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January 2024


A New Year's resolution is a tradition or commitment that an individual makes at the beginning of the year to set goals or make positive changes in their life. It is a personal pledge to achieve specific objectives or to adopt a new habit, often with the aim of self-improvement. When people make New Year's resolutions, they express their intention to bring  about positive transformations in their lives over the course of the upcoming year. For the month of January, the SUPO team would like to challenge each PSA leadership team to register and complete a Michigan Virtual course that has the potential to make a positive impact on academy staff and students.

It's easy:

  1. Go to Michigan Virtual and select a class: MV Professional Development
  2. Register.
  3. Complete the class.
  4. Screenshot the certificate and share it with SUPO.


The School/University Partnership Office is excited to highlight the collaboration between Flat River Academy and City Church of Greenville. Volunteers from the church provided the gym with a much-appreciated make-over. Community partnerships like these contribute to fostering mutual value between students and the community. Starting in January, City Church will hold its Sunday services at Flat River Academy.

Flat River Academy is dedicated to engaging learners in a comprehensive education through an innovative, project-based curriculum designed to inspire and prepare them for college and career readiness. We look forward to this new chapter of collaboration and growth!


AI Workshop - 10 Ways to Use AI to Support Teaching and Learning

February 9, 2024 - 9:00-11:00 am

Textbook - AI for Educators - Learning Strategies, Teacher Efficiencies, and a Vision for an Artificial Intelligence Future by Matt Miller

Zoom Link to AI Workshop

Participants will learn about and practice using 10 different ways to support students and teachers using artificial intelligence in the classroom.


In today's interconnected world, community engagement and media relations play pivotal roles in shaping public perception and fostering a sense of unity. Whether you're a community leader, organization representative, or an active member seeking to amplify your voice, understanding how to navigate the intricate landscape of media interactions is crucial. This guide offers ten essential tips to enhance your organization's relationship with the media, fostering open communication, positive coverage, and a stronger, more cohesive community.

10 Tips for Communicating with the Media (193KB)


Nominations open in February for the SUPO Outstanding Employee of the Year Award.

This year we are focusing on acknowledging the following school support staff:

  • Security
  • Custodial
  • Transportation
  • Food Service

One nomination per building (not district) will be accepted.

Watch for the nomination form in the February newsletter.


Digital Portfolio Contest for 8th - 10th Grade Students (please share with your teachers)

For details, view this video: Creative Opportunities Showcase Contest Video

Entry Form (to be completed by parent or guardian)

To enter the contest, complete and submit the Entry Form. The Presentation document should be submitted to Dawn Gillespie at If you have questions, don't hesitate to contact the office at (989) 964-4623.

First Prize - Apple iPad
Honorable Mention - Android Tablet

DEADLINE: March 29, 2024


Stakeholders from SVSU charter schools (school leaders, teachers, staff) can win a cash prize for their school for submitting photos of student learning, experiences, and activities that illustrate the theme of the year. Each photo must include a caption (1-3 sentences that links the photo to the theme).

2024 Theme – Seek and Ye Shall Find

At the School/University Partnership Office (SUPO) we believe that a quality education welcomes all, fosters creativity, and entitles learners to grow into their most authentic selves. As every difference is an asset, education should always be a celebration of diverse views and people. Seek out photos that illustrate students discovering their talents, abilities, opportunities for enrichment, service, and personal development.

To enter the contest, submit the Photo Contest Terms & Rules form, photos, and Media Release Forms to Dawn Gillespie (  Deadline April 1, 2024.

For additional information and forms see the SUPO website.



We are working to build a large resource center for you with information on topics that you have requested. Our first installment will be available the first week of January and will cover: Accommodations and Modifications.  I look forward to putting this information together for you. If you have other topics you would like presented, please let me know: 

 Future topics include:

  • Updated Special Education Review Process 
  • Special Education (SE) Data: Let’s take a look 
  • SE Data: Progress Report to Next Skill 
  • Staffing? Help! 
  • Rigorous and Robust PLAAFP’s 
  • Determining para-educator supports 
  • Para-educator goals for students 

Click the link to access the - Jan 2024 Best Practice Corner (141KB)



Recommended for staff working with students in an academic capacity. Highly recommended for non-certified staff serving in an instructional role at SVSU authorized academies.

Literacy researchers have identified essential practices that serve as a “minimum standard of care” when it comes to fostering literate students and literate citizens. Building off this research, Michigan Virtual has partnered with GELN’s Early Literacy Task Force to put an end to our state’s literacy crisis.

To learn more, explore these free online courses and guides that overview basic instructional practices to boost student literacy:

Participants that complete all the literacy online modules (in their selected age group) will be invited to receive special recognition at SVSU and become uniquely qualified to apply for SUPO literacy grants on behalf of their perspective academy.


  1. Go to Michigan Virtual online and select the first module under the Essential Instructional Practices in Early Literacy - Learn more about the Early Literacy Options
  2. Register.
  3. Complete the class.
  4. Repeat those steps for the remaining modules and send proof to SUPO (


Recommended for staff that support school safety (administrators, counselors, mentors, security, support staff, teachers, and building volunteers).

Enroll in this course here!

Michigan Association of Superintendents & Administrators


MASA is authorized through the Michigan Department of Education to issue Administrator Certificates with a Central Office Endorsement using an alternate pathway to certification. The Horizon Leadership Academy (HLA) focuses on strengthening leadership skills and strategies that equip school leaders to become effective superintendents and central office administrators.


MASA is hosting an Aspiring Superintendent Bootcamp to help emerging leaders get the tools, resources, and networking opportunities they need to become a superintendent.

This full-day bootcamp will focus on emerging trends in the superintendency as well as critical steps to take on your journey towards taking on this important new role. We need skilled top leaders who are ready to be the lead learner, build relationships/partnerships and take on the tough role of leading a school district.

When: February 1-2, 2024
Where: Lansing
Cost: $200 MASA Members / $250 Non-Members


School/University Partnership Office
Office Location: Gilbertson Hall
Phone: (989) 964-4623