Leadership Team/Department Head Meeting Minutes 10/11/12
GALILEO ACADEMY OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Leadership Team/Department Heads Meeting
Marcus called the meeting to order at 10:10am.
I. Winter Assembly Date
–Joseph talked about the suggestions of dates for the Winter Assembly. He sent a survey to the staff and he found 45% wanted it to be Dec. 2st and 40% wanted the last day of “Dead Week”—Dec. 14th. He felt there would be more attendance at the Assembly if we did it Dec. 14th and run 2 assemblies. If we did it on Dec. 21st we would probably just have 1 assembly.
–Science does not want to give up teaching time, so David said that his department wants Dec. 21st.
–Stan said that many students do not want to come on Dec. 21st. Even performers may not show up.
–Stan asked about the Holiday Door Decorating Contest. He suggested we reinstate it. He asked for an opinion from the group. He suggested each member check with their departments. The last several times we had the contest there was little participation.
–Ray suggested that anyone could enter, not just homeroom door decorating.
II. Assembly Bell Schedule
–Doug distributed options for a new assembly schedule. He explained the 5 options by moving time around so that the afternoon classes were not 10 minutes longer than the morning classes.
-Option 1 has all classes at 50 minutes, except 3rd. We need to keep lunch from being too late for the cafeteria workers.
–Option 2 has all lunch between the assemblies. This is problematic for those leading groups. This option is out.
–Option 3 shortens the 2nd assembly by 5 minutes.
–Option 4 has all classes 50 minutes and lunch is shortened 5 minutes.
–Option 5 and 6—5 lunch is 40 minutes and 6 lunch is 50 minutes.
–Doug felt Option 1 is the best choice.
–Stan expressed concern if the assemblies go over time. We cannot reduce lunch to less than 40 minutes.
–Lisa asked why the assembly is 4th period. One answer is those in charge have 4th period prep, and 4th period is right before lunch.
–Marcus asked for the next steps. David suggested it go to the departments for their input.
III. Electronic Sign-In
–Doug said he would like to bring this up as mornings are rushed and teachers need time to get set up before 8am. He suggested an electronic sign-in for teachers once they arrive in their rooms.
–Marcus said he would think about it.
–Doug said he could make it so that they say where they are when they sign in.
–Nancy asked if Bettie would be able to see easily which rooms are not covered.
–Ray asked if it is that hard to come in and sign-in in the office.
–Leah said it would be complicated to have Bettie look at the computer and the sign-in book.
–Doug explained that many teachers come in on the other side of the building and it is extra time to come to the Main Office and sign-in.
–Stan talked about when he injured his back and how he did it.
–Joseph would like to see something that was a card swipe several places in the building. David said there were logistical issues with this. He suggested a spreadsheet where everyone could put their initials in.
–Marcus said the administration would get back to the group.
IV. Parking Enhancements
–Doug suggested a parabolic mirror, which would help see if there are parking places available and we could see students coming.
–He also suggested that the gate have an AA2 key on it so that teachers could go in and out.
–Ethan said it is illegal to have the area locked.
–Doug suggested a push bar to get out.
–Katie said that area is locked during the school day so that outside visitors cannot enter that way. Rebecca opens it at lunchtime for access to the field.
–Marcus said we would do a little research. The parabolic mirror is a good idea.
–Ethan said we need 2 of them.
–Katie asked Doug to find online what we need and she will make it work.
–Stan addressed the problems that happen with how people park and also on game days people come and block others in.
–Nancy said they would talk to security and have them help.
V. Master Schedule
–Nancy said she was called downtown yesterday to learn about Synergy, which will be the new SIS. It will begin in the summer, but training will be in the Spring. Deadlines will be moved up to earlier dates and this will make for a smoother transition in Fall 2014 and schedules would be set by May 30th. Teachers going off for summer break would know what they are teaching exactly in the fall.
–Nancy spoke of dates the district would use for enrollment as well as how many of each group of students we would have.
–We would create on the old SIS system and then the district will convert to Synergy.
–Questions followed—concerning IT support, why can’t we build on Synergy, etc.
–Doug asked about the advantages of Synergy. Nancy said the system will list ideal schedules and Nancy won’t have to figure it out. It will have online attendance now so there will be no more attendance strips.
–There will be phone applications
–Katie said that SIS is a “stands alone” system used only by SFUSD.
–Katie also said Synergy is also a company that is nation wide.
–David said it is web based and teachers have more access to records. Teachers would see immediately who was absent, excused, etc.
–Nancy said it is like a college system and students will be able to register for classes on line. San Diego and Long Beach School Districts use Synergy. Those districts are 3 times as large as SFUSD.
–One concern is that not every classroom has a computer, so attendance could be an issue. The union is looking into this.
–Nancy is willing to start early.
–Michelle asked how this would affect the counselors when they come into the classrooms to register students.
–Doug said we would be making placement decisions based on just the fall classes.
–Members asked about training and when it would happen.
–Michelle said that there would still be mass changes in the Fall.
–Nancy said this is a huge transition but one that needs to happen. Nancy said they have been planning this for 2-3 years.
–David went to selection meetings on this and he said the fast transition is the best.
VI. College Counselor
–We are going to get a counselor to help with those students who are in the middle. This is being paid for with extra money from the district. His name is Donald Harper. He will make sure they are focused. He will focus on Seniors and Juniors and then in the Spring with the lower classmen.
–Stan explained the financing that the SSC authorized.
–Katie said this is a Classified Position and not a counselor.
–This counselor will be working with targeted students.
Department Head Agenda
–October 31st will be CLA, CFA and Data Analysis for CPT.
–Marcus said he had Social Studies and World Languages. He is waiting for the others. Please email or turn in paper assessments to Lisa.
–Every teacher should be giving some form of CFA’s between now and October 31st—Stan said their CFAs were done as the Final Exam.
–David said they agreed to just give the exam knowing that some of the students will not know all of the information.
–Department discussions will happen on October 31st.
–Part I was to make the assessments. Part II will involve Data Director.
–Marcus gave a demonstration of Data Director.
–Leah asked how much time they would get to enter data. David said last year the administration was going to do it for the teachers. Marcus said he could do it.
–Joseph asked about VPA and PE where the assessments are not multiple-choice questions. Lisa will look into it.
–Marcus said he inputted a 30-question test in 13 minutes.
–Marcus explained the scanning process.
II. Back to School Night
–It is tonight and Nancy said she has not heard from too many who can’t come.
–Michelle wanted to know if there would be an announcement at the end of 6th period for parents to get the report cards.
–Nancy said parents will register, fill out lunch applications, tour the Resource Fair, then go to the Auditorium, then Classroom Visits, then the Report Cards. There are student helpers. Report Cards will be given out in the Van Ness Gym.
–Resource Fair Tables will be in the Main Hallway.
–School Loop training will be in 260.
III. College Fair
–October 12th. Seniors are expected to go and will be back 5th period.
–Joseph asked if Seniors are excused tomorrow. They need a Field Trip Form.
–A list of students who are not going will be given out tomorrow.
–October 17th. All 10th graders and 60 11th graders.
–Michelle said they are giving their CLA’s next week and this is an issue. They like to do it on a block day.
–Lisa can get an extension on the CLA.
–Stan has a concern about using his room on 10/17 for testing, when he had a lab planned. Nancy said most of his students would be taking the PSAT.
–Nancy said it was challenging scheduling the rooms.
V. Peer Observations
–The UBC said they would be interested in bringing these back. She asked everyone to think about who they would like to observe, etc. Lisa passed around a sign-up sheet. She hoped the newer teachers could observe some of the more experienced teachers.
–Lisa asked them to take this to their department meetings.
–Lisa brought some examples of the tools for Peer Observations and she passed them out. She wants input from the group.
–David said a mini National Teaching Standards would be helpful.
–Joseph suggested printing it on legal size paper with the tear off on the top.
–Michelle discussed the English Dept. form that the administration uses.
–Stan asked if it was required that everyone use the same form.
–The administration will not see what the teachers write to each other.
–What did you like? What can I do better? and What I didn’t like are 3 areas Joseph mentioned.
–Michelle suggested keeping criticism or dislikes off the form.
–Doug asked if the Math Dept. could devise a form and the answer is Yes as long as there is a tear-off portion at the top.
–Lisa distributed more information for members to check.
–District and state all have different definitions for accommodations and modifications.
–CMA is considered a modified exam. Katie has the clarifications
Meeting adjourned at 11:45am.