Lisa Rigby
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Constructing Classes for the 2015-2016 School Year

            It is the time of year when we start planning for our next school year including looking at which students will be in each class.  We thought this was a good time to explain the process we will use for putting together the classes for next year.

           We know from experience and educational research that heterogeneous grouping improve student achievement.  We know minimizing behavior problems provides more time for academic pursuits.  In creating classes, we work to create a mix of students who have a variety of strengths and weaknesses and where students who can be disruptive are not in the same class. We also work to balance the number of girls and boys in each class. This becomes very difficult to do when you accept and honor requests for parents for specific teachers.  For example, what do we do when the parents of two children who do not do well in the same class request the same teachers?  Who do we say no to?  Also, how do we handle it when a disproportional number of parents of boys ask for a particular teacher?

The process we will use this year is:

1.     We will collect Learning Environment Forms from those parents who want to give us information about their child when considering a class placement for next year.  This form will be available on our website and in the school office on April 13th and is due by April 24th.

2.     The teachers and principal will work together to create classes of children who will work together well and whose strengths and weaknesses vary.   We will use the information provided on the Learning Environment Forms parents complete as well as teacher experiences with the students to help make these decisions.

3.     When the recommendations for the classes are complete, we will assign the teacher to the class.  (We will not use any scheduling software to create classes).

4.     Students will meet their teacher for the 2015-16 school year on the morning of the last day of school.  The teacher will have the opportunity to meet the children and the children will not need to be concerned over the summer about whose class they will be in for the year.

            This process has been used in past years at Quail Hollow.  For the most part, this process has been very successful.  We occasionally forget about two children who in past years did not do well together in a class, so this is very useful information for a parent to give us on a Learning Environment Form.  Also, placing children who are new to the school is an unknown.  These factors do influence the class make up. 

            It is possible that during your child’s elementary career he or she may have a teacher whose personality is not the very best match.  This doesn’t need to be a negative experience.  An important part of growing up and becoming independent is learning how to work with a wide variety of people.  Employers report again and again that successful employees are those who have good social skills and can work with a variety of people.

           We hope you understand that we are looking out for your child’s needs and doing our very best to create the best possible leaning community we can.

            You will find a pdf copy of the Learning Environment Form on the Quail Hollow website and hard copies in the school office beginning on April 13th.  Completed forms are due on April 24th

Coming Next School Year: Early-Out Fridays

We will have a new schedule next school year! The Canyons Board of Education on March 17 approved a new schedule for all elementary schools in the district. The schedule brings back early-out Fridays and gives teachers uninterrupted collaboration and planning time so we can better meet student needs and prepare students for college and careers. This is something that our teachers have needed for quite some time. Trained specialists will teach students in areas such as arts and P.E. during teacher planning time.

To help in your planning, please note that early-out days will be on Fridays only. So, during short weeks that have a Friday holiday, we won’t have an early-out day. Also, the District is working to set start and end times for all elementary schools before school lets out for the summer. This information will be communicated to you when it becomes available.

For your background information: The schedule was recommended by a task force that included teachers from every elementary school in the district, including ours.  The task force has been studying, trouble-shooting, and taking feedback from colleagues since December to come up with a schedule to that better serves students and gives schools flexibility to plan teacher collaboration time appropriately.

If you have any questions, please call the front office or visit


The PTA fundraiser this year is a READING OLYMPICS in conjunction with the Utah Jazz reading program! Our school can win a visit from a Jazz player, as all as many other prizes, based on how many minutes we read! The fundraiser is separate from this contest, but is also based on reading minutes. Click the link to see how it works and how you can even donate by Paypal

Teacher of the Year Nominations (Feb. 1-28)

Show your teachers some love!  Nominate your favorite for our school’s Teacher of the Year award.  The winner will receive prizes from local businesses, a banner for our school, and special honors at an April 28 Canyons Board of Education Reception and Honors Ceremony.  Our Teacher of the Year also will have a shot at Canyons School Teacher of the Year, which comes with additional prizes and a nomination for the Utah Teacher of the Year contest.

We’ll surprise the winning teacher on Friday, April 3.  Mark your calendars, and join us if you can!

Here’s how to nominate:

1.  Download Nomination Form

2.  Tell why your teacher should be the Teacher of the Year.  Be sure to include your experiences and observations about how the teacher helps students improve and prepare for the future, and encourages families to get involved in classroom or school activities.

3.  Print and submit the form to the PTA by March 2 (if you’re a school employee, submit the form to the principal).  The School Selection committee will consider nominees forwarded by the PTA (up to two) and employees.

4.  Watch for information about the April 3 Teacher of the Year surprise announcement.

Thanks for helping us recognize our outstanding teachers!