Weekly Round Up 3/20/17


At Ballard High School, our mission is to maximize every minute with our students to provide them high level, responsive, engaging instruction in a safe, student-centered environment where all are treated with dignity and kindness.

Last week was very exciting for our students and staff. I want to congratulate Coach Renner on leading the team to the state tournament and providing an opportunity for us all to come together and celebrate being Bruins.

I also want to sincerely thank the staff members who participated in our big trip to Lexington last Thursday. Thank you to our staff members who sold tickets, collected permission slips, and organized bus lists, making everything run so smoothly. Thank you to the teachers and staff members who rode the school buses and chaperoned students. Thank you to those who stayed back at school and supervised our students who were here. It was a team effort, and I appreciate everyone for coming together to make lasting memories for our kids.

Please remember to complete 2 very important surveys.

Teachers/certified staff are requested to complete the TELL Survey – https://tellkentucky.org/. You received a code that you must enter in order to enter the survey. That code is not specific to you, so if you need a new one, you can contact Susan Davis. Our response rate is only 15% right now, please take a few moments to fill this out by March 31. We don’t have any after school meetings next Tuesday, so that might be a good time to do it.

Also, we have the JCPS Comprehensive Schools Survey open. You have until this Friday to complete that. The links to the CSS are:

School Based Certified: http://tinyurl.com/jcpsSbCertified1617
School Based Classified: http://tinyurl.com/jcpsSbClassified1617


images (1) Here are many different kinds of ways to assess student understanding. Some are quick things to do at the end of class, and others will take more time and work by students.

images (1) I really like this article – it reminds us of the importance of coming to closure at the end of a lesson and offers several activities to do for closure.

Power of Positivity

From Jon Gordon:

Zoom Focus

“Vision without Execution is hallucination.”

– Einstein

I believe every one of us has a desire to accomplish great things, to do something meaningful, to have an impact. Yet, so many of us don’t take the actions necessary to create the success we desire. Then there are others who are very busy taking actions but the actions have nothing to do with their vision and goals. They’ve become lost in the busyness of life.

In my work with sports teams, businesses and organizations I have found that the key to individual and team success is to Zoom Focus. Zoom Focus helps you turn ideas and goals into reality and results. Zoom Focus helps you focus on your priorities, execute, and create success. Zoom Focus helps you take daily steps towards your big picture vision.

Now more than ever it is a time for action. It is a time for getting things done. It is a time to tune out the distractions and the noise from the doomsdayers and the naysayers and focus on what truly matters and what truly will help us create success. In this spirit here are a few ways to put Zoom Focus to work for you and your team.

Create your Big Picture Vision – This might be a goal or a dream. It might be a project that needs to be completed or a sale you are trying to close. It might be a company objective or a team mission. It might be a book you want to write, an initiative to improve your community, or a championship you want to win. Identify your vision and then you’ll be ready to Zoom Focus and take the necessary actions to get you there.

Ask One Question – Each day when you wake up in the morning ask the question, “What are the three most important things I need to do today that will help me create the success I desire?” Then each day take action on those three things.

Tune out the Distractions – Turn off the television. Stop answering the phone. Don’t answer email right now. Talk to your friend later. First, get things done. Execute, accomplish and then feel free to embrace the distractions.

Say No and Yes – My friend once told me, “If the devil can’t make you bad, he’ll make you busy.” He reminded me that we need to stop scattering our energy and wasting our time on trivial things that have nothing to do with our vision and goals and start saying yes to our priorities and to what truly matters. Each day we must make choices and those choices including saying “no” to people and opportunities so we can say “yes” to the work we are meant to do and the success we are meant to create.

Focus on Daily Improvement – I see it in sports all the time. Teams focus too much on winning the championship and forget to Zoom Focus each day in practice. They are outcome focused not process focused. The key is to focus on improving each day and take the necessary action steps. If you incrementally improve each day, each week, each month, each quarter, by the end of the year you’ll see remarkable results and growth. When you Zoom Focus on the process the outcome takes care of itself.


√ Congratulations to Mary Eschels on being selected for a Hilliard Lyons Teacher Excellence Award! She will be honored at a dinner and ceremony in May.

√ Last week we welcomed new ECE teacher Amber McCoy. She is doing a great job jumping right in with our students.

√ We have selected a new counselor to replace Phil Johnston. His name is Nik Heberlein (yes, we now have a Hebermehl and a Heberlein in the counseling office), coming from Olmstead North. The committee was impressed with his passion, commitment to students, and creative ideas for programming. He officially starts next week, but between trainings and transitioning, you may not actually see him here full-time until after spring break.

√ Congratulations to the Ballard Debate Team and coach Daniel Grossberg for an outstanding performance this weekend. The individual 2-person teams did very well, and Ballard was the third highest ranked Debate Program Overall in the state and the highest ranked Public Forum Debate Program Overall in the state!

√ This summer, the district is holding a large-scale professional development opportunity for all teachers. It is called the Deeper Learning Symposium and will be June 7, 8, 9 at the KY Exposition Center. I recommend this as a chance to network with colleagues in other schools and learn about ways to enhance student learning in specific contents.

√ There will also be a Classified Professional Learning Institute for classified instructional personnel on June 5 and 6. The times and location are TBD.


Happy Birthday in March to: Michael Hale (1st), Shaniece Bridwell (5th), Jana Cummings (7th), Jesse Whitt (7th), Tami Slaughter (10th), Mike Jackson (11th), Adam Hartigan (15th), Raquel Miller (17th), Ray Yaksic (19th), Laura Younkin (19th), Eva Rouse (24th), Sandy Ramsey (29th), Scott McDonald (30th)!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s