Frequently Asked Questions

/Frequently Asked Questions

No. Charter schools can vary a great deal in their design and their emphasis.

Yes!  Our HOWL (Helping Others While Learning) program is open daily from dismissal until 6:00 for a very reasonable cost.

There is an incredibly common misconception out there that charter schools and private schools are the same and that parents have to pay tuition for their kids to attend a charter school. Wrong! Charter schools are free to all students and are funded in the same way public schools are. In fact, it is illegal for charter schools to charge tuition. Pass it on- the more educated people are about charters, the more society will embrace them.

The name of the game is “innovation.” Charter schools were intended to be an innovative setting for the use of best teaching practices and the implementation of new programs and curriculum. In a charter school, teachers present the same state-approved standards as public schools, but the method of instruction and the way kids can learn is different and, again, innovative.

A charter school is an independently run public school granted greater flexibility in its operations, in return for greater accountability for performance. The “charter” establishing each school is a performance contract detailing the school’s mission, program, students served, performance goals, and methods of assessment.

 

 

Like all California traditional public schools, charter schools must be a member of a Special Education Local Planning Area (SELPA). Currently, we maintain status with the Beaumont Unified School District as a “school of the district” for special education services.

No, Highland Academy is independent of Beaumont USD.  Beaumont USD is our charter authorizer and has oversight responsibilities, however we have our own Board of Directors and make our own decisions to benefit our students.

No, Highland Academy currently does not have a high school, however this remains in our long term plans.

Highland Academy currently serves students in grades TK-8.  Our TK-1 program is an Independent Study program where the majority of the work is done at home and students come in once a week to meet with a teacher.  Students in grades 2-8 attend as traditional, full-time students.

In the future, our goal is to begin phasing out our Independent Study Program in favor of the traditional, full-time model.

Highland Academy Charter School is located at 715 Wellwood Ave. in the city of Beaumont in what used to be known as the Wellwood Center.

Charter schools are public schools of choice, meaning that families choose them for their children. They operate with freedom from some of the regulations that are imposed upon district schools. Charter schools are accountable for academic results and for upholding the promises made in their charters. They must demonstrate performance in the areas of academic achievement, financial management, and organizational stability.

All students at Highland Academy take the SBAC as appropriate for their grades. Also, Highland Academy will administer the CELDT test for English Learners. Students will also take benchmark assessments periodically throughout the year to monitor their progress.

Nothing! All charter schools are free to enroll in and free to attend. They are funded through the State of California just like other public schools. There is no cost to attend.

No. Any resident of California is eligible to attend as long as they can get their students to and from school.

The California Ed Code requires a lottery for all charter schools who receive more enrollment applications than they have room for. If our enrollments exceed our available space, then we will have a lottery. If our enrollments do not exceed our available space, then all applicants will be automatically enrolled.

With our project-based curriculum, there are many more opportunities for advanced learners to excel and apply their skills in creative and engaging ways. They will have more chances for them to express themselves through many different mediums, such as technology and art, and will have more of a say in how and what they learn.

Our smaller class sizes, as well as our educational model, provide more structure and support for struggling learners. They can receive more individual attention, and the hands-on nature of the program helps students to gain confidence and learn skills in a way that they can relate to.

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. This type of curriculum combines all of these subjects together so that students can learn and apply principles from each area to help them learn about the others. By learning all of these subjects together, they will be able to remember what they learn and apply it more effectively.

Highland Academy offers many types of electives classes and extra-curricular activities such as music, art, dance, and foreign language, computers and student government. These help to engage the students and create a sense of belonging to the school community.

Yes! All teachers hold a valid, California credential for the area they teach in. This will help to ensure that all students get the best educational program possible.

Visit www.highland-academy.org, call (951) 266-0220, or email Assistant Director Billy McIntosh at bmcintosh@highland-academy.org

Complete the enrollment packet which can be found at our website under “resources” and submit the application, along with (1) a copy of a valid birth certificate, (2) current immunization records, (3) a copy of a recent utility bill, and (4) the most recent transcript or report card from your student’s current school.  Applications can be turned in to the front office by hand or emailed to the Directors’ Assistant Mrs. Samantha Mosher at smosher@highland-academy.org