Q: Is there a tuition cost to attend?
A: Arco Iris is a public school within the Beaverton School District so there is no tuition cost. However, we do ask parents to consider making regular donations and we do hold fundraising events like most schools. Donations are tax-deductible, we are also a 501(c)(3) non-profit.
Q: When does the school year start and end?
A: Arco Iris generally follows the Beaverton School District calendar, however, we have additional days off for staff professional development. Our first and last school day typically align with BSD. We also have a slightly longer school day than BSD.
Q: What will my child be learning at this school?
A: Our curriculum at Arco Iris is aligned with the Oregon Department of Education state standards. We use the Beaverton School District learning targets as the guide for curriculum unit development. The middle school math program, grades 6-8, follows a different program called Core Focus on Math. We hold our students to a high standard and expect much of them. It is not an easy program and parents should be committed to fully supporting their child’s education when making the decision to attend our school. We consider all our students above average and expect them to perform accordingly.
Q: What is Singapore Math and why does Arco Iris use it?
A: Arco Iris will be using the Primary Math curriculum, also known as Singapore Math. Our school has chosen Singapore Math as it is a rigorous academic curriculum approved by Oregon’s Department of Education and has the following benefits:
Builds deep understanding of mathematical concepts through multistep problems and concrete illustrations.
Topics are built to mastery.
Supports computational skills and fluency.
Provides depth and conceptual understanding.
Utilizing Singapore Math enables our teachers to teach each student at their own level and pace. Students can all be working on the same concept, but they will each be working at the level that challenges them individually. Here’s a good overview of math programs: http://www.illinoisloop.org/mathprograms.html.
Q: What can I expect from an immersion program?
A: Immersion programs start off with students learning school subject matter in the target language rather than just studying the language itself. The goal is for students to become proficient in the second language and develop increased cultural awareness while reaching a high level of academic achievement. Students score higher on verbal intelligence tests and have greater linguistic awareness and mental flexibility. The first year can be difficult as students adjust and transition to being in a new environment where they do not understand everything at first so parental support is highly encouraged. Click here for a great article that goes more in depth on immersion programs from a parent perspective.
Q: How much is taught in Spanish versus English?
A: Approximately 80% of the instructional day is taught in Spanish, 20% in English for grades K, 65% Spanish 35% English in grades 1 through 5 and 50/50 for grades 6 and above. English Language Arts is taught in English. In math, numbers, colors, and physical items are in Spanish but it switches to English for more difficult math concepts.
Q: Is there an after-school program?
A: We have both before school and after-school programs for students. Our program is called Buenos Dias/Buenas Tardes and is an enrichment program that includes activities in Spanish. Students will have a snack and will be able to complete any homework with staff assistance. You can pick up your child and have an evening free from homework stress.
Q: Will the school provide lunch?
A: Students may bring their own lunch or purchase lunch through our partnership with a local company that supplies hot lunches to our school. The school provides lunches to those who qualify for meal benefits.
Q: Will students wear Uniforms?
A: We have a dress code we ask students to follow. This helps build a sense of teamwork and community with the students. It also promotes safety as we can immediately tell if anyone on our campus is with our school or not. Students are requested to wear dark navy or khaki pants, and collared shirts either solid red, solid navy or solid white.
Q: Is there a bus service?
A: Unfortunately, we do not have a bus service. Parents will need to drop off and pick-up their students. Many of our parents are organizing carpools and ride-sharing amongst themselves.