Paw Talk: Keys to Excellence

Week of May 2nd-May 9th

Principal's Message

Sorry...it's a long one, but an imporant one! :)


It has been a long year; teachers, students, staff and yes, even your principal is tired! There have been many struggles and times when we all wanted to give up. But, we persevered, which made the struggles worth it. The finish line is in sight and as much as our body and minds would like to ease into that finish line, we have to find a way to finish strong for our students.


We can compare the end of the school year to a track meet. Though I was never a track runner, I had friends who were. I remember they would start off strong to get out in front of the pack. They would have to keep a steady pace throughout the race to keep others from gaining on them or to stay close to the leader of the pack, but the hardest part of the race for them was the last 200 meters. Helping them along the way, were their teammates and family spread out along the track encouraging them to push through, to not let up, and to remind them that they were almost there. I'm sure those 200 meters never got easier-it was a challenge to finish strong, but they knew they had to if they wanted to achieve the desired results for themselves and their team.


We can relate these track experiences to the final months of the school year. We start off strong with a lot of energy, enthusiasm, and high expectations. We continue throughout the year with a steady pace trying not to get too comfortable. And then we approach May and June, our final months of the school year and we must reflect on the following questions: Will we go strong until that last bell rings? Or will we coast across the finish line? Which choice is best for kids? Which choice will you choose? Which choice will WE choose?


Because I know it won't be easy, I am asking all of you to join together to challenge ourselves to commit to teaching 'til the last bell of the school year rings. We can encourage one another by sharing what we are each doing in our classrooms, offices, etc. to show our students and the world that May and June Matter! May and June matter because...

  • It is one more month to help students reach their academic or behavior goals.

  • It is one more month to foster quality relationships in your classroom so students know they can count on you for support.

  • It is one more month for our students to learn the value of using technology as a learning tool.

  • It is one more month for you to try something new to reach a struggling student or inspire your students to step outside their comfort zone.

  • It is one more month to celebrate and build on the successes that have occurred in your classroom this school year.


Let's model for students that every day of the school year matters, even those in May and June. Through our teaching, we can show that learning does not stop as we inch closer to the finish line. We must bring our "best" to the months of May and June. We must strive to use instructional practices that engage all learners. I have witnessed incredible practices happening in our classrooms this year-do not stop now! Use the tools you know or try something new.


For the last 28 days of school, let's rally our strength. Encourage one another. Bring our best every day. Sleep extra hours. Reflect. Get exercise. Our students really need us now, so try to enjoy the time with them and have fun; because one thing is for certain, the year will end-so let's make every moment count. Our students deserve it!


For this week's Haiku discussion, the question is: "What are we each doing in our classrooms, offices, etc. to show our students and the world that May and June Matters?" I hope you find a few minutes this week to share your thoughts and encouragement! We can all use it!

Great "Happenings" this Week

Thumbs Up

-"Thumbs Up" to Sarina for working so hard to leave as much ready for our end of year events as she can before her last day with us :(!

-"Thumbs Up" to our PTA for sponsoring a great Chuck E. Cheese Fundraiser event!

-"Thumbs Up" to our PBIS Team for their hard work in planning our next steps with PBIS implementation!

"Thumbs Up" to our TOA's for their hard work and dedication in collaborating on next year's ELD Time!

"Thumbs Up" to our Pencil, Pen, & Brush Committee, Janice, Ana, Joaquina, & Maritza for organizing the entries for this year's events!

Week at a Glance

Monday, 5/2
  • Welcome Back Tammie Brower!
  • 8:15 IEP: X. Mauricio-Coffey @ Slocum's office
  • 9:15 IEP: N. Carrizales-(Pre-K) Jagodinski @ Slocum's office


Tuesday, 5/3

  • 8:00-10:00 ESL Class @ Rm. 18
  • 2:15 Volunteer Celebration Planning Meeting: Francisco, Okpara & Gomez @ Jessica's office


Wednesday, 5/4

  • *Staff Appreciation Week has been moved to the following week: 5/9-5/13
  • Minimum Day
  • PBIS Friends Lunch
  • 8:00-3:15 Eatinger @ CARE Team meeting
  • 8:00-11:30 District Meeting-Jessica out
  • 8:00-8:20 K-3 Jump Rope for Heart Kickoff Assembly @ Cafeteria
  • 8:30-8:50 4th-6th Jump Rope for Heart Kickoff Assembly @ Cafeteria
  • 12:30-1:30 Paw Squad meeting
  • 12:40-1:25 Teacher Prep Time
  • 1:00-3:00 Library Media Tech meeting-Margie out
  • 1:25-2:50 Grade Level Collaboration


Thursday, 5/5

  • 8:30-3:30 NGSS Training-Jessica out
  • 8:00-10:00 ESL Class @ Rm. 18
  • 9:00-1:45 6th grade Field Trip to Edward Deen museum
  • 10:00-11:15 PBIS Prize Closet; 10:00-Kinder, 10:20-1st & 2nd, 10:40-3rd & 4th, 11:00-5th & 6th
  • 10:00-12:00 District meeting-Ginna out
  • 6:00-9:00 Board Meeting-Jessica & Ginna


Friday, 5/6

  • Sarina's last day!
  • 8:00-1:55 All-day Leadership Meeting @ Rm. 18

Announcements & Looking Ahead

  • Due to unforeseen meetings that have come up and in order to align with the California Day of the Teacher and Classified Appreciation Week, we will celebrate Staff Appreciation Week the week of May 9th. We have a great BBQ luncheon planned for Wednesday, May 11th!

  • With the level of discipline rising as we get closer to the end of the school year, I ask that we please be at our lines at 7:38 a.m. When we have all students out on the blacktop in the morning, it becomes challenging to manage the issues that sometimes take place in the lines. We appreciate your help in being at your lines at the 7:38 a.m. bell to help us prevent any issues while students are in line.

  • With only 28 days left of school to make a great impact, I'd like for all of us (Teachers, Admin, Noon Aides, support staff, etc.) to try to encourage GRR lines by handing out GRR tickets to reinforce line expectations. This will help significantly in reducing the amount of discipline issues that can occur in our lines. If we all commit to consistently using GRR tickets for line expectations, it will send a clear message to students that we are a team and that we all expect great things from them. Feel free to hand out GRR Tickets to students in other classes' lines as well!

  • In your boxes, you will find a large badge holder with GRR tickets in them that you can clip onto your lanyard for easy access to GRR Tickets. When I wear mine, it reminds me to hand out GRR tickets throughout the day and students know that I am ready to give the tickets out! My goal is to hand out at least 10 GRR tickets a day. Having them around my neck and visible, it reminds me that by the end of the day, my badge holder should be empty!


  • The PBIS Team notified me that I made a mistake about how many GRR tickets were needed for the end of the year Golden Ticket event. I apologize for mistakenly telling students they needed 35 tickets. They actually need 40 tickets. Please notify your students of this. I will also add this to our Wednesday morning announcements.


  • Jump Rope for Heart jumping event Wednesday, May 18th.

Happy Birthday to our May Baby!

5/14: Priscilla Cortez, Cafeteria Lead

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