Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Minutes from 5/16/22 Meeting

   HiCap Parents Council Meeting

via Zoom

May 16, 2022
10:00 am-12:00 pm

  • No Reading/discussion today

  • Discussion of Spotlight nominees

    • Do we want to limit this to one person per level? Not necessarily, if we can write a good story about what they do to share with others

    • Short list: Determined by the number of votes and most in-depth number of nominations (comments)

      • Do we want to vote based on comments or by “power” checklist items people suggested?

        • Feel written comments would be more helpful

        • Terri & Imen will condense and present the data via email

      • The point is to share the story, so we really need to see what people wrote to help elevate good practices

    • Will vote later via survey or email

    • Lynne has a record of nominating two teachers, but neither are on the list

      • Same for Hillarie (1 of her 2 nominees is recorded)

      • Maybe there was an error in the Survey Gizmo export or elsewhere?

      • Lynne’s auto replies are dated April 11th

    • Suggestions for future improvements

      • Don’t run the survey during spring break next year, as many probably missed it due to that timing

      • Maybe another survey tool would work better

      • We can discuss more ways to improve this in the future at the next meeting

  • Amity Updates

    • Testing is wrapping up

      • NVP outdoor testing was done last week (got a break in the weather)

      • There are a few testing dates in June for transfer/new-to-district testing for placement next fall

      • There are a few out-of-district waivers hoping there will be space

    • EAP locations were finalized 2 weeks ago and are live on the website (https://www.nsd.org/schools/programs-services/highly-capable-services/services-programs/eap)

      • HiCap department sent sample Blackboard messages to schools that they can customize and send out to their families

      • They had to make sure schools got access to their list of hicap families so that they could send out the welcome messages via Blackboard

      • People should know their EAP placements now

      • Families do NOT need to re-enroll at new school, fill out a waiver, or contact transportation (all of this gets figured out in district)

        • If a family go a welcome message from the wrong school, they should contact HiCap department

        • There was a suggestion to consider sharing this information in PTA newsletters

          • Amity shared that the placements are personalized; some families get waivers/variances to keep siblings together

          • Families should know where they land as “placement has been decided”

          • New families should have been contacted already

        • Amity notes that not all districts approve waivers for the length of a child’s career at that school level; this is something Northshore does well

    • Professional Development

      • There will again be Summer Institute in August

        • Elementary: focus will be on the new ELA program

        • Secondary: hope to focus on understanding hicap students

        • How do we get people to attend?

        • Some training will be in person and some will be virtual

        • Amity is talking to Austina to see who to bring in as Austina is already engaged for those dates

    • More intentional focus on middle school AAP

      • Class composition

      • AAP curriculum

        • Will have to work through the Curriculum Materials Adoption Committee (CMAC) process

        • Amity is focusing on ELA and social studies, but also needs to do science

          • Might be a Springboard supplement for ELA

          • Work is being done on an ethnic studies course for high school, maybe more for middle school?

          • Amity asks if we have suggestions of places to look for curriculum

          • Terra will send her an email of ideas

        • Request for a suggestion of ways to prepare new principals taking on hicap for the first time

          • Amity shared that the new Sunrise principal, Micahel Griffin, may not have much hicap experience, but Amity will talk to him

          • Her perspective is that he will be a good learner and a quality fit

          • Mr. Griffin joined NSD (from Seattle SD) during the pandemic

          • He was Principal at Lockwood for a year (they have EAP) and then at Woodinville High School as an Assistant Principal

        • Terri commented that there is not a strong writing curriculum

          • Middle school work is graded based on a rubric

          • This does not clearly highlight what students are doing wrong and what needs to be improved

        • Amity asked specifically if there are any recommendations for social studies programs for middle school; Terra said yes, but the ones she had reviewed would not necessarily be good for large groups

        • Amity will also talk to Melissa Riley, Assistant Director of Equity Pedagogy and on the Ethnic Studies Pilot Work Team

        • Myriam stated that curriculum uniformity should be looked at for more levels and also evaluated for how it is taught in every school; this is not just a high school issue

        • High school working with Steven Gearing (sp?) to look at course rigor along levels, where they are in school, and outcomes (colleges and college success/graduation)

          • Is being examined and also school by school

          • There is progress just slow

        • Stephanie shared that kids don’t know grammar which also makes it harder to study foreign languages (as they aren’t already familiar with parts of speech or tenses)

          • There was no explicit grammar in K-5 before the new curriculum

          • Grammar instruction at these levels is teacher dependent rather than systemic

    • Parent Survey

      • Austina expects this to only be a minor update so we can compare it to the previous year it was conducted

      • Austina and Carson are working on the updates

      • This survey is sent to hicap families and asks about their satisfaction with programs

      • Historically, EAP families are happy and Single Subject Qualifier (SSQ) families are not happy

        • Expect we’ll see more happiness for math SSQ’s in 4th/5th grade due to offering of accelerated math

        • Asked to look at doing something similar for 2nd and 3rd grade

          • Amity cannot expand at this point because she ran out of money for FTE (Full Time Education) 

          • FTEs follow up with kids doing work on Edgenuity and make sure they are on track and answer questions

        • There was a suggestion to add questions to find out if a SSQ is doing walk to math or Edginuity

        • Survey additions

          • Add NFP

          • Make sure Innovation Lab HS (ILHS)  is present on the school lists

          • Shouldn’t need to add ILHS specific questions about satisfaction for hicap as that should come based on their answers to later survey questions

      • Amity would like to get the survey out before seniors check out so we can get their feed back

        • The Senior Survey is a different thing; it asks hicap designated seniors to reflect on their experiences of hicap education

        • We should do this again as well, as it went out late last year and we are among the first years where students have been able to be in hicap from 2nd-12th grades

        • HCP can prepare the survey, but the HiCap department needs to send this one out (HCP doesn’t have access to student lists)

      • Elizabeth Williamson asked about summer playdates

        • If we want the hicap department to share our playdate information, especially for new, incoming students, we should send it to Elizabeth (ewilliamson@nsd.org)

        • We expect this planning to happen in a month as new council members take over EAP spots

        • Council (and community) members are welcome to plan playdates that occur before school gets out, but traditionally, these happen over the summer

Amity, Elizabeth, and Angie leave

  • Council Updates

    • Treasurer’s Report from Lauren

      • We have just over $1,300

        • This is about 10 months' worth of expenses

        • Fiscal year runs from July to June

      • If we need money for summer activities, we might need to do a call for donations

        • We have 11 EAP schools

        • Estimate $50 per school

        • Maybe we could ask for donations to sponsor 1 school’s summer playdates

        • If PTAs have a welcome committee, maybe we could combine playdate efforts with them

      • Lauren will not be treasurer next year (she won’t have a student in the district) so someone else on council will have to fill the position, but it is neither hard nor time-consuming

    • Election

      • About 2/3rds of the council positions are up for election this year

      • Austina can cover the election emails and survey/voting, since she isn’t up for election this year

      • We need to decide the election schedule

      • We need to decide if we keep positions as is or if we should split alternate programs

        • Terra’s thoughts 

          • Next year the Bear Creek Campus will house Northshore Virtual Program (NVP), Northshore Family Partnership (NFP), and Northshore Networks (NN)

          • She believes that it will make sense for one representative to cover this school

          • ILHS needs its own representative or something else

        • Megan thought it might be better for the Bear Creek Campus programs to have their own representatives because the programs might have different needs

        • Bear Creek Campus is getting a new principal to oversee all and the programs will be working concurrently

        • This information makes it sound like it will work better to have one representative to meet with the principal

        • Suggested that We have a Bear Creek Campus rep and a Alternative high school rep to cover ILHS and Secondary Academy for Success (SAS)

        • Suggested made to call it Choice High School Rep

        • Motion made to disband NVP & alternative programs representatives and move to Choice High School Rep (covering IHLS and SAS) and Bear Creek Campus Rep (covering NVP, NFP, and NN)

          • Motion seconded

          • Motion passes

      • Nomination form will go out in a few days

        • Initial date planning:

          • Nominations accepted May 18th-June 1st

          • Voting June 3rd-10th

          • Transition meeting during the week of June 13th

        • Comments on initial plan

          • Maybe run voting May 31st- June 7th

          • People don’t really need a week to vote

          • Close on June 5th or 6th

          • Evening transition meeting picked for June 7th at 7pm via Zoom

          • In the next few days/week after transition meeting will have a daytime meeting with Amity et. al.

          • If end voting on June 5th, it leaves a day to let new representatives know they need to attend the evening meeting on June 7th

        • Final dates

          • Nominations accepted May 18th-26th

          • Voting May 31st-Jun 5th

          • Evening transition meeting on June 7th at 7pm

          • Daytime meeting with Amity TBD

        • If you are not running to fill your current position, encourage someone else to run to fill that spot

Monday, April 11, 2022

Minutes from 3/25/22 Meeting

   HiCap Parents Council Meeting

via Zoom

March 25, 2022

9:00 am-11:00 pm

  • Reading/discussion today: Imposter Syndrome

    • Sources

    • Most only listened to the podcast

      • We identify with the podcast

      • Helped a parent to understand their high school junior and she shared the article with her son

      • It was new to some to see that perfectionism causes you to freeze and not start until the last minute

      • We were struck by the fact that when we compare ourselves to others, we only look up, not sideways or down

      • Liked the quote, “Great can be the enemy of done.” 

      • Two-minute mountain: the physical anxiety response lasts about 90 seconds and you need to grit your teeth and get through it

        • Seth Perler tip for starting homework: you can choose to do 1 problem, 2 problems, or 3 problems; regardless of what you pick, you have already committed to starting

        • Often when you get done with one problem it is easier to keep going; you have effectively gritted through the 2-minute mountain

      • Where does a kid get the idea that this is not enough and how do we combat that to get to 80%

        • Can come from social acceptance

        • We compare grades without even thinking

        • A student perspective: education here (vs. Denmark) is more focused on grades than learning

        • Here we focus so much on ranking and measurable data

        • ILHS’s recent Mastery Learning presentation: might be a good topic if it was recorded and we can view the recording

      • Podcast format seemed to work well, so we might try to focus on this format

      • It is nice to have a safe place to discuss the source of anxiety and pressure without the assumption that this pressure is always coming from parents

  • Amity Updates

    • Identification process update

      • MST letters are going out probably on Monday for appeals

        • All appeal decisions have been made

        • There may be 4-5 more if missed opportunities or are coming later

      • Don’t have final decisions on schools hosting EAP; HR and business are working on this

      • Will encourage schools to reach out to newly qualified students once decisions are made

        • We want this communication to happen at the same time for all schools/students

        • It is great to get even a small amount of communication from welcoming school

        • Lets families know that the school knows their kids are coming

    • Algebra readiness (this process is owned by Curriculum, but Amity still gets a lot of questions about this)

      • The Algebra readiness image below can be shared on Facebook and in school newsletters

  • Sent text and phone call to check email

  • Amity advised teacher to talk to families about their ability to reject Algebra placement where desired/appropriate

  • If students without previous acceleration want to take Algebra, they need to do 7th grade challenge math in summer school

  • We are the only district that allows and encourages kids to take Algebra in 6th grade

    • Example: Mercer Island Math acceleration

    • There is some smaller percent of students that might do better to slow the math acceleration dow

    • Remember and remind people that this is a family decision and that it is easier to make adjustments or repeat a course in middle school

    • You can also adjust your  choice in the first few weeks of middle school (in high school you have 10 days to change a course before it affects your GPA)

    • Accelerated experience includes: walk to math, Edgenuity, or schools where they have an accelerated math class in their school

  • Testing Results

  • Image accounts for all first-round, makeup tests, and appeals

  • Numbers are a little lower than last year and within 10 of the previous year

  • Qualifying requirements

    • 95th+ percentile in reading and/or math on IOWA

    • 95th+ percentile NNAT for 1st grade ONLY

  • Taking summer math does NOT confer a highly capable designation (even if these classes get students to the same level as the HC double/triple jumpers) whether or not parents say this

  • Interesting connection in NNAT3 Scores and Rapid Automatic Naming (RAN) testing used for dyslexia screening (some of dyslexia screening is through iReady and some is person to person)

    • RAN testing looks at color, objects, patterns, and numbers

    • We may be able to connect the RAN to the letters/numbers part of the NNAT to find kids who need support

    • The portion of iReady test that is used for the dyslexia screener is helpful as a screener

    • If students score high on the NNAT3 and low to middle on RAN this may be a sign of more stealth dyslexia

    • Testing rapid reading (rapidly reading letters, numbers, colors and objects off of a page) correlates to dyslexia (reversing letters/numbers does not correlate to dyslexia)

    • We are trying to better identify dyslexic kids who learn sight reading, but not phonics

      • We might see these students in elementary as terrible spellers

      • The struggle in middle school when they can’t sound out novel words

      • Decoding and encoding is the same core skill set that is affected by dyslexia

      • Goal is to find kids with hidden (or stealth) dyslexia in HC to help feed them into this early intervention

      • Dyslexia is not about vision

    • RAN is a proxy measure for phonological awareness

    • Test available on thepasttest.com

      • This is a totally free oral screener that directly measures phonological awareness

      • Works for ages 4-Adult

    • We might look more at students who display poor (middle to low) spelling to see if this is a sign of dyslexia

    • Dysgraphia may be diagnosed if the issue is really dyslexia (when the problems are seen in spelling skills)

    • Speech is maybe a sign of input issues, but there can be other output issues

    • Currently, dyslexia testing is limited to K-1

      • Will likely pull 2nd grade into screen process

      • This year, we needed to train staff, gather data, and figure out what to do with the data, so started with a smaller group

    • Dyslexia screening is done for the year

  • Amity spoke at a Canyon Creek General PTA meeting on 03/22/22

    • She is available to speak at other schools, but she needs to have an idea of what the goal of her talk will be

    • At Canyon Creek 

      • Amity talked about HC and why we serve these students

      • She also shared about LAP (Learning Assistance Program) and the Multi Lanugage programs (ML) for which she is also responsible

      • It was helpful to know that at most schools that house a hicap program the majority of the students who attend the program come from that neighborhood

        • This is why these locations are chosen

        • Amity has the numbers and can share them if requested

    • Overall,  kids are closer to their middle school feeder pattern

  • Council Updates

    • Updates on Council Priorities/Work groups

      • Imen & Terry: HiCap Teacher Spotlights

        • Will share an active link with everyone

        • After the spotlight requests are collected they will talk with people about compiling

        • How can we share the link?

          • Send an email on the HCP list

          • Share on NSD HiCap Discussion Facebook page

          • Could possible share via school/PTA newsletters

        • Spotlight process is also open to general education teachers who teach single subject qualifiers

          • We need to think about how this will be introduced

          • Specify at the beginning that this is not only for HC teachers


The following minutes are presented courtesy of past secretary Steven Rubenstein who filled in when Carson had to leave at 10 am.



HiCap Parent Councils Meeting
3/25/2022


Carson – Exit stage left

  1. HiCap teacher awards (Imen & Terri)

    1. Austina – Suggestion to drop Subjects the teacher teaches

    2. Agreement to drop grade

    3. Discussion about whether to drop “Other” option from teacher type

    4. Should we let people nominate anonymously? Decision: No

    5. Separate name and email fields

    6. Austina will work with Imen to make language more consistent

    7. Motion to move forward with teacher awards: Terri Kashi. Seconded by Terra Droney. Vote: Unanimous in favor.

  2. Combined: Writing curriculum at all levels

    1. Terra - We should discuss why we need and want a writing curriculum since there is no writing curriculum that works across all grades

    2. Terra - Should narrow the goal to make progress. Hillarie - Very deep. Difficult to make headway. Need to prioritize, probably by grade.

    3. Austina - New ELA curriculum for K-5. Should consider focusing on middle school where new elementary curriculum leaves off.

    4. Amity – That is all the elementary school will be able to do for a while as it will be the focus of professional development. Agreed with Austina’s suggestion to focus on middle school. Caveat: Higher up the grade, the more teachers are stuck on using their existing content and resistant to change.

    5. Should we be putting effort into writing curriculum at all given new K-5 curriculum?

    6. Amity – Grades 4-6 are core for writing development. Middle school Springboard is reading curriculum. Some parents have concerns about whether kids are writing enough in middle school. Middle schools not currently looking at new writing curriculum. Teachers may not have a formal writing curriculum.

  3. High school alignment, course catalog, etc. (Myriam)

    1. No updates unfortunately

    2. Math trajectory diagrams are still different for each school. (Visual is different too, not just content.) Bothell is same as last year. New district-wide math pathway diagram is not being used.

    3. Few changes to class descriptions

    4. Next step? Amity - Need to determine what is realistic. What are the barriers? Will do some research.

    5. Myriam – Many parents are not aware of equity issue and that class offerings differ across high schools.

    6. Austina – Main issue is some schools are not as rigorous as other schools. That is the core problem we are trying to fix. Perhaps there is another approach than focusing on course catalog.

    7. Terra – Expand upon online course catalog to make it easy to see differences among the high schools.

    8. Steven – Inglemoor person who creates catalog was unaware of our efforts. Should we just focus on raising Bothell?

    9. Amity – Opportunities in this district are immensely better than the district where her kids went. Yes, there is room for improvement, but appreciate how much better each high school is than others.

  4. Investigate: professional development (Audrey)

    1. Subcommittee met.

    2. Can reach out to building principals they know. Come up with a mini-survey or a few questions. Asking teachers their PD needs. Basically, in phase I: gathering information.

    3. Phase II: Use committee and council to help bridge gap between existing resources / knowledge and un-met needs.

    4. How can we promote HiCap PD with teachers?

    5. Also want to advocate for parents in addition to teachers. Newsletter, blog, facebook, etc. Goal is to communicate existing resources to parents.

    6. Terra – Have we ever discussed having HiCap website being referenced from NSD site like PTA sites are from individual schools?

    7. Amity – On a bunch of PD committees. Trying to figure out summer PD offerings. Will look into adding council link on NSD HiCap site.

  5. Summer welcome events

    1. Need to start thinking about it. No discussion on it though.

  6. Elections

    1. Let Austina know if you would like to continue if up for election

    2. If still have a year left and cannot / do not want to continue, let us know before elections

    3. Should we split Innovation Lab and NFP into separate positions?

    4. Will there still be a virtual program next year? If not, should get rid of position.

Meeting ended at 11:05 am.