Volume 5, Issue 3, October 2016
Message from the Principal
We are always looking for ways to improve Homer High. In order to do this, we create goals that we focus on as a school each year. These goals are developed by staff and are then presented to the site council.
Our goals for 2016-17:
- By May of 2017, we will increase by 5% the number of students who have a 3 or better on AP tests, who have earned college credit or who have received industry certification as evidenced by transcripts, AP test results or industry certificates.
- By May 1, 2017, we will increase each of the following by 5%: number of students who feel safe, who feel there is no bullying at HHS, and who feel they have an adult who they can confide in, as evidenced by results of the yearly HHS survey.
- By May 1, 2017, we will increase the percent of teachers who will have created one electronic remedial and one blended learning opportunity for students to 100% as evidenced by completed opportunities.
Of course, each teacher, school committee or professional learning community (PLC) develops action items to help achieve these goals. Some of the action items include:
- Implement Green Dot program school-wide
- Teachers will implement one Green Dot classroom activity or one classroom discussion per month
Web of support lessons will be taught in freshman health classes and with at-risk students.
Partner more closely with KBC to make registration and advertising of college classes more effective
Create an AP study club
Create “Safe Zone” classroom and create signs
Increase positive teacher presence in the hallways during passing period
Throughout the year I will be explaining these goals in more depth and reporting our progress towards them. If you have suggestions or feedback on any of these goals or would like a more detailed list of action items let me know via e-mail.
We are always looking to improve and I would love to hear your suggestions or insights. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 235-4600. If this doesn't work for you, feel free to come into school and I would be glad to chat in person. We work hard to develop a positive and safe school environment, but we can't do it alone. If you know of a problem please let us know.
Dates To Remember
Oct. 1 - Volleyball vs Kenai - 11:00, 12:00 and 1:30
Oct. 6 - Volleyball vs Cordova - 3:30, 4:30 and 6:00
Oct. 8 - Fiesta Night Wrestling Fundraiser 5:00
Oct. 12 - First day of Hockey practice
Oct. 14 - Volleyball vs Houston - 3:30, 4:30 and 6:00
Oct. 15 - Volleyball vs Joe Redington HS 0 1:00 and 2:30
Oct. 21 - End of Quarter / no school
Oct. 21 and 22 - Varsity Wrestling at home--Round Robin Duels
Oct 26 - Grade Check and Early Release Day
Oct. 26 - First day of XC Ski practice
Oct. 28 and 29 - DDF Tournament--Homer Invite
Oct. 27 - Parent-Teacher Conferences / no school
Oct. 28 - No School
HHS is offering the PSAT on Saturday, October 15. The test will begin at 8:30 am. The cost is $15 cash or check (made out to HHS). Juniors will automatically be entered in to the PSAT/NMSQT competition. Sophomores are encouraged to take the test for practice.
Once again Homer is very proud to announce that a current senior, Zane Boyer (who took the PSAT during his junior year), has been named as a National Merit Semifinalist. He is one of 16,000 who have been chosen from the original 1.3 million testers. Zane will go on to compete for National Merit Finalist which will further reduce the pool to around 8,000. While not all students go on to such honors, all students who take the test will gain valuable experience and feedback that will make taking the SAT and ACT much easier and more comfortable.
Homer has a long history of National Merit Finalists who have gone on the further education and success. Please call the Counseling Office if you have any questions about the PSAT, college testing, or any other questions you may have.
AP Psychology is a new class being offered at Homer High School. It will be taught by Amy Johnson, who is certified in Psychology through the State of Alaska. AP Psychology is a one semester class that mimics a college Introduction to Psychology class. Topics include Personality, Memory, Emotion, The Brain, Abnormal Psychology, Biological Bases of Behavior, and much more. Any student in 10th, 11th, or 12th grade may take it. Students do not need to have taken a General Psychology class, though if they have, AP Psychology will build much more on top of the knowledge from that class.
If you have any questions about AP Psychology, please contact Mrs. Johnson at AJohnson@kpbsd.org or 235-4667. If your student is interested, have them sign up outside the band room on the interest sheet or talk to Mrs. Johnson – she is available during 3rd period, lunch, and after school in the band room.
Do you see a vase or two faces with the attached picture? Why does your brain see both? It’s all part of Sensation and Perception!
Welcome Mr. Tozzo (Get to Know Our New Teachers)
Growing up in Harlingen, Texas, I would have never imagined that teaching special education in Alaska was a part of my future. In high school I was a three sport athlete, and attended college and played soccer for Stephen F. Austin State University as part of their club and ODP program.
Teaching is something I always wanted to do, but I didn’t take the traditional route to get there. In 2005 I moved to Alaska upon graduating from college, with the plan of returning to Texas in a couple of years. I originally moved to Petersburg, Alaska where I wrote for the newspaper, worked for the radio station, and owned and operated a bicycle shop. I student taught in Petersburg for the 2010-2011 school year, then moved to Togiak, Ninilchik, and now Homer.
I began coaching the girls’ soccer team in Homer last year and put in for and was granted a transfer to Homer for the current school year to begin teaching here as well. My time in Homer so far has been wonderful. There is a bit of a learning curve when switching to a larger school, but the special education staff and administration have made that easy for me. I am hoping this is the last place I teach and am looking forward to getting involved in and becoming a part of this community. In my free time, when I have it, I enjoy fly fishing, cycling, and reading. Go Mariners!
Meet New HHS CTE Teacher Walter Love
Moving to Homer has provided innumerable opportunities for me to meet new people and introduce myself. I was asked yesterday by Principle Waclawski to once again introduce myself, this time in essay format. As Fyodor Dostoyevsky famously wrote in Notes from the Underground “By the way, what is it that all respectable men talk about most readily? Answer- about themselves. So I will too talk about myself.” That said, I cheerfully throw myself, once again, into the breach and attempt to introduce myself in a manner befitting publication.
My name is Walter Love, and I recently relocated from the small city of Miami located in the northeast corner of the Great Plains State of Oklahoma. I graduated from Broken Arrow High School while concurrently attending Tulsa Vo-Tech to learn automotive skills. My education track is long and varied as I have not yet decided on what I want to be when I grow up. Post-graduation my learning journey began as a four year enlistment with the United States Navy where I served as an aircraft mechanic. Since then I have completed a welding program through Tulsa welding school, a millwright apprenticeship and thirteen years of journeyman experience, earned a Bachelor of Science from Northeastern State University, a Juris Doctorate from the University of Tulsa, and teaching credentials in two states. I have l become a dedicated lifelong learner and continually seek out ways to improve my current skills while acquiring new ones.
Every day since moving to Homer I am amazed at the kindness, openness, and generosity of the people who live here. Every interaction with students provides another positive indication of the quality nature of the communities they are being raised in. I am honored and grateful to have been given this opportunity to pass along the knowledge and skills I have gained to the students at Homer High School.
US News & World Report has Listed Homer High as a Silver Award Winning School!
Homer should be proud of our students, our teachers and our school. We continue to excel on state and local assessments, but most importantly, we help your child grow up and become wonderful citizens.
Congratulations to Homecoming Royalty
Congratulations to Samantha Jacobsen and Martin Welty who were elected Homecoming Queen & King
October is a very busy month in the counseling office—please consider having your student participate in one of the following activities.
Hopefully all sophomore and junior parents are aware of PSAT testing in October. To allow for optimum testing conditions, we will be holding the Wednesday test (primarily for student athletes who cannot test on Saturday) at KBC in the upstairs of the main college building. Testing will start at 8:30 and be over before noon. The Saturday test, which is the one most students will be taking, will happen at HHS also beginning at 8:30. Students for both tests will be excused from their morning classes to take the test. Cost is $15 (checks should be made out to HHS) and given to Mrs. Baker or Mrs. Hampson. Please be sure to indicate if your student will be testing on Oct. 15 or Oct. 19.
Sophomores will be welcome to test in Oct. or they may choose to test in the spring, giving them more class time to improve their skills. Either date will be in preparation for taking the test junior year when it serves as an entry point for the National Merit Competition. There will be FOL times to work on test prep. Students who are opted out of FOL may attend as well. We have copies of previous tests for any students who took PSAT last year and that information can be very helpful for preparing.
Please call the counseling office with any questions you may have.
The fair will be held on Oct 18 at Soldotna High School. There will be 50 or more colleges at this fair. Technical schools (including AVTEC), military recruiters and employers will have a separate fair in February. Students will be able to have face-to-face conversations and get valuable information. HHS will be sending buses of juniors and seniors. Students must ride the bus only, unless accompanied by parents. Students will need a permission slip which can be picked up at the office or the counseling office. Please sign it and have your student return it to school. This event will take up the majority of the day but the experience will be well worth the time. Many HHS students have connected with colleges that they eventually attended. This is a great opportunity, especially for students who are beginning their college search or do not feel they will have the opportunity to actually visit schools in the lower forty eight.
Battle of the Books
Last year HHS had a very new team of readers who participated in Battle of the Books. Despite having several freshmen and new-to-Homer contestants, we did very well and received an engraved plaque for 5th place in the District. New books will be discussed this year and there is lots of opportunity for new members.
Parent Teacher Conferences
Will will also have have college preparation classes for Juniors and Seniors. Presentations will include FAFSA, Scholarships and general College Prep.
Schedule for October 27th
- 8:30 - 11:00 am
- 12:00 - 3:00 pm
- 5:00 - 8:00 pm
We Want You to Follow HHS on Facebook!
We want to be able to give you instant up-to-date information about what is going on at school. This can include emergencies, sports scores as well as dates and times of events. To stay tuned to what is going on at Homer High, "like" us on Facebook. The address is www.facebook.com/homerhs. Join close to 600 other people who have liked HHS on Facebook and the over 2000 people who view our Facebook posts.
Homecoming was a Great Success and Fun Too!
Visit the Homer High School Website
Are you wondering when sports teams have home games? Do you have a senior who needs paperwork for their senior service project ? Do you want to see agendas and minutes from our site council meetings? Check out our school website to find answers to these and other questions.
The address is http://homerhighschool.blogs.kpbsd.k12.ak.us/wpmu/.
You can access PowerSchool from our website and weekly activities as well. There are lots of great links and valuable information about Homer High School. If you have suggestions for things you would like to see on our website, please talk to Mr. Waclawski.