New Digital Citizenship Program – Common Sense Media replaces Isafe

Beginning fall 2015, we will discontinue the use of ISafe lessons and will replace CIPA required digital citizenship curriculum with material from Common Sense Media (CSM).

CSM offers a wide variety of resources beyond digital citizenship lesson, so please feel free to check out all they have to offer.

Visit  to learn more. Click here to help you get started!

KPBSD Grade Level Lesson Sequence, Memo and  Forms

Kindergarten                                  Fourth Grade                           Tenth Grade

First Grade                                    Fifth Grade                                Eleventh Grade

Second Grade                               Sixth Grade                               Twelfth Grade

Third Grade                                   Seventh/Eighth Grades

Common Sense Media Introduction Materials

Community Discussion Guides

8th Grade American History Text Update

MEMO: 8th Grade Social Studies Resources

The current 8th grade American History text will be replaced in fall 2015.  Middle School American History teachers should keep their current instructional resources until the new materials are received.

If you need support or have questions, please contact Melissa Linton, Curriculum and Assessment Coordinator at ext. 8861 or




SGM Pilot- Year End Procedures

The following information was provided to all Student Growth Map (SGM) pilot participants during the 4/29/15 session.  It outlines the information that participants need to complete by May 21 to close out the pilot project.


1. Save finalized SGM(s) in the Districtwide Staff Shared folder < 2014-15 Eval Docs for Pilot in the following format: Grade.Content.Assessment (For example: PreK.SelfHelp.Observation, 3.Reading.CBM, 7.Math.PerfSeries, 10.Foods.TeacherMade)

2. Once SGMs are saved, send a confirmation email to Doug Hayman and Christine Ermold stating the step was completed and providing the name the SGM was saved under. If supporting documents are related to the SGM (like a teacher made test or separate data chart,) send them with the email.

3. Complete two end of year surveys.


The powerpoint from the 4.29.15 session is also inserted for review.


Questions regarding this information may be directed to:

Christine Ermold, Ed.D.

Director of Elementary Education & Professional Development

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, Alaska

Elementary Administrivia

The following information was shared during Administrivia at the 3.25.15 Administrator’s Meeting.

  • The current secretary for Curriculum and Elementary Education is retiring.  Please note that as of 4.1.15, Krissy Mahan will be the contact for these departments.
  • The Year-End Checklist promotion/acceleration information should be submitted to the attention of Krissy Mahan.  A memo indicating the final decision for each considered student must accompany a copy of E 5123. Additional guidance is available by reviewing BP and AR 5123 or contacting Dr. Ermold.
  • The annual KPBSD Leadership Academy will be held on May 27 & 28 at Soldotna High School.  Schools with ten or fewer teachers may register one teacher along with the site’s administrator, while schools with more than ten teachers may register two teachers to attend, along with the site’s administrator(s).  Although fewer participants will be funded to participate, those off contract will receive their per diem rate for these days because the District Instructional Team strongly believes the learning, decision making, and subsequent leadership provided by participants in the Leadership Academy constitutes a higher level of engagement and follow up expectation of shared leadership than participation in a sit-and-get training or materials orientation. Names must be sent to Cindy Cornett for registration.  Travel requests must be entered in Generation Ready.
  • When planning for 2015-16, principals need to ensure there is time allocated during Parent/Teacher conference days for professional development.  Any principal who is concerned or who needs help planning to provide adequate time for conferences should contact his/her director for guidance.


2.19.15 Effective Instruction Committee Notes

The Effective Instruction (EI) Committee met on February 19, 2015 to continue the development and revision of tools and processes related to the Student Growth Maps.  Questions regarding the following information may be directed to the facilitator of the EI Committee, Dr. Christine Ermold, or any member of the committee.

  • The possible regulatory changes related to Alaska’s ESEA waiver were discussed, as were plans for expanding the SGM pilot into the 2015-16 school year.  Training at a district level versus site level was discussed at length, and the members of the EI committee concluded that regional, job alike, and on-site training would likely be the most helpful, and that ongoing learning during in-service or collaboration time will need to be required and scheduled at each site.
  • A guide outlining when to exclude student data from an SGM was drafted.  Exclusion Criteria 3.10.15
  • A guide for evaluating the quality of an assessment for the purpose of an SGM was drafted.  Assessment Quality Assurance 3.10.15
  • The Continuous Growth System Map was revised.  3.10.15 Teacher Evaluation Continuous Growth System v5
  • Extensive discussion regarding the Teacher Enrichment Pathway (TEP) occurred.  The TEP continues to be recognized as a powerful agent of growth for educators, however, concern continues to exist over whether requiring an additional evaluation process within the Continuous Growth System is essential.  Members of the E.I. Committee agreed to talk with colleagues about the idea of the continuing the TEP opportunity as it currently exists versus the TEP becoming an opportunity for professional development facilitated through the Professional Development Department that is unrelated to a teacher’s evaluation status.  This topic will be revisited during the next EI Committee meeting on 5.29.15.
  • The agenda and activities for the final SGM Pilot Project meeting on 4.29.15 was outlined.

Math Priority Standards and Assessment Committee

Math Priority Standards and Assessment Committee Membership

Meeting Dates:

9/11/2014 – Develop pacing guides and align standards for Algebra 1 Course.

Members of this Committee work throughout the year on revising and updating assessments.

Grade 6 teachers will be revising the common chapter and semester assessments on February 26 at Tustumena Elementary School.

The next meeting will take place on April 9, 2015 at the Kenai Library Conference Room to discuss sequence and pacing for students who accelerate to Algebra 1 in 8th grade.








Standards Referenced Reporting Committee Update

The following message was sent to elementary principals and the PD Liaisons at sites with elementary grades.  Questions regarding the content of this message may be directed to school principals or Christine Ermold, Director of Elementary Education KPBSD.

The Standards Referenced Reporting Committee met on January 27th and reviewed the survey results from the first semester survey to elementary school teachers regarding standards based grading and standards referenced reporting.  If your site had three or more respondents to the survey, the school principal and Effective Instruction coach assigned to the school will receive a separate email with those results.  If you had less than three respondents, you will only receive the summary below. There were 118 respondents, and it is estimated that about 350 teachers teach grades K-6 in some capacity (including special education, specialists, and general education teachers) districtwide, yielding an approximate response rate of 33.7%.  The committee intends to redistribute the same survey again next December, to see what areas we’ve made progress in and which areas still need attention.

Following is a summary of district level data.

Regarding the standards and the report cards:

  • 79.65% of respondents indicated they understand and use the new standards.
  • 82% indicated they know how to help parents/guardians understand standards referenced rubrics and reports.
  • 75.79% indicated their students and/or they regularly refer to the standards that are being taught during regular daily work.
  • 42.48% of respondents indicate they are able to help students, colleagues, and parents understand what Standards Referenced Reporting is, and why we are using it.
  • 4.42% indicated they really don’t know what it is or why it’s being used, while 15.93% indicated they know what it is, but are still wrestling with why it’s being used.
  • 8% of respondents indicated a generally negative view of the standards referenced report card in their comments.


Regarding desired support and professional development opportunities:

  • 61.25% indicated grade level or small group in-service training is  something thing they’d most like to have available during the semester ahead.
  • 31.25% indicated a desire for a for-credit book talk on standards and grading.
  • 31.25% also indicated a desire for school-wide in-service training led by a district coach or member of the Standards Referenced Reporting Committee.
  • The desire to have PowerSchool front loaded with more assignments and assessments already linked to the standards was indicated by 55.26% of respondents.


Regarding collaboration:

  • 75.01% indicated their collaborative team has used student progress on the standards as a focus of their professional learning and work together.
  • 61.84% requested that the district provide facilitated collaboration during early release or in-service time to create more rubrics and tools for teaching and monitoring progress towards the standards.


As a result of the information found in the survey results, the Standards Referenced Reporting Committee took immediate action to:

  • Schedule grade-span focused collaboration sessions via Lync to provide an immediate opportunity that could help meet the identified need (see the email from Michelle Thomasson dated 1/27 sent to PD Liaisons and inserted here: PD For Grade Level Collaboration).   Please note that each school’s principal, in partnership with their PD site Liaison, is charged with assessing and planning for the professional development needs of the staff.  These sessions are a supportive opportunity for your teachers but you may need to schedule more site-specific activities to target your teacher’s needs.  As a reminder, the Effective Instruction Coaches and members of the Standards Referenced Reporting Committee are available to support you in this area, as may be needed.
  • Provide the survey results to principals, PD site liaisons, and coaches in the hopes of promoting conversation and planning of future collaboration and PD that meets each site’s identified needs.
  • Created a one page guidance document regarding standards referenced reporting for students who have IEPs.  The document was reviewed by the special education department.  A copy has also been inserted here Spec Ed Guidance and added to the ‘S’ drive for your easy reference.
  • Work towards creating short videos explaining the standards and the reporting system that can be posted on YouTube and shared with parents.


Recommendations for future action (based on the survey results and other input received from our district’s teachers and principals) include:

  • Recommending an allocation of professional development funds in FY16 to support grade-alike collaboration sessions focused on rubrics for assessing the standards and ways students can demonstrate a ‘4’ on various standards.
  • Offering a for-credit course via distance technology focused on a book talk about standards and grading during 2015-16.
  • Continuing to provide as-requested support to specific sites.
  • Continuing to provide just-in-time updates during Coffee/ Tea sessions, on the KP Knowledgebase, and in the ‘S’ drive.
  • Continuing to front-load PowerSchool with assessments tied to the standards, and encouraging curriculum committees to identify any assignments that are likely used by most teachers that can also be front-loaded into PowerSchool.
  • Provide a refined guide for principals, secretaries, and teachers at multi-graded sites regarding the minimum course enrollment required in a student’s schedule.

We will work to get any site-specific data you’re going to receive to principals ASAP-  It should be by the end of the day tomorrow at the latest.

Thank you for all your effort to support our students, their teachers, and their parents!


Effective Instruction Committee Update

Following input from our pilot participants and after many discussions and a review of current practices nationwide, the Effective Instruction Committee settled on the following rating system for the purpose of the SGM pilot.  The rating system will be reviewed at the end of May to determine if changes need to be considered for 2015-16.

Unsatisfactory Basic Proficient Distinguished/ Exemplary
Less than 50% met growth goal 50-69.9% met growth goal 70-89.9% met growth goal 90-100% met growth goal

Argument Opinion 3rd Quarter Common Writing Assessment

Below you will find Common Rubrics, Prompts, Directions and Resources for the 3rd Quarter Argument Opinion Common Writing Assessment.

Click below:


The ELA Committee encourages teachers to use the Rubric for instructional purposes as well as for this on-demand assessment.  Teachers are also developing student friendly rubrics/checklists to assist in their instruction.

Rubrics may not match the pre-load assignments in PowerSchool.  Only input scores for standards that are identified in the common rubric. This misalignment will be corrected in the 2015-2016 school year.  Thank you ahead of time for your patience.

As teachers transition to the standards referenced rubrics from the Six Traits, the following resources from  Education Northwest may be helpful:

Please send specific feedback to Melissa Linton at or ext. 8861

ELA Common Writing Assessment Committee Members

Secondary Education & Student Activities “Administrivia” (1.21.15)

Secondary Education “Administrivia” (1.21.15)

  • Digital Technology Initiative Mid-Year Update:
    • We are half way through year 1 of our three year grant from the DEED.  Our mid-year report was submitted January 15th to the independent evaluator (Dr. Dale Cope)
    • The 15 teacher cohort is in the middle of their formalized training/PD sessions.
    • Most cohort members have completed the Quality Matters online course training curriculum.
    • Several Blended Learning topic Lync session trainings have/will also take place throughout this school year.
    • 19 Educators attended the iNACOL conference in Palm Springs, CA funded by the grant
    • 20+/- Educators will also attend ASTE this February in Anchorage funded by the grant
  • Activity/Field Trip Travel Possible Technology Assistance:  
    • David Henson and Jim White are working on a prototype activity trip tracking system that will preload trips, participants, emergency paperwork, and the ability to add/subtract trip participants and add notes/details using a smartphone and a QPC code reader application.
    • We are going to be working with some schools to pilot this  year and hope to go live district-wide next Fall for all activity and fieldtrips (K-12).
    • A new Travel regulations memo will be formalized by the end of this year to reflect all current and any new activity travel expectations for schools (i.e. travel range restrictions, when use of ALMR radio is expected, private vehicle transport restrictions, coaches driving restrictions, and driver on duty/driving time restrictions, etc…).
  • Distance Learning Program:
  • Our second semester course enrollment numbers are at 1010 as of this morning (1.21.15).  This is early for numbers to be this large and our teachers are near capacity on their individual teacher loads.
  • Some changes planned include allowing students to enroll in distance classes during the course enrollment period directly from Powerschool (DP/Counselors working on this now)
  • Next year Credit Recovery Courses for Connections and our K-12 program will no longer be supervised/Teacher of Record by the Distance Learning Program.  Like our larger high schools have for years, these schools will now need to oversee Credit Recovery with their own teaching staff.
  • As the program grows we are hearing concerns/worries from teachers about whether they will eventually be replaced by distance education.  This is absolutely not the case and I would be happy to discuss these concerns with anyone.  Please refer questions on this matter to me (John O’Brien)



  • Summer School Credit Recovery Session:  
  • The session will be run just as it has in the past.
  • Our large high schools provide the program (SoHi, Nikiski, Homer, KCHS, Seward)
  • All CORE areas are provided (Math, Lang. Arts, Social Studies, and Science)
  • The program is an “on-line prescriptive” web based program through Pearson called “GRADPOINT”
  • The Session runs for three weeks in June. Half days (8:00-noon) June 1-19
  • Principals do their own hiring by emailing internal certified staff to solicit interest
  • Staff need to be certified and HQ in one of the four CORE areas (preference)



  • Policy Change TAKE NOTE: 
  • AR 6146.1 High School Graduation Requirements: Additional quality points will be assigned for College Board Advanced Placement (AP) courses for the purpose of calculating grade point average (GPA). For each passing semester grade in an Advanced Placement course, 0.021 will be added to the student’s cumulative GPA. Effective for SY 2015, the fall semester weighted quality points will be added at the conclusion of the fall semester (like before).  In order to receive the spring semester weighted quality points, students must also complete the National Advanced Placement course examination.