Discussion, I believe there were two good takeaways to share with everyone:

• Instructional Models – There was no support for “Same Page for All” for a variety of reasons, but there was a good discussion on the differences between “In Person Focus” and “Teacher and Practice.” Although the wording is a big clunky, we interpreted them as:

In Person Focus: Teacher makes two sets of lessons for the on-site students and the off-site students do work that is not necessarily connected to the on-site work, such as choice boards, Dreambox, Lalilo, independent reading, etc.

Teach and Practice: Teacher makes two sets of lessons for the on-site students and when that cohort goes off-site the next two days, they will have assignments that provide additional practice for what they learned on-site. Where we got hung up was the last sentence of this description “The work students do pfff-site is important and should be completed to be ready for their in-person time.” We decided this did not mean there was new material being covered off-site days or that kids would be behind if they did not complete all of off-site assignments, but that the work they did these days was additional practice to help get them closer to mastery, which is what the group on Friday preferred.

We’ll discuss more at Tuesday’s Staff Meeting, but it’ll be important to have a shared understanding before we make a decision which model we want to follow.

• Intervention Models – I’d previously mentioned my preference for interventionists to remain online to provide students consistency four days a week and for scheduling purposes. However, there were some legitimate concerns about students trying to Zoom from the classroom, so Jenny hatched a plan where we think we could space students out in the library (1st choice) or the gym (2nd choice) and Zoom to their groups from there, which allows both the on-site and off-site students to meet four days a week and to cover more material, while not disrupting the gen ed classroom when they need talk and participate.

For your reference, linked here is my Wednesday Hybrid Presentation and below are links to the primary source documents I pulled all that information from.

Instructional Options
SAMPLE DISTRICT Hybrid (In-person only) Schedule
Holt DRAFT Hybrid Schedule (largely plagiarized it from Howard)
Elementary Hybrid Planning/Prep
Preparing Your Space for In-Person Learning
4J Return to In-Person Protocols Voice Over Presentation
4J Return to In-Person Protocols source presentation with live links

• Schedule & Instructional Model Survey – Linked here is a Schedule & Instructional Model Survey to do a barometer test of what people are thinking when it comes to the Draft Master Schedule and the Instructional Model Options for classrooms and interventionists.

• Hybrid/SSO/COVID Updates – Several hybrid/SSO/COVID items of note and follow-up to questions from meetings last week:

• Science Kits – Let me know by Friday if you’d like your science kit delivered to your classroom. Any kits left after Friday will be shipped back to the warehouse.

• Talking at Lunch – I’d gotten some bad information on this. Students ARE allowed to talk while eating breakfast & lunch. Now we don’t need to break kids spirit like they’re in a Pink Floyd Music Video.

• Tech Wipes – Brian is getting Tech Wipes for each classroom, the front office, and extras to have on hand.

• List of Teacher Responsibilities – I’m working on a Quick Sheet of all the teacher responsibilities in terms of cleaning, contract tracing, student screening, etc. I’ll have it by next week.

• Loose Paper Towels – Ryan has about 12 packs of loose paper towels and is ordering more. If you’d like some for your classroom, send Ryan an email.

• Alternate Locations – If your room becomes unavailable because a student is exhibiting COVID symptoms or you need to room clear for any other reason, classes will need to relocate for about 30 minutes while your classroom is cleaned. Each wing will need a designated “Alternate Location” for their class to go to. My thinking is there is one SSO classroom in each wing (and use Gloria & Kim’s room in the 5th grade wing), which we can set up desks and chairs if a classroom ever needs a relocate temporarily.

• Badge Access – I’ve emailed Facilities to reactivate badges a few days before hybrid starts. I’m assuming this will happen, but I haven’t heard an official answer back yet.

• Seesaw-Clever Cohort Sync Justin Huntley Emailed me back on this question. The short answer is, yes, Seesaw and Clever will will sync and classroom teachers will have two new classes in both Seesaw and Clever for each cohort. See the above linked email for details. One unknown he mentioned is they are not sure what a midyear change like this will do to student progress in every app (especially if they are not district purchased and supported.)

• Electrostatic Spray Schedule – I checked with the Custodial Service Supervisor and classrooms will be sprayed down nightly, so it’s important that anything you consider valuable is safely stored or covered. Linked here is his email with more detail on the cleaning plans.

• Class Lists Parent Notification, Friday – The latest 4J Parent Communication says that elementary families will be notified of classroom and cohort assignment this Friday. Stay tuned for details on how and what time on Friday we will send this email. Downtown is also providing an optional email template (in English and Spanish) teachers can use if they would like.

• Staffing Updates – Three staffing updates:

• Hybrid Utility Support EA Posting – Elementary schools are getting a temporary 5.5-hour classified “Hybrid Utility Support EA” to help wherever we need. My initial thought is this person will be helping with a lot of supervision and then helping in the younger grades during non-supervisory times, as well as helping with any sick students or other out of the ordinary hybrid situations, such as supervising Title 1 students while they’re online spread out in the library. This is a temporary position through the end of the year, but please tell any excellent people the posting closes this Tuesday.

• YMCA After School Openings – If there are any EAs wanting more hours, YMCA is hiring for after school child care. The posting is linked here as AFTER SCHOOL TEACHER – Youth Development. The program will run here at Holt until 6:00 and Holt’s very own Ben Duncan is the new YMCA Site Director for our after school program.

• Recess Supervision EA Interviews , 3/10 @2:00– I now have the applications for our Recess Supervisor EA Position. I’ll plan to hold interviews on Wednesday, March 10th from 2:00-3;30. Interviews will be over Zoom. Let me know if any of you are interested in volunteering your time to help with interviews.

• Supply Distribution Thursday – This Thursday is the March Supply Distribution from 8:00-3:00. If you are available to help, please add your name to the Supply Distribution Sign-Up Sheet. This will be our final school wide distribution and starting April 1, we’ll just do SSO Supply Distributions.

Pleas remind you class we’ll be passing out Jumpathon T-Shirts and Holt Bolt Jump Ropes and don’t forget to stop outside between 11:00-1:00 for a FREE Kona Ice Shave Ice! Just show your school ID and it’s on the house!



• School Supplies for Hybrid – For on-site students, we have a set of school supplied provided by downtown that we held back from handing out to students earlier in the year. Katie and Melanie will start counting out the following supplies for classes:

• Rulers
• Pencil Boxes
• Pencil Pouches
• Primary Composition Notebooks (K-1), 2 per child
• Wide Rules Composition Notebooks (2-5), 2 per child
• Manual 2 Hole Sharpener
• Sheet Protectors, 3 per child
• Book Bins
• Colored Pencils
• Washable Markers
• Ticonderoga Sharpened Pencils
• Glue Sticks
• Scissors
• Dry Erase Marker
• Pink Pearl Eraser
• White Glue
• Crayons

Schools are not to ask for supply fees or give parents supply lists, so let me know if there are essential supplies you need for the remainder of the year.

• Student Health Alerts – Now that students will be returning in person closer to spring break, Nurse Cathy will email any relevant student health alerts that teaches and staff need to be aware of. Most teachers already know if they have a student with needs because she’s already talked with you, but she’ll make sure you get any information you need to know, so watch for that email.

• Childcare Resource List – Buried in Cydney’s hybrid update email, was the linked Childcare Resource List, as well as a link to Employment-Related Day Care program (ERDC), which helps eligible staff pay for childcare while they are working. Downtown is also working on a program to provide partial subsidies for childcare costs for 4J staff using federal funds, and will share more information if this becomes available to help staff with school-age children.  

• February Student Services Newsletter – If you’re interested, linked here is the February SSD Newsletter that was sent to SPED Teachers and principals.

• REPEAT: Read Across America – This week is Read Across America. This year’s theme is “Create and celebrate a nation of diverse readers.” See the above linked NEA Website for loads of resources for this annual event. Don’t forget about Jacque’s Virtual Reading Corner (here’s a link to an editable version)

• It’s Time to Talk About Dr. Seuss – In this article from Teaching for Justice (formerly Teaching Tolerance), author Gabriel Smith discusses a study done 2 years ago that analyzed Dr Seuss’s writing from an anti-racist lens. The findings highlighted a number of concerns in Dr Seuss’s work, especially in how people of color are depicted. The author does not suggest abandoning Seuss’s work entirely, although there have been serious calls in the last few years to pull Seuss back from the relative idol status he currently holds in education. The author instead recommends we closely analyze the materials we provide students to determine if a) it should be presented at all given the students’ age and b) if it is presented, what kind of critical conversation students should engage in around the text.

• Anti-Racism Over “Tradition” – Alternatives to Dr. Seuss and Racism – This article from Kaitlin Kamalei Brandon at Colorful Pages elevates anti-racist texts that fill the same needs people have when they turn to Dr Seuss books – namely rhyming patterns, ease of reading, and illustrations. Included are texts like Ada Twist, Scientist and No Kimchi for Me along with many more suggestions.

• White House: Testing to go forward this year – I shared earlier that ODE applied for a waiver for federally required state testing, but the Biden administration said last week that states must administer federally required standardized tests this year, but schools won’t be held accountable for the results — and states could give shorter, remote, or delayed versions of the exams. See this ChalkBeat Article for details and stay tuned for what Oregon decides testing will look like this year.

• Schedule of Upcoming Events – See the Holt Staff Calendar for future events, but here are the events of note for the next two weeks:

March 1 (M)
Classified Appreciation Week
8:00-9:30, Allan to Hybrid Walkthrough w/Joyce & Dawn Strong
12:30-1:00, SSO Team Meeting (Zoom)
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)

March 2 (T)
Read Across America
Human Bean Classified Staff Appreciations (Free drink for ALL staff!)
8:00, Allan Meeting w/Facilities RE: Evacuation Plan
12:30-1:00, Interventionist Team Meeting (Zoom)
1:00, PBIS Video Creation for Hybrid
3:00-4:00, Staff Meeting (Zoom)

March 3 (W)
Elementary Transitional Prep Day
8:30-9:00, Student Council (Zoom)
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
1:00-2:00, Classified Recess Protocols Meeting (Zoom)
4:30, Poetry Club w/Ms. Katharine (Zoom)

March 4 (H)
8:00-3:00, School Supply Distribution (Front of School)
11:00-1:00, Kona Ice Fundraiser (Front of School)

March 5 (F)
Elementary Transitional Prep Day (Async Only)
12:00-1:15, Lunch Bunch – KG 12:00, 3/4 12:20, 1/2 12:40, 5th 1:00 (Zoom)

March 9 (M)
1:30-3:30, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
5:30, This Week in Sports w/Mr. Cole (Zoom)

March 10 (T)
12:30-1:30, Allan to Attendance Meeting (Zoom)
2:00-3:00, Leadership Team Meeting (Zoom)

March 11 (W)
Elementary Transitional Prep Day
9:00-9:45, Virtual Coffee w/the Principal (Zoom)
1:00, Holt Jumpathon! (Zoom)
2:00-3:30, EA Interviews (Zoom
4:30, Poetry Club w/Ms. Katharine (Zoom)

March 12 (H)
11:00-10:00, Handel’s Homemade Ice Cream – Holt Night Out Fundraiser
2:30-3:30, IPBS CDL Meeting (Zoom)
5:00-6:00, Site Council (Zoom)
6:00-7:00, PAHS (Parents at Holt School) Meeting (Zoom)

March 13 (F)
Elementary Transitional Prep Day (Async Only)
9:00-10:00, Allan to Physical Distancing Monthly Meeting (Zoom)
12:00-1:15, Lunch Bunch – KG 12:00, 3/4 12:20, 1/2 12:40, 5th 1:00 (Zoom)

Two more Mondays until spring break after this week!