News & Notes January 19, 2018
What's Happening at The Academies? 

Jan 22 -- **NO SCHOOL - Staff Development**

Jan 23 - Feb 2 -- Tomato Garden Fundraiser

Jan 25 -- Info Meeting @ Blue Oak

Feb 1 -- Info Meeting @ SVA

Feb 1 -- School Tour @ SVA 

Feb 2 -- School Tour @ Blue Oak

Feb 3 -- Chess Tournament

Feb 8 -- Info Meeting @ Blue Oak

Feb 12 -- Poetry & Prose Auditions

Feb 12 -- PTO Meetings

Feb 13 -- Info Meeting @ Annie R. Mitchell

Feb 21 -- Admissions Lotteries

Apply NOW for 2018-19! 

Spread the word! The admissions window for 2018-19 is now open! 

Now is the time for you to share our fabulous school with your friends and neighbors. Applying is easy! Just turn in our one-page application by noon on February 21. 

Spread the word. Share, share, share! 

A Message from VP Benton

Hey SVA Family,

Allan here at the Vice Principal desk. This week I thought I would share a little about what I do and what my intentions are when I work with your scholars in my capacity as Vice Principal.

While I do often see students because of a problematic behavior that has occurred, it is also my practice to visit with and check in with scholars proactively, whether or not there has ever been any problem. I make it my goal to learn as many of the student's names as I can, and am typically pretty close to 100% by the later part of the year (it's the whole new crew of Kinders that always gets me! Lol). I try to have positive contact with as many students as possible, every single day, as part of building the school community and also as a preventative measure against future behaviors. It is always my intent to make our scholars feel seen, known, and appreciated.

When I have the opportunity to advise or counsel students, I have a guiding principle that directs me. I am helping students "find their gifts," and then find ways to use them effectively. I ask scholars tons of questions about what they enjoy doing, in and out of school, what things they are good at, and with what things they struggle most. It is my belief that success/happiness/joy in life begins with pairing a person's passion/love for something with their natural abilities/aptitudes/gifts, and finding a way to fulfill some need with those gifts and passions. My effort is to help students begin to realize their passions, recognize their abilities and make connections between those things and needs that they see around them in their world. People who feel that they can positively affect their community through the use of their talents and abilities are happy people!

Another goal I work constantly toward is for students here to always feel that they have a safe place, with a safe adult to come to when needing support. I strive to ensure that students are able to trust that they will get an ear ready to listen fully and completely, and a person to walk with them through a particular struggle until resolution is found to make things as right as possible. I want our scholars to feel comfortable to walk right into my open door with their struggles and to trust that they will be addressed with the seriousness and respect they deserve.

I want all of our scholars to feel self-respect and dignity. I want them to feel valued and worthwhile. My work with your student is in an effort to help produce these feelings inside them and give them the strength and ability to make great choices on their own.

My door is always open to parents too. If you ever have questions or concerns regarding your child, please don't hesitate to reach out.

Thanks so much for entrusting us with your children.

Allan Benton
The Academies Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. 

Several of our families joined the march honoring MLK Jr last week. The march started at the Visalia Boys and Girls Club and ended with an  event  at Garden Plaza.  The theme of the march was "coming together".

To honor Dr. King, students created portraits of the civil rights leader. Pictured above are some of the portraits by Mrs. Weeaks' kindergarten class. 

Poetry & Prose

Is your child a performer?  Confident speaking in front of others? Would s/he like to be?  If so, Poetry and Prose might be just the thing to try! This county-wide oral interpretation event is open to all SVA students, grades K-8.
  • Students may perform alone, in partners or a group.
  • Material may be read or memorized (memorized is pre ferred).
  • Selection may be a piece of poetry or prose.
  • Typical entries are 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Meaningful gestures and facial expressions are encouraged.
  • No costumes, props or character makeup is allowed.
SVA is limited in the number of students we may send to the county competition, so  a uditions will be held after school on Monday, February 12th.  Selected students will perform in front of an audience and judges at the Tulare County Office of Education on Thursday, March 22.  Sign up forms are available in the front office with Mrs. George and are due by Wednesday, February 7.

KSVA TV Channel 20

The KSVA TV Channel 20 crew cover New Year's resolutions at SVA. Enjoy!


Tomato Garden Fundraiser

Please ask your family and friends to consider buying a tomato garden. This locally operated fundraiser will help our PTOs raise money to support our students.

Order forms go home with students on Tuesday, January 23.

Each tomato garden sells for $15

Buy now, plant later! Tomatoes will be delivered mid-March

Learn more about Gardens 4 Education and this local fundraiser:

Checks can be made payable to SVA PTO or BOA PTO.

Return your envelope, money, and order form to the office or your teacher by Friday, February 2.

Participation is optional and monetary donations in lieu of participating are always welcome!

English Learner Advisory Committee

SVA parents, please come to learn about our school's English Learner Advisory Committee ( ELAC). We will briefly discuss what this committee is and what it does. You are welcome to join us yourself, or to nominate any parent to join who you think might be good fit (be sure to let them know that you nominated them!). We especially encourage parents of English Learners to be part of this committee. 

This committee will advise the principal and school staff on possible programs and services for English Learners at SVA.

English Learner Advisory Committee  Info Meeting
Monday, January 22 at 3:30PM
Location: SVA, Rm 19 

Thanks for your consideration!

Chess Club Tournament 

Chess Club will be participating in our first tournament on Saturday, February 3 in Fresno.  If your child is interested in participating, please email Mrs. Rasner at

Jog-a-Thon Sponsorship Opportunity 

Are you a local business owner who supports children?  Do you know one?   Please help by spreading the word and consider becoming an event sponsor.  Business sponsorships are due 2/16.  

Sycamore Valley's Jog-a-Thon will be held on March 7 .  

Blue Oak's Jog-a-Thon info is coming soon!

SVA Basketball

The Girls and Boys Basketball season has begun!
Next game: Tuesday, January 23 @ Sundale. 

View the team calendar for the complete schedule. 

School Breakfast and Lunch 

Did you know that breakfast is available each school morning beginning at  7:45? It is!

You can pay for meals with cash or check (get an envelope in the school office) or online with our payment service You will need to register, create an account and provide an ID number for every student you're including. An app is available so you can easily use this service on your smartphone. If you need to access your student's ID number, please call your school's front office. 

School breakfast will be available at both schools before the school day begins. The cost for breakfast is $1.25.  The cost for lunch is $2.00. Applications for free or reduced price lunch will be sent home with your child on the first day of school. 

Menus are always available on our website.  Click here for the January menu

Substitute Custodian Needed  
The Academies Charters is seeking a backup daytime custodian. F ingerprint clearance is required. 

Substitute Teachers Needed
The Academies Charters have an experienced and dedicated teaching staff, but we are always looking to expand our sub list. 

If you or someone you know has the desire to be a substitute teacher at our amazing school, has a bachelor's degree, has passed the CBEST, and is willing to get a substitute credential and fingerprint clearance we would love to grow our team. 

Substitute Instructional Aides Needed 
The Academies Aide Subs minimum requirements are a high school diploma and fingerprint clearance. 

If you are interested please email Shauna Dolin at

Next SVA PTO Meeting
Next BOA PTO Meeting
January 8 January 8
Round Table Pizza
Round Table Pizza
Packwood Creek Center
Mary's Vineyard
4035 S. Mooney Blvd.
1691 E. Noble Ave.

If you would like to share any ideas or add an agenda item for discussion at the  PTO  meeting please  email  it to at least one week prior to the meeting. 

NEW: Spanish translation available at meetings
Community Events

UPHS Enrollment Information Nights

Spring info meetings for University Prep High School will be held on the COS campus in room Yokut 9 on the following dates: 
  • Thursday, February 8, 6pm-7pm i
  • Thursday, February 22, 6pm-7pm
  • Thursday, March 8, 6pm-7pm
  • Thursday, March 22, 6pm-7pm
Screenagers: Growing Up in the Digital Age
Don't miss the screening of this documentary film followed by discussion of the issues of families and the internet, sponsored by the Fresno Pacific University School of Education and including faculty members.
Free | Seating limited  | Click here to register
February 24

Fresno Pacific University - Visalia Campus

245 N. Plaza Drive
VisaliaCA  93291
Phone: 559-302-4100
Know of a community event you'd like to share? Email information and images to Claudia Van Groningen
The Academies CMO| 559.622-3236 |