Updates from Maisha Rounds: January 22, 2021

Updates from Maisha Rounds: January 22, 2021
Posted on 01/22/2021

Dear FMA,

Smile! We made it through another week. Every day, we get better and stronger as we grow together! Possessing a growth mindset in these ever changing times is essential for steady progress and forward movement. Stay calm, stay strong, and keep on keeping on!

  • Word of the Week: Determination - persevering towards a difficult goal in spite of obstacles (Discuss the word of the week with your scholars!)
  • SEL Skill of the Month: Empathy - feeling or understanding what someone else is feeling (Look for opportunities to show empathy this month!)

Upcoming Dates

  • 1/23 - Materials Pick Up - TOMORROW!
  • 1/25 - Courageous Conversations 6-8PM
  • 1/29 - End of Grading Period
  • 1/29 - Evidence due in TeachPoint
  • 2/1 - Community Meeting 8AM led by 3W
  • 2/5 - Leadership Team Meeting 8:30AM
  • 2/5 - Report Cards Sent Home

Important Links/Deliverables

Celebrations and Shout Outs

  • "Shout out to Coach Evan for being flexible and switching times so my kids could attend Greg Tang.”
  • "Thanks to Ms. Hood-Brown and Daniel for helping coordinate the materials pick up on Saturday!!" - Sarah Figge Hussein, PTO Vice President
  • "Big shout out to the 2nd grade remote learning team - Ms. Navarro, Mr. Chen and Mr. Park. They truly go above and beyond to help all the scholars in the class thrive. We are lucky to have you!" - 2nd grade parent
  • “Special thanks go to Mr. Daniel Skerit for helping out new families/students getting computers as soon as possible. Past couple days I was having a hard time signing in to my CPSD portal in order to enroll my son into the 2nd semester in-person learning & they took care of that for me yesterday. They are such a great human beings. I appreciate them for their support & being very patient with me. I also appreciate you for having them @ FMA." - 1st grade parent
  • Million Minute Marathon Update: To date, we have read 50,488 minutes… AWESOME! Remember to keep reading and recording minutes in this Daily Reading Log. The goal is for every scholar to read at least 30 minutes every day!

Staff Attendance
Please sign in by 9AM every day. Please email Linda, Assistant Principal Deborah, and Principal Maisha by 6:30AM the morning of an unplanned absence. Please also notify members on your team so they're aware.

PD Dates

  • 1/20 - Culturally Responsive Teaching (CRT) 2-3PM
  • 2/10 - Data Driven Instruction (DDI) 2-3PM
  • 3/3 - CRT (2-3PM)
  • 3/31 - DDI (2-3PM)
  • 4/14 - CRT (2-3PM)
  • 5/12 - DDI (2-3PM)

Student Attendance
Chronic absenteeism has fallen to a new low of 4.0%... WOWEE! FMA is now BELOW the district average - Excellent! Keep showing up and showing out!

Report Cards 2/5/21
The grading period ends Jan. 29th and report cards will be sent home on Feb. 5th. The window is open for FMA to begin entering grades in Aspen. Please enter grades and have report cards ready for my review by no later than 8AM on Feb. 4th.

Retention
Research shows retention may have a negative impact on students' long term academic prognosis, including increased behavior problems, school disengagement, and increased high school dropout rates. Moreover, retention rates for black and brown students tend to be significantly higher than other racial and ethnic groups. If you have concerns about a student's progress and are beginning to consider possible retention, please add the report card comment, "Retention possible." If you have not already done so, speak with the family by phone or Zoom, refer the student to RTI, and loop me in. We want to catch our students before they fall between the cracks by proactively putting supports in place as early as possible.

Black History Month
There are many exciting opportunities coming up for Black History Month in February. Let us celebrate the innovation, ingenuity, and contributions of Black Americans during the month of February. Microsoft Launches Immersive Black History Month Experience Free for K-12 Students. Read article here.

Choice Time Resumes Feb. 1st
Choice Time resumes in February as follows:

  • Mondays - FMA Choice Course, 3-3:30PM
  • Tuesdays - Harvard City Step, 3-3:30PM
  • Thursdays - Lesley/CRLS STEAM, 3-3:30PM
  • Fridays - Screen free!, 3-3:30PM

In-person teachers will have Choice Time with their individual classes at school on Mondays from 3-3:30PM. All remote teachers and paras are planning Choice Time activities on Mondays from 3-3:30PM as follows:

  • PK/JK/K: Asynchronous with individual classes
  • K/1/2: May be live or asynchronous with individual classes
  • Grades 3-5: Live, synchronous with a mixture of students from other classes in 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades
  • Remote students in grades 3-5 should choose their Choice Time courses by no later than 9 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28th.

D.E.A.R.
Students should Drop Everything and Read from 3:30-4PM Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays and record their minutes in this reading log.

Family Information Session
If you were unable to attend the FMA Family Information Session last night about the expansion of in-person learning and what to expect during the 2nd semester, you may review this presentation and watch the recording of last night’s session below:

FMA Family Information Session
January 21, 2021 | 6PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
View Zoom Recording >> 
Passcode: UwP0^q$6

School Uniforms
School uniforms are available at Fletcher Maynard Academy. Please contact PTO or fill out this Google form place your order.

Remote Learners Material Pick Up (January 23, 2021 from 11AM-1PM)
The PTO is hosting another materials pick up for all remote learners. All remote learning classes will have items to pick up including headphones/headsets. If you are not able to come during this time, please contact Ms. Hood-Brown or Daniel Skerrit to arrange for another time or way to collect your scholar's learning materials.

PTO Meeting (all families are invited)
February 11, 2021 | 8AM
| Join Google Meeting >>
Phone Numbers
(‪US‬)‪ 1.617.675.4444‬
PIN: ‪336 659 400 4221#‬

Instruments Pick-Up Tomorrow 1/23
PTO will be hosting materials pick-up at FMA tomorrow, January 23rd from 11AM-1PM on the school playground. Instruments for 5th graders will also be available for pick up at that time. Friendly reminder that no families should enter the school building due to Covid-19 health and safety protocols.

We hope you had an enjoyable week and get a chance to relax this weekend! We have some exciting news!!!!

1. CHECK OUT THE SOUNDTRAP COMMERCIAL SHOWCASE!!!!
Students worked really hard making ‘radio’ commercials and it was a joy to listen to all of their creativity!!!

2. INSTRUMENTS ARE FINALLY READY FOR DISTRIBUTION!!!!
Students and Families may begin picking up instruments on Saturday during the PTO Distribution Pickup at FMA. If you are unable to pick up an instrument on Saturday, simply call Linda Barnes at the front desk of FMA to make arrangements for another day!

We apologize for the short notice, but we just received the instruments late last week and have been working extremely hard to visit all of our schools in order to get them home to students!

We emailed students this morning about their instrument selection, so please speak with your child and email the appropriate teachers if you have any questions:

Tony Babecka (Woodwinds - Flute, Clarinet)
Matt Brady (Brass - Trumpet, Trombone)
Richey Tally (Strings - Violin, Viola, Cello)

3. STUDENTS NEED TO TREAT THE INSTRUMENTS WITH CARE AND RESPECT!!!
We had exactly the right number of instruments for every 5th grader we teach in Cambridge. Replacements are in very very very short supply, so please encourage them to handle them with care!!!

Please make sure that they follow the directions on the pages below!!!

5th GRADE INSTRUMENTALS PAGE -- Webpage that has videos and guides for beginning an instrument.

Welcoming New Students and Staff
As we prepare for the expansion of hybrid learning during the 2nd semester, we will be welcoming new and returning students and staff to our building as well as to our remote classrooms. To make everyone feel welcome, remember to show patience and flexibility as they adjust to new procedures and routines. Lend a helping hand. Ask questions. Offer solutions. Assume best intentions. Be generous with praise and careful with criticism. Teachers, please also use planning time to orient new paraprofessionals to your class rules, routines, expectations, and schedules. In-person teachers and paras should be planning together weekly.

Tutoring Plus
We wanted to reach out to let you and the FMA 4th and 5th grade teachers know that we are adding another night of programs on Thursdays from 5:15-7PM and have a few slots left. This new section will start on Thursday, February 4, and all programs will continue to run remotely via Zoom. Within our programs, students take part in a social-emotional learning curriculum (full group) for the first part of the night before transitioning into 1:1 tutoring/mentoring time.

After moving students off our waitlist, we have about 3 slots still open and wanted to check in with you to see if you have any FMA students you would like to refer. If yes, please feel free to put them in touch with us (email, phone: 857.266.6915, online form). We are also happy to reach out to families if you are able to share contact information. It would be great to receive referrals by Wednesday, January 27 to give us time to follow up about paperwork and for listening conferences.

  • Kathryn Fenneman, Tutoring Plus

Community Art Center
I have attached a flyer of our program and the community chat that we will be having. We would like it if you could join us on one of the days as well as invite your families. I will share the link with you below. It will be a time of sharing resources, meeting staff at CAC and connecting.

ARTiculate: Community Chat
Jan. 29, 2021 | 6PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Feb. 12, 2021 | 6PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting >>
Meeting ID: 867 9685 0166
Passcode: 840297
One tap mobile
+13126266799,,86796850166# US (Chicago)
+19292056099,,86796850166# US (New York)

Please download and import the following iCalendar (.ics) files to your calendar system here.

Chromebook Issues
Is your computer glitching? Camera not working? Zoom shutting down randomly? If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, then it sounds like you may need tech support! There are a few steps you can take:

1. Email [email protected] for any technology issues. Often, they are able to resolve issues from afar. If they cannot resolve the issue remotely, they will recommend you to take the second step.
2. Visit the mobile helpdesk at the CRLS building.

ICTS Technical Services Team will be operating the Mobile Helpdesk on the following days/times:
CRLS M-F: 8AM - 4PM, Saturdays: 8AM - 2PM.

The Mobile Helpdesk will be located at CRLS, Felton St. RSTA side of the school in the garage door closest to Broadway, which is the RSTA Graphics Classroom. The garage door will be open during operational hours.

Superintendent’s Updates
Dear CPS Community,
Last night, the Cambridge School Committee approved our plan to expand in-person learning opportunities for students in grades 4-12, which includes continuing a remote learning option for all families.

Please note:

  • Wednesday, January 27 and Wednesday, February 3 are now district-wide professional development days for important school-based staff planning and preparation. There will be NO SCHOOL on those days.
  • We will continue planning to provide expanded in-person learning opportunities beginning on March 1.
  • We will continue to work with the Cambridge Public Health Department to monitor COVID-19 public health conditions and CPS COVID-19 information to make decisions about in-person learning and cases requiring quarantine.

Stay tuned for information from your school next week about your student’s second semester enrollment and schedule. More information about the second semester plans along with COVID-19 resources and protocols can be found online.

We thank the CPS community for your partnership and patience as part of this planning process. We are all in this together.

Sincerely,
Kenneth N. Salim, Ed.D.
Superintendent

Teacher PD Opportunities
We wanted to send a clarification that we will still be moving forward with the last session of the RAN Screener training Screening for Reading Challenges @ CPS: Next Steps, on Wednesday, January 27th from 12:30-3PM. The screening for At Risk Readers is happening next Wednesday, January 27 from 12:30-3:30PM. All of our K, and grade 1 teachers, including our Literacy Interventionists and primary grade Special Educators should have received an invite. I recognize this is now considered a planning for educators.

This 90 minute session will prepare K-1 educators, OSS staff working with those students, Reading Interventionists, and ELA coaches to implement supports based on data from the RAN screenings conducted with students this fall. The session will include time to meet in school teams.

School Committee Meeting - Stay Informed!
N O T I C E
The next Regular Meeting of the School Committee will be held on Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at 6PM, held in and broadcast from the Dr. Henrietta S. Attles Meeting Room, Cambridge Rindge and Latin School, 459 Broadway, Cambridge, for the purpose of discussing any and all business that may properly come before the Committee.

Individuals must sign up in advance to provide public comments for the February 2, 2021 Regular Meeting: The sign-up window is Thursday, January 28, 2021 through Tuesday, February 2, 2021 at 12 Noon (by phone) and 5:30 PM (online).

  • To sign up to call in using the ZOOM app on your computer or mobile device, please visit the School Committee Virtual Meetings page.
  • To sign up to call-in by phone: contact Jenn Dever Wood at 617.349.6620. Until further notice, the Cambridge School Committee will hear public comment virtually.

Meetings will be live-streamed at www.cpsd.us and broadcast on Cambridge Educational Access TV (CEATV) Channel 98/99, as usual.

Dosha E. Beard
Executive Secretary to the School Committee

Sincerely,
Maisha Rounds, Proud Principal

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