September 9, 2019

By Allan  

Greetings Roadrunners,

Nice work welcoming kids and families back and making our first week such a good one! And again, awesome job, everyone who was on hand and able to step-up to help out during Thursday’s unexpected events! (◔_◔)

Twenty-Nine items of note for this week:

• Staffing Updates – A few staffing announcements.

• Added Kindergarten EA – Downtown approved adding a 5.5 hour Kindergarten EA since we’ve added a third kindergarten classroom. We’ll start with a sub on Monday until we can hire someone, but the job posting should go up hopefully this week if you know of anyone good who might be interested. We’re thinking the hours will be 8:15-2:30 MTWH and 8:15-1:15 Fridays.

• Added Looking Glass Counselor – I shared last year that Looking Glass is adding a second counselor to our building this year given the level of need and Sarai Barrera will be joining our current Looking Glass counselor, Audra Landry. Audra will be going on maternity leave soon and Sarai will take over her caseload, but once Audra returns, we will have two therapists available for Howard and Kelly students. Audra will work out of the current Looking Glass office upstairs and Sarai will take over Matt’s old counselor office.

• New Kitchen Staff – Nutrition Services hired Christine Fogle as our newest Food Service Assistant in the kitchen. Christine should start this week.

• Enrollment Update – On a related note, Howard is now over 500 students and is 70+ students over our projection, so I’m continuing to advocate with downtown for additional staffing. Numbers-wise, our current enrollment and staffing ratio should equate to us having one more full-time teacher, not even taking into account that we typically add 30-50 students over the course of the school year. My current thinking if we received another teacher to is to add a fourth 2nd grade classroom.

• Friday Early Release PD – This Friday’s Early Release PD is designated as a Behavior Framework PD session. Principals are to receive more information on Monday, but I believe it’s a behavior Tier 1 booster.

• EA Supervisors Meeting Notes – Several items of note from last Friday’s EA Supervisors Meeting

• Friday Recesses 5-Minutes Shorter – A reminder to classroom teachers that BOTH recesses on Friday are 5-minutes shorter than recesses Monday – Thursday. These are the hours laid out by the Standard School Schedule, where students are to have 60-minutes of recesses/lunches/passing times MTWH and 50-minutes on early release Fridays.

• Please Pick-Up at Recess On-Time – Many recesses supervisors are scheduled for other duties immediately follow their recess duty, so it’s important that classroom teachers be one the playground when recess bell rings.

• Future PBIS Rules Round-Up Thoughts – It was great having teachers coming out for the rules round-up on the playground so students know everyone is on the same page. However, it was a grueling process to review the rules over a three day period, so a couple suggestions for future round-ups were to have teachers review the rules with students on their own out on the playground the first day of school or to do the rules round-up as we did this year, with EAs doing the teaching with teachers staying with their classes, but with quick 2-3 minute rotations to cover all of the playground areas, possibly at a time different than regular recess times.

• Team Sign-Ups Google Sheet – I decide instead of an old fashioned chart paper sign-up, we’ll move into the 21st century and do a Google Sheet sign-up instead. Please follow the link to the 2019-2020 Howard Teams Google Sheet. I actually just added a tab to our Leadership/Building Rep. Positions Google Sheet, so click the Teams tab to add your name to a team you’d like to volunteer to be a part of; Equity, Garden, IPBS, PBIS, Safety, Site Council (one open classified spot), Social, or Tech (TLT).

• You’re a LIFESAVER! – Take note of Mellissa’s email stating that you’ll find a little note with a lifesaver in your mailbox and to please take a moment at some point this week or two to drop someone a positive thank you note for being a “lifesaver” during these tough first days of school.

• Friday at Four at Jenny’s! – This Friday will be our first Howard Staff Social of the year. Jenny is hosting the event at her house, now conveniently located within walking distance of Howard at 1663 Rosy Turn. Bring your own beverages and maybe a snack to share. Hope to see you there!

• PBIS Reminders – Two reminders for PBIS activities still happening.

• PBIS Back to School Refresher – By the end of the week, all classrooms should review the rules for the common school areas by reviewing the PBIS Back to School Refresher Slide Show or other means the first three days of school. Teaching these rules in each of the locations is best. Complete the checklist by Thursday, September 12th, return it to Mellissa’s mailbox, and your class earns a special reward!

• Golden Tail-feather Challenge! – If a class earns 19 golden tail feathers that can be earned on the playground or cafeteria the first eight days of school, they will earn Otter Pops at a lunch recess!

• Principal Visits to Classrooms –I’d like to again visit every classroom sometime during the first few weeks of school to meet students. I’ll read a favorite story to your class and chat with the kids a bit. Teachers, please let me know a good 10-15 minutes block of time I can come and visit.

• 3/4/5 ESYO (Strings) Recruitment Assembly 9/20 @8:40 – The Eugene Springfield Youth Orchestra Program (ESYO) is opening up Strings Academy I classes up to 3rd graders this year, so 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classrooms are invited to attend the annual ESYO Strings Recruitment Assembly. See the linked Assembly Map & Directions for details.

• Library Notes – From our library leader, Julie, …

Are we ready? First full week and library classes start! Kids are excited they keep asking when they are able to come in :). We will go over expectations and routines this week.

Kinders– I will come to you and read in class for now :)
1st– story time/story cove expectations. Practice coming in and sitting down…..
2nd – Library/story cove expectations and routines – sending shelf markers back to class for them to decorate
3rd– Library/story cove expectations and routines – sending shelf markers back to class for them to decorate
4th – Main library expectations and routines – possible check out if time allows. :) 1 book
5th – Main library expectations and routines – check out 1 book this week )

Grades 1-5 Will meet me lined up on the gray wall outside the story cove :)
It’s easier to start out side the story cove for expectations on entering the story cove….

Have a great week!


• Howard PTO Happenings – Three PTO related items of note:

• PTO Meeting Tuesday – This Tuesday, 6:00-7:00 in the cafeteria will be the first PTO Meeting of the year. It’s typically the best attended meeting of the year by families, so it would be great if any staff can volunteer their evening to come show support for parents who are making time to be involved in their child’s school. Mark your calendars and hope to see you there!

• PTO Teacher Funds – Linked here are the 2019 PTO Teacher Funds this year. Specialists will again get $125 each and classroom teachers will get $10.25 per student and grade levels will get $300 each for enrichment activities. As was last year, the two criteria for accessing the enrichment funds are:

• Enrichment – The funds are to be used for an enrichment activity. This can be a field trip or it can be brining a presenter or other guest into the classroom to lead an enrichment activity.

• Grade Level Agreement – The funds are for a grade level activity and are not to be different classroom to classroom. For example, all classes at a grade level don’t all have to go on a field trip the same day, but they do all have to be going on the same field trip.

• New PTO Board Members – We have an excellent PTO Board for the year, which is a mix of new and returning board memebers. Here are the our fabulous parent volunteers:

• President – Abbie Stillie
• Vice President – Beth Moir
• Secretary – Paige Walker
• Treasurer – Tichelle Carlson
• Communications Manager – OPEN
• Volunteer Coordinator – Holli Breshears
• Fundraiser Coordinator – OPEN
• Parliamentarian – Christy Garland
• Staff Liaison – Christina Wagner

• UPDATE: 2019-2020 Master Schedule – There’s been some more minor tweaks to the 2019-2020 Master Schedule. See the linked file on the Howard Shared Drive for the most current iteration of the schedule. Anyone affected by changes already knows.

• 4J Instructional Materials Overview – This may have gotten lost amongst the many links in Sue Wilson’s email earlier this week, but I wanted to highlight the new 4J Instructional Materials Overview, which has links to many tools such as websites, scope/sequences, login information, DreamBox student login info, etc. which may come in handy. Pages 6 & 7 have a very useful table of digital resources (i.e. Dreambox, LZ, Second Step, Journeys, FOSS, Clever, etc.) and their corresponding student and staff log-ins. Page 8 has concise directions for printing student rosters usernames and passwords as well as how to print Clever badges.

• Optional Building SMART Goals Meeting, Tuesday – Teachers are, of course, welcome to create your own goals, but I know folks have appreciated having shared building goals focused around the year’s planned PD activities, so this Thursday at 2:45 in the Conference Room will be an optional meeting to discuss potential building wide SMART Goals. Linked here are Last Year’s Building SMART Goals.

• Optional Leadership Plan Development Meeting – This Thursday at 2:45 in the Conference Room will be an optional Leadership Plan Development Meeting. The current contract gives us 22 teacher release days not to exceed 7 teachers. Linked here is Last Year’s Leadership Plan, which compensated teachers for School Climate, Technology, Math, ELA, and Equity leadership roles. If you’d like to share your thoughts on a potential Leadership Plan, you may attend this meeting or email me your thoughts. I’ll plan to share Leadership Plan proposals at the September Staff Meeting and then vote on a plan at the October Staff Meeting.

• TSS Schedule – Jyllian has solidified her schedule for her three schools (Howard, Kelly, and River Road). She’ll be at Howard five days a week, 7:30-10:30 MWF and 10:30-1:30 TH. As always, please send requests to

• Updated SPED Referral Process – On the Howard Shared Drive and linked here is the updated Steps for 4J Special Education Referral Review Process and the updated Special Education Referral Packet. I got this from Matt, who got it from Cassidy, so I haven’t seen official information on the new forms from SSD, but at an admin meeting SSD shared that the process is pretty much the same as last year, but that the referral packet is more streamlined and clear about who fills out which part.

• Classified Trade Time Forms – A few classified staff spoke to me this week about working longer days to help with start of the year craziness or to attend meetings, which is very much appreciated, but remember that you now need to complete the 4J Trade Time Approval Form and have it pre-approved by me before you can accrue trade time hours. Don’t worry about this past week, but be sure to use this form if you want to use trade time in the future.

• Music & PE Specialists and Prep – Principals were emailed the following, that when a teacher misses a prep slot during a student day, the prep should be made up. If students missed PE or Music, it is made up with a replacement slot. If students attended PE or Music but a teacher missed a prep (for a meeting or other admin-assigned reason) then the prep should be paid for at the teacher’s per diem rate. Administrators should initiate an extended contract form. Specialists’ missed prep time should also be made up or paid at per diem. If these preps are missed because there was no school (holiday, grading day, PD day, etc.), they will not be made up.

• Medical Cell Phones – Our school nurse, Robin Wellwood, shared earlier that all school nurses were issued a district cell phone, so make sure ALL phone or text communication with Robin is done using her new phone number. This is being done to address privacy concerns. SSD’s urgency is in moving texting and picture taking of injuries and students to district phones instead of personal phones.

SSD also issued the first round of building medical cell phones, which Howard received and is being kept in Lori’s office. These phones are to be used for any and all calls of a medical nature that seem appropriate. They can even be used to text a family their student is sick and needs to be picked up. These are also how staff can text our school nurse sensitive medical information. Linked here is the email that was sent to principals regarding this, but let me know if you have any questions.

• Insurance Open Enrollment Deadline SUNDAY – If you have not participated in Open Enrollment yet please do so. We do not want you to lose your 4J health insurance benefits. The deadline is Sunday, September 15th!

• REPEAT: easyCBM Testing Begins Monday – Fall Benchmark easyCBM testing starts Monday. Same routine as usual, but see Mellissa’s email for details.

• REPEAT: Artist in Residence Survey: DUE FRIDAY – Classroom teachers, please complete the linked Artist in Residence Google Form and that way I can bring a proposal ahead of time to the September Staff Meeting for a quick decision. See the Lane Arts Artist in Residence webpages for details on each artist and let me know if you have any questions. Survey responses due this Friday.

• Behavior EA Job Duties – Downtown is kind of building the airplane while they’re flying it with the new Behavior EA positions, which at our building is Jeff, but they are solidifying some dos and do nots for the position. Some highlights include:

Roles and Responsibilities:

• This EA is a Tier 2 facilitator. Meaning they will help to run Tier 2 behavioral interventions for students identified for through your schools IPBS/Tier 2 & 3 Team.
• Any student receiving Tier 2 support from the behavior EA, must be identified through your school-wide data source, teacher referral or have been receiving Tier 2 last year.
• We will provide specific and ongoing training for Check In Check Out, Social Skills Instruction, and PASS.
• Limited recess duty. We understand that there is always the need for more staff supporting recess, and recommend that the behavior EA be used to support students who need Tier 2 intervention support or social skills instruction at recess.
• We anticipate this person attending IPBS/Tier 2 and 3 meetings.
• Since this person is a Tier 2 support, they are not expected to respond to individual student crisis, unless it is part of an individual student plan or as a brief de-escalation strategy to help a student from escalating further (i.e. 5 minute walking break)

Other Important Information:

• The Behavior EA should NOT be running in-school suspension rooms or handling discipline concerns that occur throughout the day. Those should still be processed through the school-wide system.
• They will not independently add students to an intervention without being processed through the schools IBPS/Tier 2 & 3 team.

However, since this is a new position and we have a pretty sharp IPBS Team, I bed we could probably propose some of our own ideas as well.

• Papa’s Pizza Achievement Awards – I know teachers sometimes like to use the Papa’s Pizza Achievement Awards as an incentive for students, so I contacted Papa’s Pizza last week to get some awards. The awards can be given students for any sort of academic achievement and will entitle kids to a free pizza. Awards will be located in the front office in the filing cabinet next to Elizabeth’s desk.

• 4-H School Visit Opportunity – Lane County 4-H offers free presenters, who are 4-H staff, volunteers, and teen members from their Lane Leadership Team. Presentations can be one of two types: Informational (explaining about 4H) or a more interesting hands-on educational experience that could be around animal science, leadership, healthy meal preparation, getting physically active, agriculture, natural science, gardening, art, and more. If you are interested, linked here is a 4-H Sign-Up and Info Sheet teachers to fill out and submit to their office. Once you have submitted a form, their staff will contact you to set a time for your presentation.

• FREE Architects in Schools Program, 3-5 – For over 40 years, the Architecture Foundation of Oregon’s Architects in Schools program has matched professional architects and engineers with 3rd through 5th grade teachers for a FREE 6-week classroom residency. The curriculum uses architecture and engineering concepts to teach math, science, social studies, language arts and other disciplines, includes sustainable design concepts and can incorporate the engineering and design standards. Follow this link for Additional Information or this flyer and follow this link to the Teacher Application webpage. Deadline to apply is October 4th.

• Educator Grant From Teaching Tolerance – Do you have an idea for a project to help make your school or district more welcoming? Apply for a Teaching Tolerance Educator Grant! Their grants support projects designed to bring anti-bias principles and practices to classrooms, schools and districts. Awards range from $500 to $10,000 and are selected on a rolling basis. Apply today!

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

September 9 (M)
Fall Benchmark easyCBM Testing Begins

September 10 (T)
8:30, Allan to All Administrator Meeting (Ed Center)
2:45-3:15, Optional Building SMART Goals Meeting (Conference Room)
6:00-7:00, PTO Meeting (Cafeteria)

September 11 (W)
2:30, Allan to Eligibility Determination Meeting (Conference Room)

September 12 (H)
2:45-3:15, Optional Leadership Plan Development Meeting (Conference Room)
4:15-5:15, Student Success Act Staff Conversations – Phase I (North Eugene HS)

September 13 (F)
2:30-3:30, Early Release PD – Behavior Framework PD (Library)
4:00, Howard Staff Social – Friday at Four at Jenny’s House (1663 Rosy Turn)

September 15 (SU)

September 16 (M)
Title 1 Individual Diagnostic Screener Assessments
BEST Invites Go Home
3:45-5:45, Allan to Elem Principal Meeting (Ed Center)

September 17 (T)
2:45-3:30, IPBS Meeting (Mellissa’s Room, RM23)

September 18 (W)
Lori’s Birthday!
2:45-3:30, PBIS Meeting (Rae’s Room, RM1)

September 19 (H)
Talk Like a Pirate Day
4:00-6:00, 4J K-2 Heggerty Phonemic Awareness Trainings (Ashley’s Room, RM25)
4:15-5:15, 4J Student Success Act – Staff Conversations – SPED (Cafeteria)

September 20 (F)
8:45-9:15, 3/4/5 ESYO (Strings) Recruitment Assembly (Gym)
2:30, Early Release PD – PLC
5:30-7:30, PTO Family Night – Secret Life of Pets 2 (Cafeteria/Gym)

Have a fabulous week, everyone!