Keeping staff informed about GISD through news and views!

December 19, 2014

Student Artwork Featured

Annually, GISD selects student art for its holiday message. Megan Pohl created the artwork selected for use this year. Megan attends Fenton High School, and is also a student in the visual communications program at GISD’s Genesee Career Institute. The GISD Board of Education recognized Megan at its December meeting, and thanked her for her art submission.

See the 2014 GISD holiday message here.

Transportation Services Holiday Giving

Transportation Services bus drivers coordinated a sharing tree for two needy families at GISD's Early Childhood Programs and Services (ECPS). They gathered many, many gifts and dropped them off at ECPS on December 12. Transportation staff participated in this act of kindness in memory of Rita Herrington. Rita, who recently passed away, traditionally organized this annual activity.

The photo shows the many gifts donated by Transportation Services staff and features Charlie Amy and Dawnette Jefferson from bus #46, who chaired the activity this year. They wanted to continue the tradition of the "gift of giving" that Rita Herrington chaired for the past few years. Rita's husband Don, a GISD bus driver, thanked the transportation staff for carrying on this tradition of giving.

Innovation Crew Update

The Innovation Crew has been expending time and energy on a collection method for innovative ideas within the organization. A drafted data collection tool is in the works and, as with all good work, it takes time to get it just right. The crew is currently beta testing the data collection tool to ensure its ease of use and effectiveness for purposes of data tracking.

The Innovation Crew has also been busy working on an area within the GISD website, where staff will be able to submit their innovative ideas. As a result, the crew’s next steps include analyzing an implementation grid that will help to evaluate the ideas that are submitted.

The Innovation Crew is excited to implement a culture and philosophy of seeking innovative ideas from employees!

Star Award Recipient

Business Services Administrative Secretary Sui-Lin Harper, was recently recognized at a GISD Board of Education meeting with the STAR Award! The colleague that nominated her for the award noted that Sui-Lin exemplifies the word “service” and her instant smile welcomes guests immediately. They also noted that Sui-Lin doesn’t just know what she needs to do; she makes the effort to know and assist everyone in the department - making the group cohesive and productive. Sui-Lin’s positive and gracious style and intelligence gives everyone a customer service mentor. Congratulations, Sui-Lin!

Nominate a Colleague for the STAR Award

The STAR Award recognition program is open to all employees and was introduced as a way to continue to thank and recognize staff members for their efforts. The program is intended to be a positive way to recognize staff that go above and beyond their call of duty, and is strictly voluntary. To nominate a staff member, simply complete the nomination form that is available in the Staff Resources area of the GISD website and in the main office of GISD school buildings.

Superintendent's Message

How can one day or holiday create so much chaos? Celebrating holidays brings friends, family, and cheer; but it also invites decorating, shopping, wrapping, cleaning, cooking, events, wrapping, wrapping, and wrapping! Before you tip the scale past “festive”, I have found a few items that may be useful to you as you stand in that long line, attend an event that is not your favorite, or simply try to get through the demands of the season.

First, here are some “one-liners” to run through your mind, which may bring a smile to your face rather than lose to the temptation of blurting them out!

  • Don’t worry - I forgot your name, too!

  • Therapy is expensive - popping bubble wrap is cheap.

  • Chaos, panic, and disorder - my work here is done.

  • Earth is full - maybe you could head home.

  • Don’t bother me - I am living happily ever after.

Of course, I am joking with these quick responses. This time of year is a bit stressful, but it also brings with it an opportunity to remember what is important. This old story is an example of how it is the little things that matter and mean the most.

The Gold Wrapping Paper
Once upon a time, there was a man who worked very hard just to keep food on the table for his family. A few days before Christmas this particular year, he punished his little five-year-old daughter after learning that she had used up the family's only roll of expensive gold colored wrapping paper.

As money was tight, he became even more upset when on Christmas Eve he saw that the child had used all of the expensive gold foil paper to decorate one shoebox she had put under the tree. He also was concerned about where she had gotten money to buy whatever was in the shoebox.

Nevertheless, the next morning the little girl, filled with excitement, brought the gift box to her father and said, "This is for you, Daddy!" As he took the box, the father was embarrassed by his earlier overreaction, now regretting how he had punished her for using the wrapping paper.

But when he opened the shoebox, he found it was empty and again he became angry. In a harsh voice, he said, "Don't you know when you give someone a present, there's supposed to be something inside the package!"

The little girl looked up at him with sad tears rolling from her eyes and whispered: "Daddy, it's not empty. I blew kisses into it until it was all full."

The father was crushed by his immediate reaction and bent down to put his arms around his precious little girl. Again feeling silly for his reaction he apologized and thanked his daughter for the very precious gift.

Even though we may be busy and even a bit stressed, please remember that you may be the important person in someone’s holiday. You may even be lucky enough to receive a golden box.

Have a very wonderful and well deserved break that is full of lots of friends and family, love and laughter, delicious food, and maybe even a couple naps.

3D Printing at Genesee Career Institute

The Discover Engineering class at Genesee Career Institute received a 3D printer at the beginning of the school year. The 3D printer is an industry-level machine that can be used in multiple programs. It’s a great way for the class to visualize what they are imagining and creating digitally.

To make a 3D print, students create a 3D model of their idea, part, or character on the computer. It is then converted using specialized software to communicate with the 3D printer. The 3D printer feeds a thin coil of plastic through the machine, which is heated by the print nozzle. The nozzle and print table then move, while layers of plastic are created until a full model is developed. The machine allows students to make scaled physical prototypes of the parts, allowing them to compare what they imagined with reality. Students love making their ideas come to life right in the classroom!

Student Fun in Frankenmuth

Students from Room 16 at Early Childhood Programs and Services recently went on a community outing to visit Bronner's and the Bavarian Inn in Frankenmuth. While at Bronner’s, the students were excited to visit with Santa and tell him what they would like for Christmas. While dining at the Bavarian Inn, the group received a special visit from the founder of the restaurant, Dorothy Zehnder. She stopped by the group’s table to welcome the students.

Great Start Genesee Completes Strategic Planning Process

Great Start Genesee, which is comprised of the Great Start Collaborative and the Great Start Parent Coalition, recently completed its Strategic Plan for 2014-2017. Great Start Genesee is a part of GISD’s Health, Safety, and Nutrition Services department. The collaborative is comprised of a coalition of community agencies, business partners, faith partners, schools, healthcare providers, and parents. Members of the Parent Coalition are parents, grandparents, foster parents, and others in a parenting role in our community, and they represent the role of the parent on the collaborative.

The groups work together to improve the lives of children within our community and are dedicated to helping ensure a Great Start for every child in Genesee County. The work of Great Start Genesee is focused on the areas of early care and education, social and emotional health, pediatric and coordinated school health, and parent engagement. The recently completed strategic plan will guide the work of the Collaborative and the Parent Coalition over the course of the next three years.

New Family Member

Business Services Project Coordinator Megan Kinsler and husband, Anthony, are proud to announce the birth of their daughter, Angela Michelle Kinsler. Angela was born at 11:25 p.m. on September 25 and as the photos shows, is absolutely adorable. Congratulations to the Kinslers!

PE-Nut Foundations Nutrition Education Program

Students who eat nutritious food and participate in regular physical activity are healthier. They miss fewer days of school and are more on task. This means that teacher instructional time is more efficient. Numerous studies have linked physical activity among students to higher test scores. So not only will students’ health improve, but they'll be more focused learners.

GISD is committed to providing programming that assists students, their families, and staff in creating healthy lifestyles. Therefore, GISD created the PE-Nut Foundations program. It is a nutrition and physical activity education program that uses a whole child, whole school approach to motivate students, parents, and educators to be physically active and eat healthier. The PE-Nut Foundations program is designed to improve health behaviors in a school environment by presenting simple, consistent nutrition and physical activity messages via multiple approaches.

Nutrition facilitators from PE-Nut Foundations collaborate with physical educators, classroom teachers, and school administrators on a daily basis, and work together to improve nutrition and physical activity in K-12 school settings. Currently the GISD’s Health, Safety, and Nutrition Services department is able to provide schools with the PE-Nut Foundations program. As a result, over 6,000 students are provided nutrition and physical activity lessons along with healthy foods to try every month.

Genesee Career Institute Open House - Help Spread the Word!

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