SLVUSD Charter News
Vol 1.5 - Week of Oct 2, 2023
From the Principal
On Friday we bid farewell to Mirani Gomez, our Instructional Assistant in the Coast Redwood Middle program, who will be transferring to the middle school starting this week. We thank her for her support of students and staff and wish her everything of the best!
I wanted to provide some clarification about the "no touching" rule at Charter. A parent submitted feedback last week with some legitimate concerns about this rule, making the point that consensual high-fiving, hugging, holding hands, and similar benign, positive touches are to be encouraged in growing young people. We agree! And so I want to clarify that our school rule about "no touching others" and "no touching others' stuff" is really focused on the roughhousing that seems to take place with some of our students. There's hardly ever consent for someone to grab your hat off your head and run off with it. Or to swing a lunchbox or backpack and it hits you. Or to jump on you from behind when you didn't expect it. Pushing, shoving, kicking, hitting, and general rough play - even when students say that they consent to it - is just not safe, and is not allowed at school. This unsafe physical behavior will be addressed with warning and teaching and explanation, and then with escalating consequences if it continues. Parents will always be kept in the loop. Our hope is that we have the support and partnership of our families in this regard. I really appreciate the opportunity to clarify this, and hope you will let me know if you have ongoing questions or concerns.
Here's to a great week ahead!
News and Announcements
Beginner Astrophotography and Astronomy Club
If you have a middle or high schooler interested in astrophotography, Amelia's dad, Jamie, is hosting a new club! Please click here to fill out an interest form:
Jamie will host an info session about the new club, Wed, Oct 4 from 2:15pm-3:45pm in the Charter’s multipurpose room.
Who: This club is intended for charter students and families in middle school, and high school.
What: This club’s goal is to learn, share, and teach astrophotography and astronomy. Beginners and experienced people are welcome. Bring whatever digital camera you have: you will be amazed at the images that can be achieved. This includes cell phone, point and shoot, handycam, DSLR, and sports cameras. We will also have cameras available to borrow. Club activities include both instruction and observation planning sessions along with off-campus adventures to observe astronomical events.
Sessions: topics will include understanding cameras, observation planning and processing images, and ultimately understanding astronomy and our place in the universe.
Events: There will be a wide variety of events, sometimes hosted by a park such as Pinnacles, Pigeon Point, or by the SCAC astronomy club, and sometimes just for Charter families. We will meet at locations like the beach at sunset, or parks with a clear view of the night sky. We also hope to host a camping trip. Parents are expected to supervise children, so no drop offs.
When: The club will host monthly meetings on Wednesdays at 2:00 after class. The session schedule is to be determined but will be held either after school, or during class.
Communication: We will maintain a blog here: https://kids-astrophotography.blogspot.com where we will have information to get started along with posts for upcoming events. Event notices will also be sent to a Club members email list.
Community Garden Work Day!
Middle School Community Garden Day!
Thursday, October 12th, 2-4pm
Bring your shovels, rakes, and muscles!
Come help build a butterfly sanctuary next to our middle school Tea Garden! We will be flattening the dirt area outside the garden, placing redwood logs for seating, and planting native butterfly attracting plants into wine barrels.
Plants, wine barrels, and soil have been received through a gracious donation by Matt Dickinson and Family with Arbor MD Tree Care, Inc. Any questions, please contact Melanie at Melaburgess@gmail.com
SAVE THE DATE: School Picture Day for TK-8 is on Monday, Oct 9
Jostens is coming on Oct 9 to take school pictures for all our TK-8 students on Monday, Oct 9 from 9 - 11:30am in the Multi Purpose Room
Specific Program picture times windows:
Nature Academy: 9 - 9:45am
QHIA: 9:45 - 10:15am
Heartwood, QHHS and CRMS - 10:15 - 11:30 am
We know that for our CRMS, QHHS and Heartwood programs, this means coming to school on a "non-classroom day". We tried our best to get a Tuesday date, but were unsuccessful.
Thank you for doing what you can to bring your child to school and capture their Fall pictures! If it it not a school day for your child, please plan to stay through the picture event.
Did you know that our district maintains a "Community Opportunities" website? This is for parents / students to receive information about current local events and opportunities for adults and/or children.
Note: The San Lorenzo Valley Unified School District does not sponsor or endorse any of the organizations or events that are located here. They are non-school sponsored events and are not being promoted by the school district. All postings are provided as a courtesy to the parents/students.
Looking ahead - save the date!
Month of October: LGBTQ+ History Month
Sept 15 - Oct 15: Latinx Heritage Month
Mon, Oct 2- Advanced Band rehearsal - 5pm in the Multi Purpose Room
Tues, Oct 3 - Ga-ga Ball pit reserved for elementary programs every Tuesday lunch time)
- Dance Flash Mob - 2:45pm - MPR
- Beginner Band rehearsal and "instrument petting zoo" #2 of 2 - 6pm in the Multi-purpose room
Wed, Oct 4 - Astrophotography/Astronomy Club info meeting - 2:15pm - MPR
- Charter presents at the SLVUSD Board meeting - 6pm (Topic: Environmental Literacy in our garden program - Melanie Burgess and students)
Thurs, Oct 5-- Student Council - 8:15 - 8:45am - Alex's room
- Dungeons and Dragons Club meeting - 2 - 4pm - Alex's room
Fri, Oct 6 - NA Excursion Day
- Dance Flash Mob - 2:45pm - MPR
Mon, Oct 9 - Indigenous Peoples Day
- School Picture Day for our TK-8 programs 9 - 11:30am
- Advanced Band rehearsal - 5pm - MPR
Tues, Oct 10 - Dance Flash Mob - 2:45pm - MPR
- Beginner Band rehearsal - 6pm - MPR
Thurs, Oct 12 - Student Council - 8:15 - 8:45am - Alex's room
- Community Garden Work Day (middle school garden) - 2 - 4pm
- Dungeons & Dragons Club meeting - Alex's room - 2-4pm
Fri, Oct 13- NO SCHOOL (District Holiday)
- A1 Mondays are 3pm dismissal at the tricampus;
- A2 Mondays are 2:05pm dismissal at Nature Academy;
- O days are Tues/Thurs, dismissal 2:05pm;
- E days are Wed/Fri, dismissal 2:05;
- Minimum Days dismiss at 12:05;
- Short Mondays dismiss at 1:19pm
- Excursion Days (dates not all finalized) - times are individual to the excursion
SAVE THE DATE! Teen Public Art Creation Workshop
Local artist Lea de Wit, creator of the Felton Library's glass butterflies, will be leading a 1-day workshop on Oct 21 from 1 - 4pm to create a public art piece for the Felton Teen Room. Click here for info and to register!
Saturday, Oct 21, 2023, 01:00 PM
Felton Branch Library, Gushee Street, Felton, CA, USA
Student Council Update from Teacher Alex
It was impressive to see the turnout and excitement shared during our first meeting on 9/28!! We have a lot of great leaders on this campus, and we look forward very much to giving these students another way to use these leadership skills to help others. Please encourage your student to join if they are interested - every Thursday from 8:15 - 8:45am, and it's no problem if they need to be a bit late due to bus arrival times! All Charter program students welcome!
During the meeting, we took some time to introduce ourselves and share why we decided to be a part of the student council. We then discussed what student council is, and some ideas for this year. After introductions, we moved into a conversation about what leadership is, and the many ways students can show leadership. We discussed the difference between a Growth and a Fixed Mindset, and how we can use positive language and behavior to set a good example for our peers. We finished our meeting brainstorming ideas for our first Spirit Day!
For next week, we will vote on the theme and date for our first Spirit Day. We will also begin to design the posters for the Spirit Day, if we have time. We plan to finish our discussion on Growth Mindset and how to be leaders on Campus. We will look at who is interested in becoming officers for their individual classrooms/programs.
Ongoing information from previous Charter News
If you’re interested in following our Instagram account, showcasing news and events from SLVUSD Charter School, here is the info:
“I'm on Instagram as slvcharterschool. Install the app to follow my photos and videos, or click this link: https://instagram.com/slvcharterschool?igshid=MzMyNGUyNmU2YQ==
(Please know that we will be very careful not to post pictures of students on the "Do not Photograph" list.)
And if you haven't started following the District Instagram accoount, look for "slvusd" and click "Follow!"
We hope to see a positive improvement in our attendance rates this year, and encourage our families to support your student in participating consistently, whether it be in a homeschool program where work completion = attendance, or in our classroom-based 5 day a week Nature Academy. Students who are absent 10% or more in a school year are typically "less proficient in reading, writing and math than their peers with good attendance" (Source: CA Dept of Ed.) Thank you for being our partners in supporting good attendance.
New! Volunteer application hours - PLEASE NOTE: The Charter Office and SLVUSD Human Resources Office hours will process volunteer registrations on Tuesdays from 7:00-11:00 am and Thursdays from 12:30-3:30 pm. The Human Resources Office is located at 325 Marion Avenue, Ben Lomond, CA 95005.
All Charter parents are encouraged to register with the District as a volunteer and a field trip driver. (All parents are asked to drive on excursions...)
Please click here to access the required volunteer paperwork. Hard copy paperwork is also available at the Charter Office.
To use your personal vehicle to transport your own or other students, we will need updated driver information on file as well - please click here for the form.
Ø New Volunteer: You will be required to fill out the volunteer paperwork and obtain a signature from the principal. Once complete, please bring your signed paperwork to the Human Resources Office. You will be required to provide a current TB result. Also, all new volunteers will be required to be fingerprinted.
Ø Returning Volunteer: You will be required to provide current TB results. This documentation can be provided to the Charter office. The school site will forward current TB results to the Human Resources Office. You may also bring current TB results directly to the Human Resources Office.
If your child takes the bus to or from school, please remember you will need to purchase a bus pass. Please click here to access the Transportation web page with all the information you will need.
ALL Nature Academy students have to be registered to take bus transportation on A1 days to the tricampus. (No need to pay.). Our office has taken care of this registration paperwork.
Students at Coast Redwood High who need afternoon transportation to the tricampus for concurrent enrollment classes can take the TK bus that leaves the District Office at noon each day. They will not need to pay for a bus pass. However they still need to register with Transportation. Rides will be denied if students are not registered.)
The Charter Office staff ask families to call in before 1:50pm if they have a message for their student about changing that day's bus transportation arrangement.
Parking lot safety
Student drop off and pick-up:
Please be mindful of safety during drop-off and pick-up. Drive slowly, and stay with your young child when walking to and from your car. Older students should walk (never run), and watch for moving cars when the are in the parking area.
- Parents/guardians of elementary-age students need to park and walk their students to their classroom and sign them in at their classroom.
- Middle school and High school students can walk to their classroom, where the teacher will take attendance, or students will sign in.
- If your student is taking the bus, they will be dropped off in the morning in front of the District Office.
- At pick up time, teachers will supervise all students until they are picked up - either at the bus stop at the top of Marion, or at the parent pick-up spot behind the District Office building.
NOTE: The driveway down to the main campus is not designed for walkers and cars at the same time. Buses need to take wide turns to exit the transportation lot. Please use the stairs when going up and down from Marion Avenue to the central campus area.
- Parents of elementary and middle school students can park in front of the District Office Building.
- CRHS students who are driving to classes can park in the front parking lot and walk up the stairs to the CRHS building.
- Any student who is riding their bike to the campus needs to park their bike at the top by the Coast Redwood High School building, along the side of the path, and walk down the steps to the central campus area.
- All SLVUSD students are eligible to receive a free breakfast and lunch through the cafeteria. But lunch must be ordered online.
- Complete the Free/Reduced Lunch Application at https://family.titank12.com/
- Although a meal application is not necessary to receive free meals during the 2023-2024 school year, households are encouraged to complete a meal application to ensure that your school receives accurate funding. As well, your child’s eligibility for free or reduced lunch could qualify you for additional outside services or benefits including Free/Reduced Bus passes, student fee waivers, P-EBT, discounted utilities, and more.
- Meals will be served from our Multi-use Room in the central area of the campus.
- Breakfast will be available in the mornings from 8:15 - 8:45am - no need to place an order
- Lunch times vary per program, but generally happen in the 11:50 - 12:30 window
- CRHS students can order lunch and it will be delivered to the CRHS building.
- Elementary students will have lunch cards (kept by teacher)
- Secondary students will need to key in their student ID on a keypad
- Make sure your online order is in by 9am on the day prior to ensure hot lunch. Some limited cold lunch options will be available for anyone who didn't order in time. Here is a link to the steps for setting up a LINQ account and ordering your child's lunch. (Free to all; no charge!)
- SLV Student Nutrition Services. Please click here for more information
After school childcare
SLVUSD partners with the YMCA to provide before and after-school childcare at Boulder Creek Elementary and San Lorenzo Valley Elementary. For more information, please reach out to the YMCA (831) 338-2128, or visit their website - YMCA CHILDCARE.
Parent/family engagement/involvement and education opportunities
Triple P/First Five of Santa Cruz County offer ongoing parenting classes for parents of students of all ages. Please click here to see their workshop offerings.
Triple P also offers 1:1 sessions for parents who are needing intensive 10 week session and add-on sessions for people who are divorcing or separating (Family Transitions), for couples wanting to work on their relationship (Enhanced) and for people wanting to work on their strong emotions, like anger (Pathways). If interested in 1:1 sessions, please contact First 5 of Santa Cruz: https://www.first5scc.org/contact