The Hawk: November 9, 2017

November 9, 2017 6:48 pm


IACS Newsletter for the week ending November 10, 2017

Dear IACS Families:

One key part of our school mission is making learning relevant for its students through practical, hands-on application. Walk into a sixth grade Social Studies classroom and you’ll see a terrific example of this….students are currently creating products to sell at a class store, the Vator (InnoVator) shop. They learn about economics principles by making decisions about what to sell based on the demand from their classmates. They make enough product based on the needed supply to make a profit. They will adjust your price according to supply and demand. They begin with a loan from the classroom bank. After purchasing needed supplies, they decide when to pay off their loan, learning about the interest that they must repay for their loan. Shopping day is also very exciting for students as they get to purchase other products from the vendors and see how their decisions are impacting their profits. Vator Shop is an example of how teachers make learning relevant and fun!

On another note, a reminder that there will be no school tomorrow as we observe Veterans Day. Thank you to all of the veterans in our IACS community, including staff members Bob Feeney, Colin Kennedy, and Shelley Hachman. We appreciate your service!


Melissa Kapeckas

MS Principal

Important Dates

November 10No School Veteran’s Day

November 14 High School Innovation Morning for Parents of Prospective Students 8:30am

November 15 Early Release Wednesday

November 16 IACS Production of “School of Rock” 7:00 – 9:30 pm

November 17 IACS Production of “School of Rock” 7:00 – 9:30 pm

November 18 IACS Production of “School of Rock” 2:00 pm & 7:00 pm

November 20 Middle School Fall Athletics Awards Night 6:00 – 8:00 pm

IACS Board of Trustee Meeting 6:30 – 9:00 pm

November 21 High School Fall Athletics Awards Night 6:00 – 8:00 pm

November 22 Early Release Wednesday

November 23 No School Thanksgiving

November 24 No School Thanksgiving Recess

November 27 IACA Book Fair

November 28 IACA Book Fair

November 29 IACA Book Fair

Early Release Wednesday

November 30 IACA Book Fair

Middle School Parent Advisory Council Meeting 7:45- 8:30 am

Middle & High School Auditions for “Gilligan’s Island, the Musical” 3:00 – 5:30pm

December 1 IACA Book Fair

All School News

Looking for a spot on the Christianson Bus? There is space for one more student on Bus #1, which makes stops at Route 129 Plaza (at 258 Salem St, in Billerica) and the Stadium Plaza (Rt 38 on the Lowell /Tewksbury line). If you are interested, please contact Transportation Manager, Marybeth Bush:

IACS School Nutrition Program:The November Breakfast and Lunch Menu is posted here. This month’s menu features Thanksgiving Turkey Sandwich, Chicken Fajita, Steak & Cheese Sub, homemade soup and much more. Monday’s are meatless and we offer gluten-free and vegetarian options daily. To better serve IACS families, an innovative point of sale (POS) system, specifically designed for school nutrition programs, is available to all families. To create an account or to add funds to an existing account go to our website: IACS School Nutrition Program. We also accept cash and checks at the register as well. Contact Karen Drake if have any questions about the School Nutrition Program.

Athletics News


This year, in partnership with SJA and the EAA, IACS is pleased to offer students the chance to try out the sport of archery! This is an introductory opportunity for all interested middle school students. The sessions will run at St. Rita’s Parish Hall in Lowell on Thursday afternoons from 4:30-6 pm beginning January 4th and ending March 15th. Weeks 1 through 3 will consist of archery lessons and instruction, weeks 4-8 will consist of competitions and weeks 9-10 will be a tournament between the different teams.

Sessions will be taught and supervised by certified archery instructors and all equipment will be provided for athletes. As this is a shortened season and the team will only meet once per week, the Athletic Department is offering a discounted rate of $80 for participation.

Unfortunately, athletes cannot participate in this program while doing another IACS winter sport. If you are interested in joining the IACS archery team, please send the Athletic Department an email at We are hopeful that we will be able to field a team this winter in this exciting new sport!"

HS Swim Team
High School Families, there is a possibility of a high school swim team co-op this winter if there is enough interest by IACS students. Please have your students check their student email and respond to if they have interest.

Theatre News

School of Rock! Nov 16, 17, and 18: (Rated PG.)

Our kids have been working hard to put on an AMAZING show! Don’t have tickets? It’s not too late- tickets are on sale for $22 at the door.

Ticket order form here!

Like us on Facebook! Did you know that we have a theater Facebook page? Find us at Innovation Academy Performing Arts to see news, photos and videos of our IACS "rock stars!"

Next up: Gilligan’s Island- The Musical!

Calling all CAST-aways! Our winter production is Gilligan’s Island- The Musical! Don’t know who Gilligan is? Just ask your parents!

Seriously, though- you don’t have to know anything about the popular TV show to have a blast with friends and family in our winter musical!

Middle and High school students are invited to audition on Thursday, November 30th from 3:00pm-5:30pm. If middle school students cannot stay for the entire audition time it’s ok! All you need is a signed agreement form. No experience necessary- just come and prepare to have fun!

The Middle School cast will have rehearsals on Wednesday half days, 12:30-3:00. Half the time will be spent in Drama Workshop with fun games and activities, and the other half will be spent in rehearsal! Students may also choose to spend the entire time in Drama Workshop by simply emailing rhawthorne@innovationcharter. org.

Middle School News

Quality Night- coming in December:

Please be certain to mark your calendars. All middle school students are required to present at Quality Night.

Fifth and Sixth Grade Quality Night ~ Thursday, 12/14 6-7:15 pm

Seventh and Eighth Grade~ Tuesday, 12/19 6-7:15 pm

For 8th graders Applying to Technical or Independent Schools

Please be aware that deadlines can be quite early. Please provide 2 weeks or more notice for letter of recommendations in order to give staff adequate time. Any requests for other documents (transcripts, attendance/conduct record, etc.) can be made to Federico Pererya, Dean of Students.

Upcoming 7th & 8th grade Advisory Field Trip:

7th & 8th Grade Advisories are headed to Boda Borg in Boston! Please be sure to send permission slips to advisors, with $33 and complete the online waiver. Problem Solving Team is going on December 7th, and the Self Direction Team is going on December 8th.

Links: ​

Boda Borg Permission Slip- Problem Solving.doc​​

Boda Borg Permission Slip- Self Direction.doc


After School Art Winter Session

Tuesday or Thursday from 3:00 – 4:30

Starts Tuesday, November 28 or Thursday, November 30.

This 8 week open studio session is designed to give students access to a wide variety of materials and tools in the art room in order to create work of their choosing. Available media include drawing, painting, printmaking, mixed-media sculpture, collage, book making, paper mache, stop motion animation and more! There is a $60 fee for this program. Please fill out the registration form and submit payment by Friday, November 17. You can now submit your payment online!

Questions about the program or to inquire about a scholarship, please email

Recruiting Parent Volunteers for Extracurriculars

We are looking to recruit parent volunteers to act as a team manager for Destination Imagination as well as a parent to run a Chess Club or Board Game club after school. If you are interested in either of these, please contact MS Principal, Melissa Kapeckas.

High School News

The next couple months are going to be busy for our students with a lot of great activities, and here is a list of some of those events…

11/16-11/18 School of Rock Musical Performances

11/21 Garage Band/Instrumental Ensemble Concert during Advisory

11/22 Grades close for 2nd round of Progress Reports

11/28 Progress Reports shared with students and families

12/1 Winter Choice Blocks Begin

12/4 Sexual Harassment Assembly during Advisory (follow-up in Advisory on 12/5 & 12/7)

12/15 Chorus/Chorale Concert during Advisory

12/19 Endersession Packets shared with students and families

12/19 Winter Exhibition Night 6:00-8:40pm

12/21 Lecture Hall Live during Advisory

National Kindness Day – Monday, November 13th

All high school students will receive information on Monday on how they can participate in National Kindness Day. Kindness Day was born when a collection of humanitarian groups came together on November 13, 1997 and made a “Declaration of Kindness”. Likewise, on Kindness Day everyone is encouraged to make a similar declaration. Donating books, food or clothes to your local community is a great way to celebrate. However, pledging to commit just one act of kindness is no less worthwhile: hold the door open for a stranger, compliment your neighbour on their collection of garden gnomes, let your partner have control of the TV remote for the evening. However you decide to celebrate remember that the best thing about Kindness Day is that it doesn’t cost a thing! As the saying goes, “Kindness begins with me” (actually it begins with “K” but you get the idea).

STUDENT HEALTH 101 – our Online Wellness Magazine

The November issue of Student Health 101 is here! From in-the-moment mindfulness tricks, real facts about vaping, or useful tips for getting your priorities straight, Student Health 101 has something for everyone. If you’re looking for even more ways to access this wonderful tool download the Student Health 101 app, and take a look at the official IACS SH101 Twitter page! Just search @SH101atIACS within the Twitter app, tap that follow button, and be sure to turn on those post notifications to receive alerts about future articles!

For parents, there is a Student Health 101 experience designed specifically for you at .


High school yearbooks are now on sale! Yearbook order forms were handed out during Advisory this week, and extras are available outside of Mrs. Kelly’s office. The early bird deadline to purchase a yearbook for $30 is December 22. After December 22, the price will go up from to $35. Order forms can be turned in at the main office. Orders can also be placed online at

Families of Seniors: Please read the email that was sent out last week for information on senior portraits, baby photos, and parent pages. They should be sent to by January 5, 2018.

Did you miss the Ice Cream Social or Open House?

If so you missed out on picking up our new magnet.

It has a school calendar with all of the early release days highlighted for you. There’s a list of our important dates such as MCAS and prom too!

Contact Crystal McKiel,, to have one sent home to you.


Scrip Program

Welcome to Innovation Academy’s "Scrip" program! Beginning in November through the beginning of December, you can order gift cards for yourself, family and friends, teachers AND help support your school! HUNDREDS of gift cards and participating vendors are available. The order form is attached to this e-mail. We are very excited to be bringing Scrips to you!

How it works: Order a vendor ( restaurant, stores, music, movies, health and beauty) gift card through Scrips and every card you purchase has a rebate % that is returned to the schools. For example, 13% of your 99’s Restaurant Gift card will be returned back to IACS! ( Remember that next month when we have our Dining for a Cause at the 99’s and you’ve made TWO donations with one purchase!)

Ordering by paper: Choose from gift cards on your order form and place your order by every Friday now until December 8th. Paper order forms can be dropped off at the Main Office with a check payable to IACA (please include "Scrips" in the memo) along with an additional $1.00 to help with shipping and handling. Your gift cards will be distributed the following THURSDAY at a table set up at school- more details to follow.

Ordering cards online: If you order your cards online ( , your orders are ALSO due every Friday. Online orders will have the option of receiving a plastic gift card ( standard) OR an e-card. Some denominations are only available through e-card so please review your options carefully. Online orders also have an option of paying with a check or paying with a credit card. Instructions will be posted on the IACA website by this weekend.

You must set up a family account online even if you are ordering via paper. Go to, click on "Join a Scrip Program", and use the enrollment code B48FBF3B1586L . This will assure that your purchase benefits Innovation Academy. Scrips also has a customer support line at 1-800-727-4715, option 3, if you have questions regarding your online setup and purchases.

For all other order-related questions, please contact Bernadette Baird at Thank you!

YOU NEXT WEEK AT OWEN AND OLLIES! Come to Owen and Ollie’s in Dracut on November 14 for our next Dining for a Cause event! Serving Irish and American pub fare, this family-owned restaurant is a great place to get together with friends and family. Remember to print and bring your coupon. To see their dinner menu and beer/wine selections, click here.

MONDAYS are BROTHER’S PIZZA DAYS: Ordering lunch out on a Monday? Call Brother’s Pizza next door to Innovation Academy! They’ll donate 9% of your order back to the school. Be sure to mention Innovation Academy when you place your order. Dine in or dine out orders apply.