BME Staff Update

December 16, 2018

Team Meadow -

Hey Team!

I hope it's been a great weekend. We have "just" five days before sliding into a well-deserved winter break (I use air quotes, because let's be real, it's anything but "just" this time of year!).

Even though the exhaustion is settling in, and the kids may be more amped up, and the weather may be frightful ... I encourage you to make these days count. Continue to deepen your relationships, challenge students to attain high levels of learning, and make time to for reflection. Be intentional about using your time this week, and make it the best week of 2018!

Below is a list of various items to keep on your radar this week. Tom is out for the week, so I will be doing my best to be available to help and serve as needed, while keeping the plates spinning. Thanks in advance for your grace and patience.

1) Family Gathering - Monday 12/17 at 1:30pm. We will begin calling classes down at approximately 1:25/1:30, so we can begin promptly at 1:40pm. We should be wrapped up by 2:10, but please have your classes pack up prior to coming to the gym.

2) Math Coffee Talk - Monday 12/17 at 2:35pm. Be there or be square, as they say.

3) Tuesday 12/18 - I will be out of the building in the morning for a meeting, and should return by noon.

4) Wednesday 12/19 - I will be out in the afternoon to see my son's Christmas Program, but Chris Squier will be here all day should you need anything. Dabney Frothingham and Maggie Ioannacci will be in and out throughout the week as well. Don't hesitate to ask any one of them for help or support, if needed.

5) Fire Drill this week - be prepared! Remember to head outside immediately after the alarm. I will get everyone back in as quickly as possible. Keep in mind where your closest pull stations and exits are as you move throughout the building.

6) Classroom Parties on Thursday and Friday - volunteers must check-in at the office before heading to classrooms.

7) Throughout the week, do not hesitate to contact the office if you are unable to reach me via my cell. Barb and Beth should know where to find me! :)


Media Center Update

As you know, Jane is embarking on a new journey after the break, and we all wishing her nothing but the very best as we brace ourselves for her departure. Her dedication to this community and that space is unparalleled. Thank you, Jane, for your devotion and generosity to create our Media Center collection from scratch and provide a very special place for the children and adults of Boone Meadow. Few comprehend the complexities of this position, and Jane has given above and beyond to make that space thrive over the years.

Lauren and I began the process of vetting candidates last week, and even though I am out, the process will continue so that her replacement can begin on January 8th. This week, Lauren will continue to refine the pool of candidates, and we are hoping to make a recommendation by end of week. With that in mind, I am asking in advance for staff to be prepared to embrace a flexible and patient mindset as we onboard a new team member. In order to foster a smooth transition, we will most likely require a temporary modification to schedules. Some of these modifications might be removing "Media" from the related arts rotation on select days.

Thank you again for your understanding.

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Winter Parties - This Thursday and Friday

(My comments below reflect concerns that teachers have raised over the years and a need to find a balance with classroom events. My goal isn't to "control" these events. They are simply to assist in support for events to go smoothly and successfully. In addition, some items reflect our need to adhere to Board policy. Feel free to copy and paste in messaging you may send to families prior to parties. - Thanks, Tom)

Regarding Volunteers:

  • Family members attending parties are considered volunteers.
  • All volunteers must have a full background check, and pre-registering for the event is extremely helpful. See the link that Beth sent in a previous email. If you need that link again, please ask her to resend it to you.
  • As always, we are incredibly grateful for the volume of support we receive from families at BME. Although thankful, some classrooms do become too crowded for events to go smoothly. Please consider a limit to the number of volunteers. (on average, 3-5 should be sufficient)
  • In addition, volunteering requires undivided attention in order to assist in creating a smooth, well-run event. Please remember that siblings of students should not attend classroom parties with volunteers.
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ZTEP and ZTEP+ Reminders

As we near the end of Semester One, a few friendly reminders are listed below.


PLUS teachers will want to refer to the PLUS checklist for details and due dates.

Peer Observations and reflections need to occur by the end of December.

  • Document your reflection on what was learned during peer observations as artifacts uploaded to SFS by the end of December.
  • In SFS, the artifacts need to be named: Peer Observation #1 and Peer Observation #2.

Please feel free to reach out to Lauren or me if you need any assistance. We are Happy to help!


  • By this time, all extended observations have occurred. You may have also had a short observation conducted by your secondary evaluator. This isn't required in 1st semester and may occur in 2nd semester.
  • An unannounced long observation will occur in 2nd semester.

Calendar Items & Information


17th - BME Family Gathering @ 1:30 in gym (Second Step/SEL Convo); Math Coffee Talk in Family room immediately following dismissal

17th-21st - Tom out

20th or 21st - Winter Parties (your choice of date)

21st- End of 2nd Quarter & Last Day of School before Winter Break

25th - Christmas


7th - Students return to school

21st - Dr. MLK, jr Day (no school)

Personal Business Leave Requests

For Certified Team Members:

To requests "personal business days," please complete the following process.

  1. Go to the following link, and complete the "personal business request" form.
  2. Once the form is completed, please send a brief email to me (Tom) that includes the date(s) of your request(s).
  3. Enter your upcoming absence in AESOP as soon as possible. (It can always be deleted later should plans change.)

Thanks -

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