Collegium Newsletter April 8, 2019

Welcome to Collegium Charter School's weekly multimedia* Newsletter. Access our Newsletter content by scrolling through to the end, just like you would for popular social media feeds and timelines.

*Due to Spring Break, we will not share a multimedia Newsletter for the weeks of April 15th and 22nd. Instead, we'll briefly share several items and announcements with families and employees via plain text email message on Sunday, April 21st. The multimedia Newsletter will return with our April 29th edition.

CCS Family Calendar

Mon., Apr. 8th - Day 5

  • 500 Building: Penny Wars Begin (Sponsored by Student Council) (Ends April 12th)
  • 515 Building: Spring Spirit Week | Pajama Day
  • K-12: Anamnesis Yearbook Sales End
  • Grades 9-12: AP In-House Finals | Classrooms and Off-Site 7:30am - 3:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Boys Middle School Baseball vs. Jenkintown Junior High School 3:15pm @ Boot Road Park
  • CCS Morning News After-School Meeting 3:30pm - 4:30pm @ 535 Building
  • 150 Building: K-6 Talent Show Tryouts | Gym and Music Room 4:00pm - 6:00pm
  • 468/486 Building: 2nd-4th Grade Running Intramural Program | Parking Lot 4:00pm - 5:30pm
  • 468/486 Building: K-6 Talent Show Tryouts | Gym, Cafeteria, and Music Room 4:00pm - 6:00pm

Tue., Apr. 9th - Day 6

  • 515 Building: Spring Spirit Week | Dynamic Duo/Twin Day
  • Grades 9-12: AP In-House Finals | Classrooms and Off-Site 7:30am - 3:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Grades 9-12: Detention 3:00pm - 4:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Grades 9-12: Movie Tavern Student Filming Project | 600 Hallway and Bathrooms, Library 3:00pm - 6:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Girls Varsity Lacrosse vs. Jack M. Barrack Academy 3:15pm @ United Sports Training Center
  • 150 Building: 2nd-4th Grade Running Intramural Program | Parking Lots 4:00pm - 5:30pm
  • 486 Building: Little Artists Club (Session 3) | Room 515 4:00pm - 5:00pm
  • National Elementary Honor Society Student Meeting | Room 228 4:00pm - 5:30pm @ 500 Building
  • CCS Night at Zoup! (Sponsored by the NHS) @ Exton Zoup! in Festival Shopping Center 5:00pm - 8:00pm
  • Girls Junior Varsity Lacrosse vs. Jack M. Barrack Academy 5:15pm @ United Sports Training Center

Wed., Apr. 10th - Day 1

  • 515 Building: Spring Spirit Week | Character Day
  • Grades K-6: ROAR T-Shirt Day (With Uniform Bottoms)
  • K-12 Read Across America Literacy T-Shirt Fundraiser Ends (Began April 1st)
  • Grades 9-12: AP In-House Finals | Classrooms and Off-Site 7:30am - 3:30pm @ 535 Building
  • 468/486 Building: 3rd Grade Field Trip (High, Kelsey, and Gubanich) 8:45am - 2:30pm @ Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation
  • Boys Middle School Baseball vs. Delaware County Christian School 3:45pm @ Gable Field
  • 468/486 Building: 2nd-4th Grade Running Intramural Program | Parking Lot 4:00pm - 5:30pm
  • 468/486 Building: Grades 2-4 Lego STEM/Coding Club (3rd Session) | 486 Building Art Room (#515) 4:00pm - 5:00pm
  • CCS Science/STEM Fair Committee Meeting | Conference Room 5:00pm - 6:00pm @ 435 Administrative Offices

Thu., Apr. 11th - Day 2

  • 515 Building: Spring Spirit Week | Throwback Thursday
  • Grades 9-12: 2019 Rainbow Connect Leadership Conference @ West Chester University
  • Grades 9-12: AP In-House Finals | Classrooms and Off-Site 7:30am - 3:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Grades 9-12: Art Field Trip 8:30am - 2:30pm @ Barnes Foundation
  • 468/486 Building: 3rd Grade Field Trip (Egolf, Kitchens, and Morganstern) 8:45am - 2:30pm @ Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation
  • Boys Varsity Baseball vs. Perkiomen School 3:00pm @ Boot Road Park
  • Grades 9-12: Detention 3:00pm - 4:30pm @ 535 Building
  • 150 Building: 2nd/3rd Grade STEM Club | Room 961 3:45pm - 5:00pm
  • Boys Middle School Baseball vs. Phoenixville Area School District 3:45pm @ Phoenixville Area High School Field 1 - Baseball
  • 150 Building: 2nd-4th Grade Running Intramural Program | Parking Lots 4:00pm - 5:30pm
  • CougarTek Club Meeting | Room 352 4:30pm - 5:30pm @ 515 Building
  • CougarTek Team Meeting 4:30pm - 6:30pm @ Level13 eSports Gaming Center
  • Board of Trustees Work Session and Board of Trustees Regular Public Meeting | Conference Room 6:00pm @ 435 Administrative Offices

Fri., Apr. 12th - Day 3

  • 500 Building: Penny Wars Ends (Sponsored by Student Council) (Began April 8th)
  • 515 Building: Spring Spirit Week | Philly Sports Day @ 515 Building
  • Grades 7-12: Cougar Pride Day - Wear Your Cougar Gear With Uniform Bottoms or Jeans
  • Grades K-6: Spirit Day (Sponsored by Elementary Student Council) | Decade Day: Dress in styles from a favorite decade. Props are not permitted.
  • K-12: Soles for Souls Shoe Fundraiser Begins (Sponsored by National Honor Society) (Ends April 26th)
  • Grades 9-12: AP In-House Finals | Classrooms and Off-Site 7:30am - 3:30pm @ 535 Building
  • Boys Varsity Baseball vs. Delaware County Christian School 3:00pm @ Boot Road Park
  • Grades 9-12: Movie Tavern Student Filming Project | 600 Hallway and Bathrooms, Library 3:00pm - 6:30pm @ 535 Building

Saturday, Apr. 13th

  • Girls Varsity Lacrosse vs. West Chester East High School 10:00am @ Harold Zimmerman Stadium Turf
  • Girls Junior Varsity Lacrosse vs. West Chester East High School 11:15am @ Harold Zimmerman Stadium Turf

CCS Kindergarten Teacher Selected as Citadel Heart of Learning Award Finalist

On Wednesday, April 3rd, Ms. Caitlin Sullivan, our 150 Building’s Lead Kindergarten Teacher, heard some fantastic news: She was chosen as one of 15 finalists for Citadel's Heart of Learning Award! This is a huge honor for Ms. Sullivan and speaks volumes about the talent, skill, and care she brings to her students and classroom.

"I am so incredibly honored and thankful. It’s nice to be recognized for something so prestigious, and I’m shocked." -Ms. Caitlin Sullivan
Ms. Sullivan's Kindergarten Class celebrating her nomination as a Citadel Heart of Learning Award finalist.

The Citadel Heart of Learning Award program was developed with the Chester County Intermediate Unit in 2001. The program is extremely popular; thousands of nominations are received every year for Chester County public and private school teachers. Each nomination carries a heartfelt message from a student, family, or community member describing the profound effect that particular teacher’s character and influence has had on their lives.

"I love Ms. Sullivan because she gives me hugs. I love Kindergarten because of Math. Ms. Sullivan is my superhero." -Kayla S., Kindergarten
Ms. Sullivan invites her students to pick how they want to be individually greeted each morning.
"I love Ms. Sullivan because she’s a nice teacher. She helps me read." -Grayson F., Kindergarten

In addition to the prestige of being a 2019 Heart of Learning Award program finalist, Ms. Sullivan will receive $500 to use in her classroom and will be honored at the Citadel Heart of Learning Awards Banquet early next month. Ultimately, three winners will be selected for Citadel’s Heart of Learning Award—one each from a High School, Middle School, and Elementary School.

Left: Representatives from Citadel Federal Credit Union presented the Heart of Learning finalist award to Ms. Sullivan at a 150 Building faculty meeting. Right: Members of Ms. Sullivan's 150 Building Kindergarten Team hug and congratulate her for being recognized with such a prestigious award.
"I was so happy when I heard that Ms. Sullivan was named as a finalist for the Heart of Learning Award! She is an extremely dedicated educator who pours herself into everything she accomplishes here at school. Her willingness to research and seek out new ideas and her compassion for her students has made her a force of positivity and excellence. Ms. Sullivan deserves this recognition, and I feel privileged to have her teaching at Collegium Charter School." -Mr. Gavin Lawler, Principal, 150 Building

Congratulations, Ms. Sullivan, from everyone in the Collegium Community! We're extremely proud of you and are so pleased that you choose to be a part of CCS.

CCS High School Pianist Receives Honorable Mention Soloist Award

Mr. Dan Grayberg and Mr. Nicholas Motter, our CCS Middle and High School Jazz Band Directors, respectively, are very proud of how well the bands performed at Downingtown East’s Jazz Show recently.

Our bands were among many others from area schools who participated in the Jazz Show. Collectively, CCS's bands received “Excellent” ratings and CCS Senior, Marshall L., won an “Honorable Mention Soloist” award for his performance.

Mr. Grayberg and Mr. Motter encouraged Marshall to share how he felt about his solo performance: “One of the high points of the night for me was playing the piano solo at the beginning of ‘Moten Swing.’ The solo was a lot of fun to play on the grand piano, and I tried to put as much character as I could into the same runs and fills that Count Basie played decades ago."

Marshall also talked about how his music studies at CCS contributed to his recent win. "...I learned many valuable lessons from teachers at CCS that have allowed me to grow in ways that I would never have thought possible," he said. "From learning to improvise jazz with [my private piano teacher] Mrs. Gamber, to figuring out how to lead a choir with Mrs. Gabel, to playing through jazz charts with Mr. Motter, and even dabbling in a bit of orchestra accompaniment with Ms. Stell, the level of experience I’ve had the privilege to gain during my time at CCS has truly been invaluable."

"I’ll be majoring in Computer Science in the fall, but I plan to continue playing piano my entire life. I hope to be able to play piano in some capacity in college, whether accompanying a choir or other ensemble, or even just regularly going to a practice room and working on pieces on my own time." -Marshall L., 12th Grade

Mr. Grayberg and Mr. Motter agree that “It’s such a pleasure to work with CCS’s students and their remarkable musical talent. When they receive this kind of recognition from others, it’s that much more rewarding!”

Welcome to CCS, Ms. Wiegand!

As promised, Collegium located a top professional to serve as the 468/486 Building’s Assistant Principal: Ms. Jennifer Wiegand.

Ms. Wiegand (“Ms. W.”, as our students call her), joined CCS in March, and her positive, energetic, friendly presence can already be felt in the 468/486 Building! "Although Ms. Wiegand has only been here a short time," said Building Acting Principal, Mrs. Moore, "she has quickly become part of our CCS family at 468/486. She's made it a point to spend quality time with our students and teachers. It's exciting to work with a person who puts her heart and soul into our students.”

Ms. Wiegand is a Pennsylvania certified Elementary teacher and Administrative Principal. She’s spent most of her professional career as an Instructional Coach and classroom teacher in diverse schools in the Philadelphia area.

“Students deserve the best that schools can offer. That means high-quality leaders and teachers, a rigorous curriculum, and an environment where learning is interesting, engaging, and fun. My goal is for students, teachers, and staff to have ample opportunities to learn, develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and become confident, happy individuals with a plan for the future.” -Ms. Jen Wiegand

Outside of work, Ms. Wiegand enjoys spending time with her family, including her spouse, three daughters, and "Myles," her 175-pound dog.

Please join Acting Principal Marcell Moore and Assistant Principal Mallory Goggins in welcoming Ms. Wiegand to the 468/486 Building’s Administrative Team. We hope you have the chance to meet her soon.

Middle School Updates

Volunteers Needed for Middle School Field Days

Attention Middle School parents/guardians! The Health and Physical Education Department is looking for volunteers to help with our upcoming Field Days. Volunteers must have their clearances on file with CCS. (Access our Volunteering page at the button below for details.)

Our Field Day dates are:

  • Tuesday, May 28th (7th Grade)
  • Wednesday, May 29th (8th Grade)

If you're interested in volunteering, please email Mrs. Jamie Batty.

Washington, D.C. Field Trip Medical Forms

Attention 8th Grade Families!

The 8th Grade Field Trip to Washington, D.C. is fast approaching! Our School Nurse sent 8th Grade students home on Friday, April 5th with the Overnight Field Trip Medical Form and instructions on how to complete it. The form and instructions are also available at the button below.

Please fill out and return the form no later than Friday, May 3rd. Your child cannot go on our Washington, D.C. Field Trip without this critically important information on file with the School Nurse.

If you have questions, please contact Mrs. Natalie Wallace.

Elementary Student Council Presents: K-6 Decade Day

On Friday, April 12th, the Elementary Student Council is hosting Decade Day for students in Grades K-6. Students can dress in styles from their favorite decade ('70s, '80s, '90s, etc.). Props are not permitted. This is a Spirit Day, which means it's a free Dress Down Day for our K-6th Grade students.

If you have questions, please email the Elementary Student Council Chair in your child's building.

5K Cougar Classic

Help Raise Funds For CCS Students

Did you know that the 5K Cougar Classic has raised over $21,000 for CCS students over the last three years? Money raised by the event directly benefits students. It's used to buy items like iPads, Chromebooks, and incentives for ROAR and PRIDE programs in our buildings.

Want to help make this our best year yet for the 5K Cougar Classic? Sign up for our event or donate using the button below.

Sponsorship opportunities are also available. Access details at the button below.

Our event organizers are happy to answer your questions or talk with you about volunteering for this year's 5K Cougar Classic. Email them using the button below.

Philadoptables Says "Thank You, CCS!"

Philadoptables would like to express great appreciation to CCS's students, staff, and families for generously collecting pet food and supplies on its behalf between March 4th and March 15th. Philadoptables was created in 2009 to help Philadelphia's overrun shelters raise the quality of animals' lives and, in fact, save them.

Insert caption about the grade levels that participated.

"Homeless animals in the shelter and in foster care will have toys, treats, and food because of YOU. Thank you for caring and taking action to support these critters!" -Philadoptables

HS Fashion Club Prom Wear Collection

Senior Proms are milestone events for many High School Juniors and Seniors. There are students who don’t go to prom, however, because they don't have the money, don’t know how to put together the perfect outfit, or just aren’t confident enough to coordinate all of the prom elements—hairstyle, makeup, jewelry, accessories, and more!

To help make prom possible for all Juniors and Seniors who want to attend, our High School Guidance Counselors enlisted the help of FIDM Fashion Club members. The Club is collecting items students of all genders will need to put together fabulous prom outfits:

  • Prom dresses
  • Tuxedos or dress suits
  • Jewelry
  • Hair accessories
  • Purses
  • Other formal outfit details, like ties, belts, cummerbunds, vests, scarves, and shawls

FIDM Fashion Club members took the initiative even further by preparing “clinics” for students who want to learn techniques for accessorizing, applying makeup, and styling their hair for special nights like prom. Club members will open their “shop” and tutorials to students during the week of April 22nd, right after Spring Break.

Please help our Juniors and Seniors gain the confidence and ability to attend our Starry Night Prom on Saturday, May 4th! Send or drop off new or gently used donations to Mrs. Marie Rogai (FIDM Fashion Club Faculty Advisor) in the 535 Building, Room 642.

Questions? Feel free to email Mrs. Rogai.

Learn more about the FIDM Fashion Club by viewing their video below.

Background Image Caption: Two dresses already donated to the FIDM Fashion Club.

It's Time For Starry Night Prom!

Juniors and Seniors are cordially invited to our Starry Night Prom on Saturday, May 4th from 6:00pm to 10:00pm at the Coatesville Country Club.

Want to dine and dance under the whirling clouds, shining stars, and bright crescent moon? Pick up a Permission Slip in either the 535 Building's Main Office or Ms. Spangler’s Office in Room 604.

Once your Permission Slip is completed, bring it with your payment (in cash, $65.00 per person), and follow the stars to Ms. Spangler’s Room during homeroom or lunch to purchase your tickets. Payments (cash only, please) and Permission Slips must be submitted by Tuesday, April 23rd. No tickets will be sold after Tuesday, April 23rd.

Questions? Email Collegium’s Star Princess, Ms. Spangler.

NHS Zoup! Fundraiser

Please join the High School National Honor Society (NHS) at our local Exton Zoup! restaurant between 5:00pm and 8:00pm on Tuesday, April 9th!

Show the fundraiser flyer (accessible at the button above) at checkout to donate up to 25% of your meal cost to the NHS's scholarship fund. Each year, the NHS awards the scholarship to a graduating senior who shows exemplary character, dedication to academics, and service to our community.

Education Explained: Scaffolding

Each week, CCS employees highlight common terms and philosophies in education and explain how they impact teaching and learning at Collegium. This week's contribution comes from Ms. Patti Schmidt and Mr. Bryan Meyer in our Elementary English Language Development Department.

If you’ve seen a building being repaired, you know that the workers use scaffolding on the job. Scaffolding is a temporary structure used to support workers and materials as they construct or repair buildings. Scaffolding is also used by educators to support students in becoming independent learners. And like physical scaffolding, the support is gradually removed as students’ abilities develop.

You probably used scaffolding if you’ve ever taught a child how to ride a bike. First, you might have demonstrated how to ride the bike, then added training wheels for support. You removed the training wheels when they were no longer needed, but you still held the back of the bike or walked beside it as your child rode. Then, when he was ready, you let him take off and ride independently. Similarly, when teachers scaffold instruction, they break up learning into parts.

The following are examples of scaffolding tools and strategies used in the classroom:


Charts, graphs, pictures, and videos are scaffolding tools. In addition, graphic organizers are very specific organizational tools. They help students represent their ideas visually and grasp concepts such as sequencing and comparing and contrasting. They help frame students’ thinking as they learn new material.

Utilize Prior Knowledge

Teachers know that by tapping into their prior knowledge, students are able to connect new information to their own lives. This scaffolding, or foundation, is what students build new ideas and concepts upon.

Give Time To Talk

To make sense of new learning, students need time to talk about their ideas. Teachers incorporate this structured talking time in partner or small group discussions. When students can participate in meaningful conversations with their peers, they are better able to process new learning.

Pre-Teach Vocabulary

Limited vocabulary is one of the biggest obstacles students face when they read. By introducing new vocabulary ahead of time, students make connections with things they know. They benefit from visuals and drawing pictures to represent the meaning of unfamiliar words. As students visualize the meaning, they are now more ready to handle the challenging text.

Regardless of the strategy used, modeling what the students are expected to do is the foundation of scaffolding. Teachers also use “think-alouds” to verbalize their thought process as they demonstrate. When students understand the end result and are given the support they need while learning something new, they stand a better chance of building confidence and using that knowledge independently.

To learn more about how teachers use scaffolding, access the resources linked below.

Collegium Employee Spotlight: Rachel Hubbs

This Newsletter section highlights one Collegium employee each week, and allows families and students to get to know them better. Now, when you see featured employees on campus, you can greet them by name and strike up conversations! Watch this video to learn more about Rachel Hubbs, Middle School Language Arts Teacher.

Volunteer at the 500 Building Book Fair

It's that time of year again! The Grades 5-8 Book Fair begins on Monday, May 6th, just about a month away. We anticipate that the Book Fair will be as popular as ever, so we're looking for Book Fair volunteers now!

Please use the button below to sign in using a Scholastic.com login or your preferred social media account. After login, you'll be directed to Collegium's sign-up sheet for the Grades 5-8 Book Fair.

Volunteer time slots are 30 minutes each. Feel free to sign up for more than one time slot, if you can. We appreciate any time you can spare to volunteer!

Questions? Email Mrs. Wallace.

Note: Volunteer clearances are required. For more information, visit the Volunteering page on our website at the link below.

Your Family's 2019-2020 Enrollment Plans

If your 201​9​-20​20​ school year plans change and your child will not be attending CCS, please let ​our Student Records Department know as soon as possible.

Please don't rely upon your new school to advise CCS if your plans change, as schools often don't reach out for records until after the start of the new school year. As you can imagine, late notice of student withdrawals can be very disruptive to CCS's planning and budget, as well as to prospective families. Thank you!

Reserve Your CCS 2018-2019 Yearbook Now

Anamnesis, Collegium's Yearbook, is a limited edition collection of stories, photos, and events gathered throughout the 2018-2019 school year.

Monday, April 8th, is the deadline to reserve your family’s copy of this school year’s edition of Anamnesis. The cost is $65.00 per book. You can easily order online using the button below.

The Yearbook Staff (primarily made up of Collegium High School students) worked hard all year to compile this one-of-a-kind publication. Don’t miss the opportunity to capture 2018-2019’s memories from CCS!

Questions? Please email our Yearbook Advisor, Mr. Jason Springer for assistance.

CCS HSA Updates & Events

Serving in a capacity similar to a Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) or Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO), our Home & School Association (HSA) owes its success to the efforts of our many parent, teacher, and staff volunteers! Proceeds from HSA fundraisers and activities help fund CCS education and operations.

Teacher Appreciation Week

Teacher Appreciation Week, Monday, May 6th through Friday, May 10th, is a great opportunity for CCS families to come together in a show of support for our school’s hardworking teachers and staff. The HSA organizes the week’s activities and will reach out soon for volunteers and donation sign-ups.

Sign Up to Volunteer!

Elementary Building School Stores

Volunteers are needed to open the School Stores in our 150, 468, 486, and 500 Buildings before school and during lunch. The School Stores are a real treat for CCS’s students, and volunteering is very rewarding! Please sign up for a few hours (or more!) using the SignUpGenius link below. We appreciate your support! Note that clearances are required for School Store volunteers.

500 Building Resale Shop

Volunteers are needed to spend some time each week organizing our Uniform Resale Shop. The Resale Shop is a great fundraiser for CCS and is also a valuable resource for our families. Volunteers help keep donations in order and available for sale. Please use the SignUpGenius link below to donate time to the Resale Shop! Thank you.

WWPD Tip Resources

Collegium is committed to maintaining a strong and trusting partnership with the West Whiteland Police Department (WWPD). Together, we encourage all Collegium students, staff, and parents/guardians to contact the WWPD with any information they feel should be investigated.

The WWPD has a dedicated email address and phone number for the public to use to provide information quickly and directly to them.

The email address and phone line above are monitored by the WWPD Criminal Investigation Unit. We encourage anyone with information about suspected criminal activity to contact the WWPD using the email address, or by leaving a voicemail message on the WWPD Tip Line. Everyone utilizing the phone number or email address can remain anonymous, if they wish.

If your concerns are specific to the Collegium campus, we ask that you also contact your Building Principal(s):

Important Collegium Telephone Numbers

Collegium's Main Number


Building Main Office Extensions

  • 150 Building: Ext. 6811
  • 435 Building: Ext. 6002
  • 468 Building: Ext. 6401
  • 486 Building: Ext. 6501
  • 500 Building: Ext. 6106
  • 515 Building: Ext. 6336
  • 535 Building: Ext. 6602

Collegium reserves the right to edit submissions and to deny material for submission if it is deemed to be inappropriate or of little or no interest to CCS families.

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