Sioux City North

2018-2019 September Newsletter

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Message from the Principal

One of our goals this year is to ensure that every student attends school regularly.

Showing up and actively participating in school has a dramatic effect on a student’s academic success. As students go through high school, families play a key role in making sure students get to school safely every day and understand why attendance is so important for success in school and in life.

We understand some absences are unavoidable due to health problems or other circumstances. We also know that when students miss too much school— regardless of the reason or excused or unexcused – it can cause them to fall behind academically. Your child is less likely to succeed if he or she is chronically absent—which means missing 18 or more days over the course of an entire school year. Research shows:

- Children chronically absent in kindergarten and 1st grade are much less likely to read at grade level by the end of 3rd grade.

- By 6th grade, chronic absence is a proven early warning sign for students at risk for dropping out of school.

- By 9th grade, good attendance can predict graduation rates even better than 8th grade test scores.

Absences can add up quickly. A child is chronically absent if he or she misses just two days every month! Clearly going to school regularly matters!

We don’t want your child to fall behind in school and get discouraged. Please ensure that your child attends school every day and arrives on time. Here are a few practical tips to help support regular attendance at North High School:

1. If your son/daughter must be absent, parents have 48 hours to call and excuse the absence. Any absence after 48 hours that is not excused, a student will receive truancy consequences.

2. Keep your school contact information up-to-date. Our teachers and staff will contact you if something isn't right. Having the most up to date contact information helps keep the lines of communication open.

3. Automated calls are correct. If you receive a "robo-call" in the morning or at night, your student was marked absent. If your students says it is incorrect, please call! We want to make sure we take accurate attendance and we want to make sure our students are safe.

4. Every Thursday, parents with an email on file, will receive an automated email with their son/daughters attendance. It will include excused, unexcused, and tardies (late up to 20-minutes)

Let us know how we can best support you and your children so that they can show up for school on time every day. We want your child to be successful in school! If you have any questions or need more information please contact your child’s school.

For more information on attendance, visit Much of the above information and much more is available.

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School Safety

Student and staff safety is of paramount importance in the Sioux City Community School District. For this reason, the District exercises a host of crisis prevention and planning tactics. During the year, our school has fire, tornado, and intruder drills. The drills ensure our students and staff are prepared for potential emergencies. Watch for future newsletter updates that give you information on our drills, so you can continue the safety conversations with your child(ren) at home.

Should an emergency occur, the school notifies you through our Blackboard phone system. The system calls every phone number associated with your child in order to reach you. The message will give you details about the emergency and provide directions on when/where to pick up your child if the normal school day is altered.

For more information about school safety, visit our website at: or speak to our principal.

Additionally, all North High School teachers and staff participated in S.A.V.E. Training. This training allowed teacher to critically think about what they would do in their rooms and with their students to ensure their safety.

Teachers from all of North High feeder schools attended a training at North High regarding active shooters and school safety.

Parent Teacher Conferences Scheduled for September 24 and 25

Parent-Teacher Conferences will be scheduled from 8:00-8:00 pm on Monday, September 24 and from 3:30-5:55 pm on Tuesday, September 25. We are requesting all parents to sign up electronically for conferences. You can sign up for a conference time here at until 9/23/2018. We will send out the link and make home contacts prior to conferences.

Parents will sign up for a 15-minute session with your student's homeroom teacher. He or she will have a short, information session and a packet of information for those attending. After the session, all teachers will be available for the next hour for conversations and conferences. We recommend that all student accompany his or her parent for conferences.

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Financial Aid Support for College

Just a reminder that ICAN provides many different appointments/services for high school students and their families. They are available for FAFSA Completion Appointments, of course, but there are also many other appointment topics available by appointment as well. Mary Joan Dougherty is the NW Iowa Student Success Advisor. Her main office is in Sioux City at Western Iowa Tech (Kiser Bldg, Room A327). She also has limited office hours in Orange City and Sheldon.

The ICAN Offices are open Monday-Friday, 8:00-4:30. Services include appointments for: FAFSA Completion, Career Exploration, Career Assessment, College Exploration, Paying for College, Scholarship Process, CSS Profile, FAFSA/Award Letter Review, Covering College Costs – Understanding Your Options, FSA ID Appointment, FAFSA Follow-Up (Corrections or Verification), College Selection/Applications. You may schedule an appointment yourself by going to: or call 877-272-4692. (Mary Joan’s direct line is:

515-402-4211, but the toll free number can also be used to schedule appointments or ask questions) If you do schedule your own appointment, be sure to click BOOK IT or the appointment will not be scheduled.

Remember the 2019-2020 FAFSA will open online October 1. Mary Joan’s October schedule is open and available for appointments. November appointments will be opened up in early September. (ICAN advisor schedules are “opened” approximately 60 days in advance.)

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Yearbook Orders and Senior Pictures

Yearbooks are now for sale on


Students can pick up a yearbook form in Room 329 or the Main Office.

Prices are as followed:

$60.00 until September 30th which will then change to $75.

$75.00 until May 15th which is the last possible day to buy a yearbook.

Senior pictures can be submitted (electronically or hard copy) to Mr. Gerch's email ( The last possible day to submit a senior picture will be December 31st, unless otherwise communicated with Mr. Gerch.

The yearbook staff will start announcing and advertising around the school this coming week.

Uniquely North - Season 2

Last year, we launched a program to engage our seniors in school. When we give tours to alumni, many times they comment that they wished they would have been more involved. This program allows us to "gamify" the experience. Seniors will complete a variety of missions to earn 15,000 points. Each student who earns those points will recieve a "Uniquely North" Medallion at graduation practice to wear at graduation. In 2018, we awarded 31 medals and placed 6 students on the Hall of Fame (25,000 or more points).

Earn Your Silver Cord!

Who is Eligible?

All North High students who would like to help the community and others.

How Do I Qualify to receive the Silver Cord for Graduation?

Students must complete a minimum of forty hours of committee-approved community service in their sophomore, junior and senior years at North High School. You cannot average 40 hours over the three year span; forty hours must be completed within each school year. Our goal is to instill the idea of community service as a life-long pursuit. If students successfully complete the amount of hours necessary they will receive a silver cord to wear at commencement similar to the gold cords worn by academic award winners.

Important Details:

Documentation: Students MUST document all service activities on the Silver Cord Award Form provided by North High – one form for each site or project, signed by a supervisor at the site. (A note confirming the students’ service signed by the supervisor at the project is also acceptable. It must be attached to the Silver Cord Form). Forms can be submitted to Ms. Larson at North High School at any time during the year. For sophomores and juniors: if you don’t turn in forms by the end of the school year, you may submit them at any time during the following fall. There is no specific deadline for underclassmen to submit forms, although it is best to turn them in as soon as they are completed. Seniors should submit all Silver Cord forms by May 2nd of senior year. Forms may be picked up from the office or can be printed using the links below.

Summer Service: Service hours earned during the summer after the academic year may be applied toward EITHER the prior or following year – student’s choice. (For example, the summer after the sophomore year can apply toward either the sophomore or junior 40 hour requirement or divided between the two as needed). It is recommended that all summer projects be pre-approved in writing by Mrs. Larson or a principal to make sure they are acceptable. Summer service that complies with the Silver Cord criteria will be accepted even if students were not able to submit pre-approval forms. Students should pick up blank Silver Cord Award forms before the end of school to use for documentation summer service. Please keep completed forms until you return to North in the fall. The Silver Cord Adviser will be responsible for keeping students’ Silver Cord files.

Important details regarding the Silver Cord Award:

Acceptable service activities: Silver Cord hours must be for providing a SERVICE or meeting a clear NEED for a non-profit agency, church, school, park, charity program, fundraiser or community event. The service should be “above and beyond” one’s usual scope of involvement and could be part of required service for a program such as Scouts or religious education. While some organizations meet during the school day, only hours outside of school time could be applied to Silver Cord service. If there is any question about whether a specific volunteer experience meets the criteria of “providing service” or “meeting a need” students should get prior approval from the Silver Cord Committee by submitting a pre-approval form. The Silver Cord Review Committee makes final determinations regarding service.

Organizations/Activities that have been approved:

Blood Bank/Blood Drives

Food Bank

United Way

Gospel Mission

Friendship Connections

Beyond The Bell


Watchful Eye Foundation

Local church activities


Red Cross

Peer Tutoring/Extended Day


Humane Society

Head Start

Local medical centers

Retirement Homes

Salvation Army

Big Brothers/Big Sisters

Habitat for Humanity

Special Olympics

Ronald McDonald House

Junior League

American Heart Association

Art Splash


Mid-Steps Service

Santa House

Political Organizations or Candidates

Important details regarding the Silver Cord Award:

Silver Cord hours CANNOT BE for a relative, or for pay or compensation of any kind. Other activities that would not be acceptable: NHS sports team managing, training or event timing or administration; most NHS music program events; concession stand or fundraising events in which proceeds benefit a NHS program; serving as a camp counselor while receiving free room and board (some exceptions made for camps for children with disabilities); performing in a musical, dance, or theater group unless related to a social cause or charity benefit; participation on committees in which the focus is on one’s own leadership development and does not include outreach to larger community. Court ordered community service hours are not eligible.

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Attention Junior (Class of 2020) Parents! Immunization Information

Iowa Immunization law requires that all students entering 7th grade have both a Meningococcal vaccination and a Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis/whooping cough) vaccination before school starts in the fall.

Iowa law requires that all students entering 12th grade have a Meningococcal vaccination. The requirement is 2 doses of meningococcal (A,C,W,Y) vaccine for students in grade 12, if born after September 15, 1999; or 1 dose if received when students are 16 years of age or older are required before school starts in the fall.

The Tdap requirement has been in place since the 2013/14 school year and requires a booster dose of Tetanus, Diphtheria, and acellular Pertussis containing vaccine for students entering 7th grade, regardless of the interval since the last Tetanus/Diphtheria containing vaccine. Pertussis (whooping cough) is a very contagious disease that causes violent coughing fits that make it hard to breathe.

The meningococcal vaccine has been required since the start of the 2017/18 school year. Meningococcal disease is a life threatening illness that is caused by bacteria that infects the brain, blood, and spinal cord. It easily spreads in crowded settings. The vaccine is required prior to both the 7th and 12th.

What does this mean for you? You will need to call your physician’s office to make an appointment for these vaccines. You will need to check your home records or call your physician’s office to see what your student’s status is. If you do not have insurance, you can contact the Siouxland District Health Department at 279-6119. Please send a copy of your student’s updated immunization record to the school nurse prior to the first day of school. Thank you in advance for your cooperation in this matter.

North High School In the News

Snow Days and School Calendar

The 2018-2019 Calendar has been set and is available here: There are snow days built in this calendar. Please use this calendar when planning vacations. Please also consider leaving a few days, after the end of the year, as possible school make up days.

Take a Seat - Northside Activities Association

Four years ago, we completed the renovation of our auditorium. There is still work to do. Seats are still available for those who would like to donate a seat. Please visit Northside Activities Association's website for more information. To stay up-to-date on the happenings of the association, please like our Facebook page (

ACT Information

We expect students to continue their education after high school. The ACT is one of the college entrance requirements of many schools. Here is the latest information on the upcoming tests:

Next Test Date: October 27, 2018

Registration Deadline: September 28 (Go Online for Late Registration and Charges)

Visit here to sign up and log in!

Future Test Dates:

December 8, 2018

February 9, 2019

April 13, 2019

June 8, 2019

July 13, 2019

Homework Help Tutoring for 2018-2019

"Homework Help" After School Tutoring will be available again starting next week (September 11 from 3:05-4:05 pm) in the media center. We are also anticipating increasing the number of "Saturday Schools" offered. It is available after school from 3:05-4:05 in the Media Center. The time is staffed with a teacher from each of the core content areas (Math, English, and Science). Students report to the area, sign in, and get support. They can use the space as a quiet place to complete work or engage one of the teachers for reteaching or support.

Transportation is provided for those who participate. A bus picks students up around 4:10 pm each afternoon and drops students off at feeder school locations.

North High School Class of 2019 Graduation

Saturday, May 25th 2019 at 11am

401 Gordon Drive

Sioux City, IA

North High Graduation will be held at the Tyson Event Center on Saturday, May 25, 2019 at 11:00 AM. The doors will open at 10:00 AM. The event will last to approximately 12:15 to 12:30 PM. West High graduation follows ours. We ask that parents take pictures at the venue before the event and clear the spaces after for the next group of parents. Bobier Studios will also be taking pictures at the event for an optional keepsake. Order forms will be provided to seniors.
Activities Calendar

Visit the MRAC Website for the latest updates in our activity calendars.

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Report Discrimination, Bullying, Harassment, or Hazing

Bullying, harassing and hazing behavior can seriously disrupt the ability of school employees to maintain a safe and civil environment, and the ability of students to learn and succeed.

Statement of Non-Discrimination

The Sioux City Community School District offers career and technical programs in the following areas: Business & Marketing, Family & Consumer Science, Health Science, and Industrial Arts, Technology, & PLTW.

The Sioux City Community School District is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. It is an unfair or discriminatory practice for any educational institution to discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information (for employment), national origin, religion, age (for employment), disability, socioeconomic status (for programs), marital status (for programs), or veteran status (for employment) in its educational programs and its employment practices.

Inquiries or grievances, including Section 504 grievances and grievances under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, may be directed to Jen Gomez, Director of Student Services & Equity Education at 627 4th Street, Sioux City, IA 51101, (712) 279-6075, Please see District Board policies 103 and 504.4 for additional information on available grievance procedures.

About Us

Sioux City North serves over 1,500 students as one of three comprehensive high schools in Sioux City, Iowa.