Welcome to Two Rivers Community School!
I am excited to send my first newsletter as Head of School at TRCS! We are just a few short weeks from the start of another great school year and I wanted to send a quick note with some important information. For those of you who don't know me yet, my name is Jamie Nims. I have been with TRCS since we first opened our doors in 2014, primarily serving as a middle school language arts and social studies teacher until last year when I moved into a new role as Director of Education. I am looking forward to continuing to bring the mission of TRCS to life as the new Head of School. I live in Carbondale with my wife, Kristin, who is also a teacher, and our two daughters, Althea and Iyla.
If you were to ask any of the parents that moved their children to this school when we first opened what made this place so special, one of the first things you would hear about would be the incredible sense of community we had. Through a labor of love, our founding families, school leaders, teachers, and community members helped convert a dusty warehouse into a school. Since then, we have expanded from 160 students in a school without walls to a school of 350 students in a modern facility. Our sense of community has certainly not been lost with our growth, but we must work strategically if we want to bring back the community feeling that made TRCS such an incredible place to be. Though we don't need our families to haul trash and paint walls (not yet, anyway), we do need our families to get involved in the school however they can. When parents and teachers come together with the community to support students, everyone wins.
This year we will be offering a greater variety of opportunities for parents and families to connect to the school, including regular open-invitation discussions with our social-emotional coordinator and head of school as well as a variety of themed parent nights. I recognize that it can be challenging for many of our parents to make it to the school on a regular basis, but I ask that whenever the opportunity presents itself, please do!
Please keep an eye out for an email with teacher assignments. We are currently making our final adjustments to class rosters. We will be sending out notifications by the end of the week!
We are making a few changes to the unidad system in middle school this year. Rather than having an isolated unidad class with the same teacher throughout the year, a student's unidad teacher will be their current PBL teacher and unidad activities will be built into extended PBL class periods.
Transportation Needs Survey
If your children will be riding the bus this year it is important that you take a moment to complete the Transportation Needs Survey. The survey should only take a minute and will be helpful for us to determine any changes in our bus routes.
Kindergarten / First-Grade Start Times
We modify the start days and times for kindergarten and first grade in order to allow our youngest students students to get acquainted with the school and their teachers. ***First-graders will have their first day of school on the 20th of August (full day). Kindergarteners will start with a half-day on the 19th. Students with a last name A - M will have school from 8:15-11:15 and students with a last name N - Z will have school from 12:30-3:30 on the 19th.*** The 20th will be a full day for kindergarten and first grade students.
Back to School BBQ - August 27th - 5:00-6:30pm
Every year we host a BBQ to welcome students, teachers, and families to TRCS and to give everyone a chance to get to know one another. This fun event also serves as a great student fundraiser for our annual 8th-grade trip to Mexico. Please mark you calendars!
Pick-up / Drop-off / Parking Volunteers Needed!
We are making some changes to the pick-up and drop-off process. We are also making adjustments to the visitor parking lot to make a bigger and better outdoor space for students. I am hoping to have volunteers help coordinate traffic for the first week or two of school to make sure everyone learns the new system. If you would like to help out in the mornings or afternoons please let me know. No experience necessary!
We are transitioning to the Infinite Campus student information system this year and need your help to get all of our students registered. The process takes about five minutes per child and will ensure that we are able to best serve your family. A few of the many benefits of Infinite Campus include online access to grades for parents and students, emergency messenger, report cards, official transcripts, updates from teachers, and many more. If you have not completed the online registration process, please do so as soon as possible. Register here. It is much easier to complete the process on a computer than on a phone.
Thanks for taking the time to read the newsletter. We will send out school-level information the first week of each month with important dates and information. Please take the time to read them and stay connected to the community!
The Mission of Two Rivers Community School is to cultivate in every student:
-Passion for learning and high achievement through creating rigorous, interdisciplinary learning experiences on topics relevant to the students that culminate in original work aimed at engaging and positively impacting the community and the world.
-Deep, supportive relationships among staff, students, families, and the community through the small school setting, multi-age classes, a two-year teacher commitment and high parental involvement.
-Respect for and interest in human diversity through second language acquisition and cross-cultural studies that build a broader world perspective and essential collaboration skills to become leaders in our changing world.