January 24, 2022

By Allan  

Hi Everyone,

Sorry for being out last week. In normal times, I would have just come to work, but since my vaccinated middle schooler tested positive and since I had primary COVID symptoms (sore throat, congestion, minor fatigue), I figured I needed to follow the rules and stay home from work. In the end, I never tested positive and burned a few regular ol’ sick days.

Twenty-one items of note for this week:

• Staffing Update – Please welcome (back) Margaret Maddy as our newest 2.5 hour Title 1 EA. You may recognize Margaret because she previously worked at Holt in the kitchen. Welcome to the team, Margaret!

• COVID Updates – In COVID news…

• Contact Tracing Resumes – The state is now requiring schools to contact trace for all UNMASKED situations (breakfast, snack and lunch), but not recesses. This means the pause on contact tracing is over.

I asked if this meant specialists (PE, Music, SPED, Title, ELD, etc.) no longer needed to maintain seating charts, since those are always masked situations, but was told they should continue to maintain seating charts just in case rules change or if any unusual situations come up. See this 4J Communication for additional info on changes in contact tracing, isolation ,and quarantine.

As a reminder, the best way to avoid close contacts is to keep breakfast and snack in the classroom to less than 15 minutes total or create two different seating charts for breakfast and snack.

• KN95 Masks Available – Downtown is giving all schools KN95 Masks and is ordering more. One mask is good for 5 days and can last good longer if cleaned and disinfected. Come by the office if you want one.

• Staff Notifications – Teachers will get a notification from the district if a student in your class tests positive AND was in school during their infectious period. If a student developed symptoms over the weekend and was not infectious while at school, there would be no notification. However, I will continue to notify teachers of positive students so you have the quarantine dates for sending out assignments.

• Temporary Paid Leave (TPL) – If staff test positive for COVID, you will qualify to TPL. Staff Sick Leave into AESOP and after 4J Staff Contact Tracer Dawn Strong contacts you, she will authorize TPL. Also, staff caring for a child who is positive and if the staff member is not fully vaccinated (booster), they would qualify for TPL because they are now a close contact. If you are booster, however, you’d have to use sick days for child care. (I know. I know. Not my rule there.)

• January Virtual Assembly, THURSDAY @7:40 – The January Virtual Winter Wonderland Assembly is this Thursday. See the above linked agenda for details, but log on early at 7:40 and the festivities will begin at 7:50. Zoom links are on the Staff Zimbra Calendar.

• Science Assembly, THURSDAY @8:30 & 1:15– Ashley emailed details earlier, but this Thursday will be a very cool Extreme Science Assembly. See the link for some videos you might show your kids ahead of time to get them excited! Zoom links are on the Holt Staff Calendar.

Grades K-2: 8:30-9:15
Grades 3-5: 1:15-2:00

 

• REPEAT: Holt Winter Wonderland BINGO Night, THURSDAY – Get your student’s pumped! Not this week, but next week on Thursday, January 27th is a Holt Virtual Event and this time it’s Winter Wonderland BINGO Night!

• Asynchronous EA Learning – FRIDAY – SPED and Title EA were emailed info about Asynchronous EA Learning happen din this Friday, which may have missed a number of building EAs. More details and session descriptions are coming this week, but newer staff are encouraged to attend specific foundational sessions that they have not been able to join previously. These sessions will be highlighted with guidance.

• Report Card Info & Reminders – Three items of note:

• Print on Friday – Report cards cannot be printed until Friday morning. Melanie will send out an email after she’s updated the attendance.

• Parent Reports – The 4J Parent Reports (easyCBM, OSAS, attendance) need to go home and will not be available to print until Thursday. Gloria will get them to staff as soon as she can that day.

• Friday Teacher Work Day Expectations – Although teachers need to come in to print report cards, downtown emailed principals the official expectations for Friday’s Teacher Work Day, which is:

The staff work day is a regular work day. Teachers are allowed to work from home if they notify their administrator in advance. However, teachers should plan ahead if they need to collaborate with any colleagues on grading or student issues. Please be aware that teachers are highly visible members of the community, so keep in mind public perception of how this day is used.

• Staff Meeting Location Survey DUE FRIDAY – With only 13 votes it’s a dead heat between switching Staff Meetings to Zoom or remaining in-person. Please fill out the linked Future Staff Meeting Location Survey by the end of the week.

• Student Semester Changes – Last Thursday, I emailed the list of students switching pathways. If teachers haven’t already, do the following as soon as possible:

1. Decide who is taking the new students.
2. Notify the office who is taking the new students (so we can put them into your Synergy).
3. Send new families a Welcome Email by Tuesday, which can simply be your fall welcome email.

We had 12 students returning to in-person and 11 students moving online. Here’s the grade level breakdown.

Returning
KG – 2
1st – 3
2nd – 3
3rd – 1
4th – 1
5th – 2

Leaving
KG – 1
1st – 2
2nd – 0
3rd – 0
4th – 5
5th – 2

I’ve emailed returning families the following Welcome Back – Quick News.

• Bertha Holt Celebration, Gift of Hope Project, Coming in February! – As part of an ongoing tradition, the student of Holt are raising money to support an international family using the Gifts of Hope Catalog through the Holt International Organization. See the linked Gifts of Hope Project Flyer, but we are asking student to find a way to earn $1 that they contribute. These will go home at the semester change and the deadline to return funds raided is Thursday, Feb. 10th. We will announce the gifts chosen on Feb. 11th, Friendship Day at Holt.

• Classroom Buddy Activity – At the request of Student Council, the PBIS Team emailed teachers a Classroom Buddy Activity we’ll do for the Feb. 11th Friendship Day. See the above email for details and classroom buddy assignments, but be sure to following the timeline:

• Complete All About Me activity AFTER the start of the new term (Monday 1/31) and with enough time to meet and exchange with your buddy teacher.
• Meet with your buddy teacher to match kids up and then exchange papers.
• On Friendship day (Friday 2/11) hand the papers out to your class so they can “get to know” their buddies. Make sure you explain what classroom buddies are because it has been awhile and some kids might not have been here when we did them last.

 

 

• Parent Education Series – Jenny and Max are leading a parenting titled “School to Heart to Home – Conscious Discipline Parent Nights” starting next month. Please help promote this event. I’ve created a Facebook Event and Jenny made a Program Flyer (English & Spanish).

 

Parent Education Series
School to Heart to Home – Conscious Discipline Parent Nights

Let’s face it, being a parent is a hard job! It has been even harder since the beginning of the pandemic. At times, our emotions get in the way of our ability to access our own parenting brilliance. Wouldn’t it be nice to respond to conflict with rational thinking and problem-solving? Join us as we learn to regulate our emotions and stop reacting out of impulse or tradition, so we can help our kids regulate their emotions and reactions.

Come learn, connect, and explore parenting with Conscious Discipline

This series, led by 4J staff on Zoom, is based on the School to Heart to Home parenting education curriculum from Conscious Discipline.

Tuesday, February 8 at 6:00p-7:00pm – Brain States: A new way of understanding yourself and your children
Tuesday, March 8 at 6:00-7:00pm – Composure: Being the person you want your children to become
Date TBA – Assertiveness: Setting limits respectfully
Date TBA – Encouragement: Noticing, accepting and connecting with children

Dinner! Make & Take Materials! Free!

Following each session, attendees will receive:

• a gift card to a local restaurant (to replace the meal we’d provide if able to meet in person)
• printed material related to content covered.
• a copy of Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline, a parenting book that covers much of the content we will discuss.

RSVP here:

Registration Form Or email Jenny Potter potter_je@4j.lane.edu Limited to 25 families!

Once you’ve registered, we will send you a link.

For more information about Conscious Discipline, visit the Conscious Discipline Website or this short Conscious Discipline Video.

• REPEAT: Fire Drill, TUESDAY @1:10 – This Tuesday at 1:10 will be the January Fire Drill. Linked here is the Building Evacuation Map and the • REMINDER: Teacher PD Survey – During last week’s cancelled Staff Meeting, I asked teachers to use the time to complete the linked Optional Teacher Curriculum Trainings Survey (which was revised the following day on 1/19). Be sure to complete the survey by the end of the week if you did not do so already.

• REPEAT: Final School Choice Tour TUESDAY – The last school choice tour of the year is this Tuesday at 12:30, but wanted staff to know I’m planning a Zoom tour of the school at the end of my presentation, so you may see me walking around hallways and classes Zooming with my iPad or laptop.

• EEF Grants Due Feb. 4 – EEF is now accepting grants for round two of the school year. See the EEF Email or EEF Website for details. Unlike in the past, staff may directly submit grants without first going through Site Council. This year, after the Feb. 2 deadline, all submitted grants will then go to Site Council for rank ordering.

• Optional Morning Meeting PD (Virtual) WEDNESDAY or 2/2 – Jan. 26th and Feb. 2nd 4:15 to 5:15 pm, SDS staff will present how you might help to meet the Social Emotional Learning needs of your students while developing a better sense of community, belonging and classroom culture. RSVP using this Google Form as soon as possible. SPOTS for this session are limited to 50 participants. Extended Contract will be provided.

 

• HANDBOOK HIGHLIGHT: Medications – This week’s highlight from the Holt Staff Handbook is on Medications:

Medications:

• It is the policy of the Eugene 4j School District to cooperate with parents to dispense medication that has been prescribed by a physician during the school day. Confidentiality should be practiced regarding individual student medication.
• All medication should be kept locked in the office and must be in the original container issued by a registered pharmacist. Parents must sign an authorization form granting the school permission to administer medication.
• Students are only allowed to carry inhalers if there is an authorization form in the office to do so. This is very rare at the elementary level. Otherwise, students should not have medication with them, including over the counter medications. Cough drops are not permitted in class and should be immediately sent to the office.

• Black History Month Resources – February is Black History Month, so I wanted to pass along this list as a starting point for resources. There are, of course, many other resources available; Rethinking Schools, the Zinn Education Project, and Facing History and Ourselves to name a few.

Info on BHM origins:
• Awesome Video: How Black History Went From a Week to a Month
• Article: Black History Themes
• Article: The Man Behind Black History Month

On Teaching:
How to Be an Anti-Racist White Educator
What Anti-Racist Teachers Do Differently

Black Youth Leaders and Activists:
• Past: Youth in the Civil Rights Movement
• Present: Young Black Activists, Young Black Leaders and Creators Making History Today, Amanda Gorman

Black History Month 2021
For 2021, the BHM theme is The Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity. There’s obviously such a wealth of resources to work with here, but these are a few books related to this theme:
• Read-aloud: Me and Mama
• Sony Animation: Hair Love
• Read-aloud (there are a bunch of other great ones on this YouTube channel): We March

Lesson plans, etc.:
Virtual History Journeys
PBS Learning Resources

Keep in mind that black history and teaching the story of historically of marginalized groups should be a year round-activity and not just a sidebar or novelty to the American history typically taught in U.S. schools. It should be viewed as a central part of the American story.

• MegaMillions Lotto Pool – Time to dream big! The MegaMillions Jackpot for Tuesday’s drawing will be $396 Million. If you want to join the pool, get me $2 (cash or Venmo) by 3:00pm on Tuesday!

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

January 24 (M)
1st Grade Staff Room Duty
Winter Benchmark Testing Continues

January 25 (T)
12:30-1:10, School Choice Presentation & Tour (Zoom)
1:10, Fire Drill
2:45-3:25, Leadership Team Meeting (Library)
7:00-8:30, Superintendent Selection Community Forums (Zoom)

January 26 (W)
9:00-11:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
4:15-5:15, Optional Morning Meeting PD (Zoom)

January 27 (H)
Holt Spirit Day, Winter Wonderland!
7:40-8:10, Winter Wonderland Virtual Assembly (Zoom)
8:30-9:15, K- 2 “Extreme Science” Virtual Assembly (Zoom)
1:30-2:15, 3-5 “Extreme Science” Virtual Assembly (Zoom)
2:45-3:25, IPBS Meeting (Library)
6:30, Holt Winter Wonderland BINGO Night! (Zoom)

January 28 (F)
No School – Staff Work Day
7:30-8:30, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting (Zoom)
9:00, Allan to SSD Meeting (C1)

January 31 (M)
2nd Grade Staff Room Duty
Report Cards Sent Home
Winter Benchmark Testing Continues
4:30-6:30, Allan to Conscious Discipline PD (Zoom)

February 1 (T)
Black History Month
2:45-3:25, Staff Meeting (Cafeteria)
5:30-7:30, 4J/EEA Negotiations (Zoom)

February 2 (W)
9:00-10:00, Allan to Elem Principals’ Meeting (Zoom)
4:15-5:15, Optional Morning Meeting PD (Zoom)
7:00-10:00, School Board Meeting (Zoom)

February 3 (H)
5:00-7:30, 4J/EEA Negotiations (Zoom)

February 4 (F)
1:30-2:25, Friday PD – PBIS / SEL PD

February 5 (SA)
1:00-2:30, Superintendent Selection Community Forums (Zoom)

Have a good week, everyone!

Allan