SUPERINTENDENTS' MESSAGES 2015

MESSAGES 2015 :: MAY 8, 2015

MAY 8, 2015 - Principals' Biweekly Message

Congratulations to Pitt County’s Pactolus School Principal Steve Lassiter who was named the 2015 Wells Fargo North Carolina Principal of the Year last week. The Pitt County Schools’ principal succeeds Mooresville Middle School (Mooresville Graded Schools) Principal Carrie Tulbert.

Strong principals support their staff and students, and build successful school environments. You can quickly see the effects of a good principal in a school. In Pactolus’ case, Mr. Lassiter makes a special effort to celebrate all of his teachers’ accomplishments and consistently provides positive affirmation to students so that they make good choices and work hard toward academic success. As a result, students and teachers look forward to coming to school each day.

We are so fortunate that we have so many outstanding principals leading our public schools, and realize you are not recognized nearly enough for your accomplishments. Thanks to your leadership, our public schools are great places to teach and to learn. I am grateful for all you do each day for your schools and for North Carolina.

I hope you will join me in congratulating Principal Lassiter along with the entire regional finalist team,

  • Region II: Robin Hamilton, Parsley Elementary (New Hanover County Schools);
  • Region III: Tonya Williams, Sherwood Githens Middle (Durham Public Schools);
  • Region IV: Kim Robertson, Elizabeth Cashwell Elementary (Cumberland County Schools);
  • Region V: Christopher Poston, Pittsboro Elementary (Chatham County Schools);
  • Region VI: Adam Auerbach, Wolf Meadow Elementary (Cabarrus County Schools);
  • Region VII: Shane Mace, East Burke Middle (Burke County Schools); and
  • Region VIII: Scott Rhodes, East Henderson High (Henderson County Schools).

Regards,
June Atkinson


In this Biweekly Principals' Message:

  1. State Board of Education Meeting Highlights
  2. Farewell Message from 2014 NC Principal of the Year
  3. NC “Green Ribbon” School Districts Receive National Award
  4. 2014 NC Teacher Working Conditions Survey Research Brief Available; Student Achievement and Teacher Attrition Analyses
  5. The Professional Educator: An Ethics Guide for North Carolina Teachers
  6. Shattering the Myths of Online and Blended Learning
  7. New Educator Effectiveness Online Modules Released
  8. Summer Opportunities 2015: Facilitate Online Courses


State Board of Education Meeting Highlights

At Wednesday’s State Board of Education meeting, members approved grants that support school nutrition equipment and existing and initial funding of math–science partnerships, the Global-Ready District designation and rubric, the 2015 Textbook Adoption process, and waivers for LEA-wide weather-related calendars, Analysis of Student Work and North Carolina Final Exams. Among the Board’s discussion items were recommendations for changes to policies governing services for children with disabilities, revisions to the Annual Performance Standards under the READY accountability model, and the NC Charter School Advisory Board charter recommendations to grant 18 charter applicants approval to proceed with their planning year in 2015-16.


Farewell Message from 2014 NC Principal of the Year

Take a moment and reflect on the impact that you have on children, please. And I will take a moment to say thank you to each of you for the impact you have had on me. It has been an incredible honor to serve as the Wells Fargo NC Principal of the Year. A fellow principal asked me recently, “What has been your most memorable moment this year?” My response? Meeting the amazing principals across the state of North Carolina. So often, principals get “locked” into the building, and we just don’t have the opportunity to get out to meet others and learn from one another. Selfishly, I feel like I have learned so much from all of you.

In last year’s principal interviews for the state principal of the year, we each were asked essentially, if you could have one wish for your current school, what would it be and why? I recall how I hesitated over that question. I remember asking the interviewer, “One wish? Like … anything? Or does this just deal with resources, or money, or parent involvement?” Aren’t those typical principal questions? She responded, “Anything.” I want you to think about what your answer would be for a moment. What would your one wish for your school be? As the principal, you can truly make that wish come true. Let’s bring it back to the amazing principals I’ve met this year. They are making that wish come true. They are thinking outside of the box and creating an educational environment that is amazing. Make it happen.

And my final thought for you … DuFour and Marzano share, “To become the best leader you can be, you must fall in love with leading, with the purpose you serve, and the people with whom you work in fulfilling that purpose.” Fall in love with your school and your community. Think about the tasks you can accomplish when you are “in love.” You are unstoppable!!

Thank you so much for this opportunity to serve you and our students and NC education on such a different level this year. I will forever be grateful for this honor. Please stay in touch! Twitter @carrietulbert. http://carrietulbert.edublogs.org/. Carrie Tulbert, 2014 Wells Fargo NC Principal of the Year and Principal, Mooresville Middle School, Mooresville Graded Schools


NC “Green Ribbon” School Districts Receive National Award

Congratulations to Cherokee County Schools and Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools for being among 58 schools and 14 districts nationwide to be named 2015 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School Districts Sustainability Awardees. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan made the announcement saying, “U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools are an inspiration and deserve the spotlight for embodying strong examples of innovative learning and civic engagement.” National recipients were honored for their “exemplary efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, promote better health, and ensure efficient effective environmental education, including civics and green career pathways.”


2014 NC Teacher Working Conditions Survey Research Brief Available; Student Achievement and Teacher Attrition Analyses

Teaching conditions do matter in NC! A copy of the final briefing compiled by the New Teacher Center is now available for download at http://www.ncteachingconditions.org/research. The purpose of this report is to help stakeholders better understand the connections between teaching conditions and outcomes of interest in North Carolina. The research brief:

  • links teaching conditions, as measured by the survey, to student achievement and teacher retention outcomes;
  • provides information on response rates to the 2014 survey;
  • tests the relationship between 2014 survey data, and student and teacher outcomes; and
  • summarizes school-level descriptive information.

For more information, contact Yvette Stewart at yvette.stewart@dpi.nc.gov, or Dawn Shephard at dshephard@newteachercenter.org.


The Professional Educator: An Ethics Guide for North Carolina Teachers

State Board policy TCP-C-014 defines the code of ethics for all North Carolina educators to set standards of professional conduct. This new online module reviews these standards for all teachers and serves as an essential tool for all teachers, especially beginning teachers’ and lateral entry teachers’ growth and development. This module, which is available in Home Base, should take approximately 10 hours to complete and is worth 1 CEU on completion. Please contact Geetanjali Soni at geetanjali.soni@dpi.nc.gov for more information.


Shattering the Myths of Online and Blended Learning

Join the North Carolina Virtual Public School online in its professional learning course "Shattering the Myths of Online and Blended Learning." If you have ever questioned the relevance and rigor of online and blended courses in comparison to brick-and-mortar courses, this course is for you. The course will shatter nine myths of online and blended learning and help participants become better digital educators and better digital learners.

This six-week, facilitator-led course runs June 15 – July 26. The course is 30 hours of engagement with 3.0 CEU option upon completion. For registration and pricing details, visit http://www.ncvps.org/index.php/ncvps-professional-learning/. Contact Don Lourcey at don.lourcey@ncpublicschools.gov with questions or comments.


New Educator Effectiveness Online Modules Released

Principals and teachers are encouraged to take advantage of these recently released self-paced modules:

  • The Professional Educator: An Ethics Guide for North Carolina Teachers
. State Board policy TCP-C-014 defines the code of ethics for all North Carolina educators. The purpose of this code of ethics is to set standards of professional conduct. This module reviews these standards for all teachers. This also is an essential tool for beginning teachers’ and lateral entry teachers’ growth and development. This module should take approximately 10 hours to complete and is worth 1 CEU on completion.
  • North Carolina Professional Teacher Standards (updated re-release). The demands of 21st century education have required new roles for teachers in their classrooms and schools. The North Carolina Professional Teaching Standards define what teachers need to know and do to teach students in the 21st century. This module explores the teacher standards, their elements and the rating scales for each element. The module will take approximately 10 hours to complete.
  • Self-Paced Mini Module:

  • Video Recording in the Classroom for Self-Reflection.
Video is a powerful reflection tool for educators and can provide insights into classroom practice. This mini-module will provide insights, techniques and resources to help make your classroom video recordings more successful and effective. Participants can expect to spend around 30-45 minutes in this module.


Summer Opportunities 2015: Facilitated Online Courses

Looking for high-quality professional development and the opportunity to interact with peers? Summer is a great time to take online courses at your own pace. Below is a list of facilitated online courses offered this summer. Registration opens June 1. Courses start June 22. For a full description of the courses and associated CEUs visit https://rt3nc.org/.

  • Digital Literacies in the Classroom (seven weeks) 1.5 CEUs
  • Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science and Technical Subjects: Part 1 (five weeks) 0.5 CEU
  • Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science and Technical Subjects: Part 2 (seven weeks) 1.5 CEUs
  • Introduction to Data Literacy (five weeks) 1 CEU
  • Data Literacy in Action (six weeks) 1.5 CEU
  • Introduction to Universal Design for Learning (four weeks) 1CEU
  • Universal Design for Learning: Part 2 (four weeks): 1 CEU
  • Connecting with our 21st Century Learners (five weeks) 1 CEU
  • North Carolina Professional Teaching Standards (six weeks) 2 CEUs
  • Building and sustaining PD (six weeks) 1 CEU
  • Responsibilities of the 21st Century Educator (seven weeks) 1.0 CEU

These courses are available at no cost to North Carolina educators and will be facilitated by DPI professionals. The courses are completed entirely online. Participants are expected to meet all weekly deadlines in order to receive CEUs. Partial credit will not be given. Registration is limited to 35 participants per course. To register, follow the instructions below to log into Home Base to self-register for a course.

Contact Geetanjali Soni at geetanjali.soni@dpi.nc.gov if you have any questions.