Transition Plus

I can and I me!

Visit from Director Walser

Last year we had Director Ali visit us here at T-Plus. This week we will have Director Walser visit us on Monday, December 4th from 1-1:45.

Please make sure your rooms look presentable for a School Board member. We only have a short time with Director Walser, so we may not get to everyone. If you see us walking in the halls, we will try to stop to introduce you but feel free to say hi.

CBI Planning

CBI planning for 2nd Semester is on December 15 at 1:45pm. Teachers please come with a list of places they would like to take students to / places students need to visit to fulfill IEP goals etc…

Any questions/ideas can be directed to Colleen Knuth

Extra Time

I have noticed a number of licensed staff have been leaving early lately. Some staff have asked for permission on certain days.

Licensed staff workday is from 8- 4 pm unless otherwise specified.

With this extra time please make sure you:

1. Have gotten your syllabi ready?

* If so please place it in the shared licensed staff folder - Class Syllabi- Spring 2018

* All syllabi should be available for ILT to review by December 15

2. Complete the 5 essentials survey- we need to get at least 70% of licensed staff but it would be great to get 100%

There is never a shortage of things that need to be done.

Accuplacer Next Week

The last opportunity to take the Accuplacer before the end of the MCTC fall semester is next Wednesday, November 6th. We will once again be offering the test 1st, 3rd, and 5th hours in the mac lab. The sign up sheet is outside Britt's office. Please consult with Patricia or Britt if you are unsure whether a student should test. The next testing opportunity will be in January.

CTE Course Options

Do you have an independent, rock star student who has taken nearly every course we have here at TPlus and is looking for an exciting new challenge next semester? If so, please talk to Britt SOON about spring semester CTE course offerings available at other MPS high schools.

District Stuff

Licensed Staff 5 Essentials Survey

As of last week we are at a 39% staff completion rate. We are making progress! Please complete the survey today if you have not already. The link was sent to licensed staff on November 14th. The email with the link is from "UChicago Impact Surveys". Thank you!

Student Survey and Student Version of 5E

The instructions that were handed out at the staff meeting last week are attached for your reference. Also, we were able to get the 5E student question list from the district. The 5E student questions are attached as well.

Both the instructions for the two surveys and the 5E student questions are in the licensed staff folder in a subfolder titled "Student Survey and 5E". If you want support administering either survey please let Britt know asap so that can be scheduled in advance. Thank you!

Spirit Week!!!!

December 18-22

  • Monday: Jersey/Athletic wear
  • Tuesday: Favorite band/musician
  • Wed: Pajama Day
  • Thursday: Twin Day
  • Friday:90's/Mismatch Day

Students from Relationships class will also make posters, flyers etc to post around the building!

Options for 2nd and 3rd Observation activities for Tenured Teachers:

Licensed staff- remember that you should be making a selection for your 2nd and 3rd observation activities in eCompass.

When you click into your observation plan, you’ll see instructions on how to do this, when you click into the 2nd Observation tab or the 3rd observation tab.

Peer Coaching

The classes are two sessions that are three hours each – so participants will get 6 hours of learning about Peer Coaching. Here are the dates for 2017-18:

  • 12/6 and 12/13 (Wednesdays, 5pm – 8pm Location: MFT)
  • 1/11 and 1/18 (Thursdays, 5pm – 8pm Location TBD)
  • 1/20 and 1/27 (Saturdays, Time and Location TBD)
  • 2/1 and 2/8 (Thursdays, 5pm – 8pm Location TBD)
  • 2/21 and 2/28 (Wednesdays, 5pm – 8pm Location TBD)
  • 3/7 and 3/14 (Wednesdays, 5pm – 8pm Location TBD)
  • 3/12 and 3/10 (Mondays, 5pm – 8pm Location TBD)

The T Plus mental health staff want to encourage you to develop or maintain good self care practices.

How are YOU taking care of yourself?

Tip for the week:

Got a few minutes during passing time or prep time? Try some two-minute strategies to take care of yourself:

  • Do a few yoga poses or stretches to get your blood moving
  • Get out of the building for some fresh air and a change of scenery
  • Take a mindful moment and pay attention to your breathing to center yourself

ESP Evaluations

What is the 2017-18 ESP Evaluation cycle?

This process supports the ESP in continuously being present to developing your skills, knowledge, and capacity to successfully engage in your work as an Educational Support Professional.

This process also provides your Principal or Supervisor with an opportunity to connect with you about your work, and to support your growth and development. This is the fourth year that this process has been available (though last year there was very little communication about it) – and we’re excited to have made some improvements to the process that will make it easier to engage in the process.

Who needs to do the ESP Evaluation cycle?

The ESP Evaluation process is available to all ESPs who want to engage in self-reflection on their continuous professional development.

It is only mandatory for those of you who meet the following criteria:

  • You are in year 1 through 6 of your ESP experience
  • After year 6, it is expected that ESPs will engage in the process once every three years (e.g. year 9, 12, 15, etc.)

What are the next steps?

Go into eCompass and click into My Observations – what do you see?

  • A box titled ‘2017-2018 ESP Evaluation’: you have been assigned to the ESP evaluation plan. If this seems to be an error, based on the criteria above, please e-mail to let us know. If it seems correct, proceed to complete the next steps.
  • A box that says ‘No programs found’: you have not been assigned any evaluation plan.
  • A box that says something else: for some reason, you apparently have been assigned to some other evaluation plan.

Based on the criteria mentioned above, if the evaluation plan seems to be an error, please e-mail, and we’ll get it straightened out.

To begin the ESP Evaluation plan, complete the following two steps:

  • Click into the Beginning of Year Reflection Guide step, and respond to the question prompts
  • Click Select Observers and select your Secondary Observer.
  • Notify your secondary observer that you have chosen them, and plan a time to meet to review your Focus Indicators

Can I change my Primary Observer?

Short answer: yes.

Longer answer: we’ve done our best to assign the Primary Observers based on the information in our HR Info System, but there are sure to be some mistakes. That said, the Primary Observer should be your direct supervisor – so if that’s not the person who is listed, please let us know. Generally, this will be the Principal of your school, or the leader of your Department. If you’re not sure, just ask us at

How long will this take?

The act of selecting a Secondary Observer takes about a minute- Consider having the classroom teacher you work with as your secondary observer (they do not need to be SOEI certified)

Responding to the prompts in the Beginning of Year Reflection Guide is designed to take about 20-30 minutes, but you are free to spend as much time on this as you see fit.

Conducting the Review with Secondary Observer discussion is designed to take 20-30 minutes (the Secondary Observer will then summarize the meeting in eCompass, which should take 15 minutes or less).

What are the deadlines?

* Select a Secondary Observer and notify them by December 22, 2017.

* Complete the Beginning of Year Reflection Guide by December 22, 2017

* Conduct the Review with Secondary Observer discussion and complete the Review with Secondary Observer step in eCompass by January 22, 2018.

* Reminders and information about the steps after the Review with the Secondary Observer will be sent as we get closer to these deadlines.

How can I get some help with this?

Email us at – Monika Hoffman and Michael Kurheitz regularly monitor this inbox, and will respond as quickly as we can.

Check out the Observation Resources tab in eCompass for some helpful illustrated guides and the ESP rubric.

Attendance/ Cadre Request

As we move into this time of the year we usually notice a number of absences increasing. Please take care of yourself, but if you are thinking of taking off to go shopping or something else not related to an illness, just remember there are staff here that need to take up the slack.

If you are an SEA working 1:1 with a student and you are planning on being out- Please fill out this request. This means the district will work on getting us a district sub on this day.

Scan Lab

Laminating Procedures for Staff

  1. Consult with Scan Lab or Daphne about your project.
  2. Complete the order form for the Scan Lab and indicate it is for laminating.
  3. If you have small items that are printed on a full sheet, leave them on the sheet and they will be cut after laminated.
  4. If you have only one item, we may need to wait until we have enough to laminate it with other items.
  5. Please indicate when you need your items by, we can’t promise same day service, but will do our best

Scan Lab – We have 3 weeks till winter break! Let us help you preserve those memories for holiday gifts!

  • We have some highly skilled students who can create things for you or do data entry type tasks. IF you have any work that we could assist you with, please talk to Molly or MaryAnn and our students would love to assist you.
  • Make sure your photos aren’t damaged and can be enjoyed for generations by converting them to digital!
  • Did you know photos can be damaged by not only fire and water but also by air and plastics that are not Archival? Make sure your memories stay safe!
  • There’s an EASY solution that gives Tplus students valuable work experience
  • Best of all, scan lab services are available to everyone, not just Tplus employees!



Come see Elliot perform!

Elliot's performing in a comedy show Saturday 12/16.

Come show your support!

Staff Updates

Michael Greene will be starting on December 5th as part of the Engagement Team. Please be sure to give him a warm welcome!

Beginning December 11th- Maryann Sulik will be supporting Henry and Edison as the work coordinator there. Matt Hentges will move into the work coordinator position here at Transition Plus once the DCD teacher position is filled, there will be some days he will have a sub to train with Maryann in the next few weeks.

Pamela Richmond no longer is working at T Plus - we wish her all the best and currently have the secretary position posted.

Beginning Monday, December 18th, Maggie Gallagher will be moving from Children's Hospital to HCMC to support Project Search. We are excited about this re-boot for HCMC and our partnerships with Robbinsdale and Bloomington school districts. Thanks to Eric, Jeanne, Jay and Maggie in making this happen!


I have noticed the attendance of staff this year has been significantly more consistent.

This is so amazing for our students and your colleagues.

We often focus on the negative but I'd like you to turn to your team members and thank them for showing up every day! I recognize we all have hard jobs but you keep showing up day after day and that is good for students!

I appreciate you and all you do!

This Week at T- Plus

Monday --------Director Walser Visit-------------- 1pm

Tuesday --------Team 2 Meeting-------------------- 8 am

Wednesday --- Team 3 Meeting-------------------- 8:15am

Thursday ------ Visit from HS Social Workers---1:30 pm

Friday ----------- T/Th schedule

--------------------- ILT---------------------------------------8 am

--------------------- Bingo

--------------------- SEA Meetings------------------------ 9:30 & 10:05

Cultural Humility: People, Principles and Practices - Part 1 of 4