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Will the 6th grade students have recess?
Churchill is requiring all sixth graders to enroll in an Advisory/Social Studies class. This class will be held during the same period for all of them. There are many reasons for this, but one of the reasons is so that the sixth grade teachers can give recess time to the students. There is no intention of having daily recess with the 6th graders, but it is entirely foreseeable that they may have recess twice a week. Also, the school only has one lunch. This is a great benefit because all students go to lunch together. The lunch period is 30 minutes long, and students have recess time once they have finished eating their lunch. During the fall and spring, when the weather cooperates, the students go outside and play. When the weather is not good, the gym is opened so students can play there.
Will the sixth grade students be with the 7th and 8th graders? or will they be separated.
There is a plan in place to provide a designated 6th grade area in the school. They will not be totally isolated due to the presence of classes that cannot be moved (FACS and dance), but at the same time, they should have a home without being cut off from the rest of the school. The plan is that the current Spanish, French, and FACS lecture room that are located on the second floor in the south hall will be designated as 6th grade core subject classrooms. They will need four classrooms, however, so the fourth room will be room 211, which is just around the corner from the other classes. This location is great for the students because they will be located right by a stairwell that will provide them direct access to both the lunch room and the gym. They can also go up the stairs where we will have a designated science lab classroom for when the science teacher wants to do hands-on labs. There will be two computer labs located on the second floor that will be designated as 6th grade labs, and all of the lockers the second floor will be assigned to sixth graders. The students will still be out and about in the building when they need to go to art, drama, music, French immersion, Spanish, or when they go to the library. This should be a good balance where they have a designated spot where they will spend much of their day, but they will still be part of the school and go out and about for their electives.
Will there be someone to help the 6th graders get to their classes?
The school will hold Jump Start as we do every year. This year it will include both 6th and 7th graders since they will all be new to the school. This is a great day for students to come with their parents. They will be given their schedule and locker information. They will be able to walk around and find their classes and practice their locker combination as many times as they need to. When the school year begins, the teachers understand the transition that occurs, and new students are given some leeway on tardies to class as they become acclimated to the junior high/middle school set-up of moving from class to class and navigating the lockers. During the first day or two of school, SBOs and cheerleaders will be stationed around the building to help students get where they need to go. The adults in the building also help with this task.
Will you bus the 6th students?
To qualify for busing, you must live inside the school boundary and live more than 1.5 miles from an elementary school, and more than two miles from a junior high or high school. The district has determined that the 6th graders will still qualify for bussing based on the elementary requirement even though they will be coming to Churchill. The interesting element of that decision is that it is possible that your family may have a 6th grader who is eligible for bussing, but also have a 7th or 8th grader who is not eligible for bussing. The transportation department has said that siblings of eligible 6th grade students can ask for buddy passes to ride the bus, but granting the buddy passes will be determined by whether or not there is room on the bus.
Can you explain a typical schedule for an immersion student?
6th Grade: Core classes will be ELA, math, science, social studies (in French), and advisory/social studies (in English). All sixth graders will also have an elective block that consists of PE, Keyboarding, art, and FACS. For an immersion student, their 7th class will be French Honors 2. As things stand, it looks like the students will have two social studies classes. This will not be the case. All sixth graders are taking the advisory class because it is the class that will allow us to make sure we have supports in place for them. This is where they will get intervention time and extensions. This is where teachers will have the ability to provide recess time and to teach study and organization skills. The regular social studies content will also be woven in during this time. For the immersion students, the fact that they will get the social studies core material during this time means that the teacher will have more flexibility with the social studies (in French) class and will be able to do French Culture work as well as social studies work. Unfortunately, due to the two French-language classes, sixth grade immersion students will not have room in their daily schedule for student-selected electives. We have decided to keep Jazz Band as a zero period class for next year so that students in the program who would like to take an instrumental class will have the opportunity to do so. If you student is interested in Jazz Band, please contact Mrs. Diane Taylor.
Why isn’t half of my child’s day in French in Jr. High like it was in elementary?
The curriculum requirements for junior high are different from elementary school, and moving the students from elementary school to Churchill puts them on the middle school/junior high track instead of the elementary track. The biggest shift students see is the variety of electives that come in as part of junior high school. There are both state and district required classes that students must take. In addition, students are moving into more difficult math and science courses that must be taught in English so students can learn the required information and be prepared for high school level classes. All students must take PE, art, Health, Digital Literacy, music, and College and Career Awareness during their time at Churchill. These classes and the core classes shifting back to English don’t allow immersion students to maintain half of their day in the target language.
What will it take to get more French classes for my child?
This question pertains specifically to 6th grade immersion students. The main thing in the way of providing additional classes in French is FTE. FTE is the funding a school receives to pay for teachers, and it is allocated to schools based on the number of students enrolled in the school on October 1 of each year. Two years ago Churchill Jr. had one part-time French teacher (0.5 FTE). With the immersion program coming to the school, that part-time teacher has turned into a full-time teacher (1.0 FTE). Moving into next year, that full-time teacher will be completely dedicated to French Immersion, and the school will be discontinuing the regular French classes. Churchill is doing what it can within its assigned FTE to provide the best and most opportunities for the immersion students. The administration is also exploring all avenues available to them to find other, more creative ways of making FTE work within job assignments to be able to provide as many classes in French to the 6th grade students as possible.
How qualified is the French Teacher?
Target Language Teachers (Chinese, French, Portuguese, and Spanish) are required to have an elementary or secondary Utah Teaching License, or be accepted into the Alternative Routes to Licensure (ARL) program. Additionally, immersion teachers must test at a high enough level of language ability to be endorsed to teach immersion classes. Prospective teachers are given the APPL test, just as the students in the program take, and they must test into the highest two categories in their fluency. This second piece is what makes it difficult to find immersion teachers, and it also is the reason most immersion teachers are natives of a country that speaks the language. There are very few French endorsed teachers looking for jobs right now, and of those there are many fewer who are qualified enough to be allowed to teach French immersion.
What classes will be taught in French?
Sixth graders will have Social Studies and French Honors 2, 7th graders will have French Honors 3 and French Culture (if they decide to take it), and 8th graders will have French Honors 4 and French Culture (if they decide to take it). The administration is exploring all options for providing at least one additional class to 6th graders in French, but the 7th and 8th grade options are set.
Can my student take band/orchestra or other electives if they are in the French Immersion Program?
The only instrumental class that will fit into a 6th grade immersion schedule is the zero period Jazz Band. Semester and year-long instrumental classes will be available to 7th and 8th grade students. The decision 7th and 8th grade parents and students will need to make is how much French they want. The school will semesterize the French Culture class for both grade levels. How much French Culture a student takes will determine the amount of availability in their schedule for other classes. In 7th and 8th grades, the French Honors classes fill one of the student’s elective slots for the year. Remember also that after this year, 7th graders will get more freedom when PE and art will not be required for them.
Will all of the French Immersion students have the same teacher?
Yes, all of the students will have the same immersion teacher as of right now. Churchill currently has one french teacher for all the students at Churchill. Mrs. Cha-Philippe does a great job with the immersion classes and the regular French classes, and Churchill is glad to have her.
How many students will be in each French Immersion Class?
The French Immersion classes do get combined when they come to Churchill. This year’s 7th grade classes have 38 students, and the 8th grade classes have 40. The need to combine the classes is a result of the school not having the FTE to hire another full-time French Immersion teacher. The French Culture classes, on the other hand, may have fewer students in them because it is an elective class. The culture class sizes will be determined based on the number of students who register for it and how that class then fits into the broader puzzle of the school’s master schedule.
Why are there so many students in each French Immersion Class?
The required immersion classes will have the number of students from each grade level in them. This is a result of our need to combine the students into one section for the class. Churchill has one full-time teacher for the immersion program, and she is contractually able to teach six classes. Next year, the 6th grade will require two classes and the 7th and 8th grades will require one each. That fills four of the six classes. The other two classes will be filled by four semester sections of French Culture. Even with all of that, the school needs at least one section of regular French 2 to be taught to the 30 current 7th graders who are in French 1 this year. Those students need the second course so they can stay on track to be ready for AP French in high school. But, ultimately, the answer is that the class sizes are a result of the FTE for the school not allowing for the addition of a second French teacher.
What is the French sequence through Junior High? High School? IB Program?
The sequence for French Immersion is as follows: 6th graders will take French Honors 2 and Social Studies; 7th graders will take French Honors 3 with French Culture being offered as an elective; 8th graders will take French Honors 4 with French Culture as an elective; 9th graders will take French Honors 5 and will take the AP test at the end of the year (French Culture is not offered in 9th grade); 10th graders will either begin the sequence of concurrent enrollment classes or take AP French (if the student passes the AP test in 9th grade they will not take AP French in 10th grade). The French Immersion Program is not a part of the IB program.
Can my immersion student participate in band?
Churchill offers Jazz Band as well as both beginning level and concert level classes for orchestra and band. The cadet classes (beginning level) will be semester-long elective, and students can take these classes beginning in sixth grade. The concert level classes for orchestra and band will be year-long elective. Students must audition and be signed into the concert level classes by Mrs. Diane Taylor.
Do you only have one lunch for all students?
Churchill only has one lunch. It is a great benefit to our students because they don’t have to worry about whether or not they will see their friends at lunch.
Will there be any extra-curricular activities for the students? what are they? anything for the French students?
There are many activities for students to get involved in at Churchill. It is hard to list them all, so the number one suggestion is to check out the school’s website and handbook that has a complete listing. Please see the following list knowing that it may not be all-inclusive: intramural sports before and after school; competitive sports (volleyball, track, basketball, wrestling, soccer, cross-country, golf); Dance Company; leadership (student body officers, class officers, Peer Leadership Team); Ballroom Dance; Instrumental Music; MESA; Community of Caring; Memory Book Staff; Stage Crew; drama; debate; Robotics and coding; Sewing; Chess; Homework Club. Right now there is nothing specific set-up for French, but Mrs. Cha-Philippe is thinking through starting a French Club. Parent support and volunteers always make clubs easier to run.
How will the sports work?
Competitive athletics will be moving to more of a hybrid approach that better accommodates all the schools in the district. Each sport season will be approximately seven weeks long. The first three weeks of each season will be for intramural competition at the school level. At the end of the intramural period, schools can pick teams and then inter-scholastic competition will begin. Each sport will have a six game season followed by a one game championship. The district schools that only have through 8th grade students (there are four junior high that still have 9th graders) will be split into two divisions. The six game schedule will serve as a round robin tournament for the division. The winner of the two divisions will then play in a championship game. The district is looking at adding boys soccer and moving both volleyball teams to the winter following basketball. If this happens, sports will be arranged this way: Fall = cross-country, boys’ and girls’ soccer; Winter = boys’ and girls’ basketball; Winter = boys’ and girls’ volleyball with wrestling following the conclusion of volleyball; Spring = golf and track.
Will there be class officers for each class?
The school plans to continue having both Student Body Officers and Class Officers. The number of class officers may be reduced from the current number of four. Cheerleaders will be taken out of the election process, but the school will continue to have them. Class office elections for next year’s 6th and 7th grades will be held in the fall; however, the 7th graders will have their elections prior to the end of this school year. For this transition year, we will elect Student Body Officers next fall so that the 6th and 7th graders can be part of the process.To be eligible to run for office, students must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA and CPA for the three terms prior to eligibility deadlines, and they must maintain their grades and citizenship during their term of office.
Will we still be on the A/B schedule?
The school will be moving to a 7-period modified schedule. The modification comes in the form of electives. Due to the loss of a period that we have had, we will condense elective classes into three categories: quarter, semester, and year-long. By making this adjustment, students will still be able to take a variety of elective classes even though there are only seven periods. Students and parents will need to be more selective of what electives they are looking at, however, due to the different lengths of electives. A student can take more electives if they take mostly quarter-long electives, but they will have fewer electives if they take multiple year-long electives. For this first year of transition, all 6th and 7th graders will be required to take PE and art for a quarter. This is being required in the first year because the district mandates that all students take those classes at least once in junior high. Once we are through the transition, the requirement for every 7th grader to take those two electives will go away and 7th graders will have more flexibility in their elective selections.
Will school start and end at the same time next year?
School will continue to end at 2:45 Monday thru Thursday and at 12:30 on Fridays. School currently begins at 7:50am, and there is a chance that we will move the start time to 7:45. This is a discussion that has not yet gone to community council or the district transportation department. The need to move the start time up five minutes is based on the fact that we will now have six class transition times a day instead of three.
Will my child have their own locker?
All students are assigned their own locker. Generally, the school assigns every other locker to students. This allows students to have plenty of room on either side so they can get to their lockers easily between classes.
Can my child bring a backpack to school?
Students absolutely can bring backpacks, messenger bags, briefcases and purse-like bags to school. However, they must be kept in the student’s locker during the school day. This school rule came about through discussion of the community council and concern over safety in classrooms where there could easily be 40 book-bags lying on the floor and in the isles between rows of desks. Cinch sacks with rope-like straps are ok to bring to class so students can be organized and take materials they need for class without having to go to their lockers between every class.
Won’t being on a 7 period schedule create a lot more homework for the students?
Students will not have more homework per night than they currently do. The faculty has been made aware that there will be discussion regarding homework and how to make sure students are not overloaded from night to night. While the final format and plan for how that will look has not been discussed yet, the administration is very aware of and sensitive to how homework needs to be handled once the school moves to a 7-period day.
How do GT classes work in a Junior High?
Elementary students are tested by the district in the winter and receive a score that is used to determine GT eligibility. If a student wants to take GT classes at the junior high, they need to register for Honors classes on the registration card. The counselors will then use testing scores to place students into GT sections. One advantage of Churchill Jr. High school is that because we have fewer students, we often allow students whose testing scores aren’t technically high enough to take GT classes to take them anyway so that we can fill the classes. Placement in the classes is strictly by score, and the counselors begin at the top of the list and work down until a class is filled. Math classes in the junior high do not have GT levels. This is because if a student is that advanced in math, we simply put them in the next highest math class. Seventh grade students who wish to be placed in 8th grade honors can do the compacted math. To do this, the student needs to complete the 7th grade honors course over the summer through Granite Connections. Information on this process will be given to the students at the appropriate time.
Once my student is in a GT class do they have to qualify each year to remain in the GT program?
Annual testing for GT is not required; however, testing must be completed prior to a student’s initial placement in GT classes. Once the testing is done and eligibility established, GT classes become self-selecting. This means the student and parents can determine what GT classes a student takes. The school will automatically place students who qualify for GT classes into GT classes, so it is important that if a student takes the testing and qualifies but doesn’t want to take the classes, the school counselor needs to be notified.
What is the difference between GT and Honors classes on my registration card?
On the registration card, there is no difference between honors and GT. If a student wants to take either level, they should mark it on the registration card. Placement in GT classes will be determined after the fact by the school counselors and will be based on student performance on the district testing for GT entrance. Functionally, the difference between the two is that students must test into GT classes, whereas, any student may register for and take honors level classes.
What is your math GT program?
There is no GT math program in secondary schools. Churchill teaches through Secondary Math 1 Honors. If a student who is in 6th grade tests into higher level math, they will be moved up. Any student can self-select into the honors-level math classes, and from there our teachers will determine placement. If a teacher has a student who is excelling, then the teacher will discuss with the counselor and parent moving the student to the next highest level math class. Students can accelerate their math progress from sixth the seventh grade by participating in the compacted math program. This program allows the students to take 7th Grade Math Honors during the summer through Granite Connections and then be placed in 8th Grade Math Honors during their 7th grade school year.
How does the Snowbird ski program work?
The school will continue to work with our great Snowbird skiers. The details of what that will look like have not been worked out yet, but we will continue to make sure the students have flexibility at the end of the school day for their training.