Eagle News

Building Blocks of Success Week of May 16, 2016

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Dallas ISD Core Beliefs

  • Our main purpose is to improve student academic achievement.
  • Effective instruction makes the most difference in student academic performance.
  • There is no excuse for poor quality instruction.
  • With our help, at risk students will achieve at the same rate as non-at risk students.
  • Staff members must have a commitment to children and a commitment to the pursuit of excellence.

Campus Action Plan

Key Actions

  1. Allen Elementary will increase student achievement by providing purposeful instruction in Reading, Mathematics, Writing, and Science.

  2. Improve the quality of instruction by increasing rigor and student engagement.

  3. Allen Elementary will improve positive perception of school climate and culture by all stakeholders including students, staff, parents and community.

Campus Improvement Plan

Problem Statement 1: 47% of the "all students" category did not meet the state standard in writing.

Annual Goal: 76% of the "all students" category will meet state standard in writing in the 2016 STAAR.

Problem Statement 2: 67% of the African American students did not meet the state target in reading.

Annual Goal: 76% of the African American students will meet the state target in reading in 2016.

Problem Statement 3: Less than 5% of all students met 2 or more subject area tests at Final Level II in the 2015 STAAR assessment.

Annual Goal: 15% of all students will meet 2 or more subject area tests at Final Level II in the 2016 STAAR assessment.

We're Almost There!

It’s the third week of May! The weather is warming up and the sense of joy at the coming of summer is nearly palpable in our school. But as we work long hours in year-end assessments and manage students who are more restless as they sense their impending freedom, we might start to burn out a bit. We all start to wonder when it will all be over (Soon!), instead of appreciating the joys of what we do. It’s normal at this time of year for teachers and school staff to feel a little bit like we can’t keep going much longer, but we can do this! We’re awesome! Our students need our best until the very end.

Thanks to each one of you for all you do!

Proud to be an Eagle!

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Week at a Glance...

Magnificent Monday, May 16, 2016

  • Attendance is due by 9:00 am

  • ACP Testing training during PD at 4:15

  • All rooms covered for ACP Testing

  • If you have not signed an oath, please see Ms. Rodriguez by the end of the day

Terrific Tuesday, May 17, 2016

  • Attendance is due by 9:00 am

Wonderful Wednesday, May 18, 2016

  • Attendance is due by 9:00 am

  • ACP Math K-2 & 5th grade

Thrilling Thursday, May 19, 2016

  • Attendance is due by 9:00 am

  • ACP Reading K-2 & 5th grade

Fabulous Friday, May 20, 2016

  • Attendance is due by 9:00 am

  • ACP 3rd to 5th Specials


Let's monitor our scholars and ensure that they bubble in all their answers correctly.

All grade level chairs: Please email Principals award nominees for the End of the Year Awards Ceremony.

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Summer Learning for Teachers

Teachers, we will have formal conversations around strengths and growth areas. We want to ensure that you leave for the summer knowing what you are going to attend this summer.




Individualized PD Planning Document



I'm planning some special awards to present at an end-of-year gathering. Please vote in advance for special recognitions.

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TEI News

Student Learning Objective

The Student Learning Objective Goal-Accomplishment window is open on Schoolnet. If you have the data for your end-of-year assessment, you can enter it into SchoolNet now. TEI provided links to a Quick Reference Card and the rubric. The deadline to complete this is May 19.

MAY 19th is also the last day to enter extended observations and summatives in Schoolnet.

Roster Verification

In May, teachers will verify their rosters in order to verify the students that will be included in the calculation of their student achievement results. The deadline for teachers to submit rosters is May 25 at 5:00 pm. Principals have until June 10 to approve submitted rosters.

May 23-June 6 will be the teacher rebuttal window in oracle for summative performance evaluations.
June 2 is the last day to conduct spot observations and the last day to hold the summative conferences.

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District Climate Survey

The District would like to know how things are going at Allen. Follow the link that will be emailed to you to complete the Spring Climate Survey. Please remember to respond to each question as it applies to your own beliefs and actions, even when the question is being asked as a third person. Our goal is to have 100% of the teachers and staff responding positively. "Avoid Neutral responses". Ask your grade level chair or an administrator if you have any questions. Let's show the District and the whole community that Allen Elementary is a great campus and we are all proud of our teachers! Proud to be an Allen Eagle!

Note: All grade level chairs teachers, please ensure that all the teachers on each grade level complete the survey.

Contract Information

Human Capital Management is preparing to disseminate contracts for the 2016-2017 school year. Contracts will be available for all contract-eligible employees via Oracle Employee Self Service by early May. Please expect an email from notifications@dallasisd.org containing instructions on how to complete the acceptance process once contracts are available. Employees will have two weeks to provide an electronic signature.

According to Texas Education Code, contract eligible employees wishing to resign must do so 45 days before the first instructional day of the school year. The deadline for the 2016-17 school year is July 8, 2016.

A list of contract-eligible positions and additional information may be found on the contracts home page at http://www.dallasisd.org/contracts.

Happy National Nurse Day! We are fortunate to have you! Thank you for all you do.

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Authentic Student Engagement in Ms. Norton's classroom

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How to Stay Charged During the Final Weeks of School

"How to Stay Charged During the Final Weeks of School." Edutopia. N.p., 26 May 2009. Web. 15 May 2016.

The Big Test is over. The long weekend is over. You're way beyond burned out and thinking mostly about summer. You can't figure out how you're going to get through the next few weeks, or how you could keep doing this year after year.

You're probably also on a bit of an emotional roller coaster, an end-of-the-year teacher phenomenon. One minute, you connect with a kid, notice her progress, and feel proud of what you know you've accomplished. And then the student who drove you crazy all year pushes a button you didn't even know you had and you say to yourself something terrible about him, something no "good teacher" should ever say. And then Juanita's mother comes to pick her up and she takes your hands and thanks you for helping her daughter learn to read.

So, you'll come back next year, and you already have ideas of what you will do differently. And, if you're a first-year teacher, you've heard that year two is "so much easier." But the classroom is a mess, your desk has disappeared under piles of papers you'll never get to, and the kids will be back at 8:00 a.m. on Monday.

Here are some tips to help you survive these final weeks:

  • Get into a project you've wanted to do all year. Gently put aside pacing guides and textbooks, and take out the art supplies, construction materials, music, food, and novels. Do something hands on, project based, and fun. They'll get into anything you're passionate about. You'll have the energy to get through the days.
  • But don't abandon all the routines and structures you've used all year. Kids of all ages need those routines to continue. If you start showing movies all day, every day, or have a whole lot of parties, kids are likely to get a little wacky.
  • Give kids time and tools to reflect on their school year. They can write, make scrapbooks, record a video piece, or create drawings. Prompt them to think about what they learned, how they learned, what was challenging, how they dealt with those challenges, what they feel proud of, how they changed, what advice they have for kids entering that grade next year, and so on. You'll need to provide a lot of scaffolding for this activity, model the process, and have them share their pieces as they develop them.
  • Give yourself time to reflect. Read all their reflections, and talk to the kids about what they've learned and how they have changed. Answer the same questions you ask kids to reflect on. It's critical that you see how you changed, where you have grown, and what you learned. You did grow -- and you learned a whole lot. The biggest mistake we make is not taking the time to recognize and acknowledge that.
  • Celebrate with your students and their parents, with your colleagues, and with your loved ones. With students, you can have a kind of awards ceremony where every kid is honored for something positive. This approach provides an opportunity for kids to recognize each other and themselves. You need to help them wrap up their year, giving them closure and a sense of accomplishment.

    Accepting the Situation

    For many kids, summer is not a good time. It's a time when their structures and routines fall apart, the most predicable people in their lives -- their teachers and classmates -- are absent, and the boredom can be numbing. Most of the students I've taught, between second grade and eighth grades, confess that they don't really like summer.

    Sure, they like being able to wake up late and watch TV all day, but that gets old after a while. For some students, summer can be even be a time of fear, hunger, and loneliness. For middle school students, it can be an unsupervised time when their growing bodies get into trouble.

    And so, in the classroom, you might see the more challenging students get even more challenging. They regress and become more needy and clingy, or obnoxious, which leads you to putting up more boundaries, often making them even more challenging.

    Rally your strength. Access all your empathetic powers. Sleep extra hours. Get exercise. They really need you now, so try to enjoy the time with them and have fun; the year will end.

    What are your plans for the next few weeks? What might you like to try, or do differently?

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May 2016

Patricia Martinez 05/14

Mackenzie Moore 05/16

Theresa Martinez 05/24

Gabe P. Allen Elementary

Sheila Ortiz Espinell- Principal

Franceslia Rodriguez- AP

Russell Sims-AP