Pinnacle Post - August 09

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This newsletter is designed by our Virtual Guidance Counselors to help keep students and their parents informed on all the current news and events at Pinnacle Online High School. Along with news and events, the Pinnacle Post will have important information to help students succeed at POHS. Also, be on the look out for student-generated content like student poems, stories, articles and movie reviews.


  • The Student Services Department has a new look this school year. The major change within the Department is the introduction of our new Virtual Guidance Counselors (VGCs). See below to learn about how your VGC can help you:

    Virtual Guidance Counselor (VGC): Each student will be assigned a VGC to help guide them through this school year. The students are assigned to a VGC based on grade level, and your VGC will stay the same throughout the 2009/2010 school year.

    Reaching your VGC: Your VGC will be available to you during their normal business hours. You will have your VGCs email address as well as direct phone line. Voicemails or emails will be returned within 24 school hours.

    VGCs Responsibilities: Your VGC will support you in all aspects as you move throughout this school year. Our job is to help make you successful. We will contact you weekly, as well as provide you with helpful resources and information. Take advantage of your

    VGC; ask us questions, recruit us to help you gather information for college, etc.

    Preparing for your future: Your VGC is also inter-ested in your future goals. Make sure you are sharing with your VGC what you hope to do after high school, and how Pinnacle can help you reach your goals.

    The Arizona Department of Education has issued a new mandate for all students, starting with the class of 2013. All students are to have an individualized Educational and Career Action Plan (ECAP). In order to comply with this state mandate, Pinnacle has created an ECAP class which students can take and earn elective credits for graduation. Each section of ECAP is worth .5 credits, and a student can earn up to 2.0 credits in their four years at

    Pinnacle, by taking and passing ECAP. All incoming 9th graders will be automatically enrolled in the ECAP class. It will be a Pass/Fail class in which ex-tensive participation will be required. Students graduating before 2013 are welcome to also take the ECAP class for an Elective credit. Pinnacle is excited at the resources and valuable infor-mation that are included in the ECAP class.

    Meet THE POHS virtual guidance counselors

    What is aN ecap And why would I need one?

    Each student has a personal POHS Virtual Guidance Counselors that will help them achieve their goals!

    In this issue...

    Links Library - 2 Important Dates - 2 Pinnacle Staff Spotlight - 2 Tips of the Month - 2 Parent Corner - 3

    AIMS Testing - 3 College Board Code - 3 Making the Grade - 4 Contact Info - 4 Preparing 4 College - 5

    Student WritersWanted...inquirewithin.

    August 2009

    1 1

  • | SAT/ACT | Scholarships | College Fairs | Calendar | Financial Aid | Minority Scholarships | State School Scholarships |

    Week of September 6th, National Suicide Prevention Week

    September 7th, Labor Day September 14th, ACT/SAT Strategies* September 18th, ACT Registration Deadline for

    October 24th test

    September 21st, Skills and Career Assessment for 10th graders*

    September 24th, PAL Suicide Prevention* September 28th, College Bound Workshop for 12th


    *Get the details from you VGC

    Important dates

    E-mailing your Instructor Remember to e-mail your instructor, through the course, and ask for the midterm and final exams to be unlocked. The instructor has up to 24 school hours to re-view your progress and unlock the exam. Be

    sure and leave yourself plenty of time for this process to take place, which means you should be staying ahead of pace for your end date.

    Sending mail to All Course Faculty Click into your course Click on the Communicate tab on the top of the page Click on Quick Message Click the To: button On new screen under User, check All course faculty.

    Then, click the To button, then OK.

    Type a subject and message and click Send.

    Staff Spotlight

    Started in 1977 as a physical education/dance teacher for Chandler Public Schools.

    Dance Teacher for Mesa Public Schools and a Student Enrollment Specialist for Mesa Community College from 1980-1991.

    School Guidance Counselor/Department Chair from 1991-2008 for Red Mountain, Skyline and Mountain View High Schools (Mesa Public Schools).

    Served as Delegate for Rocky Mountain Association of College Admission Counselors, Board Member for Arizona School Counselor Association, Member of Western Region College Board and High School College Relations Council.

    National Board Certified Counselor. Named Southwest Student Services, Arizona High

    School Counselor of the Year.

    Married to Mark Swartz and has 3 children in collegeAshley @ UC Denver, Steph @ ASU and Drew @ Colorado State-Pueblo.

    Proud owner of two dogs: Cash & Bear. Favorite restaurant: Anything Mexican. Favorite movie: Human interest or comedy! Loves to travel and participate in water sports! If you had more free time what would you do? - Read more books.

    Kim Swartz - Director, Virtual Guidance Counseling

    Links Library L i n k s t o h e l p f u l P i n n a c l e E d u c a t i o n b u l l e t i n s

    P A G E 2 V O L U M E 1 , I S S U E 1

  • Attention Parents: WE NEED YOU! Believe it or not, you play a large role in your students success. Please make sure your students Virtual Guidance Counselor (VGC) knows how to get a hold of you and the best time of day to reach you. Good phone numbers and e-mails from parents are wonderful resources for us, so we can recruit your help when necessary. Tips to stay involved:

    Help your student set up a calendar and plan out what they need to have done, and by when, in each class.

    Ask your student how their classes are going. Have your student show you their progress in each class. Help your student study for quizzes and exams & contact your students VGC if you have questions or concerns.

    Each student has 12 weeks to complete their course.

    Every class has a Monday start day.

    Its important to complete the Orientation and survey offered to each student at the beginning of the year.

    Make sure to get in touch with your personal VGC (Virtual Guidance Counselor).

    Every student should get a copy of their Graduation Plan from their VGC. Review this and make sure your parents email back stating that they have reviewed the plan and agree with what it shows.

    Grades and transcripts are NOT automatically sent out. Please contact your VGC for information on how to obtain these things.

    Pinnacle takes attendance! You must log a minimum of 30 hours (online and offline time per class) before the midterm will be unlocked and 60 hours before the final will be unlocked. This is attendance for the virtual classroom!

    The midterm is only halfway through the course. There are more lessons before the final.

    2010 Spring Testing Writing: Tuesday, Feb 23 Reading: Wednesday, Feb 24 Math: Wednesday, April 7 Science: Thursday, April 8

    2009 Fall Testing (11th & 12th graders who have not yet passed exam) Writing: Tuesday, Oct 27 Reading: Wednesday, Oct 28 Math: Thursday, Oct 29

    V O L U M E 1 , I S S U E 1

    Passing AIMS is required

    Stanford 10 (formally Terra Nova) test dates are in the Spring and will be announced soon!

    P A G E 3

    Click into the academic course you are interested in looking at.

    Click Report tab on top of screen. Under Category use the drop down menu and select


    The screen will automatically refresh: under Grades it should say Student Grades and User should be your students name.

    Click Run on the bottom right of screen. The Reports Console will then come up.

    AIMS Testing dates

    Wondering how to check your students grades? Run a grade report! Heres how:

    Dont forget to log your offline time in each class every time you login!

    Pinnacle Online High School - College Board Code: 030666 You will need this code for some testing registrations (i.e. PSAT/SAT) as well as certain scholarship applications.

  • P A G E 4 V O L U M E 1 , I S S U E 1

    Making the grade (Article provided by Chances are that if you are reading this, you are already a somewhat successful student. However, the higher up you go in the education hierarchy, the more strategies you will need to stay successful. Consider these tips:

    Focus. This is the single most important strategy for success in both high school and college (and at work). Focus on what you want, on what you are doing, and on where you are at the moment. If you are in college, focus on each and every class and assignment. If you are in Chem I, focus on that class, that assignment, that grade. Don't let your attention be diluted with out-side interests until your schoolwork is completed. You won't do well in International Politics if you are fighting with your significant other or worrying about what to wear to the football game this weekend!

    Prioritize. Education is your #1 priority at this time in your life. All decisions must be made around that prior-ity. Sure, it would be fun to spend your time off at the beach, but not if you have to finish a term paper.

    Sleep. Get enough sleep and eat a bal-anced diet. This isn't advice from Granny; it is a practical, stay-healthy-and-you-will-do better-in-school fact. Junk food, binge drinking, doing drugs, and staying up all night do not create a successful scholar. Take care of you. Your success depends on it.

    Participate. Go to all classes all the time. Skipping class is the best way to fail. Attend every class and be a part of each one. Ask questions,