The City of Charlottesville Pupil Transportation is moving to a more accurate way of crafting bus schedules, but this has delayed the release of the bus schedule information. Thanks for your patience. These schedules will likely be modified a bit during the first weeks of the school year. Bus information will also be posted to PowerSchool accounts shortly (and will be removed from this web site). You can also receive schedules at your school’s open house.
Come meet your teachers and see your classrooms! Open houses this year will be on Monday, August 21. School starts on Wednesday, August 23.
Need a school supply list? Click here.
Wednesday, August 16
CATEC Open House is Wednesday, August 16, from 5-7pm
Monday, August 21
- Elementary Schools: 1–3pm
- CHS Virtual Orientations begin at 1pm. See here for more information.
- Walker Upper Elementary: 3-5pm
- Buford Middle School: 4-6pm
- CHS: 5-7pm
Wednesday, August 23
First day of school. See school hours below.
Elementary: 8:00am to 2:30pm
Buford and Walker: 8:30am to 3:15pm
CHS: 9:05am to 3:50pm (with a one-hour delayed start on the 2nd Thursday of some months)
Learn your schedule, complete back-to-school forms, and more!
Starting August 14, you can log in or create your account to see teacher assignments or schedules, complete your back-to-school paperwork online, and more. Bus schedule information will be posted in PowerSchool beginning around August 19.
A personalized letter giving you information about your PowerSchool account (and other updates) was mailed the week of 7/31. If the letter does not contain codes, you already have an account and can log back in. See letter for more information. If you did not receive a letter and you need codes for one or more student, call your school. If you have further trouble setting up your account, you can call 245-2943.
- Link to PowerSchool
- Sample letter in English (the letter with your family’s access codes is being mailed to your home)
- Ejemplo de carta en español (la carta con los códigos de acceso de su familia ha sido enviada por correo a su casa)
- Need to translate these instructions into another language? Click “translate” in the upper right corner and translate this page (and the letter, below) into the language of your choice.
Dear families –
The school year is almost here! The first day of school is Wednesday, August 23, and open houses will be Monday, August 21. Here are some tips to help you get your family off to a good start.
On August 14, the online program PowerSchool will re-open so that you can learn your child’s teacher assignment or schedule, review your pre-completed back-to-school forms, customize how you hear from us, and more.
PowerSchool is an online tool to help schools, students, and families stay connected throughout the year. You can check grades and attendance and more (see below). Make sure all of your students are added to your parent account.
Returning PowerSchool Users: Log back in (on or after August 14), using your parent account (not your child’s). If you don’t remember your username or password, visit the log-in page for help. A link to PowerSchool is on the parent menu at the bottom of every page at charlottesvilleschools.org. To add a child, log in and click “Account Preferences,” then “Students,” then “Add.” Enter the student’s “access info” from the back of this letter.
New PowerSchool Users: See the back of this sheet for instructions & personalized access codes.
The earliest way to learn your student’s schedule and teacher assignment is to check PowerSchool when it reopens on August 14. We will mail letters later that week.
Back-to-School Paperwork Online
To quickly complete your back-to-school forms, log into PowerSchool and click on “InfoSnap” (or PowerSchool Registration). You’ll find a complete set of forms for your student, with most of the answers pre-completed for you. Simply edit previous info and answer the remaining questions. After you finish your first child, the program can “snap” updates into your remaining children’s forms. We recommend using a computer (not a phone) – you can visit a library, use your child’s school chromebook, or take advantage of school computers at open house. The online forms include everything except the application for free/reduced lunch.
For kindergartners and students who are new to Charlottesville City Schools, these forms are not required unless you need to update the information.
Look for a paper application in the mail. Medicaid-qualifying families and students at Clark, Jackson-Via, and Johnson do not need to complete this form since they automatically qualify for free meals.
Meal Account Balance Checks
This year, we have switched from “My School Bucks” to “My Payments Plus.” You can set up low-balance reminders with My Payments Plus, and for a service fee of about 4 percent, you can pay online. We plan to connect this service with PowerSchool, as well. For more information, see charlottesvilleschools.org/nutrition.
Choose whether to receive calls, emails, or texts from the schools. Log into PowerSchool and click on Contact Manager at the left. Then click “Contacts” in a new screen. For your (first) child, click “Edit.” For each number or email you have, check the messages you would like to receive. Then click “Save.”
Bus routes will be mailed home with back-to-school information from your school.
Facebook, Twitter, and You Tube
For updates, follow us at @CvilleSchools! Many schools have accounts, as well.
Instructions for New PowerSchool Parent Portal Accounts
This letter will help you create a PowerSchool Parent Portal account so that you can get your teacher assignments, complete back-to-school forms, and view grades/attendance. You will need a letter for each of your children. (If you’re missing a letter, perhaps you already opened an account.) For assistance or an additional child’s codes, call 245-2943. Access IDs and passwords are unique for each student. You should keep this letter in a safe place.
Instructions to Open a New Account (see the letters mailed to your home for your personalized information)
- Open an internet browser on your computer and direct your browser to https://sis.charlottesvilleschools.org/publicYou may also find a link on the “Parents” menu at the bottom of every page of the Charlottesville City Schools web site at http://www.charlottesvilleschools.org
- Click the Create Account buttonA new screen will open. Parent’s information goes in the top section. You must give an email address.
The parent or guardian chooses a username and password. Passwords must be at least 6 characters.
- Children’s access information goes in the lower section.Use the Access ID and password from the letter or letters you received in the mail. Passwords are case sensitive and MUST be entered exactly as they appear above. If you have more than one child, you will receive more than one letter and should enter all children here.Remember to click Enter when you have finished entering all children.
- Once you have completed the above, you will see this screen. You can
now use your new username/password to log in at: https://sis.charlottes-
villeschools.org/public (Or find a link at the bottom of our web site.)
To Add a Student to an Existing Parent Account:To add a child, log in and click “Account Preferences,” then “Students,”
then “Add.” Enter the student access data from the letter you received in the mail.
Below are this year’s CCS school supplies lists. Copies of these lists are available at area stores. If you have any questions, please call your school.
And if you need assistance getting school supplies for this year, contact your school counselor. People who registered for this year’s Back-to-School Bash can pick up their supplies at their school open house on Monday, August 21. (The Sprint Pavilion event on August 19 has been cancelled.)
School Supply Lists for the 2017-18 School Year:
Also, you and your family might enjoy meeting up with Books on Bikes, a group of Charlottesville City Schools teachers, librarians, staff, and even trained doggie pals as they make summertime deliveries of books and freezy-pops.
Summer Reading Recommendations and Information:
The online service for doing returning students’ back-to-school forms for the 2017-18 year will be available on August 14. To access your forms, please log into PowerSchool and click on InfoSnap or (PowerSchool Registration). (The buttom will look like this:
Need help logging into PowerSchool?
- Current account users: there is a username and password retrieval tool on the PowerSchool login page. Make sure ALL your students are connected to your account (see the letter you received for codes).
- New users: you received a letter with the codes and instructions you need to set up your account. Be sure to connect ALL your students to your parent account.
- A sample copy of the information letter is here.
Are you a registering a new student?
- Kindergartners and students who did not attend Charlottesville schools last year should fill out new student paperwork here.
Charlottesville City’s elementary schools will hold kindergarten open houses on Thursday, April 20 at 3:30 – 6:00 PM. Students should visit the open house for the school they will attend. (Not sure which elementary school your child will attend? Find out here.)
- Complete online forms here (in English and español) — forms are also available at open house
- Visit the open house with proof of residency and other documents (see list here).
- Find answers to other questions (including non-resident applications) on our registration page.
We’re excited to meet our new kindergarten students and their families!
- Información acerca de kindergarten en español
- Para leer esta página en español, indica “Translate” (traducir) en la parte por encima de la página y escoja “Spanish.”
- More kindergarten information
January 24, 2017
As you know, we are developing the strategic plan that will guide our Charlottesville schools through the year 2023. So far, we have gotten a great response from students, staff, and parents — and we want to hear from you, too.
Three opportunities are available for staff and parents:
- A community-wide listening session will be held this Wednesday (1/25) at CHS at 7pm. Join us!
- An online survey is another way you can share your feedback and ideas.
- A schedule of school-based meetings is on the web site, as well.
This monthly newsletter will reflect on some of the ideas we’ve heard so far, connecting the ideas with recent activities in our schools.
—Dr. Rosa S. Atkins, Superintendent
Early Feedback from our Meetings and and Survey Responses:
- This month, CHS photo and African-American history students partnered on an community project in which they interviewed and photographed local black leaders to document African-American lives, leadership, and experiences. The images and content will be presented to the CHS community during their African-American History Month assembly.
- CHS student Saad Khaleefa more than impressed the crowd at the annual community celebration honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when he read his essay describing this experiences as a refugee from Syria. Khaleefa won the high school writing contest (and classmate Thomas Inigo was a finalist); the contest was curated by PVCC judges and sponsored by the Albemarle County Rotary Club Foundation.
- Thanks to the school division’s new iSTEM program, fifth-graders at Walker School designed, built, and tested boats for a journey up the “James River” in a classroom simulation. In addition to the STEM skills, the project incorporated history and language arts skills. Similarly, third-graders across the division designed and built garden structures to protect the schools’ lettuce from winter, among other projects. You can catch a broader glimpse of the work of this new iSTEM program at STEM nights hosted by the elementary schools this winter.
- Burnley-Moran students have been writing letters to (and receiving correspondence from) senior-citizen pen pals throughout the year. This month, they’re going to meet each other face-to-face!
- Clark Elementary organized a “community helper day” for its kindergartners, inviting special guests including their own award-winning crossing guard Ms. Ruth Hill. Other guests are future and current community helpers from CATEC, with high school students representing fields such as firefighting, dental, and medical care.
- CHS eleventh-grade English classes took advantage of performances of The Grapes of Wrath at the Paramount Theater offered by the National Players. Thanks to the theater, the actors visited CHS to offer related workshops with English and drama classes. Similarly, a number of our elementary school students were able to hear the Richmond Symphony accompany a screening of The Snowman, also at the Paramount.
- CHS biology students recently partnered with UVa Health professionals to present their research at a student symposium.
- Buford students will soon be watching Hidden Figures, a powerful reminder that each of us can use our talents to impact our world.
- Our partnership with City Schoolyard Garden offers hands-on learning across the curriculum. Students, staff, and parents are pleased with these ongoing activities and are glad to see expansions, including the green roof project on the new garden shed at Greenbrier.
Recent examples include:
- Our strategic plan process includes focus groups with students at all our schools, including our alternative program, Lugo-McGinness Academy. Students have brought important and unique perspectives but also share many of the same educational goals and preferences as their teachers and parents.
- The CHS science club BACON (Best All-around Club of Nerds) offers a model for how students can take ownership of their learning. Students pick the projects they wish to focus on and work independently on their goals. As adviser Dr. Matt Shields notes, “It’s about as far away as you can get from ‘My dad did my science fair project.'” For a fifth straight year, the students working on the Zero Robotics team qualified for the international finals in the programming competition sponsored by NASA and MIT. Good luck at the finals, BACON!
Students at CATEC also offer a model of charting their own path and exploring possible careers ranging from health care to culinary arts. New this year is the program’s partnership with tech giant CISCO, offering industry-recognized certifications in IT. CATEC recently hosted the regional competition for Skills USA, showing the range of the program’s offerings. CHS students Luis Becerra-Vargas and Ed Pollock, respectively, earned 2nd and 3rd in Culinary Arts at the competition. Congratulations!
- Even younger students can take ownership of their learning. This year, thanks to a grant from the Shannon Foundation, Venable students will lead their own parent-teacher conferences. Using portfolios of their own work, students will reflect on their growth and learning as well as articulate their goals for the future.
While students in all curriculum areas offered specific examples of ways their teachers offer choice and independence, Buford and CHS students enrolled in engineering classes say that choice and independence are at the heart of these classes. Students are given structured expectations about what they will learn and what projects will guide them through the curriculum, but on a daily basis, students work independently and with peers to accomplish these goals.
Recent examples include:
- Across our elementary schools, classrooms and even whole schools host periodic or daily “morning meetings” to celebrate successes, define goals, and build community.
- This year’s new Link Crew program at CHS has connected upper-class mentors with ninth-graders to help younger students make a good transition, establish connections, and have fun.
- More than wins and losses, athletics is about character. At a recent basketball game, CHS recently honored graduate Rashard Davis, who just helped the JMU football team earn a national championship. Davis is known for his work ethic, values, character — and setting college conference records. Similarly, girls’ basketball coach Jim Daly recently tweeted, “Our leading scorer from last night [Daeja Wade] was back in the gym by 9am to coach a 1st/2nd grade basketball team — nice reminder of what a great group of girls we have!”
- Walker students recently worked on some jigsaw puzzles while blindfolded! The challenge — completed with a little help from some friends — was organized by the schools’ counselors, who organize monthly lessons to build connections, character, and culture.
- Jackson-Via recently earned a grant from Charlottesville’s “Sister Cities Commission” to support the school’s Harry-Potter-like “house” system. Connected to Charlottesville’s sister cities in Africa, Bulgaria, France, and Italy, the “houses” are student groups designed to build both interpersonal and international connections.
- Wellness and nutrition have also received attention in the focus groups. While Charlottesville has won national awards for its commitments to healthy activity, local foods, and more, there is always room for improvement. New nutrition coordinator has met with a feedback group of Walker students, and a parent group focusing on fresh and healthy school meals has also been formed. Find the group on Facebook here!
- Lugo-McGinness Academy, the school division’s alternative school for students in grades 7-12, is leading the way for us to reexamine school culture and discipline, focusing on relationships, student growth, and self-awareness.
Recent examples include:
- Teachers at all levels incorporate learning games into their curriculum using hands-on items like dice or internet game-show-like tools like “Kahoot.”
- Perhaps the model of “purposeful play” comes from kindergarten, including Johnson students recently choosing from a range of centers to explore “community helpers” — opting to play with a hospital-themed doll set, a child’s construction work table, dress-up stations, and more.
- A recent pep rally at CHS marked the semester’s end with laughs and games such as life-sized “Hungry, Hungry, Hippos.”
- When possible, students prefer an atmosphere of “fun but serious.” One example they offered is their fine arts classes where it is fun to sing or draw or play an instrument, but the atmosphere is still marked by work and accomplishment.
- Recess remains a priority for students, teachers, parents, and child-development experts, especially when recess is augmented by regular “get the wiggles out” activities such as brain breaks, mini-dance parties, “Fun Fridays,” and other times for unstructured activities.
Continue to attract and support such high-quality teachers and staff
- Continue to support equity in achievement
- Continue our commitment to the arts
- Reexamine our facilities and how they will support learning
- This is just a sampling of ideas we’ve heard. If you think one is missing, let us know by filling out the survey or attending a meeting!
At their January meeting, the Board elected Juan Wade and Sherry Kraft as chair and vice-chair, respectively. The Board expressed its appreciation to outgoing chair and vice chair Amy Laufer and Leah Puryear (both of whom will remain on the Board). In addition, the Board voted to approve the 2017-18 Academic Calendar, the 2017-18 Program of Studies , and the tuition for the CLASS summer program. The Board also discussed the budget for 2017-18, heard updates about the “Link Crew” mentoring program at CHS, and more.
Upcoming events include:
- Stage Left Theater presents Beauty and the Beast, 1/24, 6:30pm, Walker Auditorium
- Community Strategic Plan Listening Session (open to all), 1/25, 7pm, CHS (Click here for a list of other listening sessions).
- Buford offers Parent University, 1/26, 6pm
- CHS Symphony/Choir Concert with Fine Arts Showcase, 2/1, 7:30pm, MLKPAC
- School Board Meeting, 2/2, 5:30pm, CHS Media Center
- Special Education Advisory Committee (SEAC) meeting, 2/14, 8:45am, Division Annex at CHS (call 245-2400 for more information)
- CATEC Open House, 2/16, 4-6pm
- TheatreCHS presents In the Woods, 2/16-18 at 7:30 (also 1:00 on 2/18). MLKPAC. Tickets available here.
- Professional Learning Day (no school for students), 2/20
- School Board Meeting, 3/2, 5:30pm, CHS Media Center
- View previous editions of the Superintendent Message.
STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
STEM education is one of the most talked about elements of K–12 education today. Charlottesville City Schools provides a wide variety of STEM-related opportunities for students beginning in pre-Kindergarten and continuing through high school. These opportunities help CCS students discover and develop their interest in these disciplines.
Throughout the school year, a variety of STEM-related programs enhances the learning possibilities of all students. These include in-school activities like robotics and coding workshops, as well as family nights which enable students and their families to have fun with math and science.
STEM & Math Night at Jackson-Via
Jackson-Via recently held its 2017 Math & STEM evening, where CHS students from the science club BACON (Best All-around Club Of Nerds) came to help run the activities.