March 14, 2016
Issue No: 



64 Hours

I came across this quote on Facebook this Saturday morning, “64 hours is a long time to go without the positive affirmations of a caring adult. By Monday morning, many of our students will have done just that. On Monday morning, don’t let another hour pass...”

This really caught my attention as I have been thinking a lot lately about what the home life of some of our students must be like. I have been trying to understand what it must be like to live in constant adversity. I have been trying to understand the kinds of hardships our families and their children are faced with daily. I believe this is a community issue and one that we cannot fix alone. I also believe, however, that the time students spend in school should be a refuge from trauma. At school, they should be noticed, supported and safe.

As students come back today, I hope we can do what the quote above asks us to do. It says, “Let them know, “I see you.”” I know we can do even better than that. I know we can let them know that we are glad to see them.

As we send our students off on Friday to 10 days without the sanctity of school, some of our students need to hear that you will be there for them when they get back. Those words may be the last positive thing they hear for 256 hours. May those words be good ones.

This is an interesting article about trauma and its effects on young children. It’s worth the read.

Take care. Be safe. Stay well…and enjoy spring break if you get one!


Retirement Reception for Dave Houtz


2017-2018 School Calendar Feedback Due Today!!

We want your input! The GFPS Calendar Committee has been hard at work over the past few weeks narrowing down the various options for the 2017-2018 calendar in order to make a recommendation to the GFPS Board.

To provide your feedback, click on this link and answer the questions. The three (3) calendar options can be viewed by clicking on this link
You must submit your feedback prior to the end of day today Monday, March 14, 2016!


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 will be posted Thursday, March 17, 2016 and will close on Wednesday, March 30, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Check the on-line application system (Applitrack Link To In-District Job Postings) for a list of all current in-district teacher job openings. If you are interested in applying for these opening please hand-deliver your In-District Transfer Form to the Human Resources Office to meet the deadline.


Fitness Center and Class Updates – Spring Break

Fitness Center – Open March 21-24, Monday – Thursday – Open 5:30 am to 7 am

Zumba – Cancelled - March 22 & March 24

Yoga – Cancelled – March 23 & March 24

Oula – Cancelled - March 22 & 24

Circuit Training – Cancelled – March 21 & 23



Substitute Para timesheets are due by the 2nd of each month. Substitute Teachers should verify all assignments are correct in AESOP by the 2nd of each month.

Teacher timecards and Class Coverage sheets are due in the Business Office the morning of Friday, March 11th . Reconciling should be done daily. Please verify all absences are reconciled by the 11th.

Due to spring break all schools should send their timecards on the trucks Friday March 18th. All other timecards are due in the Business Office Wednesday, March 23rd. Please e-mail any absences for the 23rd to BoPayrollLead [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us. If you know in advance an employee is going to be gone, please have them mark it on their timecard rather than waiting to email.

All time cards are due on the above dates. Do not put them in the school mail any later, as it will be impossible to pay them on this pay period. All time cards must be signed by the employee before pay checks will be released.

All federal time cards are due to federal programs office two days before the dates listed above.

Secretaries, please review your time card check-off list and be sure all employees have turned in their time cards.


Any employee terminating their employment with the district must send their timecard to the business office immediately upon termination (DO NOT wait for the end of the pay period). If the employee will be terminating shortly after the end of the pay period those days can be added to the current time card.


ELL Corner

Are you looking for strategies to re-engage your students? Here are some examples! You can use these strategies to keep all your students motivated and learning – not just ELLs!

To build vocabulary, teachers can use flip books. A flip book links the new concept or vocabulary word with an illustration and/or sentence starter. Teachers can design flip book or students can design their own. Great examples of flip books can be found at: Digital templates for flip books are available on

Word banks are another helpful tool when introducing new concepts. Word backs helps students see a list of related words to any given topic. They can serve as a quick and easy visual reminder to help students build their vocabulary skills. For more information on word banks, visit

Quick sketches are a great way to have students quickly communicate their understanding. Have students create a quick sketch to summarize their understanding of a paragraph, vocabulary word, or lesson. Have students share their sketch with a partner to explain their sketch and build their speaking skills.


March is Music in Our Schools Month!

March is Music in Our Schools Month! MIOSM events will be occurring throughout the District.

Please join us in celebrating our wonderful public school music program by attending one of our Showcase events:

Orchestra MIOSM
March 15, 7:30 pm
GFHS Auditorium
Free Admission. Middle School 8th grade combined orchestra and top groups from CMR and GFHS.

Choral MIOSM
March 17, 7:30 pm
GFHS Old Gym
Free Admission. Middle School 8th grade combined choirs and top groups from CMR and GFHS.


Lesley University Graduate Program in Great Falls

Integrated Teaching through the Arts Curriculum & Instruction, M.Ed.

First class starts September 17th & 18th, 2016. Hurry to reserve yourself a spot!

Program is designed for all K-12 educators
Project based – no GRE required
Skills that transfer to your everyday lessons!
Move up on the Salary Schedule as you go!
Financial aid and payment plans are available.
Regionally and nationally accredited
Financial Aid Counselor to assist Student Loan Process!
Deferred Student Loan payment 6 months after completion of your degree!
Nineteen weekends total! The entire program is completed in less than two years
$5000 Loan Forgiveness is available! $50 application fee waiver!

Face-To-Face teaching one weekend a month: Saturday & Sunday 8am – 5pm

Contact: Cathy Kuntz
ckuntz [at] lesley [dot] edu