January 14, 2015
The second semester is off and rolling...sort of. Thanks to all of you for being flexible and eager to rework your planning to ensure that all of our required content is delivered in a timely and effective manner. It is always nice to run into teachers who are anxious about catching up. The sense of anxiety and nervousness we feel means that we truly care about our work and the important tasks at hand. Thank you to all of you who are not perfectly at ease just yet, as we have much recalibrating in planning and instruction to complete to ensure our students have the most intensive instructional offerings in the 2nd semester.
This week we did get to begin our mid-year data reviews and we must send a special thank you to the RTI team leaders Murch and Porzuczek for being prepared and present every morning and afternoon this week leading our academic discussions. I also appreciate the extra time and energy given by Mrs. Ryan, Mrs. Hasten, Mrs. Rich, Mrs. Reiter, and Mrs. Carey as core team participants. I am proud of the discussions we are having around student achievement and the fact that we are adjusting our services now will have a tremendous impact on further achievement gains in the future.
The mid-year also brings us a few months from the delivery of IREAD and CCRA (previously ISTEP). The new assessments are VERY different than the previous as our students must now be able to actually think, apply, and defend their thinking. Although the new challenge of these assessments will or has caused increased anxiety, we must focus on the changes in our instruction that took place 2.5 years ago. Everything we have worked to change revolves around our students' ability to apply their thinking in multiple contexts while providing reasoning of their thinking. We are far from mastering these concepts school wide, however our changes are recognizable and documented. These changes over the past years will have a positive impact on our students' ability to succeed on the new assessments. We must take great care in learning the process of the new assessments in all grade levels and pay close attention to our own personal professional actions. The days of NCLB have finally past (although the name remains) and the future, although challenging, is one that we must cherish as our children can finally prove their academic talents beyond the minimal competency requirements of the past.
The challenges, frustrations, and questions that come to me from staff and teams hold great truth in the fact that we are actually working on and making great gains in our school improvement process. With growth and change challenge and frustration are expected. I celebrate all of you and where our BSE organization stands in current time. I am confident in the team, appreciate the questions, and look forward to the second semester. Thank you for committing 100% of your time to the academic well being of your students and for coming to work at BSE to serve the community. Remember we work for HSE schools and while we do so we may as well be the most positive and professional force within the greater organization!
Professional Development Agenda - Friday, January 16th, 2015 - HSE21
Dress Code: COLTS BLUE AND JEANS!
12-1PM - Lunch Provided by Dr. Harkin (pizza and drinks) LGI
1-2PM - Dr. Kingsly - Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) iPad Integration
Dr. Kingsley will the Backchannel app.
Please also download Educreations app
2- 2:15 - Restroom Break
2:15- 3:45 - Break Out Groups
Group 1: Kaminski - Current iPad Challenges - Remedial vs. Creative/Innovative - Conf Room
Group 2: Patrick - PBL - Where and how to grow from today - Library
Group 3: Murch - Core learning block rotations and tech integration - LGI
Group 4: Young - Today leading to HSE21 Elem. Implementation 2016, a timeline of needs - Computer Lab.
Rotations will occur via intercom system...please rotate quickly.
Next Staff PD - February 6th, 2015 - Half Day - Math and Dr. Flessner Focus
Welcome Jacqueline Boggs - Perm Floating Sub
Purdue University - Dec. 2014
B.A. Elem. Ed.
Veronica Lacy - Special Education
Veronica's last day is this Friday, Jan. 16th, 2015. Please wish her well as she heads out to complete her educational licensure. BSE appreciates you!!!!
Science Lab - It is FULL of materials for you to use! Let's get our kids hands dirty this semester!
It is very exciting to see and hear the action taking place with our LLI assessment and kit materials. Please remember the following are very important:
1. It is mid-year so a new LLI benchmark is in order for new students who may need this intervention.
2. A 2nd green kit is on the way for our primary team as to have a higher # of students involved.
3. I can order many more teacher manuals to ensure that all teams have LLI kit as an option each and every day.
4. Using the kit as designed is proven to be effective. Using the kit in parts or chunks will prove to be ineffective.
5. PLEASE plan with Mrs. Rich around your LLI desires to ensure a more effective start!