Mike Town, one of Tesla STEM High School’s founding teachers, is a recipient of the Patsy Collins Award for Excellence in Education, Environment, and Community.
No, we are not attempting to be a school of the future. The futures our name refers to are the futures of our students. We hope to do all we can to prepare all students for productive and enriching tomorrows that look far beyond graduation.
There are some differences between our school and JHS. Most importantly: our schedule, which provides additional flexibility for students as well as the opportunity to gain additional credits.
We would like to explain some of the specifics of our program. We have set procedures that we feel are appropriate as we attempt to bring in elements of the work environment. Stated simply, to be involved in the program, students must:
Be prepared to be productive;
Show respect to others at all times.
Students who feel this is beyond them may wish to explore other options.
¨Our program runs in approximately 30 day (6 week) sessions for a total of three per semester. Completion of the session with a D or better will result in the award of .25 credit. Because of the shorter durations of the sessions, students will lose credit on their 4th absence.
¨If a students passes all three of the semester’s sessions, they will have accumulated .75 points of credit, instead of the .5 they would receive in a traditional class.
¨We recognize that try as they might, students will occasionally fail a session. However, should they fail two out of the three sessions in a semester, they will be dropped from the class. If this occurs in half of a student’s classes, they will be dropped from Futures School. At that point, it is not the responsibility of FS or JHS to provide classes for students.
¨Futures School staff is responsible for informing parents when students are in danger of failing. Parents can facilitate this by providing current emails and phone numbers to the Futures School office. All grades can be accessed online using student names and passwords.
¨HOMEWORK: The amount of homework you will have is for the most part up to you. The expectation is that you will be productive in class and complete as much of the assignment as possible. It is not the desire of FS staff to complicate anyone’s lives. We understand that you are busy, and perhaps hold a job. That said, academic credit is being earned by you, not given to you, just as it is in non-FS classes. Work not completed in class must be completed on your own time.Graduation Requirements
As a part of the Lake Washington School District, we are beholden to the same state-set standards as the traditional high schools.
Students must complete 22 course credits, including…
4.0 credits in english including 9 LA, World Literature, American Literature, English electives
2.0 credits in science
3.0 credits in mathematics
3.0 credits in social studies, including World History, Cont. World History, US History and US Government
1 credit in Fine Arts
1.5 credits in Physical Education
0.5 credits in Health
1.0 credits in Occupational Education
2.00 world language
For students new and returning to Futures School . . .
The deal with attendance: Like JHS we classify absences as excused or unexcused, but because we are on the 6-session system, students lose credit on their 4th absence regardless of whether it is excused or not (which is why we have the appeal process). PLEASE NOTE: a parent phone call or note is not enough to excuse an absence. Absences will be considered excused if they REQUIRE a student to miss school (i.e. court, doctor’s appointment, illness).
All students new to the program (as well as some returning students) will be considered probational. Evaluations of an individual’s commitment to success, as determined by active participation and completion of assignments, will be made every two weeks throughout the first term of residence. If the student’s performance is deemed unsatisfactory for two of those three evaluations, the student’s continuance in Futures School will be suspended.
For all students returning to the program, failure in a class for two session in a semester constitutes grounds for removal from that class and corresponding reduction in schedule. Students must remain out of that class (or classes) for one semester and then may reapply for a full schedule. If students fail three or more classes for two sessions, the student is removed for a minimum of one session from Futures School. Students may reapply for admission. However, if a student has been withdrawn twice from the entire program, readmission will no longer be an option.
Students who have been withdrawn from a single or multiple classes or from the program for failure to perform, for discipline reasons, or for violation of individual contracts have the right to an appeal process. Students who lose credit in one or more classes because of attendance concerns have the right to an appeal to the Attendance Review Board, and, as a second step if unsatisfied with the decision of the Board, to the principal.
The good news – OFF-CAMPUS PASSES!! Junior an Senior Futures School students may apply for an off-campus pass at the beginning of the year. Such pass may be revoked at any time as a result of a discipline referral or if you are tardy to your next class. Off campus passes are good for lunch ONLY. Students may not use their off-campus passes for passing periods, REB time, or any other times other than lunch.
There are advantages to being a part of Futures School (accelerated credit). There are also perceived disadvantages. One of these is the fact that as a part of a small group like ours, you will be easily identifiable as a part of our program. You represent us in all that you do. We have worked very hard for this program and can allow nothing to jeopardize it, thus our discipline policy is very hands on. Staff will share situations and concerns in an attempt to avoid problems, but students need to be ambassadors for the program as well.
Students should familiarize themselves with the rules in the JHS student handbook – especially surrounding…
SMOKING: JHS is a tobacco free campus. No smoking in the parking lots, no smoking in the bathrooms, no smoking in your car – BECAUSE - JHS is a tobacco free campus!!
FIGHTING: All participants in an altercation, no matter how right the fight, will be suspended. Those watching the fight may also be given a discipline referral. Keep your ear to the ground, and let a staff member know if you know trouble is brewing – you’ll save someone a suspension!
DRUGS: Futures School has a zero-tolerance policy surrounding drugs. If you are found to be using or dealing at school, you will be dropped from the program. If we have reason to believe you are using at home, you will have to meet with our drug resource person and meet their requirements or you will be dropped from the program. We will not tolerate any drug “language” or imagery in class or on homework.
MAKE UP WORK: While this is up to the individual teacher, generally no work will be accepted a week after it was due.
TARDIES: Save the excuses. If you enter class after the bell rings, you are tardy. If you enter 5 minutes late, it is an ABSENCE. After the 3rd tardy you will be given a referral and will serve a detention. You will receive an absence on your 5th tardy, and for everyone thereafter. Please do not make the mistake of losing credit due to tardies.
Please avoid discipline referrals at all costs. Remember that teachers other than your own can give them to you if they feel justified, and that your reaction to these referrals directly affects the consequences of it. Do not make a bad situation worse by talking back to a teacher.
Teachers cannot teach and students cannot learn in an environment where discipline is a regular problem. For this reason we have one of our oldest and easiest to remember rules: Students accruing three or more discipline referrals are suspended from the program for a minimum of one semester.
We’re Thrilled to Have You!
Why all the rules? Because this is a great program, filled with great students that are sure to do great things! You are in wonderful company – our past students are in universities, the military, working full time – all the great stuff that comes with graduation.
The staff here is committed to you and your success as well – ask the former students to tell you what people have done for them! We don’t want any one to say “I didn’t know!”, so read this a couple times, and ASK US QUESTIONS! With all of us working together – it’s going to be a great year!!!
Reminders From Past Students of Futures School…
¨Attendance is important. You must keep up with your work, so you must be there every day. Be on time, period.
¨“Slacking” doesn’t work. You must finish work and turn it in to pass your classes.
¨Being in a seat is not enough! You will be expected to participate in class discussions and work.
¨The student must ask questions if they don’t understand something. If something is clear to you and not to a confused classmate, do everyone a favor and help them!
¨Futures School is a “school within a school”. You still must follow Juanita High School rules*.
*Juanita rules will be presented to all FS students in a handbook given to all students. It is the student’s responsibility to get to know them, and they will be held accountable to them.