Independence High School

2022-2023 Week 5 Updates

Principal's Update

SIXER Family,

As we go into this short week, we closely monitor the current heat wave and adjust campus activities accordingly. Outdoor activities are being avoided where possible, including canceling all athletic and afterschool practices for today, 9/6/22. We will open several indoor spaces for students to cool off during break and lunch as well as monitor for signs of heat-related illnesses. There may be additional schedule adjustments based on this heat wave.

We are just two short weeks away from the end of the marking period. Please reach out to your student's teachers if grades have not been posted yet.

East Side Spartan Promise

All East Side Students are eligible to receive guaranteed enrollment at SJSU if they meet the minimum requirements for admission. Please see the link below for more information on this outstanding opportunity for all of our students.

Athletics Updates

As we begin the 2022-23 school year, we invite you to #BeTheChange!

Sportsmanship is simple, treat others how you would want to be treated. Respect the game and everyone participating, including student-athletes, coaches, officials, and spectators. Education-based athletics is more than winning, it’s about academic development, equity, and character. Be Responsible, Be Respectful, #BeTheChange!

The California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) has produced a Sportsmanship PSA (both audio and video) for everyone to share with their school communities. If possible, please use this valuable resource before every contest and wherever you might find it useful to spread the word and help #BeTheChange! View the video HERE.

A Word to the Wise

Proper preparation prevents poor performance!

It’s going to be hot this week. Proper hydration starts 24-48 hours prior to training, competing, exertion, etc. Start now!

Shout Out

Congratulations to golfer Ashely Pang. Ashely was the medalist in the first golf match of the season against Lincoln HS last week.

Week of 9/5/2022

Thursday, 9/8/2022

Sixer Golf (girls): rescheduled due to heat

Sixer Volleyball (girls) @ Overfelt JV @ 5:30 | V 7:00pm

**Sixer Football vs Fremont HS JV @ 4:30 | V 7:00 pm

**Game day/times may change due to heat

Visit the IHS Athletics Website for up to date information about athletics! Follow us on Instagram: @indyathletics

Activities Updates

Welcome Back Dance, Friday, 9/9 @ 7 pm

The Welcome Back Dance is an outdoor event for all students, 9th-12th. Tickets must be purchased in advance - no door sales. Student tickets are $5 and space is limited - HURRY! Guest passes can be purchased for $15. There will be an 80’s theme to the dance, complete with 80’s arcade games, occasional 80’s music hits, and a Stranger Things-esque vibe!

Make-up Student Pictures. Monday, 9/12 - via English Classes.

ALL students must have their pictures taken for Student ID Cards, school transcript profiles, and the yearbook. If your student missed Picture Day, then please be sure they attend for make-ups.

Purchasing photos is optional. Parents, guardians, and students, who want to purchase photos, must complete the picture order form that was sent home with students (also attached). Bring the completed form, along with payment, back to school and deliver it directly to the photographer.

Please remember, these are legal ID's and paid for by the district, so there are rules:

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

- No bared shoulders are permitted

- shoulder straps must be clearly visible in the photo, and chests must be covered

- Obstructions, such as hoods, masks, sunglasses, some styles of colored contacts, and wigs (unless due to medical conditions) are not permitted in the photo.

Students found in violation of the clothing rules will be permitted to borrow a school-provided tank top or t-shirt for the photo.

High School Takeover with 99.7 NOW, Friday, September 16th

One of the Bay Area’s top radio stations will DJ, LIVE from Senior Stage during lunch. After school, they’ll resume their show, broadcasting from the JV/ Varsity Football Game vs. Prospect High School. The station will be offering song requests, shoutouts, free give-aways, and FUN!

DATE CHANGE: CLUB WEEK: September 19th - 23rd

Club week will work to showcase all the different student clubs and afterschool programs (ASSETS) that IHS has to offer. Each day will focus on a theme: service, cultural, academic and artistic, and social clubs. THIS is the week that students have to sign-up and join clubs! The Club Week Showcase happens at lunch!

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Positive behavioral interventions and supports (PBIS) is an approach schools use to promote school safety and good behavior. Schools that effectively implement PBIS demonstrate:

  • Increased student connection to the school community.

  • Increased instructional time

  • Up to 50% reduction in office referral rates per year

  • Reduction in overall exclusionary discipline

  • More consistent attendance

  • Higher academic achievement

  • Improved overall school climate

School-wide lessons are lessons based on our SIXER values: Spirited, Innovative, eXtraordinary, Engaged, and Respectful.

School-wide lessons are an opportunity for us to come together and work toward seeing the strength and resilience in our students and families. By doing so, we build pride in our school and community. We work toward learning about our neighborhood's history through its people and their stories, so we can be authentically community responsive in our teaching practices.

View our first School-Wide lesson on what it means to be a “Spirited Sixer” HERE.

View our second School-Wide lesson on what it means to be “Innovative” HERE.

Parent & Community Involvement Corner

If you have not yet created or downloaded the CANVAS application please use this LINK for step-by-step instructions. Instructions are now available in English, Spanish and Vietnamese. CANVAS is our new online system where you can track your student's progress. *Your student will need to share a “PAIRING CODE” with you. Please note, that parents are called “OBSERVER” on CANVAS.

REMINDER: In PERSON Back to School Night, Wednesday, September 7, 2022, BTSN CLASS SCHEDULE, First period starts @ 6:00 pm. This is a great opportunity to meet your students’ teachers, and staff and walk the campus as they do.

Reminder: Please have your student submit the forms to N01. Please use the links below to access the forms in your preferred language.





For Free Food distribution, please refer to the information below. For any questions or concerns, please contact me via email or phone 408.928.9541. Please ensure we have your email, so you can receive Parent Meetings and school updates.

Please complete the Parent Survey by using this link to get your feedback regarding Parent Workshops.

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Sixer Shoutouts

Student Shoutout

Damian Renteria takes pride in being a SIXER. He takes the initiative to spend part of his morning helping beautify our campus knowing this is his campus too and wanting it to be treated with respect. ~ Mr. Bjorn Berg, Principal

Staff Shoutout

Ms. Guibani deserves a SIXER shoutout because she puts an eXtraordinary effort into both her teaching and IEP case management. Over the summer, Ms. Guibani identified a new curriculum for her Basic Study Skills classes and has been implementing it this year. Ms. Guibani has also taken on some time-intensive IEP cases and has been doing a great job communicating with all stakeholders and facilitating meetings. I appreciate Ms. Guibani's hard work on our campus. On top of all of the great work she does, Ms. Guibani is extremely kind to all of her colleagues and students and creates a warm, welcoming atmosphere in her classroom. ~Ms. Abigail Carson, IHS Inclusion Specialist

Counseling Corner

IHS Counseling Corner Website:

Counseling Office located in N 02

1. Wednesday, September 7th - Back to School Night - Counselors will be in the N 02 office from 5:45 pm - 8 pm ready to meet and answer any questions!

2. AB 469 - ALL Senior Students must complete a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aide) or the CADAA (California Dream Act Application) and submit on or before July 1st

3. After School Workshops & in class grade level presentations: Coming Soon starting in September! The first in class presentation dates are below...

9/9 - In class 12th Grade Presentations in Econ/Government classes

9/14 - 9/15 - 9th Grade Presentations in PE 1 classes

9/16 - 11th Grade Presentations in US History classes

9/21 - 9/22 - 10th Grade Presentations in PE 2 classes

4. Parents & Students: Upcoming teacher office hours & extra help will take place on October 6, November 3, & December 1st from 8:30 - 9:30 am.

5. Our Head Counselor Ms. Pham is out on maternity leave (Congratulations Ms. Pham!). Based on the student's last name, students can reach out to the following counselors for assistance in N 02.

A's = Ms. Fernandez & Mr. Hennessey

B's = Ms. Huynh & Ms. Liang

C's = Mr. Ly & Ms. Marquez

6. Together with counseling, Mr. Anthony Garcia is our 10,000 Degrees Fellow who assists, supports, and guides our students with financial aid, college, questions and much much more!

7. In-Office Counselor Hours:

Mr. Thompson Ly: 8:45 am - 4:15 pm

Mr. Mark Hennessey: 8 am - 3:30 pm

Ms. Flor Fernandez: 9 am - 4:30 pm

Ms. Thuy Huynh: 8:15 am - 4 pm

Mrs. Lissenia Marquez: 8:30 am - 4 pm

Ms. Bonnie Liang: 8:15 am - 3:45 pm

Mr. Anthony Garcia: 9 am - 4 pm Tuesdays - Thursdays

Ms. Dalia Cuenca: 8 am - 3:30 pm Mondays & Tuesdays (USF Intern)

Ms. Erin Serrano 8 - 3:30 pm Tuesdays & Thursdays (USF Intern)

Safety and Attendance

The C-05 Office two weeks ago presented “Sixer Expectations” presentations through the Math department in Math 1 and Math 2 classes. You may access the presentation that our Sixers have seen by clicking here.

A friendly reminder, if you know that your student will be absent, please phone or e-mail your student’s Attendance Secretary to report the absence and request work from the teachers.

The IHS Attendance Office is located in N-01

Attendance Secretary

Naicila Vidal - 408.928.9521

Student last name A - L

Diana Castillo - 408.928.9521

Student last name M-Z

Thao Pham - 408.928.9542

You may sign up for Saturday School, information below, by clicking the following link:

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Mental Health & Wellness Corner

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

We are open from 8:30 am - 3:45 pm every school day.

Temporary Closures

8/11-9/12: M,Tu,Th,F: Closed 11:30-12:30 W: Closed 11:30-1:30

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:

This Week’s Updates: This week, our 2022-23 social work interns visited our campus and got to meet some of our staff. They will begin their time at IHS on Tuesday, September 6th and will be here 2-3 days a week to support our students. We are excited to have them here!

Wellness Center Groups: In the month of September, we will have some new Wellness Groups starting up again. We plan to have Art of Yoga, East Bay Art Therapy, City of San Jose Female Intervention Team, YWCA Teens Ending Abuse (TEA) Club, Ujima Life Skills, New Hope for Youth, and The City Peace Project. Please see a social worker in D05 for more information.

Wellness Wednesday: This past Wednesday, students joined in playing ladder ball and Jenga over in B villa. Mr. Berg joined us to say hello and take on some of the students. Our jenga tower even surpassed the students in height. Next week, we will visit a different area of campus with a new activity. Listen to next week’s announcements for more details.

To Be Honest Mental Health Survey: To Be Honest, is a local mental health education program for adolescents and young adults ages 14-25 in Santa Clara County. They want to learn more about what mental health resources and support you need! If you are interested in sharing more about the mental health resources that would help you and your peers, please fill out a survey here: To learn more about To Be Honest, visit ToBeHonest.Today

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. We have an exercise station, an art station, a reading/writing corner, and a kinesthetic area. Stop by to take a look!

Wellness Center Instagram @indywellness76

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