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Articles from August 2021

Friday, August 27, 2021

Wow, it’s hard to believe that the first week of school is already over.  It’s so great to see so many students in the building!!!  HERE is the video for this week.

CONGRATULATIONS:

students helping another student show school spiritShout Out — Jackie Strotman and Elaina Stephenson learned that Jocelyn Littwiller couldn’t participate in our all-school assembly on Thursday, August 26, so they stopped by to share their school spirit with fellow freshmen.  

INFORMATION:

Pick Ups/Drop Offs — Parents, please remember to refrain from blocking entrances and streets.  During our first two days, we had significant traffic congestion, with people driving in the wrong lane because they could not access the right lane.  In addition, at the end of the day, please don’t block the entrance to the school because busses need to depart after school dismisses.

Early Release — Just a reminder that Monday August 30 – September 3 is all early release.  School dismissal time is 1:15 pm.  Homeroom teachers are scheduling parent/teacher conferences.  AHS strives to create a supportive environment, so homeroom teachers are scheduling 15 minute conference calls with each student in their homeroom.  Please contact your student’s homeroom teacher to set up a time/day that works best for you.

Student ID — If your student didn’t receive an ID this week, he/she/they should do the following:

  • Check Infinite Campus. If there is already a photo of your student, the student needs to email Mrs. Ficek in the media center at christy.ficek@ames.k12.ia.us and let her know asap that they didn’t get an ID. They do not need to go to the Media Center if there is a picture already in Infinite Campus. 
  • If there is NOT a picture in Infinite Campus and your student didn’t receive an ID, please have them go to the Media Center, Mrs. Ficek will take a picture for their card.

Remaining student ID cards will be done in two to three weeks.

Study Hall — Freshman through juniors with an open period need to report to study hall.  Freshmen and sophomores are in the media center.  Juniors and seniors are in the cafeteria.  Students are required to be supervised throughout the school day.

The Pledge — An Iowa law passed this spring requires that Ames CSD administer the Pledge of Allegiance in 1st-12th grade each school day. Buildings will be administering the Pledge in accordance with Iowa law, but active participation will be an optional activity for students. For those students who want to opt out, please they may stay seated quietly or stand quietly.  Please stand and place your hand over your heart for the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.  If students are in the hall during this time, please stand quietly until the end of the pledge.

Drop Dates for Fall Semester Online Courses at DMACC:

  • Full Semester courses running 8/25 – 12/16 — Last day to drop and NOT receive a W on transcript is Wednesday, September 8.  Last day to drop and have a W on the transcript is Thursday, November 4.
  • 1st Half Term 8-week courses running 8/25 – 10/19 — Last day to drop and NOT receive a W on transcript isThursday, September 2.  Last day to drop and have a W on the transcript is Wednesday, September 29. 

Open Campus & Closed Campus — Seniors are the only class with open campus privileges.  As guardian ad litem, we are responsible for your safety and welfare while you’re at school.  Therefore, only seniors may leave when they have an open period or if they remain in the building, must report to study hall.  Juniors may leave for lunch, but need to be back in time for their next class.  Excessive tardies may result in the revocation of privileges.  Freshmen and sophomores may not leave campus unless called in by a parent/guardian.   Widespread violations of school policies may result in closing the campus for all students.  Please verify that your junior or senior has your permission to leave for lunch by completing the Senior and Junior Lunch Forms that were emailed.  Or your student may pick up a copy from the Auxiliary Office or their homeroom teacher.

PSAT Registration — All sophomores and juniors are highly encouraged to take the PSAT test given at Ames High School on Wednesday, October 13th. The test is a good practice test for the SAT or ACT college admissions test and is a mandatory qualifying test for juniors seeking National Merit Scholarships. It also will prompt colleges to contact students with admission invitations.

REGISTRATION FOR THE PSAT WILL BEGIN ON MONDAY, AUGUST 30TH, AND WILL END ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 10TH.

REGISTERING:  Students must register online for the exam. The link to register is PSAT 2021-2022 GOOGLE REGISTRATION FORM. Students can also click on the Ames High logo on the QR Code poster outside of student services to register.

The cost of the PSAT is $18 and there are two payment options as follows: 

FIRST OPTION (PREFERRED OPTION):

Parents with a Parent Portal for Infinite Campus can log into RevTrak and make a payment for the PSAT Exam. The link to RevTrak is https://ames.revtrak.net/. If a parent does not have a parent portal, please contact Zac Sjoberg at zac.sjoberg@ames.k12.ia.us. The fee will not appear in RevTrak if the student has not registered online.

SECOND OPTION:

Check made out to Ames High School for $18. Please have the check in an envelope with the following information:

  • PSAT Test
  • Student’s Full Name
  • Student’s Grade Level

The envelopes can be dropped off in the Main Office or Student Services.  If paying with cash, please send the exact amount. 

College Board will not be providing hard copies of the Student Guide this year. However, students can easily access the Student Guide for the PSAT/NMSQT.

OPPORTUNITIES:

Student Council’s Club Fair — September 8th is the Student Council’s annual Club Fair during both lunches in the cafeteria. All students will have the opportunity to look & learn about the many clubs offered at AHS.

Jazz 1 Auditions (Grades 10-12) – We have the following openings for Jazz 1 this year. Alto/Tenor/Bari Saxophones, Trombones, Trumpets, and Bass Guitar. Students interested in auditioning need to make a video performing a jazz etude and submit it in a Google Form by September 7th at 4:00 PM. The first rehearsal for Jazz 1 will be Monday, September 13th from 5:30 PM – 7:00 PM.  Please email Nick Gardner if you are interested in Auditioning or have questions nick.gardner@ames.k12.ia.us.  Audition materials will be emailed out with instructions on how to submit your video on Monday, August 30th. 

College Visits — A representative from the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) will be in student services on Tuesday, August 31st, from 10:13 AM to 11:21 AM. Please get a pass from student services or your 4th-period teacher to attend.

Community Event — International Overdose Awareness Day – Saturday, August 28, 2021 from 10 AM-Noon at Ada Hayden Heritage Park, Ames. All are welcome. Guest speakers, Narcan (Naloxone) training & vouchers and more.  See flyer for more details.

ACTIVITIES AT A GLANCE —Please click on the link to see athletic events.

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Monday, August 23, 2021

Good Afternoon Amazing AHS Parents/Guardians:

My apologies for not sending out this information on Friday or over the weekend.  HERE is the video for today’s messages.

STUDENT SCHEDULES — We continue to iron out some issues with balancing classes and adjusting some schedules.  Students and families seeking schedule changes, please follow this guidance:

Students may request changes to their schedules within the first days of the semester.  Students should contact their counselor directly to schedule an appointment.  Due to class numbers, teachers assignments, and other factors, student or teacher requests to change student schedules will need to following the guidelines below:

  1. Student has been scheduled into a course previously passed  
  2. Student has been scheduled into a course out of sequence (i.e., Spanish 3 before Spanish 1)  
  3. Student did not pass a class that was a prerequisite for the course he/she/they are currently enrolled
  4. Student has an incomplete schedule  
  5. Senior is missing a requirement for graduation  

Below are some examples of situations that will NOT result in a schedule change:  

  1. A desire for another instructor  (special cases may apply)
  2. A desire for a class to be a different/specific period  
  3. Student is failing a course that was requested and is afraid that it will affect graduation (students are responsible for maintaining passing grades and will not be pulled from a class in lieu of failing)
  4. Requested the course but no longer interested in the subject  
  5. Need to drop or replace a class to improve GPA  
  6. Student is having conflicts with other students in the class (students need to discuss problems with administrators or counselor for conflict resolution) 

Special circumstances may require a schedule change after the beginning of the semester. For those special circumstances, there is a 15 day grace period. During that time changes may be made.  Changes will NOT be granted after the 15-day window without requiring the student to withdraw from the course.  

Seniors — 2022

Juniors — 2023

Sophomores — 2024

Freshmen — 2025

Bryant A – F 

Bryant A – G 

Bryant A – G 

Bryant 

Allen – Harvey

DiBlasi G – M 

DiBlasi H – R 

DiBlasi H – Ra

DiBlasi

Hathaway – Read

Burke N – Z 

Burke S – Z, 

ESL 9 – 12 

Burke Re – Z

Burke 

Reddy – Zhu 

Our fourth counselor, Sonja Hayes, works with students in grades 9 – 12 who receive special education services or who participate in the AHS “at-promise” (ALP) program.

FRESHMAN ORIENTATION — This is intended for all incoming 9th graders on Wednesday, August 25 from 7:50 am – 1:45 pm. Students will have a variety of activities including a welcoming and community building experience, homeroom orientation, scavenger hunt, learn the fight song and take a freshman class picture (available for purchase). Students will receive their schedule and have a chance to follow their schedule and meet their teachers.  Please see the attached flyer.

TRANSITIONING FROM REMOTE ORIENTATION — This is intended for students in grade 10-12 who participated in the AHS full year Remote Campus last year on Wednesday, August 25 from 2:15 pm – 3:15 pm.  Students will meet in the cafeteria, have a brief orientation, meet other AHS students, and take a building tour.

FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL FOR ALL STUDENTS  — The AHS Staff are looking forward to welcoming back students for the 2021/2022 school year on Thursday, August 26. Students will follow their schedule and meet their teachers. There will also be an all school assembly and we are asking students to wear class colors.  

Senior – orange

Junior – blue

Sophomore – green

Freshmen – red

Staff – black

BELL SCHEDULES:  For the 2021-2022 school year, we are returning to a similar bell schedule as the 2019-2020 school year, which was a modified block schedule.  You may find that schedule here:  2021-2022 Bell Schedule.  We are planning an all-school outdoor assembly when all students, grades 9 – 12 attend on Thursday, August 26, 2021.  You can find that schedule Thursday, August 26 Schedule.  Homeroom teachers will reach out to students’ families to learn more about your student.  Conferences will be scheduled in 15 minute increments. The first full week of school, August 30 – September 3 are early release days.  We will dismiss students at 1:15 pm.  

Here is a look at what is coming up on the AHS calendar:

Day and Date

Event

Wednesday, August 25 

Freshman Orientation 7:50 am – 1:45 pm, Busses will run and school lunch will be served

Wednesday, August 25 

Transitioning from Remote Orientation 2:15 pm-3:15 pm

Thursday, August 26

First Day of Classes begin at 7:50 am – 3:05 pm

All School Assembly between 2nd & 3rd period

Monday, August 30 – Friday, September 3

Early Dismissal 7:50 am – 1:15 pm Parent/Teacher Conferences

Monday, September 6

No School – Labor Day Holiday

Monday, September 13

Back To School Night

Monday, September 20 – Friday, September 24

AHS Homecoming week

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE — An Iowa law passed this spring requires that Ames CSD administer the Pledge of Allegiance in 1st-12th grade each school day. Buildings will be administering the Pledge in accordance with Iowa law, but active participation will be an optional activity for students.  AHS has identified the beginning of each school day as the designated time to say the Pledge.

FREE MEALS — The Ames Community School District is excited to share that we will be able to offer free breakfast and lunch each school day to every child in our community through the end of the 2021-2022 school year.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently announced that it would grant the flexibility for school districts to offer no-cost meals to all children through the end of the school year.  Please keep in mind that this only applies to fully reimbursable meals, so a la carte, second meals, and single items will be charged as usual.

SCHOOL DRIVING PERMITS — Students wanting to obtain a school permit must meet the following qualifications: 

  • pass a drivers education course, 
  • reside more than one mile from school, and 
  • participate in a current AHS activity that meets more than three times a week outside of the regular school hours. 

Students who believe they qualify will need to pick up the AHS Drive to School Waiver form from Mrs. Packer in the Auxiliary Office. Once the form has been completed and signed by the coach or sponsor verifying the student’s membership in the current activity, the student will return the form to Mrs. Packer to obtain the DOT form. 

PARKING PASS — Due to the ongoing construction at AHS, seniors and juniors will receive parking tags for the student lot on a first come first served basis and sophomores and freshmen will receive parking tags to park at the Furman Aquatic Center.  Furman Aquatic Center will not open for student parking until Tuesday, September 7.   Please review the map attached.  Students failing to park in student-designated locations (i.e. on 20th and/or in staff parking), will be subject to fines and/or towing.   All school vehicles parked at AHS or Furman Aquatic Center during the school day must be registered with the school.  Students are required to purchase a hang tag that must be displayed on the rearview mirror.  The cost of a parking tag is $5.  Lost or replacement tags are $8.  Students that violate the hang tag requirement or park in restricted areas or illegally may receive a fine of $5 per infraction. Students who accrue up to 5 parking tickets will be subject to towing and/or may lose their on-campus parking privileges.  Parking tickets will be issued for both directly on campus parking as well as at Furman.  Students should NOT park anywhere else beside the two official parking lots, especially not Northminster Presbyterian.

AHS SCHOOL SUPPLY LIST — If you are interested in getting a jump start on purchasing school supplies this list is a helpful resource. Ames High School Supplies List

MASK WEARING — Staff and students are highly encouraged to wear masks, especially indoors.  While AHS does not have a mask policy, in accordance with legislation, we encourage people to keep in mind our community numbers and do their part to limit the spread of the virus.

EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY —  The ACSD school district continues to hire staff as education associates.  These positions often have flexible hours.  If you are interested, please apply HERE.

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Friday, August 13, 2021

Believe it or not, the new school year is just around the corner.  In our effort to keep you up-to-date with all the information you need, we’re starting our weekly Friday newsletters.  HERE is the link to this week’s video.

AHS INFORMATION:

SCHEDULES RELEASED — Monday, August 16th the ACSD will open the portal for students and parents to see student schedules for the 2021-2022 school year.  We recognize that scheduling is a complex process, with many moving parts.  If you see an error on your student’s schedule, please contact his/her/their counselor.  Please understand that counselors will work hard to provide timely responses throughout the next two weeks.  In case our phone lines are down, please use the following temporary number: 515-268-2446.

Seniors — 2022

Juniors — 2023

Sophomores — 2024

Freshmen — 2025

Bryant A – F 

Bryant A – G 

Bryant A – G 

Bryant 

Allen – Harvey

DiBlasi G – M 

DiBlasi H – R 

DiBlasi H – Ra

DiBlasi

Hathaway – Read

Burke N – Z 

Burke S – Z, 

ESL 9 – 12 

Burke Re – Z

Burke 

Reddy – Zhu 

Our fourth counselor, Sonja Hayes, works with students in grades 9 – 12 who receive special education services or who participate in the AHS “at-promise” (ALP) program.

SCHOOL PICTURES — Lifetouch will be taking Ames High students’ school pictures on the gym balcony Thursday, August 19 from 8AM – 4PM for all 9th-11th grade students. Enter the building through the Activities Entrance. Pictures are taken on a walk in basis, no appointment is necessary. Picture packet forms may be picked up in all offices at AHS or parents can go online at www.mylifetouch.com enter code EVTTPN4TN to order and pay for a picture package. Extra picture packets can be picked up on picture day. All non-senior students MUST have their picture taken regardless of whether a package is purchased, as these pictures are used in the Yearbook and for student ID’s. Seniors are welcome to have Lifetouch pictures taken as well if they don’t have a senior picture session set up with a private photographer. If for some reason your child is unable to attend on Aug. 19th, there will be a picture retake day on Friday, October 1st. We can’t stress enough the importance of these pictures being taken.

NEW STUDENT ORIENTATION —   This is intended for students in grade 10-12, transferring into Ames High from other high schools on Wednesday, August, 18 from 10 am – 11 am. Students will start in the cafeteria with a brief opening, will meet other AHS students, and take a tour of the building. If possible, students will receive their schedules.  

FRESHMAN ORIENTATION — This is intended for all incoming 9th graders on Wednesday, August 25 from 7:50 am – 1:45 pm. Students will have a variety of activities including a welcoming and community building experience, homeroom orientation, scavenger hunt, learn the fight song and take a freshman class picture (available for purchase). Students will receive their schedule and have a chance to follow their schedule and meet their teachers.  Please see the attached flyer.

TRANSITIONING FROM REMOTE ORIENTATION — This is intended for students in grade 10-12 who participated in the AHS full year Remote Campus last year on Wednesday, August 25 from 2:15 pm – 3:15 pm.  Students will meet in the cafeteria, have a brief orientation, meet other AHS students, and take a building tour.

FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL FOR ALL STUDENTS  — The AHS Staff are looking forward to welcoming back students for the 2021/2022 school year on Thursday, August 26. Students will follow their schedule and meet their teachers. There will also be an all school assembly and we are asking students to wear class colors. 

Senior – orange

Junior – blue

Sophomore – green

Freshmen – red

Staff – black

Here is a look at what is coming up on the AHS calendar:

Day and Date

Event

Wednesday, August 18

New Student (grade 10-12) Orientation 10 am – 11 am 

Thursday, August 19

School Pictures 8 am-4pm, Gym balcony

Friday, August 20

Fall Sports Kickoff, Gates open at 5:30 pm

Wednesday, August 25 

Freshman Orientation 7:50 am – 1:45 pm, Busses will run and school lunch will be served

Wednesday, August 25 

Transitioning from Remote Orientation 2:15 pm-3:15 pm

Thursday, August 26

First Day of Classes begin at 7:50 am – 3:05 pm

All School Assembly during 3rd period

Monday, August 30 – Friday, September 3

Early Dismissal 7:50 am – 1:00 pm

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Monday, September 6

No School – Labor Day Holiday

REGISTRATION PACKETS — Keep those registration forms coming into the Auxiliary office. It is so very important to have work processed before school starts to make the transition run smoothly for our students. Parking permit hang tags need to be assigned, activity stickers need to be placed on ID’s, the nurse needs all updated medical history forms reviewed and filed. If you still have forms, please complete them now and mail them in or drop them off at the high school.  

SCHOOL DRIVING PERMITS — Students wanting to obtain a school permit must meet the following qualifications: 

  • pass a drivers education course, 
  • reside more than one mile from school, and 
  • participate in a current AHS activity that meets more than three times a week outside of the regular school hours. 

Students who believe they qualify will need to pick up the AHS Drive to School Waiver form from Mrs. Packer in the Auxiliary Office. Once the form has been completed and signed by the coach or sponsor verifying the student’s membership in the current activity, the student will return the form to Mrs. Packer to obtain the DOT form. 

PARKING PASS — Due to the ongoing construction at AHS, seniors and juniors will receive parking tags for the student lot on a first come first served basis and sophomores and freshmen will receive parking tags to park at the Furman Aquatic Center.  Furman Aquatic Center will not open for student parking until Tuesday, September 7.   Please review the map attached.  Students failing to park in student-designated locations (i.e. on 20th and/or in staff parking), will be subject to fines and/or towing.   All school vehicles parked at AHS or Furman Aquatic Center during the school day must be registered with the school.  Students are required to purchase a hang tag that must be displayed on the rearview mirror.  The cost of a parking tag is $5.  Lost or replacement tags are $8.  Students that violate the hang tag requirement or park in restricted areas or illegally may receive a fine of $5 per infraction. Students who accrue up to 5 parking tickets will be subject to towing and/or may lose their on-campus parking privileges.  Parking tickets will be issued for both directly on campus parking as well as at Furman.  Students should NOT park anywhere else beside the two official parking lots, especially not Northminster Presbyterian.

ATHLETIC DEPARTMENT NEWS — Fall Kickoff Friday, August 20, 5:50 pm gates open with grill/food served and spirit clothing sales. 

  • 6 pm, Freshmen FB scrimmage & introductions of G/B Cross Country, Volleyball, 9,10/JV and Varsity FB at the conclusion of 9th grade scrimmage. 
  • 6:30 pm, 10/JV FB scrimmage & introductions of Girls Swim, Boys Golf and JV Cheer.
  • 7 pm, Varsity FB scrimmage & introductions of Varsity cheer.

AHS SCHOOL SUPPLY LIST — If you are interested in getting a jump start on purchasing school supplies this list is a helpful resource. Ames High School Supplies List

UPDATED STUDENT HANDBOOK — As school draws closer, AHS will release an updated handbook with our current school policies and contact information.  We will share the new handbook in upcoming parent communication, through homeroom, and on our website.  

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New Secondary Associate Principals Announced

Associate Principals

The Ames Community School District is excited to announce two new secondary associate principals in the district. Michelle Fuqua will serve as Associate Principal at Ames Middle School and Kenneth Damron will serve at Ames High School. 

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Schedule Release Update

Earlier this week, school district administration met and determined that all Ames schools will release student schedules on the same day.  In keeping with this decision, AHS families and students will have access to the 2021-2022 class schedule on Monday, August 16.  Last week in the summer information email, the date stated August 11.  That is now incorrect.

We are sorry for the inconvenience and for the earlier incorrect information.

We eagerly await welcoming back your student(s)!!  We will see you soon!

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