School Starts August 24th – We’re Excited for A New Year!

All Southwest Schools campuses officially begin the 2015-2016 school year on August 24th.  While our teachers and staff are busy getting the classrooms ready, there are a few things you can do to help your child prepare to transition back to a school schedule.

 

  • Bedtime Routine: Going back to school means an end to staying up late. To help your child transition back to waking up early, try going to bed one hour earlier every night and waking up earlier…start this routine several weeks before school starts, not the night before.

The National Sleep Foundation provides guidelines for the amount of sleep children should get at different ages. They suggest kids between the ages of 3 and 5 get 10 to 13 hours of sleep a night; ages 6 to 13 need 9 to 11 hours of sleep; and teens 14 and older should get 8 to 10 hours of sleep a night.

  • Annual Checkup (Dental and Eye exams too)  Annual checkups should be done by a pediatrician before the start of each new school year to ensure that your child’s medical records and vaccinations are up to date. (You might need to provide this information to the school.)
  • Nutrition and Mealtime:  The majority of kids spend the summer eating differently, with less rules and more tasty treats, now’s the time to change that. Summertime snacks should not go in the brown bag. Before the new school year starts, get your child back into the habit of eating three regular meals a day: breakfast, lunch and dinner. It’s also good to check with your child’s school to find out about lunch options and meal schedules before the start of the new school year.

Starting the new school year can be a time of great excitement… and anxiety. Help calm your child’s fears (and your own) with these teacher-approved tips.

  • Meet the teacher: For kids, one of the biggest back-to-school fears is “Will I like my new teacher?” Breaking the ice early on is one of the best ways to calm everyone’s fears. Take advantage of your school’s open house or back-to-school bash. Some teachers welcome phone calls or e-mails — another great opportunity to get to know each other before the year begins.If personal contact with the teacher isn’t possible, try locating the teacher’s picture on a school website or in a yearbook, so your child can put a name with a face.
  • Take a tour: If your school hosts an open house, be sure to go. Familiarizing your child with his/her school and classroom will help avoid first day jitters. Together you can meet her teacher, find her desk, or explore the cafeteria and playground.
  • Shop for supplies: Get a copy of the class supply list and take a special shopping trip with your child. Having the right tools will help his/her feel prepared. While keeping basic needs in mind, allow for a couple of splurges like a cool notebook or a favorite-colored pen. These simple pleasures make going back to school a lot more fun.
  • Ease into the routine: Switching from a summer to a school schedule can be stressful to everyone in the household. Avoid first-day-of-school mayhem by practicing your routine a few days in advance. Set the alarm clock, go through your morning rituals, and get in the car or to the bus stop on time. Routines help children feel comfortable, and establishing a solid school routine will make the first day of school go much smoother.

 

 




Southwest Schools District Meets Standard of Texas Education Agency

 

Southwest Schools is pleased to announce that the District (and all schools therein) earned “Met Standard” rating for the state for the 2014-2015 school year.

 

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) established the standards to encompass four primary criteria:

  • Index 1: Student Achievement—Based on the percentage of test scores at or above the satisfactory level. (All students)
  • Index 2: Student Progress—A weighted composite based on the percentage of test scores that met or exceeded progress measures on reading, writing and math. Growth is evaluated by subject and by student group. 
(All students; student groups by race/ethnicity; English language learners; special education)
  • Index 3: Closing Performance Gaps—Based on improving academic achievement of economically disadvantaged students and the two lowest performing ethnic groups at each campus or district. (All economically disadvantaged students; student groups by race/ethnicity)
  • Index 4: Postsecondary Readiness—Based on high school completion rates and the percentage of students graduating on the Recommended or Distinguished plans. This measure only applies to districts and high school campuses. 
(All students; student groups by race/ethnicity; English language learners; special education)
  • According to TEA Commissioner of Education, Michael Williams, “Under the new accountability system, these designations recognize outstanding work at the campus level that would not be acknowledged in previous years.”



Southwest Schools Receives Charter School FIRST Rating

Southwest Schools is pleased to announce the accomplishment of Charter School First Rating.

 

The purpose of the financial accountability rating system, known as the School Financial Integrity Rating System of Texas (FIRST), is to ensure that open-enrollment charter schools are held accountable for the quality of their financial management practices and that they improve those practices.