September 6, 2018

In this edition of the VanWeekly...

New in this issue:
  • Points Update
  • Vanguard Member Survey - REQUIRED

Previously in the VanWeekly:
  • Coaching Essentials Course - Register by Monday, September 10th
  • New Member Application - Available through September 14th
  • GaETC Registration Information - Register by October 13th
  • GaETC Innovation Grants - Deadline is September 15th
  • Upcoming Professional Development

This issue of the VanWeekly is JAM PACKED! Please make sure you take time to read through all the information, as there is critical new information included that every Vanguard member needs to be aware of. We also need EVERYONE to complete the survey.

Vanguard Points Update

Vanguard's mission is to build the capacity of instructional leaders to tranform learning and teaching. The Fulton County Board of Education believes in that mission and they support us by making a considerable financial investment in our team each year. As a result, we need to be fiscally responsible and make sure that we are providing a return on their investment. Here’s how we do that.

  • Mentoring is especially important to Vanguard - each of our members is expected to mentor another teacher over the course of the year and document that process.
  • Vanguard members earn points throughout the year for doing work that is aligned to our 4 pillars: Transform, Innovate, Mentor, and Support. All members are expected to actively engage in work that promotes these ideals.

The purpose of the Vanguard points system is to document the work that we do so that we can share and celebrate how awesome our team is!

Overview of XP

This year we wanted to gamify the points system and make it a fun way to capture and celebrate the awesome work of this amazing team. Vanguard members will earn experience points (XP) for doing the work of a Vanguardian and have the opportunity to level up and earn badges. We will be celebrating the work as you submit it in a variety of ways.

We also want to reward you for your patience as we revamped the points system for this year. We hope you will be happy with the changes. As a thank you, we're starting everyone off with a bonus of 10 XP! That's right... you've already earned 10% of your points just by being patient and supporting the Vanguard Leadership Team!

  • Teachers and METIs (Instructional Staff) will earn a total of 100 XP; 50 Mentoring XP and 50 from any category
  • Non-Instructional Staff will earn a total of 50 XP from any category. This includes school and district admin, CSTs, Administrative Assistants, Instructional Coaches, Data Support Specialists, etc. (If you're not sure if this applies to you, please reach out to a member of the Vanguard Executive Committee.)
  • You will have until May 17th to earn 100 XP.
  • All Vanguard sponsored activities will be aligned to one of Vanguard's 4 Pillars: Transform, Innovate, Mentor, and Support (TIMS)
  • In addition to earning points for Vanguard Sponsored activities, you can also earn points for any self-initiated activity at your school that supports one of the 4 pillars!
  • The intention is for XP to be a way to celebrate the work of Vanguard and have members be reflective about how the work they do connects to the 4 pillars.
  • Those of you who attended the Kickoff event (and signed in) have already earned 15 XP, plus your 10 point bonus, for a total of 25 XP!!!
  • Events like the kickoff will earn 15 points each.

Note: During your next monthly meeting at your school, you will have an opportunity to learn more about the experience points system and submit questions for the leadership team.

Earning XP for Transform, Innovate and Support

  • Forms for the pillars of Transform, Innovate, and Support will be located on the Vanguard Website. Anytime you participate in a Vanguard activity, or do something independently that supports one of the pillars, just fill out the form!
  • Forms will require members to reflect on the activity and share how it exemplifies the chosen pillar.
  • Forms will be posted on the website next week. For now, just keep track of the activity and the time it took.
  • You will earn XP based on the amount of time spent on the activity:

  • 30 minutes = 2 XP
  • 1 hour = 5 XP
  • 2 hours = 10 XP
  • 3 hours = 15 XP
  • 4+ hours = 20 XP

Earning XP for Menoring

Vanguard members will follow the FCS coaching process, consisting of 5 touchpoints in each coaching cycle:

  1. Baseline TIM-O
  2. Pre-conference – review the TIM-O and set SMART goals
  3. Mentoring Period – modeling lessons, co-planning, or co-teaching
  4. Observation w/ TIM-O
  5. Post-conference – review progress toward goals and set new goals

Each touchpoint above is worth 5 XP. Members will complete this cycle once each semester (for a total of 50 XP). Forms for each touchpoint will be located on the Vanguard website. Again, forms will be posted on the website next week. For the time being, just keep track of your mentoring cycle activities.
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Leveling Up and Badges

To be fully transparent, we are still working on all of the badges and levels that you will be able to earn. More information about this will be coming soon. However, here's what we've figured out so far about how you level up to earn your stipend!

Stipends will be released twice during the year. Early stipend earners will get their $500 stipend in December. If you're not quite to your XP goal by the deadline for the December release, you will be eligible for the second round, which will be issued in February.

November 16th - Early Bird Gets the Worm Deadline!

  • Teachers & METIs must earn 35 points by this date to get their stipend in December.
  • Non-Instructional staff must earn 25 points by this date to get their stipend in December

February 1st - Staying the Course Deadline!

  • Teachers & METIs must earn 50 points by this date to get their stipend in February.
  • Non-Instructional staff must earn 35 points by this date to get their stipend in February.
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Member Survey... Help us personalize your Vanguard Experience

Please take a few minutes to complete the Vanguard Member Survey. This activity is required for all members. This survey serves several purposes:

  • Annual iPad Inventory & needs assessment
  • Gather important member info (shirt sizes, employee ID number, etc.)
  • Gather information that will help us personalize events and professional learning opportunities.
  • Gather feedback about what we're doing well and how we can improve.
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Coaching Essentials: Learn and earn 20 XP!!!!

Be sure to complete the Coaching Essentials Interest Form today! We've purchased 60 seats, and we want to fill them all!

Peer mentoring is an essential component of the Vanguard mission and vision and we are committed to providing you with learning opportunities that will help you grow as effective coaches. We are very excited to announce a fabulous opportunity for our members to learn more about Coaching Essentials with Jan Brown from the Georigia State University Principals Center. Jan is an expert in the field of coaching and has been an integral member of the team who developed the FCS Coaching Framework. We have secured spots for 60 lucky Vanguard members to participate in this in depth two-day course. You don't want to miss out on this great opportunity, complete the interest form below today!

Session Description: Participants will review The FCS Coaching Framework to understand the FCS mission, vision, goals, theory of action and logic model. You will learn how to implement the first part of the FCS Coaching Cycle including pre-conference, and observation techniques and coaching actions. Coaches will learn the components of trust to build positive relationships with teachers to enroll them to commit to coaching. You will also learn and experience possible coaching actions, the 6 steps of effective feedback, as well as plan for and implement the Post-Reflection Conference.

If you are interested in participating in the course just follow these easy steps:

  1. Read the Coaching Essentials Participant Outline for a detailed description of the course objectives and activities.
  2. Talk to your principal and get permission to attend.
  3. Complete the Coaching Essentials Interest Form below by Monday, September 10th.
  4. You will be notified via email as we schedule people into cohorts for the course (see dates below).

Note: The Instructional Technology Department will pay for your substitute.

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New Member Application Open Until September 14th!

One of the most exciting times of the year is upon us – new member application season! We're excited to announce that the application window is open today through the end of the day on Friday, September 14th.

Directions to Share with Prospective Applicants

Create a 2-3 minute product (video, Sway, PowerPoint, presentation, etc.) that answers the following questions and expresses how you embody Vanguard's four pillars (TIMS: Transform, Innovate, Mentor, and Support). Have fun and be creative!

  1. Why do you want to join Vanguard?
  2. Describe how you have incorporated technology in innovative ways into instruction.

See the application itself for more details. The link can be found below.

The Selection Process

The leadership team will review applications and invite prospective members to attend a Saturday morning interview event on September 29th. This is where you come in – we’re inviting you to help shape the future of Vanguard by serving as interviewers. We will work in teams of two to interview applicants. You’ll go through a series of scripted questions, and record your feedback and ratings, which will inform our acceptance decisions. This will be familiar to those of you that participated last year as we’ll be carrying forward that successful approach. Participating as an interviewer will earn you up to 15 points! Decisions will be made and new members will be notified during the following week. If you're interested in helping with interviews, sign up using the button below.

What can you do to help?

  1. Help us get the word out! If your school team has fewer than 4 members, please give this application link to anyone and everyone in your school who is interested in joining the Vanguard Team! Do your best to sell the benefits and fun of Vanguard!
  2. Sign up to help with interviews on September 29th using the button below.

If your school team already has 4 members, but you know of others who would be interested in joining Vanguard, then we strongly recommend that you consider starting up a Vanchise. This will allow you to grow your school's Vanguard Team beyond the 4 member cap. The Vanchise application will be released next week.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please reach out to Justin Evans (, or your Learning Community lead.

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GaETC 2018 Registration is Now Available

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Calling all Vanguard Members!

GaETC is a 3-day event, November 7-9, 2018 at the Georgia International Convention Center (2000 Convention Center Concourse; College Park, GA 30337).

As a member of Vanguard, your attendance and your substitute is paid for by the Instructional Technology department!

You can attend 3 days, 2 days or 1 day. All you need to do is follow these 3 easy steps:

  1. Discuss with your Principal.
  2. Secure your Sub
  3. Register for GaETC before Oct. 13th, 2018!

Chris Olateru will communicate with your school bookkeeper concerning the substitute reimbursement.

Fulton County Vanguard Members have been assigned the Group Code FCVAN350. You must register to attend the conference no later than Oct. 13 so that you will receive your name badge by mail and expedite your check-in onsite. We must have a completed registration for each person attending the conference.

Please note: Any registrations already assigned DO NOT have to be re-submitted unless a substitution is needed.

How to Register:

Register @

  3. Enter your email address. SUBMIT Register myself for this event.
    1. If you are in the system, your information from last year will populate – make necessary updates.
    2. If you are NOT in the system, complete the ‘New Registrant” page
  4. Registration Options, select ‘I have a Pre-Paid Group Code’
  5. As you complete the form, there is a box - ‘Please select a conference registration type or code’, select FCVAN350 – Full Conference
  6. If you register for Pre-Conference Workshops, you are responsible for the cost of the workshop
  7. Payment Options, select ‘Pre-Paid Group Code’
  8. Submit

You will receive a confirmation email once registration is complete, and your name badge will be mailed to you after Oct. 25th.

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GaETC is Accepting Applications for the 2018 Innovation Grants!

Who: The opportunity to apply for an Innovation Grant is open to all Georgia teachers, media specialists, counselors, or any combination of persons within a school setting.

What: A maximum of $10,000 in Innovation Grants will be awarded, with each individual grant not to exceed $2,500.

When: The deadline to apply for grants is September 15, 2018.

For Additional Details Visit:

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Upcoming Professional Development

Need Support? Help is just a click away!

Vanguard Leadership is working hard to plan a calendar of meaningful professional development opportunities for Vanguard members. If there is instructional technology related professional development that you would like to have at your school, please contact Mindy Ramon for support. We have resources available to provide training at schools for district provided technology such as SAFARI Montage, Office 365, Seesaw, Edgenuity, and more. You may also be interested in accessing the Instructional Technology Training site, which has a wealth of information about each of the resources the district provides.

High Quality Professional Learning

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Vanguard Leadership Team

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Fulton County Vanguard Team

Mission: Building the capacity of instructional leaders to transform learning and teaching.

Vision: Through building colaborative relationships and supporting student focused learning, the Vanguard Team will positively impact student achievement.

Pillars: Transform, Innovate, Mentor, & Support (TIMS)