Avoca West News

Heading Into Spring Break 2017

Spring Conferences and Parent Input for 2017-2018 Sectioning

I look forward to seeing many of you at parent-teacher conferences this week. In last week's update, I shared some tips and suggestions for parents (and students) to think about both before and after conferences. Please check back (still on our website) if you want to refresh your memory before heading into school.

The focus of our spring conferences should be on your child's progress this year and creating shared goals for the remainder of his/her time this year. I ask that you please do not discuss next year's placement with your child's teacher. The sectioning process is an elaborate and involved one, and it happens within the final weeks of school. Our staff members certainly advocate to make sure that class lists are created in ways that ensure a successful 2017-2018 school year, but cannot be responsible for recalling information that was shared in March.

How can you share your thoughts about next year's placement? When we return from Spring Break, I will officially open up the door for parents to share their thoughts about placement. If you'd like to think it through before then, the following blurb will run in the Avoca West news beginning the first week we return.

As as we look to plan for a positive 2017-2018 school year, I wanted to extend an invitation for those parents who would like to provide parent input for sectioning. Please do NOT rely on your child’s teacher to communicate your wishes for next year — they are asked to stay focused on making matches they think are positive and that will provide balanced classes. Our sectioning process includes the classroom teachers, special area teachers, next year’s teachers, and all of the many support staff we have at Avoca West. The hope is that with careful planning, we can design heterogeneous classroom groups to make sure that all of our children are successful! The staff considers and balances many factors including:

  • Individual learning style
  • Student Combination
  • Support service needs
  • Social/Emotional needs
  • Gender balance
  • Teacher’s teaching style
  • Pupil service needs
  • Class size
  • Academic characteristics
  • Chronological age

If you would like to share information or specific needs that may help us in the sectioning process, you may do so in writing. Please keep your reasons tied to the factors above and refrain from making special requests for placement into a specific classroom for your child. If there is a teacher or student(s) with whom you have had a less than positive experience with in the past, you may share that in your communication as well. Parent input must be received in the office by May 5th.

A Look at Assessment at Avoca West

Parents often wonder the about the who, what, and why of the many different ways that we formally check on student learning. Two of our main assessments taken by the bulk of our students are the MAP and PARCC assessments. What's the difference between the two higher-profile assessments? Check out the quick comparison below!

(If you'd prefer a link to the full-sized document, CLICK HERE)

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Upcoming Dates to Note

3/22 & 3/23 - Half Day Student Attendance -- Afternoon/Evening Conferences

3/24 - Teacher Institute Day - No Students

3/25 - Spring Break!

4/10-4/21 - PARCC Testing Window at Avoca West (Gr. 3-5)

See PARCC testing schedule below.

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Kindergarten Registration -- Up and Running!

This past week we welcomed many new faces to the Avoca West ITC to learn more about life as a kindergartener! Please continue to reach out to new faces in the neighborhood or any folks who may have a child who will be 5 on or by September 1st. Parents are encouraged to stop by the office to begin the paperwork process, including providing a birth certificate (or passport) and two proofs of residency.

Online registration for our returning students is on target to begin in April. Stay tuned for more information!

Check out the Avoca PTC's Updated Website

Don't forget to stop by the Avoca PTC website for updated information and dates to put on your calendar as well. There are many exciting events going on -- including our Spirit Wear sales!!

Questions? Comments?

Please feel free to reach out to ask any of our office staff for help!