November 4, 2021

Special Shout Out
SHOUT-OUT: 2021 Young Citizen Award Winners
On October 28, 2021, the St. Louis Rotary Club #11 recognized 24 SLPS high school scholars at the 2021 Young Citizen Awards Luncheon. The awards ceremony was held at the downtown Missouri Athletic Club. The Young Citizen Award is presented to scholars who excel in the classroom and in our community. Along with the award, each scholar received a note with a gift card from St. Louis Rotary, a Webster University t-shirt, Webster University swag bag and a promissory $5000 scholarship to Webster University, renewable for four years.
Click here to view more pictures from the award ceremony.  
SHOUT-OUT: Dr. Marion Smith Jr. 
While we're in a celebratory mood, let us take this time to congratulate our very own Deputy Superintendent of Academics, Dr. Marion Smith Jr., for being named to the national advisory board of Getting Smart. 
Getting Smart is an organization focused on ensuring equity and inclusion as it relates to learning design, learning science, educational leadership and the day-to-day work of transformative learning and leadership in districts, with teachers and in learning organizations. 
Dr. Smith Jr., thank you for representing our scholars, teachers, and District on a national level. To learn more about Getting Smart, click here
SHOUT-OUT: AIC Appreciation Day 
Network Spotlight: 
Network 5

Carr Lane VPA Celebrates Red Ribbon Week
Carr Lane Visual and Performing Arts Middle School celebrated Red Ribbon Week October 25-29, 2021. Each day of the week featured a theme to say no to drug use and abuse. Crazy Hat Day, Spirit Day and Wacky Tacky Day gave the scholars a chance to show off their creativity. The week ended with a costume contest and a Fall Festival Showcase featuring the Carr Lane Spirit Squad, the school choir and the dance department.

The Carr Lane Spirit Squad also celebrated Red Ribbon Week with the scholars from Gateway Elementary by participating in their Red Ribbon Parade. The scholars had a great time listening to the sounds of the drums as they sent their message to “Just Say No” throughout the neighborhood surrounding the school.  This was a great way to kick off the second quarter of school year 21-22.  

E-Sports @ Carnahan  
Carnahan High School of the Future is excited to announce the launch of our E-Sports program. We are excited to have the opportunity for our scholars to learn how to compete while using cognitive/critical thinking skills. This lab will give our scholars opportunities to earn scholarships dollars for college but also earn unique opportunities for Carnahan through gaming competitions. We plan to compete not only locally but nationally through competitive competitions.  We are excited to begin this journey, exposing our scholars to technology on a larger scale. 
A special thanks to the district central office for supporting our vision to make this happen!
More exciting news to come!!!
NCNAA @ Roosevelt - Book Fair
Scholars from the Nahed Chapman New American Academy (NCNAA) @ Roosevelt High School took part in a book fair recently. Creating a love for reading is paramount for English Language Learner (ELL) scholars. 
NCNAA at Roosevelt High School seeks to support the entire scholar and their family through social, emotional and academic support.  The program has partnerships with the International Institute of St. Louis, Bilingual International Assistant Services, St. Francis Community Services, Webster University's Literacy Corps, and The Little Bit Foundation of St. Louis.  
Department Spotlight: 
The overarching goal of the ESOL Department is to provide English language learners with instructional support that will enable them to participate fully in their educational experience in our schools and in their social lives in our community. To achieve this goal, the ESOL Department focuses its work around 4 areas: ELL Instruction, ELL Professional Development, ELL Parent Engagement, and Language Access.
ELL Instruction
The district utilizes several instructional models to address the needs of English language learners: newcomer center, content-based, pull-out, co-teaching, sheltered instruction, and resource. The choice of the instructional model depends on the scholars’ language proficiency. When appropriate, more than one instructional model may be used to support scholars’ language development. 
The District’s Lau Plan provides more information about district services and supports for ELLs. Click Here to access St. Louis Public School’s Lau Plan.
For more guidance about ESOL, please contact Dr. Gonzalez Del Castillo, Director of ESOL Bilingual Migrant Program at
Co-Teaching for ELLs

Did you know that one of the ways to support ELL scholars’ academic success is through co-teaching for ELLs. Co-teaching for ELLs is an opportunity for an ESOL teacher and a classroom/content teacher to combine their individual expertise for the benefit of teaching content while supporting language development of ELLs.

The district has been implementing co-teaching for ELLs since 2014. To date, 94 co-teaching partnerships have been formed and trained. Here is what some of our district teachers and scholars say about co-teaching for ELLs: 
“I have been fortunate to co-teach with Anne Webb for a second year. We continuously learn from each other, whether it be during a lesson or planning a lesson together.  The scholars, both EL and non-EL, benefit from having two teachers in the classroom.  Working with the EL and non-EL scholars simultaneously has also increased the scholars’ understanding of different languages and cultures.  I will always value the experience of co-teaching.” (Julia McDonnell, ESOL teacher, Dewey Elementary).

 “Ms. McDonnell is so helpful making sure the EL scholars have their academic needs met while taking time to form connections with the entire class.” (Anne Webb, Classroom teacher, Dewey Elementary).

“I think it is a perfect combination of teachers” (Exel Nunez, Dewey scholar). 

“If we have one topic, we can get information from both teachers” (Carter Johnson, Dewey scholar).
“Mrs. Abernathy and I have worked together at Mann Elementary since 2007. We have been Co-teaching Science and Social Studies for the past six years. We enjoy Co-teaching because it increases class participation and allows scholars to get the language support they need without missing the classroom experience. Providing language objectives, picture cues, and other supports helps the entire class. Co-teaching is a win-win for teachers and scholars.” (Connie Berry, ESOL teacher, Mann Elementary)
For more information about Co-teaching for ELLs, please contact Heather Tuckson and Elena Okanovic, ESOL Coordinators at and
ESOL Professional Development

The ESOL Department provides high-quality, research-based ESOL professional development sessions that support the ongoing learning of all district stakeholders. ESOL professional development sessions run the gamut from cohort PDs in Co-Teaching, Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP) and District ELL Cohorts, to whole school and small group PD sessions. Many ELL professional development sessions are followed up with coaching.

ESOL PD On-Demand sessions are available to all district schools for site-based PD days, staff meetings, PLCs, and data meetings. On-Demand sessions cover a variety of topics such as ESOL Assessment Data Interpretation, Differentiating Instruction and Assessment for ELs, Effective Vocabulary Instruction, Language Access, and Academic Language Development.

After School ESOL PDs are one-hour, virtual sessions presented monthly on topics that especially aid content area teachers with ESOL scholars in their classes. They address topics such as Supporting ELs in Content Areas, Applying the ESOL Go-To Strategies for Scaffolding Options, and Using the ELL Toolkit to Develop ELL Supports in content classes.

ESOL Book Studies for small groups or whole schools are also available. These sessions can help schools focus on their site-specific needs such as Explicit Direct Instruction for ELs, Unlocking English Learner’s Potential, and Using Interactive Notebooks.
For more information about ELL professional development opportunities, please contact Jessica Brookman, ESOL Instructional Coordinator at
ELL Family Engagement

In addition to focusing on ELL scholars’ success, the ESOL Department also supports and empowers ELL families. While district scholars are learning in person this school year, ELL Parent events remain virtual. Click Here to view the list of ELL family events for the 2021-2022 school year.

ELL Parent Meetings

Quarterly parent meetings inform ELL families about the educational system in the U.S and St. Louis Public School. ELL families learn about various topics such as understanding reports cards, preparing for the parent-teacher conference, and understanding credits and graduation requirements. The meetings are presented in English, as well as in the top languages spoken in the district.

ELL Math Hour

This event is focused on promoting shared Math experiences at home on days when scholars do not attend school due to teacher professional development. ELL families interested in participating in this event are invited to pick up an interactive math can sorted by math topic and grade level. Math cans contain all the supplies needed to learn and play math games. Asynchronous supports are provided to help ELL families as they engage in these math activities at home. Click here to view family tutorials.

ELL Science Hour

This event is focused on promoting shared Science experiences at home on days when scholars do not attend school due to teacher professional development. Similar to the ELL Math Hour, ELL families interested in participating in this event, pick up a Science kit which includes all necessary supplies to conduct a science experiment at home. This year, families can build a volcano, explore magnets, and learn about force and motion.

ELL Bake-A-Book

This event provides ELL families with an opportunity to become published authors. Scholars and their families co-author a book in English and/or in their first language. The books are published and added to the district Bilingual Parent Library. Scholars also receive a copy of their published book. The name “ELL Bake-A-Book” describes the book writing process much like baking a cake. The illustrated wordless book is one of the main ingredients. Other ingredients include characters and story elements. “Mixing the ingredients” involves adding dialogue to the story. Synchronous and asynchronous supports are provided to help ELL scholars and their families navigate the writing process and complete their books. Click here to view family tutorials.

For more information about ELL parent engagement opportunities, please contact Tuyet Nguyen, Bilingual Parent Specialist at
Language Access

Languages access supports in St. Louis Public Schools are available in all district languages. Language access supports for the following languages are available through the District Language Access Team:
          • Arabic
          • French
          • Somali
          • Spanish
          • Swahili
          • Vietnamese
Language access supports for all other languages are provided using a site-specific language access code for telephonic interpretation and/or by request through the Language Access Team.

Language Access Services
  • Translation of district-wide documents and forms into top district languages.
    Translation Request Form 
  • Interpretation during meetings (in-person, via Zoom/Teams, 3-way phone calls). Interpretation support for languages available through the district language access team can be scheduled by contacting district Translators/Interpreters via e-mail or phone. 
    SLPS Language Access Team Contact Information 
    For all other languages, complete the Interpreter Request Form   
  • Robo Calls in multiple languages can be recorded to communicate district-wide or school-specific information.   
    Robo Call Request Form
  • Personalized phone calls in multiple languages. For languages available through the district Language Access Team, contact district Translators/Interpreters directly.     
    SLPS Language Access Team Contact Information 
    For all other languages, use school-specific telephonic interpretation code provided to school principals.
Library of Translated Documents and Forms
Many district documents and forms have been translated and are available to all district staff. Translated documents and forms are organized into 4 categories: academic forms, medical forms, technology forms, and general forms. Click here to access St. Louis Public Schools library of translated documents and forms.

 For more information about language access, please contact Fatima Rhodes, Translator/Interpreter (Arabic & French) at
Department Spotlight: Professional Development 
Districtwide Professional Development

November 12, 2021
The Professional Development Department is excited about the upcoming newly announced Districtwide Professional Learning and Professional Development Day that will occur on November 12, 2021. Sessions will be hosted by Central Office from 8-12 PM. Lunch and work time is 12 PM-1:30PM, and you will be engaged in sessions at your respective sites from 1:30-3:30PM. 
The schedule is as follows. A detailed communication with information about each session is forthcoming in an SLPS INFO bulletin and RoboCall. Thanks so much for all you do on behalf of the scholars, staff, and families in SLPS!

8AM-10 AM - (Districtwide Safety and Operations Session hosted by the Operations Office and Safety & Security Department) - Virtual

10AM-12PM - (Districtwide Data Literacy Session hosted by the Academic Office in collaboration with the Assessment Department) - Virtual

12PM-1:30PM - (Lunch and Self-Care Time)

1:30-3:30PM -  (Site-Based Session at your respective sites with one (1) deliverable to Network Superintendents) - In Person

All staff are expected to report to their work sites on November 12, 2021.  All links to the morning Central Office sessions will be sent out via SLPS Info on Thursday, November 11, 2021. Click the link directly from the document or copy and paste it into your URL.  There is no need to log into Frontline for this information. 

Survey: At the conclusion of the November 12, 2021 sessions, you should complete the Districtwide survey to provide feedback on this professional learning experience. We appreciate, in advance, your completion of this survey as we continue to improve professional learning opportunities.
Frontline Support
Dear Leaders,
Starting next week, Frontline will begin hosting an Orientation Webinar Series that will air on a regular cadence. The goal of this series is to provide new administrative users with a high-level overview of the core features and capabilities and discuss some of the best practices for making these solutions work for you.
If you (or your leadership team colleagues) are looking for an overview of either the Professional Learning Management (PLM) or Employee Evaluation Management (EEM) system, please register below for one or both sessions and join as you are guided through these applications.

Frontline PLM Overview for New Administrators – Register Here
Frontline EEM Overview for New Administrators – Register Here

We look forward to hearing your feedback and hope to see you there!

For more guidance please contact Dr. LaTisha A. Smith, Director of Professional Development -

Curriculum & Instruction Spotlight

Support to Schools with Limited Instructional Staff

The Academic Office recognizes that additional support may be needed in schools due to staffing issues related to Covid-19. To cover an absent teacher’s schedule when there is no substitute teacher available, Instructional Leaders may typically implement an emergency/contingency plan.  
Considering current circumstances related to Covid-19 recovery efforts, there may be times where instructional staff may be more limited than others.  The document linked HERE offers some general guidance as well as some content/grade-level specific supports to assist Instructional Leaders in navigating the daily business of learning and teaching when instructional staff is limited.  Though circumstances differ according to who is absent and/or the type of vacancy, as a public school system, it is our responsibility to maintain our commitment to St. Louis Public School's scholars and remain focused on the business of learning and teaching, even in the face of some of our most challenging circumstances.
Substitute Teacher Supports
With a significant number of substitute teachers in our schools, as an Academic Office, we continue to work to provide targeted supports to this group.
Below is information on how the Academic Office continues to stand ready to support our substitute teachers. This information will be shared with school leaders and provided to all new substitutes hired in SLPS via the Human Resources Office. 
  • ‘Welcome to SLPS Substitute Teacher’ video that provides an overview of supports and resources available and identifies key High Impact Teaching Strategies (HITS); substitute teachers will be required to view the accompanying resource video for each HITS and complete a short accountability and preparation checklist.
  • Substitute Teacher Training and Supports
  • ELA Sub & New Teacher Onboarding
For more guidance about Curriculum and Instruction, please contact Dr. Kimberly Moody, Director of Curriculum & Instruction -

Subject Area Spotlight:

Visual Arts

2021 SLPS Visual Art Contests
SLPS art scholars shine and make us proud in our community and throughout the school year! Here are the four district-wide art contests this year, two of which are already underway. 
12th Annual Kevin Coyne SAFETY Art Contest
Theme:  "Safety in Our Homes and Community”
Winners and video entries are posted on the district website: 2021 Kevin Coyne Safety Art Contest Gallery
The SLPS Middle School & High School Exhibit at STLCC-Forest Park
Prizes include art supply gift cards and 3 school credit hours for the Best-in-Show entry.
Art will be on display at the STLCC-Forest Park Contemporary Art Gallery November 8-December 9.
Famous African-Americans Portraits Art Competition
2022 will mark the 27th year of St. Louis Public Schools’ “Famous African-Americans Portraits Art Competition” and SLPS is proud to co-host this year’s contest with the National Blues Museum. The participating high school art scholars will research the background of a famous African-American Blues musician, create an artistic depiction of the musician, and include a 200-word biography.

Scholars can select subjects from this list of blues musicians:
Bessie Smith, Mamie Smith, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Billie Holiday, Nina Simone, Sam Cooke, Ray Charles, James Brown, Etta James, BB King, Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis, Ma Rainey, Muddy Waters, Jimi Hendrix
Grade level: 9 – 12       Due date:  January 26, 2022
Contest Sponsor: The National Blues Museum and donors to the SLPS Foundation
21st Annual St. Louis Public Schools Art Fair   
SLPS art scholars have the opportunity again this school year to showcase their artistic talents in the 21st Annual St. Louis Public Schools Art Fair, a collaborative art competition coordinated by the St. Louis Public Schools art department, the Project Development Office. The art fair is sponsored by the St. Louis Zoo and the St. Louis Public Schools Foundation.  Every SLPS art teacher is required to submit a minimum of three (3) pieces of quality scholar artwork (maximum of 8) for this district-wide art competition.  The Art Fair continues to be a wonderful opportunity for our young artists to display their art and receive community exposure and recognition.  
Theme: Prehistoric Animals and Their Descendants
Grade Level:  PK-12            Due Date:  February 21, 2022
2021-22 Expectations for Visual Art

For more guidance about the SLPS visual art curriculum, please contact John Grapperhaus – Visual Art Specialist/Springboard Coordinator -

Updates Around The District

Human Resources Reminder
The Board of Education recently approved the superintendent’s request to close schools on November 12 and use that time for professional development (PD).
This means that no requests (in schools or offices) for vacation or PTO will be allowed on this day. Any requested sick day on November 12 will require a physician’s note.

 Thank you in advance for your cooperation and support.
DESE Virtual Learning
If you received an email from that stated a change was made to your security access to the DESE Virtual Platform, and it provided Bertha Doar as the institution’s User Manager, send an e-mail to have your account reinstated.

In 2020 DESE gave every teacher in SLPS access to the DESE Virtual learning platform whether SLPS was going to use it or not.  SLPS has been using Edmentum.

If you have additional questions or concerns email,
iPad Training
To all Elementary/Middle Teachers/TA/ICA's - 
iPad training is now back to 2 days and will meet 2 1/2 hours each day. Training will remain virtual; however, to be compensated you must clock in 5 minutes prior to attending training and clock out at your school site. If you prefer to attend in person, you can join the trainers in the PD Loft – 3rd floor -- at 801 North 11th Street.  Please remember to register in My Learning Plan. If you need assistance with My Learning Plan, email Dr. Latisha Smith

If you have not picked up your iPad, you may come to the PD Loft between the hours of 8:30 am - 4:00 pm. 

November 3rd/4th - 4:30 pm - 7:00 pm

November 17th/18th - 3:30 pm - 6:00 pm

For more guidance about this training, please contact Cheryl VanNoy, Deputy Superintendent, Accountability, Assessment, Technology Services, Students Records, & Data,
Employee Referral Program
SLPS is looking for talented individuals to join our team for the 2021 – 2022 school year!   Know someone?  Refer them to the Recruitment Team.  If your referral is hired for one the following positions, you will receive a referral payment: 
Instructional Care Aide, Teacher Assistant, Custodian, or Safety Officer - $100
Teacher - $250

The first 50 people to refer a candidate will get a free T-shirt, regardless of whether their referral is hired.
For more guidance about the Employee Referral Program, please click here or contact Danielle Jackson - Recruitment Associate -
Opportunity for Substitute Teachers: Teaching Certification Pipelines 
The HR Recruitment Team sponsors several pipelines to support our non-certificated employees in securing their teaching certification. Since 2018-19, we have hired 100 new teachers through these pipelines! If you are interested in becoming a certified teacher on TeamSLPS, consider these two things:
  • Complete this form to tell us you're interested and receive more information
  • Save the date for our Certification Opportunity with UMSL Information Session: November 15, 2021, 4:30 pm-5:00 pm (register HERE) Our first session was a success and candidates are already signing up for the program.  Do not miss the opportunity!
For more guidance about the teaching certificate pipeline, please contact Danielle Jackson - Recruitment Associate -
Standards-Based Learning Corner
Click here to explore past topics related to Standards-Based Learning and Grading in SLPS.
For more guidance, please contact Dr. Kimberly Moody, Director of Curriculum & Instruction,
Curriculum Specialists:
  • Dr. Esther Palsenberger, Elementary ELA, 314-779-5939
  • Judine Keplar, Secondary ELA, 314-532-6427
  • Zehra Khan, Secondary Math, 314-532-3574
  • J. Carrie Launius, Elementary Science, 314-934-5258
  • Dr. Valentina Bumbu, Secondary Science, 573-544-6835
  • Dr. Glenn Barnes, Social Studies, 314-934-5267
  • John Grapperhaus, Visual Arts, 314-934-5320
  • Kaye Harrelson, Performing Arts, 314-934-5445
  • Dr. Taresa Wright-Fraser, Elementary Math, 314-943-5266
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