Last Friday the elementary students celebrated Halloween with a costume parade, songs, and holiday treats. It was great to see parents there for the festivities. Then the middle schoolers were on campus in costume for the Halloween Dance Friday evening. They collected three boxes of canned goods for the Mayors' Feed the Hungry Campaign as part of their entrance fee. What a pleasure it is to have well-behaved students at SAA! Thank you to all of the kindergarten through 8th grade parents who provided goodies throughout the day.
Another busy week is starting with picture retakes for the yearbook on Wednesday and the Fall Book Fair on Thursday. PTO will meet Wednesday evening in the middle school building. See the calendar for more information. Matt and I will be away Wednesday through Friday at the annual conference for Florida charter schools.
Also, this week the middle school math students will be taking their first math benchmark tests. These tests are done on the computer to assess the progress the students are making towards proficiency. They do not count as a grade but give in-depth information to the teachers about the level of mastery and allow the teacher to determine what needs to be retaught or reinforced. It's important that the students do their best so the results give an accurate picture. The science benchmarks for fifth through eighth grades will follow in the next two weeks.
You should see report cards available on line in Gradebook this week. Parents who have not accessed the portal will receive paper copies as soon as we have them from the district.
As we start the second quarter, I would like to share our attendance statistics with you. The district now has a program that tracks absences - excused and unexcused - because we know how important it is that students be in school to be successful. Thirty percent of our middle schoolers have satisfactory attendance so far this year; 54% have chronic absences and 16% are considered at risk. Chronic absences include those students missing more than 10% of the school days since the first day of school. At the elementary level, 74% have satisfactory attendance with only 10% (11 students) having chronic absences. These statistics actually are in line with what is happening throughout the United States. We recognize that there will be absences that need to be excused and have a policy in place regarding make-up work for students. Many of our teachers have subject notes and assignments on line through Google Classroom to assist students who have missed class. Students have one day for every day they miss to make up work. If it is a long-term project that has been assigned, that project is due the day the student returns. Please encourage your child to keep up with assignments when absent and to make up the work in a timely manner upon return. We have a teacher after school every day to assist students and Mr. Koci stays every Tuesday to offer math assistance to the sixth graders.
Reminder: Middle school students need to have their polo shirts for the Veterans' Day Parade on Nov. 11. All students will walk in the parade and Advanced Chorus will sing for the closing ceremony. Shirts are available at Children's World on Bee Ridge. We do not have them at school.
Have a wonderful week! We hope to see you on campus at the events this week.