SST/RTI News and Notes

April, 2015

From the Desk of Deanna Rogers

The year is coming to a close very quickly! We have 5 weeks of school left, but who is counting?! We have lots to do in order to close out the year. In lieu of our meeting together in April (due to testing), we agreed that I would include some important notes in this edition. Please pay very close attention to the notes and write down items on your calendar.

During the March meeting, I went over the End-of-Year checklist with everyone in detail so that you could plan ahead and spread out items due. I originally stated the due date would be May 26; however, I need to make a small adjustment so that there is time for me to make contact with you, if needed, before your official last contract day. Therefore, the new deadline for the End-of Year Checklist is Thursday, May 21. As before, I will send a calendar reminder for you this week. If you haven't done so already, please be sure to share this checklist with your principal so that he/she is aware of the items that you need to complete and can support you.

As shared last month, our focus for April is to finish up SST meetings for the year for all students. At this point, those students that were first met on 1st semester should have a 3rd review meeting scheduled before the end of May. Those students met on early 2nd Semester (January - Early March) should also have a 3rd review meeting scheduled before the end of May. For those students first met on in Mid March-now, a review meeting needs to be scheduled on an as needed basis. You might send an email or communicate with teachers and ask for a status update. Most importantly, we want to ensure no teacher is implementing a intervention that is not working and that students in need of additional supports are receiving them.

As we have been reviewing SST management logs submitted and reports from IEP online, we have discovered a few schools that have held anywhere from 0-10 meetings for the last two months. Please note: we can not delay for any reason having meetings - that is one of our main responsibilities! If you have just one day assigned a week for SST meetings, in a given month it would be expected that you would have @20-24 meetings a month. The only exception would be if your overall case load is very low. We can't justify very few meetings held, when there is a list of students that haven't been met on since first semester, students with chronic behavior issues, and students continuing to not meet the standard. I have been reaching out to individual schools and will continue to do so in the coming weeks.

With that said, if you are finding yourself behind, it is critical that you have this conversation with your Principal now so that you can add an additional day for meetings, if needed. As I have shared with a few of you already, I would advise developing a plan (placing all of your remaining meetings on a calendar) before meeting with him/her.

If you need my assistance, please don't hesitate to contact me. As several of you have discovered, I am easily accessible even late at night! Remember, we are in this together! "Good, better, best; never let it rest; until your good becomes your better; and your better becomes your best!"

Deanna Rogers, Ed.S, NBCT

RTI Coordinator (SST, 504, & PBIS)


To Do List - April

1. The deadline to review the Bi-Weekly Timeline Report for accuracy is Monday, April 20 (3pm) for all schools. Please remember you must use Google Chrome when reviewing the report! Refer back to Dr. Logan's email for the directions and link sent on April 16. Please, let's have 100% meet the deadline this time!

2. All final review SST meetings should be scheduled on your calendar from now until the end of the year and you should be holding these meetings after "regular" testing has ended for the day and/or on non- regular testing days, especially if you are behind.

3. Due to the lateness of the year, if you are finding that you have more than 3 students that you "think" may become referrals, please consult with your SELT and Psychologist well in advance of the meeting to review the files together as a team.

4. Review End-of-Year Checklist and prioritize those items that can be completed now. Make a plan and place all items on calendar so that you can meet the deadline on time.

Please be sure all 2nd grade (primary schools only), 5th grade, and 8th grade files are complete and there are no loose ends to tie up.

Spotlight Corner

This month's spotlight is Larry Banks, SST/RTI Specialist at Mays High School! It was about time a male was recognized! And, to be honest, it could have been either one of them! Larry earned his B.A. in Art Education from Benedict College, M.A in Middle Grades Reading/S.S. from Clark Atlanta University, and his ED.S in Exceptional Ed with Leadership and Supervision from Clark Atlanta University. Larry has been with APS since 2003 and has served in various roles at Mays HS. He has been Department Chair, Visual Arts teacher, Academy leader and SST/RTI Chairperson. He has been a leader at Mays and has written an AP grant, led several workshops for teachers, served as faculty representative on school advisory board, mini Sacs committee and GAP's conference. He implemented the Youth Business Institute with T.J. Maxx companies, formulated business partnerships with various corporations and colleges/universities to enhance student exposure to real world situations, and created/executed curricular activities involving school auxiliaries and fine arts department as well as the College Connection and Mentoring Program. These are just a few of his many accomplishments!

I recently witnessed Larry handle a sensitive case with much professionalism and detail. Many of us may not have been able to keep our composure, but he did a remarkable job! I learned a lot from him during that experience! In addition, Larry can be counted on to get the job done and in a timely manner. He has never missed a deadline! He takes great care in all that he does and has done a great job managing the large case load at Mays. I recall about a month or so after I started that I hadn't heard from a few people so I reached out via email. Larry was one of them and he responded all was ok and he would reach out if he needed me! Don't let his quiet demeanor fool you...he takes care of business!

Larry has been instrumental to the success of SST/RTI at Mays HS. His leadership and desire for the students to succeed has enabled him to be successful. He has led many workshops in order to build the capacity of his teachers and works with academy leaders, and lead administrators to ensure integrity of services, interventions, and accommodations are delivered to students in need. Kudos, Larry!

Monthly SST/RTI Specialist Meeting

Friday, May 15th, 8:30am-4pm

Atlanta Public Schools, Instructional Resource Center, Room 122

The agenda is still being worked on. However, below are some of the topics:

Elementary Session (8:30 - 12:00pm)
  • End of Year Program Review
  • 2015/16 School Year Updates
  • Universal Screener
  • Social Emotional Learning/Restorative Justice
  • Preplanning 2015/16
  • End of Year Checklist Reminders

Middle/High School Session (12:30 - 4:00pm)

  • End of Year Program Review
  • 2015/16 School Year Updates
  • Universal Screener
  • Social Emotional Learning/Restorative Justice
  • Preplanning 2015/16
  • End of Year Checklist Reminders

Coming Soon! Optional Math Interventions Training by Content Experts! Day/Time TBD! The Office of Student Services purchased some great resources for your use!

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