HOPE K-8 Handbook 2014-2015

Parent/Student Handbook


Justin Bryson, School Leader

4234 Monroe Street

Toledo, OH 43606


HOPE Learning Academy of Toledo

Parent/Student Handbook


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HOPE Learning Academy of Toledo 2013-2014

Parent and Student Handbook

A Message from the School Leader

Dear Students and Parents,

I am thrilled to be a part of the Hope Community this school year! The Hope Learning Academy staff, students and parents should have a lot to be proud of heading into the 2014-2015 school year. Our enrollment alone increased by 50% throughout the course of one school year! I sincerely thank each and every one of you for your support, encouragement and dedication to serve and better the lives of all exceptional children.

As we continue to grow as a school and community, we must continue to work together to accomplish even more this school year. Our theme for the 2014-2015 is “Diving Deeper”. I am personally asking for each of you, parents and students, to think about how you can help to improve the lives of those around you. We want the best for each family at our school, and our hope is that you want to be an active part in making our hope, reality.

This desire starts right inside the walls of your family home. Students, take time to tell your family members about all the amazing information you learn at school. Lean on them for support with your homework assignments and projects. Parents, embrace your child’s eagerness to learn. Not only talk to them about school, but also allow them to teach you what they are learning on a daily basis. If you would like to take that encouragement a step further, please be aware of our wonderful parent teacher organization, known as Families Serving Families (FSF). We are always ready to have more active parent involvement in the school; please consider donating your time to the mission of Hope Learning Academy.

This handbook contains essential information regarding our school and school rules as well as important Board of Education policies. I hope that you find it a helpful resource. Please contact the front office if you have any questions in regards to the handbook.

Thank you again for your dedication to excellence! I look forward to diving into a successful school year with you all!

Justin Bryson

School Leader

Mission Statement

HOPE Learning Academy of Toledo is committed to providing a rigorous academic education for the exceptional child with specialized learning needs in a non-traditional classroom setting that cultivates “self-reliance, critical thinking, and problem solving skills” through research proven curriculum infused with social growth, sensory integration and art enrichment.

Belief Statement


  • Helping each student reach his or her full potential
  • Obtaining and implementing various teaching strategies to accommodate different learning styles
  • Protecting each student’s right to learn in a safe and healthy environment
  • Expecting only positive outcomes

School Information


Daniel LaValley, Superintendent

Justin Bryson, School Leader

Jacqueline Jacoby, Director of Special Education/Assistant School Leader

Trisha Gary, Administrative Assistant

Board of Directors

Jane Charette

John Graham

Judy Johnson

John Szuch

Sandy Viviano


North Central Ohio Educational Services Center

928 West Market Street

Suite A

Tiffin, OH 44883


Web Address

Table of Contents

Academics7 - 9



Communication Tools16

Discipline Policy17-25

Dress Code26-30

Health Services & Medication Policies31-33

General School Information34-42

Acceptable Use & Internet Safety Policy43-46

Social Media Policy47-48

Bullying Policy49-50

Amendment Statement51

Acceptance Form52-53


Parents do not relinquish their right and duty to educate, but only delegate a part of their responsibility to the school. Without the cooperation of the parents, the school cannot educate the child. HOPE Learning Academy of Toledo’s philosophy concerning academic achievement is based upon the belief that children have diverse capabilities and individual patterns of growth and development.

Brain Compatible Learning

HOPE’s policies and procedures acknowledge brain compatible learning as a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach, based on current research in neuroscience that suggests how our brain naturally learns best. The nine elements of brain compatible learning are: absence of threat, movement, meaningful content, mastery assessment, choice, collaboration, adequate time, enriched environment, and immediate feedback.

Social Skills and Sensory Integration

Hope aligns student learning to academics, but also heavily focuses on the importance of developing students emotional and development needs. Sensory Integration is the way the nervous system receives messages from the senses. Since all senses are a part of every individuals learning process, Hope Learning Academy believes providing SI will improve all areas of growth in a child’s life. Additionally, Social Skills are essential to be successful in life. By teaching students how to act and respond to social situations, we are providing students with the tools needed to be successful.


HOPE Learning Academy of Toledo (HOPE) is sponsored by North Central Ohio Educational Service Center (NCOESC). The Ohio Common Core Standard guides the curriculum, which is in compliance with the Ohio Department of Education. Teachers are fully licensed by the State of Ohio and participate in on-going professional development.

Faculty is expected to align their teaching to the Common Core Standards. In their teaching practice, faculty utilize the philosophy of Differentiated Instruction and Project-Based Learning to develop lessons that stimulate problem solving that are fun, creative, and geared towards the specialized needs learners. Our faculty is dedicated, caring, and committed to student centered learning. They make a difference in their students’ lives by integrating academic disciplines with respect and integrity.

Grading Policy

Grades K - 3

A progressive scale will be used on the grade cards for Kindergarten – Third Grade.

The progressive scale is as follows:

3 = Demonstrates proficiency in meeting the standard andindependently working

2 = Progressing toward meeting the standard with practice and support

1 = Experiencing difficulty in meeting the academic standard

Grades 4-8

Percentage grades will be used on the grade cards for Fourth – Eighth Grade.

Grading scale is as follows:

A90% - 100% D60% - 69%

B80% - 89% F59% and below

C 70% - 79%


Homework is part of the learning process. Homework assignments reinforce learning begun at school and apprise the parent of work that the student is doing in school. Parents can assist their child with home assignments in the following ways:

• Provide a quiet spot away from the TV, radio, telephone, and other members of thefamily

• Check to see what was accomplished during the study time regardingcompleteness and neatness

• Be willing to listen and offer assistance when requested your child

• Encourage, but do not pressure your child

  • Allow the child to complete his/her own homework, projects, and assignments
  • Students may not have homework every night. Parents are encouraged to prompt their children to read on those nights
  • If for some reason the child does not complete an assignment, a note of explanation from the parents is requested
  • Students will be allowed to make up assignments from excused absences. The length of time to make up the work will be determined by the teacher. Assignments not completed by agreed upon completion date will be treated as missing or late assignments. This also includes personal convenience absences
  • The individual teacher will handle consequences for missing, incomplete, or late assignments
  • If a student is absent and you wish to pick up homework, the school office will need to be notified by 9:00 a.m. The homework will be available in the school office between 2:30-3:30PM

In addition to homework assignments, research supports the importance of students in all grades reading or being read to for a minimum of 20 minutes per day. By adding basic comprehension questions intermittently while reading, it adds to the effectiveness of a home reading program

Take a few minutes to make your child a better student for a lifetime!

Intervention Assistance Team

The Intervention Assistance Team is available to help teachers and parents address special student concerns. All interventions are a means of figuring out how best to teach a student who is experiencing academic, behavioral, medical, or social difficulties. Parents are important contributors to the problem-solving process; they are always invited to attend meetings; and are actively involved in decision-making and recommendations. The team consists of the parent, student (if applicable) Director of Special Education, Intervention Specialist, teacher/s, counselor, and support staff as appropriate.

Parent-Teacher Conferences

School initiated conferences will be scheduled at the end of the first quarter. A second conference opportunity will be offered during second semester. If you would like to request a conference, call the front office and a message will be left for the teacher upon whom the request is made.

Promotion, Placement and Retention

The decision to place or retain a student at a grade level will not be finalized without the consultation of the parent/guardian. The consultation will occur prior to the beginning of the fourth quarter. All options such as previous interventions, tutoring, and academic testing/evaluations will be considered. However, parent permission is not required to retain, place or promote a child at grade level. Absences of ten (10) days per semester without a doctor’s note could or may jeopardize promotion.

Report Cards

Report cards are issued four times a year. The purpose of the report card is to communicate meaningful information concerning achievement to parents and others who are authorized to access educational data. Although children vary in their rate of educational development, continuous progress is the goal for each child. Parents are asked to sign the report card envelope and promptly return it to the classroom teacher. If any school fees are not up-to-date, report cards may be withheld.

Special Education Services

HOPE is participating in an effort to identify, locate, and educate all children who have disabilities. For more information regarding assistance for students with disabilities or if you suspect a child may have a disability, please contact the Director of Special Education.

Psychological services provide educational testing to qualify students for special programs under Federal and State guidelines.


A list of textbooks each student has been assigned is maintained for each class. Each student is responsible for all textbooks loaned to him/her; they are expected to return each book at the end of the participation in the class. Students will be responsible to pay for any book that is lost, damaged, destroyed, stolen or mutilated. Report cards, records, transcripts, or diplomas may be held until all textbooks, library books or borrowed material are turned in and/or fees paid.


Non-Discriminatory Policy

In accordance with the State of Ohio, HOPE admits students of any gender, race, color, or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities. In addition, the school will not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, or ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, scholarships, loans, athletics, fee waivers, and extracurricular activities.


HOPEis a tuition free public charter school. HOPE will not discriminate in its pupil admission policies or practices on the basis of intellectual or athletic ability, measure of achievement or aptitude, status as a handicapped person, or any other basis. All students of HOPE must be residents of the State of Ohio. Admission is open to students on a statewide basis.

Applications are accepted for student admission up to the deadline date for a lottery drawing. Priority for enrollment shall be given to returning students, their siblings, and students from the district in which the school is located. If on the deadline date for a lottery drawing the number of applicants per grade level exceeds the number of seats, a lottery drawing is held for those grade levels. The lottery drawing places children in order for possible enrollment into the school. As HOPE operates and accepts students year round, if other spaces are available after the lottery places become available, students are accepted off a prioritized wait list based on the results of the lottery. If there is no wait list, then admission is on a first come first serve basis. If a lottery is necessary, it shall take place at a public location. All parties will have the opportunity to be present during the lottery process and will be notified in advance of the date, time, and location of the lottery. All parents and children selected in the lottery will be notified of the selection by certified mail. Parents have up to seven (7) days from receipt of the certified mail to contact HOPE regarding their decision. If a parent does not respond within seven (7) days of receipt of the certified mail, the school will select another child from the lottery in the order the child’s name was drawn.

Students transferring from another school will normally be placed in the grade level recommended by the previous school. For elementary and junior high students, a request will be made for official records to be sent to us within fourteen (14) days. Parents are asked to notify the school at the time of enrollment is their student has an IEP or 504 Plan, so that HOPE can provide services and a smooth academic transition.

New entrants at all grade levels will be required to present, at the time of enrollment, an official birth certificate or other evidence of birth, proof of having received or being in the process of receiving required immunizations, proof of residency and custody information if applicable.

Nothing in this policy is intended to supersede state law. In areas of conflict between this policy and state law, state law shall control all aspects.

Compulsory School Age Kindergarten Admissions

In accordance with the State Law and the school board policy of the same title, HOPE requires a child to be five (5) years old by September 30th of the year of admission. Requests to make an exception to this rule, for children who children who will be five (5) years of age before the first day of January of the year for which admission is requested, must be made in writing to the School Leader.


Each parent, as a natural guardian of his/her children, is presumed to have full authority regarding record release and enrollment, unless a court order restricts authority. If a non-parent seeks to act on behalf of the child, the School Leader will inquire as to the source of his/her authority (e.g., guardianship letter or a custody or temporary placement order). If the courts give custody to one parent, that parent has responsibility for communication and financial obligation. When there is a question regarding the adult’s authority to act for the child, the School Leader will place the burden of showing authority on that person by requiring presentation of a written court or state agency order. (Per Ohio Revised Code 3319.321)

Process and Criteria

HOPE admits children of any race, color, religion or sex. Furthermore, there will be no discrimination in the admission of students to the school on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, sex, or disability. All that will be required for a student to be admitted is submission of the following: completing and submitting the registration form and such other enrollment materials that HOPE deems necessary; and submitting copies of the child’s birth certificate, Social Security Card, current immunization record as mandated by law, court orders (if applicable) and proof of residence.

These procedures are in accordance with Section 3313.672 of Senate Bill 321, Legislation dealing with missing children that became law on April 9, 1985. Section3313.672 states:

“A pupil at the time of his/her initial entry to a public or non-public school shall present to the person in charge of admission a copy of the original certificate of his birth and copies of those records pertaining to him maintained by the school that he most recently attended. If the pupil does not present copies of the items required by this section, the School Leader or chief administrative officer of the school shall notify the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction in the area where the pupil resides of this and of this fact and of the possibility that the pupil may be a missing child, as this term is defined in section 2901.30 of the Revised Code.”

No student at the time of initial entry or at the beginning of each year shall be permitted to remain in school for more than fourteen (14) days without written evidence of immunization. In lieu of the requirements, a physician’s statement may be presented stating that compliance is in process or that immunization may be detrimental to student’s health.


Students will be accepted for admission based upon the following criteria:

1. All enrolled students in grades K- 7 have first priority for registration.

2. If no notice is received from a parent by June 30th as to their intent to send their child back to HOPE for the next school year, it will be assumed that the child will not return and that another student may fill the position.

Student Records

HOPE also complies with the Family EducationRights and Privacy Act of 1994 and grants parents/guardians the right to examine their child’s official school records. Inquiries regarding unlawful discrimination may be directed to the School Leader.

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) afford parents and students 18 years or older certain rights with respect to the student’s educational records; of which include:

  • The right to inspect and review the student’s educational records
  • The right to request the amendment of the student’s educational records that are believed to be inaccurate and the right to a hearing if the request is not honored
  • The right to file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education regarding the alleged violation of FERPA
  • The right to consent to the disclosure of personally identifiable information within the student’s records, unless disclosure is otherwise authorized by law or unless disclosure is made to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the school as an administrator, supervisor, instructor or support staff member (including health or medical staff and law enforcement unit personnel); a person serving on the school board; a person or company with whom the school has contracted to perform a special task (such as an attorney, auditor, medical consultant or therapist): or a parent or student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his/her tasks. A school official has legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his/her professional responsibility
  • The following is designated at “directory information,” which may be disclosed without prior written consent: a student’s name, address, telephone number, date of birth, place of birth, dates of attendance, achievement awards or honors earned, photograph, parent names and previous school or school district
  • Parents have the right to submit a written request (to examine their children’s official school records) to the school office, within two weeks after the first day the student is enrolled in a school year. Public schools are prohibited from releasing directory information to third parties who intend to use the information for profit making ventures

Note: FERPA requires a school district to make reasonable attempt to notify the parent or student of the records request unless it states in its annual notification that it intends to forward records on request.