Galloping Gazette

A newsletter for the Faculty and Staff - Week 1/21/-1/25

Put Students First • Seek Growth • Be Open to Change . Do Great Work Together • Value Differences

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Principal's Message for the week:

Enjoy your three day weekend! May you enjoy the outside activities or simply take this time to rest and curl up with a good book!

Shout Outs

Shout out to September Johnson, Edie Kernodle, Tammy Willett, and Abbe Torres for nominating over 30 classes so far this year with Golden Colt Tickets! - Robyn and Patti

Kudos to Jennifer Pleasant for “tackling” the textbook and Spanish materials inventories. - Robyn and Patti

Huge shout out to Michelle Nicolosi, Kelly McNeely, and Nicole Yoshida for being prepared with data and details for a recent meeting. - Patti

Thank you to Sharon Yager for using your “mom” skills and calming a quiet infant making it easier for a mom to participate in a meeting. - Patti and the team

Shout out to Bagnall, Zajac, Cochran, Pasqual, Hayes, Crouch, Dorbin, McNeely, and Vickery for being an awesome tutoring team. We are halfway to the finish line! - Jenny R.

Shout out to Olivia for joining CFES in the middle of the school year and jumping right in with her 1st graders. We are so lucky to have you! – Jenny R.

Shout out to Patti Csenar for lending me painting supplies and helping me paint my new house! - Kelly M

Shout out to Olivia Frierson and Sharon Yager for covering my room in a small emergency. – Cynthia

Shout out to Robin Mounce for always helping out with my classroom store. She makes positive connections with my students. - Claire

Mrs. Young who is getting so excited about Jamestown and using instructional technology- I love it! – Al

Mrs. Hall for letting some of her students create their own Coding Club! – Al

Mrs. Nicolosi and Ms. Jones for making the STEM clubs Awesome! - Al

Karen, Thank you for all your help this week! - Danielle

Kindergarten- I am obsessed with your winter writing! So cute! - Danielle

Shout out to Mercy and Damion!They have so much to do, but having to clean up messes in the girls and boys bathroom floor that they should not have to deal with is appreciated! You both are appreciated daily! Thank you!!! - Jill

Shout outs to Alisha Jacobs and Wende Phillips for all your incredible support this past week. - Sra. Dorbin and Sra. Pagan

Thank you to Amanda Ruiz and Haley Perry for making the entrance to the library pretty in preparation for our spring book fair. You’re THE BEST!!! - Anne Y.

Thank you to everyone that jumped in to help out when I was super sick! - Ally

If you have any shoutouts, please send them to Ms. Backer and Mrs. Jacobs by Thursday.

Schedule for upcoming weeks

Jan 21st - Jan 25th

PLC Focus - Math

Monday, January 21st

· Martin Luther King Jr. Day (No school)

Tuesday, January 22nd

· 10:30 - 12:30 Schoology Mtg at Plaza

· 3rd Grade PLC

· 3:00p - 4:00p Faculty Meeting - PBIS Training (Library)

Wednesday, January 23rd

· 8:00a - 11:00a Library Closed - Principal Meeting - Dr. Spence. Dr. Bergin, and Dr. Robertson could be staying for learning walks after. :)


· 1st Grade PLC

· 3:00p-4:00p JOY Meeting (Rm 36)

· 3:00p-4:00p Personalized Learning- Technology Meeting (Innovation lab)

· 5:00p - 7:00p Paint Night @ Lucky Oyster

Thursday, January 24th

· 5th Grade PLC

· 2:40p -5:00p Eco Club (Cafeteria)

· 2:40p - 4:00p Stem Club Meetings (Rm 34/ Computer Lab/ Rm 38 Art Room)

Friday, January 25th

· Watch D.O.G.S Dad (Rudy Sandoval)

· Watch D.O.G.S Dad (Dorsey Wizotskey)

· 1:30p - 2:30 Landstown Middle Music Presentation (5th Grade/Cafeteria)

· 4th Grade PLC

· 6:00 - 8:00pm Father Daughter Masquerade Ball


Jan. 28th - Feb. 1st

Great Kindness Challenge

No PLCs - Please use this time to work on report cards.

Monday, January 28th

· Ride the Kindness Wave (wear beach attire)

· 2:40p - 4:00p Newspaper Club (Innovation Lab)

Tuesday, January 29th

· Crazy for Kindness (wear crazy socks and/or hair)

· 7:00am - 7:45am Math SOL Tutoring (Library)

· 3:00p - 4:00p PAC Meeting (Library)

Wednesday, January 30th

· Happy Hump Day!

· Nothing Beats CFES Team Kindness (wear team jerseys or CFES spirit wear)

Thursday, January 31st

· Shine Bright with Kindness (wear neon)

· 7:00am - 7:45am Math SOL Tutoring (Library)

· 7:30am - 8:30am VBEF Board Meeting (Collaboration Rm)

· 8:20 One Book, One School Assembly PreK, KAM, 1st, 3rd 4th

· 1:30 One Book, One School Assembly KPM, 2nd, 5th

· 2:40p - 4:00p Stem Club Meetings (Rm 34/ Computer Lab/ Rm 38 Art Room)

Friday, February 1st

· 5th Grade IB MYP & Middle School Program Applications Due

· Staff/ Virtual Learning Day* (No School) - All staff to attend


February 8th - Formative Focus and Goal Setting for Student Progress Mid-Year Review Due

Colts Pride in Action

As part of our purposeful work to design a school culture where our PRIDE is encouraged and celebrated, each week a staff member or group of staff members will be highlighted for demonstrating one aspect of P.R.I.D.E (Positive, Reflective, Innovative, Design thinking, Engagement)

Kudos to September Johnson is our Colts Pride in Action (Reflective) this week as all 100 of her fifth graders received personalized feedback on their music papers this week on how they can improve to reach that AP. Well done!

PBIS tip of the week

"When you consider the importance of social-emotional learning, you shift the focus away from simply holding kids and teachers accountable for narrow achievement gains, and you start asking questions like "What do we need to do to support this child so he can learn?" ~Pedro Noguera

As a school, we are working toward teaching students "The Colts Code" This is to explicitly teach pro-social values. As you reinforce "The Colts Code" consider how you can teach things like honesty, kindness, empathy, and respect. Intentionally point out characteristics of "The Colts Code" when you read books to students or have conversations with students.

Virtual Learning Day

  • Please meet with your team and finalize your Virtual Learning Day task. During my Principal League meeting, DOSL stressed that the activities assigned to students should not simply be homework, but an activity that extends the learning for students. You all did a great job with this on the past two! I was so impressed with the student outcomes from this day! A great place to start are the division tasks within the curriculum. In each grade levels' Schoology T/L folder there is a Computational Fluency task that can be used for this VLD. Just as before please feel free to edit, modify, or change the task.
  • Please make sure you check with students to see if they need any supplies/materials to be successful on this day.
  • Grade Level Chairs, please fill out the link below so that admin and the office understand each grade level’s task. This will allow us to better answer any questions that we receive in the office. This is due on Monday, Jan. 28th.
  • In addition to your communication, we will be sending this out to all parents on Tuesday, Jan 29th through Alert Now. This should not replace your communication with parents.

February 1st - Staff Day

We are still working out the final schedule, however, please account for 2.5 hours of PD in the morning. TAs will have PD in the morning and afternoon. This will include a staff picture. Please wear a black top and jeans for the picture. Stay tuned...

PLC off Schedule

There has been some confusion on the schedule on weeks that we do not hold PLCs. The schedule will stay the same as if you had PLC. Your grade level will still go to PE on the day that you would normally have PLC and the PE staff will still dismiss the students.

Report Cards

Here are some important reminders about report cards:

  • Remember that VBCPS grading policy currently states that a DP or N should not be issued on the report card unless the parent has been notified prior to issuance.
  • Please remember, with Standards-based grading, the proficiency mark on the report card should reflect the student’s current mastery level on that standard. Various data points may be used to determine the student’s proficiency level (anecdotal notes, exit tickets, summative assessments, etc.)
  • Report card comments should not be the same for your entire class. They do not need to be super lengthy, but they should reflect that you know the student, and they should address any concerns especially any DP's or N's. Please make sure comments are tactful. Put yourself in the parents' shoes. How would you feel reading the comment if it was your child? Begin with something positive and include any quarterly awards earned by the student.

*As a reminder, Mrs. Porter and I will be checking all 650+ report card comments. Please take your time to edit your own comments and then swap comments with a colleague to check before submitting them.

We will once again recognize our students’ accomplishments each marking period with the following awards.

  • Extraordinary Colt – is in the Productivity, Part & Collab, & Citizenship- All Ps AND at least 1 AP (no DP or N
  • Academic Excellence- is 5 APs in core subjects with no DP or Ns anywhere on RC
  • Attendance Award will be awarded to students in grades PreK through 5 displaying excellent attendance.

· 2 tardies (excused or unexcused) = 1 absence

- Leaving school early – Teacher monitoring – please report any patterns of early dismissal to Robyn

Check out this awesome published article written by one of very own- Mrs. Reinen !!

February Collaboration Schedule

Its collaboration time! Below you fill find the February collaboration schedule. Please be on the look out this week for professional leave forms in your email. Please sign them and return them to Mrs Jacobs in the main office ASAP.
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Don't forget about trying out our Colt Tracker!

This link will, also, be in our handbook along with our flowchart!

Mid Year Testing Windows

Please look at these dates carefully. If you grade level needs to change a test's date range due to pacing, please let me know.

  • EDK & PALS Mid-Year Testing: Begins January 2nd – January 30th
  • Developmental Spelling Assessment DSA (Grades 3-5): January 7th--January 18th We will be using PALS data in conjunction to the DSA but not the quick checks.
  • DRA2 Assessment (Grades K-5): January 2nd--January 25th (All Kindergarten students should be tested. Students who were below grade level in 1st through 5th during the Fall testing window, should be retested. PLEASE NOTE: If you do not need to retest a student, you should enter his/her independent level in Synergy based on the student's current instructional level.)
  • Reading Inventory (Grades 3-5): January 2nd - January 25th
  • TenMarks Mid-Year Grade Level Assessment (Grades 1-5): January 22nd - January 31st
  • Quarter 2 Reading Benchmark (Grades 2-5): February 4th - February 8th (give it over 2 days like the SOL)
  • Quarter 2 Math Benchmark (Grades 2-5): January 28th –February 1st
  • Quarter 2 Content (Science and Social studies) Benchmark (Grades 2-5): February 8 – February 22

Career Day

Christopher Farms Elementary School will be hosting a Career Day on our school campus Thursday, March 28th from 8:00-10:00am. We are looking for men and women from a variety of occupations to share their careers with our students. If you know anyone who would be interested in participating please have them fill out the form below and return it to Mrs. Yoshida

National Board Certification

Have you ever thought about pursuing National Board Certification? Did you know that the process recently changed, allowing teachers more time and flexibility to achieve? Becoming an NBCT is a professionally and financially rewarding process. If you’d like to hear firsthand about what it entails from colleagues who either completed it or are currently immersed in the process, please see Bevin Reinen, Jackie Cochran, or Claire Love!


1/25 - Marcus Bellamy

1/26 - Abbe Torres

1/28 - Amanda Van Wagenen

Important Links from the principal packet

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Please note the changes!

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Keep these coming!

Please check out our form below to see how Mrs. Porter and myself will be celebrating our students and continuing our positive culture and environment.