Raptor News

Otho E. Stuart Middle School

Productive Struggle

As we are working together to ensure that all students are able to be successful in meeting their learning goals for the year, we are working hard to make adjustments and optimize learning experiences for students in person and at home. Asynchronous learning is new for all of us, but provides valuable opportunities for students to engage with material independently so they are prepared for class meetings.

We are doing our best to provide a full day of learning on asynchronous days without overloading students. This will take time to get right. One of the best ways for our students to learn is to engage in what we like to call “productive struggle.” Productive struggle is different from frustration. When a student has to think about how to answer a question or how to complete an assignment that is challenging, that is where they learn. This is also how students figure out where they need help from their teachers and what questions to ask the next day.

Because we are teaching new material to students, they will have a larger volume of work to complete independently than they had last Spring. There may be obstacles in accessing materials and new platforms for learning that will slow the learning process down. Our goal is not that parents become replacement teachers, but rather that families support students in accessing the materials provided in Google Classroom and help them troubleshoot any technology struggles they have as they work through the materials. If you find yourself spending too much time “teaching” a concept to your student or reviewing work, this is not our intention. We would rather know that a student did not understand a concept or assignment than receive a flawless assignment after spending hours working on it with a family member. It is a form of feedback to the teachers when students do not understand, and we need to know that.


Steps to take when you hit a roadblock in asynchronous learning:


  1. Have your Raptor check Google Classroom for any videos or examples of what they should be doing.
  2. There are Raptor Cafe times available for student support every day (see below under Raptor Cafe). Help your Raptor find the time for their grade level and ask a teacher for help during this time.
  3. Have your Raptor email their teacher to explain the struggle you are having. They will respond to you as soon as they are able. It might not be that day; but communicating with them will let them know what to expect when you show up for your next class.
  4. IF YOUR CHILD HAS REACHED FRUSTRATION LEVEL (TEARS/SCREAMING) PLEASE HAVE THEM STOP! No assignment is worth your child crying and screaming. Let the teacher know that they were not able to complete the assignment so that we can continue to adjust the amount of work. Remember, we NEED the feedback.


I would like to thank the parents who have reached out to let us know about the issues their Raptor is facing. Please know that we are very responsive and will reach out to figure out how to best support your child.


Together, we will continue to RISE! Have a great weekend Stuart!


Fabricio Velez, Principal

Family Involvement Team (FIT Team)

The Family Involvement Team is an advisory team that collaborates with Stuart's Principal to support our efforts and advise him on different topics that affect our community. This team meets monthly to look at school data aligned with our Unified Improvement Goal and provide specifics feedback on how to improve our practices. We are happy to announce that we will be continuing to meet on the fourth Friday of each month from 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM via Zoom. We hope to reconnect with our parents who have been a part of this team as well as welcoming new members.


Please join us for our first FIT Team meeting on Friday September 25th at 8:00 AM via the Zoom link below.


Join Zoom Meeting
https://sd27j.zoom.us/j/94779163087

Student Advisory Council (SAC)

The Student Advisory Council advises the principal on issues affecting our school community. These students are hand-selected by the Principal based on school community recommendations and student interest. This group of students develop projects to support community efforts, meet with the Principal monthly to look at data and advise, and act as School Ambassadors. These Raptors exemplify what RISE is about. They represent Stuart's student-body in every way. We will start our first meeting next Friday, September 18th from 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM and will continue to meet every third Friday of the month.

Raptor Cafe - Student Virtual Support

Stuart, please remember that next week we are starting with our Raptor Cafe! If at any time you need help with one or more of your classes, this is the perfect time to get support. Please make sure that you are logging in and asking for support during the times that our Raptors are at home (asynchronous times). Please know that your child can access this resource during the scheduled times on a regular basis.


8th Grade: 12:34 PM - 1:34 PM

7th Grade: 1:45 PM - 2:45 PM

6th Grade: 12:34 PM - 1:34 PM AND 1:45 PM - 2:45 PM

ESL/Gifted & Talented: 1:45 PM - 2:45 PM


Please click HERE to access information on accessing support for your Raptor. All links will be added by the end of the day on Tuesday, September 1st.

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