Leaders Leading Learners

Curriculum & Instruction Newsletter January 16, 2015


With the beginning of a new year, comes the start of new beginnings. There may be teachers or students who need a fresh start, therefore, let's believe in fresh starts and new beginnings.

"The capacity for hope is the most significant fact of life. It provides human beings with a sense of destination and the energy to get started." - Norman Cousins.

Action Items

Please click here to view Action Items.

Core Content Area News



Administrator Walkthroughs: As a reminder, administrators should continue to conduct walkthroughs on teachers as well as Instructional Coaches when they are presenting model lessons.

Instructional Coach Responsibilities - As a reminder ICs should continue to focus on coaching teachers, not tutoring students.

RtI Universal Screeners: As a reminder, all universal screeners should be administered during the January MOY testing window. Once the screeners are administered, teachers should enter their students' data into AWARE. The latest date for entering data into AWARE is Monday, February 2. Based on MOY qualification criteria data, campuses should identify students that qualify for Tier II or III interventions based on qualification criteria. Please see the Elementary and Middle School RtI timelines.

ABYDOS Expository Writing Training: This training will be held January 24. All K-12 teachers are invited. There are seven seats left. Click here to register.

Math & SS Textbook Adoption: FINAL REMINDER

  • Who is invited: all k-12 Social Studies Teachers, and High School Math Teachers
  • What: Social Studies and High School Math Textbook Adoption Vendor Showcase
  • Where: Bryan High School Blue Campus
  • When: Tuesday, January 20th 4:30-6:30 PM
  • Why: Your textbook vote counts and we will feed you!!!

New Information:

Mid-Year Coaching Reviews: All principals are invited to attend a mid-year coaching review between the content coordinators and instructional coaches. These review conferences will be held on Friday, January 23, 2015 in room 1200 at Bryan High School. Click here to see the schedule of those conferences and the time set aside for your school. These 15 minute conversations will address these three questions:

  • After reviewing your first semester data, what were your coaching successes and challenges? (ex. most impactful PD, teacher growth)
  • What are your coaching objectives for the spring semester? Have these been shared and collaboratively developed with your principal?
  • What additional personal professional development or support do you need?

For those who plan to attend, please arrive a few minutes early to allow time to find parking and to be at room 1200 on time, given that the schedule is precisely set.

Dyslexia Specialist Evaluations: Dyslexia Specialists are evaluated with an alternative instrument, principals are still encouraged to perform frequent walkthroughs during this Tier 3 intervention. Principal input will be sought during the evaluation process for specialists, which will be completed and finalized by their coordinator.

Benchmarks: As benchmarks are quickly approaching, please make plans for benchmark days to mimic STAAR. Please work with your leadership team to create a testing schedule that allows for 4 hours of testing (5 hours for English I, II, & III) and then a revised instructional schedule once testing is complete. It is important to remember that the time after testing should be used for instruction.


Hard Hats for Little Heads Reminder: Principals just a reminder to reserve buses as soon as possible for the February 19th 2nd grade Hard Hats for Little Heads 8-11 am. If you have any questions, please contact Janyce Kinley.

Texas A&M Women's Basketball "Bookmark Game": Grades Pre-K - 6th Students are Invited This Sunday, January 18th is the annual Texas A&M Women’s Basketball “Bookmark Game” at Reed Arena when the Aggies take on Ole Miss at 4:00 pm. Bookmarks passed out in classrooms can be redeemed for one free ticket to the game this Sunday, either in advance online by visitingwww.12thmanfoundation.com/ticket-center.aspx (click “Special Promotions” & enter promo codebookmark) or on the day of the game by presenting the bookmark at any of the box office windows at Reed Arena (while supplies last). When claiming your bookmark ticket you can also purchase additional tickets for only $3! Keep up the great work in the classroom & join us this Sunday for the Texas A&M Women’s Basketball “Bookmark Game”.

Big Buzz Theory: The Big Buzz Theory presentation is coming to your campus. Your math/science instructional coach has reserved a date for your campus. This presentation will be for your 5th grade students. The presenter provides an engaging, hands-on session on the value and life cycle of the honey bee. Click here to see the date this presentation will be on your campus.

Writing Training: All 4th grade writing teachers are asked to attend the Writing Training to receive support for the upcoming STAAR Writing Test.

  • When: January 26, 4-6pm
  • Where: Crockett Elementary

Destination Imagination: Destination Imagination (DI) is a volunteer led organization designed to inspire and equip students to become the next generation of innovators and leaders. Team activities focus on developing critical and creative thinking, problem-solving, communication, and collaboration. Campuses form teams of students, which work together on a regular basis to solve specific problems in order to prepare for regional competition. Teams pre-determine which problem they will be solving ahead of time and work with Team Leaders to prepare for that event. Branch and Johnson each have two teams that will be competing in the competition on Feb. 28. Branch’s K-2 team contains 9 students who will be competing in the Mish Mash event. Their 4-5 grade team contains 7 students who will compete in the Brand Aid Service project – Help Stop Hunger. Branch Team Leaders include Michele Ray (Counselor), and teachers, Laura Stafford, Leah Riggs and Brandon Barrett. Branch had two teams compete last year, both earned places in the competition. They are eager to return and perform well again. Johnson has created their first teams and is eager to test their student’s abilities with others from across the state. Their two teams are made up of ten 4-5 graders who will be competing in the Robotics and the improvisational event. Johnson’s Team Leader is parent, Adam Peairson.


MOY Testing: The MOY testing window

  • ISIP for grades 6-8: January 12 - 23
  • MSTAR grades 6-8: January 12 - 30

Edgenuity Training - An Edgenuity representative will be at BHS on January 20 and RHS on January 21 to provide general Edgenuity training to teachers, Instructional Coaches, and administrators. To register for the training, click on the appropriate link below.

BHS, January 20th from 4 - 5 pm, Room 1204

RHS, January 21st from 4 - 5 pm, Presentation Room

Professional Development News

New Year, New Teacher Celebration: January 21 from 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm, Bryan HS Blue Cafe

Assistant Principal PLC: January 22 from 8:00 am - 11:00 am or 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm, TESC Boardroom

Administrator's Meeting: January 29 from 8:00am to 4:00pm, Bryan High School Blue

Bilingual/ESL News

Elementary Principals

LPAC Spring Decision-Making: February 4, 2015 from 4-5pm at Fannin Cafe for all LPAC members (teachers & LPAC administrators). LPACs should not be held before the training session occurs.

Calendar: The week of January 20-23 is an "A" week
January 28 - Deadline to submit LPAC - 3rd Six Weeks for Monitored/Failures
February 16 - Deadline to submit LPAC - Spring Testing Decisions

Secondary Principals

LPAC Spring Decision-Making: Februay 5, 2015 from 4-5pm at Fannin Cafe for all LPAC members (teachers & LPAC administrators). LPACs should not be held before the training session occurs.

Special Education News

This is the first of a series on the Special Education Continuum of Services. Please make sure that all administrators who attend ARDS are aware of this information.

Continuum of Services: Bryan Independent School District Special Education:

When making decisions regarding student placement in classes, the ARD committee must consider general education placement first for each student. Only when there is data that indicates the student requires additional support should a student be place in a special education setting. When considering a change to a more restrictive environment, you should hold a staffing with specialist and/or coordinator prior to the ARD meeting. When moving students to a specialized program, you will need to meet with the LRE committee. The purpose of the LRE committee is to provide support to the campuses as they try to maintain the student in the Least Restrictive Environment.

The following are services and placements to consider:

General Education Placement with no supports:

The student is capable of receiving instruction in the same manner as a non- disabled peer in this specific class.

General Education Placement with accommodations only:

The student is capable of receiving instruction from the general education

teacher with some accommodations. These accommodations may also

include a BIP.

General Education Placement with accommodations and monitoring and support by an Instructional Aide.

This is our in class support model. Students do no require support on a daily basis but need to have an adult check in with them on a regular basis to make sure the student is completing work and to support the accommodations that are required such as small group testing or oral administration of a test. The Instructional Aide may be assigned several different classes during one set time and rotate between the classes. The Aide must be in contact with the teachers assigned on at least a bi-weekly basis. Additionally, they will maintain contact logs documenting the support the student receives.

The time documented in the ARD should indicate a reasonable amount per week. At the secondary level this might be 2 class periods per week. At the elementary level it might be 30 minutes to 90 minutes per week.

Curriculum & Instruction Department

If you have any questions, about the content in the Leaders Leading Learners newsletter, please don't hesitate to contact any member of the C&I department.