Visit the complete newsletter HERE or read below for a sneak peek…
Charter School Conversations ¿ Excluding Español?
It’s time to discuss a charter school controversy: Despite being public schools that are, technically, “open to all,” some charter schools have received criticism for finding loopholes in the law to exclude students with poor academic records, special needs, or language barriers. Sometimes they exclude students intentionally, yet often the exclusion is unintended and somewhat subconscious.
Earlier this week, we realized that our newsletters, Facebook posts, and other media have been written only in English. This is concerning on two levels: first, that we weren’t creating bilingual communications. Second, that we didn’t stop to realize this oversight until now!
Our newsletters will be bilingual in English and Spanish beginning with our next newsletter. We’d like to translate our words into other languages as well, but at this time don’t have access to translators who can speak Chinese or Vietnamese (the 3rd and 4th most spoken languages in Oregon). If you know someone with Chinese or Vietnamese translation skills, please contact us!
Visit the complete newsletter here or read below for a sneak preview…
A Piece of the Proposal Bell Schedule
The Bell Schedule, at a glance, shows what time the bell will ring and spur students and staff to bustle onto new activities each day, but it also gives a look at how “a day in the life” will feel for students. As shown in the 2022-23 Calendar, the school year is divided into two semesters and three intensive sessions. Throughout all of those changes in classes and content, the daily rhythm will stay the same.
While checking out our proposed Bell Schedule, here are some things to notice:
Late Arrival, Early Dismissal: School days will begin later in the morning than a typical high school, with first period beginning at 9am, and school days will end early as well, with a 2:30pm dismissal.
Two Meals A Day: Nutritious, organic and local, when possible. Meals will be served for breakfast and lunch.
Block Scheduling: Eight 90-minute class periods each week will take place over the course of Monday-Friday, with Monday/Wednesday “A days” holding class periods 1, 2 and 3, Tuesday/Thursday “B days” holding class periods 4, 5 and 6, and Friday “C days” holding class periods 7a, 7b and 8.
Movement, Rest and Social Times: There will be ample time each day for nutrition, exercise, socializing and rest with a 40-minute morning breakfast window, a 20-minute morning tea break, and a 40-minute lunch break all holding space between each class period. It is also our hope that, eventually, school can be open to students before and after normal school hours.
Things May Change: This Bell Schedule is our dream. The reality may look differently dependent on other related factors such as transportation, KCA’s location and other local schools’ schedules. We’ll loop back around to share an updated Bell Schedule and 2022-23 Calendar closer to opening day as everything continues to unfold and reveal itself!
Visit the complete newsletter here or read below for a sneak preview…
Newsletters will include a mix and match from the following:
Three Rivers School District Updates – The TRSD school board has our fate in their hands! Learn the latest news regarding our charter proposal.
Action Steps – What can you do to help KCA reach opening day?
KCA Student News – Hey young people! We’re not waiting until opening day before reaching out to you, too!
A Piece of the Proposal – Our proposal is long (171 pages!), so we’ll pick a piece of the proposal to unpack, focusing on things that make KCA unique.
Humanizing the Standards – Let’s be real, “the standards” causes quite the reaction from many people. We’ll pick an Oregon educational standard and show ways our classes will integrate the standard with creativity, youth autonomy, and a community arts focus.
Charter School Conversations – What is a charter school? We’ll address a question or two about the definition, composition, history and controversies of the charter school movement in the United States.
Fun and Miscellany – Who doesn’t need a little fun and/or miscellany in their day?
We submitted our proposal to the school district today! It’s a BIG day! 49 pages of narrative + 122 pages of attachments = 171 total pages (wowza). It’s been reviewed by 22 community parents, educators, and community leaders. This effort began in 2014 and culminated today!The school district has 30 business days to review the proposal and determine whether it’s complete, which brings us to the middle/end of January. We might be invited to speak at the January school district meeting (Wednesday, January 19 @ the District Offices) and/or the February meeting (Wednesday, February 16 at Illinois Valley High School). We will need supporters to submit public comments! More details to come.
Well that was fun! Opening night of the Cave Junction Farmers’ Market was a blast (were there 2 or 3 times as many vendors as we’ve been used to? Wow!)
At our KCA table, we chatted with many of you, talking about what a new charter high school for the Illinois Valley might look like. We even signed up 4 more people for our committees! But would you believe we still have a committee or two with no one signed up? The good news is we’ll be back at the Farmer’s Market this very coming Friday, and just about all Fridays this summer.
If you missed us, we were in the pavilion–did you venture that way? There was much to check out there. We think we’re going to have a different spot this time–closer to the music. Feel free to ask around if you can’t find us–we’re sure someone can point you in the right direction.
This past Friday night, we also made a little money from anyone who purchased a Slugdala card (yes, banana slug mandalas!). 100% of the profit from sales is going to KCA. So if you didn’t get your Slugdala card last week, you’ll have another opportunity this coming Friday. And if you haven’t seen banana slug mandalas–scroll down.
As we hope you know, Kalmiopsis Community Arts High School (KCAHS) is a planned free public charter high school for Oregon’s Illinois Valley. To learn more, we encourage you to come meet us and to feel free to ask any questions you may have in person! Beginning Friday, April 19, you can find us at the CJ Farmers’ Market in Jubilee Park, from 4-7pm.
We’ll also be collecting bottles and cans as part of IVCanDonate on Saturday, April 20, from 10am-2pm, behind Chevron. This is a joint fundraiser for KCAHS and the RiverStars program. We’ll be splitting the proceeds, so if you want to support arts education in the Illinois Valley, please consider saving up your bottles and cans and dropping them off on this day.
By the way, we’d like to thank a special sponsor who will help you to be able to easily find us at these and other future events. BannerBuzz is a maker of signs and banners that provides free banners for nonprofits. We’d like to thank them for sponsoring us with a banner for KCAHS. (To create your own banner, visit their website at bannerbuzz.com)
Well, that was fun! Thanks again to everyone who came out to our Kick-UP! event, where we kicked off our plans for a new free public charter high school for the Illinois Valley. Approximately 30-35 people attended, enjoying a sneak preview of the upcoming Quaketown show, a fun and informative skit, and let’s not forget free pizza and salad.
We also had the opportunity for attendees to sign up for our first committees. But lest you think you had to be there to get in on the ground floor of our committees, we’re here to tell you otherwise. You can check out our committees below, and still lend a hand:
Here’s our committees, along with expected time commitment, and committee chairs:
If you are interested in helping us achieve another high school option for the I.V., with a performing arts underlying much of the program, please consider getting in touch. We’d be happy to talk to you about these committees and how you can help us. You can email us at KalmiopsisCommunityArts@gmail.com.
On Monday, March 11, at the Kerby Belt Building, we’ll be presenting plans for a new Illinois Valley-based charter high school. The event will feature a free dinner, entertainment from the IV’s own RiverStars program, and a fun and informative session on what Kalmiopsis Community Arts High School is all about.
Interested students and parents will want to attend, as well as anyone in the community who has long wanted to see such a school happen. There will be an opportunity to sign up for assorted committees, so we can get started on building our dream arts-based high school for the Illinois Valley.
The event starts at 6:30pm, with a free dinner, and will be followed at around 7pm with skits and info. Please join us! And if you can RSVP below that will help us plan accordingly–thanks!
In our forest of Oregon green lies a red-dusted land like a desert, a wilderness so rich in magnesium-laded serpentine rock that it’s shooed away all but the hardiest of species. Those that survive, however, thrive. This is their place. And while walking these wild lands back in the 1930s, botanist Lilla Leach dropped to her knees in front of a small shrub with purple flowers and exclaimed, “I have never seen anything like it before! Isn’t it beautiful? I believe it is new.”
Kalmiopsis is the flower, and Kalmiopsis became the name of this wilderness edging the Illinois River as its two forks converge in Cave Junction and then, together at last, flow northward towards the Rogue River and, finally, the sea.
We believe the people of the Illinois Valley are like the Kalmiopsis Wilderness: resilient, intrepid, and unique. We thrive in difficult environments, creatively confronting our challenges.
We want the Illinois Valley spirit distilled in our school, and for that reason we have chosen to call our school Kalmiopsis Community Arts High School. (Or KCA for short).
A group of IV educators is exploring the feasibility of developing a new free public charter high school (grades 9-12). The plan would be to open in the Illinois Valley in Fall 2020. We are seeking input from the public on the need for an additional high school option, as well as what people would like to see as part of a new high school. This survey should take no more than 10 minutes of your time. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us!