For Parents » FAQ

FAQ

 

 

STUDENT ABSENCES:

 

How should I report my student’s absence from school?

Upon returning to school, students should provide a doctor’s note or a note from home explaining the nature of the absence. Notes documenting absences must include dates and parent or medical professional signature or stamp. Notes should be submitted to classroom teachers in PreK-5th Grade and to the Lamar Campus Receptionist for 6th-12th Grade.

 

How will I know if the school is closed due to bad weather?

NYOS Charter School follows Austin ISD to determine necessary closings or late starts due to inclement weather. Go here to learn more.

 

Why is it so important to have all of this information about my student’s absence?

Did you know that for every day your student misses school, NYOS Charter School loses $50 in funding? This loss of funding can add up. For example, if you have three children who all miss one day of school, that’s a decrease in funding of $150 for NYOS Charter School.

 

A significant portion of our school’s funding is based on attendance information.  We need to submit to the State documentation of our average daily attendance.  If we do not do this accurately and according to their guidelines, our funding can be significantly impacted.  By providing us with this information, you are helping NYOS keep a constant level of funding.

 

How many absences are allowed?

NYOS follows the attendance guidelines of the Texas Administrative Code (TAC §25.085). Students must be present 90% of each semester.

 

What if we have planned absences?

It is possible that students will have scheduled appointments (ex: orthodontist) and must miss a class. We request that parents provide the school notification in advance. It is also important to vary the time of absences that are routine so that a student does not miss the same class each time.

 

What is an excused absence?

For consideration of compulsory attendance requirements and class credit, NYOS counts all absences, but will consider and excuse from the count (for purposes of assigning credit and promotion) absences relating to observance of religious holy days, mandated court appearance, college visits for juniors and seniors, and temporary absence for the purpose of an appointment with a health care professional if the student comes to school the day of the appointment, either before or after the appointment. 

 

Do tardies count?

Four (4) tardies = One (1) absence. It is important for students at all grade levels to be on time to all classes. Students in grades 8-12 who are more than 10 minutes late to a class are considered absent.

 

 

CELEBRATIONS:

 

May I bring my student items like cake, balloons and flowers?

No. We do not permit deliveries of flowers and balloons during the school day. NYOS follows the Texas Public School Nutritional Policy that stipulates students may not share cupcakes, cookies, candy, etc. in the cafeteria during the lunch period and we do not allow these items during class time. Parents with students in grades PreK-5 may drop off a small birthday treat (pencils, stickers, cupcakes, cookies) before school. The items will be distributed to classmates during the last 15 minutes of the school day.

 

 

General COMMUNICATION:

 

What is the best way to learn about school events?

Go here to learn more about ways to stay connected with NYOS Charter School, including receiving our NYOS Notes and accessing our Parent Portal.

 

How should I communicate with teachers and administrators?

School email and phone contact information is posted on our website. Please provide teachers at least 24 hours to respond.

 

How can I find out about my student’s classroom performance?

We encourage parents to initiate conversations and questions with teachers through email or phone. Teachers will also notify parents when students are not performing at their expected potential.

 

Login to the Parent Portal on our website to gain instant access to student grades and attendance (grades 6th-12th).

 

Additionally, Google Classroom is a way to facilitate paperless communication between 6th through 12th grade teachers and students and streamline educational workflow. Within Google Classroom teachers can create classes, post assignments, organize folders, and view work in real-time.

 

Finally, a great way to stay in touch with your child’s PreK-5th Grade teacher is to utilize their preferred mobile app for info related to upcoming events and announcements. Some apps offer the ability to share photos or message with class parents. Ask your teacher what they use to get signed up. All apps are easy to use and improve your ability to connect and improve your child’s classroom experience. Examples of apps include: Classroom Dojo, Bloomz, and Smores Remind.

 

Student conferences are scheduled three times annually for grades PreK-5th and two times annually for grades 6th and 7th. All parents are expected to attend. Conferences are required upon notification from teachers for students not performing well in grades 8th through 12th.

 

Interim Progress Reports are sent home with students after the first four weeks of each quarter and report cards are sent home at the end of each quarter. PreK-5 students receive progress reports quarterly if they are not meeting academic, behavioral or attendance expectations. Parents may request a conference or progress report at any time.

 

 

STUDENT ELECTRONICS:

 

Can students bring and use their own computers or electronic devices?

6th through 8th grade students are not permitted to bring their own laptop to school, but 9th through 12th grade students are permitted to do so. Elementary students may bring electronic devices to school, but they may only be used before or after school with teacher permission. All students must sign the NYOS Acceptable Use Policy.

 

Additionally, our code of conduct states that cell phones must be turned off during instructional time except for staff approved use in class. Cell phones used without teacher permission will be confiscated and delivered to the front office for release to a parent. Continued violations will result in a fee that will contribute to the school's operating funds.

 

 

LUNCH:

 

How can I add funds to my student’s lunch account?

NYOS is using My School Account to manage student cafeteria accounts and pre-orders. My School Account offers free online and phone support, so please do not hesitate to contact them with any questions you may have. My School Account also offers a free and convenient app to allow you to manage your student’s account from anywhere. Go here to pre-order cafeteria meals for your student a week in advance. 

 

May I bring lunch to my student?

Yes. Lunches may be dropped at the reception desk and the lunch will be delivered or the student will be notified to collect it. Parents are only permitted to bring a lunch for their own child, and cannot bring a lunch for another child.

 

 

MEDICINE:

 

May students bring medicine to school?

Students are not allowed to have any medication with them (in classrooms, desks, lockers, or backpacks). All medications must be kept in the nurse’s office at all times. Read our Parent/Student Handbook here to review procedures and guidelines for all grade levels.  

 

 

PARENT INVOLVEMENT:

 

Is there a school organization in which all parents can be involved and support the school’s needs?

All families are encouraged to join the NYOS Parent Teacher Association (PTA). We believe that parent involvement is in direct correlation to student success.

 

Go here to learn more about the PTA and to become a PTA member. When you join the NYOS PTA, not only are you supporting our school community, but you'll be able to vote on annual fund proposals and take advantage of a variety of local discounts.

 

Are there other opportunities for families to get involved at NYOS?

Absolutely! NYOS families need to volunteer at least 20 hours per school year to help support our school. These volunteer hours can be earned through a variety of opportunities: from chaperoning a study trip to assisting with games at Field Day to helping with set-up for our fall festival!

 

Beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, NYOS families can sign-up for volunteer opportunities using our new volunteer portal, Signup.com! To begin signing up for volunteer shifts, just follow these steps:

 

  1. Go here to register a SignUp account.
  2. Select "Start Planning." You're now registered – but, wait: see Step #3 below to sign-up for volunteer shifts!
  3. After you’ve completed registration, visit the links found here to sign-up for volunteer shifts. That's it!

 

 

STUDENT DROP-OFF AND PICK-UP:

 

How should I enter the campus when I am dropping off or picking up my student?

Kramer Campus: enter the driveway adjacent to the Grant AME Church and exit via the driveway near the Administration building.

 

Lamar Campus: enter at the west entrance off Yager Lane and exit either on Lamar Blvd or the east exit of Yager Lane. 

 

To learn more about drop-off and pick-up, visit NYOS Charter School’s Pick-up Map.

 

What if I need to drop-off and pick-up students in multiple grade levels at NYOS?

Please keep the following drop-off and pick-up times in mind for each grade level at NYOS. Based on each of these schedules, families with students in multiple grade levels can find a time to drop-off or pick-up their students all at once:

 

  • PreK-3: Monday through Thursday, 12:30pm to 3:35pm; Friday, 11:00am to 2:00pm
  • PreK-4: Monday through Friday, 7:50am to 10:50am
  • K-5th Grade: Monday through Thursday, 7:50am to 3:35pm; Friday: 7:50am to 12:35pm
  • 6th-8th Grade: Monday through Thursday, 8:00am to 3:40pm; Friday: 8:00am to 12:30pm
  • 9th-12th Grade: Monday through Thursday: 7:45am to 4:00pm; Friday: 7:45am to 12:45pm

 

For families with students at both our Kramer Campus and our Lamar Campus, please see information below about our bus schedule.

 

Does NYOS provide transportation?

Because NYOS admits students from a total of 18 different school districts in the Austin area, we're unable to provide transportation to and from school.

 

If siblings go to both the Kramer and Lamar Campus, both students can be dropped off at Kramer before the school day begins and the older sibling can then be transported by our bus from Kramer to Lamar, and then back again at the end of the school day. Please see information below about our bus schedule.

 

What if I have students at both the Kramer Campus and the Lamar Campus?

Families who have a student at both our Kramer Campus and Lamar Campus may drop-off and pick-up both students at Kramer.

 

In order to do this, you must first send a written permission to your student’s teacher, followed by emailing our Elementary Principal, Ms. Berkenhoff at tberkenhoff@nyos.org to let her know of your families plans to utilize our bus.

 

Our NYOS bus transports 4th-12th grade students back and forth to our Lamar Campus, but please note that NYOS families must adhere to the following bus schedule in order to take part in this opportunity:

 

Morning:

  • Depart Kramer at 7:30 AM
  • Arrive at Lamar at 7:45 AM

 

Afternoon:

  • Lamar Bldg. B 4th & 5th grade student load at 3:15 PM
  • Lamar 4th & 5th depart at 3:25 PM
  • 4th & 5th arrive at Kramer at 3:35 PM
  • Depart Kramer at 3:40 PM
  • Arrive at Lamar at 4:05 PM
  • Depart Lamar at 4:05 PM
  • Arrive at Kramer at 4:20 PM

 

Friday/Early Release:

  • Lamar Bldg. B 4th & 5th grade student load at 12:15 PM
  • Lamar 4th & 5th depart at 12:25 PM
  • 4th & 5th arrive at Kramer at 12:35 PM
  • Depart Kramer at 12:40 PM
  • Arrive at Lamar at 1:00 PM
  • Depart Lamar at 1:05 PM
  • Arrive at Kramer at 1:20 PM

 

Can students wait on campus after dismissal time?

No. Students should be picked up promptly at the end of the school day. Unless students are participating in a school-sponsored program and you have received notification of a scheduled tutorial, practice or event, students must be picked up within 15 minutes of the end of their school day. NYOS does not have staff that can provide supervision at the end of the day and safety is our utmost priority.

 

What if I want to pick up my student early?

Parents should not routinely pick up students early. If early pick up is necessary, parents must sign in at the campus reception desk. Parents may not go straight to their student’s classroom to pick-up a student.

 

What are after-school options for Elementary students?

NYOS partners with Boys & Girls Club of Austin in order to provide affordable on-site, after-school care for students in Kindergarten through 8th Grade. Little Munchkins, a private daycare option, also provides after-school pickup for NYOS students participating in this particular program.

 

 

STUDENT INVOLVEMENT:

 

Does the school offer extracurricular activities?

Yes. NYOS has many different clubs and sports available to students. Go here to learn more about extracurricular activities and clubs. Go here to learn more about athletics offerings. 

 

Can anyone participate in sports?

Yes. NYOS wants everyone to participate in at least one school activity. We believe that sports support healthy learning and lifelong lessons in team work, skill building and perseverance. All students may join and participate in any sport offered at their grade level. That being said, NYOS families are also responsible for paying any necessary Athletics fees if they would like their student to participate in a school sport.

 

Are there fees for participating in clubs and sports?

Some clubs have associated fees and all sports require registration, physicals and fees. The sports registration fees at NYOS cover the various costs associated with the sports: facilities, uniforms, equipment, and sometimes bus transportation. NYOS families must pay for any necessary Athletics fees if they would like their student to participate in a school sport.

 

 

ELEMENTARY FAQ:

 

What is NYOS' approach to Elementary curriculum?

NYOS Charter School's Elementary grades are part of a Marzano High Reliability School with certifications in Levels 1- Safe and Collaborative Culture, 2-Effective Teaching in Every Classroom, 3- Guaranteed and Viable Curriculum, and 4- Standards-Referenced Reporting. We are currently working to become certified in Level 5- Competency-Based Education (CBE). In a CBE system, all students move forward with learning goals based on demonstration of proficiency rather than a student’s age or grade level.

 

How are Elementary students assessed?

In PreK through 5th Grade, NYOS students do not receive grades. Instead, teachers determine student progress using a Standards-referenced reporting system with student growth notated on proficiency scales. Proficiency scales delineate the expectations for what students are to learn and how they must demonstrate proficiency.  Scales begin at Level 1- just getting started, 2- in progress, 3- meets grade level expectation, or 4- exceeds grade level expectation. Instead of report cards, students, parents, and teachers participate in three conferences per year to review student progress on an individual basis. Students participate in and even lead these conferences, assuring that they know and can articulate their progress.

 

How is discipline handled at NYOS for Elementary students?

Elementary grades use techniques and strategies from the "Tribe Learning Community" to assure the healthy development of every child. Embedded in this process are four agreements: 1) attentive listening 2) appreciation/no put downs 3) mutual respect, and 4) the right to pass. Each school day begins and ends with a classroom community circle to ensure that social, emotional learning skills are taught with intention. We also use strategies and techniques from "Teaching with Love & Logic," which is grounded in empathy, accountability for the problem, and logical consequences. You can learn more about tribes here: http://tribes.com/about/ and you can learn more about Love & Logic here: https://www.loveandlogic.com/

 

What is the teacher to student ratio?

NYOS Charter School's charter caps student class sizes at 19 students per class. Most Elementary classes have a ratio of 1 teacher per 18 students, providing more opportunity for teachers to work one-on-one with each individual student.

 

How many classes are in each grade level?

There are two PreK-3 classes and two PreK-4 classes. There are four classrooms per grade in Kindergarten through 5th Grade. We also use a Looping model in which students keep the same teacher and same class group for two school years. Loops are K/1st, 2nd/3rd, and 4th/5th.

 

What is the daily and yearly schedule for Elementary students?

NYOS is a year-round school with students beginning the school year near the end of July. The calendar provides four 9-week quarters with 2-week breaks immediately following each quarter. The school year runs through the end of May.

 

K-5th Grade students begin the school day at 7:50am and end at 3:35pm on Monday - Thursday. On Friday, school begins at 7:50 A.M. and ends at 12:35pm. Included in the daily schedule is a 30 minute lunch and two 20 minute recess periods per day, Monday through Thursday.

 

The second-half of the day on Fridays, NYOS teachers participate in organized professional development in order to continue building skills that result in highly effective teaching and innovative classroom instruction.

 

Do Elementary students follow a dress code?

Yes, Pre-K through 5th Grade students wear uniforms Monday through Thursday. Students wear red, navy, or white non-monogrammed polo shirts and navy, black, or khaki (tan) shorts, pants, jumpers, or skorts. These items can be purchased at stores like Target, Walmart, Old Navy, and Costco. Friday is free dress day when students are allowed to wear any school-appropriate clothing.

 

Does NYOS have Art, Music and P.E.?

K-5th Grade students participate in Art, Music and P.E. on a weekly rotating schedule. They also participate in weekly Spanish classes. Additionally, all K-5th Grade students have two 20 minute recesses each day.

 

Are NYOS teachers certified?

Almost all of NYOS Charter School's teachers are certified through the State of Texas. Additionally, all NYOS teachers have at least a Bachelor's Degree, with many teachers having a Master's Degree, and a couple teachers having a PhD.

 

 

SECONDARY FAQ:

 

What’s the typical class size for Secondary grades (6th-12th Grade)?

NYOS Charter School caps our class sizes as 19 students per class. That being said, some middle school classes have an average of about 15 students per class, while some high school classes have an average of about 12 students per class.

 

Do Secondary students follow a dress code?

Yes, all Secondary students wear uniforms Monday through Wednesday. Students wear navy, white, grey, or black non-monogrammed polo shirts and navy, black, or khaki (tan) shorts, pants, or skirts, which can be purchased at stores like Target, Walmart, Old Navy, and Costco.

 

Thursday is College T-Shirt and NYOS T-Shirt Day for all Secondary students. Secondary students can wear a t-shirt, sweatshirt, or hoodie from an accredited college or university, or that is NYOS sponsored. Friday is free dress day where students are allowed to wear any school-appropriate clothing.

 

Are teachers available to assist students outside of class?

Yes. Teachers have office hours and tutoring to work with students as-needed.

 

Does NYOS offer Pre-AP and AP courses?

Yes. We offer a variety of pre-AP courses for students beginning in middle school, in addition to offering Advanced Placement courses for high school students. Please see our course catalog here for course offerings.

 

Are NYOS teachers certified?

Almost all of NYOS Charter School's Secondary teachers are certified through the State of Texas. Additionally, all NYOS teachers have at least a Bachelor's Degree, with many teachers having a Master's Degree and a couple teachers having a PhD.

 

What supports does NYOS have for multilingual learners?

All NYOS teachers are trained in the English Language Learner Proficiency standards each year.  We have a reading literacy class that supports our MLLs and we also offer check-in support for some MLLs as-needed.  

 

What special education services does NYOS provide?

In accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), NYOS provides special education services to children with disabilities to meet their unique needs. Services are provided in special education or general education settings with modifications, supplementary aids, and other special arrangements.

 

Students must be identified as in-need of special education through a referral and evaluation process. If your student is offered a spot at NYOS and receives special education services, we welcome you to notify us if you have questions about any programs related to your child.

 

How is discipline handled at NYOS for Secondary students?

All Secondary grades follow discipline guidelines that are focused on Restorative Practices. Restorative Practices studies how to improve and repair student relationships and manage conflict with the purpose of building a healthy school community. This practice identifies both proactive and reactive approaches for students through building relationships, restoring relationships, and repairing community.

 

What sets NYOS Charter School apart from other Austin area schools?

At NYOS, our mission is to educate the whole student. We're committed to serving each individual student through opportunities that include small class sizes and individualized instruction, coupled with crucial life skills: organization, time management, conflict resolution, flexibility, communication, and advocacy.

 

NYOS also encourages responsibility, leadership, and empathy in our students alongside challenging each of our learners through rigorous academics. Our staff are truly passionate about the work that they do, and through getting to know each of our students on an individual basis, they're committed to ensuring that all students are poised for post-secondary success.

 

How much homework do students receive outside of class?

Beginning in Elementary school, about 10 minutes of homework is added per grade for our students. Additionally, all middle school students participate in a class called Brain Power for the last class period of their school day.

 

Brain Power is a class in which middle school students get started with their homework and have the opportunity to visit with appropriate teachers to ask questions regarding any homework assignments that they have received. This helps students to learn organization skills, time management skills, and study skills that they can then carry with them into high school.

 

What is the daily and yearly schedule for Secondary students?

NYOS is a year-round school consisting of two 18-week semesters with students beginning the school year near the end of July. The calendar provides four 9-week quarters with 2-week breaks immediately following each quarter. The school year runs through the end of May.

 

Middle school students have school from 8:00am to 3:45pm on Monday through Thursday and from 8:00am through 12:45pm on Friday. High school students have school from 8:00am to 4:00pm on Monday through Thursday and from 8:00am to 12:45pm on Friday.

 

Class days for all Secondary students consist of seven class periods a day from Monday through Thursday and alternating "A" days and "B" days on Fridays. The second-half of the day on Fridays, NYOS teachers participate in organized professional development in order to continually build skills that result in highly effective and innovative classroom instruction.

 

Does NYOS provide a credit recovery program for students?

No. If students do not receive credit for a course, they will need to either take credit by exam or attend summer school in their home district. When a student receives an offer to NYOS Charter School for one of our Secondary grades, the student must have enough credits to be classified for that particular grade in order to become enrolled at NYOS.

 

How is GPA calculated for high school students?

A total Grade Point Average (GPA) is calculated for each student using a simple unweighted 5.0 system (comparable to the 4.0 commonly used by colleges and universities). The GPA is a cumulative average of all semester grades earned in state accredited courses in high school beginning with the freshman year. Middle school courses which are counted for graduation credits are not included in the GPA. Grade points are awarded based on the grading system used in NYOS.

 

What colleges have NYOS students been accepted into?

A sample of our students' college acceptances have included, but are not limited to the following:

 

Abilene Christian University, Allegheny College, Baylor University, Blinn College, Boston University, Brigham Young University, California Polytechnic State University, Coastal Bend College, Columbia University, University of Colorado at Boulder, University of Colorado Springs, Concordia University, Earlham College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Evergreen State University, Fordham University, Georgia Tech, Goucher College, Howard Payne University, Huston-Tillotson University, Lamar University, Lewis & Clark College, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, University of Michigan, Milwaukee School of Engineering, New York Institute of Technology, New York University, University of North Texas, Phiilander Smith College, Prairie View A&M University, University of Portland, Reed College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rice University, Rochester Institute of Technology, The University of Rochester, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Sam Houston State University, Sarah Lawrence College, Seattle Pacific University, Southwestern University, St. Edwards University, St. Olaf College, Stanford University, Stephen F. Austin University, Sul Ross University, Texas Christian University, The State University of New York Polytechnic Institute, The University of Texas at Arlington, The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Texas at Dallas, The University of Texas at Permian Basin, The University of Texas at San Antonio, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Texas A&M University, Texas State University, Texas Tech University, Texas Woman’s University, The University of Utah, Vassar College, West Point Military Academy, West Virginia University, and Western Washington University