The Monday Message

Office of the Principal; Monday September 7, 2015

Quote for the Week!

"What you accomplish this week is limited to how much you are willing to try new practices." ~ Steven Anderson
  1. I proactively seek and consider diverse voices, ideas, and perspectives.

  2. I seek first to understand , then to be understood.

  3. I take care of myself, others, and the environment. (Leave no trace)

  4. I embrace a mindset that promotes my own and others’ learning.

  5. I address conflict directly, productively, and with compassion. Assume best intent.

  6. I seek opportunities to show gratitude and celebrate with colleagues.

The Week Ahead

Monday 9/7/15 - Labor Day, no classes for students or staff

Tuesday 9/8/15 - International Literacy Day, Admin Meeting (9-11am, Cafe'), District Leadership Meetings (4:00pm, Various District Locations)

Wednesday 9/9/15 - No Team Meetings this week. District Magnet Meeting (1-3pm, DFES), Data Team Fishbowl Pre-Planning Conference Call (1:30pm)

Thursday 9/10/15 - Optional Tech Training in Media Center every block: (Creating Email Groups and Helping Students Create and Share Folders), District SLO Training (9-10:30, DO Board Room), Team Leader Crew Lesson Mtg (3:50-4:50pm), C-Team Football (5:30pm, at Laurens HS)

Friday 9/11/15 - US Patriot Day (9-11 Remembrance Day)

Data Team Fishbowl

Thursday, Sep. 24th, 2:30-3:30pm

Irmo Middle Media Center

Thursday September 24th, we will be visited by Melissa Biggerstaff and a D5 Team for our Data Teams Fishbowl exercise. 8th Grade Math will be inside the fishbowl. 7th Grade Math will be on the outside of the fishbowl. The fishbowl exercise will be held in the Media Center. All teachers will receive shared documents to help us prepare to shine. Finally, we participate in a conference call with Mrs. Biggerstaff (Wednesday September 9th) to help us prepare. Below are the final readiness documents. If you have any questions, see me or Mr. Hutto!

New Link Readiness Materials - Important Information!!!

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Thursday, Oct. 8th, 4pm to Monday, Oct. 12th, 11:45am

6051 Wescott Road

Columbia, SC

We are a month away from our parent/teacher conferences required by the district calendar. In customary fashion, we will hold conferences the evening of Thursday October 8th from 4:00-7:15pm and on Monday October 12th from 8:30am-11:30am. We will dismiss all teachers and staff at 11:45am. The AP's will be communicating the structure for conferences and how we will facilitate this event for students, parents, and families.

Share Fair Nation

Saturday, Nov. 14th, 9am-2pm

Irmo High School

November 14, 2015

Save the date! Share Fair Nation is coming to District Five!

Join us at Irmo High School on Saturday, November 14th, for a transformative—and fun—learning adventure! We’re helping teachers bring innovation and technology into their classrooms, and we’re teaching kids to love STEAM—science, technology, engineering, the arts and math—with hands-on, interactive activities and experiments.

Join us for this (optional) FREE, exciting event!

Duty Roster

Click here for the Duty Roster

Monday - Labor Day - no supervision required

Tuesday - R Group on duty (Hutto and Mays-Fowler PM Duty)

Wednesday - M Group on duty (Smiley and Mays-Fowler PM Duty)

Thursday - O Group on duty (Godfrey and Mays-Fowler PM Duty)

Friday - I Group on duty (Jackson and Mays-Fowler PM Duty)

Tasks to Complete This Week!

Tasks to Complete This Week!

1. Teach like a champion every period, every day! Also, take attendance every period.

2. Attend and actively participate in Tuesday's District Leadership (if applicable). If you are not on district leadership, use this time to get caught up in your classroom.

3. Everyone report to duty as scheduled. See roster here.

4. Read the Monday Message in its entirety (including the articles linked and inserted). Also view the video clips, reflect, and adjust your practices where needed.

5. Your diplomats should be up and running this week. We will be visiting classrooms to engage with them and observe the highlighted classroom consistencies.

6.. Review your emergency preparedness procedures. Especially your fire drill procedures.

September Staff Birthdays

Robert Jackson – 9/1

Sharon Moore – 9/4

Kim Waters – 9/5

Tamika Battle – 9/6

Ryan Crothers – 9/8

Ann Weaver-Clark – 9/8

J. Aram Olson – 9/15

Keela Davis – 9/20

Brittany Fronhoeffer – 9/20

Pete Bobb – 9/26

Margaret Lewis – 9/30

Please join me in wishing these staff members a happy birthday.

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1. Richard Schedler - Mr. Schedler worked hard over the summer to find money for new furniture for three of our sixth grade classrooms. The furniture arrived this week. The students and staff were so excited. He is now working on finding additional funds for the other three the classrooms. This will impact other classrooms on campus as we will be able to shuffle furniture and try to get as many matching sets in classrooms as possible. iAM so proud of Mr. Schedler for being an example of excellence this week. Please join me in recognizing him for obtaining new results from his new thinking and practices. Let's give Mr. Schedler a huge iAM shout out.

2. Joe Cioffi - This past week, Mr. Cioffi created a learning target tracker and reflection sheet (included here and below) to guide instructional practices in his classroom. It is an excellent document that all teachers can (and are encouraged to) use in their classes daily. I want to take a moment to extend a huge iAM shout out to Mr. Cioffi for this LT Tracker. iAM so proud of him for being an example of excellence this week. Please join me in recognizing him for obtaining new results from his new thinking and new practice. Let's give Mr. Cioffi a huge iAM shout out.

3. Clare Bellucci and Barry Lee - At a time of year when the work that we do in schools becomes a clear reality, we have teachers who go above and beyond in sharing the workload and getting the job done. Mr. Lee and Ms. Bellucci attended a voluntary 7th grade SS textbook training after school yesterday from 4:00-5:30. I want to take a moment to extend a huge iAM shout out to Mr. Lee and Ms. Bellucci for their dedication and interest in learning more about our next SS textbook. iAM so proud of them for being examples of excellence this week. Please join me in recognizing them for obtaining new results from their new thinking and new practices. Let's give Mr. Lee and Ms. Bellucci a huge iAM shout out.

4. Christine Cozzoli, Haley Calore, Mrs. Battle, Ms. Goeckner, and Bryan Winfree - This past week, we had a teacher to get ill and needed to seek medical care. As a result, that teacher had to leave early which required classroom coverage. In a true team fashion, Ms. Cozzoli, Mrs. Calore, Mrs. Battle, Ms. Goeckner, and Mr. Winfree jumped at the opportunity to help and voluntarily gave up a portion of their planning to cover the teacher's classes and duty. iAM so proud of them for being examples of excellence this week. Please join me in recognizing them for obtaining new results from their new thinking and practices. Let's give Christine Cozzoli, Haley Calore, Mrs. Battle, Ms. Goeckner, and Bryan Winfree a huge iAM shout out.

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This initiative goes live this week. Make sure your diplomats know who they are and that they greet all visitors to the classroom. Guidelines are here.

Emergency Preparedness (repeat; priority)

We will begin our random (unannounced emergency drills - required by state law and board policy). In preparation for those drills, please review the procedures and make sure you practice them with your classes. During evacuation drills, everyone must be out of the building and in their assigned areas in ninety seconds. Let's hustle to safety in an orderly fashion.

Teaching and Learning

As leaders, we believe in inspecting what we expect and reporting results in a transparent way to monitor our progress. In that light, we will be visiting all classrooms this week and will be looking for classroom consistencies. To ensure that this is not perceived as a gotcha, I am frontloading this information and including another copy of the consistencies with the highlighted areas that we will be observing for implementation.

Global Issues

In a recent analysis of survey data both students and teachers at IMS indicated that global issues are rarely (if ever) connected to classroom experiences. Returning teachers, if you recall from our MSAP compliance visit, one of the improvement priorities was to increase the dosage of our international theme. In an effort to help us reach that goal, I am providing everyone with a list of global issues that you can review and decide which one can become a launching platform for your classes, lessons, projects, etc. Each one has resources and supporting links to help your planning. Also, as an added resource, here is a list of Ted Talks on global issues.

Closing Thoughts

This week's Monday Message contains a calendar to guide our week ahead and events on the horizon. As we march into September, one of the things that I wonder at the start of each school year is whether or not we are being sucked into power struggles with students. In one class observed, when a student got frustrated because she didn't want to think independently, she shifted the focus from deeper learning to a behavioral outburst and sucked the teacher into a power struggle. It was masterfully done by the student which elicited a predictable response by the teacher. The student indicated "I always do this and I always get the same response by teachers." This made me wonder how much this happens in our classrooms and question whether or not we are teaching teachers how to dodge power struggles and remained focused on deeper learning and high quality instruction. Your mandatory reading assignment this week is Dodging the Power-Struggle Trap: Ideas for Teachers. Once you've finished the reading, identify one powerful takeaway that you feel can improve the practices in your classroom. Click here to record and share your takeaway.

Let's have an amazing week of teaching, learning and assessment.

Join me in our pursuit of excellence by embracing new thinking and new practices so you can get new results.

Robert S. Jackson, Ed.S., Principal

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