Dear Arco Iris Families,
Welcome to the Arco Iris Community. The choice you’ve made to enroll your child in Arco Iris Spanish Immersion School has naturally made you a member of our community. As a member of our community you will be included in both your child’s classroom as well as the Arco Iris Community communications. These communications allow you to remain involved and aware of the many exciting things happening at Arco Iris.
In addition to community communication, personal communication also enhances our learning environment. As a commuter school our families are given more opportunities to interact and connect. These connections build bonds that resonate beyond the walls of the classrooms and these community connections are supported by an annual student directory, which will be distributed near the beginning of the year.
Established in 2010, Arco Iris is proud to be Beaverton School Districts first public charter school. There is often confusion and misinformation in regards to the differences between a traditional public school and a public charter school. 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. 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. Although public charter schools are publicly funded, they do not receive the same level of funding as traditional public schools. At Arco Iris we receive less, per student, than traditional Beaverton schools. In addition, charter schools are required to cover expenses that traditional schools do not, such as technology services, rent/mortgage, etc. At Arco Iris we do not attempt to recover all the funds lost as a charter, we prefer to focus on a reasonable amount of additional support. Our school budget is planned around an annual $725 per student donation* or fundraising. This amount includes enrichment fees and funds for operating expenses. Student enrichment fees are used towards events like fieldtrips, cultural celebrations, art literacy and so much more. Our operational expenses allow us the freedom to use the state and federally funded portion of our budget to expand on staff learning opportunities, teaching tools/classroom supplies and other expenses that enhance our ability to support our staff and students.
Our curriculum primarily focuses on Spanish literacy and mathematics. Our exploration of the Spanish language goes beyond the spoken word; we also explore Hispanic cultures. Our school calendar will include notifications of cultural and socialization opportunities outside of school hours. This is done to encourage families to explore the cultures and local celebrations as well as foster a strong sense of community engagement.
We are excited that your family has chosen to become a part of our community. We look forward to providing you opportunities to actively participate in your child’s education and Spanish language development, and encourage you to collaborate with our staff to help our students learn. Together, we will succeed in raising bilingual, culturally aware, competent leaders.
Your Arco Iris PTO
P.S. If you have any questions about fundraising at Arco Iris, you can email us.
*Your cash donations are 100% tax deductible because Arco Iris is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.