May 1, 2015
Dear SBS Families,
I am pleased to report that we will be moving forward with restructuring our Upper School effective for the start of the 2015/16 school year. In general, this restructuring plan will re-establish the Side by Side 5th Grade classroom as a self-contained, elementary classroom that would no longer follow a departmentalized, middle-school structure. The 5th Grade will instead return to being the final grade level classroom in the Side by Side “Lower School,” while our “Upper School” would continue for only grades 6-8. For your reference again, below is a brief summary of this proposed plan:
- 5th grade will become a self-contained, elementary classroom in the “Lower School” and would no longer follow a departmentalized, middle-school schedule
- The SBS Upper School will be restructured to only include grades 6-8
- The SBS Upper School will implement a true middle-school “block” schedule; i.e. students would have three (3) 90 minute instructional blocks daily including Humanities, Mathematics and Science.
- Additional instructional time will still be scheduled to account for Research & Portfolio Seminar, Specials (Physical Ed, Art, Music), and study skills
- The SBS Upper School will begin to incorporate a true interdisciplinary approach to teaching & learning; a portion of Literacy instruction for students in 6-8 would now take place across the other disciplines (Math, Science)
- A STEAM component will now be integrated into our Upper School program to enable true, cross-disciplinary learning for our students; Discipline specific literacy will be integrated with non-fiction and inquiry elements of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (i.e. for a set amount of time each week students’ literacy instruction will be integrated in Math and Science class)
If you have any additional comments or questions about this plan, please feel free to contact me at any time (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The 2015 Side by Side Gala is on Saturday, May 9 from 7-11 P.M. at the Norwalk Inn and Conference Center. The Gala/Auction is Side by Side’s largest fundraiser which greatly contributes to lowering the cost of student activities and field trips. ALL OF OUR STUDENTS directly benefit from the success of this annual fundraiser. All families and friends of the Side by Side community have received invitations. If you have not RSVP’d already please do so now—the RSVP deadline is Thursday, 4/30.