Independence HS


Principal's Update

SIXER community,

Last week we welcomed the class of 2027 and their families to our community. Friday, we discussed our SIXER values and how to navigate this newsletter. Today you are learning about Canvas, our learning management system.

This week I encourage you, as your teachers continue to instruct you on class and school systems, to make sure you know how to engage fully in your classes. Don't be afraid to ask questions, and remember that you have many advocates on campus. Thursday, our staff collaboration is "Office hours." This is a time when you can arrange to meet with your teachers for additional support. If you have questions on a project or need a little more help understanding a concept, show up to office hours to get that extra support.

What's happening this week

STUDENT PICTURES (Wednesday, 8/9 & Thursday, 8/10)

ALL students will have their picture taken for their student ID card (a legal form of identification), the yearbook, and their transcript profile. Wednesday and Thursday are block-schedule days. Students will take their photos during the periods of their English or ELD classes.

If students/families/guardians desire to purchase photos, then complete the form and bring payment on Picture Day. Independence does not handle payments. All forms of payment are to be handed directly to the photographer/ vendor (from the student). A physical copy of the order form has been provided to all students. Electronic copies can be found below:

Picture Order Form. English

Picture Order Form.Spanish

Picture Order Form.Vietnamese

Since these are legal ID’s, issued and paid for by the district, there are some rules:

  • Students may not wear clothing that references drugs, alcohol, and sexual wording or images.

  • No bare shoulders are permitted - straps must be clearly visible in the photo.

  • Obstructions, such as hoods, sunglasses, colored contacts, masks, and wigs (unless due to medical issues), are not permitted.

Students violating the clothing rules will be provided a school-issued t-shirt or tank top to borrow.

Yearbook Promotional Sale!

For a very limited time, the yearbook will be at its lowest price of the year. Come to the A06 Bank to purchase and reserve your full-color copy for only $65! We accept cash, check, and card. Or, visit the (enter code: 6072) to reserve a copy online (a $4.99 fee applies).

Senior Sunrise (Monday, 8/14)

Bring picnic blankets, games, sports equipment, and Bluetooth speakers to enjoy the start of the school year together!

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Counseling Corner

Welcome back, Sixer Community!

We are excited to have students back on campus and look forward to working with them!

Schedule Change Requests:

Counselors are currently reviewing schedule change requests and making necessary changes (i.e. missing a class, placed in the wrong level, need class for graduation, have two of the same class). Students will receive an email if/when a change is made.

All other requests (i.e. different elective, order of classes, etc.) will only be made if possible (we can’t overload classes) and if there is room in the schedule.

Please keep in mind:

  • Making a schedule change may require a change to several classes

  • Students should attend their current schedule and do their best in case a change is not made

We are doing our best to make changes as quickly as possible. We thank you for your patience and understanding.

Counselor Caseload Update:

IHS Counseling has made a shift in caseload. Please make note who your student’s counselor is as it may have changed.

Ms. Marquez’s Caseload

Ms. Marquez is currently out on leave. Please contact the following counselor based on last name:

Athletics Updates

“Just Play, Have fun. Enjoy the game." - Michael “Air” Jordan

Announcements: Fall Season started (sort of) on Friday, 8/4/2023. All athletes must be cleared via prior to practicing. Strongly suggest athletes attend a workout to introduce yourselves while they complete the registration process.

Sixer Football: Practice Monday, 8/7, at 4:25 pm. Bring cleats, workout clothes, and water. Contact Head Coach Braun ( or Coach Montesano ( for questions and further details:

Sixer Golf (girls): Practice Monday, 8/7, at 4:15 in Memorial Grove. No equipment is needed.

Sixer Volleyball (girls): Practice/Try-outs in the large gym at 4 pm on Monday, 8/7/23.

Sixer Cross Country (boys & girls): Meet at the stadium at 4 pm. See Coach Kevin

Sixer Tennis (girls): Meet at the tennis courts at 4 pm. See Coach Scott

Sixer Water Polo (boys & girls): Meet at the swim center at 4 pm. See Coach Martinez

Sixer Girls’ Flag Football: Meet at lunch in C-commons on Tuesday, 8/8/23

Visit Sixer Athletics for up-to-date information about athletics! Follow us on Instagram: @indyathletics

Activities Updates

Fall Play Auditions (Wed, 8/9 - Fri, 8/11)

Announcing the Fall production of the comedic play: PUFFS! by Matt Cox. This play takes place at a certain British school of Magic, Wands, and Wizards… yeah - you know the one. Wayne, an orphan, goes on a fantastical journey when he joins the house of the Puffs. Along the way he makes friends, learns some great stuff and takes us through a crazy 7 years at a school where nothing is what it seems.

Visit Ms. Edwards in room C-303 for more information about participating. Auditions take place this week! Aug 9, 10th and 11th from 7th period - 4:30 pm. Actors will need to prepare a 1 minute previously written speech, monologue or soliloquy.

Inter-Club Council Meeting (Friday, 8/11 @ 4pm)

A mandatory Inter-Club Council (ICC) Meeting is this Friday at 4pm in C-Commons. All clubs must send a minimum of two elected delegates to the ICC Meeting, or risk probation. Even clubs whose applications are currently pending must attend the mandatory meeting. Details can be found on the ICC Google Classroom.

Club Week! (Tuesday, 8/15 - Friday, 8/18)

During Club Week, we showcase all the different student clubs and afterschool programs that IHS has to offer. Each day will focus on a theme.

  • Tuesday, 8/15: Cultural, Performance, & Entertainment Clubs

  • Wednesday, 8/16: Service, Academic, & Humanitarian Clubs

  • Thursday, 8/17: Before & After School ASSETS Programs

  • Friday 8/18: Fall & WInter Sports; Performing Arts Programs

The Club Week Showcase happens during lunch at Senior Stage.

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Schoolwide Elections (All Applications due Friday, 8/17)

Class of 2027 - Freshmen Class Office

Are you passionate about serving? Can you bring the integrity? The spirit? And the hype to be a leader and representative for your fellow classmates? Then run for ASB Government! The Class of 2027 has several positions to fill, including President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Applications and further details are available on Instagram @ indyactivities and your class instagram account: @ihs_co2027. You can also find applications in the ASB School Bank (located in A06), or just ask your Honorary Eagle Mentor.

Class of 2026 - Special Election: Vice President

10th graders interested in running for Vice President, please visit our Instagram Account: ihsco2026 to find the application link. Applications are due on August 17th… Once more, applicants should visit our class instagram account: ihsco2026 to apply.

School Site Council (SSC)

The School Site Council (SSC) is a collective body of stakeholders (students, parents, teachers, and staff), whom the Principal reports and collaborates. Meetings are held once a month, where stakeholders review the principal's vision, preview school data, and report happenings on campus. While any student can observe a SSC meeting, only two, specially elected student representatives may serve as voters on the board.

If you are devoted to bettering IHS and the campus for all stakeholders, and if you are passionate about your opinion, then this is an excellent opportunity for you to run for election.

Qualifications (no application necessary):

- students from 9th-12th grade (especially 11th and 12th)

- can meet once a month (second Tuesday of the Month) at 5:30pm - 6:30pm

- Special election will be held online. Polls are open to ALL students.

- Candidates receiving the top two total vote tallies win voting positions on the council.

All interested parties must complete the following, short survey, HERE. The survey closes Friday, 8/17 @ 11:59pm.

Seniors! Check out the special Senior Button in this Newsletter for all things relevant to you and graduation!

Follow us on Instagram:

Stay up to date on all student activities and events at IHS - be sure to follow your ASB accounts:

And, your class account for important information specific to your grade level:

Parent & Community Involvement Specialist (PCIS) Corner

Welcome Sixers Family to the 2023-2024 school year! We wanted to take the time and introduce ourselves as your Parent & Community Involvement Specialists (PCIS), Ms. Ha Pham and Ms. Maggie Rodriguez. We are located in what we are calling the "Sixer Community Center" located in A202.

Please ensure we have your email so you are able to receive Parent Meetings and school updates. We offer a variety of support services for our school community. Please complete the Parent Survey by using this link to get your feedback regarding Parent Workshops.

As a reminder please refer to the academic calendar 2023-2024 to support you in the planning of any holiday vacations. As a reminder, vacations are not excused absences in-session days.

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For any questions or concerns please contact Ms. Ha 408.928.9598 or Ms. Maggie 408.928.9541.


988 Crisis and Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Get Help - Behavioral Health Services - County of Santa Clara (; informational flyer for mental health teams (attached)

Black Youth & Suicide: A guide on suicide risk and mental health support for Black youth in Santa Clara County

LGBTQ Youth Space (ages 13-25):


Downtown Youth Wellness Center (ages 12-25) – flyer attached; Programs – Alum Rock Counseling Center (

Santa Clara County Office of Education - Department of Youth Health & Wellness

Headspace for Teens:

Crisis Text Line:

Mental Health & Wellness Corner

The Mental Health and Wellness Center is located in Room D-05.

How do I submit a referral?

Students, parents, teachers, and community members may submit a referral for any student at Independence by visiting the link below and filling out a Care Team referral form. A social worker or intern will follow up with the student.

Care Team Referral form:

Calming Space: The Calming Space is designed as a space for students who are experiencing stress in class and need a short break to self-regulate. Before students visit the Calming Space, we ask that they check in with their teacher and request a pass. Students may spend 15-20 minutes in the Calming Space; if they need more time, a wellness center staff member will check in to discuss additional resources and support. We ask that students always check in with an adult when they arrive and before they leave the Calming Space, keep their phones away, and that they try at least one station in the space. Stop by to take a look!
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On Friday, August 4, Sixers took part in Sixer Values Friday! This was a school-wide collaborative effort to learn about our Sixer Values: Spirited, Innovative, eXtraordinary, Engaged, and Respectful.

School-wide lessons are an opportunity for us to asset-map our community of learners. We work toward seeing the strength and resilience in our students and families, bringing forth our assets, and building pride in our school and community. We work toward learning about our neighborhood's history through people and their stories, so we can be authentically community responsive in our curriculum and pedagogy.

Based on our SIXER Values, school-wide lessons are a jumping off point to introduce a simple idea, with the intention that through rich classroom discussion and related lessons throughout the year, students come together, learn about each other, and build respectful relationships.

Check out the School-Wide lessons on our Sixer Values HERE!
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School Funding (Income Eligibility) Forms

All our students will receive free brunch and lunch this year, regardless of income status.

The School Funding Form (Income Eligibility Form) impacts the funding our school and district receive through the Local Control Funding Formula, LCFF. Help us meet 100% of our families by filling out this form.

Additional student benefits include AP Test discounts, College Application Waivers, Internet Discounts for home, and Grant opportunities for ESUHSD.

You can fill it out online.

Paper forms and instructions are available here -

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Reporting Line

Independence makes use of the SaySomething Anonymous Reporting System from Sandy Hook Promise. If you, or your student, have a tip to report, you can use the following link, and it will be routed to the appropriate individuals.

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