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GSD LogoUpcoming Important Dates

Jul 10 – Young Hacks Academy, GMS All day
Aug 1 – National Night Out, Gorham
Aug 14 – Star 36 Training for Champions at Central Office
Aug 17 – Team Leaders Meeting, GMS Library 9:00 – 2:00 pm
Aug 24 & 25 – Teacher In-Service Days 8:00 am at GMS
Aug 28 – First day of school for 6th graders
Aug 29 – First day of school 7th & 8th graders
Aug 30 – Team Leaders Meeting 2:30
Sep 1 – No School for students & teachers, Labor Day Weekend
Sep 4 – No School Labor Day Holiday
Sep 5 – GMS Open House 6:00 – 7:00 pm
Sep 6 – Faculty Meeting 2:30 pm
Sep 11 – 6th Grade MLTI Night 6:00 – 7:00 pm GMS Auditorium
Sep 12 – 7th Grade MLTI Night 6:00 – 7:00 pm GMS Auditorium
Sep 13 – Content Area Meetings 2:30 pm
Sep 13 – 8th Grade MLTI Night 6:00 – 7:00 pm GMS Auditorium
Sep 15 – School Dance 6:00 – 8:00 pm Gym

Young Hacks Academy

GMS will be hosting the Young Hacks Academy beginning on July 10. Our very Tech Guru, Terri Dawson will be directing Young Hacks as they explore many things technology! Young Hacks will tackle daily missions using Scratch, a user-friendly, visual programming tool that empowers students to quickly start developing their own video games and interactive stories. The challenge is to come up with a project that will not only entertain their friends, but also teach something about important topics that are impacting our local and global community.

Not all of the Young Hacks Academy time will be spent behind a screen. There will some very interesting outdoor games that the Hacks will enjoy that do not include technology. It is summer, after all!

If you know off a young hack who might be interested in attending this Academy, please contact Terri for more information or go to the Young Hacks Web Site.

Star 360 Training

There will be a training for selected individual and Star 360 Champions will attend a training on Star 360 on August 14. The session will begin at 8:30 and run until 3:00 pm. The session will be held at the Central Office.

If you were a “champion” this year, please mark this date in your calendar.

Team Leaders

As we progress toward the full implementation of Proficiency Based Learning, our needs, as a school, have changed. There are so many different committees that have a direct impact on our day-to-day work, communication is so very important. I think that we must adjust our Leadership Team to meet this increased need for complete communication.

Therefore, rather than have grade level representatives, I am seeking to find Content Area Leaders in math, science, social studies, English language arts and Allied Arts. We will also have representatives from Special Education, Support Services, Advisory and Assessment.

This change will increase the membership by only one member. If we are judicious in our selections, we can still achieve grade level representation.

I am including a link to an application form that I would like anyone interested in being considered for a Leadership position to complete. If you are interested, please complete the form and submit it to me no later than July 31. We will make the decisions and notify the entire school on the choices and who their Team Leaders will be for the coming year.

If you apply, please note that our first meeting of the year will be Thursday, August 17 in the GMS Library. We will start at 9:00 am and be done by 2:00. We will order out for lunch.

Budget Items

As you are all aware, our 2017-2018 School budget was approved by the voters earlier this month. So, we do have a budget and we will be make our purchases over the course of the summer.

A couple of items that are very important for everyone to understand, and, yes this is very important and we will not vary from this practice.

  1. We will not be reimbursing anyone for purchases made on your own. This has continued to be one of the exceptions noted by the school district auditors. Exceptions are not good in the audit world and we will not continue to make this part of our practice. So it will be important for you to plan your purchases with me and Susie before you make any purchases.
  2. Many of you submitted requests for items to be included in this year’s budget. This does not mean that it was included. The district build the budget based upon needs. Sometimes, what you perceived as a need, was not perceived as a need at the district level. So, again, you need to check with Susie or me before you make any purchases.
  3. I am trying to judge the use of Ruth’s Recyclables, could you please get back to me, via email, about how often you have visited Ruth’s and a brief idea as to how much of their offerings you use annually.
  4. We cut back on the PaperCut for faculty this past year and we observed a sharp increase in our paper usage. We needed to make additional purchases of paper that we did not plan for last year. I am going to reinstitute the PaperCut for the staff. This doesn’t mean you can’t use paper, it means we are going to keep track of the paper that is used.
  5. Finally, with the new configuration of our Team Leader Group, the Content Area Leader will help administration on developing the needs of the different content areas during the budget development process.

Summer Reading

I have found a couple of really good books to occupy my poolside time that have piqued my interest and I wanted to share with all of you.

The first is titled The End of Average by Todd Rose. Rose has a very interesting history and not one that would have predicted that he would end up as a member of the faculty at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Rose, a native of Utah, dropped out of high school, started and stopped his college education, after receiving his GED. He worked in several dead-end type jobs that he quit after not distinguishing himself in any of them. His take on his success is the basis of this book. Here is hie TEDx video from Sonoma County in 2013.

The second book that has caught my attention in from one of my favorites, Sir Ken Robinson called Creative Schools. It is very easy to hear Sir Ken’s voice come through his writing, which makes the reading quite entertaining.

Both of these books have helped my focus my attention of where are focus needs to be as we work to educate in the 21st Century.

 

Not wanting to be a Killjoy

I hope that I did not offer a black cloud on an otherwise beautiful Summer day by including some of the opening days of school on the calendar at the top of this. I do hope that all of you are enjoying some restful and relaxing days during these early weeks of July. I think I saw someplace, that there is 7 weeks before we start back up. Now, I don’t know if that’s true as I have not counted the days. I am just enjoying the days,as the come, one at a time. I hope you all enjoy them the same way!

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