Week ending November 15
Dear IACS Community-
The high school faculty often discuss how we can better support our students. In that spirit, we are going to pilot an “Extra-Help Block” during the school day. The block will not be a regular part of the weekly schedule, but rather will be used several times a semester on selected days. December 10th and January 9th are the two dates that we have planned for the Extra-Help Block this semester. The block will be 80-minutes long and will be split into two 40-minute sessions. The three morning classes are shortened to 50-minutes in order to create the time for this block. Students will sign-up in through their advisor to get extra-help in the classes that would be most beneficial to them at that moment in time (as long as that teacher has not reached max capacity). For those students that don’t need to meet with a teacher, but could use the time for quiet study, or to work with other students on a group project, the library and the cafeteria will be available. Restorative yoga will also be an option for students and some students may have the opportunity to serve as peer tutors. This is not seen as a replacement for extra-help sessions after school, but rather as an additional support for students when all students and teachers are available. Seniors that have earned “senior privileges” will be able to sign-out during this block. If the Extra-Help Block is seen as a productive use of time, we will add more dates for 2nd semester. We all recognize how busy and stressful the lives of teenagers can be at times and our hope is that this additional support can provide some small relief for our students.
Erik Arnold, Ed.D.
High School Principal
All School News
IACS Board of Trustees invites you to a special presentaton:
How Will the “Future of Work” Change the Future of Learning?
Monday, 11/18 at 6:30 p.m; IACS Room 145
At IACS, we hear all the time from alumni, admissions officers, and employers about how IACS graduates truly have a "leg up" for success beyond high school. Our student-centered, student-directed, project-based approach to education continues to be cutting edge, and something not readily found in traditional public school environments. However, in order to remain at the forefront of educational practice, we need to continuously update our understanding of the newest research in educational models and cross-check it against the future of work.
The IACS Board of Trustees is charged with ensuring we remain true to our charter, in which we pledge to prepare our students "for the 21-century". In anticipation of our charter renewal application this year, it seems to be a good time to celebrate what we do so well, but also to take a peek around the corner to ensure we understand how to best prepare our students for evolving workforce needs, skills, and practices.
As a first step in sparking conversation among our community members, the Board of Trustees will be hosting an educational futurist, Clare Bertrand, from Jobs for the Future (www.jff.org) to speak at our next Board meeting on 11/18. We invite you to join us to hear her presentation and ask any questions about new educational approaches.
Opening night was Thursday but you can still catch one of the shows on Friday or Saturday for our productions of BRING IT ON and So You Want to Be A Cheerleader!
More info at innovationcharter.org/theater!
Email IACS Drama at email@example.com if you have questions! Hope to see you there!
Middle School News
Students enjoying the new fitness stations in Challenge class. Thank you to everyone who donated to the Annual Giving Campaign last year as those funds were used to help improve our outdoor spaces, including this fitness trail and a new outdoor yoga platform.
Special thanks to the facilities crew for their work this summer and fall to install them.
Reminder about Personal Device Policy
A reminder that fifth and sixth grade students are not allowed to use personal devices during the school day between 8-3 pm unless they have teacher permission. Students in seventh and eight grade may use personal devices during passing time and lunch. Often, we find that when students are violating the policy they are using their device to text home. Please work with your child to write down after school plans in their planner if they need reminders. We also sometimes find that students will text home if they aren’t feeling well or if they are having a bad day. We want to teach students to communicate with the adults at school. It’s important that students that do not feel well go to the health office to be assessed and dismissed, if needed. It is also important that we are helping students problem-solve with staff if they are having a bad day. Thank you for your support!
After School Art – Winter Session 8-week Winter Session registration is open!
Offered on Mondays or Thursdays from 3:00 – 4:30, the after school art program allows students access to a wide variety of materials and tools in the art room in order to create work of their choosing. The fee for the session is $60 and can be paid online.
The session begins Monday, January 6 and runs through Thursday, March 5. Please submit payment of $60 by Friday, December 20 to be registered. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or to inquire about scholarships.
To register, please follow this link: Art After School Payment Form
Picking up Students
Middle School students are supervised until 3:05 when dismissal ends and need to be picked up by that time. If students are staying for extra help, please ensure that the student and family has made arrangements with the teacher in advance to say. If families are running late, they should make arrangements for after care program. Students are not allowed to wander around campus.
One note: students sometimes walk to local restaurants to get food on an early release, but the feedback has been that often they can be overwhelmed by many unsupervised students at the same time.
Eighth grade Transition
It is that time of year that eighth grade student and families are looking ahead to high school. If you missed our first open house, never fear…there is another one coming up on January 22nd from 6-8 pm.
For students applying to technical or private schools, please ensure that you ask teachers directly about letters of recommendation and provide at least 2 weeks notice.
Save the Date- Quality Night
Presenting at Quality Night is a promotion requirement. Fifth and seventh graders will present twice throughout the school year. Sixth and eighth graders will present in December and turn their focus to preparing for their gateway jury presentation in the spring. Family participation at Quality Night is essential in providing students individualized feedback about their work. Please do not hesitate to invite other guests (grandparents, aunts/uncles, neighbors, etc.) that are interested in supporting your child and seeing some examples of the project-based work IACS students do.
Mark your calendars:
Quality Night for seventh and eighth graders is Thursday, December 12 6-7:15 pm.
Quality Night for fifth and sixth graders is Tuesday, December 17 6-7:15 pm.
Note: Quality Night prep time will be during the school day on December 3 and 5. Students will need index cards. Most students in grades 5-7 will need a poster board or trifold board to create a visual display. For students in grade 8, we encourage them to create their visual on Google slides instead of on a poster.
High School News
Career Week at IACS
This week, IACS celebrated National Career Development Month with a series of guest speakers. We welcomed musicians, artists, engineers, and other professionals to speak with our students about their careers and offer advice to those who may be considering a similar path. We were especially excited to welcome back our alumni, including Andy Iovanna (’12), Adam Reilly (’12), and Ella McGaunn (’14). Students also spoke about career paths in advisory and took some personality and career assessments.
Feedback from Students regarding the presentation they visited:
Sergeant Manning: "What he said was very informal and I really enjoyed hearing what he had to say. I have been considering going into some form of law enforcement for the last few years so hearing what he said today gave me a very good perspective as to what it is like to work in that field. Some of the things he said really put things into perspective and I see the job in a different light.I’m grateful that I got a chance to hear what he had to say!" -Marina DiGiovanni
Music Panel: "It was really fun and informative getting to know the panel a lot better, and they provided me with a lot of qualitative information that I needed. After coming out of that, it gave me a clear objective to focus on in my future, and I am very grateful for that." – Tyler Donkoh-Halm
Adam Reilly (‘11) spoke with current students about being an EMT/EPA.
Andy Iovanna (‘11) and Greg Orpen. Andy spoke about being a Software Engineer.
Musicians: Molly Lozeau, Ella McGaunn (‘14) and Devereux Geiger with students.
Just a reminder, Yearbooks are on sale! They are $35 until December 31, after which they will be $40. Please order and pay online at https://forms.diamondmindinc.com/iacs/hsyearbook. The online order form includes personalization options (i.e. your name and icons). The deadline for ordering is Friday, April 3, 2020. Senior photos, baby pictures, and parent pages are due no later than Friday, January 3, 2020.
More volunteers needed for Multicultural Night!
We are looking for more people to bring in a dish for Multicultural Night that will happen on Exhibition night: January 9th, 2020 at 5pm. The goal of this event to bring the community together in a fun and delicious way! Please fill out this form by December 10th to sign-up to bring a dish!
Donations for Winter Semi-Formal 2020!
This year’s Winter Semi-Formal is on January 24, 2020! The theme this year is going to be Rose Gold! Student Government is looking for some donations, we have a list below for some materials that we need. Please email email@example.com if you are interested in donating. We appreciate all the help we could get!
Photos of the Owen DeLuca’s lettuce plants and Hope Coleman-Plourde’s sweet red pepper plants growing in the Derival Advisory. This indoor gardening activity is how we’re practicing our SEL theme of resilience and learning how to grow our own food. Owen’s lettuce was so sweet and crisp! We’ve set them up for another 2-3 harvests. We can see the peppers beginning to form in Hope’s plants!
Videos of the Week:
This winter, we are offering the following sports to HS athletes: basketball, cheerleading, indoor track & field, swim.
Registration instructions, along with information about tryouts and practice times/days can be found here.
The link to FamilyID (the online registration portal) is here.
Please contact the Athletic Department at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or concerns.
Lowell River Hawks – Ice Hockey
Join us for our 1st annual Innovation Academy Charter School Night at the River Hawks on December 7th. Tickets are only $11 and are available here: https://groupmatics.events/event/Innovationacademy
Questions? contact Dawn at email@example.com
Save the Date – Embrace Winter – Jan 31st
That’s it! Now IACS will receive 0.5% on all qualified purchases made when logging in via smile.amazon.com. Thank you!
Innovation Academy Charter School