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tv   Government Access Programming  SFGTV  August 30, 2019 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT

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okay. then the motion is approved. then our next item is 11, adjournment. is there a motion to adjourn? >> motion to adjourn. >> second. >> clerk: okay. all commissioners in favor? opposed? no? we are now adjourned. it is 11:18 a.m.
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>> peace, peace, and welcome. we are glad you are here. this is the regular meeting of the board of education of the san francisco unified school district. today is august 27th, 2019, roll call, please. >> thank you. [roll call] >> i mentioned last meeting that this month we lost toni morrison , she passed on august 5 th of this month. in her memory, i was going to start the board meeting for the month of august with a quote from toni morrison. tonight i have what i think the
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political correctness debate is really about is the power to be able to define. the definers want to the power to name, and the defined are now taking that power away from you. section a, general information number one accessibility information for the polk, public , number two, teleconference information section b., opening items. number one, approval of board minutes of the regular board meeting for august 13th, 2019. can i have a motion or a second? >> so moved. >> second. >> roll call vote on the minutes [roll call]
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>> speaker cards for the regular agenda are -- if you wish to address the board of education, members of the public are reminded that an individual can complete a speaker card prior to the item being called. members of the public have two minutes to address the board and/or time as set by the president, importantly according to board rules and procedures, speaker cards will be accepted for any item for the board. number two, superintendent's report. dr. matthews? >> good evening, everyone. last week was the first week of the 2019, 2020 school year.
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give everyone a good round of applause, a great opening. i always love the first week and the first day of school. i have the opportunity to visit a couple of sites and along with me, maryland and breed and the president, the deputy superintendent, commissioners all were there and they were there to greet the students at some elementary schools and middle schools. first, i went to starting elementary were community building is a key focus. they started lace -- with a schoolwide dance party. the principal helped integrate students in the mandarin immersion program and general education. throughout the year, students will hold their own farmers' market and publish their own book along with other activities to help strengthen the school community. then we went on to roosevelt middle school. it is one of two schools that
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began rolling out the middle grades redesign of grade six through eight. this includes expanded access to electives like robotics and drama, deeper learning, an additional professional collaboration time for teachers. in order to expand access to arts, computer science, health and languages for all middle grade students, the district is engaged in a multiyear process to reimagine how the middle grades are taught. i had a fantastic and wonderful time doing -- seeing all of our students excited on the first day of school. has we begin the new school year , i would like to highlight a couple of things. first, one of our most important highlights for this year, our teacher salaries. we all know how expensive it is to live in the bay area, and even though our district is the same base funding amount from the state for teacher salaries, there are other places that are less expensive to live and we
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have prioritized raising teacher salaries while maintaining one of the lowest class sizes and most competitive benefit packages in the entire state. our average teacher salary has gone up from 62,005 years ago to 82,000 this year. the second thing i would like to briefly highlight is san francisco unified computer science. five years ago, only seven students took computer science and last year that number was over 25,000. we are educating students to be ready for the jobs of tomorrow that are plentiful in the bay area and that is in high-tech. next announcement is that all san francisco heisel juniors and seniors are invited to attend the 20th annual historically black colleges affair like monday september 9th at the san francisco city hall. this is a great opportunity for students to speak with recruiters from over 30 historically black colleges and
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universities. students can receive on the spot admissions for colleges and scallops -- scholarships for colleges. you should bring your current transcripts and your s.a.t. test scores if you have them available. our district is hosting this event in partnership with the san francisco alliance of black school educators, the mayor's opportunities for all program, black to the future, and the human rights commission. i hope to see you all there. finally, all san francisco unified schools and offices will be closed for labor day on monday, september 2nd, and we will see everyone back on september 3rd. one final announcement, this evening, we are going to welcome our new student commissioners, and i like to call forward to the chief chief to introduce them to us. >> good evening. each year we go through a very
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challenging process of selecting two students to serve on the board of education. at what gets harder and harder every year is we put two students on the board and they knock it out of the park and every year they get better and better and the bar is raised. we are challenged with, can we possibly find two students again this year that can match the students that we had last year. we are lucky and confident that we have found the two that will do this. i am really excited tonight to introduce you to -- come on up, jet and betsy. [applause] betsy attended alvarado elementary school and became a student leader when she was a sophomore. what inspires her to be a student leader is her family in the youth that will come after
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her. the opportunities that sfusd has provided for her to excel in student leadership and participating in her school's instructional rounds. she believes is important to have student input when we talk about the curriculum, and another opportunity for her was participation in and mission's high school administration interviews. welcome to betsy. and jet, we just call him top gun, no, we don't, i'm just kidding.
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[please stand by] >> it is so quiet. >> hi, everybody. i am jet. i want to say i'm honored to serve on behalf of my peers and i look forward to working with you this year. thank you. >> hello, thank you for allowing us to be here today. i hope we can all do great work together.
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>> welcome. let's see, number four, recognition and resolution of commendations. we have none tonight. number five, recognizing all valuable employees. we have none tonight. section c., public comment on nonagenda items. please note the board of education will now call for public comment. please note public comment is an opportunity for the board to hear from the community on matters within the board's jurisdiction. we ask you refrain from using employee or student names. if you have a complaint about additional employees, you may submit to the employee his supervisor in accordance with district policy. as a reminder, board rules and california law do not allow us to respond to comments or answer questions during the public
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comment time. if appropriate, the superintendent will ask staff to follow up with speakers. i have two names here for public comment. when you hear your name called, make your way to the podium. you will have two minutes. [calling names] you have two minutes whenever you are ready.
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>> hello, my name is jeremy lee, i am 16. i pull evolved. i'm here to request funding to purchase new poles for the team. there are 20 of us across three schools and we all go to lincoln high school. currently several of our top vaulters perform extremely well outside the city and have already broken or close to breaking the city records. to progress further, they would require bigger and longer poles. additionally i would like to speak to anyone from the board about funding who are interested , and her the ability to get donations from businesses in the district. thank you all for listening. please consider the funding.
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>> hello. good evening, commissioners. my name is jim. i am with the yellow -- i am not with the yellow vest movement although i appreciate the cause. i'm here to address serious concerns we have with the r.f.p. what that was put out last week for the consultation project. for the first time ever, at least in the 20 plus years that i have worked there, the district has proposed dividing up the transportation contract into multiple parts. in this case, three parts with separate companies involved for each one of these. in addition to creating a more logical overhead and most likely crossing the district -- costing the district more money, it says of the stage that two of these workplaces be nonunion, at least initially. this indicates where a majority
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of new hires are not members of the workforce or another unionized workplace. this is quite likely to occur. this is a serious workplace through our membership -- serious threat to our membership with the division of the transportation contract, there is also potential to have multiple labor agreements and multiple labor unions involved where historically there has just been one. this workforce, our workforce has been without any work stoppages are major issues since the 1970s and we wish to continue this trend. we feel this is in the best interest of our workforce, school district, and the children we all serve. we really fail to see the logic of the consultation contract and setting the states for turmoil. i feel stability should be our goal. i respectfully urge the board to consider this and not split up
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this contract. thank you. >> good evening, commissioners. one of two of you might know who i am. i have been driving the school bus in the district for 48 years i have seen a lot of contracts come and go. they tended to split it up before but it was more economic and -- economical to have one contract to do it. if you take a look at the costs of the busing contract, you can't really conserve much money on buses and feel maintenance without having a lower quality. you have learned administrative costs, billing costs, technology in all of those will go up if you duplicate your triplicate lease costs. where will the savings come from the only thing i can see is it will come from labor, even though you kindly put in the prevailing wage clause, there is still going to be an attempt to
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cut wages and benefits in ways that are probably skirting the language of the contract. most of our drivers have to commute to 1-2 hours each way to work and have a three hour or four hour layover to get paid for six or seven hours. it is like 11 to 13 hours of work. some people resent this, but this is the most expensive area to live in in the country and putting out an r.f.p. for three contracts is going to wind up coming down hard on the drivers and it could make it difficult for us to live and work in the city. we would like you to keep the contract in one piece if you would. thank you for listening.
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>> hello. i am here to talk about an incident that happened at my school about four months ago. m.u.n. -- one of my fellow students wore a costume that was technically not listed as a kkk costume. it was listed as a crusader costume. i am not here to complain about that, i understand children make mistakes. i'm here to talk about the way it was handled by my counsellors and staff. a few students, myself included had a picture of the event is documentation that it happened because it was something so out of left field. it was something that had never happened before. so we had documentation, we have a picture of it. one student had a video. we were immediately told to delete it by the students who
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were the costume. staff said we were going to ruin his life. it -- if it got out. we were told not to talk about it in public because we would ruin his reputation. in meetings with counsellors, we were told that it was basically a mistake that he made and that we should all look -- let go of it, that it didn't mean anything and that we should forgive him and become friends with him again. i understand forgive and forget, but i just couldn't. it just hurt me and my fellow students as somebody who is half chinese, i felt horrible. i felt unsafe, i guess.
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sorry if my voice is breaking, that is basically all i have to say. thank you. >> hello. i am sarah. i am a half filipino student and i'm here to talk with the same event that happened four months ago. this is my view on what happened i get to school pretty early so i was able to see the student pull out the costume and i understand he didn't know what it was. i don't know why he brought it to school, i don't think i will ever understand why, but i saw everybody tried to convince him to put it away because it really was a problematic thing to have out, and then i saw another student come up to him jokingly and put it on who one of my friends took a picture. after that, i went into my history class. i was still thinking about it, it was still bothering me a lot. i got called by my head councillor for a meeting.
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she threatened us, she yelled at us and she made us delete the picture. she really tea much made the minorities the villains. after threatening to suspend us if this ever got out, she tried to force us to become friends with the student to put it on and he got no punishment, while the minorities got in trouble for just being scared, rightfully so. that is all i have to say. >> thank you. i will have the superintendent come to get more information from you. easter sanderson, we will talk to the students from lowell just to get more information. thank you. >> thank you. >> that concludes general public comment.
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thank you all for speaking. you did great. >> section d., advisory committee reports and appointments. there is no advisory committee report tonight. do we have any appointments for this report? >> i just had a question. i know -- i know it would be great if we had any open spaces for us to make sure that we are filling spots, and specifically the charter transparency committee. i know some people have made appointments and some people haven't and it would be great for all of us to know who is appointed and who is not. i know there maybe -- there may
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be some folks who are considering others and it would be great if we could get this done by the next meeting. >> do you have a list of vacancies across every body? >> i think mike davis is overseeing the new committee. that will be the one that we will have the most questions around. >> but we also -- we also have a violin rule? if people are curious about other vacancies -- >> thank you. do we have an update from the curriculum committee?
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>> yes, we met yesterday. we talked about the resolution on the studies that commissioner collins and commissioner lamb brought forward at the last meeting in june and it was a really great discussion about shifting minds and figuring out what work we need to do in our schools, talking to teachers who are already doing this work and already experts in having these discussions with our students in a safe way and we would move forward with a positive recommendation. >> thank you. section g. for proposal, none tonight. section h., special order of
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business for the sentient proposal. number one, consent calendar, can i have a motion and a second >> so moved. >> second. >> we don't have any public comment on consent. any items withdrawn or removed by the superintendent? >> none tonight. >> any items removed for first reading by the board?
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>> it requires that all contract proposals of the board and an employee organization which relates to matters within the scope of representation be presented at a public board meeting. meeting and negotiating between the district and -- shall not take place on the sentient proposal until a reasonable time
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has elapsed to enable the public to become informed and to express itself regarding the proposals at a public board meeting. accordingly, to allow the public an opportunity to provide input, the sentient proposal shall be submitted for adoption by the board on september 10th, 2019. >> thank you. section i, discussion of other educational issues. director matthews? >> this evening we will have a presentation, i will give you the opportunity to discuss the middle school redesign. it's an opportunity for you to get more information. we will have our assistant superintendent of middle schools leading.
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>> i like to be close next to you. good evening, superintendents and commissioners and deputy superintendent. i also want to give a call out to the principal and teachers at roosevelt and others who are in the back right here. [cheering] >> i feel like eighth grade is the grade that really helps you get ready for life. you are making a college -- [indiscernible] it really helps. it really will help me because i want to be a divorce lawyer. so now i know to stay in school and to study. >> i think, what you she said, you start young with classes,
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you start with a bunch of classes and you see what you like and what you don't. you have higher responsibility. it makes you more responsible and more respectful. it puts a pressure on you, but more like a responsibility on you. >> we just wanted to start with some voices from our eighth grade students. i want to repeat again, i feel like eighth grade is the grade there really helps you get ready for life. i feel that the middle grade is the grade were you still feel, you are in between where you are a kid, where you are in between the adult life and you are thinking and dreaming, as well, so i want us to rethink about, it is not the middle grades were no longer redesigning, this year we are actualizing and making vision into a reality, so we are the middle grade initiate wonder , and that is what we are about. we went into this journey -- we
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want to be in the best position to expose students to various elements of vision 2025. it is not that far away, it is five years from now. we wanted to start working. they are organized to maintain the status quo. this is, in 2015, we started thinking about a better way. in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, here we are. we started this design challenge back in 2015 and 2016 where we adopted vision 2025 and the graduate profile and it calls for something bold and inspirational to really, really -- an outcome that would really change how things graduate from our system. so what you heard today our student voices that are calling us for conditions of different kinds of teaching and learning and this is what we are doing.
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you will see that as you start going into our middle schools. you are going to see teachers planning together, teachers designing lessons and project -based learning. teachers really diving into something. so some of the elements here is that many of the comprehensive middle schools are engaged already in this work. you hear the pilot schools are getting into the structures, which we will go more in-depth about the structures again, but from the deeper learning from the performance-based assessments, all of those components, a lot of middle schools are doing the work. as expected, we are seeing differences in middle schools from the starting point. some schools will have project -based learning, and some are in tech integration and some are doing emotional embeddedness because that is okay. each nature of the school is unique and roosevelt and francisco are piloting elements
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of this model. at the end of the day, the reason why we do this is that equity continues to be at the center of the redesign, equity is not just a word, equity is something that we live, breathe, and feel. so it means both access to the structure, cultural responsive design and outcomes. here we are. it began, like i said, it was a call from the board of education , from all of you to resolve the issues that many students were not getting access to the arts, to computer science , to health, to something that we said, this is something that is good for all of our students. we were not getting there. only 40% of students could act in this. i want us to think about what it means to really create systems and structures where all
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students, each and every student every day gets the quality and equitable education that they deserve, so this is something that we are doing right now, and at our pilot schools, specifically roosevelt, at one point only 20% of students were having computer science. now that is 100%. at one point, 40% of students were getting access to the arts, now that is 100%. >> good evening, commissioners. and the deputy city superintendent. my name is jennifer steiner. i am currently the acting chief academic officer and deputy director of professional development. i'm here to talk about a slide that i thank you have seen a number of times. if you have looked into this work, if you have examined the
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work. when we are looking to change access, we knew that if we wanted students to get to the graduate profile that we needed to think about redesigning structures. it wasn't that the middle grades didn't want to offer everything to everyone, it was that the structure was literally not allowing it to happen. we started to think about, what happens when he think about the bell schedule, the master of schedule, the number of periods in the day? what happens if we think about re-creating the way we offer opportunities so that every single student can get access to health and computer science, to world language? even if there are students that have an i.e.p., they should be able to take art. it shouldn't stop them. and then finally, we started thinking about not just the equitable access, but also, what are the adult learning structures that need to happen in order for all of this to happen? if we are going to re-create how middle grades look, then we need to ensure that every single adult in the building can do that. how do we do common aligned planning, at all special learning, and finally, how do we
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redesign experiences so they offer students deeper learning experiences along the way to really get them to 2025 and the vision. so the way this is looking this year is students will continue to get all of the five core areas. this isn't changing. students will get english language arts, meth -- math, physical arts, and they will get to take an elective dependent on their school. the big changes in the middle grade redesign are the exploratory courses and the acceleration courses. one of the things we looked at his students get to accelerate either in math or literacy depending on if they need additional support or if they have the opportunity to go deeper if they are already at grade level. we also explored the idea of exploratory courses that we heard from earlier. in sixth grade, students are getting visual and performing arts, computer science and world language, and in seventh and
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eighth grade, they are getting visual and performing arts in computer science. and the shift towards a world language means that every signal one of our students in middle school gets to learn a world language. students previously were only allowed to take world language if they were in a pathway before they got into the middle grade. and then the two other shifts i want to talk about that highlight is earlier, tom mentioned that the computer science shift, but also a health shift. previously only sporadically was held happening in the middle grades. some students were getting it in seventh grade, some people were getting an eighth grade, not every single seventh and eighth grader gets access to a health education. we have redesigned professional learning. we worked all last year with groups of teachers, groups of seat -- teachers on special assignments and we major every teacher is in a grade level and
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a department team so they can work together to understand what they are teaching, lesson plans, to think about the student work in front of them, and also early release allows them to get together after school as well. >> good evening. i am one of the chief technology officers and a cosponsor of grade redesign. thank you for the opportunity this evening. we want to -- as we mentioned earlier, all of our middle schools are engaged in some way in the redesign and initiate wonder. it is organized around the design principle and the guiding principles of deeper learning. age context, each school is different. it is selecting the design principles that work best for their schools. based on what they have focused on, they have shown their journey and where they are today
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whether that be technology integration, project-based learning, and performance-based assessments. and something to highlight here is that all of our copperheads of middle schools in the seventh grade will be participating in the performance-based assessment principles through student led conferences. our seventh graders are the class of 2025, so wanting to provide opportunity for students to share their voice, they're learning, and an agency around that learning to be able to present what they know and what they have learned throughout the years. we are excited about that opportunity and working with schools to support them. it should also be noted that even if the school hasn't selected identified there deeper learning principles, they are all engaged in the learning and on a journey together so that could involve learning journeys to other schools to see the deeper learning principles in
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action, all of the school leaders participate in a professional learning activity through our middle grade lead cohort, and opportunities for teachers at the schools to engage in a learning up -- learning about and the preparation around the shift and change is that we are putting into place through middle grade redesign. we did mention that we have two of our middle schools who are our pilots this year. roosevelt middle school and francisco. we should also note that they have been on quite a journey over the last few years, particularly around technology integration, through our partnership with digital promise and verizon, so they are still part of this pilot learning community and are working side-by-side with these school so they can learn from that and see what needs to happen in their school in order to implement the elements of middle
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grade redesign. we are wanting to highlight -- i wanted to talk about the context of the school matters. while we have our find asian models for middle grade redesign , there are some nuances at each school. roosevelt will have -- both roosevelt and francisco will have a modified schedule. roosevelt will shift to a seventh period schedule and francisco will stay after a sixth for a period schedule. they will be doing the aligned professional learning on wednesday after news and those already started with educators and it is a good time for teachers to learn, to collaborate, and build their capacity around this change. and unique to us, too is looking at the common planning time organized by content so they can think about the articulation between sixth through eighth grade. and both schools are honing in on a lot of the deeper learning principles, technology
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integration, and roosevelt will go further along. for francisco, they have a strong foundation already in place and we will be building on that and project-based learning. we shared earlier about some of the professional development and professional learning that the school is engaged in. there's been a significant focus on project-based learning. and francisco will have -- continue its focus on social emotional well-being and readiness. with that, you know, we wanted to share, too, this is a major shift.
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that will continue and we are always looking for opportunities to get feedback and to get input on what we are doing and what we are designing together. some of the specific things that we are doing in terms of our next steps, we have been working around a task force that we are kicking off this year. we are excited about that. will continue to do work with parents were public schools and having focus groups for families schools will be doing student based focus groups to be able to learn from students and hear from them and their experiences. we have surveys that are available online for anyone in the community to provide feedback, and then we are also partnering with our research planning and assessment office to do a formal program evaluation that looks at both implementation as well as impact that will look at a teacher his perspective as well as a student perspective. we want to think because this is
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a systems change, we want to look at the access in terms of the structural changes that we are maintaining, what also mindset and attitude and ultimately student outcomes. thank you very much for the opportunity to provide a brief update on where we are. we are now open for questions. >> i do have members who signed up for public comment. when you hear your name called, make your way to the podium. you will have two minutes. [calling names]
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>> good evening and thank you for all of your time. my name is anthony. i'm in eighth grade teacher. i am here to express my gratitude to contribute to this campaign as well as the middle school redesign. attending the buck institute this summer was rewarding -- was a rewarding and illuminating spirit in situ project-based learning. i was intimidated at the thought of reconfiguring construction. it seemed unfathomable that i would be able to incorporate math skills into a final assessment, but this structures that i have been learning have really been showing me that i can do just that. time in front of students is invaluable. our time outside of the classroom with each other is just as valuable. i'm confident my teaching will become even more equity-based because of the extended periods because i will have more time to
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monitor student learning, individual intention is imperative. this shift means giving students more access to one-on-one support to address clarifications. the seven graders that i have had -- that i have in my advisory in the a graders i will be torching next year are the graduating class of vision 2025. with this in mind, excuse me, with this in mind, the structures we are teaching now have the ability to catalyze our ability to enable them to meet sfusd graduate profile components as well as the 21st century learners. it has been said that san francisco unified school district is the highest achieving urban district in california, but with that in mind, it also has some of the largest achievement gaps. is my belief that there deeper learning initiatives such as
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initiate wonder campaign, teachers will be better equipped to fight such inequities. >> thank you. >> hello. my name is alanna. i am a teacher a roosevelt. i want to thank you for having me here to speak about the middle school redesign. im specifically going to speak about project-based learning. i was likely one of the teachers at my school that was able to attend pdl world over the summer , which was a conference all about project-based learning there we were each able to develop and create a unit that we are planning on implementing that is coming this school year. through that process we or able to gain a deeper understanding of all the different components and we were able to bring those back to the rest of our staff -- we have already started. we will be developing and implementing professional development for the rest of our
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staff and helping them create more project-based learning unit so we can all begin this implementation throughout the school year. we are all really excited to do this. and we are implementing the full block schedule, which is really giving us more time to successfully implement these with students. we are also very excited because it is giving us a chance to create units that will allow us to give students more -- make the units more authentic, give them more voice and choice in their learning, or time for student reflection and revision and critiquing, and all of these will make their learning more engaging. it will give them more chances to make -- get meaning for their learning and gain all of those life skills that we are aiming for them to have, especially through vision 2025. as other schools begin to move towards this process of curriculum, i hope they also get
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the opportunity to go to pdl world. it was so useful for the rest of us. it will really help students gain that deeper understanding that we are all working towards. thank you. >> hello. my name is hannah and i cheat seventh grade science at francisco middle school. last year and this year, we have been piloting aspects of the middle school redesign. two that i am very excited about is block scheduling and deeper learning as a whole. my experience last week and today was block scheduling that has been incredible. it has really given me time to dive deeper into content already , build stronger relationships with a lot of my students and i can't wait to have -- complete a whole lab in one day as a science teacher. that is really exciting. we also have our early release times on wednesday. we had our first last week.
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that is really giving teachers the opportunity to develop as professionals and choose what professional learning community they want to be part of. so i chose project-based learning. we started this last year and we are continuing it now. i designed an entire unit based on conservation and partnered with the marine mammal centre. it ended up with a community showcase, and that is one element that project-based learning is really pushing, and watching how much the kids got involved and excited and how proud they were when they presented their projects to the community and their families was so inspiring and i just really saw all my students engaged and passionate about their work and that felt really good. i'm really excited about seeing where initiate wonder goes, and continuing to develop as an educator and being part of this. thank you.
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>> good evening. my name is belinda and i teach eighth grade english at the incredible james denham middle school. when i saw the graduate profile rewritten in first person, student friendly language that mirrored the competencies of deeper learning, i knew immediately that i must do everything necessary in service of students owning their education in a way that celebrates their individuality and empowers them to choose how they learn and how they demonstrate that learning. middle school redesign opened a floodgate to transfigure the concept of equity from something adults believe for students, to young people embracing their own learning journeys and encouraging each other to do likewise. seven days into the school year, i have watched and listened as students took the six competencies of deeper learning and created academic goals for themselves that reflect not only
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the graduate profile, but in openness to explore a mindset and participate in productive struggle. many for the first time. ella wrote, i will master essential academic content in english by asking for help when i don't understand something like figurative language. oscar's goal is to solve complex problems in math by trial and error. isaac said that he can now collaborate with more with friends and class in class because he has deeper learning sentence frames to work with. other surety is a better understanding of how to go beyond the surface of characters and settings in his reading. page wants to learn how to learn different things in diverse ways , and mattie stated she knows that developing a growth mindset means she must step outside of her comfort zone of shyness to work with others for the first time. middle school redesign didn't just initiate wonder in one teacher learner, by thousands of middle school students for whom
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an education where their voices rise above all of the noise around them and it has never been this bright, this beautiful , and is accessible. thank you. >> hello. my name is jesse walker and i'm a teacher at roosevelt middle school. knowing last year that we would be one of the pilot schools for the middle school redesign, we had the opportunity to go to pdl works conference and learn more about them and how to implement it into our classrooms. that was a huge advantage for us as teachers. we are now able to come back to our school with our early release one days and we are doing teacher led meetings for staff. they hear from us teachers how we are implementing it in our classroom instead of some to come in that has not taught for a while. i think all of our staff is really loving these early release one date -- wednesdays. we now have more than three hours of common planning time as
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teachers, to work together. last year we only had an hour a week to work together. we couldn't always be more aligned. this year, we have three hours to work together. we are able to plan project -based unionist -- units that allow students to have voice and choice and work well with our students. it has definitely been a positive experience so far this year and i'm really excited. thank you. [please stand by]
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>> and also as a parent of a fifth grader at one of our elementary schools, i can't tell you about the chatter about middle school and how freaked out some families are. i've forwarded out to our elementary school already.
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i would encourage, though, maybe a potential workshop with the enrolment fair might be a great way to reach the families. you let us know where to show up. we'll be there. thanks. >> thank you. any comments or questions from commissioners? commissioner lopez. >> hi. thank you for presenting and thank you to the teachers to shared their experiences. that is valuable. i was telling my colleagues that planning time is like gold. i know you are piloting this at certain schools and this will be built out. but i'm wondering about the k through 8 schools and whether
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they will be involved in this process. >> that's something that we're discussing. the one thing with the k-8 schools, it's a smaller structure. but i'm in conversation with the superintendent. they were part of our pd and retreat, so we are in conversation. >> thank you for the presentation. i had the opportunity to visit roosevelt yesterday and visit it firsthand and that was illuminating. and i was thankful to see this take shape and lift-off. michael mentioned one of the challenges and i was wondering if you could address it here
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around students who are low performing and not able to access the exploratory courses. we talked about it, where health and computer sciences have been on the books for and while and you have not mentioned it. for the electives, can you talk a bit about the challenges there and what that might look like going into the future. >> in the model that we created it was an eight-period model. at roosevelt it is a seven-period model. we are constrained by that.
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so we had to make some adjustments with the seventh-period day. we wanted to focus on the exploratory courses that everyone has access to computer sciences and health and the other courses. this is a learning year. we are going to work towards this model which is where all students will have access to electives. >> can you elaborate on that, how will that happen if you're constrained by the amount of periods you can have in a day. >> what i'm going to say is it -- we are constrained by the contract.
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it's the five-period day. it's in the language. so we're learning to see how -- this is why we're really constrained by that. >> one thing that we've been thinking about is with the black scheduling and with that the black scheduling can be alternated. so with that what our future potential of the changing of the contact can be. so in the future how the students might take an elective even if it's not daily. >> i would just like to know who these students are. moving into the school year, who are the students who will not be able to avail themselves of
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elective courses. >> that's why we're also working with our research planning and accountability office to measure towards access and achievement as well. >> i was just curious if you can talk a little bit more about how the exploratory courses are going to work. how students are going to -- what a typical year would look like with these courses. it's great that we're offering world language in medical school and that's a huge step forward. i question the one trimester if that's going to get them ready for a class


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