The Educational Technology and Library Services (ETLS) team ensures all DPS students have access to a robust, culturally responsive digital library. Check out their fun video for the #booksareessential campaign. The Sora collection also has more than 30,000 titles, in several languages, to access year round. Click here or get the free Sora app.
May 14, 2020
Sign Up for PERA 101 Webinars
Whether you’re just beginning your career or counting down the days until retirement, it’s always a good time to learn more about the PERA retirement benefits that are available to DPS team members. 

Join the DPS Employee Wellness team and PERA to learn when you’ll be eligible to retire, and how much income you might expect, and walk away with an overall better understanding of your PERA benefits. 

Register in advance for the following webinars:
  • Noon-1 p.m. May 15 -- register here
  • 4-5 p.m. May 18 -- register here
  • 8-9 a.m. May 20 -- register here.

If you have any questions, please contact Kaila Warren.
Transitioning to SchoolMessenger
As we previously shared , DPS will be transitioning from Infinite Campus (IC) Messenger to SchoolMessenger for automated calls, texts and emails to families. Schools have now started moving to SchoolMessenger for all school-based communications since IC Messenger phone and text options will   no longer be offered after this school year.

  • School-based staff, if you think you need training on this new communications tool, please reach out to your school leader.

  • Central Office teams, if you would like to submit a request for an automated message to families, please email Communications.

If you have other questions about the transition to SchoolMessenger, please email  communications@dpsk12.org.
"Would You Rather...?" Results
In the spirit of our Shared Core Value of Fun, we asked Team DPS who they would rather quarantine with. Here are the results:
Top 5 Callout: Biggest Wins
This year has included so much more than just COVID-19. Tell us about your greatest wins and successes from 2019-20 school year! What goals have you crushed? How did you rock remote learning? Share your positive reflections through this form.
Join the District Accountability Committee 
As a member of DPS, you're invited to apply to join the District Accountability Committee (DAC), which aims to help improve DPS by advising the Board of Education on the adequacy and cost effectiveness of educational programs and policies. The DAC is open to DPS parents, staff and community members who are interested in advancing our schools and helping ensure Every Child Succeeds.  Benefits of joining the committee include:

  • Insight into key district initiatives.
  • Networking opportunities with other community leaders.
  • Opportunity to provide recommendations directly to the Board of Education.

If you would like more information, please see this application and click here for bilingual flier.
Sign Up for Virtual Equity Boot Camp
Our upcoming Equity Boot Camp, "Neurodiversity and Exceptional Students: Changing the Narrative in Our Classrooms," focuses on gaining insight into our neuro-diverse and exceptional students. Join us from 1-3:15 p.m. May 22 and learn from our scheduled speakers:

  • “Understand Today’s Gifted Children: Confronting and Dismantling Stereotypes and Racism in Gifted Education” -- Presented by Robin Greene, Director of Student Equity and Opportunity: Gifted Students and Nursing.

  • “The Gifts that Exceptional Students Bring to the Classroom: Flipping the Script on How We Think about Students with a Disability” -- Presented by Robert Frantum-Allen, Director of Special Education.

Equity Boot Camps offer are an opportunity to build skills with colleagues, while infusing equity and inclusion through culturally responsive practices throughout DPS. Register here.
Down-Payment Assistance for Home Buyers
To support team members in buying a home in the community they serve, DPS has partnered with Landed -- a San Francisco-based startup that helps employees in education buy a home through a down-payment assistance program. The opportunity provides half of the 20% down payment on a home, up to $120,000, to be paid back in the future. This program is open to all employees -- teachers, staff, and administrators -- who have worked in public education for at least two years and can contribute as little as 5% down.

This month, Landed is hosting two online information sessions for those interested in learning more about Landed’s down-payment program and other homebuying resources. Interested participants can RSVP for May 28:


 For more information, visit landed.com/signup or contact Paula Davis .
Self-Care Optimism Strategies
The Culture, Equity and Leadership Team (CELT) is offering a wide variety of strategies aimed to support team members in staying healthy and strong, both physically and emotionally. Check out this week's latest videos: 

  • Sleep: One of the ways to mitigate stress is sleep. Are you getting at least 7-9 hours of sleep a night? Learn how sleep impacts your health, and strategies to improve your sleep.

  • Accept change: Change is occurring rapidly right now, and everyone is affected differently -- some people slowly adjust, while others dive right in. Learn how to accept change and leverage the positive impacts. 

  • Keep moving: Our bodies need to move every 60 minutes. Learn how simple changes in your daily routine can decrease stress, help engagement, support memory and critical thinking while enhancing mood. 
Living Our DPS Honorees
Maria Alfaro
Dean of Operations, Green Valley Elementary
Accountability
Jennifer Piel
Program Manager, Discovery Link at Carson Elementary
Fun
"Maria oversees numerous tasks in our school and always lives our Shared Core Value of Accountability. She is extremely professional, supportive and holds herself to the highest standards. Maria leads by example and expects us, paraprofessionals, to perform at our best! She is always promoting workshops and professional developments for our team. Mari holds us accountable at all times! She is a great model to follow."

--Jessica Hernandez, Green Valley Elementary
"Jennifer is using an app ‘Marco Polo’ to reach out to her fellow teachers, students and families by offering them challenging and fun activities that they can do to interact with each other! These activities ask students to participate in reading, math, science and physical activity. She is keeping the Fun associated with the Discovery Link before- and afterschool program going! The response she is receiving has been great!"

--Leslie Reis, Discovery Link at Carson Elementary
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