Happy New Year, Dolphin Families!
Looking forward to an awesome 2024 at Toler!
Excited for the second half of the school year!
The staff and I hope everyone had a fabulous winter break with family and friends. We look forward to welcoming everyone back on Wednesday, January 3, 2024. There is much to look forward during the upcoming months! Toler Trekkers is on for Wednesday morning; gates will open at 8:35am. Start the new year off with a fun walk-jog around our upper field. All grade levels are welcome!
Behind the scenes: January is a month that is laser focused on 2024-25 school year staffing, budget building, finalization and approval. If you were unable to participate in the survey and have input that you would like to share, please reach out to me or any member of School Site Council (SSC). Our staff, SSC and community works together to realize the most positive impact on student achievement and social-emotional learning (SEL) for all of our students. This includes goals in the areas of student attendance and suspension rates. While Toler has dramatically improved attendance rates in the last year, attendance is still a program improvement area (state focus). I am proud of our attendance gains. We have gone from last in our cluster (2021) to third; we are closing in on first place! Check out this link for data details: https://exchange.sandi.net/owa/#path=/attachmentlightbox.
As you know, attendance matters. There is a direct correlation between student engagement, achievement and well being parallel to regular daily attendance at school. I am pleased to report that our suspension rates since 2021 have drastically improved, moving us out of program improvement in this area. Restorative practice teaches our kids life long lessons, empathy and changes long term behavior.
I am also quite pleased to share that California Department of Education (CDE) reporting for the 2022-23 CAASP assessment showed gains for Toler in both English Language Arts and Math, placing us in the "green band" for BOTH areas! Our SSC will continue with focus on expenditures that support student achievement and well being. Thank you to our teachers, support staff for implementing best practices and ongoing collaboration to support intervention and enrichment for our students. Thank you to our students for their hard work. Thank you to our families for your support at home! We will continue with our focus on innovative curriculum that supports grade level standards and mirrors real world learning and practice.
Go Dolphins, 2024!
Laurie Brady Francis
Upcoming January Dates
Moto-Monday: Mondays, 9:05am, line-up area by the Library
Toler Trekkers, Wednesdays, 8:35-9am, Upper Field
1/2 Garden Volunteer Day - Postponed
1/3 School Resumes - Welcome Back!
1/8 Student Council Meeting with Principal, 1:00, Rm 4
1/9 Reptile Assemblies Grades UTK- 5
PTA Meeting, 6pm, Bernard & Francis
1/15 Martin Luther King Holiday, NO SCHOOL
1/17 Tentative SSC Meeting addition, 1:05pm - Budget Input
ELAC Meeting, 5:30pm
1/11 January DNN 11:20am
Clairemont Community of Schools (CCos) Meeting, 5pm More information: https://sites.google.com/sandi.net/ccos
1/12 Professional Rugby Players in PE (all day)
1/23 Marston Counselor Visit
1/24 Student Leadership & Attendance Awards
SSC Meeting, 1:05, Rm 4, Budget Review
Clairemont Community of Schools (CCoS)
CLAIREMONT COMMUNITY OF SCHOOLS - JANUARY 11 (IN PERSON AND ONLINE)
Clairemont Community of Schools (CCoS) are meetings in which parents and staff from all five feeder elementary schools, Marston and Clairemont High School discuss topics like K-12 alignment, district updates, enrollment, marketing and other items brought forth to the committee. Area Superintendents, principals and a SDUSD Board Trustee often attend these meetings. Click here for more information including meeting dates and times and submitting an agenda item. If you’re considering submitting an agenda item request, please do at least seven days prior to the meeting by completing this form: CCOS Agenda Item Request. You can attend the meeting via Zoom or in-person at Clairemont HS in room 114.
Learning from the kids...New Year's Resolutions!
Former Woodshop President at his retirement community (Del Webb Sun City Festival in Surprise, AZ), Dave Dietz made new signs, stakes, and numbers for the new garden flower beds. Mr. Dietz even made a serving and cutting board for student tastings! Dave and Farmer Heather (also pictured) have been collaborating for the past few months and Farmer Heather is thrilled with the outcome.
Article of Interest - Language Development and Reading
There is much debate right now about the whole language approach versus phonic approach to reading instruction. Throughout the last three decades of my career, this "pendulum" has swung back and forth several times. Truth is, a balanced approach to reading instruction is what works - phonetic development, building prior knowledge and whole language approach paired with high interest, relevant text and materials. This article discusses the importance of language development as related to teaching and learning to read. https://www.edweek.org/teaching-learning/a-missing-link-in-the-science-of-reading-conversation/2023/12
Thank you, Jon Lewis!
Toler's Garden Liason, John Lewis has secured a grant to install new garden beds on the upper field. The team needs volunteers, help with installation and clean up. Are you able to donate two-three hours to help? We need you. Keep you eyes open for a flier and sign-up from Toler PTA.
Would you be more likely to help:
Safety first - Please...
Please mind our crossing guardsand drive slowly in all drop off and pick up areas around the school. 2024 introduced a new law: cars can not park within 20 feet from a marked crosswalk. See link: https://fox5sandiego.com/traffic/new-traffic-laws-bringing-changes-for-california-drivers-in-2024/T
We are looking into creating a second safety patrol by the back gate. Please mind the crosswalk law and do not park in the red or bus zones.
District News and Information
Families of English Learners
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) has created a free resource for families and educators of English learners called the “English Learner Family Toolkit”.
The English Learner Family Toolkit consists of 6 chapters and each chapter contains 5 sections – an overview, family and student rights, questions to ask schools, tips, and resources. Download the complete toolkit by choosing your language and clicking the Download link below:
English Learner Family Toolkit App
There is also an EL Family Toolkit app to help families stay connected to the latest tips, innovative tools, and practical resources to support students enrolled in U.S. schools. This FREE app is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, and Arabic and can be downloaded on Android and Apple devices!
Google Play Store:
Apple App Store: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/el-family-toolkit/id6446053105
Parents, families, and guardians can use the EL Family Toolkit to:
Learn more about U.S. schools
Learn about their rights in U.S. public schools
Find out about school enrollment and attendance policies
Get information about programs, services, and extracurricular activities
Find advice and suggestions for helpful questions to ask when talking to school staff
Find ways to support the safety, health, and success of ELs
Browse quick tips by topic
Multilingual Education Department (MED)
EL Family Toolkit Website: https://ncela.ed.gov/educator-support/toolkits/family-toolkit
At the December Board Meeting, an updated budget shortfall of $70.1 million was shared in the First Interim Financial Report.
This number is lower than what was previously shared due to cost savings that have already occurred during the current school year.
The budget shortfall total is a fluid number that will shift as more information is released by the State.