Notes from Dr. Irvin
Your WGHS Weekly eNews for September 7
Hello WGHS Families,
As we enter into September, calendars are getting more crowded with national testing dates, a litany of high school activities, and numerous community options. Please take time for yourself and your child to slow down, to linger, to connect with each other. Parents of high school students often scurry from one event to another and have not prioritized the time we have remaining to see and listen to each other. My wife and I have 3 aging parents remaining that warrant, not yet demand, our limited time. Our oldest is in college with our youngest in high school--the time has gotten away from us in our home, it feels. As both are juniors in their respective settings, they have transitions to weigh just around the corner. When looking back, our remorse centers around times we oriented our lives around something that in retrospect seems trivial now. I hope you take the time to count the cost of each item you and your child say yes to in your day. Engage in those you select, and do not look back on those you declined.
Next Week's Schedule:
LATE-START A, A, B, C, A
A Peek at the Week Ahead
- 9/8: Fall Sports Assembly, 7th hour (students only)
- 9/9: ACT Testing, WGHS
- 9/9: WGSD Family BBQ, 11am, Ivory Crockett Park
- 9/11: Late-Start A Day; Doors open at 9:25, and school starts at 9:40am
- 9/12: Senior Parent Night/Financial Aid Night, 6pm, Auditorium
- 9/13: Parents' Club Meeting, 7pm, Library
Monday, September 11 is our first Late-Start day!
Guide to Late-Start Mondays
A late-start schedule allows time for instructional staff to collaborate in Professional Learning Communities, or PLCs.
Extra time allotted for instructional staff is the only time teachers of the same course can meet in PLCs to provide a guaranteed viable curricular experience for students, which includes:
Essential content and skills students need to know for a particular unit
Common assessments to determine if students have mastered those essential skills
Adjustment of instruction and design interventions to help students who need additional support, and they design enrichment opportunities for students who already have an understanding of certain concepts
In order to accommodate PLC time, we will have a late start on 16 days out of the school year. School will start at 9:40 a.m., and most periods will be 40 minutes on those scheduled dates. Instructional staff will meet with their PLCs from 8:30 - 9:30 a.m., and the building will be open to students at 9:25 a.m.
Bus transportation will be modified to accommodate the new schedule. Parents who drop off their students before school should make arrangements to drop off at 9:25 a.m. or after. We currently will not schedule any before-school activities/meetings on the late-start days to allow staff time to meet.
Late-Start Supervision Program
WGSD provides free supervision to students who need this service. Supervision begins at 8:15 a.m. for grades 6-12. If your family is in need of care, please contact your school.
Students who are enrolled in the Late-Start Supervision Program must enter through the Senior Entrance (main entrance on Selma) from 8:15 - 9:25 a.m. Students will be directed to and must stay in the following supervised areas: Library, Cafeteria, or PV Commons.
Bus Pick-up Times
Our first WGSD LATE-START DAY is Monday, September 11, 2023. Our buses will pick up students at their stops about 1 1/4 hours after your regular pickup times. All First Student bus riders should have received an email with their pick-up location and time. If you have any questions, please contact Beverly Brooks at firstname.lastname@example.org.
VICC bus riders should have received notification directly from VICC. Please contact VICC at 314.721.8657 with any questions.
Culture and Climate
In continuation of our efforts to support the academic and personal well-being of each student, district culture and climate surveys will be administered to students in grades 3-12, families, and staff. Surveys will solicit participants' perspectives about learning strategies, culture and climate, and experiences in the classroom and/or school.
The surveys will allow for students, families and staff to offer feedback specifically about school safety, their sense of belonging, teacher-student relationships, cultural awareness and diversity and inclusion. For comparison purposes, the same surveys from 2022-2023 will be used this year.
The survey window for students and families will be October 2-13, 2023 and March 25-April 5, 2024.
To learn more, including survey previews, aggregate data from last year, and how you can exclude your child from participating in the surveys if you choose to, click here.
2023-24 WGHS Spectator Information
WGHS Spectator Guidelines and Information to Purchase Season Passes and Single Game Tickets
We are excited for the beginning of the new school year and watching our student athletes compete during their seasons. This email is to give you information on admission prices to our home games and season passes.
WGHS will charge admission to the following home sporting events.
- Varsity Football - $5 (for regular season games)
- Basketball - $5 (any night there is a varsity game scheduled)
- Varsity Soccer - $3
- Volleyball - $3
- Please be aware that other schools that our teams play at may have additional sports that they charge for and possibly different pricing as well.
All season passes are only available to be purchased online and can be accessed on your mobile phone through the GoFan app. Screenshots of tickets and season passes will not work this year.
BRIDGing Our Stories
The BRIDGing Our Stories - (Building.Relationships.Inclusion.Diversity.Growth) program allows WGSD middle and high students and staff to tell their stories through art. Students and staff members can express themselves through art such as poetry, photography, music, dance, painting, etc. These creative expressions will be placed in a Community Gallery for the public to view, learn, and appreciate. In addition, the art will be used in a professional development session for staff to learn about the power of storytelling, relationship building, and building community. The grants are able to cover funding for some art supplies. Students will be asked a year later to share how being a part of the project impacted their classroom experiences. This program is grant-funded by the WGSD Foundation and Lindenwood University.
Did You Know?
Oct. 17, 18, 19 PARENT/TEACHER
October 19 & 20 NO SCHOOL
November 1 NO SCHOOL
Nov. 22-24 THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY
Dec. 18-21 SEMESTER EXAMS
December 22-January 2 WINTER BREAK
January 3 RECORDS DAY
January 4 SCHOOL RESUMES
January 15 DR. M. L. KING DAY–NO SCHOOL
February 16 NO SCHOOL
February 19 PRESIDENT’S DAY—NO SCHOOL
March 4-5 PARENT/TEACHER
March 15 NO SCHOOL
March 18-22 SPRING BREAK
April 15-26 EOC TESTING
May 10 SENIORS LAST DAY/CHECK-OUT
May 18 GRADUATION
May 21-24 2ND SEMESTER EXAMS
May 24 LAST DAY OF SCHOOL
WGHS Attendance Procedures
Call your child's AP office to report an absence, late arrival, or early departure. Checking out early? When leaving school during the day, students must check out through the assistant principal’s office.
Student Early Release:
We require at least one hour notice when calling your student out early. Call the Assistant Principal's office before the designated time and report the absence. You may also send a note with the student to be presented to the Assistant Principal's office before school.
At the designated time, your student will receive a pass to check out if you called ahead. The student will check out in the Assistant Principal's office.
You will NOT enter the building if you have called the absence in and communicated a pick-up location with your child. However, if you choose to pick up your child in the building, you must do so at the main entrance on Selma Avenue. Upon entering the building, check in with the receptionist. Please bring your driver's license if you are checking in. The receptionist will contact the Assistant Principal’s office to send for your student. Please be aware that not calling ahead to schedule an early release can take up to 30 minutes to send for a student.
PSAT Deadline is Approaching
The Preliminary SAT, also known as the PSAT, is a practice version of the SAT college admissions exam. In addition to being a practice SAT, the PSAT serves as the qualifying test for juniors for the National Merit Scholarship program.
Test Date: Wednesday, October 11, 2023, 8:25 am-noon (students will be excused from class)
Who is eligible?: Sophomores and Juniors
To register: visit www.TotalRegistration.net/PSAT/263573
Deadline to register: September 8, 2023
Dual Credit and Advanced Placement (AP) Exam Registration is Open!
Did you know that there are more than 30 classes at WGHS offering college credit for students? An email was sent to all students (and their parents) in qualifying classes earlier this week. If you missed it or just want to plan ahead, view this document for details. Pay special attention to the following deadlines:
· MO State Dual Credit: https://dualcredit.missouristate.edu/ (Deadline: 9/18/2023)
· UMSL Dual Credit: https://www.umsl.edu/continuinged/acp/ (Deadline 9/13/2023)
College Admissions Representative Visits Start Soon
Juniors—are you ready to start learning about colleges? Seniors—do you have questions about the application process for schools on your list? College representatives will start visiting WGHS the week after Labor Day-November 1st. This is a great opportunity to hear from colleges all across the country in the comfort of your own school. A list of colleges visiting will be posted on our Counseling Department calendar, in Naviance, and shared in our daily announcements. Students should stop by the Counseling Center to sign up to meet with schools they are interested in and to receive a pass to be excused from class. Be sure to check the calendar regularly as visits are being updated daily.
Save the Date!
Senior Parent Night and Financial Aid Presentation, Tuesday, September 12th in the WGHS Auditorium
(Students are welcome to join but will hear a similar presentation in their senior English class prior.)
6:00-6:45pm: The College Application Process (when, how, transcripts, letters of recommendations, etc.) with Jennedy Lombard and Ellen Silverstrand
6:45-7:30pm: Financial Aid presentation with Hannah Smith, Program Coordinator, Office of Financial Services at Saint Louis University
Junior Parent Night, Tuesday, September 26 at 7:00pm in the WGHS Auditorium
Junior parents! Please join Mrs. Lombard and Ms. Silverstrand as we “kickoff” college planning for the Class of 2025. Topics will include: college admissions testing, a timeline for the college search and application process, tools for conducting your search and more! Students are always welcome to attend but will hear a similar presentation in their English class prior.
Webster Groves School District uses ParentSquare for school communication, primarily with email, text and app notifications. ParentSquare automatically generates an account for each parent, using their preferred email address and phone number. We encourage parents to access their accounts so they can download the mobile app and update their preferences on when and how they are notified.
Create a Canvas Account to Stay Connected
To stay connected with the learning in our classrooms, please create a Canvas Observer Account which is our district's learning management system. You will find three helpful documents below:
- Canvas Informational Letter
- Creating an Observer Account, Logging into Canvas, and Setting Notifications
- Student Accessing Canvas
If you have any questions please contact Tim Brown, Director of Student Assessment, Data and Learning Technologies at email@example.com.
Shop the Parents' Club Spirit Store!
The Spirit Store is open! Hours are 8-9:15 a.m., Tuesday - Friday.
The online store is open 24 hours a day at https://www.wghsparentsclub.org/spiritwear.
Every time you shop at the Spirit Store, you are supporting student scholarships and teacher grants!