Thomson Staff Newsletter

March 14, 2016

Important News & Notes

Kindergarten Round-up

This week is a very busy one, but also a wonderful one in terms of welcoming next year's students to Davison. While I will be at the AMR most of the week, please know that I have my cell phone with me, be checking email, and can come back if needed at any time. I want to thank you all for your help with students, subs, and helping where ever, whenever is greatly appreciated!

March is Reading Month

Keep encouraging those little ones to read and record their reading minutes on their reading calendars. If I haven't taken your picture yet for the 'pie in the face' wall, please try and find me this week. We'd really like to have the pictures all up in the gym by next Monday. With me at Round-up this week, it may be tricky, but any of the ladies in the office can take your picture...we need a picture of ALL staff members. Don't for forget, today is 'Read a Shirt' Day and next Monday is 'Black Out Day'. You may want to explain again in your newsletters and plan accordingly in your lesson plans, that 'Black Out Day' is really about turning off those electronics (black screens) and spend the time that would have been spent playing games on the electronics we would love to have them reading. Also, we are encouraging kids to wear black that day. In order to support this at school, again, please ensure that your lesson plans for next Monday reflect 'no electronics'.

Don't forget...

''Do Unto Otters"-Virtual Guest Reader

March is Reading Month and as State Superintendent, Brian Whiston, is asked each year to come to schools all across the state to read to students. Superintendent Whiston loves reading to kids, especially his grandkids. However because his schedule does not allow him to reach all of the schools that ask for him to come read, Superintendent Whiston wanted to provide a video of himself reading a children’s book that schools can play to students. Please play this in class when time allows:,4615,7-140-37818_45256-377817--,00.html

The book has a great message that plays into Cardinal Code very nicely!

DRA Testing Window

While subs will NOT be provided for this DRA Testing Window, the window opens today,, Monday, March 14th and stays open through Thursday, March 24th. Any student who is not reading at grade-level, DRA 3 or above, must be tested during this time. However, please remember that teachers may test any student they'd like for instructional purposes. As always, if you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask,

Early Release Make-up

As Mr. Brown shared this past Friday, the Early Release Day that was missed due to snow will be made up Thursday, March 31st. Students will be release at 1:28 p.m. and our PD will begin at 1:45 p.m. and last until 4:45 p.m. This PD session will be for all Certified Staff, Paraprofessionals and Challenge Coordinator. The Coordinator's Office has communicated that they will be able to cover their topic in the allotted PD time scheduled for Friday, April 1st (Certified Staff only), so we will have March 31st to work on School Improvement as a staff which will be wonderful to gain full staff input. I will be working with Melissa Baracco to develop an agenda.

Gmail Training for ALL STAFF WHO USE EMAIL

As I shared in an email earlier this month, on Monday, March 28th we will have a staff training from 3:45-4:45 p.m. for ALL STAFF WHO USE EMAIL. This training will take place at Thomson and while not mandatory all staff with a district email are highly encouraged to attend. The change over from our current Outlook to Gmail will take place Tuesday, March 29th. All Certified Staff will receive professional development for attending and hourly employees will be paid for attending. Please look for an rsvp later this week to ensure that we have enough devices for everyone to have one.

Dimes for Diapers

Davison Community Schools along with all other Genesee County Schools is participating in the “Dimes for Diapers Challenge”. Our schools will collect dimes throughout the month of March to benefit the Flint Diaper Bank. The classroom that raises the most money in Davison will get a pizza party courtesy of ELGA Credit Union. Taking an additional idea from Mrs. Wendt at Gates, the classroom that raises the most money will get a pizza lunch courtesy of me.

Why a diaper drive?

  • 1 in 4 children in Genesee County lives in poverty and their families struggle to buy diapers
  • State and Federal assistance can be used to buy candy and pop but not diapers
  • Many babies are forced to wear the same diaper all day or for several days
  • Every dollar raised buys seven diapers at cost and changes a baby for a day
  • Every dime collected will stay right here in Genesee County to help change diapers and lives
  • The diaper bank has been providing free water with every pack of diapers throughout the water emergency

I ask all teachers to come up with a classroom container to collect the dimes in (these containers will need to be locked up each night). This can be a used juice bottle, an old vase, or any other container that you believe would motivate students to contribute to this cause. Dimes for Diapers will run through March 30th. Information on this is also being included in the Thomson Tidbits going home today.

Volunteer Dinner

Please remember that you will need to get the names and addresses for parent and community volunteers to Anna tomorrow, Tuesday, March 15th. If there are volunteers that you need to get addresses from, please at least get the names to Anna so we know how many invites to prepare.

Cardinal Code Focus for the Week: Bus!

Teachers please be sure that you are intentionally teaching the Bus Cardinal Code lesson. Please be sure to include the lesson in your teacher lesson plans and intentional teach the lessons as they are written. Remember, role playing is one of the best ways for students to demonstrate their understanding...consider arranging your room like a bus to practice!

School Improvement & Mini QAR

The Thomson Mini QAR is Thursday, March 24th, we will begin to focus on our presentation and school improvement planning for next year all while continuing to implement our plan. While attendance is not required on March 24th. I am willing to cancel our Staff Meeting on March 23rd to ensure that all are in attendance. In addition, PD hours will be granted for those in attendance. Please know how important it is to those presenting that we show are support of them and our support for all the hard work that each and every one of you is doing!

Important Upcoming Dates

March 14-18th-Kindergarten Round-up

Monday, March 14th-'Read a Shirt' Day; DRA Testing Window Opens

Tuesday, March 15th-Social Studies Committee Meeting, 4:14-6:15 p.m.

Wednesday, March 16th-All Day ACC

Friday, March 18th- Fire Drill; Superintendent Lieske visits to read to classrooms

Monday, March 21st-'Black Out Day'; PTO meeting 6:30-8:00 p.m., Lori and Melissa B are the representatives for March

Tuesday, March 22nd-Lock Down

Wednesday, March 23rd- Child Study Day (please send any new names to myself and Maida)

Thursday, March 24th-DRA Testing Window Closes; End of 3rd Marking Period; Thomson Mini QAR 4:15-5:15 p.m.

Friday, March 25th-Good Friday-No School for Staff or Students!

Quotes Worth Reading...

"I'm thankful for my struggle because without it I wouldn't have stumbled across my strength."

-Alex Elle, Author

Birthdays and Celebrations

Here are our upcoming birthday: Jen Baliko, March 14th...Happy Birthday!