The Soto Scoop

Week of September 19-September 23

Principal's Message

This week we focused on our third leadership habit--Put First Things First! Together we explored and shared with staff and student leaders how to prioritize and act on our plans in order to live a happy, balanced life. By putting first things first you are in charge. You identify the "big rocks" and act on what matters.

Over the next couple weeks we will put first things first by making sure that quality instruction is ongoing as we tackle other big rocks--

  • Meet with administration to ensure clear expectations and set goals as part of our TEI Goal-Setting Conference
  • Administer Common Assessments to Gauge, Track, and Address Our Students' Achievement
  • Engage in Data Talks to Understand our Students' Data and Re-Teach to Succeed

By putting first things first, we are inadvertently being proactive and beginning with the end in mind. Way to go Soto Leaders! There is no limit to what we can accomplish together!


  • Next week we will embrace and explicitly teach our fourth leadership habit, Think Win Win. Make sure that all students are exposed to the language and meaning of the habit. This is a great opportunity to build your classroom culture.

  • Staff Attire: District employees are reminded to return to full professional attire on Sept. 25th when the summer dress code expires. Visit the Staff Page to view the announcement. Thank you to all staff for embracing our Synergy Monday (khaki pants/navy shirt) and Spirit Friday (jeans only with spirit or college shirt).

  • Compliance Courses: Instructions on how to complete this year's compliance courses were emailed earlier this school-year. Please make sure that you read the email in detail and turn in certificates to Mrs. Ramos when done. This can be a time-consuming task. Please be proactive and don't delay! Due: October 7th

  • Dialogue with the Superintendent: Please save the date for “Dialogue with the Superintendent” on Tuesday, September 27, 2016 from 4:45pm to 5:45pm. He will be visiting Molina HS and engaging in dialogue with teachers and school staff only.

  • TEI Requirements: We will conduct TEI Goal-Setting Conferences this week. An email with details was sent by Mrs. Kwiatkowski earlier this week. Be on the lookout for an invitation from your appraiser. SLO/PDP Due: September 27th

  • Bulletin Boards: Several staff have reported that bulletin boards are damaged on a daily-basis by wondering little hands. Please make sure we are continuing our hallway "5-Up" procedure and explicitly teach your students to take care of our school.
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A Week in Review

Counselor's Corner

I enjoy working with you and all our Soto Stars! Our Student Council Leaders will be meeting every Wednesday in Mrs. Waters classroom. We will be reviewing and working on the 7 Habits. I have started doing my guidance lessons and will be visiting your classroom during the Social Studies block. I will be sending out a schedule. Please fill out the Teacher Referral form if you need me to see a student.

Education Go Get It Week is this week. Teachers please send me your college information and picture so we can have them on posters and placed by your room.

Please encourage your students to participate in all the college activities we have planned for this week. We want to emphasize how important college is for all our students. I appreciate all your assistance!

Monday-"Hats off to Education! " Wear your favorite college or sports team cap.

Tuesday-"Get Crazy about Education!" Wear your crazy socks.

Wednesday-"Go Wild for Education!" Wear animal print or camouflage shirt.

Thursday-"Soto is ready for the Job Market!" Dress up as your career path for the future.

Friday-"Soto is College Bound!" Wear your college shirt.


Assistant Principal-Operations Overview

CEOP: According to our safety protocols, door window coverings should be accessible for lock down situations; however, the windows should NOT be covered during day to day activities. Please ensure the "Soto Stars" window covering or any butcher paper displays do not block the view into the classroom on a permanent basis.

RtI/SST: Students will be tested with a math screener for RtI baseline data. This will be an in-house assessment that Ms. Jones will roll out with me in the next few weeks.

Common Assessments: Common assessments will take place Wed-Fri. Below is the schedule for contents/grades. Note the 3-5 teachers will switch and follow testing protocol for check out, active monitoring, and check in. K-2 teachers will test their own homerooms for this first round.

Wednesday, 9/21: 3-5 Reading

Thursday, 9/22: K-2 Reading & 3-5 Math

Friday, 9/23: K-2 Math; 4th Writing; 5th Science

The Readers of Today Are The Leaders of Tomorrow

Countdown to Common Assessment 1! The past 4 weeks our leaders have been exploring the genres of fiction and poetry. As we think about how we are setting up leaders to be successful on their common assessments, this week's focus is explicit aligned direct instruction and providing/ referencing visuals that support leader's learning.

What Is Explicit Instruction?

  • Explicit Instruction is skill based, but students are active participants in the learning process.
  • Students are cognitively engaged throughout the learning encounter. They have opportunities throughout the lesson to self-monitor and direct their own learning and participation.
  • The teacher constantly monitors understanding to make sure students are deriving meaning from instruction.
  • Students like it because they are learning!

We will revisit this important topic during our Monday PD.

Your Partner In Instruction,


Reading Reminders:

  • Thank you to all K-2 teachers who have completed their Google survey on PLC's. Your feedback will be used to tailor the support and professional development you are provided.
  • Achieve 3000: 229 of 265 Students have completed their level set. Soto has the highest percentage complete in the Molina and Conrad feeder pattern. (Go Soto!) Make sure your leaders begin to use Achieve 3000 this week, so we can get to 100%.

Math Corner

As we practice Habit 3- Put first things first, teachers kept leaders first. Soto made great strides towards preparing the campus goals. Reasoning Minds was launched this week. Leaders were practicing their problem solving skills and using their notebooks. Teachers were putting leaders first by anticipating their background knowledge and misconceptions. Here are some examples of teachers putting first things first at Soto.

Your synergizing math interventionist,

1+1= 1,000

Great Happens Here!

This section will showcase ideas on how to implement The Leader in Me seen across the campus and on The Leader in Me online.

Check out Ms. Soltero's smiling students as they "Put First Things First" by tracking their math scores in their "carpeta de liderazgo" (leadership binder). For other great tips and ideas, visit

September PTA Drive

Teachers and Staff we are on a mission to reach 100% PTA parent and staff membership by the end September. Please encourage students and parents to join our PTA. One class per grade-level will win a pizza party for achieving 100% participation and teachers will be entered in a raffle to win a $50 gift card. Teachers will receive a leaf on our membership tree for each child in their class that joins.

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Lighthouse/FAC Meeting

Monday, Sep. 26th, 3:30pm



Monday, Sep. 26th, 3pm

4510 West Jefferson Boulevard

Dallas, TX


Tuesday, Sep. 27th, 3pm

4510 West Jefferson Boulevard

Dallas, TX

Girl Scouts Meeting

Tuesday, Sep. 27th, 3:15-4:30pm


Teachers please keep girls until after dismissal 3:15 p.m.

Soto Select Choir

Tuesday, Sep. 27th, 3:15-4:30pm

Music Room

Teachers please keep choir students until after dismissal 3:15 p.m.

Soccer Practice

Tuesday, Sep. 27th, 3:15pm to Wednesday, Sep. 28th, 4:30pm


After School Art Class

Wednesday, Sep. 28th, 3:15-4:30pm

Art Room

Teachers please keep girls until after dismissal 3:15 p.m.


Thursday, Sep. 29th, 8am to Friday, Sep. 30th, 3:15pm

4510 West Jefferson Boulevard

Dallas, TX

Art Club

Friday, Sep. 30th, 3:15-4:15pm

Art Room

Teachers please keep art club students until after dismissal 3:15 p.m.

1st Six Weeks ENDS

Friday, Sep. 30th, 3pm

4510 West Jefferson Boulevard

Dallas, TX