Friday Flight

August 2014 Edition

Welcome to 2014-15!

I've enjoyed seeing so many of you as we're preparing for the start of school! I hope you're still enjoying summer, getting some rest, and having some fun. Below are some points that may be of interest to you. Much like at the end of the year, I'll make revisions to this Flight and resend as needed. When school starts, you'll receive a new Flight each week. I look forward to officially welcoming some of you back and some of you to the Lowell community for the first time!

Good times are ahead!

District E-Mail Passwords

The information below was sent via e-mail on 8/5 from the Department of Technology. If you weren't on your e-mail before that, you may need this to successfully change your password.

Password Requirements - Passwords must be a combination of at least three of the following four categories:

  • a capital letter
  • a lowercase letter
  • a number and/or a special character
  • be a minimum of eight (8) characters


P@ssw0rd --capital P, lowercase letters, @ symbol and a 0 (zero) were used.

An easy way to make more complex passwords is to take a common phrase and change some characters into numbers and symbols.

ChicagoBears could be Ch1cagobe@rs – There is a mix of capital letters and lowercase letters, the letter “I” in Chicago was replaced with the number “1” and the letter “a” in bears was replaced with the “@” symbol. This would satisfy the complexity requirement needed.

If you need assistance please use the technology helpdesk. Follow us on Twitter for important technology updates and notifications.

Facility Updates

The front hallway was repainted and one other spot in the school had a little make-over; I won't spoil it here if you haven't been back to school yet! Here are some other tidbits about Lowell facilities:

  • Please take down any tattered signs or art in your area.
  • We do not have regular custodial hours yet; our crew has been pulled to other buildings. Please be sure you are signed in and that you enter and exit through Door #19 if you have any doubt people are at school. We'll notify you when regular custodial hours resume.
  • Please be sure any unwanted furniture/items you have in the hallway is clearly labeled "Please remove", "Not needed", or something similar.
  • Projectors will be installed in the reading room, both ELL rooms, and the music room.
  • Do not place unwanted items in the staff center. See the Lowell Classifieds link below if you have items to share or items you are seeking.
  • If you maintain a bulletin board in the hallway, please ensure it is tidy. We can gradually supply fabric; if you'd like that for a board you maintain, please let me know. Please repair ripped borders or remove unneeded staples. We want everyone to feel good about spending time in our school, and we can further that through our care and attention to detail.
  • You'll also notice hallway art/frames/signs coming down; we'll be working with a group of parents to take and print enlarged photographs.
  • We are working on securing new exterior door mats.
  • The Beautification crew will be replanting our front door planters at the start of school. We'll also have a Beautification Fall Clean-Up Day after school in addition to our spring Beautification day.
  • I will be walking the grounds with our new facilities director at the start of the week.

Please review the Memo to stay current on building parent communication!

Schedule Draft

You can view the draft schedule here. This is pretty final, unless your sets of eyes catch any inconsistencies. Please view the master page, your grade level page, the specials chart view page, and academic blocks chart view page at minimum. Again, please direct any errors you notice or questions directly to me.

You need to be logged in to your district Google account to view; if you are logged into your personal account, you won't have permission. Remember, after changing your password you'll use that same e-mail password for your Google account. Enter your e-mail address rather than your A0# when logging into Google.

Want a paper calendar/planner? They are available on the main office counter. Stop & take one starting Monday!

Lowell Staffing 2014-15 (As of 8/8/14)

Currently Posted Positions

  • Teacher Aide (1)
  • Lunch/Recess Subs

New to the Nest

  • Christine Fitzgerald, Psychologist
  • Betsy Pond, Grade 3
  • Jen Ross, Grade 2
  • Celeste Sorenson, Social Work
  • Melissa Vesta, Kindergarten
  • Kelly Woods, Grade 3
  • Sage Youngstedt, Resource (Lowell a.m./ Whittier p.m.)
  • Stefanie Youngberg, Aide
  • Jill Goetz, Speech (0.25; T. Diedrich's class)

Changes in the Nest

  • Renee Kuta from Kindergarten to 1st Grade
  • Melissa Chiappini from Grade 3 to ELL

Student Teachers

  • Kristine Morozink w/Brooke Thurston (Fall 2014)
  • Rachel Jobe w/Denise Uthe (Fall 2014)
  • Kari LaPointe w/Mary Carlson (Spring 2015)

Leaving the Nest

  • Amy King (to Madison Instructional Kindergarten)
  • Tracie Sklenicka (to Lincoln)
  • Amy Meron
  • Dana de la Vega
  • Lee Raezler
  • Mary Ann Stevenson
  • Beth White

Taking Leave from the Nest for 2014-15

  • Meg Zaino
  • Elizabeth Tanglis

See the Memo for bios on our new teachers!

Please consider writing a post for our blog!!

You can also encourage a student or parent to share OR comment on an existing post!! Did you have a cool summer learning opportunity? Share that, too.

Upcoming Lowell Events

  • Teacher Assignments available on ParentVUE: Friday, August 15th after 4 p.m. You should not contact your families prior to this time. Any letters home should not be postmarked before August 15th. Cathy will print lists with addresses for you early next week.
  • Teacher Institute Day: Tuesday, August 19; 8:30-3:30. The building will be closed to parent/student tours during Institute hours. If you schedule any meetings with parents, please do so outside of those hours. We'll start in the LLC together for them morning. The afternoon will be articulation based on student-needs. Attire: Casual
  • Teacher Work Day: Wednesday, August 20: Any 7 1/2 hours between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. Please see below about Back-to-School Social. The building will be closed to parent/student tours during work day hours until 4 p.m. At that time there will be a formal tour prior to Back to School Social. If you need to schedule a parent meeting that day, please notify the office and come to the office to greet the parents and walk them down. I want you to be able to work free of interruption, but I understand you need to meet. Attire: Casual
  • Back to School Social: Wednesday, August 20; 4:30-6 p.m. You are encouraged to put out conference sign-ups and any volunteer sign-ups at this time. Classroom teachers will be in their classrooms this night, and students are welcomed to bring supplies. Specials teachers/specialists should spread out to help direct families or congregate in the common area. Attire: Spirit wear or school colors welcomed
  • First Day of School/ Grades 1-5: Thursday, August 21; Specials will start Day 1. We will also have a brief assembly at 10 a.m. in the gym/multi-purpose room.
  • First Day of Kindergarten: Friday, August 22
  • Curriculum Night: Thursday, September 4; 6:30-8 p.m. Teachers will be present for the whole evening to offer more than one session to parents. More details to follow.
  • Beautification Fall Clean-Up: Friday, September 12
  • Picture Day: Tuesday, September 23
  • Runathon Fundraiser: Thursday, September 25
  • Parent-Teacher Conference Dates: Tuesday, October 14th & Thursday, October 16th from 4-8 p.m. are the school-wide dates; per the contract, you are to schedule a third 4-hour block at your discretion. You may put out conference sign-ups at Back to School Social. The office will collect a conference schedule from each teacher prior to the conference dates.

Please dispose of any classroom allergy signs that were not part of an allergy packet from Chris this year. All wording should be 'safe' not 'free' (ex. peanut safe, not peanut free).

Professional Learning Meeting Calendar

Anticipated 2014-15 Meeting Calendar- DRAFT

Look for more information via links below in the coming weeks:

  • BLT
  • Instructional Team
  • Wellness
  • Tech Team
  • Foundations Team
  • Aid meetings

  • Lunch & Learns (optional)

Homework Folders

One teacher per grade level has received the homework folders to distribute to her grade level team. Your team can decide on where to store folders so you can give new students folders as they join us!

Water Club from Cathy

Please join water club! What is water club? It is the cooler in the office that is always available; you could send a child down with your glass and we will fill it for you. Unlimited cold water. The fee is $25. For the first half of the year and probably another $25 for the second part. Please notify Cathy in the office if you are interested.

Lowell iPad Summer Exploration

Were you part of the iPad Summer Exploration? Be ready to share out your findings as we start school! Look for a Remind text and an update here in the next week with more information on how to report back.

The Eagle's Nest

I am in the process of updating the content & access to the Eagle's Nest, our staff Google site, for 2014-15. Have a suggestion for something you'd like posted there? E-mail Kathy!

Lowell Guidelines for Success

The Lowell Community Takes FLIGHT

  • Focus on Success

  • Love to Learn

  • Include Everyone

  • Give Respect

  • Honor Hard Work

  • Think it Through

Getting rid of something? Need something?