June 1, 2015

By Allan  


Hi Everyone,

Here’s the second to last announcements for the school year!

Nineteen items of note this week:

• Last Call for Staff Summer Reading Picks! – If you would like to share your taste in books with your coworkers, send me a book or two or three you’d recommend or ones you’re planning to read this summer. Feel free to include any comments. I’ll put the list in next week’s announcements, so send your picks by the end of this week!

• June Fire Drill, Thursday at 8:15 – Our June Fire Drill will be this Thursday at 8:15. If we’re unexpectedly rained out, we’ll try later in the day when there’s a break in the weather.

• Master Schedule Meeting, Wednesday at 2:30 – If anyone has found solutions to concerns they had with next year’s master schedule, Robin and I will be meeting at 2:30 this Wednesday in Room 8. We’ll contact any grade level effected by any proposed changes, so we won’t be changing anyone’s schedule without consulting with you first.

• PBIS Focus: Celebrating Your Success – The June PBIS monthly focus is Celebrating Your Success, so remember the PBIS/CFK Cheat Sheet, which matches our monthly themes with Caring for Kids class meeting lessons. This is an easy way to tie the two activities together.

• Construction & Furniture Updates – Attached are the minutes from the last Owner/Architect/General Contractor (OAC) Meeting and some items of note from last week’s Design Team meeting:

• Design Team Items Discussed at Friday’s PD – Shared at the last Friday’s meeting, the Design Team let staff know that an additional book shelf is being added to the new school classrooms, running the length of the hallway/commons side of the classroom wall, which will greatly help with the storage issue we’ve been concerned with for quite some time. To do this, there were some tradeoffs to save money, which included going with a standard over a custom student desk color. Another major saving would be selecting four legged chairs over the cantilever style. Related to cost savings, we may also be able to get a additional round table for each classroom as a result of some of these savings if they add up enough. The team also had three questions for staff regarding selection of a Node chair for the “teacher task chair” to go with the teacher desk (which the group approved), whether we needed additional poster storage to what was already built-in (the group decided the built-in poster storage was adequate) and whether staff wanted desk cubbies under student desks or not (K-2 did not want cubbies and 3-5 did. The group agreed to having either half with cubbies and half without, or if it’s cheaper, get student desks all with cubbies.).

• White Board Centering – After prepping for the mock-up classroom, we realized the front white board was aligned to the outside wall of each classroom, which we felt was rather odd and would make the board for awkward for having groups sit up front or for students sitting in the opposite corner of the room to see. At last week’s Design Team meeting, teacher reps got the district staff to agree to more centering the white white board. The shorthorn projector position would stay the same, meaning it’s not in the center of the board, but the board itself would be more centered.

• Spring Break and Summer Move Dates – If we were to move over spring break, which is still in question, we’d have two work days without students before the break (March 17 & 18) to pack and three days after the break to unpack (March 28, 29 & 30). Additionally, teachers will have four days extended contract to use at any point in the year to pack and/or unpack. If we do a summer move, teachers will get the four days of extended contract to pack and unpack, which is what was previously given to teachers during other school moves.

• Study Carrels
– One interesting minor detail of the new school is the style of study carrels we’re going to put into the new school’s “Time Out Room” located in the office. We’re look to get something similar to the study carrels at Holt, which looks pretty good for being able to separate multiple students. We’ll also have an additional single study carrel in the front office by the nurses office.

• Report Card Grading Day Expectations – Taking classified staff first, this is a regular work day for most classified staff. For licensed staff, HR this year has granted principals the discretion to allow teachers to work from home. If teachers would like to work from home this day, let me me know, but be sure to make plans ahead of time if you need to collaborate with colleagues for 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 if working off-site on grading days is abused, we will not be allowed to continue the practice. Linked here are the expectations that were sent to principals.

• School Carnival Updates – The carnival this year will run generally like it has in the past with a couple of exceptions. With a smaller area behind the school and the limited vehicle access to the playground area, the PTO is planning to move a few of the activities that require electricity, a soft surface or a larger set-up, like the bounce house and the micro racing cars, will go in the grassy area in front of the west wing of the building. Electricity would be run out of classroom windows to the various events. The silent auction, the usual student prize booths, food (including yummy goodies from Beeter’s Bakery), and the car bash will all be back. Should be a fun time!

• Year End Checklist Year End Checklists were put in staff mailboxes last week (if you are responsible for an area). It’s pretty much the same checklist that’s been used in the past, but let me know if you have any questions.

• Staff Technology Summer Checkout – Related to the above items, if you are taking home any of your technology (laptop, iPad, etc.) over the summer, be sure to fill out and turn in a copy to the office of the 4J Technology Equipment Checkout Contract (MS Word or PDF).

• Last Days of School Calendar & Schedule – Attached and at the bottom of this post is an updated calendar of events for the last two weeks of school. It’s mostly the same, but with a couple new additions.

• Family Summer Resources from Care Team – At last week’s Care Team meeting DHS staff shared a few resources I thought I’d pass along. One is the Direction Services 2015 Summer Directory, which has a current list of camps, diagnostic and treatment services, education services, employment programs, recreation, respite care and support, and website resources for families. Another worth noting is the Inner Peace Project Summer Therapy Group, which is focused on improving self-esteem, executive function, concentration and emotion regulation for students K-5. It free for anyone on OHP. A third worth noting is on Managing Anger and Frustration. It’s a 4 week session (July 7-30 for 9-12 year olds and Aug. 4028 for 6-8 year olds) geared toward children with anger and frustration concerns, and will focus how to cope with those feelings. Please feel free to share these with families as you see appropriate.

• 4J Staff PD Survey Results – If you’re interested, linked here are the licensed and classified staff survey results by level, school and region. The goal of this is for principals and staff to use this (along with academic and school data) to better plan future professional development.

• Downtown Admin Updates – Monica Brown has accepted the position of Chief Financial Officer/Director of Support Services and will begin her new assignment on July 27th. Monica is currently working for the Oregon Department of Justice as their CFO. Before that she served as principal legislative analyst for the Legislative Fiscal Office in Salem. She has also worked in the financial offices of the Oregon State Police, Oregon Department of Administrative Services-Budget and Management and the Public Works Department. Monica is excited to be returning home to Eugene. In the 1990’s she worked for the City of Eugene.

• Summer 2015 NGSS and STEM Courses – Kim Finch has had a number of teachers ask for elementary STEM professional development that relates to the Next Generation Science Standards and shared the following opportunity for elementary teachers to participate in high quality science PD subsidized by the South Metro Salem STEM Partnership and PSU. Teachers can get four graduate credits for $281 dollars and may qualify for other funding. The courses are offered in Newport, Bend, Portland and Salem and are a digital hybrid model that includes some face to face course time. See their brochure and website for more information.

• 13 Math Rules that Need to Expire – Lupe shared this article, 13 Rules That Expire, at Friday’s PD, which came out of the Math Teacher Leader Group. I thought this article was valuable enough that it was worth re-sharing here so that everyone on staff who teaches math could have a chance to read it. The article covers commonly accepted math strategies (such as imprecise vocabulary and relying on tips and tricks that do not promote conceptual mathematical understanding) which lead to misunderstanding later in students’ math careers. This is an article to put on your summer reading list!

• News from the Emerald Empire Reading Council – Here’s the June Newsletter from the Emerald Empire Reading Council. This month’s newsletter includes links to literacy related resources and quite few professional development opportunities happening this summer and next fall. If you’d like more information, visit their quaint website.

• Not Interchangeable – Sex? Sexual Orientation? Gender Identity? Gender Expression? Knowing how these terms are distinct from one another can make a huge difference in your classroom. This may not seem like an elementary level issue, but it is something that’s come up for elementary students in other 4J schools. Read more in this Teaching Tolerance article.

• Mindfulness – Great Video for Children – A simple message about mindfulness and managing emotions from children, called Just Breathe that I thought was worth sharing.

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

June 1 (M)
Tail Feather Challenge Continues
Artist in Residence Continues (see schedule)
EEF Grant Reports Due
9:00-12:30, 1st Grade to Mount Pisgah
2:00-5:00, Allan to Pay Grade Evaluation Meeting (Ed Center)
2:30-5:00, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meeting (Ed Center)

June 2 (T)
9:05, 4th Grade Play for K/2/5 (Cafeteria)
10:00, KG End of Year Celebration
1:00, 4th Grade Play for 1/3/LS (Cafeteria)
2:30-3:30, IPBS Meeting (Hop Valley)

June 3 (W)
All Library Books Due
8:15-9:30, Field Day – K – 2 (Track)
9:00-11:00, Allan to Construction Progress Meeting (Construction Trailer)
10:15-11:30, Field Day 3 – 5 (Track)
2:30-3:30, Optional Master Schedule Meeting (Room 8)
4:00-5:00, Allan to North Region Principals’ Meeting (NEHS)

June 4 (H)
Library Basket Giveaways
Rooms 1, 2 & 16 Lunch at Park
8:15, Fire Drill
10:55-12:30, June & July Birthday Lunches with Mr Chinn (Library)
1:00-1:45, PBIS Tail Feather Reward (Track)
1:40-2:00, Kelly Students Teaching in 5th Grade
2:30-4:00, Design Team Meeting (Library)
5:00-8:00, School Carnival

June 5 (F)
Grading Day – No Students

June 8 (M)
9:00-1:30, 3rd/4th/5th to Splash
3:30-4:30, Allan to Reclassification Meeting (Ed Center)

June 9 (T)
Last Day for 5th Grade and Kindergarten
Last Day of Music & PE
8:00-11:00, Room 3 & 17 to Bowling Field Trip
1:00-1:45, 5th Grade Graduation (Gym)
1:50-2:05, 5th Grade Clap Out (East Wing Hallway) (see map & directions)

June 10 (W)
Last Day for Students
“Grab & Go” Sack Lunch (see times below)
11:05, Dismissal
11:30-12:00, Staff End-of-Year Root Beer Float & Ice Cream Sundae Celebration (Cafeteria)
12:00-4:00, Staff Checkouts with Allan

10:10 1st grade
10:25 2nd grade
10:35 3rd grade
10:45 4th grade

Students will enter the cafeteria through the doors closest to the office. They will put together their own sack lunch, assembly line style. As students pass through the line, they should form a new line at the doors exiting to the breezeway. Once all the students have gotten their lunches, the class can leave the cafeteria. This process should take 5-8 minutes.

If staff not supervising students are available to help during this time, that would be terrific ☺.

June 11 (H)
Last Day for Staff (Classified and Licensed)
7:30-4:00, Staff Checkouts with Allan
2:00-4:00, End of the Year Staff Celebration at Roaring Rapids Pizza

June 12 (F)
Budget Reduction/Unpaid Furlough Day

Sept 1 (T)
Teachers Report Back (Classified calendar has not been published yet, but likely Sept. 2)

It’s the last full work week of the school year! Make it a good one!