Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Reviewing Cum Folders

This week, you should have checked all of your cum folders. Ever wonder exactly what it means to "check" your folders? As you have probably discovered, the cum folders can be found in The Guidance Office with the homeroom teacher's name on the front of the drawer. The first thing to check of course, is if every child on your roll has a cum folder! Tracy Carlin is the person to see if a folder is missing.

You often hear techers say that they don't want to check the cum folders because they don't want to form prejudices about children before they are able to form their own first impression, but this can be dangerous in the case of medical problems or custody arrangements. Often a child is entitled to particular services so a teacher needs to look for a few things from the very beginning. Below are some of the things that you should check to give you more information about the students in your class:

1. Target (our school intervention team work is filed in a manilla folder), ESE (Exceptional Student Education - Special Education folders, which include services for the gifted, are green), Speech and Language Services (in a pink folder), and Section 504 Packet Plans(which are also in a manilla folder) all have their own folders within the yellow cum folder. Each of these will tell you something particular about a student.

2. There will be an orange sheet of paper that will tell you if the child has had any interventions while at Chets. Attached to this are any PMPs (Progress Monitoring Plan) that will also tell you about intervention plans that have been designed for the student in previous years. The PMP will be signed by the parent indicating that the teacher and parent have had a conference discussing the needs and results of these interventions.

3.Custody issues will be a formal decree found after the Code of Conduct form towards the front of the yellow folder.

4. Students that have serious medical alerts will have a red dot on the front of the cum folder. You will also find additional facts about the medical condition with the health information inside the cum folder.

5. Make sure to also look for a red folder because this will tell you a child's ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages) status. There will also be a Home Language Survery that will tell you if the family speaks another language at home and what that language is. This will be a big help in knowing if you need an interpreter for conferences. An active ESOL student requires that the teachers use ESOL strategies in the classroom documenting them in her lesson plans. An ESOL student in the 2 year monitoring phase requires a teacher to document progress on the left side of the folder on form c. An ESOL student who is finished with the 2 year monitoring phase does not require any additional paperword on the teacher's part but all of this information will be helpful as you get to know your students.

If there is anything in the cum folder that you do not understand, do not hesitate to ask about it. Tracy Carlin can answer any of your questions or can direct to the person that can!

1 comment:

Mrs. Nash said...

Great idea for a post, dayle. I remember my first year teaching...we didn't really have a formal cum check deadline -- or even, that I recall, a "mandate" to check your cum folders. I'm sure I never checked them...because I didn't even know where they were kept in the building until much later in the year! I think, as a new teacher, having never experienced the end of the year cum processing, you have no idea what sort of important information you might find in there! I, too, have heard a lot of people talking about avoiding predispositions about children. I've learned just the opposite over the years! I read everything I can get my hands on! I use the information on the yellow promotional cards as much as possible, too!