In this first episode of AWSP News for 2020, we discuss:
Prefer to read the news? Check out our script.
Love Like This | Cartoons and materials designed to help create the conversation with young people.
Friends and Family Guide and for download/printout. | How to help someone in an abusive relationship.
How’s Your Relationship? | These sets of activity cards help you get the conversation started so you can chat about love with those you love or talk to someone about their abusive behavior.
Valentines for Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month | February is just around the corner.
Team Up Washington | This is a new initiative that supports athletic coaches/teams to incorporate violence prevention lessons into their season – next coaches training is happening on February 10th at T-Mobile Park, hosted by the Mariners.
Refuse to Abuse 5k | Held in partnership with the Seattle Mariners at T-Mobile Park.
Happy New Year! Welcome back!
There has been a lot of conversation about drills lately – the whats, the whys, the hows and the whens. Old requirements; new requirements. Muscle memory, option-based responses, and more.
So what do we need to know and know how to do? What else should be consider when planning our drills?
Schools are required to have at least one drill per month, including summer sessions, when students are present. Our WA required drills practice four basic functional threat or hazard responses: earthquake response, evacuation, lockdown, and shelter-in-place. For schools in mapped tsunami or lahar zones, a pedestrian evacuation drill is also required. (More on that requirement at a later time.) Finally, at least one drill per year must incorporate the school mapping system. Schools may choose to practice one or more functional drills multiple times during the course of a year, based on the specific threats and hazards which the school faces.
The drills are intended to practice a single emergency response. Each drill focuses on a single function in order to strengthen skills, build muscle memory, and identify areas of improvement. It is important to note, though, that there are times when drilled functions may be sequential. A drop-cover-hold earthquake drill followed by an evacuation drill is one example of this.
Drills are frequently scheduled and announced: “We will have an evacuation drill on Wednesday at 10:25.” The question has been raised as whether this is really a useful drill. The answer, “Yes, it is.” Remember muscle memory. Such an announcement will prepare staff and students to practice what they need to do within the context of an evacuation. Less specific drill times can also be useful: “We will have an evacuation drill on Wednesday.” Such a plan may test that muscle memory.
All of which leads into the conversation around staff and student preparation. Take time to talk with your staff about the practice of drilling. Work through scenarios and mini-table top exercises. Consider option-based responses – “what-if” situations. Develop parallel, age-appropriate lessons for classroom use prior to your actual drills. Include your school’s rules to be followed during a drill. Remember that the drills, themselves, are ultimately meant to teach students and staff to take appropriate action based on specific situations. Prior conversations will also help reduce levels of anxiety during various drills for both staff and for students.
Finally, remember to involve your local first responders and families in your drill preparations. Depending on the nature and timing of a particular drill, you may want or need to invite them to participate along with your staff and students.
Plan before your drill. Make it a New Year’s resolution!
A student is directed to leave the classroom in order to have a conversation with the teacher in the hallway. This action needs to be documented as a Classroom Exclusion.
If the student remains under the teacher’s supervision while in the hallway for a brief period of time and the purpose of the conversation is to support the student in meeting behavioral expectations, the teacher’s action would constitute “other forms of discipline” and would not be a Classroom Exclusion.
Similarly, if the teacher calls for support so a different adult can work with the student for a brief period of time - for purposes of re-teaching or reviewing classroom expectations - that action would not constitute a Classroom Exclusion.
However, if a teacher directs the student to go into the hallway and leaves the student there unsupervised—or, for example, with a para-professional for longer than a brief duration of time—those actions would constitute a classroom exclusion.
Check out the other Classroom Exclusion Fact or Fiction videos on our Youtube Channel!
“School Suspensions are an Adult Behavior”
Supporting and Responding to Behavior: Evidence-Based Classroom Strategies for Teachers
What is PBIS?
Understanding Implicit Bias
In this final episode of AWSP News for 2019, we discuss:
Prefer to read the News? Check out the script.
A “Brief Duration” is defined by law as 5 minutes or less.
State regulations actually do not define “brief duration”. So, there is no set amount of time that defines a Classroom Exclusion.
That said...the goal is to keep students in class as much as possible and the intent of the new discipline law is to avoid students being punished by having them out of class or school for extended periods of time.
Evidence-based behavioral interventions and classroom strategies that include brief durations of time away from instruction typically recommend a duration not to exceed five minutes.
For example, Breaks are Better—a tier 2 intervention intended for students who engage in task-avoidance behaviors—provides students explicit opportunities to request breaks from academic activities for approximately 2 to 5 minutes.
The key questions in all of this is…”What we are having students do while they are out of class? And how can we develop non-punitive classroom instructional systems for behavior modification that support students as they work to increase behaviors that promote learning?
On behalf of all of us here at AWSP and the students and principals in our state, we want to wish you all a happy holiday season, well-deserved winter break and a chance to rest, relax and recharge for the 2020 year.
We are all in this business together. The business of shaping the future by impacting the kids in our system. Strong partnerships, collaboration and networking is the only way to put hope in the center of our educational system.
Thank you for the continued “forever impact” you are having on each and every child in our great state and beyond. Together, we are making a difference.
Again, we wish you a restful, family-filled holiday season. See you in 2020!
‘Twas the week before break and all through the school
The students were studying for exams that aren’t cool.
The students’ work was hung on walls with care,
With hopes that high scores would soon appear there.
Technology is working, and the staff is in step
As the administration is quickly filling out TPEP.
The end of first semester is coming near
As we only have three weeks after the New Year.
I walk through classrooms, seeing great education being taught
Knowing that my teachers always give all they’ve got.
As we stress over data and the achievement gap
It is clear that there is space in the brains left to tap.
Then came an OSPI bulletin that arose such a clatter
And I rushed to the website to see what’s the matter?
What a great surprise to a new assessment name
As my students are struggling to hit the ‘moving target’ game
With education changing, and Collections of Evidence not coming back
The confusion with graduation, is rising high in my stack.
With no AYP and no support team to blame
OSPI called all the assessments out by name:
On WASL – Wait that’s SBAC, on Finals – that was EOC
Testing MAPS and DIBELS, no one is free
Smarter Balance confusion is on the rise
With stress and frustration in students’ eyes.
As this poem is meant to add joy and smile
Knowing that education always goes the extra mile
So many assessments for goodness sake
Please hug a teacher and have a safe break.
We recently met with representatives from the Washington School Counselor Association (WSCA) and would like to share some information and resources with you for maximizing the role that school counselors play in your building.
According to a 2008 report by the NASSP, the College Board, and the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), when principals and school counselors work together effectively, they can have a huge impact on student achievement.
Check out these resources to learn more:
"Finding a Way" tells the stories of principals and school counselors who have formed strong partnerships to overcome challenges and prepare students for college. This publication highlights the activities, skills and behaviors contributing to their success.
"A Closer Look at the Principal-Counselor Relationship" reports on the results of a national survey of more than 2,300 school counselors and principals. Respondents shared their perceptions about the most important characteristics of a successful relationship and the most significant barriers they face.
The Elementary Grade Level Committee spent time as a committee in break out sessions, collecting good thoughts/ideas and answering questions in relationship to our AWSP governance reconfiguration, advocacy platform, self care & work-life balance, MTSS supports in place at the building level, and celebrations of what’s working in your school.
Additionally, with new membership to our committee we spent some time completing a “Goose Chase” with the Goose Chase app to get to know our colleagues on the committee better and to have a little fun prior to heading to our dinner social. We encourage you to check out this fun app – it’s easy to do and a fun way to connect in a staff meeting and to laugh together as a team!
Our second day, we focused our professional learning on using a “Fishbone Diagram” with any problem of practice your school might be facing. We highlighted the importance of “Inquiry vs. Advocacy”, the importance of suspending opinion to guide teams to solutions where they actually had control. We used this critical video to teach the concept to participants.
WIAA Report – New leadership at WIAA. Challenges introducing 6th grade sports (Wrestling, Track, X-country) include space and referee availability.
NASSP Report, Region 7 convening report and advocacy – An emphasis on connecting with local legislators – inviting them to your school in order to help them understand how school works. Focusing on the positive and asking for support in order to increase opportunities for more students.
Discussion and idea sharing on the new discipline law.
Our agenda was full of items relevant to our collective work.
Special kudos to John Belcher for his expert facilitation skills and having us share some of our collective work through the use of Google Slides and Padlet. Modeling this activity for our group gave us all ideas we can take back and use with our staff.
As you return to your work remember to take a moment and thank your Superintendent for allowing you to attend and be a representative of your region at the meeting. Feel free to pass a long any documents or information you heard/learned to the rest of your administrative team. Coupled with your own administrative team is the league that you represent. Be sure to update them and other individuals with the details of our work at your next meeting.
Here are the items from our agenda:
If you would like to review the notes we took during our table discussions, they can be accessed here.
Thanks again for your work and most of all your time. John and I hope you found it valuable, informative, and most of all worthwhile. As always, should you have any questions, thoughts, comments, or things you need me to follow-up with, give me a call or shoot me an email.
Our next meeting is January 25th and the 26th at the SouthCenter Double Tree. Until then, keep up the great work for kids!
Check out the other Classroom Exclusion Fact or Fiction videos on our Youtube Channel!
“School Suspensions are an Adult Behavior”
In this episode of AWSP News, we discuss:
Dr. Dana Anderson, Kim Fry, Abigail Westbrook and Kurt Hatch discuss policy, leadership and practice for positive discipline systems.
It’s hard to believe it’s December already! The holidays are upon us. Where does the time go?
No doubt there will be a lot of new technology coming into homes over the holidays. Check out and share the Connect Safely Guides. You’ll find both one-page Quick Guides and longer Parent Guides to help all adults understand many of the apps, sites, and technologies which they may be seeing or hearing about.
2. National Bullying Prevention Center
As another gift to educators, the Pacer National Bullying Prevention Center Videos has over 100 short videos available for free. These can be used as staff refreshers. Many can also be used in the classroom with students. This is a resource which keeps on giving as new videos are frequently added.
Did you realize that the suicide rate is lowest in December. That’s good news! However, those rates rise after the New Year and into the spring. Check out the OSPI Suicide Prevention page. There you will find an excellent Model Plan Template to help build suicide prevention into your district and school comprehensive safety plan.
As we know, Threat Assessment refers to a structured group process to evaluate the risk posed by a student or another person. It is done in response to an actual or perceived threat or concerning behavior. Through our 9 ESDs, WA is implementing the Salem-Keizer Threat Assessment Model. The model includes a site-assessment screening completed by a trained multi-disciplinary Level 1 team. If necessary, more comprehensive in-depth assessment and consultation is completed by a Level 2 multi-agency team. For general background information on threat assessment, checkout this link from the Secret Service.
Have a safe and happy holiday season! Get ready for a safe and productive new year!