Friday, December 19, 2014

Is It The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year?

English: Screenshot of Jimmy Stewart and Donna...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The energy level in our schools is certainly at its peak as we enter the holiday season and and near our December vacation. While so many of our students are excited about the impending festivities of the holiday season, there are a number of students who do not see this as "the most wonderful time of the year."  There are numerous reasons for students to feel a bit down about this time of year...

I was reminded of this while reading Patricia Polacco's Welcome Comfort, a sweet story about a foster child who never had positive feelings about Christmas until he met a special member of his school's staff. While we cannot replicate the wonder of Comfort's experience in the story, we are fortunate to have the opportunity to provide support for our students when they need it most.

With this in mind,  please look out for those students who are acting up or melting down during "the most wonderful time of the year." The fact of the matter is that for many of these students school is the most stable environment they have in their lives and the thought of being away for a "vacation" is not a vacation at all.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

BPS Evaluation Update - Uploading Evidence to TeachBoost

We are coming close to the midpoint (February 1) in the Educator Evaluation cycle for educators on a 1-year plan (all Non-PTS educators). This means that Non-PTS staff will be receiving their Formative Assessment Reports from their evaluators by February 1. At least two weeks (January 16) prior to this deadline, educators should provide their evaluators with evidence of the following:
  • evidence of family outreach and engagement
  • fulfillment of professional responsibility and growth
  • progress on attaining professional practice and student learning goals.

I have shared two workflow options for moving evidence of meeting the standards of the Massachusetts Model System for Educator Evaluation and one for uploading evidence of attaining professional practice and learning goals.  

Option 1 is a simpler workflow and also may be preferable since any changes that are made to the Google Drive document will be updated automatically if changes are made later after the initial upload to TeachBoost.

Option 2 is the workflow that should be utilized if you are uploading a file from your computer's desktop or hard drive.

Evidence for goals upload is also a pretty simple workflow that allows you to grab evidence from Google Drive or from your computer. 

It is recommended that you continue to use Google Drive for organizing your evidence. Remember that you can save all file types to your drive and that your BPS account provides you unlimited storage.

Option 1 - Upload Evidence by sharing a link from Google Drive

Option 2 - Download from Drive first (and/or Upload from Laptop)

Evidence for goals upload

BHS Faculty Flash Mob Is A Record Breaker - Burlington Blog Update (Edition 13)

The post below is actually a copy of a weekly e-mail that I send to our staff  to promote our Burlington Public Schools Blog which shares the great work going on across our school district. I also try to give a quick technology tip/resource that I think would be useful. It is the 13th post in the series.

Checking in on The Burlington Public Schools Facebook Page

Checking in on the insights from the district Facebook page, we recently had a noteworthy occurrence with a post. A typical post on the page usually garners a reach total in the low hundreds and on rare occasions we have posts that reach over 1,000.  But the BHS flash mob from the pre-Thanksgiving Pep Rally more than tripled the previous high for the reach of a post with over 9,000 people reached!  Let's see who can top that! 

As always, feel free to forward any posts that you would like to share on the BPS Facebook Page, the BPS Blog, as well as photos for the BPS Instagram account.  We scan the district blogs and websites for material, but there are always things that fall through the cracks due to the volume of online sharing across the district. 

Burlington Blog Update 

Here are the latest posts from the BPS Blog:

Only 111 posts to go...

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

You Can Help Stop The Violence Against Young Black Men - YouTube Video of the Week #4

This is a wonderful TEDx Talk that was given in Boston at TEDx Beacon Street.   Here is the description of the video from the site:

"This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. The Department of Justice reports that African Americans are twice as likely as whites to be arrested during a traffic stop, and almost four times as likely to experience the use of force during encounters with the police. And according to the FBI, young black men are 21 times as likely as their white peers to be killed by police. In this talk, cultural innovator Vernā Myers shares some hard truths about racial injustices, (including the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO), and offers us three ways we can uncover our biases, overcome our discomfort and make a difference in the lives of black men and our society as a whole.
For two decades, Vernā and her team of consultants have helped eradicate barriers of race, gender, ethnicity and sexual orientation at elite international law firms, Wall Street powerhouses, and the 10,000 member Fire Department of New York, with the aim of establishing a new, more productive and just status quo."

Sunday, December 7, 2014

My Weekly Diigo Bookmarks (December 7, 2014)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.