Paras, Pumpkins, a Parade and PLCs

Week of 10/15 at Montrose

Hi All,

I hope this crisp Autumn weekend found you smiling! Keep it going. Your smile is beautiful!


Staffing Updates from Central Office

Dear Parents:

It was a pleasure meeting you at this week's PTA meeting. In response to the concern that you expressed regarding the change in the number of paraprofessionals, please be advised that following a review of the assignment of paraprofessionals, Dr. Ficarra has made the determination to reinstate the past practice of assigning 2 paraprofessionals in each classroom for the duration of the school year.

Classroom Collaboration

We have all recently been in discussions about the very important work that paraprofessionals do in our school. As we know, these team members are instructional aides and more.

In order to support the collaborative atmosphere it takes to provide students our best, the practice of previewing lessons, discussing student needs and sharing instructional support methods with paras before and after student contact time will be in place in all classes this week. Permanent paras will be provided with copies of lesson plans, a folder and a notebook for these meetings. *The notebook must stay in school. This way, when teams are meeting to prepare and discuss, all team members are aware of the lessons, instructional strategies, and supports (academic, social and/or behavioral) and will probably have ideas and insights to share. This is also an opportunity to share the "why" behind many of the ways things are done with a particular student or based on the curriculum. All of these components are important for student development and team cohesiveness. #GOTEAM

Ordering School Lunch

Per my email on September 7, lunch orders are to be submitted as follows:

  • on Monday mornings, submit Monday's order only
  • on Mondays after student dismissal, submit orders for Tuesday - Friday

Please update your class sheet to reflect any new students. ID numbers are in PowerSchool - Anna can show you where. Lunch orders will be faxed or emailed to Food Services on Monday and Tuesday mornings only. In the case of student absence, the office will make Food Services aware and adjustments will be made accordingly.

PLC Meeting (SOMSD Staff: Required, Delta-T Staff: Optional)

PLC meeting is this Tuesday. I have a competing engagement, so I won't be here after school. I'm not sure where you are in terms of having done PLCs before, so I'll set some guidelines:

1. Deciding on topics (What do you want to learn?)

2. How is this aligned with district/school goals? (a. Data-driven instruction, b. Intervention and Referral Services/Supports) *Think about your PDP and how it aligns here

3. Choosing groups (3-5ppl per PLC is ideal so everyone has a voice and a task)

4. Setting SMART goals (4 is reasonable)

5. What resources do you need? Who do you need access to?

6. Look at the Tuesday meeting calendar. Map out your PLC for the year. After this week, meetings will be 3:30-4:30 one Tuesday/month.

7. Create a Google doc for your PLC. Keep notes. Set norms. Hold yourselves accountable.

8. There will be an end of year share out on June 14. It will be in jigsaw format. Be sure to include handouts and technology to show what you have learned and how this learning can grow your colleagues

*Paras, if you'd like to be in a PLC (must be separate from SOMSD staff), please use #1, 3, 5 and 6 above as your guide. Email me with the information on the topic, group members and resources. I will meet with you to provide additional guidance.

Para Absences

Thank you for advising me and Anna if you will be absent. As a reminder, AFTER contacting Delta-T, please email both of us or call the school office.


Mrs. Samuels:

Montrose: 973-378-2086 x7500


Have a wonderful week - because... why not?