WHS Newsletter

October 2019

Message from the Principal

What makes the difference between a successful high school student and one who struggles? That’s the question that student researchers in Kentucky set out to answer. They surveyed more than 4,000 teens. They read research studies. The findings were clear— parent involvement plays a huge role. Here are some of the things they learned:

1. Nothing takes the place of personal contact. If you have a question, it’s easier to ask someone you have already met. So plan to meet all your teen’s teachers.


2. Attend school events. They often are a time when parents and teachers can meet and talk informally. As Dr. Laurence Steinberg said, “Parents who attended school programs, went to back-to-school nights, went to see their kids play in athletic events or perform in musical and theatrical events,” had students who were more successful.


3. Parents and teachers are busy. You may not always be available to answer a phone call from the school. Be sure the school has all your phone numbers and an email address so you will be less likely to miss the message that your teen skipped fourth block!

(source: http://www.parent-institute.com/pdf-samples/n7e0711.pdf)


I am excited to announce a new opportunity for parents to be involved at West High. We will have our first P.A.W.S. (Parents & Admin Working for Success) meeting October 21st, 6:00 PM in the Media Center. The goal of this group is to build a bridge between parents/guardians and the school. All parents/guardians are welcome.

West High P.A.W.S. Meeting

Monday, Oct. 21st, 6pm

2001 Casselman Street

Sioux City, IA

Join us for the initial parent/guardian group meeting at West High. Come be a part and learn more about things happening at West High.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

Join Our Grassroots Advocacy Committee

The Sioux City Community School District needs your voice on the Grassroots Advocacy Committee. Would you be willing to be a volunteer for our school? There is VERY LITTLE time commitment and you NEVER have to attend a meeting. As a volunteer, you agree to receive email updates about important legislative events that have an impact on public education. Then, we ask that you take the information you receive and contact our local legislators to let your voice be heard in advocacy of good public education. Advice will be provided on how you can email, call, or write a letter to the legislators. Take a look at some of the past advocacy for reference: http://www.uen-ia.org/legislation.htm. You can also look at the Legislative Action Priorities set by our school board: https://www.siouxcityschools.org/legislative-action-priorities/. Please contact April Tidwell to ask questions or to volunteer. tidwela@live.siouxcityschools.com


Únase a nuestro comité de base y abogacía

El Distrito de la Comunidad de Sioux City necesita su vez en el Comité de Base y Abogacía. ¿Estaría dispuesto a ser voluntario para nuestra escuela? El compromiso requiere MUY POCO tiempo y usted JAMAS tendrá que asistir a una junta. Como voluntario, usted está de acuerdo a recibir correos electrónicos con actualizaciones sobre eventos legislativos importantes que impactan la educación pública. Después, le pediremos que tome la información que recibió y contacte a nuestros legisladores locales para hacer que se escuche su voz en abogacía a un buena educación pública. Se le dará sugerencias sobre la manera de cómo puede enviar un correo electrónico, hacer llamadas, o escribir una carta a su legisladores. Tómese tiempo pare que vea el tipo de abogacía que se ha hecho: http://www.uen-ia.org/legislation.htm. Usted también puede ver las Prioridades De Acción Legislativa fijada por la mesa directiva: https://www.siouxcityschools.org/legislative-action-priorities/. Por favor contacte al director de la escuela con sus preguntas o para ser voluntario.

After School Tutoring & Night School

After School Tutoring is available every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday in the Media Center from 3:05-4:05 pm. The time is staffed with a teachers from each the core content areas. Students report to the media center and get support. This is a great way to catch up in a class or get help with current homework. No Sign-up required. Students may show up as needed.

Night School is also available for students that want to continue to work on their Edgenuity courses or need extra help. Tues & Thurs 3 - 7PM and Wed 3 - 5 in room 265

Saturday School

Saturday school is another opportunity for students to get caught up on missing work, get extra help in classes that they are struggling with, or continue working on their Edgenuity courses. Our next Saturday school is October 19th, 8:00 AM - Noon

Food Pantry & Clothes Closet

West High's Food Pantry, "The Bear's Den," will be open Oct 19th 9AM - 11AM.

The pantry is open for any Westside families to get what they may need. Some clothes and toiletry items are also available.


The pantry is available by appointment throughout the month. Please contact Joe Schmitz schmitj@live.siouxcityschools.com or your student's counselor to set up an appointment.

WHS Activities and Athletics Calendar

Click here for all athletic and activity schedules

Students and Staff of the Month

Each month one student from each grade level and department and one staff member will be recognized for living by the WHS motto We Are WEST! In September the following were recognized:
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PBIS Update

Check out this article from Ms. Jensen one of our PBIS team members.
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FAFSA- Ahhhhhhh!!!

Does the thought of the financial aid process intimidate you? Are you nervous about completing the FAFSA? If so... we have the perfect solution for you!!

GEAR UP is hosting FAFSA Completion Events at each of the three Sioux City public schools during October. During these events there will be no formal presentation. Rather it is meant to be a place for families to come to work on their FAFSAs and get them completed with the help of local Financial Aid professionals. If the event scheduled at your home high school does not work in your schedule, feel free to join us at one of the other events.

You will need to bring your laptop computer, a copy of your 2018 Tax Returns (for parents and students if applicable), Social Security Number, and your FSA ID if you have one created. Senior Students and Parents/Guardians should plan to attend.

GEAR UP will be providing pizza and refreshments. See you there!


Thursday, October 17

West High School

5:30-8pm


Create a FSA ID for students or parents by clicking HERE.

ACT Updates

The ACT is a college entrance exam that we encourage all students to take.

The ACT is one of the college entrance requirements of many schools. Here is the latest information on the upcoming tests:


Visit here to sign up and log in!


Future Test Dates:

October 27, 2019

December 8, 2019

February 9, 2020

April 4, 2020

April 21, 2020 (Administered to all 11th grade students at the high school; no cost to students)

June 13, 2020

Important Reminders for the Class of 2020!

October 7th – Jostens will meet with 12th graders

9:30 AM, Auditorium, Information about graduation orders


October 14th – Jostens Order Pick-up

Lunch, The Den, Students can turn in orders


April 21st – Senior Meeting during Homeroom

9:30 AM, Auditorium, Counselors will meet with Seniors to go over end of the year deadlines and expectations


May 16th – Prom

7:00 – 10:00 PM, Hilton Garden Inn

May 16th – 17th After-Prom


May 22nd – Last Day of School for Seniors & Graduation Practice

May 22nd – Senior Honors Assembly

May 23rd – Graduation Tyson Events Center


West High Yearbook Photograph Requirements for 2019-20.

Reminder: Senior pictures are due by Jan 15th. Please read the following requirements for the senior pictures to be used in the yearbook.

  1. The yearbook photograph must be a head and shoulders or waist up composition.
  2. High resolution
  3. Hand gestures may not appear in the photos.
  4. “Selfie” photos will not be accepted.
  5. Attire for photographs must comply with West High School’s dress code.

Senior pictures can be delivered to Ms. Stephens in room 257 or sent via email to stephet@live.siouxcityschools.com. Electronic submission is preferred but not required. The final date for accepting senior pictures will be January 15, 2020.

The 2019-20 Yearbooks are available for order now!

Social media and technology are always changing, but yearbooks are forever. Buy your student a lasting memento that will grow in value each year of your student’s life – the 2019-20 West High yearbook.

When you buy your child a yearbook, you are buying a product that will be treasured today and for years to come. This invaluable keepsake of the 2019-20 West High yearbook is only $40. The price will go up as the year goes on so don’t wait.

Buy online with a credit card, debit card or PayPal at yearbookforever.com or at school with cash or check from Ms. Stephens in room 257 at West High.

Order now, so your student won’t miss out when the yearbook is distributed around October 2020, or when the class reunions start rolling around. Senior year happens once… the yearbook is forever.

Well Wishes for Mr. Martin

A table will be set up in the Media Center for staff and students to create cards for Mr. Martin. Stop by and help send many well wishes to him.

Let's Talk

An engaged community makes our District stronger. That is why we have made it easy for you to connect with us whenever it is convenient for you. We encourage you to take advantage of Let’s Talk! our 24/7 online submission site, by reaching out with your ideas, questions, concerns, and praise. To make a submission, please visit http://www.siouxcityschools.org/lets-talk/.

Non-discrimination Statement

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,gomezj2@live.siouxcityschools.com. Please see District Board policies 103 and 504.4 for additional information on available grievance procedures.

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