Department news

Winter Weather Plan now available
The 2015-16 Winter Weather Plan is now available. New this year, the windchill limit has been adjusted to 35 degrees below zero to better align with the National Weather Service threshold for issuing a wind chill warning.

Cold
School will be canceled if the forecast for 6 a.m. the following morning shows:

  • Windchill below -35 degrees Fahrenheit OR
  • Air Temperature is below -25 degrees Fahrenheit

Decision will be made by 6:30 p.m. the night before a cancellation.

Snow
The decision to cancel school for snow or hazardous driving conditions will continue to be made by 5 a.m. the morning of a cancellation.

Plan professional development day on Nov. 20 for secondary grades
As a reminder Friday, Nov. 20 is a professional development day for secondary grades 6-12. From 7:30 to 10:30 a.m., district departments will be holding sessions at various locations throughout SPPS. These session are directly aligned with Strong Schools Strong Communities 2.0 and School Comprehensive Improvement Plan (SCIP) priorities.

For late start PreK-8 schools:
To ensure that middle school teachers (grades 6-8) in PreK-8 buildings have the same opportunity to co-facilitate and participate in professional development with other secondary colleagues, a stipend will be provided per the contractual workshop rate.

This stipend will compensate teachers for the difference between their school start time and the start time of the professional development sessions. Staff at these K-8 schools who may have conflicts should notify their principal to be excused from the beginning of the PD sessions.

Equity in the Classroom Series: Unlearning Whiteness with Ryan Williams-Virden
Creating Equity through Culture is a workshop aimed at beginning to equip 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 http://ryanwilliamsvirden.com.

  • 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 michelle.bierman@spps.org with questions.

Stay up to date with the Multilingual Learning newsletter
The Nov. 12 issue of the Office of Multilingual Learning newsletter is now available.

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.

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 Beth.Gregor@spps.org 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 mrc@spps.org or 651-744-2635.

Sign Up for the 2015 Holiday Weight Challenge by Nov. 23
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: http://employeewellness.spps.org/holiday_weight_challenge_2.