Weekly Community Update: March 22 and 15, 2015

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

On Thursday, March 26, 2015, we will host our last Report Card Pick-Up Night of the year at ISA. Unlike other Report Card Pick-Up Nights, our freshman, sophomore, and senior students will be exhibiting work. The public exhibition of student work is one of the unique features of an ISA education. Not only do we encourage parents and families to view their own child’s work, but we invite you to visit and give feedback to students across the three grade levels. Our students benefit from diverse audiences and multiple eyes on their work.  Below is an overview of the afternoon and evening:

5:00-7:15 p.m.: Student Exhibitions of Work & Report Card Distribution

  • Freshmen: Make A Difference Fair  (MPR2, across from the cafeteria)
  • Sophomores: Advocacy Fair (Cafeteria)
  • Juniors: Parent Meeting @ 6 pm. No student exhibition (Sergiovanni Room)*
  • Seniors: SA2020 & DC Policy Recommendations  (1st Floor ISA Building)

*Please note: Junior students will not be exhibiting work, but the team will hold a parent meeting at 6 p.m. to share updates and distribute report cards.

Families may pick up report cards in the locations listed above and visit the student exhibitions any time between 5:00-7:15 pm. Each student will have an assigned shift at his/her exhibition site, along with time to visit exhibitions of other students and grade-levels.

Freshman, sophomore, and senior students will remain at school to set up their exhibitions ahead of the 5:00 p.m. start time. We will be providing a pizza snack for all freshmen, sophomores and seniors, and any juniors who remain on campus.

Several ISA senior parents on the project graduation committee will also be at Report Card Night recruiting parent chaperones for the June event and selling tickets for fifteen dollars. As a reminder, all ISA families are invited to go to California Pizza Kitchen on Thursday, March 26 and present this flyer (hard copy or image) as the restaurant will be donating 20% of all sales to ISA.

Finally, a large number of ISA students will be participating in this weekend’s Astronomy Club field trip to Leakey, Texas. We are hoping for clear skies and great star gazing. The camp does not have cell phone or wifi service, but look for photos from the weekend late on Sunday on our ISA Twitter: isa_globies.

Have a great week!

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

 

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Our ISA travelers to China returned late Friday night after spending 10 days exploring Beijing, Xian, and Jiamusi where they participated in a homestay with Chinese host families. With ISA partner schools now in China, South Korea, Germany, and Japan, we have created a two-year travel rotation to help interested students and their families plan.  We plan to rotate travel between China and South Korea each spring break, while rotating travel between Germany and Japan each summer. Following this pattern, ISA will be traveling to South Korea next year during spring break and to Japan during the summer of 2016.  Later this spring, we will hold an information meeting for these 2015-2016 trips.

Every year, all ISA students have the opportunity to interact and learn from our global partners when they visit the school, attend classes, and live with ISA families. Although we have hosted all of our foreign delegations for the 2014-2015 school year, we will begin preparing in late spring to host a group of German students set to visit ISA in early October. Please look for more information in the coming weeks about how to sign up to host a German student next October.

Before students left for spring break, several ISA students competed in two special events. First, our art students presented their work at the annual VASE art competition where thirteen students were honored as regional medalists, and two students qualified to continue on to the state competition. Second, ISA students won 6th place out of 36 teams in Academic WorldQuest competition, a team game testing high school students’ knowledge of international affairs.  Congratulations to all of these students, art teacher Cruz Ortiz, and WorldQuest sponsor Josh Duelm!

On Saturday, March 21, thirty ISA students will participate in a Model United Nations simulation at St. Mary’s Hall. Along with representing France, UK, Bolivia, Egypt, Burundi, Bangladesh, and Syria at the simulation, several of our upperclassmen will also be co-chairing at the event. Best of luck to all the delegates!

Saturday, March 21 is also the last opportunity for students to take the TSI at ISA to qualify for dual credit. Students may see Necol Harness, ISA counselor, to sign-up and for additional details.

Looking ahead, I want to remind families and students about our 3rd and final Report Card Pick-Up Night on Thursday, March 26.   The evening will include grade-level meetings and student exhibitions of work. Please look in next week’s message for event details.

Finally, ISA families have the opportunity to support ISA Project Graduation on Thursday March 26,  the same day as ISA Report Card Night. California Pizza Kitchen Restaurants, at both the Quarry and Huebner Oaks locations, are generously donating 20% of your check when you present a hard copy this flyer or phone image.  This offer is good all day on both take out and dine in orders. Since this offer is takes place on the same day as ISA Report Card Night, families may stop by for lunch, before picking up your child’s report card, or on the way home after Report Card Night.

 

Have a great week.

 

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

Weekly Community Update: March 1, 2015

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Last Wednesday, more than fifty ISA freshmen through seniors attended a special evening performance of the Merchant of Venice at The Classic Theatre of San Antonio after spending several weeks studying the play in the ISA elective Shakespeare course. Thank you to the parents who volunteered to chaperone and to ISA English electives teacher Rick Flieger for organizing the field trip for our students.

There are a few important deadlines approaching this week or the week following spring break. First, all registration forms  for Dual Credit are due to Mrs. Necol Harness no later than Wednesday, March 4. The forms are linked here for your convenience and available in the ISA counseling office: Dual Credit Check List and Parent Consent Form.  Second, registration for Advanced Placement (AP) exams, available through the NEISD Parent & Student Portal, end at 2:30pm on March 20; however, we encourage students to register before they leave for spring break. Third, PALS applications are due Wednesday, March 18.

Early on Wednesday, March 4 nineteen ISA students along with social studies teacher Luke Freeman, math teacher Stacy Brooks, and Chinese teacher James Ku will depart for Beijing, Xian, and Jiamusi, China for cultural visits and a homestay at our partner school. We wish them, and all within the ISA community who may be traveling over spring break, safe travels. We look forward to welcoming everyone back on Monday, March 16.

Look for my next message on Sunday, March 15, 2015.

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

Weekly Community Update: February 15

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Tomorrow, Monday, February 16, is a student holiday for all NEISD high students and a  professional development day for faculty.  The ISA faculty will spend the day continuing a book study about assessment and grading, learning advanced features of our new SMARTBoards, exploring possible benefits of Google Classroom at ISA and preparing for Freshman Orientation (Class of 2019) & Choice Slip Night at 6:00p.m. in the Lee Campus cafeteria.

Our new freshmen, along with our rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors are invited to participate in Summer PE Camp 2015, and registration is now open. Students are asked to complete the registration, linked above and posted in the ISA Bulletin, by Friday, March 6.  Space is limited for this very popular summer program, so we encourage students to register as soon as possible and to drop off payment in the ISA office to guarantee themselves a seat.

Necol Harness and Julie Magadance, ISA counselors, asked me to share that registration for Advanced Placement (AP) exams will open on Monday, February 16 for ISA sophomore, junior, and senior students who will be taking AP exams in early May.  In order to take an AP exam, students must register through the NEISD Parent & Student Portal. Although the actual cost of an AP exam is $89, students attending an NEISD school will pay only $20 per test because of district support.  Additionally, if a student qualifies for the Free and Reduced Lunch Program, the fee is lowered to $10 per test.  The online registration runs through 2:30 on March 20, 2015.  However, we highly recommend and ask students to register before they leave for spring break on Friday, March 6, because once the deadline passes, we will be unable to add additional students.  The on-line registration accepts Visa and MasterCard; students may also bring cash, a money order, or a cashier’s check to the ISA counseling office to register.  If you have any questions, you may email Necol Harness at nharne@neisd.net. The complete AP testing schedule can be found HERE and on the ISA Calendar.

Finally, this Saturday, the Sophomore Team will hold a Saturday School from 9 a.m. to noon for students who are asked to attend by one or more of their teachers.

Have a wonderful week!

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

 

 

Weekly Community Update: February 9

Sunday, February 9, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

We welcomed our senior class home from Washington, D.C. late Friday night after a busy week of learning and exploring. You can look forward to photos from the trip posted on our ISA webpage later this week and, in the meantime, you can see images on the ISA Twitter @ISA_globies.

As our seniors continue working on their trip project ahead of a March exhibition, our junior students are ready to present learning from their travel to Alabama and subsequent research. All ISA families and students are invited to attend the Junior Class Social Injustice Presentations from 6:00-8:00pm on Thursday, February 12.  The presentations will take place at ISA, and a complete schedule will be posted on our home page later this week. Good luck to all of our juniors!

The sophomore board asked me to announce two donation projects they are sponsoring this month. The first, Jeans for Teens, is an effort to collect gently used jeans for local charities and shelters. Jeans may be dropped off in Ashley Taplin’s room through the end of the day Friday, February 13. The second project, benefitting students at Krueger Middle School, is seeking gently worn dresses, slacks, dress shirts, ties, belts, and dress shoes. These items will be accepted through March 13, again in Ashley Taplin’s classroom. Thank you to the sophomore board for tackling these two projects.

Students are still able to sign-up for dual credit classes next year.  However, the deadline to complete the online registration at ApplyTexas, one of the first steps in the process, is this Friday, February 13.

Looking ahead, next Monday, February 16 is a student holiday. The ISA faculty will use the time for professional development and prepare to welcome our 120 new students that same evening at the Freshman Orientation & Choice Slip Night at 6:00pm in the Lee Campus cafeteria.  The new freshmen, the Class of 2019, will meet the ISA faculty, learn about the work of the ISA Amigos, complete course selection cards,  hear about the travel experience to Heifer International, and have the opportunity to sign up for Summer PE Camp.  We congratulate and welcome all of the new students and their families, who were drawn from 300 applications.

In the event you have friends whose students were not drawn in the lottery, the wait list will be available Monday, March 2.  Families will be able to call to find out their position on the wait list beginning that day.

Have a wonderful week.

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

Weekly Community Update: February 1, 2015

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Our senior students are likely busy today packing their bags ahead of tomorrow’s early morning departure to Washington D.C.  By Monday afternoon, after checking into their hotel, the seniors will likely be exploring nearby monuments on the Washington mall, possibly playing in some light snow forecasted for the area, or taking the subway to their      first embassy visit.  We wish our seniors, their teachers, and all of our parent chaperones a wonderful week of learning in our nation’s capital!

This week, we celebrate our two ISA counselors Necol Harness and Julie Magadance in honor of National School Counseling Week for their unique contributions and dedication to our school. Mrs. Magadance will spend the week traveling with our seniors, who she has been coaching through the college application process, while Mrs. Harness will be in the DIM classroom helping freshmen begin course selection for next year. On behalf of the ISA community, we send our thanks and appreciation to Mrs. Harness and Mrs. Magadance for the compassion and expertise that they contribute to ISA.

Along with working with freshmen on course selections this week, Mrs. Harness will host ApplyTexas sessions in the Peer Tutoring Center during 5th lunch every day this week.  Students must complete the ApplyTexas application before they can enroll a dual credit class for the 15-16 school year. The ApplyTexas application is just one of several steps necessary for enrollment, which are outlined in this Dual Credit Overview. We encourage students and/or parents to reach out to Mrs. Harness at nharne@neisd.net with any questions.

I also want to highlight a special North East ISD Facility Needs Survey designed to collect information from the community related to infrastructure, safety enhancements, and facility improvements. The survey remains open until Friday, February 6, and we encourage ISA families to share your feedback. You may read more about the survey HERE.

Looking ahead, the Junior Team would like to invite all members of the ISA community to the Junior Class Annual Social Injustice Presentations on Thursday, February 12th, 2015, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. The presentations will be held in the ISA first floor hallway and are the culmination of a semester of research into the history and current status of various injustices present in our society.

Finally, a reminder that the 15-16 Freshman Application is due Wednesday, February, 4th.

Have a great week and safe travels to our seniors!

 

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

Weekly Community Update: January 25, 2015

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

As the February 4, 2015, deadline to submit the ISA Freshman Application quickly approaches, we are wrapping up recruiting season with two final events. First, Wednesday is our final Shadowing Day from 9:15-11:30 a.m. for prospective freshmen and their families. Interested students may still sign up using the link above. Second, on Monday, February 2nd, ISA will host our Parent Informational Meeting Night at 6:00 p.m. in the Lee campus library. This event is for parents and families of current 8th grade students interested in joining ISA in the fall of 2015. If you have friends or family who are interested in ISA and were unable to attend a Shadowing date, please encourage them to attend this informational meeting. Also, remember that the freshman application (Class of 2019) is due Wednesday, February, 4th. Although siblings of current students are granted automatic admission, they must submit an application by the deadline as well. Students may access the Freshman Applicationhere or on the ISA web page.

There are several unique opportunities for students listed in the ISA Daily Bulletin, including information on a full scholarship to Indonesia through the Indonesia-U.S. Youth Leadership Program and an internship to work as a paid intern at a local nonprofit in San Antonio for 8 weeks, as well as attend a week-long Student Leaders Summit in Washington DC. Students should see Vicki Woodard, ISA Internship Coordinator, in the ISA office for more information.

Finally, we want to send a huge thanks to the ISA Amigos for organizing last Thursday’s Pasta and a Play and Report Card Pick-Up Night. Thank you also to all of the families who attended and who made donations to the silent auction.  We appreciate your participation in our community’s event!

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

Weekly Community Update: January 19, 2015

Monday, January 19, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

We hope to see you all this Thursday night as we host our second Report Card Pick-Up Night of the year and the 9th Annual Pasta & a Play Dinner and Silent Auction. Sponsored by the ISA Amigos, Pasta & a Play allows the ISA community to give back to the larger Lee campus through our support of the opening night of the Lee theatre production. The evening is also the ISA Amigos’ last and most important fundraiser of the year, raising funds to support grade-level travel experiences and field trips. The Amigos are still accepting silent auction donations, baked goods (sign-up here), and $5-$10 gift cards for bouquets.  Items may be dropped off in the ISA office.

As you plan for Thursday, below is an overview of the evening:

5:00 PM: Dinner and the Silent Auction Begin (Cafeteria)

6:15 PM: Welcome and Report Card Distribution (Cafeteria)*

7:00 PM: Dinner and Silent Auction End (Cafeteria)

7:30 PM: Opening Night of 9 to 5 The Muscial (Lee Theatre)

*Senior Travel Meetings @ 6:30 in the Sergiovanni Room. Senior report cards  will be distributed in the Sergiovanni Room.  

If you have not purchased your tickets for the dinner and/or play,  paid reservations for this event can be made in the ISA office by returning  the ticket reservation envelope that was sent home last week. Families may also pay online using the online payment system linked off of the ISA homepage.

Necol Harness, ISA counselor, visited sophomore and junior classrooms last week to share information about the 2015-2016 ISA Dual Credit program.  Dual Credit courses allow the student to earn college credit while simultaneously completing high school courses through NEISD’s partnership with Alamo Community College. During the 2015-2016 school-year, ISA will offer two dual credit courses (AP United States History and AP English IV) to all junior and senior students who qualify and complete the application process.

Students who are interested in taking Dual Credit classes will need to qualify by taking the TSI exam. The time needed to test varies from student to student. We have scheduled five testing dates:

  • Thursday, February 5th from 4:30-9:00 PM
  • Thursday, February 12th from 4:30-9:00 PM
  • Thursday, February 19th from 4:30-9:00 PM
  • Thursday, Feburary 27th from 4:30-9:00 PM
  • Saturday, February 28th from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. (There will be a  rolling start time for students who have school activities on Saturday morning)

All testing will occur at ISA in the Sergiovanni Room. Students will need to sign up with Mrs. Harness to take the exam by the Tuesday before each test day. The cost for the test is $20. We encourage students and their families to closely review the Dual Credit Information Sheet and see Mrs. Harness to receive the Dual Credit Handbook.

Finally, our campus nurse Rebecca Joplin asked us to share that medication self-carry paperwork for the upcoming senior trip must be submitted to her office no later than Wednesday, January 28. As a reminder, students are allowed to self-carry EpiPens, asthma inhalers, and hormone treatments if the required paperwork is filed with the nurse.

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

Weekly Community Update: January 11, 2015

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Congratulations to all of the ISA students who participated in MUNSA XIX last week, the largest conference to date in MUNSA history!  We extend our thanks to the ISA Amigos and parents for staffing and donating food to the sponsor room throughout the event.  Additionally, MUNSA XIX could not have taken place without the support of Trinity University, our venue. In particular, we would like to thank Dr. Angela Breidenstein and the entire Department of Education. Finally, I would like to send a huge thank you on behalf of the ISA community to Cassie Allen and Melanie Anderson, MUN sponsors!

Although the event has come to an end, we can relive the highlights through the MUNSA XIX Newspaper, which includes press releases written by ISA freshmen and upperclassmen. Congratulations to the MUNSA Press Secretaries and our ISA Freshmen on their publication!

On Thursday, January 15, financial aid experts from UTSA will be at ISA to lead a session for ISA senior families on filling out the FAFSA forms. The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Sergiovanni Room, and all senior families are strongly encouraged to attend this important financial aid meeting.

Our next school-wide ISA event for families is the second Report Card Pick-Up Night of the year and the 9th Annual Pasta & a Play Dinner and Silent Auction on Thursday, January 22, 2015. Sponsored by the ISA Amigos, this community-building event raises funds to support grade-level travel experiences and field trips. Below is an overview of the evening:

5:00 PM: Dinner and the Silent Auction Begin (Cafeteria)

6:15 PM: Welcome and Report Card Distribution (Cafeteria)

7:00 PM: Dinner and Silent Auction End (Cafeteria)

7:30 PM: Opening Night of 9 to 5 The Muscial (Lee Theatre)

Paid reservations for this event can be made in the ISA office by returning the ticket reservation envelope that will go home with students this week. Families may also pay online using the online payment system, which will be linked to the ISA homepage shortly. The ISA Amigos will be discussing this upcoming event at their monthly meeting this Thursday, January 22 at 5:30 p.m. in the Sergiovanni Room.

Looking ahead, the ISA Interact Club will be marching in San Antonio’s annual Martin Luther King, Jr. March on Monday, January 19. Any student wishing to participate may pick-up a permission slip from ISA teacher Mitzi Moore to ride an ISA bus to and from the event.   Please look for final details in next week’s Sunday message.

Have a wonderful week!

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

Weekly Community Update: January 4, 2015

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Dear ISA Families,

Happy New Year!

Model United Nations San Antonio (MUNSA XIX: Visionary) begins Wednesday evening when the conference is called to order during the Opening Ceremonies at Trinity’s Laurie Auditorium. ISA families are invited to attend the Opening Ceremonies from 7:30-8:30 p.m. along 1100 student delegates from across San Antonio, Texas, the U.S., Mexico and Guatemala as we begin the three day event.

More than 400 ISA students will be participating in MUNSA XIX. Freshman students will attend the simulation on Thursday, January 8 to cover the event as part of the ISA Press Corps. Freshmen have been learning about journalistic writing in English class and will write press releases about the event when they return to school. Sophomores will serve as country delegates and attend all three days of MUNSA XIX. In addition, a large portion of juniors and seniors will be running the simulation as co-chairs, press secretaries, photographers, secretaries, technology support, runners, and MUNSA XIX peacekeepers. Finally, there are ten senior members of the MUNSA XIX Secretariat who will lead the event. The Secretariat has spent countless hours over the last six months preparing for this week’s events along with Ms. Cassie Allen and Mrs. Melanie Anderson, the MUN sponsors.

If you cannot attend Opening Ceremonies or if you would like see more, you may visit MUNSA XIX at Trinity University during the committee sessions or attend the Closing Ceremonies in Laurie Auditorium on Friday, January 9, 2014, from 6:15-7:00 p.m. You may access the complete MUNSA XIX Schedule here. When you arrive at Laurie Auditorium, look for the MUNSA XIX peacekeepers (wearing blue berets) who can help direct you to committee rooms. Best of luck to all of our students for a successful MUNSA XIX!

Before MUNSA begins on Wednesday, we will kick off the first day of the second semester tomorrow with an hour-long advisory from 8:45-9:45 a.m. where students will receive their second semester schedules. We will run an adjusted bell schedule for the remainder of the day, but school will dismiss at the normal time.

Looking ahead, the next whole-school ISA event is Report Card Pick-Up Night on Thursday, January 22. Teams will pass out report cards and share updates.  This is the same night as the eighth annual ISA Amigos Pasta & A Play: a dinner, bake sale, and silent auction to raise money for the ISA Amigos, our sole booster organization.

All ISA students will receive a flyer and a ticket reservation envelope on Monday, January 12 for families to reserve dinner and/or theater tickets. To help the ISA Amigos plan, please return your family’s reservation envelope no later than Tuesday, January 19 to the ISA office.  If you prefer to pay online, you may purchase tickets using an online payment that will go live next week and can be accessed off the ISA homepage. Tickets ordered online or using the envelope will be available for pick-up on the night of the event in the cafeteria.

Have a great week!

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

Weekly Community Update: December 14, 2014

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Dear ISA Families,

Semester exams begin on Tuesday, December 16, 2014, and continue through end of the week. Below is a list of the exams that will be given on each day this week:

  • Tuesday, December 16: 2nd and 5th Period Exams
  • Wednesday, December 17: 4th and 6th Period Exams
  • Thursday, December 18: 3rd and 8th Period Exams
  • Friday, December 19: 1st and 7th Period Exams

Although students take one or two exams per day, other class periods will be meeting each day on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday, December 18 and Friday, December 19 are early release days on high school campuses, with school dismissing at 1:30 p.m. The buses, including ISA shuttles to NEISD home campuses, will run immediately following the end of the school day at 1:30 p.m. Students are welcome to stay after school until 5:00p.m. on Thursday, December 18 to study and/or to use our computer lab to prepare for their last two finals on Friday.

At last Thursday’s German travel interest meeting we shared this overview of our travel to our partner school in Frankfurt. The German Trip Application is due no later than Friday, December 19th.

Thank you to all the families who are hosting students from our partner school inTakayama, Japanwhen we return from the winter break. As a reminder, we will hold an hour-long  Japanese Hosting Orientation meeting on Monday, January 5 at 6:00p.m. in the Sergiovanni Room. We have a few final Japanese students to place in ISA homes. Interested families may express interest by completing this Japanese Hosting Application.

This will be the last weekly community update until Sunday, January 4, 2015, the day before we return from winter break.  I wish you and your family a peaceful holiday season.

Sincerely,

Kathy Bieser

 

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