Monday, April 6, 2020

  Florida flag
Pictured very top:
Colonial's Latinos in Action students attending their Regional Conference at UCF in mid March (please see their story below).
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Colonial High School

Last week, the Governor issued an Executive Order directing an extended school closure for schools in Florida through May 1. We also realize that during this past week of distance learning that there were server related connectivity issues. The district has been working very hard since to remedy those problems.

I do want to remind our Colonial school community that OCPS has already put in place supports to help families with food distribution, mental health, and to help families with additional needs. The OCPS website has all of this information and it is continually being updated each day.

I hope our Grenadiers will use this time of school closure to proceed in their learning by staying engaged with their teachers in the online classrooms. Also, I hope that they will pursue learning and other passions that matter to them during this time. I have been inspired by many of our students who are already investing this time to learn and are making productive use of the experience until classes resume.

Stay well and be kind to one another.

It's Great To Be A Grenadier!

Dr. Maestre

Like the sign says, I miss you Grenadiers and hope to see you soon. And please,  keep up with your school work until then. You can do it!

Important Remindersreminders

1. Communication:  Teachers are making daily contact with their students.  Some phone numbers, email addresses, or mailing addresses are out of date, therefore, you may be missing important updates and information regarding district decisions.  Please contact to update your contact information.

2. Attendance and Grades:  Attendance is still being submitted for each day and assignments are being graded.  It is critical that you login to Canvas each day and submit the work assigned by each teacher.  If you have questions, communicate with your teacher during their virtual office hours.  If you have not heard from your teacher, call the school.

3. Technology Support:  If you are experiencing technical issues with your laptop or charger, please access helpful information on this link: Tech Tips: Troubleshooting Issues.  If these tips do not help you to solve the problem, you can also schedule an appointment with one of our technical support staff: 
4. SGA Applications: Due April 17. See the flyer below or the SGA Instagram account for more information.

5. Class Cabinet Applications: Due April 15. The application can be accessed via Canvas.  Email Ms. Muller ( or Ms. Vetter ( if you have any questions.

6. Class Cabinet Elections: Voting will take place virtually through a form on Canvas the week of April 20-23. You can only vote once for your grade level.  More information to come as we approach voting week.   
7. Practice Social Distancing:
Our Guidance Counselors are here for you! Reach out if you need support!

Guidance counselors during Virtual Spirit Week's Pajama Day (April 2)

Source: The Wall Street Journal
Latinos in Action
Last month, Latinos in Action students participated in the Regional Conference at the University of Central Florida. Our Grenadiers enjoyed break-out sessions which support the tenets of the program, including service engagements with the community and social or professional skills and behaviors.  

Students were able to network with LIA students from other schools, as well as ask questions about UCF and tour the campus. A special thank you to Mr. Silva and Ms. Olivo-Rodriguez for assisting with the trip. Ms. Martinez, our Latinos in Action teacher on Freshman Campus, organized the experience for our students.

** Please see their group picture at the very top of this week's issue.!
In each issue we will provide resources that you may find useful during Distance Learning. 
Parent Resources: 
OCPS Distance Learning Resources 

Students who do not have a library card can still access many features using their virtual library card. Information about the virtual library card can be found here: 

Parent Launchpad Account Setup 

Parent Canvas App
Parents can download the Canvas App to observe their student's progress.
iOS directions -
Android directions - 

Community Resources
Call 211 for financial assistance, health programs, crisis support and more.
For additional resources contact Hilda Tolentino, CHS SAFE Coordinator:

Grab-and-Go Meals
Grab-and-Go meals are available in the front parking lot Monday - Friday from 10:00 - 1:00 p.m. Walkers and bike riders welcome. This service will be provided throughout the duration of schools being closed. Your child does not need to be a CHS student. All students are served meals.

Staff members ready to hand out meals from 10am to 1pm last week. All students are served meals, whether they attend Colonial or not.

Spirit Week Winners!
A huge SHOUTOUT to our Girls Basketball team - they are the winners of the SPIRIT WEEK  challenge! Thank you for keeping our hearts RED & BLACK!
Distance Learning Highlights - Week #1 

Mr. Whaley's TV Production students are continuing to provide important news to all students and staff! Keep up the amazing work!

Whether it was wearing pajamas on a Spirit Day or distributing food on campus, our staff members are staying busy with distance learning and social distancing!

College Acceptances!
Please join us in congratulating the following students for their acceptances into college! We are so proud of their accomplishments! 
* Adlinaid Acevedo: Montgomery County Community College
* Alexandria Admettre: Valencia College
* Ahmed Aissam: University of California-Berkeley
* Alesandra Burgos: Trinity Baptist College
* Ryleigh Burke: University of Central Florida
* Johan Estevez: Seton Hall University
* Yalmarielysbeth Gonzalez: Advent Health University
* Renee Harris: Valencia College, Hollins University, Claflin University
* Andria Lenihan: Ringling College of Art & Design, Massachusetts College of Art & Design
* Josue Lopez: Valencia College
* Victoria Lopez: Seminole State College
* Omar Martinez - SUPER SCHOLAR: Stanford University 
* Moises Munoz: Florida Polytechnic University, Florida Institute of Technology
* Kiara Ortez: Valencia College
* Johanna Pearce: Valencia College
* Andrea Salguero: Valencia College
* Jacob Sanchez: New York University-Tisch School of the Arts
* Axel Singleton: Seminole State College
* Miguelangel Soto: Valencia College
* Kendy Thach: Valencia College
* Marie Claire Uwamaliya: Valencia College
* Daniel Velez: Valencia College
* Leylanie Viruet: University of North Florida, Jacksonville University, Johnson & Wales University
Tre'Vion Wells: Valencia College, University of North Florida, Georgia Southwestern State University
* Gabriel Woody: Briar Cliff University, Hamline University

Congratulations to Omar Martinez who has been admitted to Stanford University and is Colonial's first OCPS Super Scholar for the Class of 2020!
Stanford University in northern California where Omar Martinez has been accepted, is ranked #6 in the USA among National Universities according to U.S. News & World Report 2020 rankings.
Worldwide School Closures as of April 3

As of this past Friday, over 1.5 billion students are at home as they have seen their schools closed due to the coronavirus. Hundreds of U.S. counties and scores of nations around the world cannot offer distance learning to keep their students' education progressing with 1/4 of the school year undone. While it is not a perfect situation, we are so fortunate to be part of a school district that can keep our students engaged academically until this crisis has passed. We thank all of our families for their support and understanding as we refine the process. 

* Please click here or on the chart to view the day-by-day growth in students displaced from their schools through April 3 due to the coronavirus outbreak.  
Monday's Motivational Moment!
Making the Best of Life

JOHN WOODEN, the great UCLA basketball coach who won more NCAA championships than any collegiate coach in history, once made a profound statement about life in general. He said,  
"Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out!"
What he was really talking about was the most important determiner of success: attitude. Attitude is a choice, not an emotion, not a talent that some possess and others do not, not a complicated skill to be learned, but a choice. It can be a difficult choice especially in the face of adversity or tragedy, yet there are those among us who are still able to make the right choice.  
Think of attitude as a discipline, the same thing as staying fit or arriving to school on time, every day. You must work at it daily to make it work for you. The natural result of attitude is action. A great attitude produces an abundance of positive action vs. a poor attitude which creates no action or destructive behavior. For example, procrastination is the result of poor attitude. The interesting thing is this: it all starts and forms from our daily thoughts. The more positive and productive thoughts we have, the more success we will realize.!
For now our students are engaged in Distance Learning - something that only a few weeks ago we were not prepared for. But thanks to many fiercely dedicated and tireless teachers plus some very talented OCPS technology support personnel, our students have the opportunity to carry on with their education. Compare where we are at OCPS with those located in hundreds of U.S. counties and scores of nations around the world where their learning has been abruptly shut off with 1/4 of what their students were due now lost.  
We understand this is not the perfect situation and that our Grenadiers greatly miss their friends, classmates, teammates, coaches and teachers. But hopefully after this month classes will resume as normal. Until then, think about your attitude daily, just as you might in terms of getting in shape, playing with your pets, hanging out with friends, or anything else you enjoy in life.  
I know our Grenadiers have the attitude to do what it takes to succeed partly because . . . "It's Great to be a Grenadier!"   
Dr. Maestre, Principal 
Colonial High School 
Sunday, April 5, 2020  

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Leadership Team

chs Principal: Dr. Hector Maestre
Assistant Principal: Ms. Elizabeth Fuller
Assistant Principal: Mr. Jason Jimenez
Assistant Principal: Mr. Jonathan Zenzel
Assistant Principal: Ms. Kimberly Parsons
Assistant Principal: Ms. Maricarmen Aponte
Assistant Principal: Mr. Michael Mezger
Assistant Principal: Ms. Mary Vetter
Leadership Team Biographies: Leadership Team Biographies

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