River Valley Academy News

An RVA Family Update

March 5, 2021 Edition

Trimester 3 is up and running!

Spring is just around the corner, and graduation is too! Every class is important this time of the year! Please make sure your student attends every class, every day!

We are beginning the last trimester of the 2020/2021 school year! It is time for all students to focus and get to work, so all necessary credits are earned for the year!

To help students complete credits for graduation, RVA is offering a Zero Hour this trimester. Students will have the ability to work on six classes, instead of five. Zero Hour will begin at 6:45 AM, every day! Students can sign up for Zero Hour here.

Co-op is also an option for seniors. This opportunity to earn credit for working part-time, is for students who already have a job. If you think you might qualify, stop down to check!

Please be sure to scroll through this edition of RVA News, as there are exciting career opportunities including job fair information!

It is going to be a productive and exciting trimester!

Jenny Thompson

RVA Picture Day is Tuesday!

Picture Day was cancelled in the fall, due to Covid-19. We would love to have updated pictures of students for student recognition. On Tuesday, March 9, Sarah will take photos of students. If you would like a copy of the digital image Sarah takes, Sarah will be able to send this to you, upon request. If your student has senior pictures or other photos they would like to submit, we are happy to accept these as well. Thank you!

Attendance Expectations for Trimester 3

It is time for all students to buckle down and finish their classwork! In an effort to provide a supportive academic environment to help students reach their goals:

  • students without a documented medical excuse who aren't present in school, will be marked absent.

  • Students with a documented medical reason to work from home will need to keep their screens on for the entire class period. This will allow teachers to monitor student work.

Thank you for putting your best effort into completing classes and graduating!!

How do I know how my student is doing from day to day?

RVA courses are run through either Schoology or Edgenuity. Schoology courses are RPS teacher created and directed. If you want to know how your student is doing in these classes, log in to Schoology. If you need help getting in to Schoology, use this How to Cheat Sheet. Using a parent log in, parents can see messages and course information. However, if you want to see what your student has completed and what grades they have earned so far in classes, the best way to do that is to log in as your student. Students have access to the course gradebook which includes a list of assignments that need to be completed, showing scores earned on work that has been turned in.

Edgenuity courses offer parent updates. If you would like to be signed up to receive these, please complete this form. When the form has been processed, you will receive directions for signing up for the Parent Portal along with an access code. You will receive daily updates. If you want specific information on how your student is doing in Edgenuity, ask your student for their login information. If you log in as the student, you can see a more detailed report.

Good questions to ask your student include:

1. Are you attending all class sessions, whether school is in person or remote?

2. Are you completing at least one assignment in each class session?

3. About how far in each course are you?

4. What are you doing well?

5. What can you do better?

Parents and schools are partners in educating students!

It's that time of year: Here come the graduates!

Brandon Beldon completed all of the requirements to earn a Rockford High School diploma!

Brandon kept going to finish his degree as he wanted more opportunities for his future. He chose RVA because it allowed him to go at his own pace, and gave him a certain sense of freedom.

Regarding his RVA experience, Brandon says, "The staff is down to earth, humble, and accepting. I would say there was never anyone I met who wasn't willing to help me or wasn't at least to some capacity supporting me. My teachers were definitely very patient and understanding and very friendly always offering useful help, but when push came to shove, I was the only one who could really help myself enough to get the work done." He appreciated that staff made sure students received the help they needed.

Brandon's plans for the future include looking for a better job and being financially and mentally secure.

Brandon, we are so excited for you and for all that you and your good heart are going to accomplish in the world! Thank you for persevering and reaching this milestone. We wish you all the best!

Graduation is coming, May 20!

RVA is excited to plan for Graduation 2021! We have reserved Ram's Stadium, behind Parkside Elementary, for our outdoor ceremony. As with all events this year, circumstances and weather may affect our plans, but please mark it on your calendar, as we hope for the best!

Jenny will be meeting with seniors in the next weeks, to make a realistic plan for graduation. It will be important for students to buckle down and get the work done, to make graduation happen!

Jobs for Michigan's Graduates (JMG) comes to RVA!

All seniors are invited to participate in this terrific opportunity! In partnership with Project Northstar and Kent ISD, students can learn about money management, job search and interview skills, and career path navigation.

In addition to the ability to learn these important life skills, students can earn gift cards ranging from $25 to $150 in stackable gift cards! They may even be eligible for up to $10,000 in grant funds to pursue post-secondary/training school expenses!!

Classes will meet right at RVA, during third hour on Tuesdays!

Come find out how Project Northstar can help you transition from high school to college, trade school, or career!

Groups are happening!

Many students have been struggling due to Covid. Depression and anxiety are prevalent. In partnership with Arbor Circle, Kate Miller our social worker, will be inviting students to join groups of students to support one another. Students were introduced to this opportunity on January 28 and February 2. Topics will be initiated by students and facilitated by health professionals. Topics may include healthy coping skills, 'adulting', and positive choices.

Our first group meeting will be March 3!

If you feel your student would benefit from this support, please contact the office! You can find out more about Arbor Circle and their counseling services here.


Due to the snow day on January 26, the PSAT was cancelled. Sophomores will take the PSAT in April, during MME testing week. Juniors with take the SAT at that time. To prepare for these tests, students should log in to Khan Academy and search SAT practice. There are numerous resources there, to help your student do their best on the SAT!

Google Meet Reminders

Google Meet sessions are currently happening for our students working from home for medical reasons. Students are expected to participate in 5 Google Meets a day, and remain in attendance for the full class period. Attendance will be taken, and tardies recorded.

Google Meet nicknames will be the teacher's first name followed by the class hour. For example, if you have Heather for third hour, the code would be heather3.

If any packets or other school items are needed, these can be picked up at RVA. Please let the office know what you need.

Attendance (time and effort) counts!

Attendance will be taken in person and for students working from home for medical reasons, via Google Meet. Attendance rates should be above 90%. Schools are required to track attendance and report to the truancy office. Please check in with your student to make sure they attend over 90% of their scheduled classes! Education still needs to happen, and diplomas still have to be earned!

Students, please take advantage of the opportunity you have to complete courses that will help you graduate on time, or in the time frame you have planned, for those of you planning to graduate early. Your diploma is a product of time and effort! Make it happen!

KCTC Virtual Visits are up and running! There are 3 steps to get enrolled for next year!

Step 1: Kent Career and Tech Center (KCTC) ran a virtual introduction with us on November 6. You can find more information in this KCTC video introduction. Step 2: The next step is to complete an individual program visit. KCTC offers 29 programs! Each of these programs can be investigated on their website, where you can find videos of the programs in action, as well as information on teachers and hands-on learning labs used.

If you are a junior or sophomore and you are interested in KCTC for next year, please let Jenny know, by signing up using the KCTC Individual Virtual Visit survey. Step 3: After your individual virtual visit, let Jenny know your interest in getting registered for KCTC next year!


March 11th – 9:00 a.m – 12:00 p.m and 1:00 p.m – 4p.m

Register for 15-minute phone conversations with construction employers with immediate openings.

Job seeker registration begins Monday March 1st and goes through Tuesday March 9th.

You can register and view participating employers and postings here: Virtual Job Fair Connects Job Seekers with Jobs | West Michigan Works! (westmiworks.org)

Meet the Recruiter Event – Local Health Care Employers

Tuesday, March 30, 2021, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM

This is a golden opportunity to get job search information directly from local hospital recruiters!

More information and registration at https://www.kentisd.org/educators/career-readiness/students/programs/meet-the-recruiter/

Virtual Pop-Up Professional Panel

Hear from Professionals of Color who have overcome obstacles to gain success within their careers.

Thursday, March 18, 2021 from 2:00 PM – 2:40 PM
Guest: Michael Hopson, Senior Recruiter with UFP Business School

Register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIkce6vpjgpEtJ0oYMVfY0K3svbkeHT8YnV

Talk & Tours

Virtual career exploration events designed to increase awareness of diverse careers available in high demand sectors. Meet 4-5 professionals at once. Ask questions!

Upcoming Events

Pharmacy Careers – Meijer Pharmacy
Monday, March 22, 2021, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Law Enforcement- Grand Rapids Police Department - New Date**
Thursday, March 25, 2021 @ 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM

For full schedule, information and registration visit: https://www.kentisd.org/educators/career-readiness/students/programs/talk--tour-career-series/

How are you doing? People care and want to help!

Hand 2 Hand can help with food and toiletry needs.

RVA has an amazing staff, social worker, and mental health liaison who can listen and connect you to resources!

Ele's Place is a community based organization with the mission to create awareness of and support for grieving children and their families. Please find a very helpful guide for parents - how to support teens, as well as a handout titled, How to Help Yourself: For Teens below.

Area Resources

North Kent CONNECT: (adjusted hours due to COVID-19 precautions)

Mondays and Wednesday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Community Calendar of Services

Mobile Food Pantries: https://www.feedwm.org/findfood/

Assistance with housing, food, utilities:

contact 211 by phone or text (800-877-1107), text your zip code to 898211

Youth in need of shelter: The Bridge 616-451-3001 or 877-275-7792

RVA/RPS Calendar Highlights

March 9: RVA Picture Day/ JMG 3rd hour

March 10: Group 3rd hour

March 16: JMG 3rd Hour

March 17: Group 3rd Hour

March 23: JMG 3rd Hour

March 24: Group 3rd Hour/ Early Release for students

March 30: JMG 3rd Hour

March 31: Group 3rd Hour

April 1: Spring Break begins

April 12: School Resumes

April 12-16 MME Testing Week

May 20 : RVA Graduation 2021!