In answer to parents’ concerns School Board members have proposed that the district conduct a survey to get input on school start times. The survey response period begins on December 1st; it is available in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole. It is very important that parents complete the survey at the link below to express their thoughts on this important topic. You need to fill out only one survey even if you have children in more than one school. The survey will direct you to questions regarding both schools. The preferred method is to take the survey online; however, paper and pencil versions of the survey will be available at your child’s school as well. As a convenience, if you are unable to complete the survey at home, you may go to the Parent Education Center at each school to complete the survey on a computer or you can complete a paper and pencil version as stated above. School staff will advise you how to complete the paper and pencil version. We would like to get as many parents to participate in the survey as possible, so that we will have the best information to use for planning any changes which may be in order. You will assist us in responding to your needs by completing the survey today. The survey link is below. The deadline for completing the survey is Dec. 22nd. Thank you.
PAKER Night!: What better way to end Read Across America Day? We will have a Dr. Seuss themed evening (Thursday, March 2nd) that the students will be talking about for a long time. Please plan to attend! The fun begins at 5:30.
Gerald Adams Elementary would like to extend a very special thank you to Dion's Quick Mart #3 in Summerland Key for donating $500 to support math and science education.
Please take the time to complete this brief survey to help us at Gerald Adams School to continue to meet your family’s needs.
4th Grade students participating in Century 21 planted and enjoyed the harvest from their garden!
Our GAE Family is proud to announce that third grade student, James Osborne won the Hoop Shoot Contest in Miami. James will be representing Gerald Adams Elementary at Regionals. Good luck, James!
In answer to parents’ concerns School Board members have proposed that the district conduct a survey to get input on school start times. The survey response period begins today; it is available in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole. It is very important that parents complete the survey at the link below to express their thoughts on this important topic. You need to fill out only one survey even if you have children in more than one school. The survey will direct you to questions regarding both schools. The preferred method is to take the survey online; however, paper and pencil versions of the survey will be available at your child’s school as well. As a convenience, if you are unable to complete the survey at home, you may go to the Parent Education Center at each school to complete the survey on a computer or you can complete a paper and pencil version as stated above. School staff will advise you how to complete the paper and pencil version. We would like to get as many parents to participate in the survey as possible, so that we will have the best information to use for planning any changes which may be in order. You will assist us in responding to your needs by completing the survey today. The survey link is below. The deadline for completing the survey is Dec. 22nd. Thank you.
The Gerald Adams Family is proud the hardworking students who were awarded at today's ceremonies. Congratulations on a job well done!
The 2nd Annual Gerald Adams Elementary School Art Extravaganza will be held on Wednesday, May 4th from 5:30 pm-7:00 pm. All students will have art work on display. There will also be a lot of great activities to enjoy with your family: Pizza Dinner Fundraiser, Steel Your Heart steel pan show, Artist of the Year Show, watercolor painting with Mrs. Smith, and guest artists! Come support the arts, you will have a blast!
For children that will be 5 years old on or before September 1, 2016 and will be starting Kindergarten in August. In order to register, you must live in our school district and show proof of this (parents license, utility bill, lease, etc). You must also bring the child's birth certificate, complete shot record ,and Florida physical. You must also complete a registration packet which we provide.
If you can not attend the orientation, please call the office to set up an appointment time, after May 27, for registration. You must have all items listed above.
The following surveys are located at http://florida21stcclc.usf.edu/surveys/:
• 21st CCLC Teacher Survey of Student Improvement
• 21st CCLC Student Satisfaction Survey
• 21st CCLC Family Member Satisfaction Survey
• Encuesta de Satisfacción de Padres de 21st CCLC (Spanish Family Member Survey)
• 21ièm Sondaj CCLC pou Satisfaktyon Paran (Creole Family Member Survey)
Students in grades 3 and 4 will begin taking the FSA on Wednesday March 30th. 5th grade students will begin testing later in April. Please see our school calendar for testing days for a particular grade level and make sure that your child arrives to school on time and well rested.
Registration is now open for our 2nd annual Fintastic 5K taking place on February 27th at 8 am! This year's theme "Colors of the Sea" will splash all participants with colors all along the course. Don't miss this wonderful event benefiting our PBS program.
Click on the medal below for more information and to register!
Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! is an annual event during which students, teachers, administrators, parents and volunteers celebrate the tremendous success of Florida's students over the past decade.
Below are a few exciting events taking place at our school. We hope that you will take this opportunity to support reading in your homes and participate in school‐wide and classroom activities.
Monday, January 25th - Professional Day-No School
Tuesday, January 26th - Million Minute Marathon! As a class, students record the total number of minutes that they read for the whole day. There will be a prize for the most minutes!
Tuesday is also “Sock it to Books Day”! Students can wear crazy socks to school in order to raise awareness to Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!.
Wednesday, January 27th - “Be the Story Day”-Students can dress as their favorite character in a book.
Thursday, January 28th ‐ “Hats Off to Books Day”- Students can wear hats to school in order to raise awareness to Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!.
Friday, January 29th – “Score With Books Day”- Students can wear their favorite team’s gear to show support for Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!.
Please encourage your student to participate in these fun events throughout the week!
4th and 5th grade students participated in their annual writing camp; Thursday, February 25th. Mrs. Herrin opened writing camp with writing awards in which each student was recognized for all their hard work and effort preparing for the FSA. This year's camp though went completely student directed ad high tech! Student’s created their own scripts, skits, songs and for the first time ever played a digital Writing Olympics Game using Kahoot! with Ipads and Chromebooks. This friendly competition between 4th and 5th grade was for bragging rights on which grade level was best prepared for the FSA Writing Test next Tuesday! Students had a great time and are reading to ROCK the test!
Please click here for an important letter to parents from Dr. Mark Whiteside, Mornoe County Department of Health Medical Director, regarding influenza in the Florida Keys.
The Gerald Adams Family would like to send out a huge thank you to Mrs. Star Norris for taking such great care of our students and staff. Mrs. Star Norris received a GEMS Award at the January 12th School Board workshop meeting in recognition of her 28 years of service to GAE students and the students of the Monroe County School District. Mrs. Norris will be retiring at the end of January. Congratulations Mrs. Star, WE LOVE YOU and know you will be greatly missed!
Mrs. Madok presented an Aspire session on coding and robotics this past week and the Future of Education Technology Conference in Orlando, Florida. Mrs. Madok's presentation was chosen from a pool of educators that submitted presentation proposals from around the world. During her presentation she demonstrated to a room full of educators and administrators how students in her classes are learning how to code can be applied to robotics by the use of Bee Bots. Congratulations Mrs. Madok on a job well done!
MCSD Parent Email Registration
GAE families can now follow us on twitter to get up to the minute information on all the great things happening at our school. Look for @GaeDolphins.
Parents and students can now follow how many books and words our GAE students have read this school year.
You are cordially invited to our Parent Open House next Tuesday, September 15th from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Student Advisory Council sign up will be in the cafeteria from 5:30-6:15. Our Scholastic Monster Book Fair will be open in the media center from 5:30-7:00. Classrooms will be open for visits from 6:00-7:15.Title I Orientation will be held during classroom visits. To learn more about Title I please click on the link below. We hope to see you all next Tuesday!
Please click on the link below to find the morning and afternoon bus routes for our Gerald Students. All students riding the bus must have a bus pass on the first day of school.
Want to help our school raise funds? WE NEED YOUR BOXTOPS! Please clip and save BOXTOPS and send them in to school. Our school receives $1.00 for every 10 BOXTOPS and every little bit helps. Unsure of what everyday products earn BOXTOPS? Click here to see the participating products. Sign up and earn BOXTOPS for our school online; support Gerald Adams at www.boxtops4education.com.
Our school/district has selected the Student Insurance Plan from Health Special Risk, Inc. (HSR) to make reliable coverage available to parents. If you don't have other insurance, this plan may be a resource to consider. Additionally, even if you have the other coverage, this plan can help fill expensive "gaps" caused by deductibles and co-pays. Coverage may be purchased at any time during the school year by visiting
Please click on the links below for further information:
1. Clinic Announcement and Schedule
2. Patient Packet English
3. Patient Packet Spanish
4. Sports Physical Form
5. School Health Physical Form
Will your child be 3 or 4 years of age on or before September 1, 2015?
Head Start Program Open Enrollment
April 1, 2015 thru June 1, 2015 for the 2015-16 school year.
Applications are available on-line at:
www.Keysschools.com (under school tab, go to Centers and then click on Head Start)
Or applications may be picked up from a Head Start Site Coordinator at:
Horace O'Bryant School
Gerald Adams Elementary School
Stanley Switlik Elementary School
Key Largo School
There is NO COST to Parents!
Families must meet the eligibility criteria for the program. Transportation is available, ask a Site Coordinator for more details.
Head Start programs promote ‘school readiness’ by enhancing the social and cognitive development of children through the provision of educational, health, nutritional, social and other services to enrolled children and families. They engage parents in their children's learning.
Give your child a HEAD START!
(Se habla español)
In Key Largo
Key Largo School, call Isabel Campanioni (305) 453-1255 x 57354
Stanley Switlik Elementary, call Isabel Vargas (305) 289-2490 x 59309
In Key West
Horace O'Bryant School, call Elizabeth Alvarez (305) 296-5628 x 65392 Or Toni Rodriguez x 65393
Gerald Adams, call Jessica Delgado (305) 293-1609 X51329
FSA Writing Grades 4-5 March 3rd Make-ups March 4 & 5
FSA Reading Grades 3-4 April 1 & 2
FSA Math Grades 3-4 April 7 & 8
Grade 3-4 Make-ups April 6, 9, and 10
FSA Reading CBT Grade 5 April 21 & 22
FCAT Science Grade 5 April 28 & 29
FSA Math CBT May 4-5 Make ups May 6, 7 & 8
for in our communities and in our schools.
Let me begin with a somewhat overdue "thank you" to the voters of Monroe County who overwhelmingly approved an extension of the ½ cent sales tax for capital improvements. Your support is greatly appreciated by our students and by our staff. I can assure you that your trust in our ability to properly invest these resources as promised; to enhance and improve our buildings, to assure safety and security for students and staff, and to deploy student technology in a way that improves student learning, will be kept, measured and well communicated. Again, thank you on behalf of our students and our staff.
I also want to express my personal appreciation for the time and effort put forth by many in our communities who volunteered to participate in an annual review of our Strategic Plan-Charting the Course to Excellence in the Monroe County Schools. Gathering over fifty people together, including staff and community members, to review accomplishments in year 1 and set forth targets for continued progress and improvement in year 2 was a valuable and informative experience. Time was taken to celebrate successes of the past year, but a greater focus was placed on planning for future next steps toward our ultimate goals and strategic objectives. I am grateful that we have such an engaged and generous community when it comes to important efforts such as this. I also know this is just one example of the kind of community involvement and support that takes place each and every day in our schools. Thank you for your support of time and effort.
Finally, I want to give a big "shout out" to the dedicated staff of the Monroe County Schools. No organization is more dependent on their human capital than a school system. It will always be true that we will only be as good as the people who work here. Many of our staff have persevered and endured through difficult times, yet have remained focused and dedicated to their students and families. We have been fortunate this past year to be able to provide a modest increase in compensation for all of our employees and in addition have provided a "premium holiday" from their health insurance contributions for one pay period this month due to the improved financial health of our self-insured fund. Our employees truly deserve all we can do to recognize and support them. On behalf of the School Board and myself I want to say thank you for making the first half of the 2014-15 school year such a positive step forward for everyone.
Community engagement is a critical part of our Strategic Plan and saying thank you is simply not enough. Truly effective engagement with our community means that both sides are contributing to the benefit of the other. We are grateful for what our communities do for us, but also want to continue to expand upon what we can do for our communities. In 2015 I will be announcing details of the "Superintendent’s Community Service Challenge", an organized opportunity for all Monroe County School employees to give back to their respective communities while at the same time building camaraderie and rapport within our organization. Details will be announced shortly after the first of the year.
I know we all have a great deal to be grateful for at this time of year. I just wanted you to know how grateful we are in the Monroe County Schools for your continued support that is demonstrated in so many different ways. We are indeed Charting the Course to Excellence -with gratitude for all you do.
Thank you and Happy Holidays.
Mark T. Porter, Superintendent
Teacher Feedback: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/iBElieveTeacher
Student Feedback: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/iBElieveStudent
Parent Feedback: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/iBElieveParent
Your feedback is so important- it helps us to improve our efforts.
We appreciate your time.
The District Action Planning and Problem Solving Team for Monroe County Schools
Six students from our 4th grade class have entered Scholastic's "This Is How I Shake It Off!" Contest sponsored by Taylor Swift. The grand-prize winner of the contest will win a trip to see Taylor Swift in Concert and have a personal meet and greet with her! GAE wishes Gianna Cervantes, Jocelyn Lopez, Ashley Castro, Rachel Owens, Roosney Joseph and Christ Jolis the best of luck! We are Dolphin Proud!
ExxonMobil Education Alliance grants are awarded on a first-come first-served basis. Gilda Niles of Dion Oil works with ExxonMobil to secure the Education Alliance Grants for schools throughout the company’s marketing area. This year ExxonMobil awarded four thousand $500 grants to schools throughout the country for a total of $2 million.
This program is designed to provide Exxon and Mobil Retailers, as well as Distributors like Dion Oil Company, with an opportunity to invest in the future of their communities through educational grants to neighborhood schools. ExxonMobil believes that, as members of the community, local Retailers and Distributors are best qualified to work with local educators to help identify schools and programs most in need of support. ExxonMobil is pleased to fund this very important program at a time when budgets for our schools do not always provide for some of the most critical needs.
GAE students participated in the 2014 Key West Elk's Club Hoop Shoot Competition on Saturday, November 15th. Jeremiah Osborne won first place in the 10-11 age group. Hunter White won first place in the 8-9 age group and Bailey Utt won second place in the 8-9 age group. Congratulations to all the participants and winners!
Count Down to Open Enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace
The Affordable Care Act is working to deliver affordability, access, and quality to millions of Americans across the country.
Looking for health insurance that fits your needs and your budget? Look no further than the Health Insurance Marketplace. All plans in the Marketplace cover essential health benefits, pre-existing conditions, recommended preventive care and more. Open enrollment begins November 15. Enroll by December 15, 2014 for coverage that starts January 1, 2015. To find the latest, most accurate, information about the Marketplace visit HealthCare.gov.
If you have health coverage through the Marketplace, it’s time to review your plan and decide if you need to make changes for 2015. Every fall, your health insurance company sends you a letter explaining changes to premiums and benefits for the coming year. You can choose to stay in your current plan (as long as it’s still offered) or make changes. If you don’t take action by December 15, 2014, you could miss out on better deals and cost savings.
It’s easy to renew. There are 5 steps to stay covered:
- Review: Plans change, people change. Every year insurance companies can make changes to premiums, cost sharing or benefits and services they provide. Review your plan’s 2015 coverage to make sure it still meets your needs and you’re getting the best plan for you.
- Update: Starting November 15, visit HealthCare.gov and log into your Marketplace account. Answer a few questions to get to your 2015 application – it will be pre-filled with your latest information from 2014. Step through each page of your application and make changes if you need to. This is important – even if none of your information has changed, you might be eligible for lower costs than last year! You also can call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 to review or make updates over the phone.
- Compare: Log into your Marketplace account and follow the “Enroll To Do List” on HealthCare.gov to compare 2015 plan costs and benefits. New and more affordable plans may be available in your area this year. If you decide to stay in your current plan, follow the directions to search by that plan’s 14-digit ID – you can find the ID on the letter from your plan. Or, call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596 for help.
- Choose: Choose a health plan for 2015. You can keep the same plan (as long as it’s still offered) or select a new one that better fits your needs. If you want to stay enrolled in your 2014 plan, use the plan ID in the letter you get from your health plan.
- Enroll: The Marketplace open enrolment period begins on November 15. Make sure to review, update, compare and choose by December 15 to have any changes take effect on January 1. Stay covered for 2015! Contact your plan to confirm your enrollment. Make sure to pay your premium.
If you don’t finish all of the steps by December 15, we’ll try to enroll you automatically so you stay covered. But this coverage might not be your best option for 2015 and you could miss out on cost savings.
If you have questions or need to find someone who can help you in person, we can help. Find local help at: www.Localhelp.healthcare.gov/
Or call the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596. TTY users should call 1-855- 889-4325. The call is free.
Representatives from the United Way's "Stuff The Bus" campaign visited Gerald Adams this week bringing much needed supplies to our students. We would like to send out a huge THANK YOU, on behalf of the students and faculty.
The United Way is conducting an online survey through the month of September.The purpose of the survey gather data from parents on the kind of childcare they were able to find for their children this summer and how affordable it was. We hope to use this data to help create additional affordable childcare options for Keys families in the summer of 2015 and beyond. Please click on the links below to complete this brief survey.
Spanish here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/veranochildcare
On Thursday, May 7th Gerald Adams held it's first annual "Art Extravaganza" coordinated by our new art teacher Ms. Ali Heinz. GAE families were welcomed with a pizza dinner, followed by several student created art exhibits, visiting artist and art activities. The highlight of the evening was the "Artist of the Year" presentation in which Ms. Heinz presented Neftalie Cajuste and Jonathon Graves with this award, followed by a wonderful performance by our Steel Pan Band and Chorus. These young artist will have their work displayed in our new student art gallery.
“The goal of having the Art Extravaganza is to bring in the community and to have a night where the students are immersed in all different types of art. The students worked hard throughout the year on their art projects, this gives them the opportunity to have their artwork on display for all to admire and to be proud of what they accomplished. The Art Extravaganza gives the students a feeling of being in a live art gallery, they even have the opportunity to create art alongside professional artists from the community. I wanted the students to have a chance to see different types of professional artists at work, this year we were honored to have watercolor artists, an acrylic artist, a driftwood artist, a technology artist, a clay artist and quilting artists. A special feature of the art show was the Under the Sea black light installation, where each students made a neon ocean project and it was displayed on stage where the students walked through and experience an aquatic scene around them glowing in the black lights. I am so excited to continue this wonderful event in hopes to make a difference in a child’s life through art.”- Ms. Ali Heinz
2014-2015 Title I Parent Brochure
Summer Reading Adventure 2014
Parent help with Summer Reading
Summer reading list
Summer Reading Journal Kindergarten
Summer Reading Journal Grades 1-2
Summer Reading Journal Grades 3,4,5
Monday-Reader's Oath & Classroom Door Contest
Tuesday- Crazy Sock Day
Thursday- College Shirt Day
Friday- Dr. Seuss Day-Hat Day
Click on the link below to see the Reader's Oath
Today's Tuesday envelopes included our AdvancED/SACS Accreditaion parent surveys. Your feedback is very important to us. Below please find the survey and answer sheets in case another one is needed. Please feel free to download, print and return it to school with your child no later than Friday, March 7th.
English Survey Questions
English Survey Answer Sheet
Spanish Survey Questions
Spanish Survey Answer Sheet
Hatian-Creole Survey Questions
Hatian-Creole Survey Answer Sheet
We are especially proud of 4th grade student Woodson Benjamin for winning the Most Improved Reader of the Year Award and a brand new Kindle with gift card. Woodson, who also received the Super award and is a member of the Million Word Club, has accumulated over 165 AR points and has shown a +4.5 grade level learning gain due to all his reading.
WAY TO GO WOODSON! WE ARE VERY PROUD OF YOU!
Our yearly Gingerbread Holiday Event will be held Tuesday, December 10th from 6:00-7:15pm. To make this project a success, we need your help! Please donate the following items below and send them to your child's teacher as soon as possible. We also need adult helpers in the classroom. If you are willing to help out, please contact your child's teacher.
Grades 4-5 PK-5
Boxes of graham crackers Bag(s) of jelly beans
Cans of white frosting Bag(s) of peppermint candies
Box of plastic knifes Bag(s) of chocolate kisses
Bag(s) of red shoe string licorice Box of plastic knifes
Box of ice cream cones Tubes of colored icing
Bag(s) small drinking cups Bag(s) of M&M's
Bag(s) small pretzels Bag(s) of gummy bears
Bag(s) of small Santas (the ones in foil) Bag(s) of gumdrops
Bag(s) of small candy canes Bag(s) of miniature marshmallows
Paper Plates Bag(s) of chocolate chips
Bag(s) of shredded coconut Boxes of aluminum foil
GERALD ADAMS CARNIVAL: The Gerald Adams Carnival is October 25. Tickets will be on sale starting Tuesday, October 22nd. Tickets are 50 cents each. We will allow each child to purchase a maximum of $10.00 worth of tickets in advance. Additional tickets will be on sale during the carnival. The carnival starts at 1:15 p.m. and ends at 2:30 p.m. Parents are welcome to attend this event!
Students are encouraged to dress the following ways:
Monday: Professional Day (No School)
Tuesday: Pajama Day (Picture money due tomorrow.)
Wednesday: Twin Day
Thursday: Dress-up Day (pictures)
Friday: Hat Day (students may wear hats to school)
Friday is also the Fall Festival. Tickets go sale Tuesday .50 cents each, $10.00 limit.
Gerald Adam’s Odyssey of the Mind team placed first in their division in the regional competition last Saturday. The students performed a long-term problem called Not-So Haunted House, as well as a spontaneous challenge. This year’s team members are McKenzie Falls, Amy Guzman, Arwyn Leslie, Yanessa Camejo, Brielle Stokes, Kevin Bec, and coach Mrs. Katrina Madok. We are so proud of our team and their wonderful performance.
Parents the following page is a great resource to help you understand and support the new Common Core Implementation.
YOU ARE INVITED TO AN OPEN HOUSE
EXCLUSIVELY FOR ELL STUDENTS AND PARENTS ON
Our Cherrydale Farms Fall Fundraiser is coming to an end. Please submitt all orders by Wednesday, October 2nd.
Student Council is meeting on Tuesdays 7:45-8:15 for 3rd, 4th,and 5th grades. Those 4th and 5th graders interested in running for an office (President, Vice President, Historian, Secretary and Treasurer) should be at the meeting September 24th to find out the procedure. Our first fundraiser will be “Tabathon” for the Ronald McDonald House. Please save soda can tabs and bring to our next meeting. Any questions call Mrs. Shanle 293-1609 X51362 or email email@example.com
Gerald Adams is hosting a blood drive today, September 17th from 12:00pm-7:00pm. Free movie tickets will be issued to all blood donors. A supplies basket will be awarded to the teacher of the winning class. Our school will earn $10 for every donation.
Our annual open house will be Tuesday, September 17th.
Gerald Adams Elementary is the lucky recipient of the Key West Office Max “A Day Made Better” donation. We were all completely surprised by the friendly Office Max team that arrived at the school with two huge boxes full to the top with generous donations for our school. We were told that we are the lucky school this year chosen to receive the donation. We thank Store manager Dwight Guillen and Office Max for supporting public education.
GAE Families Celebrate Our Grandparents!
The Monroe County School District has announced its employees of the year.
The winners will be feted at the Employee Recognition Banquet, on May 17 at the Marathon Yacht Club.
"I commend all of these employees for their outstanding effort," said Superintendent of Schools Mark Porter. "However, in reality, they are representative of the outstanding work that so many of our employees perform every day on behalf of children and families."
This year's crop of noteworthy employees includes Teacher of the Year Stacey Milchman of Plantation Key School; Inclusion Teacher of the Year Jane McGill of Key West High School; Principal of the Year Fran Herrin of Gerald Adams Elementary; Assistant Principal of the Year Wendy McPherson of Sugarloaf School; Guidance Counselor of the Year Vicky Cooper of Key West High School; Management Employee of the Year Pansy Wang, the staff accountant; and Instructional Employee of the Year Christina McPherson.
School Related Personnel of the Year include Teacher Support Group Employee of the Year Janet Atkin, a lab manager at Key Largo School; Clerical/Office Group Employee of the Year Becky Davila of Key West High School; Food Service Group Employee of the Year Veronica Dixon of Marathon High School; Maintenance Group Employee of the Year Dan Martin, who works in Lower Keys Maintenance; and Transportation Group Employee of the Year Angela Davis, who works in Upper Keys Transportation.
"I just think what is truly remarkable are the continued efforts of these employees and other to go above and beyond, despite the challenging circumstance we have endured as an organization," Porter said. "This simply adds to my admiration for what they do each and every day."
Porter's views were echoed by District Director of Teaching and Learning Theresa Axford.
"These are all peer nominations, which specify individual accomplishments," Axford said. "It's an opportunity for all district employees to recognize the outstanding work of their colleagues."
For more information about the Employee Recognition Banquet, call 305-293-1400, ext. 53379.
Parent Climate Surveys!
The District wants your input!
PARENTS: If you have two or more children in the district, you may either submit one survey for each child or you may submit just one survey for multiple schools/children.
Students, faculty/staff, and parents/guardians are encouraged to complete the on-line survey by April 12, 2013. Results of this survey will help in planning for next year. Thank you.
Third grade math isn't for the squeamish.
Jeremiah Osborne, an 8-year-old who is tall for his age, and whose eyes seem incapable of concealing a single emotion, proved this on Thursday morning inside his classroom at Gerald Adams Elementary.
Here, the kids mostly work in teams. They listen to one another and work together.
But Jeremiah now sat alone at his desk after huddling with a group of four classmates and their teacher, Meghan Taylor. He put down his pencil and silently rested his head in his hands over his math book.
Page 54 wanted him to write a question for a story problem, using a series of five-digit numbers. The point was to teach the kids that certain words go with subtraction, like "difference," while words such as "sum" and "altogether" are clues that the problem requires addition.
Can't, Jeremiah's expression read.
He stood up and leaned forward over his desk, pulling a red satin sports team jacket over him.
In an hour or so, he'd find success during science, measuring pictures with a ruler and then using a magnifying glass.
But today's math was a different story.
From the back of the classroom, Taylor's teacher-radar picked up Jeremiah's quiet frustration, even though she was huddled up with a second group of 8- and 9-year-olds.
She gently coached Jeremiah back into the academic starting blocks.
"Sit in your chair and take a deep breath," said Taylor, looking up from the blue half-moon shaped table, where five children sat, chewing over the same problem as Jeremiah.
"Look at the chart before you read the question and before you give up," Taylor told him gently.
As the new five-kid huddle worked it out, listening to one another's attempts, Jeremiah sat down and picked up the pencil, eyes back on the page.
Trying, his face clearly said.
This is the type of team learning that goes on daily inside Gerald Adams, which as of Friday, had 73 children in three separate third-grade classes, and which last year, rose an entire letter grade on the state's rating system to earn an "A," after a prior year at a B. For a few years prior to the B, Gerald Adams had remained an "A" rated school.
In the 14 years that Florida has used the letter grade system to rate schools, Gerald Adams has received five Cs, four Bs, and five As.
The elementary, which has pre-kindergarten through Grade 5, and is located on Stock Island, celebrated the A rating like an underdog football team marvels in its newfound glory on the field.
Then-superintendent, Jesus Jara, name checked the school in an announcement and proudly singled out the achievement to the School Board.
In a district of 12 public schools, Gerald Adams became the ninth to carry an A rating last year.
One of three traditional public elementaries in Key West, Gerald Adams reflects the district's academic prowess for Florida's tests and rating criteria, it does not reflect Monroe County's overall public school demographics.
At Gerald Adams, 48 percent of students are Hispanic, 25 percent are black and 24 percent are white.
The district's combined 8,300 students are 52 percent white, 34 percent Hispanic and 10 percent black.
Poorer kids make up the majority of Adams' student roster, as 73 percent of the children qualify for and receive free and reduced lunches -- the national barometer for measuring low-income families.
Throughout Monroe County schools, the majority of students can afford to buy lunches, while 48 percent qualify for free and reduced meals.
Last year, Principal Frannie Herrin went before the School Board to inform them that some of her students were new to the U.S. and, until arriving, had never before seen a working faucet or toilet. Many do not speak English, she told them.
Florida changed its grading formula on the standardized FCAT test to include scores from special needs students and students who speak English as a second language, which previously hadn't counted.
The FCAT, required to pass in order to move on from third grade and then, in 10th grade, to graduate, looms large over schools such as Gerald Adams.
At the mention of the acronym "FCAT," 8- and 9-year-old eyes widen in Taylor's classroom. They know it's serious business.
"It's hard," Jeremiah said.
The district's new superintendent found Gerald Adams an engaging school.
"It's a great school because of the diversity," said Superintendent Mark Porter, who is in his first school year. "They're doing a great job. There is something to be said about the 'open classrooms' there. It creates a kind of collegial feel."
Porter, a veteran educator from Minnesota, spent the first day of the school year visiting Gerald Adams. The air-conditioning went out, but students and teachers pressed on in the heat.
Porter said he likes an elementary school that makes him feel over-sized.
"I've always been a little biased toward the older buildings," he said. "The architectural scale is a little smaller, more kid-friendly."
Taylor's classroom, which has partitions as walls separating it from other classes, is a tight-knit space. Taylor worries about the noise level often.
But the learning goes on.
Like that math problem: There was an election of some sort between Jacob and Martin, the math book advised. Martin won 16,888 votes, while the total ballot box take was 18,736.
Taylor told him, and the rest of her 25 students that spend the day learning reading, math, writing and science with her.
Jeremiah wasn't alone with his mental wrestling over Jacob and Martin and this election, and Taylor could sense it.
"You know why it's hard? Because it's taking you to a different place," Taylor said. "We're just trying to look at it from a different perspective."
Soon, there was P.E. and then lunch, two periods that the students aren't with Taylor, whose planning period is included in that space in the daily routine.
Taylor's class is just over the Florida class-size mandate, which allows for a teacher-to-student ratio of 1-to-18, plus three students.
Of the three third-grade classes last week, one held 22 students and the other 23. The numbers fluctuate throughout the district at the start of every school year.
By Oct. 1, the district must report its enrollment, which on Friday was 8,300, in order to receive Florida's per-student allocation.
Porter said the district is fine-tuning its class sizes and teacher roster, and will abide by the law.
"We are committed to being compliant with class-size mandates," said Porter. "We'd like to say we could have it all done sooner and quicker."
The class numbers don't faze parent Gerald Fisher, whose son Joseph attended Gerald Adams for seven years before moving on to Horace O'Bryant Middle School.
Joseph, 12, is autistic. Fisher's daughter, 10-year-old Deshawn, is in fourth grade at Adams.
"The teachers kept me informed about things that I needed and whenever Joseph had a problem, the teacher made me aware of it," said Fisher. "We kept in communication."
Fisher, 61, is a Vietnam veteran battling throat cancer and raising his two children alone, as his wife is serving a prison sentence.
Gerald Adams is close to his Stock Island home, and his kids can catch the school bus, said Fisher.
Adams has been a longtime part of the Fisher family, through tough times.
"As far as students in the classroom, there is just enough to a class for one teacher," said Fisher, praising the school for helping his children. "I think it's very nice."
SCHOOL ADVISORY COUNCIL TONIGHTParents please join us for an introduction to our SAC meetings. The orientation meeting at 6:00 p.m. tonight in the cafeteria during PAKER NIGHT.
THANK YOU GRANDPARENTSWe would like to thank all of parents and grandparents who join us for lunch last Friday. We all enjoyed the family feast.
TESTINGProgress Monitoring Testing for grades K-5 will begin September 24th and continue throughout the week. All students are tested in the areas of math and reading. Fifth grade students will also be tested in science; and fourth graders are tested in writing.
LUNCH FORMS:The last day for free lunch from last year is Oct 2. If there is not a new lunch form submitted for approval then lunch will need to be paid for. Please see the office staff if you need assistance with completing the form.
IOU POLICYIOU charge limits: Dollar limit is equal to 3 IOU’s for breakfast and 3 IOU’s for lunch. Students with a negative balance will not be allowed to purchase a la carte items. No child will go without eating. Cafeteria managers will provide an alternate meal to those students who still do not bring in the money owed or who do not have a lunch with them without an IOU being issued. Alternate Meal Breakfast: Toast & Milk Lunch: Cheese Sandwich & Milk.
21st CENTURY AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAM:
We are still awaiting word on the acceptance of our grant. Please follow this weekly newsletter for up-dates and registration information.
EARLY RELEASE DAYSWe will have Early Release from school on September 13th and 26th. We dismiss at noon. You must pay for daycare in order for your child to stay.
SUMMER READING ASSIGNMENTS: To qualify for the beach party—ALL summer reading needs to be turned in by Friday, September 14th.Our first regular School Advisory Council (SAC) meeting will be held on September 18 at 7:00 p.m. following Open House. We will review our State Grade & Curriculum changes. Please join us!
CONSTITUTION DAY:is Friday September 14th. To pay tribute to our GREAT country everyone should were red, white and blue!
PAKER NIGHT—TONIGHTOur first PAKER night of the school year is tonight from 5:30-7:00 p.m. PAKER stands for Parents and Kids-Everyone Reads and is a special night for you to celebrate reading with your child. You can read with your child, learn about our Accelerated Reader program and watch your child work with the program. Your child will get to make a craft. A slice of pizza and a drink will be available. Please mark your calendar and plan to attend this fun evening with your child!
Open House Schedule-SEPTEMBER 18THSCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR will be here September 17—21! Stop by the Media Center to see the great selec-tion of books for sale. We will be open between 7:45—8:30 in the morning, after school until 3:30 or stop by at our Open House. All classes come to the media center once a week to check out books. Students are allowed to keep their books for one week; if they need longer to fin-ish a book they can renew it by bringing it in. Please help your child remember to bring their books to school as they will not be able to check out new books if they have overdue books. Parents are welcome to come in with their children to help them choose books first thing in the morning or right after school.
Class Visitations from 6-7 p.m.
SES Registration—bring your ticket to the SES Booths in front hallway
Book Fair - in the media center from 5:30-7:00
TITLE ONE ORIENTATION AT 6:00 P.M. IN THE CAFETERIA
SAC ORIENTATION AND PARENT SIGN UP: IN THE CAFETERIA AT 6:30 P.M.
FCAT TESTING: April 24 & 25—
FLORIDA AQUEDUCT AUTHORITY DROP SAVERS POSTER CONTEST: Congratulations to the winners at Gerald Adams.
They were: K-1- Samuel Avilucea; 2-3-Skylar Larmel; 4-5-William Horn.
Our runner-ups were
Madison Atoche Eva Jackel
Brian Criado Julia Nurkiewicz
Arwyn Leslie Yanessa Camejo
Brielle Stokes Zjayden Wallace
Alex Sanchez Ashley Gonzalez
Sydney Bennett Davon Battle Jordan Figuroa
The winners’ entries will go on to compete at the County Level in their grade categories.
MRS. MARSTON’S CLASS NEWS: Mrs. Marston’s Class would like to thank Mrs. Joyce Milelli and Mrs. Beth Oropeza for teaching them about Dental Health Care. Also, thank you to the Children’s Healthy Smile Project for the very nice “Smile Kits”.
CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR ODYSSEY OF THE MIND TEAMS: Gerald Adams’ Odyssey of
the mind teams took first and second at the county competitions! Great work team and coaches Katrina and Marc Hacker! Our teams will travel to Orlando to compete in the state competition.
SPRING BREAK: Begins March 19th and runs through March 23rd. Classes reconvene March
26th. Our 21 Century Program is also closed during that time. If you need child care during that time, please contact Poinciana School. Our students are eligible to attend their paid daycare program during that week.
KINDERGARTEN GRADE PLAY: The KindergartenPlay, How Does Your Garden Groove?, will be Thursday, March 15th. Dinner will be at 5:00 and the show will be at 6:00. All Kindergarten students will be in this musical. Dinner is Pasta with tomato sauce and fresh vegetables (From our groovy garden) $4.00
Students, $5.00 Adults and $20.00 for a family of 6.
TITLE ONE PARENT NIGHT: We will have a special Title One meeting for parents on March 13th. The New FCAT Cut Scores, Budgeting and important issues regarding our Parent Compact and Parent Involvement Plan will be discussed. Please come and be a part of updating and revising our Title One Plans and Procedures. 5th grade parents will also have an opportunity to view students’ movie maker projects. The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the cafeteria.
THIRD GRADE PLAY:What a spectacular per-formance! "The Green Machine was a hit! A special thank you to third grade teachers, Ms. Revelin and Ms. Madok for a job well done. Thank you to our parents who attended.
HOLIDAY NIGHT/PAKER NIGHT IS TO-NIGHT: A fun filled evening is planned for all. We will be having a steel pan band/Chorus con-cert, PAKER Night, Century 21 Craft Making event and the book fair in the media center and students will have the opportunity to build their own gingerbread houses. The event will run from 6:00-7:30. The Band performance is at 6:00 and house building at 6:30 p.m.
NO SCHOOL: There will be no school during the winter holiday break from December 23rd- January 9th. Classes will reconvene on January 10th. Our daycare program is also closed. If you need child care during this break, please contact Poinciana School at 293-1630 and make arrangements IN ADVANCE so they have ade-quate staff. Spots do fill up quickly, so call now if you need child care.
PRE-K Students to visit the North Pole:We would like to recognize and thank the Silverlin-ers for a fun-filled event. All of our Pre-K stu-dents got to visit the North Pole and see Santa. They loved it!
SAFETY NOTICE FROM COACH ROOSA:ALL students must wear tennis shoes on the days they have PE. Without proper shoes, they cannot participate in the class activity and they are required to walk laps as 30 min-utes of physical fitness is required for all. So please ensure that your child get the most from PE —and that they have their shoes. (For safety reasons, Crocs, sandals, dress shoes, and boots are not permitted!)
STEEL PAN BAND: Thank you to the Steel Pan Band and parent, Greg Shanle, for playing at the Schooner Wharf during the lighted boat parade. They jammed at this great event!
EARLY RELEASE TOMORROW:There will be a dis-trict early release tomorrow. All students will be dis-missed at 12:00 p.m. Our Century 21 program is closed. If you need daycare, please make arrangements with Aleida Valle, our daycare director.
CENTURY 21 ANNOUNCEMENT—WE WILL GIVE ONE LATE PICK-UP. AFTER THAT YOU WILL BE CHARGED A $15 DAYCARE FEE. YOUR CHILD WILL NOT BE PERMITTED TO RETURN TO OUR PROGRAM UNTIL THE MONEY IS PAID. NO EXCPETIONS. PICK UP TIME IS MONDAY—THURSDAY BY 4:45 AND FRIDAY BY 4:00.
CENTURY 21 REMINDERS:Our C 21 Program is offered Monday—Thursday until 4:45 and we do have a late bus. However, on Fridays, the program ends at 4:15 and we do not have a late bus. Parents will be charged a late fee from daycare if they are repetitively late. Addition-ally, chronic late pick ups will sacrifice your child’s spot in our program.
NO SCHOOL: November 11th is Veteran’s Day.Our school is closed. Please make arrangements for your chil-dren on that day.
SECOND GRADE PLAY:Parents, Mark your calendars. The 2nd Grade Play, "Arf" is tomorrow night. We hope to see all second graders and parents at this great event! Pasta dinner is at 6:00; the play begins at 7:00. Students must be here by 6:40.
STEEL PAN BAND:A special thank you to the Steel Pan Band who performed for the residents of the conva-lescent center.
PRE-K FALL FESTIVAL:Thank you to all the parents that came and helped out at our pre k fall festival. We would also like to thank Ms. Madox and her challenge class for helping us. It was a great event for kids and families!
Please save these at home and return to school the empty containers to help us raise money for our stu-dents. Thank you!
Our recycle rangers decided to donate some of their earnings—they chose the following organizations: Provid-ing clean water to a family for a year, meals to the hun-gry and square feet to protect wildlife lands in the US. We are proud of the proactive, civically minded choices.Please help! Gerald Adams is now participating in an ongoing recycling project turning trash into cash! Visit our website for a recent list of items: http://gae.keysschools.schoolfusion.us
STUDENT COUNCIL CANNED FOOD DRIVE: WE WILL BE RUNNING A CANNED FOOD DRIVE TO ASSIST NEEDY FAMILIES. IF YOU CAN DONATE ANY CANNED FOOD OR BOXED FOOD ITEMS TO HELP THOSE IN NEED, IT WOULD BE GREATLY APPRECIATED. The collection boxes are in the main hallway just drop your cans in there. We are having a competition to see what grade collects the most cans. Thank you!Please be on the lookout for the Parent Involvement Scorecard and Concept Placemat from School House to Your House in your student’s Tuesday Envelope. This program is designed to be a strong link between home and school. Each week for the next 20 weeks your student will bring home a new concept placemat. The concept is discussed at school and then the job of everyone at home is to continue the discussion. The concepts are positive and important to talk about. The first one is Attitude. Enjoy the discussions with your students!
November 8, 2011
NOVEMBER IS PARENT INVOLVEMENT IN EDUCATION MONTH
Some ideas to get more involved this week:
- Play a favorite board game or card game together as a family
- Consider volunteering at your child’s school
- Join the SAC or a parent involvement committee at your child’s school
- Check out your school’s website to keep up with school news
(From the Florida Parental Information and Resource Center)
SUPERINTENDENT’S YOUNG READER AWARDS—will run from August 24, 2009 to April 16, 2010. Please make sure your child is eligible for one of our reader awards at the award’s ceremony. Students must meet the following criteria:
STUDENT COUNCIL OFFICERS
Congratulations to our new student council officers:
President: Anthony Cabrera
Vice President: Hanley Marrero
Recording Secretary: Alonzo Ridgeway
Corresponding Secretary: Chase Floyd
Treasurer: Haley Castleman
Historian: Samantha BarrabeitgSilver— 30 Gold—40 Super 50 read by the student st Grade—Silver— 35 Gold—45 Super 55 read by the student nd Grade —Silver— 40 Gold—50 Super 60 read by the student rd Grade—Silver— 25 Gold—35 Super 45 read by the student th – 5th Grade—Silver— 22 Gold—28 Super 35 read by the student
CLINIC NEWS:The clinic is in need of donations of underwear and T-shirts. If you can, bring donations to Ms. Starr or Ms. Beth.
FEDERAL CARDS:Federal cards went home last week. Please fill out ALL information and send back to school as soon as possible. If you have any questions, please con-tact Jocelyn Cabrera at x 51300. These forms can have an affect on federal aid to our school and ARE VERY IM-PORTANT! Thank you.
CENTURY 21 REMINDERS:Our C 21 Program is of-fered Monday—Thursday until 4:45 and we do have a late bus. However, on Fridays, the program ends at 4:15 and we do not have a late bus. Parents will be charged a late fee from daycare if they are repetitively late. Addition-ally, chronic late pick ups will sacrifice your child’s spot in our program.
NO SCHOOL: November 11th is Veteran’s Day.Our school is closed. Please make arrangements for your chil-dren on that day.
SECOND GRADE PLAY:Parents, Mark your calendars. The 2nd Grade Play is November 9th. We hope to see all second graders and parents at this great event!
4th GRADE EXPOSITORY WRITING CAMP:Thank you to fourth grade teacher and students, along with Mr. Taylor, our Reading Coach for creating a wonderful camp for our students!
PAKER Night and MATH PARTY: A special thank you to all the parents and students who attended PAKER and Math Party! Kudos to Mrs. Brown and Mrs. Revelin who coordinate these wonderful events.
HONOR ROLL BREAKFAST:Congratulations to all our students who made the honor roll. THANK YOU to Mr. Taylor, Ms. Hannah and Ms. Schmidlin for coordinating the celebration.
CONGRATULATIONS GAE CHORUS:They did a great job performing at Children’s Day and representing our wonderful school.
MRS. ELLIS’ CLASS:This class making quilt blocks to enter in a national contest. They design and make a 12 inch block with three special fabrics . They can add other fabrics if they choose. This project was sponsored in part by the Flor-ida Keys Council for the Arts, the State of Florida, Depart-ment of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Art Council, the National Endowment for the Arts and private do-nations.
MRS. ADAMS’ CLASS:The third graders in Ms. Adams's class have been excitedly using their class pumpkin to expand their math estimation skills. The top excellent estimators were: Darien Lopez, who exactly estimated the pumpkin's cir-cumference; Arwyn Leslie and Kenderline Sillon, who tied in their estimation of the weight and Zjayden Wallace, whose estimate was closest to the number of seeds inside the pump-kin. Arwyn also had her design selected by her classmates as the face that changed the pumpkin into a jack-o-lantern.
SCHOOL HOUSE:Please be on the lookout for the Parent Involvement Scorecard and Concept Placemat from School House to Your House in your student’s Tuesday Enve-lope. This program is designed to be a strong link between home and school. Each week for the next 20 weeks your stu-dent will bring home a new concept placemat. The concept is discussed at school and then the job of everyone at home is to continue the discussion. The concepts are positive and im-portant to talk about. The first one is Attitude. Enjoy the discussions with your students!
Click here for a list of all items will be posted on our school webpage.
DOLPHIN DAYS DONATIONS: Parents, Coach Roosa needs your help with Dolphin Days. If possible, please donate powdered Gatorade or cups to ensure that everyone stays well hydrated. THANK YOU!!!
SAC MEETING: Our February SAC (School Advisory Council) meeting has been scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in the cafeteria during PAKER NIGHT. The agenda will be: the new testing calendar, Parent Input for use of Parent Involvement Dollars, input on after school program and review of student discipline plan.
STUDENT COUNCIL CANNED FOOD DRIVE
SAC MEETING: After PAKER Night please join us for our SAC (School Advisory Council) meeting at 6:15 p.m. in the cafeteria. The agenda will be: Approving the A+ Plan, SIP Update (Writing), Progress Monitoring Data and the Gingerbread House Activity in December.
SECOND GRADE PLAY: Second grade students will present A Race to the Finish on Thursday, November 18 at 7 p.m. This play is based on the classic Aesop Fable “The Tortoise and the Hare. All students in second grade are in this production. A Piccadillo-Rice-Black Bean dinner starts at 6:00. Dinner will be $4.00 for adults and $2.00 for kids.
ACCELERATED READERS: Congratulations to the top Accelerated Reader Points Performers at Gerald Adams! To date, by grade level, the highest point earners are: 5th grade: Michael Cassidy and Tyler Meyer; 4th grade: Tatyana Deras and Julianna Gonzalez; 3rd grade: Chase Floyd and Azra Gomez; 2nd grade: Solyse Stehly and Arwyn Leslie; 1st grade: Adam Goelz and Nathan Norris. Extra congratulations go out to Chase Floyd who has the most AR points at Gerald Adams with 118! The more you read, the more you know!
NO SCHOOL: There will be no school Thursday November 11th. This is Veteran’s Day. Daycare and 21 Century are also closed that day.