Department news

Peer Assistance and Review (PAR) Support available for tenured PreK-12 teachers
Peer Assistance and Review (PAR) is a program of SPPS and the Saint Paul Federation of Teachers to support teachers in developing and refining instructional practices. PAR consulting teachers are able to coach, consult and/or collaborate. This is a reflective and intensive support model based on your individual needs. Requests will be filled based on availability of PAR consulting teachers.

These are some areas where PAR can help teachers:

  • Reach professional goals
  • Adjust to a new school
  • Adjust to teaching a new grade level and/or content area
  • Reflect on instructional practices in the classroom

Register on PD Express with the title PAR: 2015-2016 Tenured Teacher Coaching/Collaboration and then contact PAR Lead, Beth Gregor, at to set up an initial appointment with a PAR consulting teacher.

Equity in Action Series at the Multicultural Resource Center
The Multicultural Resource Center (MRC) will show the film “Cracking the Codes: The System of Racial Inequity,” with facilitated discussions to follow.

The film will be shown in three segments – join us for one or all. View clips from the series.

  • Monday, Nov. 16: Social Determinants: History, Identity & Culture
  • Monday, Nov. 30: Internal Components: Bias, Privilege, Internalized Racism
  • Monday, Dec. 7: External Relationships: Interpersonal, Institutional, Structural

All sessions will be held at the MRC at Washington Technology Magnet from 4:30-6:30 p.m. This series is free and open to the public.

Register on PDExpress under MRC or contact the Multicultural Resource Center at or 651-744-2635.

Community Giving Campaign begins Nov. 16

Each year SPPS staff may elect to donate money from their paychecks to support causes that mean the most to them -- including supporting their own schools. Some choose to give to the United Way, others give to their place of worship, and others give to organizations that serve Saint Paul students. 

Stay tuned for more information in The Bridge about signing up for the Community Giving Campaign -- a fast and convenient way to support our community.

Equity in the classroom series: Unlearning whiteness with Ryan Williams-Virden
Creating equity through culture is a workshop aimed at equipping teachers with the tools to foster culture in themselves and their classrooms. Ryan Williams-Virden is an educator, cultural worker and fellow at the Cultural Wellness Center. Check out his blog at

  • The workshop is 4:30-6:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 10, at the Multicultural Resource Center at Washington Technology Magnet School.
  • Sign up on PD Express

The workshop is open to everyone. Contact with questions.

Information about TD&E summative evaluations of teachers

A summative evaluation of teachers is done once every three years for tenured staff. Staff should have been notified by the end of September if their evaluation is occurring this school year or during the 2016-17 school year.

The evaluation is not based on a single classroom and/or job observation, but instead on multiple instructional and professional experiences. The process brings together all components of Teacher Development & Evaluation (TD&E), and measures every domain on the evaluation tool based on evidence over the three-year cycle. Teachers can have an announced observation before their summative evaluation is complete.

More details about summative evaluations are available on the TD&E website. If you have questions about TD&E, contact Amy Steele at You also can submit comments to the TD&E Feedback page.

Register by Nov. 23 for the 2015 Holiday Weight Challenge
As the weather gets colder and our calendars fill up with holiday events and other obligations, it is important to remember to take care of ourselves. This can be a challenging time of year for maintaining a healthy weight. Join the Holiday Weight Challenge to help you stay on track and avoid the holiday weight gain this season.

The six-week challenge runs Nov. 23 through Jan. 1. Participants will receive weekly emails for motivation and ideas to help them maintain their weight through the holidays. Register for the challenge by Monday, Nov. 23.

If you follow all six weeks of the program, you will be entered into a drawing to win a FitBit. For more information on this program, visit:

SPPS App Store under review, new app approval temporarily suspended
More than 400 apps are available in the SPPS App Store. To ensure the best experience for teachers and students, the SPPS App Store is currently under review for the second semester. The addition of new apps has been temporarily suspended while this review is underway.