Ram Nation News

Week of October 28, 2019

Vision

A middle school that cultivates scholars to be catalysts of change, life-long learners, innovators, and competitors in a global society
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#EXCELLENCE, Back At It Again

This week, our students will be taking their common assessments.


  • Let's be very intentional to provide a great learning environment for our kids.
  • Let's be very purposeful and have a laser focus as we work on having double digit gains across all subjects in all buckets and ensure our students are meeting their goals!!!



Since the beginning of the school year, we have been working diligently to ensure our students are receiving good first instruction by analyzing the TEKS, creating exemplars, scripting the "I Do", and teaching at the level of rigor the state expects our students to perform. Our students need to know up front what good work looks like, along with the expectation that they can achieve it. We know that each one of our students are capable of learning; however, they all learn at different pace and in different ways. As I shared before based on an article read, a great deal of student achievement lays on the level of motivation students have and teachers play a very important role in encouraging and motivating students. MOTIVATE our students to do their very best so that they would not miss the opportunity to be and feel successful.


I am so proud to be a part of Rusk Middle School. We are making tremendous progress and I believe, without a doubt, that it is because of our people. We are almost out of the “Roctober” month, keep your head up, stay focused on providing the best for our students and support each other; you are a change agent that makes the difference in the lives of our kids!!

Attendance

Regular attendance is essential to providing students with opportunities to learn. It is awesome to see all of our students being on time to school and transitioning in an expedited manner from class to class. The following is the percent for attendance for the week of 10/21 - 10/25:


  • 6th Grade - 95.66% -
  • 7th Grade - 96.03% - an improvement of 0.61%
  • 8th Grade - 94.85% -


Way to go 7th grade team taking the lead!!

Let's continue to encourage our students to be present and on time on a daily basis. It really makes a huge difference when our students are present learning

Thank You

  • Coach Bey for her leadership as the Athletic Coordinator and basketball girls's coach. Last week, she led the basketball tryouts to provide our girls the opportunity to be a part of our teams. We look forward to see and hear about a great season!
  • Mr. Salazar, Ms. Winton, and Mr. Alarcon for their commitment to teaching the whole child as they held soccer tryouts last week. They started practices strong and look forward to an awesome season!!!
  • Coach Clark and Mr. Thornton as they are transitioning from football to basketball providing great support to our students. They held tryout last week and will announce students who made the team this upcoming week!
  • Ms. Maloy, Mr. Brown, Mr. Morshed, Ms. Adams, and Ms. Gray for their hard work and determination to meet our PEIMS compliance expectation of 100%. They had two long weeks of troubleshooting, collaboration, and lots of paperwork to reach this goal. Way to go!!!

PLC and Collaboration

It is great to see our staff members collaborating and learning in PLCs as we grow as a high effective team. Once again, our teachers had the opportunity to participate in the SWAG sessions in a cross network collaboration. Our teachers participated in a looking forward planning PLC where they were able to unpack standards and complete a know and show chart that our students must master during the third six weeks. Also, we had several of our teacher leaders and administrative team to present; shout out to our presenters Ms. Guerra, Ms. Minter, Mr. Halsell, Ms. Vasquez, Ms. Perez, Ms. Wells, Ms. Rocha, and Ms. Molla.

Climate and Culture

As I shared with you at the beginning of the school year, our goal for our climate survey is to rank in the 4th and 5th quintile in all areas! This means that all of our areas of our climate survey will be green. Also, we want to provide our students with the opportunities to participate in after school or co-curricular activities as we support our district's goal #4.

I appreciate the hard work, dedication, and commitment as we continue to engage in various activities that supports building climate and culture. We celebrated Homecoming with fun events for our students; it was great to see how staff and students participated in the homecoming pep rally, tailgate, game, and the activities for Red Ribbon Week. Shout out to Ms. Guerra for leading the homecoming activities; our students had a great time!!! Shout out to Ms. Calderon, Mrs. Mooty, and Ms. Woods for their leadership and support as we celebrated the Red Ribbon week. The various events supported our students in knowing what it means to be drug free and what to do to be a person of character. Our students and staff had a great time!!!

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Rusk Middle School HOCO pep rally

REMINDERS FOR THE UPCOMING WEEK

  • Our Remarkable Rams will be testing this week. Remember to incorporate the testing message/script in which you worked/edited. During testing, we should be intentional as we aggressively monitor and provide accommodations to identified students. Please refer to the handout provided during PLC - Testing Expectations.
  • As common assessment scores are available, have students profile (use link to access two samples of profile sheets to use) their assessment and conduct conferences with students so that they know what mistakes they made as they took the common assessment. Also, set goals so they know what they need to do to achieve and make significant progress. (TEI 1.2 and 1.5)
  • As we work on documenting the progress our students are making, remember our policy regarding failure rates and the various opportunities needed to ensure our students are successful. EIA (Regulation) (TEI 2.2, 4.2, 4.5)
  • During transitions, let's make sure to have 100% participation and hold each other accountable to be present in the hallway supporting students. Our goal is to narrate the positive and have at least 10 positive interactions each transition. APs, CICs, and counselors will be working with each one of you to provide individual support. (TEI 3.3 and 3R Positive Attitude/Enthusiasm).
  • Be very consistent in the effective implementation of various practices discussed during our TEI orientation and lesson alignment conversations. With regards to Alignment (learning objective), the proficient rating states: Focuses students at the beginning and throughout the lesson, by clearly stating (TEI 2.1)
    • What they are learning
    • Why it is important
    • What mastery looks like
    • How to connect it to prior knowledge and their own lives and explaining to students
  • Submit lesson plans by Thursday at 8:00 a.m. (TEI 4.2)

DAILY EVENTS

Monday, October 28-

  • B Day
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • 4:45 - 6:00 p.m. - Department PD - Rooms shared by Appraisers.


Tuesday
, October 29-
  • A Day.
  • Math Common Assessment
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring. In the testing classrooms, we will be looking for teachers actively monitoring with the tracker. Also, teachers will be using the exemplar generated at the beginning of the six weeks to compare with the work produced by the students.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • 4:30 - 5:30 p.m. - Dallas ISD Flu Clinic available. See Passport website for dates, locations and more https://www.passageware.com/ClinicSignUp/DISD/
  • 4:30 p.m. After School Program Continues. Let's make the best out of this time being very purposeful in the material covered with students and the students who must attend your sessions. We need to work on the recruitment of students for our after school program since it impacts student growth, our school performance, progress, and, ultimately, part of our stipends are tied to the attendance of our students to our tutoring/enrichment sessions. As a reminder, students do not have the option to opt out; if you need assistance with parents, please let anyone from the leadership team know.
  • Remember to clock out at or after 6:00 p.m. during the 2 days that you will stay after school.
  • Football Game Vs. Medrano @ Franklin - Time TBA


Wednesday, October 30-
  • B Day
  • Reading Common Assessment
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring. In the testing classrooms, we will be looking for teachers actively monitoring with the tracker. Also, teachers will be using the exemplar generated at the beginning of the six weeks to compare with the work produced by the students.
  • Meet with your grade level teams to align your Lesson Plans, continue the analysis of the common assessment, and analyze data profiles for your students.
  • 4:30 p.m. After School Program Continues. As a reminder, students do not have the option to opt out; if you need assistance with parents, please let anyone from the leadership team know.
  • Remember to clock out at or after 6:00 p.m. during the 2 days that you will stay after school.
  • 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. Teacher of the Year Reception - Frontiers of Flight Museum


Thursday, October 31-

  • A Day
  • Literary Character Day - Students may wear appropriate customes that represent a literary character; students must have the book that goes along with their character.
  • 8:00 a.m. - Lesson Plans Due
  • Science and 7th Grade Writing Common Assessment
  • We will be walking classrooms checking for alignment, exemplars, and aggressively monitoring. In the testing classrooms, we will be looking for teachers actively monitoring with the tracker. Also, teachers will be using the exemplar generated at the beginning of the six weeks to compare with the work produced by the students.
  • Department Collaboration PLC - Data Meetings for CAs completed. Bring copies of your students' work.
  • 4:30 p.m. After School Program Continues. Remember to clock out at or after 6:00 p.m. during the 2 days that you will stay after school.
  • 4:50 p.m. - 5:50 p.m. - Rusk Leadership Academy - Anyone interested in pursuing a leadership role with 5 or more years of teaching experience is welcome to attend. Please, fill out this link to RSVP. We will have a series of sessions and your commitment is required if you choose to be a part of this opportunity.


Friday, November 1-

  • B Day
  • Students may be able to wear jeans for $1 to support AVID.
  • Social Studies Common Assessment and make up testing. All District CA must be entered in the computer by 5:00 p.m.
  • AVID Art Institute Field Trip - Ms. Reeves. She will send the list of students who will be attending by Tuesday, October 29 EOD.
  • 5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. - Fall Festival - Games, music playing, photo booth and outside playing - Ms. Eddy and Student Council.


Saturday, November 2 -

  • Soccer Game at Franklin Field Vs. Franklin - 10:00 a.m. Girls. 11:00 a.m. Boys.


Sunday, November 3 -

  • Daylight Saving Time Ends - we'll “fall back” and return to Standard time. We'll set our clocks back one hour before bed on Saturday night.

Upcoming Events

November 6-

  • 9:00 a.m. - 10: 30 a.m. - Leadership ISD Visit.
  • 8th grade field trip to Townview


November 7-

  • 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. Fall Preview Night - Hispanic Heritage celebration. Club, After School Programs, and Sports highlights


November 13 -

  • 8th Grade Field Trip to North Dallas HS


November 22 -

  • High School Fair - 8th Grade

Happy Birthday -

We want to wish you the best and many blessings for the years to come.


  • Ms. Herrera - 10/1
  • Ms. Alanis - 10/2
  • Ms. Vasquez - 10/8