Haas Elementary Staff Bulletin

April 2015 Vol. 3

4th Grade M-STEP Testing Begins

This Tuesday and Wednesday fourth grade students will take the language arts assessment. Fifth grade students will be completing any make up assessments as well. There is no need to change to special or lunch schedules.

Teachers in the Park Meeting

Monday, April 27th at 3:30, you are invited to meet in the Title I room help develop a plan to address "summer slide" in our students, including getting books into their hands throughout the summer. This is one of the ideas that has come from our book study. Bringing our best ideas together brings the best result, so please join us if you are able!

Book Study This Wednesday

We will be discussing Chapter 4 of "Struggling Readers". Please be prepared to discuss the following:

  1. Look at the descriptions of struggling readers and developing readers on pages 105-106. Put a check next to each element of the description that is true in your classroom. (Are struggling readers asked more often to read aloud?) If your reading instruction mimics what researchers have found as distinguishing the lessons offered to good and struggling readers, select one aspect that you could alter. Can you bring the reading lessons you offer to good and struggling readers closer together? Would someone be able to tell who was a good reader and who was not just by observing your teaching?
  2. Try using the Pause-Prompt-Praise strategy when working with your struggling readers. Use it for three consecutive days. Do you see any changes in the struggling readers behaviors?

Staff Input Reminder

Please don't forget to submit the issues/concerns by grade level/department that you believe the school improvement team should address, no later than this Friday, May 1st.


  1. Identify the concerns/issues that you believe should be addressed by the school improvement team.
  2. Identify your top 3-5 professional development needs.


Remember that everything is on the table and open for discussion, with the following expectations:


  1. Concerns must be specific to programs/procedures - not specific to any individuals.
  2. Concerns must be accompanied by potential, plausible solutions.

First Grade Donuts with Dad!

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End of Year Assessments

Above and beyond the state assessments there are many end of year assessments to be completed. As communicated at the end of last week, beginning and end of year assessments will be turned in to me. They may be submitted electronically or in hard copy (photo copies of grade books...)

As a reminder, beginning/end of year assessments in ELA and Math are used to demonstrate student growth in the evaluation process. These assessments include DRA (Or beginning/end of year MLPP assessments as appropriate), MAISA Writing assessments, and EnVision math assessments. In addition, for our local and school improvement purposes, we will need social studies and science unit assessments. Again, it is not necessary to create separate spreadsheets for submission. Photocopies of grade books, or any other system you have used to track your students' progress can be submitted, just please make sure I am able to identify the unit/topic.

Once we can fully utilize Illuminate it will be much easier to disaggregate our local data for school improvement purposes. Until then, I will disaggregate the data based on your submissions. If you have any questions about data submission please contact me directly.

Dismissal

In the last PBIS committee meeting, we discussed hallway issues at dismissal. There are two primary issues to address in our last 28 days. First, the hallway is full of students, making it very difficult for our youngest students to make their way to parent pick-up or dismissal. Second, the building is frequently completely empty by 3:10 (the bell rings at 3:13).

I will share out a dismissal schedule through Google Drive that will bear some resemblance to our exit strategy for fire drills. The biggest change will be keeping students in classrooms rather than having them waiting in the hallway. Borrowing from the first grade procedure, each grade level will move bus riders to one classroom and parent pick up students to the other just prior to their exit. Please review the dismissal plan. My intent is to meet briefly with each grade level on Monday to answer any questions.

Our building team can look at more permanent solutions as part of our improvement process. Thanks for your cooperation and assistance with the remainder of the year!