August 26, 2018
"The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it" ~Flannery O'Connor
In this issue:

  • Headmaster Letter
  • AHM Letter
  • Curriculum Night
  • Drop off and dismissal
  • Carpool Program
  • PSO Events
  • Women's Self Defense
  • Great Hearts Gala
Headmaster Letter
Dear North Phoenix Prep Families,

Over the past week, I have engaged in many conversations with our faculty, families, and students about homework. The time spent on daily assignments also has been, I am quite aware, a perennial topic around your family dinner tables. Particularly in the high school, daily homework has been a challenge for our students, with the daily target being about three hours.  

Certainly, nobody in our community objects to challenging students with the rich content of a classical education. That's why our families send their students here, and that's why our teachers want to teach here. At the same time, we also want our students to wonder, to express their curiosity, and truly to enjoy the pursuit of wisdom and virtue at our Academy. We want to challenge our students while maintaining their capacity for a challenge. Furthermore, we want our students to take real delight in their studies. 

At the beginning of the school year, I said that our job is to love the students unconditionally, which means that we will their good in all things. The decisions that I've made about homework are driven by that principle of willing their good:  
Our overall target for high school daily homework will now be 2 hours. I am defining homework as deliberate practice of/preparation for the day’s lesson, not as studying for tests/essays/projects, which may take additional time. This means I’m committing to a 1/3 reduction from the old model, in which the target was 3 hours for high school. Or, to put it another way, if high school homework was 30 minutes per class, it’s now 20 minutes per class (with HL thus getting 40 minutes). 
All faculty will now use a uniform template for collecting self-reported data from the students about homework times. This is so that our faculty can consistently track whether they are meeting the target, discover any relevant patterns, and address any inconsistencies that may arise.
Students have differing abilities, and teachers sometimes miss the target on an assignment. Thus, some students may spend less time than the target, others more. We're only human, and so I am certain that we will encounter nuances or complexities that we cannot see yet. Know that I am 100% committed to supporting our whole community in fleshing out further issues, and addressing them so that the new target that I have set becomes the norm far more often than not. I believe that this will deepen our students' engagement and help them become the best versions of themselves.  

With Devotion,
Headmaster Weinhold
Assistant Headmaster Letter
Dear Parents,

This is an especially important week in the life of North Phoenix Prep. Starting on Monday, students and teachers will be carefully tracking homework. On Thursday, all parents are invited to attend our annual Curriculum Night. Both merit special attention.

Homework Self-Assessment:
In a 2017 article published in The Guardian, neuroscientist Helen Silvester cited research pointing to the importance of homework in supporting the learning of students in grades 7-12. In particular, an analysis of research conducted between 1987 and 2003 confirmed that “With only rare exceptions, the relationship between the amount of homework students do and their achievement outcomes was found to be positive and statistically significant.” In other words, homework helps, right? Not so fast. Silvester also cited research that indicates that in high-performing high schools, “56% of students considered homework a primary source of stress.” High levels of stress impact a student’s ability to engage in their work. Where is the sweet spot?

At North Phoenix Prep, we are blessed to have highly qualified faculty who care deeply about your child’s learning. For the past several weeks teachers have been experimenting with monitoring homework and using that feedback to adjustment their instruction and assignments. I can’t tell you what a privilege it is to work with such innovative and motivated educators! The preliminary findings have been so impactful, that we have decided to expand the monitoring of homework schoolwide. Starting on Monday, every student will be tracking the time spent on their homework for every class.

The best way you can help us in this important effort is to encourage your child to diligently and faithfully complete their NPX Daily Self-Assessment Summary Sheet. Teachers and administration will be regularly and carefully reviewing the data to inform our instruction and homework policies. And please know that there is neither penalty nor reward for information communicated on the Self-Assessment Sheet. We value accurate data, and we appreciate your support in encouraging your children to partner with their teachers in this effort.

Curriculum Night, Thursday, 8/30, 6-8pm:
In last week’s Newsletter I wrote about the link between academic achievement and parental involvement in school. Curriculum Night offers a unique opportunity to enter into your child’s world. During Curriculum Night, you will follow your child’s class schedule and learn from their teachers as they offer ten-minute mini lessons. Please know that the abbreviated schedule is just enough time to experience how the course is taught, but not enough time to ask questions about class procedures or your child’s progress. If you would like to converse with a teacher about your child, please make an appointment. Finally, know that this is a parents-only event, and truly one of the best nights of the year!

Yours,
Ms. Cindy Coughlon, Assistant Headmaster
Curriculum Night!
North Phoenix Prep will be hosting its annual Curriculum Night on Thursday, August 30th from 6-8 pm. Reminder: this is a parent only event.

This special evening is your opportunity to walk through a day in the life of your student and to meet your student’s teachers. You are encouraged to arrive early in order to pick up your schedule. 
Drop off and Dismissal Reminders

Thank you for your patience with the drop-off and dismissal process these first three weeks. In order for things to continue to improve and to run smoothly and safely, keep the following items from the Family Handbook in mind:
 
Pick-Up Plan Traffic flow is the same as the drop-off procedures. The timing of dismissal is as follows: If your eldest students are K - 6th graders, dismissal begins at 3:00. If your eldest are Prep students, please do not arrive until 3:25 pm . This will help with the congestion and traffic flow. All cars will EXIT SOUTHBOUND onto 32nd Street as there are 'Right Turn Only' signs in place for this. Please do not use The Elks Lodge parking lot to park and/or drop-off/pick-up your students without proper authorization from The Elks Lodge. There is 'No Parking' along Hearn Street and the adjoining neighborhood streets. Please honor the signs posted . Please do not park in the Student Parking spaces located in the northwest corner of the property. These spaces are provided to student drivers who have paid for these spots. They are numbered and designated signs are posted.




Carpool Program
Another way to help with drop off and dismissal is to enroll in the  carpool program  sponsored by our PSO. North Phoenix families can register online for private access to an interactive map that enables you to locate and contact others in the carpool family.  








Cornhole Tournament hosted by Dad's Club

Saturday, September 8
6:30 pm @
Italian American Club
Dad's Club presents the 11  th   annual Dad's Club Cornhole Tournament ($20/person includes food; cash bar).   RSVP in advance   for tournament bracket setup. Questions?  dadsclub@anppso.org
Sack Lunch Service Event

When: Saturday morning at 10 am,  September 15th.  
Where: Elks Lodge 335
What: We will be putting sack lunches together that we then take down to Phoenix Rescue Mission.  
Who: All ages welcome. This is the rare service event where all ages can really help.
Needs: In addition to simply coming to help put together the sack lunches, we have the following specific needs:
  • We ask each family to contribute at least $30 to help with the food costs
  • Bring cardboard boxes to help transport the sack lunches when we are done
  • Help drive the lunches down to Phoenix Rescue Mission

Great Hearts North Phoenix Prep Women’s Self Defense
Women’s Self Defense
A Weekend Enrichment Activity
for the
GreatHearts North Phoenix Prep Community
The program will be conducted by Master Kaneen and a corps of certified instructors at the facilities of 9 Dragons Kung Fu in three, two-hour classes. Sessions will be held on Saturday afternoons in September and October.
GreatHearts North Phoenix Preparatory Academy, in partnership with Master Michael Kaneen and 9 Dragons Kung Fu, is pleased to present a practical course in self-defense for our female students. This course focuses on the key aspects of self-defense for women, including knowledge, instinct, preparation, situational awareness, and specific techniques for repelling a physical attack.

The Second Annual NPX Women’s Self Defense series, and NPX Weekend Enrichment activity, will be held over four weekends in September and October. Beginning September 1, this fun activity is open to all women Prep students (grades 7 to 12) as well as moms and dads and female NPX teachers and staff. Have fun with your friends while learning important skills and techniques from Master Michael Kaneen, leading consultant to businesses and government and member of the US Martial Arts Hall of Fame. Regardless of whether you participated last year, join us for a remarkable event. 

Please consult the documents linked below to register 


Tickets on Sale Now: Great Hearts Gala
September 29th, 5:30p.m. at Chateau Luxe

Hosted  Cocktail Hour, Silent Auction, Dinner, Program featuring Great Hearts Students, Live Auction, Raffle, Music and Dancing
under the Stars
WE NEED YOUR SUPPORT
Do you have a business or a business connection who could donate items to the
Silent or Live auction? If so, please:
Contact Denise Zabilski at  dzabilski@greatheartsaz.org

Individual tickets  on sale now  !! 
Sponsorships still  available
$250 per person

North Phoenix Preparatory | 14100 N 32nd Street | Phoenix, AZ | 85032 | 602-996-