The Supe's Loop November 1, 2021

Now you're In the Loop!

Transitions

It’s that time again to start thinking about whether or not the snow blower is going to make it through another season, putting the mower away, and remembering to unhook and drain the garden hoses from the house. Though there’s been a slight chill to the air in the past week or so, we know that winter is just around the corner.


This time of year is a transition time both at school as well. The newness of the school year has been replaced with the familiarity, consistency, and regularity that provides the framework for learning and growth for our students. This predictability and structure can be especially helpful to kids when there have been so many variables due to the pandemic.


Our focus as a school system will remain keeping our staff and students safe and healthy throughout the pandemic. In addition, we are also going to continue our work at continuous improvement to ensure that, as a school system, we continue to grow and improve in our abilities to ensure student success. Though we may need to dial down our pace of improvement from time to time due to external circumstances, we remain committed to incrementally improving at whatever rate is possible and look forward to being able to get back to full speed as soon as possible. Our students deserve nothing less! The goal: to ensure that each student who graduates from the Public Schools of Petoskey can go anywhere and do anything they want to do and are competitive because of the education and support provided by our school system.


Put another way, The Public Schools of Petoskey strives to positively impact the lives of our students through education. It’s great work that matters and I’m proud to be working with this team to help realize the vision for every student.

Big picture

Every Opportunity

People make the difference in every organization I can think of. No matter how great your procedures, protocols, or systems are, if you don’t have great people there will always be something lacking in your overall organizational performance.


We are fortunate in the Public Schools of Petoskey to have great people throughout the organization who routinely demonstrate their dedication to our students and to this community. This dedication is evident when you listen to conversations in classrooms between teachers and students. It’s apparent when you walk the hallways in any school and see the interactions among students or between students and staff members. There’s an identifiable level of mutual appreciation and respect that creates a positive culture where learning, growth, and development can thrive. Schools have never been asked to do more than they have during this pandemic and our educators and support staff have answered the bell and continue to provide quality learning opportunities for all students.


Thanks to all of our staff for keeping their focus on students' social, emotional, and academic development, despite the many twists and turns COVID has provided.


Sincerely,

Christopher Parker, Superintendent Petoskey Schools

All Learners, All the time

At its regular October meeting, the Board of Education heard from Director of Special Education Lauren Ringle, as well as teachers and students from both the general education program as well as special education programs in the elementary, middle, and high schools.


I was impressed by the presentations by our teachers who are teaching combined classes (co-teaching) of students with and without disabilities. Some had been working together for years, while others had just come together this year and were working through all of the challenges and nuances that comes with getting co-teaching up and running. It was clear through their presentations that, once again, our staff is amazing and take on whatever is needed to help all students grow and thrive.


Many thanks to Mrs. Ringle for her vision and support of our staff to help lead great things for our students in special education and to all who help support our students with IEPs each and every day. Thanks to each of our teachers for taking on new challenges and creating great learning opportunities for students.


I would like to especially thank the following teachers for their presentation to the Board:


  • Heather Giammalva and John Boyer

  • Sam Fettig and John Lennon

  • Erika Leppien and Ashley McSweeney

  • Heather Loe and students


Great job everyone!

CONGRATULATIONS Petoskey Middle School!!!

In a recent published first-ever rankings of public middle schools, the news is GOOD for Petoskey Middle School!


PMS is ranked #59 in Michigan Middle Schools!

Ranking among the top 30% of middle schools in the state of Michigan, making it a U.S. News Best Middle School.


Click Here for the full story.

Staff Spotlight

Welcome Alicia Schlehuber!


School districts are eligible for a variety of state and federal grants designed to support the unique needs of their student populations. One of the grants Petoskey Schools receives is Title VI. The Title VI grant is designed to address the unique cultural, language, and educationally related academic needs of American Indian and Alaska Native students.


The district has recently reengaged our Indian Education Parent Committee to inform the use of these funds. The committee developed a job description for an Indian Education Coordinator to support the academic, cultural, and non-academic needs of native students. Using this job description, we were fortunate to hire Alicia Schlehuber, LLPC, to serve in this role. Alicia is a licensed professional counselor with over 15 years experience in education, including training in creating cultures of trauma-informed care and college and career counseling. Ms. Schlehuber is also a strong advocate for educational, economic, cultural, social, and community opportunities for underserved students.


In an effort to re-engage our native students with the opportunities provided by this grant, we are asking parents/guardians of Indian* students to complete an ED 506 Form. This form serves as the official record of the eligibility determination for each individual child included in the student count for the Title VI Indian Education Formula Grant Program. This form will be kept on file and will not need to be completed every year.


If your children meet the eligibility requirements listed below and you wish for them to be included in the Indian student count and receive information on programming, please complete one form per child and return all forms to Nicole Morrow. Forms can be completed electronically and emailed to morrow.nm.y@northmen.org or mailed to or dropped off at 1130 Howard Street, Petoskey, MI 49770. Please call (231) 348-2354 with any questions.


*Indian means an individual who is (1) A member of an Indian Tribe or Band, as membership is defined by the Indian Tribe or Band, including any Tribe or Band terminated since 1940, and any Tribe or Band recognized by the State in which the Tribe or Band resides; (2) A descendant of a parent or grandparent who meets the requirements described in paragraph (1) of this definition; (3) Considered by the Secretary of the Interior to be an Indian for any purpose; (4) An Eskimo, Aleut, or other Alaska Native; or (5) A member of an organized Indian group that received a grant under the Indian Education Act of 1988 as it was in effect on October 19, 1994.

Tech Talk: Tech Tips for Parents.

With work, dinner, homework, and household responsibilities, parenting can be a challenge. Add to that the ever present digital devices and another layer of complexity can emerge quickly. We all do the best we can with managing devices, but it can be challenging to know how best to regulate them, particularly when kids are so attached.


This month’s tech tips for parents are provided by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The full list of tips can be found HERE.


  • Treat media as you would any other environment in your child's life. The same parenting guidelines apply in both real and virtual environments. Set limits; kids need and expect them. Know your children's friends, both online and off. Know what platforms, software, and apps your children are using, what sites they are visiting on the web, and what they are doing online.


  • Set limits and encourage playtime. Media use, like all other activities, should have reasonable limits. Unstructured and offline play stimulates creativity. Make unplugged playtime a daily priority, especially for very young children.


  • Be a good role model. Teach and model kindness and good manners online. Because children are great mimics, limit your own media use. In fact, you'll be more available for and connected with your children if you're interacting, hugging and playing with them rather than simply staring at a screen.

Attitude of Gratitude - A Day of Kindness

When: November 5, 2021

1:00-2:45p.m.


Join your community and come together to keep Petoskey Strong.

Lets help each other and promote kindness throughout our town!


Students and Community members will perform outdoor activities cleaning up:

  • School Grounds

  • Playgrounds

  • Senior community member yards/gardens

  • Parks

  • City gardens

  • Raking leaves

  • Picking up litter


We want to highlight good deeds in our community and build a more compassionate place to live. There will be activities taking place all over Petoskey. No need to sign up – join your fellow neighbor and lend a hand.


Please join this positive power on November 5th!

Students and staff wishing to participate in the 2021 Day of Kindness will be sent out at 1:00. All students must be back in their buildings by 2:45 for dismissal. Students will be with assigned staff members at all times and on all projects. Projects for students will be within walking distance of their building. In case of inclement weather, students and staff will focus kindness efforts within the school buildings.


Kindness is the #1 trait that we look for in a friend.

Lets make Local Happen

Beth Kavanaugh's 92% Local Food Solution.


"92% of the fruits and vegetables we feed students come from local farms", says Beth Kavanaugh, head of Petoskey schools food program.


What if every Michigan school could make that claim? We and our supporters are working hard to make it so. Our children would be healthier, and our farm families would be more economically secure.


Read here full story HERE


Thank you, Beth, for all you do for Petoskey Schools!

Pandemic Update

We continue to utilize the mitigation strategies outlined in the District Preparedness Plan and Health Department order. Masking, Social Distancing and proper hand hygiene continue to be at the center of our strategies to keep students and staff healthy. As a reminder, please conduct a quick health screening on your students in the morning and keep them home if they're sick.


COVID-19 case reporting is available HERE and is updated at the end of each weekday. This method of reporting has replaced the 5:55pm text and email notifications that we utilized last year. COVID testing for students is available at the Spitler Administration Building M-F from 7:50am - 8:30am. I am encouraged that the strategies implemented this year, in combination with the addition of testing and new quarantine guidance, have resulted in fewer disruptions to student learning and in-school opportunities.


Thank you for your ongoing support!

Emergency Relief Funds Survey

The Public Schools of Petoskey is applying to receive Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Funds (ESSER) to address learning recovery from the impact of COVID-19. These funds are designated for one-time or short-term expenditures to address the ongoing impact of the pandemic.

The purpose of this survey is to seek input from all Petoskey Schools staff, parents, and guardians regarding how to spend these one-time, restricted dollars. Your responses will be aggregated and presented to the Board of Education at the November board meeting.


Take Survey

Upcoming Events

What is Happening this Month?

There's always something exciting happening in the Petoskey Schools!


Here are just a few of our upcoming events:


  • November 1 - Professional Development Day, NO SCHOOL


  • November 2 - Election Day


  • November 5 - Day of Kindness

  • November 5 - End of Quarter I


  • November 18 - Board of Education Meeting 7 p.m., PHS Auditorium

  • November 24th thru 26th - Fall Break, NO SCHOOL

The Full Value Agreement

Speak Up

Staff and Students are encouraged to speak up and advocate for themselves as well as for others. This component strives to strengthen communication among staff members, between staff and students, and between students themselves.


Be Safe

Staff and Students are expected to conduct themselves in a manner that maintains physical and emotional safety for those they interact with. This component of the FVA is concerned with both physical and verbal behavior.


Work as a Team

The third component of the FVA involves Staff and Students working together. Not only is this important for our classes, teams, arts, and other extracurricular activities, but the ability to work together is also a highly sought after ability by employers.