School Expectations - October 6, 2017

Dear McDonald International Students and Families,

Can you believe we have already been in school a month! In such a short time, many exciting things have happened at McDonald International.

I am proud to share that McDonald International currently has seven teachers who earned their International Education Category. This is more than any other school in Seattle Public Schools! The International Education Category is earned by teachers in International Schools who have demonstrated their ability to teach by incorporating the key components of International Education: Global Perspective, Innovative Teaching, Global/Cultural Competence, and World Languages. In order to qualify for this Category, teachers presented example units, lesson plans, and evidence of student work in each of these four area. We are very proud of the seven teachers who have earned the Interntional Education Category and the work of all staff members in the area of International Education.

Later this month, the students at McDonald International will celebrate Indigenous People’s Day by participating in an assembly led by Paul Cheoketen Wagner. Paul is a Native American storyteller and flute player.  The assembly was set to take place today but due to an emergency in Paul’s family, we are working to reschedule his visit. Thank you to the PTA for supporting this assembly.

Earlier this week our seventh intern joined the McDonald International staff. We welcome Nelson Vasquez. We now have interns in all immersion classes grades 2nd through 5th. Nelson will be working with the 3rd grade Spanish Immersion students and Unai, who had previously been working with the 3rd grade students, will now be working with the 5th grade students. The next time you are at school, please be sure to introduce yourself to Nelson.

Many of you have probably already heard that Lincoln High School will be (re)opening in the fall of 2019 to address growing enrollment in our city. Please join the SPS planning team on October 12 from 6:30-8:00 to give your input. The meeting will be held at Hamilton International Middle School.

Earlier this year, I shared that the staff and students have been focusing on school-wide expectations. This included explicit instruction on teaching expected behavior/procedures in the hallways, bathrooms, cafeteria, and playground. You might have even noticed that we have charts hanging in the building with these expected behavior/procedures written in English, Japanese, and Spanish. Starting on Monday, October 9 we will launch an incentive program to recognize Scotties who go above and beyond in following our school-wide procedures. Teachers and other adults in the building will carry “Super Scottie Tickets” and hand them out to individuals or whole classes when they notice outstanding behavior. Tickets will go into a box, and a weekly draw will recognize three Super Scotties each Friday during morning announcements. Those Super Scotties will also get their photo taken with Scottie--yes big Scottie! Examples of ways to earn Super Scottie Tickets include (but are not limited to):

  • In the hallway, ignore a distraction—such as another student stopping to tie their shoe--and continue walking calmly and without talking.
  • Be the person who collects the little bits of trash left of the table before leaving the lunchroom--even if it is not yours.
  • Help other students get quiet with a silent signal when teachers are giving directions in the lunchroom.
  • Show kindness and flexibility at recess by taking turns with equipment, listening respectfully during a disagreement and keeping small problems small.

Please encourage your child to be a Super Scottie!

McDonald International has many ways for families to stay well-informed about what is happening at school. While most information can be found on the PTA website (, be sure to check out the school website as well ( As you play around on the site, make sure you check out a video created by our 5th graders from last year and some photos of our community crosswalks. Additionally, you can access the Family Handbook from the site.

Curious what’s going on in Art? Check out Miss Amanda’s studio update by downloading the attached PDF.

It was wonderful to see so many families at Curriculum Night! Next year we will have a plan for child care for those families who need it. We apologize if this prevented anyone from being able to attend. 

At McDonald International, we recognize that Halloween can be a fun experience for kids, and we also recognize that some people don’t observe Halloween and that these events can sometimes be disruptive to the school day.  The staff of McDonald have chosen to limit Halloween festivities to after lunch.  Each grade level is choosing how they want to celebrate Halloween, so look for information from your teacher or room parent on whether or not your class will have a party.  Again, these parties will only be in the afternoon, and are not to exceed an hour. Regarding costumes, students may wear costumes for the party in the afternoon only.  Costumes for students and adults must be appropriate.  No weapons, gore, or other references to violence.  We want to be especially mindful of our youngest students and that costumes can be frightening to our little ones.  If staff feel that anyone is wearing a costume that is inappropriate, the student or adult will be asked to change out of the costume. Use your best judgment when helping your child with his/her costume and ask us if you’re not sure. Please set expectations with kids that they may need to make changes to a costume in the school environment that otherwise might be fine outside of school. Lastly, if students want to wear costumes, they must be able to get into it without adult help. Thank you!

I look forward to seeing everyone at the Move-A-Thon and, as always, if you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Michelle Goldberg

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