Saturday, January 24, 2015

BLOG - PART 1 Dress As Your Favorite Hero Day!!!

Dress As Your Favorite Hero Day Was So Much Fun!!!!

There were so many more pictures but I couldn't get them all on. I wish I could have because they are all great. Our technology wizards will get them to all play on our hallway media tv.  I hope you enjoy them!

January 26-January 30th A Week Filled With Quality Teaching and Intentional Planning:)

PEER EVALUATIONS - Completing an Observation
Here are some tips that might help those of you doing Peer Evaluations.....
·        Click on the Evaluation Process tab.
·        Click on the Staff Evaluations tab.
·        Find the name of the teacher you are evaluating.  Click on the down arrow by their name and select the plan you are going to be editing. 

·        You do not have to complete the Pre-Observation options.
·        Click on “Edit” beside Formal Observation.
·        This will take you to the Formal Observation screen.  Click “Start New.”
·        Enter the observation details.
·        Complete the observation.
·        Return to the top of the screen and click on “Save Changes.”
·        If you are ready to share the results click on the “Share” button.  A box will appear.  Click on Share.
·        Click on “Save and Exit.”  This will take you to the summary screen.
·        If you have completed the observation click the down arrow under menu and select “Finalize.”  Note that once you select “Finalize” you will not be able to make changes.
·        A “Mark Complete” button should appear.  Click on “Mark Complete.”
·        Click “OK” on the text box that appears.

·        This will return you to the evaluation screen.  Click on “Actions” beside Formal Observation and select “Send.”  You will be able to do this when we are given the rights by HR.  If you have done a peer eval. and can't get it in, then you need rights and I need to let HR know so be sure to shoot me an email to tell me who you have observed if you haven't done so already.  All probationary teachers need a peer eval. It should be completed this week.  Questions?  See me:)

      Report Cards..... Thank you for doing such a great job on your

report cards. Dr. Frazier and I are working this weekend to get them back to you on Monday.  They will go home on Tuesday.

Mark Your Calendars! 

 Magnet Tours All Week...So far there are almost 80 Magnet Applications and Growing. This means we are on an application as either first, second or third choice. Wow!!

Formal Observations will continue this week as will CWTs.
    • 1/27 Report Cards sent home 
    • 1/27 SIT meeting
    • 1/30 Dr. Frazier, Jennifer Hart, Katie McGregor and Steve Friel to Ron Clark Academy
    • 2/3 We will have observers from Central Office in your classrooms conducting Instructional Walks beginning at 1:00. They will be working in teams. Please make sure you are well planned out/have current student work posted inside and outside of your classrooms. EQs/I can statements posted. Rooms are clutter free and student desks are orderly.  These are all actually things that should be done automatically. All holiday displays should be down...yes, there were a few still up.  Please make sure your team's assigned Bulletin Board is up and content based.
    • 2/4 Vision Screening
    • 2/5 Lifetouch Class Pictures (please remind students)
    • 2/6 HEALING FORCE Assembly pre-k-5  at 1:15 
    • 2/6 Go RED Day!!
    • 2/9 Our Very First Dairy-O Night from 5-8.  "Frozen" Theme.  Diggs-Latham will get 10% of the profits and we don't even have to wash tables, so come on out and bring your families or come for dinner with friends.  We will be sending a flier home to parents. This is a PTA event.  Please support us, its important.  We need extra funds for school projects.
    • 2/10 Faculty Meeting (SIOP Training continues)
    • 2/11 Third Early Release Day-Focus on Vertical Alignment
  • 2/12 Arts Council Show NC Musical History 9:00-9:45 Grades 3-5

SO..What is an Instructional Learning Walk?

As you know, on February 3rd, we will have teams visiting our classrooms for Instructional Learning Walks.  The Learning Walk is an instructional support strategy that aligns with our other Instuctional Coordination Work. The format of the walk is below:
  1. The Learning Walk Teams will consist of 3-5 members per team. including the district's Chief Academic Officer, Asst. Superintendent, Principal, Asst. Principal, Program Manager, CC, Academic Coach, other central office personnel.
  2. Team will visit classrooms for 10 minutes each using an identified template
  3. Schools will be asked to identify in advance three instructional foci (must align with our school improvement plan) and two to three related results indicators student or teacher behaviors or artifacts that would be present if the focus is being addressed) that we would like to focus on during the visits.  For example, if a focus is standards-based instruction, an indicator would be posting and referencing the EQ/I Can statement.
  4. The classrooms selected will represent a cross-section of the classes in our school.
  5. Following each classroom visit, teams will have a 5 minute debrief to discuss.
  6. The meeting will conclude with a post walk debrief that includes feedback from the Learning Walk Teams.
We will discuss this at Tuesday's SIT Meeting.

Reflection Questions

Are you keeping up with your PEPs, and progress monitoring?
Very soon you will get information on Beginning to Think about Retentions.  Make sure that you are having Parent Conferences as needed and are communicating with parents.  Report Cards should not be a shock to any parent as you should be communicating throughout the quarter.  Each grade level is supposed to have an additional Parent Engagement Night this year.  It can be done as a grade level or individually. Several of you have already done this.  It could be a writing night, an author's chair, a Fun with Science or Math Night, an informational night or any other creative idea you dream up to engage our parents and help them help their children. Let us know when you will be doing these so we can get them on the calendar.  

Monday, January 19, 2015

Celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.(Week of January 19-23rd)


Diggs-Latham Teachers are Awesome!
WooHoo...We received FOUR grants.  Let's Celebrate!
Congratulations to four Diggs-Latham Teachers who were awarded 2015 Winter Clinard Grants for Innovative Teaching..  
I am so proud of all of you:

Amanda Stevenson
Melissa Baccari
Harrison "Ross" McNeil
Zenyth Thomas

I would also like to acknowledge all of the teachers who also submitted this grant. I am very proud of you as well.  This is a competitive grant.  Great job taking a risk!

FYI...EOQ was Friday, January 16th

Cymbre White!!!!!!

No School on Monday in honor of the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and on Tuesday, as it is a Teacher Workday (RS) Day.

 Make sure you let Ms. Kennedy know what your plans were for the RS day.

  • Grade Verification Reports are due to Mrs. Wolfe by 10:00 am on the January 21st.
  • Report Cards are due to administrators in a folder with your name on it by Friday.  Please be sure to read and re-read reports to catch errors. It is also helpful to read each others. Sometimes others can spot little things that we don't see after we have looked at them a million times:)
  • January 23rd-Dress as your favorite Hero Day! Please talk to the students about what a real hero is and might do. Their hero could be a favorite book character as well. Who is your hero?
  • Our Curriculum Coordinators have a meeting on Friday
  • SIT will meet on January 27th
  • Report Cards go home on January 27th
  • Make sure that you are scheduling conferences with parents and keeping them in the loop of academic progress. Your communication logs should be filling up.  If you are having difficulty contacting a parent, let us know, we have resources such as our home school coordinator and social worker.  Also, please keep PEPs up to date.


Just talked to Brenda Bourne about being able to put in peer evaluations in Evaluation TNL.  If you have not been able to put a peer evaluation name in, send me your names.  I will send them to HR on Tuesday and they will open up the rights.  People asked when these were due, they are due the week January 25th. Many of you have completed them. Once HR assigns you rights you can transfer your paper answers to rubric into system and then sign off on them.  

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Brrrrrr...Another Cold Week Heading Our Way! January 12th-January 16th

Happy Birthday to Diggs-Latham's January Babies!

  • Jimmie Holmes-January 3
  • Gail Hayes-January 5
  • Lisette Prato-January 12th
  • Alberta Perry-January 16th
  • Sidonna Brown-January 17th
  • Taylor Mathis-January 20th
  • Suzanne Asbury-January 27th

2015 Magnet Fair...A Great Success!

As I mentioned in my email Saturday Night, I could not be any prouder of the teamwork, teacher leadership, collaboration and just plain hard work that went into the planning and execution of the 2015 Magnet Fair.  Once again, our students showed great professionalism and talent.  A successful on-stage performance and a display of artistic artifacts and instruments requires a lot of problem-solving, rehearsing and planning.  I realize that and thank all of you for your efforts.  This endeavor also took a lot of volunteerism.  Thank you to everyone who came out to help with public relations, set up, student rehearsal and transportation.  It took a team of people and I thank you all.  We received so many compliments and have even been asked to perform at different venues.  This is pretty remarkable in light of the fact that our specialists only see their students once every six days.  Having the fair right after the holiday break was also a challenge.  I want to thank all classroom teachers with their patience and understanding with rehearsal schedules.  When you see our students perform, you will see why the Arts are so important in their lives.  Balancing Academics and Arts is what we do best!

We will be putting more photos on the website this week!  Stay tuned....

Master Calendar Changes

Keeping up with the master calendar we gave you at the onset of the school year is important.  It is very helpful in planning. On occasion, we need to make adjustments.  We had scheduled a "Dress as your Favorite Hero Day" for this Friday.  We will move that event to the following Friday in light of testing and make-ups.  Talk to your students about what a hero is and does. I am sure Ms. Batten can provide some good books on heroes.  They may choose a hero in their own lives or one from history.  Steer the away from cartoon super heroes.  New Date-Friday, January 23rd.
We will have a lock-down drill and possibly a fire drill this week. We will be very sensitive to testing schedules and not interrupt.

CONGRATULATIONS to both Miss Prato and Miss Stevenson who are newly engaged:)  

Family Affairs

Please keep Miss Megan Shoaf in your prayers.  Her Grandmother, Martha Shoaf passed away earlier in the week and her favorite Aunt, Judy Kaye Foster passed away at Kate B. Reynolds Hospice Center on Friday night.  Megan will need your prayers and support.  Aunt Judy fought a very courageous battle with cancer.

Little Emily is still in Durham and she is also fighting a courageous battle.  She had been released from the hospital only to have to return two more times.  Suzanne Asbury's family continues to need your prayers.  

The flu is going around and I know some of you and/or family members have had it.  They tell me the best defense is to keep washing your hands.  Stress this with the students as well.  Continue to use hand sanitizer.

Blood Bourne Pathogen Training-Mandatory for all staff will be held after school on Tuesday afternoon.  I will be conducting the training and will do my best to keep it to 45 minutes or less. Our entire district is required to have this training as well as the lock-down training we did in December.  If for some reason you did not have the lock-down training, contact me or Dr. Frazier.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Happy New Year! January 5th-9th

Magnet Fair-Saturday, January 10th

Our annual WSFCS Magnet Fair will be held this Saturday.  Our Arts Team has been working very hard to prepare our students for this weekends performance.  We talk to large crowds of people interested in our school and are in need of volunteers to help us promote Diggs-Latham. If you could spare a little time, whether it be only an hour, we certainly could use you!  I will put a sign up sheet outside of my door on a clipboard.

FCAE reminder:

Jackie Pullen is the FCAE (Forsyth County Association Representative). There are AR meetings once a month.  If you need contacts, information, or want to join, please see Jackie.

Technology info:

MS 2013 Suite is free for up to 5 machines for all MS products for students and staff of WSFCS.  
Student instructions are on the WSFCS homepage and can be found at

Staff instructions and details can be found at
Office 365 Plus - Free for WSFCS Student and Teacher Accounts - YouTube
If you are an active WS/FCS student or employee, you are entitled to install Office 365 and Office 2013 on up to five of your personal devices at no charge. ...

fyi:  Technology Service Desk is not available for personal device help.