Welcome to the Week of February 7, 2021!
February is a time to reflect. We went out remote almost one year ago. F. Scott Fitzgerald said, "It was only a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light it scattered the night and made the day worth living." We feel fortunate to see the faces of our scholars each day engaging with our rigorous curriculum, pondering deeper questions, wondering at the world around them, and interacting with their peers through discussion and play. Many of our students are still currently remote, and we highly encourage a return to in-person schooling as the environment most conducive to learning.

We are thrilled about some new programs and events that we are developing for in-person students and families during the second semester of school. Look forward to more details soon about these exciting new activities.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) recently announced that it will be requiring all students—including those currently enrolled in Distance Learning—to take all State-mandated assessments in person. Beginning February 24, our English Learners will be required to be on campus for TELPAS testing. All 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students will take the STAAR test in either April or May and are required to complete the STAAR assessment in person as well. More details about STAAR will be communicated in the coming weeks.

If you are considering a return to in-person learning, please reach out to Ms. Finn to let us know so that we can be prepared to welcome your child back to our school building.
At a Glance
February 8 | Grade 1 Open Forum
February 15 | Presidents' Day Holiday
February 16 | Spirit Night at Chipotle
February 24-March 4 | TELPAS for Distance Learners
Visit greatheartsirving.org for the most up-to-date information and much more.
Life at School
While we remain committed to providing the best possible classical education for all our students, as Ms. Finn's Letter from the Headmaster for February stated, the Distance Learning format comes with unavoidable limitations. Memorizing and reciting poetry is a key part of our curriculum at Great Hearts Irving. In-person students have the opportunity to practice reciting poems together, which makes their recitations more fluent, more expressive, and more impactful.

Our third graders have been working to memorize a speech the hero Aeneas makes in the Aeneid, arguably the most important literary work in all of Western Civilization. Aeneas's speech is one of encouragement through adversity, and his words speak powerfully to our present moment. Click here for a recording of a dramatic recitation by our very own third graders.
Please let us know of your intent to return by sending Ms. Finn an email.
A Closer Look
Grade 1 Open Forum
Parents of First Grade scholars are invited to a virtual Open Forum with Ms. Finn over Facebook Live on Monday, February 8 beginning at 8am.

Health Screenings
Parents of distance learners in Kindergarten, 1st, 3rd, 5th grades, and all students new to Great Hearts Irving should sign up for a time to visit the campus for State-mandated health screenings.

Great Hearts Advocacy
Register for a virtual Parent Advocacy Rally happening on February 10 from 5:30 to 6:30pm. Sponsored by the Texas Public Charter School Association, the rally will include important legislative updates from Starlee Coleman, the TPCSA’s chief executive officer. 

On the Horizon
Spirit Night at Chipotle
Save the date for our next Spirit Night at Chipotle on I-635 and Belt Line on February 16th between 5 and 9pm. And don't forget that scholars can wear their Spirit Shirts to school!