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Charter News: June 2, 2017

posted Jun 2, 2017, 5:36 PM by Rhonda Schlosser



Like a welcome summer rain, humor may suddenly cleanse and cool the earth, the air and you.

~Langston Hughes




Dear Charter Families,


Next Thursday is the last school day; summer officially will begin!!  These last weeks have had such beautiful and touching program celebrations and advancement ceremonies, with more planned for next week.  Each celebration is so personal, each student known so well by their teachers and peers; each event will become such a heartwarming memory.  Some activities I have missed but I have had the pleasure of attending;

  • Fall Creek Homeschool’s End of Year celebration which included sharing their Jar of Good Deed’s.

  • Quail Hollow Homeschool had their celebration with their older students walking through the ’gateway’ while teachers and parents honored their individual uniqueness.

  • Quail Hollow Integrated Arts had their very first wonderful advancement ceremony where new honor awards and VAPA inspired presentations began traditions for the years to come.

  • Mountain IS had an intimate and loving retirement party for founding teacher Maria Fahrner.

  • Nature Academy’s 6th-grade class had a lovely volunteer tea party held in their garden.

  • And today ended with our Coast Redwood High School graduation for our 18 seniors held in the beautiful Redwood Amphitheater, with music and speeches and each student being honored by their teachers as they received their diplomas.


Kudos go out to the fantastic teachers once again who go the extra mile every year to make the end of year so special for their students.  Next week will be filled with many more special events and advancement celebrations.  I can’t wait!


Please read on for some very important information regarding registration for next year’s enrollment as well as some interesting tips for your summer.


~Rhonda


CHARTER SCHOOL REGISTRATION / INFORMATION FOR 2017-2018 ENROLLMENT

The SLVUSD Charter School uses PowerSchool Registration, an online platform for completing student registration. We have outlined below the requirements for our Returning students, as well as when to access the web-link to complete the online registration process.


RETURNING STUDENTS: We need your most current information in the event of an emergency! You will be required to complete your annual registration (information update and Parent Permissions) before you can attend classes.

PLEASE NOTE: The Parent Portal will be closed between July 1 and August 4. The Parent Portal will reopen on August 5, 2017.

PowerSchool Registration Window & Parent Portal:

The PowerSchool Parent Portal will re-open on Saturday, August 5.  You may access PowerSchool Registration through the Parent Portal URL:  https://grades.slvusd.org/public


Once you have created your PowerSchool Parent account, you will then complete your student’s on-line registration by clicking on the “PowerSchool Registration” link. Students are not considered enrolled until the on-line registration has been completed.  PLEASE NOTE: Students will need to be fully enrolled before they begin classes next year.


Bell Schedule next year: Teacher collaboration

Next year, SLVMS and SLVHS will move to “Early Out” days instead of having “Late Start” days. School will start at 8:00 and release at 1:40 on Early Release Mondays, and 2:25 on other days of the week.  This scheduling will impact our families in the Nature Academy as well as some of the CRMS and CRHS students. A more detailed bell schedule will be sent later.  


These “Early Out days” allow for our teachers to collaborate together on how best to support their students.  This collaboration time is very important for our teachers and allows them time to review information and data and make any changes to their plans in order to reach each student the best they can.


Screen Time Awareness:  From our Student Services department

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As summer comes upon us and students have more leisure time on their hands, we would like you to consider placing some guidelines around student screen time.


According to the Council on Communications and Media (www.aap.org), increased screen time has a negative effect on children.   The major areas that may be impacted are:

  • Sleep: Technology should be turned off at least 30 minutes before bedtime in order to allow your child’s brain some time to settle down from the bright lights of screens and the stimulation of playing with electronics.  Send tablets, phones, and computers to bed early and keep them outside of your child’s bedroom so they won’t be tempted to play.

  • Attention Span: a 2015 study by the Microsoft Corporation found that technology interfered with the ability to stay focused and that the human attention span has reduced from 12 seconds to 8 seconds since the year 2000.   Further, according to a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics in 2011, children and adults who were exposed to more screen time had a higher rate of diagnosed attention span disorders.  The fragmented, action-packed nature of electronic devices contributes to the problem.

  • Learning: While technology puts a world of information at our fingertips, the Internet cannot replace human interaction.  Too much screen-time can blunt imagination and resourcefulness, as well as impact the ability to build new memory.  It is also important to think about what you do not want your children to learn without the benefit of adult support and discussion and filter their Internet use accordingly.

  • Mental and Physical Health: Overuse of screen time is linked to higher rates of depression, anxiety, and obesity.

  • Privacy: Children are at risk of having their privacy compromised and/or being exposed to online predators. Talk to your children about internet safety.  Commonsensemedia.org has many helpful ideas for building skills for digital citizenship.


To promote a healthy balance between media use and other activities, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends developing a Family Media Plan that addresses the health, education and entertainment needs of each child, in addition to needs of the family as a whole.   You can get started on your own plan here: https://www.healthychildren.org/English/media/Pages/default.aspx


For additional tips on media use, please see below.  

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends the following:

Media Use Plan Tips:

  • Screens should be kept out of kids' bedrooms.  Put in place a "media curfew" at mealtime and bedtime, putting all devices away or plugging them into a charging station for the night.

  • Excessive media use has been associated with obesity, lack of sleep, school problems, aggression and other behavior issues. Limit entertainment screen time to less than one or two hours per day.

  • For children under 2, substitute unstructured play and human interaction for screen time. The opportunity to think creatively, problem solve and develop reasoning and motor skills is more valuable for the developing brain than passive media intake.

  • Take an active role in your children's media education by co-viewing programs with them and discussing values.

  • Look for media choices that are educational, or teach good values -- such as empathy, racial and ethnic tolerance. Choose programming that models good interpersonal skills for children to emulate.

  • Be firm about not viewing content that is not age appropriate: sex, drugs, violence, etc. Movie and TV ratings exist for a reason, and online movie reviews also can help parents to stick to their rules.

  • The Internet can be a wonderful place for learning. But it also is a place where kids can run into trouble. Keep the computer in a public part of your home, so you can check on what your kids are doing online and how much time they are spending there.

  • Discuss with your children that every place they go on the Internet may be "remembered," and comments they make will stay there indefinitely. Impress upon them that they are leaving behind a "digital footprint." They should not take actions online that they would not want to be on the record for a very long time.

  • Become familiar with popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You may consider having your own profile on the social media sites your children use. By "friending" your kids, you can monitor their online presence. Pre-teens should not have accounts on social media sites. If you have young children, you can create accounts on sites that are designed specifically for kids their age.

  • Talk to them about being good "digital citizens," and discuss the serious consequences of online bullying. If your child is the victim of cyberbullying, it is important to take action with the other parents and the school if appropriate. Attend to children's and teens' mental health needs promptly if they are being bullied online, and consider separating them from the social media platforms where bullying occurs.

  • Make sure kids of all ages know that it is not appropriate or smart to send or receive pictures of people without clothing, or sexy text messages, no matter whether they are texting friends or strangers.

  • If you're unsure of the quality of the "media diet" in your household, consult with your children's pediatrician on what your kids are viewing, how much time they are spending with media, and privacy and safety issues associated with social media and Internet use.

P.S.  If you have the time, please explore the website Common Sense Media for more great tips. https://www.commonsensemedia.org/



Summer Reading Programs:
 Bookshop Santa Cruz: Our popular summer reading program for young readers (going into grades K-12) will run June 1st through September 6th this year. We're challenging kids 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 for your age level or download one of the pdfs listed below starting on Monday, May 15th. 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 into us before school starts. Pick out your first book and start reading!  All summer reading books are on display at Bookshop Santa Cruz.  bookshopsantacruz.com/summer-reading-program. 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.  Extra bonus: The school that has the most students participate will also get a gift certificate to buy new books for their school library!



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 8th:  Last day of school

  • The Charter School offices will be closed for the month of July and will re-open the first week in August.  

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