A+ Manual

 

Sweet Springs R-VII

High School

 

greyhound

 

A+ Student Manual

 

 

A+ Schools:  Providing students with the tools they need for a successful future.

 

 

 

 

Preface to the A+ School Program

            When the Missouri State Legislature established the Outstanding Schools Act of 1993, they included the provisions for the A+ Schools Program.  In an effort to enhance educational opportunities for high school students, the legislature provided that students who attend schools that meet specific criteria explained in the A+ Schools Program Grant Application, would be eligible for financial incentives, as State funds are available.  Once designated an A+ School, Sweet Springs R-VII High School graduates who meet specific A+ criteria will be eligible to receive paid tuition and general fees, subject to legislative appropriation (as State funding allows) to attend any public community college, vocational or technical school in Missouri.

 

            The purpose of this manual is to provide students, parents/guardians, faculty and staff with the guidelines and policies of the A+ Schools Program.  It is the responsibility of Sweet Springs R-VII School District to follow these policies to ensure A+ designation is received and maintained.  Accurate certification of students is crucial to the integrity of the program and A+ Schools designation.  It is the responsibility of the students and parents to read this manual carefully in order to understand all guidelines and regulations required.

 

Table of Contents

 

Student Eligibility………………………………………………………………………… 3

Student Incentive…………………………………………………………………………            3-4

Student Enrollment……………………………………………………………………… 4

Grade Point Requirement………………………………………………………………. 4

Monitoring of A+ Status…………………………………………………………………..            5

Notification of A+ Status………………………………………………………………….            5

Good Faith Effort………………………………………………………………………….            5

Career Paths………………………………………………………………………………            5

Tutoring…………………………………………………………………………………….            6

Attendance Requirement……………………………………………………………….. 6

            Attendance Review Process…………………………………………………….            7

            Attendance Waiver Guidelines………………………………………………….            7

            Reasons not allowable for Waiver………………………………………………            7

Citizenship Requirement……………………………………………………………….. 7

            Removal from the A+ Program………………………………………………….            8

            Unlawful use of Drugs/Alcohol………………………………………………….            8

            A+ Citizenship Appeal Process…………………………………………………            9

Sample Forms

            *A+ Participation Agreement…………………………………………………… 10

            *Attendance Appeal Form………………………………………………….…… 11

            *Citizenship Appeal Form……………………..………………..………….…… 12

            *Assurance of Compliance Form……………………………………………….            13

 

 

Student Eligibility

            To be eligible for the financial incentives of the A+ Schools Program (paid tuition and general fees, subject to legislative appropriation, as State funds are available); a student must be certified as an A+ student by Sweet Springs R-VII High School.  To do so the student must meet the following criteria while in high school:

 

  • Enter into a written agreement with their high school prior to April 15th of the semester of graduation and have attended a designated A+ school for three consecutive years (Students must have a 1st quarter grade for their Sophomore year to qualify).

 

  • Graduate from high school with a four-year cumulative grade point average of 2.5 or higher.

 

  • Have at least a 95% cumulative attendance record over a four-year period.

 

  • Perform 50 hours of documented, unpaid tutoring over four years.

 

  • Maintain a record of good citizenship and avoid the unlawful possession, use and distribution of drugs and alcohol throughout four years of high school.

 

  • Make a good faith effort to first secure all available federal post-secondary student financial assistance funds that do not require repayment, such as the Pell Grant.

 

  • Copy of students Social Security Number Card on file with the School.

 

  • Beginning with the high school senior class of 2015, have achieved a score of proficient or advanced on the Algebra I end of course exam.

 

    • Beginning in 2015, if you meet all of the eligibility requirements except the Algebra I end of course requirement, you may establish eligibility by completing your first semester at a participating school with a minimum of 12 semester credit hours or the equivalent and a 2.5 grade point average.

 

Student Incentive

      Following designation as an A+ School, Sweet Springs R-VII graduates meeting the qualifications explained in this manual, will be eligible to receive the following financial incentives:

 

Text Box: PAID TUITION AND GENERAL FEES, SUBJECT TO LEGISLATIVE APPROPRIATION, AS STATE FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE, TO ATTEND ANY PUBLIC COMMUNITY COLLEGE, VOCATIONAL OR TECHNICAL SCHOOL IN THE STATE OF MISSOURI FOR A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS OR SIX SEMESTERS.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


After meeting the criteria for eligibility at the local district students must:

 

  • Make a documented effort to first secure all available post-secondary student financial assistance funds that do not require repayment.

 

  • Be aware that all tuition incentives will be available only for the purpose of applying toward the remaining cost of tuition and general fees, subject to legislative appropriation, after available federal post-secondary student financial funds have been applied to these costs.

 

  • Maintain a 2.5 GPA in the post-secondary setting to continue to receive the A+ funding.

 

  • Take advantage of TWO YEARS of financial incentives within FOUR YEARS of graduation from Sweet Springs R-VII High School, as State funds are available.

 

  • Be aware that funding is dependent on legislative support.

 

 

Student Enrollment

  1. Students are encouraged to enroll in the Sweet Springs R-VII High School A+ Program at the beginning of their freshman year.  Enrollment must be completed prior to April 15th of the semester of graduation.

 

  1. If a student transfers from another school after the beginning of his/her sophomore year, the student may only participate in the A+ Schools Program if the school from which he/she transferred is a designated A+ school.  Students must have a 1st quarter grade for their sophomore year on their transcripts to verify they were enrolled at an A+ School.

 

  1. Enrollment may be done during designated A+ student enrollment opportunities or directly through the A+ Coordinator.

 

  1. An A+ Participation Agreement must be completed with all appropriate signatures and filed with the A+ Coordinator.  (A sample is included in this booklet.)

 

  1. Any student requesting A+ incentives after the beginning of his/her freshman year must meet all criteria dating back to the beginning of his/her freshman year.

 

 

Grade Point Requirement

            The A+ student must graduate from high school with a minimum grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale (grade averages will not be rounded).  The cumulative GPA is applicable to all four years of student’s enrollment in high school.  The official transcript will document and certify that the GPA requirement has been met.

 

 

Monitoring of A+ Status

            At the end of each semester, students who are participating in the A+ program will receive a letter reporting their progress in each of the required areas.  Any questions or concerns about the information reported should be directed to the A+ Coordinator.  If these are not resolved, they should be directed to the High School Principal and then the Superintendent.

 

 

Notification of A+ Status

            The A+ Coordinator will review all records of A+ students, and names of eligible students will be submitted to the principal and guidance office for official certification prior to graduation.  Students and parents will be notified and the student’s transcript will reflect A+ status.

 

 

Good Faith Effort

            The student is required to make a good faith effort to secure all available federal post-secondary student financial aid funds that do not require repayment.

 

  • Parents must complete and file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  The FAFSA summary report must be sent to the community college or public Vocational/Technical School that the student is planning to attend.
  • The FAFSA form is available from the counseling office in December the year of graduation.  Parents are encouraged to apply as soon as possible after January 1 of that school year.
  • The website to electronically fill out the FAFSA form is http://www.fafsa.ed.gov.
  • Tuition incentives will only be awarded to reimburse the unpaid balance of the cost of tuition and general fees, subject to legislative appropriation, after available federal post-secondary student financial aid funds have been applied to these costs.

 

 

Career Paths

      Each student will be required to declare a career path.  Career paths are designed to give each student a selection of courses that will be relevant to his/her chosen field of study after high school.  A career path may be changed at any time.  Students may choose from the following career paths:

 

      Arts and Communications

      Business, Management and Technology

      Human Services

      Health Services

      Industrial and Engineering Technology

      Natural Resources/Agriculture

 

      More information about career paths is available from the Counseling Department.

Tutoring

      A+ students are required to perform at least 50 hours of school-based tutoring.  The tutoring activities must:

 

  • Involve A+ students with other students within the district, at all levels.
  • Provide encouragement for students to get turned on to school and strive for good grades.
  • Be school-based and under the direction of a district staff member.
  • Students will be required to sign an A+ Participation Agreement.
  • Students may obtain a Tutoring Log Sheet from the A+ Coordinator’s Office.  These sheets should be completed as tutoring is done.  Log sheets must be turned in by the end of the semester during which tutoring occurred to be included in the semester report to parents.  It is the student’s responsibility to maintain his/her log record and turn it in to the A+ Coordinator in a timely manner.
  • Tutoring may be done before or after school, during the school year or during summer school.
  • Failure to adhere to tutoring guidelines may result in disciplinary action and/or dismissal from the A+ Program.

 

Text Box: No financial remuneration may be accepted for tutoring activities.
 

 


Attendance Requirement

 

 

Attendance Requirement

            To be eligible for the A+ Schools Program Tuition Reimbursement Incentive, a student must have a 95% accumulated attendance record (no more than 35 days absent/8.75 days per year) for four years beginning with the student’s freshman year.  Students are expected to attend school regularly and to be on time for classes.  From this requirement the student will acquire the habits of punctuality, self-discipline and responsibility.  A student who does not meet the 95% attendance requirement will not be eligible for the A+ Tuition Incentive.  The following attendance guidelines will be followed:

 

  • Students must attend Sweet Springs R-VII High School or another A+ approved school for three consecutive years prior to graduation. 

     

  • A cumulative attendance record will be kept from the beginning of the A+ student’s freshman year until graduation.

     

  • Each semester the A+ Office will provide parents/guardians and students information that includes the student’s attendance record.

 

 

 

 

Attendance Review Process

            The state attendance requirements are very specific.  The State Board of Education says no exceptions to the 95% attendance requirement without following the attendance waiver guidelines.  If a student is ill or injured, homebound schooling should begin immediately.

 

            If your student is injured or has a long term illness, please make sure to obtain written documentation from the doctor in case an appeal is necessary in the future.

 

 

Attendance Waiver Guidelines

            Anyone submitting a request for an A+ waiver of days missed shall provide the A+ Coordinator with the following official documentation:

 

REASON FOR ABSENCE                                                            DOCUMENTATION

Hospitalization                                                                     Letter signed by the doctor

Chronic health problems                                                   Letter from doctor & school nurse

Personal/Family calamity (fire, flood, etc.)                      Principal’s letter

Catastrophic illness (long term)                                        Principal’s/Doctor’s letter (with

                                                                                                recommendation for homebound

                                                                                                instruction.)

 

 

Reasons not allowable for waiver

            No student will receive a waiver if any absences are due to any of the following:

 

  • Truancy/Skipping classes/school.
  • Taking school time for any personal activity not included in waiver guidelines. (examples:  shopping, hair appointments)
  • Out-of-School suspensions for any reason.
  • Personal/family vacation.
  • Transportation problems.

 

Attendance requirements for A+ are not to be confused with general

attendance requirements as stated in the Sweet Springs R-VII Handbook.

 

 

Citizenship Requirement

            Participation in the A+ Schools Program is a unique privilege for Sweet Springs R-VII High School students.  According to the A+ School’s Administrative Guide, students pursuing the A+ incentives must maintain a record of good citizenship and avoid the possession, use and distribution of drugs and alcohol.

 

            Certification of good citizenship will be based on the official discipline record maintained in the high school office.  The principal assigns consequences for infractions of the discipline code and is responsible for certifying the accuracy of the student’s discipline record.

Removal from the A+ Program

      A student may be removed from the A+ Program when:

 

  1. Conviction of a felony that is verifiable and either a matter of public record or communicated to school officials in compliance with the Safe Schools Act.

     

  2. A student has missed 35 days or more of school.

     

     

  3. A student has violated the Student Code of Conduct and citizenship requirement. Any infraction of these policies could cause you to be removed from the A+ program.

 

Any student who commits an offense involving drugs or alcohol or which falls

under the Safe Schools Act will be immediately dismissed from the program.

 

 

Unlawful possession, use and distribution of Drugs/Alcohol

            An A+ student will not sell, possess or use any controlled substance or drug paraphernalia as defined by law and stated in the Sweet Springs R-VII Student-Teacher Handbook.  The use of prescription medicine is allowed under Board Policy when administered by authorized school personnel.  Students and parents are responsible for understanding and following these guidelines.

 

            The following offenses reported to school authorities and substantiated, will result in immediate removal from the A+ Program.

 

  • Possession, use or distribution of alcohol, drugs or narcotics.
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia.
  • Criminal activities as defined by the Safe Schools Act:
  • Possession of a weapon (under provision of Ch. 571 MO Revised Statutes).
  • Assault on a student.
  • Intimidation or physical threat of staff.
  • Vandalism/theft.
  • False firm alarm/bomb threats and misuse of emergency equipment.
  • Serious sexual misbehavior/exposure.
  • Possession of dangerous items.
  • Dangerous behavior.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A+ Citizenship Appeal Process

            Students and parents or guardians may appeal an A+ disciplinary decision using the following process:

 

            Students and parents/guardians will have 15 calendar days to appeal a decision that is made dealing with discipline using the A+ Appeal of Citizenship Form available from the A+ Coordinator.  The appeal must be made in writing through the A+ Coordinator.  (A sample is included in the back of this handbook.)

 

            Within 10 days of receiving a written appeal, the A+ Coordinator will convene the A+ Attendance and Citizenship Review Team.  The team will be composed of a guidance counselor, a principal, two teachers, and one advisory committee member.  The parent/guardian and students must appear in person before the Review Team.

 

            The A+ Coordinator will act as facilitator and non-voting member of the Attendance and Citizenship Review Team.  After the team reaches a decision, the A+ Coordinator will notify the parents/guardian by letter within five calendar days.  If further appeal is necessary, due process guidelines must be followed, starting with the Superintendent.

 

The Review team will be made up each year of:

 

A. Business person(s);

B. Labor leaders;

C. Parents;

D. Community college and postsecondary career-technical schools;

E. Senior citizens;

F. Teachers

G. School Board Members

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SWEET SPRINGS R-VII HIGH SCHOOL

600 E. Marshall St.

Sweet Springs, MO  65351

 

A+ Participation Agreement

 

            I, ____________________, have hereby read and agree to the following eligibility provisions established in the Outstanding Schools Act of 1993:

 

  • Attended a designated A+ school for three (3) consecutive years prior to graduation.
  • Graduate from high school with a 2.5 grade point average on a 4.0 point scale.
  • Have at least a 95% attendance record for the four-year period. (35 days)
  • Perform fifty (50) hours of unpaid tutoring.
  • Maintain a record of good citizenship and avoid the unlawful use of drugs and/or alcohol.
  • Avoid the use of tobacco and tobacco products.
  • Register for Selective Service, if applicable.
  • Make a good faith effort to first secure all available federal post-secondary student financial assistance funds that do not require repayment, such as the Pell Grant.
  • Copy of students Social Security Number Card on file with the School.
  • Beginning with the high school senior class of 2015, have achieved a score of proficient or advanced on the Algebra I end of course exam.

     

    Be it understood that in exchange for meeting or exceeding the above

    criteria, the above named student may be eligible for reimbursement as established in the Outstanding Schools Act of 1993.  This reimbursement is DEPENDENT ON STATE FUNDING.  Said reimbursements are the responsibility of the Missouri General Assembly and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and not the Sweet Springs R-VII School District.  Reimbursements are described as:

     

  • The cost of tuition, subject to legislative appropriation, to any public community college, vocational or technical school in the State of Missouri for any student that has made a good faith effort to secure all available sources of funding that can be applied.
  • The period of eligibility shall be for a maximum period of two (2) years (six semesters) during the four (4) year period immediately following graduation.  A+ benefits end upon receiving a degree or certificate.

 

Hereby signed and agreed to on the ________ day of ________, 20______.

 

___________________________________(Student)     __________(Year of Graduation)

 

 

___________________________________(Parent/Guardian)

 

 

___________________________________(A+ Coordinator)   Received_____________

 

Sweet Springs R-VII High School

A+ Program

 

MCAN00491_0000[1]

Appeal of Attendance Form

 

Student Name:

 


Date:

 

Parent Name:

 

 


Parent Address:

 

 


Phone #:

 

 


City:                                                    State:                           Zip Code:____________                   

Parent Signature:

 

Student Signature:

 

This request is to appeal the school absence(s) for the following:  (Please check the appropriate boxes)

 

 


SEMESTER:           Fall         Spring            SCHOOL YEAR:

 

 


APPEAL WILL BE:              In Person                In Writing

 

In the space below please indicate the date(s) of the absence(s) and the reason for the request to be reviewed.  If additional space is needed, please attach another sheet of paper.

 

            DATE OF ABSENCE                                               REASON FOR ABSENCE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sweet Springs R-VII High School

A+ Program

 

MCAN00491_0000[1]

Appeal of Citizenship Form

 

Student Name:

 


Date:

 

Parent Name:

 

 


Parent Address:

 

 


Phone #:

 

 


City:                                                    State:                           Zip Code:____________                   

Parent Signature:

 

Student Signature:

 

This request is to appeal the school absence(s) for the following:  (Please check the appropriate boxes)

 

 


SEMESTER:           Fall         Spring            SCHOOL YEAR:

 

 


APPEAL WILL BE:              In Person                In Writing

 

In the space below please indicate the basis of your appeal for the A+ School Program. If additional space is needed, please attach another sheet of paper.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This form must be forwarded to the A+ Office within 15 days of the date of the disciplinary action occurred. Parents will be notified of a hearing date scheduled within 10 days of the appeal notice.

 

 

Assurance of Compliance

For A+ Tutors

Sweet Springs R-VII School District

 

I have read and I understand the information contained within the Sweet Springs R-VII Student Tutoring Manual. I realize the importance of following the guidelines set forth within this manual and the impact that I may have on the student (s) I will be tutoring. I understand that failure to abide by the guidelines established for the A+ tutors could result in my removal from the tutorial program making me ineligible for A+ benefits. My performance and presence must be beyond reproach. I am representing my school, my community and myself. I pledge to comply by all the standards outlined and set forth in the Sweet Springs R-VII A+ Student Tutoring Manual and to put forth my very best as an A+ tutor.

 

 

Signature of A+ Candidate Date Pledge Signed

 

 

_____________________________ __________________

 

 

 

Sweet Springs R-VII High School

600 E. Marshall St.

Sweet Springs, MO  65351

 

Telephone  (660) 335-6341

FAX  (660) 335-6379

 

 

Mr. Josh Hume

Principal

(660) 335-6341

 

 

Mrs. Donna Wright

Superintendent

(660) 335-4860

 

 

Mr. Daniel Conner

Counselor/A+ Coordinator

(660) 335-6341