(from Andy Haluska)
The elementary report card committee provided Mr. Schultz with recommendations. These recommendations include designing an electronic report card system with the help of Josh Merlis (programming) and Christy Multer (design and look). The committee also recommended ways to provide support, staff development, security as well as input for "window" for inputting grades. Mr. Schultz has responded to the recommendations and will be sending them out to the committee members in the near future. Teachers will be able to use half of the staff development day on Oct. 20 to enter grades into the system. The committee will meet towards the end of the year to review the electronic report card and make necessary changes.
(minutes e-mailed by Andy Haluska)
The elementary report card committee is at the point where an electronic draft is being created by Josh Merlis. Josh will be working on putting our report card into an electronic format over the holiday break. After the Report Card Committee reviews the electronic draft, we will have an informative meeting to share the draft with all interested teachers and administrators. We will explain the draft in hopes of clarifying confusion, and will also seek feedback and suggestions for improvement.
Please let me know if you are interested in having a paper copy of the current report card draft for your grade level.
Please look for an email outlining the times and places for these meetings.
Andrew Haluska and Tim Sinnenberg
(minutes e-mailed by Andy Haluska)
Report Card Meeting
Monday, November 26, 2007
Present: Laura Barry, Mike Danis, Star Gaworecki, Amy Bennice, Judy Madej, Andy Haluska, Tim Sinnenberg, Peter Sawyer, Kathy Fernau and Alison Donofrio
1. Including the special area report card as part of a two-sided document: The committee would like to take a look at the draft copy completed by Josh Merlis to better determine if the special area report card should be part of a two-sided document rather than another sheet of paper.
2. The committee will need to determine which professionals have access to the report cards. Some staff members will be able to make changes to the report card, and others may be a "read-only" user.
3. Printing options: Some options to consider include:
a. having a central printer in each elementary building
b. having teachers print to their own printer using special paper
c. allowing teachers to print at a photo-copier in the Main Office
4. Time Line: Josh Merlis will be putting together a draft during the holiday vacation. He will have a copy for the committee to review in January or February. The committee will then send out draft copies to our constituent groups. Parent input will be collected at this time. It may be from a PTA meeting, sending out a survey to parents, or through a survey sent to a sample of the parent population. The committee would like to finalize the report card recommendations by April, 2008, so that a pilot can occur in June, 2008, for designated teachers.
5. Pilot of the report card: In order to determine if there are any technical glitches, the committee would like to pilot the report cards in June, 2008. Each committee member would use the newly revised report card with their students. We will need to consider parent communication by the district to explain the pilot. Also, some special area teachers may need some staff development so that they can input grades for teachers doing the pilot.
6. Staff Development: Some ideas for staff development include:
a. October conference day
b. Turn-key trainers (possibly committee members)- would train all staff, similar to the SASI approach
c. Summer curriculum- time to train the turn-key trainers
d. New teacher orientation- new staff given information about the report cards
e. Conferences- teachers will go over the new report cards with parents
f. Staff meetings in June- committee members can share information with all elementary staff members
g. Back to School Nights- information shared with families
Another idea for Gail Venezio to consider is to offer staff development training on how best to organize a parent/teacher conference to maximize communication.
7. The District Language Arts Committee made a recommendation to the Report Card Committee about the Grade 3-5 report card. The LA Committee would like to have spelling continue as its own category as well as to include spelling with the writing conventions section of the report card. There was much discussion about this topic. It was decided to keep spelling with the writing conventions portion of the report card rather than its own category. Feedback will be collected from constituent groups to gather more input on this topic.
8. Trimester versus Quarterly Grading: The Report Card Committee will send a letter to Jim Schultz to consider letting our committee make a recommendation about this topic.
(e-mail from Andy Haluska)
Over the last few weeks, Tim and I have met with Brian Netkin, Jim Schultz, Rick Evans, and Josh Merlis and have reported to the district SASI committee. As a committee, we have done an outstanding job getting teacher input to inform drafts of report cards that will be used for the 2008-2009 school year. Tim and I spoke to Jim and Rick about the direction we need to go with these drafts. Brian Netkin is in the process of speaking with SASI technicians about their ability to create our drafts as a template. Brian is not too confident that they will be able to do this. Tim and I will also be visiting Bethlehem this summer to see how they use SASI at the elementary level (anyone else interested in going, please let Tim or I know). Superintendent Schultz is allowing us to look for alternative methods to create our report cards. We will be seeking the guidance of Josh Merlis, a high school teacher who also does computer programming work for the district. We are hoping that he can create a template that is compatible with SASI. The district SASI committee would like to see us create a program where grades are entered into SASI. From there, the data would be extracted and put into the templates that have been created. In September, our committee will meet again. At that meeting, we will talk about our visit to Bethlehem, create a plan to gather input from parents, share information that Josh and Brian have gathered and create a project timeline for the 2007-2008 school year.
Tim and I would like to thank you for all of your hard work and dedication. We look forward to working with you next year. We believe that we are on the correct path to creating a report card that is manageable for teachers and provides the information that our parents need. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please do not hesitate to send me an email. Have a great summer. You will hear from us in early September.
I wanted to take a few minutes to update Teachers Association members on the progress of the elementary report cards. We have just about finished "paper" drafts of the report cards. There is going to be a kindergarten, first, second, and grades 3-5 report card. There will be a separate special area report card. Tim Sinnenberg and I met with Brain Netkin yesterday to share the drafts and see if we could tie the elementary reports cards into SASI. Brian asked many questions and had to speak with the people at SASI to see if some of the things we would like to do are possible. We are in a holding pattern until Brian gets back to us. It is extremely important to the committee that the report cards fit the needs of the district, teachers and parents. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please do not hesitate to ask me. I may not know the answer, but will find out as much information as possible and get back to you. Thanks for all the input and support.Andrew Haluska
3rd grade teacher
Charlton Heights Elementary school