While the excitement of the season is upon us, and there are only a few weeks left until Winter break, every single hour spent in the classroom is still essential to our scholars’ success. We are so proud of scholars who are putting in the extra effort by attending Saturday school. We average more than 50 scholars each session, and a record number of teachers are assisting, alongside volunteers from Peace Fellowship Church who are coming to tutor.
Earlier this month we celebrated 61 scholars who earned a place on the Honor Roll with a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and Principal’s Honor Roll with a GPA of 3.5 or higher. More scholars are making the honor roll than ever before! Our seniors received their results from the October SAT test, and 17 scored higher than 890. Five seniors--Faith Brooks, Kyeon Ford, Malaysia Johnson, Markese Stephens, and Kaziah White--scored more than 1000! Sometimes you need a second try to get the score you want, so 13 of our seniors will be retaking the test to improve their scores. We commend our scholars on their hard work and perseverance.
Reaching this level of achievement requires an early start and consistent attendance and dedication. Our teachers have noticed a slide in attendance in recent weeks, and we ask scholars and families to reverse this trend! Important teaching and learning happen every single day, and scholars can easily fall behind if they miss several days. Our goal is for scholars to be absent no more than two days each quarter to ensure that they are keeping up with their work and taking advantage of the educational opportunities offered to them.
It is especially important that families of ninth graders check to make sure their scholars are on track for graduation within four years. Even though graduation sounds far away now, if a scholar fails several classes for the first two quarters of high school, he will likely be required to repeat ninth grade. How can ninth grade scholars and their families make sure they’re on the right track? Parents should ask their children what their homework is each day and whether they’ve completed it. Offer to help or encourage scholars to attend tutoring or Saturday School if necessary. We are always willing to help scholars who are struggling, as long as they’re making a good faith effort to improve. Log in to PowerSchool to monitor your children's progress. Call the main office if you need help logging in. Scholars can download the PowerSchool app on their phones so they will have 24/7 access to assignments and grades. Scholars can use online tools--also available on their phones--such as IXL for math and Achieve 3000 for reading to improve their skills even when they’re not in school.
Teachers and staff at IDEA have high expectations of our scholars intellectually, socially, and behaviorally. We strive to promote a positive learning culture in and out of the classroom. Our current instructional emphasis is academic discourse--encouraging scholars to engage in high-level conversations about what they’re learning. We want scholars to be engaging with the material they’re learning, their teachers, and their peers to help create a vibrant academic community.
I am thankful for our scholars, families, staff, and community, and I appreciate the privilege of serving as IDEA’s principal. My door is always open if you have questions or concerns.