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FLEX


FLEX FAQs and Information

Flex

From the desk of Lynn Pierson, Principal  

 

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background   Two years ago I started studying Professional Learning Communities (PLC) by reading books and articles and attending conferences on the topic of PLC. I had always believed that Luna Middle School was a professional learning community. I still believe that, but it is so much more than my initial understanding.  Last year I involved my leadership team in a yearlong study of PLC’s (an assessment of where we are and where we wanted to go and how to get there? ).  We studied the book On CommonGround by Richard and Rebecca DuFour, several articles which are included on the Flex webpage, and The Collaborative Teacher by Cassandra Erkens et al. This current school year, we began training the staff, establishing expectations and providing training for teachers to learn how to better function as a PLC. All of this includes meeting as grade level, subject specific teams to establish power standards (what are students’ must knows?), write SMART goals, plan lessons, write common assessments, analyze data, plan for interventions/reteach for students who are not learning. “Teacher leaders understand that the work of teaching is far too complex and the work of learning is far too important for us to confine student achievement within the limitations of our personal expertise. Teacher leaders with integrity integrate standards, assessment, instructional and classroom management into a seamless, powerful learning experience for all students…” Cassandra Erkens, The CollaborativeTeacher.   All of this is not entirely new to Luna teachers, but there is a shift from a focus on teaching to a focus on learning. In short, just because you taught the concept, it doesn’t mean the students learned the concept. Now what is the next step??? With that question in the forefront of all the instructional decisions teachers and administrators make every day, we found a need for more timely, directed and intense intervention at the point when students “just don’t get it.” And that brings us to the explanation of Flex Schedule.

schedule   Our goal with Flex is to provide the time, during the school day, for students who “just don’t get it” to work with their individual teacher. By giving students the extra support immediately when needed during the learning process, not after students have failed, students will be more successful. I know some students in class are reluctant to ask for assistance, or they simply don’t know what they don’t know!  Prompt, directed intervention will help students who need more time and multiple approaches to learn a concept.

flex   allows students who may already know the concepts and/or catch on quickly the opportunity to engage in enrichment activities. Students will receive an enrichment pass and then the students decide from a list of available activities which one they are interested in. The enrichment pass opens the door to students to learn to play ping-pong, to play crazy eight, to participate in community service, to attend study hall, to play Wii Fit, to play flag football, to be kids and have some fun while learning something they will think is totally unrelated to school.

flex   will also allow counselors to work one-on-one with students who are intentional non-learners, those kids who have shut down and/or who appear to find no value in learning (they learn, just not the curriculum we offer; those students have their own curriculum!) Rather than reteach concepts, counselors will be working with students to understand and treat lack of motivation. There are differing levels of motivation for school, some subject related. Students struggle for a variety of reasons and we need to treat the cause, not just the symptoms. The counselors will be working with those students. I’ve heard and been guilty of saying, “If the student did their homework or if the student studied for tests, they would do well in class.” Yes, that is a no-brainer! But, believe it or not, there are students who don’t do what is obvious to the self-motivated adult learner. The opportunity to attend enrichment activities will also serve as a motivator for students to turn in assignments, study for tests and seek help when needed. When self motivation is not fully developed, then we need to step in and  provide some external, positive motivation.

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Why is this program called Flex?

A This program allows teachers and students the flexibility for focused instructional time for students at the critical point in learning, not after the test. It also allows time for enrichment activities for students who do not need additional instructional time.

Q What is FLEX intervention?

A   Flex intervention is the time for additional instruction, make up work, help with projects and to complete missing assignments. If students have low benchmarks or are failing a class, they will be assigned to intervention. With the implementation of FLEX, it is our goal to intervene before students fail. Once students, who previously have not completed homework or studied for tests, see results of intervention, we anticipate far fewer failures. 

Q What is FLEX enrichment?

A   If students are meeting Luna’s high academic expectations, then students may attend an enrichment activity of their choice!

Q When is FLEX scheduled?

A   Instead of Advisory five days a week, FLEX time will be Tuesday through Friday during Advisory time, 5th period from 12:40 pm until 1:10 pm.

 

Q When will I get my FLEX pass and how do I use it?

A   You will receive an intervention pass or an enrichment pass from your third period teacher.   The intervention pass will list one or more teacher names and subjects. If more than one teacher is listed on the intervention pass, you must choose the subject for which you need the most help.

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Q What must I do when some subjects on my intervention pass are marked out?

A   You must attend intervention for the subject that is not marked out. In the example below, you would go to Math with Ms. Garza.

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Q Where may I go when I receive an enrichment pass?

A   If you receive an enrichment pass, then you will choose an enrichment activity from those listed on posters placed in hallways throughout the school. The list of activities will also be listed on the Luna website so you can preview and decide ahead of time where you want to go. Be aware that some activities have limited space (30 students only). The most popular ones will fill up quickly. Enrichment passes will look different each day. Yesterday’s or last week’s pass will not gain you entry into enrichment!

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Q What do I do if the teacher listed on my intervention pass has an enrichment session that day? (Should not happen often)

A  Teachers will post signs near their doors that tell when they have intervention or enrichment. If a teacher is not available for intervention because the teacher is scheduled for enrichment that day, you must report to Open Intervention. You will report to your assigned intervention teacher the following day. Schedules like the example will be posted throughout the building.

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   Example of a possible FLEX SCHEDULE for Luna Middle School

TEACHER

ROOM #

ACTIVITY

DAY

Lopez, M.

G113

Intervention

Tuesday - Friday

Markovich, B.

F218

Quiz Bowl

Tuesdays & Thursdays

Markovich, B.

F218

Intervention

Wednesdays & Fridays

Gamez, R.

D109

Intervention

Wednesdays & Fridays

Gamez, R.

D106

Jazz Band

Monday, Tuesday & Thursday

McDonald, D.

F213

Intervention

Tuesday - Friday

Wollard, C.

Bus Loop

4 Square, hoola hoop, hackey sack

Tuesday - Friday

 

Q  May I go to my locker before and after FLEX?

A   Yes, you may, especially if going to intervention if you need materials or enrichment if you want to put away books.

Q What happens if I lose my FLEX pass?

A  You must give your intervention or enrichment pass to the teacher as you enter each FLEX session. Students with no pass must report to Administrative Fun Time in the ISS room, P#1. Really we say “fun time” but you won’t be having fun.

Q If I finish my work in Intervention in 10 minutes, may I go to enrichment?

A No, you may not.

Q May I go to a class for intervention help if I have an enrichment pass?

A Yes, if you have made arrangements with your teacher, you may go to intervention even if you have an enrichment pass.

Q What if the enrichment activity I choose if full?

A   That is a possibility so have a backup plan. If you see a “FULL” sticker on the FLEX sign, you must choose a different enrichment activity. If you need help finding a backup activity, look on the hall posters or ask an administrator. There will always be room in the cafeteria for movies.

Q If it is raining, will we still go to an outdoor enrichment activity?

A   No, outdoor enrichment activities will be cancelled on bad weather days, and you will choose a backup enrichment activity. Listen carefully for announcements about outdoor activity cancellation.

Q   If I get an enrichment pass and decide to go to flag football and don’t like it, may I leave and go to another activity like games?

A  No. You must stay in flag football for the entire FLEX period that day. Then you may choose another activity the next time you receive an enrichment pass.

Q   What do I need to know about Administrative Fun Time (AFT)?

A  Administrators will do daily hallway and restroom sweeps during FLEX. If you are not where you should be, if you lose your FLEX pass, or if you misbehave in FLEX, you must attend AFT in the ISS room (P#1).

Q   What if I need a quiet place to do homework, read or work on a computer?

A   Study Hall, Library, Computer Project Help, and Open Computer Lab will be available every day. Study Hall will be available for a quiet area for homework or to study for tests. The library will be available for SSR (Silent Sustained Reading). The CIT (Campus Instructional Technologist) will be able to help you with computer projects in the designed LAB. An OPEN Computer Lab will also be supervised by a teacher for use by students.

 

 





FLEX Links

Site Description

Informational Documents

Title Filename Modified
PLCFLEXNewsletter.pdf 11/16/2010
FLEX Luna Parent[1].pptx 9/22/2012