Nuts & Bolts

September 4, 2018

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Welcome back

I hope everyone enjoyed their long weekend and spend copious amounts of time filling their buckets. I hosted a friend from the east, spent time with the family, and enjoyed watching the 50th year of the US Open.

It seems as though the honeymoon period has ended for some of our kiddos. Be sure we're following the behavior reporting process (outlined below) to ensure we all efficiently help our kiddos that need some extra love.

Have a beautiful week!

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Construction Update

I thought and was hoping last week would be the last construction update; sadly, it was not.

The green bars of the playground are still off-limits as they are are being repaired. I am told they should be fixed by the end of the week. Please do not play on them until you hear an announcement from the administration that they are cleared for play. Thanks for reporting the issue and for your patience.

3 Big Misconceptions About Inclusion

Please read the insightful article linked above about inclusion. Using other words, this article highlights how the Montessori approach fits well when designing and implementing instruction for all. It also mentions that inclusion is a social justice issue, an issue close to the Montessorian's heart.
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Behavior and Injury Reporting

Thank you for using Aspire to document classroom and admin level behavior infractions. It has been super helpful already. Even though it's not official, we encourage you to follow the procedures in the draft Student Conduct and Discipline Plan shared with you all via google docs during our PD week. Please note, unless a child is at infraction level 3 or 4, they should stay in the classroom with appropriately assigned interventions and/or discipline.

** If the student needs to be addressed immediately by an administrator (level 3 or 4), please alert the administrator to come to the child or bring the child to the office - in addition to checking the "alert admin" box in Aspire. The administration should be alerted in person by contacting the office via phone, in person, or by walkie-talkie.**

Injury reports and incident reports are to still be completed on paper and submitted to the office.

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Teaching Assistant Schedules

We are still missing a few . . . If you have not done so already, please email teaching assistant schedules to Remember, assistants cannot exceed the weekly number of hours on their employee agreement - unless they have approval from René in writing via the extra hours request form before the extra hours happen.

Coach's Corner- Montessori Mondays

Exciting news . . . The first Montessori Monday professional learning opportunity is happening next Monday, September 10th. The same session will be presented twice to be able to accommodate all schedules. Participants only need to attend one session, either 8:30-11am or 12-3pm in the commons area.

Monday's topics include: Montessori philosophy overview, Power of Placemat, Grace and Courtesy, and an Overview of Spiral Curriculum and Lessons. The year's schedule and topics to be taught can be found on the document below.

Montessori Mondays were created for this school in response to staff requests for more Montessori training for all staff members in order to support a positive and collaborative Montessori school culture. Montessori Mondays will happen approximately once per month and are an in-house training of Montessori principles and foundational knowledge. All are invited to attend. Assistants and other staff members who do not have official Montessori credentials are strongly encouraged to attend.

Thank you lead teachers for allowing this to fit in assistants' schedules and for supporting their attendance during the normally scheduled hours.

MMA Cross Country Meet Schedule

You have seen them running around school; now you should see them run in a competition. Our cross country team started practicing the first week of school and have been preparing for their meets to begin. Put the schedule below on your calendar and come out to cheer on the team! The MMA girls' cross country team are defending their championship title this year.
  • September 6th - MMA Home Meet at Harrisville Park, 4:15pm
  • September 13th - Ogden High Meet at Mount Ogden Park, 4:15pm
  • September 18th - Meet at Syracuse Arts Academy, 4:30pm
  • September 20th - Meet at Quest Academy, 4:15pm
  • September 27th - Meet at High Mark Charter, 4:15pm
  • October 4th - Championship at Big D Park

See you there!

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Fire Drill Tuesday

This Tuesday, September 4th will be our first fire drill. Please refer to the MMA Emergency Guide (published in the 8-18-18 N&B and linked below) for procedures. If you need clarification regarding how your class should exit or line up outside, please ask your classroom neighbor or the front office.

To keep the drill as authentic as possible, we do not announce the exact times - only the date. Please be sure that students are quiet for the duration of the drill.

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Accurate Attendance

Accurate and timely attendance record keeping is an important teacher obligation and one to which we are legally bound. Attendance records can (and have been this past year) be a determining factor in a court battle, custody decision, the deciding factor as to whether a child is granted their out of boundary exception, or if they get accepted into private schools and other special programs. Accurate enrollment numbers and funding are also dependent on accurate attendance keeping. AND, for safety and legal reasons, we must know what children are in the building at any given time.

All teachers should complete their attendance in Aspire by 9am each day. Junior High teachers should complete their class attendance within the first 10 minutes of each class period. If you are unsure of these procedures, please ask Autumn or Amanda in the office. Thank you for making this a priority.

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Sign In / Sign Out Procedures

The sign in / sign out procedures are updated for this school year. Much of this change is necessitated because hourly assistants all work different schedules this year. If you have questions regarding these procedures, please ask for clarification in the office. There is a new, black binder on the tall counter in the office to organize these new procedures.

Non-salaried, hourly staff need to sign in and out each day under the pink "hourly daily sheet" tab. Hourly employees who have to sign time sheets every other week will also complete their weekly timesheet under the yellow tab. It is recommended that staff members fill in their time sheets each day; however, time sheets must be completed and signed by the end of the pay period to ensure timely payments. Hourly staff should not exceed the hours stated on their employee agreements unless they have completed the request for extra hours form and received approval from René prior to working over their hours.

Salaried teachers do not have to sign in daily, unless they arrive to school after 8am or leave before 4pm. In these cases, teachers should sign in/out under the orange "staff sign out" tab.

Substitutes will sign in and out under the green "substitute sign in" tab.

Everyone who is present for work and then leaves the building for any reason during the school day needs to sign out and then in under the orange "staff sign out" tab. This is for safety reasons, to account for all souls in the building if there were an emergency.

Thank you in advance for following these procedures as they will greatly streamline work in the office.

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After School Activities Request Form

We are a community school and encourage after school events that engage families; and we need to communicate these events with our entire community and the whole school. For this purpose and to ensure that events do not overlap, there is a procedure (new this year) to request permission to conduct an after school activity.

Please complete the form below at least two weeks before your event and submit this form to René's mailbox. You will receive notice when the event is approved. Please do not advertise events before they are approved. When possible and appropriate, administrators will meet with student groups planning events to discuss details and grant approval.

Setting the Alarm

We should all be arming the alarm now if you are the last to leave the building. The procedures above are almost identical when arming and disarming the alarm. The only difference would be if you hit arm vs. disarm. Please have all the lobby doors closed before touching the alarm keypad or you will receive an error message that door are open and the alarm cannot be set.

Ms. Janae is our newest custodian who helps Ms. Magdalena take care of our now large school building. She comes in around 4-5pm and stays until 9pm. This means that you should probably only have to set the alarm if it is very late on a weekday or if you come in on the weekend.

If you cannot remember your code, please ask Megan or James. If you need an in-person lesson at the panel, please ask René or James.

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Case Managers

Please respect our case managers' schedules and time they are spending in classrooms by not calling case managers to deal with behaviors or incidences of students with an IEP, unless there is already a plan in place to do so and/or the student is a danger to themselves or others.

Thank you for embracing a growth mindset with our students with special needs as it benefits not only those students with an IEP, but all students.

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Seeking Volunteer(s)

One of our parents ran Lego League last year after school. She applied and won a grant to expand our Lego League to be an official FLL (FIRST Lego League) for grades 4-8. With this expansion, she is seeking a staff member to sponsor the team and assist her in running the after school activities. The optimal team size is 6-8 kids and would run just like a sports team that meets at least once a week and has practices and competitions. The idea is for kids to want to stay on the team for multiple years to get better. The team would meet once a week for 2 hours. There would be occasional extra meetings or practice scrimmages. There is a final competition on a Saturday at the end of the season (December/January).

Please contact Autumn if you are interested in helping get our FLL competing.

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WSU Arts Learning Collaborative Workshop Series

WSU's Arts Learning Collaborative will be hosting several workshops this fall. These workshops are open to classroom teachers, fine/performing arts specialists, pre-service teachers, administrators, and community members!

Please visit their website,, to see details of the September and October workshops (pictured above) and all of the workshops they have planned for the 2018-2019 school year. USBE relicensure hours are available for all certified teachers who attend.

ICYMI - August 27, 2018 N&B

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ICYMI - August 18, 2018 N&B

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ICYMI - August 13, 2018 N&B

In case you missed it, click here to read the previous Nuts and Bolts.

ICYMI - July 20, 2018 N&B

In case you missed it, click here to read the previous Nuts and Bolts.