Oglesby Parent Newsletter: JULY
Oglesby Montessori Parents,
To begin I hope all is well with you and your family during this unprecedented time. I wanted to provide you with updates as it relates to the Oglesby Montessori Program.
Oglesby Summer Remote Learning:
Oglesby currently offers summer remote learning for Montessori students. Our goal was to provide students with an opportunity to continue learning with a focus on reading and mathematics. Currently Ms. Clay has 12 of the 31(which is 39%) Montessori students enrolled. Take a look inside:
Students are comparing and contrasting two texts using a Venn diagram. Students have rich authentic learning experiences virtually. KUDOS to Ms. Clay and the scholars participating in the program.
Oglesby Montessori Staffing
In order to be as transparent as possible with all stakeholders. I would like to explain Montessori staffing and funding. The Montessori Allocations for SY19/20 and SY20/21 are the same. Central Office funds 3 Montessori teacher positions and 2 Montessori teacher assistant positions. For SY20/21 Oglesby will have 3 Montessori teachers and 2 Montessori teacher assistants. We will not be hiring any new staff. All staffing for these classrooms will be persons who are currently employed at Oglesby.
We did have two Montessori teacher assistants impacts. They were impacted because of seniority. Seniority means two teacher assistants at Oglesby have more time with Chicago Public Schools than the two Montessori teacher assistants that were impacted. Seniority is how impacts are determined, which is contractual. Central Office closed two teacher assistant positions at Oglesby because based on their findings that role was no longer needed. Please know that this decision was made by Central Office and was not intended to upset or disrupt the Montessori program at Oglesby.
Administration will be assigning two teacher assistants to the Montessori classrooms for the upcoming school year that are currently employed at Oglesby, no new staff will be hired. They will receive Montessori teacher assistant training. They will work with the teachers to continue to provide students with a well rounded educational experience. I hope this provides some clarity.
Oglesby Montessori Volunteers
I just wanted to provide clarity around the Montessori volunteers support this school year because I have heard false statements about the involvement of the Montessori volunteers. Please know that as principal I have the discretion around how volunteers engage. My charge is to establish a sound uninterrupted instructional program which is directly aligned to the Montessori philosophy, which promotes a three hour uninterrupted learning block. Please see below how volunteers supported this school year. (This information was shared in the Oglesby December Parent Newsletter)
EC: 1 volunteer, 1 day a week on Wednesday(Ana Cummins) to assist with sandpaper letters/sounds and early numeracy. Teacher instructs volunteer how to do the work.
EL: 1 volunteer, 4 days a week, Monday-Thursday. 3 days devoted to reading tutoring for emergent readers/third graders who were held back (Bether Weiss - Mon, Tues and Katherine Baldwin - Wed), and 1 day for general classroom assistance and help with special projects such as cooking (Bether Weiss Thurs.)
Finally, please see below comments taken directly from a thank you email from Bether Weiss (Montessori Volunteer) sent to me on June 8, 2020.
“As I retyped the Moving Up ceremony program for Ms Daggett, Ms Clay and Ms Rich, it occurred to me that I hadn't sent you even an email of thanks or even checked in since the end of month in February. I cannot imagine how challenging these past few months of virtual learning have been. I have also been thinking a lot about the Oglesby families.
So, let me thank you for letting me work with the kids this year, especially the Thursday baking mornings. The kids really looked forward to that and didn't even know we were working on reading and fractions all at the same time.” Bether Weiss
This partnership has not been dismantled. I appreciate all that the foundation does for the students and families of Oglesby Montessori program. Please understand that my charge as instructional leader is to establish structures that allow all students to thrive. Once we receive guidance from Central Office, administration plans to meet with the foundation to discuss the upcoming school year.
Montessori Parent Survey
In order to ensure we have a clear understanding of what parents value in a Montessori program we developed this survey. Please complete so that your voice is heard.