March 2018

Attendance...Did You Know?

Wouldn't it be wonderful if all parents were punctual about getting their children to school on time? Wouldn't it be terrific if all children were in their seats or appropriate location when the bell rang? Have we heard so many excuses why a child was late to school we could write a book? Not many individuals can testify that they have never been late to school, for a meeting or other appointments. Life happens. For some of our parents tardiness is a lifestyle. This a serious concern.

In the past few months, the Administrative Services Office has taken calls from multiple parents asking about whether or not a school can require a parent to walk their child into the building to sign in when they are late.

After a review of the SPS District Attendance Guidelines and Procedures and a visit with Dr. Bret Range, Director of Elementary Learning, we learned that nowhere in the Attendance guidelines/procedures does it require such action by the parent. According to Dr. Bret Rang, the key statement in the guidelines is "When a student is delayed in getting to school on time, the student should report to the office for a Tardy Pass to his/her first class." It does not say a parent has to accompany the student. To sum up, we do not require the parent to walk the child into school to sign them in. We would simply ask the parent to make sure their child has entered the school.

It is understandable that we are ever aware of the need for increased measures to ensure student safety. Having a collaborative discussions about these matters is important and often leads change. Discuss these concerns or ideas with your principal, Directors or Executive Directors.

Hello Fourth Quarter!

Fourth quarter is refreshing. Flowers popping up, trees budding fresh greenery, bushes blooming, outdoor sports, and generally better weather is just around the corner.

Along with weather changes, Fourth Quarter has some minor changes in our district transfer policy that warrants review.

  • No 2017-2018 Immediate transfers should be accepted after March 8, 2018. Our district believes that the last nine weeks of school should not involve shifting of schools due to transfer requests.
  • If a student's family moves to a different attendance location within SPS District and wishes to have their child attend the new school where they reside, they can do this.
  • If that same student mentioned above, wishes to stay at their original school, and not attend the new school during fourth quarter, they can stay. If they wish to continue at the original school for the next school year, they should complete an Immediate Transfer for the upcoming school year. That request goes in the first come, first serve rotation per the transfer guidelines.
  • If a student's Immediate Transfer is revoked between March 9-the end of school, they should remain in their transfer school through the end of the school year. It should be made clear to the parent/guardian that the student will return to their home school building in the fall.
  • Any letter to revoke a transfer during 4th Quarter should be received by the family prior to the last day of school. Additionally, it is good practice to call the parent. Yes, it may be unpleasant, but good customer service to give the parent a heads up about the next steps to enroll in their home attendance school.

Where Do I Send the File When a Student Moves?

In the past weeks, we have reviewed the question above with a few building secretaries.

Please make note when a student leaves the district it is important that the Cognos Report: Student Transfer Out Checklist be put into the front of the student cumulative file.

Here is the refresher for elementary, middle and high school secretaries. Please review to refresh these procedures. We really could use your assistance in making sure our student files are accounted for when there is a move.

Elementary Procedures:

In District: When another SPS school calls or emails to get the student file, forward the entire file (don’t forget the health file, see school nurse) to the new SPS School site.

Out of District: When an out of district school calls for the student record.

  • Copy the Student Transfer Out Check List (It is a Cognos Report) and put it in the front of the student cumulative file. Be sure to include the request from the new school district.

  • Add a hard copy of the most recent grade card if it is not in the file.

  • Log the record out using the Records Request option in Eschool (under Demographics)

  • Send the entire record (including the health file which is with your school nurse) to the Records Office, Bentley Administrative Building, 1610 E. Sunshine.

Middle Schools

In District: When the new SPS site calls or emails for the records, send the entire file (don’t forget the health file )directly to the new SPS school.

Out of District:

  • Copy the Student Transfer Out Check List (eSchool Cognos Report) and put it in the front of the student cumulative file.

  • Make a copy of the student file and send the copy to the new district.

  • Log record out using Records Request in eSchool under Demographics.

  • Store all Health Files of withdrawn students until student turns 23 or a request is received.

  • Keep the original file at your site for one year.

  • Each September, the Records Office will call for the previous year’s withdraws. At that time send to the Records Office, 1610 E. Sunshine.

High Schools

In District: When new SPS site emails or calls you to get records, send the entire file (don’t forget health file-see school nurse) to the new school.

Out of District :

  • Copy the Student Transfer Out Check List (Cognos Report) and put it in the front of the student cumulative file.

  • Make a copy of the entire file and send to the new district.

  • Keep the original student file at your site for one year.

  • Store Health Files of withdrawn or graduated students until the student turns 23, and then shred file.

  • Each September, the Records Office will request all the previous year’s withdrawal and the last year graduates records. Send them to the Records Office, Bentley Building, 1610 E. Sunshine.

Celebrating Our Volunteers

The chart below demonstrates the dedication and efforts of our SPS Volunteers. One year ago today, Feb 23, 2017 we had a total of 10,103 hours logged by our volunteers. The grand total one year later, 12,415 logged volunteer hours. What a difference our volunteers are making daily in our buildings and in the lives of staff and students. If your building has volunteers, please encourage them to log their hours.

Some of our Site Volunteer Coordinators have found methods to make this easier for their volunteers to accomplish. For example, having a computer available for volunteers to log their hours with the Volunteer Log Icon on the desktop. Some individuals record hours on a hard copy paper in the office to track volunteer time in and out, then the SVC logs the hours for the volunteers. RSVP READING Buddy Tutors log their hours with the Council of Churches who then reports the hours back to Ann White and Linda Lemmon. We input those hours to avoid confusion.

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Recognize Your Volunteers

National Volunteer Week runs April 15-22, 2018 to celebrate volunteers and the services they provide to schools and communities. National Volunteer Week was established in 1974 and has grown exponentially each year.

Springfield Public Schools Volunteer Program has 54 Site Volunteer Coordinators and other school staff work with our volunteers to ensure that the volunteer and what they desire to offer to the school are a match.

Our volunteers provide a variety of service at our buildings that allow our teaching staff more time to spend with students on academic progress and success. These dedicated individuals cut, laminate, staple, run copies, fold, sort, assemble, assist with classroom parties and chaperone field trips, in addition to, tutoring and/or mentoring students. For all of these roles and more, we are very thankful for our school and department volunteers.

Please make advance plans to let your building volunteers know their value during National Volunteer Week. What have other buildings done during these days? Some schools provide signage of appreciations, others have students write thank you notes or create a craft or art project to give the volunteers, and even a small treat with a special note of thanks can make a volunteer feel appreciated. There is no right or wrong way to show your school's appreciation. Thank you in advance for taking the time to show volunteers thanks!

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