Letter from the Principal

Letter from the PrincipalComments Off on Letter from the Principal

Dear Janney Families,

This week’s newsletter contains important information about Report Cards and Parent-Teacher Conferences.  Your child will receive his or her report card on Monday, November 5th, and your child’s teacher should have sent out a link to sign-up for a Parent/Teacher Conference time slot on Tuesday, November 6th.  Included in the section below on Parent/Teacher Conferences is a link to sign-up for a conference with our Specials teachers.

We are looking forward to our annual Janney 5K on Saturday, November 17!  Please read below to learn about how you can volunteer your time at this fun event.

Included in this week’s newsletter: an explanation of our K-5 report cards; information about Parent/Teacher Conferences; ways to volunteer at the Janney 5K; information about our Halloween parade; and, our student support services column from our school counselors, Lisa Oakley and Cydney Lewis.

I look forward to seeing many of you at our annual Halloween parade tomorrow at 1:30pm!

Report Cards
On Monday, November 5th, your Kindergarten-5thgrade student will receive a report card that will summarize the first quarter of learning.  If your child is a Pre-Kindergarten student, s/he will receive a report card on Tuesday, November 13th.  The report cards are divided into four main parts: the first page of the report card contains overall number grades for each subject, and letter grades that focus on learning behaviors; the second and third page of the report card contain letter grades for specific subject areas; and finally, the teacher comments will either be included as a separate document or appear on the first page of the report card, depending on your child’s grade level.

Here is a brief overview of each section:
Number grades
Number grades (4,3,2,1) denote a student’s overall performance in a specific subject area.  This grade is determined not only by the skills listed on the report card, but by other expected skills and standards as outlined by our curriculum.  Please note that the number grades are not simply an average of the skills listed in each subject section.  A 4 means that a child is exceeding grade level performance and expectations, while a 3 reflects grade level appropriate work.  A 2 demonstrates that a student is operating slightly below grade level, meaning that a student is still developing skills necessary for grade level work or that a student shows inconsistent application of the grade level skills.  A 1 shows that a student is operating well below grade level and has not demonstrated knowledge of grade level skills.

Letter grades
As mentioned above, letter grades (S,D,B) are given to specific skills within a subject area.  Please note that these are not the only skills taught during a particular advisory.  Throughout the advisory, teachers assess students in specific skills to determine whether a student is demonstrated himself or herself to be secure (S), developing (D), or beginning (B).  It is also important to note that some skills have not yet been introduced and will therefore be marked with an “N.”

Comments
The comments often contain information that is not easily expressed in other areas of the report card; this is also the section that teachers use to further explain a child’s performance.  Teachers make individual decisions for each child to either focus comments more heavily on academic performance, or on the social/emotional aspects of a child’s school experience.   Teachers often use this space to celebrate growth in a particular area, and to give specific feedback and next steps.

Please ask questions if there are parts of the report card that do not make sense to you, or if you need more clarification on next steps or further supports.  We look forward the next advisory of learning!

Parent-Teacher Conferences
This year, Parent/Teacher Conferences are scheduled for Tuesday, November 6th, after the first advisory report cards are sent home.  Included below are some suggestions on how to make the most out of the time you have with your child’s teacher.

Each family will spend 15 minutes in their conference, reflecting on their child’s academic and developmental growth so far and the growth still to come. Parents come to these conferences with different goals, and we want to be responsive to what you would like to discuss.
To maximize your time:
-Reflect on your goals in advance. What will make this conference feel like a success?
-Develop 2-3 questions around these goals and write them down. It is easy to get carried away by the momentum of the conference and having the questions in hand helps.
-Arrive a few minutes early. Student work folders at most grade levels will be placed outside of classroom/conference spaces. So that the conference is enriched by discussion about rather than a review of student work, take the time to look through it. Based on what you see, add a question or two to your original list.
-Share your questions with the teacher at the beginning of your conference as a way of contributing to the agenda.
-Make sure to begin and end your conference on time. Many teachers will have timers set to signal the end of the conference; we do so to be respectful of the family that follows.

I sent this link via our community newsletter last year to provide a few helpful tips for parents:
http://www.npr.org/sections/ed/2014/09/18/349337543/how-to-make-the-most-of-your-10-minutes-with-teacher

Below, please find the sign-up genius links for our student support service team members and for our specials team.

Link to Specials P/T Conferences:
https://www.signupgenius.com/go/60b0a4fafa82aa46-parentteacher5

Janney 5K
Now that you have taken advantage of the early bird discount and signed up to run, please consider volunteering your time to help us with some tasks to ensure the race runs smoothly.  Or spread the word to your neighbors.  Some of these tasks are great for middle or high school kids looking for community service hours.  Go to https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090444adaa2ba64-janney1 to sign up now.

Thanks to all who rallied for early bird signups and family sponsorships and especially to those who brought in corporate sponsorships!

18 days to the Janney 5K!

Reminder: Halloween Parade
The Halloween parade will begin at 1:30 pm on Wednesday, 10/31.  Children are expected to bring their costumes to school and will be allowed to change 15 minutes prior to the parade.  A gentle reminder that students are not allowed to wear costumes that promote violence or bring materials that look like weapons.  Classroom parties will follow the parade.  As Wednesday, 10/31 is a full school day, we intend to maintain a normal school day prior to 1:00 pm.  Thank you for your support and cooperation.

Parade route: All classes will report to their Jamboree spots by 1:30 pm.  This year, homerooms will be called over the microphone to walk 2×2 down the middle of the field or “runway” from the Jamboree stage side to the opposite gate. Classes will then proceed out the back gate, circle around the blacktop, through the concrete on the atrium side, and back to their Jamboree spot. Classes are encouraged to do a brisk walk without stopping for pictures, and parents will be encouraged to take candid pictures on the field, reserving more posed pictures for classroom parties. After the parade, classes will be dismissed to the building (oldest first) for classroom parties.  If you have a child in PK or K, your child’s teacher will communicate the class Jamboree spot before next Wednesday, 10/31.

Student Support Services Column
Acting With Kindness

Be kind, be nice, behave! These are things we tell our children repeatedly, but what do these words mean? Can kindness be learned? Yes, and here are some of the ways we’re teaching it at school:

Being Helpful– Finding ways to be helpful comes naturally for many students. For example, if someone gets a scrape on the playground there are usually several volunteers willing to take the injured student to the nurse. Similarly, finding lost items, holding the door for a teacher with his/her arms full, delivering messages and managing classroom materials are all ways students help in school. Following the teachers’ directions the first time is also helpful, and students learn to recognize this as being kind, too.

Sharing– Sharing materials is a necessity in many communities, including the classroom. Beginning in PreK students are taught to share such items as glue, scissors, and crayons. But sharing goes beyond materials; we also share space and time when we take turns and give others a chance to participate. What’s more, any time we share our time or resources, such as volunteering or making a donation, we’re acting with kindness.

Encouraging– We act with kindness any time we offer praise, congratulations, or cheer someone on in their endeavors. The school day provides many opportunities for students to encourage each other!

Inviting/  including– These are skills that often still require adult support. It can be tricky for children, especially students in lower grades, to find the confidence to invite a friend to join their game, or include someone they notice playing alone. However, students generally want to be kind, and with a bit of guidance from the adults in their world, they can learn to be inclusive.

 Noticing– The tiniest action with the biggest impact! Noticing is at the heart of empathy, which is ultimately where kindness is rooted. In elementary school noticing can mean paying attention in class (something teachers love!) or simply giving a compliment, such as “I like your drawing.” Think how you’ve felt when someone tells you they like your new haircut- it’s not how you look that matters but that they’ve noticed the change.  Soon, noticing turns into listening, which is an essential element of healthy relationships; when we notice and listen to someone’s needs it help us to empathize and respond with kindness.

These days a little kindness can go a long way!
What are some of the ways your children see you being kind at home?

Lisa Oakley, School Counselor
Cydney Lewis, School Counselor

Warmly,
Alysia Lutz, Principal

  • Janney Calendar

    April 2021

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    • End of Term / Half-Day PD & Half-Day Records Day / No School for Students
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    • Janney Meeting re New Ward 3 Schools
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    • Dining Out at Potomac Pizza
    • DCPS Office of School Planning Meeting with Janney re New Ward 3 Schools
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