From The Desk of...
Julio César Contreras, Instructional Leadership Director
Welcome to the first Community Newsletter from your ILD. It is my hope that this monthly communication will provide you with helpful information about the work our dedicated teachers and relentless school leaders do on a daily basis. As you know, I strongly believe 3 things help make students successful in life. I call it my Secret Formula for a better future. Read more about it below.
As you may recall, I first arrived to Tulsa Public Schools in August of 2014. For the last 12 years I worked in Chicago Public Schools. I have served as a teacher, Assistant Principal, Principal, Director as well as a Deputy Chief of Schools (Assistant Superintendent equivalent).
Today, I have the honor of serving in Tulsa as a Teacher-on-Special Assignment (once a teacher, always a teacher). The schools I support are: East Central Jr & HS, Nathan Hale Jr & HS, McLain 7, Jr, & Hs, and Memorial Jr & HS.
In my opinion there are 4 key practices that positively impact student learning:
1- Planning and Preparation: We must plan for success
2- Observation & Feedback: Spend time observering and coaching others
3- Progress Monitoring: Strategic check points to ensure instruction = learning
4- Learning Tasks: Support teachers in order to provide high quality instruction for students
As you read through this newsletter feel free to forward it to others as well as send me feedback on how to improve it. In short, this is your monthly newsletter from me and I want to make sure you are kept informed.
An Effective Leader in Every School...
In order to achieve the Tulsa Public School goal: An Effective Teacher in Every Classroom and An Effective Leader in Every School it is critical for me, as an ILD, to:
a) Visit schools, Principals, and classrooms weekly
b) Regularly engage teachers and students with a focus to identify what's working and areas of growth
c) Serve as an advocate with TPS, homes and the community for our students, teachers and school leadership
Four Priority areas of focus for my Portfolio of Schools:
- 4 Year Graduation Rate
- High quality instruction
- Student engaged in challenging and meaningful learning tasks
Reading Partners and Tulsa Public Schools
Reading Partners provides one-on-one reading instruction to elementary school students reading below grade level to help them succeed in school and in life. This is Reading Partners second year serving Tulsa students, in 15 TPS Elementary Schools. Reading Partners currently serves more than 650 students with 950 volunteers, but the fact is there are hundreds more students who need Reading Partners in TPS schools. Want to help prepare stronger readers?
- By becoming a Reading Partner and volunteering as little as one hour a week, you can help mentor and teach a child to learn to read - unlocking a meaningful skill that is the foundation for future learning.
- You don’t have to be a teacher to teach a child to read. Volunteers are trained to work with students on developing their reading skills every week. Reading Partners offers an easy-to-follow, proven curriculum and on-site support that allows you to help your student to learn to read.
- More Reading Partner volunteers are needed specifically at Cooper, Kerr, Mitchell, Jackson and Hawthorne Elementary.
- No experience is required, and Reading Partners provides all the training and materials you'll need. All volunteers must pass a standard TPS background check and be at least 14 years old.
- To sign up, go to www.readingpartners.org. For questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 918-671-9689.
Honestly, volunteering once a week to help a child fall in love with reading...is Priceless!
One hour of mentoring helps the future!
What if just one hour of company time supplied your workforce for life?
How would it impact recruiting efforts if Tulsa grew its own STEM workers? And what if engineers were as easy to find as old pennies?
Just an hour of your employees' time each month can set a child up for a lifetime of success in a STEM career, ensuring that the future workforce needs of companies like yours are always met.
Join Tulsa Mayor Dewey Bartlett, Tulsa's first lady Victoria Bartlett and Partners In Education as we showcase the incredible STEM mentoring happening in our city today — and how easily your company can be involved. Featured speakers include Beverly Woodrome with the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence and Xan Black with the Tulsa Regional STEM Alliance. We'll also have a surprise announcement.
Tuesday, Jan. 27 | Free buffet begins 8 a.m. | Program 8:30 - 10 a.m.
TCC Center for Creativity | 910 S. Boston Ave.
Important Dates and Upcoming Events
- 1/15 The 3rd Annual TPS Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Banquet. The inductees this year include:
- Those who use to play: Gene Shell (Webster/Edison), Art Williams, Sr. (Washington), Doug Dugger (McLain/Memorial),
- Those who play today: Jill Most-Barth(Softball-East Central), JV Haney (Edison/Webster), Dr. Neal Mask (Hale), Lee Mayberry (Rogers), Robert Sprague (Webster/Hale/Memorial), Mike Mims (Washington), Eddie Sutton (Central), Gene Hart (Webster), Melvin Driver (McLain).
- 1/27 Mentoring To The Max: TCC Center for Creativity, 910 S. Boston Avenue
- 2/6 Early Release Day for students
- 2/16 No School: Presidents Day
- 2/20 Board Meeting @ TPS Education Service Center, 3027 S. New Haven Avenue
The Secret Formula: Strong Schools+Strong Homes+Strong Communities = Our Future Leaders
Similar to a triangle, there are three points that ensure the success of every child to achieve success.
- Strong Schools
- Strong Homes
- Strong Communities
Watch the interview above...
A Star Student...
Q. What do you like most about school?
A. They give me a head start on college. Teachers help me academically. Especially my math teacher.
Q. If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
A. The cost of college. It think education should be free and that's why some don't go to college
Q. What do you want to be? Where would you like to attend college?
A. I want to be a Welder or a Petroleum Engineer. I would like to attend OU, OSU or even out of state. That way I will be able to travel.