Cardinal Notes

information and reflection about Joseph Case High School

Volume 12, No. 5 *** October 28, 2015

First annual experimental film festival

What a thrill to walk into school this past Monday and bear witness to our Case video students' creations at the first annual experimental film festival. Organized and produced by teacher Tommy Whalen, the film festival is a showcase -- open to the entire student-teacher community -- where students share, discuss, critique, and , most importantly, celebrate their first forays in to a new medium. The short films are outstanding, but the detailed, professional discussions that follow each film are even more impressive.

Mr. Monteiro has ask me to showcase this program -- as well as some of the festival's highlights -- at the November 9 school committee meeting.

I am so proud when teachers and students take risks at this high school in order to grow. Validates everything we do at Joseph Case High school.

Pictures from the first experimental film festival at Joseph Case High School

Tech-Know Tuesday

Tech-Know Tuesday began this week with an introduction to Google Forms, a powerful mechanism to collect information, including surveys. We will continue with Google Forms next Tuesday, November 3, and begin with a review of October 27th's itinerary. Faculty and staff are enthusiastically invited to join me in Room 202 at 2:45 p.m. for 30 minutes of tech training.

Lee Denim Day follow-up

Joseph Case High School raised $255 as part of its Lee Denim Dress Down Day on Friday, October 16. As well, we celebrated Kris Lucca's 15th year as a cancer survivor. I am grateful to all faculty and staff who participated in this annual fundraiser.

Important Dates

Some upcoming date:
  • October 30 - In-service Day. No school for students.
  • November 6 - End of Term I
  • November 11 - No School: Veteran's Day
  • November 12 - Academic Awards Ceremony, 9 a.m.
  • November 13 - Report Cards published electronically at the end of the school day
  • November 19 - Parent-Teacher Conferences, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
  • November 20 - Homecoming Dance. 7-10 p.m.
  • November 23 - Parent-Teacher Conferences, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

End of Term I

It's almost unimaginable that Term I comes to a close next Friday with report cards published electronically at the close of school on November 13. Please help your student come to positive closure of this term.

Reminder: daily attendance affects eligibility

A not-so-gentle reminder that students must be in school for a minimum of five complete periods in order to participate in sports or any extra-curricular that day. Only the principal (or designee) can waive the attendance requirement if notified in advance of an absence. A doctor's note can excuse an absence from school if submitted in a timely manner, but only the high school administration can waive the requirement.

Rule of thumb: email the principal at least 24 hours in advance with specific requests, whether it be medical, legal or for bereavement.

Reminder: excused absence documentation

Per the current student handbook:

Excused absence documentation should be submitted to the main office within five (5) school days of the student‘s return to school. Excused absence documentation NOT received in a timely manner must be submitted directly to the principal and accompanied by written rationale as to why routine deadlines were not met. In order for consideration to occur, this documentation must be received in the principal‘s office no later than the following dates in the 2015-2016 academic year:

 Term 1 – November 13.

 Term 2 – January 29.

 Term 3 – April 8 (seniors); April 15 (underclassmen).

 Term 4 – five business days after the last official day of school.

The attendance appeal committee will meet formally during the first and third weeks of the month to rule on circumstances outside of the five days. Parent will be given an opportunity to defend their appeal. The appeal committee's ruling is a final judgment.

If the original protocol is followed, there will be no reason for appeal. Let's model responsibility in documenting excused absences.

October reflection - in anticipation for AP Saturday classes

WE are indeed blessed in Swansea to look for ways to increase rigor and relevance in our high school classes. Whether it's a recent professional day exercise to look at recent student assignments to collaboratively assess them on a research-based continuum or searching for ways to encourage and engage our AP students, Joseph Case High School is not complacent!

Recently, all teachers in our English, math, science and computer science AP classes followed up a week-long professional development with two days of intensive training and perspective with similar teachers from across the Commonwealth. I am grateful for these teachers who selflessly gave of their time and returned with a sense of urgency for our students: Kendra Brooks, April Hanks, Peter Brock, David Pasquariello, Bob Eddy, Charlie Shaker, Il Chy and Nathan Beit-Aharon.

This Saturday marks a new first for our AP initiative through Mass Insight Education.

The school bus will roll at 7:20 a.m. on Saturday, October 31 for BMC Durfee High School for our first Saturday class in AP Language and Composition and AP Literature and Composition. Please urge your AP English student to take the bus due to the large campus and multiple road construction challenges en route to Elsbree Street. The class is scheduled from 8 a.m. until noon. I will be celebrating this first journey on social media (and riding the bus!) on Saturday morning. Follow us on @josephcasehs.