The STEM Weekly Stream

STEM Academy Family Newsletter

Week of November 8

Welcome to the 6th Edition of the STEM Weekly Stream, our family newsletter. Picture Day is tomorrow - check below for details. Also in this edition is information regarding upcoming family events; the YMWIC College & Career Expo and the annual Fall Family Summit. Keep reading about where to find your student's first Report Card, and information about Parent-Teacher Conferences. Finally, scroll to the bottom to check out the pictures from Friday's Character Day! Halloween came a week late at STEM, but our students and teachers came with excellent costumes.


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Tuesday, November 9

All students in grades 7-11 will have their school photos taken on Tuesday, November 9. Lifetouch (the photographers) will provide students with order forms to take home for purchasing pictures.

Students should come dressed in their white uniform shirts. If they do not have their shirt, they will be provided a white button down to wear for the photo (pictures are head and shoulders only).

Photos taken on the 9th will also be used for student ID's, and published in the 2021-22 Yearbook.


Where to Find Your Student's Report Card

The first marking period has officially closed, and the first report card will be posted to Home Access Center this Thursday afternoon (November 11).

While we no longer print and distribute report cards for all students, we can provide paper copies upon request. Simply call Ms. Jones or Ms. Dixon in our office (610-447-3650) and ask for a printed report card. They will send a copy home with your student.

Home Access Center (HAC)

The HAC is where you will find your student's report card. Not only that, visiting the HAC will allow you to check your student's grades and attendance on a daily basis..

If you do not have your HAC set up yet, email Ms. Misha Memon ( She will reply with your username, password and a link to the log in page.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Report card conferences will be held from 11:30 AM until 5:30 PM on Tuesday, November 23 - mark your calendar! Appointments are suggested, and teachers will be in contact soon with instructions for scheduling them.

This year, we are happy to offer both in-person and remote options for conferences. We hope to see you here at STEM, but understand that schedules are very busy. When you make your appointment for the conferences, you will indicate whether you intend to attend in-person or via Zoom.

Finally, if you forget to make an appointment, we would still love to see you. Walk-ins will be welcome at STEM on the 23rd, and pop-ins on Zoom will be welcome also.


November Family Events

November will be a busy month here in Chester Upland School District. There are a number of events we hope you will join us for. Additional information is below...

YMWIC College & Career Expo

This year we are continuing our partnership with the Young Men and Women in Charge Foundation. YMWIC provides extensive support for students who are interested in entering S.T.E.M. career fields, from elementary school through college.

YMWIC is hosting their 16th annual College and Career Expo on Saturday, November 13 at Henderson High School in West Chester. This is a great opportunity for students and families to learn more about the college process and careers in S.T.E.M. fields. There will be a bus departing STEM at 8:30 AM (free of charge) for any students and families who wish to attend. RSVP with Mr. Bell!

YMWIC is also offering workshops here at STEM every other Thursday evening at 5:30.

Visit for more information about YMWIC!

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Fall Family Summit

Also on the 13th is the annual Fall Family Summit. If you are attending the YMWIC event, the bus will have you back at STEM to catch the Summit as well! There will be family workshops, activities for kids, and giveaways, including a Coat Drive Distribution!

This event is for all families in the Chester Upland Community, so please spread the work to family, friends and neighbors!

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GPA - Grade Point Average

For many of our students, especially new 9th Graders, Grade Point Average (GPA) is a concept that takes a while to really understand. However, students need to know that once they get to high school, their grades really count. The final marks students receive on this first Report Card will stay on their transcript and be seen by the admissions counselors when they apply to college. Please join us in emphasizing to students the importance of striving for the highest grades possible, even in Freshman year. The hard work will pay off when it comes time to apply for college.

After School Program

Our famous 21st Century After-School Program is now back in session! Many of our students have already signed up, but there are plenty of openings. Register here.

Our After-School Program provides great value for many of our students and families.

  • First and foremost, it is the ideal place for students to get enhanced academic support. With 12 of our fantastic teachers on staff, students have the opportunity to get an hour of individual or small group help from a certified teacher each day
  • Research shows that students who are involved in extra-curricular activities are much more likely to succeed in school. The After-School Program includes a variety of activities to meet the interests of students, including Robotics, Chess, Hi-Q, School Newspaper, Botany, and more!

Registration is open and we encourage all families to enroll their students! Check out the flyer and contact Ms. Merto ( with any questions.

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Early Warning System

At STEM, we strive to have systems in place to identify students who need help, and provide them with supports as soon as possible. Our Early Warning System (EWS) allows our grade-team teachers and counselors to collaborate to keep students on the right track. Using academic and attendance data, our teams identify students who may be in danger of failing multiple courses or missing excessive class periods.

This year, with the adjustment back to in-person learning, and with so many of our students new to the school, we are finding many students need extra support. We ask that families work with us to help students maintain the focus and effort necessary to stay on top of their academic work. Our teachers and counselors are your teammates working together to ensure students are successful!


Information for Senior Parents

The school year is now in full swing, and it will be moving fast, especially for Seniors. Please keep important dates and information in mind:

Senior Pinning Ceremony: Senior families, please mark you calendar for the evening of Wednesday, November 17 at 6:00 for the Senior Pinning Ceremony. The event will be held at Chester High School.

Senior Dues: The first $100 installment of Senior Dues payments was due last Friday, November 5. Please contact Ms. Thomson to arrange payment if you have not already dones so.

Senior Meetings: Seniors have all been scheduled for their initial Senior Meeting with their Counselor, Ms. Hargadon. At these meetings, they discuss their plans for next year, and are provided a guide for their next steps. Questions about college and scholarships should be directed to Senior Counselor, Ms. Hargadon.

Contact Information

Senior Advisor: Ms. Rachael Thomson -

Senior Counselor: Ms. Casey Hargadon -

Principal: Mr. Brendan Bell -

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PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Support) is always important at STEM, and never more so than right now. We have so many students who are new to our school building and also those who have not been in a classroom for a long time. Our goal is to support our students by instructing them on how to be positive members of our school community.

Positive Behavior Emphasis: Be On Time

We use the STEM PBIS acronym below to teach students our expectations for their behavior. The "T" stands for Take Accountability, and we want our students to take ownership of their responsibilities. Our students usually do a great job, but when they need a reminder, we all need to work together to get them on track.

This week, I am asking families to help by making sure their students are on time for school. Students must be in their First Period class by 7:50 AM. We have students who are arriving later and later, which is beginning to seriously impact their classes.

Before we begin taking punitive action, let's work together to make sure our students arrive on time. Remember you can always check your student's grades and attendance every day by loggin into the Home Access Center (see the instructions toward the top of the newsletter if you don't have login information). Take a moment today to verify your student is arriving on time each day!

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Check out the World Famous Chester Clippers Cheerleaders showing us what PBIS means at STEM

Cheerleaders PBIS

Character Day - Friday, November 5

Character Day was a hit at STEM! Students and staff donated $1 to the Senior Class to dress as their favorite TV, movie, book or video game character. Check out some of the best costumes: