School Leadership Team Meeting Minutes

Thursday, April 28, 2022 at 6:00PM

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Kristina Silvagni, Barbara Dean, Marc Ciprut, Jessica Russo, Balvinder Deonarine, Kimberly Xavier, Denise Bucaoto, Melissa-Ann Phillip

 Meeting Called to Order 

Review minutes from last SLT meeting:

The minutes from the previous meeting were read and approved by the team. 

Review of SLT Charter:

Thank you to all members and observers for respecting and always following the charter. 

New Business

CEP Work- Progress Reporting Tool, Reviewing Action Plan 

The main work of the SLT is to work on our CEP. We always review our goals and action plan to assess where we are in making progress towards meeting our June goals.

In March, the SLT did a lot of work analyzing and reviewing data from our MOY assessments for acadience and iReady across the grades. We reviewed and discussed the data from different sub-groups such as SWD (Students with disabilities) and ELL (English Language Learner) populations.

Ms. LaPorte reviewed the data that was collected and input into iPlan Portal. Based on our analysis, we are meeting our benchmark goals in both ELA and Math.

Some adjustments that were made to our action plan for ELA was to build reading stamina and inter-visitations to create shared school-wide beliefs and practices around shared reading. Some adjustments to close the gap within our SWD and ELL learners included more individualized plans for those students for additional support. Some other adjustments included visual support, total physical response (TPR) activities (act it out), providing sentence stems (starters/prompts) and access to grade leveled texts.

Some adjustments made to our math CEP goals were activities to build fact fluency, supporting families with new math strategies, and teacher training in math intervention programs. Centers and math games can also be utilized to build discussion and fluency. Math vocabulary can become more of a focus to continue to build discussions and build vocabulary in different content areas. Games and mathematical practices can help strengthen those skills.

Centers are very present in Kindergarten learning. Games and activities help strengthen skills in various math topics. Center learning is a district-wide initiative and the goal is to bring centers to upper grades as well to support student engagement. In our school, centers and games are already present in the upper grades. Centers allow for concrete learning, discussions, and opportunities for students to engage with their learning.

We are currently not on track for our chronic absenteeism goal. We discussed that COVID procedures and protocols are likely causing attendance to drop. Families are encouraged to keep students home if they don’t feel well. We are trying to maintain the health and safety of our school community. During attendance meetings, student attendance concerns are addressed and outreach is made to identify the root causes for absences. In analyzing the data, there is a large number of students that are slightly below the 90% attendance mark. Outreach is made by the attendance coordinator to families who are well below the 90% mark.

We are on track and above our supportive environment goal for June. Upon reflection, we believe that starting our school year with the 9 days of love plan helped foster relationships in the classroom and build school community. The focus on SEL throughout the year across grades also supported the students to help build relationships in the school community. We learned about each child and their background through surveys and projects and used this knowledge to make connections. This helped build home school relationships and connections with students and families. This work is helpful to build a culturally responsive learning environment. We strive for everyone to feel loved, valued, and respected. Ms. LaPorte shared how some families have reached out to teachers and expressed interest in teaching the class about their culture, traditions, holiday celebrations, their career, etc. A suggestion would be to share that families can reach out to teachers to teach about their jobs, culture, etc. to the class. These outreaches and connections are welcomed. 

2022-2023 CEP (School Summary)

A rough draft of new goals and action plan will be due in iPlan Portal at the end of June.

The beginning of the CEP includes a School Summary where school’s share information The team reviewed our current school summary and held a brief discussion on what we can add and what we should delete. Some adjustments that are going to be made are some PTA programs such as Robo-mindtech, Kiwico STEM kits, Bricks 4 kids, and the dance residencies. We will also include the shared reading work and virtual family connections. Some revisions will revolve around new protocols post COVID, and a review of the core curriculum.

Shared Reading Work

The Instructional Leadership/MTSS Team has been leading the work around strengthening vocabulary through core instruction. The team presented a slideshow to share this work focused on shared reading. 

The Instructional Leadership/MTSS team visited all classrooms across the different grades to assess the fidelity of shared reading and to highlight and share best practices with the staff as well as create the expectations for what all shared reading experiences should contain to ensure consistency and coherency across the building. Our work on shared reading supports the 5 pillars of reading. Some best practices observed included: 

  • Visual use of vocabulary words 
  • Slide shows 
  • Acting out vocabulary words 
  • Constant accessibility to the words throughout the lesson 
  • Gathering student’s prior knowledge of a text and vocabulary 
  • Use of real world connections 
  • Engaging students in discussion (turn and talk/small groups) 
  • Students engaged in the same text that is on grade level 
  • Embedding other content areas into this work (science/social studies) 
  • Uninterrupted first read to listen for fluency, intonation, accuracy, etc. 

The team also created a document for teachers to support the planning of shared reading centered around text selection, prior knowledge, visuals, structure/student engagement.

Ms. LaPorte thanked Ms. Russo and Ms. Dean for the presentation.

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

There was no new news from the UFT.

PTA News and Updates

  • We had a successful walk-a-thon that raised a lot of money towards end of the year carnival and teacher appreciation week. Ms. Megna’s class won the ice pop party.
  • We are planning a teacher appreciation luncheon. (Thank you from the teachers).
  • We will be having a Mother’s Day Plant Sale on May 5. This will take place during recess time.
  • A big thank you to Mr. Erber for his help with Square One Art.
  • The Scholastic book fair will be starting on May 23. This is the buy one, get one book free fair.
  • Kiwico STEM kits were ordered for a second round for all classes PreK included.
  • We are planning for an end of year carnival.
  • PTA is looking to donate more books particularly for Asian American/Pacific Islander Month which is in May.
  • PTA elections are coming up in May as well.
  • We are looking for more family attendance at PTA meetings. An idea around some kind of incentive or raffle was shared as a possibility to increase attendance.

Principal Report

End of Year Screener Assessments

Final round of screener assessments EOY (End of Year) for Acadience, iReady and the DESSA (SEL) screener. These assessments will be scheduled for each grade to begin the second week of May. Families will receive data reports showing their child’s growth from the beginning of the year to the end. 

Gifted & Talented Admissions
  • The Mayor has released information regarding the G&T (gifted and talented) program for the 2022-2023 school year. The application is online for families to apply and will open on May 31st.
  • Ms. LaPorte shared the DOE website link which contains information regarding G&T.
  • Pre-K teachers will evaluate and nominate incoming Kindergarten students. If they are recommended, they will receive a letter and then the family will have to apply to the program if they are interested.
  • New program launching for entry into grade 3. Children enter these programs in grade 3. Highest-performing grade 2 students (whose grades are in the top 10% at their school) are invited to apply.
  • Interested families with children entering grades 1, 2, or 3 can apply this spring to enter G&T programs in fall 2022.
Virtual Hall of Science Workshops 
  • Virtual Hall of Science workshops are after-school programs. 
  • There are a lot of spots available since it is virtual. 
  • Please register just one student since siblings can participate on the same device. 
HIV/AIDS Lessons 
  • Families will be informed of the lessons for each grade level and will receive the link to view the curriculum online.
  • Families do have the option to opt out of one lesson only which is the prevention lesson. Information will be sent out to families as we get closer to the week when lessons will be taught. All other four lessons are mandated and required lessons for all students.
Grade 5 Information 
  • Senior dues are for yearbooks, luncheon, cap and gowns, graduation decorations. 
  • There will be a grade 5 snack sale to help raise money for 5th graduation and end of year activities. All students will be able to participate to purchase snack sale items during their lunch period.
  • Outdoor graduation ceremony will be on Tuesday, June 14th in two groups.
  • Gift for the 5th grade will be a commemorative t-shirt.
  • There will be a yearbook signing event for the fifth grade where they will get to sign each other’s yearbook.
  • There will be a student only award ceremony to honor and celebrate student’s achievements.
  • Grade 5 will participate in Field Day at Cunningham Park on Wednesday, June 8th.
Kindergarten Moving Up

There will be an outdoor ceremony in the afternoon on Tuesday, June 14th. We will use the chairs in the outdoor area for families. 

Summer Rising 2022 
  • The application for the Summer Rising Program opened on Monday, 4/25. After an hour, our school was at full capacity for the summer rising program. 
  • The first half of the day is run by the DOE and then the second half of the day is supported by the Common Point Queens CBO. 
  • If there are additional seats that open up, information will be shared with families. 
  • Mr. Burke can field any questions regarding the summer program. 

Questions/Concerns 

Meeting Adjourned 

Thursday, March 24, 2022 at 6:00 PM

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Kristina Silvagni, Barbara Dean, Marc Ciprut, Jessica Russo, Samar Shamsi- Rehman, Balvinder Deonarine, Kimberly Xavier, Denise Bucaoto, Melissa-Ann Phillip

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting

The team reviewed and approved the meeting minutes from last month’s meeting on February 10th, 2022. The team reflected on the video montage that was shared with families during the Coffee & Conversation Family meeting on March 17th.  The montage included pictures and videos of different activities from Respect for All week, Spirit week, Black History Month, the 100th Day of School, and the STEM projects. The montage will also be shared during the next PTA meeting.

Review of SLT Charter

The SLT Charter was read aloud to remind the team members of how we all want to feel during our meeting time together.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

CEP Progress Measures and Targets- Analyzing data to determine if we are on track in meeting our MOY Progress Targets for CEP Goals in ELA, Math, Supportive Environment, and Chronic Absenteeism.

The team spent the majority of the meeting reviewing different data sets measured against the CEP progress monitoring goals for the MOY to help determine whether we are on track to meet the June goals.  Some questions the team members were asked to think about were the following:

  • What do we notice?
  • Are we meeting our MOY Progress Target?
  • Are there certain sub-groups that are not meeting the MOY Progress Target?
  • What are some areas we need to focus on improving?

ELA MOY goals for all students

75% of K-2 students are performing at or above benchmark on Acadience. The team reviewed the MOY Acadience data and made the following noticings:

  • Second grade retell score was only 38% which was concerning.  Some components of the Acadience assessment were timed and if students only read a portion of the text that may have impacted their retell score. 
  • Kindergarten had the lowest overall proficiency score of 60% compared to 80% overall in grades 1 & 2.
  • Some components of the Acadience assessment were new from the BOY to MOY.
  • The total percent at or above benchmark was 74% indicating that we are on track to meet our ELA goal for K-2.

71% of 3-5 students are performing at or above benchmark on iReady. The team reviewed the MOY iReady data and made the following noticings:

  • 72% of students in grades 3-5 performed at proficiency levels on the MOY iReady assessment indicating that we are also on track to meet this goal according to our MOY target.

ELA MOY goals for students with disabilities (SWD)

68% of K-2 students are performing at or above benchmark on Acadience.

  • Right now based on the data of 57% of students with disabilities in K-2 performing at or above benchmark, we are approaching our ELA goal for SWD in K-2. (11% difference)
  • 60% of students in kindergarten and grade 2 are at or above benchmark however 50% of grade 1 students are at or above proficiency where all grades have similar number of total students.
  • Retell was at 20% for grade 2 students and phoneme segmentation fluency was at 20% for kindergarten.
  • As the data was analyzed by teachers to identify students for small group targeted intervention as well as trends in their class and their grade, an action plan was created to support the areas in need of improvement.  For example, grade 2 has embedded multiple opportunities for students to retell throughout the day as well as part of their reading log homework.
  • Wondering: Does attendance play a factor in the data that is presented? As we know there was a spike in COVID cases across the city in January and many students may have been absent for a variety of reasons.  This could be a contributing factor to a drop in % especially since students took the MOY assessment end of January/early February.
  • The attendance team does meet every other week and we do analyze attendance and achievement as well as sub groups to identify any specific trends.

25% of 3-5 students are performing at or above benchmark on iReady.

  • 33% of students in grades 3-5 performed at or above benchmark on the MOY iReady assessment indicating that we have met and even exceeded our MOY progress monitoring goal.
  • Although we exceeded this goal at this time we still have more work to do to close the achievement gap within this subgroup.  This is an area we will need to focus on when we work to develop the CEP action plan for the remainder of the school year.
  • In looking closely at the data, 62% of grade 3 students have performed at or above benchmark however only 21% in grade 4 and only 11% in grade 5.

ELA MOY goals for English Language Learners (ELL)

44% of K-2 students are performing at or above benchmark on Acadience.

  • Overall, 31% of K-2 students are currently performing at or above benchmark as measured on the MOY Acadience assessment indicating that we are approaching our MOY progress monitoring goal of 44%.
  • Grade 2 students had 40% proficiency, Grade 1 had 29% proficiency, and Kindergarten had 21% proficiency.  Grade 1 also had half the number of ELL students than grade 2 or kindergarten.
  • Action steps need to be included for ELL students to support and close the achievement gap.

31% of 3-5 students performing at or above benchmark on iReady.

  • Currently 22% of students in grades 3-5 are performing at or above benchmark as measured on the MOY iReady assessment which indicates that we are approaching the progress monitoring target goal. (9% difference)
  • Grade 3 had 57% of students proficient while grade 4 had 0% proficient, and grade 5 had 0% proficient.  It is also important to note the total number of ELL students in each grade which is 7 or less students.
  • This data demonstrates the strong need to identify additional supports to ensure we are meeting the needs of our English Language Learners.
  • Wondering: What supports are there for ELL students? –> Some supports include a 15 week after-school ELL program for extra support.

Math MOY goals for all students

50% of students are performing at or above benchmark.

  • Currently 58% of students are proficient in math as measured by the MOY iReady assessment indicating that we are exceeding our progress monitoring goal at this time by 8%.

Math MOY goal for students with disabilities (SWD)

22% of students are performing at or above benchmark.

  • In analyzing the data, 28% of students with disabilities achieved proficiency on the MOY iReady assessment indicating that we are currently exceeding our progress monitoring target goal at this time.
  • Grade 5 had the lowest proficiency at 11% with grade 4 close behind at 14%.
  • We need to include action steps specific for SWD to help close this achievement gap.

Math MOY goal for English Language Learners (ELL)

19% of students are performing at or above benchmark.

  • Overall, 15% of English Language Learners are performing at proficiency in math at this time indicating that we are approaching our MOY progress monitoring target goal.
  • Grade 3 had the highest proficiency at 29% however grades 1 & 5 had 0% proficiency.
  • We must ensure supports are in place for ENL students in our CEP action plan to increase proficiency levels.
  • Some staff members have been engaging in training for certain math intervention programs to continue to support our students in math during the WIN period. 

Chronic Absenteeism goal for students with disabilities (SWD)

  • Goal: less than 14% chronic absenteeism.
  • Currently the data shows that we have 25% of chronic absent students indicating that we are not on track for meeting our progress monitoring target goal for SWDs.  Chronic absenteeism includes students who have less than 90% attendance.
  • Grade 2 has the highest percentage of chronically absent students at 40% and grade 5 close behind at 33%.
  • Regarding the chronic absenteeism goal: We continue to provide outreach to families to create individual action plans to support families based on root causes we learn about.
  • Teachers make positive outreach calls to families if students are absent.

Chronic Absenteeism goal for English Language Learners (ELL)

  • Goal: less than 14% chronic absenteeism
  • Currently the data shows that we have 23% of chronic absent students indicating that we are not on track for meeting our progress monitoring target goal for ELL students. 
  • Grade 5 has the highest percentage of chronically absent students at 40% and grades 3 & 4  are close behind at 29%.

Supportive Environment Goal for All Students

  • 74% of students responding positively that they have an adult in the building who they trust.
  • 557 out of 603 students (92%) of our students indicated on a survey that they had at least one adult in our school building who they trust and feel comfortable going to if they need help with something or have something exciting to share.
  • This data indicates we are exceeding our MOY progress monitoring target goal in this area at this time.

Action Plan for February to June

Team members engaged in a Jamboard activity to add additional thoughts, ideas, and steps to the action plan based on the information we just gathered from the MOY progress monitoring assessment.

School Budget

The school budget was reviewed and the following information was shared:

  • Our budget remains healthy. 
  • Students in grades K-5 are currently receiving dance instruction through Notes in Motion which is a dance residency that will be ongoing for 8 weeks. 
  • We have utilized the APRA enrichment funds to work with Bricks 4 Kids; each class in grades K-2 will receive 4 workshop/sessions and students in grades 3-5 will receive 3 workshop/sessions. This program supports STEM and social emotional learning.
  • Each grade level team received funds ($2000) to order classroom materials that would enhance and support instruction in the classroom.
  • The school also purchased additional intervention programs such as Spire, Heggerty, Do the Math, and Building Fact Fluency to be used to support Tier 2 intervention during the WIN periods.
  • Some funds were allocated for teacher training for certain intervention programs (SPIRE, iReady) as well as new leveled books for classroom libraries.
  • To support our grade 2 students, we also purchased the instructional tool for iready ELA. Students in grade 2 will take the ELA iReady assessment so that they could receive targeted lessons geared to the areas they need additional support in.
  • New metal chairs were ordered for all grade 3-5 classrooms as the wooden chairs were breaking and becoming unsafe.

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

No new updates were shared by the UFT.

PTA News and Updates

  • Picture retake day will be held on April 4, 2022.
  • P.S. 115’s Walk-a-Thon to celebrate National Walking Day will be held on Wednesday, April 6 as a PTA fundraiser (April 7 is the rain date).
  • May will be the Scholastic Book Fair.
  • PTA will begin preparing for elections for the next school year. 
  • Thank you to Mr. Burke and Mr. Erber for their support in Square One Art. Families will be able to place orders of their children’s work.
  • From teachers- Thank you to the PTA for the KiwiCo STEM kits. The students had so much fun engaging in the projects!

Principal Report

  • Women’s History Month- We want to thank all of the moms in our school community for sharing their knowledge, journey, expertise, and careers with our entire school community. The presentations were so engaging and wonderful!  The moms were amazing as they engaged students in discussions and answered questions from our very interested students.
  • Residencies- Discussed these residencies as part of Budget report
  • NYS ELA, Math, Science Exams, NYSESLAT- Students in grades 3-5 will be taking the NYS ELA exam on Tuesday, March 29th and Wednesday, March 30th, the NYS Math exam on Tuesday, April 26th and Wednesday, April 27th, and grade 4 students will be taking the NYS Science performance exam the week of May 23rd and the written exam on Monday, June 6th.  They are all well prepared.  English Language Learners will be taking the Speaking component of the NYSESLAT between April 11th and May 20th and the Listening, Reading, and Writing component between May 9th and May 20th.
  • Cluster Programs- We want to thank our cluster teachers for their flexibility and support throughout the school year.  We have been able to transition most of our cluster classes back to their classroom spaces so students now go to the library, art room, music room, and computer room.
  • Grade 5 Graduation- A brief discussion was held around Grade 5 Graduation and consensus was reached around trying to make the graduation as normal as possible for students.  The ceremony will need to take place outdoors since indoors requires visitors to be vaccinated.  Possibly one class at a time for each ceremony depending on number of guests/students, etc.  We will meet with the grade 5 committee on planning some next steps. The committee would look into renting chairs.   Caps and gowns were already purchased. 

Questions/Concerns

From the Chat: 

  • Question: Are you guys will put into consideration for the kindergarten kids because last year Covid and they missed lots of in classroom work? Response: Covid created many challenges across all the grades. These screener tools help indicate gaps in specific areas to help guide instruction. 
  • Question: Any information about 5th Grade Graduation please. Thank you 🙏
  • Some parents asked questions regarding a language opportunity for students next year. 
  • Question/Comment: Not as ideal as in person but Varsity Tutors offer language classes. My daughter takes Spanish classes online. Response: Ms. LaPorte will look into this to see if we can maybe offer language classes to students.

Meeting Adjourned

Thursday, February 10, 2022 at 6:00 PM

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Jessica Russo, Barbara Dean, Kristina Silvagni, Samar Shamsi-Rehman, Melissa-Ann Phillip, Denise Bucaoto, Balvinder Deonarine, Kimberly Xavier

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting 

The team reviewed and approved the meeting minutes from last month’s meeting on January 20, 2022. One revision to the spelling of a team member’s last name needs to be made.

Review of SLT Charter

The SLT Charter was read aloud to remind the team members of how we all want to feel during our meeting time together.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

Student Survey

A revised version of the K-1 student survey and grade 2-5 student survey was shared with the team for feedback. This survey will be administered during the week of February 14, 2022. The goal of this survey is to make sure students feel supported in our school, and assess whether all students have an adult in the school building who they trust and feel comfortable going to if they need support or to share positive news. This survey and CEP goal speaks to the NYC Schools survey results last year. Only 48% of families responded favorably on the 2021-2022 NYC School Survey that they were not concerned about the opportunities their child had to build relationships with adults at school, which indicates that 52% of families are concerned about the opportunities their child had to build relationships with adults at school.

Once students complete the survey, a copy of the student’s response along with a letter will be sent home explaining the purpose of the survey and to encourage families to continue the discussion at home. Sharing this information with families will provide them with helpful information about who their child feels comfortable going to if they need support at school.

Analyzing ELA & Math Progress Monitoring Data

The team spent the majority of the meeting time analyzing the Middle of Year (MOY) ELA and Math screener data by school and grade level and made noticings from the beginning of year (BOY) assessment results to the middle of year assessment results (MOY) in order to help plan the action steps for the remainder of the year to ensure we meet or exceed our June goal.

Students in grades K-2 were assessed in ELA using the Acadience assessment and students in grades 3-5 were assessed in ELA using iReady. The Acadience MOY assessment for K-2 had some additional assessments added for some grades or taken away for some grades from the BOY to the MOY. This is something to be mindful of when looking at the data as we may not necessarily have the same assessments from BOY to MOY. We can however look at the overall reading composite score for students which includes an average of all assessments administered. 

When we analyze the data, we are identifying students who need additional intervention support as well as assessing whether our core instruction is healthy and strong. Overall our students demonstrated progress from the BOY to the MOY assessments in both ELA and Math. After some analysis of the SWD and MLL data for both reading and math assessments, it was noted that although students in these sub-groups made progress, there is still more work that needs to be done to close the achievement gap.

Some specific noticings shared out by the team while analyzing the data/graphs

Whole School Reading MOY

71% of students performing above or on grade level

Whole School Math MOY
  • Percentage of students achieving above grade level increased from 21%-36%
  • Percentage of students on grade level increased 20%-23%
  • Percentage of students below level is going down also (from 48% to 35% one grade level below; from 11% to 6% two or more grade levels below)
  • Significant growth in algebra and algebraic thinking
  • A small group of students who are below level (get more targeted instruction)
Whole School SWD Reading MOY
  • Exactly half of the students with disabilities are performing far below grade level and approximately 37% are performing on or above grade level.
Whole School SWD Math MOY
  • Only 18% of SWD are performing on grade level in Math.
Whole School MLL Reading
  • Almost 60% of MLL students are performing significantly below
  • About 32% of MLLs are on or above grade level
Math MLL
  • More than half of MLLs (64%) are approaching grade level and 21% are far below grade level.
  • Only 15% are on grade level
Kindergarten
  • Data showed a decrease in the % of students who performed above grade level, a slight increase in % of students on grade level, but an increase in % of students performing well below benchmark.  The addition of new assessments could have impacted the outcome of the above grade level data. 
  • 63% of students are at or above benchmark
Kindergarten Math

Geometry domain seems to be strong in kindergarten. Kindergarten students showed growth in all domains from BOY to MOY. 52% of students are proficient in Math.

First grade Reading
  • 1st grade made big strides in Reading- 85% of students overall are above or on grade level
  • % of students below or well below decreased significantly.
First grade Math
  • 45% of students are proficient in Math according to the MOY data.
  • Algebraic thinking- students made a significant amount of improvement
  • Growth demonstrated in all domains
Second Grade Reading
  • Percentage of students on grade level increased from 11% to 31% however percentage of students performing above grade level decreased from 74% to 48%. This could be due to the different assessments administered for the MOY. Overall, 79% of grade 2 students are performing on or above grade level in Reading. Students had to read and then retell but could only retell up to the part they had read during the time which impacted their score.  Teachers will plan to strengthen fluency and retelling strategies.
Second Grade Math
  • 54% of students are proficient in Math.
  • Algebra and algebraic thinking is a common strength with grades 1 and 2 with grade 2 students also demonstrating growth in all domains with Number and Operations also being strong.
Third grade Reading
  • A significant amount of growth in both ELA and Math
  • Students performing mid or above grade level increased from 46% to 64% and students performing early on or one- three or more grade levels below decreased.
  • 89% of students are proficient in Reading
  • Significant growth made in vocabulary development 
Third grade Math
  • 70% of students are proficient in Math
  • % of students performing mid or above grade level more than doubled from 17% to 38%
  • Early on grade level increased from 21% to 32%
  • One grade level below significantly decreased from 52% to 25%
  • Algebra and algebraic thinking has increased significantly
Fourth Grade Reading
  • Phonological Awareness is at 100% in grades 3-5
  • Phonics need is a small group of students- these students will be pulled for small group targeted intervention work during the WIN period
  • 65% of students are on or above grade level in reading
  • Comprehension of Literature increased as well as Comprehension of Informational Text and Vocabulary
Fourth Grade Math
  • Significant improvements in algebra and algebraic thinking (Almost 20% increase)
  • Geometry is still an area that students struggle with- how can we embed this throughout the year since the unit is typically taught towards the end of the school year?
  • 66% of students are proficient in math
  • Increase of 17% proficiency from BOY to MOY
Fifth Grade Reading
  • Increase from 53% proficiency to 62% proficiency
  • All domains showed an increase in achievement form BOY to MOY
  • 100% proficient in phonological awareness
  • 94% on or above grade level in phonics
  • Just about 100% of students performed mid or above grade level in High-Frequency Words
  • Comprehension of Literature increased as well as Comprehension of Informational Text and Vocabulary
  • Vocabulary: 52% to 58%
  • Comprehension of Literature: 48% to 62%; Comprehension of Informational Text: 60% to 73%
Next Steps

We will provide more access to informational text for upper grade levels.

The MOY benchmark assessment window will close tomorrow February 11, 2022. The makeup window will be next week until Friday, February 18th.

A question was raised regarding looking at last year’s data compared to this year’s data however the fact that many of our students last year were remote makes it hard to use that data since we are not sure if there was support at home while students took the assessments. This year’s data has more integrity than last year’s data since all students take the assessments at school. This year’s data will be good to look at next year for trending data as we follow students from grade to grade. For example, we can track this year’s 3rd graders in fourth grade next year to analyze their growth and progress.

Some questions and ideas were shared to try and get students excited about reading and finding some ways to encourage more stamina in reading as well. This could be something we add to our action plan in the CEP.

School Budget

To continue to provide students with additional online support for use at home, IXL accounts will be renewed for ELA and Math for all students in PreK-Grade 5.  We are considering purchasing IXL for science as well.

Two full class sets of ipads have been ordered to keep in school to use and share among lower grades, especially as they take the online iReady assessments. Two full class sets of Chromebooks were also ordered to help replenish the laptop carts since we gave school laptops to students to use during the pandemic.

We are currently looking into a STEM or coding in-house residency. We have reached out to Bricks 4 Kids. Any other ideas?

Other resources students can use at home- SORA App is available for all NYC students as long as they use their NYC DOE email. Epic is available for a limited time. We are working on making sure all students have a Raz Kids account with login information.

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

The UFT Chapter Leader was unable to attend meeting.

PTA News and Updates

The Cradle of Aviation virtual assemblies were very successful. The PTA is looking forward to receiving feedback from teachers regarding the program and activity.  Ms. LaPorte will share the link again with teachers to complete the feedback form.

The PTA funded KiwiCo STEM kits for students in grades K-5. The PTA is looking to purchase butterfly kits for Pre-K classes since they did not get the KiwiCo STEM kits.  Students will engage with the STEM kits next week before the break.

Spring picture day will be held on Friday, March 4th for students in grades 3-5 and Monday, March 7th for grades PreK-2.

The PTA after-school activities will begin soon.

Principal Report

Updated Attendance Policy

Effective immediately remote learning/asynchronous work will only be available for students who test positive for Covid-19.

There are a lot of upcoming special events for the month of February: Black History Month, 100th day of school, Respect for All week.

Black History Month

We are celebrating Black History Month this month in many different ways.  Teachers have been engaging students in reading and learning about different African Americans who have had a significant impact on our culture and history through read-alouds and having students do research projects. The focus is on learning about important African American inventors, scientists, authors, artists, sports players, etc. Mr. Ciprut, our music teacher is also focusing on different music artists who have had a significant impact on music such as Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong. During the week our morning announcers share some information about the artist and then we play a song by them.  This music has been enjoyed by all.

Respect for All Week

Respect for All Week is celebrated across the city the week of February 14th.  he family flyer was shared which outlines each day’s focus and planned activities.

  • Monday, February 14, 2022 is Respect for Diversity day. Share our Similarities, Celebrate our Differences: Students are encouraged to come to school dressed in their traditional clothing and/or bring something to school that represents their culture. Activity: Students will engage in classroom discussions about celebrating our differences and have an opportunity to share what they brought in to represent their culture.
  • Tuesday, February 15th: Anti-Bullying/Cyberbullying: “P.S. 115Q Stands Together Against Bullying”. Wear your School T-Shirt or School Colors (Blue and Gold). Activity: Students will take the “Kids Against Bullying Pledge”. Together with their classmates they will create a pledge and sign it showing their commitment to creating a bully-free environment. Pledges will be displayed outside each classroom door. 
  • Wednesday, February 16th: Celebrating Kindness/Be an Ally (100th Day of School). Activity: Students will write one way they can be kind to others on a heart cutout.  These will be collected and used to create a display of a large heart titled, “100 Ways to be Kind” and another display that spells out the word KIND. 
  • Thursday, February 17th: “It Feels Good to be Yourself”. Wear your Favorite Pajamas. Read Aloud of the book I Am Enough by Grace Byers. Activity: Students will create a list of all the things they love about themselves. 
  • Friday, February 18th:  National No One Eats Alone Day. Spread the Love – Say “Hello” to someone during Lunch. 
  • Activity: Lunchtime Read Aloud: The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig. Discuss ways to include others so no one feels invisible.

100th Day of School

100th day of school is on Wednesday, February 16th.  This will be a day of fun-filled activities focused on the number 100. 

Home Test Kits for Winter Recess

To support the “Stay Safe, Stay Open” plan, all students and staff will be sent home with two COVID home tests the Friday before the break.  It is recommended that the first test is given on Saturday, February 26th and the second test on Sunday, February 27th. These tests are strongly encouraged but are not mandated for students to be able to return back to school on Monday, February 28th.

Parent- Teacher Conferences

Virtual Parent Teacher Conferences will be on Thursday, March 3rd. This will also be a half day. Parent Teacher Conference notices will be sent home on Monday 2/14/2022 and classroom teachers will send the doodle sign-up sheet for families to sign up for their individual appointment times. Report cards will be distributed in NYC Schools Accounts on March 24th.

Women’s History Month

We are planning for special virtual assemblies to be held on each Friday during the month of March beginning on Friday, March 11th. Ms. Tang will create a flyer with some soft criteria asking for moms in our school community who are interested in sharing their profession/story with students. Students will also have an opportunity to participate and ask questions. A google form will be created for anyone interested in participating. The parent can either share their screen or we can share it for them. For in class projects we were thinking of having students research women in their culture who have made a significant impact on history or who have influenced them.

Questions/Concerns

Comments from the chat

  • Question: “Hi! What happens if a kid says no?” (On the student survey) Response: “As the students go up reading levels, they may struggle a bit more with retell until they master that skill because the book styles change significantly.” “That is a great point, Mrs. Xavier.”
  • Grade 6: 1= R or below (avg. O), 2= S/T/U (avg. S), 3= V/W (avg. V), 4= X or above
  • “Stop. Drop. Read I do it at home!”
  • Comment: “I think it might be nice for this to be shared with the family community as a whole as the information sent home for February did not include this aspect of the work being doing around Black history month.”

Meeting Adjourned

Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 6:00 PM

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Jessica Russo, Barbara Dean, Marc Ciprut, Kristina Silvagni, Samar Shamsi Rahman, Melissa-Ann Phillip, Denise Bucaoto, Balvinder Deonarine, Kimberly Xavier

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting

The team reviewed and approved the meeting minutes from last month’s meeting on December 22nd, 2021.

Review of SLT Charter

The SLT Charter was read aloud to remind the team members of how we all want to feel during our meeting time together.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

Access to iPlan Portal/ Questions/Reflections from SLT Training on January 11, 2022

All members and alternates were invited to participate in the yearly SLT training. Ms. LaPorte asked if any team members had any questions from the District SLT Training held on January 11, 2022. No questions were raised. Ms. LaPorte is working on making sure all core members have access to iPlan portal which is where the CEP document lives. We will continue to log into the iPlan portal to continue working on our CEP goals and action plan during each meeting.

Creating a Survey for Supportive Environment Goal for Progress Monitoring (Students/Families)

A discussion was held around the progress monitoring tool for the Supportive Environment Goal.  It was agreed upon to make a school-created survey to help track our progress in meeting our June goal. At the last meeting we discussed a student and parent survey.  Through discussions of what we really want to get out of the survey results which is to learn and gather data from students about whether they can identify at least one adult in the school building who they feel they trust and can go to if they need to speak with someone the team decided to just have students complete the survey. The goal is to make sure we know our students well and to build relationships with them. These relationships support learning and social emotional development. 

A deeper conversation was then held around the survey itself by looking at a previous survey to make revisions based on the administration of the survey a few years ago and how students responded. Student Survey: K-1- Teachers would need to support students in completing the survey maybe one on one. Student Survey 2-5- Students can take the survey independently.

Feedback on revising the survey: Ideas of listing the different people in the school building- teachers, paraprofessionals, safety agent, school aides, guidance counselor, etc. should be added so students know the adults in the building. Ideas around using the mood meter- who do you go to when you are feeling in the different quadrants/colors of the mood meter as we also want students to know they can also go to these people for positive things.  The words trust and support should be defined for students before they complete the survey. It would help if teachers discussed the survey and provided examples for students first before having students complete the survey.

The team also discussed whether families should complete the survey but members shared that families may not know who their child is comfortable going to so they would most likely ask their child which would then be a duplicate response.  It was decided to send a copy of the child’s survey home to families with a letter attached explaining what it is and to encourage families to engage in conversations with their child. This will support families in understanding who their child is comfortable speaking with at school.

It was recommended to over communicate with families and to make sure we provide families with information on what this survey is for and the purpose of the survey. 

Ms. LaPorte will draft a letter and share the draft with the core members of SLT. She is looking to send out the survey in the beginning to middle of February. Ms. LaPorte will mention the survey at the next PTA meeting. 

School Budget 

Our school budget is healthy as schools have been held harmless for register loss this school year. There are certain lines of money in a school’s budget that are allocated for specific items/categories.  For example, Title 3 funds can only be spent to support English Language Learners/services, NYSTL money must be spent on NYSTYL approved items, the ARPR funds are to go towards the academic recovery services program, interventions, etc. We have also received funding through APRA to support and supplement the arts. This money can go towards art supplies, professional development in the arts, an after-school program, or an in-house residency program. Due to the fact that students do not receive dance instruction this year, we have reached out about an in-house dance residency for all students in grades K-5. More information will be shared once this is confirmed. A question was raised about the possibility of hiring a cluster teacher for a STEAM program moving forward as in the past there was a science teacher. Ms. LaPorte explained how cluster programs are selected each year from a staff vote. The idea is that stem should be integrated throughout classroom instruction and teachers are now teaching science throughout the week using the Amplify curriculum.

The NY Hall of Science is looking to partner with us again this school year for after school programs connected to science topics. We will work out the logistics and determine whether it is best to hold in-person or remote sessions. With budget we have also set aside funds for school furniture to order new metal chairs as the wood ones in grade 3-5 classrooms seem to be breaking and we don’t want anyone getting hurt. Enough funds have also been set aside to cover teacher absences.

News and Updates Committee Reports

United Federation of Teachers (UFT) News and Updates

There are no updates from the UFT.

PTA News and Updates

The PTA has purchased the KiwiCo STEM kits for all students in K-5. Hoping that students engage with these kits the second week of February. Planning of virtual STEM assemblies are in progress. The PTA is working with Cradle of Aviation and NY Hall of Science. They are currently working through the financials. PTA spring enrichment programs are also in progress and in discussion. PTA is working with Varsity Tutors. There are currently some concerns from some families about sending their children to school during the rise in COVID cases. They are not sure if it is safe for students to be in school. Indoor recess alternatives and possibilities were brought up including educational programs, yoga etc. 

Principal Report  

Health & Safety

New DOE Health Screener/COVID Protocols/Test Kits/COVID-Related Links.

The “Health Screener” is the first tool to help identify if anyone is able to clear and enter the building.

It is important that everyone reads each question carefully. Any student who has a positive test result must isolate for 10 days and may return to school on the 11th day. Vaccination status does not matter if someone tests positive. There is a difference between an in school exposure and an out of school exposure with regards to procedures. Everyone must read the screener carefully. We encourage families to contact the school at any time to clarify any questions or concerns with regards to determining entry.

Testingresults.schools.nyc is a public site that has each school’s COVID testing information and percentage results for each week. This information is public.

Middle of Year (MOY) Assessments- ELA and Math

The school is in the process of having students complete the Middle of the Year (MOY) benchmark assessments for Acadience (ELA for K-2) and iReady (ELA- Gr. 3-5 and Math- Gr. K-5). To ensure the integrity and the validity of these assessments, they are to be administered in school, in person. Students who are absent are not to take the assessments while at home. They will take the assessments when they return back to school. The window for the MOY closes in the middle of February. We are excited to share that all students in K-5 (K-5 Math; 3-5 ELA) now have access to different lessons in iready as an extra instructional tool for students. Once students complete the screener the tool will generate lessons and assignments based on how they performed and aligned to the skills they need to strengthen.

Kindergarten Applications 

The Kindergarten application deadline has been extended to tomorrow, Jan. 21, 2022. All Pre-K students MUST complete these applications.

Middle School Applications 

Middle school applications opened last week and will close in the beginning of March. The school held a middle school information session with Ms. LaPorte and Ms. Ria for families yesterday during the day and on Tuesday, January 25th another session will be held in the evening.

Promotion in Doubt

Each year in January schools are asked to identify students who are not meeting grade level standards and are in jeopardy of being promoted to the next grade in June. Discussions will take place with teachers and administrators prior to meeting with families to discuss student growth and areas in need of support as well as an action plan to ensure the child makes adequate progress by June. This doesn’t mean the child will be held over in June, it indicates that we need to develop a plan to support the child.  There are many months left before the end of the school year for the students to demonstrate progress. The goal of the parent meeting is to open conversations and have supportive discussions on ways the child is being supported at school and what the family can do to support the child at home. Official letters will be sent home by Feb. 15th after meetings are held.

Remote Learning Information

At this time, there is NO remote learning option in the way it was in the 2020/2021 school year. This comes from the Mayor and Chancellor. Teachers have been posting asynchronous assignments on google classroom for students home due to quarantine or unable to pass the health screener. All work is asynchronous. Ms. Ruggiero will meet with students on a grade who are home one period each day to answer any questions students have about the assignments but not to teach the lessons. She is available more for office hours. Students who complete asynchronous work will be marked present for remote learning that day, but it may not reflect it in attendance until the following day.

Questions/Concerns 

Question: What happens if child is quarantined during administration of NYS test?

Response: Ms. Tang attends NYS test information sessions prior to testing so hopefully there will be guidance around that area of concern. 

Comments/Questions from the chat

“If you give a specific list, many students will only pick from that list.”

“I would prefer my child to pick who he trust as a parent I don’t always know who he likes and makes happy but that’s for 5th grader.”

Meeting Adjourned

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2021 6:00 PM

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Barbara Dean, Jessica Russo, Kristina Silvagni, Samar Shamsi-Rehman, Melissa-Ann Phillip, Denise Bucaoto, Balvinder Deonarine, Kimberly Xavier

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting: The team reviewed and approved the minutes from last month; Nov. 18th meeting. Ms. LaPorte thanked the team for their flexibility in moving the SLT meeting from the originally scheduled date.

Review of SLT Charter: The SLT Charter was read aloud to remind the team members of how we all want to feel during our meeting time together.

Community/Team Building Activity: The team engaged in a team building activity: “Holiday ABC’s” where everyone had to think of holiday words that start with each letter of the alphabet A-Z and type them in the shared google sheet.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items: 2021-2022 CEP Feedback and Progress Monitoring. We received a great compliment from the District Team on our CEP: “Kudos to the team for a well written CEP.”

Creating a Survey for Supportive Environment Goal for Progress Monitoring: For our ELA and Math CEP goals we are using the Acadience or iReady assessments as our progress monitoring tools.  Starting Jan. 11, 2022, students will be assessed on the mid-year benchmark in acadience for K-2 ELA and iready for grades 3-5 for ELA and grades K-5 for Math. The window closes in early February. 

For the Supportive Environment goal, we need a school created survey to monitor the progress.  The team worked to create a google form survey for families by thinking about some questions aligned to the NYC School Survey and aligned to the data we hope to gather around the children being able to identify an adult in the school building who they trust as well as opportunities for their children to build relationships with their teachers.  The team also reviewed different scales to use for responses and identified which was best to collect the data for this survey. (ex: always, sometimes, rarely, other)

The team also began brainstorming opportunities for students to meet with our guidance counselor if they needed to speak with someone- possibly have certain periods designated for certain grades or maybe during lunch periods? 

Ms. LaPorte shared a student survey that was used a few years ago which asked students if they had someone in the school building who they trusted and to identify who that person or people were.  Lower grade students completed these with the support of the teacher and students in grades 2-5 completed these on their own.  The responses provided us with a lot of information as we were able to track and see which students did not have someone who they could go to or trust and we reached out to them to build relationships.  We can also use this to compare responses for families.  The idea of collecting the student surveys was well received by the team as this would give us the information right from students instead of the family survey.

It was also noted that we should continue to over communicate and maybe providing families with a list of support staff available to speak with and support students would help families know who to reach out to if their child needs support with different areas. 

 Strengthening Vocabulary in Core Instruction: To support our ELA goal and to strengthen the vocabulary pillar of reading which was an area in which the school needed to focus based on our beginning of year assessments, the instructional leadership team/MTSS team has been working on creating a plan to incorporate vocabulary into daily core instruction. We decided to develop a structured 5-day shared reading experience where each week students will have an opportunity to engage with a complex text on their grade level and work on different skills/pillars.  There is a structured plan for K-1 and a structured plan for grades 2-5.  The shared reading plan was shared with the team and each of the days were explained.  The instructional leadership team has also been working on gathering complex texts to provide access for all students to rich high level texts as some students may be reading below grade level and are only exposed to texts on their independent reading level.  This supports the Advanced Literacies as well.  We would also like to begin a Word of the Week where each week students will learn a new word through morning announcements and it will be highlighted in classrooms.  We will also share the word of the week with families as part of our weekly email to bridge the home-school connection.  To support vocabulary development, we will also make sure that we have print rich classroom environments and use higher level vocabulary words as we engage in discussions and lessons with students.  We would like to begin Vocabulary Word of the Week approximately the second week in January 2022. See our Shared Reading Structure.

School Budget: Based on the conversation we had at our last SLT meeting around the school budget, the Iready instructional tool was purchased for students in grades 3-5 for ELA and for students in grades K-5 for Math to support instruction that will be tailored to meet individual students’ needs. Get Epic was looked into for a schoolwide subscription however they do not offer schoolwide/bulk subscriptions. For additional reading support right now students in grades 1-4 have their Raz Kids Accounts from last school year. All students have their IXL accounts for ELA and Math and can access this site at any time for extra practice.  Computer Science read alouds were ordered for all classrooms to support Computer Science lessons.  We are also looking into purchasing computer science/programming tools such as a robot mouse.  As we have distributed many of our school laptops and some have come back broken, we are looking to restock our laptop carts with new laptops so that students can use them during the day if we need.  Part of the school’s budget is allotted to cover all staff absences.  This year we have received arts funding to supplement and support the arts and can be used to purchase art materials, provide arts residencies for students, or professional development.  We are hoping to be able to continue our partnership with the NY Hall of Science.  The Academic Recovery Services Program will begin in January 2022 for Kindergarten students with IEPs. 

School Construction Authority Projects: Each year schools are asked to submit a list of potential school construction authority (SCA) projects based on a needs assessment completed with the custodial engineer.  This year we have submitted the following project proposals:  Expansion of our school cafeteria, repave the playground on the north side of the school, renew the outdoor garden area, handicap lift for the stage, installing an elevator.

The playground by the kindergarten area will be updated and will be under construction as part of a previous RESO A grant. * This project is already in progress* 

News and Updates Committee Reports: UFT News and Updates- No News/Updates. PTA News and Updates: The PTA President thanked the school and staff for their hard work. The staff also thanked the PTA as well for the thoughtful treat for the holidays and Ms. LaPorte thanked PTA for recognizing all staff members in the school building as everyone plays an important role in the school community.

The PTA ordered STEM kits for the classrooms for students to engage in. 

The PTA shared that they would like to plan some virtual assemblies for the students in the beginning of 2022. 

Principal Report: Report Cards: Were sent out in each child’s NYC Schools Account.  Grades for drama and physical education were not included as there have been different substitute coverages during the first marking period.

Questions/Concerns: No questions or concerns were raised.

Meeting Adjourned.

Thursday December 17th, 2020

Members in Attendance: Danielle LaPorte, Marc Ciprut, Alex DeCanio, Jessica Russo, Barbara Dean, Rachel Fritz, Kristina Silvagni, Shernette Walters, Suchi Behl, Denise Bucaoto, Sonia Mohan, Melissa- Ann Phillip, Samar Shamsi

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting

Minutes from the November meeting were reviewed by the team and approved.

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

Mr. Ciprut did not have any news to report on behalf of the UFT.

PTA News and Updates

There will be a PTA meeting at 8:30 AM on 12/23.

Principal Report

School Updates- Coffee and Conversations have been held by grade bands this month.  The presentation is the same at each meeting, however, the questions and conversations were focused on specific grade information. In the event of inclement weather, school will shift to a remote learning day.

COVID Testing

COVID testing will be continuing on a weekly basis. All students attending in person learning need to have a completed consent form on file at the school. Families have been very supportive of these new protocols. Random COVID testing shifted from monthly testing to now weekly testing. Testing date is not shared ahead of time.  Schools must meet a 20% threshold of students and staff to be tested on each testing day.

Review of Budget

Approximately $23,000 left for sub coverage. There was additional COVID money dropped into school budget as well to support the need for additional staff. We have budgeted money for an afterschool AIS (Academic Intervention Support) program for grades 3, 4, and 5. This is a per session after-school program that would require teachers to apply to teach the program after work hours.  We do currently have an Title 3 ENL after school program being taught by Ms. Keller and Ms. Glash.  Money was pulled from our budget due to our enrollment. After December 31st, some money may be put back depending on the number of special education students and ENL students enrolled.  Some funding we receive is tied to certain limitations/restrictions.  Our budget also has to align with our CEP goals and action plan.

DOE Ipads- status- DOE iPads have been shipped to the school and families who have requested these devices have been called and have started picking them up. **There have been some issues with DOE iPads as some of the apps won’t load.  Some of the documents are hard to read due to the screen cutting the words off.  Ms. LaPorte will look into this issue and try to get help from the help desk.**

Middle School Application Process- Welcome Letters

All grade 5 families should have received a welcome letter to set up their MySchools account. Families should set up their accounts first so they have them ready for when the application opens.  Application is currently not opened.  In January, Ms. Ria will hold a middle school application workshop for grade 5 families.

Kindergarten Application Window for the 2021-2022 school year

The Kindergarten application is open and closes on January 19th. Families apply through their MySchools account. All current Pre-K students in our school must apply for Kindergarten.

NYS ELA, Math, and Science Exams

All NYS Exams are still on schedule to be administered to students in grades 3, 4, and 5 in the spring. There have been some concerns from families. We are awaiting additional guidance regarding testing including logistics and hope this is shared at the next test coordinators meeting. If we need to bring back staff to support proctoring we can ask teachers who are working remotely as long as they are not on a health accommodation to support testing.  As we know the January Regents have been cancelled. Once we receive more information regarding the exams, the school will notify families.

Deputy Superintendent Visit

Dr. Davidson, the Deputy Superintendent, visited our school virtually last week (week of 12/7). She visited google classrooms, joined live google meets to see instruction, shared best practices, etc. Some highlighted items; students engaged in tasks on jamboard, students demonstrating learning through the use of flipgrid, math number routines, and opportunities for feedback.

Follow up to Model 1A/1B Conversation

Shifting from an A/B/C model to an A/B model: Due to our current in-person numbers as well as the need for additional staff, we are unable to safely make the shift to all students in school 5 days a week at this time. We are however able to make the shift to an A/B model. This still increases the number of in person learning days from 1-2 days a week currently to students attending 2-3 days a week. This shift will happen in January. SLT engaged in conversation to discuss the two options for the A/B model schedule. There was a choice of model 1A and model 1B. After the SLT discussion, it was brought to our families and staff for feedback. There is a really big push to get our students in person for 5 days a week of learning. If we can’t get all students in right now there are a few subgroups to be prioritized: SWD, ENL students, as well as students in an ICT setting, and our youngest learners. Currently we are in need of 4 special education teachers. There has been new guidance around the ICT setting and teachers working in an ICT class. There is a possibility to have Pre-K and Kindergarten students to have them start 5 days a week.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

Review of CEP action plan in Iplan Portal and feedback given to make revisions

Instead of reviewing the CEP action plan, concerns were raised from our school community (staff and parents) feeling overwhelmed due to the circumstances of the world. We are here to do our best to support each other’s well-being and the whole child which is extremely important. Some concerns raised were focused around supporting our students’ well-being and thinking about the whole child, the health and well-being of staff, covid testing, and aligning our work with the specific needs of our school community.  Ms. LaPorte will create a google form for the team to share their concerns and possible solutions regarding the needs of our school community for both remote and blended learning. Concerns still also exist around the large remote class sizes.  We will use the feedback to drive our next steps and plan of action for school improvement.

Questions/Concerns

Question from the Chat: When do educators receive the COVID vaccine?

Meeting Adjourned

Remaining meeting dates:

  • Jan. 21, 2021
  • Feb. 25, 2021
  • Mar. 18, 2021
  • Apr. 15, 2021
  • May 20, 2021
  • June 17, 2021

*Schedule may need to be revised. Some dates conflict with CDEC meetings.*

Thursday, November 12, 2020

Meeting Called to Order

Review minutes from last SLT meeting

Minutes from the October meeting were reviewed by the team and approved.

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

Mr. Ciprut did not have any news to report on behalf of the UFT.

PTA News and Updates

Ms. Walters, PTA President reported that after-school enrichment programs have begun and are going well.  Attendance has been great for these programs with about 98% of students showing up. Today was chess with two classes running at the same time. This past Tuesday we had our PTA Executive Board meeting and we opened it up to the school. About 28 parents logged on and many questions and concerns were addressed. It was a very productive meeting. Our next meeting will be November 25th before Thanksgiving. 

Principal Report

School Updates-  In-person and remote learning is going well and has been great. Students are engaged in routines and have gained a sense of some normalcy in their daily schedules and programs. Students are attending school on their correct day and families are very good about completing the daily health screenings.

Review of Budget

The current FY 2020-2021 school budget was reviewed. Budget is based off of student enrollment which is how we are funded per student. October 31st is usually when our enrollment numbers are captured however the date was pushed to November. As of now, we have about 700 registered students, that is NOT including Pre-K students since they get funded by the State. We have discharged many students who have switched to a private school or moved to Long Island. We are currently using most of our money from school budget for sub coverage to fill the gaps with blended remote teaching. We have received Title III funding from the state which can only be used for Title III programs to support our English Language learners. This money will be used for a virtual ENL after-school program which will be taught by two ENL certified teachers. Online supplemental subscriptions for BrainPop ENL, IXL (ELA, math, science, and social studies) and Starfall have also been purchased students attending the ENL program. A portion of these funds will also be used for two parent workshops for our ENL families focused on “Helping Your ELL Child Learn English” and “Improving Your Child’s Study Skills”. The final portion of funds will be used for a professional learning workshop for staff members to support ENL students in the mainstream classroom. Additional COVID funding was given to schools for additional sub coverages to fill open positions. To ensure teachers and students have access to digital curriculum we purchased the TC reading, writing, and phonics virtual units and video lessons. We will be looking to use some of the money to hire additional staff to support some of the larger remote class sizes. 

Learning Preferences (Blended Learning Opt-In)

This window is currently opened and will close on Sunday, Nov. 15th. These students will begin in-person learning the week of Nov. 30th. Currently we have about 12 students who are requesting to switch to blended learning. Being that most of our students are remote we do have space to offer seats to all who are interested at this time.

iReady Diagnostic Screeners

We will be using iReady with all students in grades K-5 as a diagnostic screener to help us identify students’ strengths and areas in need of improvement. All students in K-5 will take the assessment online in Reading first then in Math beginning next week- the week of November 16th. All students will need to complete these assessments remotely and as independently as possible in order for us to get an accurate understanding of what students know and how we can help them. We want to see what the child knows. An example was given with regards to getting glasses and an eye exam. In order for students to get the right lenses they need to take an accurate assessment. This online assessment is an adaptive assessment which means that the questions change based on how students respond. If they get the questions correct they get progressively more difficult. These grades do not count or impact student report card grades in any way. They are simply diagnostic assessments to help teachers know where students need additional support and the small groups they can pull for targeted intervention. This will tell us if students are below, on, or above grade level. Mr. Burke sent an email to families with the information and teachers will receive training Monday afternoon regarding the administration of the assessment. 

DOE iPad status

We were able to give as many laptops that we had to students. We have been reaching out to families who have requested iPads but have not yet received them to see if they still are in need of a device. The DOE will be shipping us more devices to supply those families in need. 

PTC Feedback

Parents and teachers engaged in a nice dialogue on what is working best. Since report cards were not distributed prior, conversations were focused on how students are doing and how they can make progress.  Some remote teachers have had to use additional time to meet with all families. A thought we had for next time was to have remote teachers post asynchronous work in the morning of the half day so they could use the additional time to schedule parent conferences. This way they would have more than 5 minutes with each parent. 

Instructional Tools

Jamboard, Flipgrid, Padlet: Some instructional tools we have used as a school so far have been Jamboard and Flipgrid. Next we will incorporate Padlet and finally Pear Deck. The purpose of introducing these tools one at a time was to support students and families in becoming familiar with how to use the different tools. Our goal is to be able to have students select the tool they want to demonstrate learning for a given task. It is important to also know that even though Flipgrid is an approved instructional tool, some students/families are not comfortable having their children on video. Teachers should be mindful of this and allow students to use another method to demonstrate learning.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

2020-2021 Grading Policy

A draft of the revised grading policy was shared which included information from the academic policy guide.  The reason why we give report cards was discussed as well as the fact that students earn grades. Report cards will be given in December, April, and June. Due to this new learning environment some changes have been made for the grading policy of the 2020-2021 school year. We will still continue to use our current grading scale of a 1-4 however grades of 1, 2, or 2+ will NOT be given to students as the document states that students will not receive “failing” grades if they have not yet met the learning outcomes for their courses.  Instead, students will receive a mark of “N” for “Needs Improvement”. Students will still receive grades of 3, 3+, and 4. Students will receive a grade for marking period 3 and then the final grade will be a cumulative grade for all 3 marking periods. In terms of the final grades; families will be able to notify the school of their request either by email in writing or verbally in a documented conversation if they would like to have their child’s final grade only changed to “MT” “Meets Standards” instead of a passing grade.  This can be for individual subject areas. More information will be shared with families as we get closer to that date. Students will receive an “NL” if they are newly admitted to the school and have not been present for at least 75% of the days in the marking period. They can also receive a mark of “NL” if there is not enough information to determine whether a student has met the standards. Students will ONLY receive cluster grades for the cluster programs that they have engaged with within a marking period. For example, for the December report cards students will receive grades from clusters from their specials they had in cycle 1 and cycle 2. Cycle 3 will start in January. Next we looked over the revisions grade level teams made as to the percentages for how grades would be given. The weight of formal assessments was discussed since these assessments may not be as accurate in this type of learning environment. We hope to share this revised grading policy with families on Monday, November 16th.

Review of CEP Goals in iPlan Portal

The first submission of CEP is due in iPlan portal by Monday, November 16th ; we will work to create our action plan for all CEP Goals and discuss progress monitoring tools.

SLT members worked on the Action Plan for the CEP goals using a padlet where members had previously jotted down their thoughts and ideas for each goal. We went through the ideas shared for the CEP goal on supportive environment to look for trends and patterns across ideas to then come up with a few action plan steps after a discussion was held around what is happening in some classrooms to support this goal.  One action step we thought of was to have students complete a reflection at the end of each week indicating what was their best part of the week and what they would like the teacher to do next week to make it better. This would help incorporate student voice. A discussion was held around what this could look like in the lower grades where students could share this information out with the class. Another action plan step we agreed on was providing opportunities for students and families to express how they or their child was feeling. One way would be for parents to be able to contact the teacher via class dojo. Finally we discussed the idea of having a calm down corner or folders in Google Classroom with fun “Brain Break” activities, “Purposeful Play”, “Fun Friday” activities, etc. The next goal we discussed was chronic absenteeism for our English Language Learners. After reviewing some ideas we discussed having a point person for each grade to reach out to families to learn about why the child has been absent and provide support. We also discussed trying to have some of our staff members who speak the family’s native language call to develop a relationship with the family to offer help and provide support. This may help to make the family more comfortable in sharing.

The rest of the ideas will be reviewed and added into the action plan on iPlan portal for the team to review.

Questions/Concerns

  • Is there any plan or discussion to prepare for potentially going all remote in regards to NYC zones increasing in cases?
  • The school is prepared and ready with all google classrooms set up in the event that we have school closures due to COVID.  All curriculum is available digitally for staff and students as well.  Cluster teachers have also created google classrooms for their in-person classes just in case.
  • What would the effect be on preparing for state test prep (AIS)?  
  • Pending budget we would still be able to hold the AIS after-school program since it will be held virtually.
  • Parent concerns with class size ratio to teacher- blended vs. remote.  Once the opt-in window closes we will look at class sizes and possibly have a co-teacher to support.

Questions from the chat:

  • Will after-school ELA and math prep be offered again? Answer: As long as we have the funds, we will be preparing to have an AIS ELA and Math program virtually. 

Meeting Adjourned

Remaining Meeting Dates:

  • Dec. 17, 2020
  • Jan. 21, 2021
  • Feb. 25, 2021
  • Mar. 18, 2021
  • Apr. 15, 2021
  • May 20, 2021
  • June 17, 2021

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Members in Attendance:

  • Danielle LaPorte
  • Alex DeCanio
  • Kristina Silvagni
  • Rachel Fritz
  • Jessica Russo
  • Marc Ciprut
  • Shernette Walters
  • Sonia Mohan
  • Melissa- Ann Phillip
  • Denise Bucaoto
  • Concetta Ceriello
  • Samar Shamsi
  • Suchi Behl

Meeting Called to Order

Ms. LaPorte welcomed everyone to the meeting and reminded all visitors of their role as observers during the meeting and if they had questions or concerns they could add them in the chat to be addressed at a future SLT meeting based on relevance.

Introductions

New members as well as alternates were introduced to the team.

Review CR A-655 & the SLT requirements

Ms. LaPorte read through parts of the CR A-655 document to ensure all members had an understanding of the function, structure, roles and responsibilities, and focus/priority of the School Leadership Team.

Assign SLT Roles & Responsibilities

Roles of Chairperson and Secretary were assigned by the Team (Chairperson- Ms. LaPorte; Secretaries- Kristina Silvagni until January; Sonia Mohan January until TBD).

Review School Leadership Team Bylaws

Ms. LaPorte read through parts of the SLT Bylaws and the team focused on making sure the Bylaws were aligned to the CR A-655 policy. Parts discussed were the Mission Statement which includes the purpose of the School Leadership Team, the expectations of team members, the role of the general public, core responsibilities, as well as what does not get discussed at SLT meetings including the mentioning of specific students, staff or parent names.

Set SLT Meeting Dates for the Year

Dates were set for SLT Meetings for the Year

SLT Calendar for the 2020-2021 School Year:

  • Nov. 12th, 2020
  • Dec. 17th, 2020
  • Jan. 21st, 2021
  • Feb. 25th, 2021
  • Mar. 18th, 2021
  • Apr. 15th, 2021
  • May 20th, 2021
  • June 17th, 2021

News and Updates Committee Reports

UFT News and Updates

Mr. Ciprut indicated that there was no news/updates to be shared.

PTA News and Updates

PTA President Shernette Walters welcomed newly elected SLT Parent Representatives. The Scholastic Digital Libraries for the students were published and shared with students, staff, and families. Some concerns were raised around Savvas Math online assessments/program ** Ms.LaPorte will contact Savvas to check it out** (Note: Check Answer means to save the answer. Ms. LaPorte will also speak with staff to make them aware. PTA enrichment programs will begin in two weeks. (Beginning 11/9) The PTA is working on registering students for these programs. A question was asked around other teachers’ names in the google classrooms- Ms. LaPorte stated that teachers are collaborating with grade level teachers and sharing the workload for assignments and creating materials. This has been helping to maintain grade-level coherency and consistency especially in the event that students switch from blended to remote and vice versa. An idea was raised around providing grade 5 students with an opportunity to experience departmentalization- Ms. LaPorte and staff will revisit the idea of departmentalization as we get into the Spring.

Principal Report

Ms. LaPorte thanked the teachers and staff for the successful reopening of school. Many of the teachers and staff are doing double the work- teaching in-person students and managing and meeting with the blended remote students as well. To help provide support, the first and second grade teams now have a blended remote teacher to help support and service blended remote students. We are looking toward growing this for the rest of the grades. We currently have 1 ENL teacher in person- Ms. Keller. We now have hired a remote ENL teacher to help support and service ENL students. Ms. LaPorte thanked the students and families with all of their hard work both virtually and in person.

Random Covid Testing took place this past week. This will continue to take place once a month. We will send home a notice to make families aware that testing will take place the following week however the exact day is not given. This past testing day went very smoothly and the students did great.

Opt-In Window UPDATE: There will only be ONE opt- in the window from Nov. 2nd-Nov. 15th for families of students participating remotely to opt in for blended learning. This change was made by the DOE in hopes to build consistency for our children and families. This is guidance from the DOE, not the school. We will be keeping our program model and currently have many seats open for in-person learning.

Marking Period 1 will end on Dec. 7th and report cards will be sent home on Dec. 21st. Virtual Parent Teacher Conferences will be held on Nov. 5th and will be a dialogue between families and teachers to share information about students. Families are encouraged to share how it is going at home.

Nov. 3rd is Election Day. All staff members will be working remotely this day and it will be a full instructional day for students.

Discussion of New Business Agenda Items

Cellphone Policy:

The Cellphone policy from the 2019-2020 school year was reviewed and a discussion was held around revising the section on bringing personal laptops/iPads, etc. to school to include this as part of the policy to support student’s working in the blended learning model. A revision was made to the policy to allow students to bring in personal laptops, iPads, kindles, etc. to work on school-related assignments only. These devices are to only be used during the instructional time of the school day and should be placed in backpacks when not is use.

Homework Policy:

A discussion was held around our homework policy as well as being flexible with due dates of assignments, activities, and tasks. A consensus was made around not giving homework assignments this year due to the fact that students already don’t have enough time to complete the work from the day and could use the time to work on trying to complete any work from the school day.

2020-2021 Grading Policy

Ms. LaPorte discussed the new grading policy guidelines and reviewed important parts from the Chancellor’s letter that was shared with families. Pre-K will not be given grades. Grades will still reflect the students’ understanding and growth in subject areas. Each school will select their own grading scale from several options such as 1-4 numerical scale, A-D, etc. Students will not receive failing grades this year if they have not yet met the learning outcomes for their courses. (Level 1 or 2). Instead students will receive a mark of N for “Needs Improvement” Families will have an option to request for passing grades to reflect Meets Standards (MT) rather than their score of 3, 3+, or 4 numerical grades on report cards ONLY for the Final grade in the final marking period. Parents will need to request this by writing a letter after final report cards have been distributed in June. This can be a request for MT in one subject area and doesn’t have to be in all content areas. Attendance will NOT be a factor in a student’s grades. However, grades will reflect participation, demonstration of all components of student learning, and engagement in their work. Grade of NL means there is not enough work to assess or provide a grade. It is also used for newly admitted students who have not attended school for at least 75% of the days in the marking period. The team will review and add these new components to our grading policy. Grade level teams will work to revise their grading policy based on the discussion of weight of formal assessments in this learning environment.

Review of CEP Goals in iPlan Portal

Ms. LaPorte reviewed the process the SLT went through to determine our goals for the 2020-2021 school year. The team reviewed NYS Data for ELA & Math, ESSA (School accountability reports). As part of CEP we need a goal for all students, a goal for English Language Learners, and a goal for Students with Disabilities. We need goals in ELA and Math and Chronic Absenteeism if we received a level 1 in this area which we did for our English Language Learners sub-group. Our goals have already been approved by the superintendent over the summer. The team is always reviewing and analyzing the action plan and the data to see if we are on track for meeting our June goals. We are always able to revise our action plan but NOT the goals. At our next meeting we will think about school data we can use to progress monitor whether we are on track for meeting our benchmarks and June goal since NYS state exam results don’t come in until the summer.

Walkthrough of iPlan Portal

We reviewed a power-point which discussed the action plan of a CEP and Progress Monitoring. As a next step prior to our November meeting the team will work on adding their thoughts and ideas to a Padlet to create an action plan for each goal.

Questions/Concerns

Comments from the Chat:
  • If a child is shy perhaps or if a child is uncomfortable with this new way of learning or if a child is embarrassed about the appearance of the home they are in those could be reasons for not turning video on. If family has TV blaring in the next room or talks loudly on the telephone or family members curse in the background that could be a reason why their screen is muted. This is a new way of learning that not all families are comfortable with and not all teachers are comfortable with.
  • The teachers do not truly have a grasp on the students abilities so grading is going to be inaccurate as it was last year too. Please consider this thought for next meeting

Meeting Adjourned