Newsbits
May 18, 2015
Issue No: 
37

Contents

Finish Strong

 

I never quite know how to feel about this time of year. On one hand, there is satisfaction in checking another 180 days of amazing learning off the list. Hopefully each of the 180 days brought many moments of joy for you and your students. There is so much excitement as the variety of student and staff celebrations are held. Each assembly, concert and commencement puts a smile on my face. There is summer to look forward to: a time to take a breath and recharge the batteries.
On the other hand, though, there are the sad good-byes to students and staff…and I’m horrible at good-byes. There is the taking down of bulletin boards and the storing away of learning materials. I find the look of empty classrooms to be a bit depressing. There is the end-of-year rush to get everything done as we already begin our planning for next year. I can see the stress on staff and student faces.
These ups and downs, highs and lows, can make me feel a bit manic this time of year. Those feelings make it all the more important to stay focused on the tasks at hand. In other words, finish strong.
The Daily Motivator, Ralph Marston says, “Start strong, stay strong, and finish strong by always remembering why you are doing it in the first place.” As we look to last day of the year, I want to take you back to our first day together, to Convocation. I promised you that I would be:
• Accountable and accessible by taking responsibility for my decisions and actions, and being available to our community;
• Committed and loyal to GFPS and its vision, mission and beliefs;
• Engaged by putting my attention towards our strategic plan and all the other important work that must take place in a first class school district; and
• Service by providing assistance and attention to those who need it.
I hope my work continues to come up ACES because our kids, our community and our future deserve it.
What did you promise on that first day? Why were you here in the first place? I know that as we move through these final days of the 2014-2015 school year, there will be distractions and detours. Hopefully, there will also be time to step back, to remember, to reflect upon our ultimate purposes. Let’s finish what we started.

Take care. Be safe. Stay well.
Tammy
 

Retirement and Longevity Awards

Retirement and Longevity Awards
Wednesday, May 20, 2015 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 2014-2015 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.

 

CMR 2015 Retirement Tea

East Middle Shool 2015 Retirement Social

East Middle School Administration, Faculty and Staff Invite You to Our
2015 Retirement Social
May 20, 2015
2:20 pm in the EMS Cafeteria
We will be honoring the following educators for their
years of service and dedication
to the students of the Great Falls Public School District.
Barb Holden
Elaine Blythe
Elaine Schoyen
Maria Taylor
and Mary Aspinwall
Family, Friends and Colleagues Welcome
 

GFH Farewell to Staff

On May 20th from 2:45-4:00pm in the Bison Beastro (South Campus) GFH will be holding its farewell celebration for staff who will not be rejoining us next year: Jane Gregoire, Gary Copeland, Rachel Waterfield, Shawn Ruff, Kathleen Brown, Jessica Bryant, Stacy Peterson, Taylee Fromm, Matt Carey, Missie Hill, and Lyn Conway.

We will also have a Silent Auction to replenish the funds of the Ben Lundquist Scholarship that is offered to graduating seniors who have a parent currently employed full time at GFHS for a minimum of 3 years with GPA of 2.5 minimum. Unfortunately the fund was depleted so no awards were given last year, but this year we are hoping to be back on track due our staff’s and a benefactor’s amazing generosity!

We are asking you to consider donating anything (apparel, baked goods, art, or anything you think might spur the interest of bidders. Donation items we have already received that you might consider bidding on so far include: 4 Disneyland Passes valued at $620, a golfing package, various baked or homemade items (including GFHS Staff’s Choice Award Winning Cyndi Jacobsen’s cookies), various apparel, and an emergency car kit (portable compressor, jumper cables and the whole caboodle). Donation(s) can be sent to April Senger at GFHS. The paperwork is in place! The value that your donation sells for will be sent to you as a tax donation form for your next tax season.

The description below shows that Ben Lundquist’s dedication to our students and families is a long standing tradition!

His family was his teaching, and his students were his children. Ben Lundquist was lovingly referred to by his students as “Uncle Ben”. He taught in such diverse places as Sweden, Minnesota and Bozeman, MT. He helped establish the American Field Service in Great Falls and was the first winner of the Humanitarian Award from the University of Great Falls. He was active in community affairs; he was counselor and friend to many as well as history teacher for 35 years. Because of Ben and his many achievements in teaching, his fellow teachers have been inspired to maintain a memorial to him and the teaching profession and to honor those whom Ben thought so highly of-----the young people.
 

Dr. Fred Anderson is Retiring

Retirement Celebration for Sandy Houle

It’s hard to IMAGINE
It’s hard to BELIEVE
But Sandy’s finally ready
To RETIRE & LEAVE!

Please Join us
on
Thursday
May 28th, 2015
3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
at
Longfellow’s Cafeteria

To celebrate
SANDY HOULE
and her many years of accomplishment
with Great Falls Public Schools

Cake & Punch to be served
 

Retirement Party for Odetta Arcand!

Retirement Party
For Odetta Arcand
On Thursday May 28th
At 3:45 in the West Library
Come help us celebrate!
 

Katie Kotynski is Retiring!

Fall Print and Graphic Orders 2015-2016 School Year

All Fall orders need to be titled as "Fall" for the due date. That is for both the Print Center orders and Graphic orders.
Graphic orders for the 2015-2016 school year that must be created need to be submitted no later than June 30th. Any submissions beyond then may not be returned until approximately early October. Please try to prepare for the new school year early so we can get your orders done on time.
Fall Print orders CAN NOT be submitted electronically. With having such a high volume of orders for the fall, we do not want to risk any orders being lost in the system. Please send all fall orders as you would in the past.
Please feel free to give Central Reception a call with any questions or concerns.
268-6054
268-6051

 

Staff Purchasing Reminders & Tips

From time to time as staff members, we get pre-approval and buy certain items for school use with our personal money. By district policy, the maximum limit for a staff reimbursement is $150. Once a purchase has been pre-approved by an immediate supervisor, the purchase should not include personal items on the same receipt. To avoid the reimbursement process totally, many merchants accept hand carry purchase orders. This means that staff members won’t have to use their own money and go through the burdensome process of getting a check from the district to be reimbursed for their purchases. The Purchasing Department (Mary - #6040/Kayla - #6043) will work with you to identify the merchants who accept hand carry purchase orders.
 

Good Apple Awards

Time is running out for nominations for Good Apples for the 14-15 school year. Any nominations need to be sent as a word document attached to an email to Susan Woyth by Wednesday May 20th 12 o’clock Noon.

Tech Team Opening at the Preschool

Are you a teacher at the Preschool who likes helping others with technology and learning about new hardware and software? Then you might like to apply for the Tech Team. See the linked application, which is due Friday, May 22, 2015, at 4 p.m., for further information.
Please submit completed applications and direct any questions to Charlene Ammons.
Click for application
 

PIR with ADVENTURE

PIR with ADVENTURE – ONLY 6 SEATS REMAIN
Indian Education For All has the trip for you! We will be exploring the Blackfeet and Flathead Reservations while learning about herbal medicines, language immersion, bison history and management, listening to oral tradition, and perhaps we’ll sleep in a tipi.
This is a 5-day, 4-night trip via charter bus. There are no out-of-pocket expenses for participants and teachers will receive 12 PIR hours.
The focus of this trip to provide teachers with a unique experience that provides for the learning of Indian culture, history and contemporary issues within an authentic setting.
Teachers should expect to have an exciting, fun, and challenging learning experience.
Training Day: June 6th, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Travel dates: Leave June 22nd – Return June 26th
Register on PIR eCentral: IEFA Teacher Camp l
ONLY 6 SEATS REMAIN
Indian Education For All has the trip for you! We will be exploring the Blackfeet and Flathead Reservations while learning about herbal medicines, language immersion, bison history and management, listening to oral tradition, and perhaps we’ll sleep in a tipi.
This is a 5-day, 4-night trip via charter bus. There are no out-of-pocket expenses for participants and teachers will receive 12 PIR hours.
The focus of this trip to provide teachers with a unique experience that provides for the learning of Indian culture, history and contemporary issues within an authentic setting.
Teachers should expect to have an exciting, fun, and challenging learning experience.
Training Day: June 6th, 8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Travel dates: Leave June 22nd – Return June 26th
Register on PIR eCentral: IEFA Teacher Camp l

New PIR Classes Have Been Added

We have added several classes to PIR. To sign up, visit pir.gfps.k12.mt.us
 

• Ceramic Coil and Slab Vessels
• Ceramic Animal Rattles
• CPR and First Aid (four sessions)
• Digital Resources for Meet Common Core (EMS only)
• High School Mentor Training (Grant Teachers Only)
• Language Difference vs. Disorder
• Montana Counselor Tour Part II (HS Counselors only)
• Multi-Sensory-Phonics for Classroom and Small Groups
• Office 365 (third session)
• Oral Tradition of Storytelling
 

PAYROLL INFORMATION FOR MAY 2015

PAYROLL INFORMATION FOR MAY 2015

Teacher time sheets are due in the Business Office the morning of Wednesday, May 13th. Please e-mail your absences to BoPayrollLead [at] gfps [dot] k12 [dot] mt [dot] us each day through May 15th. If you know in advance a teacher is going to be gone, please mark it on the time sheet rather than waiting to email. Teachers who use time cards should also turn them in at this time.

All other time cards are due in the Business Office the morning of Thursday, May 21st.

Substitute teacher time sheets are due by the 2nd of each month.

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.

TERMINATING EMPLOYEES

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.

 

Update- Employee Wellness Classes

Yoga will be cancelled on May 13, 2015 – this is the same day as the District Spring Poker Walk
 

Zumba will be cancelled Tuesday May 12 and Thursday May 28, 2015
 

Spring Poker Walk Winners!

Lesley University Graduate Program in Great Falls

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

 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
406.899.7308 ckuntz [at] lesley [dot] edu
 

MSUN Online Courses