White Pine Charter School  Newsletter
Cougars are Willing, Positive, Connected, and Significant
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Success for Every Student 

 

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November 2017                                                                               Vol. 01
 

Parent Connection
  

Some parents with students at White Pine Charter School were asked the following question, what made you bring your children to WPCS?

"My family chose to attend White Pine Charter School because of it's challenging academic atmosphere and focus on Core Knowledge. We love that our  children
are able to grow in many directions while being fostered by the best teachers in the area. Teachers go above and beyond and care for my children in more than just academic areas.                                - Joanna  Stark 

My kids attend White Pine for the one-on-one tailored education they receive. Each one of my children has had special attention given to them to help them succeed  individually."                  - Shannon Kinghorn

I was drawn to White Pine 12 years ago when my first child started kindergarten. I liked the thought of all-day kindergarten, Spanish as a  specials class, and  afternoon kindergarten being more science and nature oriented. I liked that they had group classes as well as individual time in kindergarten because I believe social skills are huge part of achievement. As my children progressed through White Pine, they required speech therapy, which was offered, as well as two levels of reading and math. My child was catered to at whatever level they were at. They did not fall behind or feel bored. The middle school has been awesome in offering great choices of electives, and the teachers are all amazing. The assistant principal (who used to be the third-grade teacher) does a phenomenal job in behavior modification plans, which have helped my child grow and learn how to handle difficult situations. Thank you White Pine for such a great experience!                  - Stephanie Liddle

Exciting News from the Board of Directors

Your school's board of directors have been hard at work with an eye on enhancing the educational opportunities at White Pine Charter School. 

Since communications with parents is a top goal, we are excited to create this monthly newsletter and announce that a new website is coming soon. With these new communications in place, parents should feel in the know. Plus, you'll be able to access the information they need in an easier, quicker and more convenient way. We anticipate the website's launch in December, and as part of this initiative, a professional photoshoot will take place later this month. 

The board has established six goals for this school year. Here they are in a nutshell: 
  • More fully bring parents into the academic equation. Research shows that parent involvement is one of the most important elements for a student's long-term success. We want to ensure you always how your student is performing in real-time, so you can help them in whatever way is needed. 
  • Improve academic performance by providing teachers and students all of the resources they need to succeed. For example, the Board recently funded 1:1 technology in the middle school
  • Improve our school's facilities (e.g. cafeteria, sidewalks, landscaping, two modulars, hallways, gym, etc.) 
  • Create and maintain a thriving, vibrant middle school (with meaningful before and after-school activities)  
  • Reinforce White Pine's longstanding reputation as the top school in southeast Idaho
  • Chart the course for White Pine's expansion in high school
You'll notice the final goal is lofty: expand into high school. Although previous boards analyzed this scenario and applied the brakes, the current board passionately believes that pushing forward is critical. As a result, we are quickly drafting strategic plans, defining the new school's curriculum and points of differentiation, approaching potential donors, and examining possible locations. 

On November 8,  a few board  members toured an innovative STEM-focused school in Washington State with several Idaho legislators. We came away with several ideas we want to implement at the next level.

WPCS board members (Tony Lima, Joanna Stark), Principal Clarke, and three Idaho legislators (Rep. Wendy Horman, Sen. Dean Mortimer, Rep. Julie VanOrden) toured the STEM-focused Delta High School in Pasco, Washington.

If you are interested in sharing ideas about our expansion into high school, please  chat w ith Jeremy and Ken. The Board also invites your input at our meetings. 

On a different note, we've received so many positive comments about our new breakfast and lunch offering. You may recall that we spent last summer installing a top-of-the-line kitchen, completing it just days before the start of school. We used to bring in lunch each day from a District 93 kitchen and then re-heat it. Now, not only is the food much fresher, but it is also much tastier. We control the quality. Our dedicated kitchen staff is continually elevating the menus, focusing on homemade, made-from-scratch options, and rolling out delightful recipes. 

Lastly, you should know that WIPFLI LLP, an independent accounting firm, just audited our 2016-2017 financials. They reported no material weaknesses. White Pine Charter School is doing well financially; we have a solid balance sheet; and we have strong cash reserves to weather storms in the future. 


Administration Update
 
Our students are having an excellent year.  We enjoyed seeing so many of you at our Back to School Night, parent/teacher conferences, The School Carnival, STEM night, Movie night, and as so many of you have served as volunteers in the classroom! One of the top determining factors in a student's success is parental involvement at the school. Please spend time volunteering in the classroom, helping out with PFA functions or simply come and enjoy a meal with your student in our cafeteria.
We would like to remind everyone that as the temperatures fall, students need to bundle up. Our students will play outside unless the outside temperature is below 0 degrees or with a wind chill factor of 0 degrees or below. Please make sure that when the snow starts to fall, your child is equipped with snow pants, warm hats, gloves and boots.  
As the spirit of the holiday season is upon us, I would like to make a suggestion that a book is a gift that every child would enjoy. Students who read at least 30 minutes every day tend to score higher on tests, earn better grades in school, and demonstrate greater creativity.  
Happy Thanksgiving!


Counseling Corner


Middle School:
The Green Dot Club has been amazing this year.  They have been up and active from the beginning. In October they hosted the Halloween Costume Swap so that families could share costumes. The activity was designed to be a service project toward those that are unable to afford costumes. We will be doing this activity again next year. The leftover costumes are being stored until then.
Next up for the Green Dot Club is helping with the holiday assistance programs here at WPCS. They will help organize the Turkey Boxes and help with the Angel Tree. The Green Dot Club Leaders have decided that their mission this year is to "make a great change by treating everyone equally and including everyone."  Student leadership training is being revamped and will roll out in the next couple months.  It is Mrs. Elsbree's intent to include the current student leaders in the training so that the group works cohesively together.
Elementary:
Red Ribbon Week this year was great!  The national theme was "Your future is key so stay drug free."  We had a lot of discussion throughout the school about the future.  Next time you're in the school building take a look at our handprint wall.  Next to your student's handprint, you will find what they would like to be when they grow up. Some of the ideas that they came up with were, "musician, artist, scientist, neurosurgeon, vet, chemist, and a billionaire."
Donation Closet:  It is cold!  If you have spare coats, boots, gloves, or hats that are in great condition, please consider donating them to students in need.  
Turkey Boxes:  For the last two years Mrs. Elsbree has organized the turkey boxes for families in need.  She works with classes who would like to adopt a family, teaching them the skill of giving, accepting others, and being grateful.  If your student's class chooses to participate, you will receive an email home with a list of items needed.  Please work with your student's teacher for needed donations.  The Green Dot Club will help arrange the final collections from classes.
Angel Tree:  Each year the White Pine community helps to provide gifts to families in need.  Prior to Thanksgiving Break you will receive notification to when the tags are put on the tree.  We try to get this done early in case there is a great deal during Black Friday or Cyber Monday.  Green Dot students will help organize this event and wrap presents.

Message from our PFA
 
We are having a great year this year and are so thankful for all the support you have provided us so far.  We had record attendance at our Fall Carnival, record sales with Popcorn Friday, and one of the highest submissions for Box Tops with our first collection.  Thanks to our successful fundraising efforts so far, we have been able to purchase ball and jump rope sets for each Kindergarten through fifth grade class, a standing desk for Ms. Croft's classroom, an iPad Mini 2 for Ms. Whitworth's classroom, and a gift card to Home Depot for Mr. Lang.  
Our next goals are letters for the outside of the school building that will say "White Pine Charter School" and a portable stage. With your continued support, we should easily be able to accomplish these goals!
This month, we have already had PFA-sponsored events.  Our final event is this Friday:
November 17: Hat Day
Since Thanksgiving week is the following week and football is a big part of that week, we are asking that students and faculty wear a hat with their team's favorite color or logo.
To stay up to date with PFA happenings, please be sure to like our Facebook page: White Pine Charter School PFA.  We post all of our latest information there as well as volunteer opportunities.  If you have any questions, we can also be reached at whitepinepfa@gmail.com.


Lady Cougars move to 3-0 with victories over Taylors Crossing and Holy Spirit last week!




STEAM Club off to great start!





Cross Country had a successful season!




Capturing Cougars in Action


Hands on learning in Mr. Lang's STEAM class. A core class at White Pine Charter School .

Dr. Hank put on a great assembly about being an upstander.


White Pine student council created a rendition of the "Black Pearl" for the Pumpkin Walk at McCowin Park.


  White Pine students gave a Veterans Day performance at the Life Care Center. 













 


  Monthly Events

Nov 14  Girls Basketball - Connor Academy @ WPCS 5:30

Nov 15  Burgess Basketball Camps for Grades 2-5 4:00 - 7:00

Nov 16 Girls Basketball - WPCS @ Swan Valley 5:30

Nov 16  3rd Grade Endangered Species Zoo 8:30 - 11:30

Nov 17 No School

Nov 17 End of 1st Trimester

Nov 20-24 Thanksgiving Break

Nov 28 Girls Basketball - WPCS @ ISTCS

Nov 30 Nutcracker Field Trip for 3rd/4th Grade 

Dec 1 Spirit Day/Popcorn Friday

Dec 5 Girls Basketball - Holy Spirit @ WPCS

Dec 6 - Family Night at Freddy's 5-8

Dec 7 Girls Basketball - Swan Valley @ WPCS

Dec 12 Girls Basketball - Taylor's Crossing @ WPCS

Dec 14 Girls Basketball - WPCS @ Connor Academy

Dec 22 Early Release Day

Dec 25 - Jan 5 Winter  Break




Our funding is 
based on student attendance 

When you make appointments that could take your child away from school, please schedule them for after 1 p.m. We lose funding if students leave before 1 p.m. Also, please plan vacations when school is out of session. We want to secure as much funding as possible to invest in your children!

Office Info 

Please check in at the front office before heading to a classroom. F or the safety of your children, a ll adults must have a visitor badge.