Principal's Newsletter

April 8th, 2016


A WOW goes to Mr. Howell every day and an extra one goes to him for the day that I was physically helping one of my students down the hall and into art. On that day when he saw the situation Mr. Howell jumped up from his desk, met us at the door and asked the student about the weather the next day and what he should wear to work. The student stood straight up, reported that Mr. Howell needed a jacket the next day, put on his smock and sat at his table! WOW & WOW & THANK YOU! --Lisa Chamberlain

WOW to Kristy Giacomarra and Jodi Fitzgerald for helping me plan an amazing Tech Fest.--Susan Adams

WOW! To 2nd grade who always puts kids first in their data discussions!!--Susan Adams

WOW to the principals for making para appreciation day so special. Thank you for acknowledging the paras and how much we do everyday. The lunch was wonderful.--Linda Carr

WOW to our paras for attending our faculty meeting about behavior. Your ideas and thoughts are going to be so helpful!--Dr. DeWeese

WOW to Janice Beerman, Kody Stricklin, Donna Baeten, Michelly Kelly, Mary Scheffer, and Betsy Arnold for taking two days away from their kids and their classrooms to conduct interviews.

---Dr. DeWeese

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Staffing Update

Please help me welcome Dione Anderson and Makenzie Oldham to Harvest Ridge. Both of them will be serving as Reading Specialist starting next year.

Dione has been a Reading Specialist for the past ten years at Daniel Boone Elementary. Prior to that she was a kindergarten teacher at Independence and a teacher here. She is excited to come back to where she started her career.

Makenzie has spent the last three years teaching third grade at Daniel Boone Elementary. She has spent the last three year immersed in learning about teaching literacy and providing interventions to struggling readers. Her career goal is to become a reading teacher just like her mom.

We are still working on filling our five classroom positions. I will send out an announcement as soon as those offers have been made and accepted. PE interviews will be conducted on April 15th and I will update you once that position is filled as well.

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Faculty Meeting Follow Up

There were great discussions taking place at our faculty meeting. I know we were short on time, but if you get time in any of your PLC meetings you can continue your discussions with your behavior committee representative.

The purpose of strengthen our Tier 1 system and providing positive feedback and recognition to students isn't because we are doing something wrong rather it is to help us get better at building a positive climate for students, be more intentional about recognizing students, preventing behavior problems, and most importantly protecting instructional time. When there are strong universal supports in place for all students we can prevent students from needing behavior interventions just like in academics. Tier 1 supports are not just about the classroom. It is about every area of the building and it takes every person in the building to implement the system.

Our Tier 2 and Tier 3 interventions are taking place for students who have met behavior triggers. Those interventions are research based from PBIS and have been taking place and set up through the Behavior Steering Team. Some tweaks will most likely be made to those systems as we will have a better data tool next year to provide more specific behavior data on students.

We have amazing students who work hard every day, even our most challenging students. They deserve to be recognized for it in order to reinforce it. I am looking forward to creating this environment for our students and to watch us learn and grow together over the next year. Keep your ideas and questions coming. We need input from all areas to help the committee make the best decisions for our building.

We all have the ability to set up our classrooms for academic success. Effective classroom management is not about what we do when misbehavior occurs, but by what we do to set up our classrooms for academic success and to prevent problem behaviors from occurring.

Putting systems in place requires change, reflection, and learning. One of the best things we can do moving forward is to maintain a positive attitude, keep the lines of communication open with administration and the behavior team, and remember that we are all in this together to learn more and do more to help our students succeed.

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CITW Walks

On April 29th in the morning Dr. Buckman will be visiting to conduct walkthroughs. She has recommended that our building CITW trainers participate in those classroom visits to get a better understanding of how to lead our building professional development next year.

While this has not been a typical practice at Harvest Ridge, it has been a practice in all the other buildings for two years. As we move forward next year our CITW trainers will visit classroom to help support teachers in their learning.

Since this has not been a practice for us this year I am giving you the option to not have the trainers visit your room that day. This is a choice for this year only. Please let me know before April 29th if you would prefer for Dr. Buckman, myself, and our trainers to not visit your classroom during her visit.

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Math Observations

On May 11th a team of teachers from McKelvey Elementary, from the Parkway School District would like to come over and observe one teacher per grade level in Math. They have purchased Envisions and are beginning to implement the program next school year. I will be looking for people who are wiling to host a teacher to observe. Their math coach will be joining them.
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Beautification Committee

It was mentioned at the EDC committee to have a beautification committee to look at ways to update the building and make it more inviting. We talked about paint, the bulletins boards, and possibly updating the artwork. At some point I think the landscaping could use some clean up as well. If you are interested in helping please let me know.
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Nee Data Forms

Please have your NEE Data Form updated and complete by April 15th. it needs to be signed by you and your evaluating administrator.
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All certified staff evaluations are due on April 30th. I know I have observed some of you recently. I will be having follow up conversations as soon as I finish all of my evaluations. I have about 10 more to go! Thanks for your patience. I am trying to work around MAP testing so I want to make sure I get the observations done on time. Keep up all the great work you are doing. Interviewing has been fun, but I miss seeing your kiddos learning.
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Where is Your Principal?

Monday, April 11th- Classroom Observations, Weekly Administration Meeting

Tuesday, April 12th- PLC Meetings , PTO Meetings

Wednesday, April 13th- Writing Revising Meeting, Site Visit

Thursday, April 14th- Kindergarten Transition Meeting, IEP

Friday, April 15th- PE Interviews

Monday, April 18th- Weekly Administration Meeting

Tuesday, April 19th- Facilities Meeting, PLC Meetings, Observe Reader's Workshop at McKelvey

Wednesday, April 20th- IEP Meetings, SPED PLC

Thursday, April 21st- BST Meeting, CIA Meeting

Friday, April 22nd-- Principal's Meeting

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Site Visit

On Wednesday we have a site visit taking place. I know Dr. Hendricks- Harris and Dr. Garland will be attending. Dr. Sloan might be attending as well. I have received an agenda and it does consists of classroom visits. The site visit begins at 2:00.