Frequently Asked Questions

Click on each question or the plus sign to see the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. Please check back often for more answers to questions you may have as we will be adding more information as time goes on. Thank you!

School Operations

School hours are from 8:05 AM to 3:10 PM for all grades. For early release Wednesdays that occur bi-weekly, the school will begin at 8:05 AM and end at 1:10 PM.

Middle School:
There are six periods/blocks, which include core classes of Math, Language Arts (ELA), Science, History, and Character/Leadership.  Students are on an A/B rotation class calendar.

Students will be assigned to a homeroom which will be the class they start their day in. Middle School students will have one elective class each day in addition to study hall time to make up tests, talk with their teachers, and do homework.

New Summit values family time and understands the balance of school and home life. Homework should not dominate your student’s life but instead, give you and your child a chance to work together to re-enforce what they have learned at school. Homework should take no longer than 10 minutes per grade level. For students who struggle with taking longer on their homework, we ask that the parents please let the teacher know so that they can rework the amount of homework they have been given to not take as long. In addition to regular homework, parents will be asked to read to their child 5 nights a week for at least 20 minutes for those in grades K-6.

At this time, due to being a charter school, we are not able to offer bus pickup or any other form of transportation. We recommend carpooling with another New Summit family if you are not able to pick up or drop off your student during the recommended times or looking into our before and after school care options.

During the drop off process, students MUST exit the vehicle from the passenger side. Please make sure your children know how to take their seatbelts off on their own. We ask that students be dropped off no earlier than 7:45 am as the building will be locked.

During school pickup, families are to have their pick up number displayed in the dashboard of their car or hanging from the rearview mirror.  If there is someone else picking up your student, they will need your carpool number to pick the child up. For more information on the carpool process, please click here.

Kindergarten – 2nd grade has 3 recesses-a morning recess, a lunch recess, and an afternoon recess. Grades 3-5 have 2 recesses-a morning or afternoon recess, and a lunch recess. 6th grade and up will have a lunch break.

New Summit offers 5 specials classes including Art, Music, PE, Curiosity Science, and Library. Students will have one of these every day, all year long for an average time of 40 minutes.

The max for kindergarten is 20 students per class. The max for first grade is 22 per class and second grade and up is 25 students per class. At the beginning of the school year, we may have up to 3 students per class over the max ratio due to the beginning of the year attrition. With our TA’s and Instructional staff, New Summit is a 20:1 average ratio for each grade.

New Summit Charter Academy has an open door policy and welcomes parents to come and volunteer at the school anytime. We ask that parents complete 15 volunteer hours per semester per family for a total of 30 hours per school year.

Volunteer opportunities include things like reading to children, helping as a lunchroom monitor, pick up trash around school grounds and much more! Families are encouraged to visit their child’s classroom, and special events will be held where parents are invited and encouraged to be a part of the school day. There are also committees in various areas that parents can help with staff appreciation, fundraising, help in the library and more.

For parents who work or are unable to come to the school, we will have home volunteer opportunities for you to participate in.

No, not by the name, PTO or PTA. Instead, we have a Yeti Parent Committee (YPC) which is run by a select few from our parent community.  The YPC is open to any parent, guardian, or immediate family member of a student at New Summit Charter Academy. Teachers and Administration are also invited to join!  To find out more you can visit their website by clicking here.

Yes, our students have a dress code to enjoy a learning community without the distractions from prevailing fashions. Uniforms have been found to help with the overall climate of respect; they foster a tendency to focus on faces, not clothing, and are surprisingly helpful with budgeting and wardrobe planning. With less focus on name brands and standing out, parents often can spend less on clothing. For more information, please see our uniform guidelines in the menu bar under ‘Resources.’

Currently, New Summit is working on bringing back its chess club, STEM club, book club, and art club.  In the Fall and Spring months, students can participate in Landsharks running club.  Also in the Spring, there is the garden club for 3rd grade and up.  Art classes are also periodically offered.  As soon as our new gymnasium opens up there will be sports offerings including basketball, volleyball, cross-country, and track and field. More sports and activities will be added as we grow.

Yes. Our food is contracted out through Sodexo providing meals throughout District 20 schools.  Students have the choice of four lunch options at an affordable cost to our families.  Visit our cafeteria page by clicking here.

Please read a more detailed answer to this question click here.

This is a critical and excellent question. We take security very seriously at New Summit. We have partnered with the District for services and other providers to add to the safety and security of our school. We have employed a Facilities and Campus Security Director who will be on campus daily. He will work directly with the district on all the security plans for New Summit, in addition to following the requirements of the Claire Davis Act. We have radios that connect directly to the school district 20 officers, and there will be a minimum of eight staff with one on hand at all times. We are one of the only schools in Colorado using the Centurion Safety Management and BluePoint Alert systems used in major airports and with major airlines, directly notifying local police to the scene. This system is used as a tool for all our risk management. We also have security cameras in addition to our key card system that will allow no entry into the school unless you have a keycard or are approved through our Raptor system at the front Receptionist desk. We are also looking at purchasing some bulletproof tint for windows in the school. All of this to say, we are pleased with the measures that our school has put into place for the safety and security of our students.

New Summit follows the policy from District 20. The policy is JE found under this link. We will have a process and definition set in our parent handbook. The state also has a way we can consider a habitually truant student. Here is something else to consider. There is something called… STANDARDIZED CALCULATION FOR COUNTING STUDENT ATTENDANCE AND TRUANCY. This link explains the rules around what the local district and or charter school will set for considering a student habitually truant. With our Literacy First and Math Mastery program, we prefer students to be consistent with their attendance. We will not be flexible with attendance. Please email the principal if you have any further questions.

Kindergarten-5th grade is Elementary, 6th-8th grade is Middle School, and 9-12th grade is High School.

Teachers

All teachers are licensed and highly qualified or in the process of participating in a program to be licensed.

New Summit Charter Academy is hiring! If you are interested in employment with NSCA, please complete the Employment Interest Form, following all directions listed in the description. New Summit Charter Academy is an equal opportunity employer and we welcome your interest in employment. Please visit the employment page often to find a listing of current job postings.

Ask A Question

New Summit Charter Academy’s growth and expansion are dependent upon communication.  If there are questions you have about our school and feel it would benefit other potential families joining our community please submit your question below.

    Curriculum

    New Summit Charter Academy uses the Core Knowledge Curriculum for all core subjects for grades K-8 including Core Knowledge Language Arts through Amplify.  For Math, we use the Singapore Math approach for grades K-7 with a curriculum called Primary Mathematics and Dimensions Math.  We offer Spanish, Music, Art, and PE and Library for specials in grade K-5 and Middle school 6-8 we offer a wide range of elective choices.

    “The Core Knowledge Sequence is predicated on the realization that what children are able to learn at any given moment depends on what they already know—and, equally important, that what they know is a function of previous experience and teaching. Although current events and technology are constantly changing, there is a body of lasting knowledge and skills that form the core of a strong preschool-grade 8 curricula. Explicit identification of what children should learn at each grade level ensures a coherent approach to building knowledge across all grade levels. Every child should learn the fundamentals of science, basic principles of government, important events in world history, essential elements of mathematics, widely acknowledged masterpieces of art and music from around the world, and stories and poems passed down from generation to generation.” – Core Knowledge Philosophy

    To learn more about the Core Knowledge Curriculum, click here.

    Literacy First is a pillar of New Summit. We understand that in order for a child to access all subjects, he or she must know how to read. This creates a love of learning.

    We believe that all students can learn to read, and it is the responsibility of the teacher, parents, and interventionist to work together to determine how best to support the child. We believe in Early Intervention vs. the Wait to Fail model. At New Summit, a student will receive support as soon as the data shows a gap. We know that multi-sensory, explicit, sequential, phonics-based instruction has proven to be the most effective.

    At New Summit Charter Academy, we use a proven program and approach called, Capturing Kids’ Hearts by The Flippen Group to be an immersive, participatory experience. Teachers, staff, and administrators learn and practice skills they use and model in their classrooms that build meaningful, productive relationships with every student and every school community member.

    New Summit is excited to begin a process for enhancing our Character Education process with our House of Yetis. We wanted to develop a system where EVERY student has a place to belong, be supported, and be successful. This will make our school community stronger.

    The first level of support will be in the classroom, where the teacher can differentiate instruction. This means the child may, for example, sit closer to the teacher during instruction, have shorter assignments, and be allowed additional time on tests and assignments. Each situation will be individually appraised to determine the best support in the classroom.

    In addition, if according to the standardized testing (DIBELS and NWEA), teacher observations and class assessments, a student is determined to be below proficiency for his/her grade level, it may be determined that the student will qualify for additional support by an interventionist.

    The student will be in class to receive instruction for the normal literacy block. But at another time of the school day, an interventionist will work with the child for an additional 30 minutes in a small group, using a state-approved, research-based intervention. For the duration of this process, the student will be progress monitored to determine next steps, in order to optimize his/her learning.

    The student will receive differentiated instruction through small group instruction based on needed skill development. This will be either one on one or in a small group and will look slightly different in each grade level and with each teacher’s teaching style. See our section about skill-level grouping to learn more.

    We do teach cursive starting in 3rd grade.

    We are technology-friendly but not technology-focused.  Technology is a tool, not a toy, and is an asset versus a distraction.  The focus of New Summit is for students to have a quality and engaging educational experience.

    FOR TEACHERS FOR STUDENTS
    Efficient and Effective Tools for Teachers Assist in Learning
    Proficient Users Become Competent Users
    Teacher Driven Use to Enhance Lessons Chromebook Access for Testing Interventions
    Use of Chromebooks for Testing and Skill Group Enhancement Google Classroom
    Google Classroom

    Special Services

    Yes, students with an IEP or 504 will be able to attend and receive services that are written into their IEP or 504. Your child’s IEP MUST be reviewed prior to acceptance regardless of the district in which you reside. Currently, NSCA contracts with Academy District 20 and follows their program policies and regulations.

    If you are a new enrollment, our school counselor will review your student’s 504 and, in some cases, schedule a meeting with your family, to ensure that your student’s needs can be met at our school. ASD20 and NSCA review all new student IEP’s to ensure all services in the IEP will be met.

    Yes. Because of each student’s unique giftings, we evaluate a body of evidence to determine a student’s eligibility. That body of evidence may include achievement and ability testing, a portfolio of student work, and recommendations from teachers, coaches, and parents. Determination of eligibility follows the CDE requirements for gifted and talented students.

    At New Summit, we determine the programming based on students’ needs. Options include pull out classes, passion projects, subject or grade acceleration, extracurricular challenges, and independent study projects.

    For more information on the gifted and talented program at New Summit, click here.

    Charter Schools

    In Colorado, “school choice” refers to parents’ right to select the school that best meets their children’s unique needs. Parents in the state are free to select neighborhood schools other than their assigned school within their home school district or to select public schools in other school districts through Colorado’s open-enrollment laws. They may also select public charter schools, public contract schools, online schools, or homeschool programs.

    Some states provide tuition assistance to parents who select private schools. Colorado currently has no such program. Even so, parents may select one of Colorado’s hundreds of private schools so long as they can afford tuition.

    The price of freedom is eternal vigilance, however. Though Colorado has many choices available, the battle to keep those choices unrestricted is constant. We need your help to make sure our vibrant choice community not only stays strong but continues to grow!

    Colorado is fortunate to be home to a wide variety of educational choices. However, no school or school system can meet the needs of every child. In cases where families desire more or different options than those provided by the traditional public system, parents or community members may opt to find a new public charter school to fill these gaps.

    Charter schools are often able to provide different programs, models, or areas of focus under mission statements that may differ from those in neighborhood schools.

    No! Charter schools are tuition-free PUBLIC schools of choice.

    These schools are funded with public money through the School Finance Act and other sources, just like traditional neighborhood schools, but operate with a higher degree of educational and operational autonomy. This additional autonomy allows charter schools to offer more robust choices to students and families.

    There are a few key differences:

    ⋅ Charter schools are schools of choice. No student is assigned to a public charter school. Instead, each student enrolled in a public charter school is there because his or her parents chose that school.

    ⋅ Charter schools are governed by their own boards, usually made up of parents, educators and community members, rather than by their local school district board of education. This type of hyper-local control allows charter schools to tailor their educational offerings to their student population and communities.

    ⋅ Charter schools may apply for and receive various waivers from certain sections of state law and local school district policy that allow them to exercise more freedom in their approach to education. For instance, charter schools can set their own school schedules, decide their own hiring and personnel policies, and adopt educational models that differ from those used in traditional public schools. (Note: All public schools, charter or otherwise, may apply for these waivers. However, because charters often require autonomy and flexibility to pursue their missions, they are most likely to apply for and receive them.)

    ⋅ While charter schools are still required to follow state standards and administer state academic assessments, they are free to make decisions about which educational models, curricula, and materials they will use to accomplish their academic goals.

    Absolutely not! Charter schools ARE local public schools. Unlike most students at neighborhood schools, who are typically enrolled in specific schools based on geographic attendance boundaries, every student at a public charter school is there because his or her family affirmatively CHOSE that school.

    The idea that parental choices “steal” money from other schools implies that school districts, not parents, have ownership rights to every child (and thus, all the money allocated for that child’s education) who happens to reside within their boundaries. This is a fundamentally wrongheaded concept of education that places the financial interests of systems ahead of the interests of individual children. Ultimately, families have ownership rights over their children’s education, and those families should be free to choose which school receives the allotted per-pupil money for their child.

    In reality, students move between schools and districts all the time. Some use open-enrollment laws to select neighborhood schools other than their assigned schools, others change residences, and still others move out of state, decide to homeschool, or enroll in private schools. The notion that students choosing charter schools is somehow different or out of the ordinary, or that it constitutes anything other than a fair system under which funding follows the student to his or her school of choice, is misguided.

    Charter schools must be authorized by either their local school district through the elected board of education or through the state Charter School Institute (although the latter still requires the consent of the school district in most instances).

    Once authorized, charter schools must have their authorization renewed by their authorizer—typically their home school district—on a regular basis, usually every three to five years. In cases where authorization or renewal is unfairly denied, charter schools may appeal the decision of local school boards to the Colorado State Board of Education.

    Yes and no. While charter students are funded at the same per-pupil level as school district students, school districts are allowed to keep a small percentage of those funds for services provided by the district’s central administration. Additionally, unlike traditional public
    schools, charter schools are usually responsible for the costs associated with their facilities—mortgages or lease payments on their school buildings, athletic facilities, maintenance, etc. These additional costs can significantly reduce the amount of funding available for educational services, teacher salaries, and other expenses.

    For example, consider two public schools in a single school district—one a charter school, and the other a neighborhood school. Both schools serve 500 students receiving approximately $8,000 each per year in per-pupil funding. The neighborhood school’s building is paid for by the school district, meaning it can use the entire amount of its per-pupil funding for educational services. The charter school, by contrast, will have to finance its own building. On average in Colorado, that amounts to $660 per student—a reduction in total per-pupil revenue of $330,000 per year for our example charter school.

    In addition, some charter schools do not receive a fair share of their local school district’s mill levy override revenue, or additional property taxes voters agree to pay for the purpose of funding education. This is particularly true for charter schools authorized by the Charter School Institute, which has been unable to fully fund mill levy equity for its schools due to an unwillingness of the state legislature to provide the required money to do so.

    No. As public schools, charter schools are subject to the same federal and state nondiscrimination laws as neighborhood schools. They may not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, political beliefs, sexuality, or disability status.

    Opponents often claim that charter schools do not enroll students with disabilities at the same rate as neighborhood schools. However, charter schools may not make enrollment decisions based on a student’s disability status and are required to provide services to students with special needs either directly or through an arrangement with their local school district.

    Additionally, charter schools may identify or serve students with disabilities in a different way than neighborhood schools, meaning that a comparison of enrollment percentages does not provide a true apples-to-apples perspective.

    As is the case with neighborhood schools, charter schools may move students with severe disabilities into specialized schools or programs within their district to best meet the needs of the affected student. They work with families and the local district to find the best solution for these students.