May 8, 2017

By Allan  

Hi Everyone,

This week is Teacher Appreciation Week, but I’d like to recognize the hard work and dedication of ALL of our staff members. I couldn’t see wanting to work at any other school and you all are the reason Howard such a great place for kids, staff, and families! Our school has continued to grow and I really think it’s our staff who’ve given Howard it’s well deserved reputation and are the reason more and more families are choosing to come here. You all are amazing!

Watch out for some nice appreciations for staff this week that our fabulous PTO is planning!

Twenty-one items of note for this week:

• Safety Training Reminder & Update –This Wednesday, all classroom teachers are to teach students the ALCIE classroom training using the ALICE Elementary PPT Presentation and book I’m Not Scared, I’m Prepared. We will then hold a Lockdown Drill the next day on Thursday at 9:00, but there is one change all schools are doing for the drill.

Instead of only doing just a Lockdown: Evacuation Drill, we’ll first do a Lockdown: Barricade Drill. See the linked updated Lockdown Announcement & Directions for what classroom teachers should do with students for the Barricade Drill and the Evacuation Drill, along with the script I will read. I’ll first read the script on for the Lockdown: Barricade Drill. Teachers and/or supervising adults MAY demonstrate some barricading techniques (adults only in a drill). Actually moving of objects will not occur. The teacher should describe what they would do. After one or two minutes I’ll follow-up with the Lockdown: Evacuate Drill announcement. Teachers and/or supervising adult will then direct students to the nearest exit and walk to the edge of the property (not your fire drill line). Let me know if you have any questions.

• Fire Drill Friday at 12:30 – We’ll hold our April Fire Drill this Friday at 12:30 as long as the weather is cooperating. 5th grade is gone on a field trip at this time, so minus 70-something students may help make things go a bit quicker.

• Wacky Wednesday, Crazy Socks Day! – If you haven’t already, get your wacky socks ready for this Wednesday. It’s Crazy Socks Day!

• Updated Artist in Residence Schedule – Linked here is an Updated Artist in Residence Schedule, which starts next week. I’ve made changes from a few teachers I heard from, but please look at the schedule and let me know as soon as possible if you see anything that needs changed. Also, the artist said she could work into the next week as well and offered to do a fourth session with classes, so let me know my Tuesday if you’d like four sessions and I’ll look at revising the schedule.

• Possible Tech Visit – An elementary school from Roseburg contacted me and was interesting having some of their teachers come see technology immersion in classrooms and also to see how small groups function with and without EA support. Teachers would not have to plan anything special, just do your regular thing, but I wanted to put it on folks radar that we may have some visitors May 17th or 18th. I’ll build a schedule for folks fi and when they come that I’ll share with teachers ahead of time. And for Howard old timers, the school is Winchester Elementary School where our former Title 1 Coordinator, Melissa Locke-Warnicke, is principal.

• No Parking at Emerald Park – Emerald Park staff have asked that Howard staff not park over in their lot. They said it wasn’t a problem earlier in the year, but now that good weather is here, they need all of their limited parking spaces. On a related note, I took this opportunity to again make my Sisyphean pitch to Facilities that we really need additional parking.

• PRIDE Assembly, Discipline – Not this week, but next week on Friday, May 19th will be our fourth PRIDE Award assembly and this time it is for Discipline. The K-2 assembly will be 12:30-12:55 and the 3-5 assembly will be 1:05-1:30. See the linked assembly map and directions for details. Classroom teachers should pick 2-3 students who demonstrate the characteristic of Discipline (“Working hard at everything!”). Parent invitations and PRIDE Awards are located in the filing cabinet by Bianca’s desk and be sure to get your completed PRIDE Awards to me before the assembly so I can add my signature. Feel free to let students know about this upcoming award and maybe it’ll motivate some kiddos to work harder than usual!

• 3/4/5 BEST Strings Assembly – Dates didn’t work out so well for this, but also on Friday, May 19th, Ruth Root would like to hold her end of year performance by the Strings Academy students. The assembly will be for grades 3/4/5 and for classrooms not already on field trips or with other conflicts, but please see the linked assembly map and directions for details.

• ELA Consumable Orders & 5/17 Grade Level Meeting – I’m again repurposing our monthly Grade Level Meeting for a meeting to discuss consumable orders for English Language Arts for next school year. At the Wednesday, May 17th meeting at 1:30, information will be shared about ordering materials for Being a Writer and Journeys (math materials are being ordered for everyone). Linked here is the Teacher Handout on Ordering Consumables that we’ll go over more at the meeting, but I’m sharing it now as an FYI.

• 3-Month Rule Furniture Adds – If you recall, we were told by Facilities they would not purchase any additional furniture for us until after living in the new building for three months. We gave them our wish list after three months and we now finally have some answers. I’ll share the final list once I get it, but some of the major items we’ll be getting include additional classroom furniture for the six classrooms that were originally left unfurnished. We really don’t need all that furniture now, but there are more homes and apartments planned within our attendance area, and we’ll always need more furniture as things get damaged or broken. The bad news is that Facilities waited so late to make a decision and to place the order, we won’t get any of the new furniture by the start of next school year. We’ll likely get it in November or December, so we’ll unfortunately be adding old student furniture from the warehouse to start the year for Rhonda’s facilitating teacher classroom. Some other items we’ll be getting include a small couch for each of the commons areas, some additional rolling white boards with small shelves for materials, step stools for preschool and kindergarten sinks and white boards. I don’t have the final list yet, so outside of the above items I don’t know what all has and has not been approved off of our wish list. I’ll keep you all posted.

• Tail Feather Challenge – Remember that we are in the middle of a PBIS Tail Feather challenge, so be sure to hand out those tail feathers to classrooms who are being Safe, Kind, and Responsible. The goal for classrooms is to earn 15 more tail feathers. Once classrooms have earned that, they get an extra recess and popsicle party. Teachers get to pick the time that works best for their schedule.

• Free Tutoring for KG and 1st Students – The Center for Teaching and Learning’s Clinic at the University of Oregon has openings for their summer reading and math tutoring program for current Kindergarten and 1st Grade students to receive intervention services. Linked here is a flyer and registration packet that you can feel free to share with any interested parents. School staff and families can contact Anna Ingram ( with questions or to submit an application.

• Reminder: Classified Self-Evaluations Due – A reminder for classified staff that you need to complete the Classified Employee Self-Assessment assessment form (PDF or DOC) and give me a copy (email or hardcopy) and we need to meet briefly before the end of the month, where I will complete a Classified Employee Evaluation form.

• Reminder: Licensed End-of-Year TalentEd Tasks Due – All licensed staff need to complete their End-of-Cycle Goals Reflection form in TalentEd. After that is completed and once I’ve completed my tasks and forms, we’ll need to meet before the end of the month.

• District Admin Update – Iton Udosenata has accepted the position of principal for North Eugene High School. Iton is currently the principal of Cottage Grove High School, in the South Lane School District. What you may not know is that he is a proud alumnus of North Eugene High School. Prior to his current position, Iton was an assistant principal at Willamette High School, a social studies and alternative education teacher at Thurston High School, and, at the beginning of his career, a middle school history teacher in Los Angeles. Here’s a link to a Register Guard article that ran in the paper last week.

• Norovirus in North Region – Nurse Robin let me know that there has been outbreaks of norovirus in a few schools north of Beltline, so as an FYI, linked here is a FAQ Sheet on Norovirus.

• Conservation Education Talks and Field Trips – The Willamette National Forest will again be offering conservation education talks and field trips. Programs are available for preschool, kindergarten, elementary, middle and high schools and may be of particular interest to Biology, Science, Conservation Education, and Geography lessons. These programs can be offered at school or as field trips at the Willamette National Forest. See the linked letter and flyer for their education activities which will be offered through September 10, 2017.

• “13 Reasons Why” Netflix Series: Considerations for Educators – Schools have an important role in preventing youth suicide, and being aware of potential risk factors in students’ lives is vital to this responsibility. The trending Netflix series “13 Reasons Why,” based on a young adult novel of the same name, is raising such concerns. The series revolves around 17-year-old Hannah Baker, who takes her own life and leaves behind audio recordings for 13 people who she says in some way were part of why she killed herself. The series, which many youth are binge watching without adult guidance and support, is raising concerns from suicide prevention experts about the potential risks posed by the sensationalized treatment of youth suicide. See the linked resources from the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) for information about the series and as well as recommendations for educators and families.

• Are fidgets classroom distractions? – Just so you don’t think I’m the only cranky old man about the fidget spinners, a number of Chicago schools are now banning them.

• Friday at 4:00 – Let’s end on a fun note. Ashley and Shelley have planned a Friday at 4:00 this Friday at the Beer Garden on 6th street. See the Facebook Event Page for details.

• 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:

May 8 (M)
Teacher Appreciation Week
Human Growth and Development, 5th Grade
AMX Staff Working in Building
2:30, Allan to IEP Meeting (Conference Room)
7:00, Allan, Natalie, & Allison to River Road Community Meeting

May 9 (T)
Human Growth and Development, 5th Grade
AMX Staff Working in Building
7:30-11:30, Data Team Meetings (Conference Room)
9:00-1:30, 1st Grade Science Factory Field Trip
11:50:12:20, Allan Covering Classroom
2:30-3:30, IPBS Meeting (Mellissa/Sarah’s Room, B203)

May 10 (W)
All Classrooms Teach Safety Training Lesson
Wacky Wednesday – Crazy Sock Day
Human Growth and Development, 5th Grade
Title 1 Progress Monitoring Day – No Groups
9:00-12:30, KG Grade Science Factory Field Trip
2:00-3:00, Allan to Coding RoboKind Meeting (Conference Room)
2:30-3:30, PBIS Meeting (Rae’s Room, A101)

May 11 (H)
9:00, Lockdown: Barricade and Evacuation Drill Practice

May 12 (F)
7:45-5:30, 5th Grade OMSI Field Trip
12:30, Fire Drill
4:00, Friday at 4:00 (Beer Garden on 6th)

May 14 (SU)
Mother’s Day

May 15 (M)
Artist in Residence Begins

May 16 (T)
8:15-11:15, Allan to Elementary Principals’ Meeting (Ed Center)
3:00-5:30, District Elementary Librarian Meeting (Library)
6:00, PTO Meeting (Community Room)

May 17 (W)
1:30-2:30, Grade Level Meeting Time – Repurposed for ELA Consumables meeting (Volunteer’s Classroom)

May 18 (H)
Bianca Out
9:00-11:00, Allan to ILT Meeting (Ed Center)
2:30-3:30, TLT Meeting (Angela’s Room)

May 19 (F)
Bianca Out
7:30-9:00, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting
8:30-1:45, Zimmerman and Kreider/Shadwick to McGowan Creek
8:45-9:15, 3/4/5 BEST Strings Assembly (Gym)
12:30-12:25, K-2 Pride Assembly – Discipline (Gym)
1:05-1:30, 3-5 Pride Assembly – Discipline (Gym)
6:00-8:00, PTO Family Craft Night – Crafts and Coney’s (Gym Cafeteria)

Have a good week, everybody!