Dr. Angle's Blog


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Happy New Year!

 

I know what you are thinking.  This message is a couple weeks late.  Actually, it’s right on time for our students who begin second semester on Tuesday, Jan 19 when they return from the long weekend. 

 

First semester credit will have been issued (assuming a passing grade was earned) and second semester will begin.  A time to get a fresh start; a time to make resolutions to do better; a time to say “Happy New Year!”

 

As we begin the second half of the year, I encourage ALL of us—teachers, parents, students—to think back to the enthusiasm we felt in August when we started this year.

 

I encourage ALL of us to remember the tenants of the Give Me Five initiative: Attendance, Attitude, Academics, Athletics, and Activities.  And, to resolve to do better in each of them.

 

Take a few minutes to do a check-in with yourself by asking these questions:

 

--Am I arriving at school ON TIME every day, unless I have a LEGITIMATE, EXCUSABLE reason to be tardy or absent?

 

--Am I staying for the FULL INSTRUCTIONAL day?

 

--Am I being respectful of teaching and learning?  Am I giving my best effort?

 

--As a student, how are my grades? How can I improve? 

--As a teacher, how is my instruction? How can I improve?

 

--How am I supporting the athletics program either as a student athlete or fan? 

 

--What activities am I involved with at school?  How am I making DC Charter a better place for those who spend their days here?

 

As we enter second semester, I encourage us all to renew our commitment to ourselves and to this school year.  We started out with great enthusiasm.  Let’s finish just as strong!

 

All the best!

 

Dr. A

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Jan 14, 2016 at 9:29 AM
  

It’s called the most wonderful time of the year.  And it can be, but it can also be exhausting and stressful, especially when one has to also deal with snow and power outages and lack of phones and internet!

 

Whether you are eager for the coming holidays or just eager to get them over with, I want you to know that all of us at DC Charter are wishing you a safe, restful, and happy winter break!

 

As 2015 comes to a close, I want to take time to say “thank you” for the contributions you’ve made to DC Charter during my first six months as your Superintendent.

 

So many of you have embraced the Give Me Five initiative and, as reported at the end of first quarter, we are making positive gains and significant progress in all areas of our school focus: attendance, attitude, academics, athletics, and activities.

 

So many of you have volunteered your time and talent.  You’ve helped in classrooms, you’ve tutored students, you’ve cut and pasted and glued and glittered.  You’ve cheered on our athletic teams and you’ve supported us when we have had to have difficult conversations because you know that, like you, we want what is best for your child.

 

You’ve been working really hard and you deserve this break!

 

May the peace, joy, and hope that are the real meaning of this most wonderful time be with each of you and your friends and families this day and each day throughout the coming year!

 

Merry Christmas!

 

Dr. A

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Dec 17, 2015 at 12:03 PM
  
This is the time of year when we pause to reflect on those things in our lives for which we are thankful.  Among the many things for which I can give thanks this year is my job as Superintendent/Principal here at DC Charter.  I am so fortunate to work with so many wonderful colleagues who work hard every day to do what is right on behalf of the students we serve.  Teachers, assistants, and support staff work together to help each student find success and it is wonderful to see the ways people come together to benefit our students.

Speaking of our students, they are certainly another reason I am thankful for my job here.  Our students are polite and well-behaved and work hard to be successful in their classrooms, on their sports teams, and as contributing members of the school community.  One of my favorite children's stories is, "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" by Barbara Robinson.  It is a humorous account of a boisterous group of siblings and the novel begins with a line that says "the Herdman's were absolutely the worst kids in the history of the world" and then goes on to share the many antics of the Herdman family.  I can say, however, that the DC Charter students, unlike the Herdmans, are the "best kids in the history of the world."

Kids aren't simply good without having positive role models in their lives and people around them who have high expectations.  Thank you, parents, for the way you've raised your kids and for having high expectations for them while they are at school each day.  You, and other member of our community are consistently supportive of our school and it doesn't go unnoticed by those of us who spend our workdays at DC Charter!  All of us are grateful for the many ways you show us you care about the work we do and that you care about us as people.

I am indeed fortunate and give thanks at this special time of year for the opportunity I have to serve this great community!

May you find many reasons to be thankful, too.

Sincerely,

Dr. A


REMINDER
School will dismiss at 12:30p on Wednesday, November 25.  
School will be closed on Thursday and Friday (Nov 26-27)
Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Nov 24, 2015 at 10:26 AM
  

INCLEMENT WEATHER AND EMERGENCY SCHOOL CLOSURES

 

As we approach winter, I want to take a few moments to remind parents and guardians of the procedures we follow should we need to alter bus routes, delay opening, close early, or cancel school due to inclement weather.

 

Working collaboratively with First Student Transportation, the Superintendent may alter the school operating schedule to help ensure the safety of our students.  Every attempt will be made to publicize the decision by 6:30a.

 

There are four possible outcomes when inclement weather is an issue:

ALTERED BUS ROUTES

In the event of inclement weather only in the higher elevations, Bus DC1 will not travel past the Tiller Ranger Station and will not travel on South Umpqua Road.  Instead, students may meet the bus at the Tiller Ranger Station at 7:30a (normal operating schedule) or 9:30a (delayed opening schedule).

 

DELAYED OPENING

If weather conditions are such that roads are expected to be cleared and safe as the temperature warms throughout the morning, school may open two hours later than normal (10:15a instead of 8:15a).  If this happens, buses will arrive at their stops two hours later than their normally scheduled time.  Depending on weather conditions, we may also operate using the Altered Bus Routes plan during a delayed opening.

 

EARLY CLOSURE

If weather conditions change during the school day, we may find it necessary to close school early.  Depending on weather conditions, we may also be required to operate on the Altered Bus Routes plan during an early closure.

 

SCHOOL CANCELLATION

If weather conditions warrant, school may be closed for the entire district.

 

In any of the above situations, the district will communicate schedule changes using the following:

 

SchoolMessenger                        automated phone call to parents and employees

Facebook                                     message posted on the District Facebook page

www.dayscreekschools.com      notification message on the district website homepage

Brooke Communications           541radio.com

                                                     Best Country 103

                                                     News Radio 1240 KQEN

                                                     104.5 SAM FM

                                                     i101 FM

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Nov 16, 2015 at 11:07 AM
  

Unbelievably, the first quarter of the school year has come and gone!  Report cards will soon be issued and parent/teacher conferences will be on Thursday, November 5 from 5-8p and on Friday, November 6 from 8a-noon.  We look forward to seeing many of you on campus for conferences to discuss your child’s individual progress.

 

In addition to reviewing each individual student’s progress, the end of the quarter also gives us the opportunity to reflect on our overall goals for the school year and to review our progress toward those goals.  Remember the Give Me Five initiative that I rolled out at the beginning of the school year?  Please read below for reminders of the expectations (taken directly from the back-to-school newsletter) and updates on our progress in each of the areas of our school focus.

 

Attendance:  My expectation is that we attend school all day, every day unless we have a legitimate, excusable reason for being absent. I want everyone to work hard on getting to school ON TIME and staying for the full instructional day. No matter how good our instruction is, students can't do their best if they aren't in class to receive the information teachers are presenting.

 

Progress Report on Attendance:  the vast majority of our students are doing an outstanding job in this area!  Attendance is up, tardies and early dismissals are down.  Most absences are for legitimate reasons and parents are doing a good job informing the school when their child must be absent and following up with a note so we know whether the absence is considered excused.  Keep up the great work in this area because attendance is one of the most important predictors of success in school.

Attitude: My expectation is that all of us are respectful of teaching and learning and that we demonstrate this by treating others the way we expect to be treated. This means being kind, using good manners, being good stewards of our facility and resources, reporting bullying, and taking care of those around us.

 

Progress Report on Attitude:  most of our students are doing a great job in this area!  As a group, our students are polite, respectful, and helpful.  Teachers are working closely with our Student Success Coordinator, Cathy Knapp, when there are behavior concerns and parents are working with us and supporting us when disciplinary consequences have to be imposed.

Academics: My expectation is that annually we see improvements in student outcomes including grades, graduation rates, and scores on standardized assessments such as PSAT and Smarter Balanced. Ms. Knapp, your teachers and I will be having monthly Professional Learning Communities (PLC) meetings to discuss how to best meet the needs of each student in the school so that each of you experience the most success possible. We will expect you to display consistent effort and to work toward continual improvement. This means paying attention in class, participating in class and completing homework, and asking for help when it's needed.

 

Progress Report on Academics:  During the first quarter, teachers have focused a lot of attention on implementing our new reading curriculum in grades K-6.  We have also worked on fully implementing our new iPads to support classroom instruction.   Our students in grades 8-12 have been working with Oregon CIS (Career Information System) to learn how their choices in high school are going to impact the choices they are able to make post-high school with college and career.  Teachers will begin reviewing math textbooks in the coming weeks, as we plan to purchase new math curriculum for grades K-12 for use beginning next year.  Students are enjoying these new programs and are benefiting from them.

Athletics: Days Creek has a history of great athletics programs and my expectation is that we will continue to excel in this area. Rachel Whetzel, our Student Council Advisor, and I have met with your Student Council officers to talk about ways we can increase attendance at athletic events and to increase our school spirit and morale. You'll be happy to know that for middle school sporting events, we have eliminated gate fees so more of you can participate more easily.

 

Progress Report on Athletics:  We’ve had a very successful quarter athletically.  Take a look at these impressive stats:

 

High School Volleyball… 2nd place in league.  3rd place at district tournament.  Qualified for state playoffs and were eliminated by #4 ranked Trinity Christian League record 10-3.

 

High School Football… Tri champs in 3-way tie for first with Camas Valley and Powers.  Traveling to Triad Christian School today for District playoff game.  Winner qualifies for state.

 

Junior High Football…  Overall record 5-2.  Would have qualified for playoffs if there were playoffs for middle school football.

 

Junior High Volleyball…  1st place in our division.  Second place at the Little Fir League District playoffs.

Activities: When I met with the Student Council to discuss athletics, we also brainstormed all sorts of things we can do to make our school a happier place by doing FUN activities. It's important to remember that schools exist for TEACHING AND LEARNING, which is why Attendance, Attitude, and Academics come first. But, I believe schools can and should also be places where people have fun. We are planning on lots of activities for the 2015-16 school year to make our school a place where students and their teachers want to spend their days.

 

Progress report on Activities:  all one has to do to know that we’ve made this a priority in our school year is read the recent blog post titled “Student Council Activities.”  Student Council Adviser, Rachel Whetzel, and the student council officers have done a tremendous job planning and executing numerous activities that inspire and motivate our students to show their Wolf Pride!

 

We are very proud of our students and will be recognizing their efforts at our Quarter 1 Give Me Five awards assembly on Friday, November 13.  Watch for more information about the date/time of the assembly and plan to come to support our students as they are recognized for their great work!

 

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 30, 2015 at 10:12 AM
  
Today, I'm sharing a message from Rachel Whetzel, our Student Council Adviser, regarding the activities our student council have been involved with during the first quarter.

Student Council is back! After a year off from having an official council, elections were held, and we have OFFICERS! Elected officials are Cole Brown; President, Brooke Hopfer; Vice President, Sarah Michaels; Secretary, Jay Zhu; Treasurer, and Samantha Canete; Activities Coordinator. I am so excited to be working with these kids as their advisor this year! The kids and I were able to meet with Dr. Angle at the end of last year, and speak with him about some of his visions and goals for the coming year. It was exciting for me to watch their smiles grow as he spoke with us, and their excitement for this year grew. Here are a few of the things we've done, and plan for this year: 

 

So far this year:

  1. Back to School Bash
  2. Wolf Week first week of school
  3. First Week of School Assembly
  4. Reserved Senior Parking Spaces
  5. Days Creek Charter Council Recognition
  6. Wolf Week Homecoming
  7. Homecoming 
  8. Virtual Store Front
  9. Wolf Hat Sales

Plans for the future: 

  1. Bonfire
  2. Homecoming Bowling "Ball" 
  3. Student "store" vending machine
  4. Howlers
  5. Pack Pride School Spirit temporary tattoos

Student Council participated in the Back to School Bash, helping with games, chalking the playground with back to school messages, and feeding the crowd popcorn and sodas. We also introduced the council to students at the first week assembly, and handed out treats to student who had participated in the school wide dress up days the first week of school. Council members also judged the school's decorated doors that were part of the first week of school celebrations. 

Senior parking is back, and Seniors this year, were offered the option to paint their spaces and decorate them!! Seniors were happy to spend some money for a special spot that is just for them at the front of the school, and I look forward to seeing their designs in place!! 

Elected Student Council members were recognised at a Charter Board's meeting, and got to introduce themselves to the board as well. 

Homecoming week snuck up on us, but the school participated in a great Wolf Week, starting with Mustache Monday, Geektastic Tuesday, Superhero Wednesday, and Pack Pride Thursday! 

Student Council purchased crowns, flowers and sashes that were presented to the Homecoming Court at the football game on October 2nd. King and Queen this year are Seniors Cody Ferch and Jenni Massey! 

I have also created a virtual store front for school spirit apparrel, where multiple groups profit from the sales of items listed there! Visit www.shop.spreadshirt.com/packpride to make a purchase! So far, there are designs to benefit Student Council, Letterman's Club, Football and the Elementary at Days Creek! My personal favorite is our "I AM THE PACK" design. We hope to add hats, and more designs to benefit other groups, like basketball, track and volleyball! Student Council is also selling faux fur wolf hats at the booster club booth!

 

We have delayed the homecoming dance until this weekend and bonfire until a bit later, so that we can make plans for a GREAT bonfire, with some friendly competition. We're also planning to have our homecoming dance at the Nickle Bowl in Tri City... our Bowling "ball" will be a ton of fun, and a bit out of the norm for our school dances. We're looking forward to seeing all those fancy dresses and suits completed with bowling shoes. More to come on the dates and times for both the bonfire and ball. Lastly, Student Council has plans to host a Howler week, where students and staff can send messages of encouragement in the form of an anonymous "howler" to fellow students. We're also looking into purchasing some temporary tattoos that can be used on game nights in place of face paint, for students and fans to show their PACK PRIDE!! 


Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 29, 2015 at 7:32 AM
  

Today, I'm sharing a message from our Network Administrator, which provides an update on our technology initiatives since July 1.

DCCS Tech-Talk!

 

The Days Creek Charter School instructional technology department may be a small department but has large responsibilities when it comes to supporting our District’s educational mission. Since mid-June we have been busy updating all school computers to Windows 7. Using federally-funded Erate program subsidies, we’ve replaced nearly all of our network switches within the last twelve months . Using district funds, this summer we replaced most of the old, energy-hogging computer monitors with refurbished flat-screen, energy-efficient monitors. We have expanded our wireless network to all areas of the Days Creek campus and typically see 150 or more devices use the network during a school day. In mid-September we deployed 32 iPads on a mobile cart shared between classrooms. Students have greeted these new instructional aids with remarkable enthusiasm!

 

In addition to providing a strong computer network that allows all students to access online educational materials via wired or wireless devices, the technology department maintains our web site and Facebook page. Check out our new website at: www.dayscreekschools.com for a constant flow of current information; from “What’s New” articles featuring school events and activities to the “District Board” or “Charter Board” sections that contain meeting agendas and minutes, or the “Calendar” section on the home page. The site has a number of videos and pictures of sporting and other events along with other resources for community members, parents, staff and students.

 

The IT department enjoys the services of our student technology intern, Dylan Anselmi. He recently helped pack five pallets of obsolete technology that was picked up at school at no cost to us by the Apple Recycling Program! His help with that program was invaluable as is his ability to help with setting up computer, printers, and iPads.

 

Athough there is more work to be done, the IT department is proud of our recent achievements. While operating very frugally, we have an enviable, 1 to 1 student to computer ratio. Our high-speed fiber internet connectivity provides excellent access to web-based instructional materials and courses, and we continue to plan for the future where we anticipate even more web-based instructional strategies will be employed. We are committed to supporting each and every DCCS student in their striving for educational excellence and enjoy being a part of the team of enthusiastic and effective DCCS staff!

 

 

Joe Augsburger

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 28, 2015 at 2:03 PM
  

The recently formed site council had its inaugural meeting last week.  Members include the superintendent, chairs of each school committee, and representatives from the following groups: school board, charter board, DC Education Association, DC Classified Association, parents, students, and community members.  The purpose of bringing together this diverse group of stakeholders is to ensure the mission and goals of the school are aligned with the vision and expectations of our community.  I am so impressed by the excellent work happening in so many facets of our school.  The following is a synopsis of the minutes of that meeting.

Committee Reports:

Curriculum/Instruction/Assessment- Shari Ellis, Becky Harmon, Scott Hampton, and Sarah Hooper.

  1. The committee is investigating new math curriculum to be purchased and implemented for the 2016-17 school year. 

     

  2. The committee created a survey that will be sent to teachers asking each to list skills that they want their incoming students to have mastered.  This is the first step toward curriculum mapping that will clearly identify in each grade level and subject area key skills from the common core standards that are most important for success at the next grade level.

     

  3. Ongoing professional development for our new K-6 reading series will be provided and educational assistants will be included in that training.

     

  4. The committee is investigating additional formative assessments that will help inform instruction to ensure that no student falls “between the cracks” with mastering content needed to be successful.

Career/Technical Education- Holly Michaels, Nicole Bambino and David Hunt.

  1. The committee would like to seek dual credit for students in the areas of Welding and Ag-Business.

     

     

  2. The committee reported that Industrial Source in Green charged only $200 to service the welders and regulators. The shop now has new oxygen and acetylene.

Discipline – Mike Keizer, James Ellis, Teresa Reed, and Cathy Knapp.

  1. The committee will schedule a meeting in the next few weeks to discuss school wide goals in regards to discipline. Discipline issues and consequences will be discussed as well as improvement plans and reward systems.

Marketing- Mike Keizer, Jim Docherty, and Jesse Jackson

  1. The committee met to determine community outreach activities to support the mission of Days Creek Charter School.

     

  2. The committee members discussed methods to reach out to the regional community of current and potential parents, patrons and students to share activities and accomplishments associated with DCCS. They agreed on an action plan that included producing monthly articles for publication/ dissemination while also acquiring photographs from several sources to attach to articles and post on the DCCS website.

Safety – Cathy Knapp, Louis Calvert, Lisa Hemphill, Anna Rickards, and Scott Hampton.

The focus of the safety committee will be:

  1. Lock down procedures
  2. General safety of the school: keeping track of fire, lock down and earthquake drills.
  3. In keeping within the OSHA guidelines and regulations the committee will check each room to make sure that they are in a safe condition.

Social Committee – Parma Ferguson, Sarah Hooper, Teresa Reed, and Sandy Smith.

  1. The Social Committee is planning on the following activities this year to ensure every employee feels valued and appreciated:

 

Welcome gifts for new teachers

Monthly staff birthday celebrations

Payday goodies

Christmas Dinner

Administrative Assistant’s Day

Bosses’ Day

Salad Club

End of Year Celebration

Other Reports:

Student Council: Rachel Whetzel

The student council has already conducted or is planning the following:

  1. Back to School Bash- The student council served popcorn and soda, had a drawing and had planned activities and games for students while parents registered their children for school.
  2. Colorful “positive” messages in chalk were written on the blacktop to welcome students as they arrived at DCCS for their first day of school.
  3. Students dressed according to “theme days” during the first week of school.
  4. Student Council sponsored a decorated classroom door contest and awarded the winner with an ice cream party.
  5. Reserved parking for seniors.
  6. Homecoming – a prince and princess were chosen from each class. A bonfire and dance is scheduled to be held in November.
  7. Virtual store: The DCCS Booster Club is allowing Rachel to use the club account for the virtual store. Four designs of T shirts and sweat shirts of all sizes with the Days Creek Logo are available to order through the store.
  8. The student council has been selling Wolf Hats with the profit going directly to student council.
  9. The student council will be selling ads to be done during intermission at basketball games. 
  10. The student council is planning a Secret Santa Activity for the school in December.

 

Days Creek Education Association- Mike Keizer reported that DCEA will be looking at the teachers’ constitution and making necessary updates this year.

Parent Club – Parma Ferguson reported that the parent club has over $7,000 due to the success of last year’s carnival.

Upcoming events include:

      Halloween Party / costume contest in the gym

OMSI Demonstration (all school)

Christmas Bazaar

        Christmas Program

Valentine’s Day Party

Field trips

End of year activities

 

As you can see, so many positive things are happening at DC Charter!  We invite you to be part of this exciting journey.  The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, January 14th at 4:30 pm.  Please consider joining us!

 

Respectfully,

Dr. A

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 21, 2015 at 2:53 PM
  

It is a complete coincidence that this week—the week immediately after the tragic events at UCC—is fire safety week, a week when we focus on school safety.

 

As I’ve done my walk-throughs, I’ve heard teachers discussing with our youngest learners how and why to call 9-11.  This afternoon, we are conducting bus evacuation drills for all students to ensure they know what to do in the event the need to exit the bus quickly.  And, tomorrow we will be having an assembly for our K-5 students that allows them to meet our local volunteer firefighters and see the firetrucks up close and personal.  As the culminating activity of the week, the Med Flight helicopter is going to land on campus and students will have a chance to tour that impressive machine!

 

We don’t talk about safety only during fire prevention week.  We have fire drills monthly to ensure students know how to evacuate the building quickly and safely.  Next week (Thursday, Oct 15) we will be having our annual earthquake drill.  In the weeks ahead we will practice our lockdown procedures.

 

Our school has a safety committee that meets regularly to review the school crisis plan and make sure everyone knows what to do in an emergency situation.  I’m also arranging for an independent review of our school campus and crisis plan to ensure that we are doing everything possible to ensure the safety of the children you entrust daily to our care.

 

Feeling safe at school is important.  Physically safe and emotionally safe.  It’s why we had the school psychologist on-site Monday to talk with any students who were struggling to process what happened last week at UCC.  It’s why we take seriously any reports of bullying or harassment and investigate and act promptly.  Every student deserves to feel safe and cared for at school.  Every adult has the responsibility to make sure this happens.

 

Thank you for the many ways you support DC Charter.  With your time, your support, your suggestions.  You are appreciated!

 

All the best!

 

Dr. A

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 07, 2015 at 11:37 AM
  

Thursday, October 1, 2015


Dear Parents and Guardians of DC Charter Students,

By now, you have most likely heard about the tragic shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg this morning. Douglas County School District #15 would like to offer its condolences, thoughts and prayers to the students, staff and community of UCC and the city of Roseburg during this difficult time.

Days Creek Charter School considers the safety and well-being of our students to be of the utmost importance. We have multiple policies, procedures and protocols in place to help prevent and respond to these types of challenging situations. 

We also have caring adults available at our school to provide support to students and staff who may need it.  Additionally, we partner with the Douglas ESD who can provide us with trained counselors as part of their crisis response plan, should the need arise.  You may want to consider talking with your student about the tragedy when they come home from school today.  Death can be a difficult topic to discuss with students, particularly younger ones. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us.

As a way of showing respect to our community, all after school events and activities will be canceled today. 

Spend some time with your kids tonight, and hug them extra tight when you tuck them into bed.

Respectfully,

Dr. Mark A. Angle

 

 

Posted by Dr. Mark Angle  On Oct 01, 2015 at 2:01 PM
  
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