BME Update

October 8th-12th, 2018

Team Meadow -


As I reflect over these past several weeks, I am in awe of you! We round out our first quarter of the school year with so many growth opportunities and challenges that would stump many, but not our Boone Meadow Team! You are powerhouses in this field, and I thank you for your commitment to be life-long learners that embrace a growth mindset.


Across the building, student-led conferences were a tremendous success. Repeatedly, parents provided positive feedback and students were beaming with pride as they shared their successes and goals. Over the past couple of years, I've loved the opportunity to witness and engage in these experiences as my own children articulated their learning and areas of growth. As we continue to expand our understandings through these interchanges, we will refine our work as we continue to align with our district priorities of student agency and empowerment.


We are almost there, and it's okay to admit that we are counting the days to our much needed and well-deserved fall break. These past couple of months you have poured your heart, soul, and energy into these little people and your school family. Thank you for taking risks and giving your best.


We know that each and every day that children are in our presence is to be cherished and provides unique opportunities. Every moment you are with your students, you are influencing them. Thank you for keeping your eye on rich learning experiences for our students as we near our vacation. Continue to model your best, and speak encouragement and kindness into their souls - You do this so very well.



With respect,

Tom

Important Info:

Jog-A-Thon


  • Friday was the due date for JAT monies to be turned in for students to be considered for the prizes. 64% of students turned in money or made online donations by Friday evening.
  • As of Friday, we had a total of $19,700 in donations. As you continue to receive money, please be sure to send down to the office so we can get it to PTO.
  • PTO is considering doing the prize drawing at the PTO meeting on Wednesday evening.


Shade Structure & Playground


  • PreK-2 teachers - please have a conversation with your students about the mulch and how it needs to remain on the playground to help keep students safe. Repeatedly, I have been cleaning up the equivalent of buckets of rubber mulch that are piling up outside door 10.
  • Our landscaping donor backed out at the end of last week, so on Saturday, Deb and Anthony Roach came to BME to sow grass seed and place straw on the muddy spaces around the new shade structure. They also placed some pumpkins and mums on the corners of the structure to help beautify the space a little prior to the dedication on Wednesday evening. Please help keep students from disturbing these items as we prepare for Wednesday evening.


Fall Parties

(My comments below reflect concerns that teachers have raised over the years and a need to find a balance with classroom events. My goal isn't to "control" these events. They are simply to assist in support for events to go smoothly and successfully. In addition, some items reflect our need to adhere to Board policy. Feel free to copy and paste in messaging you may send to families prior to parties.)

Regarding Volunteers:

  • Family members attending parties are considered volunteers.
  • All volunteers must have a full background check, and pre-registering for the event is extremely helpful. See the link that Beth sent in a previous email. If you need that link again, please ask her to resend it to you.
  • As always, we are incredibly grateful for the volume of support we receive from families at BME. Although thankful, some classrooms do become too crowded for events to go smoothly. Please consider a limit to the number of volunteers. (on average, 3-5 should be sufficient)
  • In addition, volunteering requires undivided attention in order to assist in creating a smooth, well-run event. Please remember that siblings of students should not attend classroom parties with volunteers.


Family Gathering

We gathered for our first Boone Meadow Family Gathering (Second Step assembly). Several of you commented on how you appreciated the opportunity for our entire school body to gather and focus on common language and experiences with our SEL programming. In future gatherings, we would like to diversify involvement with more student and staff leadership. Thank you for your consistency with the Second Step curriculum, as it strengthens the skillsets of the students in our community.

Staff Meeting Agenda

We will begin in the Family Room at approximately 2:40 or shortly after dismissal.
  • Share Joys and Sorrows
  • Brief Updates
  • Conferences (reflections)
  • PLC updates
  • Second Step updates
  • Purpose of various assessments

Important Dates & Information

October

8th - Staff Meeting

9th - End of Quarter 1; Picture retakes and make-up day (T& L out in AM for Elementary Admin mtg); 1st grade PLC

10th - Kindy PLC in AM; 2nd grade PLC in PM; PTO meeting & Dedication of Shade Structure with AAD (6:00PM)

11th - SpEd PLC

15th-19th - Fall Break

22nd - Staff Meeting


November

12th - Veterans Day Program @ 9:30.

14th - ZEF Family Book Night @ BME & SGE

17th - 3rd Annual BME Talent Show

Standards Based Report Cards and End of Q1

Please read the important dates and reminders below:
  • First Quarter ends October 9th
  • Teacher deadline to update all grades October 23rd by 8:00 a.m.
  • Elementary report cards will be posted to PowerSchool on October 24th


While it is true that our SBRC gives parents much more information than the traditional A, B, C, etc., it is very important to also add a personal touch. Student-specific comments can help clarify questions, reiterate important points, and expand understanding for students, parents, and possible future schools. Some instances where comments are most crucial:


The student has regressed in a standard (mastery to progressing; progressing to beginning).

  • Why did they go down? Did the expectation increase? Did student progress stagnate so that they are no longer on track to meet the expectation for end of year?


The student is working on skills above or below the grade level standards.
  • What skills is the student working on? How is the student progressing in terms of these skills? If the student has an IEP, this would be a place to reference the progress note for an explanation of how student is developing in terms of his/her specific goals.


There is a concern you want to ensure is documented/communicated for the future.
  • We know that this is not going to be the first time that you have mentioned that (fill in the blank- attention, work completion,etc.) is a concern. This has likely happened in various emails, phone conversations, and meetings during the course of time. However, a brief explanation of the concern and the students' progress/lack thereof regarding it ensures that those who work with the student in the future know that these conversations have taken place. This information has come in handy particularly when we are looking at patterns over time for a student in order to determine supports or interventions needed.


There are strengths of the student that are not reflected by the standards.
  • Everyone likes to hear something positive about their child. As we continue to focus on the student as a whole person, what is something you have noticed that makes them unique?


A narrative of dissertation proportions for each student is unnecessary and unrealistic. The box for comments is small and we know that you don't have time for long comments.


However, a few brief sentences that are specific to the student CAN SAVE TIME later in responding to emails asking for clarification, further develop your relationship with the parent, and provide colleagues/future schools with pertinent information regarding the student's time with you.


If you need any assistance with comments, please reach out to Lauren or me. We are happy to help! A good rule of them is to always sandwich an area to improve with positives!

*NEW* Report Card Format - Important SBRC Reminders From Rhonda Fox

Please be sure to read the entire email sent from Rhonda on Monday Oct. 1st.

However, below are the important notes she listed at the end of her email:


A few notes regarding the new report card format (not the current KG one):


  • Standards will only show on this report if there is a grade or it is a rollup for a standard with a grade. Because of this, it is extremely important that you mark EACH standard. Those not assessed should be marked NA.

  • There is no longer a need for a separate report card for HA Math students or an addendum for HA Lang Arts. The report card will pick up any standards that apply to a particular student if there is a grade for it.

  • Some of the special sections or notes of the 1st and 2nd-grade report cards (e.g., Writing Stages. Legend for Work Habits grades and Reading Grade Levels) are not complete yet either. We will continue to work on these to make sure they are ready for 10/24.

  • On Oct. 24th, we will generate the report cards and then archive them. This will cause the report cards to appear in the PowerSchool Parent Portal. We will not be emailing report cards to parents this year, but instead will be providing parents directions on how they can access report cards themselves.

Shade Structure Dedication on October 10th

A couple years ago, Boone Meadow was the recipient of an Adopt-a-Shade Program Grant by the American Academy of Dermatology. Through the combination of the $8,000 grant by AAD and the generosity of our PTO, we were able to install the shade structure this past summer.


On October 10th, we will celebrate this partnership with a dedication of the structure during our monthly PTO meeting at 6:00 PM. More info to come regarding the dedication.


In the meantime, we are working on getting a few picnic tables for the area, as well as, some landscaping to help spruce up the area.

Personal Business Leave Requests

For Certified Team Members:

To requests "personal business days," please complete the following process.


  1. Go to the following link, and complete the "personal business request" form. https://goo.gl/forms/CycfilABEUyILbh83
  2. Once the form is completed, please send a brief email to me (Tom) that includes the date(s) of your request(s).
  3. Enter your upcoming absence in AESOP as soon as possible. (It can always be deleted later should plans change.)


Thanks -

Big picture