How to Change Your Contact Info & Preferences

Are your SPS automated calls going to an old number? … Do you want to also get a Text message? … Do you want to add other numbers for emergency messages?

First, please note that the email pulled into School Messenger system is your SPS work email.  If you’ve been here a while and you once have a 3-letter-first-name email, it might be that email that’s in the system.

Second, the phone number pulled into the system is the phone number you have on file in HR and finance.  If you want SPS to know an updated number, please contact HR.

Here’s how to change your contact info in School Messenger:

  • Create your account by going to, using the email address as noted above.
  • Once the account is created, you can see how the system is currently contacting you and make any changes you want.
  • Remember that if you phone number is wrong, changing it in School Messenger will not change it at SPS.  You still need to contact HR.

Wellness Challenge #1

Challenge #1, Sleep for 7, is Now Open!
… Be one of the first 200 SPS Staff to Register and Complete this challenge to earn (one) 1 Hour Leave Early Ticket. ****(Rules and Terms Apply)
Registration: 10/29 – 11/19, 2018
Challenge Runs: 11/9 – 12/7, 2018

Drop Grade Feature in TAC

Teachers wanting to use the Drop Grade feature of TAC must set that up prior to loading report card grades for MP1.  Please follow the attached directions to do this properly.

General Guidelines for the Drop Grade Feature

    • Teachers must meet minimum grade requirements.
    • Dropped grades do not count in the number of grades for the minimum requirement.
    • Teachers must decide to allow drop grades before the end of the first marking period.
    • Once teachers have set up the drop grades feature in TAC, that setup cannot be changed for the rest of the school year.
    • Teachers can control which assignments drop in a category by using the Can Not Drop feature when creating an assignment.


Drop Lowest Grade Directions




New Faces … New Places

The Suffolk School Board announced administrative changes at its October 19th meeting:

  • Nicole Duplain was named dean of students at Hillpoint Ementary School.
  • Melissa Zawodny was named dean of students at Mack Benn, Jr. Elementary School.


Duplain is in her third year as graduation coach at Nansemond River High School, and taught elementary school for seven years, including a year at Elephant’s Fork Elementary.  She earned her bachelor’s from Longwood University, her master’s from Old Dominion University and is working on her doctorate of education at ODU.

Zawodny is in her second year as literacy teacher at John Yeates Middle School, and taught for nine years at Creekside Elementary.  She earned her bachelor’s from Christopher Newport University and her master’s degrees from CNU and Hampton University.

2018-2019 Report Card Directions and Dates

2018-2019 Marking Period Due Dates

Marking Period

MP End Date Teacher Due Date MP Roll Forward Date

RC Distribution Dates

MP1 November 5 November 9 November 15 November 16 – PT Conference
MP2 January 28 February 4 February 7

February 11 – (Distribute)

February 15  – PT Conference

MP3 April 5 April 11 April 23 April 24
MP4 June 13 ES & MS – June 7

HS – June 13


ES June 13

MS & HS June 14

Directions for the 2018-2019 Report Cards

Elementary School


Middle School


High School



Each October, National Principals Month recognizes the essential role that principals play in making a school great.

Principals are among the hardest working individuals in education. Principals set the academic tone for their schools, and it is their vision, dedication, and determination that provide the mobilizing force for achieving student success.

Each October, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, and the American Federation of School Administrators seek to honor these unsung heroes for their tireless efforts in pursuit of excellence in education.

National Principals Month is a widely recognized celebration of the principalship, marked by national and state resolutions supporting the event, as well as acknowledgements from U.S. Senators and Representatives, and top government officials. However, the most important National Principals Month celebrations are the ones that take place in schools and communities across the country.

NOTE:  The Virginia School Principals Appreciation Week is often declared by the Governor for the third week in January.  However, that resolution has not yet been released for 2019.  So we’re celebrating in October too.

Wellness Spotlight

Meet Charlotte from Kilby Shores Elementary!  Charlotte is a custodian who participates in the school’s Traveling YMCA Program after school every Tuesday and Thursday.  When asked why she is participating in this program, Charlotte said “for my health.”  Charlotte enjoys the Traveling YMCA program because of the instructors, and because it is challenging and fun.  Charlotte also enjoys working out with the Kilby staff.  Charlotte said her goal is to be logged into the Simply Well Program by the end of the week.
Join Charlotte this week and login to the SPS Employee Wellness Program!
Register and Login:

UPDATE: 2-Hour Delay … Creekside Elementary only Closing

Friday, Oct. 12 … Opening Two Hour Late

Creekside Elementary School only is CLOSED due to a power outage.

Parks & Rec before- and after-school programs are open on regular schedule except Creekside.

YMCA morning programs closed.

October is Bullying Prevention Month

Suffolk Public Schools joins both a state and national focus this month to promote awareness of school bullying.  The Suffolk School Board passed a resolution last month to demonstrate how educators, community leaders and parents play a critical role in creating a climate where bullying is not tolerated.  It has been proven that when adults and children stand together bullying ends.

Childhood bullying is a significant problem nationwide. It can cause school absenteeism, mental and physical stress, poor school performance, poor self-esteem, and in some cases, school violence or suicide.  Statistics show that 160,000 children in the United States miss school each day as a result of being bullied.  More than 20 percent of school-aged children report being bullied each year – upwards of 13 million students.

“More than one of every five school-aged children report being bullied,” said Julie Hertzog, director of PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center, which sponsors Unity Day and founded National Bullying Prevention Month in 2006. “It’s important these students know they are not alone and that they have the right to feel safe. By joining together and wearing ORANGE on Unity Day, we can send the unified message that we care about student’s physical and emotional health and that bullying will no longer be accepted in this society.” 

Schools throughout SPS will participate in Unity Day by wearing orange on Wednesday, October 24.  The theme is “Together against Bullying: United for Kindness, Acceptance, and Inclusion.”  Wearing orange on Unity Day sends a powerful message of support, hope, and unity again bullying.

The bullying prevention efforts in Suffolk Public Schools include school-level campaigns, classroom discussions led by guidance counselors, and an expanding school-wide programs which teach, model and provide incentives for positive behavior.

In addition, the division has an anonymous Bullying Tip Line — (757) 538-5438 – and an online Bullying Complaint form.   Information on what SPS considers to be bullying is highlighted at as well as in the Student Handbook and the Student Code of Conduct.

Throughout the year, teachers and guidance counselors integrate discussions about bullying prevention in lessons at all grade levels.  A few examples of school-level activities during this special focus month include:

  • Learning about Buddy Benches, installed last year at each elementary school, where students who are lonely or upset can sit and others will know they need a buddy to cheer them up. (Suffolk Education Foundation project);
  • Participating in anti-bullying discussions with deputies from the Suffolk Sheriff’s Department;
  • Serving oranges at lunch on Mondays to support the school’s “orange dot” campaign to block out bullying (Creekside Elementary)
  • Practicing the lessons from Dr. Seuss’ The Sneetches, a book about how sneetches with stars on the bellies think they are better than plain-bellied sneetches (Florence Bowser Elementary);
  • Creating a rainbow of positive messages from students and staff using colorful post-it notes, and demonstrating how each class will be bully-free with a door decorating contest (Hillpoint Elementary);
  • Pledging to prevent bullying by writing your name on orange links to create a unity chain and creating handprints to lend a hand to spread kindness (Nansemond Parkway Elementary);
  • Discussing the real-life story that inspired the 2017 movie “Wonder,” about a boy with facial deformities and his efforts to change how others see him. A family movie night is set for Oct. 25 (Oakland Elementary);
  • Discovering through a featured assembly presentation “Bully No More” what to do if you are a bullet target or a witness to bullying, and how to recognize if you are being a bully (Pioneer Elementary);
  • Blocking out bullying by wearing sunglasses and emphasizing the message of “See Something, Say Something” (Col. Fred Cherry Middle);
  • Encouraging students to do random acts of kindness in a school-wide “Kind Challenge” and creating posters with messages about individuality, diversity, self-esteem, school spirit, and community(John Yeates Middle);
  • Plus additional activities at all other schools.


For more information, contact Dr. Suzanne Rice, Assistant Superintendent of Student Services, at 925-6750 or

Sync Your Tracker

Interested in syncing your tracking device and earning SPS Employee Wellness Program points?  Simply Well offers up to 45 points for stepping it up!
Click on the HEADER here to open the post and get to the live links.
Need More Details?  Visit:
Click on the HEADER here to open the post and get to the live links.

October is Cyber Security Awareness Month

The National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) hosts an annual campaign during the month of October to raise awareness about cyber security. NCSA pas published some general tips to increase cyber security awareness. Protect yourself and protect your accounts by reviewing these tips:

Employee Wellness Program Now Open

The SPS Employee Wellness Program is now open for the 2018-19 school year.
Earn 200 points as an individual by May 15, 2019 and receive a $200 (Taxable) reward. 
Upon login you will be asked to complete your Member Health Assessment and earn your first 50 points!  
Encourage your colleagues to participate!  With 30% home staff completing 200 points may May 15, 2019, your building could potentially earn $1,000 (taxable) wellness money to be used as a building.
More details?

Interim Progress Report Directions

Please see the appropriate directions for completing Interim Progress Reports (IPRs).


Interim Progress Report Due Dates for 2018-2019

Marking Period

Progress Report Distribution Date Teacher Progress Report Load Date


October 4

October 2


December 13

December 11


March 4

February 28

MP4 May 15

May 13


Financial Wellness is Important …

Get started today by creating your FREE SmartDollar account.
Each program step is worth 10 Employee Wellness Points with a max of 70 Employee Wellness Points upon program completion.
Contact your building Wellness Champion for more details and flyers.
Click on the headline to get to the link ……..

Teacher Positions Available for After-school Grant Program

Teachers Position Available

at the BTWES 21st Century Community Learning Center

Booker T. Washington Elementary School, a Suffolk Public School, with provide before-school, after-school, Saturday and summer camp programming to 75 at-risks K-5 students and their families. into ExcellenceStudent Success Realized through Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics Learning Pathways program will offer students homework help & targeted academic support in addition to literacy and mathematics focused, curriculum integrated learning and healthy living experiences. Programming begins October 15, 2018 through May 9, 2019. 

The following positions are now open for internal applicants ONLY.

Genius Hour Teacher: Monday – Thursday 7:40am to 8:55am

One hour before school, students are able to make independent learning decisions to follow their own interests for continued exploration into any of the STREAM content they have received during the afternoon program. Staff must have an understanding in guiding student self-direction and reflection, interest-based learning, inquiry, and autonomy.


Power Hour – Academic Assistance Teacher: Monday – Thursday 3:50pm to 5:20pm

Teaching staff will provide support to students and document their progress through the following academic assistance models:

  1. One-on-one and/or small group Targeted Tutoring sessions based on student academic needs as directed by classroom teacher/school input.
  2. Homework Help – Students will be given a quiet space with flexible seating to complete assigned homework with available instructional support and feedback on their progress.
  3. Read and Ride Station: Students will complete their assigned 20 minutes of independent reading time while riding on a stationary bike each day. Instructional staff will be present to assist with bike transitions, appropriate reading material selection and engaging students in comprehension prompts as they ride.


Enrichment Hour – Designing Minds Teacher: Tuesday & Thursday 4:50pm to 6:35pm 

Must be able to teach both days.

Teaching staff will facilitate engineering and technology project-based learning utilizing the standards aligned children’s engineering design briefs model to include using the school’s MakerSpace Lab. Staff will also assist with supervision of students eating dinner and bus dismissal.


Enrichment Hour – CodeCreate Teacher: Monday & Wednesday 4:50pm to 6:35pm

Must be able to teach both days.   

Teaching staff will facilitate student exploration into computer science programming concepts, computational thinking, digital citizenship, and methods of computational thinking through an arts integration and creative problem solving curriculums developed by CodeVA and Staff will also assist with supervision of students eating dinner and bus dismissal. Participation in the CodeVA summer training is preferred.

Application button

C & I Folder Changing Names

The C & I Folder in Team Drive is changing to the Teaching and Learning Resources folder.

Quit 4 Life

SPS Staff,
The SPS Employee Wellness Program will open in October.  However, you can enroll in Optum smoking cessation program today.  You will be rewarded with a max of 20 SPS Employee Wellness Points upon completion.
Enroll now: 1-866-Quit-4-Life or
Go to: SPS Employee Wellness for more details.

Installing Software

software installationStaff members can install software through the Software Center.  The Software Center contains titles that have been approved for download by the Technology Department.  Click below for the step-by-step directions.

Software Installation

Getting Started with Windows 10

WindowsDo you need help getting started with the Windows 10 operating system?  Click below for some helpful tips.

Windows 10 Getting Started

Connecting your Computers


Computer 1: Hey, I hear people!

Computer 2: Woo hoo, that must mean school is about to start!

Computer 3: And it means someone is going to turn us around, brush the dust off us, and plug us in!

Computer 4: Amen, because I am sick of looking at this wall.

Are your computers unplugged? Are the cords in a pile? Do you need help getting everything connected and turned on? This presentation will take you through the steps to connect your computers properly. If you have difficulty with this task or run into a problem, please submit a TSR through the HelpDesk ticketing system. Technicians will address TSRs in the order received.

Preservice Conference Day 2018 – What You Need to Know


What You Need to Know About

Preservice Conference Day 2018

  • All Instructional Staff are expected attend at one of two sites on Friday, August 24: KFHS – Elementary & NRHS – Secondary

  • There will be five (5) session rotations: Here is a sneak peek at the conference schedules. Click on the level to view.

  • You MUST select your sessions in Frontline Education on Thursday, August 23: Elementary will receive Frontline training during Overview sessions & Secondary will receive training at their home schools by school admin.

  • Conference Session One (1) will begin promptly at 8:30am: Please arrive early to enjoy some refreshments and find your first session before it starts.

  • Be sure to sign in at EACH session: STAR points will be awarded per session and attendance will be shared with school admin.

  • Bring a fully charged laptop or Chromebook: Many of the sessions require use of technology and pulling in to charge will not be available in most session spaces.

  • Have fun learning WITH and FROM your colleagues and our Partners-in-Education: Nearly 240 sessions will be facilitated by numerous Suffolk Public Schools teachers, school and district leaders as well as representatives from several local organizations. Thank you in advance for your full engagement during the sessions you attend. 

Sign Up to Receive Your School’s Peachjar E-Flyers

Stay in the loop.   SPS employees can receive all the Peachjar e-flyers being shared with parents.  Sign up for your school or several schools.  If you are an SPS parent, you should already be in the Peachjar loop.

Create your account at