April 16, 2018

By Allan  


Greetings Roadrunners,

It’s Volunteer Appreciation Week, so be sure to give an extra thank-you to those amazing parents and volunteers you see working in our school on a regular basis!

Eighteen items of note for this week:

• Job Expo Update – The person we were hoping to hire for our 5th grade vacancy at the Job Expo decided to stay in their current position and declined the job offer. This means I’ll be back at the Job Expo this Thursday, so if you know of any strong candidates for the position, please encourage them to apply.

• 2018-2019 SPED Staffing Updates – Principals received our SPED classified and licensed staffing for next school year. For licensed staff, Bryan, Katie, Linda, and Rae are all staying the same. For classified staff, there were a number of changes. Learning Center EAs, Suzanna and Janet, stayed the same. CLC EAs, Maria, Jolene, and Rebecca, are all 6 hours next year, which is a 30-minute reduction for two positions. Melva is retiring from her CLC EA position, but Jamie is shifting from her 1:1 position into Melva’s vacancy. The CLC is also getting one additional 6-hour EA position, which someone will be placed. Life Skills EAs, Cindy, Debora, Jessi, Rhonda, Shawna, and Tina, will stay the same, but Tamara was displaced due to seniority and the position eliminated, and Allison is moving into a different job and someone will be placed into her position, but it will be 4 hours instead of 6. For LC, CLC, and Life Skills 1:1s, Kittie and Lyndsey will stay the same. Navneeta has been displaced due to seniority and the position eliminated. Jackie has been hired as Spring Creek’s Life Skills teacher for next school year, and someone will be placed into her Life Skills 1:1 position. Lastly, one CLC 1:1 position and one Life Skills 1:1 position currently filled by subs will have people placed into those positions.

The reason behind these SSD staff changes were several. One is a need for more effective services (graduation rate and other key indicators are falling, such as levels of inclusion in gen ed continuing to drop). Two, sustainability has become an issue. The district cannot sustain the rate of staff adds they have been doing. Third is beginning the process of changing our SPED delivery models, which will involve SPED classified EAs (1:1, Program, CLC and CLB) being collapsed into one job category in order to facilitate job preservation and ease of staffing. CLBs at Kelly and Roosevelt are being dissolved and students will be served in their home schools. Fox Hollow will close FHIP and add a separate behavior classroom much like Lane School. High school behavior EAs are being dissolved and learning center classified time has been added. In implementing these changes, SSD is making it a priority to sustain jobs (seeking a MOU with OSEA to collapse 1:1, program EA, CLC & CLB classified jobs), maintain time block rights, and maintain location/level if possible.

• PTO Meeting, Tuesday at 6:00 – The April PTO Meeting is this Tuesday at 6:00 in the Community Room if any staff are able to come out to show support our for our small but hard working parent group.

• 2018-2019 Calendar Approved – Kerry Delf sent an email earlier regarding the 2018-2019 School Calendar, but a couple items worth noting are:

• Conferences Nov. 8 & 9 – There are shared district wide dates for Parent/Teacher Conferences on November 8th and 9th. I have not yet heard the parameters for these days, although the new teacher contract says that, “principals will collaborate with the school’s unit members before deciding when and how to conduct all-school parent conferences“ and that “all-school parent conferences after 4:00 p.m. will be compensated with an equal amount of workday hours off,” which sound like school will have flexibility to decide conferences times around these established dates. If we did it as we have had in the past, we could do evening conferences Wednesday, Nov. 7th, 4:00-8:00, all-day conference Thursday, Nov. 8th, 8:00-8:00, and a comp day on Friday, Nov. 9th (making a four-day Veterans Day weekend for most staff).

• Semester Two Grading Day – The final grading day on next year’s calendar is AFTER the last student day. The plan is for downtown to print and mail report cards home after the grading day. However, teachers will still need to print a copy of report cards for when you complete student CUM files. The first semester report cards will go home with students, the as we have done in the past.

• 2018-2019 Master Schedule – I’m not planning to do much work on the master schedule until after the start/end times are settled (also the plan for the additional PE/Music times), but if you’re interested, linked here is a Draft Sample Master Schedule schools could use with the 6 hour 40 minute day schedule. See the linked district website for updates on the 4J Standard School Schedule. And on a related note, a second draft of start/end times for schools is being worked on and will be going out soon for feedback before the community forum Wednesday.

• Classified Self-Evaluation Forms Due May 4th – As we approach the end of the year, all classified staff need to complete the Classified Employee Self-Assessment form (PDF or DOC) and give me a copy (email or hardcopy) by Friday, May 4th. After I get a copy we will meet briefly sometime before the end of May, where I will go over the evaluation form I have to complete for each classified staff member. Let me know if you have any questions.

• PBIS Kindness Challenge & Assembly – We are in the midst of our school-wide kindness challenge and there are lots of kind acts being recognized and celebrated. See Rae and Jill’s emails for details, but linked here is the Assembly Map & Directions for the PBIS Kindness Extravaganza on Wednesday, April 25th with K-2 at 8:45-9:10 and 3-5 at 9:20-9:45. I did change the original plan of one big assembly to instead having two assemblies, which helps Title 1 staff with progress monitoring this day and is also easier management-wise during the assembly.

If you want to incorporate a kindness lesson into a Morning Meeting, Class Meeting, or Closing Meeting, remember the kindness videos shared earlier on Color Your World with Kindness, What does kindness mean?, Kindness is a muscle (dance along and sing), and Thai Doctor (for older kids). And remember the focus should be on highlighting the acts of kindness, showing kids examples of kindness, and celebrating kind acts (not about getting a slip of paper).

• Tech Trot Prizes/Incentives Volunteers? – The PTO is sending info out soon about the annual Tech Trot (i.e. jog-a-thon to help cover student technology fees) and as with the cookie dough fundraiser the new school board policy no longer allows us to offer individual prizes as incentives. Instead we’ll have a menu of progressive prizes, which you can preview on the linked Tech Trot Prize Sheet. There are a few that are school-wide rewards, some that are classroom only, and some that are names pulled out of a hat from each class. Most rewards won’t interrupt instruction until they progress high enough to earn doing a pie in the face to a staff member at $4,000, or earn an extra recess at $5,000, or all staff wearing a clown wigs for a day at $6,000 (they said it’s okay if there are bashful staff members and we have at least half of us wearing wigs), or a PJ Party and (short) movie at $7,000, or duct tape someone to a wall at $8,000, and a lip synch battle at $9,000. Most all of these would be done all at one assembly.

I’m willing to do all of the crazy above items, but kids may like to see a variety of staff on the rewards sheet when it goes out, which means we are looking for volunteers for the following:

• Be a special guest at a fun lunch with 2 kids from each class in the Community Room
• Get a whip cream pie in the face at an assembly
• Get duct taped to a wall or post
• Do a lip synch battle at an assembly (I’m most excited for this one!)

Multiple volunteers for these would be great, so let me know if any of you are wiling to get your crazy on!

• 2018 ACE Awards—Nominate Now! – In case you missed the Ace Awards nominations email, they are now accepting nominations. If you’d like to nominate any of your colleagues in one of the five categories (teachers and licensed specialists, administrators and supervisors, classified staff, volunteers, and a special lifetime achievement award), follow this link to the Ace Awards Nomination Form. Nominations are due May 1st. Linked here is the ACE Award Nomination Criteria and a link to the news release. Submit a Nomination by May 1, 2018

• Foundations In Math – Summer 2018 – 4J’s excellent Foundations in Mathematics course is again being offered this summer! A number of Howard teachers have attended this in the past and it’s gotten great reviews. The class typically fills quickly, so talk with your colleagues if you’d like to go as a team. A few of details:

• It will be a 3 day course held from June 26-28.
• Teachers will be paid extended contract for 2 of the 3 days.
• Teachers can receive 1 U of O credit at a reduced rate.
• See the Foundations in Mathematics flyer for details and click here to register.

• Earth Day, Sunday, April 22 – Earth Day is observed around the world annually on April 22nd. The first Earth Day was celebrated on April 22, 1970, and is considered the birth of the modern environmental movement. If you’d like ideas for student activities, linked here are Earth Day resource from Scholastic, Education World, NEA, and the EPA.

• Title 1 Parent Survey – As an FYI, Title 1 schools sent out the annual Title 1 Parent Survey last week. It’s being done electronically and the due date for families to complete the survey is Monday, April 23. This is a fast turnaround for Howard, River Road, Chavez, McCornack, and Kelly because downtown wants to incorporate our results into their BEST grant application (the current BEST grant expires this school year).

• BEST & Strings Next Year – The district BEST Coordinator let me know that BEST is no longer partnering with Eugene-Springfield Youth Orchestras (ESYO) after this school year, which means that our String Academy program next year would have to be fee based. Howard has typically had the highest participation rate of any school in 4J, but the increase in cost will likely price a number of families out of the program. However, one idea I have is we could write an EEF grant to provide scholarships for students. I’m not sure that would be a high priority grant, since it doesn’t serve a large number of students, but it may be worth writing if we don’t have many grants submitted to Site Council. Right now I only know of two being sumbitted.

• REPEAT: EEF Grant Applications Due to Allan April 23rd – Grant proposals are due to do me by next Monday, April 23rd. Grant proposals do not need to be completely written out before the 23rd, but at least tell me the title and general idea before Site Council. May 15th is the deadline to submit the final grant applications to EEF. Take note that EEF prioritizes requests that support educational enrichment, equity and/or access programs, and that impact the largest number of students possible. EEF prioritizes grants that relate to the Arts, Literacy, and STEM. Grant requests may be requested in any amount up to $5000. Schools may submit up to 5 grant requests total. See the linked EEF website or linked email for details.

• REPEAT: Volunteer Appreciation Week & Volunteer Appreciation Doughnut Day, 4/19 – Volunteer Appreciation Week is this week, so please take time to recognize any volunteers. Also, please give to your volunteers the invitations for the doughnut themed Volunteer Appreciation on Thursday, 12:00-3:30, in the Community Room. Volunteers can stop by anytime for doughnuts, treats, and appreciation. Invitations in English and Spanish are underneath staff mailboxes and feel free to do more for your classroom volunteers if you wish!

• District Admin Updates – Chris Mitchell has been appointed Cal Young Middle School’s new principal for next year. Jericho Dunn, who started the year as Cal Young’s principal, resigned this spring and the assistant principal is filling the role for the remainder of the year. Chris has been principal at Roosevelt Middle School for the past six years. Chris’s replacement at Roosevelt Middle School will be Eric Anderson, the current principal at Charlemagne, who has previously been principal at North Eugene High School and also at Roosevelt form 2009-2012. Lastly, the Food Service Director for 4J Nutrition Services (and Howard parent) Kaylynn Olney’s last day was last Friday, in order to take a new job, and in the interim, the current Operations Manager will take over until Sodexo finds a replacement.

• Modeling Assertiveness With Students – See this Edutopia article about how simple role-playing exercises can show students how to stand up for themselves without being unkind to others. Strategies include the “nice no”, setting a boundary, asking for some thinking time, stating your needs, using an “I feel” message, and knowing how to respond to aggression.

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

April 16 (M)
Volunteer Appreciation Week
Julie Out – No Library
8:00, Allan to IEP Meeting (Conference Room)
4:00-5:30, Allan to All Admin Meeting (Ed Center)

April 17 (T)
8:00, Allan to Truancy Hearing (Office)
2:30-3:30, Staff Meeting (Angela’s Room)
6:00-7:00, PTO Meeting (Community Room)

April 18 (W)
5:30-6:30, 4J School Schedule Community Forum (Ed Center)

April 19 (H)
9:00-9:30, Allan to ABA Meeting (Office)
12:00-3:30, Volunteer Appreciation Donut Day! (Community Room)
4:00-6:00, Allan to Job Expo (Ed Center)
5:00-7:00, PTO McTeacher Night Fundraiser (River Ave. McDonalds)

April 20 (F)
7:30-9:00, Allan to 4JMAPS Meeting

April 22 (SU)
Earth Day

April 23 (M)
EEF Grants Due to Allan
May School Newsletter Articles Due
3/4/5 ELA Performance Task
8:30-2:30, Allan to Report Card Revision Team Meeting (Ed Center)
2:30-3:30, Site Council Meeting (Conference Room)

April 24 (T)
3/4/5 ELA Performance Task
8:15-11:15, Allan to Elem. Principals’ Meeting (Ed Center)
8:30-12:30, LCC Dental Clinic
2:30-3:30, IPBS Meeting (Mellissa/Mariah’s Room, RM23)

April 25 (W)
Administrative Professionals’ Day (formerly known as Secretaries’ Day)
Title 1 Progress Monitoring Day – No Groups
3/4/5 ELA Performance Task
8:45-9:10, K-2 PBIS Kindness Extravaganza (Gym)
9:20-9:45, 3-5 PBIS Kindness Extravaganza (Gym)
2:30-3:30, Student Care Meeting (Conference Room)

April 26 (H)
3/4/5 ELA Performance Task
Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day

April 27 (F)
3/4/5 ELA Performance Task
9:00-12:00, 1st Grade Near By Nature Field Trip – Chunn/Kerins
11:00-12:50, April Birthday Lunches With the Principal (Community Room)

Have a fabulous week, everyone, and fingers crossed for a much drier week!