Cardinal Notes

information and reflection about Joseph Case High School

Volume 15, No. 2 *** September 5, 2018

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Opening of School

One hundred and thirty-seven young adults entered Joseph Case High School on August 28 as the Class of 2022 were greeted by the entire faculty and staff in the auditorium before going into their advisories. This is the tenth consecutive year that students commenced their high school experience in small, purposeful learning communities.

Joseph Case High School’s are consistent with the beginning of school last year, with an initial enrollment of 540 students.

The high school welcomed two new technology teachers: Tim Healey and Justin Shay. Keith Mello is now the freshmen guidance counselor, with Cassie Reis and Anthony Palladino representing students in grades 10, 11 and 12.

The school year began with traditional class assemblies to review high school expectations and address new policies, yet week one was anything but commonplace. Relationships were prioritized over regulations. For the fourth consecutive year, teachers were instructed to get to know students and their passions while easing into instruction. Wednesday through Friday were celebrated on social media via #1st3days. A school-wide pep rally welcomed all students to celebrate fall athletes and artists while informing students of when clubs and activities will begin for the year.

The high school continues to offer a variety of non-traditional programs for the success of its students:

  • Opportunities for 25 students each semester to take Virtual High School (VHS), an on-line program for students and staff interested in courses and curricula areas not offered onsite at Joseph Case High School
  • Piloting a credit recovery program in January and February utilizing Edgenuity
  • Saturday School continues for both credit recovery for students and as an alternative to suspension
  • Year Eleven of a four-year personalized Advisory Program
  • Chartwells Food Service continues in the cafeteria in Year Five. We will continue to offer breakfast throughout the morning for a third year

We are grateful for the routine maintenance and physical plant upgrades that took place over the summer. Included in the high school improvements were;

  • replacement of the track at Cardinal Stadium
  • repaving of the northern parking lots
  • systematic replacement of carpeting at the high school
  • painting of the second floor Learning Center that houses classrooms in English, math, history and world languages
  • annual maintenance to the gymnasium

Thank you to Superintendent of Schools John Robidoux and the maintenance staff for prioritizing these projects during the summer months. Much appreciated!

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With six school days under our academic belt, today marks mid-week of our second week of the 2018-2019 academic year. Since the first minutes of school, Joseph Case High School has prioritized relationship building once more as our initial focus this year. Complementing our mission, we also brand relationship-building on Twitter using the school-wide hashtags #1st3days and #casepride. Our first week of school ended on a robust positive note with an all-school pep rally celebrating fall athletes and artists, as well as extra-curricular opportunities. Here's to looking forward to the joys of this week!
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Open House this Thursday

Our annual traditional Open House will be held this Thursday evening , September 6 at Joseph Case High School. We begin in the auditorium at 6 p.m. for opening remarks by Principal McCann (annually calling it the best 30 minutes of your week!!), followed by a modified Day 1 schedule where you can attend your child's classes and meet our awesome teachers.

You can copy your students' schedule from the Aspen X2 portal. Counselors will be in front of the guidance office at 5:45 p.m., to distribute schedules if necessary.

Open House is perhaps the most important evening of the year. It's not about textbooks, restrictions and rules.

It is an opportunity for you to meet teachers face-to-face, received an understanding of the classes' academic adventures for the year, and begin to build relationships between these two important groups of stakeholders.

I'm hoping it's the best 150 minutes of your week.

Class Rings on sale

Balfour will be in the main lobby during Open House Night from 5:30-6:30 p.m. to take ring orders. After our annual Sophomore Ring Assembly during the first week of school, formal orders can also be placed during all three lunches on September 7 and 10. Sales reps will be available to discuss options and payment plans.
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Drop/Add ends

Please note that the close of school on Friday, September 14 concludes our drop/add period at Joseph Case High School. Level changes may be considered at the end of Term I in all classes, except Advanced Placement.

Student Information Forms

Updated student information forms must be returned to the main office as soon as possible. The forms were mailed to all Case families in August. Blank copies are also available in the main office. Updated Student Information Sheets enable the school to safely contact you in the event of an emergency, inclement weather, or when family contact is needed by a teacher.
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Opioid Education

Massachusetts' 2016 legislation requires that parents, guardians, and other adults in a middle and high school extracurricular athlete’s life such as School Nurses, Athletic Directors, Coaches and Athletic Trainers, receive educational materials on the dangers of opioid use and misuse.

Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) has developed educational materials on opioid misuse prevention and is partnering with schools across the state to share this information with students, parents and school personnel.

Click here to access the materials.

Because of the risk of injury and the subsequent need for pain management, student athletes may be at risk for opioid misuse.

Joseph Case High School supports the distribution of opioid education materials in coordination with our athletic and health-related staff in our school throughout all sports seasons.

Parent and Family Professional Development: Vaping and Drug Use Warnings

Please join me in the auditorium on Wednesday, September 26, beginning at 6 p.m., for an informative evening of the dangers of vaping and electronic cigarettes. The presentation will also offer opportunities to witness a simulation of a teenager's bedroom that contains multiple hiding places for tobacco, drugs and alcohol.

Joseph Case High School is grateful for the collaboration of Swansea School Nurses, the Southeast Tobacco-free Community Partnership, and the Bristol County District Attorney's office.

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Last week, I shared with the freshmen that this was my 42nd opening day of school in Swansea -- 12 as a student grades 1-12, followed by 30 school openings as an educator.

Joseph Case High School is an awesome place to build a foundation to follow your dreams. We are competitive, academically, athletically and artistically. Last year, we ranked for the first time in the U.S. News and World Report's inclusion as one of America's best high schools in 2018.

This summer, I celebrated at the National Principals Conference the many digital initiatives and advances a small public high school has made, from a total redo of the technology curriculum to removing restrictions on digital devices to fully embracing social media as a branding mechanism. I was proud to accept the honor of 2018 NASSP National Digital Principal of the Year ==> not only as Joseph Case High School's principal, but as a graduate of its Class of 1980.

Let us continue to evolve as a community that enables its stakeholders to dream and provision for their next adventure.