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Parent's Corner

Welcome to the Parents Corner, where parents can find school and curriculum information, all in one location.

ACT Explore Test for 8th Graders

ACT Explore LogoThe eighth graders took the ACT Explore Test this past October and have received their results. This test is to help eighth graders explore a broad range of options for their future. It prepares students for their high school coursework and their post-high school choices as well. ACT Explore can serve as an independent program or as the entry point into ACT's College and Career Readiness System. EXPLORE® contains four curriculum-based assessments: English, mathematics, reading, and science. The assessment is on the major areas of high school and postsecondary instructional programs. It measures the skills and knowledge needed for college success. Additionally, EXPLORE includes a career exploration component for students that stimulates their thinking about future plans and relates personal characteristics to career options. If you missed the parent meeting or wish to find additional information on how this test can help guide your 8th grader, visit the ACT Explore website.

Teacher/Parent Communication Tools

Please remember that the middle school has created three important tools to enhance school communication with you – teacher websites, JupiterGrades, and student planners.

Each middle school teacher has a website, creating an opportunity for parents to be aware of what is happening in their child’s classes. To locate a particular site, go to the Staff Listing & Teacher Websites page located under Contact Us. Once there, scroll down to the section labeled Teachers and click on a teacher’s site. One of the features the page will allow you to see is your child’s upcoming assignments, quizzes, and tests.

JupiterGrades is an online program that you and your student can access anytime. The program allows access to the most current information for assignments, quiz/test scores, and attendance. If you have more than one student in our district, you can create a single account, allowing instant access to information for each child. Students have their own password and are encouraged to monitor their own progress.

All students were issued a student planner at the beginning of the school year. They use their planner for each class in order to write down daily assignments and keep track of upcoming projects, quizzes, and test dates. Visiting with your child about what is recorded in the planner provides a great communication tool to stay abreast of the activities that are happening in class each day.

If you have any questions about teacher websites or JupiterGrades, please feel free to contact Mrs. Carpenter, Administrative Assistant, by e-mail or by phone at (480) 882-3515.

Tax Credit

Don’t forget that we have an opportunity to dictate how our state taxes may be used to enhance our schools. Remember that the funds we dictate to our school are returned to us dollar-for-dollar in the form of a tax credit when we file our state tax return. As you know, the Arizona State Legislature has a tax law (ARS 43-1089.01) that allows up to $400 tax credit for married couples filing jointly or $200 for individuals, who make a donation to a public school. The law is set up so that any taxpayer may contribute to a public school, regardless of whether the taxpayer has a child attending the school.
Please remember the three ways that you can make your contribution to our school. You may go online at our district website and click on the School Tax Credits link under Helpful Links, and either make your contribution online or print a copy of the receipt, fill it out, and mail it (along with your contribution) to the middle school. You may also come directly to the middle school and make your contribution. Whichever method you choose to contribute, we will be very grateful!

As we shared in last month’s article, one of the misconceptions of the tax credit opportunity is that people believe they have to make the full contribution in order to participate. Remember, that is not true; you may make any contribution you would choose to make. Our hope will be that we will all try to take advantage of our ability to determine how this part of our state taxes will be spent on our Cougar students!

Bus Transportation

Current middle school policy requires that students have their school ID with them at all times during the school day and at school-sponsored activities. In a continued effort to improve bus safety/security and verify the accuracy of students riding the bus on their designated routes, the district transportation department is instituting that students have their school student ID available to show their bus driver. If a student needs a replacement school ID, please contact Mrs. Josie Carpenter at (480) 882-3515.