Principal's Corner

MLK - "I Am King"

Week At A Glance

We Made It!

Thank you to every staff member. You have shown resilience through one of the most difficult school years ever. As a school family, we have endured so much. Some of our colleagues that started the year with us are no longer here, but we wish them the best.

Just know you are truly appreciated and I couldn't run this school without all of you. It truly takes a village to not only raise a child but to educate one too.

Embrace this year for what it is, a stepping stone to greater things at MLK...

The best is yet to come!!

June 20 - 24, 2022

What's Happening This Week

Monday, June 20, 2022

  • No School
  • Juneteenth Celebration

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

  • STEM Appreciation Luncheon (for STEM after-school staff)
  • 8th Grade Kings Dominion Field Trip
  • Admin Weekly Meeting -10:30 am
  • Weekly Principal Conference Call

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

  • 8th Grade Cook-out
  • Faculty Meeting (mandatory) 3:45 -4:45 pm
  • Attendance Meeting - Mr. Murray - 12:00 pm
  • 8th Grade Moving On Ceremony Practice - 9:00 am -auditorium
  • Respite Day -Sponsored by SCAN ( wellness location set-up for teachers at 9:15 am- 1:00 pm) (activities include: hot tea bar, massages, painting, etc.)

Thursday, June 23, 2022

  • 8th Grade Moving on Ceremony - 9:30 am, location - MLK Auditorium
  • 6th Grade Cookout/Field Day
  • 8th Grade Dance - 7:00 pm

Friday, June 24, 2022

  • RPS Pupil Transportation Staff Appreciation Bowling Event -4:00 -7:00 pm

End of the Year Updates

Here are just a few reminders to close out the school year:

  • Pack your belongings in a box and label them with your name.
  • Make sure you complete your entire school close-out packet and return it to Ms. Anderson before you leave for the summer.
  • Take home all personal belongings, on the last day of school.
  • Give Ms. Shaw your summer contact information before you leave.
  • Make sure you sign your contract if you intend to return to RPS.
  • Make sure you have posted your grades, they were due last Friday.
  • Make sure you have submitted your electronic portfolio, it is part of your end-of-the-year evaluation. It was due last Friday.
  • If you are interested in any leadership opportunities for next year, please let me know before you leave for the summer.
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After-school Dismissal

We will start dismissing walkers and riders by grade levels again. This has become necessary, because some teachers are still allowing their students to leave class before after school announcements are made. By dismissing by grade level, the administration and pinpoint exactly which hallway students are being allowed to leave before their designated time.

Again, do not allow students to leave your classroom before their designated time and before the official announcement is made over the PA system.

If students leave your classroom without permission, please send their names to your grade level administrator.

Thank you


Friendly Reminder:

Remember to incorporate SCIDDLE into your morning routine, just before the morning classroom circles.

Each teacher should have a SCIDDLE poster in your classroom. If you need a poster, please see Mr. Chris Moore.

We now have fun size skittles bags of candy. They can be used as incentives for students who follow the SCIDDLE steps and/or know the steps.

You can pick the packages of candy up from your immediate supervisor.

Unfinished Learning

The impact of COVID on students have been significant, especially students of color and low -income.

Students of color and low -income students suffered most. Students in majority -Black schools ended the school year six months behind in both math and reading, while students in majority -white schools ended up just four months behind in math and three months behind in reading.

Students didn't just lose academic learning during the pandemic. Some lost family members: others had caregivers who lost their jobs and sources of income: and almost all experienced some form of social isolation. This increased a world -wide concern for students mental health. and an increase in chronic absenteeism

The cumulative effects of the pandemic could have a long - term impact on an entire generation of students. Education achievement and attainment are linked not only to higher earnings, but also to better health, reduced incarceration rates. and greater political participation. Without immediate and sustained interventions, pandemic -related unfinished learning in itself will become a pandemic with disastrously effects for our young people.

As educators, we need to recommit and reimagine our education systems for the long -term, in order to reduce the impact COVID on unfinished learning.

Remember you "why" for becoming a teacher....

Educational Professionalism

What is

Respect and courtesy have been cited as key components of educational professionalism. A professional respects all others, even when that respect is not returned. As a role model for appropriate behavior, an educators always must show respect to colleagues, parents, and students.

As a teacher you play a critical role in helping young people achieve success in the classroom. A professional demeanor shows you take your responsibilities seriously. Failing to act professionally sets a bad example and may cause you to lose the trust and respect of students.

Some characteristics of educational professionalism:

  1. Arrive to work on time or early.
  2. Dress respectfully and neat -A teacher's appearance plays a role in conveying professionalism.
  3. Ability to develop trusting and productive relationships with students...
  4. Productive and positive interaction with colleagues...
  5. Blame no one...
  6. Growth Mindset...
  7. Patient, caring, kind..
  8. Knowledge of learners...
  9. Compliment others..
  10. Ask for help...

Field Trips

The district has relaxed it's restrictions on field trips. Field trips are now allowed. The district prefers that field trips are outdoors, but they can be indoors.

All field trips that require the use of school buses, must leave after 10:00 am and return by 2:00 pm.

Please discuss end of the year grade level field trips with your grade level teams this month. All field trips must be approved by the principal.

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No Cell Phones

Student cell phones shouldn't be heard or seen in building. They should not have them out at all. Moving forward we will start implementing the following responses to inappropriate cell phone usage:

  • 1st infraction - Verbal warning (ask the student to put the phone away0
  • 2nd infraction - Teacher Conference
  • 3rd infraction - Contact parent/Caregiver
  • 4th infraction - Meet with Admin or Grade Level Chair
  • 4th infraction - Parent Conference Letter - student must return to school with a parent/caregiver
  • 5th infraction - Request that student leave their cell phone at home
  • 6th infraction - Possible Virtual Learning

Please Focus on the Teach Like a Champion techniques listed below for the rest of the school year.

Teach Like A Champion Techniques for the Month


Technique - SLANT

  • To maximize students' ability to pay attention, use an acronym to teach students key baseline behavior for learning. like SLANT (Sit up, Listen, Ask, and answer, nod your head, and track the speaker).

Technique - Culture of Error

  • An environment where teachers feel safe making and discussing mistakes, so you can spend less time hunting for errors and more time fixing them.


Technique -Cold Call

  • Call on students regardless of whether they've raised their hands. This technique holds students accountable for learning. It teaches them to always be prepared to respond to a question about the lesson and it allows the teacher to call on all students.

Technique - Wait Time

  • Allow students time to think before answering. If they aren't productive with that time, narrate them toward being more productive.


Technique - Show Call

  • Create a strong incentive to complete writing with quality and thoughtfulness by publicly showing casing and revising students writing -regardless of who volunteers to share.

Technique - Everybody Writes -

  • Prepare your students to engage rigorously by giving them the chance to reflect in writing before you ask them to discuss.


Technique - Opt Out

  • How to move students from the blank stare or stubborn shrug to giving the right answer every time.

Technique - Do It Again

  • When students fail to successfully complete a basic task - from entering the classroom quietly to passing papers around - doing it again, doing it right, and doing it perfectly, results in the best consequences.


Technique - Right is Right

  • This technique accepts no half-answers but asks for complete and correct answers to questions.

Technique - Stretch It

  • This technique pushes a teacher to take correct answers and ask students to add depth or nuance to their answers.


Technique: Strong Voice

  • Affirm your authority through intentional verbal and nonverbal habits, especially at moments when you need control.

Technique: What To Do

  • Use specific, concrete, sequential, and observable directions to tell students what to do, as opposed to what not to do.

Meeting Protocols

  • Department and grade level chairs should send the agenda for all meetings the day before the actual meeting.
  • Attendance must be taken at all meetings, including virtual meetings.
  • Minutes for all meetings should be posted in the google folder for the specific department or grade level, within 48 hours after the meeting.

New Mask Mandate

Governor Youngkin's bill has been passed that will give parents the option to have their students wear mask or not in school. This will go into effect as of March 11, 2022.

Superintendent Kamras has stated that parents need to complete a google form stating that they do not want their child(ren) wearing a mask in school.

Central will maintain the list and share it with principals.

School Improvement Plan

SOL Pass Rate Goals: School Year 2021-2022

Writing - 50%

English - 50%

Math - 50%

Science - 50%

Civics - 50%

Current Pass Rate

Writing -19%

English -34%

Math - 40%

Science - 24%

Civics -?


Reading Comprehension Strategies

Read 180


Visual Representation

These are the strategies that will be focus for core instruction for English and math. Administration will be focused on these strategies during walk -throughs and formal observations.

MLK Updates

  • Update student seating charts whenever students are moved, for any reason. Because of COVID, some teachers may have a different seating chart weekly.
  • Please make sure your google classrooms have been activated and assignments have been posted.
  • Each teacher needs to sign -in on the Raptor System, by 7:45 am.
  • While eating breakfast and lunch, students need to social distance at least 6ft, to the greatest extent possible.
  • Upon students entering the building, all staff should do a mask check. If students do not have their mask on correctly, ask them to "mask up."
  • Teachers should have a hard copy of student's schedules
  • Teachers need to be at the monitoring post by 8:00 am
  • Review grade level lunch transition plans - See immediate supervisor for any questions or clarification.
  • Please review expectations for lunch behavior inside the classroom and in the cafeteria. Also, teachers may classes outside to eat lunch, just make sure you have a seating chart for your students.
  • The building opens for students at 8:00 am
  • Review RPS and MLK's COVID Health and Safety Plan
  • Greet students at the door, with a smile.
  • Review the school's values, motto, and theme daily.
  • Review COVID protocols for the classroom, restrooms, transitions in the hallway, lunch, and dismissal, with your students.
  • All seat charts should be posted in ASPEN. If teachers do not have access to ASPEN, they will need to create a hard or electronic copy on their own and keep it in a folder (hard copy or electronic).
  • If you have any immediate concerns throughout the day, please do not hesitate to contact your immediate supervisor, grade level counselor, and/or caring and safety associates.

Culture and Climate

There has been an increase in disruptive student behavior, from fights, verbal altercations, skipping classes, to vandalism in the restrooms. To combat this behavior everyone needs to talk to their students about expectations in the classroom, hallways, cafeteria, arrival, and dismissal.

Please make sure you are following established procedures and protocols:

  • Contact parents with positive information and concerns about students. If a student is receiving a failing grade for their interim report, please contact the parents.
  • Contact at least 10 parents per week. Suggestion, create a grade level parent log in an excel spreadsheet. The 7th grade team is already doing this.
  • Refer disruptive students to APs and Mr. Thompson, so we can utilize our Restorative and Mindfulness Rooms.
  • Report any information about potential altercations between students to APs, Admin. Aide (Mr. Thompson), and grade level chairs.
  • If you see or hear a student being bullied or teased, don't ignore it, intervene and/or ask for assistance from your grade level counselor, AP, and /or admin. aide.
  • Review classroom expectations daily, before community circles and during each class period
  • Review additional expectations for the hallways, cafeteria, and dismissal.
  • Teachers are expected to escort students to the bus loop, during dismissal. This should look like students lining up and walking in the hallways, just like for a fire drill. Please make sure you communicate this to your students.
  • Cell phones should not be visible in the classroom. Students should not be allowed to charge cell phones in the classroom. Admins will document this during walk-throughs, if it happens.
  • All teachers should be using Class Dojo, as part of our school -wide incentive program. If you are not set -up, please see your immediate supervisor.
  • Teachers can ask parents to come to a parent conference, without waiting for an administrator to give it as a response to a behavior.
  • Invite Mr. Spurell and Mr. Moore to your classrooms, to speak to your students.
  • As a grade level, think of different activities and themes for Fun Fridays. Fun Fridays, should be something that students have to earn, in order to participate. You can use the last 30 minutes of class on the 2nd and 4th Friday of each month. One or two teachers on each grade level can take students to a separate designation for Fun Friday (ex. different room, outside, auditorium, etc.)
  • Make sure you are documenting student behavior also. Again, one grade level document that houses all of this information is more efficient.
  • Reward students who are following the school values, kindness, respectful, responsible, and practicing safety.

Quote of the Week

"Today be the reason why someone feels loved."

Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School - Ms. Inett Dabney, Principal

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