May 30, 2016

By Allan  



Hello Everyone,

If you didn’t make it to the Farewell Event for the Old Howard Building last week, at the bottom of this week’s announcements are a few pictures from the event, including some pictures of the very waterlogged time capsule contents, which included a GI Joe action figure, sports cards, a stuffed animal, school supplies, a mushy phone book, and other random items. Also at the bottom of the email is an mp3 file of a late 1990s mixtape the class put together, which for some reason starts off with a song from the 1950s. At the event, staff and students going back as far as when Howard first opened nearly 70 years ago came to the event. I’d set out memorabilia from the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, and 00s on tables by decade and I thought I was kind of special because pictures of me could be found on four of the tables, but I was one upped by Darby Tracy, who is a former Howard student and teacher (and now Howard grandparent), who can say the she was at Howard in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, AND 00s. After seeing so many people at the event, it was clear that Howard has been a very special place to many people and it continues to be so today. Not to get too gushy, but I love our school!

Eighteen items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – We had a new 4th grade CLC student start last week and Patricia Donohue is set to start this Wednesday in the CLC as our newest EA 1:1. I’ve worked with Patricia when I was at Cal Young, where she was a 1:1 and she was a fabulous, so I’m very happy we were able to get her. Patricia was most recently working as an EA in the CLC-B at Edison. Please welcome Patricia to the Howard family! In other CLC news, Aden will sadly be leaving the Howard family at the end of the school year. In his two years here at Howard, Aden has done an amazing job with one of our CLC students, but this summer he will be moving to Mobile, Alabama and is in the process of applying down there for positions similar to his current one. Wish Aden well in his future endeavors! Lastly, I’m working with David and Rachel on hiring a Music teacher for us for first semester next year (David will be here two days a week second semester). 4J is hiring for three music positions, so we did the first round of interviews last week and we’ll be doing a second round of interviews this Tuesday, so hopefully I’ll have an announcement for our position soon.

• Kindergarten EA Interviews, Thursday, June 2nd – I’ll be holding interviews for a 3-hour Kindergarten EA position this Thursday, June 2nd from 3:00-6:00. I haven’t confirmed interview times for candidates yet, but I don’t plan on it going any later than 6:00. Let me know by Wednesday if you’d like to be on the interview committee

• Report Card Grading Day Expectations – Not this Friday, but Friday next week is the elementary report card grading day. This is a regular work day for all staff, with the exception of the very few student-contact-days-only staff. HR has said it is allowable for licensed staff to work from home this day if they notify their administrator (me) in advance, 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.

• Report Card Translation Deadline, June 1st – If you have report card comments you need translated into Spanish, they are due to Bianca by this Wednesday, June 1st.

• Summer Reading Staff Picks – Since summer is almost here, it’s time for me to put together my annual end-of-the-school-year Summer Reading Staff Picks! I always find it fun to see what people are planning to read over the summer, so send me an email, text, or tell me in person what books you’re planning to read over the summer. I haven’t thought too much about my list yet, but I’ve heard from some friends that The Girl With All the Gifts by M. R. Care is a good one. Also, the last two summers I’ve been reading one book from the A Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) series so I’m now on Book 3,  A Storm of Swords. Let me know your picks by Friday next week!


• 2016-2017 Master Schedule – Linked here is the updated 2016-2017 Master Schedule (PDF and Excel). We’re beginning to plug in the EA times and once that’s done I will put the schedule into our more familiar format. Let me know if you have any questions regarding the schedule.

• 2016-2017 Master Calendar – Site Council next week will be looking at the 2016-2017 building master calendar for next year. I have most of the dates plugged in at this point, so feel free to look now and give feedback. Regarding conference dates, I put those the week of Thanksgiving again since we had positive feedback from both staff and families. I also left our Howard PD dates roughly the same as in the past, though I did want feedback regarding our October Howard PD date. River Road, Spring Creek and Awbrey Park are all holding their first PD date on Monday, October 31st to avoid Halloween craziness, which would be instead of our usual first date the Friday before State In-Service Day. We could still do our Halloween Parade on the Friday before Halloween. Let me know what you think.

• Wacky Wednesday: Hawaiian Style Day – This Wednesday is the final Wacky Wednesday of the year and this time it’s Hawaiian Style Day. Unless you’re Frank, who has Hawaiian Style Day most days, start thinking about what aloha shirt or other island gear you’d like to wear for this day. It’s supposed to be 89 degrees this Wednesday, so this is a perfect excuse to wear shorts and flip flops!

• 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.

• BEST Strings Assembly for Grades 3/4/5 – This Wednesday at 9:00, our strings students want to show off their skills to their classmates and the strings program would also like to potentially recruit new students to join the program next year. See the linked assembly map and direction for details.

• New Building Updates – Six items of note for the new building and move:

• Boxes in Hallway – I was asked if boxes have to be stored in the hallway, and the answer is they do not. Boxes can be stored in classrooms or hallways. They will be moved to the new building either way.

• New Building Shades Hitting Boxes – I don’t know if it’s contractors or Howard staff, but our project manager asked me to remind folks that if you are in the new building, make sure that boxes or furniture are not moved under where window shades come down. The shades drop down each night and when they come down on boxes or furniture it causes them to rest evenly, which then causes them to get tangled when they retract up in the morning.

• Historic Preservation Consulting – You may have noticed a woman taking photographs of the old building this past Friday. She’s a historic preservation consultant who is documenting the old building before it gets torn down. When they are done they are giving the all of their written documentation, history, photos and historic building plans to the Lane County Historical Society, the school district and I asked for a copy of the materials for us as well. I’ll be sure to share this with everyone once they have it all put together.

• Library Weaving? – Is there anyone who would like the library weaving or have a plan for it? Paul Bodin, the former Howard Artist in Residence who made the weaving, originally said he’d like to have it if it wasn’t going into the new building, but he decided he doesn’t want it either. My plan is to give it to the PTO to auction off at the carnival as an iconic piece of Howard memorabilia, unless there is someone on staff who for any sentimental or other reasons would like it or has another plan for it. We do have some high resolution pictures of the weaving, so it’s well documented for posterity, but I wanted to check with staff one last time before handing it over to the PTO. Let me know by Friday if you think we should do something else with it.

• Workroom Cleared Out – Just about everything in the workroom is going to be packed next week. We’ll leave white and colored copier paper and also some tag paper, but just about everything else is going to be boxed up, so be sure to grab any paper clips, 3×5 cards, construction paper or whatever else you need for the last 11.5 days of school.

• Preschool Promise Update and Name Suggestions – The Preschool Promise funded preschool will be posting soon for a licensed teacher and two EA positions. The program will serve about 15-16 students who come from families 200% below the poverty level (Head Start serves students 100% below the poverty level). Transportation will be provided for students. The preschool will likely have a later start time around 9:15AM and dismissal may be later as well. This will depend upon the Transportation Department some, but preschoolers will have their own bus. Students will also get a lunch. Lastly, let me know if you any of you have clever names for the preschool. Preschool Promise is a pretty dull name. I’m thinking we should name it Little Roadrunners or something like that to connect it to our school since most of the preschoolers will become Howard kindergartners. Let me know your ideas!


• Book Fair and Birthday Lunches Updates – The Book Fair location has been moved from the gym back to the library. The moving schedule for library books was a concern earlier, but we now think we can make it work. This move will displace the June and July Birthday Lunches on Friday, but our new plan is to do a special outdoor picnic lunch under the tree outside Room 11. Crystal will roll out a table or two and we’ll do birthday lunches out there as long as the weather forecast continues to be dry.

• Elementary Science Teacher Leaders Newsletter – Here is a link to the first Newsletter for Science Teacher Leaders. The documents includes next year’s implementation plan and several interesting links including the FOSS Scope & Sequence and information on the Next Generation Science Standards.

• Artist in Residence Tiles – Since a couple people asked, I thought to say it here that the tiles students are making with Alex are going home since we can’t install them in he old or the new buildings at this moment.

• SBAC Score Communication – Student test scores are available to teachers within 2 to 3 weeks of students finishing their Smarter Balanced Assessments, but teachers should not share scores with students and families at this point. Individual student assessment scores will not be finalized in terms of accuracy until June 24. The state data is embargoed until September 15 when the state, district and school percentages will be made public. Because of this, we are not to share testing results information with families until September. The district will again generate a parent report for each student with the expectation that schools will distribute them to families in September.

• Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Program (Free Books for Kids!) – I’m sure this is a marketing ploy, but the Barnes & Noble’s Summer Reading Program only requires kids to fill out a Reading Journal (available in both Spanish and English) of what they read over the summer and who they would recommend those book to. They can then redeem their completed journal for one of the free books listed in the journal.

• District Admin Updates – Steve Menachemson will return as the Technology Director in mid-June. Steve was recruited earlier this year for a private sector opportunity. And to clarify technolgy admin roles, this position is different from the Instructional Technology Administrator position that Kim Finch will start this summer when Kim Ketterer retires. This leaves only a half-time principal vacancy at Family School, which is paired with a half-time assistant principal position at ATA, and three other assistant principal jobs left to fill, so I’m thinking admin shuffling is now starting to settle.

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

May 30 (M)
Memorial Day – No School

May 31 (T)
Final Week of Artist in Residence
4J Begin Moving Library Items
2:30-6:00, Allan to Music Teacher Interviews (Ed Center)

June 1 (W)
Wacky Wednesday – Hawaiian Style Day
BOGO Book Fair Begins (Library)
9:00-9:30, BEST Strings Assembly for Grades 3/4/5 (Gym)
2:30-2:50, Optional First Day of School Planning Meeting (Library)

June 2 (H)
4J Begin Moving PE Equipment
2:30-6:00, KG EA Interviews (Office)

June 3 (F)
BOGO Book Fair Ends (Library)
Last Day of BEST
9:00-11:00, KG to the Raptor Center
10:45-12:30, June & July Birthday Lunches with the Principal (Outside Room 11)

June 6 (M)
2:30-3:30, Site Council Meeting (Staff Room)
2:30-5:00, Allan to Pay Grade Evaluation Meeting (Ed Center)

June 7 (T)
1:30-2:00, Japanese language and culture lessons w/5th Grade

June 8 (W)
Last Day for ELD
8:15-9:30, K-2 Field Day (Track)
10:15-11:30, 3-5 Field Day (Track)
1:30-2:30, PBIS Meeting (Room 21)

June 9 (H)
Data Team Meetings (Staff Room)
1:00-2:00, 4th Grade Play (Kelly MS Small Gym)
2:15, Allan to BEST Meeting (Office)
3:15-5:15, Allan and KG Teaches to Kindergarten Teacher Monthly Meeting (Ed Center)

June 10 (F)
Grading Day, No Students
7:30-9:00, Allan to 4JMAPS Board Meeting
5:00-8:00, School Carnival

June 13 (M)
9:00, 4th Grade New Building Rules Round-Up (New Building)
1:00, Tail Feather Reward (Playground)

June 14 (T)
9:00, K-1 Grade New Building Rules Round-Up (New Building)
9:15-1:00, 3/4/5 to SPLASH
11:30-1:00, KG End-of-Year Celebration

June 15 (W)
Last Day for KG and 5th Grade
All Student Body Fund Requests Due
10:00, 2-3 Grade New Building Rules Round-Up (New Building)
12:00, 5th Grade Graduation (Gym)
12:50, Clap Out for 5th Grade

June 16 (H)
Last Day of School
Last Day for 192-Day Classified Employees (4J Date)
11:05, Dismissal
11:30, Staff Last Day of School Root Beer Float & Ice Cream Sundae Celebration

June 17 (F)
Additional Paid Day #1 for Designated Classified Staff
Last Day for Licensed Staff (4J Date)
All cum folder due
4J Moving Usable Furniture Moved to Fox Hollow
Demolition of Playground and Quad/Main Building Overhang Begins

June 18 (SA)
4J Salvage Begins

June 19 (SU)
4J Salvage Begins

June 20 (M)
Additional Paid Day #2 for Designated Classified Staff
Additional Paid Day #1 for Licensed Staff

June 21 (T)
Additional Paid Day #2 for Licensed Staff

June 22 (W)
Everything Out of East Wing – Asbestos Abatement Begins

June 24 (F)
Everything Out of West Wing – Asbestos Abatement Begins

July 5 (T)
Demolition Begins (tentative)

And for Howard old-timers, Tim Rochholz, a former Howard principal from five principals ago,  will be returning to Howard on Wednesday, June 15th to give the 5th grade “commencement” speech.

Have a good 4-day week, everyone!






Click image to listen to 1990s Mixtape!

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