The North Star School
Welcome to fall North Star! We have been so pleased with the start of the year and have welcomed fall with many school spirit events and a focus on deeper learning for our students. We are excited to see our learners engaging with their instructional activities. Our first quarter, which we call “Marking Period 1” for term 1 closee out on September 26. If you have a student who is struggling or who is just looking for additional support, please encourage them to contact their teacher for additional help. If they are not passing their class, teachers will provide grade recovery plans. It is important that you help us encourage your learner to get missing work submitted to ensure credit earning!
We ground our work at The North Star School in relationship building with students and families. If you have questions for any staff member, please reach out. You can access the Staff Directory here. The success of our students is our priority. Additionally, our focus on students demonstrating “S.T.A.R.” (Service, Trust, Attitude, and Respect) qualities is a top priority. We are working with all students to ensure they know what being a “S.T.A.R.” looks like! Wishing you a wonderful October ahead. We are North Star!
Spirit Events For October
We are excited for October and all we have planned, including a Spirit Week! Check it out in the calendar.
LCPS will be administering Fall Writing SOL tests to students in October. Tests are administered as part of the Virginia Assessment Program and provide useful data to parents, teachers, and school administrators on what students have learned during instruction.
The North Star School will administer the Fall Writing SOL 10/16-10/19.
Please reach out to Nichole Chappell, testing coordinator with any questions.
Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) will be offering the PSAT 8/9 (Preliminary SAT) to students in grade 9 and the PSAT/NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) to students in grades 10 and 11 during the month of October. Registration is not required and there is no cost for students. This year, students will receive a digital version of the test, requiring the use of their LCPS-managed device. The Desmos calculator is built into the digital test portion of the Math test in which it is permitted, therefore, students do not need to bring a calculator. Students are required to take the PSAT test at the school to which they are assigned and may not make up a missed test at another school.
PSAT will be administered at The North star School October 4, 2023.
Student guides can be downloaded here:
Click each image to make larger.
Deeper Learning at The North Star School
During the upcoming month we are going to begin peer to peer classroom observational walkthroughs. The idea of this is two fold. Sharing and seeing great teaching will enhance instructional best practices school-wide creating a balanced classroom experience for your children. Secondly, we will be collecting data to inform the Deeper Learning team as to where we will need to focus our professional development towards to elevate our staff.
We are off to a great start this year and are excited to see your families get the best learning experiences possible.
Greetings from the Electives CLT in the North Star School. Our Art, PE, Spanish, CTE and GED/ISAEP classes are celebrating the beginning of a new school year.
The art classes created an outdoor mural on the fence. Photography classes are working on both creative pictures and pictures for the yearbook. In Spanish classes, we are celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. From September 15 to October 15 each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month. The North Star School celebrates the achievements, histories, traditions, and cultural diversity of Hispanic/Latino/Latinx Americans whose heritage is rooted in 20 Latin American countries. PE classes and the Drivers’ Education program have started.
The business program is communicating successfully with students and families via the Remind app. Finally, great news from the GED program! A shout-out to the ISAEP students who have been attending school - we have an improved attendance rate in these classes.
News from the Math Department
Math has had a busy start to the year with many classes taking the MAP Growth test to gauge students’ math progress over the term. Several students had the opportunity to take a math SOL in September to try and fulfill their LCPS graduation requirement. On October 4 all our North Star Navigators will be taking the PSAT during the school day. The PSAT is a preparatory version of the SAT and gives students exposure to the type of Math, Reading, and Writing questions that they will encounter when they take the actual SAT.
We’re excited to start marking period 2 where we’ll dive into more of the fundamentals of the math curriculum.
This year, our students in World History I, World History II, World Geography and US/VA History will complete state performance assessments in place of the Standards of Learning Test. Since the vision of LCPS is to develop students as collaborators, critical thinkers, contributors, creators and communicators that can make meaningful contributions to the world, we were excited about the opportunity to align our assessments with this vision.
While traditional multiple choice assessments are an efficient method of measuring what students know, performance assessments allow students to demonstrate what they can do with what they know. They allow students to construct or create an original response rather than just recognizing a potentially right answer out of a provided list. Research has shown that the "mere acquisition of knowledge and skills does not make people into competent thinkers or problem solvers. To know something is not just to passively receive information, but to interpret it and incorporate it; meaningful learning is reflective, constructive and self-regulated.” (Wittrock, 1991, Bransford and Vye, 1989, Marzano et al., 1988, Davis et al., 1990).
Our teachers will administer performance assessments at different points throughout the school year as well as collect a “body of work” from the students as proof of their mastery of the course. Families will be provided with student progress on mastery of standards and on state performance assessments through the year in ParentVue Gradebook. The evidence gained through performance assessment is used to guide future classroom instruction and helps teachers understand how deeply students understand a skill/topic. Additionally, families will access a summative report at the end of the school year.
Please contact your respective Social Sciences and Global Studies teacher at the North Star School if you have any questions about the performance assessments:
US/VA History - Deborah Jackson - firstname.lastname@example.org
World History I - Dave Ungrady - email@example.com
World History II - Ron Yeager - firstname.lastname@example.org (Starting in January)
World Geography - Timothy Arnold - email@example.com (Starting in January)
Earlier this month, students in Social Sciences and Global Studies classes at The North Star School took a learning walk in the department’s common area that informed them about the U.S. Constitution.
Library / Media Center
September is Library Card Sign-Up month, so we would like to encourage all of our students, staff, and community members to sign up for a library card at your local public library this month! Check out this library card form for more information.
We’re looking forward to putting out resources for Banned Book Week in October!
Learn more about how to balance your student's digital life through Common Sense Media.
Information for Seniors
Sign up to receive Remind texts by texting @6g24h3 to 81010.
To better access information from your home school about graduation events, visit this slideshow.
October STAR Symposium
Date: October 25
Time: 6 pm - 7 pm
Location: The North Star School
Family Liaison News
Information on this form will enable our Family Liaison, Nida Hanan, to provide information and resources to assist and support your family.
October 4 - PSAT Day (grades 9-11)
October 9 - No School (Indigenous People's Day)
October 16-19 - Fall Writing SOL
October 25 - STAR Symposium
October 27 - End of First Quarter
October 30-31 - Student Holidays
November 7 - Student Holiday
November 9 - School Picture Day
November 13 - No School (Diwali)
November 22-24 - Thanksgiving Break
December 21-29 - Winter Break
January 1 - Holiday (New Year Day)