MJ News

January 18, 2022


Important Dates

  • Monday, January 17th - MLK Day - No School
  • Tuesday, January 18th - Faculty Meeting @ 8:15m in library and INSTITUTE DAY Please feel free to view the details of the day here
  • Wednesday January 19th - Board of Education Meeting @ 7pm WRS
  • Thursday, January 20th - Green Team Meeting @ 7:30am
  • Friday, January 21st - ER/PD Team Plan Time

Institute Day - Tuesday, January 18th

  • Details of the day can be found here
  • The hours are 8-2:30. This is non-negotiable as some sessions are live, while others are self -paced.
  • We will meet for our January Faculty Meeting during the building time of the day at 8:15am.
  • Teams should plan to meet together for the presentations. This will afford you the opportunity to fully engage in each session - including the Turn and Talk components. Please consider and apply any/all safety measures including masking, distancing, and being mindful of 15 minute timeframes.
  • The Traveling Treat Cart will be outside of 2nd grade classrooms - be sure to stop by for treat and an opportunity to say hello!

January Classroom Refresh

When we return from any break, it is vital that building and classroom expectations are revisited with students. This allows us to proactively approach behavior and refresh expectations with students.

During the first week back from winter break, every school in the district will be engaging in Whole-School Expectations revisits and Station Rotations. We are also asking that teachers utilize the first weeks back from break to revisit classroom expectations.

The Department of Teaching and Learning is providing resources to guide you in planning and preparing lessons to review behavior expectations within your classroom or space.

Elementary Communication/Resources

Junior High Communication/Resources

Focusing on proactively stating behavior expectations prior to any transition or activity is the framework District 15 is moving towards. As creating a safe and conducive learning environment, as well as being responsive to our students’ needs is a priority, teachers should utilize allocated SEL, and additional instructional time as needed, to focus on this work.

Noon Hour Public Service Safety Announcements

We are likely to have more indoor recess time with weather and the conditions outside. During this less structured time, it is essential we remain vigilent about safety protocols. We are asking noon supervisors to conduct brief "Safety Breaks" during indoor recess time. Classroom teachers are welcome and encouraged to share this with their students. Noon supervisors, please begin making these on Wednesday, January 19th.

Indoor Recess Safety Script

“Excuse me boys and girls, it is time for a brief safety check. Please be sure you are maintaining 3 feet of space between yourself and others and that your mask is covering both your mouth and nose. If you have been near the same friends for more than 15 minutes, you should move on to visit with someone else at this time.”

In time, this can sound like -

“Safety Check - Mask on mouth and nose? 3 feet from others? More than 15 mins with same friends, move on.”

Tuesday Treat Days

Kindly make your way toward our second grade classrooms on Tuesday. Many thanks to the 2nd grade team for providing the goodies!

Tuesday Traveling Treat Day


  • Here is a resource regarding loan forgiveness programs for teachers. While there are many links available, here is one that you may find helpful in learning more about the program. Federal Department of Student Aid

  • All non-tenured teachers’ summative evaluations are due by February 15. Please schedule an appointment with your evaluating administrator February 7-14th.

  • Please encourage students to bring winter gear including boots and snowpants so they can enjoy the snow. It would be helpful to include this in your upcoming newsletters as well. If you have a student who needs any outterwear, please see one of our building social workers.

  • The 2022 ACCESS window will run from Wednesday, January 12, through Wednesday, February 9 .

  • Just a reminder…The Virtual Learning Guide for Teachers is your go to resource in the event of a classroom or school closure.
  • 2nd & 4th Grade Gifted Selection Process (HOPE Scale)

2nd & 4th-grade teachers- here is the list of students on the 2022 CogAT Eligible List. Please complete the HOPE Scale Form for all children we notify them about by February 11.

  • Evaluation Reminders /Teacher Evaluations

    Non-tenured Formal Observation #2 and final SLO data must be submitted to the evaluating administrator by January 25

Important COVID Updates

  • COVID-19 Symptoms

    Fever (100.4 or higher), new onset of moderate to severe headache, shortness of breath, new cough, sore throat, vomiting diarrhea, new loss of sense of taste or smell, fatigue from unknown cause, muscle or body aches from unknown cause not attributed to allergies or pre-existing conditions

    Although we are not requiring staff to wear the green self-certification cards on their lanyards anymore, we continue to ask that all staff monitor their symptoms and ensure they are symptom and fever-free before coming to work.

    At this time, staff with symptoms still need to submit a PCR test to return to work.

  • New Guidance

    Isolation & Quarantine

    • For our classrooms where we have students who have medical exemptions and are unable to wear a mask, individuals will need to continue to be excluded for 10 days.

    • In our classrooms where we have immunocompromised or high-risk individuals, individuals in that classroom will also need to be excluded for 10 days.

    Test To Stay

    • Now allowed for ALL in-school exposures (including lunch)
    • Exposures out of school (household, extracurriculars at/outside of school) do not quality


    • Even if someone qualifies for a shortened quarantine or isolation, they will need to hold off on extracurriculars and sports until day 11


    • Staff must be up-to-date on vaccination (meaning they have their booster) to not be identified as a close contact
    • Students need their primary dose of vaccination (first two doses) to not be identified as a close contact

Virtual for students with symptoms & Test To Stay

Following the updated Executive Order and per the guidance provided to us by our lawyers, we should be providing students with COVID-19 symptoms concurrent learning. We still have the 24 hour rule in place to ensure staff have some time to prepare for the transition. If a student is awaiting a test result, they will join concurrently and if a family decides not to get a test done (not something we see frequently), the student would learn concurrently for 5 days.

In addition to that update, all close contacts identified in the school setting including on the bus and in the lunchroom, now qualify to participate in Test To Stay. Our hope with this new update is we will be able to keep more students learning in the classroom. Household exposure, extracurricular close contacts (in or outside of school), and students who are unable to wear a mask do not qualify for Test To Stay.

Staff member with symptoms
  • Staff need PCR to return after symptoms
  • Please distance as much as possible when returning
  • Working on a flow chart for staff

Katie's Coaching Corner

Coaching Check -In

Please consider taking this anonymous survey to help me support you!

Article of the Week:

Edutopia Article: Building Resilience in Young Math Students

Think, Pair, Share Resources:

January SEL Lessons:

Casel Focus: Goal Setting: How does setting a specific goal create a path to success?

SEL Learning Standard Alignment:

  • 1C. Demonstrate skills related to achieving personal and academic goals.

  • 1B. Recognize personal qualities and external support

* K-3 Lesson

*4-6 Lesson

Helpful Pages to Bookmark:

*Second Step Login Page

*D15 SEL Pacing Guide

Google Slides Hack

Have you ever wished there was a way to make your slide bigger and easier for students to see when you're modeling & editing a Google slide for your class on the Smartboard? Since you can't type on a slide while it's in "slideshow" mode, now there's a way to make the slide bigger in "edit" mode. Click here to learn how (39 seconds)

Coaching Corner - Resource Portal

I’d love to collaborate with you and your teams! Please click here to sign up for a time to meet.

Quote of the Week

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