Action items

Staff: Register to Participate in Share the Love project with your students
SPPS staff should consider participating in the Share the Love project with your students. Share the Love launched as a pilot program in 2015 with 700 SPPS students participating. We are excited to see this program grow in 2016 and look forward to working with you.

The Share the Love program is designed to deepen young people's understanding of what it means to build strong communities. Students begin with team-building activities focused on learning more about each other. They work together to identify people in their schools and neighborhoods who have helped them be successful or who they want to support with a postive message. The lesson ends with making pop-up thank you cards using craft supplies.

In 2015, students chose to deliver cards to local Meals on Wheels workers, firefighters, law enforcement officers and veterans.

Materials will be delivered the first week in February. Materials will include cardstock, construction paper, craft supplies, Share the Love stickers and a pre-paid USPS box. If you have questions, contact Lisa Crocker at lisa.crocker@spps.org.

Staff: Review student records and privacy rights
SPPS families will receive information this week notifying them of their rights under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act. Families will also receive information regarding what SPPS considers directory (or public) information.

For more information, contact Student Records at 651-632-3764.

Staff: Learn how Steve Jobs would use Design Thinking to create community impact
At Apple, creativity and innovation do not come by accident. As part of the company's design mindset, they are practices that predictably create wildly successful products. What if we used the same innovation approach to address community needs?

Participants in this hands-on professional development session will focus on how design thinking, service learning and entrepreneurship can be integrated and applied across in-school curriculum, and during out-of-school time and youth leadership initiatives.

Participants will explore how empathy, framing problems, creativity, risk-taking and a maker mentality can prepare youth to thrive, contribute and innovate locally and globally. Teachers, youth workers and youth are encouraged to attend this session.

  • 12:30-3:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 29 in the Multicultural Resource Center at Washington Technology Magnet

SPPS staff can register through PDExpress. Youth and non-staff adults may register online or by calling 651-487-7383.

Teachers: Free Winter Carnival field trip opportunity
Third and fourth grade students have the opportunity for a free Saint Paul Winter Carnival experience thanks to a partnership between SPPS Community Education and the Saint Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation. Classes will receive busing to the Landmark Center in downtown Saint Paul to watch a Fire and Ice presentation, learn about Winter Carnival history and see the celebration firsthand.

Available dates are Wednesday-Friday, Feb. 3-5. Programs begin at 10 a.m. and last about an hour. Space is limited. If you have questions, contact kathryn.mommaerts@spps.org.

Staff: Donate to Project REACH Coat and Blanket Drive through Jan. 15
Project REACH is hosting its sixth annual Coat and Blanket Drive now through Jan. 15. Donate new coats of any size, blankets and linens to your school office or the SPPS Office of Title I Federal Programs, 1021 Marion St. Project REACH is an SPPS program that serves families in our school district who are experiencing homelessness.