Message from Mrs. Drake

Dear Parent/Guardian:

We are striving to ensure that everything we do at TJ is focused on making every single student successful.  We cannot do it alone.

Students with involved parents tend to be more successful.

Please work with us.

We are fast approaching the end of the first semester.  The normal busy pace has picked up rapidly as we work hard to finalize grades and second semester schedules.

As I mentioned in my letter dated January 5, 2012, because of some challenges posed by the new electronic grading system, I have directed teachers to use their professional judgment when determining the end of semester grade. The grade must reflect the student’s performance during the first semester.

On Friday, January 13, second semester schedules were distributed to students.  As mentioned in my letter, a large number of scheduling changes are taking place between first and second semester due to our first semester scheduling dysfunctions.  It has been a mammoth team effort by faculty, counselors and administration to design the second semester schedule.  It was not through choice that we engaged in this exercise, and we are aware of the concerns many students and parents are experiencing with further changes to student schedules.  I wish the changes could be avoided.  Sadly, they cannot.  The merging of students from a range of classes determined our decision to start with fresh grades for second semester.

Our Superintendent, Rob Neu, announced some changes in a parent letter dated January 6, 2012.  I would like to highlight the section about homework.

Homework – Homework is an important part of the learning process. Homework should be regarded as two separate categories, practice and assignment completion. When students are assigned homework for practice outside of the school day, it will not count toward the calculation of their grade. However, when students finish an assignment that was started in class (example: project, essay, report, etc.) that will assess their mastery of a specific learning target or power standard, this can be used as evidence of mastery and count toward the calculation of their grade.

Please contact me if you have any questions.



Liz Drake

Thomas Jefferson Principal

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