Newsbits
April 25, 2016
Issue No: 
33

Contents

SUPERINTENDENT’S MESSAGE

Schools Are Buildings With Tomorrow Inside

The assistant superintendents and I have been making the rounds speaking to staff members about the Facility Plan and the $98.8M bond levy. We are doing this because it is imperative that staff members understand the plan and have the facts. It is inevitable that community members will ask you questions. When they know you work for the District, they will assume that you have information about it. Those community members are right. You should be in the know and if you don’t happen to know the exact answer, you should be able to know where to find answers. So Ruth, Tom and I have been making the rounds. Unfortunately, we will not be able to reach every single employee at a meeting. Therefore, this article is a primer on the information that is available to you.

First of all, be aware that there is a complete section of the GFPS webpage devoted to Facility Planning. It can be found here: www.gfps.k12.mt.us/facility. As you check out the page, you can view the POWERPOINT that is being presented in the schools and to community groups. While it doesn’t have the verbal part of the presentation, it does provide the basics of the Plan and bond levy. The next thing to do is to read the FACILITY ACTION PLAN that can also be accessed on the page. For each project, it gives the details, the rationale and the impacts/consequences. It also contains pictures and other information. The SUMMARY BROCHURE is also there. These will also be out in the buildings in a couple of weeks along with specific brochures for each school. As you get questions, you might also want to check out the ASKED AND ANSWERED document. As we answer questions in the community, we update it, so it should be a good resource as it grows. Lastly, you can find out the estimated cost of the bond levy for any property. The SCHOOL BOND CALCULATOR has all the directions and with just a few clicks, you get the estimated dollar amount.

We will be providing information to the community all through the summer and into September. We will have a booth set up at a variety of community events and will try to reach the public in a variety of ways. If you would like to help, email me with your summer email address and phone number.

This is a big ask of our community but it will be worth it in so many ways. This is our time to ensure our buildings will be viable educational institutions for years to come. Schools are buildings with tomorrow inside. Let’s make those buildings even better. If not us, who? If not now, when?

Take care. Be safe. Stay well.
Tammy

SEND IN YOUR BALLOT!

Please remember that the work of our Board of Trustees significantly impacts our work. It is important that our voices are heard via the voting that seats the Board. This year, there are three seats up for election. Those are the seats of Jeff Gray, Ann Janikula and Laura Vukasin. All three incumbents have filed as have four other candidates. Trustee elections are often decided by only a few votes. Every vote counts. Don’t let your ballot sit in your pile of mail. Exercise your right and responsibility. Fill it out and mail it in today.

 

GFPS Employee Election Guidelines

These hold true for the upcoming Trustee election as well as the facility bond election to be held in October.

BACKGROUND
MCA 13-35-226: A public employee may not solicit support for or opposition to any political committee, the nomination or election of any person to public office, or the passage of a ballot issue while on the job or at the place of employment.
MCA 2-2-121: Public funds may not be expended for any form of commercial advertising in support of or opposition to a bond issue or levy submitted to the electors.
GFPS 5224 Personnel Policy—Political Activity—Staff Participation: No person may attempt to coerce, command, or require a public employee to support or oppose any political committee, the nomination or election of any person to public office, or the passage of a ballot issue. No District employee may solicit support for, or opposition to, any political committee, the nomination or election of any person to public office, or the passage of a ballot issue while on the job or at his place of employment. However, nothing in this section is intended to restrict the right of a District employee to express his or her personal political views.

EXAMPLES OF RESTRICTED USES OF PUBLIC FUNDS
The following are examples of prohibited activities for political purposes by governmental bodies. Not all possibilities can be shown:
1. Political signs to expressly advocate a ballot issue, candidate, or political committee may not be placed on school property or buildings.
2. District equipment such as telephones, copy machines, fax machines, video equipment, audio equipment, and cameras are not permitted to be used for political purposes.
3. District computer equipment such as computer hardware, computer software, and printers are not allowed to be used for political purposes.
4. District e-mail and web sites are not permitted to be used. School district employees should not use District resources to forward or generate political e-mails.
5. Political posters, brochures, buttons, flyers, or promotional literature of any type cannot be displayed by schools.
6. Employees of a governmental body may not engage in campaign activities of any sort during time the employees are expected to be engaged in official work duties.
7. Teachers may not send advocacy literature home with students.
8. The teachers’ lounge cannot be used to distribute or display political advertisements.
9. Employees cannot encourage others to support or oppose the election of any person to office or the passage of a ballot issue during the time the employee is expected to be engaged in official work duties.

This list is not all-inclusive.

EXAMPLES OF ACCEPTABLE ACTIVITIES
1. Know the facts and be prepared to answer student, parent and community questions regarding the facts.
2. Volunteer on non-work time to participate in a citizen committee. District employees may be members of independent citizen committees to advocate for or against a candidate or ballot issue, and may solicit or encourage members of the public to be part of a citizens' committee, so long as these activities occur on personal time and off District premises.
3. Make phone calls from home to discuss the election.
4. Personally donate money to citizen committees.
5. E-mail on personal time from a personal account and network to other personal accounts information about the election.
6. Provide impartial, factual information as a part of the employee’s job on work time or in a school facility.

                            This list is not all-inclusive.                                 TLacey 4/16

 

In-District Teacher Transfer Information

Reminder – As a teacher, if you apply for a position and accept that
position for the following school year you cannot apply for any
additional positions within the teacher unit.

In-District Teacher Transfer Information

Current openings were posted Tuesday, April 19, 2016 and will close
TODAY Monday, April 25, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Check the on-line
application system Link To In-District Teacher Job Openings
for a list of all current in-district teacher job openings. If you
are interested in applying for these openings please hand-deliver your
In-District Transfer Form to the Human Resources Office
to meet the deadline.
 

Preschool Matters

 

Tech Team Opening at Lewis & Clark

Interested in representing Lewis & Clark (effective August 1, 2016) on the district-level technology team? If so, please fill out the below application by Friday, May 6, and email to Susan Quinn. The application lists the responsibilities of the job, which requires a two-hour meeting once per month in addition to other duties. Questions can be emailed to Susan Quinn, Jana Mora, or Charlene Ammons. Visit the following link for the application (http://bit.ly/GFPS-tech-team-app). Download the application as Word, fill it out, and email it to Susan Quinn by Friday, May 6.

 

What: The Annual GFPS All-City Art Show

What: The Annual GFPS All-City Art Show
When: April 28-May 28
Where: Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art
Opening reception Thursday April 28 from 4:30-6:30 pm.

Details:
Artwork from all schools and all grade levels in the GFPS system will be on display for the month at the Paris Gibson Square Museum of Art. Come see the creative works from these students in the professional display space of the Square! Free admission.

Dusty Molyneaux
Music and Art Supervisor
Great Falls Public Schools
(406) 268-6079
dusty_molyneaux [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us

 

 

2nd Annual Rob Quist Benefit and Arts Appreciation Fundraiser coming right up!

 

Employee Wellness Spring Poker Walk

 

Retirement and Longevity Awards

Retirement and Longevity Awards
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 7pm
Paris Gibson Education Center

All employees who have served the District 25, 30, or 35 years will be honored as well as those employees who have retired during the 2015-2016 school year or are retiring at the end of the school year.

Honorees will be sent an invitation via letter in April. If you do not receive one and you think you fall in the categories noted above, please contact Kim Fadrhonc at 268-6051. The District will honor each recipient with a gift. Desserts and refreshments will be provided.
 

Interested in June Professional Development? Looking for Something Different?

Indian Education for All is currently seeking 20 GFPS teachers to embark on an all-expense paid 5-day 4-night excursion across the highline. Teachers will receive 12 PIR hours, while immersed in the Seven Essential Understandings of IEFA. Teachers will explore three different reservations—Fort Peck, Fort Belknap, and Rocky Boys and learn from tribal members—more exciting details to come! Desirable candidates are adventurous, enthusiastic and ready to have a blast.

Register through PIR eCentral: IEFA Teacher Camp II.

Paid Training Day: June 4th, 8:30-3:30
Travel Dates: leave June 20th - return June 24th

Please contact Katie Hurin (268-6657; Katie_Hurin [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us) or JoLena Hinchman (265-6661; jolena_hinchman [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us) for more information.

 

MIET 2016

 

Retirement Celebration for Bill Salonen