Oct. 5 campaign kicks off Breast Cancer Awareness Month

This year, an estimated 250,000 new cases of breast cancer will be diagnosed. The good news is that prevention and early detection are saving lives. Dallas ISD staff have the opportunity to donate toward breast cancer research by participating in the districtwide “Pink Out” day on Friday, Oct. 5.

Staff are encouraged to wear pink shirts, sweaters, cardigans, or other appropriate tops. Those who choose to donate toward breast cancer research can take advantage of the “Denim Day” also on Oct. 5 and wear work-appropriate jeans.

For instructions to donate via Oracle Employee Self-Service, click here. For any questions or additional information, contact the Benefits Department at benefits@dallasisd.org or (972) 925-4300.

Toastmasters offer weekly speaking and leadership development

Dallas ISD Talk It Up! Toastmasters invite you to join us to grow your public speaking and leadership skills and improve your self-confidence. We offer two opportunities per week to learn from Toastmasters’ time-tested, proven curriculum. Feel free to try us out at either of our one-hour meetings: Mondays at 11:30 a.m. at the Linus Wright Dallas ISD Administration Building, 9400 NCX, or Wednesdays at 5:45 p.m. at the H.B. Bell School Support Services Building, 2909 N. Buckner Blvd. Both sessions feature opportunities to deliver speeches, practice leadership roles and learn to think on your feet. Attend a meeting soon to find out what Toastmasters can offer you. Got questions? Call 214-779-2311.

New principal selection process to attract, prepare, develop and retain the best educators

School Leadership has established the Leader Excellence, Advancement and Development program, or LEAD, to develop a principal pipeline strategy focusing on attracting, preparing, developing and retaining the best educators. Coordinating with internal and external partners, LEAD will spearhead several key initiatives for the district.

LEAD’s first initiative this year is to revise the principal selection process, ensuring the highest quality leaders and best-fit candidates for all schools will be identified and selected. This new process will launch on Sept. 1.

Those who are interested in applying for a principal position, meet the qualifications, and wish to take part in the selection process for the 2019-2020 school year can apply via Applitrack no later than Sept. 30.

For additional information, please contact Menay Harris, executive director for the LEAD program, atLEAD@dallasisd.org or (972) 925-4627.

Camp Kindle teaches teachers how to use technology in the classroom

Jiv Daya has donated kindles to grades 3–5 in six feeder patterns!

At Camp Kindle, several teachers from each network learned how to best use kindles as a learning tool. The training was done by Jiv Daya, Dallas ISD IT, Personalized Learning and the Blended Learning Coaches from School Leadership.

Watch the above video for a spooky fun look into the camp.

Trustees approve $33 million in raises for teachers, support staff and central staff

The Dallas ISD Board of Trustees on Aug. 23 unanimously approved up to $33.3 million in salary increases for eligible teachers, campus leaders and non-instructional staff.

The district is able to fund the salary increases after receiving higher-than-expected revenue from property taxes.

The salary increases will go toward:

Employees that are eligible for salary modification TEI/Teachers: $16.1 million (includes benefits)

  • Eligible teachers at Progressing II and above based on their 2018-19 earned Effectiveness Level will receive the greater value of a 2-percent salary increase or any earned Effectiveness Level change
  • Performance Based Retention Increase – removed due to minimum of 2-percent increases for eligible groups.
  • A revised salary level for Progressing I from $51,000 to $52,000 to align with the Novice Teacher introductory rate
  • Eligible High School ROTC instructors will receive a salary increase of 2 percent
  • For teachers new to Dallas ISD, placement on the 2018-19 modified Teacher Introductory Compensation Schedule to ensure market competitiveness
  • All teacher salary changes will be reflected in the October 2018 paycheck

Principals and Assistant Principals: $3.9 million (includes benefits)

  • For eligible employees evaluated under the Principal and/or Assistant Principal Excellence Initiatives, the earned Effectiveness Level or the modified Effectiveness Levels based on market adjustment (if applicable)
  • Implementation of an APEI and PEI salary schedule for Magnet schools
  • All Principals/Assistant Principals will receive the new compensation in October 2018 check

All Eligible Non-Instructional, Operations, Counselors, Media Specialists, Central, Technical, Non- TEI Instructional Support and Support Staff: $13.3 million (includes benefits)

  • For other eligible employees, the Board approved salary increase for 2018-2019 of 3 percent
  • A revised hiring schedule for Media Specialist to align with updated Teacher Introductory Compensation Schedule
  • A revised salary schedule for Police Officers and Telecommunicators to align with the 3% increase
  • All Dallas ISD Transportation must be hired on or before August 23, 2018 to be eligible
  • All other staff must be hired prior to December 31, 2017 to be eligible for the increase
  • All eligible monthly staff in this category will receive the new compensation in September 15, 2018 paycheck
  • All eligible bi-weekly staff in this category will receive the new compensation in September 21, 2018 paycheck

Staff from ACE campuses prepare for new school year with intense training

Last week, staff members from Dallas ISD’s ACE schools convened to prepare for the coming school year.

ACE stands for Accelerating Campus Excellence and is a strategic staffing initiative that hires proven educators at perpetually struggling schools to boost student achievement and college readiness.

The core plan focuses on instructional excellence from teachers and high expectations for students. Other aspects of the plan include additional resources for students and designated time for staff development. ACE focuses on leadership through the use of teams comprising campus staff. A laser-focus on goals focuses on specific academic benchmarks, but the plan also aims for a much-improved culture at each school.

The initiative began in 2015 with six elementary schools and one middle school, where the ACE plan helped students make incredible academic gains. The second group of ACE schools were designated in 2017, and added five additional elementary schools and one middle school.

For the 2018-2019 school year, four ACE schools remain from 2017 (C.F. Carr, J.M. Ervin, Eward Titche and Thomas J. Rusk) and one remains from 2015 (Elisha M. Pease). Newly added to the ACE roster are César Chávez, Paul L. Dunbar, L.L. Hotchkiss, Martin Luther King Jr., Maple Lawn and J.J. Rhoads.

During the recent kickoff event, Damien Stovall, principal at Titche Elementary School, shared his philosophy for boosting student success.

That success begins in forming a positive relationship between teachers and students, which leads to confident children.

“Before you try to teach them anything, they don’t care what you know, until you know that you care,” Stovall said. “Once you boost their self-confidence, the sky’s the limit, I don’t care where they started or where they’re at.”

He recited a pledge students sign at the beginning of the school year. It says, in part, “I am somebody. I was somebody before I came here, and I’ll be a better somebody when I leave. … I deserve the education that I get here. I have things to do, places to go and people to impress. I will go to college and prove people wrong. I will follow my dreams and persevere.”

Learn more about Dallas ISD’s ACE plan here.

Required compliance training for campus staff available online

Campus-based employees are reminded that required compliance training on a variety of health and safety topics is available online this school year. The sessions range from bloodborne pathogens, bullying and child abuse to suicide prevention, sexual harassment and type II diabetes. All campus employees are required to complete the compliance training by Sept. 30, 2018. A list of the online sessions and instructions to register are available here. Completed courses will appear on employees’ transcripts. Staff should direct questions to Jennell Johnson-Polk at (972) 925-3379. Similar training planned for central staff will be communicated at a later date.

Districtwide program aims to boost consistency in teaching curriculum

About 1,500 Dallas ISD school employees convened on July 25 at Wilmer-Hutchins High School to officially kick off a districtwide program to foster best classroom practices by emphasizing teamwork.

Campus Instructional Leadership Teams (CILT) are made up of five people, including the principal and teachers, and will help guide a more effective and consistent implementation of curriculum across the district. The CILT program had previously existed, but had been shelved the past few years.

Superintendent Michael Hinojosa and members of his Executive Leadership Team touted the benefits of working together to help ensure the best results for students. After hearing from district officials, CILT members broke into smaller sessions based on grade level and subject to focus on specifics.

The kickoff will be followed by five additional CILT group meetings before each six-week grading period begins to pinpoint what aspects of the curriculum will be the focus.

Staff emerge as rising leaders

Dallas ISD’s Leadership Development Program took nearly 30 district staff and turned them into the next leaders to watch.

For 10 months, participants took part in leadership lessons that were held at UT Dallas Jindal School of Management and at 9400 NCX. Lessons included:

  • DiSC Profile, Self-Awareness, and Teamwork
  • Dallas ISD Governance, Structure, and Operations
  • Culture
  • Talent
  • Emotional Intelligence in the Workplace and Boundary Spanning Leadership
  • Impact
  • Stakeholders

The participants were required to increase their understanding of high-level issues that affect Dallas ISD, including: managerial, legal, educational, and community issues. They also had to become knowledgeable in governance processes, serve on key leadership committees, and complete coursework.

Not only did participants build leadership capacity, but they were required to work cross-functionally as they increased their leadership skills.

Educators invited to free online workshop promoting success of immigrant students

A free interactive, online workshop is open to Dallas ISD educators and administrators to promote the success of immigrant and refugee students.

Teachers, administrators, librarians and volunteers can go here to register for free. The workshop—Immigrant Student Success: Strategies and Tools for K-12 and Adult Educators—will be held July 10–11 from 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

The workshop will explore how to:

  • Integrate immigration into the curriculum;
  • Build relationships with immigrant students, families and communities in perilous times;
  • Use storytelling to educate all students on immigration;
  • Empower both teachers and students;
  • Create more welcoming classrooms, and more.
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