Student and Parent Handbook 2014-2015



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Student and Parent Handbook 2014-2015

Children’s House Program



Preschool-Kindergarten

1204 E Empire

P.O. 1417

Cortez, CO 81321

970.565.8586

www.kivapreschool.org
Elementary/Middle School Program

Grades 1-6

510 N. Beech Street

P.O. 1417

Cortez CO 81321

970.***.****

www.kivacharter.org


Children’s Kiva Montessori School (Kiva) is committed to the policy that no otherwise qualified person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to unlawful discrimination under any district program or activity on the basis of ethnicity or race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, age, or disability. Sexual orientation is a person's orientation toward heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality, or transgender status or perception of the individual's sexual orientation.
Further, the Kiva affirms the rights of all students and staff to be treated with respect and to be protected from intimidation, discrimination, physical harm and/or harassment based upon ethnicity, race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, age, or disability.

Avoiding unlawful discrimination requires the collaborative responsibility of each administrator, supervisor, employee, and student to affirm in actions and deeds the intent and spirit of governing laws and regulations. Toward this end, the Kiva will assist management, staff, and students to implement the Kiva’s good faith intent not to discriminate in the Kiva’s employment and educational opportunities.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") provides that no qualified disabled person shall, on the basis of disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to, discrimination under any program or activity which receives or benefits from federal financial assistance. Persons protected under Section 504 and the ADA include students, applicants for employment, employees, parents of students, and members of the community who come within the definitions of "individual with a disability" under those statutes.

* Under authorization of Montezuma-Cortez Re-1 School District (District), Children’s Kiva Montessori School adheres to all District policies unless otherwise noted.

Student/Parent Handbook revised July 21, 2014. This handbook is subject to change at any time; notifications of major changes will be posted on school websites and in monthly parent newsletters.

Table of Contents
Abbreviations Guide

Partnerships, Accreditations and Memberships

Children’s House

Elementary/Middle School

Vision, Mission and Academic Guiding Principles

Children’s House Mission

Children’s House Academic Guiding Principles

Elementary School Mission

Elementary School Academic Guiding Principles

Middle School Mission

Middle School Academic Guiding Principles

Organizational Structure

Boards of Directors

Administrative Team

Community Partnership Leadership Committees

School Advisory Council

Budget and Financial Oversight Committee

Curriculum Committee

Parent/Teacher Organization (PTO)

Getting Involved


Academic Programs

Four Plans of Development

Multi-year Cycle

Rigorous Integrated Academics

Community-Based Methods

General Admissions

Orientation and Registration

Montessori Transition Program

Children’s House Enrollment

Readiness for Children’s House

Elementary/Middle School Enrollment

Advanced Placement

Exceptional Student Services

Response to Intervention

Gifted and Talented Services

Tuition and Fees

Children’s House Tuition

Children’s House Withdrawal

Children’s House Fees

Children’s House Tuition Assistance Policy

Children’s House Colorado Preschool Program (CPP)

Kindergarten Scholarship Program

Elementary/MS Tuition and Fees



School Hours, Drop-off, Pick-up Procedures

Children’s House (Preschool-Kindergarten) - School Daily Schedule

Elementary/Middle School (Grades 1-6) - School Daily Schedule

Before and After School Care

Elementary/Middle School Wednesday Outdoor Program

Children’s House Drop-Off Procedures

Children’s House Pick-up Procedures

Elementary/Middle School Drop-Off Procedures

Elementary/Middle School Pick-Up Procedures

Early Dismissal/Late Arrival



Instruction and Assessment

Children’s House Assessments

Elementary Assessments

Communicating Progress with Parents

Weekly Work Plans

Parent-Teacher Conferences

Special Conferences and Support

Children’s House Progress Reports

Elementary Progress Reports

Middle School Progress Reports

School Newsletter

Classroom Newsletters

Parent Education Nights

Feedback for Excellence Form


Nutrition and Food Program

Children’s House

Elementary/Middle School

Elementary/Middle School Farm-School Lunch Program



Student Expectations

Attendance

Pre-Arranged Absences

Truancy


Participation

Positive School Behavior and Disciplinary Procedures

Suspension/Expulsion Procedure

Parent/Guardian’s Role in Supporting Positive Behavior

Student Code of Conduct

Homework


Loss or Damage of School Materials

Dress Code

Additional Information on Clothing

Family Partnerships

Parent Expectations

Professionalism and Privacy

Parent Initiated Communication

Parent Involvement Hours

Childcare during Evening Meetings

Transportation

Carpools


Health Policy

Exclusion/Inclusion Due to Illness

Daily Student Health Inspections (CH)

Emergency Medical Treatment

Health Consultant

Reporting Communicable Illness

Documentation

Medications at School

Student Health Plans

Immunization Disclosure

Animals at School

Sun Protection



Emergency and Safety Plan

Entrance and Security

Fire and/or Emergency Evacuation Plan

In-School Emergencies

Injured Child

Supervision of Children

Missing Child

Kidnapped Child

Safety and Recess

Suspicious Activity

Fire, Weapons, Alcohol, Illegal Substances, and Tobacco

Weather Guidelines

Outdoor Play and Work

School Closure

Tornado

Reporting of Abuse and Neglect

Reporting Abuse and Neglect by a Staff Member

Reporting of Licensing Complaints


Additional Guidelines

Telephones

Holidays and Celebration

Birthday Celebrations

Children’s House Naptime

Children’s House News

Items from Home

Lost and Found



2014-2015 Student & Parent Handbook Acknowledgement

2014-2015 Conduct and Discipline Agreement

Abbreviations Guide

Advanced Learning Plan (ALP)

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Board of Directors (BOD)

Business Manager (BM)

Center for Disease Control (CDC)

Children’s House (CH)

Children’s House Director (CHD)

Children’s Kiva Montessori School (Kiva)

Colorado (CO)

Colorado Department of Education (CDE)

Colorado Exceptional Americans with Disabilities Act (ECEA)

Colorado Growth Model Standard (CGMS)

Colorado League of Charter Schools (CLC)

Colorado Measures for Academic Success (CMAS)

Colorado Preschool Program (CPP)

Director of Curriculum Instruction (DCI)

Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS)

Elementary/Middle School (E/M S)

Executive Director (ED)

Free and Reduced Price School Meals (FRM)

Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE)

Individual Education Plan (IEP)

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Montelores Early Childhood Council (MECC)

Montezuma-Cortez Re-1 School District (Re-1) or (District)

National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

Parent/Teacher Organization (PTO)

Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC)

Physical Education (PE)

Response to Intervention (RtI)

San Juan Board of Cooperative Education Services (SJBOCES)

Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and the Arts (STEAM)

Southwest District of the Colorado Association for the Education of the Young Child (SWNAEYC)

Teaching Strategies GOLD (GOLD)


Transitional Colorado Assessment Program (TCAP)


Partnerships, Accreditations and Memberships
Children’s Kiva Montessori School (Kiva) is a partnership between the Children’s House (Preschool and Kindergarten) and the Elementary/Middle School. Together, our school provides a continuous educational option for children ages 3-14. We use Montessori methods to create an environment that promotes academic excellence, the development of the whole child, and cultivates responsibility, initiative and independence.
We are an autonomous school. Each program is governed by a separate all-volunteer Board of Directors accountable to the Colorado Department of Education, State and US Federal Government. Our boards, administrators, staff and parents work together to create a unified program for ages 3-14 while meeting the distinctive goals, objectives, and requirements of their individual programs.
Children’s House: Children’s House, the Children’s Kiva Montessori Preschool and Kindergarten, is home to our early childhood program and serves students age 3-6. This program has been in operation in Cortez since 1997 and is currently located at 504 East Empire Street in Cortez, CO.
The Children’s House uses the Qualistar Rating (Colorado’s Quality Rating Improvement System) to measure the quality of child care programs on a 1-4-star scale. In 2014 Children’s House was awarded a three star rating! For more information about Qualistar Rating, go to www.qualistar.org.

The Children’s House also uses the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) national accreditation system to improve our programming and professional development. NAEYC’s rigorous standards for high quality early childhood education requires accredited program to invest in a three-year process of self-study, evaluation, site-visits and consultations. The Children’s House is working towards this accreditation and hopes to be the only NAEYC accredited program in Cortez by the spring of 2015. For more information about NAEYC, go to www.naeyc.org.

The Children’s House holds memberships to local and national organizations including the Montelores Early Childhood Council (MECC), Colorado Non-Profit Association, Cortez Area Chamber of Commerce, Southwest District of the Colorado Association for the Education of the Young Child (SWNAEYC) and the Colorado Montessori Association.
Elementary/Middle School: Our Elementary and Middle School is home to our Kindergarten-8th grade program and serves students ages 5-14. The Elementary/Middle School is housed at 510 North Beech Street and serves students age 6-14 with our Kindergartners attending classes at the Children’s House. We operate under the Colorado Charter School Act (C.R.S. 22-30.5 et seq.), a law passed in 1993 by the Colorado State Legislature. As a Colorado charter school and public school of choice, our teachers and students are required to meet and exceed the training qualifications and academic achievement standards of their colleagues in traditional Colorado schools.
Our authorizer is the Montezuma-Cortez RE-1 School District (District). Though we partner with Re-1 on specific large scale logistical management like school-specific tech support, facilities usage, HR and payroll services, our school is governed by an independent volunteer Board of Directors. We operate under a renewable contract with Re-1 and are fully responsible for maintaining our own budget, curriculum, teacher training, and Colorado Department of Education accreditation. Because we are a school of choice, our Elementary and Middle School is ultimately responsible to our consumers - the parents and students who make the choice to attend!
In this our first year of operation, our Elementary/Middle School does not have a quality standards rating established from the Colorado Department of Education.

Our Elementary/Middle School holds memberships to local and national organizations including the Colorado League of Charter Schools, the Colorado Montessori Association, and the American Montessori Association.

Vision, Mission and Academic Guiding Principles
School Vision: The Children’s Kiva Montessori School provides a vibrant and engaging learning environment based on the teachings of Dr. Maria Montessori that supports all students’ academic excellence and ability to become empowered, creative, lifelong learners responsible for themselves, their community and their environment.
Children’s House Mission: The Early Childhood Program at Children’s Kiva Montessori School uses authentic Montessori methods in a safe and nurturing environment to inspire students’ sense of wonder, innate desire to work and learn, and positive engagement with their community.

Children’s House Academic Guiding Principles: The Early Childhood Program at Children’s Kiva Montessori School mentors, encourages, and guides children to become self-directed, independent, compassionate learners through curriculum and practices that include:


  • Authentic Montessori environments: Practical Life, Sensorial, Math, Language and Cultural Studies.

  • Daily lessons in Graces and Courtesies - developmentally appropriate instruction and modeling of peaceful conflict resolution with self and others.

  • Respectful, nurturing, and supportive classrooms where independence, self-direction, and concentration are fostered.

  • Student-centered approaches to introducing lessons based on student interest and readiness balanced with standards-based goals for academic, social, emotional and physical development.

  • Developmentally appropriate academic, social, emotional and physical challenges to cultivate self-esteem, resilience, and whole-child success.
  • Curriculum aligned to and monitored by best practices in Early Childhood Development National and State standards.



Elementary School Mission: The Elementary School at Children’s Kiva Montessori School uses authentic Montessori methods, community-based educational approaches and integrated academics (STEAM) to support student academic success, responsibility, and independence.
Elementary School Academic Guiding Principles: The Elementary School at Children’s Kiva Montessori School mentors, encourages, and guides children to become responsible, thoughtful, caring citizens through curriculum and practices that emphasize:

  • Authentic Montessori methods.

  • Rigorous, integrated academics - project-based and Colorado Standards-based curriculum that integrates Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and the Arts (STEAM).

  • Community-based approaches including field experiences in our rich local and global environments and close partnerships with families, community.

  • Daily lessons in Graces and Courtesies - developmentally appropriate instruction and modeling of peaceful conflict resolution with self and others.

  • A whole child, whole school, whole community approach that embraces and enriches the talents and resources of our students, families, faculty, and community.

  • Health and wellness curriculum that includes:

    • Farm-school lunch program and garden

    • Family-style lunch period

    • Integrated PE and wellness curriculum

    • After-school outdoors program

Students will develop success, responsibility, self-reliance and initiative in: Language Arts and Mathematics, Science, Technology, and Engineering, Cultural Studies, Humanities and Spanish, The Arts and Movement, Character Development including personal, social, emotional skills.

Middle School Mission: The Middle School at Children’s Kiva Montessori School uses authentic Montessori methods, community-based educational approaches and integrated academics (STEAM) to support student academic success, increased responsibility and independence in the adult world.

Middle School Academic Guiding Principles: The Middle School at Children’s Kiva Montessori School mentors, encourages, and guides young adults to become responsible, thoughtful, caring citizens and adults through curriculum and practices that emphasize:


  • Authentic Montessori methods – including a focus on the entrepreneurial skills needed to foster independence through our Farm-School and Small Business Program.

  • Rigorous, integrated academics - project-based and Colorado Standards-based curriculum that integrates Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and the Arts (STEAM).

  • Community-based approaches including field experiences, apprenticeships, and mentorships with professional and skilled adults and leaders in our community.

  • Daily lessons in Graces and Courtesies - developmentally appropriate instruction and modeling of peaceful conflict resolution with self and others

  • Health and wellness curriculum that includes:

    • Farm-school lunch program and garden

    • Family-style lunch period

    • Integrated PE and wellness curriculum

    • After-school outdoors program

Students will achieve success, self-reliance and independence in Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Engineering and Technology, Social Studies, Spanish, the Arts and Movement, Character Development as well as 21st century and post-secondary workforce readiness skills.

*We currently serve students grades K-6th. Our Middle School will grow in response to families committed to enrolling in our 7th and 8th grade programs. Families should discuss their future educational plans with the Executive Director and attend meetings in the winter of 2014-2015 related to the Middle School.

Organizational Structure
The partnership between Children’s House (CH) and Elementary/Middle School (E/M S) are modeled after a number of successful Colorado Montessori Charter Schools operating in partnership with a tuition-based preschool. To support our unified age 3-14 program, our organizational structure balances the needs of each distinct program with the shared goals, philosophies and practices of the whole school.


Boards of Directors: Each program is governed by a separate Board of Directors (BOD) with up to nine (9) members each. These parents or community members are appointed by the standing BOD for two-year terms, unless filling a vacancy and serving out the predecessor's remaining term. All BOD members are committed to ensuring the success of the Children’s Kiva Montessori School (Kiva) through alignment of vision and mission with the best practices of professional and quality education.

The role of each BOD is to set policy and direction for the Kiva and to assure the Kiva is run in compliance with all applicable laws and contractual obligations. Under authorization of Montezuma-Cortez Re-1 School District (District), Kiva adheres to all District policies unless otherwise noted. In accomplishing its responsibilities, the BOD is supported by a number of committees consisting of parent and non-parent volunteers in areas ranging from financial matters to facilities issues. Both Boards meet on the second Monday of each month; meetings are posted on each program’s website. All community members are welcome to address the BOD at meetings. All other corporate documents (e.g. by-laws, articles of incorporation, BOD policies) are located on the school website and in the front office and all are available for public review. Board members do not have access to confidential files of students, school personnel or other federally or state mandated confidential information.

Administrative Team: Our Administration Team is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Kiva. Led by the Executive Director, each member of the Administration Team has distinct responsibilities.
Executive Director (ED) – Mr. Josh Warinner: The ED is responsible for and accountable to the Board of Directors for all aspects of school operations. These include the broad categories of enrollment, education programs, community relations, fiscal management, personnel management and property management. These responsibilities are administered in a manner consistent with Montessori philosophy and in the best interest of the Kiva. The ED delegates responsibilities, provides appropriate leadership, and works with the District, State of Colorado, Children’s House and Elementary/Middle School Boards of Directors, staff, parents, and community to effectively achieve the school’s mission, vision, and goals.
Children’s House Director (CHD) – Mrs. Alexia Hudson-McGrath: The Children’s House Director assists the Executive Director by overseeing the operations of our Children’s House. This includes, but is not limited to, maintaining accreditations and legal compliance related to early childhood education programs, personnel management at the CH level, managing scheduling for CH, support in program development and grant-writing and cultivating parent relationships and outreach at the CH level.

Business Manager (BM) – Mr. Ken Geiger: The Business Manager is responsible for and accountable to the Executive Director and the Boards of Directors for financial records and reporting and overall facilities management. All financial arrangements and records regarding tuition and enrollment status, and fees associated with the business of the school are handled through this office.

Community Partnership Leadership Committees: School committees are made up of staff, board, parent, and community partners working together on specific projects and goals. For more information about each committee, contact the Board of Directors or school administration.
School Advisory Council: As required in C.R.S., §§ 22-11-401 to 406, and outlined in School and District policies, this committee will:


  1. adopt school goals and objectives for the improvement of education in the school;

  2. adopt a plan to improve education achievement, reduce the gaps in performance of groups within the school, increase the ratings on the state accountability report, and assure the school’s accreditation status;

  3. make recommendations to the Executive Director regarding the prioritization of expenditures of school monies;

  4. determine whether decisions affecting the educational process are advancing or impeding student achievement;

  5. report to students, parents, Kiva Boards of Directors and Re-1 Montezuma-Cortez Board of Education on the educational performance of the school and providing data for the appraisal of such performance;

  6. make recommendations to the Executive Director on the expenditure of all school grants; and

  7. make recommendations to the Executive Director on safety issues related to the school environment.

The School Advisory Council will be made up of:



  1. The Executive Director or the Executive Director ‘s designee;

  2. At least one teacher who provides instruction at the school;

  3. At least two parents or legal guardians of students enrolled in the school;

  4. At least one adult member of the school’s PTO; and

  5. At least one person from the community.




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