Focus of the Week: Cleanliness (I kid you not, this really is in the sequence of the character ed book and not because of recent events... I digress...)
Feasibility Study- SRSD Admin @ 8AM
IEP @ 8AM Anthony, Shufeldt, Frisk
Feasibility Study- SRSD Teaching Staff @ 4PM
Tuesday, May 17
Maurus @ Central Office 8-11AM
Meet the Band @ 10:45AM (4th grade)
Staff Meeting@ 4-5:30
JCC @ 6PM
Wednesday, May 18
Happy Birthday, Mary!!!
PBIS (if needed) 8AM
Compton/Maurus Meeting @ 9AM
Wildlife Safari Visit- Kindergarten @ 10AM
Maurus Evaluation Meeting @ 2PM
Thursday, May 19
5th Grade Field Day @ THS!
PBIS District Meeting @ 8:45-10:30AM
Employee Daycare/Preschool Information Session @ Board Office- Maurus/Duperron leading @ 2:30-4:30
(If you are interested or wondering about employee daycare for 2016-2017 [even for a family member, such as a grandchild], please stop by, or email me. Please let anyone in the district who may need daycare for next year or beyond know that we will be at central office to hear ideas and answer questions- our daycare is completely led in a cooperative way by SRSD employees, not central office).
Friday, May 20
Kindergarten Orientation @ 11AM (Brooke, make sure to have alternative arrangements for the classes that run from 11 until lunch- the incoming kindergarteners will be eating lunch in the cafeteria before all of our kiddies come in).
Supply and Textbook requests due!
Last Day for Book Check Out!
4th Grade Mini Society! 11AM-12PM and 2-3PM
Last Week's Behavior Data
Send Home: 1
Trends/Hot Spots: Physical aggression.
One thing that struck me with students who received out of school suspension this week is that when talking to their families about the behavior (punching with intent to injure the other), the families were in support of the children receiving services with Thomasene. Hopefully, the intake process will go quickly without hitches so that the families and students will get the support that they need.
Thank goodness we are able to more easily support our kids this way- four years ago, I could only offer a sheet of counselors I didn't personally know and a mini pep talk about the benefits of counseling support.
MTSS: Not Just for Academics
I know that we are better as a whole at academic interventions, but when we think about MTSS, as a school we have been largely focused on ONLY that aspect of interventions. MTSS is really an integration of academics and behavior (we KNOW as educators that the behavior affects the academics and vice versa).
Moving forward, we need to be thinking about doing behavior interventions not as a choice, but as something that we automatically do for students if they are having difficulties. For example, if we have a student who does not yet meet the grade level standard in math in a core area, such as adding, we provide academic interventions to support the student in gaining the skill of adding.
It's the same thing we must do with behavior.
If a student is not displaying success with behaviors that are normal for his or her age, or required to succeed in school, we provide him or her with interventions designed to target the specified behavior that the student needs in order to succeed.
What is EXTREMELY important to note is that behavior interventions are not a series of "gotchas" of collecting card flip data or creating a series of consequences.
That would be as crazy as expecting the student who can't add to figure out how to add on their own (or to blame external factors like the family for not teaching them to add) and then flipping their card and giving consequences when they haven't yet learned how to add and expecting that even though they haven't learned how to add yet, that we continue this cycle and expect that one day, they will learn how to add.
I can guarantee one thing in this scenario. If we punish the student for not knowing how to add and keep track of how they don't know how to add and blame the family for them not knowing how to add (and maybe even call the family to reiterate that their child does not know how to add) , I am 99.9% sure they will STILL not learn how to add.
Additionally, it is noteworthy that the research shows that students are most likely to succeed with new behaviors when the behaviors are supported, taught and reinforced throughout their day. If the only intervention is an isolated teaching that is separated from the classroom, the student will be able to produce the taught behavior in isolation, but will be unlikely to produce the behavior during their typical school day (just like the kid who can do something with you right by their side but then can't do it on their own).
I will give you a serious personal example. I have talked to "experts" about becoming healthier- since I started as a principal, my ability to focus on my personal health has significantly declined (and I had a third baby in my mid-thirties, which didn't help the old metabolism one bit, as well as a foot that was broken twice in the last year). If you look at my badge from four years ago in comparison to my badge this year, you will notice a puffier face and a Jay Leno-esque double chin on this year's badge. I can't even fit into the pants I wore my first year!
I have talked to the buff physical trainer who knows the science behind being healthy as well as a counselor about how to change my mindset about being healthy, and even my doctor about being healthy. No matter how much discussion I have had with them and no matter how much data the doctor shows me about blood pressure and blood sugar, I still know that I am not on the health trajectory that I need to be on. THE DATA IS RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME AND I STILL HAVE A HARD TIME BEING HEALTHY!
What absolutely DIDN'T help me (and caused me to devilishly shove Haagen-Dazs down my throat in retaliation) was Jeff reminding me that I looked very different than I did four years ago, or worse, than when we first met almost 20 years ago (and, I might add, he NEVER made that mistake again. He likes sleeping in his bed too much). Hearing all of that nagging made me feel worse and defeated.
The key to me becoming healthier was not by talking to the physical trainer, counselor, or doctor in isolation. Don't get me wrong- the talking to them did help, but what made the most significant impact was when Jeff and the kids decided to support me at home with my efforts. Instead of nagging about being healthy, we have started to walk more at home after work and are being more health-conscious with meal choices. With the support of the people surrounding me, I am more likely to succeed rather than just hoping that a magical wand will be waved over my head and *POOF* I will be in single digit clothing once again. Dear God, though, if any of you find that wand, please send it to me.
So, I know that was a bit of a tangent there, but I had to emphasize that when we are approaching working with our students in regards to behavior, that we don't look for the one-shot solution for behavior support for students. Sure, I am available to provide a sleep-inducing lecture to your class on the importance of end of the year behavior, and sister Lois is always taking prayer requests, but the one-shot intervention/person to "fix" things does not work (just ask Thomasene and Compton- that's what they studied for years).
It is the integration of ALL of us and the support, teaching and reinforcement of behaviors THROUGHOUT the day, especially in the classroom.
From this point forward, we will begin to include behavior in the MTSS system. This isn't really a Jefferson thing or a Maurus thing. It is actually what we should have been doing and thinking all along.
If you find that you don't know how to manage all of the behavior interventions or don't know just what to do, just ask me, Compton, Thomasene or your colleagues (there are many on the Jefferson staff who have mastered this integration of behavior supports).
Change on the Horizon...
Just so you know, the incoming student has many health challenges (his team and I will be able to fill you in at the beginning of the staff meeting on Tuesday). His team consists of Anthony, Frisk, Kopy/Yekin, Bastine, Hempton and Muse (they see all students in the school) and me.
Thank you for being very patient with SPED teachers and me over the last couple of weeks, as we have had several meetings, trainings, and hours spent making sure that this little guy is able to be successful and safe at Jefferson.