Administrative Update VAAC
Newsletter- March, 2021
March is upon us! We are thrilled to celebrate March is Reading Month with our families virtually this year. Please check out the March is Reading Month calendar and engage with us through literacy! We will round out our celebration with a VAAC on Tour event, where you can visit us at your local school district on April 1st. We hope you're able to join. Once we finalize our locations, we'll send an official invite. RSVP's to this event are highly encouraged.
At the 6-12 level, we're finding that there has been an increase in the number of students completing mastery tests without opening their tutorials. Our staff have been working with students on academic honesty in online learning. Please help us keep the focus on the process of learning! Students may use their guided notes on their mastery tests and post tests. If guided notes are unavailable, your mentor or teacher can support you with how to take Cornell or two-column notes. Note taking is a GREAT skill for all learners! Here is a resource you mind find helpful if you are interested.
Monthly newsletter and (sometimes) weekly updates are sent through S'more and posted to our website, here.
Mrs. Ashley K. Leneway
Wayland, Hopkins, Fennville and Glenn Families
We have asked all Wayland, Hopkins, Fennville and Glenn families to complete a survey about your needs for next year, 2021-22. Originally we wanted to close the survey 2/24/2021, but we only have about half of our families complete the survey. If you have not completed it already, if you could please take a few moments to complete the survey, we would appreciate have the most accurate data as we begin planning for next year.
We would ask that you complete one survey for each child you have enrolled at VAAC. The first section is required, the second and third are optional but we would love to have that information for planning purposes.
Here is a quick survey for Otsego VAAC families to see who might be interested in an online experience for next school year (2021-2022), not through VAAC but through Otsego Public Schools.
State Testing- PSAT, M-STEP, Etc...
VAAC Calendar and Upcoming Events
Our VAAC school calendar is available on our website, here.
VAAC is closed on Friday, March 5, 2021
VAAC teachers will be hosting conferences March 15-April 1
VAAC is closed for Spring Break April 1- April 9
VAAC is closed May 28 and May 31.
The end of our school year is June 4, 2021
Longevity and Sustainability Group- New Format
We will be restructuring the longevity and sustainability group. For the time being, the meetings held the 1st Thursday from 7-8pm and the 2nd Friday from 1-2 pm will be a time to touch base with Mrs. Leneway and any staff who are able to attend. We will use this time to hear your feedback or support families with their needs. Here is a list of the meeting dates in full.
March kicks off a month long celebration of literacy! During the month of March, we encourage families to read, write, and talk about books every single day. We've created a calendar of activities to help you incorporate literacy in your daily lives. We would love for you to join us!
Allegan County Farm Bureau
Would like to help promote reading in March with a fun and farm friendly activity. They are asking families to share fun photos of their children reading to farm animals or reading an “agricultural” themed book. Please visit their Facebook page for more information or to post your picture! https://www.facebook.com/allegancountyfarm/
K-5 Families Literacy Support Series
We kicked off a new series of monthly informational meetings for our K-5 VAAC families around literacy. All the resources and the video recording of our meeting can be found here. Our next meeting is about phonological awareness and phonics, basic building blocks for literacy. We welcome all families to join us on March 18 at 8am or 7pm via Zoom. ZOOM LINK (for all meetings): Meeting ID: 867 9813 3133 Passcode: VAAC
Skills for Effective Parent Advocacy
SWMiSTEM together with Southwestern Michigan College would like to offer your students a virtual innovation/invention experience extraordinaire!
Students in grades 3 through 12 and undergraduate students are invited to identify a problem, and then design and present a solution to judges through Flipgrid, a free video creation app. They can look for a problem in their own life, their family, neighborhood, school, community, nation, or even the world! Individuals and teams of up to four are welcome.
Presentation videos must be three minutes or less. Rules and criteria can be found on the attached document, and there is also a link to it on the flyer. Once students have registered, they will receive a link to the Flipgrid platform and other resources.
Winners will be chosen from each age category as outlined in the rules. A virtual meeting will be held on April 9, 2021, to announce the winners. Winning projects will receive a $10 gift card and a frameable certificate of achievement and their photos will be included in a press release.
We are excited to see what invention/innovation takes place in these days of quarantine!
SAT prep or College Board Information
Information from the College Board- handouts for college prep and financial aid:
Handouts for students from College Board on how to register for the test:
Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) at VAAC
PROUD certificates contest & PROUD Certificates and student recognition
Our staff will be looking for, nominating and celebrating student displaying the attributes of PROUD virtually here at VAAC. Teachers will submit student names to me weekly and I will mail PROUD certificates, created by our very own VAAC students, to your home in celebration and recognition. We look forward to recognizing our hard working students and sharing those celebrations with your family.
2021 VAAC Talent Show
VAAC Random Acts of Kindness
Many VAAC students and families joined us in participating in Random Acts of Kindness! Here is a link to learn more about this annual tradition. #ExploreTheGood #MakeKindnessTheNorm #RandomActsofKindnessDay Thank you to those who shared images of their acts of kindness!
GVSU Free Virtual Tutoring Services
Begins October 5th for K-12 students
Sign up at gvsu.edu/k12connect
The Michigan Learning Channel
The Michigan Learning Channel is now available through your antenna on WCMU, WGVU and Detroit Public TV. A statewide public television partnership offering instructional content to support the education of students and to provide alternative resources for families and teachers. https://www.michiganlearning.org/
Here is the schedule for March 2021
There is a parent webinar on Tuesday, March 2nd at 4:00pm to learn about all the resources available to families. Reserve your spot here.
Welcome- Katalina Hicks!
Katalina is a Fennville and University of Michigan graduate. This fall, she will return to formal education to obtain a Doctor of Medicine and Master of Public Health degree. She has graciously offered to support students and tutor in her free time before starting medical school. We are so grateful to have her helping our VAAC families.
Tues 4pm to 7pm
Wed, Thurs 12pm to 3pm
If you are interested in her support, please contact her at:
Cell: (616) 256 6156
Attendance, Truancy and Engagement
If you have not created a daily schedule, especially if you are behind pace, I highly recommend you create one today! Here is a great template that we've been using with families at VAAC.
Plan to spend one hour per day per course to stay on pace. If you are behind, increase that to 90-120 minutes per course daily.
Students in grades K-12 are required to participate in at minimum 2 two-way contacts per week with their mentor or classroom teacher. Parents and Students in grades K-5 can work collaboratively with the VAAC mentor teacher to accomplish the 2 two-way via zoom, email, or phone call. This means, the teacher initiates contact (via Seesaw (K-5), Remind (6-12), Google Classroom (6-12), Zoom, email, text message or phone call) and the student responds, then the teacher responds (teacher-student-teacher). These two-ways will be logged, and two per week must be completed for a student to have positive attendance marked. Students & parents need to be on the watch for contacts by their mentor and respond to all contacts.
Students will submit an assignment every Wednesday.
Students will login and complete work regularly (5 out of 7 days per week) to the appropriate Edmentum platform (Calvert, Exact Path, Courseware) and be working toward completion of their coursework.
If 2 two-way communications are not completed Wednesday to Tuesday, the local district is contacted, they are maintaining attendance records. Students who are consistently missing that communication or who are not completing and submitting coursework online will be considered truant. Here is the link to our truancy documents that have been shared.
All of the curriculum products we use are Edmentum products. Edmentum Calvert is our K-5 program. Edmentum Exact Path is our K-8 virtual assessment and learning pathway. Edmentum Courseware is our 6-12 program. It helps our team out immensely if you can clarify which Edmentum program you need support with and helps to streamline the troubleshooting process. Thank you!
Our tech team can be reached Monday-Friday during business hours at (269) 512-7756.
If you're needing help outside of business hours, please complete this form, https://forms.gle/EKkQ8PddXdP5QupX6, and our tech team will respond once they're back in the office.