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Monday, January 24, 2011

ESU 4 Special Education - January 24, 2011

Monday Memo

January 24, 2011
“The key to change... is to let go of fear.”
~Rosanne Cash

"Be extraordinary in the ordinary things in life." -Unknown
Courageously leading a dynamic revolution in Education! 

**Attendance sheets will be due Feb 1st... 

**Observation (Evaluation) Schedules... I have been emailing with many of you to get the evaluation schedule set. If you have not responded to my initial email, the time to do it is NOW! As we prepare for the observations, staff must complete the worksheet titled "Interview Protocol for a Preconference." Remember that we are not actually meeting prior to the observation but I would like you to complete this worksheet prior to the observation. I would like to have the schedule nailed down by the end of this week... Observations will start next week. (Updated 1/24/11)
Time Management 101... In the interest of trying to support some of you who are still working on the resolution to be better organized in 2011, I found this article from the Harvard Business Review booklet by way of the "Marshall Memo" that is sent to ESUs every couple of weeks. CEO Peter Bregman recommends a 4 step-process each day... 
1) Plan for the day (5 minutes)... before you even turn on the computer! Make your list; similar to decide which "frog" you're going to eat. 
2) Calendar the day... take out your calendar and schedule your top priorities into specific time slots, putting the hardest and most important items earlier in the day. (Sound familiar, frog fans?)
3) Refocus for one minute every hour... set your phone, watch, computer to ring every hour. When it rings, stop what you're doing, take a deep breath, look at your list and ask if your last hour was productive. Then, look at your calendar and recommit yourself to how you're going to use the next hour.
4) Review (5 minutes)... At the end of the day, shut off your computer and look back on the day. What worked? Did you get distracted? What can you do better tomorrow?
Try this and see how it works... report back on all your success!!! 
(You can report back by 'commenting' on this blog page! Try it out! Just once!)

**Mileage Reimbursement.... As of January 1st, the IRS allowable rate for mileage reimbursement will change to $.51 per mile. Please note as you submit your December/January reimbursement; you will have two different mileage figures...
Go for it
Run toward it
Dive in head first
Live life with no regrets
Put your heart out there
...Don't be scared you might get hurt, but its all worth it in the end... THE BEST IS YET TO COME
**Weather reminder... I can't believe that winter 'snuck up' on me! Generally, I post the weather reminders about making sure that you are aware of the weather, on the districts' contact lists, etc. However, this year, I missed the opportunity! So, better late than never... it's convenient when all the ESU 4 districts close at the same time, however, be aware that weather conditions are often different throughout our ESU. If you have any questions or concerns about weather and roads, please call ahead to your schools and learn about conditions. If you have any concerns about safety, make the safe choice. Please make sure that your districts are aware of weather conditions as you are driving. Thus endeth the yearly sermon about weather safety! ;-) (Posted 1/11/11, EJS)
Upcoming Staff Development...
 - Writing Measurable Goals... WEBINAR Series, Session #1! Monday, January 24, 2011 (3:45 - 5:00 p.m.) All ESU 4 Certified staff need to register and participate in this webinar series... No travel involved. Just a computer! Everyone who participates will receive a copy of "Writing Mearuable IEP Goals and Objectives" by Barbara Bateman/Cynthia Herr. Register via the on-line registration website. NOTE: We will be able to record all webinars. If you need to participate via the recorded webinar, let me know and I will get you that information!

Self Evaluations/Goals-action plans/Individual Development Plans... I am still missing self-evaluations and goals/development plans from Kathy N. 

LESSON REFLECTIONS were due November 19th!!!... I'm still missing reflections from the following people... Amy Jobe, Denise Buethe, Kathy Novak, and Joel Halpine. For those of you who do not teach specific lessons, please reflect upon a testing session or a meeting. (Updated 1/12/11 - EJS)

Requests for Professional Development/Workshops...Send in a leave request WITH your original request to attend the training; sometimes we get your registration information but I really need that leave sheet. (This might help us in being more accurate and timely with leave forms as well.)

According to the New York Times, there is no scientific research that proves that life is serious.
So... Lighten up!!! 
**LEAVE FORMS...We continue to have trouble with getting all the forms we need, when we need. When you are submitting a request to attend a meeting/workshop, please attach a copy of the workshop flyer with the leave request. That will allow us to make sure we've got you registered! I don't want to be repetitive here (but I will!), your leave requests really need to match your professional goals. If I don't have your goals, I can't okay leave requests!

When is it a great day to be a Husker fan????
The correct answer is... ALWAYS!!!

Never stop playing the game!
Educational Service Unit #4, Auburn, Nebraska

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