IACS Newsletter for the week ending April 6, 2018
Dear IACS Community,
Starting this school year, all public schools in the state of Massachusetts were mandated to conduct verbal drug use interviews, targeting students in two different grades. (This program is called “SBIRT”) I was initially skeptical about this process, unsure if this would be a valuable use of student and staff time. My concerns proved to be unfounded and I quickly realized the benefit of creating opportunities for individual “touch points” with students. Most students showed openness and seemed to embrace this forum to share, discuss, and ask questions. I think Nancy Tripp, LICSW, captures our experience with these screenings well:
“The anticipatory anxiety surrounding implementing a required initiative such as the SBIRT screenings quickly evaporated once the screening process began and I was interacting with students. Overwhelmingly, students were curious, cooperative and thoughtful in their responses. Aside from some much appreciated comic relief, reactions and responses from students came across as authentic and reliable.”
Without exposing or implicating our students in any way, here are two recent articles that I think you may find helpful in continuing the discussion at home: US Teens often ride with impaired drivers and Schools Confront Sudden Increase in Easily Concealed Vaping Devices. These issues are not specific or unique to our students, but rather nationwide trends that every parent should be aware of. Please consider reading these articles and asking your students about their level of knowledge or experience navigating these waters.
In the meantime, IACS looks forward to continuing to work collaboratively with the parent community in helping our students make healthy decisions.
Director of Health and Wellness
TENTATIVE LAST DAY OF SCHOOL: JUNE 20
April 6 Casino Night 7:00 – 10:00 pm
April 9 MS Grade 7 & 8 ELA MCAS Testing
April 10 MS Grade 7 & 8 ELA MCAS Testing
April 11 Early Release Wednesday
Driver’s Ed 12:30pm
April 12 HS Shadow Day for Accepted Students
April 16 – April 20 No School April Vacation
April 23 IACS Board of Trustee Meeting 6:30 – 9:00 pm
April 24 HS Exhibition Night 6:00 – 8:30 pm
April 25 Full Day Wednesday
April 26 MS Parent/Principal Advisory Council 7:45- 8:30 am
MS Innovation Tour for Parents of Prospective Students 8:30 – 9:30 am
April 28 SAT Prep “Bootcamp” for HS Juniors 9:00 – 1:00 pm
April 29 SAT Prep “Bootcamp” for HS Juniors 9:00 – 1:00 pm
April 30 MS Grade 5 & 6 MATH MCAS Testing
May 1 HS Shadow Day for Accepted Students
MS Grade 5 & 6 MCAS Testing
HS Family Orientation 3:30 – 4:30 pm
May 2 Early Release Wednesday
IACS Red Cross Blood Drive 2:00 – 7:00 pm
May 3 MS Grade 7 & 8 MCAS Math Testing
HS National Society Induction 6:00 – 8:00 pm
May 4 MS Grade 7 & 8 MCAS Math Testing
May 5 SAT Exam 8:00 am
Casino Night is Tonight!
We will be drawing the $10,000 cash raffle prize winner tonight at Casino Night at the UMass Lowell Inn and Conference Center at 50 Warren Street in Lowell. Hope to see you there. Dress is business casual and should be a lot of fun.
A heartfelt thank you to all of our students who sold tickets for the Cash Raffle. Special Congratulations to our top ticket seller Melanie Bouzan, with a grand total of 79 tickets.
The following top 9 students received Honorable Mention Status:
Brayden Anderson – Theriault
Red Cross Blood Drive: Did you know that every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood? Although an estimated 38 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood at any given time, less than 10 percent of that eligible population actually do each year. (source: www.redcrossblood.org) On Wednesday, May 2nd the American Red Cross will be holding a Blood Drive in our cafeteria. The event will begin at 2 pm and will end at 7 pm. If you are over the age of 18, please consider donating
We are looking forward to summer and 3 weeks of Performing Arts Camp that are open to the Community of and outside IACS! Camps are open to any students finishing grades 4 through 12. Camp begins at 8:30am and finishes at 3:30pm daily.
July 9-13: GLEE CAMP with free, public performance of the students’ work on Friday, July 13 at 5pm! For an additional cost, the first 10 students entering grades 9 and up who sign up will have the option of traveling into New York City to see the matinee show of Phantom of the Opera on Broadway on Thursday, July 12!
July 16-20: HAMILPROV WEEK where students will spend 1/2 the day learning about the Broadway sensation Hamilton, and 1/2 the day working on Improvisational games, activities & skills. Free, public performance of the students’ work on Friday, July 20 at 5pm! For an additional cost, the first 10 students entering grades 9 and up who sign up will have the option of traveling into New York City to see Hamilton on Wednesday, July 18!
July 23-27: DRAMA CAMP! Where we will learn the play THE GOOD DOCTOR which we will perform at a theater, right off Broadway (RIGHT next to Kinky Boots!!!) on Tuesday, July 31!
For more information please check out innovationcharter.org/theater/ and sign up at about camp, May show auditions, Phantom of the Opera Auditions, and all else that is coming up!
MIDDLE SCHOOL NEWS
MCAS Testing Update
The MCAS schedule is as follows:
April 2-3- 5th/6th grade MCAS ELA testing
April 9-10- 7th/8th grade MCAS ELA testing
April 30-May 1st- 5th/6th grade MCAS Math testing
May 3-4- 7th/8th grade MCAS Math testing
May 8-9- Science MCAS testing for grades 5 and 8 only
Massachusetts is in the midst of transitioning to computer-based testing and this year, all middle school grades will participate in computer-based testing. In preparation for this, we’ll have all students participate in a tutorial to show students how to utilize the TestNav platform and a practice test. This will help students become familiar with the computer-based platform before they utilize it for testing and help our IT department and staff ensure everything is running smoothly before testing. This will occur on Thursday, 3/22 for students in grades 5 and 6 and Tuesday, 3/27 for students in grades 7 and 8. If you’d like to see the TestNav tutorial and/or review computer-based or paper-based practice tests, they are available at this website: http://mcas.pearsonsupport.com/tutorial/
Families often ask us what they can do at home to help their child be prepared and do their best on the day of the exam. Please be sure your child is well rested and eats a healthy breakfast on testing days. Remind your child that the tests are not timed and s/he is well prepared for the exams. We want our students to remember to go back into the passages as they work through the tests and to check all of their work prior to finishing. Be certain to arrive to school on time. Once a testing session has begun, students who are tardy are not permitted to enter the testing room. If you have any questions about MCAS testing, please do not hesitate to contact me at email@example.com or 978-649-0432 x 2229.
Save the Date- Spring Quality Night
Fifth grade Quality Night is Tuesday, 5/22 from 6-7 pm. Please make sure this date is on your calendar. Attendance is mandatory.
Seventh graders will also be making presentations as well, but we’ll be altering the format for the spring. We will partner with HS advisories so that seventh graders will be making their presentation to older students as well as receiving feedback. These presentations will occur during the school day during the week of 5/22.
A reminder that all sixth and eighth graders have their assigned jury presentation date/time. Eighth graders will jury during the week of May 29th. Sixth graders will jury during the week of June 5th.
The 2017-2018 Middle School Yearbook Is now for sale at the Early Bird price of $20 until Friday, April 13, 2018
High School News
Important HS Dates
April 24 Spring Exhibition Night, 6-8pm – All are welcome!
April 27 S2 Progress Report #2 Grades due
May 3 NHS Induction, 6-8pm
May 4 Senior Projects & Presentations of Learning begin
Last chance to order yearbooks!
Due to a lack of yearbook orders, we are reopening yearbook ordering through next Thursday, April 5. The order form was emailed to all students today. All checks/cash and order forms can be turned in at the main office. Online orders are no longer accepted. Yearbooks are $35.00. Yearbooks will not be available for sale at the end of the school year. Reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Exhibition Night is Approaching!
Mark the calendar for Tuesday, April 24th from 6-8pm! Everyone is invited to Exhibition Night. Subjects featured on this night will be Art, History, Math & Spanish. This is a great way to see the project-based work that our students create during the school year. See you there!
STUDENT HEALTH 101 – our Online Wellness Magazine
The March issue of Student Health 101 as well as the accompanying parent issue, Student Advocate is here! If you’re looking for a new fun (and healthy!) snack, look no further than this safe-to-eat “Raw” Cookie Dough Recipe! Take advantage of this resource by downloading the Student Health 101 app and take a look at the official IACS SH101 Twitter page. Don’t forget to fill the SH101 survey after reading an article, and be entered for a chance to win $100!
DINING FOR IACA: We hope you can make it to Chipotle on Tuesday, April 10 to help us raise money for IACA. When you present the attached flyer, the restaurant donates 50% of your bill to our school!
SCHOLARSHIP APPLICATIONS ARE DUE Wednesday, April 11th to Miss Deknatel’s office by the end of the school day. Don’t miss your chance to win one of three $1,000 scholarships for college!
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY: We’re looking for volunteers to help with the 8th Grade Semi on June 2. Interested? Contact Jo Anne Frazier at email@example.com.
BURRITOS, ANYONE?: Or tacos, or salads, if you’re hankering for Mexican on a school night, be sure to come to Chipotle in Billerica on Tuesday, April 10th. This fantastic fundraiser has been rescheduled due to last month’s snow, and generates 50% of proceeds from every guest with a flyer. See you there!