Student Handbook

SonShine Academy Student/Parent Handbook—A Seventh-day Adventist Elementary School of the Rocky Mountain Conference of Seventh-day Adventists

1200 Culbertson Ave.,

Worland, Wyoming 82401

(307) 800-1022

Teacher: K-8th Annette Treat (307) 431-1365

 

School Operating Committee:

Chairman: Dr. Kirby Treat (307) 431-6040 

Treasurer: Dr. Duane Curtis (307) 347-3838 

Pastor Steve Nelson (402) 913-4727

INTRODUCTION

SonShine Academy is operated by the constituency of the Worland Seventh-day Adventist Church. The school was originally operated from 1969-89. It was re-opened in 1998 to serve the growing need for Christian education in the local church.

The School Operating Committee is elected annually by the constituency of the local church, and is responsible for the operation and administration of the school. The school is accredited by the Office of Education of the Mid-America Union of Seventh-day Adventists. We adhere to the policies provided by this office. However, the local School Operating Committee (S.O.C.) makes the day-to-day decisions in harmony with these policies.

PURPOSE

This handbook has been written to help explain the goals, policies and regulations of the Worland Adventist Christian School. The school was established to provide Seventh-day Adventist youth in the area with Christian education. It is our commitment to provide them with the best education possible. As enrollment space allows, students will be accepted from non-member families in the community who are concerned with, and committed to the goals of Christian education.

MISSION STATEMENT

It is our beliefs based on the decision-making abilities that study in a Christian environment fosters the development of life-skills and decision-making abilities based on the transforming power of a personal relationship with God. Through loving God, and committing our lives to Him, we then are better able to love and serve our fellow human beings. God, as our creator has a plan for each of our lives, and has additionally redeemed each of us at great personal sacrifice. Christian education should aim to enable each student to realize and achieve all that God has planned for his or her life.

SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES

1. To encourage our children to have a relationship with Jesus through daily prayer and Bible study. 

2. To inspire young people by example and instruction to accept Christ as personal friend and Savior. 

3. To cultivate in our students a spirit of devotion, respect and reverence toward God. 

4. To promote a Christ-centered curriculum. 

5. To instill in the student the ideals of honor, integrity, honesty, purity, responsibility, service, neatness, and punctuality, and thus encouraging each student to be willing and faithful to carry out the duties and obligations which life requires of him or her. 

6. To acquaint the student with the great themes and truths of the Bible. 

7. To promote in each student the ideals of self-respect and of mutual respect and cooperation rather than competition and rivalry. 

8. To promote participation in physical fitness and the teaching of healthful living habits. 

9. To expose the student to a variety of life experiences and develop his/her capabilities to the maximum possible. 

10. To encourage in the student the development of creativity; and independent thinking. 

11. To develop in each student a sense of responsibility for his/her own behavior, thus cultivating self-discipline and self-control.

 

ADMISSION

MINIMUM AGE 

Kindergarten:  Student must be 5 years of age by September 1.

First Grade:  Student must be 6 years of age by September 1.

Many of the best educators recommend a child reach age seven before confining him/her to the classroom.

REGISTRATION

An application packet may be obtained from the school. A parent or legal guardian should fill out the forms and submit a copy of the student’s birth certificate and their current immunization records. A form to release information from the student’s previous school must also be signed so we can access previous academic information for the new student. New students will also need to complete the reference forms and return them as soon as possible.  These forms need to be returned to the teacher. The information will be processed and the S.O.C. will reach a decision about the enrollment of the student.

 

Enrollment priority is given to students from the area Seventh-day Adventist churches. However, any boy or girl, regardless of religious affiliation, color or creed, desiring a character-building education and willing to abide by the standards and course of study of the school, will be considered if room is available.

All registrations are tentative until approved by the S.O.C. All previous school records must be transferred to SonShine Academy upon the student’s being accepted into enrollment.

 

Registration implies an obligation to meet, in a timely manner, the financial responsibilities that occur out of tuition fees, or other applicable charges approved by the S.O.C.

ENROLLMENT POLICY

Because the function and environment of a multi-grade classroom varies from that of a single grade classroom, the student’s ability to adapt, and the teamwork of the parents and teacher are of utmost importance for a smooth transition. With these factors to consider, it is the policy of SonShine Academy that each incoming student is enrolled for a trial or conditional period when he/she is first accepted. The conditional period is a period of three months or ninety days enrollment. During this time, the teacher and parents/guardians will supervise the transition process to determine whether or not the student is making a successful transition into the multi-grade environment.

If either the parents/guardians or the teacher determine that the student is not adapting to the new environment to such an extent that his/her needs are not being met, or that the transition is causing continued disturbance in the classroom, it will be concluded that enrollment in this school is not to the student’s advantage. The parents/guardians or the S.O.C. may elect to terminate the student’s enrollment at any time during or at the close of the ninety day period as the situation requires.

 

SonShine Academy has not been established for the purpose of offering special education.  Therefore, it is not possible to accept pupils who have significant scholastic or behavioral problems, or are mentally or significantly physically handicapped.

MEDICAL RECORDS

1. Immunizations: SonShine Academy follows the requirements for immunization as mandated by the state of Wyoming. The local Health Department will be happy to assist you with these requirements.

2. Physical Exam: Any new student and students entering grades Kindergarten, fourth and seventh are required to have a routine physical examination by their medical provider. The exam should be completed not more than 90 days prior to first entering the school, and no later than 30 days after school has begun.

SCHOOL SCHEDULE AND ATTENDANCE

STUDENT ARRIVAL AND PICKUP:

No Student should arrive on campus before 7:45 am. Parents should arrange to have their children picked up no later than 4:15 pm each day. 

School Day

Kindergarten:  Tuesday and Thursday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

Grades 1-8:  Monday through Thursday 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

Friday - No School

ATTENDANCE

1. Attendance at all school sessions is required. The only valid excuse for absence from school, according to state law, is sickness or death in the immediate family. 

2. Absences for other reasons such as shopping or music lessons are unexcused, and make-up work may be required at the discretion of the teacher. 

3. There may be times when it is necessary for a student to be absent for reasons other than those stated above such as medical or dental appointments. In such cases, the parents should make arrangements with the teacher. 

4. Punctuality is important to character building. Excessive tardiness will require additional work for the pupil. In the case of 3 unexcused absences with in a 9 week period, the parent will be expected to give an explanation.  Three unexcused tardies equals one unexcused absence.

5. For each case of absence or tardiness, the pupil should bring upon his/her return to school, an excuse in writing from his/her parent or guardian, unless prior arrangements have been made with the teacher.

6. "A total number of unexcused absences equaling 15% of the school days in a semester (11 days) may result in a failing grade for the student for that semester."  Mid-America Union Education Code Book 

GENERAL POLICIES AND INFORMATION

CLOSED CAMPUS

During the school day, the student’s safety is the school’s responsibility. Consequently students are not permitted to leave the school at any time during school hours unless in the company of the custodial parent or guardian, or on an authorized school activity accompanied by the teacher. If a parent or guardian cannot be contacted in case of an emergency, the teacher will arrange safe and appropriate transportation.

This policy covers the time period from when the student initially comes onto the campus until he/she leaves after school is dismissed. Any unauthorized leave or absence will be considered truancy and will result in disciplinary action.

PARENT/TEACHER CONFERENCES

Parent/teacher conferences will be scheduled by the teacher at the close of the first and third quarters. Students’ report cards will be presented to the parents at that time. Other conferences may be arranged by the parents or the teacher outside of regular school hours. It is very important for parents to attend the parent/teacher conferences.

ACCIDENT COVERAGE

SonShine Academy participates in a student accident insurance program which provides medical coverage for the student after the parent’s own insurance pays first. If parents do not have medical insurance, then the school’s insurance covers the deductible part of the parents accident insurance. Details of this coverage are given to parents at the beginning to the school year. If you have questions about the program please discuss it with the teacher.

STUDENT CONDUCT

By registering at SonShine Academy, the students and parents/guardians agree to abide by the judgment of the S.O.C. and faculty as it applies to standards of dress and conduct.

Upon admission to SonShine Academy, students agree to observe all its regulations and to uphold the Christian principles upon which the school is founded.

The following practices WILL NOT be tolerated.

1. The use of profane, vulgar, violent or threatening language. 

2. The possession of any obscene material. 

3. Dishonesty, including theft and cheating. 

4. Insubordination, disrespect or disobedience by a pupil to a teacher or a supervisor.

5. Willful destruction of any school property or any vandalism. 

6. School property damaged or destroyed by student abuse or misuse will be charged to the student responsible. 

7. Illegally entering any part of the school building. 

8. Personal Electronic Devices are not allowed without the specific approval of the principal.

9. Guns (real or toy), explosives, knives, fireworks, etc. 

10. Alcohol, tobacco, illegal drugs or any substances detrimental to the health of the student.

11. Threatening, fighting, bullying or engaging in any acts of physical aggression.

Serious disciplinary action or immediate suspension may be expected for the disregard of any regulation in this handbook.

BICYCLE POLICY

Students riding bicycles to school must park them when they arrive, and remove them only after school dismissal. The school cannot assume the responsibility for bicycles stolen or taken without permission. Skate boards and roller blades/skates are not allowed on the school grounds.

CHANGE OF ADDRESS/PHONE

In order to maintain the vital link of communication between the school, parents, and students at all times, the administration must have up-to-date information. If a family moves during the school year, or has a change of phone number, parents should provide the school with the new address or phone number immediately.

DISCIPLINE

1. Purpose: Discipline is a method of counseling with a prescribed set of guidelines designed to help the student accept a more meaningful Christian behavior. Decisions and consequences are a fact of every life, and effective discipline helps students learn to make their own responsible decisions. Consequences for misbehavior and poor decision-making, when firmly and appropriately enacted, can help guide the student into making better decisions both now and throughout life. When the school and parents work closely together with compassion and respect, problems can be more easily resolved.

2. Probation: If a student’s behavior continues to be detrimental to the school family after repeated warning and parental counseling, he/she will be placed on probation. A student placed on probation by the S.O.C., must not violate any school rules, and must demonstrate a positive attitude in all school activities. This is a serious step, followed only by dismissal. After the probationary period is completed the student will be reinstated or dismissed depending on the student’s behavior and attitude.

3. Suspension: Suspension is the temporary separation from the school family. After repeated warning and parental counseling, he/she will be placed on probation. A student may be suspended for repeated offenses when other actions and consequences have not been effective. In the case of a serious overt act or violation of school regulations, the teacher may suspend a student from school although there has been no prior defiant behavior. In no case will a student be sent home until the parent/guardian has been notified.  

A conference with the parents/guardians, student, teacher, principal and the S.O.C. Chairman or other designated representative, will be required before the student is readmitted to the school program.

3. Dismissal: The S.O.C. is the ultimate authority in the dismissal of students. As a general rule, dismissal is used only when other means of correction fail to effect a change in conduct.

MISUNDERSTANDINGS

1. No school problems should be taken directly to the S.O.C. without first taking such matters to the teacher. 

2. If the teacher is unable to solve the problems, the principal/S.O.C. chairperson and the teacher should meet with the concerned parent. 

3. If the problem is still not resolved, it is to be taken to the S.O.C. The Committee has full and complete authority in all matters pertaining to the school. The Educational officers of the Seventh-day-Adventist church in the Mid-America Union and the Rocky Mountain Conference are relied upon for advice and counsel. 

4. Above all, each person involved should prayerfully seek to solve misunderstandings in a loving, Christ like manner, bearing in mind the Biblical principles of Matthew 18:15-20.

MUTUAL COOPERATION AND RESPONSIBILITY

The successful operation of the school is a responsibility shared by the Rocky Mountain Conference Board of Education, the teacher, the parents, the students, and the local church members. A child’s first and most important teacher is the parent. As your child’s school family, we are honored to become a part of the educational partnership. The school’s purpose is to support, help, encourage and strengthen that bond between parent and child. The School Operating Committee, and the school teacher invites close interaction and communication between all those involved in the exciting process of learning.

NON-PUBLISHED REGULATIONS

Teachers, parents, students, S.O.C. members, and area church members involved with the function of the school will need to be thoroughly acquainted with the contents of the school handbook. However, it is obviously impossible to anticipate all circumstances which may arise, and some regulations may have to be enacted to cover such circumstances. Any regulation or changes to this handbook voted by the S.O.C. and publicly announced to the students will have the same authority as those appearing in this handbook. Any voted changes will be made known to the parents/guardians as soon as possible. Responsibility for interpretation and application of all regulations shall rest with the S.O.C.  Parents requests to meet with the S.O.C. and discuss policy changes will be handled on an individual basis as promptly as possible.

FIELD TRIPS

Written permission, signed by the parent/guardian must be on file with the teacher before the child will be permitted to participate in field trips. Attendance on field trip is required as these trips count as official days of school.

HOME AND SCHOOL ASSOCIATION

All members of the Worland SDA church and parents of the school children are members of the Home and School Association. They are cordially invited to attend the functions sponsored by the organization and to assist in the programs of the school. Support Christian education by supporting the Home and School association.

VISITORS

Parents are welcome to visit the classroom during the school hours. To promote the smooth operation of the classroom process, parents must make arrangements with the teacher in advance.

The teacher may, at his/her discretion, enlist the help of parents as classroom volunteers. Parents are encouraged to volunteer and participate in such programs.

 

All volunteers must complete the course at www.verifiedvolunters.com before volunteering. 

Students wishing to have relatives or friends visit the school must first secure permission from the teacher. All visitors are expected to conduct themselves in harmony with the standards of the school.

PRESCRIPTIONS AND OVER-THE COUNTER MEDICATIONS

When it is necessary to take medications at school, the following instructions must be followed.

1) Medications are to be given to the teacher for safe keeping.

2) During the regular school day, any student who is required to take medication prescribed by a physician, may be assisted by the teacher or other designated school personnel if the school has receive both:

a) The medication in its original prescription bottle bearing the original prescription label with the name and authorization of the physician, the name of the student/parent, and the time schedule, dose and method by which such medication is to be taken. The label must contain the name and address of the pharmacy, and she serial number of the prescription.

b) The parent/guardian must provide a written statement giving permission for the school to administer medication as prescribed.

3) Unsupervised use of over-the-counter medications may be dangerous. They must be authorized by the parent/guardian in the same manner as prescription medications.

SCHOOL CLOSURES

As a general rule the school will not close because of bad weather. If school should be canceled or closed early, parents will be notified by the teacher. As a parent, you will have to decide if conditions in your area will allow you to travel safely to school.

TRANSPORTATION

The school cannot permit students to leave the campus in any unauthorized vehicle at any time. Parents must specify in writing or by direct phone call to the teacher if a child is to go home with another family. The teacher should also be made aware of carpooling arrangements.

INTERNET ACCESS

Students attending the school may have Internet access. Such availability will only occur after student and parents have signed the Internet Use Agreement. This document gives the student certain responsibilities for the use of this research tool.

TELEPHONES

The telephones of the school are for business use. Students will be allowed to use the phone in case of illness, injury, or other extenuating circumstances. Teachers and students should not be called during school hours except in cases of emergency. Student’s cell phones must be turned off during school hours. Permission to use the phone/cell phones must be received from the teacher.

SPECIFIC REGULATIONS

1. Students must obtain permission from their teacher before bringing toys, playthings, special projects, etc. to school. 

2. Permission from the teacher is necessary before any student brings an animal to school. Animals must be properly cared for and kept under control. 

3. Students shall respect the privacy of teacher’s and student’s desks and other belongings. 

4. Restrooms and hallways are not play areas. 

5. Gum chewing is permitted at the discretion of the teacher. 

6. In harmony with the basic principles of good health, we ask that students not include unclean meats or caffeinated beverages. High sugar treats should be limited. 

7. Wrestling, aggressive play behavior, and disruptively loud yelling and noise is unacceptable. Such behavior will be appropriately disciplined. 

8. Common sense is to be followed when using play equipment. Students safety is a constant concern, and playground equipment should be used only for the purposes for which it is designed. For instance, standing in swings, swinging upside down, swinging sideways, twisting, or jumping from a swing can lead to a dangerous accident and is not allowed. Students should follow the teacher’s guidelines concerning the use of play equipment 

9. No hard balls will be allowed on the school grounds.

DRESS STANDARDS

Students are expected to dress in harmony with the basic principles of health, modesty, neatness and appropriateness. These guidelines are established to promote self-respect and respect for others, as well as to minimize disruptions and distractions caused by clothing inappropriate to the school setting. If a student arrives at school in inappropriate clothing or underwear showing, the parents will be asked to correct the problem at that time and to insure that it does not happen a second time.

GENERAL STANDARDS

1. Consideration for the growth of children should be given when purchasing clothes for the coming school year. Clothing that barely meets the school standards in the fall may be unacceptable in the spring. 

2. Students will keep their hair well groomed. Hairstyles extreme in their style, color, (or length in the case of boys) are distracting and inappropriate. 

3. Unnatural make-up and bright or dark colored nail polish is not permitted. If it is noticeable and distracting, then it is unnatural and excessive. 

4. All clothing should be free from pictures, designs, words, or comments that are not in harmony with Christian principles. 

5. Immodest or revealing clothing such as: spandex or bike shorts, tight-fitting, frayed or shabby clothes, tank tops, cut offs, cropped off shirts which expose the midriff, halter tops, fish net or see-through shirts or skirts will not be permitted. 

6. Shorts of a modest length are allowed when appropriate to weather conditions and at the discretion of the teacher. Skirts should also be of a modest length. 

7. Shoes, sandals with ankle straps (no thongs or slippers) are to be worn at all times for safety, health and insurance reason. All students are expected to remove their "outside" shoes before entering the classroom during adverse weather conditions. 

8. In keeping with simplicity and safety, and to prevent loss or damage, jewelry brought to school will be collected by the teacher, kept in safe-keeping, and returned to the parent/guardians. 

9. All students are expected to participate in physical education.  It is recommended that suitable clothing for such activities be worn as there is limited time to change clothes before P.E.  Girls should wear shorts under skirts or dresses.

10. Pants should not be tight-fitting, low hipped, excessively baggy, dirty, faded or cut up. Girls may wear stretch pants leggings if worn with a long, tunic-style top.

FINANCIAL INFORMATION

It is the purpose of SonShine Academy is to make Christian education available to as many as possible. We therefore have tried to keep tuition charges as low as feasible. The total cost of operating the school is not covered by tuition. The members of the church and others invest a large sum for the support of the school.

1. Entrance fee (non-refundable) per student, separate from the tuition, is due at the time of registration, and is to cover the cost of textbook rental, workbooks., student accident insurance, library fees, and craft supplies, etc. 

2. Tuition is a set amount per year and is divided into 10 equal monthly payments. The first payment of this charge is due at the time of registration. The remaining 9 payments need to be made by the 15th of each month. 

3. The account for the previous year’s schooling must be settled before the student is permitted to enter for the current school year. Delinquent account remaining from siblings, who previously attended, must be settled before another child from the family is admitted as a student. 

4. School bills are to remain current.  A late fee may be charged on overdue accounts.

5. When a student’s bill becomes ninety days overdue, the student’s enrollment status will come under review by the S.O.C. and subject to action unless financial arrangements are made by the parents at an S.O.C. meeting. 

6. In harmony with the policy established by the North American Division of Seventh-Day Adventist and the S.O.C., transcripts of credits, report cards, or diplomas will be issued only when a student’s account is paid in full. 

7. If a student withdrawals, tuition will be charged on a pro-rated basis.

NONDISCRIMINATION STATEMENT

The K-12 School System of the Rocky Mountain Conference of Seventh-Day Adventist admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded and made available to students at the school. The K-12 School System of the Rocky Mountain Conference of Seventh-day Adventist does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, emotional and ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies scholarship and loan programs, and other school administered programs. The Worland Adventist Christian School adheres to the above policy.

 

Asbestos Statement:  It has been certified that no asbestos is present in the classroom. 

TUITION RATES

Tuition payments are for ten payments, as stated in the financial information section. If you have other needs, please talk with the teacher or the treasurer.

Annual Registration fee:  $250.00 

         Kindergarten:  $230.00 monthly

         Grades 1-8:    

         1 child:       $275.00 monthly

         2 children:  $530.00 monthly

         3 children:  $795.00 monthly