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School staff: Plan now to raise funds for your school on Give to the Max Day, November 14
Has your school designated an administrator for your fundraising page on GiveMN.org? Each school already has an online fundraising page on the site -- now is the time to personalize it with photos, video and messaging that will really speak to your community. To gain administrative access to your school’s page, contact brandi.cavalletti@spps.org, 651-767-8181.

Not sure how to start? Watch a recorded webinar that was presented just for SPPS schools last week. Also, feel free to contact Alsa Bruno or Leona Thao at schools@givemn.org or 651-325-4281. 

School staff: Apply for scholarships to Dodge Nature Center
Dodge Nature Center has funding for field trips that provide hands-on environmental education experiences for Minnesota students. Scholarships are available for both transportation and the cost of the class.

Resources:

The Dodge Nature Center is scheduling visits beginning November 18, 2013 through February 28, 2014. To schedule classes contact Julie Allen at 651-789-5215 or jallen@dodgenaturecenter.org.

School staff: Encourage students to apply for Prudential Spirit awards
Now through November 5, students in grades 5-12 may apply for Prudential Spirit of Community Awards if they have made meaningful contributions to their communities through volunteer service within the past 12 months. The application is available at http://spirit.prudential.comLearn more.

Principals: Notify parents of "Parents' Right to Know" information
Title I schools are required by law to notify parents of the following information about their children's teachers:

  • Completion of state requirements for licensure and certification
  • Emergency or other provisional status
  • Educational background

If paraprofessionals are serving their child, parents may also ask the paraprofessionals' qualifications.

Principals, if you have not done so already, please post this information on your school's website or send it home with students in written format.

Principals and supervisors: Identify Community Giving coordinators
On November 18, we kick off this year's Community Giving Campaign. The campaign is a way to support the many community organizations that provide services to students and are actively involved in our schools. These partners help us create strong schools and strong communities. We are looking for site coordinators to help make this the most successful campaign ever and show how Saint Paul Public Schools truly are committed to helping the whole child. Please forward the name of your site coordinator to Maureen Hartung atmhartung@communitysharesmn.org by Friday, October 11. View the memo for complete details.

Principals and staff development coordinators: Complete staff development report
We are required to report all professional development activities that occurred both at the district and building levels during the 2012–2013 school year. The reporting deadline is Friday, October 11, 2013. You will be asked to provide data on your student achievement goals, advisory committee membership, staffing, staff development activities, and the impact of these activities on teaching and? learning. For complete instructions, read the memo from Stacey Gray Akyea.

Principals and clerks: Follow new Connect5 guidelines
We know that different school communities respond differently to various communication methods and frequency. But some of our parents are overburdened with automated telephone calls from schools and the district.

Please review new guidelines and new texting features, and share this information with your school's designated Connect 5 messenger.

Principals and teachers: Register for Mill City Museum scholarships
Mill City Museum offers free museum admission and partially subsidized busing for students from qualified public schools. For more information, view the flyer.

Grade 3 teachers: Request free dictionaries
The Saint Paul Chapter of Rotary International will once again be providing a dictionary for every 3rd grade student in Saint Paul Public Schools. Rotary members enjoy being able to deliver the dictionaries in person and meeting the students who benefit from this project. Interested schools should sign up as a group and, if possible, have all 3rd grade students in one area for the presentation. Rotary members will take a few short minutes to explain the Rotary before handing out dictionaries. These dictionaries become the property of the student.

Saint Paul Rotary members are available to make visits to schools October 14 through November 15, 2013.

The deadline to sign up for Rotary presentations and dictionary distribution is Friday, October 11. Email kathy.weyandt@spps.org on or before that date with the following information to sign up:

  • School
  • Contact person
  • Requested date
  • Best time
  • Number of 3rd graders

If you have any questions, contact Kathy Weyandt at 651-767-8373.

Grade 3 teachers: Schedule a free field trip to the Minnesota Zoo for your students
Again this year, Target and Travelers Corporations are sponsoring field trips to the Minnesota Zoo for every 3rd grade student in SPPS. Offered September through March, Monday through Friday, this program provides admission, transportation, lunch, a 45-minute Zoo naturalist-led Zoo Class, time to visit the animal exhibits for all students, and one chaperone for every five students. 

The Zoo Class that your students will experience is Animal Heirs. It was specifically created by SPPS district science specialists and is aligned to state science standards. 

To learn more and to register, please visit the Center website. Contact Jaime Dery at jaime.dery@spps.org or 651-744-7394 with questions.

Teachers: October grant deadlines for arts, professional development, aerospace and more 
Follow links below for information on the following grants due this month, and be sure to watch The Bridge and the CMD website for deadlines, how-to and more. Remember that nearly all proposals must be routed through CMD for approval, so send your completed application at least seven working days in advance to lisa.vandersteur@spps.org.

Due in October:

10/15 - Lowe's Toolbox for Education
10/15 - Music is Revolution Mini-Grant
10/15 - NEA Student Achievement Grants
10/15 - NEA Foundation Learning & Leadership Grant
10/18 - Air Force Association: Aerospace Education
10/31 - CVS Caremark

Teachers: Apply for education scholarships
The purpose of the scholarship fund of the Saint Paul Retired Teachers, Inc. (SPRTI) is to support staff in efforts to provide quality education for the students of Saint Paul Public Schools. Scholarships are paid directly to the college of the recipient’s choice for graduate level coursework. Applications are available at staff.spps.org/scholarships and are due in January 2014. 

iPhone and iPad users: Follow instructions to upgrade to iOS 7
IT services and the Office of Personalized Learning have completed the assessment of iOS 7. iPhone and iPad users are encouraged to update their devices by following the instructions on the IT Services website