Lowell April Newsletter

We are proud of our pride of Lowell Lions!

From Ms. Franzone...

Dear Lowell Families,


We are looking forward to connecting with many of you for family/teacher conferences this week. We are thrilled to be able to welcome families into the building for these short meetings, and also know that meeting via Zoom is another great option for many families. However you are joining us, know that you are a valued and welcome part of the Lowell community! If you are coming to Lowell in person, we do ask that you limit your visit to your scheduled conferences, and go straight to your students’ classrooms. In addition, masks are still required in all MMSD buildings and will be required for conferences as well.


May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, and our classrooms will be spending time highlighting the stories and contributions of this community.


More information will be coming out about some special events for our students in the weeks ahead, including our Fun Run on May 13th, Hat and Hotdog Day (date TBD), our Land Acknowledgement Ceremony on May 26th, and our Fifth Grade Celebration on June 8th. We are looking forward to celebrating as a school community!


Thank you for your continued support!



Warmly,


Ellen

Early release at 10:35am on Thursday, April 14th (NO 4K Classes)

Other Upcoming Dates:

April 13: O'Keeffe Orientation (VIRTUAL), 7-8pm

April 14: Early Release at 10:35am for K-5; No 4K Classes

April 14: Family Teacher Conferences

April 19: Dine out for Lowell at Ledger, 7:30am-5pm

Class Placement

In the coming weeks, our teachers will be making plans about class placement for next year. This is always a complex process and involves a multitude of factors. If you would like to provide some input to this process, please fill out this form by Friday, April 29: Lowell Class Placement. Please note, we are not able to take requests for specific teachers. Classroom assignments will not be finalized or announced until mid-August.

Safety Lessons at Lowell

In the next few weeks, classroom teachers will re-share brief video lessons from me (Ms. Franzone) on what to do in case of emergency situations at school. MMSD developed the lessons specifically for our elementary students. At these young ages, we approach the topic of safety in much the same way as we do our Second Step lessons on social-emotional learning. We want students to feel secure, safe, and confident at school.


Read the full letter here.

Join the LCO Board

Please consider joining the LCO board! If you are a caregiver for a Lowell Elementary School student or a Lowell teacher, you are eligible!


Time commitment: 1 board meeting per month and a maximum of 1 community meeting per month, plus a few emails and event sign-ups in between.


Several board seats are available. Please fill them! Many hands make light work. To find out more information, please read here, or contact board.lco@gmail.com. Thank you for considering!

Dine out for Lowell at Ledger Coffee Roasters!

Tuesday, April 19th

7:30am-5:00pm

Garver Feed Mill

3241 Garver Green, Suite 140

Forward Testing in April

Each year, Wisconsin students in grades 3-8, and 10, participate in the state’s Forward Exam. Schools across the state must select a date from March 21 through April 29, 2022 to give the test. Our school is scheduled to take the Forward Exam after Spring break in early April.


The Forward Exam measures knowledge and skills students should have for their grade level. The Exam tests students in the areas of English language arts (ELA); mathematics in grades 3-5; science in grade 4; and social studies in grade 4. One or more subtests may be administered daily during our selected time frame. The results of these tests will be used to help school staff make determinations regarding curriculum, placement, and services to best support students.


Student performance on the assessment will not affect their grades. Please encourage students to take the test seriously, do the best they can, get a good night’s rest prior to the exam, and eat breakfast at school (remember, it’s free this year for all students). Students not in school on testing days will be scheduled for a make-up test prior to the close of the testing window.


State assessments, including the Forward Exam, are required by both State (Wis. Stat. § 118.30) and Federal (ESSA-Every Student Succeeds Act) Law. Additionally, the Forward Exam is given in-person, with no virtual/remote options available. Students in Madison Virtual Elementary (MVE) and Madison Promise will receive additional information about taking the test in-person.


The Department of Public Instruction (DPI) has created a Forward Exam Information for Families brochure, which gives more information about the assessment. (Spanish version of brochure; Hmong version of brochure). Additionally, if you have any questions regarding the state assessment system or specific assessments, please contact Tim Peterson, MMSD Director of Assessment, at tpeterson2@madison.k12.wi.us.

Volunteering at Lowell

Thank you for your interest in volunteering at Lowell Elementary! The first step to volunteering with MMSD is to complete an application in Volunteer Tracker. If a volunteer is supporting the school through special events like booster club or book fairs, etc, and they will not be alone with students, they do not need background checks. (Level 1 positions) However, if a volunteer may have unsupervised contact with students such as a tutor, field trip chaperone or classroom assistant, then a background check is required. (Level 2 positions)


For both Level 1 and Level 2 Volunteers

  • Application in Volunteer Tracker - Volunteer Tracker will be used to manage your volunteer record, and allows the schools to know who is ‘approved.' Volunteers can even log their volunteer hours.

  • COVID-19 vaccination verification - performed as part of the Volunteer Tracker application


Additional Steps for Level 2 Volunteers

  • Background check - performed as part of the Volunteer Tracker application

  • Required training - Building Security & Safety, Covid 19 Safety protocols, and Leaning Forward Together: a training based on MMSD’s commitment to anti-racism, the importance of identity and relationships. These trainings are tracked for each individual person in Volunteer Tracker and are approximately 3 hours total.


You’ll receive an email when your volunteer application has been approved.


Once you’re approved to volunteer, please reach out to us to let us know your availability.

  • You can contact your child’s teacher to see if there are any volunteer opportunities in the classroom; or

  • You can contact the Main Office at 608-204-6613, or email lowell@madison.k12.wi.us, to see what schoolwide opportunities are available, or if a different classroom is in need of some support.

  • Some examples of volunteer opportunities at Lowell are:

    • Help with breakfast or lunch

    • Reading or math buddy

    • Literacy or writing support

    • Shelving and book repair in the library

    • Help in the art room


When you’ve been matched with a volunteer position, we’ll schedule a time for you to come to Lowell for a brief orientation. Please always conduct a symptom screener before entering the building.


You can visit the MMSD Volunteer site for more information about volunteering.

Research Opportunity

Adaptive Brains- Learning about Emotions: ABLE Study

More information here.

Lowell Community Organization Spring Newsletter

Please read the Spring Edition of the LCO Lions Times to find out more about the Lowell Community Organization and upcoming events.