Waterford Weekly

September 7, 2015


September 7: No School - Labor Day Holiday

September 8: Cluster 7:05 a.m.; PBS 3:10 p.m.

September 9: Guided Reading In-service; Staff Meeting 3:10 p.m.

September 10: TLT 3:10 p.m.; Open House 6-7 p.m.

September 11:

September 14: Cluster 7:05 a.m.; Board Meeting 6:00 p.m.

September 15: TLT at WG for Close Reading Training; Child Study 3:00 p.m.; Extended Response Assessment from 9/15-9/18

September 16:

September 17: TLT 3:10 p.m.

September 18:

Quote of the Week

"Heart is courage and compassion. Without it life is empty, lonely. You're always busy but never fulfilled."

Bolman and Deal from Leading with Soul.


*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Randy and Moshe for organizing all of the NWEA testing, helping with questions, concerns, and problems, and working the "kinks out!" Mucho Gracias!!

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Lynette Kauffman for taking our new Kindergarten Class for us until a new teacher could be secured! We appreciate your willingness and flexibility to be part of the Waterford Team on such short notice! Thank You! Thank you! Thank You!

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: All Teachers for completing the NWEA PD in a very short period of time. I know that the testing piece has been an added layer of "new stuff" this year but it will go smoother the second time around and will become like "old hat" by the end of the year. Thanks for working together and navigating through the "rough spots." You are awesome team and I am so very proud to be part of such an exceptional team!! KUDOS to All!! NO STAFF MEETING IN DECEMBER! :)

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Renee for sorting all of the EL accommodation sheets for teachers.

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Randy for printing out the EL accommodation sheets for the teachers.

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Teresa Mack for volunteering to teach the Chess Club this year! We appreciate your willingness and dedication!

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Linda Evans and Eli Medrano for doing the announcements every morning!

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Kyle for covering bus duty for Randy over the last 2 days.

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Ben for covering Gary Thursday and Friday with the sub shortage.

*A BIG SHOUT OUT TO: Natalie and Abby, student teachers, for supporting a reading group with an LLI Lesson on Thursday and Friday.

Welcome Jayden Hugo!

Jessica Arellano delivered her baby boy, Jayden Hugo on September 1st. He weighed 8 lbs. and 14 ounces. Mom and son are doing fine. Congrats Jessica!!

Thoughts & Prayers

*Please continue to pray for Randy's mother as she goes through chemotherapy.

*Please pray for Brianna Miller and her family as they prepare for an upcoming visit to the Cleveland Clinic.

*For Linda Evan's mother-in-law who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

TLT Update

We talked about "Time-Honored" Traditions as Waterford and listed the following:

All School Picnic, Waving Goodbye to the Kids on the last day of school, Daily Announcements, Field Day, Book Fair, Singing off the Wall, A.M. Announcements, Consistency in Expectations, Staff Support - Family Atmosphere, Food at Christmas, Golden Ticket Celebrations, and Waterford Welcomers.

Can you think of any others?

We also talked about how we can unlock our teacher's potential: When teachers feel valued they put forth more effort and are willing to take on more responsibility, a shared purpose/vision, affirmation, spreading out the leadership, courageous conversations, and being willing to share our flaws.

How else can we help unlock your potential?

We are continuing our work on evaluating text complexity with close reading and learning how to determine teaching points with narrative text. There have been a lot of "aha moments" as we work together as a team to learn how to "dig deeper" into text. In fact, Joy said last week," I've read that story so many times to kids and have never thought of that!" We hope that you will have those same "aha's" during the second semester!

Listening Day at Waterford

Mark your calendars!

Dr. Woodworth and Dr. Metcalfe will be at Waterford on October 1st. They will be available all day for you to come ask questions and talk with them about all the happenings in GCS. Make sure to set aside some time that day to meet with them! I'll let you know where they will be located once the time gets closer.

What's Happening?

*A big welcome to our new Kindergarten Teacher, Lisa Zehrung. Lisa is excited for the opportunity and is thrilled about her first elementary teaching job! A "little bird" also told me that Lisa was recently engaged! So, we have wedding bells to look forward to in the future along with our continued growing family of new babies. :)

*GrapeSeed for K/1 and Marcia's 2-5 group will begin on Tuesday of next week. This will occur during the "Success" time but students will meet from 8-8:45 each day so that the required 40 minutes of GrapeSeed instruction can be completed. Trina will be teaching the K section, Marisa the 1st grade section, and Marica a section for those in 2-5 need additional support. An additional section may be added later on if there is a need based on data.

*Our Fall Open house this fall will be held on Thursday, September 10th from 6:00 – 7:00. Each grade level will give three 15 minute presentations from 6:00 – 7:00 so parents have the opportunity to attend multiple grade level presentations. There will be an English and Spanish speaking room for each time slot. Translators will be provided for each grade.

The evening’s schedule:

Session 1 6:00 – 6:15

Session 2 6:20 – 6:35

Session 3 6:40 – 6:55

In addition, the PTO will have a table set up in the front hallway to try and gain some new members. As an added bonus, Kona Ice will be here selling treats to anyone who would like to purchase them. Our PTO will receive 25% of the proceeds.

PTO News

PTO stuff you should know................................

REMIND APP: Remind is a free, safe, and simple messaging tool that helps us share important updates and reminders with students and parents. Subscribe by text, email or using the Remind App. All personal information is kept private. No one at the school or on the PTO will see your phone number. For more information, please see the attached.

BOX TOPS: Box tops for education are a great way for the PTO to earn funds on things that you already buy. See one of these? Cut it out, and send them in with your student. We submit them twice per year for a cash refund! Want to help? We really need a coordinator. Contact the PTO, if you would like to be the spokesperson for the Box Tops program!


Things coming up....

August 31 Due date for Mum Fundraiser

September 11 Mums are delivered to the school

September 11 2:30 - 5 pm Adults must pick up mum orders

September 12 9-11 am Adults must pick up mum orders

September 21 6 pm - PTO meeting

October 12-16 Fall Book Fair, open late during Parent Teacher conferences

October 13 and 15 Parent Teacher Conferences

October 26 6 pm - PTO meeting

November Rise and Roll donut fundraiser

December Polar Express Family Night

EMAIL LIST: Would you like to be kept in touch by email? Send a message to waterfordelementarypto@gmail.com, and we will add you to the list!

OTHER STUFF: You can also sign up for donations to Waterford's PTO at the following locations...Target, Meijer, and Red Robin. You can save Campbell's Labels for Education.

GCS News and Notes

Today’s Focus: Teams

“It takes each of us to make a difference for all of us.”
– Jackie Mutcheson

Thanks for all that you do for our team and the students of GCS!

Teacher Evaluation Handbook

The evaluation committee met on Tuesday, September 1st and finalized the Teacher Evaluation Handbook for the 2015-16 school year. The revised document is attached, with new language in red, bold font and language that has been eliminated in strikethrough font. This is being provided so that you know (and may share) with your teachers where the changes can be found. If you would like Angela or Alan or Tammy to assist in walking through this document with your teachers, please contact one of them. Rationale for these changes follows in the bulleted list below:

Handbook Revisions:

a. Page 5 & 6 – Changes relate to including the student growth piece in teacher effectiveness ratings (per IN statute) and some of the changes related to the GCS sustainability plan

b. Page 7 – Changes in how an initial practitioner’s license can now be renewed (based upon a new statute that went into effect January 2015)

c. Page 9 – Added a paragraph related to the TAP threshold for a teacher needing an intensive assistance plan. This is a guideline from NIET/ TAP, and it allows for intensive support to a teacher who may have a score lower than a 2.0 in either teacher performance or student results. This is a critical piece to the plan now that student achievement is included in the effectiveness rating.

d. Page 10 –This adds specificity related to how to factor student achievement results into the teacher effectiveness ratings. This reflects the metrics that have been used in GCS to assign bonuses to teachers, and also represents the consensus of the committee after several discussions on this topic.

e. Page 10 – 11 – You will see in the draft that we have not changed the ranges for the effectiveness ratings. Based upon our conversations last year and the fact that we will now be adding the student achievement factor, it is the committee’s desire to keep the ranges the same for this year.

f. Page 11 – The changes under the section ‘Ineffective Teacher’ are required by statute and must be included in our district plan that will be sent to the IDOE.

g. Page 12 – The proposed section related to master teacher evaluations is NEW. This language is an attempt to differentiate the performance evaluations for master teachers, based upon their various roles/responsibilities at different levels. For 2015-16, it allows a master teacher to elect to include cluster observation as a part of their performance evaluation.

h. Appendix – Appendix E is a draft of a new format for Intensive Assistance Plan. The committee believes that this is a better version than the one we have used in the past. The intent is the same, but it provides more clarity.

Thanks to everyone who served on the committee: Regina Goodman, Melissa Bebout-Schmitz, Marilyn Graber, Jim Graves, Kelly Whittaker, Amy Smoot, Mary Brookins, Krista Troyer, Jeanna Salyer, Brad Remsburg, Lynne Peters, Lynnette Kauffman, Alan Metcalfe, Angela Piazza, and Bev Krabill. A copy of the FINAL handbook will be put on the GCS website under staff services and in the evaluation section.