Trantwood Times

"Captivating Every Student, Every Day!"

An Attitude of Gratitude Rocks! I am grateful for....

Thank you to Stephanie and Diana for helping Courtney and I get through the beginning of the year! Many thanks to Brandy Long and the entire cafeteria staff for going above and beyond each day for our little pre-k students. The ENTIRE office staff THANK YOU. At time when I have felt a bit crazy, you have helped me through. Nancy Lambert for going above and beyond when I asked for help. Courtney Goffigan, thank you for taking over on the day of the Cox High School car accident and I had to go to a doctor appointment. It's SO nice to know you have my back. The custodians have been patient with our bathroom accidents and extremely helpful with simple requests. So thankful for Hope Twine giving me some background information to be able to take over the Partners in Education position. Thanks so much! Jan Roewer, I will always remember you sticking up for Pre-k in the first PTA meeting of the year. That meant a lot. Sarah Gannon

I’m grateful for so many people! I absolutely love my grade level and Berkley; I feel we work well together through agreements and disagreements. I’m grateful we help each other out in so many ways during the school day and after. I’m grateful for Nancy, Michele, and Terry for being so on top of things! I’m grateful to Lou Anne and Anne Z for hiring me and seeing me as being a great fit to this team. I love it here!!! Jen Hawkins

I am grateful for all of the staff who watch over my son every single day. I am so glad I brought Daniel to the nest, and I love knowing that he has a whole bunch of momma and daddy cardinals watching out for him. Eleanor Richards

Thanks to Tim Cassidy and Gina Howes. I am grateful for such a warm welcome to P.E. Your team spirit is awesome! Kim Odom

Gretchen Barreto, Katie Schatti, and Jenn Hawkins make an amazing first grade team! Thank you, ladies, for always being there for each other and our students! Melissa Moore

I appreciate the kindness, patience, and overall positive attitude of Cazzy Roberts. The children adore her, and she is always willing to jump in and help in any way that she can both personally and professionally. What a JOY it is to be working with her this year in my classroom! Kim Catt

Kudos to BJ Williams for preparing our building for the storm – even though we weren’t supposed to get hit by Matthew. The sandbags she put by every exterior door saved our building from major flooding! On Tuesday morning, she worked diligently to clean-up several rooms that did have water through-out the classroom. She did this while taking care of her many other responsibilities in our building. Thanks for all you do BJ!! Office Staff

Kudos to Beth Wik! Beth made a beautiful display for “Disability Awareness Month”. You can find it outside of the teacher work room on Cardinal Ct. Thank you Beth for reminding us that it doesn’t matter what Disabilities we may have. With hard work and determination, we can do almost anything! Cazzy Roberts


Oct. 14: Deadline for RI (gr 3 - 5) & the Achieve3000 Pre-Level Set assessment (gr. 3 - 5)

Oct. 21: Deadline for Kg DRA Assessment

Oct. 28: TalentEd Professional Goals due

Oct. 28: TalentEd Formative Options Checklist due

October 17 - 21, 2016 National School Bus Safety Week & Safe Schools Week

Monday, Oct. 17

Rube Goldberg Club, 2:40 - 4:00

GOTR, 2:40 - 4:00

Tuesday, Oct. 18


Rube Goldberg Club, 2:40 - 4:00

ILT, collab room 3 - 4

Wednesday, Oct. 19

  • Security Assistant Day - thanks Mr. Elis for helping to keep us safe!
  • GOTR, 2:40 - 4:00
  • Rube Goldberg Club, 2:40 - 4:00
  • Art Club, gr. 4 & 5, 2:40 - 4:00

Thursday, Oct. 20

  • Earthquake Drill, 10:20 am
  • Rube Goldberg Club 2:40 - 4:00
  • Digital Innovators Meeting, 3 - 4

Friday, Oct. 21

Making Your Learning a Priority

Here are some great learning opportunities:

Oct. 18: Best Practices in Word Study (gr. k - 2)

Oct. 25: Best Practices in Word Study (gr. 3 - 5)

Jan. 24: Close Reading, (K - 2)

Jan. 31: Close Reading, (3 - 5)

Sign up in MyLearning Plan

Welcome To The Nest!

We are excited to welcome Cheryl Counts-Harrison as our new Special Education Compliance Specialist. She will be with us Mondays and Fridays and any other day necessary.

Classroom Display Expo aka Replacement of Promethean Boards

The Departments of Teaching and Learning and Technology invite all teachers and administrators to the upcoming Classroom Display Expo at Plaza Annex. The expo will take place on October 31, 2016 from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Attendees will have an opportunity to test drive the products displayed and explore product functionality and instructional implications for each solution. Feedback will be solicited to aid in the development of a division wide replacement plan for interactive whiteboards. Manufacturers’ representatives will be present to answer any questions.


An earthquake drill is held to practice procedures to follow in the event of an earthquake. In practice drills, teachers should supervise students and be alert to the position of each student during the entire drill.

Signal: The signal for the drill is the following PA announcement. “ATTENTION STUDENTS AND STAFF, IMPLEMENT EARTHQUAKE PROCEDURES - DUCK, COVER AND HOLD ON.


  • 1. Drop to knees facing away from windows.
  • 2. Get under desks or tables where possible and hold on firmly.
  • 3. Fold body onto floor with arms close to knees.
  • 4. Place head between knees; and cover head with hands.
  • 5. Stay in this position for 10 seconds.
  • 6. Teachers will direct students to return to seats.

Earthquake Safety Guidelines: Remain Calm. The rolling sensation may terrify you, but unless something falls on you, the sensations will not hurt you. Think through the consequences of any action you plan to take. If you are indoors, stay there.

If you are in danger:

  • Get under a sturdy table or desk.
  • Brace yourself in an inside corner away from windows.
  • Move to an inner wall or corridor.
  • Watch for falling objects - plaster, bricks, light fixtures, etc.
  • Stay away from furniture which might slide or topple over.
  • Stay away from windows, sliding glass doors, and mirrors.
  • Grab anything handy (back pack, notebook, papers, box, etc.) to shield your head and face from falling debris and splinting glass.
  • Don't be alarmed if the fire alarm or sprinklers go off.
  • Do Not Rush Outside. Stay on the same floor that you are on.
  • Do not use elevators as the power for elevators may go out and leave you trapped.

The greatest danger from falling debris is just outside doorways and close to outer walls. If for safety reasons you must leave the building, choose your exits as carefully as possible.

  • If conditions warrant an evacuation, check evacuation routes and staging location prior to moving students. If you are outside, stay there. Move away from the building, power poles and lampposts. Electric power lines are a serious hazard - stay away from fallen lines. If possible, proceed cautiously to an open area.


The Office of Programs for Exceptional Children is preparing to develop a five-year plan to increase outcomes for students with disabilities. Once developed, the five-year plan will guide the work of the Office of Programs for Exceptional Children through 2021.

VBCPS would like to invite school administrators, special education and general education teachers, school counselors, psychologists, school social workers and itinerant service providers to participate in one of the subcommittees being formed for each area of the five-year plan. The subcommittee areas are: identification, delivery of services, curriculum development, professional learning and parent and community involvement.

Let me or Mrs. Kurz know if you are interested in serving on the five-year plan committee. I will gather names and contact Katie O’Neil in the Office of Programs for Exceptional Children by Oct. 21.


The quarterly testing window is from October 31-December 2. By Oct. 31, we will have another laptop cart available for checkout. This cart will go to grades 2 - 4 only during this window.

Grade Level - Mandatory Quarterly Tests

  • 2nd grade - LA, Math, Science, Social Studies
  • 3rd grade - LA, Math, Science, Social Studies
  • 4th grade - LA, Math, Combined Science/Social Studies
  • 5th grade - LA, Math, Science, Social Studies

We are a Global Pathways School. How will you let your students drive their learning about the world?

When thinking about what will you do to reach this goal, here are some questions to spark thinking:

Student Question:

What contribution do we wish to make to the global community?

Questions for self:

What values do we hope to instill in our students so that they are able to make the important decisions necessary to enhance and sustain our limited resources?

What impact do we wish to make in the larger community in which we are visible, beyond our students?

To spark some ideas for your classroom, consider attending the Fall Fest & Expo. See below for more info.

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Parent Access to Records

According to an Oct. 6, 2016, Principal's Memo, please be aware of the following:

Parents have the right to inspect and review any education records relating to their child. School divisions must respond to a parental request to inspect and review "without unnecessary delay."

To comply with this request without unnecessary delay, please forward all requests of this nature immediately to an administrator.

Breakfast Update

We are pleased to announce that beginning Monday, Oct. 17, Mrs. Owens will be stopping by each classroom to clean any space used for breakfast. Many thanks to PAC for bringing this issue to our attention!

Also, please be reminded to use the brown trash can when 5 or fewer students are eating breakfast. The large plastic bags are provided for times when more than 5 students are eating breakfast at a time. Waste not...want not!

Learning Walks

As you know, individuals from Dept of School Leadership (DOSL) and Teaching and Learning (T & L) visit our building from time to time to conduct learning walks. When visiting classrooms, the look fors include:

  • Posted learning targets (at TES, these are "I can" statements) in student friendly terms, that match the instruction
  • Learning environment - Are there flexible learning spaces? Are student's social and emotional development being nurtured? Does the teacher model passion, care, and support? Are there respectful and positive relationships in this classroom? Are there student created displays, resources, and/or work? Do the routines and procedures support independent and collaborative work? Is the classroom neat and orderly? How is the student empowered to become self-directed and self-reliant?
  • Student engagement - Can everyone answer what am I doing and why am I learning this? Do students share their goals for learning? Is the work rigorous enough for the student? Does the teacher provide feedback so that the student knows what they are doing well and what their next step should be to continue to master the learning target? How many times does the teacher need to redirect students? Who's doing the work - the teacher or the student?

We will keep you posted on what else they look for when visiting. Thank you putting students first in your decision making and continuing to be open to change!

FasttMath & Fraction Nation


Just wanted to update you that we believe that FasttMath and Fraction Nation have hopefully (fingers crossed) ironed out all of the kinks and teachers and students can begin using it. I am attaching a link to that you can use to help teachers and students access it via the Clever Portal. They will be prompted to enter their username (lunch number) and password (6-digit birthday).

Students should also be able to access this at home.


Johanna Ortiz

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Seeking Growth - Doing Great Work Together! #WeAreVBSchools @Trantwood

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Congratulations Mrs. Hawley - SCA Teacher of the Month!

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We love Sweet Frog!

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Look what gem was found in the courtyard? Do you know what it is?

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Exploring to find something new!

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Work that body!

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Teamwork! Thank you for a beautiful display.

Adjusted Dismissal Schedule for Nov. 23, 2016

The Calendar Committee recommended and the School Board approved an adjusted dismissal for Nov. 23, preceding the Thanksgiving holiday break. Here is the adjusted schedule:

Student hours: 8:10 - 12:10

AM Kg: 8:10 - 10:10

PM Kg: 10:10 - 12:10

Staff Hours: 7:40 - 12:50

Modified lunch schedule will be provided

Note: Leave requests for days when the adjusted work schedule is observed will be deducted based upon the regular work schedule. Leave requests will not be prorated due to early release schedule.

Oct. 24 - 28, 2016

Monday, Oct. 24

  • LAM, OTB
  • GOTR, 2:40 - 4:00

Tuesday, Oct. 25

  • LAM, OTB
  • Gr. 5 Recorders club, 2:40 - 4:00
  • Faculty Meeting, 3 - 4

Wednesday, Oct. 26

  • STEM, 2:40 - 4:00
  • ARt club, gr. 4 & 5, 2:40 - 4:00

Thursday, Oct. 27

  • Green Cardinals, 2:40 - 4:00

Friday, Oct. 28

  • Happy Birthday Gina Howes!
  • SCA Pizza Party, 2:40 - 3:30
  • Halloween Booogy Ball, 6:30 - 9:00