Family and parent involvement in school can have a significant and lasting impact on how your child views academics. Below you will find an outline of how families support JCCS.
Supporting the Philosophy
The Juneau Community Charter School program is designed for families who want a high level of involvement in the educational process, a school closely connected with the community, and whenever possible, individualized instruction.
Embracing the Whole Curriculum
Our curriculum differs from traditional schools. It is important that parents welcome the opportunity to learn about what it means to educate “the whole child” at school and to support the children and teachers in that endeavor.
Being a Member of a Community
JCCS works best when we all know and feel in community with one another, kids and adults. For new families, we pledge to do our best to make you feel welcomed into our midst and hope that you will help us to get to know your family and your child.
Advocating Not Only For Your Own Child, but For All
Parents at JCCS often act not only as administrators of our own school, but voices for children in Juneau. We often are asked to make decisions about policies that need to be in the best interest of all the children and families.
Students Benefit from the Whole Program
When you consider enrolling your child at JCCS, consider the whole school experience, K through 8th grade. The small, closely-knit aspect of our school combined with our constructivist, community-focused approach has an additive effect and the longer a student’s tenure the greater their experience.
Supporting the Classroom
Perhaps no factor is more important in the success of a child’s education than parent involvement.
Working in the Classroom
For each child enrolled, parents are encouraged to spend approximately 5 hours per month in the classroom. This could mean assisting the teacher with a lesson, doing lunch/recess duty, helping to prep for lessons, or other tasks that will be requested of you by teachers, specialists and office staff.
In addition to regularly scheduled work hours, teachers are often in need of extra parents who are able to transport and/or accompany the class on out-of-school excursions.
Sharing Your Talents
Our curriculum has always been made richer by the contributions of parents and community members amongst us. Perhaps you speak another language or are familiar with the public waste disposal system in our community or write poetry or can recognize birdcalls. Please share with your child’s teacher your areas of interest, experience or expertise.
Keeping Abreast of What’s Happening
A newsletter is sent home every Friday and is posted to the school’s website that includes important information for parents both about what has been going on in the classroom and what lies ahead. The school’s governing board, the office staff and specialty instructors frequently pass on important information this way. Email and phone calls are also employed to make sure all parents are keyed into school needs and activities. It is critical that parents take the time to be aware of what’s happening at school and in their child’s classroom.
Individual teachers will speak with you about their expectations for homework (it varies from class to class) but it is important that parents understand the work their child is doing, that they help their children establish good work habits at home and/or regular attendance at Homework Club and that they communicate with the teacher about any problems or concerns. It is also very important to the success of your child’s music instruction that home practice becomes routine.
Communicating with the Child’s Teacher
The teachers at JCCS are very accessible to parents and children. They see themselves as partners with parents in the education of children and try very hard to establish good lines of communication. Parents need to meet them halfway in this effort.
Supporting the School
Parent involvement in the school’s operation creates a sense of community, which fosters a unique and supportive learning environment.
Each family is requested to sign up for one job that helps to maintain the school. Some examples are: coordinating special events, managing the recycling program, copying and distributing the weekly newsletter, managing the Scholastic Book Club orders or serving on the Academic Policy Committee (our administrative board). The Family Job Coordinator works closely with each family to determine the best way for you to be able to contribute to the school.
Taking Initiative and Ownership
All parents and staff are encouraged to recognize issues, needs and problems when they see them, take the initiative to bring these issues to the attention of the appropriate people and work with them to find solutions or take action. That’s how our school was created in the first place.
JCCS strives to make this model of cooperative education work for all families who wish to be involved. With this in mind, we are aware that families and individuals must cycle through times of intense involvement and lighter work loads for all kinds of reasons. Also, we strive to make parent involvement work for all types of individuals regardless of marital status, employment responsibilities and so forth. Please speak with your child’s teacher, the Facilitating Teacher or an APC member about any concerns you have about fulfilling your responsibilities.