Families of ELL students are encouraged to become involved as partners with their child’s school in providing a relevant and successful educational experience. Annually, the school district and/or separate schools will hold meetings for parents of students participating in an English language development program. The purpose of these meetings is to listen to parental concerns about students’ academic progress and to provide parents with information on working with school personnel to ensure that each ELL student succeeds in attaining the same high levels of achievement that all students are expected to meet.
Thatcher School District is may be eligible to receive federal funds for Title III programs that are part of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Title III programs help schools provide English language development services to students identified as English language learners. Supplemental services are designed to help increase students’ ability to speak, write, and understand English. The overall goal of the program is to increase the number and percentage of students who:
1.Make progress in learning English,
2.Attain English proficiency by the end of the school year, and
3. Make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) on required state assessments.
Please contact any school principal for more information on how to be an active participant in helping your child learn English and meet challenging academic standards.
Who is considered “homeless”? Any child or youth not attending school who lacks a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence, including those who are sharing housing with others due to loss of housing or economic hardship. Also included are children and youth who are living in hotels, camping grounds, emergency shelters, cars, bus or train stations, or other similar settings.
The Thatcher School District provides equal access and comparable services to all students regardless of their home living situations. Homeless children and youth have specific educational rights that include:
1.Immediate enrollment in school and, when desired or feasible, at the “school of origin;”
2.Prompt provision of necessary services such as transportation and meal programs;
3.Appropriate support services and programs for which theyare eligible, such as vocational programs and programs for students who are disabled, gifted, or limited English proficient;
4.Academic assistance through the district’s federally funded Title I program.
5. Parent or guardian involvement in school activities.
If you are homeless or know of a child or youth that is homeless and not attending school
please contact the central district office at (928) 348-7201 and ask for the homeless liaison.
This person will provide information and assistance during the enrollment process. For more information, ask about Policies JFABD and JLG.
NCLB requires that all paraprofessionals in the Title I Program and all teachers teaching core academic subjects must meet certain requirements. Core subjects include English, reading or language arts, mathematics, science, foreign languages, civics and government, economics, arts, history and geography. In general, teachers must have full certification, a bachelor’s degree and demonstrated competence in subject knowledge and teaching. Paraprofessionals must have a 2-year college degree or pass a state approved test. Parents and guardians have the right to request information regarding the professional qualifications of their child’s classroom teacher and/or paraprofessionals in the Title I Program. Forms for requesting this information are available at the central district office. Within one week of any written request, the district will provide the following information:
1.Whether or not a teacher has met state licensing requirements for the grade level and subjects in which he/she is providing instruction,
2.Whether or not the teacher is teaching under an emergency status for which state licensing requirements have been waived,
3.The type of college degree major of the teacher and the field of discipline for any graduate degree or certificate, and
4.Whether or not your child is receiving Title I services from a paraprofessional and, if so, his/her qualifications.
Parents of students in Title I schools are guaranteed annual notification of their “right to know” about teacher qualifications by the school district. For more information, ask about Policy IHBD-EB.
Parents or guardians may request that their students infomation not be released without prior written parental consent.
ACCESS TO STUDENT INFORMATION
BY MILITARY OR COLLEGE RECRUITERS
The federal NCLB law requires that school districts, upon request, must provide to colleges, universities and military recruiters, access to the names, addresses and telephone listings of high school students. Parents or guardians of a high school student may request that their student’s name, address, and telephone number not be released by the District without prior written parental consent. Forms for making this request are available at the high school office.
This request must be submitted in writing to the Superintendent at the beginning of each school year.
PUBLICATION OF STUDENT PHOTOS
Annually, each school in the District arranges to have student photographs taken for school purposes such as creating student I.D. cards, as well as to provide an optional service for parents and families who wish to purchase picture packets. The District also maintains a website where general information, policies, and news of current events is posted.
From time to time, photos of students occasionally appear in school and District publications in conjunction with routine operations and publicity. Yearbook pictures, team photos, and classroom candids are examples.
Student photos are not used by the District for any commercial or private purposes and are not released to others for such purposes. Parents and guardians have a right to request that pictures of their student not appear in any school publications. This request must be made, in writing, to the superintendent at the beginning of each school year.
It is the responsibility of Thatcher Unified School District to inform the general public and all parents within our boundaries of our responsibility to make available special education services for student with disabilities aged 3 through 21 years and how to access those services. In addition, we have a responsibility to provide information regarding early intervention services for children birth through 2 years. We are responsible for identifying, locating, and evaluating all children with disabilities including children aged 3 through 21 and for referring children from birth through 2 years of age to Arizona Early Intervention Program (AzEIP) for evaluation and appropriate services. Weare also responsible for providing a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) which includes special education and related services to children with disabilities at public expense, under public supervision and direction and without charge to the parents.
For all new students to the district, the classroom teacher will complete screening activities within 45 days of enrollment. The teacher will look at the child’s ability in the areas of academics, vision, hearing, adaptive, communication, social/emotional and motor skills. If any concerns are noted the child may be referred for additional help.
Children birth through 2 years of age who are receiving early intervention services and will be participating in preschool programs for children with disabilities will be assured of a smooth transition into that program. We will ensure that: 1) transition conferences for children aged 2 years 6 months to 2 years, 9 months will be held; 2) by the child’s 3rd birthday an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) will be developed and implemented; and 3) for the child who turns 3 years of age during the summer, the IEP team will determine the date for services to begin including eligibility for Extended School Year (ESY) services. If you have concerns about a child you know please contact Dr. Suzanne Menges at 928-348-7206; Child Find at (602) 364-4015, or visit the Child Find website www.ade.az.gov/ess/childfind. For more information, ask about policies IHB and IHBA.
NCLB requires every state to establish academic standards for what students should know and be able to do. Each district and school is measured by how well students are progressing toward and meeting these standards. All students are required to make progress as measured by a state developed test that is administered annually at specific grade levels.
Annually the District will publish an easy-to-read and detailed “report card” identifying the progress of each school. Included in the report card is student achievement data separated into groups by race, gender, migrant status, low-income status, ethnicity, English language proficiency, disability status, and all students. The annual report card provides parents with timely information about the schools their children attend and how the schools are performing for all children, regardless of their background.
Title I is a section of NCLB known as “Improving the Academic Achievement of the Disadvantaged.” The purpose of Title I is to ensure that all children have a fair, equal, and significant opportunity to obtain a high-quality education and reach, at a minimum, proficiency on challenging state academic achievement standards and state academic assessments.Funding under Title I helps allow schools to supplement instructional services and activities in order to improve the educational opportunities of educationally disadvantaged or deprived children, especially those who are at risk due to living in poverty, having a language other than English as their first language, or living without a permanent home.Although progress toward AYP is reported for all schools, there are particular expectations for schools and school districts that receive Title I funds, and there are special consequences for failure to achieve AYP. If the state Department of Education determines a Title I school or district has not made AYP for three (3) consecutive years, it must:
1.Identify the district for school improvement, corrective action or restructuring,
2.Provide the district with an opportunity to review the data upon which the review was based, and
3.Publicize and disseminate the results of the progress review to parents, staff and the community.
District and school staff, with the involvement of parents, must develop plans to improve student learning so that AYP is achieved by all students and by each subgroup of students.
Research overwhelmingly demonstrates the positive effect that parent involvement has on their children’s academic achievement. In addition to a variety of parent involvement opportunities available throughout the district, special programs and activities are maintained in conjunction with Title I programs at Jack Daley Primary School and Thatcher Elementary School. NCLB has requirements for Title I programs that include:
1.Maintaining policies/plans on parent involvement at the district and school levels,
2.Involving parents in planning at the district and school levels,
3.Planning and holding annual meetings with parents,
4.Providing training to parents in ways to support their students’ academic success, and
5.Coordinating parent involvement strategies among various federal education programs.
In the event a Title I school with a Title I program is identified as needing improvement, corrective action or restructuring, the District will notify parents and explain how they can become involved in school improvement efforts. Thatcher Schools’ Parent Involvement Policy helps to promote school-home collaboration and integrate parent involvement strategies, activities and services, particularly for students who are limited English proficient, disabled, migratory, homeless, economically disadvantaged or in need of additional academic assistance. These programs, activities and procedures are described in a School-Home Compact, which is distributed annually to parents of students participating in a Title I program, and is also available to other interested parents in the district.
Through the Title I program, the District annually conducts an evaluation of the effectiveness of its Parent Involvement Policy and School-Home Compact. The purpose of the evaluation is to:
1.Determine how program procedures have contributed to the academic progress of students,
2.Identify strengths and needed areas of improvement in the program, and seek to remove any barriers that may prevent parents from fully participating in their child’s education.
Throughout the year, notices will be sent to parents of children receiving Title I services. In addition, information will be made available to the community regarding progress each school and the district is making toward achieving high academic standards. If at any time you have questions regarding school notices, practices or information, please contact your child’s school for clarification or assistance. Your active participation in your child’s education and school is important and encouraged. For more information, ask about Policies IHBD and KB.