Monthly Archives: March 2013

HABIT 5: Seek First to Understand

Habit 5

“The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them.” ~ Ralph G. Nichols

  • Welcome Back Hurricanes!!!!!
  • Habit 5 point to ponder:  As educators/leaders we are constantly seeking new ways to communicate effectively.  We work on our delivery….our diction…our understanding of the concept…and anything else that helps us make a point.  After all the goal is to convey information, right? But when is the last time we truly worked on our listening. Communication is the most important skill in life. “Seek first to understand” involves a very deep shift in paradigm. We typically seek first to be understood. Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply, ( p.s. this is a challenging Habit for me, but I choose to Accept this Challenge). The goal for an effective educator/leader is to move every conversation into the attentive listening category.  This is half the battle : )
  • ePAT will be administered on April 2 – 3, 2013. Reference the link below for your scheduled time.

  • FCAT Training Season is upon us.  Click on the link below for your grade level training date.


  • Note:  All the 6th/7th grade Test Administrators and Proctors will need to attend both the paper and computer based trainings. Plan accordingly for your PLC meetings next week.  Trainings are additionally posted on Zimbra.
  • The FCAT Scheduling Committee  has developed 3 different FCAT Daily Schedule Plans for the staff to review.   Below you will find the plans and a link to take the survey via Survey Monkey, to specify your preferred FCAT Schedule.  The link will remain active until April 4th at 4:00pm.  Make sure to look at each dated tab on the bottom of the spreadsheets (this is where daily schedules are represented).

Plan 1 FCAT April 15 – 18, 2013 ..  Plan 2 FCAT April 15-18 ..  Plan 3 FCAT April 15-18 ..

  • 2013 – 2014 Scheduling:  The results are in and Plan C (Block on M,T,Th,F…every class W) was chosen as the most conducive schedule for student learning and enrichment to be implemented next year.  The Modified Block Scheduling Committee will meet to address the questions that were posed for Plan C and develop a minute to minute Bell Schedule.  We will keep you posted.  The Modified Scheduling Professional Development Team will be meeting to finalize PD needs and dates.  Below is the chart of the voting results.

2013-2014 Scheduling Preference

  • Click on the link below to see what’s happening on the Hurricane Weekly: 

Week of April 1

  • REMINDER: This year’s Summer Conference will focus on Instructional Practices from the Marzano model with examples and references to the Common Core State Standards. The conference will take place at Seminole State Conference, July 16 & 17. The registration fee for the conference is $50 per person for the two-day conference, limited to the first 300 people. We will also be offering Clinical Educator training July 16-18. The cost for this training is $75 per person, limited to the first 100 people.  If you are interested in attending, see your Curriculum Administrator.

Have a Great Week Back Hurricanes!!!!!


Posted by on 03/30/2013 in LEAD21- SERIES1


Habit 4: Think Win-Win


“Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Value and respect people by understanding a “win” for all is ultimately a better long-term resolution than
if only one person in the situation had gotten his way.”
  • Good Morning Hurricanes!!!!!!!!!
  • There will be coffee and pastries for you in the Data Lounge Tuesday morning before you start your busy day. Just our way of saying:  “Thanks a Latte” for all you do.
  • Just want to remind everyone you must have your grades due 5:00pm Friday, 3/22/13. Skyward will be going down right after that for maintenance.
  • This is a reminder that your Deliberate Practice Reflections are due Friday.


  • Check out the Hurricane Weekly for up to date Happenings!!!!

Week of March 18. 2013

  • Scheduling Options for 2013-2014.  Take a moment to review the attached schedules for 2013-2014 implementation.  A survey monkey has been sent to you for your feedback.
Plan A -2013-2014-SCHEDULING
Plan B -2013-2014-SCHEDULING
Plan C -2013-2014-SCHEDULING
Take the Scheduling Survey
  • The School Board of Seminole County invites the public to submit names to be considered for renaming the facility, formerly the Hopper Center, located at 1101 Bay Ave., Sanford. There are plans to repurpose the vacated building on Bay Avenue to include Pre-Kindergarten classes, Title I Family Engagement activities, and work areas for some of the Exceptional Student Support Services staff currently housed at the Mellonville facility. Please submit names by U.S. mail postmarked by Wednesday, April 10, 2013 to Jill Mahramus, Clerk to the Board, at the Educational Support Center, 400 East Lake Mary Boulevard, Sanford, Florida 32773 or by e-mail submitted by midnight on Friday, April 1, 2013.


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Posted by on 03/18/2013 in LEAD21- SERIES1


Habit 3: Put First Things First


Congratulations to our PLC of the Month! 7th Grade Intensive Math
  Mr. Kiefer, Mr. Rincon & Ms. Howard
  • This week let’s look a little closer at Habit 3:  Put First Things First.  Habit 3 is about life management as well–your purpose, values, roles, and priorities. What are “first things?” First things are those things you, personally, find of most worth. If you put first things first, you are organizing and managing time and events according to the personal priorities you established in Habit 2.  “The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.”
  • On March 11, the Admin Team, Coaches, Guidance Counselors, Kathi Wells and the Social Studies teachers will work on Student Led conferences with our students.  Each SS teacher will be teamed with a member from the team listed previously. Together the Social Studies teacher and their partner will facilitate student led conferences.  “This way, each student will have the opportunity to conference with an adult, which allows us the opportunity to discuss progress, set goals, and assist each student in becoming a leader of their learning”, Julie Ciocca.  The students will have an agenda for their conference (which they reviewed in Friday’s Mission Possible Activity).  Thank you Social Studies teachers for supporting us in the school wide endeavor..
  • Tuesday, March 12th is our Family Data Chat night.  We have approximately 179 RSVP’s as of Friday.  Thank you to all who volunteered to assist and to those who wanted to, but had prior engagements.  Dinner will be served for the teachers who are volunteering in France at 4:15 pm.
  • The Employee of the Year Program will be held on Thursday, March 14, 2013 at WINTER SPRINGS HIGH SCHOOL . Our honoree, “Josey Pagan”  and others will be honored. The EOY Program is scheduled to begin at 6:00 P.M. Come join me and others for the festivities!  She doesn’t like a fuss… but she is so worth it!!!!!!!
  • Laura has completed the necessary worksheets for the “A+ Award Program.”  The required information has been forwarded to  ESC for processing. It is expected to be included in the March 29th  paycheck. Thanks for all your hard work Laura!
  • Just a reminder that your Deliberate Practice Reflections are due prior to Spring Break.  Check out the deliberate practice tab for more information.
  • Teachers we need your support in the hallways and your duty stations.  Students will become increasingly “energetic” over the next two weeks leading up to Spring Break.  This is historical time of year that schools see a spike in their behaviors.  Let’s Be Proactive and Not Reactive!! If you are not aware of your Duty Station, contact Mr. Grace or refer to the Safe Schools 101 tab at the top of LEAD21. Mr. Grace will be taping a broadcast with Ms. Dombroski for the morning news, however there is no substitute for your presence in the halls/stairwells.  
  • All Call for “Scheduling Minds” .  I wanted to personally invite anyone that is interested in being on the FCAT Bell Schedule Committee, to contact Diane Taylor, by Tuesday, March 12, 2013.  We will be meeting on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 from 3:00 – 4:00pm in Africa ( front office conference room).  The hope of this initiative is to  create a  committee of “scheduling minds” to develop additional  FCAT testing schedules to be utilized for our FCAT testing in April.  Ms. Taylor has worked very hard on creating two drafts…thank you Diane.  Additional schedules created by the committee, along with the two created by Diane, will be reviewed by the staff.  Jointly we will reach a consensus on the schedule that best meets our needs.  We were looking to begin this scheduling team with our modified block options, but thought it would be a great to begin getting input for FCAT testing as well. Several teachers have expressed interest in being a part of the process and we agree that you should. Working together can only make this ease the stress for all.  Below you will find the FCAT testing parameters to develop the Bell Schedule… Thank you in advance for helping out with this massive endeavor.

FCAT Testing Dates-Parameters-Computers

  • Check out the Hurricane Weekly for the Day to Day Happenings!!!!
  • UCF Lockheed Martin Academy  K-8 Mathematics and Science Education M.Ed.  I am with the UCF Lockheed Martin Academy K-8 Math and Science program.  We are currently recruiting teachers to join our M.Ed. program in Mathematics and Science Education.  The Academy provides approximately 1/2 of the funding for this program through an endowment from Lockheed Martin.  Eligible candidates must have 3 years of teaching experience and a professional certificate to apply.Our application deadline is 4/15/13 for this summer’s cohort.  CLICK here to visit our website for more information. We would appreciate it if you could pass this information on to your mathematics, science and interested elementary teachers.We look forward to continuing to partner with SCPS.Barbara Serianni, University of Central Florida,,407-222-4452

priorityYou have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage—pleasantly, smilingly, nonapologetically, to say “no” to other things. And the way you do that is by having a bigger “yes” burning inside. The enemy of the “best” is often the “good.”

Have a Great Week Hurricanes!!!!!


Posted by on 03/10/2013 in LEAD21- SERIES1



“We may be very busy, we may be very efficient, but we will also be truly effective
only when we begin with the end in mind.”~Stephen Covey
Hello Hurricanes
  • Faculty Meeting Wednesday,  March 6, 2013 in the Media Center at 8:30am. Topic:  Modified Scheduling for 2013-2014.  Be Prompt.
  • Modified scheduling Question and Answer session from 3:00 – 4:00 pm in Media Center on Wednesday, March 6, 2013.  Teachers from Milwee Teachers will be available to give you the good, the bad and the ugly.
  • It’s been confirmed by the ESC…..”A+ Funds” have arrived at the county office.  The DOE has used an average of $93.29 per (FTE) student based on an October 2011-12 enrollment count.  The payroll  distribution will be by April 12.
  • If you are interested in volunteering for Family Data Chat night, on March 12, 2013, email Diane Taylor.  Together we can make a difference.
  • Mission Possible will be held March 8, 2013.  Ms. Ciocca has provided the lesson via email, on the shared folder and additionally posted under the Mission Possible tab above.  Make sure to review the lesson prior to Friday.  Students will be using this information for their family data chat.
  • The Admin team, Counselors, Coaches and Kathi Wells will be Special Agents in our Social Studies classes on March 11, 2013.  We will be having data chats with the students regarding their progress 3 Discovery Education data.  Students will have the opportunity to have a dry run of their data chat and give the students who are unable to attend on the 12th the opportunity to strut their academic growth.
  • SSMS now has a Discipline Team!!! The primary responsibility of this committee is to support/train our staff in “Behavior Interventions that Work!”  This is also the name of the conference the team will be attending on March 20, 2013. We must have a proactive approach in re-mediating discipline behaviors in lieu of placing “band aids” on the same behavior over and over again.  The Discipline committee consists of Mr. Grace, Mr. Kiefer, Ms. Hernandez, Ms. Grant and  Mr. Nicholas.
  • Save the Date: 
    June 10 or June 11, 2013 for Administrators
    June 12 and June 13, 2013 for Educators
    The Department of Teaching and Learning is pleased to announce two conferences to be held this summer.   The sessions will include information to guide the successful implementation and transition from NGSS to CCSS.
  • Remember to check out the Hurricane Weekly Tab for the day-to-day events this week.
  • Fundraiser Kick-Off March 5th.  See email from Fitzwater and last weeks LEAD 21.


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Posted by on 03/03/2013 in LEAD21- SERIES1