• Authorized and beginning 2019

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 8/8/2019

    I look back at the blog posts and realize...I never updated the fact that we became authorized! The district communications department did some media on OTMS and our authorization back in the spring...but it is OFFICIAL! We want to thank, so much, the OTMS community and the 27J district for its support in this endeavor. For anyone who knows what it takes to be an IB school, you know it is a massive undertaking, as is anything worthwhile. So thank you!

    We are very excited to continue our International Baccalaureate work at OTMS. With one year under our belt of the district resources, the four-day student contact week, the one-to-one chromebook access...and about seven more new items that happened in the 18-19 school year...we are now ready to get back to work, to blending the systems that we have to make them the greatest they can be for kids. Here's to a great 2019-20 school year!

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  • Still waiting

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 1/29/2019

    Well, I wish I could say we know, but we are still waiting patiently to hear from International Baccalaureate on our status as an IB World School. Our verification visit in November we felt went amazing, and we were told that hopefully by February we would know...and we're still waiting.

    In the meantime, I wanted to share that our teachers are continuing to develop their IB units with the new district resources. Mr. Rodriguez, our Visual Arts teacher, attended an IB workshop this past weekend spending over 16 hours learning with other teachers from IB facilitators about how to continue to refine our practices to align more with IB. If you get a chance, ask him about his experience.

    As soon as we know from IB, we'll share the word. Hope everyone is staying warm with the colder winter weather...that we're all thankful to have. Take care. -- Mrs. Meredith

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  • Latest update

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 12/4/2018

    Hello all and buenas dias! An update on our IB Verification visit:

    First, thank you to all of the students and parents who participated over the course of the two days to provide an honest persepective of where we are at. We feel we had a successful two days with our out-of-town International Baccalaureate visitors. The two ladies thoroughly enjoyed Overland Trail Middle School and had a lot of positive things to say about us in regards to all of the work that we've been implementing over the last three years. We recognize, especially for our current 8th grade students, that this has been a challenge as we have grown in our understanding and worked to implement the Standards and Practices that IB asks for. Thank you so much for your patience, flexibility, open-mindedness, and feedback as we continue to learn and grow together. 

    With many new teachers to Overland Trail this year, we are hoping to send several if not many to IB sanctioned workshops in the coming months. Mr. Rodriguez will be attending the Visual Arts training to further his learning as it is our goal to have at least one person trained in each subject in the building at all times. More staff will potentially attend workshops throughout the summer months as well.

    At this time, we're waiting anxiously to hear back from IB in regards to our verification visit. They share a report from the visitors with IB, and IB then looks at everything we have submitted as a building as well as what the team observed to make a final judgment. This process can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks; we figure we'll know by February...and we'll definitely be sharing as soon as we know!

    Have a great rest of the semester, and as always, if you have questions, please reach out to Christy Meredith, the IB Coordinator at cmeredith@sd27j.net.

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  • 11-8 and 11-9 International Baccalaureate Verification Visit

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 11/7/2018

    We have an exciting two days at Overland Trail Middle School. For the last 2.5 years, we have been a candidate International Baccalaureate -- Middle Years Programme. On 11/8 and 11/9, IB will be sending two representatives to visit our building. During this visit, they'll meet with staff, the Superintendent, parents, students, visit classrooms, and look at all of the work that we have been doing as well as what we have planned. Following these two days, we will receive in the coming couple of months, a report that will hopefully verify us as an official IB World School...so fingers crossed as a LOT of work has been done, is going, and will come to continue to meet the needs of all of our students to prepare them for their futures.

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  • Parent Teacher Conferences -- Understanding Grading

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 10/5/2018

    Hello OTMS families,

    We cannot believe how quickly the school year is flying by. I think we could all agree that it has been a great start to the school year and are eager to continue the learning. In transitioning away from traditional letter grades to measure what our students truly know and can do, we've created a guide to understanding scores in Infinite Campus to help any families who might have some questions. Take a look at the link below...


     Understanding Grading at OTMS for Parents

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  • Fall 2018

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 9/4/2018

    Welcome back to another amazing year of being an OTMS Bullpup! This is going to be a big year for all OTMS Community Members as we will have our official IB-MYP Authorization visit on November 8th & 9th. What this means is that two individuals from IB will be visiting our school to celebrate all of our work, provide feedback, meet with students/staff/parents/community, and determine whether or not we are an official IB World School. So yeah, this is pretty big! 

    As a result of all of this amazingness, staff is working even harder to ensure we are learning and implementing with fidelity all that we know. We're revising units now that the district has purchased resources for the four core contents, and looking at alignment of components across the district, while being true to our IB goal. 

    In September, we also launched our first ever Community Project presentation to the students. Information about what this entails can be found on the 8th Grade Community Project link available to the left. If you are a parent of an 8th grade student, this is a big year for these kiddos, and it will be honored at the 8th Grade Awards Celebration at the end of the school year. If you are a parent of a soon-to-be 8th grader, you'll want to be in the know for this as well.

    Any questions, please contact Christy Meredith, the school's IB-MYP coordinator via email at cmeredith@sd27j.net

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  • 3rd qtr continued

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 2/22/2018

    The second half of the third quarter is in recognition of the coming deadline for the application for authorization. OTMS, with the approval of their IB consultant, will be applying for authorization as an IB World School in April. What this means is that the school will be finalizing aspects necessary for the application. At this time, teaching staff will be continuing to develop clarity around planning successful IB-MYP units that integrate the district's curricular frameworks (based on state or national standards) with the IB philosophy, conceptual understandings, Approaches to Learning skills, and assessment objectives. Teachers will finalize their best unit for submission to IB just prior to spring break.

    In line with planning successful and complete units that work to integrate all aspects of our instruction at OTMS, teachers through their department meetings will be finalizing their Subject Group Overviews. This document is the scope and sequence of what each content for each grade will plan for instruction. These are also in line with the district's curriculum frameworks. Drafts of the subject group overviews will be published on the school's website before the end of the school year, and will be utilized as teachers collaboratively prepare course syllabi for the 2018-19 school year.

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  • 3rd Qtr 2018

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 1/9/2018

    Welcome back from break everyone! This quarter, teachers will be exploring the district's assessment platform as we continue to understand assessment in the MYP. We will be working to create standards-based type assessments that are aligned to the MYP criterion to capture students' understanding of the standards.

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  • 2nd Qtr

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 11/6/2017

    Assessment is different in the IB-Middle Years Programme because it involves aligning our classroom practices with specific rubrics. This approach is very similar to standards-based assessment. As a result, the staff will explore and learn assessment in the MYP 2nd quarter, working to create IB rubrics and understanding the criterion that they are selecting for their assessment.

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  • 2017 Fall Parent Teacher Conferences Video

    Posted by Christy Meredith on 9/19/2017

    Below are the videos that were shared in the small gym at Parent Teacher Conferences in the fall of 2017. These presentations were meant to inform parents and community members on the changes that are happening at Overland Trail regarding assessment and how to support our children.

    Presentation in English

    Presentation in Spanish

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