Handbook

EVOLVE Academy

A pathway of Resiliency Preparatory Academy

Scholar and Family Handbook
 

Welcome! This booklet contains important information about our pathway, Evolve Academy, and the ways in which we work together as a community. Please take time with your guardian to review the information in the book and be sure that you understand what is expected of you. The Evolve staff loves and believes in our scholars. We recognize the strengths and diversity of each individual. Regardless of past experiences, scholars are treated with dignity and respect. In order to make their educational experience worthwhile, scholars are expected to be actively involved and take ownership in every aspect of their education. Our policies and expectations are set forth with the intent that scholars will make positive changes that will move them toward success in high school and beyond and become successful, contributing members of society.

 

Evolve Academy’s Mission:

Evolve Academy builds on the individual strengths and passions of our scholars. We empower youth to develop the mindsets and skills to succeed in high school and achieve their goals for post-secondary education and employment. We build a culture of holistic support, promote rigorous, scholar-centered academics, and facilitate real world opportunities to learn and serve in the community. 

 

Core Values

 

Continuous Growth- We commit to ongoing personal and professional development to become lifelong learners.

 

Social Responsibility- We challenge one another to be positive leaders and productive forces in creating a better community.

 

Self-Awareness- We believe in ongoing reflection about personal strengths, weakness, and decision-making. 

 

Meaningful Relationships- We believe in developing and maintaining positive mutual rapport between scholars, educators, families, and community that foster trust.

 

High Expectations- We believe that all members of the school community can reach their maximum potential both academically and socially.


 

Evolve Academy is a pathway within Resiliency Preparatory Academy.  Scholars who have been assigned Resiliency Preparatory Academy have the choice to apply to Evolve, which is a rigorous, competency based program that will increase project based and community based learning opportunities. 


 

Evolve Academy, a Pathway of Resiliency Preparatory Academy

290 Rock Street

1st Floor

Fall River, MA 02720

 

School Administration

Phone Numbers

 

Main Phone Number: 508-675-8230           Fax Number: 508-235-2661

____________________________________________________________________________


 

Important Contact Information


 

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Matthew Malone     mmalone@fallriverschools.org

 

Principal, RPA Robert Correia             rcorreia@fallriverschools.org 

 

Evolve Director Janet Doyle jjdoyle@fallriverschools.org

 

Adjustment Counselor               Ashley Monterio amonterio@fallriverschools.org 

 

Science Professor Alexandre Audet           aaudet@fallriverschools.org

 

Humanities Professor Eric Pavao ericpavao@fallriverschools.org

 

Mathematics Professor Frank Mazza fmazza@fallriverschools.org




















 

Organization and Communication

 

  • First Level

 

In order to facilitate timely and supportive communication regarding your student’s educational experiences at Evolve Academy, the first level of communication regarding your concerns or issues is to contact the professor.  Professors can be contacted via the main office phone number. We strive to make contact with you regarding your concerns within 24 hours of receiving your message. In addition to phone contact, all faculty can be reached via the internet. For a full listing, please see the Fall River Public Schools website, www.fallriverschools.org, and click on Resiliency Preparatory Academy.  Should the matter require additional information, the courteous and proper sequence for contact would be to contact the following:

 

  • Second Level

 

Evolve Director- Jan Doyle

 

  • Third Level

 

Principal - Robert Correia

 

  • Fourth Level

 

Central Administration

Ann Dargon Assistant Superintendent, Special Education and SEL

Julia Carlson Assistant Superintendent, Curriculum and Instruction

Dr. Matthew Malone Superintendent of Schools


















 

Why Evolve?

 

Evolve Academy Competencies and Attainments

 

Investigate

Create

Iterate

Communicate

Collaborate

Question-

 Formulate and Raise Questions

Design-

Develop a product or solution

Self-Assess-

Reflect on academic and personal progress

Listen- 

Actively engage in another’s expressed ideas

Engage-

Discuss and coordinate with others to accomplish a goal

Discern- 

Determine relevance and credibility of sources

Plan-

Set goals, timelines, and priorities to develop a product

Grow-

Set goals and action plans to improve personally and academically

Express-

Clearly convey thoughts or feelings 

Feedback-

Share constructive criticism

Analyze-

Draw inferences and conclusion

Synthesize-

Combine data to create a claim or hypothesis

Advocate-

Seek out resources for support of overall growth

Interact-

Positively affect others through voice or actions

Contribute- 

Impact the learning community

 

  • Scholars will be fully prepared with knowledge and academic skills necessary for success in college and career without need for remediation

  • Research shows that scholars who are able to demonstrate key skills in communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creative thinking, and responsibility are more successful in post secondary education and the world of work. 

  • The benefits of ensuring scholars can demonstrate mastery of the competencies will ensure that all scholars are fully prepared for any goals they set in their futures.  

 

Beyond solid preparation for college and careers, Evolve offers a personalized atmosphere for all scholars. Every scholar is well known by staff and each scholar is a member of the school community working with a professor who acts as his/her advocate at Evolve and in the greater community.

 

In addition to meeting all the requirements for entrance into the Massachusetts State University systems, Evolve graduates will demonstrate mastery of the 5 competencies and their respective attainments-specific, measurable skills.



 



 

Our Beliefs

 

At Evolve, we strive to not only create rigorous, challenging learning opportunities inside the walls of the school, but extend those opportunities out into the community.  We believe that scholars discover their abilities, values, passions, and responsibilities in situations that offer adventure and the unexpected. We strive to challenge our scholars to undertake tasks that require perseverance, fitness, craftsmanship, imagination, self-discipline, and significant achievement. A professor’s primary task is to help scholars overcome their fears and discover they can do more than they think they can.

 

  • The responsibility for learning is both a personal process of discovery and a social activity. Everyone learns both individually and as part of a group. We encourage our young adults to become increasingly responsible for directing their own personal and collective learning.

 

  • Learning groups are small in Evolve Academy, with a caring adult looking after the progress and acting as an advocate for each scholar. All scholars need to be successful if they are to build the confidence and capacity to take risks and meet increasingly difficult challenges. But it is also important for scholars to learn from their failures, to persevere when things are hard, and to learn to turn disabilities into opportunities.

 

  • Individual development and group development are integrated so that the value of friendship, trust, and group action is clear. scholars are encouraged to compete not against each other, but with their own personal best and with rigorous standards of excellence.

 

  • Both diversity and inclusion increase the richness of ideas, creative power, problem-solving ability, and respect for others. Scholars investigate and value their different histories and talents as well as those of other communities and cultures. Our two learning groups, called colleges (Omega and Kappa), are heterogenous in grouping with under 15 scholars in each group. 

 

  • A direct and respectful relationship with the natural world refreshes the human spirit and teaches the important ideas of recurring cycles and cause and effect. Scholars will learn to become stewards of the earth and of future generations. 

 

  • All scholars own their own learning and are positive contributors to the culture of the school community. Scholars and professors are strengthened by acts of consequential service to others, and one of Evolve’s primary functions is to prepare scholars with the attitudes and skills to learn from and be of service.







 

Our Holistic Approach to Supporting Scholars

Advisory and PACT

 

Advisory (Mind)

PACT (Heart)

All scholars assigned an Advisor who will meet 1:1 with each scholar weekly.

All scholars will be members of the PACT, which are two, 45 minute classes each week on Tuesday and Thursday, led by Evolve’s Scholar Adjustment Counselor (SAC). 

Advisors and scholars develop a caring, trusting relationship to support each other.

PACT supports scholars in developing a growth mindset, character, and a strong sense of community.

Advisors support scholars with attendance, academics (competencies, grades, test scores), and connect them to individual, wraparound supports.

PACT engages scholars in lessons where they explore their own identity, goals, and interests.  Academic credit is awarded for PACT. 

Advisors are scholars’ main point of contact for home and school communication for phone calls, texts, emails, and home visits.

Scholars learn to take ownership of their learning and support each other to overcome barriers to their learning.


 

 

EVOLVE SCHEDULE


 

M,W,F Bell

Schedule

Monday

Wednesday

Friday

T,TH Bell Schedule

Tuesday

Thursday

9:00-9:30

Community

Meeting

Community

Meeting

Community

Meeting

9:00-9:30

Community

Meeting

Community

Meeting

9:30-10:30

Signature Experience Block 1

Omega-

Humanities Kappa- STEM

Omega-

Humanities Kappa- STEM

Omega-

Humanities Kappa- STEM

9:30-10:30

Signature Experience Block 1

Kappa- Humanities Omega- STEM

Kappa- Humanities Omega- STEM

10:30-11:30

Signature Experience Block 2

Kappa- Humanities Omega- STEM

Kappa- Humanities Omega- STEM

Kappa- Humanities Omega- STEM

10:30-11:30

Signature Experience Block 2

Omega-

Humanities Kappa- STEM

Omega-

Humanities Kappa- STEM

11:30-12:15

Edgenuity Whole Group

Self-Directed/ Advisory/

Edgenuity

Edgenuity Whole Group

11:30-12:15

PACT Omega/ Edgenuity Kappa

PACT Omega/ Edgenuity Kappa

12:15-12:35

Lunch

Lunch (Bag lunch for students; dismissal at 12:15)

Lunch

12:15-12:35

Lunch

Lunch

12:35-12:55

Edgenuity Whole Group

Professional Development for Staff

Edgenuity Whole 

Group

12:35-1:20

PACT Kappa/ Edgenuity Omega

PACT Kappa/ Edgenuity Omega

12:55-2:00

YMCA

(Dismissed from YMCA)

 

YMCA

(Dismissed from YMCA)

1:20-2:00

Self-Directed/ Advisory/ Edgenuity

Self-Directed/ Advisory/ Edgenuity

 

  • Every Wednesday is a half day with dismissal at 12:15

  • Students are dismissed from the YMCA on Mondays and Fridays at 2:00

  • Students may arrive between 8:45 and 9:00

  • Students will be marked tardy if not here by 9:00




 

ACADEMIC POLICIES

 

There are several programming options available at Resiliency Preparatory Academy, one of which is Evolve Academy. Students assigned to Resiliency Preparatory Academy may choose to apply to Evolve Academy.  Upon acceptance, students will be placed into the appropriate courses they require for graduation.

Grading System for Evolve Academy

 

  • Students enrolled in year-long courses will receive a midterm progress report and a report card for each trimester. Credit may be awarded at the end of the school year for year long courses and at the end of each trimester for trimester length courses. 

  • Students will receive a letter grade for each online course. Note that some competency based classes will be graded as Pass/Fail. The letter grades, along with the corresponding numerical grades, are listed below.

 

A+ (100-97) A (96-93) A- (92-90)

B+ (89-87) B (86-83) B- (82-80)

C+ (79-77) C (76-73) C- (72-70)

D+ (69-67) D (66-65)

F (64 and below)




























 

2019-2020 Courses

 

2019-20 Courses:

English 

History 

Mathematics

Science

PE/Health

Signature Experience

*Competency Based Grading System

Sophomores

Grade 10

ELA 2

(online)

US 2

(online)

Plane Geom

(online)

Bio 1 or 2

(online)

Health Opps through PE

(YMCA)

Culinary Arts 1 (Citizen Food) - tri 1

 

Sig Exp #2 TBA- tri 2

 

Sig Exp #2 TBA- tri 3

 

Critical Reading and Effective Writing- YR

Juniors

Grade 11

ELA 3

(online)

World 

(online)

Algebra 1 Common Core or Algebra 2

(online)

Bio 2 or Chemistry

(online)

Health Opps through PE

(YMCA)

Culinary Arts 1 (Citizen Food) - tri 1

 

Sig Exp #2 TBA- tri 2

 

Sig Exp #2 TBA- tri 3

 

Critical Reading and Effective Writing- YR

Seniors

Grade 12

(SY 20-21)

ELA 4

Recover Any Missing History

Algebra 2, Financial Literacy, or Pre-Calculus

Chemistry or Physics 

Health Opps through PE

Internships, Dual-Enrollment College Courses

 

Massachusetts Board of High Education

College Freshman Admissions Standards

High School Academic Course Requirements

 

The Massachusetts Board of Higher Education requires the following college-preparatory academic units as a minimum:

  • 4 year English (20 Credits

  • 3 years Mathematics (Algebra I , Algebra II, and Geometry) (15 Credits, 20 for EPP)

  • 3 years Science (2 years of lab science) (15 Credits)

  • 2 years Social Science (1 U.S. History required) (15 Credits)

  • 2 years College Preparatory Elective (20-25 Credits)

  • 100 Credits Minimum and Passing Math, ELA and Science MCAS Scores for a Diploma


 

Academic Ethics:  

Evolve Academy strives to provide academic excellence and the opportunities for each individual scholar to excel. In keeping with this goal a high standard of academic ethics must also be maintained.  All scholars will:

  • Learn to value and demonstrate ethical behavior.

  • Be better prepared to deal with such expectations outside the school environment.

  • Be assured that the integrity and value of their academic achievements will not be diminished.

Therefore, cheating, copying, plagiarism, forgery, and/or altering school documents in any manner will not be tolerated. According to Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 10th Edition, plagiarism is defined as, “stealing and passing off ideas or words of another as one’s own; to use without crediting the source;  to commit literary theft.” This definition also applies to information acquired via the internet.  

 

Academic Ethics elicits the following responsibilities:

  • To maintain a personal standard of academic ethics.

  • To understand clearly the instructions, classroom behavior expectations, and academic expectations of their professors.

  • To in no way participate or give the appearance of contributing to any cheating, copying, or plagiarizing.

 

ATTENDANCE POLICIES

 

Statement of Philosophy


Good attendance is very important to the success of scholars. Absences, whether excused or unexcused, are detrimental to the learning process and work completed outside of class is not as effective or meaningful as the actual classroom experience. In order for scholars to obtain the greatest benefit from an education at Evolve Academy, regular attendance is essential.


Absence Reporting Procedures
 

The parent/guardian of a scholar who is absent from class is responsible for calling the attendance office by or before 8:00am on the day of the absence. The phone call should provide the following information:
 

• Who is calling

• scholar is absent, including last name

• Date(s) of absence

• Reason for the absence
 

You may call the office between the hours of 7:00am and 3:30pm at 508-675-8230. For your convenience, there is a voicemail number which may be used during non-school hours to leave a message to excuse a scholar prior to the school day that they will be absent. Doctor’s notes or legal notes are required for excused absences.

 

Unexcused Absence from School:

If a parent/guardian is unaware of their child’s absence, the scholar will be considered truant. Excessive absences, excused or unexcused, will result in a scholar/parent meeting and may result in home visits from a school staff member.
 

Attendance Expectations for Scholars:

In addition to guardians notifying and providing documentation of absences, scholars are expected to call their advisor by 8:00 if they are going to be absent or tardy. Scholars are expected to seek out all missed work.

 

Early Dismissal:

Evolve requests that all parents/guardians call the school to document and explain the reason for an early dismissal. Parents who send a note for dismissal will be contacted by an Evolve staff member via phone so that the Evolve staff can confirm that the parent actually wrote the note.  If a parent dismisses their child by phone, an Evolve staff member will ask them to provide a working number so that it can be confirmed that we are talking to the parent/guardian of the child.

 

Homework: 

Homework may be assigned by any teacher at Evolve on any day.  Scholars are expected to complete any and all assigned homework. Homework guidelines will be determined by individual teachers. The professors at Evolve will notify parents when schare not doing their homework and will make a concerted effort to keep scholars after school in order to have those scholars complete assignments that are overdue.  We ask guardians for support to ensure that scholars are attending these scheduled times.

 

Network/Internet Acceptable Use Policy:  

Access is a privilege—not a right. 

Users are responsible for exhibiting appropriate behavior on school computers just as scholars are responsible for their behaviors in classrooms and school hallways.  Communications on the network are often public in nature. General school rules for behavior and communication apply. 

 

The district has installed a filter on the network to restrict access to the areas of the internet that are illegal or inappropriate for scholars or the school setting.  The chance of accessing inappropriate material is still a possibility and parents and guardians, as well as staff members are responsible for monitoring scholar internet use.  Email is not private. 

 

Any breach of the FRPS online contract will result in disciplinary action and loss of privilege. Any type of vandalization to school technology (i.e., broken screens, lost keys, cracks or dents due to inappropriate handling) will also result in disciplinary action and parents may be responsible for the cost of reconditioning damaged technology. 


 

Cyberbullying / Harassment:

Per district policy, acts of cyberbullying are prohibited and will result in disciplinary action.  Cyber bullying encompasses any of the already prohibited actions – such as bullying, discrimination, or harassment -- accomplished through electronic means:

  • Voicemail

  • Text messaging

  • Social Media

 

Examples of cyberbullying include:

  • Posting slurs or rumors, or other disparaging remarks about a scholar of staff member on any website or blog.

  • Sending email or instant messages that are harassing or threatening.

  • Taking and sending an unauthorized and/or unwanted photograph of a scholar or staff member.

 

Evolve will discipline scholars who are deemed to be engaging in any type of cyberbullying, on or off school grounds, if such cyberbullying causes or threatens to cause a disruption or interference with a scholar’s education or well-being.

Any action by a scholar or parent deemed inappropriate will be fully investigated by an Evolve administrator.  Consequences for scholar actions that violate this policy shall be determined by the administrator and/or may become a police matter. A bullying investigation may be opened in situations where there are multiple instances of cyberbullying/harassment. 

 

Medication: 

It is encouraged that scholars take medication before or after school whenever possible.  However, if a scholar must take medication during school hours, please notify the office immediately so that the Health Services Department may be notified and give you the proper instructions.
















 

EVOLVE PHILOSOPHY OF DISCIPLINE

 

While the word “discipline” is most often associated with punishment, we see it differently. Discipline comes from the Latin root “disciple,” meaning to learn. We believe discipline is about teaching scholars to become a person of upstanding character. We don’t want scholars to be punished then come back to school and repeat the same poor behavior. We want them to transform their attitudes and actions.

To this end, Evolve believes in discipline that is both accountable and restorative:

• Accountable: Clear rules and logical consequences. Progressive does not mean permissive. We have the absolute highest expectations for completely respectful scholar behavior.

• Restorative: A process aimed at teaching scholars to internalize positive mindsets and character traits, to do the right thing because it has value to them (not because of external rewards or punishments).

In the restorative process, when scholars violate a community rule, in addition to earning the logical consequence, scholars are also required to:

• Take responsibility for their behavior

• Understand the impact they’ve had, and…

• Take action steps to “make it right” by repairing the harm they’ve caused to the community.

The immediate goal of the restorative process is for scholars to get back on track with behavior so they can resume learning right away. The long-term goal is for scholars to become independently respectful and invested in their own learning. This long-term goal is correlated with college and career.

 

Evolve strives to maintain an atmosphere in which all members of the community are allowed to grow and learn without limits or distractions.  All scholars are expected to behave in a manner that does not disrupt the learning environment. School personnel are committed to ensure compliance with the Fall River Public Schools’ Code of Conduct.  Please consult the Code of Conduct handbook for further detail regarding district policy on disciplinary actions.

 

Security Protocol:

Scholars  will be admitted into the building at 8:45am. Upon entering the building, scholars  will be required to turn in their cell phones to security, where they will be filed and held until dismissal. In addition to the use of a metal detector, scholars and their bags will be searched at the security checkpoint before being admitted into the building. 

 

Searches:
Per the Fall River School Committee, all scholars who enter the Resiliency Preparatory Academy will be searched upon entering the building. Additional searches may take place if there is probable cause that a school rule is being broken. Students who arrive to school wearing multiple layers of clothing will be subject to additional searches and may be asked to remove layers in order to be in compliance with the school dress code. 

This policy is for the safety of all persons in the building and takes precedence over usual search policies in the district.  Any scholar who denies the school the right to a search of their person and their belongings WILL NOT be allowed to enter the building.

 

Electronic Device Policy:

There will be no cell phone use allowed in the school. When scholars are checked in to the building, they will be required to hand in their cell phones. Administration or security will then put each scholar’s cell phone in their individual folder. Prior to dismissal, staff will distribute all electronic devices back to their owner. 

 

Student Phone Use:

All scholar phone calls must take place in an administrator’s office.  The staff member will place all calls for scholars. If a parent needs to contact their child, they should NOT call their child’s phone. Please call the main office line at 508-675-8230 to contact your scholar.

 

Food and Drink:

Unopened food and beverages should be placed in scholar lockers and only retrieved during their lunch time. Any open beverages or food will be discarded upon entering the building.

 

Lockers:

Scholars will be assigned lockers at the start of the school year. Lockers are subject to search at any time.


Address Updates:

It is important to have current addresses and phone numbers for all of our scholars and their families. If you need to make a change to your address or phone number please bring a current bill and photo ID to the main office.



 










 


 

ATTIRE POLICY:

 

• All scholars should be able to dress comfortably for school without fear of or actual unnecessary discipline or body shaming. 

• All scholars and staff should understand that they are responsible for managing their own personal "distractions" without regulating individual scholars' clothing/self expression. 

• Students should not face unnecessary barriers to school attendance. 

• Reasons for conflict and inconsistent discipline should be minimized whenever possible.

 

Dress for success and to promote an environment focused on learning. Choose clothes that are appropriate for school – your place of work! At Evolve Academy, we ask that scholars wear clothing to school that would be suitable for a casual business environment. We do not require uniforms or a uniform dress code, so we ask that individual scholars and their families support a positive and professional environment by dressing in a manner that will not be disruptive or detrimental to the learning environment.


Clothing that might be considered disruptive or detrimental to the learning environment may include:


• Outfits that inappropriately bare or expose traditionally private parts of the body including, but not limited to, stomach, buttocks, shoulders, back, and breasts


• Clothes, paraphernalia, jewelry, or body adornment that contain advertisements, symbols, words, slogans, patches, or pictures that:
 

o Are sexually suggestive

o Are drug or alcohol related

o Are obscene or profane

o Promote hate or advocate violence

 


Gang-Related Behavior and Dress


This policy is in place to protect the safety and well being of all scholars. The term “gang” used in the policy refers to groups of individuals who share a common interest, bond or activity characterized by criminal, delinquent, or otherwise disruptive content engaged in collectively or individually. Gang activity in school is often marked by the prominent display of certain colors or other symbols on apparel worn by scholars, graffiti with distinctive symbols and the use of hand signals that denote gang membership. scholars who adopt a dress style suggestive of such displays, or engage in graffiti or hand signals, even when unassociated with gang activity, may become targets of anti-social behavior. The purpose of this policy is to protect the health, safety, and welfare of those in the school community and to prevent the initiation or continuation of gang membership and gang activity in our school.


• Any manner of grooming or apparel which may include jewelry, hats, emblems, and badges, which by virtue of color, arrangement, trademark, or other attribute is associated with or denotes

membership in or affiliation with a gang will not be allowed in school.


• Gestures, hand signals, or graffiti which denotes gang membership or activities is prohibited.

 

• Gang graffiti on school premises will be photographed as soon as it is discovered and then will be removed. The photographs will be shared with local law enforcement authorities and used in

future disciplinary or criminal actions against the offenders.


• Any scholar wearing or carrying overt gang paraphernalia or making gestures that symbolize gang membership will be referred to administration for disciplinary action.


• Disciplinary action for violation of these standards will include notification of the violation, the

requirement of the apparel to be changed before returning to class, and a

parent conference. Repeated violations may result in removal from the program.


• If there is a disagreement about the appropriateness of a scholar’s dress or appearance, the scholar will be provided spirit wear and a conference will be held with the scholar’s parent or guardian.