October is Disability History Month

A reminder that October is Disability History Month. Schools across the district will observe this by conducting or promoting educational activities such as school assemblies or guest speaker presentations that provide instruction, awareness and understanding of disability history and people with disabilities.

New YouTube caption editing tool

In response to increasing demand for closed captioning, YouTube is starting to roll out a new captioning service. With improved speech recognition and a revamped user interface, the new tool promises to make captioning video content even easier.

Some YouTube users may encounter a new set of options when entering the Subtitles menu of their YouTube Studio. To begin editing automatically generated captions for a video, users can click “Duplicate and Edit.”

YouTube caption screen showing a Duplicate and Edit option

This will bring up the new YouTube caption editor. This tool, unlike previous iterations, allows for users to edit the captions in either paragraph or caption form. This makes editing the captions more natural and efficient. To toggle between the different layouts, users can click either “Edit as Text” or “Assign Timings”.

YouTube caption editing screen. Edit as Text is selected
YouTube caption editing screen. Assign Timings is selected

Once editing is complete, users may click ‘Publish’ to publish their captions to their live video.

A screencast demonstrating the new tool has been produced by the Communications and Community Relations Department. Additional information on the new YouTube captioning tool may be found on the YouTube help page.

Olympia School District staff are also invited to attend the Enhancing the Accuracy of Automatically-Generated Captions workshop in which we will discuss using the new and old tools. In the meantime, if you have any accessibility questions or tips, please reach out to Robert Hardy in the Communications and Community Relations Department.

Congratulations to our newest Everyday Heroes

Everyday Heroes Logo with the words: Celebrating OSD Employees

Now more than ever, let’s hear about all of our Everyday Heroes around the district. Remember to submit names of employees districtwide who have done something deserving of encouragement and praise. Give a shout out to one of your colleagues at your school or support building and watch for it to appear in an upcoming Everyday Heroes blog post.

Here are our newest honorees:

Everyday Heroes
All Staff Supporting DLC and Life Skills Programs
I have to nominate the extraordinary heroes and recognize the staff teaching and supporting in-person learning at our district level programs. It is not every day that a person volunteers to come back during a pandemic and help the students most in need of in-person education. I have to commend each and every person who has stepped up and offered their skills and their patience as the first staff to return under new and uncertain times.

To quote Shannon L. Alder, “Heroes are not made. They are born out of circumstances and rise to the occasion when their spirit can no longer coexist with the hypocrisy of injustice to others.”

Such circumstances we find ourselves in, and your service cannot be understated. You have my deepest respect and gratitude.
Submitted by Denise Hammer, Social Services Coordinator, Madison and Boston Harbor ES

How to nominate an Everyday Hero

  • Email the Communications and Community Relations Department (communications@osd.wednet.edu) a few sentences, and no more than 200 words, about why the person deserves recognition. It’s easiest to write as if speaking directly to the colleague, such as “Thank you for helping with…” or “I really appreciated when you…”
  • Write “Everyday Heroes” in the subject heading of the email.
  • Include your first and last name as the person submitting the comments.
  • Include the first and last name of the OSD employee you are recognizing.
  • Include the job title and work location (school or department) of the person you are recognizing.

All submissions will be posted in this blog on a weekly basis and archived each week.

See the latest OSD Office Directory

Below you will find a viewable Google Sheet with the current OSD Office Directory. You can print this document off as a single page, front/back piece.*

To print just follow these simple instructions:

  • Open the One-Page OSD Office Directory.
  • Select the print icon, or go to ‘File’ and ‘Print’.
  • This takes you to ‘Print Settings. In the top right-hand corner of the page select the pull-down menu that reads ‘Current Sheet’ and change that to ‘Workbook’.
  • Select ‘Next’ in the top right-hand corner of the page.
  • The print dialogue box will open on your computer.
  • Interested in printing on a single sheet of paper? Select ‘Two-Sided Print’ in your print settings. You will want to print with a ‘Long Edge Binding’ so that the directory prints in portrait layout.
  • Select ‘Print’.

This is a “live document” which is maintained by the OSD Communications and Community Relations Department. Should there be any changes needed, please let us know at communications@osd.wednet.edu. We will get these updates/change requests made and they will be available immediately to anyone accessing this document.

We hope this is a useful tool to all employees!

*Please note that only OSD employees will have the ability to access/print this document.

Learn about Open Enrollment

Person holds finger on the on switch for cell phone as if to check messages

The following is information from the OSD Payroll department:

I love receiving a plethora of open enrollment emails and I read every one of them! Said no one ever!

This year, enjoy virtual, easy and streamlined communications during Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment 2021: October 26 – November 23, 2020
The district is partnering with NW Benefit Advisors to bring you everything you need to know for a fun-filled Open Enrollment season. You can access all materials for the voluntary benefits through NW Benefit Advisors and there will also be links to SEBB benefits.

To opt-in to receive the latest information simply Text ‘Olysd’ to 52855. That’s it! The first 200 employees to register will be entered into a raffle.

For more information about Open Enrollment, visit the staff Intranet newly updated Payroll/Benefits webpage. To access the staff intranet, go to the district website Home page and select LOGIN in the upper right corner. Sign in with your OSD Google account, then on the Home page select Intranet, Departments, Payroll, and then Benefit Information.

OSDEF wreath sales start online October 12

OSDEF Logo (three stick figures) in green with the words Wreath Fundraiser underneath

Beginning today, October. 12, online sales open for the annual OSDEF wreath fundraiser, featuring locally sourced holiday wreaths. Traditionally this fundraiser has helped offset the cost of Cispus for fifth graders. This year, with the uncertainty of COVID-19, all proceeds will benefit the OSDEF Principal’s Emergency Fund and the OSDEF Teaching & Learning Grant Program.

Quantities are limited this year, and the deadline to order is Friday, November 6, 2020. Wreaths must be picked up on Sunday, November 22 by the purchaser or a designee. Distribution will be contactless and available at both an eastside and westside location.

Open Enrollment is October 26 through November 23, 2020

Stethoscope with heart-shaped center design

The following is information from the OSD Payroll department:

This year has been hard enough, so the Payroll department is streamlining Open Enrollment communications!

Open Enrollment 2021: October 26 – November 23, 2020
The district is partnering with NW Benefit Advisors to bring you everything you need to know for a fun-filled Open Enrollment season. You can access all materials for the voluntary benefits through NW Benefit Advisors and there will also be links to SEBB benefits. All you have to do is ‘Opt-in’ so you receive your invitation to the site. It’s that easy!

2021 Open Enrollment – Virtual, Easy, Streamlined Communications. To opt-in to receive the latest information simply Text ‘Olysd’ to 52855. That’s it! The first 200 employees to register will be entered into a raffle.

For more information about Open Enrollment, visit the staff Intranet Payroll department Benefits page.

A new weekly blog record! Congratulations to 5 new Everyday Heroes

Everyday Heroes Logo with the words: Celebrating OSD Employees

Thank you to everyone who sent in names this past week recognizing Everyday Heroes in their schools and support buildings. We received five outstanding recognitions, which is a record for one week since the Communications and Community Relations department launched this feature several years ago in the staff blog.

Remember to submit the names of employees districtwide who have done something deserving of encouragement and praise. Give a shout-out to one of your colleagues at your school or support building and watch for it to appear in an upcoming Everyday Heroes blog post.

Here are our newest honorees:

Everyday Hero
Scott Boe, Paraeducator, Hansen ES
I really appreciate that you jumped right in to help out your first grade colleagues in September. With very little notice, you took on distance learning like a pro. You handled setting up and figuring out a Schoology classroom and learning the ways of Zoom meetings, while organizing and handing out supplies and preparing to teach eager first graders, with grace and calm. I appreciate that you have always been willing to help out at Hansen. We have always counted on you to be there when we needed an emergency substitute or a steady presence for an emotional student. We have always counted on you to be there supporting our students in small groups or out on the playground refereeing kickball games. Your positive attitude, concern for others, and kind words make me thankful that I work at Hansen. Thank you. You are an Everyday Hero.
Submitted by Cynthia Johnson, first-grade teacher, Hansen ES

Everyday Hero
Bob O’Donnell, TOSA, Instructional Technology Knox 111 Administrative Center
As an Instructional Technology TOSA, Bob has been instrumental in supporting our staff as they provide remote instruction to students. This week Bob took an hour to help a Mom who is new to Garfield, with 3 kids, learn how to navigate Schoology and support her kids. The teacher in Bob came out. He was thoughtful, patient and demonstrated all of those experiences important to  learning (at any age) – observe, practice and apply with support. In short time she was working all 3 Schoology pages. It was a great thing to witness. Thanks Bob!
Submitted by Brendon Chertok, Principal, Garfield ES

Everyday Hero
Kathy Cognasso, Athletic Secretary, Capital HS
Recently Kathy (Cognasso) sent out an email to the staff asking for their bitmoji. In keeping with the Open House theme this year, Kathy has created an AWESOME staff photo. It has really put a smile on our staff’s faces.
Submitted by Stacy Sharp, School Fiscal Officer, Capital HS

CHS staff photo containing bitmojis for each staff member

Everyday Hero
Olympia HS Administration Team
I would like to nominate the entire OHS Administration team of Matt Grant, Andra Kelley-Batstone, Jake Tyrrell, and Lindsay Welsh!  They have worked tirelessly all summer long getting ready for our faculty and students to return to school, either in the building or virtually.  They are always happy to help, are supportive, encouraging, and dedicated to the education of all students. Thank you, Admin Team!  You are simply the best!
Submitted by Wendy Rae, Administrative Assistant to the Principal, Olympia HS

Everyday Hero
Cassie White, Teacher/Librarian, Marshall MS
(Note: Cassie White received two nominations from Marshall MS)

Cassie, we really appreciate how you constantly go above and beyond as our Teacher/Librarian at Marshall. (Are you even human?!) We appreciate your commitment to ALL of our students inspiring literacy, digital citizenship, critical thinking, and being upstanders in our community and the larger world. We appreciate your ability to always see other approaches to solving problems. We appreciate you voicing the needs of marginalized and underrepresented populations. We appreciate your sense of humor as you so graciously put all of our tech issues at the forefront. We appreciate that you make it all look so easy (like a rock star!), while sweating it out in the trenches right along with us. We appreciate your sense of humor and dedication to making our school and world a better place to be. Cassie, we appreciate you everyday, although you may only hear: “Cassie, can you fix this!”  Thank you!
Submitted by Eric Durban on behalf of Marshall MS staff

Cassie deserves a huge shoutout for everything she did to ensure a smooth start to the school year for all our students and teachers. Cassie spent days upon days prior to our materials pickup days finding, issuing, naming, and putting into student piles all the books that us teachers wanted the students to have for distance learning. With the possibility of distance learning for the entire first semester, this was not a small job! Cassie then fielded many technology calls and emails from students, families, and teachers to ensure we were all able to connect. I know myself and my fellow coworkers all appreciate Cassie’s knowledge, her enthusiasm, her positive attitude, her smile, and her hard work. You make our jobs so much easier to do. Thank you for all you did and do on a daily basis.
Submitted by Jo Nilsen Badami, Teacher and Testing Coordinator, Marshall MS

How to nominate an Everyday Hero

  • Email the Communications and Community Relations Department (communications@osd.wednet.edu) a few sentences, and no more than 200 words, about why the person deserves recognition. It’s easiest to write as if speaking directly to the colleague, such as “Thank you for helping with…” or “I really appreciated when you…”
  • Write “Everyday Heroes” in the subject heading of the email.
  • Include your first and last name as the person submitting the comments.
  • Include the first and last name of the OSD employee you are recognizing.
  • Include the job title and work location (school or department) of the person you are recognizing.

All submissions will be posted in this blog on a weekly basis and archived each week.

Lace up your shoes! Intercity Transit announces Youth Walk Challenge

Walk n Roll Logo with words Walk n Roll (letter O in Roll is a bicycle wheel

Stay active, practice pedestrian safety skills and win prizes by taking the Youth Walk Challenge this October with Intercity Transit.

This year Intercity Transit is celebrating Walk to School Month a bit differently. Join them for this fun event and encourage youth to get outside and stay active during distance learning. Youth from across Thurston County can participate by walking 10 days during the month of October. Both Individual and group participation is encouraged, meaning that individual youth, families, child care facilities and in-person and distance learning classrooms can participate in this event.

To participate:

  1. Download and review the Youth Walk Challenge Flyer & Youth Walk Challenge Card.
  2. Record the minutes you walk each day.
  3. Email a photo of yourself walking or a picture of your completed challenge to walknroll@intercitytransit.com.
  4. ‘Intercity Transit will mail all participants a small prize and enter you in a prize drawing for a $50 gift card!

Child care facilities and in-person classrooms can choose to participate in the challenge as a group, tracking your progress together. For these groups, Walk N Roll can provide prizes directly to your site or school. Please contact Intercity Transit at walknroll@intercitytransit.com for more information or any questions you may have!