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Welcome Letter

Dear Students and Parents,

Welcome to the 2017 - 2018 school year.  I’m happy to have you as a part of our schools, and I’m excited about starting a brand new year.   Our commitment to you is to do our very best to teach students to be Effective Communicators and Critical Thinkers. This year I look forward to student growth, both academically and personally. You can expect several changes to our program this year, including our start/release times, bell schedule, and class rotations.  You will find these in communications from our secretaries.

All four of our teachers will be returning:   Mr. Anderson (History, Government and Economics), Ms. DeLeon (English and P.E.), Ms. Dennen (Science, Art & online learning) and Mr. Winders (Math and Music Appreciation).  We will also continue to utilize the services of Valarie Alston, our college and career specialist, to provide critical instruction in that area and support for all students.  Our teachers are easiest to reach via district email through Aeries.net Parent Portal.

Please make attendance a priority, as our district greatly benefits from revenue generated by student attendance.  Lost revenue critically limits the funding for materials, supplies, programs, and enrichment activities our students so deserve.

Parents, you should expect a phone call each day that your student is absent.  Lill Aspoy-Codiroli is returning as the secretary of Sonoma Mountain and Julie Corda as secretary of Carpe Diem.  We work closely with the district to monitor attendance because we have found that students who are absent are often earning fewer credits than we would prefer.  In addition, because tardies cut into instructional time, we have a no-fault tardy policy and expect students to make up time that they miss in class on the day they miss it. Students not keeping up academically, behaviorally or with attendance will be considered for a different placement (see credit earning agreement).

Students at both CD and SM will continue to use iPads to strengthen and add variety to learning opportunities as well as chromebooks on a daily basis.   Along with planned field trips, we will continue to incorporate our outdoor education program with several day hikes throughout the year and a culminating overnight campout in the spring. 

We purposely design our schools so that each student who tries hard can find success.  You should know that we truly appreciate students who are committed to improving academics, attendance and attitude.   

Together we will work hard on developing consistency and responsibility.  Please do everything you can to keep the positive attitude I hope you are starting the year with, and follow through with your goals and the commitments you have already set as well as the new ones we develop together for you as a learner.

Moving into my 11th year in alternative education, I have learned the value of getting to know all of our students well.  Please be as patient with me as you would like me to be with you. We will all do better if we work hard at treating each other as human beings.   I will do all I can to support our students in their academics, personal interests, and personal development.  Please feel free to call or email me with any questions or concerns throughout the course of the year.

 Thank you in advance for your cooperation and hard work you will put in to be successful,

 Gregory A. Stevenson, MA