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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: September 9, 2018

posted Sep 9, 2018, 12:50 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


“Education...is painful, continual and difficult work to be done in kindness, by watching, by warning,...  by praise, but above all -- by example.” ~John Ruskin



Dear Charter Families,


I trust you are all settling into the rhythm of the year, building the routines that will help ensure your student’s school work gets done on time, finding the right balance in the evenings for completing homework, relaxing as a family, and getting to bed at a good hour to be able to get up in the morning refreshed and ready to go!  Not an easy balance to maintain, I know. This balance between work (parent or student) and family time is an important balance. It is very easy to forget to turn off the many screens and phones and to just keep doing your personal ‘thing’ instead of becoming conscious of connecting to family as you prepare to close the day and settle to sleep.


Finding the balance that works for your family, helping your student to navigate their school responsibilities, joys, and personal challenges is a dynamic journey that works best with a strong community of support.  When I walk into any classroom or check in with our teachers it is wonderful to hear about the wisdom and care that they bring to your student’s learning experience. We believe that the responsibility as educators goes beyond the walls of the classroom and the academic content. Our focus on Life Skills and Social-Emotional learning is the foundation that solidifies every students' desire to learn more and do their best.


In addition to our teachers, another support for you in the Charter is our mental health counselor. Robin Bates offers a tiered level of support for our programs. We begin with a theme for the year that helps focus the social-emotional skill building that she will offer in the classrooms.  She is also available for individual counseling and may also offer groups sessions as well. Please read on to read her first article for the year.


~Rhonda




From our Mental Health Counselor:  Robin Bates

Hello Charter school village! I feel so grateful and privileged to be able to serve this community as a Mental Health Specialist and look forward to an amazing year of collective self-discovery!


Identity: Who am I?

A few weeks ago, my son, who often throughout his childhood has had anxiety at night about different “monsters” under the bed, came into our room to say yet again that he was struggling with some fear. In the old days, he would come in with some creative stuff: a “shark between the wall and the bed”, a “giant wild feral cat scratching to get in his window” (which, by the way, was two stories above the ground), or some other wild scene that I would then offer him comfort. Later, the fears would become a little more concrete: a robber, a mountain lion or a strange new neighbor outside of his window.  


So, I was reading a book in my bed after his bedtime and he quietly and sheepishly came in and sat next to me.  


“Mom, I’m scared”. I waited for the rest of it.  “Mom, this time it’s not anything outside. Tonight, well, (he paused a moment).....I am scared of myself”.  This wasn’t the usual theme.  Being a therapist, my curiosity perked up and I put my book down, inviting him to tell me more.  “Mom, it’s just weird. Who am I REALLY? When I move my arm up and down, am I the one watching myself do this? Or am I the arm that is moving up and down or am I the one that decided to move the arm?  This is really freaking me out! Now I don’t really even think I know who I am at all!” Without trying to explain to him what an existential crisis was, I just gave him time to explore this experience and listened with deep curiosity and compassion.  


Our theme this year is:  Identity.  This covers a lot of ground (some would argue it covers ALL the ground), so we will have opportunities to learn about our identities through many different lenses.


Exploring our identity involves expanding our awareness and practicing being “the one watching the arm move and the one making the decision to make the arm move”.  Any time we can stand back a moment and look at our reactions with curiosity and compassion, we are opened to new choices and deeper self acceptance. We learn to take ownership of identity.  And when we do this, we learn to have more compassion for the diversity of others.


As parents it’s hard not to get overwhelmed or bewildered by our children and our most straight-forward instinct can sometimes be to help our children NOT do or accept whatever it is that they’re experiencing.


It can be helpful to approach children’s identity challenges with curiosity.  “Tell me more about what you’re feeling/thinking?”. “I love the way you’re looking closely at this and really paying attention to the details of how you are feeling”.  “If you could draw or color this experience, what would it look like? If you could hear sounds or music about this experience, what would it sound like?” These questions help us and our children practice “leaning in”.  And when we lean in, often there’s lot of great new discoveries in there!


Often times we need only focus on ourselves and watch our own identities at play. This morning I asked my son for the 1,013th time to stop pulling clumps of dirt out of this ledge on the side of the driveway before getting in the car - and to top it all off, we were close to being late to school.  I got so frustrated! Did he seriously forget or not hear me for the 1,013th time?!! I was beyond disappointed. I was offended! I could feel my heart rate rising and my cheeks getting a bit flush. But at a certain point, I found myself just observing this reaction with curiosity.  “Why am I really feeling this way? What does this remind me of? What am I feeling under this? How is this effecting parts of my own identity? Are there conflicts in my identity that are causing this upset”. I kept leaning in. My identity as a “good mother” was being directly challenged and I was in a fight with it.  Time to cool off. And before too long, my experience shifted.


I invite all of you to learn more about the many moving parts of your identity - to lean in and be curious about all of the roles and ideas about self that we have without blaming, and having compassion without shaming.


This month, our focus will be on identity formation.  Students will learn how our inside, outside, and stage of development all influence our expanding sense of who we are. Sometimes other people’s thoughts about us can help us discover who we are NOT, which can be difficult but also very useful.  Other times we get to experience alignment with outside influence and inner knowing of identity. Understanding and normalizing all of it is the key towards the ultimate goal: acceptance and curiosity about who we are. I look forward to having some fun this month!


Here are some resources that could be useful for discussions and questions that could come up around discovering our identity:


Stella Luna, by Janell Cannon (I SO LOVE this one!)

The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf (an old classic but still so rich)

Shrek 1 (movie by Dreamworks)  - perfect opportunity to talk about identity and how sometimes   

 we are perceived differently on the outside than how we identify on the inside!

Genderspectrum.org - this is a great resource for learning about what it means to be transgender and resources for talking with kids and adults.


Books for teens about identity (a list I found on The Guardian website):

The Crew by Bali Rai

The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4 by Sue Townsend

Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan

The Arrival by Shaun Tan

The Outsiders by S E Hinton


PARENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE: First Meeting: Wednesday, September 12 from 3:00-4:00 pm.  Parent’s voice is very important to Charter Schools!  I count on the Parent Advisory Committee to provide input regarding our programs and their unique needs as seen from a parents perspective.  I also need parent input in reviewing and understanding the business and foundational aspects that are required to keep our Charter school running smoothly to provide the support our student population needs.  This includes understanding how our budget works, our accountability requirements for State and Local Assessments, learning about our Charter Petition, and discussing ways to better support our students' academic and social-emotional needs: Kindergarten through High School.


As a dependent Charter, we are supported by the District’s school board, who oversees our school along District Office Cabinet support. The SLVUSD school board also reviews and approves our Charter petition renewal every 5 years as well as our LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan) report every year.  The Parent Advisory Committee is a critical component to ensure that parent’s input has a consistent say in the development of our programs that make up the Charter school.  

Please come to this meeting and learn more about the Charter. Come to tell me what is important to you.  I would like to have representation from every program on the Parent Aadvisory Committee.


PERFORMING ARTS AFTER SCHOOL EVENTS OPEN TO ALL CHARTER PROGRAMS!

Below is a list of After School Performing Arts opportunities available to All Students in Every Program of our Charter School:


For those of you who are new to our programs, these are two very popular Performing Arts events that a large percentage of our students participate in.  They are hallmarks of our unique, multi-age student collaborations where our older students become leaders and mentors, and all students step in at a level that is right for their development and ability.


Thrill the World! 2018 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event)

Rehearsals

When: Thursdays: Oct.4 and Oct. 18 and Fridays Oct. 12 and Oct. 26 from 3-4:30pm

Where: Multipurpose Room on the Quail Hollow Campus (up by the Charter Office)

No need to sign up ahead of time. Just show up.


This event was founded in 2006 in Toronto and has now spread to six continents. Every October people in cities around the world dance to "Thriller" at exactly the same time.  Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other! Celebrating the truly inspirational genius of Michael Jackson in a living and moving way is what keeps people coming back year after year.  This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 27, 2018 at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3pm sharp. There is also an option to perform in a flash mob on Halloween in Ben Lomond.


All Charter Musical: Into the Well!: An original rock musical

Last year we had a great turnout with 64 students from each and every program in our charter participating.

Amber will have an informational meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 3pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held in the multipurpose room at the Quail Hollow Campus.

You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.


This year the play will be, "Into the Well". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2008 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) This story incorporates fairy tale characters from many different stories such as Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, The Frog Prince, Goldilocks, Jack and the Beanstalk, and many more.  Songs and scenes include a giant singing Bob Dylan tunes, punk-rock huntsman, and runway models gone awry! Music ranges from Motown, funk, pop, punk, and good ole' rock n' roll.

Come to our meeting to find out more details! Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 3pm for students and parents, held in the multipurpose room at the Quail Hollow Campus.


Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 15, 16, 22, 23 in the multipurpose room on the Quail Hollow Campus   Rehearsals: 3-5:30pm, Mondays and Tuesdays

Performance Week: February 4-9


If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me at  awalker@slvusd.org.  

I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!


~Amber Walker



Santa Cruz County Fair: We encourage community engagement and the Fair has many ways for students to learn more about specialized crafts and trades. For years the County Fair has been a favorite of our families and we have had students enter the fair in various categories and bring back ribbons.

Hours: Wednesday 9/12 to Friday 9/14 Noon to 11:00PM Saturday 9/15 10AM to 11PM & Sunday 9/16 10AM to 10PM


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • September 24th: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 4th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

  • TBD: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 13th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


CAFETERIA NEWS: Breakfast is $2.50 and Lunch $3.50. Application for free and reduced lunch can be found on the SLVUSD Nutrition Webpage: http://slvusdcafe.com/


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

CRHS: On-site classes started this last week. We are working on finalizing our Headwaters trip plans and on writing benchmarks. We would like to share driving and parking information on the high school campus, in order to help alleviate any anxiety around this issue:

1. Parents and students -  please drive slow through the parking lot - 10 mph.

2. Parking has become very restricted. There are 4 visitor spaces for parent parking only near the swimming pool. Please ask your teacher for a parking  permit. They are free.

3. Do not park in spaces designated STAFF. You will be ticketed.

4. CRHS designated student parking is any of the spaces painted (Student) or left blank.

5. Understand that the comprehensive high school starts several hours before us, thus, most if not all spaces will be full. Please plan to park over and around the softball fields.

6. Display your permit on your rearview mirror or on your dashboard.

7. Leave your home in plenty of time to find parking in order to get to class on time!

CRMS:  -On-site classes begin Wednesday, September 12th

Nature Academy: 6th-grade class had a terrific trip to the California Academy of Sciences. On September 14 the7-8th graders and on September 28 the 6th grade students will have their annual Ropes Course at Mt. Hermon. The annual beginning of the year hike for all grades will be on October 12th to Mt. Umumum.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Inspirational Math: Short videos on growth mindset, etc. Folding Geometry, Fibonacci and Pascal’s Triangle, Growing Shapes.Why Study History? The significance of quotes from historical people of influence, discussion, brainstorming, sharing. Mini-Bios on Katherine Johnson, who celebrated her 100th birthday last week, and John McCain. Shakespeare/Romeo and Juliet Intro: We had a great time viewing short film clips about the life of Shakespeare, the power of Iambic Pentameter, the appeal of Romeo and Juliet, and a synopsis of the plot before our SC Shakespeare Field Trip to see Romeo and Juliet.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Tuesday, Sept. 11th Beginning of the Year Camping Trip New Brighton State Beach Friday, Sept. 28th Kayaking trip-Elkhorn This is another one of our annual favorites! This particular event is for 3rd-5th grade.  Each kayaker must have one accompanying adult. Saturday, Sept. 29th QHHS Boosters Pumpkin and Bake Sale at Santa Cruz Mountain Harvest Festival.

Fall Creek Homeschool: -On-site classes begin Tuesday, September 11th

Mountain IS:  The students had their first week of on-site classes and had a great two days filled with lots of great activities and discussions.  It is going to be a great year at Mountain IS with a Ms. Bauscher and such a caring group of students and families,


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.)

  • September 24th: Picture Day: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 4th: Picture Day: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

  • November 12: No School Veterans day

  • November 13th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)

    • TBD: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 19-23: No School Thanksgiving Break

  • October 19th:  No School-- Professional Development Day for Staff

  • November 12th:  No School- Veteran’s Day

  • November 19-23rd:  No School- Thanksgiving Break

  • December 21st-Jan 4th:  No School- Winter Break


Charter News August 26, 2018

posted Aug 28, 2018, 4:04 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.  -A.A. Milne



Dear Charter Families,


A week of school is over and we are starting week two! It’s great to see all the classes and programs bustling and everyone so excited to start a new year.  The kids look so happy to be back and all the teachers are full of rejuvenated energy as they engage with their students and classes. It is especially great to see the new energy that our many new teachers are adding to mix.

I am sure that many students are feeling more tired and drained than usual as they step back into the school routine of early mornings and hours of learning and exercising their `brains.  Students are back to needing to go to bed earlier to wake up early and get ready for a day of engagement in classrooms, with teachers, and with their peers. For (most) children and families, the start of the school year means that there needs to be a shift from the summer sleeping hours and relaxing pace of the mornings. The change of routine, new classes, new peers, new expectations can be physical and mentally exhausting. I noticed a distinctive slower pace in the students and teachers too by the end of the week.  Hopefully, everyone took advantage of the weekend and got some extra hours of sleep and fun in the sun.

Welcome back to week two.  There are great things happening.  Thanks for being with us.

~Rhonda



PARENT ADVISORY COMMITTEE: First Meeting: Wednesday, September 12 from 3:00-4:00 pm.  Parent’s voice is very important to Charter Schools!  I count on the Parent Advisory Committee to provide input regarding our programs and their unique needs as seen from a parents perspective.  I also need parent input in reviewing and understanding the business and foundational aspects that are required to keep our Charter school running smoothly to provide the support our student population needs.  This includes understanding how our budget works, our accountability requirements for State and Local Assessments, learning about our Charter Petition, and discussing ways to better support our students' academic and social-emotional needs: Kindergarten through High School.


As a dependent Charter, we are supported by the District’s school board, who oversees our school along District Office Cabinet support. The SLVUSD school board also reviews and approves our Charter petition renewal every 5 years as well as our LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan) report every year.  The Parent Advisory Committee is a critical component to ensure that parent’s input has a consistent say in the development of our programs that make up the Charter school.  

Please come to this meeting and learn more about the Charter. Come to tell me what is important to you.  I would like to have representation from every program on the Parent Advisory Committee.


PERFORMING ARTS AFTER SCHOOL EVENTS OPEN TO ALL CHARTER PROGRAMS!

Below is a list of After School Performing Arts opportunities available to All Students in Every Program of our Charter School:


For those of you who are new to our programs, these are two very popular Performing Arts events that a large percentage of our students participate in.  They are hallmarks of our unique, multi-age student collaborations where our older students become leaders and mentors, and all students step in at a level that is right for their development and ability.


Thrill the World! 2018 (Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Event)

Rehearsals

When: Thursdays: Oct.4 and Oct. 18 and Fridays Oct. 12 and Oct. 26 from 3-4:30pm

Where: Multipurpose Room on the Quail Hollow Campus (up by the Charter Office)

No need to sign up ahead of time. Just show up.


This event was founded in 2006 in Toronto and has now spread to six continents. Every October people in cities around the world dance to "Thriller" at exactly the same time.  Preparation and counting down worldwide is part of the fun, but the feeling of being connected to others and dancing together as one is a Thrill like no other! Celebrating the truly inspirational genius of Michael Jackson in a living and moving way is what keeps people coming back year after year.  This year the event will be held in Santa Cruz on Saturday, October 27, 2018 at the Louden Nelson Center lawn at 3pm sharp. There is also an option to perform in a flash mob on Halloween in Ben Lomond.


All Charter Musical: Into the Well!: An original rock musical

Last year we had a great turnout with 64 students from each and every program in our charter participating.

Amber will have an informational meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 3pm for students and parents. The meeting will be held in the multipurpose room at the Quail Hollow Campus.

You will get a synopsis of the script, hear about characters and musical numbers, and get detailed info on the rehearsal schedule/requirements.


This year the play will be, "Into the Well". Once again, it will be an original script written by Janinne Chadwick, which Amber directed and choreographed in 2008 with LPRT (Little People's Repertory Theater.) This story incorporates fairy tale characters from many different stories such as Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, The Frog Prince, Goldilocks, Jack and the Beanstalk, and many more.  Songs and scenes include a giant singing Bob Dylan tunes, punk-rock huntsman, and runway models gone awry! Music ranges from Motown, funk, pop, punk, and good ole' rock n' roll.

Come to our meeting to find out more details! Tuesday, Oct. 9 at 3pm for students and parents, held in the multipurpose room at the Quail Hollow Campus.


Auditions: 3-5:30pm, Mondays/Tuesdays, Oct. 15, 16, 22, 23 in the multipurpose room on the Quail Hollow Campus

Rehearsals: 3-5:30pm, Mondays and Tuesdays

Performance Week: February 4-9


If you have any questions about any of these dates, feel free to email me at

awalker@slvusd.org.  

I look forward to sharing my love of performing arts with your students!


~Amber Walker


STUDENT REGISTRATION:  Our sincerest appreciation to all of you who have had to work through some difficulties in registering your student through the new infosnap process.  There are still some glitches, so please bear with us as we continue to complete some remaining registrations.

For technical difficulties, please contact the following:

Email:  support@infosnap.com

Phone: 866-434-6276 Press 1 and then 4 for Registration Support

Support Hours: Monday- Friday 6:00AM-5:00PM PST

Web portal:  https://help.powerschool.com

https://support.powerschool.com/f/contact_support  

~THANK YOU!



Santa Cruz County Fair: We encourage community engagement and the Fair has many ways for students to learn more about specialized crafts and trades. For years the County Fair has been a favorite of our families and we have had students enter the fair in various categories and bring back ribbons.


Hours: Wednesday 9/12 to Friday 9/14 Noon to 11:00PM Saturday 9/15 10AM to 11PM & Sunday 9/16 10AM to 10PM


 😀 Put your smiles on and brush your hair, Charter picture days are coming soon! More information will be sent closer to the picture dates.

  • September 10th: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 4th: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

  • TBD: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 13th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)


CAFETERIA NEWS: Breakfast is $2.50 and Lunch $3.50. Application for free and reduced lunch can be found on the SLVUSD Nutrition Webpage: http://slvusdcafe.com/


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

CRHS: Headwaters Outdoor School Trip DEADLINE to sign up: Friday, August 31

Brian and Wade will be taking 15-26 of our Coast Redwood High School students to Headwaters on Monday, September 24 through Friday, September 28.

Shakespeare Festival in Ashland Oregon Trip Kay and Amber are bringing back our annual trek up to Ashland Oregon in May, 2019, to enjoy 3 nights and 4 days in Ashland, Oregon. Students will stay at a local hotel and enjoy 6-8 plays and workshops over three days. A visit to Southern Oregon University will be on our itinerary where we will visit their theater program and explore the campus. Parent Chaperones are welcome and we may need drivers!  Fundraising: Immediately in the fall we will begin our Toyota Drive for School (September)and volunteers for the Redwood Mt Faire (June) Pre-requisite: Enrollment in "Chill with Will" one semester class prior to the trip

CRMS:  Students have had their orientation and the weeks are filled with home studies and conference meetings. -Friday, Sept. 7: All Homeschool Charter Capture the Flag at Quail Hollow Ranch

Nature Academy: Back to School Night is this Thursday. Expect more details from your teachers soon.

6:00 – First Bell Rings for Back to School Night Classroom Visits.

-6th grade class: Sept 7th, will be taking a trip to the Cal Academy of Sciences. At the end of September Ms. Hope’s class will go to  Mt. Hermon for their Ropes Course. The annual beginning of the year hike for all grades will be on October 12th to Mt. Umumum.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): -Tuesday, Sept. 4: Field Trip to SC Shakespeare’s production of Romeo & Juliet  -Friday, Sept. 7: All Homeschool Charter Capture the Flag at Quail Hollow Ranch

Quail Hollow Homeschool:  Students have had their orientation and the weeks are filled with home studies and conference meetings. -Friday, Sept. 7: All Homeschool Charter Capture the Flag at Quail Hollow Ranch September 11th  - Thursday, September 13th Beginning of the Year Camping Trip New Brighton State Beach Tuesday,

Fall Creek Homeschool: Students have had their orientation and the weeks are filled with home studies and conference meetings. -Friday, Sept. 7: All Homeschool Charter Capture the Flag at Quail Hollow Ranch

Mountain IS:  Students have had their orientation and the weeks are filled with home studies and conference meetings. Tuesday, September 4, on-site class begin  -Friday, Sept. 7: All Homeschool Charter Capture the Flag at Quail Hollow Ranch



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.)

  • September 3: No School Labor Day

  • September 10th: Picture Day: Nature Academy 6-8 grade: (during PE period)

  • October 4th: Picture Day: Quail Hollow Homeschool, Quail Hollow Integrated Arts, Fall Creek Homeschool, Coast Redwood High School, Coast Redwood Middle School Picture Day: (time TBD)

  • November 12: No School Veterans day

  • November 13th: Picture retake day for all homeschool programs :  (time TBD)

    • TBD: Nature Academy 6-8 grade Picture retake day: (during PE period)

  • November 19-23: No School Thanksgiving Break

Charter News June 15, 2018

posted Jun 16, 2018, 4:41 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


“Where are we? - Here. What time is it? - Now.      

Let’s make the best of it together. Life spent with others is a life well spent.”

~Carter Milhous


Dear Charter Families,


Hooray and congratulations!  Every child, every family has progressed through another year of learning, many making that special advancement or graduation leap to their next step on the ladder, or rung, or river, or whatever metaphor fits for your family style.  We strive to support and create life-long learners and hopefully, your child’s learning will continue through the summer; be it in the form of camps, summer school, junior guards, sports of many kinds, travel, and hopefully reading books and sharing stories and various adventures with family and friends.


As we close the year, I wanted to introduce a few of the new teachers and staff members that will be joining us next year, as well as some new developments in many of our programs.


I have learned to love change...okay maybe not love but definitely, appreciate. Though not always initially embraced, change brings new life, ideas and energy to any situation.  And for our Charter programs, whose educational foundations are strong and whose flexibility has been positively tested, change becomes a fertilizer of sorts to help strengthen our already vibrant education programming for your children.


We are pleased and excited to announce our new teaching staff that will be joining us this next school year. They have written a short bio to introduce themselves to all of you. Please read on to learn a bit about them.  You can also read about a few of the new additions or supports we have added to our programs.


Our teachers have already written a closing email to their families that include initial events for the beginning of the school year.

Expect to receive an email from us in the first weeks of August with a special letter welcome back to school email from your teachers soon after.  Teachers return to work on August 14th.  

The first student school day for the coming year will be August 20.


Until then, have a wonderful summer.


~Rhonda


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


____________________________________________________________________


Welcome new staff members!

Rachel Hagar: Science teacher for Nature Academy program.  I feel honored to work with this team of fantastic Nature Academy teachers dedicated to providing a rigorous, holistic approach to educating students.  I am also a nature lover and am thrilled to educate students by taking them beyond the four walls of a classroom. Many of my own educational highlights took place doing field studies: from science camp at Onemia, Minnesota looking for wolf tracks in the snow and doing adventure ropes among frozen pine needles; noosing lizards and live trapping mice under moonlight at the Mohave Desert Research Station; mapping wetlands at the Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Laboratory, pursuing my love for rainforest preservation by volunteering at Genesis II Cloud Forest Preserve in Costa Rica, and finally volunteering at Indian Canyon.


My teaching philosophy is to bring a love of science and environment and community to students and to help them believe in their limitless potentials. I choose to think of solutions and not the problems. If there is a problem, I believe in open communication so voices can be heard, and issues healed and resolved, and moving forward in a positive way, together.


I have taught for 15 years; Earth Science, Chemistry, Biology, and Drama. I have also taught Video Production. The majority of my teaching has been teaching science for middle school students. I look forward to working with this fabulous group of students, parents, and educators to see what we can create together!


Rebecca Doty: Math teacher for Nature Academy program: I am thrilled to be joining the Nature Academy team to teach 7th and 8th-grade math and writing. With 17 years of experience teaching both elementary and middle school, I am excited to have an opportunity to work with middle school content yet to get to know the students better in a more intimate setting such as the Nature Academy program. Growing up in the Sierras (Mammoth Lakes to be exact) has nurtured my love of nature, and I am an avid backpacker, hiker, trail runner, indoor climber (with a desire to cross to the outdoors), and dancer. I also enjoy cooking, theatre (I have a degree in Theatre Arts Directing), crafting, and would love to learn more about computer programming this year. My favorite adventures thus far in life have been solo backpacking the John Muir Trail and an epic trip to Turkey. I hope for many more of these types of adventures in my future.


Amanda Bauscher: Teacher at our Mountain IS program.  I am delighted to have the opportunity to be a part of such an innovative public school!  Over the past 20 plus years of working with children and adults, both here and abroad, I've seen how unique each of our learning processes can be. Working with children to develop a strong sense of self-efficacy and passion for what they are learning is fundamental to my practice. I've found that by embracing our diverse talents, we expand our understanding of each other and our world, leading to a more compassion and cooperation in general. Mountain Independent Studies program appears to be an ideal environment for each child to shine individually and within a community!


Mary Zilge: Academic Counselor for CRHS and our 8th graders. Charter students and families, I am very excited and honored to be a member of your community.  I am thrilled to be returning to what I originally intended to do in education; supporting students through their educational journey in academic success, social-emotional growth, and career and college exploration.
I grew up and attended school in our wonderful valley.  I moved to San Diego for ten years, met my husband, and once we had two girls, realized where we wanted to raise them and moved back in 2001.  
My career in education began in 1991 as a teacher then as an academic counselor.  I joined SLVMS in 2006 as an academic counselor and in 2009 became the Dean of Students.  I can't state enough how excited I am to be returning to the role of an academic counselor.  I am looking forward to meeting and working with families who embrace education from multiple perspectives and as a team, supporting your students to have all opportunities open to them as young adults.


______ :  Quail Hollow Integrated Arts 60% teacher:  TBA


_______: Quail Hollow Homeschool teacher.  TBA


______ :  Mental Health Counselor.  TBA


______________________________________________


New additions in Our Charter Programs:


Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA) program expanding: We want to share some exciting news about this wonderful program.  The QHIA program, thanks to the efforts of teacher Amber Walker and the support of the District, is expanding. Our student community will grow to 40 students next year.


Of course, this also means that the program will be provided with additional instructional space and an additional 60% teacher. Amber will be closely involved with the hiring process to ensure that the teacher she will be partnering with has rich experience with theater, music, art, and dance: professionally and personally, in some combination. We will also ensure that this new teaching partner understands the importance of cultivating our focus on social/emotional education and homeschool community building.


We feel confident and excited to embrace more students into our QHIA family and Amber is excited to mentor another teaching partner to share in this innovative classroom model.


K-5 Homeschool programs: Next year we are planning to offer a Home-School Parent Forum, open to all parents of K-5 students enrolled in the Charter. The purpose is to establish a consistent place for parents to share great ideas, get help in implementing project-based learning at home, and delve deeper into what homeschooling can be.


The forum will meet twice monthly, the first and third Mondays of each month, from 12:30 to 2, at the Fall Creek Homeschool classroom. Child care will be provided. One of the first ideas we will discuss is the possibility of a parent-led co-op writing group for 3rd-5th graders. Though the writing group would be taught by parents on a rotating basis, the curriculum and lesson planning will be supported by Charter teachers and staff.

Please mark your calendars for these semester 1 forum dates! 9/17, 10/1, 10/15, 11/5, 11/19, 12/3, 12/17


Junior Master Gardening Program offered to All Programs:  Melanie Burgess, Charter parent and certified gardener, plans to expand her work beyond teaching our high school students horticulture lab and will be working with the rest of our programs next year.  She is passionate about spreading the practices of sustainable gardening to all of our students and through her research and practice in Santa Clara County gardening programs, has found that the Junior Master Gardening Program is the curriculum to do just that.


The Junior Master Gardener program is an international youth gardening program of the University Cooperative Extension network. JMG engages children in novel, hands-on group and individual experiences that provide a love of gardening, develop an appreciation for the environment, and cultivate the mind.  The program also inspires youths to be of service to others through service learning and leadership development projects.

Melanie will work with each of the programs, bringing the students into one of our many gardens one time a month, to work them through the curriculum.  Students who complete the program will receive certification awards.

Level 1 Certifications (1st-5th): Plant Growth and Development, Soils and Water, Insects and Plant Diseases, Vegetables and Herbs, Fruit and Nutrition.

Level 2 Certifications (6th-8th) Ecology and Environmental Horticulture, Landscape Horticulture, Life Skills and Career Exploration.


All of our students will have the opportunity to earn a Junior Master Gardener Certification by 8th grade.  


Coast Redwood Middle School: We are pleased to announce that for the 2018-19 school year, Coast Redwood Middle School will be taught by Keidi Lewis and Mark Thomas, as Marcy Reynolds takes a leave of absence to support an elderly family member.  Class hours, days and location will remain the same, our project-based, collaborative focus will remain the same, the inclusiveness and individualized support will remain the same. The only change will be who is teaching.


Both Keidi and Mark are very experienced and excited to work with Coast Redwood Middle School next year.  They are looking forward to working with each other as well as with CRMS families. They have already started brainstorming possible themes for next year.  We can’t think of a better teaching team to facilitate learning at CRMS.

Longtime charter teacher, Keidi Lewis has co-taught CRMS in the past and has been on staff at Coast Redwood High School for many years primarily teaching History, Spanish and Life Skills-related subjects. A lifelong learner, she interested in all subjects… and she loves to teach! Next year Keidi will be teaching at CRMS on Mondays and Wednesdays while continuing to teach and support the students at Coast Redwood High School on Fridays.

Mark Thomas has taught for many years at San Lorenzo Valley Middle School. Ostensibly retired, Mark loves to teach so much that he keeps coming back. He has taught math for much of his career but has also enjoyed teaching woodworking, writing, and drama. Mark really appreciates a project-based, application-focused approach to learning and is looking forward to being able to facilitate that type of learning at CRMS.

Marcy will work side-by-side with Mark and Keidi through the middle of September to help kick off the new school year.  She will continue to be available to check in with the teachers, so you can expect to see her at our Parent Orientation Meeting and at various points throughout the year.


Coast Redwood High School Parent Committees: We are excited to hear from our parents about their interest is supporting CRHS. Here is a preview of where parent interests were noted:  - CRHS Boosters Club - Sunshine Committee - Master Gardeners Program

- Field Trip Coordinator   - Graduation Committee - Headwaters Shasta beginning of the school year field trip. - Ashland Oregon Shakespeare field trip.

_____________

Dates to Remember:

• August 20: First school day of the 2018-19 school year.


Charter News June 8, 2018

posted Jun 10, 2018, 4:10 PM by Rhonda Schlosser   [ updated Jun 14, 2018, 8:41 PM ]


“It’s not enough to have lived. We should be determined to live for something.”

~Winston S. Churchill



Dear Charter Families,


The end of each school year always feels like a ride down a river; sometimes rushing, sometimes feeling a bit stagnant, sometimes with a wind shifting the currents so we have to collectively steer against the sudden onslaught - exhilarating, exhausting, and oh so worth it for all those involved once it is over.  Hooray, summer vacation is very near: Thursday, June 14th is our last official day


The academic and social lessons our students learned have been continuous: sometimes hard earned, sometimes learned with a flow that made them seem effortless.  There isn’t any one of our Charter programs where we didn’t have a student - or three or more - whose academic and/or social-emotional needs added an additional layer of work that, in the long run, has given them a greater appreciation to the lessons well learned.  To those students who went the extra mile; we doubly commend you.


I continue to be impressed with the level of commitment and integrity our teachers have for their job, and to the parents who work so hard alongside their students, helping them through the final days. Thank you to everyone. Thank you to the Charter support staff and greater district teams who help our Charter programs.  It has been another rewarding and productive year.


A special thank you to the teachers and support staff who are moving on at the end this year.  It is inevitable that we have to say goodbye to someone nearly each year. As hard as it is, what makes it easier is that 99% of the time, they are leaving for a good reason, never because they are unhappy.  We will miss them all, wish them happy trails, and hope they come back to visit in the years to come.


Jen Sims: Mental Health Counselor.  Though she is not leaving the district, she is transitioning to work full-time at BCE.  We will miss her as a consistent voice and support to our staff, students, and classroom development.  Luckily we know she is just a skip down Highway 9 away.


Kim Fleming: Teacher at our Mountain IS program.  Kim stepped in when the program’s founding teacher retired a couple years ago.  This year, Kim rebirthed the program and solidified it into a place where all students and families feel Safe, Seen and Supported. Under her heart-filled guidance the kids and homeschooling families flourished and the message has been resounding: Mountain IS is a great place to be!


Rory McKee: Academic Counselor for CRHS and our 8th graders.  Rory was hired as our Academic Counselor when Jen was hired as fulltime counselor at SLVHS. Rory was a great fit for us: as a Nature Academy graduate, he shared the values we hold and had a level of scrutiny and personal commitment to connecting to each student that further added clarity and consistency to our counseling systems.  


Gillian Blair: Quail Hollow Homeschool teacher.  Gillian has been working with our K-5 program, team teaching with Katie and working as a collaborative team member with our other K-8 teachers and programs for many years now.  Enough years to leave a lasting imprint for her passion for learning, especially in mathematics! We are grateful that she came out of retirement to share her creativity with so many hands-on activities and to infuse the love of learning into another generation of students and families.


Carter Milhous: teacher and co-founder of the Nature Academy program.  He taught in the district for 30 years, 20 in the Nature Academy.  Words cannot begin to express the imprint he has made on the many many students that his teaching and field experiences has touched, the many many parents and families whose relationships and lens on learning was forever changed by working with the foundational Life Skills he so believed in.  And of course to the teachers and staff members who worked alongside him; we will miss his knowledge, wit, and playful dedication. Not only has he touched the lives of countless students with his caring heart, deep knowledge of a variety of subject areas, and catchy sayings, he also leaves behind a large garden with working solar panel and thriving pond, a greenhouse, and an 18-hole disc golf course.  


~Rhonda


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


From our Counselor, Jen Sims:  School is where it happens

My reaction upon being hired by the San Lorenzo Valley School district 3 years ago was…surprised. Also relieved, because I had been working at the New Leaf and found it to be way harder than any other job I have had, but mostly surprised. At that point I hadn’t spent too much time with kids since I was one myself, although I had some experience teaching them. Most of my experience in the last ten years was doing individual therapy with adults. I applied for the job because I had been getting interested in mental health at schools, and more specifically student development theory (more on this later). I guess the surprise was that I didn’t realize that I would be the school counselor to younger children. It’s worked out though, and I’ve learned a lot over the years. Most of all I’ve learned that school is where it happens.


Back to Student Development Theory – it has three guiding assumptions:

  • Each student is a different individual with unique needs

  • The entire environment of the student should be taken into account for and used for education

  • Student has a personal responsibility for getting educated


I look at our schools through the lens of student development theory and it helps me to understand the place in a more grounded way. Things can get rough at school and while it’s our job to make sure things don’t get abusive, like bullying, there is something to be said for learning how to manage conflict. It’s painful to watch kids in distress but this is what they came here to do, to push up against each other and the school rules and constraints again and again as they keep learning about their own existence and co-existence with others. If we keep teaching them, I trust that they will keep developing more and more skills to deal with each other and their own emotions. School provides endless opportunities for that, because school – any kind, any classroom, is where it happens.


Every day at school – whether it is a two-day or five day per week situation – every day in that community provides our students with academic demands and challenges. That is what is mostly measured in data and that is what determines a school’s ranking. There’s so much more unofficial learning going on at school, however, things that can never be measured but are important and have lifelong impact. Children come to school to try it all out – who am I? What are relationships? What are my boundaries? What are your boundaries? What offends me? What do I like? How do I feel about my peers, teachers, the world? Do I like people or are they draining? The pursuit of identity is a daunting task and we are their faithful witnesses. School is the perfect stage for the drama to occur because it sets the boundaries that ensure things can’t get too out of hand. Providing a safe place for students to get through this part of life is part of every single staff member at this district’s job – from the principals, to the IT people, to the teachers, to the custodians – all of us. School is where it happens.


This year I had the opportunity to write about, think about and discuss concepts related to empathy every month with staff and students. This gave me the unique opportunity to visit classrooms, nearly all of them, and spend time talking with and getting to know them. I gained a deeper understanding of classroom culture and how each group has a distinct dynamic or flavor. No classroom was conflict-free and all classrooms had beautiful expressions of empathy, compassion, support and understanding. Through this process I gained more empathy for everything we are doing here at school to get along and make it work. I see teachers working to incorporate social-emotional skills into all aspects of learning and being flexible in addressing individual needs, I see parents showing up to work with and advocate for their children, I see students making great choices every day that help us move forward as a community. And even though we focus on the students, in actuality everything we’re doing is part of the bigger picture of all of our growth and development. At school we are all learning a lot from each other, all the time, like it or not. School is where it happens.


Next year I will be transitioning out of the charter school over to Boulder Creek Elementary. Of course I have mixed emotions. I love my work with the Charter School students and staff. I love dreaming and scheming with Rhonda to bring mental health to the charter school in a great way. Moving to Boulder Creek means that I can bring more consistency to one school, and as it turns out I do get along with younger students. I hope you’ll always feel free to contact me about anything - Jen


SLVUSD opportunities: SLVUSD is now hiring for the following positions. Positions are permanent unless indicated. If you are interested, please apply on Edjoin, www.edjoin.org.  Contact the Human Resources Department (336-5193) if you have questions about any of the openings.

Boulder Creek Elementary

Custodian

Special Ed Instructional Assistant (part-time)

San Lorenzo Valley Elementary

Education Specialist Teacher (SDC)

Instructional Assistants (all part-time, hours vary according to position)

K-3 Music Enrichment Teacher (temporary year to year)

San Lorenzo Valley Middle School

Education Specialist Teacher (ED-SDC)

Secondary Dean of Students (Temporary)

San Lorenzo Valley High School

Mathematics Teacher

Spanish Teacher (Temporary-1st semester only)

Girls Varsity Basketball Coach (seasonal)

Girls Varsity Water Polo Coach (seasonal)

SLV Charter

6th-8th Grade Integrated Arts Teacher (60%, temporary)

Mental Health Specialist (40%)

SLVUSD-District

Maintenance Specialist-Electrician

We are also looking for substitute custodians to work at all sites.


Community Events: The Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) is currently soliciting input from students, parents, and staff at the San Lorenzo Valley schools on the Highway 9-San Lorenzo Valley Corridor Transportation Plan. The RTC is specifically seeking feedback on the area of Highway 9 around the schools.

Please consider taking this survey and providing your valuable input on this important community project:   https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6TNGT7T.

For more information on this project,  https://sccrtc.org/projects/streets-highways/hwy-9-plan/


 

There is a coupon code for all students of Charter who wish to participate, at SLV it is at runsignup.com for the summer Splash and Dash and the code is “student” it is good for $10 off

https://runsignup.com/Race/Register?raceId=59257&coupon=Student

 



Our popular summer reading program for young adults will run June 1st through September 5th this year. We're challenging teens to read 6 books--at least 3 from our recommended reading list (see below) and up to 3 of their choice. Complete the challenge and not only will you have read some terrific books, but you'll earn excellent rewards: A $5 Bookshop gift card, a free scoop from the Penny Ice Creamery, a free slice from Pizza My Heart, and a special prize from the Santa Cruz Warriors!

How to get started: Come to Bookshop Santa Cruz to pick up a summer reading bookmark from the Young Adult section or download the pdf below. You are going to want to hang onto this because it's also your reading tracking form that you're going to use all summer and turn back to us before school starts. Pick out your first book and start reading!  All summer reading books are on display at Bookshop Santa Cruz.  Download the bookmark!

What you get to read: We have put together a great list of 6 recommended books. To complete the challenge, you get to choose at least three of these recommended books and up to three books of your own choosing--for a total of 6 great books--to read over the summer. See the list below.

How to complete the challenge: Just bring back your filled out bookmark, making sure to note your name, age, and school before turning it in, by September 5th. Then you will get to collect your rewards and proudly post your name on our Summer Reading wall.

Bonus: If you liked the book you read, let us know by writing a short review (50 words or less) about why you liked it. For each review, your name will be entered into a raffle to win a $50 gift card to Bookshop Santa Cruz! Reviews will be posted in the Bookshop for everyone to read.

Extra bonus: The school that has the most students participate will also get a gift certificate to buy new books for their school library!

Recommended Reading List Books:

The Pearl Thief (Paperback) By Elizabeth Wein

When the Moon Was Ours (Paperback) By Anna-Marie McLemore

Lucy and Linh (Paperback) By Alice Pung  

Salt to the Sea (Paperback) By Ruta Sepetys

You're Welcome, Universe (Paperback) By Whitney Gardner

All American Boys (Paperback) By Jason Reynolds, Brendan Kiely


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

Coast Redwood HS: It has been a flurry of activity the last of couple of weeks as on-site classes have ended and our seniors have been preparing for graduation. Anticipation and excitement has been building and the final crescendo of graduation has come! Congratulations to all of our graduating seniors: Brynna Beddell, Jacob Burgess, Jason Erwin, Justin Erwin, Daniel Halberstadt, Isabella Hayes, Cassandra Heron, Myles Laurin, Ben Murphy, Harmony Perna, Portia Simmons, Cameron Snider. They all have great plans for their post graduate years ahead. We wish you all the best!

Coast Redwood MS: We have ended our year with fundraising activities with the Redwood Mountain Faire,  end of year conferences and wrapping things up in the garden in preparation for summer. The kids did a great job selling their handmade lotions at the faire: articulating information about our classroom business and why we use the ingredients and packaging that we do. They sold $363 of product and distributed all of our brochures and the business cards  It’s been a year of lots of learning, friendship and fun activities for all. Our advancement ceremony and party will be Wednesday the 13th at the Trowbridges.  Thank you Rachel and family. Enjoy the summer!

Nature Academy: All of Nature Academy is buzzing with excitement as the end of the school year ends. Days full of work completion and fun filled year end classroom activities. We are looking forward to our 8th graders Advancement this next week on the 13th. Congratulations 8th graders! We know you will do well, in ay of the schools you are transferring to.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): We had a bittersweet week as students are already experiencing all of the emotions that come with the end of the year, and friends transitioning to other places next year. They are such a thoughtful, reflective group of young people. We celebrated our end of the year and advancements with a potluck pool party. Congratulations to the recipients of our 2018 Peer Awards: ~Oral and Written Communication: Julia Deraco ~Thinking Analytically, Critically, and Practically: Naia Cantor-Baker and Amaya Gordon ~Healthy Self-Awareness and Social Relationships: Andy Matessa ~Social Responsibility and Integrity: Elliot Lariz ~QHIA Spirit Award: Abena Reisewitz-Oteng

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Our last days of class have been so much fun! K-2 circled up for walking the number with friends showing off some groovy dance moves. 3-6 shared out their summer plans and talked about their amazing grandparents and great-grandparents and all they have done and shared with us. We all chipped in and became scrubber bees to leave our classroom all cleaned up for the summer and our yearbook was a success, once again.  Our end of year advancement celebration and swim party was so much fun! Have a fabulous summer!

Fall Creek Homeschool: Our end of year meetings are in full swing! Our yearbook has gone to print and is going out to families at end of year meetings. We will be saying our last goodbyes for the summer at our paperwork picnic and pool party on June 13th!

Mountain IS: We are coming to the close of our school year, busy with end of year conferences. We will be saying our final farewells for summer to each other at our pool party. Happy Summer!  A huge thank you to Kim Fleming for creating such a wonderful year.  Thanks to Beth and the parents too. Our upcoming events are: End of Year celebration June 11.


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.)
  • June 13: Nature Academy (9:30-12:15) Coast Redwood MS (3:00-7 pm) advancements

  • June 14th:  Last day of school

Charter News May 18, 2018

posted May 28, 2018, 2:30 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.  ~Voltaire


“To create is to live twice.”  ~Albert Camus




Dear Charter Families,


We are rounding the last turn and finishing the last stretch of the school year!  Every year I am amazed at all that gets done during this time of year. Teachers and students are working in double time; working both the academic completion path and the final trips and celebration path. Admin staff is busy supporting the classroom efforts, closing this year’s ‘books’ and prepping for next year.


Everyone is simultaneously thinking about the end of the school year and the start of summer. With heartfelt emotion, we are recognizing the contrast between finishing strong in final academic projects and course requirements and saying our goodbyes through final field trips, advancements and graduation celebrations.


Students and teachers alike are feeling mixed emotions about ending their school year.  It is a time that is full of high energy and the finish line is in everyone’s minds. Thus, this is a time for extra rest, extra patience, and extra recognition and appreciation to your children and their teachers for continuing to work at their best. Congratulate them for a job well done, every day.  Everyone in the Charter, every teacher, and every student, and every parent that is supporting the process truly work with their hearts on their sleeves, with best intentions even when the thread feels like it’s close to breaking. Everyone is working at their best and at the same time, respecting that we need to enjoy the relaxing moments in order to savor the final days too.


Thanks for honoring the special end of the school year process.  Thanks for appreciating your students and their teachers. Thanks for encouraging more sleep and at the same time, more push towards your students completing their work to their best ability.


Please read on for news on special opportunities.


Have a great Memorial day weekend.


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


LCAP; Local Control Accountability Plan: A BIG THANK YOU to ALL who COMPLETED the SURVEY. The information you shared through the survey is very important to all of the Charter Staff.  So far we have received 69 surveys; the majority STILL from CRHS and Nature Academy.  The number is growing and I am grateful for any and all feedback we receive. I have gathered the data and will use it as I complete the annual LCAP report. (posted on our website under info) http://charter.slvusd.org/charter-info/governance-reports-plans/-lcap

The deadline to use the data for our LCAP plans has passed, but I still want to hear from everyone and so am keeping the survey open. I would love to receive feedback from every parent in the Charter!

Please click on the PARENT SURVEY Link and share your opinion!  https://goo.gl/forms/229cj48X1DsR6VM22  


The SLSVUSD School Calender for 2018-19 is finalized; here is the link to access the calendar: http://www.slvusd.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/2018-2019-School-Calendar-Final.pdf


Community Events:


Our popular summer reading program for young adults will run June 1st through September 5th this year. We're challenging teens to read 6 books--at least 3 from our recommended reading list (see below) and up to 3 of their choice. Complete the challenge and not only will you have read some terrific books, but you'll earn excellent rewards: A $5 Bookshop gift card, a free scoop from the Penny Ice Creamery, a free slice from Pizza My Heart, and a special prize from the Santa Cruz Warriors!

How to get started: Come to Bookshop Santa Cruz to pick up a summer reading bookmark from the Young Adult section or download the pdf below. You are going to want to hang onto this because it's also your reading tracking form that you're going to use all summer and turn back to us before school starts. Pick out your first book and start reading!  All summer reading books are on display at Bookshop Santa Cruz. Download the bookmark!

What you get to read: We have put together a great list of 6 recommended books. To complete the challenge, you get to choose at least three of these recommended books and up to three books of your own choosing--for a total of 6 great books--to read over the summer. See the list below.

How to complete the challenge: Just bring back your filled out bookmark, making sure to note your name, age, and school before turning it in, by September 5th. Then you will get to collect your rewards and proudly post your name on our Summer Reading wall.

Bonus: If you liked the book you read, let us know by writing a short review (50 words or less) about why you liked it. For each review, your name will be entered into a raffle to win a $50 gift card to Bookshop Santa Cruz! Reviews will be posted in the Bookshop for everyone to read.

Extra bonus: The school that has the most students participate will also get a gift certificate to buy new books for their school library!

Recommended Reading List Books:

The Pearl Thief (Paperback) By Elizabeth Wein

When the Moon Was Ours (Paperback) By Anna-Marie McLemore

Lucy and Linh (Paperback) By Alice Pung  

Salt to the Sea (Paperback) By Ruta Sepetys

You're Welcome, Universe (Paperback) By Whitney Gardner

All American Boys (Paperback) By Jason Reynolds, Brendan Kiely


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

Coast Redwood HS: We are finishing the school year strong. Our 10th, 11th, and 12th grade English class Mystery Writers have completed their mystery short stories! Over 1000 pages of mystery and intrigue. As part of the mystery writing we toured the Winchester Mystery House and the students were inspired for writing their next novel. Next year, our creative writers will continue their quest of solving mysteries and dabble in fantasy/science fiction writing. We are closing out the year with conferences and then graduation!

Our upcoming events are; Graduation June 8th, Redwood Mountain Faire Fundraiser June 2 & 3.

Coast Redwood MS: Busy, busy as the school year ends. We just got back from our trip to beautiful Yosemite. Students have completed their yearbook pages o go to print. Our garden re-design project is looking good; planting has been completed and everyone has been working hard to get it done! Thsnk you to the parents giving their extra time! The Jamba Juice fundraiser has been successful in helping to pay for the garden deck portion of our project. The yearbooks is moving forward! Our project presentations are all finished, we had some interesting ones: the history of art materials, optical illusions, marine iguanas, tortoises, types of rock climbing, and mycelial intelligence to name a few. Our upcoming events are: Fundraiser Boulder Creek Music & Art Festival May 27,  Fundraiser Redwood Mtn. Faire June 2&3, Advancement Ceremony June 13

Nature Academy: Our 6th graders just returned from their trip to Headwaters, Mt. Shasta. It was a powerful and fun experience for all of our 6th grade students. The 7th & 8th graders just returned from their trip to Lake Tahoe and had a fabulous time bicycling, hiking, and fly fishing to name just a few of their activities. They hiked Donner Lake imaging what it must have been like to have to travel by foot through this mountainous area and how long it must have taken! Our upcoming events are: June 13 8th grade advancement ceremony

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): We have been making our final push on editing our yearbook and getting it ready for print. We wrapped up our CSI Investigation into the many theories surrounding Shakespeare’s true identity. Congratulations to Liam, Miles, Lucas, Seleona, Violet, Julia, and Ruby for their incredible performances in our Charter Talent Show. It was a great evening of dance, singing, music, and art and film displays from all programs!  Our final Capture the Flag event for the year was wonderful with 38 players in attendance! We have had fun with writing exercises around the theme of character development, establishing setting, and creating an ending first. We have spent time discussing and debunking myths and generalizations made about Native American people and watched a video on perspectives from contemporary Native American middle school students. Our upcoming events are: Advancement/Year End Celebration June 7, Great America June 12

Quail Hollow Homeschool: As we wrap up the school year, we have been working on completing our yearbook to get ready to print. Thank you to all who came out to join us for our first Annual Author’s reception. The students get kudos for reading their wonderful work to a live audience! We all got together and brainstormed all the activities we have done this year - what an amazingly long list!

Our upcoming events are: Advancement/Year-end Celebration May 31

Fall Creek Homeschool: As our school year comes to a close we have finished up student projects. We painted the mountains and other geographical features of the 3D map of California. We listened to the true story of Astro, the Stellar Sea Lion who spent time at Long Marine Lab before being relocated to an aquarium in Mystic, Connecticut. From the evidence in the book, we calculated that Astro is probably still alive and could be visited if one happens to be in Connecticut. The end of the year celebration was a lot of fun with students bringing their scooters, skateboards and roller skates to enjoy the day And we made slime to round out the day. We watched videos created by our classmates and made a thank you card for our custodian for all of her hard work this year. And we wrote a page in our rainbow books about our best memory of the year at Fall Creek.

Mountain IS:  Many things are happening as we are winding up the school year. We are getting ready to order our yearbooks and complete the last of our classroom days. We will be enjoying a family beach day and a classroom creek day as our last day of school arrives.

Our upcoming events are: End of Year celebration June 11


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.)

• May 28:  Memorial Day: no school
• May 31: Quail Hollow  advancement celebration
• June 7: Quail Hollow Integrated Arts advancement celebration
• June 8: Coast Redwood High School graduation ceremony (12:30-2)
• June 13: Nature Academy (9:30-12:30) Coast Redwood MS (3:00-7 pm) advancement celebration
• June 14th:  Last day of school

Charter News May 7, 2018

posted May 8, 2018, 11:36 AM by Rhonda Schlosser


“To avoid trials is to avoid living; the more you go through, the more you learn.”

― Matshona Dhliwayo



Dear Charter Families,


I presume that all of you received the all call from the district regarding the Lockdown that occurred last Wednesday on the Tri-campus. (Please note: while it is mentioned as the Tri-campus, the message also includes Nature Academy, Coast Redwood HS, Coast Redwood MS, Fall Creek HS, and the Ludlow facility)


It was an unnerving event to say the least, but thanks to the wonderful efforts of Ms. Calden at the Middle School and all the supporting staff, the entire middle school campus was secured, our local Sheriff's Deputies responded quickly, and then handled the situation professionally and with great heart toward our schools and our children.  

A huge thanks to the students and staff. The teachers knew just what to do.  And to our very own Danelle Matteson, who managed students that were in our office and fielded calls from concerned parents all of our programs throughout the event. The students handled the situation very well and remained calm and supportive throughout the day.


The district will continue to use the dial out system and the district website to provide information. With every event, we become more efficient and knowledgeable in how to manage the next situation. Here are a few things that we would like to pass along:

  • In a crisis situation, the information immediately available online is often wildly inaccurate.  Once everything was over, we looked online and saw several instances of blatantly incorrect information presented as facts - on Facebook, Twitter, emails, and the websites of local news outlets.  If it isn't coming directly from the Schools or the Sheriff's Office, you should read it knowing it might not be factual.

  • While the schools and school district want to get information out as soon as possible, it may not be right away because we are in an emergency situation where our only concern until it is over is to make sure your children are safe.  

  • At the school sites, we will not be answering phones or emails from the outside. We are on radios and school emails making sure all kids are safe and accounted for.  If we have a minute to put out a quick email to parents to update them on anything confirmed as fact by law enforcement, I will. If we don't have that minute, or if there is nothing confirmed as fact, we won't be using our phones..

  • We want to keep everyone informed, and recognize that in emergency situations it is not enough. We thank you for your patience and understanding.

  • Law Enforcement specifically asks that people do not drive to the site of a lockdown.  First, it could be dangerous. Second, an influx of vehicles coming to scene could delay or hinder emergency vehicles, and third, once an area is secured, anybody driving or walking onto campus could be seen as a threat by law enforcement.

  • Lastly, it is hard to understand why anyone would intentionally make such a false call and raise such chaos, but it happens.  if you have any information about who might have made a bomb threat to the school please call the Sheriff’s Office.


~Rhonda


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


From our Mental Health Counselor, Jen Sims:  Social Justice is something we live.


Last Friday I went to see West Side Story, put on by the San Lorenzo Valley High School and including many talented Coast Redwood Charter students. First, let me say that it was excellent! I could go on and on about all the parts that I loved. My next take-away was the reminder that theater is one of the absolute best ways to teach social justice to the world and ourselves. I’ve been trying to talk to kids about this all month and I’m realizing that it’s not just something one can tell someone about and expect them to get it…social justice is something we absorb because it is something we live.


Spoiler alert: I was a drama geek growing up and coped with my life by joining ensembles and performing. I was in Hair and Evita – in their own way each of these shows discussed huge political and social issues. Putting myself in other people’s shoes and acting out their stories changed me, gave me a wider perspective on the world and a lot of insight for a teenager. West Side Story addresses problematic social issues such as racism, violence, and prejudice against immigrants, things that are still relevant today. There is a big message in this show about the futility of that behavior. In the show, they are dreaming that “There’s a place for us, somewhere a place for us, peace and quiet and open air...” I know that just by being a part of this show these student performers, musicians and crew will walk away from this experience with a deeper sense of the human dynamics that lead to these social justice issues, as well as deeper understanding of themselves. All of us who witness the performance will also have this benefit.


The facts of social justice do not matter: it is the stories that evoke feeling that lead to change. As a kid, I was making fun of fat kids until my mother shared a story of how my beloved – and overweight – grandfather had been teased. Believe it or not, I had never before made the connection. The story was way more impactful than just being told I was wrong. It had an immediate long-term impact because suddenly the story became relevant to me. Nope, altruism does not necessarily come naturally. When working with your child around social justice issues, connect it with something they can relate to in their own life and work outward from there. Experiential activities like volunteering will help, as well as books, movies, and theater.


All humans understand that things can be unfair. “No one is free when others are oppressed” - author unknown. Social injustice requires that someone is on the bottom at all times, and therefore there is not one person in this world that has not experienced the pain of oppression. The way our society works, there is plenty of room for someone to always get a turn at the bottom. I think that acknowledging this is as important as acknowledging that we do have privilege. Otherwise, the same dynamic holds and wealthy able-bodied white men get told they have no problems and are to blame for all the social justice problems in the world – so it’s their turn at the bottom. We don’t have to perpetuate that. It is true that some groups and some situations have more unearned privilege than others in America. If people are busy defending themselves for having privilege they might not be able

to acknowledge it at all and use it to even the playing field.


Use your powers for good. Children have so many different skills and abilities. I have the good fortune to see a unique side of them at school where I am more focused on their emotional life than academic talents. I see so much cool stuff and truly earnest uses of privilege for good. I see older kids helping younger kids and kids with stronger voices advocating for those who might be afraid to speak up. In talking with students about it this month, I know that they are paying attention and aware of the issues that affect larger society. I see a brave willingness in them to sit and have hard conversations, come to agreements and stick to them for the good of the community. I see the opposite of all of this too, but not as much. The negative stuff is louder and more worrisome, but small and large heroic acts also take place every day. Certainly, if we surveyed every single student, most of them would say they were against bullying. In the stories students most enjoy, the bully never wins. In our real life, let's keep elevating and recognizing the students that use the privilege of their resilience to stand up for others and make that the social norm.


Children are natural social justice warriors. Children question everything and all authority! I get it; they are essentially one of the most oppressed classes in society. They will nitpick with me over the fairness of how many gummy bears each person gets, but in reality, I see them put up with lots of unfair things and choices they wouldn’t make. For example, being in school and many of the rules they have to follow. The rules make sense to adults but not to them. This is all good practice for their future life and I encourage each child to speak their mind about whatever issue they find unfair and make a good case for change. I am honest and transparent with them about the reality of the rules. As much as students are working on reading, writing and math, they are working on developing their critical thought about the systems they are involved with and this will come with some resistance. It is our responsibility as adults to have good conversations that help children process their own ideas about change and the world.


When a person has empathy, it is almost impossible not to become involved in social justice issues. Empathy is such a hugely powerful emotion that it alone can be an agent of change. It starts from within, but can be easily translated outward to the world. Social Justice is something that can be noticed and discussed every day, from issues within the home (why does he get to go to bed later than me), to issues in the San Lorenzo Valley (when will the highway nine construction come to an end?), to Santa Cruz County (why is housing so expensive?), and beyond. Looking at life with a social justice lens works well with a growth mindset as it encourages action and change as the personal becomes political. It is something we live.


LCAP; Local Control Accountability Plan: PARENT SURVEY.

 

A BIG THANK YOU to ALL who COMPLETED the SURVEY. The information you share through the survey is very important to all of the Charter Staff.  So far we have received 64 surveys; the majority from CRHS and Nature Academy.  The number is growing and I am grateful for any and all feedback we receive.  The more completed surveys we get back, the better we can work with the data.

IT IS NOT TOO LATE TO FILL OUT THE SURVEY!  I would love to receive feedback from every parent in the Charter!

Please click on the PARENT SURVEY Link and share your opinion!  https://goo.gl/forms/229cj48X1DsR6VM22  


Parent Advisory Committee: LAST MEETING OF THE YEAR:  Thursday, May 10th, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.  We will be discussing the LCAP funding and our School goals for next year.     All Parents are invited to attend.


The SLSVUSD School Calender for 2018-19 is finalized here is the link to access the calender: http://www.slvusd.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/2018-2019-School-Calendar-Final.pdf


SLV CHARTER TALENT SHOW: Please come and support our charter students We have students performances from every program!


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

Congratulations to Markus Spracklin for receiving an award for Environmental Sciences and his work on Solar Panels in the Real World at the Santa Cruz County Science Fair!


Coast Redwood HS: HEADWATERS ADVENTURE TRIP We are continuing to accept Headwaters participants! SENIOR COLLEGE COMMITMENTS The class of 2018 may be a small class, but they are mighty! We are very proud of each and every senior. Come join us in celebrating their graduation from Coast Redwood High School on Friday, June 8, at 12:30 pm, at the Fall Creek Amphitheater. ALL CHARTER TALENT SHOW Thursday, May 10, 7:00 pm at the PAC. Excellent talent and artists - come out and support our students!

Coast Redwood MS: We started our CAASPP testing this week. We have been working on our garden re-design and have received a donation of several yards of organic compost from Vision Recycling for our garden. Our Jamba Juice fundraiser kicked off last week, these funds will be used to help pay for a garden deck. I have been pursuing the possibility of selling our lotion at one of the local festivals. It would be great to have a chance for the kids to do more direct sales and for them to have an event to work toward with our class business. Students have started working on the yearbook as we go toward the end of the year. Our Natural Bridge Yosemite trip is right around the corner and we are all very excited.

Nature Academy: 6th-grade students are working through rocks and gems unit in science and have begun an elective in crochet. The students are almost finished with their year-long country reports. 7-8th grade class are preparing for their Civil War event, completing their causes of the war booklet and writer’s workshop creative writing piece during that time period.  The details of their Tahoe trip are in their final stages.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): Students presented their research on many different aspects of Medieval Europe. We have covered most of the Nervous System for sciences. We looked at many layouts for our Yearbook, which we will spend a lot of time on next week. Jen Sims came and led a discussion on Social Justice, and we participated in some 50/50 Day activities and discussions including short films on Bias and Privilege. 50/50 Day is sponsored by the same group that organized Character Day at the beginning of the year. It deals with gender and racial equity in all areas of our lives. We also finished our mural!  We have had a fun week putting yearbook pages together, we learned how to collaborate with different rhythms using found objects in our STOMP! class, and doing a CSI Investigation: “Did Shakespeare Really Exist”.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Thank you to all of our families who made every effort to attend and participate in our annual state testing. It is so important to our school to have all families participate. We look forward to getting back to our regular routine and seeing all our friends next week. We have our Bee Class field trip coming up next week. There will also be an Author’s Reception to celebrate our writers as they have the opportunity to share with our class and families their wonderful books.

Fall Creek Homeschool: We looked at a poster of our local watershed, discussed how that works and noted many of the animals and plants that live in our local area. We worked cooperatively to learn about the elephant seals at Ano Nuevo in preparation for our field trip.  We used wet paper and watercolors to paint a watershed and learned a technique for “erasing” paint to add a new color. Our field trip to Ano Nuevo State Park was enjoyed by everyone. Students learned about this unique marine mammal as well as the other inhabitants of the park including shorebirds, land mammals, and past human inhabitants such as the native Ohlone and historic light keepers. We enjoyed mini-lessons on Coastal Marine Wetlands, Birds of the Wetlands, and endangered species. Students embraced the opportunity to view actual elephant seal skulls, compare sizing and learn about tracking devices. We helped Natalee with a letter-writing campaign to help the oceans: we wrote letters to local stores and restaurants to ask them to only carry sustainable fish.

Mountain IS:  Students have been busy taking the State tests, preparing for a talent show.  Families took a field trip to the Everett Family Farm and learned all about organic farming.  In class, they worked on Mandalas and a Mexican Train.


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.)
  • May 22: Fall Creek advancement celebration

  • May 28:  Memorial Day: no school

  • May 31: Quail Hollow  advancement celebration

  • June 7: Quail Hollow Integrated Arts advancement celebration

  • June 8: Coast Redwood High School graduation ceremony

  • June 13: Nature Academy (9:30-12:30) Coast Redwood MS (3:00-7 pm) advancement celebration

  • June 14th:  Last day of school

Charter News: April 20, 2018

posted Apr 23, 2018, 2:03 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Dear Charter Families,


Thanks to everyone whose children are participating in the annual Statewide testing.  While I don’t believe it is anyone’s favorite activity, It is another way that the District and Charter review your child’s progress.  It is a snapshot in time. While no single test can give a complete picture of your child’s progress, having your child take the statewide tests provide additional information about what educational approaches are working and where additional resources are needed. it is also a requirement for all public schools to achieve a 95% participation rate.  Given that we are a small school, it doesn’t take many students to affect that rate. I have been in several classrooms that have begun testing, and while the tests may be somewhat long, the students seem relaxed and fully able to get up and take breaks. Their critical thinking ability is serving them well! Please feel free to contact me if you would like additional information.


I am taking this opportunity to share information from Delaney Ruston, MD; Screenagers' Filmmaker about “ Why three hours is too much”.  I have shared information from her Tech Talk Tuesday before, but this topic is particularly important to me and all the Charter teachers.  We have amazing students who are also great kids in our programs, yet I am noticing more and more that their attention span seems to be shortening and the primary activities that they talk about often involve screens.


Please read her blog below and see if it resonates with you and your family.


~Rhonda


NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


Tech Talk Tuesdays: Why 3 Hours is Too Much.

What happens when you have an active, involved kid with good grades, who wants to play video games for three straight hours a day, every day? A father came to me with this dilemma. He explained, “My son is in 7th grade, plays on two sports teams and is an overall good kid, but I still think three hours is too much time. When he asks me why, I struggled to come up with a good reason.”

What are some good reasons? There are many, and I thought this would be a great time to share this dad’s question with colleagues who I recently spoke with on a panel at the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Each of them works with families around curbing excessive video game use.

Psychiatrist and Gaming Addiction Specialist, Dr. Clifford Sussman makes this point, “The more time one spends online, especially in one sitting, the more a process called downregulation causes a drop in the number of dopamine receptors in the reward processing area of the brain. This causes a decrease in our ability to feel pleasure, resulting in a need to seek more stimulation.”

Dr. David Greenfield, Founder of The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction says “Although performing well in major life-spheres is often a key contraindication of Internet or video game addiction there are other issues and neurobiological consequences that may be more subtle, but nevertheless impactful.” He adds, “Heavy use seems to have several negative impacts (including getting less sleep) perhaps the largest imbalance in our use of time which we all have a limited amount of.”

Clinical Psychologist Edward Spector, says “Almost any problem in your life can be overcome with 3 hours per day of effort.  Likewise, almost any hope or dream can be accomplished in 3 hours a day. That gaming habit turns out to be very expensive. It costs you the gold medal you would have won, the musical instrument you would have mastered, the problems you would have overcome, and the dreams you would have realized.”

Let me give two of my top personal responses to this question. One is that there are so many things I want this child to have in his life-skills’ toolbox: Is he learning how to be a helper in a community by helping with house activities? Does he have a couple of dishes he can cook and feed others? Is he gaining emotional resilience by practicing talking about personal things with trusted adults... and the list of tools goes on and on.  

My next response is that his son is playing “THEIR” GAME—not his own. While there can be some creativity in games, it is limited and set within the developer’s boundaries. This youth has a brain, and a brain is the best creation machine imaginable. I want to ensure he has lots of chances to use his creativity in all sorts of ways.

For the Tech Talk Tuesday let’s talk about the importance of setting realistic time limits. Even when your child has a busy schedule full of school, sports and other interests, three hours is still too long to spend on a screen. Engage your children in a conversation about how long is too long. Here are some questions to help get the conversation going:

    • What do you love the most about your favorite game or your favorite app?
    • How do you feel when you spend a lot of time playing it or being on the internet?
    • How many hours per week would you like to spend doing fun things on the internet?
    • Do you agree or disagree with what the experts said?


LCAP; Local Control Accountability Plan: PARENT SURVEY.

 

A BIG THANK YOU to ALL who COMPLETED the SURVEY. The information you share through the survey is very important to all of the Charter Staff.  So far we have received 58 surveys. This is a small number but I am grateful for any and all feedback we receive.  The more completed surveys we get back, the more we can work with the data.

 

Every year I review our school plan and ask for input from staff and parents about how they believe we are doing in achieving the goals. I review the use of our LCAP funds and the delivery of the information to achieve our school’s goals based on parent, student, and teacher input.

 

IT IS NOT TOO LATE TO FILL OUT THE SURVEY!  If you have not already done so, please take a minute to share your opinion with us.

 

Please click on the PARENT SURVEY Link and share your opinion!  https://goo.gl/forms/229cj48X1DsR6VM22  

 

I would love to receive feedback from every parent in the Charter!

 

Message from the Superintendent--opportunity for parents to provide feedback:

Each year I share information with parent groups at each school site regarding the instructional program in SLVUSD.  This is an opportunity for parents, to review the district priorities and action plans and provide feedback to the district.  

 

The LCAP survey is one way that the district gathers input from staff and parents. Please take a minute to take the LCAP survey and add your thoughts and comments. Your opinion matters and services and programs for students are added each year based on many of your responses. We will be reviewing the information on the surveys on April 10, 2018, to write our final LCAP plan and budget for 2018-2019.

Thank you for your support for the SLVUSD staff and students. -Laurie Bruton

Here is the link to the PARENT LCAP survey.  https://goo.gl/forms/jY18nK3lkO988eZI3


Parent Advisory Committee: LAST MEETING OF THE YEAR:  Thursday, May 10th, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.  We will be discussing the LCAP funding and our School goals for next year.     All Parents are invited to attend.


The SLSVUSD School Calender for 2018-19 is finalized here is the link to access the calendar: http://www.slvusd.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/2018-2019-School-Calendar-Final.pdf


All Charter Talent Show: Hello Charter Families. The deadline to RSVP with an act for the All Charter Talent Show is next Wednesday, April 25. We have 3 acts signed up so far, and we need 15-18 for the show to go on!!

Details:  Performance at the SLV Performing Arts Center (PAC) on Thursday, May 10, at 7:00 pm!

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! Student/parent collaborations are also highly encouraged!

We will display 2D and 3D artwork in the lobby of the PAC.

Please respond to Amber Walker: awalker@slvusd.org with the following info by Wednesday, April 25:

  1. Name and age/grade of student

  2. Contact information of parent or responsible adult: email address and phone number

  3. Charter Program they are enrolled in

  4. What kind of performance or visual art will be presented

  5. Staging needs-such as mats, microphones, piano, extension cords, backing musical track, chairs, etc.


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

Coast Redwood HS: Coast Redwood High School will host an information night from 5:30-7:00 pm on  Tuesday, April 24 All prospective students and their families are invited to attend to learn about our campus community, visit our classrooms, and our outdoor horticulture classroom. Families will receive information about the many individualized opportunities high school students have to earn their diplomas, participate in athletics, theater productions, adventure field trips, clubs as well as courses at community colleges and courses through CTEP (formally ROP/regional occupation programs)

Coast Redwood MS: Wednesday, April 25, Trip to the Rosicrucian Museum.Students William and Amelia lead the rest of the class in softball/baseball skills. In the garden, students either finished their bed designs and materials lists, made scale drawings of their beds for the green-board garden map, planted seeds, started building beds or helped stage the deck. Half the group got to go with Tina to the library to work on drawing skills.  Since we had two clay-related student presentations on Wednesday, we pulled out the clay and the kids had some very enjoyable time sculpting items they would like to take with them into the afterlife (based on William’s presentation. Project presentations included Claymation, Terracotta Warriors, and the Mariana Trench.

Nature Academy: 6th-grade class is learning about China and working on their comprehensive Country Report.They are completing their swimming unit and preparing for their week-long stay at Headwaters Outdoor Camp. 7th-8th graders: Nature Academy students are offered extra credit for a write up on their  Interest in bees. Here's a great opportunity to learn more, and offer solutions to enhance the health of our community. Students will need to look into creating bee-friendly habitats within the Nature Academy garden. This could form the basis of an in-depth scientific monitoring project which could sponsor greater community health as well as make you a stand-out when applying for colleges.  Parents and teachers of the 7-8th-grade class are planning a fabulous day of hands-on learning about the Civil War and the more volunteers we get, the better it will be! The event will take place at the Evergreen Cemetery and Harvey West Park. The morning will consist of different stations that students will rotate through. At one station, students will be working with interns and volunteers from the MAH (Museum of Art History) doing tombstone restoration. At another station, students will "Feed the Troops" by participating in some Civil War Era cooking, and at another, students will learn and practice flag signaling as was done by soldiers of the time to communicate with each other.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): We had a wonderful week with two community art partners: Chris Howe and Kate Longini-Pratt. Chris gave a unique Bonsai demo, and Kate continued working with students on our mural. Students also worked hard on finishing their Medieval Europe individual projects and we started sharing them yesterday. We learned about the fashion of that time period as well as a handmade, detailed map of the many European tribes. We will finish sharing next week, and we’ll start our Renaissance Unit. We also learned about the Digestive System and are moving on to the Nervous System next week.

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We welcomed a new student into our class after spring break. During math we calculated how many letters in the class had in total for our names, breaking down by letter. We found the most common letter was “A” and that is called the “mode”. The 3-6 grades made estimates of how many of each letter of the alphabet is contained in the collection of all our first names. We then checked our estimates against an actual tally we made.  We are so lucky to have our very own Karla DeLong, expert teacher and beekeeper offer to share some of her knowledge with us. If you would like to participate, please sign up with Katie by May 4th.

Fall Creek Homeschool: We enjoyed student presentations on Elephant seals, Narwhals, and Orcas. We made blank books for the Author’s Fair. We used storyboards to plan what we would write in the blank books. Our K-3 played Scrabble Scramble and the 4-5 grade worked together to investigate and solve a geometry problem. We participated in a  watershed walk at Mt. Hermon with the Outdoor Science School, discussed topography, hiked along Sequoia Trail identifying trees and plants, and investigated stream health of Zayante Creek at its confluence with Bean Creek.

Mountain IS: Students drew watercolor pictures inspired by Drew Brophy (warm vs cool colors). They played hula hut, had life lab lessons observing the changes seen in Spring.  They also worked with activities experimenting with safe landing in their zip lines discussing mass and velocity. The class also wrote about how small moments can be when big things happen.



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 27th: Nature Academy Application Window Closes

  • May 4: Nature Academy Lottery, 3 pm.

  • May 28th:  Memorial Day: no school

  • June 14th:  Last day of school

Charter News; March 29, 2018

posted Apr 16, 2018, 11:24 AM by Rhonda Schlosser

With the coming of spring, I am calm again.

-Gustav Mahler



Dear Charter Families,


I know we are all thankful for the start of our Spring Break!   May you enjoy the activities that bring your family joy and nourish your well being.


We look forward to having you back with us on Monday, April 9.


If you would please take a few minutes to complete our annual parent survey I would greatly appreciate it!  The link to the Charter survey and the District survey is below.


Take care.


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


LCAP; Local Control Accountability Plan: PARENT SURVEY.  As a Charter School, we have our own LCAP report and I am beginning the update to our report and plans for next year.   Every year I review our school plan and ask for input from staff and parents about how they believe we are doing in achieving the goals. I  review the use of our LCAP funds for unduplicated students as part of the update to our Charter LCAP.

 

Below is the link to a short PARENT SURVEY with questions specific to our Charter goals.  https://goo.gl/forms/229cj48X1DsR6VM22  

 

This survey is similar to Dr. Bruton’s LCAP survey, but more specific to our goals.  I would love to receive feedback from every parent in the Charter!

 

I will be meeting with staff and parents to discuss our LCAP in person the week after we return from Spring Break. We will be discussing this further at our April Parent Advisory Committee meeting.

 

Message and a Survey from the Superintendent

Each year I share information with parent groups at each school site regarding the instructional program in SLVUSD.  This is an opportunity for parents, to review the district priorities and action plans and provide feedback to the district.  

 

The LCAP survey is one way that the district gathers input from staff and parents. Please take a minute to take the LCAP survey and add your thoughts and comments. Your opinion matters, and services and programs for students are added each year based on many of your responses. We will be reviewing the information from the surveys on April 10, 2018 to write our final LCAP plan and budget for 2018-2019.

 

Thank you for your support for the SLVUSD staff and students. -Laurie Bruton

 

Here is the link for the PARENT LCAP survey.

https://goo.gl/forms/8XUOrdoW2ujaPT5v2

 


Charter News March 26, 2018

posted Mar 30, 2018, 3:56 PM by Rhonda Schlosser


Dear Charter Families,


We are soon to be embarking on our annual State Testing, also known as the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) using the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) System.  CRHS will begin testing the week after our Spring Break and all the other programs will soon follow. The testing window is open through the first week of June. The Charter staff work to create a testing schedule that best fits with their students’ class times in their programs, and give breaks as appropriate in order to create as relaxing an environment as possible.  There are summative assessments in grades three through eight and eleven for ELA and mathematics. The California Science Test (CAST) will be field-tested in spring 2018 in grades five and eight and in grade twelve.


The physical fitness test (PFT) for students in California schools is the FITNESSGRAM®. The main goal of the test is to help students in starting life-long habits of regular physical activity. Students in grades five, seven, and nine take the fitness test. The test has six parts that show a level of fitness that offer a degree of defense against diseases that come from inactivity.


These assessments are just one way that the Charter programs review your child’s progress. As the only assessment at the state level, we are required to have a strong participation rate as the way to show our accountability through the new California Accountability Model and school Dashboard. If you would like more information, please visit the CDE website. https://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/

Please read on more information about the dashboard and for a letter from the District on testing.


There is also a link to a parent survey that I would love for all to complete!


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


Intent to Return Forms: Please turn in your intent to return forms to your teacher or to one of our offices as soon as you can.  Please Note:  It is especially important to receive exiting students' Intent to Return Forms indicating their next school site.  Counselors at SLV High School, CRHS or at other schools start scheduling students for fall classes in May and our registrar needs to correctly set their next school indicator in Power School for this to happen.

Also, a reminder:  Siblings still need to complete an application in order for us to begin their application process. Siblings of NA students need to complete Nature Academy application for the NA 2018-19 lottery to be eligible to attend Nature Academy next year.  


The SLSVUSD School Calender for 2018-19 is finalized here is the link to access the calender: http://www.slvusd.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/2018-2019-School-Calendar-Final.pdf


LCAP; Local Control Accountability Plan: PARENT SURVEY. “The LCAP is a three-year plan that describes the goals, actions, services, and expenditures to support positive student outcomes that address state and local priorities. The LCAP provides an opportunity for local educational agencies (LEAs) to share their stories of how, what, and why programs and services are selected to meet their local needs.” https://www.cde.ca.gov/re/lc/

 

As a Charter School, we have our own LCAP report and I am beginning the update to our report and plans for next year.   Every year I review our school plan and ask for input from staff and parents about how they believe we are doing in achieving the goals. I  review the use of our LCAP funds for unduplicated students as part of the update to our Charter LCAP.

 

Below is the link to a short PARENT SURVEY with questions specific to our Charter goals.  https://goo.gl/forms/229cj48X1DsR6VM22  

 

This survey is similar to Dr. Bruton’s LCAP survey, but more specific to our goals.  I would love to receive feedback from every parent in the Charter!

 

I will be meeting with staff and parents to discuss our LCAP in person the week after we return from Spring Break. We will be discussing this further at our April Parent Advisory Committee meeting.

 

Message from the Superintendent--opportunity for parents to provide feedback:

Each year I share information with parent groups at each school site regarding the instructional program in SLVUSD.  This is an opportunity for parents, to review the district priorities and action plans and provide feedback to the district.  

 

The LCAP survey is one way that the district gathers input from staff and parents. Please take a minute to take the LCAP survey and add your thoughts and comments. Your opinion matters and  services and programs for students are added each year based on many of your responses. We will be reviewing the information on the surveys on April 10, 2018 to write our final LCAP plan and budget for 2018-2019.

 

Thank you for your support for the SLVUSD staff and students. -Laurie Bruton

Here is the link for the PARENT LCAP survey.  https://goo.gl/forms/jY18nK3lkO988eZI3


Parent Advisory Committee: Next meeting is Thursday, April 12th, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.  We will be discussing the LCAP funding and our School goals.

All Parents are invited to attend.



California School Dashboard: The California School Dashboard is an online tool designed to help communities across the state access important information about K–12 schools and districts. The Dashboard features easy-to-read reports on multiple measures of school success. Instead of looking at a single measure (test scores), the Dashboard looks at multiple measures to evaluate a district's and a school's performance. The Dashboard also is based on an improvement model, looking for districts and schools to make improvements, rather than simply comparing them to other districts and schools. http://www.caschooldashboard.org

Click here for an easy to read handout that explains the components of the dashboard. You can access SLV district information and information about all schools in the district.

You may also like to review Dashboard FAQs

Note: The indicator data on the Dashboards for smalls schools with low numbers of students in various grade levels or subgroups may have varying significance due to either incomplete information or fluctuating enrollment percentages by grade level.


Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Information

The following resources are provided as information for our parent / guardian community on our District Website

Safe Spaces for Immigrant Families – English

Espacios Seguros Para Las Familias (Safe Spaces for Immigrant Families) – Spanish

Know Your Rights – English

Know Your Rights – Spanish

Know Your Rights at Home – English & Spanish

Know Your Rights at Work – English & Spanish

Where to Fill Out Forms – English

Where to Fill Out Forms – Spanish

Childcare Safety Plan – English & Spanish

Income Guidelines – English

Legal Aid at Work – English

Redadas En El Lugar De Trabajo (Legal Aid at Work) – Spanish


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

Coast Redwood HS:  Seniors are receiving their acceptance letters into various colleges and those who will begin Cabrillo next year are in the enrollment process and taking assessment tests.  Last Friday, many students went on a team building field trip to Castle Rock. HOLI EVENT March 30 in the garden area. Bring sunglasses and wear tee shirts Facts: Holi marks the passing of winter and beginning of spring and is celebrated each year around the vernal equinox, the first day of the new season on the astronomical calendar. The festival signifies the victory of good over evil, the arrival of spring, end of winter, and for many a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and repair broken relationships. DISCLAIMERS: The colors are not dangerous, but we strongly advise that for protection you can wear something to protect your eyes or cover your mouth, such as a T-shirt. And just to note - most of the guests come in white clothes to make the effect of the colors more visible.

Coast Redwood MS: The kids worked in their garden bed design teams to figure out what the materials for their bed designs would cost if we were to pay retail prices for those materials. Thanks to all who came out for our garden family work day last Sunday.  We were treated to our monthly visit from Jen Sims. This month’s theme was acceptance and the effect of put-downs. We also talked about the importance of social-emotional learning as we prepared for and participated in 17 seconds of silence (17 mindful breaths for us)  to honor the victims of the Parkland, Florida shooting. Afterward we brainstormed a list of what makes us feel safe and considered what art might have to do with creating safety after watching the inspiring film: A New Color: The Art of Being Edythe Boone. In our class business we started to experiment with trying to replicate the recipe for our Extra Rich lotion. Crystal came in and showed how to distill hydrosols out of plant material.  We made one small batch of redwood hydrosol, which smells amazing and that we might distill down to essential oil to add to our hand and body lotion. The kids participated in a peer review process of their animal stories and practiced giving each other constructive, critical feedback as well as encouragement. We also were treated to a visit from Antonie Del Bonta from Kid Power who taught the kids very important communication skills around setting boundaries and staying safe, physically and emotionally.

Nature Academy:  6th, 7th, and 8th graders are planning Roller Palladium Extravaganza March 30. To add a bit of pizzazz for the 'extravaganza' part, we are asking everyone to come dressed in monochromatic theme. 6th grade class had their Cultural India Day celebration with a festive food event.    They are finishing up their digital photography unit and will begin a unit in watercolor.  7th-8th graders had a trip to the Monterey Aquarium and Cannery Row that tied into their work with Steinbeck’s novel and their ocean studies.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): We had a great time at the SF Zoo with CRMS. The weather was gorgeous, and our class, “Close Encounters”, was so cool! We began our study of Human Body Systems with a Stations Lab, which had students walking around to different “skeletal stations”, using critical thinking, and answering questions on their own and in small groups. We also started a new writing genre, letter writing, with a project called Letters of Hope, created by Yes! Magazine. PI day was a tremendous hit with the students baking pies in honor of the day. VAPA week ended with our program putting on a performance fundraiser at the SLV High School,  Performing Arts Center. And the Maker/DIY Fair was a stupendous success. The students worked so hard on their “Letter of Hope” project. We did a practical lab, identifying each muscle group by name as we targeted each through strength training exercises. We then identified them on a diagram using an interactive powerpoint presentation on the muscular system. They had an open art expression activity, which we followed up by “framing” sections of the dried murals with pieces of matte board, identifying elements of art. Finally, we watched the powerful documentary, “A New Color: The Art of Being Edythe Boone”,

Quail Hollow Homeschool: Friends of all ages gathered to work on the comics we wrote starring our clay animal figures, and putting finishing touches on the animals themselves. Jen Sims came and led students in grades 4-6 in a discussion of acceptance and tolerance, accompanied by a reading of Those Shoes, by Maribeth Boelts.  Friends in grades K-3 continued writing and illustrating I Know an Old Lady, and their animal comics. We planted cabbages in the garden, donated by the Bonnie Cabbage Program. We are going to try to grow the biggest cabbages! We are deep in our preparation for our annual school play; props, setting, costumes and lots of practice of the play itself!  This year it is “Wild Ham” We are combining a play based on Where the Wild Things are and Green Eggs and Ham. Dress rehearsal on Monday, morning performances Tuesday and Wednesday at 10:30, an evening performance Tuesday evening and a cast party on Thursday! Hope to see you at the PAC.

Fall Creek Homeschool: We enjoyed student presentations on the Great White Shark, Leafy Sea dragons and the sea otter. We watched a demonstration showing how much fresh water and salt water is on the planet. We discussed the hair-raising amounts of water factories need to produce certain common items. We prepared for a homework task of recording how much water our families use for various common tasks. We worked in partners and drew large posters that showed the 4 layers of a typical river. We then cut out and pasted animals, plants and insects onto our posters in the layer or zone where they live.  We listened to the book Three Days on a River in a Red Canoe. We drew the River Layers and discussed how rivers have 4 types of water movement.  We played a group math game using students as manipulatives to solve various operations and equations. We listened to a story called Follow the Water from Brook to Ocean. Students were interviewed about their ocean beach painting/drawing and wrote their story  and we continued our wet on wet paintings of the River's Edge. We ended with a Comment/Compliment Circle. We distinguished between brooks, streams, and creeks; lagoons, marshes and swamps; lakes, ponds and reservoirs. We noted that though we are going to Neary Lagoon it is actually a marsh by definition. We discussed all kinds of wetlands and why they are important.

Mountain IS: In Language Arts most of our students finished editing and are now writing their nonfiction animal group essays. We will be finishing illustrations and adding covers next week . In Art we completed our "gray scale" raccoons and began to create "grumpy cats" in chalk pastel. We also began a weaving project.

Sign Language: Beth taught us some new signs for family members, we are creating books as well about our families. Math/Calendar: We sang our days of the week song and months song in English and Spanish. We also continued discussing shape attributes and some pretty complicated patterns. Sheila is practicing songs with us in preparation of the spring concert. We played Greekafoo in PE, which is a strategic adaptation of capture the flag in which players can send others to jail, or rescue teammates by throwing, catching and dodging foam gator balls, in route to capturing, or while guarding the flag.


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 2nd-6th:  Spring Break!

  • May 17th:  Nature Academy Open House

  • May 28th:  Memorial Day: no school

  • June 14th:  Last day of school

Charter News: March 11, 2018

posted Mar 14, 2018, 3:23 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



The hours of folly are measured by the clock; but of wisdom, no clock can measure. ~William Blake


Dear Charter Families,


I hope you all remembered to change your clocks forward for Daylight Savings Time.

This coming week is a short week with no school on Monday as it is our last teachers’ Professional Development day for the year.  

The week is also the District’s VAPA Awareness week.  Please take a minute to read below about the variety of presentations that you can visit or attend throughout the week on our campuses.  

Jen, our counselor, also has a great article for you to read.


AND!  We have our annual information nights this month.  March 13 is our night to learn about all our various Hybrid Home-School programs.  March 20 is our Nature Academy information night. Come, bring a friend and learn more about our dynamic programs and some exciting changes.  


~Rhonda



NOTE: All newsletters will be archived on our website if you would like to confirm any information. http://charter.slvusd.org/.  Specific pertinent information can also be found on our website so if you have an opportunity, please give it a review.


From Our Counselor, Jen Sims: Beyond Tolerance

Originally, it was my plan to spend this month talking about ‘Tolerance’, but when I brought it up to the staff at the Charter School last August, I got a groan from one of the teachers.  “Tolerance,” he said. “What is that, like you just barely accept something?” I didn’t have an attachment to it at the time, so I easily agreed to go with ‘Acceptance and Understanding’ instead.

Looking back, he was right.  Tolerant is how my mother asked me to act around my annoying little brother.  With tolerance, the assumption is that we don’t like what’s on the other side.  We build walls to have tolerant relationships with our neighbors. Thinking about it like this, it seems obvious that to achieve empathy we have to go way beyond tolerance.

This is not to say that tolerance doesn’t have an important place.  There’s resiliency building in learning to tolerate something, for example: learning to wait, adjusting to the personality clashes that a sibling brings to your life, or learning to be the loser at something.  Being able to roll with things, be a good sport or develop ways to deal with people are great tools for life. All require tolerance. When it comes to our hearts, however, we need more than that. We need acceptance, understanding and connection.

Acceptance leads to connection and connection leads to acceptance.  It works both ways and we all need both. I often work with students to re-regulate after an upsetting event in their life.  They may be angry or heartbroken, afraid or ashamed – whatever it is, they are stirred up inside. I find that accepting them where they are and finding ways to connect can lead them pretty quickly back to center.   Children, and really all people, want to be seen. They feel better when they are seen because that is a connection. They want to know that how they are being in the world is okay. And most of all, they want to know that even though they aren’t okay in the moment, they’re not kicked out of the tribe.

The need for acceptance is about survival.  It is really hard to disconnect from the group when we as humans are wired to survive in packs.  Students of all ages tell me that they hate certain things they feel like they have to do to fit in; that they are just faking it out there.  It breaks my heart but I also get it – Imagine my surprise when I showed up for my 8th grade year to discover all of my friends now worshipped Duran Duran and I knew nothing.  I ended up faking an entire Duran Duran fandom just to not be cast out of my friend group.  I wish I had that time back. I want all of the students that I work with to have the ability to pursue what they love regardless of how someone else may feel about it.  Unfortunately, kids get rejected for their authenticity all the time and since the need for acceptance is so strong, they end up shifting who they are inside…for a while at least.

How do we help our children withstand this pressure to conform, especially when something inside says their very life may depend on fitting into the group?  I believe that the most substantial way we can help is by working with them to find where in life that they feel accepted and a part of things. Kids who feel accepted for who they are, whether by their families, classrooms, sports teams, theater groups, friends, school club, pets, or even just one single person have a better shot at carrying their truth out into the world with them.

Being connected to something has a positive impact on our mental health and ability to self-regulate.  In 1978, psychologist Bruce K. Alexander created an experiment to look at the causes of drug addiction.  For one subject group of rats, he created a huge ‘Rat Park’ with lots of space and other rats. The other subject group of rats was kept in individual cages.  Both test groups were offered morphine and water; overwhelmingly the rats that lived in the communal rat park chose water over the drug. The rats that lived in cages, however, chose morphine.   When addicted rats were moved from cages to the rat park, they would begin to choose water.   This study demonstrated the damaging effects of social and emotional isolation on rats. Humans as well, when we are isolated either figuratively or literally, we become despondent and can turn to addictive vices to regulate our internal systems.

We need each other.

I see many students at the SLV Charter and Boulder Creek Elementary schools thriving because their teachers have worked to create a caring culture that promotes acceptance.  Teachers coordinate activities both in and outside of the classroom that foster relationships and provide that opportunity for connection, not to mention the discovery of differences in the world.  From my perspective as a school counselor, a student who feels at home in the classroom and mostly accepted by their peers is usually doing okay. This does not mean that there are never problems or disagreements, but the focus on contributing to the greater community provides focus and containment.  The common language of community is what usually transcends the differences between us, allowing us to form real relationships and the connection that we so need. When we get to know each other beyond what we see on the outside, our acceptance of each other deepens.

I can accept you but not this behavior/action. All of this talk of acceptance does not mean acceptance of poor behaviors that harm self or others at an individual or community level. Separating someone’s actions from their basic essence, however, may allow them to confront these issues more clearly and objectively.   

Sometimes I ask a student what their goal is for the day and nine times out of ten they will respond that they want to be good.  I try to remind them that they already are good, but what do they want to accomplish? A child is not their behavior. Being able to follow the rules does not make you good or bad, it means you have a skill to follow rules.   

I like to say, “I did not like your choices, but I still like you.”

Acceptance almost always means seeing something good.  I think we can teach our students about lots of different cultures and the sameness and differences between us until the cows come home, but the bottom line is that we usually start to accept something or someone when we perceive something good about them.  It could be a heroic act that they perform or something familiar that they do that makes you feel connected to them. Work with your child to see the good in others (and themselves), what makes them special and interesting. What things make us the same and connected?  We all want to be noticed for the things we do that are unique and feel accepted when they are seen. This is a skill that can be applied across all situations!

What if we spent as much time accepting ourselves as we do criticizing ourselves?  I know what my brain is like and I can’t imagine anyone reading this has never struggled with self-judgment or doubt.  It would be pretty revolutionary if we all strove toward self-acceptance as a practice and really, what’s stopping us? Therefore, the real step one in teaching children how to be accepting is for us adults to be accepting of others and ourselves.  Practice acceptance every day. Bravely accept who you are and get so busy with that that you no longer have the need to change anyone else! Let acceptance be the message that we pass along for our future communities.

Read more about the Rat Park experiment here:

https://www.summitbehavioralhealth.com/blog/overview-rat-park-addiction-study/   


SLVUSD Charter Information Nights:

Hybrid Home/School Programs: SLVUSD Charter School is hosting an Information Night on Tuesday, March 13 at the SLV Middle School Library (second floor) from 5:30-7:00 pm located in Felton.

Nature Academy: Tuesday, March 20 at the SLV Middle School Library (second floor) from 6:00-7:00 pm located in Felton.

Questions regarding Charter Information Nights? Email Danelle Matteson at dmatteson@slvusd.org or call 831-336-5167 or 831-335-0932





Opportunities in our Community:

VAPA Awareness Week

SLVUSD Visual and Performing Arts Awareness Week

  • Tuesday, 3/13 - Friday, 3/16: Art display: HS Multi Purpose Room (MPR).  Bring your classes through to see 2D and 3D art displays from all schools in the district.  All adults/staff are also welcome to walk through. The MPR will be open after school from 3-4 on Tuesday through Thursday.

  • Tuesday, 3/13 – Friday, 3/16: Charter Art Display at District Office

  • Tuesday, 3/13 - Friday, 3/16: Performances in Performing Arts Center

--Movie showing: A New Color—for MS and HS (description below) (Email Amber Walker awalker@slvusd.org to attend)

--Rehearsals: West Side Story: Tuesday-Friday from 3 to 6 in the PAC (Drop in and observe our talented students in this classic musical! Students should be supervised.)

--SLVE Dance performance: Thursday, 3/15 from 12:30 to 2 in the PAC (Email Katie Feickert (kfeickert@slvusd.org) to attend)

--Classical Evening of Violin, Ballroom Dancing and Opera, performed by current and past SLVUSD students. Thursday, 3/15 at 7:00 in the PAC. Donations accepted.

  • Musical Showcase Rehearsal: Weds, 3/14 and Fri, 3/16 at room 25 at the Middle School. 10:05 to noon, and 12:50 to 2:41. Students will be rehearsing various Broadway songs and dances. (Email Will Guilford (wguilford@slvusd.org) to attend)

  • Mini-Maker Space/DIY: Friday, 3/16 at Quail Hollow Site from 10-1. Come see students create projects and do hands on activities with tech.

 

Film Story: A New Color

“You can’t change your beginnings, but you sure can put a nice, beautiful ending to the story.” - Edythe Boone

Long before Black Lives Matter became a rallying cry, Edythe Boone embodied that truth as an artist, an educator, and a great-grandmother. When a personal tragedy ignites a national outcry, everything that Edythe has worked so tirelessly for is at stake.

From humble Harlem beginnings herself, the indefatigable Edy has for decades introduced underserved youth and seniors to the transformative power of art. Filmed in an observational style over three years, A New Color creates an opening to see the world through Edy’s eyes and her artistic legacy commemorating the great events of her time.  Those events keep coming, as we see when the death of Edy’s nephew becomes a national symbol of racist policing.

The persistence of racial inequality in this country evokes for activist artists like Edy powerful and deep questions: Have Edy’s nearly eight decades of social justice work meant something? Has it been worth the sacrifice? Can building multicultural bridges through art bring about positive change? Who will carry on her civil rights legacy?

Edy’s reaction shows the depth of her clear-eyed, compassionate commitment to building a just and peaceful community. A New Color illuminates timely social issues and shows how the work of one resilient woman reverberates throughout a community to inspire a powerful chorus: “Our lives matter and we will not be disempowered by those who judge us for our age, gender, or the color of our skin.” An intimate portrait of somebody extraordinary, Edythe’s story shows not what it is to be Black or to lose a loved one, but what it is to be human.


Parent Advisory Committee: Next meeting is Thursday, April 12th, from 3-4 pm in the Fall Creek Charter office.  All Parents are invited to attend.


Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Information

The following resources are provided as information for our parent / guardian community on our District Website

Safe Spaces for Immigrant Families – English

Espacios Seguros Para Las Familias (Safe Spaces for Immigrant Families) – Spanish

Know Your Rights – English

Know Your Rights – Spanish

Know Your Rights at Home – English & Spanish

Know Your Rights at Work – English & Spanish

Where to Fill Out Forms – English

Where to Fill Out Forms – Spanish

Childcare Safety Plan – English & Spanish

Income Guidelines – English

Legal Aid at Work – English

Redadas En El Lugar De Trabajo (Legal Aid at Work) – Spanish


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

Coast Redwood HS:  Coast Redwood High School will host open school nights from 5:30-7:00 pm on the following dates on: Tuesdays April 24 and May 22. All prospective students and their families are invited to attend to learn about our campus community, visit our classrooms, and our outdoor horticulture classroom. Families will receive information about the many individualized opportunities high school students have to earn their diplomas, participate in athletics, theater productions, adventure field trips, clubs as well as courses at community colleges and courses through CTEP (formally ROP/regional occupation programs). Location: 7105 Highway 9 (room P-3, off the main SLVHS campus) in Felton. Questions? Email Kay Mendoza kmendoza@slvusd.org

Coast Redwood MS: We continue to work on re-designing and building our garden area. We have received a donation of wood from a former parent alum for rebuilding our planters. Our field trip to the San Francisco Zoo was great fun. We were able to make lots of incredible observations about animal communication and gather tons of data to help us with our stories.

Nature Academy: Second trimester has ended and students are working on their self-reflections as they begin to prepare for a portfolio review of their work. 6th grade parents had their meeting about the annual  week long trip to Headwaters. Students are continuing their studies in the book Tangerine and they are working on the economy of their individual country reports as well as their informational writing  on a topic of their choosing. 7th and 8th graders are working on their Whirligig projects, are in their new round of electives, and are compiling their portfolios..among other activities.

Quail Hollow Integrated Arts (QHIA): We explored Feudal Japan with mapping, note taking, short videos, and a focus on Kabuki theater! This got the students extremely engaged (they challenged me to teach for a whole day speaking with the Kabuki inflections/tone of voice). Students also came up with their Maker/DIY ideas for our Fair on Friday, March 16. We began our study of Human Body Systems.We started our letter writing genre  with a project called Letters of Hope, created by Yes! Magazine. I will enter student writing in this annual competition; winners will be published!

Quail Hollow Homeschool: We worked on making clay animals in class. They turned out amazing! This ongoing project will be finished and springboard us into our next project of story in comic book form.. We had guest readers that read various wonderful, silly stories or poems. Students are busy memorizing and practicing their lines at home for our upcoming play.

Fall Creek Homeschool: In Science we have been learning more about our ocean crisis and how the middle school students are taking this mission into their own hands. We learned about ocean acidification, "plastics pollution", how microplastics pose as false food source to marine life. We were encouraged to be citizen scientists to protect our oceans. Using students as manipulatives, students completed math exercises to organize themselves into groups, then played addition and subtraction games within those groups. Natalee led an election for Class President, including "campaign speeches" and voting. Lisa led a guided rivershed watercolor painting.

Mountain IS: We researched animal facts in a variety of informational text. We looked for similarities and differences in animal storybooks and non-fictional text. We worked in teams to develop a paragraph structure   to express what we found during our animal research. We read a new fable about how the bear came to have a short tail, then retold the story in small groups using transitional words.


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.)
  • March 12th:  No School--  Professional Development Day for Teachers

  • March 13th: Charter Information night:All Hybrid Home/School Programs 5:30-7pm MS Library

  • March 20: Nature Academy Information night 6-7 pm. Middle School Library

  • April 2nd-6th:  Spring Break!

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