Parent Newsletter September 2020
Dear Central Academy Students and Families,
It can be very challenging to keep track of all the information you’ve been getting from DMPS, your home school, and Academy– especially if you have children in more than one school. I try to be judicious in my use of mass email to Academy students and families. But I also use the Central Academy website to warehouse all the information I send out and district links. Watch this 1:38 VIDEO tutorial on where to find the information you need.
School Board meeting tonight
The DMPS school board is considering a move towards more in-person learning. READ about it. The School board will be continuing that discussion this evening at 5:00 PM. Watch it on YouTube or see the AGENDA.
Every proposal before the school board has Academy classes continuing in the virtual model for first semester, even if in-person learning resumes in the home schools.
Because Academy includes students from 18 DMPS buildings and another 12 metro area school districts, an outbreak here could be devastating for the community and the risk of an outbreak is higher if we resume in-person learning in the current climate.
When DMPS is in compliance with the Governor’s proclamation for in-person learning, Academy’s virtual classes will still meet the compliance rules because Academy classes are optional (meaning students who do not want to take virtual courses at Academy may take other courses at their home schools to meet graduation requirements). So, choosing to take an Academy class this semester means choosing a virtual service model for those specific Academy classes.
I know some are relieved to hear this and others are upset to hear it. We will do everything in our power to make the virtual learning experience the very best it can be by supporting our teachers, students, and families with real time instruction, regular feedback, and continuing professional development during this difficult and unprecedented semester.
Updating Spring High School Transcripts
As you know, last spring schools closed unexpectedly due to Covid-19. Because of that sudden shift in our service model last year, students who were taking high school courses last spring have the option of either taking the letter grade they earned for second semester OR taking a P (pass) or NP (no pass) for their semester “grade.” The difference is the letter grade counts toward cumulative GPA while the Pass or No Pass would not. Students who opt to earn a P rather than a letter grade WILL still earn credit, but it will not impact their GPA in any way. Students can choose on a class by class basis.
Middle school classes did not earn letter grades last spring (and also don’t usually count towards graduation). However, 8th graders at Central Academy take High school courses. So, if you have a current MS student (6th – 8th grade) you don’t need to worry about this. But if you have a 9th grader who took classes at Central Academy last spring as an 8th grader, you have the P/NP option for your Academy courses.
If you would like to change your existing grade to P/NP, please email either firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com to let them know your decision. We will accept written (emailed) requests only for documentation purposes.
Some of you may be familiar with Al Éxito’s free after school programs coordinated by Academy parent, Dawn Oropeza. ALL students are welcome and represented to join Al Éxito! Click on the FLYER (Al Exito HS Registration FY21) for contact information and to register. The program is online through December 30.
This year, Al Éxito has some extra perks to ensure students’ academic success:
- Each high school student will be assigned a college mentor for weekly check-ins and tutoring.
- Each student in the district will have access to Compa en Camino a hotline during the day to call if they have tech problems, issues with school work or siblings, they are in need of supplies, food, or anything else they need
- Al Éxito is hiring 12 high school participants to mentor our middle school student $30 a week. Work from home!
- Individualized, bilingual college prep for Seniors and a separate session for Juniors. Al Éxito stays with students until the student is situated I college.
|drēm|sēd| Al Éxito youth-led business. Students partner with business in DSM to bring a product to market. Students have sold internationally! Looking to hire students for leadership of Operations and Marketing Departments. Great resume builder!
Al Éxito has financial support for mix statues families that have accumulated debt due to COVID- 19. We have a separate additional fund specifically for farmworkers, meatpacking plant workers, or those associated with that work. You can find applications on our website www.alexitoiowa.org or email dawn@alexitoiowa. org
Together, with you we can build better communities with Latinx excellence!
Community Legislative Action Team (CLAT)
We know these are unprecedented times. The world is heavy right now. It’s hard to know where to focus and how to stay centered. But we also know that we need to continue to fight for and support Des Moines Public Schools (DMPS). Chronic under-funding will only be made worse by the current situation.
That is why we are reaching out to you today. Let’s engage and build power together. Join us for a Zoom conversation to learn more about the district’s advocacy group, CLAT, and to share your concerns and stories.
Please join us for one (or both!) virtual listening sessions:
Tuesday, September 22nd @ 7pm – click here to register on Zoom
Saturday, September 26th @ 9am – click here to register on Zoom
The DMPS CLAT Team
Connect with us!