The STEM Weekly Stream

STEM Academy Family Newsletter

Week of November 22

Welcome to the Thanksgiving Week Edition of the STEM Weekly Stream, our family newsletter. Report Cards are out! Please check below for information on where to find your student's Quarter One grades. Report Card Conferences are tomorrow - we hope to see you there. Teachers will be available here at STEM, and on Zoom as well. Zoom Links for all Teachers are included below. Also, our October Students and Staff of the Month are featured!


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Gratitude for the STEM Community

Thanksgiving is my favorite time of the year. For me, the week always provides a much needed opportunity to celebrate with family and friends, relax, and enjoy great food! I also like to take time to reflect on how fortunate I am to have been a part of the family here at STEM Academy and Chester Upland School District over the past 7 years. It is truly a blessing to have this job that I love, and to be surrounded by the amazing students, staff and families of this community. Thank you all, and please enjoy a wonderful holiday!

-Mr. Bell


Parent-Teacher Conferences

Report card conferences will be held from 11:30 AM until 5:30 PM Tomorrow - Tuesday, November 23!

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. Walk-ins will be welcome at STEM on the 23rd, and pop-ins on Zoom will be welcome also.

Click below to access STEM Teacher Zoom Links:

Teacher Zoom Link

Where to Find Your Student's Report Card

Report Cards were posted to the Home Access Center on the morning of Friday, November 12. If you do not yet have an HAC account, please follow the instructions below.

While we do not print paper copies for all students, we can do so upon request. Just call or email Ms. Jones or Ms. Dixon in the office to request a copy, and we'll send one home with your student. Also, we would be happy to print a paper copy for you when you arrive to Report Card Conferences on Tuesday!


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.


Week of November 22

Thanksgiving is our favorite holiday here at STEM! We are incredibly grateful for the amazing students, families, teachers and staff at our school. This year, Thanksgiving Week also comes with a special schedule:

Monday (11/22): Full Day - Regular Schedule

Tuesday (11/23): Early Dismissal (10:30 AM) for Students (3rd & 4th Period Only) - Report Card Conferences from 11:30-5:30

Wednesday (11/24): Early Dismissal (10:30 AM) for Students and Staff (1st & 2nd Period Only)

Thursday (11/25): Thanksgiving Day - Schools Closed

Friday (11/26): Schools Closed


October Awardees

Each month, one outstanding student from each grade is selected by their teachers as Student of the Month. These students have demonstrated excellence in STEM Academy traits of Scholarship, Leadership, and Character. Please join me in congratulating the following students who represented the best STEM has to offer during the month of October!

7th Grade: Ciani Fournier

8th Grade: Stephen Swen

9th Grade: Dayanara Martinez

10th Grade: Tahjee Gant-Irons

11th Grade: Zanae Holland-Barksdale

12th Grade: Desean Hubert

Staff Members of the Month

If you have called or visited STEM Academy, you have probably gotten to know our October Staff Members of the Month. Ms. Yvette Jones and Ms. Latifah Dixon work in the STEM Office and are often the face or voice that greet our families and answer questions and concerns. But there is much more to their jobs than just that. From finding substitute teachers to processing orders and everything in between, Ms. Jones and Ms. Dixon make sure each day at STEM runs smoothly. We would be lost without them!

Please join us in congratulating and thanking our awesome office staff, Ms. Jones and Ms. Dixon!!

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Senior Pinning Ceremony

The Senior Pinning Ceremony was held on Wednesday, November 17 at Chester High School, and featured keynote speaker, Dr. Stacia Wilkins. Thank you to Senior parents for their support and to Ms. Chassidy King and Ms. Rachael Thomson for organizing the event.

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


Varsity Sports

Chester Clipper Winter Sports tryouts have begun. Students who are interested in participating must have an updated physical. Forms are available at the front desk at STEM, and can be taken to your family doctor, or Everest Urgent Care to be completed. Please contact Athletic Director LaDontay Bell ( with questions.

Winter Sports Coaches

Boys Basketball: Keith Taylor

Girls Basketball: Marvin Dukes

Cheerleading: Karen Miah

Boys Indoor Track: James Wharton

Girls Indoor Track: Jamal Allen


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 received 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!



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