Department News

Personalized Learning updates: iPads and MacBooks for staff, Moodle Upgrade and More
Staff who qualify for iPads or MacBooks should have received an invitation to attend a handout event on Sept. 1. This will be the only handout opportunity until later in the fall due to the resources needed for student iPad handouts. Staff who have questions about their eligibility should check with their site administrators who have access to the criteria list. If you believe that you are eligible, but did not make the list, please submit an an IT service ticket.

Here are more back-to-school updates from the Office of Personalized Learning:

New school bus discipline referral form
Transportation, PBIS and Campus staff have updated the School Bus Discipline Referral Form.

By simplifying the form, it is now aligned with Campus behavior fields and allows the Transportation Department to better track bus behavior issues. Please record all school bus discipline issues in Campus instead of the several other methods that have been used in the past.

Human Resources rolls out extended payroll information, including schedule and deadlines
To better serve employees, payroll has expanded the information provided to employees, including a payroll schedule that includes pay period end dates, timesheet due dates and pay date information. In addition, deadlines are clearly defined, payroll forms have been improved, and employees now have a designated payroll contact who handles their pay.

All new information for 2015-16 is accessible on the payroll website.

All staff: 'I Am SPPS' campaign launches on social media, SPPS website
A new campaign called “I am SPPS” is launching this week on the SPPS Facebook, Twitter and www.spps.org/iamspps. The campaign, inspired by the wildly popular Humans of New York project, will share quotes from SPPS students, staff, families and supporters. Topics will vary but could range from personal stories to experiences at Saint Paul Public Schools.

A staffer from the Office of Communications, Marketing and Development will contact school principals and department leaders for recommendations on who to feature in the campaign. Photos and quotes will be posted on Facebook and Twitter, as well as archived on spps.org/iamspps.

For 2nd Year, Nutrition Services highlights local food with 'Minnesota Thursdays'
The Nutrition Services program “Minnesota Thursdays” will return for a second year to highlight seasonal, Minnesota-grown ingredients. The program, which will occur the first Thursday of each month in our schools, is a partnership between Saint Paul Public Schools and Minneapolis Public Schools.

The first Minnesota Thursday menu will be offered on Sept. 10 and will feature ingredients sourced within a 200-mile radius of the Twin Cities.

The program highlights local farmers, ranchers and companies, and teaches students about local food, nutrition and agriculture while supporting the local economy. The Minnesota Thursday initiative is part of our Farm to School program.

Find more information about Minnesota Thursdays and the Farm to School program on our website at ns.spps.org or view our interactive menus at spps.nutrislice.com.

PLC building contact's quarterly meeting dates announced
Each building has a Professional Learning Community (PLC) contact person who will attend quarterly meetings. The PLC Building Contact will:

  • Be the main point of contact for questions and disseminate information to the school-based leadership team
  • Update school staff on PLC expectations and best practices
  • Collaborate with other Building PLC Contacts and district leadership throughout the year at PLC Building Contact quarterly meetings

Building PLC Contact quarterly meeting dates are:

  • Thursday, Sept. 17 from 7:30-9 a.m or 3-4:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Nov. 5 from 7:30-9 a.m or 3-4:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Jan. 7 from 7:30-9 a.m or 3-4:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, March 3 from 7:30-9 a.m or 3-4:30 p.m.

Building PLC Contacts should register on PDExpress for TDE: PLC Building Contact Quarterly Meetings (TDE302 - SY15-16).

Staff meal account information now available at any school
All staff meal account information is now accessible at any SPPS school. As a reminder, the lunch PIN number is 99 + your employee ID number.

Use the School Marketing Toolkit to promote your school
The School Marketing Toolkit is open to all SPPS staff to promote your school's academics, events and programs. Student photos and customizable flyers, newsletters, postcards and more are available.

Just choose a template, customize it, add your school logo and you're done. The School Marketing Toolkit is updated regularly throughout the school year.

If you have questions, please contact pepe.barton@spps.org.

Meal prices for 2015-16 school year
Meal price increases were approved in April 2015 by the SPPS Board of Education. The increase is required by the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act. Each year, SPPS is required to review our paid lunches to ensure we meet the USDA guidelines.

SPPS continues to provide breakfast at no cost for all students. Lunch will be provided to all students at no cost in 39 schools under the Community Eligibility Program. For a list of schools, visit ns.spps.org.

Deadline approaching: Save money on healthcare in 2016
The deadline to complete your Wellness Initiative is Friday, Oct. 23. You could save hundreds or even thousands of dollars by completing these steps:

  1. Health Assessment: You and your covered spouse must complete the online Health Assessment. For instructions on completing the health assessment, visit employeewellness.spps.org/assessment.
  2. Wellness Program: You and your covered spouse must complete a wellness program. For Wellness Program options, visit employeewellness.spps.org/programs.
  3. Save Money: If you and your covered spouse complete these two steps by Friday, October 23, you will receive the healthcare savings in 2016. For specific amounts, click here.

Not sure if you completed all the steps? Check your Wellness Initiative status by visiting healthpartners.com/wellbeing or by contacting Health Partners Customer Service at 952-883-7800.

What did you do to Live Well this summer?
Each day you can make small decisions to live a healthier life. But these small decisions start to add up over time and can include things like:

  • Choosing to take the stairs over the elevator
  • Parking farther away
  • Drinking water instead of a high-calorie drink
  • Joining a gym

At SPPS we know our staff makes the decision to Live Well every day. We want to hear what you did to Live Well this summer! Submit your testimonial and you’ll be entered in a drawing for prizes, including a FitBit, Co-op Market gift cards and a gift card to an athletic store.

  • Email district.wellness@spps.org
  • Provide your testimonial of what you did to Live Well this summer
  • If you have one available, submit a photo of you Living Well

If you have questions, contact Brian Neppl at 651-767-8154 or district.wellness@spps.org.