October 13, 2014

By Allan  



Hello Fabulous Staff,

I hope you all had a relaxing (three-day for some) weekend.

Seventeen items of note this week:

• PTO Meeting, Tuesday at 6:00 – The October PTO meeting will be this Tuesday, 6:00-7:00 PM in the library if any staff are able to attend. There was a big turnout of staff and families for the September meeting, which was a great show of support for the PTO’s work. Hope to see you there!

• Halloween Parade October 29th, 12:30-1:00 – It’s not for a few more weeks, but attached are the directions and map for the Halloween Parade and Thrill the World performance. We are not going to be teaming up with Kelly, which works better because scheduling the parade in the morning was going to be problematic. See the attachment for details on our plan for the day, but the short version is that we will follow our usual parade route and will perform the Thriller Dance (6 minutes) on the playground, though this year it will be 1st through 5th graders performing for families. We will then resume the parade route for as long as time allows, with teachers ending the parade and taking students back to class if time appears to be running short. I’ve run this plan by a few people, but let me know if you see any potential problems or have any questions.

• Educator Goals Meetings – I’ve heard from most licensed staff regarding scheduling educator goals meeting, with a number of folks scheduling a time to meet during the school day. If I haven’t heard from you, let me know if you have a time you’d like to meet during the day or in one of the time slots below. For staff who cannot meet during these times, I’ll be scheduling a roving sub on October 21st to cover for teachers so we can meet.

On a related note, if licensed staff are interested in using the Building SMART Goals (PDF or Word)I shared at last month’s staff meeting, you can cut and paste these into TalentEd, though stff are welcome to develop their own goals. Also know that you do not have to have your goals entered into TalentEd before I meet with you. Let me know if you have any questions on this.

• Mon. 10/13, 2:20-2:40 TAKEN
• Mon, 10/13, 2:45-3:05 _______________
• Mon, 10/13, 3:10-3:30 _______________
• Tues. 10/14, 2:20-2:40 TAKEN
• Tues, 10/14, 2:45-3:05 _______________
• Tues, 10/14, 3:10-3:30 TAKEN
• Wed. 10/15, 2:20-2:40 TAKEN
• Wed, 10/15, 2:45-3:05 TAKEN
• Wed, 10/15, 3:10-3:30 TAKEN

• Wed. 10/22, 2:20-2:40 _______________
• Wed, 10/22, 2:45-3:05 TAKEN
• Wed, 10/22, 3:10-3:30 TAKEN

• Wed. 10/29, 2:20-2:40 _______________
• Wed, 10/29, 2:45-3:05 _______________
• Wed, 10/29, 3:10-3:30 _______________

• Golden Beep, Beep x2! – After talking with our new Popcorn King, David Benson, he’s up for making two bags of popcorn each Wednesday, so starting this week we will have two classes who can win The Golden Beep, Beep.

• PRIDE Awards Wednesday, Oct. 22nd – Not this week, but next week will be the October PRIDE Awards. Teachers should pick a letter (Perseverance, Respect, Integrity, Discipline, Excellence) to honor students and fill out the PRIDE certificates located in the office. Invitations to families are also in the office. Students will receive their certificate and wrist band during their lunchtime. There is no minimum or maximum number of PRIDE recipients per class, but the general rule of thumb is 2-3. And remember, as you turn in your PRIDE nominations, be sure that you let Lori know who and why each student is being recognized so she can put their name up on the board.

• Classified Staff AESOP Reminder – When entering an absence into AESOP, when you get to the Time section, always select “Custom” and then enter your work hours. If you forget this step, AESOP defaults assigning the sub to an 8 hour day. Let me know if you have any questions on this.

• Elementary Leadership Plan Changes – While we need to wait for the School Board to ratify the new EEA contract, I wanted to let everyone know how the Elementary Leadership Plans have changed since we approved our plan in September. Currently we divided our 14 days among 4 people (3.5 for Rae & Meliissa for School Climate, 3.5 for Angela for Technology and 3.5 to Shelly for Literacy), but pending board approval we will now get 20 days to divide among up to 7 teachers. This means we will need to revisit and update out plan. The 20 days could be evenly divided among our four current leaders or we could add new compensated leadership positions and decide how to divide the 6 additional sub days. Let me know if you have ideas or preferences on how to distribute our 20 days, so we might have a starting place for discussion at our next staff meeting.

• Conference Compensation for Large Classes – Most teachers probably already know this, but section 10.1.9 of the contract states “If an elementary school unit member has greater than twenty-eight (28) students for the all-school parent conference, he/she will be compensated for one half (1/2) day at his/her per diem rate.” How this was handled last year was that following conferences teachers with 29 students or more signed an extended contract form to receive their additional half-day pay.

• EEF Grants Ideas Due Oct. 27th – So far I’ve heard from two staff members who were interested in applying for EEF grants; 5th grade for a $2,000 grant to the air & space museum and from Julie to purchase OBOB books for next school year. That leave one $2,000 and one $500 grant open for any other interested staff members. Grants are due to EEF by November 13th, but grants will actually need to be ready to be shared at Site Council on October 27th, where we will approve and rank order the grants we are submitting. If no one else applies for either of these grants, I’ll probably wrote one in support of PBIS and/or purchasing more Howard t-shirts for staff and students. Please let me know if you are planning on submitting a grant to Site Council.

• District Admin Updates – Tryna Luton has been hired as the Staff Growth and Effectiveness Administrator, taking the place of Tasha Katsuda who became the new Federal Programs (Title 1) Coordinator. Since 2008, Tryna has been serving as the Director of Federal Systems for the Oregon Department of Education. One of her many responsibilities in this role was to collaboratively direct the teacher and principal evaluation system implementation. Before her work with ODE she worked at Oregon State University as a P-12 Outreach Coordinator/Administrator and she also worked for 10 years as a teacher in the Lebanon Community School District.

• Resources for Smarter Balanced – Marlee Litten posted several links for Smarter Balanced last week. The one link about universal tools is now expired, but Oscar had downloaded the video so it is loaded on the Teacher Resource Site under ESC > State Assessments on the Teacher Resource page. If you have found other resources to share, please send them to Marlee or myself. The video of a PLC team is still not working on YouTube so downtown is trying to get a copy sent to us of that one.

• Title 1 Newsletter – If you’d like to know what’s happening in Title 1 from the district perspective, here is the latest Title 1 Newsletter that went out to all Title 1 Coordinators and principals. This month’s issue is again mostly coordinator compliance tasks, but there is an interesting video on close reading strategies with informational texts.

• Recycle Art Challenge – The deadline for this is Wednesday, but here’s an opportunity for teachers to raise awareness about waste control and promote recycling education PLUS win cash for your classroom. The contest is open to all Lane Country children grades K-5. Winning artists will receive a pizza party for their homeroom class and $350 will also be award to the class of each winner. In addition, each winner will personally receive a $50 gift certificate to the Maude Kerns Art Center. See the flyer for details.

• Should students begin coding in kindergarten? – As coding takes off in K-12 education, this article highlights the growing support for introducing such lessons in early grades, with researchers saying that coding allows students to develop skills that will help them succeed in science, technology, engineering and math. Coding also has been shown to help develop other skills when introduced earlier, such as communication, self-expression and problem-solving. On a personal note, I had my 5 year old, Grace, try the free K-2 coding program mentioned in the article, Scratch Jr., and she loved it, especially the part where she could program in voice recordings. The regular version of Scratch, aimed at older students, is only available as a desktop application, but they are working on an iOS version.

• What the maker movement can offer education – The maker movement is a natural fit in education, according to Jennifer Wyld, a Ph.D. candidate in free-choice learning in the Science and Math Education program at Oregon State University and a guest blogger for the International Society for Technology in Education. In this post, Wyld writes that maker spaces include sharing and passion-based learning, and that they encourage grit and determination.

• Race Conversations – An announcement was made by recently by North Eugene about a teacher of color who was targeted by disgusting flyers. This was shared with the North Region principals, and I felt, we as a staff need to be aware of it and how it may effect our students who have siblings and relatives there. As a staff, I hope that you can incorporate conversations about difference, including race, in our class meetings and morning meetings. One of the great take-aways from the student actions against this flyer and treatment of adults and students is to enrich our conversations across all the schools in 4J. We must directly address microagressions when we see them happening. The video below shows how some students have reacted to the microagressions they feel daily on campus at Harvard University. Our children in our classrooms are really no different.

• 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:

October 13 (M)
Reading Progress Monitoring Week 2
BEST Starts
2:20, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting
2:30, Reflector App Training (Room 6)

October 14 (T)
8:00-11:30, Kindergarten Hearing Screening (Room 22)
9:00-11:00, 2nd Grade to Alton Baker Park/Nearby Nature
10:00, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting
12:00-6:00, Cookie Dough Order Pick Up (Room 11)
2:20, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting
3:10, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting
6:00-7:00, PTO Meeting (Library)

October 15 (W)
8:30-11:30, Allan to TAG Coordinator Training (Ed Center)
2:40, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting

October 16 (H)
9:00, Book Giveaway Winners (Office)
2:30-3:30, TLT Meeting (Room 6)
4:00-5:00, Allan to 4J Staff of Color Meeting
5:45-6:15, BEST Parent Meeting

October 17 (F)
School Picture Day
7:30-9:30, Allan to 4J MAPS Meeting
8:00-4:00, Allan to Oregon Intervention System (OIS) Training

October 20 (M)
1:30-2:30, Robin and Allan to Title 1 Coordinator and Principal’s Meeting (Ed Center)
2:30-5:00, Allan to Elementary Principal’s Meeting (Ed Center)

October 21 (T)
Roving Sub for Teacher Goals Meetings
2:30-3:30, IPBS Meeting (Room 1)

October 22 (W)
Data Team Meetings
10:55-12:30, PRIDE Awards at Lunch (Cafeteria)
2:45, Allan to Teacher Goals Meeting

October 23 (H)
10:55-12:30, October Birthday Lunches with the Principal (Room 11)
2:30-3:30, Taking it Up Meeting (Staff Room)

October 24 (F)
8:00-4:00, Allan to OIS Training (Ed Center)
1:00, Referral Free Parties
5:45, PTO Movie Night – “The Lego Movie” (Gym)

Have a great week and keep your fingers crossed the indoor recess looking forecast changes.