Graduation Packets and Cap N Gown orders are due by May 10th. See Vivian regarding any questions.
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WHAT IS VENTURE?
Venture, established in 1978, is a fully accredited comprehensive school for students in grades K-adult education, and delivers the curriculum through independent or home study. Students come to Venture a minimum of once a week and spend about an hour with their teacher. Students receive weekly assignments at that time, and are expected to spend a minimum of 20 hours a week on academic work.
Students attend Venture by choice. Venture helps students to pursue their educational opportunities outside the classroom, yet within the framework of the educational requirements of the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. The nature of the independent study program gives students the opportunity to personalize their instruction and the freedom to utilize resources and activities to create an exciting and flexible educational experience. While attending Venture, many students take courses concurrently at the local community colleges. Students learn and practice the self discipline necessary for future success.
THE VENTURE VISION
Venture School is dedicated to providing a place where all students feel valued and unique. Students are offered creative opportunities to learn and to accomplish their academic goals. The program offered is tailored to meet students’ individual needs and incorporates individual learning styles, interests, aptitudes and passions. Venture is a dynamic institution constantly examining the program and seeking new strategies to better meet the ever-changing needs of students and the demands of the 21st century.
May 3, 2013
Important Graduation Information
Congratulations! We are looking forward to celebrating with you at our graduation ceremony on Wednesday June 19th in the Performing Arts Center at Dougherty Valley High School. Our ceremony will begin at 7:00 p.m and end at approximately 8:30 p.m. Graduating students should plan on arriving no later than 6:30 p.m. to prepare for the ceremony. Staff will give them instructions at that time.
Cap and Gown Orders
Graduation packets have been distributed to all seniors. Seniors may order a cap and gown for the ceremony, but no one is required to wear a cap or gown to participate in our graduation. Cap and gown orders must be returned by May 10th. The graduation packet includes a personal statement form. Graduates will provide a short statement about their education and their future plans. Venture teachers will read these statements at the graduation ceremony. Personal statements are due back to your teacher by May 24th.
Student Speakers and Performers
We are still looking for students who would like to speak or perform at our ceremony. (We usually have two students in each role.) Please let your teacher know as soon as possible if you are interested.
The DVHS Performing Arts Center has a seating capacity of 600. It is a beautiful venue, perfectly suited to a graduation ceremony. Our other option was to hold the ceremony on the football field, a far less personal and comfortable setting. Unfortunately, this means that we have to limit tickets to six per family. (Graduates do not need a ticket.) We hope that we will be able to provide more tickets to families who need them, but at this point we have about 100 graduates who have indicated an interest in attending the ceremony. Until we have an accurate count of attendees we cannot release any other tickets.
You can help. Please let your student’s teacher know as soon as possible if you are not attending or if you can relinquish any of your six tickets. We currently have a waiting list with requests for about fifty additional tickets.
We will begin distributing up to six tickets per graduate on June 3rd. Please understand that all attendees must have a ticket to enter the PAC and that we will not be able to replace lost tickets. If available, waiting list tickets will be distributed beginning June 10th, the week before graduation.
Please call Sheila Sanders or Vivian Jeffrey at 925-479-1200 with any questions about graduation.
Friday May 10th – Cap and Gown Orders Due
Friday May 24th – Graduation Statements Due
Monday June 3rd – Graduation Tickets Released (up to six per family)
Monday June 10th – Waiting List Tickets Released (if available)
Wednesday June 19th – Graduation Ceremony @ 7:00 p.m.
2013-14 Registration (Returning Students Only)
Registration packets for the 2013-14 school year are now available at our front desk. All returning families will need to complete a registration packet and register on the Parent Portal, a component of our student information system. Directions for registering for the Parent Portal are included in the registration packet. All out-of-district families must renew their interdistrict transfer requests with their home district. You are welcome to call our front desk (925-479-1200) if you have any questions.
Thanks to all who participated in STAR testing over the past two weeks. We had a great participation rate and our students worked hard on their tests. We will have make-up testing sessions next week. Teachers have been making follow-up calls to families with students who still have testing to complete.
California High School Exit Examination (CAHSEE)
The final administration of the California High School Exit Examination (CAHSEE) will be given on Tuesday, May 14th (English Language Arts) and Wednesday, May 15th (Mathematics). Juniors, seniors, and adult education students who have not passed one or both sections of the test and sophomores who were absent for one or both sections during the March administration should take the test in May. Testing both days will begin promptly at 8:30 a.m. and finish by noon. Please mark these important dates on your calendar now.
Concurrent Enrollment Program for 2013-14 School Year
Venture students who would like to apply for concurrent enrollment at their home school will be able to pick up applications at Venture School’s front desk beginning on Monday, April 29th. Applications must be completed and returned to Venture by Friday, May 10th. All students who are interested in concurrent enrollment must apply, even if they are currently enrolled in the program.
Placement in the concurrent enrollment program is limited. District policy allows Venture to place ten students in each comprehensive high school and three students in each middle school. Students can only be placed at their home school. Concurrent enrollment is not permitted at the elementary level.
At the high school level, priority is given to students needing to take laboratory science, foreign language, or advanced math courses not offered at Venture but required for college admission. Within this priority group, older students are given preference. At the middle school level, priority is given to students who will most benefit educationally from the program.
Students selected for concurrent enrollment will receive notification in early June. This notification will include information regarding course scheduling at the home school.
Venture Interact Club
Please join us for a special Venture Interact Club meeting on Wednesday May 15th from 3:45 to 4:45 in Classroom 1. Our meeting will feature guest-speaker Don Routh from the Wheelchair Project. He will explain how we can work with all of the other schools in our school district next year, to supply free wheelchairs for impoverished people around the world. This will be a fun and meaningful project and we hope you can attend this planning session. Interact is open to all Venture students in grades 8-12. We have a great group of students who attend regularly to meet, socialize, and complete a service project. Come join us! Contact Principal Matt Hermann for more information.
Student/Staff Book Club
The final meeting of the Venture School Book Club will be held on Wednesday May 29th at noon. We will be discussing our final book, How to Save a Life by Sara Zarr. Funny, insightful, and moving, Zarr’s novel is a smart page-turner reminiscent of John Green’s work. See our book club board for more information. We have eight copies available for check-out at Venture on a first-come/first-served basis. See Matt. Credit may be available; talk with your teacher.
Discount at Sports Basement for Venture Families
Sports Basement in Walnut Creek offers an ongoing discount for students, staff, and families of Venture School. Shoppers only need mention our school’s name to receive 10% off their purchases, with 5% of the sale going back to the school. Easy, easy fundraising, good at all SB locations, year-round.
Important information for Seniors who are taking Concurrent Classes at a Community College which they need or want to include on their final Venture transcript: Colleges will post Spring Semester grades in late May or early June. At that point, please print a copy of your unofficial transcript and bring it to Lucy. The coursework will be added to your transcript prior to your graduation date. An official copy of the transcript may not be available until late June. At that time, you will need to order your official transcript for Venture. You may have it mailed by the college or sent to your home: if the latter, bring the transcript to Venture in the sealed envelope.
The Senior Graduation Survey is now available through Naviance/Family Connections. All seniors must complete the survey before they can be cleared for graduation. Students who used Naviance at their former high school may use the same Username and Password; however, Venture students must access Naviance either through the Venture website (Quicklink on the homepage) or www.connection.naviance.com/venture. If you cannot log in, please see Lucy as soon as possible.
The East Bay College Connection Fair takes place on Saturday, May 11th from 1:00-4:00 pm at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga. This free event is open to all high school students and their parents. Representatives from more than 150 different colleges and universities will participate. The event will also include workshops on the application process, financial aid, and advice for first-generation college students. A complete list of workshop times, topics and locations may be found at http://www.stmarys-ca.edu/undergraduate-admissions/22nd-annual-east-bay-college-connection-wacac-fair-at-saint-marys-college.
Venture students who want to take concurrent classes at their home high school next year must complete the Concurrent Enrollment Application available at Venture’s front desk. Applications are due Friday, May 10th. Priority will be given to those students who return their applications by the deadline.
Venture students can earn college credit through San Jose State University and Udacity. SJSU is offering a summer opportunity to help students earn college credit that transfers to most universities. The cost is only $50 per credit. Courses will be taught by SJSU faculty in such subjects as Intro to Programming and Psychology. Classes are entirely online and may be taken on a flexible schedule. Each class costs $150, including materials, on-demand tutoring, virtual office hours, and 3 or 4 college credits on an official SJSU transcript. This new program is a joint venture with Udacity, an online education start-up which has been featured in Time Magazine and the New York Times. Space is limited. For questions, email Kevin@udacity.com.
COMMUNITY COLLEGE CONCURRENT ENROLLMENT
Summer School Classes at Community Colleges provide Venture students with extended learning opportunities, high school credits, and a head start on college. Now is the time to enroll online as a concurrent (high school) student at DVC, Las Positas, and other local community colleges. If a transcript or assessment is required for your selected class, make sure you take care of that ASAP. Students who are currently eleventh graders or younger must have the Special Recommendation Concurrent Enrollment form signed by the counselor or principal prior to registration. Registration takes place in May: specific dates are listed on the college websites. (For example, DVC in-person registration starts on May 29th.) 2013 Graduates planning to take community college classes this summer will enroll and register as college students. If you need any assistance, please see Lucy.
Concurrent Enrollment for Fall Classes at Community Colleges is currently in progress. Students planning to attend DVC, Las Positas, Chabot, or other colleges should be applying as soon as possible. The enrollment, assessment and registration process is the same as for Summer School classes. Because registration dates fall in the summer prior to the start of the Venture school year in August, students should take care of this prior to the end of June. Fall 2013 Course Schedules may be found on the colleges’ websites. Lucy would be happy to assist with class selection or any other questions about the process.
EOPS Summer Institute at Diablo Valley College is open to this year’s eleventh and twelfth graders. This six-week “bridge program” aims to prepare students for college success. Course include math, English, and college-readiness skills, all taught in a supportive learning community. Check out EOPS at www.dvc.edu/org/departments/eops-care/summer-institute. Applications can be obtained online or from Lucy. They are due May 20th.
Diablo Valley College Summer Camps for High School Students offer “five days of fun and 1.5 college units.” The Engineering, Construction, and Manufacturing Camp will be held June 17-21. The Culinary and Hospitality Summer Camp will take place June 24-28. Registration for the engineering camp is available at http://cococostemsummercamps.org. Culinary camp registration will be available in May through Judy Moon (firstname.lastname@example.org). Several Architecture, Robotics, and Intro to Engineering classes are also available through the regular DVC Summer School.
SRVUSD Summer Enrichment Classes for Middle School Students will be taught at Charlotte Wood Middle School. Two-week sessions are scheduled for June 24-July 5 and July 8-19. Engineering, Video, Art, Public Speaking, Writing and Math are among the offerings. For further information and registration, go online: www.srvusd.net/summerprograms.
Colleges That Change Lives (www.CTCL.org) will sponsor free college fairs in the Bay Area this summer (July 29 in Santa Clara and July 30 in San Rafael). A presentation on “How to Choose a College That’s Right for You” opens the program, followed by discussion with representatives from member colleges. This organization encourages students to make the college search process a well-informed journey that leads to the best possible outcome: finding the right college fit for them. Venture parents who attended a CTCL event last summer spoke very positively about their experience. Check out their website for more information and directions to the events.
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