Austin Packer Bulletin - 0115
Volume 1, Issue 15
The Packer Profile
The Packer Profile identifies the community's shared aspirations for students and what it means to be a graduate of APS. It reflects what our students, staff, and families desire each day for our students and support their preparation to become career and life ready.
The Packer Profile reflects three key principles to guide student experience throughout their education at Austin Public Schools:
- Career Pathways Exploration –Students will leverage their interests and abilities to explore future careers and educational opportunities.
- Meaningful Learning Experiences – Core content and instruction will intentionally engage students in authentic learning experiences with relevance beyond APS.
- Packer Portfolio – Beginning with the class of 2027, students will celebrate by designing their meaningful pathway journey and growth in the Packer Core Values through a digital portfolio.
Throughout the school year, design teams of teacher leaders from AHS and Ellis have been working to create the Packer Profile 3 key principles and what those will look like for students and staff. The design teams sought feedback from community stakeholders on December 19. They will continue to create a scope and sequence that will evolve as our 2027 Packers engage in the Packer Profile as 9th graders next fall.
Our new video shows WHAT the profile means for our next generation of Packers!
Packer Profile – Community Input Sessions
Nearly 50 regional and community stakeholders worked with us to learn more about the Packer Profile and give feedback and ideas on the design teams' work on career pathways, meaningful learning experiences, and the Packer Portfolio.
In true educator form, we asked our participants to complete an exit ticket answering the question, "what do you know now that you didn't know before." Here are just a few things we heard:
- "I appreciate that the school district is taking an interest in the after-high school life of students!"
- "Excited for my granddaughter's future."
- "APS has a focused approach to developing students."
- "We all can make it happen."
- "I am impressed with the progress and thought made so far on the Packer Profile – keep up the progress and good work."
- "Our community is more engaged in the growth & success of our students than I previously knew. This is fantastic!!"
- "Tons of awesome people in our community care about our kids and their education."
We are excited to take the next steps in our district's continuous improvement efforts with the Packer Profile.
Dr. Joey Page, Superintendent
STEM Forward: Outstanding Educator Award
Congratulations to Austin's Lisa Lage, Jessica Stanley, and Ryan Stanley on being nominated for the 2022-2023 Outstanding Educator Award by Southeast Service Cooperative's STEM Forward!
STEM Forward is a collaborative group of southeast Minnesota K-12 school districts, post-secondary partners, and community businesses, IBM, Mayo Clinic, The Hormel Institute, and Workforce Development, Inc., who work together to promote STEM excellence in our K-12 schools.
The Outstanding Educator Awards event will be celebrated at the 31st Annual STEM Forward Gathering On February 8, 2023, at The Workshop in Rochester. This event will also be live-streamed on Facebook via Southeast Service Cooperative!
Comunidades Latinas Unidas en Servicio
In partnership with Riverland, CLUES and other community agencies will host a free food distribution at the Riverland West Building throughout 2023. The distributions will mainly be on the 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month beginning January 13. Event is open to all in the community who need food support. Distribution begins at noon and lasts until food is gone. A variety of fresh fruit, vegetables, eggs, cheese, frozen meat and/or fish and shelf stable items are typically available.
Austin High School Art Show
Award of Excellence Winners
Honorable Mention Winners
Congratulations to all the participants!
Minnesota Student Survey (MSS)
Every three years, Minnesota's fifth-, eighth-, ninth- and 11th-grade students complete this voluntary, anonymous survey. It includes questions on school climate, bullying, out-of-school activities, healthy eating, emotional health, substance use, connections with school and family, and many other topics. State agencies use the survey to identify important trends and target resources to improve the well-being of the state's youth. Districts and counties also receive reports to be used at the community level.
Survey data is available on the Minnesota Department of Education's Minnesota Student Survey webpages. Summaries of elements of the survey are also available from the MDH Minnesota Student Survey website. See full MDH press release here.
New Education Commissioner
In a Minnesota Department of Education press release Governor Walz and Lt. Governor Flanagan announced the appointment of Willie Jett as the new Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education.
Willie Jett II is an instructor in the Education Administration Licensure program in the Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development at the University of Minnesota. He has taught and led in urban, suburban, and greater Minnesota school districts for over three decades. Jett understands the challenges and strengths of all communities, and his career is characterized by a commitment to raising student achievement and closing opportunity gaps.
He is committed to preparing our future citizens, growing Minnesota's workforce, and supporting professional educators. Jett earned his B.S. from University of Illinois at Chicago and M.A. from University of Pittsburgh.
Parents Bill of Rights
I was recently asked about the proposed Parents Bill of Rights. While we do not yet know the details of any final legislation, the Parents Bill of Rights Act includes five core principles. Based upon the summary of the five core principles, if passed, the legislation would not appear to have a significant impact on Minnesota schools. Many of the rights set forth in the five core principles are already encompassed within state law.
For instance, with respect to school curriculum, Minnesota statute §120B.20 already requires Minnesota school districts to have a procedure for parents to review curriculum (policy 606). In addition, parents that wish to address the school board, can already do so, as almost all Minnesota school districts have open forums during their school board meetings where parents have the right to address the school board on issues, as determined by the parents (206). Under the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act, Minnesota school budgets are already public data (700 series). In addition, state and federal law (FERPA) currently protects the privacy of identifiable student data, with limited exceptions. Last year, Minnesota passed the Student Data Privacy Act banning schools and their technology providers from tracking student activities or sharing student data.
Finally, Minnesota statutes §121A.031 and §121A.64 require school districts to have policies (514 & 529) for addressing student bullying, including how school districts will respond to student bullying behavior, and for notifying teachers of students with a history of violent behavior.
Comments Requested on Proposed 2022 K-12 Academic Standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts
Per Minnesota Statutes 2021 section 120B.021, subdivision 4, every ten years Minnesota's K-12 Academic Standards in each content area must be reviewed and revised. The review and revision process for the K-12 academic standards and supporting benchmarks in mathematics began during the 2021-2022 school year. Because of this statutory requirement, a standards review committee of volunteer Minnesotans is formed to review and revise the standards and supporting benchmarks each year in the specific content area up for review. The review and revision process for the K-12 academic standards and supporting benchmarks in ELA began during the 2019-2020 school year. Because of this statutory requirement, a standards review committee of volunteer Minnesotans is formed to review and revise the standards and supporting benchmarks each year in the specific content area up for review.
Rulemaking Public Comment Period for Proposed K-12 Academic Standards in Mathematics
The initial public comment period in the statutory rulemaking process started on Wednesday, December 28, 2022 and will run for 60 days, closing on Monday, February 27, 2023 at 4:30 p.m. Central. To provide feedback on the standards as a part of the statutory rulemaking process review the Request for Comments document posted on the MDE rulemaking webpage for the proposed K-12 academic standards in mathematics. Comments must be submitted to the Office of Administrative Hearings' ecomments system.
Rulemaking Public Comment Period for Proposed K-12 Academic Standards in ELA
The public comment period for ELA's Statement of Need and Reasonableness (SONAR) in the statutory rulemaking began on Wednesday, December 28, 2022 and will run for 30 days, closing on Thursday, January 26, 2023 at 4:30 p.m. Central. To provide feedback on the standards as a part of the statutory rulemaking process during this period of Dual Notice, review the Request for Comments document posted on the MDE rulemaking webpage for the proposed K-12 academic standards in ELA. Comments must be submitted to the Office of Administrative Hearings' e-comments system.
FCC Seeks Public Comment on School Cybersecurity
The Federal Communications Commission announced Wednesday it is seeking public comment on using its E-rate program to pay for school and library cybersecurity improvements, such as advanced or next-generation firewalls. Feedback must be shared by February. 13, and reply comments must be filed by March 30.
To submit a public comment to the FCC on the matter, visit http://www.fcc.gov/ecfs.
Reminder: Elementary School Transition Updates
The Minnesota Department of Education's flexible learning year provides optional scheduling approaches for students and educators for a school year by building or program. Sumner Elementary School has utilized a 45/15 schedule for several years in the Austin Public Schools. Starting in the 2023-2024 school year, Sumner Elementary School will return to the same calendar as the other elementary schools in the district.
This means that beginning with the 2023-2024 school year, all Austin Public Schools will be on a traditional calendar when all students begin in the fall, have traditional breaks throughout the year, and have most of the summer off. This transition in schedule also means that all elementary students in the Austin Public Schools will eventually begin the process of adhering to attending their neighborhood elementary school. The elementary boundaries have not changed. This transition will involve several changes throughout the district, and we would like to share as much as possible with you here.
In this week's Alumni Spotlight, we catch up with alumnus Nick Grage.
Are you an alumnus of Austin Public Schools? If so, we'd love to hear from you!
We're excited to hear about your accomplishments and are eager to share your successes and advice with our current students, families, and the Austin community. Please take a few minutes to complete the quick questionnaire at https://www.austin.k12.mn.us/district-resources/alumni-spotlight regarding your current position and your career trajectory.
Thanks, and we look forward to hearing all your wonderful stories!
At Austin Public Schools, our mission is to inspire, empower, and accelerate every one of our learners, and we know that the only way for us to reach this goal is through the efforts of all our incredibly hard-working staff.
In this week’s Staff Spotlight, we’re highlighting Ellis Middle School Dean of Students Paula Ziems.
"Paula is a genuine, caring, and valuable staff member who takes time to listen to students, staff, and parents, and works extremely hard to keep Ellis a safe place."
If you’d like to nominate an outstanding Austin Public Schools staff member for our weekly Staff Spotlight, please take a moment to fill out the form at https://www.austin.k12.mn.us/district-resources/staff-spotlight. It only takes a minute and can truly make someone’s day. Thanks!
Superintendent Coffee and Conversation
Please consider joining Superintendent Page at the Coffee House on Main, 329 Main Street North, for Coffee and Conversation!
February 9 – 7:00 – 7:45 AM
March 30 – 7:00 – 7:45 AM
April 4 - 7:00 - 7:45 AM
May 29 - 7:00 - 7:45 AM
*Dates are subject to change
Or you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 507-460-1900 to schedule an appointment.