Endeavor's Annual Fund Hits the $150,000 Mark!Posted by Christi Whiteside on 5/24/2019 4:00:00 PMDear ECS Families and Donors,
The 2018-2019 Annual Fund has received $150,853! With a combination of your direct donations, business sponsors, corporate matches, proceeds from Endeavor's Family Fun Fest and the Stride for the Pride, the Annual Fund has reached the goal of $150,000 this year! Thank you to all of our donors for your tremendous support and dedication to the success of our school.The Annual Fund is Endeavor's way of supplementing the gap in our state and local per-pupil funding. That gap is created by the State's requirement of charter schools to fund their own building and facilities using per-pupil dollars.By reaching our goal, the Annual Fund has absorbed enough operational expenses within our budget, which will allow us to address several high priority needs we would have otherwise struggled to afford this year. As a result, Endeavor has:
Your gifts have made a significant difference for our school, our students and our teachers! On behalf of the Administration, Board of Directors and our entire school community - THANK YOU for your support of Endeavor Charter School and the 2018-2019 Annual Fund!
purchased 60 new iPads to be housed in classrooms
purchased two new upgraded IT servers
begun much-needed erosion recovery and landscaping improvements to our campus
increased funds for our athletics, fine arts and STEAM programs
and made important strides to better compensate our talented teachers and staff!
Madagascar!Posted by Christi Whiteside on 5/17/2019 4:00:00 PM
Did you go see Madagascar Junior this week? Congratulations to the 7th and 8th grade cast, the Behind the Scenes elective crew, the many parent volunteers, Mrs. Tudor, Ms. Tompkins, Mrs. Diaz, Mrs. Tatum, and especially to Mrs. Colvin for her first ECS production! It was another ECS Fine Arts department masterpiece, and the story is a great parallel to the adventure our 8th graders are soon to embark upon.
In the play, one of the main characters is tired of life in the zoo and seeks wide open spaces. His friends follow to help him, and they all end up on a crazy adventure in an unknown land with strange new characters. They form a conga line and exit the stage singing “Together Forever!”
Well, ECS isn’t quite a zoo, but our 8th graders are also eager for wide open spaces! They are ready for the opportunities and challenges heading their way. They are certainly going to meet many new characters, some of whom may seem strange. They are also eager to stay with and help their friends. When they head out into the strange new lands ahead of them, they may face difficulties. They may question who they are and where they belong. Things may seem foreign and scary at first, but if they stay true to who they are, we know they will succeed!
Please join us for the 8th Grade Walk on June 6 at around 2:45. It won’t be a conga line, but we’ll celebrate our 8th graders as they parade through our building for the last time before they graduate that evening. Even though we wish they’d be together forever, we are so proud that they will forever be a part of ECS!
Director, Endeavor Charter School
ECS Staff Update May 9, 2019Posted by Christi Whiteside on 5/10/2019 2:45:00 PM
LaShonna Smith will be joining our Exceptional Children’s team as the new upper grades EC teacher. She comes to us with 7 years’ experience as a talented special education teacher as well as a creative classroom teacher. We are happy to have her!
Nguyet Ng will be joining us as the new first grade teaching assistant working with Ms. Ammons. She has 8 years’ experience as an elementary school teacher. Her skills in organization, tutoring, and classroom management will be an asset to the class!
Tiffany Carson will be leaving ECS at the end of this school year for a new teaching opportunity. She will be missed!
…a passionate, NC certified, middle school science teacher.
…a passionate, NC certified, middle school math teacher.
As always, we value your recommendations. Please forward this job information to excellent candidates you may know. Full job descriptions are posted on our website. Thanks for your help!
Endeavor Charter School
Want to talk?Posted by Christi Whiteside on 5/3/2019 4:00:00 PM
We struggle sometimes with communication - personally, professionally, on social media, in front of a crowd, in our own hearts. At ECS we constantly struggle with the best means and the best frequency for our communications with you. We hear from some folks that we send way too much information, and it is overwhelming. We hear from other folks that they don’t feel they ever hear what is happening on campus.
We also struggle sometimes with the best topics to discuss. As a staff, we always have one topic or another that we are working on and thinking about. These are not always the same topics that parents are thinking about. Some topics are perfect for taking time and gathering input from all stakeholders. Other decisions just need to be made by the party in charge – staff, PAWS, Foundation, etc.
When we host events intended to share school wide information, we struggle with the timing and format. What works for one family does not work for another. Is carpool time good to host a meeting? Mornings? Evenings? Virtual meetings?
As we look toward next year, we are looking at the ways we communicate with you. We are considering what works well and what could be better. We’ve gathered feedback over the last few parent surveys and have found some ways to respond. There are two main improvements we are working on right now.
Meet the Teacher is one of the most exciting days on campus for students and staff. We’ve come to understand that it can also become long and tedious for parents. This July, we will try a new format. Rather than the three shifts of class visits we’ve previously held, we will follow an open house format next year. Our building will be open on July 29 from 9:30-11:00 for families with students in all grades above kindergarten. During this time all classes will be open for all students and families to visit at their convenience. We will also open the multipurpose room for informational booths and the opportunity for parents to learn about other aspects of our program – Student Assistance Program, early literacy support, athletics, curriculum, and more. We are excited to share some of the ways we enrich opportunities for students that you may not know about. As we plan this event, we recognize that if all families arrive at 9:30, parking will be a big mess, so as we continue to share this information, we will also ask families to stagger their arrival times throughout that time span. Kindergarten Meet the Teacher will be held on August 2nd, following their staggered entry days.
We are also going to start hosting a Carpool Coffee each quarter next year. During morning carpool once per quarter, we will invite parents in to hear about what is going on at Endeavor, to ask questions and share comments. This will provide us an opportunity to get together and keep in touch in a new way. We hope this time will be well attended and will offer some of our working moms and dads a more accessible time to be on campus. Perhaps the smell of coffee and pastries will lure some folks inside!
As we are rapidly heading toward the end of this year, please know that we appreciate your support. The ways you invest in our school allow us to do what we do!
Christi Whitside, Director
Endeavor Charter School
ECS Staff Update April 5, 2019Posted by Christi Whiteside on 4/5/2019 4:15:00 PM
ECS Staff Update April 5, 2019
Our thanks go out to those leaving ECS for all they’ve done for us over the years!
Erin Fulk, 1st grade Teaching Assistant, will be leaving ECS to spend more time with her family. We wish her well!
Katie Clemmons, 7th and 8th grade science teacher, will be leaving ECS to return to a larger middle school. We send our best wishes with her!
…a 50% 1st grade teaching assistant preferably with teaching or related experience.
…a passionate, NC certified, middle school science teacher
Please send these two job openings to those you know. Full job descriptions are posted on our website. Thanks for your help!
We are still looking for a few parents representing all grades to help review the responses from the parent survey and begin to form recommendations about the future of ECS. If you are interested email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Parent Survey Results and UpdatePosted by Christi Whiteside on 3/29/2019 4:30:00 PM
This year’s parent survey was the first significant step in future planning for Endeavor. We want to gather as much data as we can from our community because we want to start painting the picture of what the next 10 years of Endeavor Charter School will look like.
Top Parent Preferences for K-5: STEAM, Service, Science and SS as year-long courses, Separation of reading and writing
Top Parent Preferences for Middle School: STEAM, Increased elective choices, Expanded core courses, Add academic clubs
Top Parent Preferences for Additional Fine Arts: Technology and PE
Top Parent Preferences for Facility: Gym, Computer lab, Science lab, Performance space
Our next step is to take the ideas from the parent survey and the results of the staff survey and talk through what they might look like in reality and how they’d impact learning and working at Endeavor. Every idea that brings something new or bigger or different to ECS will impact other aspects of our school, and we will need to determine which ideas will best allow us to maintain what we love about Endeavor while enriching the students’ and teachers’ experience.
If you’d like to be a part of a group to consider the pros and cons of our many options, please email me at email@example.com. This group will flush out options and their impacts. This essential information will go to the decision makers who will determine the next ten years of Endeavor.
Stay tuned! It’s an exciting time to be a part of Endeavor!
Christi Whiteside, Director
One School, One Book - The Boy Who Harnessed the WindPosted by Christi Whiteside on 3/9/2019 11:00:00 AM
Yesterday was a great example of a special ECS day! It was the culminating day from our school wide study of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind. This was our first participation in a One School, One Book event in which all grades enjoy the same book written in picture book, early chapter, and adult chapter versions.
The books tell the true story of the life of William Kamkwamba and the transformation of his life in Malawi after he reads a book about creating electricity from a windmill. Can you imagine a more perfect true story for a school to feature? His life was transformed because he read! We’ve gotten great feedback from students of all ages who’ve been caught up in William’s story. If you haven’t heard about it, ask your child today!
For our culmination of our book study, each grade spent time today honoring William and his journey. Some grades created collaborative collages (the style of the picture book’s illustrations) featuring scenes from the book. One grade viewed the movie of William’s life which was released just last weekend on Netflix! Other grades tried their hand at building purposeful creations from throw-away items as William did. We saw marble tracks, miniature windmills created with circuits and motors, solar ovens, anemometers and pinwheels, inventions to help crops grow, kites, and much more. Thank you for sending in so many of these recyclable items for our use today. We heard many students say they were planning to continue building at home this weekend!
This was a fun STEAM day with a bonus of a literary focus. It was a great day to be at ECS! Enjoy the photos of the day below!
A Day in the Life at ECS!Posted by Christi Whiteside on 3/1/2019 4:00:00 PM
Photos from my travels around ECS this week!
Paving, More Paving, and CarpoolPosted by Christi Whiteside on 1/27/2019 12:00:00 PM
Thank you for your patience during the paving on Burlington Mill Road this week. We were happy to be able to hire a Wake Forest police officer to ensure everyone’s safety. Your patience has been much appreciated!
There is another paving project coming soon. While this may be more of an inconvenience for us, it will also bring greater rewards! The land across One World Way from ECS has been sold to Moffat Pipe Company which is currently around the corner from us. As an effort to improve traffic flow on One World, part of their construction will include adding a left turn lane into OUR PROPERTY! This is such exciting news for us! This improvement will come with some necessary lane closures along the way. As their construction begins, it will also mean the additional vehicles on One World. During this time, we again ask for your patience as our neighbors move forward with improvements which will benefit us all.
Since we are already talking about traffic, I need to send a few carpool reminders. Please note that our carpool procedures have not changed. We still need every car to display their carpool tag all the way through carpool, stay in the assigned lane, exit the curb in a single file line, re-enter the carpool line if your child does not come out, and be kind to our carpool staff. We’ve seen several drivers forgetting these expectations recently. Most upsetting are those who have forgotten to be kind to our staff. Our staff works hard every day to keep every child safe. Please be nice to them!
The carpool policy which is broken most often is when a child does not come out and the parent is told to re-enter the carpool line for a recall. We’ve seen drivers enter the parking area from the wrong direction and from the right direction to avoid the line. We’ve seen cars park in the overflow lot and parents walk through the middle of carpool. We’ve even seen drivers simply refuse to move from the sidewalk, basically shutting down carpool. All of these actions take our carpool staff’s focus off of the children they are supervising. All of these actions cause our staff to shift focus to overseeing and adjusting for parent behavior rather than child safety. Every one of these actions impacts the flow of our line which impacts every other family. Please don’t be this person. Know that every person in line behind you has somewhere they need to be, too. Every person working in carpool wants to go home as soon as possible. Most importantly, every person involved in carpool wants every child to be safe every day. Following our procedures is your investment in the safety of every child at our school. For those rule followers out there – thank you! We appreciate your support!
Christi Whiteside, Director
Endeavor Charter School
UPDATE: Field Trips at ECSPosted by Christi Whiteside on 1/18/2019 4:00:00 PM
Much time and thought has been put into field trips over the last several months. In the fall, the Board of Directors’ Student Life Committee (now Community Engagement Committee) extended an invitation to interested staff and parents to come together to talk about field trips. This committee provided a great opportunity for many stakeholders to share their opinions, experiences, and concerns about field trips with one another. I am grateful to all participants for their time and input!
One core focus of the group was to consider the reasons for field trips. At ECS, we believe that field trips should provide a learning experience that cannot happen in the classroom or that will be greatly enhanced by the field trip experience. Some of the reasons we take field trips include: educational experiences, expanding the established curriculum, hands-on learning, team building, and community service.
As our staff has continued to examine our trips, we have come to accept that our sixth grade Space Camp field trip no longer aligns with the North Carolina Standard Course of Study Science curriculum. When the state rewrote the curriculum, the space goals that were once part of the sixth grade curriculum were rewritten such that those goals were no longer focused on at Space Camp. Accordingly, the trip no longer serves the educational benefit it once did. For this reason, we have made the difficult decision that this year will be the last year we participate in a Space Camp trip.
In preparation for this change, the sixth grade teachers have been seeking new trips which better meet our criteria for field trips. The trips planned for next year include:
- Duke University- Students will experience learning in a college environment through demonstrations and experiments in the Physics, Chemistry, and Math departments led by professors and a tour of Duke University led by a current college student.
- Project Catch - Students will go fishing at Falls River to identify parts of the ecosystem in the lake. They will also identify what fish they caught and what part of the food chain that fish fits into. The site staff is working with our staff to determine a second ecological activity for this trip.
- NC Museum of Art - Students will first participate in a scavenger hunt around the museum with the Goose Chase app encouraging students to closely study the art while experiencing a new technical tool. Then, a docent will instruct students in the exhibits for Ancient Egypt, Rome, and China which are the focuses of much of the 6th grade Social Studies curriculum.
- Morehead Planetarium and Science Center- Students will experience a planetarium show about the colors of the different planets and how scientists use the Electromagnetic Spectrum to learn more about the planets. They will participate in an activity on the Science Stage named “Phenomenal Physics” where there are demonstrations and hands on activities about physics and a discovery class named “Solar Systematics” where students are able to closely look at and study planets using tools and materials similar to NASA. A restaurant lunch on the way home will focus on calculating percentages for tips.
- Betsy-Jeff Penn 4H Center - This environmental education center has a recently expanded selection of course offerings. Students will participate in an astronomy class at night with telescopes to look at the stars and planets. They will canoe to locations in the natural environment where they will observe and identify parts of the ecosystem. They will also participate in a plant class where they will identify the different parts of plants and then identify the plants in the forest. All of these classes directly correlate with the 6th grade Science goals.
Thank you for supporting our teachers and administrators and for believing in our ability to plan educational experiences for our students that meet the criteria outlined above. As an administrator, I appreciate the time and energy all of our stakeholders put into field trips. I would like to thank PAWS, our Community Engagement Committee members, and our parent chaperones for all the time and energy they have put into the field trips we have had and all those to come. I would also like to thank our talented teachers who put tremendous thought and research into planning field trips for the benefit of their students. We learn by doing!
I am glad to further discuss our thoughts about field trips. Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Christi Whiteside, Director
Endeavor Charter School