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Charter News Archives

The purpose of these newsletters is to keep families informed about events and activities that pertain to all programs; such as Board updates, WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges), LCAP(Local Control Accountability Plan), All-Charter events, and other pertinent information. It is also the newsletter for the general public to find out some specifics about all the individual programs we serve. We will be sending this newsletter out every other week. You will be receiving regular emails from the teacher(s) of your specific program to keep you updated on homework, classroom activities and specifics on field trips and special events for your child.


Charter News: May 7, 2017

posted May 14, 2017, 11:27 PM by Rhonda Schlosser




"To stimulate life, leaving it then free to develop, to unfold, herein lies the first task of the teacher."

~ Maria Montessori


“Appreciation is a wonderful thing. It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.”

― Voltaire



Dear Charter Families,


This week is designated Teacher Appreciation week.  In some places they may say it is a day, some may have mentioned it last week, of course, they should be appreciated always, but I’d like to take this time to honor the teachers in the Charter.  Probably all principals think their teachers are the best, but I really think we do have the best!


Our Charter teachers are unique in that they are also champions of the programs they work in.  Their dedication to maintaining communication with their parents and students, and continuing to build creative and flexible programming is phenomenal! They are great at collaborating, teaching through thematic hands-on projects, and infusing their brain-based and developmental knowledge into their teaching as well.

Here is a list of our teachers and the programs they work for, with only a few of their special attributes (forgive me if I don’t share your favorite attribute):


Coast Redwood High School:

  • Kay Mendoza: English and Arts. Started the program 20 years ago.  She is diligent with her oversight and guidance of the program and always working beyond her 100% to keep it moving forward.

  • Keidi Lewis: Social Sciences and World Languages. She exudes effervescence when she talks and teaches.  She is also great at planning and taking students on field trips.

  • Wade Axup: Sciences. He is a wiz at integrating technology into his classes and helping our teachers with technology as well. He loves biology and marine science.

  • Brian Heery: Mathematics.  Also a Sensei in Aikido, he integrates a variety of techniques into his classes so that all students can feel mastery with their math.

Nature Academy:

  • Carter Milhous: Sciences, P.E. Math. Co-founder of Nature Academy, he always starts his teaching with brain-based theory. He loves the hands-on projects, science journals, and integrating computer technology whenever possible.

  • Melissa Stockton: English, Home Economics, GATE, Social Sciences, P.E. Co-founder of Nature Academy. Great at teaching writing,  integrating Language Arts into all subjects, and passionate about teaching cooking, nutrition, sewing….

  • Rosemary Hope: Multiple Subjects.  One of our newest teachers, she exudes the positive values of a self-contained classroom, teaching new 6th graders not only core content but how to respectfully communicate, collaborate and become a classroom family member.

  • Tamar Ragir: Math. Mathematics truly is her passion. She is always finding new ways have the students develop their math skills and critically think mathematically, including through hands-on activities.

Coast Redwood Middle School:

  • Marcy Reynolds: Multiple Subjects.  A true lifelong learner, she is always learning something new to enliven the students. Dedicated to the homeschooling value of working with where the student is and supporting their needs. Also a QiGong teacher, she infuses her mindfulness training into her classroom.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts:

  • Amber Walker:  Multiple Subjects. She knows homeschooling inside and out as she homeschooled all three of her children, the oldest now 26. She started this program this year to share her love of integrating arts. She is passionate about the performing arts and has directed and choreographed Charter plays with multi-age students for 20 years.

Quail Hollow Homeschool:

  • Katie Parmenter: Multiple Subjects, Social Sciences. She loves the younger grades. She takes her time to make sure that children feel safe and care for one another. Her interests in History and crafting are specialties.

  • Gillian Blair: Multiple Subjects, Math.  A seasoned Math teacher, she is enjoying working and learning from the homeschooling families and truly believes in the thematic way of learning/ She is loving creating new hands-on activities for her students.

Fall Creek Homeschool

  • Lisa Michel: Multiple Subjects, Arts. As a former Waldorf teacher, she weaves Waldorf techniques, arts, and imaginative free play into her classroom.  Her passions include Astronomy and Nature Studies.

Mountain Independent Study:

  • Kim Fleming and Reina Honig. Multiple Subject.  Together they did a wonderful job co-teaching founding teacher Maria who was on leave.  Supporting loved traditions, learning the values of homeschooling, adding their love of the arts, writers’ workshop, and ao many ways to enliven this program for all who are involved.


Thank you, teachers, for making SLV Charter the great and unique school that it is!


~Rhonda

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Come See Our All Charter Play!  

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Congratulations to our very own Quinn Becker for supporting the pack in the SLVHS production of Grease!


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What’s Going on in Our Charter School? ..little snippets from some of our programs.

Thank you, students, for doing your best in the annual State testing.


Coast Redwood High School: Several students went on a tour at USCS. Staff and Students participated in an experiential workshop with Dr. Heath Wood to help build a culture where empathy and greater understanding of each other can expand.

Coast Redwood Middle School: Friday, May 19th, at 6pm at the Santa Cruz MAH, our class will be hosting one of the art exhibits during the 3rd Friday History Blast event!   Our art exhibit is a timeline of our oceans that begins in the 1950's before plastic pollution started entering our oceans and posing danger to sea life and human life. Our kids have created many amazing things this year, and they will be for sale at our exhibit to raise money for our class.  

Nature Academy: Thanks to the teachers and students for preparing for our Open House night and to the parents who came to visit the classrooms.  The 6th grade class had their Save our Shores Beach day, the 7-8th graders concluded their Renaissance unit with a Fair and Feast at Highlands Park.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts: Most of the class is currently working on the All Charter Play. May 24 and 25 Charter Talent Show. This is a wonderful event, and we are performing AS A CLASS, presenting “Alexander Hamilton”, which we have been rehearsing with Arindam Krishna Das. Students are also encouraged to present an individual or group piece.

Quail Hollow Homeschool:  We have started the yearbook process. Please send in any pictures you have from this year to contribute to the yearbook with your child on Tuesday.  Students participated in our last Skate day of the year.  They are planning their Field Trip to the Rosicrucian Museum.  King Kong Fun Run is coming at the end of May

Fall Creek Homeschool: We have started the yearbook process. Please send in any pictures you have from this year to contribute to the yearbook with your child on Tuesday.  Students participated in our last Skate day of the year.  Students completed their classroom and personal books and sharing them at the Author’s Fair.

Mountain IS: IS Pentathlon will happen on May 12, 2017 (All ages participate) Events will take place on the field, track, and blacktop. The purpose of the event is to bring peace, grace, beauty and athleticism to all who participate and spectate. All students should wear white, we will provide purple sashes and kids will make their own foliage head wreaths Parents are encouraged to come and watch the event


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • April 28: Nature Academy Lottery 3 pm at the Charter Quail Hollow Office

  • May 6: VAPA Showcase. May 6, 2017:  12 PM to 4 PM: SLVHS Campus

  • May 11 & 12:  All Chater Play.  The Little Mermaid: a West Side Story.  PAC @ 6:30

  • May 25:  All Charter Talent Show at 6:30pm

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school

~Rhonda

Charter News, April 22

posted Apr 24, 2017, 11:15 AM by Rhonda Schlosser



"Treat people as if they were what they ought to be and you help them become what they are capable of becoming."  -Goethe




Dear Charter Families,


We were finally able to present Screenagers last week.  While the audience was probably not as large as it would have been had it not been rescheduled, the parents and students that were in attendance were very appreciative of the opportunity to view this wonderful film. Many mentioned that they thought the film should be mandatory viewing for parents in our digital age of learning. Families who came were not only from the Charter but also from SLV High School and Middle School. We had a great discussion afterward. It was especially good to hear from the students in the audience and to see so many families who attended and together.  Some of the comments shared were:

  • Several students said that they learn better and seem to retain more from textbooks

  • Students also agreed with the movie in how distracted they can become with the use of internet in the classroom if it isn’t managed well, and also how easy it is for students to misuse the computer in the classroom if they so choose.

  • A few parents mentioned their own overuse of their smartphone or computer at home.  Some said that they felt they were managing it okay until they intentionally stopped for a good length of time and thus realized how much more relaxed and present they were with their family.

  • The Tech Talk Tuesday mentioned was an idea that many felt would benefit their home.

  • Most agreed that not having smartphones and computers in the bedroom was a good idea, though many also agreed that it may be hard for them to initially implement.

This was the second time that Ambe Walker and I have seen the film and we both realize how much more we were able to glean from the film the second time around.  For those of you who could not make it, I highly recommend you review some of the resources linked on the Screenagers website  https://www.screenagersmovie.com.  In particular, the Tech Talk Tuesdays, and  Resources tabs. Thank you to Amber and Jen for attending and adding to the discussion!


~Rhonda

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CAASPP testing continues: The Charter programs will continue with testing through mid-May. A Huge Thanks to all the students for working so hard!  I have heard from the teachers and seen for myself that the classes that have finished truly did do their best.  Every class I entered seemed relaxed and energized to do well with their tests. I know it is not a pleasurable experience for most and that for some students the tests can be hard and some questions frustrating. Remember that the tests are designed to be comprehensive and that not many students can know 100% of anything! These tests only show a moment in time for each student’s academic ability and only in this specific, standardized format.  The tests are primarily designed to show schools an overall view of how our students are doing in Math and ELA and Science.  It is one measure that is required by the State and we greatly appreciate your participation.  We do really need 95% participation, and in our small school, every student makes a difference.  Thanks again!

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Nature Academy Lottery: The lottery will be held This Friday at 3:00 pm at the Quail Hollow Charter Office.  If you have any questions, please contact Rhonda at rschlosser@slvusd.org 335-0932, or Holly at hthomas@slvusd.org 336-5167

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SLVUSD VAPA Showcase: May 6, 2017:  12 PM to 4 PM: SLVHS Campus


Come and see the fabulous SLVUSD Visual and Performing Arts accomplishments from the 16-17 school year. We will have performances by our theater students, band, choir, and elementary music. There will be artwork on display, and some community activities. We hope you can join us. No cost to attend!

Event Volunteers: In order for us to successfully host this event we will need lots of helping hands from our generous parents. We are seeking both volunteers to help out on the day of the event, as well as food and drink donations to be sold to event goers.

The following volunteer opportunities are available:

• Baked goods and water donations (see attached flyer) • Food/drink servers

• Set up including hanging and arranging artwork and setting up food/beverage areas, table

set up, etc.  • Clean-up/ break-down   • Cleaning popcorn maker before event  • Cleaning popcorn maker after event   www.SignUpGenius.com/go/20F0C4AABAA29A5FC1-vapa4

If you have any questions about VAPA Volunteer list please email Lani Egbert, eegbert@slvusd.org


We are looking for bakers to donate some tasty treats to our first annual Visual Arts Performing Arts Showcase SIGN UPBake sale donation ideas:

●  Homemade baked goods — cookies, brownies, muffins, cupcakes, rice krispie treats, pies, cakes, zucchini bread, banana bread, etc. ●  Cases of bottled water ●  Starbucks coffee containers

Please join our list of bakers by using the Sign Up Genius survey. www.SignUpGenius.com/go/20F0C4AABAA29A5FC1-vapa3

Any questions, please contact Halley Benjamin, hbenjamin@slvusd.org

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Parent Advisory Committee: Thank you to the parents who continue to come each month and give feedback to important aspects of running the Charter.  At the last meeting, after review of the LCAP discussion, we discussed the annual parent survey.  The questions on this survey help the Charter staff to assess how we are doing in the areas of academics, communication and safety and engagement.  This survey is also used as a follow up for our LCAP review and reporting.  We made changes to the questions based on review of the results from the previous year and by looking at the LCAP goals.

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What’s Going on in Our Charter School?

 

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ALL Charter Talent SHOW: Calling all acts for our All Charter Talent Show, to be performed at the SLV Performing Arts Center (PAC) on Thursday, May 25, at 6:30pm. In addition, there is a mandatory Dress Rehearsal from 3-6pm on Wednesday, May 24. *Please speak directly with Amber if there is a conflict with this date. There are a few exceptions to the mandatory Dress Rehearsal attendance, but it must be discussed prior to then to be determined.

Acts should be no longer than approximately 3-4 minutes in length. Solo dancers, group dancers, solo musical artists, bands, monologues, stop motion videos, short films...any and all visual and performing artists are welcome!    We will also display 2D and 3D artwork in the lobby to the PAC.


Please respond awalker@slvusd.org with the following info by Friday, May 5:

1)Name and age/grade of student

2)contact information of parent or responsible adult: email address and phone number

2)Charter Program they are enrolled in

3)what kind of performance or visual art will be presented

4)staging needs -such as mats, microphones, piano, extension cords, backing musical track, chairs, etc.

Thanks so much! I am looking forward to another year of amazing talent.


..little snippets from some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School: Information Night, Thursday, 4/27, 5:00pm-6:00pm, Room P3.  Students and parents of 8th graders are encouraged to attend to meet all the CRHS teachers and hear what they have planned for next year.

Special Workshop; Guest Speaker Heath Wood - Friday, May 5th

What: A presentation and facilitated conversation about self-awareness, communication skills, and

creating safety for ourselves and others in social and academic situations.

When:  Friday, May 5th, 9th/10th Graders from 9-11am, 11/12th Graders from 12-2pm.

Who: ALL Coast Redwood students and staff

Where: Coast Redwood, P5  (Brian’s room)

Cost: FREE!!! While normally trainings like these are quite pricey, this workshop is FREE for all CRHS students.

We have invited Heath to work with us now as preparation for our 2017-2018 school year and to kick off the positive changes we will continue to be making at Coast Redwood. It is so valuable and important to Coast Redwood teachers and the building of our Coast Redwood community that we are asking all of our students to be here, and as an added incentive are considering it an extra credit project for a class of your choice. More on this next week!

- Yearbooks - order yours today! - Last Meeting of the Tribes - Friday, April 28 (Attendance day) starting at 10:00. Agenda - students will receive their progress report, answer questions, confirm ROP applications, verify concurrent enrollment, pick-up Cabrillo summer school and fall high school release forms, and much more! - Senior cap and gowns have arrived. 20 years of providing an academic choice! Come celebrate with our graduating seniors on June 2

Coast Redwood Middle School: Students have been working on their individual and class projects and in the garden in addition to the CAASPP testing.

Nature Academy: 6th grade went on an O'Neill Sea Odyssey on the  17th. Thank you to everyone who volunteered to drive. Students are swimming for their PE and making final preparations for their Mt Shasta trip happening in May.  Their CAASPP testing begins this week. 7th and 8th graders are deep into their Renaissance unit, with posters and speeches of notable people of the time period and science projects with DaVinci in mind. A new elective cycle has begun as well.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts: Had a field trip on Wednesday, April 19 to MAH in Santa Cruz

Students met downtown and had an art walk scavenger hunt along primarily Pacific Avenue, and some of the nearby side streets until their interactive activities in the Museum of Art and History.

Quail Hollow Homeschool:  We attended a field trip to Good Life Ceramics April 21st. Walking around campus, friends were on the lookout for animals.  We made a list of what was seen followed up with a drawing of our favorite animals we spotted with some descriptive words. Jen, our counselor talked about 'Circles of Privacy'. We looked at different behaviors (for example, kissing, hugging, handshake, smile) and brainstormed who we would be doing these things with. It's important to trust you gut and say no if something doesn't feel right. There is such a desire to continue working outside; Children had the opportunity to choose to work in the frog pond, the garden, or to make a marbled paper craft activity.

Fall Creek Homeschool: We had a wonderful art workshop led by Michele and Don Faia. We drew mandalas titled ” Your Inner Sun”.  The 3rd graders worked on making videos using Adobe Spark. The 4th and 5th graders worked on storyboards for the videos they are making. We received a letter from the International Astronomical Union thanking us for our suggestions to change the word we use for natural  satellites.  We completed steps 3 and 4 in our hand made bookmaking process. We worked on a star map. We listened to the true story of a famous astronomer, Annie Jump Cannon. We had a wonderful field trip to the Mystery Spot with a school group tour.

Mountain IS: We had a nice week in class learning about Dr. Suess, doing some creative writing and learning about cave formations called stalactites and stalagmites. We read several Dr Suess books and created graphs with partners to collect data from classmates (what is your favorite? Which has your favorite illustrations?). We are doing a demonstration with Epsom salts and students had to make predictions and will observe the growth over the next week. We spent some time in Writer's Workshop as well. Thank you to all who put on the amazing Earth Day celebration! All of the teachers and kids loved the event and learned a lot. It was a great success. In the spirit of Earth Day we made natural cleaning products using fractions. Then did some spring cleaning around the classroom! We ended the day with a video about an art exhibit at the Smithsonian made exclusively from trash found at beaches. What a great opportunity to strike up a conversation about the three Rs: reduce, reuse, recycle!


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • April 28: Nature Academy Lottery 3 pm at the Charter Quail Hollow Office

  • May 6: VAPA Showcase. May 6, 2017:  12 PM to 4 PM: SLVHS Campus

  • May 11 & 12:  All Chater Play.  The Little Mermaid: a West Side Story.  PAC @ 6:30

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school

Charter News: March 31, 2017

posted Mar 31, 2017, 5:25 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



Patience is not simply the ability to wait - it's how we behave while we're waiting.

~Joyce Meyer





Dear Charter Families,


March is closing and next week we have our Spring break.  It is a well-deserved break for everyone and a nice time for rejuvenation as we continue the homeward stretch to the end of the year.  Students have been working hard and deserve a well-earned break.

Thank you to the wonderful staff who designs such unique programs for our students and families.  Students have continued to have wonderful experiences with their classmates through field trips, plays, presentations, and collaborative activities in the classroom. When we come back, there are already plans for more exciting activities as we begin our countdown to June. There is still a lot of learning ahead, and for now…

May you all enjoy the coming week in a way that fills your heart and soul.


~Rhonda

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Notes From Our Counselor Jen Sims: Patience

March is a tough month – it’s long, it rains, we have no 3-day weekends and spring break is taunting us from down the road.  It’s tough to keep your nose to the grindstone while the sun is starting to shine and the buds are blooming into beautiful flowers.  We’ve been waiting the whole winter for that!  There so much patience to be exercised in March that I felt it was a great wellness topic.  


BUT I have to admit...I am the worst when it comes to patience.  The worst!  I feel like kicking rocks when it comes to this subject.  I bet a lot of you are nodding your heads in agreement as you read this right now.  For that reason, I’d like to spend at least part of this article giving impatience a shout out, and frankly, it’s due.  Where would we be without impatience?


Martin Luther King said, “We have no alternative but to protest.  For many years we have shown an amazing patience…but we have come here tonight to be saved from that patience that makes us patient with anything less than freedom and justice.”  Patience is a virtue but let’s not take it too far, right?  We cannot glorify the ability to sit still, because there are some things we should not be sitting still for.  Impatience tells us when it is time to act, to shift and to make a change.   


If I have learned anything in my years as a psychotherapist, it is that no one changes anything until it no longer works for them.  Not adults and not children.   I’m certain that as parents you have had the frustration of looking at your child’s ineffective behavior and clearly seeing what could be different – but your child isn’t aware.  Just telling them what needs to change doesn’t usually work.  Counseling and behavior charts can work, but not all the time.   What works 100% of the time for all of us is getting sick and tired of waiting for a person or a situation to change.  


I can trace most of my important decisions back to this.  I was impatient with the limitations of my work with people, so I decided to become a therapist.  I was impatient waiting for the job I had at a community agency to get different, so I struck out on my own.  I was impatient waiting for Pennsylvania to catch up with some of the ways I wanted to live, so I left.  


What have you been too impatient to wait for and how has it spurred you on to action?  Can you recognize and promote the same in your child?   And how do you know when impatience crosses the line?


This leads me to discuss the dark side of impatience.  I can think of many times that impatience has lead me down the wrong path – I’ve been hung up on by insurance and cable companies.  I’ve blurted out the wrong thing because I just can’t wait to say something.  There is one doctor’s office in Pennsylvania to which I should probably never return.  Looking back I wish I had handled these situations more effectively because I ended up turning small events into social justice actions inside my head.  It didn’t have to be that way.  Here are some strategies on helping your child avoiding these potentially awkward moments by developing some self-control and patience.


Patience is developmental and requires practice:  Younger kids have less of a tolerance for patience so start small.  Short waits, getting longer as they get older is your best bet.  It takes practice, so find situations where you can insert purposeful delays to help them get used to it.


Countdowns!:  I am a huge fan of countdowns.  If you are waiting for a vacation or holiday, do something fun during the month or week leading up to the date.  Whether it’s marking the days off the calendar, reading a book chapter a night (for example, let’s say you’re going to HAWAII – read a book about Hawaii leading up to the trip), or having some special events beforehand like shopping for suntan lotion or planning your Netflix binge for a staycation.  Anticipation can be so much fun.


Practice mindfulness:  Waiting for anything, like the doctor or the bus, can be a great time to practice mindful breathing or sensory mindfulness – what do you see, hear, taste, smell and feel right now?


With older children, practice patience by working toward a goal:  Saving money is good one for this.  We often have to wait for the things that we want in life while we are working and earning them.  The waiting will feel worth it when they can purchase a new outfit, shoes or video game.


Wrapping up, I want to add that we have worlds at our fingertips with iphones and ipads, and these are extremely helpful for boredom and waiting.  I believe in their use for keeping a child (or ourselves) occupied when the wait is really too long.  This won’t result in increased patience or attention span, however, so I encourage you to still practice, practice, practice patience and impatience as it works for you and your child.  


Have an awesome spring break.  It’s finally here!!!!

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Screenagers: Take 3!!!  As incredible as it may sound, our March 8 Screenagers night was curtailed once again.  But We Will Not Give Up!


We have scheduled a final date of Wednesday, April 19, 7-9 pm, for any and all parents and students to come watch this important film with us, at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

Our students watched the film with their teachers and the overwhelming response is that, while they had some criticism of the film, the majority of every class felt it very important that their parents view the film as well. We love it when our families can engage in important conversations with each other and their children. There is no doubt that the topic of screen time is an important one to ponder and make some decisions about. Parent involvement and support is so important to your students success and events like these are a good way to support your children’s education.

A brief discussion of the film will be offered right after the film.  

Tickets previously purchased will be honored. Tickets are a suggested donation of $10.  Please note:  Tickets and trailer for the film available at this NEW LINK:  

https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-2178

You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which you need to bring with you to the event.  If you prefer to not purchase them online, they can also be purchased through your teachers or by contacting Danelle Matteson at 335-0932.

If you are able to make it, I think you’ll enjoy it, and also enjoy talking with your kids about it afterward. This is a very important topic for our staff and we hope that you will attend the viewing on April 19th at 7 pm, in our Performing Arts Center on the SLVHS campus. Many of our high school students were not able to attend due to the conflict with a scheduled class. It would be great if they could come with you to the evening show.


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Open application window for Charter programs. INTENT to RETURN FORMS:

We are already receiving new applications for next year for all of our programs.  You should have received an ‘Intent to Return’ form in an email from your teacher.  Please fill this out and return it to either of the Charter offices as soon as possible.

This form either holds your spot OR releases your spot for someone else to fill. Students who are returning, either to their current program or to another program within the Charter do not need to apply again.  You spot is guaranteed, provided we receive your Intent to Return form.

Siblings have priority enrollment, however all siblings still need to fill out a 2017-18 application in order to hold their spot and begin the enrollment process.  

Thank you for your speedy attention to this request.

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Parent Advisory Committee: PLEASE COME, April 19, from 3-4. More about testing, and further refinement of LCAP funding.

At our last meeting, we discussed the ideas from parents within the various programs about how to spend LCAP funds, based on the goals for our school Charter LCAP funding, what the goals our, how our supplemental funding was allocated, what was spent, and ideas for next year. Some good ideas were shared around encouraging and developing our students abilities in Mathematics.

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Upcoming CAASPP testing begins: The Charter programs will begin the annual State testing once we return from our Spring Break. Part of the State Test requires headphones.  We will have headphones in every testing area for students to use, however, if your student has earbuds or headphones of their own that have a regular phone jack plug, please have them bring them to school that week.  Students can certainly use our headphones, but may like theirs better.  Testing for CRHS and CRMS begins the week we get back from Spring Break - April 10-14. IF you have any questions about the tests, please feel free to contact you child’s teacher, or Rhonda at rschlosser@slvusd.org


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets from some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School:  CRHS had their Leadership Activities Rainbow Week - March 20-24. We wish for our students to relax and enjoy their spring break. Students worked hard these last 3 quarters and deserve a well-earned break. Well done everyone! When we return our 11th graders will start their CAASPP testing for ELA on Tuesday morning, April 11, and 10th graders will start their test on Friday, April 14, for science. Thank you, parents, for your homeschooling support of your teen during these last 3 quarters. We are in the home-run stretch!

Coast Redwood Middle School: Students are completing their project presentations and work on the class logo for their product. Hannah’s mom came to class and did a graphic design activity with the kids to get them thinking about expressing emotions and ideas through shapes. Thanks to her leadership we already have some good ideas for our business logo to go with the business name the kids chose –Healthy Redwoods-.

Nature Academy:We we return the 7-8th graders will begin their renaissance unit.  6th graders will continue their China unit and begin to prepare for their Mt. Shasta annual trip.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts:We have some exciting activities in the classroom coming up:

Students will create Rube Goldberg machines, applying their knowledge of Force and Motion. We will be building planter boxes and filling them! We need some parent volunteers to lead construction on this project. Please respond if you would like to come and help create our planter box gardens. We will be creating a mural on the “ball wall” on the court. Students will submit ideas for the design

Quail Hollow Homeschool: This was our performance week!  Friends who participated in the play did an amazing job and we are all so proud of you and the hard work you put in.

Congratulations on a job well done! If you did not participate in the play, we hope you were able to come out and enjoy at least one of the performances - they were truly entertaining!

Fall Creek Homeschool: We attended a performance of the Quail Hollow Homeschool’s play “Master Mummy” at the Performing Arts Center. We had a discussion about various ‘houses’ in the play yard and the rules pertaining to how we share them. We made marbleized paper for our hand made books. The 4/5 graders continued making videos using Chromebooks – this time trying to compose a story with beginning, middle and conclusion. We made planispheres, which are essentially star maps.We completed step 2 out of four steps for our hand made books – sewing the pages together. The children brought home the storyboards they started in class with a partner. These can be used as jumping off points for composing a story to eventually write into their hand made books.

Mountain IS: We continue creating our own board games which integrate a variety of curricular areas. First we "buddied-up" to brainstorm a list of words typically found on game boards. We also created titles and selected fonts to create labels. In art we Modge Podged our spaces, words, spinners and titles to the game boards. Next week, students will create a rough draft of the playing instructions for their games. After some peer editing and revising, students will publish a final draft of direction on the back of their games so that anyone can enjoy playing them.  


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)


  • QHIA application window Mar. 14-April. 28

  • April 3-7: Spring break

  • CAASPP Testing begins at Charter sites.  

  • April 19: Parent Advisory Meeting, 3-4 pm

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school






Charter News: March 17

posted Mar 17, 2017, 8:51 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


The joyful heart sees and reads the world with a sense of freedom and graciousness.

~John O'Donohue




Dear Charter Families,


March marks the hints of Spring, the itch for Summer, and the quickened pace of the school year.  Whew what energy! This newsletter has several updates so please read on to learn about:

  • Visiting Committee WASC update

  • Screenagers!:  Take 3

  • Intent to Return requests and Open application window for Charter programs

  • Upcoming CAASPP testing

  • New California School Dashboard

  • District and Charter LCAP parent input

  • Snipets from our programs

Enjoy the weekend, with maybe some time for outside activities...as I hear that we may be in for a bit more rain next week.


~Rhonda

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Visiting Committee WASC update: WASC visit complete!  The Western Association of Schools and Colleges completed their review of our school and left us with a glowing report of how well we are doing for our students and their families. Here are some of the committee’s commendations:

District support is critical for a program such as this, and district officers and staff are highly commended for long-term support of this innovative charter. One district officer described the Charter as a test-bed for good ideas, which speaks highly of both the Charter and its parent district.


The VC commends a broadly talented and experienced teaching staff, and appreciates the long hours and creativity dedicated to addressing the concerns of the prior visiting committee.  The VC hopes that the entire Charter community sees the WASC self-study process as being worthwhile and rewarding. The Committee also appreciates the friendly, efficient and helpful support staff, and admires how the grounds and buildings are kept with such pride.

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Screenagers: Take 3!!!!  As incredible as it may sound, our March 8 Screenagers! night was curtailed once again. This time it did not happen due to calendar mix-up at the PAC.  Our extreme apologies to the parents who came, only to find that the PAC was not open.  Thank you to our staff Amber, Rosie, and Jen who were there and fielded the frustrating non-event.


But We Will Not Give Up! After ensuring that yes, indeed we can keep the rental of the DVD from the Screenagers producers, and double assurance that the PAC will be ready for us, We have scheduled a final date of Wednesday, April 19, 7-9 pm, for any and all parents and students to come watch this important film with us, at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

Our students watched the film with their teachers and the overwhelming response is that, while they had some criticism of the film, the majority of every class felt it very important that their parents view the film as well. We love it when our families can engage in important conversations with each other and their children. There is no doubt that the topic of screen time is an important one to ponder and make some decisions about. Parent involvement and support is so important to your students success and events like these are a good way to support your children’s education.

A brief discussion of the film will be offered right after the film.  

Tickets previously purchased will be honored. Tickets are a suggested donation of $10.  Please note:  Tickets and trailer for the film available at this NEW LINK:  

https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-2178

You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which you need to bring with you to the event.  If you prefer to not purchase them online, they can also be purchased through your teachers or by contacting Danelle Matteson at 335-0932.

Again, Please take the time to read further about Screenagers.  If you are able to make it, I think you’ll enjoy it, and also enjoy talking with your kids about it afterward. This is a very important topic for our staff and we hope that you will attend the viewing on April 19th at 7 pm, in our Performing Arts Center on the SLVHS campus. Many of our high school students were not able to attend due to the conflict with a scheduled class. It would be great if they could come with you to the evening show.


________________________________________________________________

Open application window for Charter programs. INTENT to RETURN FORMS:

We had a great turnout for both the Nature Academy and our Homeschool programs Information Nights.  Our information nights mark the beginning of our application windows.  We are already receiving new applications for next year for all of our programs.  You should also have received an ‘Intent to Return’ form in an email from your teacher.  Please fill this out and return it to either of the Charter offices as soon as possible. This form either holds your spot OR releases your spot for someone else to fill. Students who are returning, either to their current program or to another program within the Charter do not need to apply again.  You spot is guaranteed, provided we receive your Intent to Return form. Thank you for your speedy attention to this.

________________________________________________________________

Upcoming CAASPP testing: Most, if not all of you know that, as a publicly funded Charter, we are aligned with the State adopted K-12 Standards and the Annual State Assessment that is used to measure grade level progress toward these Standards.


Below is a letter from the District that was mailed to all parents.  I have taken the liberty to send it via this newsletter so that I can add a ‘Charter perspective’ as well, seen in bold type.

2016-2017 Notice for Statewide Tests – Smarter Balanced Assessment

March, 2017

In 2010, California adopted more rigorous K-12 standards in English Language Arts and Math to ensure all students move from grade to grade with the academic knowledge and skills necessary for success beyond high school. Since we raised the bar for what we expect students to know and be able to do, we have also changed the way we measure student progress through our state tests, known as Smarter Balanced.


How much time do the tests take? The statewide tests are not timed so your child can take as long as he or she needs to fully demonstrate what he or she knows and can do. Students are tested in grades 3-8, 11 in English and Math, and grades 5, 8 and 10 in Science. We take great care to create the best environment possible for our students, with each program determining the best time frames and breaks within the testing period to support our students.


What do the results mean and where do I get my child’s results? Test results identify your child’s strengths and areas for improvement in English Language Arts and Math. This test is developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium and is one measure used by many States in our country and is meant to be used as one form to measure growth and areas for improvement. Each subject will be broken into categories and will show how well your child performed in each area. The tests measure student learning on a 4-point scale. You will receive your child’s scores by mail at the beginning of the next school year.


Why does participation matter? While no single test can give a complete picture of your child’s progress, having your child take the statewide tests provides teachers and administrators with information about what educational approaches are working and where additional resources are needed. Your child’s participation is very important to ensure schools and districts receive the targeted resources they need to help all students succeed. We are required to have 95% of our students participate in the CAASPP testing every year as part of our Charter renewal.


When will my child take the test?  The San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District Smarter Balanced Assessment testing window will be between March 21 and June 8. Your child’s school will have the specific dates your child takes the tests within the statewide testing window above. Please check with your child’s school for specific testing dates.

For more information go to www.caaspp.org or contact your child’s school.  I know that some of the tests may be difficult, or even considered unpleasant for some students. It is a short window of testing each year that is important for many reasons. We respect your commitment to act on what is best for your child, and I would be more than happy to meet and talk with any parent who is concerned about their child taking this test.


Thank you.


*California Education Code section 60615 permits a parent or guardian annually submit to the school a written request to excuse his or her child from any or all parts of any test provided pursuant to Education Code section 60640 for the school year. If a parent or guardian submits an exemption request after testing has begun, any test(s) completed before the request is submitted will be scored and the results reported to the parent or guardian and included in the pupil's records. Note: Authority cited: Sections 33031 and 60640, Education Code. Reference: Sections 60604, 60605, 60607, 60612, 60615, 60640 and 60641, Education Code.

Negative Effects State Opt-out Rules can have on SLV Charter:

  • Opt-out students now counted as Not Proficient against the overall school score

  • Opt-outs count against the percentage of students who take the test, which needs to be at or above 95%

  • In the past, opt-outs showed as if the student didn’t take the test.  They now show as if the student is Not Proficient in Math and ELA.

  • This Not Proficient designation means student in 11th grade did not meet EAP portion of test and depending on high school course of study and scores on other standardized exams such as AP, SAT, and ACT, may have to start college with remedial LA and Math courses

________________________________________________________________                                                                                          

New California School Dashboard: Please read the attached letter that explains the preliminary roll-out of the California School Dashboard, the new accountability system in California. In addition, the California Department of Education has prepared a wealth of resources for parents you can explore. This is a very early version of the tool and we are all learning together, so please stay tuned for future updates.You can access the dashboard at this site https://www.caschooldashboard.org/#/Home and search for SLVUSD Charter.  NOTE: The data may be misrepresentative due to the small size of our student population, as a whole and within grade levels.   This dashboard is part of the new way the state is planning on assessing schools ability to support their students.  It is a work in progress and only one accountability tool.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.   AND, coming to our Parent Advisory Committee meetings is always a great place to ask questions and discuss what this is all about and how it relates to the Charter programs.

_______________________________________________________________                                                                                          

Parent Advisory Committee: PLEASE COME, April 19, from 3-4. More about testing, and further refinement of LCAP funding.

At our last meeting, we discussed the ideas from parents within the various programs about how to spend LCAP funds, based on the goals for our school Charter LCAP funding, what the goals are, how our supplemental funding was allocated, what was spent, and ideas for next year. Some good ideas were shared around encouraging and developing our students' abilities in Mathematics.

_______________________________________________________________                                                                                        

All Parents Are Invited to Attend a…

PRESENTATION of the LOCAL CONTROL ACCOUNTABILITY PLAN (LCAP) FOR SLVUSD

TUESDAY, MARCH 28th 6:30pm – 7:30pm SLVHS Multi-Use Room

OR...

TUESDAY, APRIL 11th 6:30pm – 7:30pm BCE -Library

  • Hear About the District’s LCAP

  • Provide Your Input

Parent Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/L3LBQ7B

Teacher Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/LF5VR6G


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets from some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School:  CRHS Leadership Activities Rainbow Week - March 20-24


Coast Redwood Middle School: The week of March 13 we are on a snow trip to Yosemite National Park. We will have investigated snow and early spring ecology. As well as study geograph, participate in winter sports and work in groups to prepare meals, budget, shop and cook.

Nature Academy: 6th grade parents will be meeting this Tuesday evening at 6:30 for the first Headwaters Trip meeting.  We are moving into our next PE Unit this week, Softball. This means I am looking for a parent to help me during PE. This is a shorter 3-week unit and a great opportunity to help with volunteer hours as well as get to know the class. The 6th grade class has completed their Egyptian studies and are putting in a lot of great work on refining their writing skills.  The 7-8th grade classes came back from a great snow trip to the Sequoias. They are continuing their work in science on the take apart project, moving into an electronic project, completing their argumentative essay, and continuing work on their Africa Unit. The students are enjoying another great elevctive cycle, thanks to parent support.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts: We are focusing on Force and Motion in our sciences which also incorporates quite a bit of math. We made great strides in our PAC scale models, with one finished! The students will be able to choose their own production and create a set for it. We also had Garvey Gordon and Steven Dowdy from Coast Redwood High School come and organize PE games with us yesterday. We listened to the “Hamilton” soundtrack, dissecting Jefferson and Hamilton’s “Cabinet Battle No. 2” this time. We discussed the origins of International Day of the Woman. The students will be shown brief clips of outstanding women in history each week this month. We continue Yoga class with Mary. The students have played spontaneous games of kickball, including our K-6 population from QHHS, each day this week. Friday, March 24: Make-O-Rama/DIY Day, presented by QHIA, 10-1:30;

Tuesday, March 28: Quail Hollow Homeschool K-5 Performance at the PAC, 10:30

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We have been learning about Ancient Egypt and began making our clay sarcophagus project for our mummy dogs. We have been rehearsing our upcoming play. The Ensemble worked on song - Walk Like an Egyptian and beginning choreography. First and second graders worked on finishing their unit on friendship, self-regulation and communication.This week Jen Sims talked to our 3rd grade students about skillsfor feeling calm inside.  This is very important for maintaining healthy relationships!  They went on a wise minded walk and observed what they saw, smell, touched, heard and smelled.  Later they recorded their experiences through and discussed which sensory experiences felt the best. (4-5) The weather was so great, we chose to go outside and begin to work in our pond area, where the Save the Frogs pond area is.  It is full of egg sacks and pollywogs!  Tuesday, March 28: Quail Hollow Homeschool K-5 Performance at the PAC Make-O-Rama Friday, March 24 How it works:  Parents and/or students come up with an easy to make project, bring the supplies, and set up a station for students to roam to, create something from scratch, and bring it home. The QH Integrated Arts students will be working in teams teaching some stations. A few of the projects they will be offering to make are butter, a stress ball, slime, sock puppets, origami, drawing eyes, t-shirt decorating, and more...

Fall Creek Homeschool: We took a fabulous trip to the Fujitsu Planetarium and Cheeseman Garden at DeAnza College. It was great for the kids to see a state-of-the-art planetarium. We discussed how we can use our hands to estimate time and distance in the sky. We made ”astrolabs” to measure the altitude of any star. The class got to see a real astrolab made of brass. We listened to a story from the Bororo Trive of Central Africa about the names of the stars. We made thank you cards for the astronomers who showed us the sights on stargazing night. Make-O-Rama Friday, March 24. How it works:  Parents and/or students come up with an easy to make project, bring the supplies, and set up a station for students to roam to, create something from scratch, and bring it home. The QH Integrated Arts students will be working in teams teaching some stations. A few of the projects they will be offering to make are butter, a stress ball, slime, sock puppets, origami, drawing eyes, t-shirt decorating, and more...

Mountain IS: We continue creating our own board games which integrate a variety of curricular areas. First we "buddied-up" to brainstorm a list of words typically found on game boards. We also created titles and selected fonts to create labels. In art we Modge Podged our spaces, words, spinners and titles to the game boards. Next week, students will create a rough draft of the playing instructions for their games. After some peer editing and revising, students will publish a final draft of direction on the back of their games so that anyone can enjoy playing them.  During music time, we divided into two groups. 1/2 our class did a brisk yet  lovely hike to the creek, then we switched activities so everyone was able to enjoy music


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)


  • Nature Academy Lottery application window: Mar. 8-April. 21 Lottery: April 28

  • QHIA application window Mar. 14-April. 28

  • April 3-7: Spring break

  • CAASPP Testing begins at Charter sites.  

  • April 19: Parent Advisory Meeting, 3-4 pm

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school

Charter News: Feb 27

posted Mar 2, 2017, 11:55 AM by Rhonda Schlosser



“Your breathing is your greatest friend. Return to it in all your troubles and you will

find comfort and guidance.” ~Unknown


Love yourself first, and everything else fall in line.  You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.”  ~Lucille Ball


Dear Charter Families,


It appears that the rains have stopped, at least for a while. I hope you are all enjoying time to dry out and spend time outside.


We continue to have had a lot of extra activities in our programs. Amber has begun working on our All Charter play with over 50 students from all of our programs, ranging in age from 5-16!  QHHS began practicing their play, and Mt.IS just finished theirs. Nature Academy’s 7-8th grade students just came back from their trip in the snow, and several other programs are beginning to plan their end of year trips. Students from CRHS have been working on their front garden area, moving much appreciated donated mulch to help soak up the excessive standing rainwater. And this week, Monday and Tuesday, I will be hosting a WASC (Western Association for Schools and Colleges) committee that will be here to review the CRHS program as part of the process needed for our accreditation.


Please read on to hear from our Counselor, Jen Sims, and about more special events.


~Rhonda


Notes From Our Counselor: Teaching your children to love themselves…and their inner critic.


                  to        


During February, the month of love, we often make Valentines and give them to the special people in our lives to remind them of our appreciation and care.  I am curious if anyone out there has ever spent this time reflecting on self-love and compassion?  Sometimes saying “I love myself!” can provoke negative feedback – others can view it as selfish or conceited.   Self-love does not have to equal self-involvement, however, and I believe it is absolutely a key protective factor when it comes to all of the societal pressures and danger that the children in our lives are facing today.  If you love something, you take care of it; you spend time with it, you stand up for it and see it as important.  We can work to teach children that that “something” can actually be them.


It seems like self-love should be a natural occurrence, and maybe it is.  Many (but not all) of the younger children I work with seem to feel great about themselves and face life with confidence.   As life goes on, it seems like the “Inner Critic” – that voice inside your head that tells you you’re not being careful enough, or that you didn’t do something right, or everyone’s outfit/grades/life is better than yours - becomes more prominent.  Louder.  Meaner and more sarcastic.  Most of all, the Inner Critic can sound totally believable, and that makes it very hard to turn away from.


I think the first step to self-love is taming that Inner Critic – but how?  The Inner Critic will surely tell your child that getting rid of it will make life worse – they need it to survive!  It is important at this point to help your child understand the function of the Inner Critic.  Our Inner Critics are actually an important part of our internal self and are there to protect us from shame.  Think about it – we need critical thought to make sure we show up on time, wear the right clothes for the right situation, make decisions that lead to connection and ultimately survival.  But sometimes the Inner Critic can get out of control and become badgering and hammering through unwanted thoughts that are intrusive and uncomfortable.  Taking the approach that the Inner Critic is kind of like a misguided friend can be very helpful and make it a little less scary.


This might be hard for your child to wrap their head around – how could something so mean be my friend?  Here are some ideas that can be tweaked to be developmentally appropriate to your child:

Don’t believe everything you think!  On average, we humans have about 60,000 thoughts per day and 95% of them are the same as yesterday.   When your child presents you with a negative belief that you think sounds suspiciously like the Inner Critic, help them investigate this against reality.  “What makes you think that is true?”  “What is your evidence?”  “Is there anything happening that could support a different reality?”


Embrace your Inner Critic.  This can be a very disarming move.  Instead of encouraging your child to ignore the Inner Critic, help them to listen more closely.  Get to know the voice very well yourself so that you can listen for it and hold a mirror up for your child when it starts to overwhelm them.  The goal is to be able to distinguish the voice of the Inner Critic from their own voice, and thus begin to develop a compassionate response. “Sounds like your Inner Critic is worried that you won’t make friends, how can you reassure it that you have the skills and have made friends in the past?”


Draw your Inner Critic. You can help your kid take the Inner Critic from inside to out by having them draw their Inner Critic.  They might find that it doesn’t end up being as scary and unmanageable as it sounds in their head.  Or it is scary, but now they can look at and deal with it with your support.


Dialogue with your Inner Critic. This is especially applicable for older children.  They can use paper and pencil, or the computer to generate a dialogue with their Inner Critic.  This is great practice and may result in reduced anxiety through having faced what’s happening inside their head. “You’re not good enough!”  “Says who?”  “Says everyone!”  “You mean everyone as in you?”  “uhhh….”


Be your own cheerleader:  Work with your child to understand that loving and speaking well of yourself is not the same as being conceited.  This was some surprising feedback I got while talking to students about Self-love and the Inner Critic.  I would hate to think that any child is not polishing their shine in order to appease the egos of others.  Come up with some positive language to replace negative thought loops.  “When you can fly with the eagles, don’t let the turkeys get you down”


When it comes to self-love, it’s nice to think about it as a twist of the Golden Rule – Treat others as you would want to be treated, and also treat yourself the way you expect others to treat you.  Take care of yourself, spend time with yourself, stand-up and advocate for yourself, and let go of the things that get in your way.  I’m sending all Charter Parents well wishes for this endeavor and please know that I am here to support the beautiful journeys of self-development we are all witnessing. -Jen


SPECIAL EVENT: SCREENAGERS! NEW DATE: Wednesday, March 8, 7-9 pm. at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

We have rescheduled our  hosting of the film of SCREENAGERS.

A brief discussion of the film will be offered right after the film.  We will be sending out a parent discussion guide closer to the date of the event for parents to use at home with their students after the screening.  We will also have hard copies at the event.

“This special screening probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including the director's own, and depicts messy struggles over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world.”

Tickets previously purchased will be honored. Tickets are a suggested donation of $10. Tickets and trailer for the film available at this link:  https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-1315   You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which you need to bring with you to the event.  If you prefer to not purchase them online, they can also be purchased through your teachers or by contacting Danelle Matteson at 335-0932.


Community Event: Cabrillo College Community Forum-  March 9- 7 PM Cabrillo College will be holding a community forum on March 9, 2017 at 7:00pm in the SLVHS multi-use room for the SLV community. Cabrillo’s mission is to be “a dynamic, diverse and responsive educational community that is dedicated to helping all students achieve their academic, career, and personal development goals.”  To achieve this, they will convene community forums and Cabrillo College focus groups that will enable the college to refine its understanding of community perception. The intent of this forum is to hear from a broad range of constituents. Come and make a positive contribution to the future strategic planning for Cabrillo College.


Parent Advisory Committee: PLEASE COME, March 15, from 3-4

At our last meeting, we discussed the Charter LCAP funding, what the goals our, how our supplemental funding was allocated, what was spent, and ideas for next year.  We also reviewed the coming WASC visit.

NEXT MEETING:  March 15, 2017: More about the LCAP goals and funding.


Information Nights:  Come learn more about in of our programs!  Please invite others who may be interested.

  • If you’ve ever wondered if a different delivery model would benefit your student.

  • If you’re a parent or caregiver looking for more involvement in your child’s education.

Our Information nights are coming in March. The information nights open the application window for the Nature Academy and Quail Hollow Integrated Arts Program.  A lottery will be held if there are more applications than seats available in either of the programs.  All other programs are filled based on the date the application is turned in as are the wait lists.


Nature Academy program March 7  5:30-6:30 MS Library

NA application window March 8-April 21       Lottery: Friday, April 28


Homeschool Charter programs March 14  6-7:30 pm MS Library

QHIA application window March 14-April 27       Lottery: Thursday, May 11



Please plan to come to of these two opportunities to hear from our superintendent.


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets from some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School: SENIORS: FIELD TRIP TO CABRILLO COLLEGE TO TAKE THE ENGLISH (ELA) AND MATH ASSESSMENTS Jennifer will be driving 10 students to Cabrillo College to take the readiness assessments in Math and English. The results of these two assessments determine which classes a student is eligible to enroll in, in the fall. **Extra bonus points on your senior exit portfolio will be granted for attending and completing the assessment test(s) WHEN: Friday, March 3,                                           

MEETING OF THE TRIBES Friday- March 17 STUDENT VOLUNTEER UPDATES: Horticulture students and volunteers worked hard to move mulch into the swampy areas of our compound. Well done everyone! You made a HUGE difference  keeping our outdoor classroom clean of mold and bacteria!MESSAGE FROM OUR LEADERSHIP CLASS: On Tuesday, March 7, 2017, Coast Redwood Charter High School is hosting our very own Coast Con. Every student is invited to dress up as their favorite, book, movie or anime character. Superheroes are welcome! Please make sure that all costumes are school appropriate. This includes no fake weapons or normally inappropriate clothing. We will be giving prizes to students who participate. Everyone is encouraged to participate and have fun! Questions? Emily and Bella are ready to answer your questions!

Coast Redwood Middle School: We spent some time talking about the “why” of circle check-in time.  I shared with them excerpts from a blog post by Chad Fowler, CTO and software developer about how even though it is not easy for him, and it seems unnecessary for his very technical job that empathy is the most important skill he practices, both for success in his professional and his personal life. Class Business:The kids watched part of a video of a TED talk by Simon Sinek, about how great leaders inspire action, and took Cornell Notes to write down the main points of the talk. To begin visioning our own mission statement, the kids started working on a process of developing their own personal mission statement.  The process included drawing and answering questions to investigate what they most value and admire, and what circumstances bring out the best in them.  Once each child has their own individual mission statement, then we can see if we can pick up common threads to form a mission statement for our group. Table groups completed a second lotion trial with the same oil they used before.  They worked on more accurately measuring weight and volume of ingredients and we were more sensitive to the role of temperature in the emulsification process.

Garden: Students worked in pairs to map the garden (including measuring the paths and the existing beds) and weeded the paths to help identify beds in greatest need of rebuilding.

Nature Academy: 6th grade parents will be meeting this Tuesday evening at 6:30 for the first Headwaters Trip meeting.  We are moving into our next PE Unit this week, Softball. This means I am looking for a parent to help me during PE. This is a shorter 3-week unit and a great opportunity to help with volunteer hours as well as get to know the class. The 6th grade class has completed their Egyptian studies and are putting in a lot of great work on refining their writing skills.  A parent meeting will be held to prepare for their annual Headwaters Outdoor School Field Trip.  The 7-8th grade classes came back from a great snow trip to the Sequoias. They are continuing their work in science on the take apart project, working on their Africa Unit.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts:We focused on acceleration, force, gravity, and orbital velocity. Students used ratios to determine the appropriate scale and size for their models. I also shared the current topic of NASA discovering 7 planets in the constellation, Aquarius, that all orbit around a single star; 3 of which are in the “habitable zone” possibly having surface water, and all 7 are rocky and earthlike. This began an extremely exciting conversation sharing so many exciting theories about what this could mean. We continued to work in our History notebooks, adding information about governmental checks and balances between the 3 branches of our government, and gave examples of instances when these checks and balances have occurred during the last 5-8 years.We listened to Hamilton tracks comparing lyrics to historical events; primarily Federalists vs. Anti-Federalists.  We continued with our short story genre, using another writing strategy to effectively show characters’ primary traits without saying it, such as “she was brave.”

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We had a great first play practice today - all participants seemed to

thoroughly enjoy themselves and had wonderful, creative ideas to share. We discussed different strategies friends use when determining a given number - counting the number, counting on, or subtracting from 10. We discussed the 4 dimensions:  length, width, depth and time.   We defined and calculated perimeters and areas of various figures. Working on a STEM Activity students had the challenge to make the tallest pyramid possible with their group using only toothpicks and clay in 30 minutes.  We reviewed different 3D structures: triangular pyramid, square pyramid, and rectangular pyramid.  We related some prior knowledge from our Greek Column building to what makes a strong, successful structure - a strong foundation. Jen, our  counselor came and worked with the K-2 classes around friendship. They watched a short video called "Partly Cloudy" (available on youtube) and talked about the unique needs we all have when it comes to making friends.  Not everyone likes the same things!  At the end they did a self-esteem mad lib which the kids wanted to hear 3 times!

Fall Creek Homeschool: Stargazing! The Santa Cruz Astronomy Club has agreed to come do another telescope night with us! We’ll be focusing on the constellations and the Messier Objects. We’ll also see Venus and Mars! We had a parent meeting yesterday. We had a good discussion about the winter break, the benchmarks, the research reports and the Science Fair, parent workshop ideas, testing and fundraising ideas. We had a visit from Jen Sims, our school counselor. She led the children in a discussion and activity about nurturing ourselves. The children brainstormed ideas for these categories: ways to care for myself, ways to calm and soothe myself, ways to believe in myself, and things to let go of. We listened to the myth of why Artemis asked Zeus to put Orion into the stars. We went down to the big field and played Cranes and Crows and Octopus – it was great to have a dry day to run around like crazy!

Mountain IS: Wow! Bravo to our wonderful actors for their fabulous performances this week! We couldn't be more proud of the kids. Thank you again for your support and help. Please remember that the Science Fair is this Wednesday with the projects due on Tuesday. We're looking forward to the student presentations  and touring the school projects.


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)


  • February 24: End of Second Trimester

  • March 7: Nature Academy Information Night.  5:30-6:30

    • Lottery application window: Mar. 8-April. 21

  • March 8: SCREENAGERS Special parent Screening. 7 pm at the PAC on the SLVHS campus.

  • March 14: All Homeschool Programs Information Night.  6:00-7:00

    • QHIA application window Mar. 14-April. 28

  • April 3-7: Spring break

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school

Charter News: Feb 12

posted Feb 15, 2017, 1:52 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving. -Paulo Coelho


Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. Lao Tzu



Don’t forget, no school tomorrow, February, 13th


Dear Charter Families,


The rains have subsided for a spell and I hope that your homes and roads will have time to dry and stabilize some. Our sympathies go out to those whose homes were flooded or who now have an extended commute due to road closures.


Unfortunately we needed to cancel our viewing of Screenagers due to the District’s storm closure. We have rescheduled it for March 8th, same time, same place.  Our students have now watched it with their teachers and the overwhelming response is that, while they had some criticism of the film, the majority of every class felt it very important that their parents view the film as well. We love it when our families can engage in important conversations with each other and their children.  There is no doubt that the topic of screen time is an important one to ponder and make some decisions about. Parent involvement and support is so important to your students success and events like these are a good way to support your children’s education.


I have listed some salient points that our teachers heard from their students through their discussions after the film.

  • The kids were quite attentive during the film and authentically interested in how something so much a part of their lives was being portrayed.  

  • Many kids felt that the examples used in the film were extreme.  Many felt that they could (and do) drop using their electronics for a week or more without any trouble, if they are away or have other activities.  

  • Some kids saw themselves reflected in the film more than others.  

  • Discussions were had about the characterization of computer use based on gender and class presented in the film and whether evidence from their own lives supported those characterizations.   

  • Almost everyone felt their parents should see the movie. About 75 % think their parents really need to see the movie, mostly because they perceive their parents as using a lot of screen time. Students thought that their parents were addicted to social media, and that they needed to see the film.

  • Students also unanimously thought that they had a good relationship with their parents regarding screens and social media. Many kids felt like they had a clear idea of how the parents should handle limits on computer use the situation and didn’t quite understand why the parents in the film were having such a hard time.

  • They referenced what they had learned last year about the brain and entertainment screen time.

  • Many expressed concerns that parents be made aware that the documentary seems biased and in their perception somewhat "fake."  They are concerned that their parents may disregard the benefits of the internet and media and curtail use without considering the benefits.

  • They expressed that the film spent too much time on video games and not enough on social media, admitting that the social aspect of screen time; relationships, bullying, being safe on the internet etc. was what they were dealing with most of the time, and should have been more of a focus of the film.

  • They recognized that many of the scenarios of the students presented in the film matched those of people that they know.

  • The majority of students did not think that violent games had an effect on student behavior, with a brave minority claiming the opposite. This was a big part of our discussion time.

  • They also discussed how many of their parents had completely different opinions regarding screen time and social media.

  • All students thought that children under 5 years old should not be using screens as much as they see them do.

  • One student noted that as soon as we were out of the PAC, half of the students immediately pulled out their phones : )

Again, Please take the time to read further about Screenagers.  If you are able to make it to the parents’ viewing, I think you’ll enjoy it, and also enjoy talking with your kids about it afterward. This is a very important topic for our staff and we hope that you will attend the viewing on March 8th, at 7 pm, in our Performing Arts Center on the SLVHS campus. Many of our high school students were not able to attend due to the conflict with a scheduled class.  It would be great if they could come with you to the evening show.

~Rhonda


SPECIAL EVENT: SCREENAGERS! NEW DATE: Wednesday, March 8, 7-9 pm. at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

We have rescheduled our  hosting of the film of SCREENAGERS.

A brief discussion of the film will be offered right after the film.  We will be sending out a parent discussion guide closer to the date of the event for parents to use at home with their students after the screening.  We will also have hard copies at the event.

“This special screening probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including the director's own, and depicts messy struggles over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world.”

Tickets previously purchased will be honored.

Tickets are a suggested donation of $10.  Please note:  We have opened up the ticket sales to families of the other schools in the District, so please buy your tickets right away! There are only 210 seats available. Tickets and trailer for the film available at this link:  https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-1315   

You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which you need to bring with you to the event.  If you prefer to not purchase them online, they can also be purchased through your teachers or by contacting Danelle Matteson at 335-0932.



Parent Advisory Committee: PLEASE COME, This Wednesday, Feb. 15, from 3-4.

We will be discussing the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP):  

• What are the goals, • how are we moving forward, • What are the next steps for the coming year.  This is an important discussion and hearing from our parents is important.

Our WASC visit is planned for Feb. 27-28.  We will review the schedule for this important visit.


NEXT MEETING:  March 15, 2017. We will be discussing more about the LCAP goals, as well as testing preparation.


Information Nights:  Come learn more about in of our programs!  Please invite others who may be interested.

  • If you’ve ever wondered if a different curriculum delivery model would benefit your student.

  • If you’re a parent or caregiver looking for more involvement in your child’s education.

Our Information nights are coming in March. The information nights open the application window for the Nature Academy and Quail Hollow Integrated Arts Program.  A lottery will be held if there are more applications than seats available in either of the programs.  All other programs are filled based on the date the application is turned in as are the wait lists.


Nature Academy program March 7  5:30-6:30 MS Library

NA application window March 8-April 21       Lottery: Friday, April 28


Homeschool Charter programs March 14  6-7:30 pm MS Library

QHIA application window March 14-April 27       Lottery: Thursday, May 11


Campus Video Surveillance for greater safety: The SLV tri-campus now has video surveillance; 50 cameras are now running 24/7.   Video surveillance is also at the entrance of the Quail Hollow Campus as well.  This is a reminder of the importance that all visitors must have a badge when they are on campus.  Badges are given to visitors through the Fall Creek Charter office. Please contact your teachers or Danelle if you have any questions.


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets from some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School: Here we are in second-semester and running strong. Our continued message to our students and to their Learning Coaches (parents) is to stay organized, check your emails, check the web page, open Schoology several times a week, check PowerSchool on a weekly basis, be on time with attendance and assignments, and ask questions! CRHS GRADUATION - Save this date and join the families and students of the class 2017 in celebrating their graduation at the Fall Creek Amphitheater on Friday, June 2 at 12:30p.m. This year's graduation also marks the 20th year Coast Redwood HS has been an education choice for hundreds of students! SENIORS: FIELD TRIP TO CABRILLO COLLEGE.Jennifer Kelly will be taking 10 students to Cabrillo College to take the readiness assessments in math and English. The results of these two assessments determine which classes a student is eligible to enroll in, in the fall. WHEN: Friday March 3, 2016  Assessment Time: 9:30  Leaving CRHS at 8:00 CONGRATULATION TO LILLIAN BUSNARDO who reached 6th place in Saturday's quarterfinals at the CCS Girls Wrestling Championship in San Jose.  PARENT SUNSHINE COMMITTEE  Thank you Cassie and Cayenne for the wonderful once-a-month teacher appreciation lunch! It is always a special treat to take a break and enjoy a ready homemade lunch!  The entire staff also wishes to thank everyone for your gifts "from the heart" at winter break and for your year-round donations. Thank you!

Coast Redwood Middle School:Chabot Space and Science Center:   In addition to exploring the museum exhibits, we participated in a Lego Robotics lab where the kids were encouraged to think like programmers, using programming blocks to troubleshoot different parts of a wheeled robot.  The most fun was when the kids got to explore programming the vehicles on their own.  Our day ended with watching a planetarium show on Ancient Mayan Astronomy and culture.  Thanks all for making the trek up to the Oakland hills! Class Business Kick-Off: Last week we started moving forward with our natural body care product class business. The kids brainstormed body care products that they would like to make, ideas for jobs that needed to be done to run the business, and how they would like to spend the profits (if there are any).  Starting with April’s lotion recipe, we did some product testing.  The kids worked in their table groups to describe the qualities of four different potential base oils that we might use.  They then made a small batch of the recipe using the various oils. Small containers of the lotion are now placed in different environments to test the effect of the oils on shelf-life and product characteristics.

Nature Academy: The 6th grade class has completed their Egyptian studies and are putting in a lot of great work on refining their writing skills.  A parent meeting will be held to prepare for their annual Headwaters Outdoor School Field Trip.  The 7-8th grade classes are continuing their work in science on the take apart project, working on their Africa Unit and preparing for the Sequoia Field Trip.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts: We reviewed Grammarly revision suggestions to student research papers, using some student examples on the big screen. Please refer to a detailed email regarding how I’m using Grammarly as a teaching tool for students to improve various components of their writing.

The focus on CK12 Science was Acids and Bases. We individually and collectively researched a long list of Revolutionary Era women who accomplished remarkable feats, yet many of whom are not well known. We were surprised to learn how many women fought during the American Revolution disguised as men.

Quail Hollow Homeschool:We discussed the impacts of the recent stormy weather on us and our families, friends and neighbors.  We shared some new Wonders of Me posters brought in by friends - we still have a few out there, so finish them up and bring them in.  Friends who participated in the Science Fair shared about their projects.

Fall Creek Homeschool:The Santa Cruz Astronomy Club has agreed to come do another telescope night with us! We’ll be focusing on the constellations and the Messier Objects (galaxies, nebulas and star clusters). We’ll also see Venus and Mars! Come dressed warmly and bring binoculars! Wednesday, February 22 at 6:30 pm

Mountain IS: We are continuing with our play practice  both Tuesday and Friday. We finished our tall tale figures and painted the backdrop for our play which looks fabulous. Thank you Alex for helping to put that up for us.  We also practiced some Chinese jump rope games in PE. There are only 3 class days left to practice.  On Valentine’s day, we will have a themed art time and will be welcoming our loved ones for a " healthy for your heart picnic" from 12:20-1:00. We ask that each family bring a healthy snack to share. We will be sharing valentines after our picnic. Our day with conclude with a parent vs student game of hula hut.



DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • February 13th: No School--Presidents day

  • February 20th: No School--Presidents day

  • February 24: End of Second Trimester

  • March 7: Nature Academy Information Night.  5:30-6:30

    • Lottery application window: Mar. 8-April. 21

  • March 8: SCREENAGERS Special parent Screening. 7 pm at the PAC on the SLVHS campus.

  • March 14: All Homeschool Programs Information Night.  6:00-7:00

    • QHIA application window Mar. 14-April. 28

  • April 3-7: Spring break

  • May 29th:  No School-- Memorial Day

  • June 8th:  Last day of school


Charter News: January 27, 2017

posted Jan 29, 2017, 4:49 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Character is the ability to carry out a good resolution long after the

excitement of the moment has passed.    -Cavett Robert




Dear Charter Families,


We ended last week with another one of our professional development days.  And once more I am led to express how appreciative I am to work with such a dedicated staff, who continually show their professionalism and love for what they do. They love to share and learn new aspects of education. They don’t get to work together very often, but when they do, the conversations are rich and full of sharing ways to interweave their expertise with each other. Please read on to hear from Jen Sims, our mental health counselor.  She has been leading such wonderful proactive, preventive discussions in our programs with the students and with our teachers.


ALSO: Please take the time to read further about Screenagers.  This is a very important topic for our staff and we hope that you will attend the viewing on February 8, at 7 pm, in our Performing Arts Center on the SLVHS campus.  


~Rhonda


Notes From Our Counselor: Some thoughts on change and New Year’s Revolutions.

I hope everyone has had a restful holiday season and is ready to take on 2017.  The new year brings new hope, and this is the time of year when many of us decide to try something new or make a big life change.  I’ve been thinking about the differences between Resolution and Revolution.  Resolution means to “firmly decide to do or not do something.”  Revolution means to “overthrow one system in favor of a new system."   So, it seems that the first is to change what you do, and the second is about transformation.  Transformation, I believe, is the key to lasting change and something to think about when setting intentions for the New Year.  Don’t just resolve to do something, start a revolution!

Of course, you’re going to need a lot of resolve to get to revolution.  Resolution and Revolution really need to work together to help us make permanent shifts.  Without resolve – that day-to-day push to keep momentum – revolutions are impossible.  And without revolution, what’s going to keep you interested in this change?  

Ninety percent of New Year’s resolutions fail because there is truly a limit to willpower.  Humans can also be downright resistant to change, especially if the current situation is in some way beneficial to them (i.e., it’s comforting and familiar).  Lasting change has really got to be worth your while. It must become intrinsically more valuable than what you might have to give up in the process.

Think about a habit that you have been able to develop successfully – any habit, good or bad, no judgment!  How did you get there?  Why that habit? What needs are met by this habit? What did it take to become ‘proficient’ in this habit?  What are the factors that keep you excited about this habit?  Who supports you in this habit?  What are the benefits that you derive from this habit?  Does it work for or against the goals you have for your life? What gets in the way of doing this habit and how do you deal with that?   

These questions can help uncover true motivations and desire.  For example, smoking is an unhealthy and deadly habit, yet people continue to do it with full knowledge of the risks.  Why?  Well, besides the physical addiction, smoking meets a lot of needs – it staves off emotions, it’s a reason to take a break, it gives someone something to do with their hands, there is companionship in smoking breaks…these are huge and unless these needs are also addressed, the mere act of stopping smoking won’t have as much of a chance.  Developing this compassionate awareness can help us see the bigger systems, and this is the only that way that we can overthrow them. Compassionate awareness leads to revolution.

When it comes to parenting, working with your child to develop this kind of insight is an ongoing process.  There is no age limitation.  As soon as a child starts asking “Why?” is as good a time as any to help them start exploring why they do what they do.  As they grow, you can ask more sophisticated questions and help them learn to connect their thoughts and feelings to their behaviors. By the time they are teenagers, they will have an understanding of their emotions and an increased ability to self-reflect.   These are the skills that a person needs to even begin have the capacity for transformational change, and it's something you can easily work on every day.

If you have any questions or want to talk more about this subject, don't hesitate to contact me at jsims@slvusd.org


SPECIAL EVENT: SCREENAGERS! Wednesday, February 8.  &-9 pm. at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

We are proud to announce that we are hosting the film of SCREENAGERS.

“This special screening probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including the director's own, and depicts messy struggles over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world.”

Students in our secondary programs are scheduled to discuss and view the film on February 2. Our teachers will be facilitating a discussion with the students after they view the film together.  

Screening for Parents will be on the evening of February 8, at 7 pm.

Tickets will be a suggested donation of $10.  Please note:  We have now opened up the ticket sales to families of the other schools in the District, so please buy your tickets right away! There are only 210 seats available, total.

Tickets and trailer for the film available at this link:  https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-1315   

You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which you bring with you to the event.

If you prefer to not purchase them online, they can also be purchased through your teachers or by contacting Danelle Matteson at 335-0932.

We will be sending out a parent guide closer to the date of the event for parents to use at home with their students after the screening.  We will also have hard copies at the event.





Parent Advisory Committee: Notes from the meeting: The county has asked for an updated extensive safety plan to be put in place for all of its schools. The plan includes an assessment of the school’s current status; an action plan for people, programs and place and listed procedures for complying with school safety laws. We met with Rhonda to review and approve the Safety Plan before the school board meeting on 2/15/17 when they will approve the plan. Teachers and a representative from the Sheriff’s will review it as well. Rhonda and staff have streamlined a safety plan that is inclusive of all programs under the Charter’s umbrella. The safety plan is in a binder at the Charter Office and is available anytime to review once it is approved.

In making an assessment of the current status of safety, Rhonda reviewed data from a variety of sources including parent surveys, teacher surveys, and a 2016 Gallup Poll taken by our Charter students and found some fabulous data:

  • The charter school saw no crime in the 14-15 or 15-16 school year!!

  • The charter school saw no drop-outs in the 14-15 or 15-16 school year!!

  • The high school graduation rate is 100%!

  • 93% of parents report confidence in the safety of their kids while at school!!

  • The school is in compliance with all laws, rules, and regulations pertaining to hazardous materials and earthquake standards.

The action plan for going forward includes: Building greater compassion and self-esteem with a specific focus on proactive instruction and interventions, including education on Digital Citizenship.   

~ from Sally Munro

NEXT MEETING: Feb. 15, from 3-4.  We will be discussing the upcoming WASC visit, as well as testing preparation, and further questions.


ALL CHARTER PLAY INFORMATION MEETING. THIS TUESDAY, Jan. 31 at 3pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.


This is a special event that has become a favorite for many of our students who love the theater.   Amber Walker is a dynamic teacher who encourages every student with her excitement and performance expertise.  Last year we had a great turnout with 64 students from each and every program participating in our All Charter musical.


You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.  *Rehearsals will be on Mondays and Tuesdays from 3-5. Attendance requirements will depend on casting.


This year, the play will be, "The Little Mermaid: A Westside Story". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed in 2006 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale with a twist, containing mermaids who are Dancing Queen's, working class sharks who sing Bruce Springsteen, a mermaid girl falling for a surfer boy, and so much more! Music ranges from pop, rock n' roll, motown, and funk.


Come to our meeting to find out more details!


Information Nights:  Come learn more!  Please invite others who may be interested.

  • If you’ve ever wondered if a different model of teaching would benefit your student.

  • If you’re a parent or caregiver looking for more involvement in your child’s education.


Our Information nights are coming in March. The information nights open the application window for the Nature Academy and Quail Hollow Integrated Arts Program.  A lottery will be held if there are more applications than seats available in either of the programs.  All other programs are filled based on the date the application is turned in as are the wait lists.


Nature Academy program March 7  5:30-6:30 MS Library

Application window

NA application window 3/8-4/21/17

Lottery: Friday, April 28


Homeschool Charter programs March 14  6-7:30 pm MS Library

QHIA application window 3/14-4/27/17

Lottery: May 11


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

Coast Redwood High School: Second semester is in full swing and all classes have resumed, with students busy in their various classes.  Even through the storm, the Meeting of the Tribes meeting was well attended.  

Coast Redwood Middle School: The class will be going on a field trip to the Chabot Space Center on Feb. 1 where the students will participate in a Robotics Lab. The students went to the San Francisco Symphony with the QHIA students last week.

Nature Academy: All grades had a great day at the Pacific Climbing Gym. 6th grade students have completed reading The Outsiders and are beginning discussion of the themes in preparation for writing a response to literature paper.  They are still studying Egypt and will soon begin a new science unit.  7th-8th graders are working on a science unit that involves taking apart machines.  They will begin reading Touching Spirit Bear and have begun their next round of electives.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts: Students listened to a few songs from “Hamilton” that correlated with events that took place around the time of the Treaty of Paris, breaking down the lyrics and discussing those historical events. Arindam Krishna Das, Charter parent, and local musical director/instructor, worked with the students on the physicality of singing, recognizing notes in your body, and creating harmonies to “Alexander Hamilton” for our showcase on Feb.10. We previewed excerpts that we would hear at the SF Symphony, and discussed the various composers and pieces that would be presented. The kids gave great feedback after our field trip commenting on favorite pieces and expressing appreciation for the preview lesson.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Students are working on their Science Fair projects.  The Charter Science Fair is February 3, where the students will present and share their science projects to parents and teachers who will interview them about their topic.  They will introduce their QH Homeschool play this coming week and begin practice. Many of the students went to the Santa Cruz Symphony along with the Fall Creek students.

Fall Creek Homeschool: Students are working on their Science Fair projects.  The Charter Science Fair is February 3, where the students will present and share their science projects to parents and teachers who will interview them about their topic.  They will introduce their QH Homeschool play this coming week and begin practice. Many of the students went to the Santa Cruz Symphony along with QHHS students. A Field trip to MAH, The Museum of Art and History, is on Feb 1.

Mountain IS: As part of our study of Tall Tales, the class retold a story about PE using outlandish attributes, adjectives, and exaggeration. It will eventually be written (and illustrated) into a "published" Tall Tale. Students are continuing work on our weaving project.  The work on our classroom play based on Tall Tales is running smoothly. We will begin working with Micha next week who will choreograph the dancing and help direct our class play (thanks to the Parents Club for funding this amazing choreographer!).



DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • February 8: SCREENAGERS Special parent Screening. 7 pm at the PAC on the SLVHS campus.

  • February 13th: No School--Presidents day

  • February 20th: No School--Presidents day

  • March 7: Nature Academy Information Night.  5:30-6:30

    • Lottery application window: Mar. 8-Mar. 21

  • March 14: All Homeschool Programs Information Night.  6:00-7:00

    • QHIA application window Mar. 14-Mar. 28

Charter News: January 13

posted Jan 16, 2017, 1:06 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. I can never be what I ought to be until

you are what you ought to be. This is the interrelated structure of reality.     

-Martin Luther King, Jr.


Dear Charter Families,


Welcome to 2017!  Already the year has begun in ways that contrast the year that just ended; lots of rain, a new president and government (to name the most obvious).  Both have had their share of press and impact, and both are significant reminders of the inevitable changes that come our way, of how we need to learn to adjust and work with change. Martin Luther King Jr. was a great model in the strength of character, of upholding the value of working together and standing up for what one knows is just, loving, and for the betterment of all humankind.

I believe his holiday comes at a good time in January when the New Year is a reminder of the importance to take time for reflection and renewal. We all need an honest time to reflect on what we are doing and how well it is working; for ourselves, our families, our communities, and of course for our children. The staff will have another Professional Development Day on January 27th.  This is one way that we re-calibrate together on specific academic issues.  And as most of you know, we are always reflecting on how best to support you and your students in the social-emotional realm, as well as on our teaching and facilitating best practices for the whole child.  


There is one issue that has come more and more to the forefront of our discussions together. That is how to find the right balance between the effective uses of screen time for learning versus the over saturated involvement that we see happening with some students. Overuse of screen time with our students and the greater society has made drastic changes in how we interact.  And so...


We are proud to announce that we are hosting the film of SCREENAGERS in order to further the discussion of this important topic.

“This special screening probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including the director's own, and depicts messy struggles over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world.”

Many of us have been in the education field for many decades, and are thus on the ‘front lines’ of seeing how the increased screen time has impacted our students, your children, our citizens. We would like you to join us in the screening of this film, to extend the conversation both within our school and in your homes.  As Martin Luther said, ‘Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly’. Our intent is to always work as a collective team: parents, teachers and students together.  We look forward to our continued journey together and hope to see you at the Screenagers screening night.  Please read on to learn more.


And don’t forget, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr., we have a holiday this coming Monday. Have a great three day weekend!


~Rhonda


SPECIAL EVENT: SCREENAGERS! Wednesday, February 8.  7-9 pm. at the Performing Arts Center on the Tri-campus. 7105 Highway 9, Felton, 95018

Tickets will be a suggested donation of $10. (There is a cost to host this film, though we don’t want to turn anyone away, we would appreciate anyone who is able to pay the suggested amount.)  Please note: If there are extra tickets after Charter parents have a week to purchase, we will be opening up the ticket sales to families of the other schools in the District as of Monday, January 23rd, so please buy your tickets right away! There are only 210 seats available.

Tickets and trailer for the film available at this link:  https://impactflow.com/event/presented-by-slvusd-charter-school-1315

You will receive a confirmation back from impact flow, which we ask you to bring with you to the event.  We will be sending out a parent guide closer to the date of the event for parents to use at home with their students after the screening.  We will also have hard copies at the event.


Students in our secondary programs are scheduled to discuss and view the film the first week of February.  The student target audience is generally noted as ages 10 and above. Our teachers will be facilitating a discussion with the students after they view the film together.  



Parent Advisory Committee: January 25, from 3-4 PLEASE COME

This is a particularly important meeting as I will be sharing our SAFE SCHOOL PLAN, which needs to be reviewed by our parent committee, and our final WASC Report.  All parents are welcome to attend.

Next Meeting Date: Feb. 15, from 3-4



ALL CHARTER PLAY INFORMATION MEETING. Tuesday, Jan.31 at 3 pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held room 17 at the Quail Hollow Campus.


This is a special event that has become a favorite for many of our students who love the theater.   Amber Walker is a dynamic teacher who encourages every student with her excitement and performance expertise.  Last year we had a great turnout with 64 students from each and every program participating in our All Charter musical.


You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.  *Rehearsals will be on Mondays and Tuesdays from 3-5. Attendance requirements will depend on casting.


This year, the play will be, "The Little Mermaid: A Westside Story". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed in 2006 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) It is the classic tale with a twist, containing mermaids who are Dancing Queen's, working class sharks who sing Bruce Springsteen, a mermaid girl falling for a surfer boy, and so much more! Music ranges from pop, rock n' roll, Motown, and funk.


Come to our meeting to find out more details!


Information Nights: Please invite others who may be interested.

Our Information nights are coming in March. We have one for our hybrid-Homeschool programs, and another for our seat-based Nature Academy Program.  The information nights open the application window for the Nature Academy and Quail Hollow Integrated Arts Program.  A lottery will be held if there are more applications than seats available in either of the programs.  All other programs are filled based on the date the application is turned in as are the wait lists.


Nature Academy program March 7  5:30-6:30 MS Library

Application window

NA application window 3/8-4/21/17

Lottery: Friday, April 28


Homeschool Charter programs March 14,  6-7:30 pm

QHIA application window 3/14-4/27/17

Lottery: May 11


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

All programs are getting into the grove after a refreshing, though storm-ridden break.  We are excited about our All Charter activities that are being offered and encourage you to participate in the All Charter Musical Play and the viewing Screenagers.


Santa Cruz County Drug Awareness: Note: this is a notification that I was given from the Santa Cruz County Sheriff Department.  This message does not pertain directly to the San Lorenzo Valley area, but we felt it was worth sharing for families who may have an interest in being informed of such activities.


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • January 16th: No School--Martin Luther King’s Birthday

  • January 20th: End of 2nd quarter

  • January 27th:  No School--Professional Development Day for teachers

  • February 9: SCREENAGERS Special Screening 7 pm at the PAC: Tickets available  

  • February 13th: No School--Presidents day

  • February 20th: No School--Presidents day

  • March 7: Nature Academy Information Night.  5:30-6:30

    • Lottery application window: Mar. 8-Mar. 21

  • March 14: All Homeschool Programs Information Night.  6:00-7:00

    • QHIA application window Mar. 14-Mar. 28



Charter News: December 16

posted Jan 9, 2017, 7:00 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Welcome, winter. Your late dawns and chilled breath make me lazy, but I love you nonetheless.      ~Terri Guillemets



Dear Charter Families,


The winter season is upon us, with our longest day, the Winter Solstice on December 21. We begin our Winter Break this Friday and Thursday, December 22 is our last day of school.  Many of the classrooms have been having special events together over the last couple weeks with gifts making and/or exchanges, festive parties, and potlucks; all of them marking the excitement of our coming two-week vacation and the close of 2016.  


Winter’s long cold nights are a good time to take the opportunity to slow down our pace and to take extra time for introspection, rejuvenation, and general tending of the hearth and home.  


Please read on to hear more about Gratitude, the theme our counselor, Jen Sims has for this month.  She has some good ideas to share with your child(ren), ideas that you may want to add to your holiday routine.


Also note that our Parent Advisory Committee meeting is this Wednesday, Dec. 21 from 3-4 pm.  I have important information to share about our Safe Schools plan and we will talk more about our LCAP and WASC plans.


May you all find joy in the Winter holiday, and may you have time to enjoy that which nourishes your hearts and souls best.


Have a great last week of school, and see you Monday, January 9, our first day back in 2017.


~Rhonda


From our Counselor, Jen Sims:  THE CASE FOR GRATITUDE


November and December are months when we count our blessings.  My Facebook feed is full of it, with hash tags like #30daysofgratitude or #thanksgivingblessings.  It’s nice and possibly uplifting to spend a certain amount of time acknowledging the good things that come to us, but what might change if we make it a daily practice?   


Quite a lot, according to Dr. Christine Carter, a Berkeley researcher who has dedicated her career to studying the science of happiness.   Her work has shown that individuals who practice gratitude tend to lead happier, healthier and more satisfied lives.  They also show greater resiliency.  Children who practice gratitude are less likely to have behavior problems at school or become teenagers who abuse drugs and alcohol.  They show less entitlement and are not as bothered by small problems.  Much of this can be attributed to the very real impact that gratitude practices have on human brains.  Studies have shown that subjects who show more gratitude have more activity in their hypothalamus, an area of the brain that controls, among other things, your metabolism and stress levels.  Thus there is a connection between increased gratitude and better self-care, getting more exercise and sleeping better.   Gratitude also stimulates the release of dopamine, a ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter that makes you say, “hey let’s do that again!”  This can help establish a pattern of positivity.


The best part of developing a gratitude skill and practice is that the human brain is so adaptable that it doesn’t take long at all to set the course.  Here are some things you can focus on to get started.


Focus on the here and now: Take the time with your child to point out things that you find beautiful every day.  The changing colors of the leaves, the fog raising up over the trees, a loving interaction…it doesn’t have to be a big deal.  What are the small things that bring you joy?


I’m grateful for this…you’re grateful for that?: You might be surprised at what kids are grateful for.  In my small groups, children have expressed gratitude for things like video games and chicken nuggets.  Not what I would choose, but practicing gratitude requires authenticity and consistency; it does not have to match a certain ideology.


Give credit where credit is due: Help your children see and acknowledge the people that are helping them succeed in life.  Teens can be especially myopic and may attribute successes to themselves and blame the bad things that happen on others.  


Volunteer:   Not only does volunteering enable you and your children to give to others, it opens their eyes to the experiences and realities of other people.  This can help them expand their worldview and learn from others.


When it comes to teens, don’t be super serious: Teens may enjoy gratitude but may not enjoy a ritual of holding hands and earnestly announcing what they are thankful for.  Be flexible and keep it light enough for teens to want to participate, and also help them recognize their everyday gratitude through language, actions and involvement in school activities.


I’m hoping everyone has a beautiful holiday season!  


~Jen Sims


For more information about practicing gratitude and it’s effects: http://www.christinecarter.com/


Parent Advisory Committee: NEXT MEETING: December 21, from 3-4 PLEASE COME

Please ask your program representative about the presentation Dr. Bruton shared at our last meeting about the State of the District.  At our next meeting with will be discussing:

  • Safe Schools Plan  • LCFF/LCAP: Supplemental funds  •  WASC report update

  • Questions/ Interests/idea

Next meeting date: January 11, 2016  Jan 25th from 3-4


TRAVEL ADVISORY:  As a public health agency, Santa Cruz County Mosquito and Vector Control would like to make sure our residents are informed and travel safely.

Zika virus is still spreading throughout many parts of Latin America and the Caribbean, including Mexico. Click here: (English, Español) to check your destination for Zika precautions.

Zika is spread primarily through the bite of an infected mosquito, so we urge travelers to take precautions to avoid becoming infected:

-  Use insect repellent (including DEET, picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus—needs to be reapplied often)

-  If using sunscreen, apply sunscreen first, then put on repellent.

-  Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants if weather permits

-  Use air conditioning or window/door screens to keep mosquitoes outside, or use a bed net if these options are not available.

- Help reduce the number of mosquitoes outside your home or hotel room by dumping standing water from containers like flowerpots or buckets.

Here (English, Español)  is the recent notice regarding Zika and Travel from the California Department of Public Health, released  on 12/13/16. They include links with more information.

Thank you for your help. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Travel Safely!

Sincerely, Amanda Poulsen, M.S.

Vector Ecologist

Santa Cruz County Mosquito and Vector Control

Website: agdept.com/mvc.html


Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) As part of the new accountability requirements under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the U.S. Department of Education is requiring school districts nationwide to identify students who are armed forces family members.

Is either parent/guardian on active duty in the US armed forces: Army, Navy, Air Force,  Marine Corps or  Coast Guard or on full-time  National Guard Duty?   


If so,  please let us know by emailing hthomas@slvusd.org or calling Holly Thomas at 336-5167.  

Your cooperation is greatly appreciated!


COMING SOON: SCREENAGERS.  SLVUSD Charter will be hosting the screening in early February. "SCREENAGERS probes into the vulnerable corners of family life, including the director's own, and depicts messy struggles, over social media, video games, academics and internet addiction. Through surprising insights from authors and brain scientists' solutions emerge on how we can empower kids to best navigate the digital world."

Students' screening and classroom discussions will be scheduled for the first week of February, with a screening for parents on the evening of February 8 at 7 pm. Tickets will be a suggested donation of $10.


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

CRHS: Students are completing their semester courses and final assessments.  The Leadership class is leading preparations for their holiday party this week. The Yearbook Committee is busy gathering pictures for their various page. January is the time for end of semester conferences and students are making sure that they are ready for their second semester coursework.

CRMS: Presentations on Inventions continue in the classroom. Going out with Tim Corcoran and his co-teacher Julie to Gazo’s Creek is always something special.  We hiked, investigated the geology and biology of the of the beach, listened to stories about local history, collaboratively created sculptures out of found objects, and talked about earth stewardship.

Nature Academy: 6th grade students had a wonderful field trip to Gazos Creek last week with Tim from Headwaters.  They are beginning their unit in Egypt, which will continue when they get back in January. Art lessons continue using a variety of mediums.  7th-8th grade students are beginning their work on creating a children’s story, currently reviewing and dissecting their favorite picture books they will use as a guide when writing and doing artwork for their own. Choices in electives include wire bending and improv.  And Ms. Ragir continues to design math lessons and activities to expand their math interests and fluency.  Please make sure you ask your child to explain what they are learning in her class.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA):The students dissected the text of the Declaration of Independence! This is another daunting task, yet we approached it as a scavenger hunt; looking for keywords and concepts, and had an incredible discussion regarding whether or not the ideals on which this Declaration was conceived are being practiced today. It really is an outstanding piece of writing.  

Jen presented a Cyber Bullying Workshop: The discussions could have gone on for another hour. They revealed that students are fully aware of and are, in many cases, subjected to bullying via social media on a daily basis. The kids were so grateful to Jen, and are looking forward to her coming back next week. Quail Hollow Homeschool: Winter Holiday Potluck and Talent Share Thursday, December 22nd 10-1 We will begin with the talent share component and then share a meal together before friends exchange gifts with their Secret Santa.  In class we worked with different ways we know how to write numbers -standard numerals, tally marks, pictures, and the kinds that are on some clocks! Roman Numerals. We worked on two math puzzles.  One we solved easily.  The other, which still needs to be cracked, is how to make $1.09 using exactly 30 coins. We discussed how Rome absorbed traditions, holidays, foods, architecture, gods and goddesses from the regions it conquered, especially from Greece.  

Romans then modified these pieces from other cultures to fit their own ideas and needs.  We read the myth of Jupiter, Juno and Io, and matched up Greek and Roman deities. We made Roman gladiator sandals.  Students were encouraged to find a style that worked best for them.

Fall Creek Homeschool: We had a visit from Officer Koenig – the school’s safety officer. He explained his job and answered myriad questions about his work and his role at the school. We listened to an old Swedish tale, The Tomten and the Fox by Astrid Lindgren. A parent told us her mother grew up in Finland and thus she knew of the Tomten and did some of the same things that happened in the story. We used rulers to make a 10” box and  divide it into 8 equal parts. We then drew a small octagon in the middle and traced 8 circles in the wider parts. We turned this into a Moon phase chart, relating each phase of the Moon to a step in the life of a plant – from seed to compost. This was very challenging and yet they all did a very good job due to the previous work we have done this fall with rulers and geometric drawing.

MountainIS:We had a great week in IS, a visit from Santa Lucia, Greek Mythology, and more!  In Math we played a game "fishing for tens" using ten frames. We also did our first "Excellent Equation" for the number 13 (based on the date 12/13/16) which led to some great conversation about composite and prime numbers. The tradition of Santa Lucia was continued with some tasty homemade saffron rolls from Tenaya as she shared a little of her family history and personal connection to the festive event. The 5/6 class put on a fabulous performance of "Theseus and the Minateaur" - many of our students have great background knowledge of Greek Myths so it was fun to discuss the myths afterward. Mountain Holiday Sing is also on Thursday, 12/22 and all IS students are encouraged to come and participate.


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • December 23rd- January 8th: No School--Winter Break

  • January 9:  First day back in 2017.

  • January 16th: No School--MLK Bday

  • January 20th: End of 2nd quarter

  • January 27th:  No School--Professional Development Day for teachers

  • February 13th: No School--Presidents day

  • February 20th: No School--Presidents day

  • March 7: Nature Academy Information Night.  5:30-6:30

    • Lottery application window: Mar. 8-Mar. 21

  • March 14: All Homeschool Programs Information Night.  6:00-7:00

    • QHIA application window Mar. 14-Mar. 28





Charter News: Dec. 5, 2016

posted Dec 15, 2016, 12:44 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


"
Creativity is especially expressed in the ability to make connections, to make associations, to turn things around and express them in a new way." -Tim Hansen


Dear Charter Families,


As you know, our charter programs are based on a shared commitment between our teachers, the parents, and their children.  A student can only do their best if all three stay interconnected in a consistent, positive and supportive way.


Whether you have your student enrolled in one of our K-8 homeschool programs, in our 9-12 homeschool based high school, or in the Nature Academy, your positive, nurturing involvement makes all the difference in your student’s overall success.


This success includes not only doing well academically, but also in learning how to positively support the learning environment, to stay curious, happy, and to find value in what they are doing.


One of the strengths in the Common Core standards is the focus on digging deeper, looking at things in more than one way, and understanding different perspectives. Students are asked to show a deeper understanding of what they are learning than has previously been required of them, demonstrating greater critical thinking and analytic skills. These skills take practice and need to be supported between the teacher-parent team.  Hearing about these skills just at school is often not enough.

I decided to reschedule the topic for our second Parent Education night that was canceled for a couple reasons: first and foremost because the topic is foundational in providing the support your child needs to become a lifelong learner. Secondly because many parents emailed after it was cancelled stating they were interested and were planning to attend!


The evening is designed for parents who want to encourage their children to think more critically. It will help parents design questions, tasks, and projects that will help students go beyond basic knowledge and develop critical thinking strategies.  If a child is stimulated and curious, then engagement follows.  This cannot happen without the ability to question and think critically.  This is a skill that all students and their parents will benefit from.  


Tuesday, December 13 is the date for our next Parent Education Evening with Martha Kaufeldt. She is a dynamic, professional educator who packs a lot into her presentations.  Everyone who has attended her sessions in the past have said they learned a lot as a result of attending.


ALSO!  The evening will begin with an opportunity to meet our Mental Health Counselor, Jen Sims.  Come at 5:30 and learn more about how she works with our students, learn about the themes she focuses on in order to support our elementary and secondary aged students.


There will be light, healthy snacks for both parents and students.  We have put a deadline on the signups of December 9 this Friday!  The previous parent night had to be cancelled due to lack of sign-ups, but after it cancelled, several parents called to sign-up!  I know that everyone’s lives are busy, but please, don’t wait until the last minute to sign up. Please RSVP Danelle dmatteson@slvusd.org or me rschlosser@slvusd.org to sign up for this special and important opportunity.  


~Rhonda



PARENT EDUCATION NIGHT: Tuesday, December 13.   Come early for a special opportunity with our Counselor, Jen Sims.


Parent Advisory Committee: NEXT MEETING: December 21, from 3-4

Please ask your program representative about the presentation Dr. Bruton shared at our last meeting about the State of the District.  At our next meeting with will be discussing:

  • Safe Schools Plan  • LCFF/LCAP: Supplemental funds  •  WASC report update

  • Questions/ Interests/idea

Next meeting date: January 11, 2016


Math Tutor available for Secondary math support

-Mondays, from 12:30-3:30 in CRHS Portable 5 for High school students.

-Thursdays from 2:15-3:30 in the CRMS classroom P28 for middle school age students.

Mark is excited and ready to help any student who comes to work with him.  No need to sign up ahead of time.. Please make sure your student comes prepared with their math homework or questions about skills.


In Our Community:  A Letter to the public from our County Sheriff


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November 17, 2016


Dear Santa Cruz County Community:


With the conclusion of the presidential election I know there is a lot of fear and confusion  in our immigrant  communities  regarding  statements  that  the  federal  government  intends on dramatically increasing deportations in the near future.  I have been contacted recently by several school districts  who  report  that  children  are  expressing concern about being  detained and deported at school.


It is the practice and policy of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office to not entangle ourselves with  federal  immigration  policies. Sheriff's Office personnel do not and will not investigate immigration  status. As your elected Sheriff, I believe it is imperative that we continue to build trust and we continue our practice of fair and impartial  policing with all of the communities we serve.


Enforcing  federal  immigration  policy  at  the  local  level  erodes  trust  and  causes  fear  in  the immigrant communities  we serve,  resulting in victims under reporting or not reporting crimes to local law enforcement.  I am deeply committed to ensuring this does not happen.  It is the job of local  law  enforcement  to  make  sure  our  community  members  are  safe  and our  children  can attend school without fear.  This is our job and this is what we will continue to do.

Sincerely,

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Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) As part of the new accountability requirements under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), the U.S. Department of Education is requiring school districts nationwide to identify students who are armed forces family members.

Is either parent/guardian on active duty in the US armed forces: Army, Navy, Air Force,  Marine Corps or  Coast Guard or on full-time  National Guard Duty?   


If so,  please let us know by emailing hthomas@slvusd.org or calling Holly Thomas at 336-5167.  

Your cooperation is greatly appreciated!


What’s Going on in Our Charter School?  ..little snippets of some of our programs.

CRHS: This past week was filled with college and career conversations, multiple intelligence assessments, figuring out the over-the-lifetime value of a high school diploma, of a two-year (AA) degree, of a (BA/BS), and the value of a graduate degree. They also discussed various careers, entrepreneurship, and internships.     Meeting of the Tribes #2 went very well. Our emotional/mental health counselor, Jenn Sims stepped in to give our students a health lesson, as did our college counselor, Jen Kelly, who discussed Cabrillo Night. Wade, Keidi, and Kay discussed school business and other pertinent information. Keidi gave a lesson on friendships and nurturing the CRHS culture and continued respect of one another.

CRMS: Project Presentations: The next four weeks will be filled with wonderful presentations by the students.  Partner Bios:  Students brainstormed interview questions and conducted an interview with their partner to find out more about them.  They took notes on their interview and have  started writing a biographical paragraph about their partner. Art: With Leean’s help the kids made prints from their original photos, using two colors of ink this time.  They also mounted their black and white prints from the previous week.  Freedom vs. Safety Discussion: Discussing school rules and lockdowns gave us a great opportunity to discuss the Freedom vs. Safety continuum. Students were asked a dozen different questions and they responded by placing themselves along the continuum –were they more toward the safety side or more toward the freedom side?  It was great to hear some of the discussions that arose as the kids shared their perspectives with each other.

Nature Academy: 6th graders are gearing up for their  trip this coming Tuesday to Gazos Creek with Naturalist Tim Corcoran from Headwaters Science school.   Students in 7th-8th grade are refining their response to literature essays based on Freak the Mighty.  They are working on their crank boxes their unit project in Science and had an art lesson in Chinese Ink drawings.  

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA) Amber will be presenting an update on this program to the school board on Dec. 7, and they asked if our students wanted to perform something. The majority of the students wanted to perform the opening number of “Hamilton” in a spoken word format! Art analysis “Paul Revere’s Ride” Direct Art Instruction-alcohol inks on tile: this is a wonderful, fluid, art process that uses “floating” ink on top of isopropyl alcohol that is poured on the surface of the tile before it evaporates. Lots of science concepts involved too They came out beautifully, and were sold at the Craft Faire. Line Dance-learned the Wobble and students worked in groups to add original choreography and teach each other.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Music: All together we​ reviewed and sang the 12 Days of Christmas and began a special song to perform for the Winter Holiday potluck. History:They learned and discussed Roman contributions to architecture - specifically arches and watched a brief video and then had our own challenge to complete; Sugar Cube Arch Challenge Science: Participated in an experiment on surface tension.  What floats and at what point will it begin to sink?  What causes that to happen?  There was emphasis on making a hypothesis and the scientific method. Typing:  Students were shown how to log on to chromebooks with their school account information and given an account on typing.com They began to practice proper typing form.  Art: Read Mr. Seahorse by Eric Carle and took advantage of the

lovely weather to do a tissue paper collage of a seahorse.

Fall Creek Homeschool: A unit on the moon began by singing the song ‘Moonshadow” by Cat Stevens/Yusuf. They had a general discussion about what we already know about the Moon and were awed at some Moon statistics.  They looked at a photo of a full Moon projected onto the big screen and identified some key geologic features and discussed what could have caused them. They marked these features on hard copies of the full Moon photo. They listened to a book called Stargazers by Gail Gibbons. They split into groups and worked with drawings of pentagons and pentagrams. A number of children made the discovery that if you use a magnifying glass you can continue to subdivide the figures into infinity. The used various items to create craters in pans of simulated Moondust (regolith). We varied the size and weight of the impactors and the angle of direction from which the impactor hit the “Moon”. We measured the craters’ diameters, depths and patterns of ejecta rays. They reviewed related vocabulary: crater, impactor, ejecta, debris, regolith, ray, angle, lava, basin, velocity, and terminator.

MountainIS:. In art they used chalk pastel to create an organic abstract. They read Straga Nona by Tomie de Paola. And, students worked with their "buddy up" pairs to build as many words as they could using the letters T-H-A-N-K-S. Also, in music they were introduced to the Peter Piper tongue twister. They had a great field trip to the Aquarium. It was so neat to hear the kids talking to each other about the interesting scientific facts they learned while checking out the amazing exhibits. We got to see the sardine feeding in the deep sea aquarium, visit Baja with its reptiles, scorpions and tropical fish and even see the bat rays getting fed! They are learning about earthquakes - the kids are full of great facts about the natural disaster and were excited to put to test their engineering skills with a fun STEM activity. Using just a few materials and jello as the 'earth material' groups of 4 built 3 story structures to withstand the trembles and shakes of a 15-second earthquake. They also wrote or illustrated stories about earthquakes using the elements of a story. It was a great way to see how they could implement their newly learned facts into a creative story while working with a partner.


DATES TO REMEMBER: (Please refer to your program’s newsletter for greater detail regarding dates and details specific to your program’s Field Trips and class events.)

  • Dec. 13th, Tues 5:30 - 7pm. Parent Education Night: "Using Projects and Problem-solving to Engage Every Learner!"

  • December 23rd- January 8th: No School--Winter Break

  • January 16th: No School--MLK Bday

  • January 20th: End of 2nd quarter

  • January 27th:  No School--Professional Development Day for teachers

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