Homer High-Lights

VOLUME 8, ISSUE 1, August September 2019

Principal's Message

Welcome to a new school year!


I am looking forward to seeing all of you again on August 20th and witnessing the growth of our students. We are getting some data back from last year and it looks like HHS rocked our test scores again! Our AP scores increased for the 6th year in a row and our MAP scores are much higher than the national average. We have Homer High graduates attending some of the top universities in the country, working in welding, on the slope, in apprenticeships and other trade programs.


We had a great year last year. I am aspiring to an even better year for our 2019-2020 school year. Of course we have to be realistic that their will be some distractions that we can't control. We have three fewer teachers because of budget cuts, which means we will have 15 fewer classes each semester. We also have uncertainty at the state level for funding. This makes it hard to maintain the best teachers and staff.


These distractions are unfortunate, but my hope is to make sure these outside events have little effect on the quality of education students receive. I am confident that all teachers and staff will do the same.


As always, I would appreciate hearing from you. If you have ideas or suggestions, please drop by. If you can't make it in, call me at 907-235-4600 or e-mail me at dwaclawski@kpbsd.k12.ak.us.


Yours in great education,


Douglas Waclawski

Principal

HHS Wins Silver Medal for 9th Year in a Row

We received this award for 2019! We are currently ranked the #2 high school in Alaska!


Homer High School has earned the Silver Award from the US News and World Report for the 9th year in a row as one of the top schools in the nation! This prestigious award ranks us as one of the top 5% of schools in the country. We are proud of our students and how hard they work every day. Thank you Homer for supporting our school and these amazing students.


Check out link below to read the article:


https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/alaska

District Emergency Action Information

Do you know what to do in case of an emergency? What happens on snow days? What should parents do if there is a shelter in place, earthquake or violent act at school? Below are links to district web pages and district information sheets for your information about the District Emergency Action Plan.


https://www.kpbsd.k12.ak.us/communications.aspx?id=22877


https://www.kpbsd.k12.ak.us/Workarea/DownloadAsset.aspx?id=34276


Here are a couple quick answers to the questions asked above:


What if there is a huge snow storm?


  • Check on the KPBSD Facebook to see if school is closed. If you think it is dangerous to travel, you don't have to send your student to school. It is your call, but please call the office so they know what's happening with your student.


What is ALICE?


  • ALICE is a system to help keep as many students safe as possible during an active shooter incident. This program trains students and staff to know whether to run, stay in place or counter. See the form below that explains what ALICE stand for.


What if there is an earthquake or active shooter at my school?


  • Please don't rush to the school; this creates more challenges for the emergency responders and police and could make the situation more dangerous. It is better not to call your child; it distracts them from following safety instructions and could put them at risk in some situations. The police and school will not let students or staff out until everything is all clear. Check the school's Facebook page for information. Please trust us to take care of your children.
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JumpStart & AP Classes

Yes, HHS will have AP classes and the the Kenai Peninsula Borough JumpStart funding to help pay for college classes for 2019-20.


We have 3 fewer teachers at HHS for the 2020 school year, but we still have exciting classes and a robust schedule. In fact, we are adding two new classes this year. Sean Campbell will be teaching AP World History which freshmen and sophomores can take. Jan Spurkland will be offering computer programming which students from all grades can take. This might also be able to count as an AP class, but we are still working out those details.


We will also be offering AP Biology, AP Calculus and AP Composition and Literature. Other AP sections will be rotated every other year or as need warrants.


AP classes are popular because they are challenging, college-prep courses, they can offer a GPA boost (worth more for one's GPA than a non-AP class), and many colleges offer credit for students who score high enough on end-of-year AP tests. If AP classes are not something a student wants to try, they can still take college classes. Juniors and Seniors can get half of the tuition paid for through JumpStart. Talk to your counselor about what classes are available and scheduling.

2019 Parent Survey Results

Every year we survey our parents to get feedback on what HHS does well and what we need to improve on. We use this data for school improvement, but sometimes parents don't know if their voices make a difference or if we even use this information. We want to make sure that you understand how this data is used.


Here are some of the results from our parent survey from last year and how it was used.



  • Communication improved between teachers and parents, but we still have a little ways to go. Parent/teacher communication will be emphasized during teacher training.
  • Perception of the quality of education at HHS and bullying improved from last year. We would still like to improve on this so Green Dot will be emphasized again this year.
  • It was suggested that we take a closer look at freshman and sophomores who take online classes. We will make sure these are appropriate placements and that they are in a position to succeed if they enroll in an online class.
  • 91% of parents like our 9:00 am school start time
  • Many parents would like a monthly update from teachers. This will emphasized during teacher training.


We got from great feedback and we are continuing to look for ways to use this data and to improve. Thanks to everyone who took the time to fill this survey out.

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Freshman Orientation / Open House

Our Freshman Orientation / Open House will be held on Thursday, August 15th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.


It is very important that all freshman and their parents attend the orientation. New students of any grade can also attend and visit their classrooms and talk to teachers.


Here is a short list of everything that will be happening the evening of the 15th:



  • Update and fill out all paperwork
  • Return all permission and consent forms
  • Make sure all shots are up to date
  • Get your schedule
  • Receive your locker combination and make sure it works
  • Meet your teachers and find your classrooms
  • Listen to the principals welcome and review of important items
  • much more...

Dates To Remember

Note: all dates for sports are home events; away events are not listed here


Aug 15 - Freshman Orientation 6:00-8:00pm

Aug 20 - First Day of School 9:00-3:45 (6 period day)

Aug 21 - Senior Class Meeting during FOL (block day)

Aug 22 - Junior Class Meeting during FOL (block day)

Aug 23 - Sophomore Class Meeting during FOL (block day)

Aug 24 - Volleyball vs Kenai begins at 10:00

Aug 29 - Volleyball vs Kodiak: Freshman at 4:00, JV at 5:00, Varsity at 6:30

Aug 31 - Varsity Swimming

Aug 31 - Volleyball vs Seward: Freshmen at 11:00, JV at 1:00, Varsity at 1:30

Sept 6 - Swimming vs Colony 5:00

Sept 6 - Football vs Houston 6:00

Sept 7 - Swimming vs Colony 10:00

Sept 12 - Volleyball vs Palmer: Freshmen at 4:00, JV at 5:00, Varsity at 6:30

Sept 13 - Football vs Valdez 6:00

Sept 14 - Volleyball vs Nikiski: Freshmen at 11:00, JV at noon, Varsity at 1:30

Sept 27 - Volleyball vs Grace: Freshmen at 4:00, JV at 5:00, Varsity at 6:30

Sept 27 - Homecoming Bonfire 7:00

Sept 28 - Volleyball vs ACS: Freshmen at 10:00, JV at 11:00, Varsity at 12:30

Sept 28 - Homecoming Football vs Nikiski: JV at noon, Varsity at 3:00

Sept 28 - Homecoming Dance and Festivities 8:00 pm

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HHS Rocks AP Results Again!

Another year and another test HHS students have rocked. The AP test results from 2019 have just been release and scores have increased for the 5th year in a row. This year 83% of students who took an AP exam received a score of 3 or better which is way above the national averages.


The Homer community should be proud of the hard work and dedication these students put into these classes. AP or Advanced Placement classes can be harder than some college classes. You have to pass a rigorous test in order to get college credit.

Opening School Calendar

Here is a quick rundown of important dates that are coming up for the new school year.


  • Wednesday, August 7: Seniors pick up schedules 9:00-3:00
  • Thursday, August 8: Juniors pick up schedules 9:00-3:00
  • Friday, August 9: Sophomores pick up schedules 9:00-3:00
  • Monday, August 12: New Student Registration 9:00-3:00
  • Thursday, August 15: Freshman Orientation/Open House 6:00-8:00
  • Friday, Aug 16: Connections Students 9:00-12:00
  • School starts Tues, Aug 20

Join Fall Sports

Fall sports practice have already started but it's not too late too join! If you are interested in participating in a sport, the coach's contact information is provided below. The online Arbiter Athlete instructions and site for filling out all the paperwork can be found at:




You must have all paperwork in and a physical completed and to your coach before you can start practice.


XC Running – Bob Ostrom (bobostrom@gmail.com) Started 7/31 from 4 – 6 pm every day.


Football – Justin Zank (Jzank@kpbsd.org) Started 7/31 from 4:30 – 7:30 pm


Football Cheer – Rachel Ciccarone (rciccarone@kpbsd.org) Started today 5 – 7 in mat room


Volleyball – Stephanie Carroll (carrolls.fish@gmail.com) VB Camp on 8/5 from 9 am – 2 pm


Swim & Dive – Caleb Miller millerc0408@gmail.com Started on 8/7 (TBA)

HHS Communicates Using Facebook

Want to know what is going on at HHS?


Sometimes things change at the last moment and we can't call everyone. If you want the most up-to-date event schedules, start times, scores and last minute changes, like us on Facebook. Go to https://www.facebook.com/HomerHS/ and be sure to follow us. This is the most efficient way for HHS to post last minute details, school closures and more. We also post lots of the cool things our students and staff are doing.


See you on Facebook!

Soccer Rocks State

Both boys and girls soccer teams won 2 out of 3 games and earned 4th place at state. Both teams lost a close game the first day of the tournament. The girls lost to Thunder Mountain 1-0 They then beat Palmer 4-0 and North Pole 3-2.


The boys lost in overtime to Ketchikan 1-0 and then beat Grace Christian 2-1 and Monroe Catholic 1-0.


Awards


Boys

  • Eyoab Knapp - All Tourney Team.
  • Boys Soccer - Highest GPA Award.


Girls

  • Kappa Reutov - All Tourney Team.
  • Highest GPA Award
  • Sportsmanship Award.

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Spring Sports Results

Softball placed 4th at the 2019 State Tournament. They also won the Academic and Sportsmanship Awards


All Tourney Team


  • Brianna Hetrick
  • Grace Godfrey


The results for 2019 Tack & Field

Girls


  • 100 M - Laura Inama - 6th Place
  • 800 M - Brooke Miller - 2nd Place
  • 1600 M - Autumn Daigle - 3rd Place
  • 3200 M - Autumn Daigle - 4th Place
  • 4 x 400 M - Marina Carroll, Laura Inama, Brooke Miller & Autumn Daigle - 2nd Place
  • 4 x 800 M - Ella Blanton-Yourkowski, Haylee Overson, Brooke Miller & Autumn Daigle - 1st Place
  • Shot Put- Anna Brock - 1st Place
  • Discus - Anna Brock - 5th Place
  • High Jump - Marina Carroll - 4th Place
  • Long Jump - Laura Inama - 4th Place
  • Triple Jump - Marina Carroll - 5th Place
  • 300 M Hurdles - Laura Inama - 4th Place


Boys


  • Long Jump - Silas McGhee - 5th Place
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