Department news and announcements

Learning Platform coming to a school near you!
School Comprehensive Improvement Plan (SCIP) planning for personalized learning starts soon for all schools, and select classrooms will begin using the Learning Platform in fall 2014. Download the schedule to find out when your classroom or school will be affected. Learn more about the learning platform on the Personalized Learning website or review the frequently asked questions.

Scholarships available for GRAMMY Camp St. Paul
GRAMMY Camp is a residential eight-day music immersion experience offered to talented high school music students June 13-21. Campers can choose from a variety of music careers, known as “tracks,” such as audio engineering; electronic music production; music journalism; video production; music business; songwriting; and performance for bass, drums, guitar, keyboard, vocals, woodwinds and strings. All tracks are taught by GRAMMY award-winning faculty and generous scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.

McNally Smith College of Music is the site of the 2014 GRAMMY Camp. Learn more on the GRAMMY Camp St. Paul website, and contact Jan Spencer de Gutiérrez at jan.spencer@spps.org with questions.

Farmer Nelson and “Perfect” the Pig available for presentations
Farmer Nelson and “Perfect” the Pig will be available to give presentations to third grade classrooms from March 4 through March 21, 2014. Farmer Nelson has been visiting Saint Paul Public Schools for twenty years to teach students about agriculture and livestock. The Pork Producers of Minnesota have established a grant that allows him to offer this educational program. The classroom presentation lasts 45 minutes and includes a short video. If you are interested in scheduling one for your students, register online. For more information, please contact Roxie Laugeson at 651-325-2670 or email roxie.laugeson@spps.org.

Used furniture auction begins February 20
Used school district furniture will be available for auction February 20 through February 25. To view the items and submit a bid, visit the Auction Masters website using access code #519. If you have questions, please contact the Facilities One-Stop phone number at 651-744-1800.

Coming soon: Sound testing in secondary schools
In the coming weeks and through the rest of the school year, the Environmental Services Group (ESG) will visit middle and high schools to conduct sound tests for the Hearing Conservation Program.

ESG will measure sound levels and equipment noise levels in areas such as band/music rooms, cafeterias and shop rooms. If sound levels are above normal, an action plan for affected individuals will be developed that may include protective gear or yearly audiograms.

In the fall, ESG will finish tests at any remaining secondary schools and begin testing elementary schools.

If you have questions, please contact Patrick Kenneally at patrick.kenneally@spps.org or the Facilities One-Stop phone number at 651-744-1800.

Need childcare for spring break? Discovery Club is here for you!
Discovery Club's non-school day childcare is available to all SPPS employees, even if your child does not attend SPPS schools. Registration is now open at five non-school day locations: Battle Creek, EXPO, J.J. Hill, Rondo, and St. Anthony Park. The fee is $42 per day per child (plus the $15 registration fee, good through summer 2014) and includes breakfast, a snack and field trips. Children must bring a bag lunch. Non-school day childcare is available from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the following dates:

Non-school day Register by

March 3

February 24

March 21

March 14

March 31-April 4
(Spring Break)

March 24

Visit discoveryclub.spps.org or call 651-632-3793 to create an account.

No-cost tours available at Alexander Ramsey House
The Alexander Ramsey House has tours available for SPPS classes at no cost. Schools can also be reimbursed for their transportation costs.

Alexander Ramsey was the first Territorial Governor of Minnesota and the second State Governor. During the tour, museum educators lead students and their teachers through the 1872 mansion and bring the Ramsey family to life by using original family artifacts, letters and journal entries. This opportunity is designed to help students connect with the people, places, and history of St. Paul. Learn more at www.mnhs.org/ramseyhouse.

Tours are available by appointment Monday through Friday in March, April, May, and early June. Specific tour topics can be requested with advance notice. To make your reservation or get more information, please call 651-296-8719 and ask for the site supervisor, Ron Grogg. You can also send an email to ron.grogg@mnhs.org.

Blood drive at 345 Plato
On Friday, February 14, the Office of Teaching, Learning and Leading is celebrating love for humanity by hosting a Blood Drive from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 345 Plato. If you want to share the love, please go to the Red Cross Donation website and register for a specific time slot and enter sponsor code 0177627.

We promise liveliness and gaiety so please join us as we celebrate the chance to help save a life and join together as a community. If you have trouble registering please contact Laurie Brazman at Laurie.Brazman@spps.org. If you'd rather just walk in, we won't turn you away.