OSS Newsletter: September 2019
Published on Aug 30, 2019 13:19

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September 2019

Welcome Back:
A Message from Leadership

field tripThe Office of Student Services would like to take the opportunity to welcome both returning and new staff to the Cambridge Public School District for the 2019-2020 school year! For our new staff, we are excited to have you join our team.

As we enter the new school year, the OSS leadership team would like to make sure we are fully supporting students and staff. This year, the OSS Leadership meetings will occur every Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at one of the school sites. We will spend the first-hour visiting classrooms to connect with you, view student work, and support instruction. Next, our team will meet to review student data, address parent/staff concerns, and assess the effectiveness of our instructional supports and services for students. From 12:30 to 2:00, we would like to invite teachers, paras, or parents to meet with us for “office hours”. This time may be used to provide additional coaching and support around co-teaching, specially designed instruction, or data collection, or for one-on-one or group discussions around a specific concern staff may have. Please view the schools we will visit as a team below. We will be sending out a link that will allow staff to set up a time to meet with us for “office hours".

Dr. Alexis Morgan
Assistant Superintendent, Office of Student Services

Jean Spera
Director, Office of Student Services

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Thank You for Helping!

We would like to acknowledge and thank the following staff for helping us this summer. 

Learn more >>

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Parent & Family Handbook 2019-2020

girls playingWe have updated our Parent & Family Handbook for the School Year 2019-2020. In our updated handbook, families and staff can find information that outlines different aspects of the Office of Student Services (OSS). This handbook is separated in six sections, which covers key components that are essential to understanding what OSS offers and to also provide families access to important information, including resources that are available to them both within the Cambridge Public School District and outside. This handbook will be available on the Cambridge Public School Website in September.

Here's where you'll be able to find it:
www.cpsd.us >> Department >> Office of Student Services >> Parent and Guardian Resources

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Things to Do Before the First Day of School: Survival Guide for the First-Year Special Education Teacher
(Cohen, Gale, and Meyer; 1994)

teacher resources

  1. Review student files. For each student, you should have a record of the student's:
    –District reading and math department data
    –Student's grades
    –IEP (If you have any questions or concerns, contact your Team chair)
    –Parent/Guardian Contact Information
  2. Meet with:
    –Students' former teachers for suggestions on effective strategies and methods (if missing from IEP) 
    –Parent/Guardian to begin building rapport
  3. Prepare:
    –Administer any informal reading or math assessments to determine student’s current levels
    –Classroom behavior management and strategies aligned to PBIS 
    –A method for keeping track of student’s daily progress. Prepare a form or use the template developed by OSS 
    –Forms to provide weekly or bimonthly updates to parents/guardians


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Where to Access Materials

  • Educator Handbook - Includes information about employment policies, benefits, and time-off.
  • OSS Procedures Manual will be available in early September. Includes information about the IEP referral process, evaluation, and Team Process.
  • IEP Process Guide
  • To obtain a CPSD Staff ID, please go to the Human Resources Department (located in the Administrative Building) or the Safety and Security Office (located at the high school).
  • For any technical support, submit a ticket to CPSD Help Desk by emailing [email protected].


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Meet the Team: Get to Know the OSS Central Office Staff!

raised handsAre you a new staff member? Please save the date of September 24th, from 4-5:30PM for a Meet & Greet for New Staff with OSS Leadership at the Kennedy-Longfellow School (158 Spring Street, Activity Center).

Want to know who's who in the OSS Central Office? Then take a look at this handy document. 

Learn more >> 

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Save the Date!

girl writingCPS Celebrates Dyslexia Awareness Month
Saturday, October 19 | 1-5PM
CRLS, 459 Broadway

Presented by: Dyslexia Working Group and OSS 

Join us for an afternoon of workshops, guest speakers, simulations, and parent panels. Light refreshments and childcare will be provided.

View flyer >>

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OSS Events & Reminders

Upcoming Events

September 3rd
Alan Bloom & Margie Carlman
Special Start/Related Services
Lesley U, 89 Brattle St, Cambridge
SHER 350

September 5th
Dr. Rhonda Bondie
Inclusion Specialist & NEW Lead Teachers
Lesley U, 29 Everett St, Cambridge
UNIV 3-097

September 6th
Dr. Rhonda Bondie/Alan Bloom
Inclusion Specialist & Lead Teacher
Lesley U, 29 Everett St, Cambridge
UNIV 3-103

September 12th
Easy IEP Training for New Staff
CRLS TRC Computer Lab

September 16th
Dr. Melissa Orkin
SOA Day Non-Subseparate Staff
(Full Day OSS Elementary, Optional for School Psychologists and SLPs)

September 18th
Special Start Full Day

September 20th
OSS Leadership Meeting
*Every Friday*

September 24th
Meet & Greet with OSS Leadership

September 24th-26th
Faith Fisher
SRA Reading Mastery/Corrective Reading
OSS Leadership Meeting:
Anticipated Dates & Locations

September 20th- CSUS
September 27th- CPORT
October 11th- CRLS
October 18th- KLO
October 25th- Amigos
November 8th- PAUS
November 15th- G&P
November 22nd- Morse
December 13th- RAUC
December 20th- Peabody
January 10th- King Open
January 17th- Tobin
January 24th- VLUS
February 14th- King
February 28th- CRLS
March 13th- FMA
March 20th- KLO
March 27th- CSUS
April 17th- CPORT
May 8th- G&P
May 15th- Tobin
May 22nd- King
May 29th- Baldwin

In Our District & Community

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Looking for things to do in Cambridge? 
Find It Cambridge >> 

CPS District Calendar
View printable calendar >> 
View online calendar >>

Back-to-School Information & Annual Forms
Find out about student forms and other important resources. 
Details >> 

MIT Volpe Block Party
September 7 | 11AM-3PM
Sennott Park, Cambridge
Details >>

Danehy Park Family Day
September 14 | 11AM-4PM
Danehy Park, Cambridge
Details >>

Immigration Legal Clinics (FREE!)
3rd Wednesday each month
90 Third Street, Cambridge
Details >>
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Office of Student Services
159 Thorndike Street, Cambridge, MA 02141
www.cpsd.us  •  617.349.6504
CPS Mobile App >>
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