Sunday, May 19, 2024

Week of May 20th

 UAI Staff News

Volume XI
Issue 33
May 20th, 2024

Teach In Day is Here!
  Monday is our Anti-Bias School-wide Teach In.   Our RPET Team (Annie, Joanna, Sarah R, Danielle I, Jean, Jelissa, Elena, Sue, and Freida) have all worked hard to pull together a day of collective learning and growth.  We are a community united in our pursuit of maximizing inclusivity, controlling implicit bias, and eradicating hate.  

We began this work in the wake of the fallout of the student-led pro-Palestinian protest in the fall.  While our students had a long (and successful) history of leveraging their voices to stand up and speak out agains things like gun-violence, advocate for climate change, and push for women's reproductive rights and Black lives mattering, this last protest in the fall was different.  The fall protest revealed how underprepared we were as a community at large to recognize and address actions that spread hate.

On Monday, we will be leaning into key social emotional skills to build them collaboratively - perspective taking, empathy, self & social awareness - as tools to build our capacity to be more inclusive and more capable of halting the spread of hate in our community.  We are not alone in this work.  We have the Islamic Network Group (ING), who specializes in building peace & unity in communities and supporting communities to develop their capacity for fostering inclusivity, acceptance, and harmony.  With their support and participation in two panels (1 HS and 1 MS), the RPET has worked to provide a rich array of experiences aimed at pushing us all to realize our core values of Rigor, Power, Equity and Joy. 

Equity work is hard work.  It's exhausting. It's fraught with so many perils (which causes LOTS of anxiety and stress), making it so difficult to know what the right move is.

We could certainly step back and do nothing.  That would be easier for all, but in truth it would only really benefit those who already possess privilege.

That is why we push so hard to do this work.  We cannot idly stand by allowing certain members of our community to carry the weight alone.  We all must step forward and bear the load together, united, and pushing towards shared goals.

In order for us to achieve this unity, we need folks to do their part to cultivate and support student buy in.
  • Find your why.  Bias is allowed to run amok when we allow ourselves to be passive and shy away from the hard work that it takes to learn to become aware of and confront the biases that spread hate or privilege specific groups.  Reflect on your own reasons why this work is important to you.  Have that in mind for the day as you lead the activities.  It will help our students follow your lead to fully engage in the work.

  • Show Up for the cause!  Your energy and attitude leads to quality of the experience that our students feel.  If you feel that this equity work is important, they will follow your lead.  Your presence and energy is the best beacon to how kids should engage.

  • Be Prepared.  Please make sure you and your co-facilitators are fully prepared.  
    • Is it crystal clear when folks are taking their preps? (Everyone lunches at same time, professional period IS the teach-in work on Monday)
    • Is it crystal clear who is leading which activity and what the responsibilities are of folks who are not leading (e.g. discipline, teaching assist, helping students stay engaged)
    • Is it crystal clear how you are managing students who engage in disengagement actions (use phone, put head down, work on other work, etc)? 

    • Do you have all the materials and have you tested your audio/video?
    • If you have any questions or uncertainties, please make sure you make time to email/text or powwow at the start of the day to hammer out the details.

  • Post Up Reminders.   In all of your google classrooms, please post up messages in your Google classrooms to remind students about the Teach in and why it is important.  You can use this slide:

Important Upcoming Dates

  • MON  20MAY. 
  • TUE    21MAY. 
    • MS Trout Release Trip - Be Free little fishies!

  • WED  22MAY.
    • UAI Cultural Celebration 5:30-7:30PM

  • THU   23MAY.
    • AP Testing Continues - AP Bio (4 students) @12PM
    • PM Parent Conferences - 5PM-8PM (Remote)
      NOTE - there are no afternoon conferences in May - just Thursday Night
      These conferences are focused exclusively for students who are not yet meeting CEP grade goals (>75 in your classes)
    • Please Make Sure you have contacted families via email, text, or call at least 3 times PRIOR to these meeting and you've logged it into the outreach log

  • FRI    24MAY.
  • MON  27MAY - Memorial Day - NO SCHOOL

  • THU   30MAY -31MAY - Senior Trip (12th Grade)

  • Upcoming June Dates
    • TUE  04JUN - Algebra 1 Regent Exam - no classes 8-12
    • THU 06JUN - Brooklyn Queens PD Day - NO CLASSES
    • MON 10JUN - Math MAP Testing - 2nd & 3rd Period (8-12); 4th/5th Pd (MS)
      • This counts as the final exam for all math classes
    • TUE 11JUN - ELA MAP Testing  - 2nd & 3rd Period (8-12); 4th/5th Pd (MS)
      • This counts as the final exam for all ELA classes
    • WED 12JUN - Science & Spanish Finals (in regular class periods)
    • THU 13JUN - Social Studies, Art, Comp Sci, Health, PE Finals (in regular class periods)
    • FRI 14JUN - Regents Week Begins 
    • MON 17JUN - Eid Al Adha - NO SCHOOL
    • WED 19JUN - Juneteenth - NO SCHOOL
    • MON 24JUN - High School Graduation
    • TUE 25JUN - 8th Grade Stepping Up
    • WED 26JUN - Last Day of School

Announcements & To Dos

Last few weeks of school.  Now is the time to be super clear with both kids and families about where students stand in the class.  PLEASE look at the OUTREACH log.  Make sure you are making outreach to students who are currently failing or will fail your course for the year.  On Thursday, during Family Conferences, you will be expected call ALL of the students's families who are currently failing your course and explain what the student has done to be in this status and what the student can change to pass the course before the end of June.

TO DO:  By 8pm on Thursday, please make sure you have completed and documented in the outreach log for MP4 all outreach to students who failed MP3 and/or are currently failing < MP4.

<Repost> Update GradeBooks.  Please use your prep time this week to make sure your gradebooks are up to date.  We are using SyncGrades gradebooks to track student progress and make plans for summer school and graduation.  At this late stage of the year, we need your help in being super on top of your grading so that we have the most up-to-date information to share with families.

If you have an 8th or 12th grade student in your classes that you believe will ultimately fail, please reach out to Kiri/Annie immediately.  Those families are being met with now to let them know that they will be mandated to summer school and cannot participate in June ceremonies.

If you forget to let Kiri/Annie know, we cannot effectively do our job to prepare families and students.  Your communication is essential.  Please make sure to be on top of your grades!

Save the Dates. As we will every year, we will have training rate per session set aside for all folks who want to come in next year to set up classrooms and get a jump on planning.  Please save the Tue-Thu during the last week of August!

<<REPOST>> Grading Policy Reminder.  As a reminder, our grading policy has shifted a little bit this year.  Check out the "LOWEST FINAL GRADES" tab of the MP4 Outreach Log

CHANGE:  Each marking period is now independent of the others.  So MP4 is a separate grade from MP1, MP2, and MP3.

CHANGE:   We are still annualized, so grades need to be cumulative.  So, the final grade for the school year is an average of all four marking periods. 

SAME:  The lowest failing grade we use (anywhere) is a 55.  We do not use zeros or grades less than 55 to indicate failure.  

NOTE:  It is possible for a student to fail MP4 but pass for the year, depending on how strong their grades were for the other three MPs.  Conversely, if a students failed 3 marking periods, they would have to have very strong MP4 grades to even have a hope of passing.  On the "Lowest Final Grades" tab you can also see the MIN MP4 Grade that students need to pass (>65) for the year.

Per Session Postings

For ALL per session activities, please complete Per Session Application Form

NO New Activities at present

After School Clubs.   If you are interested in running an after school club, please complete THIS form by EOD TUESDAY 26SEP23  AND submit the Per Session Application Form.  Clubs are slated to start next week.  Clubs must have a steady roster of at least 8-10 students per week in order to NOT be cancelled.  Rosters & Attendance lists MUST be submitted with per session time cards.  If your club goes three consecutive weeks with less than 8 students, your club will need to be cancelled (so that we can optimize funds for other uses - so sorry...wish we could fund everything all the time, but unfortunately, we don't have endless sums of funds).  After school sessions can be 3-4PM or 3-4:30PM or 3-5:30PM (teacher's choice)up to three days per week.  So per session hours can range from 1-7.5hrs per week).  Posting Expires 10OCT23.

Please continue to help promote your after school clubs.  Please make sure you are getting a reliable group of at least 10 students.  Help our after school classes get off the ground! - I will be collecting final rosters on 30NOV - you have additional time to recruit!!
Black Student Union - Joanna & Pauline (Rm 411) - Tuesdays & Thursdays 3-4:30
Arts & Crafts Club - Tiffany & Jennifer (Rm 311) - Mon/Tue/Weds - 3-4:15PM
Theater Production Club - Noelle (Rm 315) - Tues/Thurs/Fri - 3-5:30PM
Student Government - Sue, Marsha, Phillan, and Girls' Inc's Kassi (Rm 309) - Tuesdays - 3-4PM
Youth Leadership Council - Kelly  (Rm 307) - Tuesdays 3-4PM
Photo Club - Tom(Rm 205F) - Wednesdays 3-4:30
Cheer - Mary & Lia - Various days depending on Game Days
Anime & Art Club - Adelle & Francis (Rm 409) - Tuesdays & Thursdays 3-5PM
Running Club with Camryn (starts after the marathon is over)
Dance Club - Girls Inc - Room 503
Students Against Racism & Bias Club - Jelissa (Rm 305) Tuesdays & Thursday 3-4PM
Muslim Student Association - Laura (Rm 404) TBD
GSA Club - Amanda - Rm 407

PSAL Supervision.   Posting Expires 10OCT23. PSAL Games are starting up soon. Please submit the Per Session Application Form if you are interested in supervising student spectators.  Hours vary depending on games.  Each game (basketball or volleyball) is usually 4-6pm (is) so each supervision session is about 2hours.  Staff are welcome to sign up for as many games as they'd like.  Please see UAI calendar or PSAL website for game dates. Duties include making sure
students remain safe and orderly during games
only eligible students are admitted to games
all students fully dismiss from the building at the conclusion of the games

CSI Planning & Supervision.   Posting Expires 10OCT23. This posting if for supervision per session to plan, supervise, monitor and coordinate extra improvement efforts to address UAI achievement gaps and improve student performance in target metrics.  Activities include analyzing and reviewing data, planning and executing professional development experiences to improve staff performance, analyzing and editing video footage to improve teacher lesson execution and lesson implementation, and supervising out of school activities - including recruitment, staff planning, and after school activities.  Hours vary per week depending on task and work completed.  Hours range 1-7.5 hours per week.

Classroom SetUp.  All classroom staff are invited to come in to set up and plan for up to 10 hours all together any day this week Monday-Friday 9AM-2PM.  Staff must clock in AND out each day, and cannot be in the building after 2PM.  Please adhere to guidelines set out in the blog post above.  All Staff MUST also apply to this position by completing the "Per Session Application From" - see link above.  [Posted 27AUG23] - Posting CLOSED and JOB is over.

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