School Year Kick-Off Coffee Talk! (Live on Youtube)
Monday, August 10th, 6PM
Virtual Meet the Teacher
Monday, August 10th and Tuesday, August 11th
6th Grade Virtual Orientation
Tuesday, August 11th
First Day of School – Distance Learning
Wednesday, August 12th
Virtual Back to School Night
Wednesday, August 26th
Parent Coffee Talk: To launch the 2020-2021 school year, Westlake Charter School is hosting a Parent Coffee Talk live via YouTube on Monday, August 10th at 6PM. During the broadcast our Principal, Mrs. Callau, and Executive Director, Mr. Eick, will discuss the opening of the school year and their excitement for some great learning opportunities to come. We will open the meeting with celebrations and will answer questions live throughout the meeting. To enter a celebration or ask a question, we will be making this Google Form Link live during the broadcast.
- Click HERE to attend the coffee talk via YouTube.
- Click HERE (during the broadcast) to share a celebration or ask a question that can be shared during the broadcast.
Meet the Teacher: We are excited to welcome our students and families virtually for Meet the Teacher on Monday, August 10th and Tuesday, August 11th from 12:00-2:30. This event will allow for students and teachers to meet each other prior to the first day of school. Families will be able to watch an introduction video from their teacher and meet their teacher virtually at a preselected appointment time. Sign ups for a Meet the Teacher appointments will be coming out in next week’s Westlake Weekly. For more information see page 31 in the Fall Opening manual.
Classroom assignments: Families, we typically send out class lists the day before school, but we thought that sending them out today would help families organize shared childcare. One way that this might help is that families can see who is in their student’s classroom, then use the parent childcare cooperative site to organize Distance Learning Cooperatives each day of the week. If a group of classmates can socially distance at one home during distance learning, it may help students stay engaged and help parents with childcare. Click HERE to see Classroom Assignments – We will be adding teacher names to these assignments on Sunday, August 2nd in the Westlake Weekly.
Middle School Classroom Assignments: Middle school students will stay with the same students for both of their academic blocks. This decision was made to reduce the mixing of students. For example, students in Classroom 1 in 6th grade will remain together for the entirety of their day as they attend their academic blocks. Classroom 1 will start their morning in Block 1/2 Humanities and then the entire class will stay together and go to Block 3/4 math/science. The lists that are posted on the school website are core academic class lists, not Advisory lists.
There will continue to be a focus on Advisory for Social-Emotional development in Middle School. However, in Levels, 1-4 Advisory will be held virtually to minimize the mixing of students.
Schedules for 6th-8th grade students, which lists both advisory and academic core teachers, will be mailed home on Friday 7/31. Families should expect these before Meet the Teacher.
A New View of Distance Learning: Westlake Charter School believes that learning must include the four C’s: communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity. Distance learning in the spring was an emergency response and we are extremely grateful and proud of the work our teachers and staff did to keep our community connected. Having said that, our goal this fall is very different from that in the spring. We have heard people say, “Students can’t learn through distance learning,” and while it is not our first choice either, we would like to disagree. Our students can and will learn to think critically and creatively, by collaborating with their teachers and peers daily. We will use every tool we have, whether that is digital, or physical tools sent home in a learning kit, to ensure our students are engaging in quality learning and able to communicate their learning in countless ways. To understand some of the creative learning designs that are being produced by our Westlake Teachers, please read pages 15 through 20 of the recently updated Return to School Family Handbook.
Student Login information: As we are ramping up our plans to begin school on August 12th, we must first ensure that every family is connected. We are continuing to distribute Chromebooks and assist with Wifi connectivity to the families who have requested assistance through our Summer Survey. For those families who are ready to start logging in to test their connectivity, but need their student login information, our teachers will be sending that information home on the week of August 10th. However, if you need this information sooner, you can reach out to our Distance Learning Technical Support Help Desk described above.
Distance Learning Technical Support: Westlake Charter School has created a digital Help Desk to support our families during this time of Distance Learning. Our Help Desk can be contacted via chat, email or phone. For more information on how to contact our Help Desk, and our operating days and hours, please click HERE. Help Desk support will begin August 5th and continue until further notice.
Childcare Support During Level 1 Distance Learning:
Option #1: WAVE Childcare Cooperative – Distance Learning Cooperatives
Thank you to our WAVE Parent Team for leading this work. Over 100 students have been added to the Childcare Cooperative sheets, and now families can select if they would like to host a Distance Learning Cooperative at their house or seek a Distance Learning Cooperative at a classmate’s house on any given day!
If you would like to be added to the parent childcare cooperative site, click HERE and our WAVE Parent Team will add you to the site. Our WAVE Team has also built grade-level Facebook Groups so that families can communicate around how these learning cooperatives can come together.
Thank you families for your willingness to collaborate to support all of our students during this challenging time. By joining together, we each have the opportunity to support our community. Those who can offer to host a learning cooperative at their home, even one day a week, may give essential workers in our community the ability to work during the day and know their students are continuing to learn with their peers.
Option #2: BASE Distance Learning Camps
Our BASE team has crafted separate spaces across campus that can be used as a Distance Learning Camp between the hours of 8AM-2PM. Students in grades K-5 will be grouped by grade; students in 6th-8th will be grouped together, in a larger space that better facilitates social distancing. All BASE Camp students who enroll will spend the day engaged in distance learning activities provided by their classroom teacher, and be supervised by a Westlake Charter School staff member. During the assigned grade level recess and lunch times our staff will make sure students are given time to run, play and refuel.
- Due to the need to ensure social distancing, space in each grade level Distance Learning Camp is limited
- Due to the necessity of reducing the mixing of cohorts, families will be required to pre-register and pre-pay for a full week program
- Weekly rates of $225 a week will apply: Full and Partial Scholarships will be made available for families based on income and/or number of siblings enrolled in camp.
BASE can only plan for the availability of these Distance Learning Camps if we know how many families may be interested in using these programs. Please, if you may even be remotely interested in this opportunity, please click HERE to let us know by Friday, July 31st. Thank you for your collaboration.
School Supplies: As in previous years, WCS is requesting a $25 donation to cover the cost of supplies that will be distributed to students to ensure all students have the supplies needed to support learning. As such, we will not be sending supply request lists to families. Click HERE to donate toward our school supply campaign.
School Supply Distribution: Many of our grade level teams are assembling supplies that they would like to send home so that your student has learning tools that are not strictly digital. We will be organizing the distribution of these materials before school starts. This first Distance Learning Kit will include your student’s spirit shirt! We would love to see everyone continuing to celebrate our school culture on spirit Fridays during Level 1: Distance Learning!
Updated FAQs on theFall 20/21 Return to School Page: Thank you to all the families who have sent questions regarding the launch of the school year. We have been updating the FAQ section of our Return to School: Fall 20/21 website and now have 50+ questions and answers. Click HERE to see this week’s updates on the site.
7th Grade TDAP: 7th grade families – if you haven’t already turned in your proof of the TDAP immunization, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. As a reminder, 7th grade students will not be able to attend school when we return to campus without this immunization.
WEB 6th grade Virtual Orientation: Our 6th grade Explorers will have a virtual orientation on Tuesday, August 11th from 9:00-11:00 put on by our 8th grade WEB leaders. WEB is a middle school transition program that helps welcome 6th graders and makes them feel comfortable throughout the first year of middle school. WEB stands for “Where Everybody Belongs.” We are excited to welcome our 6th graders to the middle school program. This orientation day is a great opportunity to learn about middle school, meet up with 8th grade WEB leaders and to build community and culture. All 6th grade families should mark their calendars. More details will be shared in the upcoming weeks.
Uniforms: Our families have asked if uniforms will be required during distance learning, you will find the answers below.
Level 1: During Distance Learning in Level 1 students will not need to be in a school uniform when they participate in Distance Learning. While participating in video calls students will be expected to follow the Westlake Charter School Free Dress guidelines.
- Clothes must be free of inappropriate wording and images
- All clothing must fit properly. Pants around the natural waist, tops completely covering the torso area
- All shirts must have sleeves, no sleeveless shirts.
- All clothing must be free of rips and tears
BASE: As BASE launches Distance Learning Camps on campus during Level 1: Distance Learning uniforms will be required.
Level 2-5: Students who are on campus will need to follow the Westlake Charter School Uniform policy click HERE to view the Uniform Policy.