The Den Quarterly
Quarterly Newsletter: Fall 2023
Message from the Head of School
Kristen Bishop, CEO/Head of School
Dear AGCS Families,
Thank you for taking a moment to read the fall edition of the Den Quarterly, our school-wide newsletter. As we conclude the first quarter, I am eager to reflect on our collective achievements and share some key updates with you. This quarter, we've seen remarkable accomplishments in our classrooms, extracurricular activities, and community initiatives.
Portrait of Parent/Guardian: During back-to-school night, we explored this year's “All In” theme and the new "Portrait of a Graduate/Staff Member/Guardian/Board Member" which supports this theme. We examined the "Portrait of a Guardian/Parent" and I sought your feedback. We are now using your feedback to finalize this document and will publish the final versions by the end of January. Your participation in this along with your consistent dedication to being positive, accountable, confident, and kind parents and role models are deeply appreciated.
Academic Building Project: We are thrilled to announce that the school has secured a USDA loan, a significant step in constructing our new academic building for grades 7-12. This financial backing brings us closer to offering our students state-of-the-art learning facilities. Please visit the "Capital Campaign" section below to see how your contributions can further support this exciting project.
16th Annual Holiday Show: The AGCS holiday show is a delightful experience, filled with the joy and excitement of our students' performances. It's a time for parents to come together, enjoy the festivities, and experience the magic of the holidays through our children's eyes.
This year's theme is “All In for Holiday Books.” We invite families to donate a favorite holiday book to children in need. For some pre-show fun, parents can dress as their favorite holiday book character for a chance to win a prize.
Project Graduation is sponsoring the holiday show program this year. Support the class of 2024 by advertising your business or sending a special message to your child in our program. Place your order here! Deadline is 11/15!
Winter Break: Winter break is fast approaching. It starts after our half day on 12/22/23 and ends on 1/2/24. This is a perfect time for our students and staff to rest, spend time with family, and recharge for the new year. I encourage you to take advantage of this time with family and loved ones.
Stay updated with our latest announcements and updates via our website and social media platforms. Thank you for your unwavering support of our school community. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns.
Video: AGCS is "All In"
During this season of giving, Avon Grove Charter School is excited to relaunch the Capital Campaign for our new academic building. We're inviting community members to join us in reaching our goal of $500,000.
By partnering with Avon Grove Charter School and making a tax-deductible donation, you'll significantly impact the future of our students and the community. We plan to acknowledge your generosity as a capital supporter with various tiers reflecting your level of commitment. For donors who contribute significantly, we're hoping to name the building or its parts in their honor. If you, your family, organization, or corporation are interested in making a major contribution, we would be delighted to discuss potential naming opportunities with you.
Every donation, large or small, is valuable. Your one time or recurring contribution will provide crucial support to this important project. To understand more about charter school funding and our dedicated fundraising efforts for this project, watch this video. Visit the Capital Campaign page on our website to learn more about the project. Contribute with the link above or via the website.
Teaching and Learning
Click the letter below for more information and helpful resources concerning the K-6 report card
AGCS E-Sports Team
Director of Teaching and Learning, Jen Weaver, Instructional Coach, Bethanne Lindenbaum, and STEM teacher, Andrew Braydman, have started up AGCS' first ever Esports Team.
The team is just finishing up it's first season! Twelve of our high school students were part of our inaugural team that faired well in competition with teams across the state. We are looking forward to enter the Spring League after the holidays!
Please be sure to complete your student's back to school forms in PowerSchool. The annual health update form, including medication permission, is in the document this year. Without this form, the nurses are unable to medicate your child during the school day.
Food Safety During the Holiday Season
The upcoming holiday season means gatherings and food preparation. Here are some food safety reminders from Weekly Safety:
Always wash your hands after handling raw or under-cooked poultry.
Use separate cutting boards for raw meat and produce to prevent cross-contamination.
The USDA recommends cooking a turkey in an oven heated to a minimum of 325 degrees. Use a food thermometer and cook the turkey to an internal temperature of 165-180 degrees to ensure it is cooked thoroughly and to avoid illness caused by consuming under-cooked poultry.
Store leftovers within 2 hours or toss them.
See more from Weekly Safety about holiday food safety using the link below!
Our staff and students are looking forward to field trips in many grade levels this year. Due to staffing, the school nurses do not attend field trips. The only medications allowed on field trips are epinephrine injectors and rescue inhalers. If you need to attend a field trip to manage your child’s medical needs, please contact your child’s teacher and the school nurse.
Multiple illnesses continue to circulate in the community. The AGCS School Nurses ask that all sick students remain home until they are fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medications, or 24 hours vomit free and tolerating foods in the case of stomach viruses. Should your child need to be picked up from school sick, please have a plan in place for your child to be picked up within an hour of the nurse’s call.
The fall sports season came to a close in the first week of November. Our teams enjoyed a very successful fall in the Mid-Atlantic Independent League (MIL).
Our middle school boys soccer team finished their season with a 9-4 record. The boys played hard and enjoyed some great success on the field. They consistently showed improvement as the season progressed.
The boys varsity team ended with season records of 11-2 overall and 9-1 in the MIL. This resulted in a #1 seed in the playoffs. The team advanced to the league championship on Friday, October 27th but, unfortunately, fell to Tri-State Christian Academy after a tough 2-1 loss.
Billy McAffee, Ryan Stockar, Ray Sanchez, Sam Neely, and Agustin Lopez were all named to the MIL 1st Team. Agustin Lopez led the team in goals scored this year, scoring 14 goals.
The team finished the fall season off on Monday November 6th with the 3rd Annual Rose Hill Cup. The Rose Hill Cup is a soccer fundraiser "friendly" between AGCS and AGHS. AGHS won the game 4-0. Thanks to community support, the teams raised over $1,000 for The Bridge.
Our Cross Country program had a very successful season full of PR’s (personal records) and team success. The varsity team said goodbye to a few key members as seniors Elizabeth Ciarlone, Lindsay Civatte, and Will Maroun finished their AGCS XC careers. The MIL XC Invitational was great to watch as our runners gave it their all, many pulverizing their PR’s by minutes.
The middle school Cross Country team was small but mighty as they constantly pushed for 1st place finishes. The future of AGCS XC is bright.
The middle school girls volleyball team finished their season with a winning record thanks to some BIG wins against MIL opponents. The girls were led by 8th graders Melina Erdmann and Lily Tritz. The team's competitive season was a fantastic opportunity for our girls to prepare for the varsity level.
Varsity volleyball finished their season on Saturday, November 4th with an impressive battle in the MIL championship game. Even though they came up short, the team had the most successful season in AGCS volleyball history.
Seniors Gia Hall and Emily Colp were placed on the MIL 1st Team. Senior Sophia Stephenson and Sophomore Chloe Sullivan were named to the MIL 2nd Team. Gia Hall was awarded the MIL MVP. Additionally, Gia became the 1st volleyball player in school history to record 1000 service points.
The seniors are leaving the team in great shape as the girls look to bring home the championship next fall
Winter Sports tryouts began the week of November 13th. Keep an eye on our athletics schedule and come on out to support our winter teams at Goldey Beacom College:
- Boys basketball
- Girls Basketball
As we prioritize the safety and well-being of our students, we would like to update you on the safety measures in place at Avon Grove Charter School. Our commitment to fostering a secure and nurturing environment remains unwavering, and we continually strive to enhance our safety protocols to ensure a safe and supportive learning space for all.
Below, you will find our safety and security video, created in partnership with the Avon Grove School District, which highlights important guidelines and information regarding school safety.
Within our school community, we have implemented upgraded security and communication measures across both AGCS campuses, including regular safety drills to prepare students and staff for any potential emergencies. Our staff have completed training in emergency response, preparing them to handle various situations effectively. Additionally, we maintain open communication channels with local first responders to ensure swift and coordinated action in case of an emergency.
We value your partnership in maintaining a safe school environment. Regular updates and open lines of communication are vital in our efforts to ensure transparency and keep you informed about any developments regarding school safety.
As we continue to prioritize the security of our school, we encourage you to engage in conversations with your children about the importance of adhering to safety protocols.
Portrait of AGCS
This year, in order to lay out the specific responsibilities and qualities of each integral 'part' of our 'whole' AGCS, we began working on our Portrait Profiles: Portrait of a Graduate, Portrait of a Staff, and Portrait of a Parent/Guardian. These portraits aim to integrate all of our core beliefs and values, standards, and mission.
Thank you to everyone who provided feedback on this portrait work through the fall. We are currently taking that feedback and putting the finishing touches on our Portrait work, including developing our Portrait of a Staff. All of our Portrait work will be completed and published by the end of January.
Raise Craze Update
On October 31 we closed out our annual Raise Craze Fundraiser. We raised $49,876 and students completed 4,660 acts of kindness in the month of October! Together, we were able to make significant donations to local organizations and families in need.
AGCS had the honor of attending and presenting at the 2023 PA PBIS Forum in Hershey, PA. Educators from across the state joined to discuss best practices and current research. AGCS was recognized for meeting fidelity at Tiers 1 and 2 for practices related to positive behavior supports and programming. A group was also selected to present on Data Based Decision Making under a behavioral framework. We’re so proud of our teacher presenters and appreciate the classroom coverage that staff provided so that we could attend the conference!