Navigating Mat-Su Central
Welcome to Mat-Su Central School (MCS)
Mat-Su Central School, (MCS) under the authority and guidance of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District, was founded and functions under the belief that choice is an important and viable option in American public education. Mat-Su Central School programs are provided for those students and families who choose an alternative to the traditional neighborhood schools. These programs are organized around the needs of students and families.
How it Works
Explore here to find general information about our program. This section covers the major aspects of our program and how it all works. Read on more in-depth information below.
Mat-Su Central School Program Highlights
Based on the educational program that the parent and advisory teacher deem is best for the student and the family, the following opportunities and school support are available:
- AdvancED Accredited school
- Apple Distinguished School: 2013-2015
- Music classes taught by highly qualified teachers at MCS, such as Band and Choir
- Math classes taught by highly qualified teachers at MCS for high school credit, middle and elementary school students
- Access to Mat-Su Borough School District high school classes, ASAA sports, and Career and Technical programs through shared enrollment opportunities
- Participation in specialized field trips and extended learning opportunities such as Spelling Bee, Geography Bee, Battle of the Books
- Participation in programs such as Student Government, Close-Up, Youth Court, etc.
- Flexible Individualized Learning Plans
- Certified and highly qualified teacher support including onsite special education support • Certified nurse health services
- Onsite accounting department to expedite reimbursements
- Pyramid of Intervention support to assist struggling students
- Learning with technology workshops and classes
Individualized Learning Plan (ILP)
The Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) is the cornerstone of the MCS program. The ILP includes grade level expectations and relevant state standards which will be covered in each subject, curricular materials, activities, resources, credits and course assessment. Based upon current Alaska statewide assessment, results and other assessments (AIMSweb, MAP) specific intervention and monitoring plans will be incorporated into the ILP for core academic areas that the student is not proficient in.
Parents/home teachers must submit a separate ILP for each student. Work samples will be requested periodically and at semester conferences. Students who do not have current Alaska statewide assessment results will participate in MAP testing (Measure of Academic Progress). This information will be helpful in developing an ILP aimed at each child’s academic strengths and weaknesses. Students are required to participate in grade conferences. Failure to complete grade conferences may result in program dismissal.
An Individual Learning Plan must be completed annually for each student enrolled in the program.
ILPs must be completed annually for each student enrolled in the program.
An Individual Learning Plan must:
- provide for a signed agreement between the certificated teacher assigned to the
student and at least one parent or the guardian of the student verifying compliance with the ILP. The signed agreement must verify that:
- be developed in collaboration with the student, the parent or guardian of the
student, and a certificated teacher assigned to the student;
- provide for an ongoing assessment plan that includes all statewide assessments required for public schools
- provide for the course of study at an appropriate grade level that is consistent with state and district standards
- the student and parent have the same right to access the district appeal process as students and parents in the district’s other programs; and
- the textbooks or other curriculum materials and the course of study are
appropriate for the student as outlined in the ILP;
- provide for a grade or other determination that the student has met the standards
for a course, determined and assigned by the certificated, teacher who is responsible for the course. The plan may provide for review and consideration of any recommendations submitted by the student or the student’s parents;
- provide for a transcript that includes the source of any course taken by the student that was not offered or approved by the governing body of the district and for which no public money was provided. The transcript must note whether the student’s mastery of the content of the course was approved by the district as meeting a requirement for graduation; and
- provide for monitoring of each student’s work and progress by the certificated teacher assigned to the student and a record of the monitoring contact.
- include a provision for modification of the individual learning plan if the student
is below proficient on a standardized assessment in a core subject;
- include at least monthly teacher-student or teacher-parent contact for students
who have obtained a proficiency level of below proficient or far below proficient on the most recent administration of Alaska’s statewide standards-based assessments and quarterly reviews of all students’ work or progress in the individual learning plan; and
- identify strategies to move toward proficiency students who have obtained a proficiency level of below proficient or far below proficient on the most recent administration of Alaska’ statewide standards-based assessment.
Core Course Requirements
- A student enrolled in at MSC, whether full-time or part-time, must take at least 50 percent of the student’s coursework that the student takes through the correspondence study program in core courses. A student enrolled in more than two correspondence classes must take core courses in at least two different subject areas.
- A district may waive the requirement if the district determines that the student is a senior and needs less than 50 percent of the student’s curriculum in core courses to qualify for high school graduation.
- Core coursework performed outside the student’s program may not count towards the required 50 percent core courses. “Core course” means a course of study in English, social studies, science, technology, world languages, or a course required by a student’s IEP if the student is receiving special education and related services.
A district shall waive the core course requirement if the student obtained a proficiency level of advanced or proficient in English/language arts and mathematics as outlined in 4 AAC 06.739(b) during the previous academic year.
General Eligibility Requirements
Students generally reside along the Parks or Glenn Highway corridors south to and including Anchorage and meet all requirements for enrollment in school as set out by the MatanuskaSusitna Borough School District and the Alaska Department of Education.
MCS students must:
- Not be enrolled in any other state supported educational program.
- Collaborate with advisory teacher during ILP and academic conferences
- Participate in collaborative academic intervention plans
- Participate in all applicable district and mandatory state testing
- Failure to participate in mandatory testing may result in loss of re-enrollment privileges and or suspension of resources including allotment accounts.
- A student enrolling with the MatanuskaSusitna Borough School District for the first time must provide the following documentation:
- Shot record (shots must be up to date)
- Original birth certificate (MCS will make a copy)
- Physical exam record / school physical for sports
1. Open Enrollment-No Fees
a. To obtain full allotment funding, students must enroll by September 30 and remain enrolled for the duration of the official student count period. Students meeting this requirement will be allocated a student allotment of $2,200. This amount will increase to $2,500 for juniors and $2,700 for seniors who meet the requirements of the MCS Honors Program (see below). The official number of students who qualify for a MCS Honors allotment will be forwarded to the MSBSD business office following the end of the first academic quarter.
b. Students enrolling at MCS on or after October 1 and up to and including October 20 will be allocated a student allotment of $1950.
c. Access to an allotment account for students enrolling after October 20 will be reviewed by the Mat-Su Central administrator.
2. Enrollment after the Official Count Period (Alternative Enrollment Period)
Students enrolling in MCS after the official count ends and before the end of the year will be provided with a basic program of study. However, students may be assessed for the cost of any resources the student may require.
Procedures for Enrollment Consideration after the Official Count
All students wishing to enroll in MCS after the official count period, who are currently attending another school in the District, should advise that attendance school. The Principal of MCS will have final discretionary approval of all student requests for enrollment after the official count period. The Principal may request a conference with parents and students to determine if MCS is an appropriate educational setting. Students who have been unsuccessful previously in MCS may be denied admission or placed on probationary status. The student and parent(s)/guardian(s) must schedule a conference with the assigned advisory teacher to determine the program of study. No materials will be issued prior to this initial conference. A program of study will be developed and supervised by the MCS Advisory Teacher. This program of study will be appropriate to the skill levels of each individual student. Students and parents must sign a Statement of Commitment to submit satisfactory coursework at regular intervals and upon completion or loss of eligibility, to officially withdraw and return all texts, tests, equipment, and usable materials.
3. Suspended Students’ Enrollment
Students who have been suspended or expelled from a public school may, depending on administrative or Board action, enroll in MCS. The student would be provided a program of study in the core academic areas.
4. Non-consumable Returns Mandated
Students are to return non-consumable (i.e. books, supplies, and equipment) when withdrawing, graduating, or completing their work. Students/Families may choose to purchase books, supplies and equipment used during a student’s enrollment at MCS. The purchase price for items can be determined at the time of withdrawal.
5. Unusual Circumstances
Parents enrolling students due to unique circumstances or emancipated students enrolling in MCS during an Alternative Enrollment Period, a Suspension, or an Expulsion, may request a financial waiver or an extended payment plan for all associated materials/course fees. The MCS administrator may grant this request based on a review of the circumstances.
6. Mandated State Testing
Student attendance at state mandated testing is a requirement of enrollment at MCS. Failure to participate in mandatory testing may result in loss of re-enrollment privileges, and/or suspension of resources including allotment accounts.
Buyout Option for New Families
MCS provides a buy-out option of up to $500 per student for families who are transferring to MCS from non-District home school programs and meet our program eligibility requirements. This enables families, who want to keep resources from their previous program, to transfer more easily to MCS. The two buy-out options are available by a credit to the student’s allotment as follows:
- Pay the non-District program directly
- Reimbursement check to the family
This option must be exercised within 12 months from the date of initial enrollment.
To get more detailed information and guidelines, visit the Accounting Page.
Mat-Su Central provides an allotment based home education support program designed to provide parents with the flexibility to develop and support an innovative, comprehensive, educationally sound curriculum. Allotment funds will be available to implement academic endeavors that support the student’s ILP in accordance with state laws and regulations. Parents will complete an ILP before any allotment expenditures are approved. Expenditures must be directly related to the student’s ILP. Student allotment amounts will be determined annually by the Academic Advisory Council and may vary based on student enrollment date.
- $2700: Senior who meets MCS Honors Program criteria
- $2500: Junior who meets MCS Honors Program criteria
- $2200: Students who enroll thru September 30th
- $1950: Students who enroll between October 1st and October 20th
The fund account may not be used by the district or the parent to supplant district funds or obligations for IEP services.
As a general guideline parents are encouraged to receive prior approval from their child’s advisory teacher to ensure the requested expenditure supports their child’s Individualized Learning Plan (ILP) and thus eligible for student allocation funds. The following guidelines are to be followed for allotment expenditures during your enrollment at MatSu Central School:
- An in-district home school student may use 100% of his/her fund account for fine arts, physical education, music and/or other educational areas as outlined in the Individualized Learning Plan, as long as the student scores proficient or advanced on state required assessments. A student who scores below proficient may have his/her expenditure of the fund account restricted. The student’s Individualized Learning Plan must outline a plan for the student to become proficient. The advisory teacher and parent/guardian will prioritize the expenditure of an adequate portion of the fund account to achieve proficiency.
- Nonsectarian services and materials may be purchased from public, private, or religious organizations with student allotments if:
- the services and materials are required for the course of study in the ILP
- textbooks, services, and other curriculum materials and the course of study are approved by the school district and:
- are appropriate for the student
- are aligned to state standards
- comply with Alaska law related to the prohibition of partisan, sectarian, or denominational doctrines from being advocated in a public school during school hours
- comply with Alaska law related to the prohibition of discrimination in textbooks and instructional materials, and support a public purpose.
- Unexpended funds provided for student allotments may be carried over from one fiscal year to the next. To claim unspent allotment dollars from the previous school year, returning MSCS students must be enrolled in iParent by September 30th, and meet all MSCS enrollment requirements including continuous enrollment in the correspondence program for which the annual allotment was provided and the student remains enrolled through the October count period.
- Family and student/sibling allotments may be transferred between students to spread the costs for shared resources between enrolled students i.e. internet costs, supplies, computer ink cartridges, computers, etc. All other transfers will be approval by MCS administrator.
- Student allotments may not be used to pay for services provided to students by a family member. Family member is defined as a spouse, guardian, parent, step-parent, sibling, step-sibling, grandparent, step-grandparent, child, uncle, or aunt.
- A parent may contract with a private individual to provide tutoring to a student in a subject described in 4 AAC 04.140, fine arts, music, or physical education if:
- the instruction is part of the student’s individual learning plan under (d) of this section; and
- the tutor is not vested with the primary responsibility to plan, instruct, or evaluate the learning of the student in the subject.
- Textbooks, curriculum materials, school supplies, tutoring services, athletic equipment, and technology expenses may be approved by the certificated teacher who has primary responsibility for the course. Funding for other materials or services requires the approval of the correspondence program director or the director’s trained designee and the valid instructional purpose served by the expenditure must be noted in the student’s individual learning plan. Business managers or other administrative personnel who are not certificated under 4 AAC 12.305 or 4 AAC 12.345 may process receipts, reimbursement requests, or other paperwork related to expenditures or fund account activity, but may not fulfill the responsibilities of certificated teachers, program directors, or trained designees as outlined in this subsection.
- A parent or guardian may purchase nonsectarian services and materials from a public, private, or religious organization with a student allotment if:
- the services and materials are required for the course of study in the ILP;
- textbooks, services and other curriculum materials and the course of study:
- are approved by the school district;
- are appropriate for the students;
- are aligned to state standards; and
- comply with Alaska law related to the prohibition of partisan, sectarian, or denominational doctrines from being advocated in a public school during school hours, as well as with Alaska law related to the prohibition of discrimination in textbooks and instructional materials; and
- the services and materials otherwise support a public purpose.
- Through a fund account, parents may contract with a private individual to provide tutoring to a student if the instruction is provided by a private or sectarian educational institution (as long as the conditions in above are met).
Home Internet Support
Home internet access will be reimbursed up to a monthly maximum of $150 per family. Mobile internet access may be reimbursed when home internet access is not available. Families may appeal guideline exception(s) and troubleshoot home internet network thru MCS Technologist. MCS can provide LTE mobile devices as approved by Advisors and other program requirements.
Immunizations and Health Examination of Students
Current immunizations are required by Alaska State Regulations (4 AAC 06.055) in order for students to be enrolled in school. An exemption may be obtained under specific circumstances (see criteria below). A child shall be immunized against diphtheria, tetanus, polio, pertussis, measles, rubella, mumps, hepatitis A, and hepatitis B, and varicella, except that pertussis is not required in children over six and rubella is not required in children 12 years or older.
Any child who lacks proof of immunization or a valid exemption will be excluded from school. Children who have begun the required series and are in the “waiting period” before additional doses can be given will be allowed to remain in attendance until the next dose is due.
Two types of exemptions to immunization requirements are allowed in Alaska:
1. Medical – The regulations allow a statement signed by an Alaska licensed physician, osteopath, physician assistant, or advanced nurse practitioner stating that immunizations would, in that individual’s professional opinion, be injurious to the health of the child or members of the child’s family or household. In addition, disease history may be documented via a medical exemption form.
2. Religious – A parent or guardian must sign a statement affirming that immunization conflicts with the tenets and practices of the church or religious denomination of which the student is a member. Statement must be notarized and must be updated yearly.
In excusing students from attending school or from any curricular activity because of illness or physical disability, school authorities shall recognize only a medical doctor licensed in the State of Alaska, a school nurse, a representative of the Alaska Department of Health or the local Health Office, or a chiropractor licensed in the State of Alaska.
Academic Advisory Council (AAC)
Academic Advisory Council (AAC)
The School Board believes strongly in providing innovative and alternative forms of educational delivery systems within the Matanuska-Susitna Borough School District. The School Board recognizes that students may benefit from an education program other than the regular school program. The School Board believes a quality education occurs best when parents are involved and supportive of their child’s education.
A permanent Academic Advisory Council shall be formed, consisting of seven to nine members that shall be empowered by the School Board to make policy and budgetary recommendations to District Administration and the School Board that define the Mat-Su Central School philosophy, mission, vision, policies, administrative regulations, practices, and procedures in accordance with State law and regulation. The Committee shall consist of parents of students enrolled in the program, school staff, one appointed School Board member, one non-voting MCS Student Government student, and one Superintendent designee from the District Office. The majority of the Council shall be made up of parents of students enrolled in the program.
The Academic Advisory Council will meet at least once monthly.
Mat-Su Central is committed to strong academic opportunities for families and students. Our program is designed to help families access high quality tools and tested strategies to develop the best opportunities for each individual student.
The Purpose of Learning
The Purpose of Learning: Mat-Su Central School recognizes the main purpose of learning is the development of students’ core competencies for continued lifelong learning and application.
- Weighing evidence, reasoning, and analytical skills will be the focus of MCS’s learning experiences.
- Competencies in research, writing and effective oral communication will be encouraged, articulated, and calibrated to real-world expectations and daily life skills.
- Students are expected to regularly demonstrate their skills and knowledge in core competencies through oral and written work.
- Reinforcement of personal life skills to teach students how to effectively operate in the world (such as time management, budgeting, accountability, independent living and interpersonal relations)
Student Motivation: Students are motivated to learn through a combination of four distinct, yet interrelated incentives.
1. Students are encouraged and motivated through their positive experiences with the adults in their lives, both in and out of school. It is vital to develop family learning units composed of students, parents, advisory teachers, community professionals and vendors focused on helping young people learn. Students are assigned an advisory teacher who meets with them on a regular basis to help answer their academic questions, establish trust and confidence, and develop a relationship necessary to empower and support learning. MCS becomes a kind of extended family with strong, healthy interactions to motivate students’ pursuits of excellence.
2. Students are motivated to learn when they feel positive about themselves. Low-esteem issues often negatively impact learning. By encouraging a community learning environment, MCS will foster positive goals and accomplishments.
3. Opportunities for students to explore their questions and interests are a driving force for learning. The natural desire to learn, inquisitiveness, curiosity, and passion have for centuries motivated people to seek knowledge. As part of their Individual Learning Plans, Mat-Su Central School will encourage students’ individual talents, desires, and goals by incorporating their interests and/or providing opportunities to work on projects with mentors or experienced community members.
4. Learning by Experience: students become active participants, instead of passive learners, creating a purposeful, living laboratory that operates in a caring and supportive environment. MCS recognizes each student’s strengths and weaknesses and integrates their personal interests (who they are and what they believe and care about) into the learning environment. When students are actively and personally involved in their learning process, they will readily engage in manipulation of materials, extended learning activities, in-depth investigations, study, research, and use information and ideas to derive more meaning from their experiences.
The Pursuit of Excellence
The Pursuit of Excellence: By continuing to pursue excellence, students are constantly challenged to expand their knowledge and opportunities. Students are encouraged to capitalize on their successes by using them as stepping stones to a higher level of learning. Gifted and Talented students are often not recognized in the public school system as “at risk students” because of their accelerated learning. If their education is not combined with continued challenges, they often grow bored and stagnate, eventually dropping out of school. The Pursuit of Excellence provides the challenge students need to grow. Mat-Su Central School is committed to encouraging each student to pursue the next level of excellence in their educational and vocational aspirations.
Personalized Learning: Personalizing the educational experience develops the intrinsic desire to learn and develops personal ownership in the learned knowledge and skills. MCS’s student Individual Learning Plans will focus on the student and their strengths and desires. Personalized learning allows for students to access customized opportunities through a “menu of choice” in their academic pursuit.
A significant number of students come to MCS “educationally battered.” Through the individualized staff support and personalized learning approach, MCS is able to help these students become successful again. This academic success improves their self-esteem and provides a stepping stone to long-term academic success.
Standardizing curriculums is essential for students to be able to meet or exceed the State of Alaska’s standards and Grade Level Expectations (GLEs) thus ensuring educational proficiency and age appropriate growth. By meeting or exceeding State standards and GLEs, students are able to successfully transfer within the educational system without experiencing a deficiency or gap in their education. Mat-Su Central School’s Academic Advisory Committee has implemented a subcommittee called the Academic Committee of Excellence (ACE). ACE is responsible for evaluating the variety of curriculum used by students to meet or exceed State standards. ACE will also provide mentoring and professional parent educator development strategies to enhance cohesive instructional and educational delivery methods.
Mat-Su Central School’s Academic Committee of Excellence (ACE) subcommittee will be comprised parent educators, advisory teachers, and administrative staff. ACE will work in collaboration with Highly Qualified Teachers, community professionals, vendors, the Mat-Su Borough School District and representatives from educational and/or curriculum companies. The goals of ACE will be as follows:
- Examine and review curriculum and materials
- Compare curriculum to Alaska State standards
- Develop a database of curriculum for easy access
- Ensure correlation of curriculums to State Standards
- Track overall school performance
- Extrapolate school assessment data to align with curriculum and/or interventionimplementations
- Provide a Continuous Improvement Model
- If needed, develop a school improvement plan in conjunction with MSBSD staff
All students attending MCS are expected to work toward a quarter/semester grade in all assigned courses. Grades will be derived from either the assigned home school teacher, supported by a body of work accompanying the grade or the assigned advisor in conjunction with grades registered in the class. Grades are reported on a MCS provided report card. Parents turn in a completed report card with the portfolio of work to support the grades that are given. Grades for students taking vendor courses may be determined by using the vendor grade or by incorporating an alternative assessment agreed upon during the ILP conference. After review and consideration of any recommendations submitted by the student and parents, the student’s grades* are verified and documented by a certified teacher.
End of year grading: Students who enroll at the beginning of a semester are expected to complete coursework by the end of a semester unless arrangements with the advisor are made at the time of the ILP. Because other students may enroll part way through the semester, an extension of the time to complete the course work may be necessary. The grade for a course not finished will become an NC (No Credit) or other grade as determined by the advisor. Elementary (K-5) with a course not finished will receive a NM for “No Mark” indicating the course was not evaluated. Middle School (6-8) students will receive a NG for “No Grade” when grades are not turned in at each quarter. However, for the end of semester and year, middle and high school (6-12) students will receive a NC for “No Credit”for coursework not completed.
Grades for Prospective Graduates: Grades must be turned in to the advisory teacher at least seven (7) days prior to the day of graduation to allow for verification of transcripts, and to ensure that the student may receive his or her diploma at the graduation ceremony.
*Grading Criteria for High School PE, Music, Fine Arts, and Activity based courses: In order to earn a grade/credit in these subjects, students must show documentation to their advisor in the form of:
- 62.5 hours of instruction and/or practice for each high school 1⁄2 credit; and,
- Daily activity log of instruction and/or practice
All courses assigned at MCS must be completed and the grade reported before transfer to another school if credit is to be received. Courses not completed will receive a grade of NC, which means No Credit. That grade will remain on the transcript until another course is completed to override that grade. An NC grade will have an adverse effect on GPA. Courses taken over the summer must be finished at least 2 weeks prior to the start of the new school year if transferring to another school to allow time for the credit to be assigned to the transcript.
High School Graduation Requirements and Graduation Ceremony
Students who have completed the required credits, based on graduation year and consultation with certified advisory teacher and all other MSBSD graduation requirements will be awarded a Mat-Su Borough School District diploma. Seniors may earn a maximum of 4.0 credits per semester. The maximum may be exceeded on a case-by- case basis with advisor and principal approval. Students who have completed all graduation requirements are encouraged to participate in MCS’s graduation ceremony.
Parent Contact with Advisory Teacher
MCS communicates with families via office visits, telephone calls, email, Facebook, newsletters and our Mat-Su Central School website www.matsucentral.org for upcoming notifications and events.
Successful home schooling families maintain accurate phone and email contact information as well as share their preferred method of contact with the MCS front office and initiate contact with their advisors monthly along with grade and progress conferences. More frequent contacts may be necessary in order to ensure a child is successful. Contact agreements will be determined during the initial orientation meeting with the advisor. All parents/home teachers should contact their MCS advisor or school office if there are changes that need to be reported, i.e. extended absences, change of address, phone number, etc.
We recognize one of the challenges of homeschooling your child(ren) is having confidence that they are on a flight path of academic growth. Through your enrollment at Mat-Su Central, you have access to two research based academic assessment resources. There is no cost to your allotment. These services are included in your enrollment at MCS. Information from these programs provides academic information to assist in making curriculum choices and educational decisions about your child’s progress.
For children in grades kindergarten through third, the AIMSweb benchmark is required in the fall, winter and spring; information will be shared with the family regarding Early Literacy and Numeracy
If your child is between the grades of third and eighth we offer the Measures of Academic Progress or MAP program developed by the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA). MAP assessments provide detailed information about where each INDIVIDUAL child is on their own unique learning path. This program takes advantage of technology to ADAPT the assessment to each child. Answer a question correctly and the test presents a more challenging question. Miss a question and a simpler one is offered. MCS offers MAP assessments in Reading, Mathematics, Language, and Science. MCS students are also offered the Compass Learning/MAP bridge which develops an unique, individual learning pathway for each child based on the concepts they are ready to learn. It’s also a wonderful tool for filling in gaps or for acceleration. MAP is a requirement for all students in the area in which they are below proficient. Parents are encouraged to consider this option if their child is advanced. Why have your fourth grader spend a year in fourth grade curriculum if they have mastered the grade level core standards already? Follow the link for more information http://www.nwea.org/node/4661.
Pyramid of Support: Home Education Intervention Program
A student who does not score proficient or advanced on state mandated assessments may have his/her expenditure of the fund account restricted. The student’s Individualized Learning Plan must outline a plan for the student to become proficient. The advisory teacher and parent/guardian will prioritize the expenditure of an adequate portion of the fund account to achieve proficiency. For those students who perform below proficient, parents/guardians and advisory teachers will collaborate to develop a support program.
This program shall consist of the following:
a. Continued instruction in all core content areas
b. Supplemental Instruction/Support in the Content Area(s) where the student has scored below proficient
c. Proactive interventions and the use of intervention strategies to assist the student in achieving proficiency.
The following is a list of possible intervention and academic monitoring strategies:
- Survey study habits
- Evaluate current curriculum being used and suggest possible alternatives
- Use placement and diagnostic tests
- Use supplemental materials to address academic need
- Use MAP (Measure of Academic Progress) or AIMS (Assessment Management Instruction System – web based) assessment to assess current level of academic progress during the school year.
- Tutor in specific subtest areas
- Use data driven curriculum
- Tutor weekly in specific content areas
- Use other researched based strategies
Before enrolling a student at MCS who is eligible for special education services, an Individual Education Plan (IEP) Amendment meeting will be held to ensure student needs are addressed completely and are in compliance with the student’s Individualized Learning Plan. Special education services beyond a Supervisory Model will be provided at the student’s boundary school.
If a MCS student in grades 9-12 meets the academic requirements listed below, the student allotment may be used at family discretion to achieve the goals of the students ILP.
- Students must be proficient in all areas on state mandated assessments
- High School Students must have earned sufficient credits to meet current grade level enrollment appropriate to number of years in high school.
Honors Program: The intent of the MCSS Honors Program is to support high school juniors and seniors who are on a rigorous path of academic coursework. In order for students to be eligible for the UA Scholars Top 10% award, they must first qualify for the Honors Allotment. Exceptions may be made by appeal to the guidance counselor and administrator.
All juniors and seniors who meet the academic criteria listed below will have an allotment of $2500 for their junior or $2700 for their senior year at Mat-Su Central School.
Juniors: a minimum of 12 high school credits with required credits attained in the following areas:
- English – 2 credits
Students will need to have completed 2 of the 4 required credits of English.
- Social Studies – 1 1⁄2 credits
Students will need to have completed 1 1⁄2 of the required 3 credits of Social Studies.
- Math – 2 credits
Students will need to have completed 2 of the required 3 credits of math.
- Science – 2 credits
Students will need to have completed 2 of the required 3 credits of Science.
All seniors who have participated in taking either the Work Keys, ACT or SAT assessments and meet the academic criteria listed below will have an allotment of $2700 for their senior year at Mat-Su Central School.
Seniors: a minimum of 18 high school credits with required credits attained in the following areas:
- English – 3 credits
Students will need to have completed 3 of the 4 required credits of English.
- Social Studies – 2 1⁄2 credits
Students will need to have completed 2 1⁄2 of the required 3 credits of Social Studies
- Math –3 credits
Students will need to have completed an Algebra, Geometry and 1 additional math credit.
- Science – 2 credits
Students will need to have completed 2 of the required 3 credits of Science and be currently enrolled in a Science course or have completed 3 required credits of Science.
It is the responsibility of the parent to ensure that all completed coursework and transcripts are submitted to MCS at the conclusion of their child’s sophomore and junior year.
Early High School Credit
An eighth grade student has the option to receive early high school credit with prior approval from the building principal. Courses available for early high school credit are Algebra 1, Geometry, Algebra 2, English 1 and Foreign Language. Students will receive their normal letter grade on their middle school report card. A student must earn at least a B in the course in order for high school credit to be awarded and placed on the transcript.
A high school student may take college courses. This program is designed to provide eligible students the opportunity to receive credit for certain courses through accredited institutions of higher education. Students must register for at least two (2) semester hour course to receive 0.5 high school credit and a three (3) semester hour course for 1.0 high school credit. Upon completion, an official transcript must be requested by the student from the college institute and submitted to the MCS registrar, and will be recorded on the student’s transcript in the semester the final grade was issued. Pre-approval from advisory teacher and MCS administrator is required. (AR 6146.2.b)
Extra-curricular Eligibility for Alaska School Activities Association (ASAA)
Students enrolled with MCS have the opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities with their boundary school. To be eligible to participate all students must meet Alaska School Activities Association (ASAA) and MSBSD guidelines as follows:
- (except for first semester freshmen) Must have passed at least five (5) semester units of credit* or the equivalent during the previous semester, with an overall 2.0 GPA for the semester. Students who passed the required number of classes but who did not maintain an overall 2.0 GPA during the previous semester may regain eligibility during the current semester by achieving and maintaining an overall 2.0 GPA within the school’s grading system, and
- Be enrolled in at least five (5) semester units of credit* or the equivalent during the current semester and maintain overall 2.0 GPA for the semester. Students who do not maintain an overall 2.0 GPA may regain eligibility during the current semester by achieving and maintaining an overall 2.0 GPA within the school’s grading system.
- Maintain a 2.0 GPA the previous quarter. GPA is at the end of first quarter, first semester, third quarter and second semester.
- Private school students who wish to participate must be registered in a minimum of five classes equaling two and a half semester units of credit in the MSBSD. A student’s boundary school, Correspondence, Alternative schools, or a combination of the three will apply.
- Private school students who participate in a MSBSD extra-curricular activity forfeit their eligibility to participate in sports or activities at their private school.
- A student must have passed five or more courses during the previous semester.
- A student’s work must be completed, graded, recorded and confirmed within one week of the close of semester of eligibility.
- All classes completed, graded, recorded or confirmed after the semester cut off will be recorded in the next semester.
- Students are ineligible until MCS has received verification of all course completions being used to count towards eligibility.
* Note: Seniors on track to graduate must take at least four (4) semester units of credit.
Students, who plan to participate in any MSBSD and/or ASAA extra-curricular activity, and their parents should notify MCS advisory teacher and be familiar with the eligibility requirements as stated in the MSBSD student handbook (available at MCS or on the MSBSD website), addressed by the Alaska School Activities Association (www.asaa.org), as well as board policy (BP 6145) on this issue. Information may also be obtained from www.highschoolsports.net.
Generally, the maximum age for attendance in the MSBSD is 19 years of age provided the student has not completed the 12th grade. However, a student will be permitted to complete the semester in which the 20th birthday falls.
A student 20 years of age or over may apply to receive education services by submitting a statement of reasons for the request. Services may be provided at MCS at the discretion of the Superintendent upon recommendation by the MCS administrator.
Overage students are not eligible for a student allotment, they will only be provided with advisory teacher guidance and course curriculum.
The maximum age for attendance for a student with disabilities shall be consistent with state and federal law and the student’s IEP. (BP5111.1)
Technology, Musical Instruments and Equipment
Purchases over $150 require Advisor pre-approval.
Technology – A portion of a student’s curriculum allotment may be applied toward the purchase of technology while enrolled in the MCS allotment-based program. Technology and equipment is purchased with public funds and becomes property of the Mat-Su Borough School District. Technology items will be loaned to a student during his or her enrollment at MCS. Technology and equipment that parents choose to purchase directly themselves, should receive prior approval from their advisory teacher, especially when the cost exceeds $150; an exception is transferring students utilizing the Buy Out option.
A Pre-Order form can be given to MCS for the advisory teacher’s approval.
Costs of repairs of computers and other technology equipment not covered under warranty will be deducted from allotment-based student allotments. In case of deficient funds, parents will be responsible for all repair costs. MCS technology items are not to reside in private and/or non-secular facilities, and are to be used only by MCS and MSBSD students.
Three-year (3-year) Student Allotment Computer Program (Limited to Available Units)
• To expand educational opportunities for students by enabling the cost of a student allotment computer to be spread over three consecutive enrolled school years @ MCS.
3-Year Computer Program Stipulations:
• 3-Year Plan options are: MacBook Pro and MacBook Air laptops
• MCS re-enrolling families and new families from other homeschool programs are eligible.
• Eligible parents/students would have option of 3-year program plan or current 1-year plan
• Allotment deduction to be divided in thirds of initial price; any remainder added to first deduction.
• Returned computers are re-circulated into the 3-year computer program. Computers may be transferred to another sibling or family without disrupting allotment deduction schedule.
• If family and student withdraws or returns computer, balance of 3-year deductions may be deducted from allotment immediately. rd
• In this plan, AR 3270.2 does not apply until after 3 year for purchasing computers.
• 3-Year Plan available to students in Grades K-10. 11th and 12th grade students must receive prior
approval from MCS administrator.
• All other agreements stated in current MCS Family Handbook apply.
Musical Instruments – A portion of a student’s curriculum allotment may be applied toward the purchase of musical instruments during the student’s home education program. All music students must have an approved ILP during the loan of the musical instrument. The musical instrument will be loaned only to that student during their enrollment at MCS. Upon that student’s withdrawal from musical instruction and/or MCS, those same instruments and non-consumable materials must be returned to MCS. The purchase of all musical instruments should be processed through the Accounting office using the Pre-Order form. Costs of musical instrument repairs not covered under warranty will be deducted from student allotments. In case of deficient funds, parents will be responsible for all repairs. MCS musical instruments are not to reside in private and/or non-secular facilities, and are to be used only by MCS and MSBSD students in performances and home practices.
All Musical Instruments are included in the Mat-Su Central School Inventory
Both students in the MCS Onsite Music Program and those not taking courses within the MCS Onsite Music Program can use their allotment to purchase instruments. All students will have the option to purchase the instruments through AR 3270.2. Any instruments not purchased through AR 3270.2 will be put back into the MCS Music Program once the student is no longer taking music classes. These instruments will create an inventory that can be loaned out to other students. These instruments that become part of the MCS Onsite Music Program inventory cannot be purchased by the student. The MCS music teacher will be allowed to use this inventory first to fill the band, and then the rest of the instruments can be loaned out to students for private lessons by filling out a Pre-order request form, and the Blue Sheet for the instrument will be processed through the Accounting Office.
Mat-Su Central Onsite Music Program
The MCS Onsite Music Program is defined as instruction delivered by MCS music teacher.
Instruments used by the MCS Onsite Music Program (band, choir, orchestra, piano, guitar, etc.) remain in the MCS Onsite Music Program and are assigned to students enrolled in MCS Onsite Music Program classes, who have priority. MCS Onsite Music Program instruments may be checked out to students outside of MCS classes at discretion of music teacher. Instruments in the MCS Onsite Music Program are not available for purchase through AR 3270.2.
Mat-Su Central Homeschool Music Program
The Mat-Su Central Homeschool Music Program is defined as instruction delivered by approved vendor and/or homeschool educator. Instruments in the Homeschool Music Program will be in circulation for use in homeschool music courses and Homeschool Music Program parents may purchase instruments as per AR 3270.2.
MCS Procedures for parent requesting computers, musical instruments, cameras, equipment, etc. *
Applies to ALL MCS students who are enrolled in either Onsite classes or Homeschool classes with the objective to support student learning and account for MSBSD/MCS property.
• Student must be enrolled in relevant SchoolMax music course and approved in ILP or have an “intent to audit” on file in MCS counselors office. Students must maintain academic progress to retain use of instrument through grade submission or other determination.
• Parent submits Pre-order form to Accounting office or Advisor.
• Advisor approval signed on Pre-Order form.
• Pre-order form turned into Accounting office
o Priority on used equipment will be based on date of submission of Pre-order form.
• Item is filled from MCS inventory or ordered
• Accounting office/Staff contacts parent
• Parent signs MCS Blue form (used for tracking MSBSD/MCS assets) Student must have Blue Sheet
on file in the MCS accounting department for any MCS purchased instruments used for practice, instruction or lessons, and a copy of Blue Sheet for MCS Music Program instruments will be given to the MCS music teacher.
• When course ends or student withdraws parent has option of:
o Returning item to MCS Accounting office which places in back in circulation for students to
check out by repeating steps in this subsection.
o Purchasing item under AR 3270.2 which removes item from MCS inventory.
There is an exception for MCS Onsite classes (math, technology, music, etc) which are defined as equipment purchased while a student is enrolled in a MCS staff taught/facilitated class or purchased by MCS. The MCS Onsite math, technology and music programs have an inventory of equipment that is retained and disseminated to support the Onsite MCS programs. The program instructor has the oversight of this inventory. This equipment is only available for check out to a student in a Homeschool taught class with permission from the MCS program instructor. To clarify, any student whether in a Homeschool or Onsite class may submit a Pre-order form when requesting any form of equipment or musical instrument to support their ILP. If inventory is available (outside of the MCS Onsite inventories as defined above) then these items will be made available to students.
These procedures will be updated as the new Student Management System comes on line.
Music Instruments Quality Control
When possible, the MCS Music Teacher will provide the MCS accounting department with instrument specifications and competitive price lists from vendors including all known local Mat-Su Borough businesses prior to July 1st each year, from which parents may make informed decisions and the public interest in public expenditures is represented. When necessary, requests for instruments whether for Homeschool Music Program lessons or MCS Onsite Music Program will go through the MCS music teacher for proper fitting and measuring. Purchase of instruments shall be processed through the accounting department using the Pre-Order form, and parents will sign a disclaimer for any purchase that falls outside of MCS Music teacher specifications and bid procedures or using the MCS music teacher for fitting and measurements.
ICUE will be the official system of record for Enrollment and attendance data in MCS Onsite Music Program classes in order to make informed decisions for MCS Onsite Music Program needs.
Instrument Maintenance and Repairs, when possible, will be the responsibility of the MCS music teacher. Costs incurred by the MCS music teacher for repairs and maintenance will be covered by the MCS budget, and pre-approval from the MCS administrator is required. Costs of musical instrument repairs not covered under warranty will be deducted from student allotments. In case of deficient funds parents may be responsible for all repairs.
The MCS Music Teacher will provide to the MCS accounting department a list of students and the amount of fees to be deducted following AR 3260. The MCS teacher has discretion when the AR allows for it. This information must be received prior to the end of the school year Quarter 1 and Quarter 3, otherwise fees will not be deducted from student allotments. Music fees will be tabulated and transferred from student allotments into the MCS Onsite Music Program budget, to be utilized at the discretion of the Music teacher within district policy.
The schedule as taken from AR 3260:
- High School Electives $15-$20 Per Course/Per Semester
- Middle School Exploratories $20 Per Course/Per Semester
- Elementary No Course Fees
Instruments and technology equipment that parents choose to purchase directly themselves, should receive prior approval from their advisory teacher. Purchase of instruments shall be processed through the accounting department using the Pre-Order form, and parents will sign a disclaimer for any purchase that falls outside of MCS Music teacher specifications, bid procedures, and MCS Music teacher for fitting and measurements.
Program Withdrawal Procedures
Please bear in mind the following when considering withdrawal from Mat-Su Central School:
- Students withdrawing from the allotment-based program prior to November 1st of the current school year are responsible for reimbursing the program for the portion of the educational allotment they have used.
- A student who withdraws from the program at anytime throughout the school year may not be eligible for re-enrollment in the program the following year.
Students who withdraw, transfer, graduate or receive a Certificate of Attendance from Mat-Su Central School must:
- Complete a withdrawal or check-out form.
- Have the form signed by parent and MCS advisor.
- Return all non-consumable books and curriculum material, computers, musical instruments, and equipment.
- Turn in reimbursement forms on or before withdrawing from the allotment-based program – upon withdrawal, the allotment account will be closed. No further requests for reimbursement will be accepted after date of withdrawal.
- Bring fund account current.
After all of the above have been satisfied, a copy of the withdrawal/check-out form and/or transcript will be provided. Please remember, resources purchased with MCS funds, including the allotment process, are the property of MCS and must be returned when exiting the program. Parents will be provided a list of what materials and equipment need to be returned. In some cases, materials or equipment that are assigned to a withdrawing or graduating student may be retained for use by a sibling currently enrolled in the program, if the enrolled sibling’s ILP documents the need. For example, the graduating senior’s MCS tuba would only be passed on to a sibling whose ILP documented tuba instruction. Arrangements for officially transferring these items must be made through the advisory teacher and the accounting office.
Extended Activities & On-Site Program Info
MSC is committed to providing opportunities for families and students to get out and enjoy all kinds of learning opportunities. Some of these activities are academic in nature, and some are more exploratory. Check out our offerings in the Program Offerings are, and get details here on how to join us.
An Extended Activity is any Mat-Su Central School organized activity that is done in addition to regular home school and include options like:
- On-Site Classes (see offerings)
- Field Trips
- MCS Sponsored Events
- Parent/Guardian Organized Activities
- Vendor Provided Classes/Activities
(For complete Policy Statement, see Administrative Support Staff – Field Trips at Mat-Su Central School)
Enrollment Forms & Payments
A. Any Student participating in a Field Trip or Extended Activity must complete Field Trip Packet Forms A and B. Student activity fees will be deducted from their allotment if available; otherwise, participants will need to pay the outstanding activity balance. Please check your allotment balance.
B. When there is a parent participation cost, the costs need to be paid at the time of enrollment and is non- refundable. Parent costs cannot be deducted from a child’s allotment. Make checks payable to Mat-Su Central School.
C. MCS will provide the parent/guardians with a receipt and complete the payment received information on the application.
D. Allotment deductions are non-refundable.
E. All parents participating in field trips are required to complete a Hold Harmless Agreement for Volunteer form.
Bus Transportation—Chartered Busses
A. A minimum of 20 students is required to charter a bus. This means 20 students paying the bus fee and riding on the bus. If quota is not met, chartered bus will be cancelled.
B. Parent/guardians need to drop off students 15 minutes before bus departure and be at Mat-Su Central School at bus arrival time to pick up their students. Student Activity Fee includes individual student cost for bus, activity, and supervision.
C. For those activities that do not require bus transportation, parent/guardians need to deliver their students to the activity site 15 minutes before the activity takes place and be there to pick up at dismissal time.
D. For fieldtrips within the Mat-Su or Anchorage Borough, Parent/guardians riding on the bus must agree to assist in the chaperoning of all students.
Private Vehicle Transportation
A. If you plan to use or provide private transportation other than direct family to any extended activity, fill out the Parent/Adult Student Transportation Insurance Confirmation form along with the Private Transportation Release of Liability, which can be found within the Field Trip Packet. One form is good for the complete school year.
B. If parent/guardians are using private vehicles to transport students to an event, or if your student is riding in someone else’s private vehicle, complete the “MSBSD Parent/Adult Pupil Transportation Insurance Confirmation” Form C and the “MSBSD Release of Liability” Form D. This is for releasing MSBSD of liability by the applicants for using non-MSBSD transportation to transport their students or students other than in the immediate family to attend the activities. [Transporting students to an event in a private vehicle, not the bus] Forms must be filled out in advance.
Attendance & Enrollment
B. Withdrawal from Mat-Su Central School leaves student ineligible for activity attendance.
Enrollment – Field Trip/Activity enrollment remains open as long as space is available.
A. Some vendors require wavier forms in order for students to participate in their activities. Completed waiver forms should be attached to the filled out portion of this packet when it is submitted. Waiver forms are available in the Mat-Su Central School front office.
B. If your vendor requires a waiver form for participation, it will be included in the Field Trip Packet. Fill it out and submit it with Field Trip Packet application. Keep a copy for yourself.
C. Some vendors [Alaska Rock Gym etc.] require you to show a copy of the completed waiver form each time that the student participates in that activity. A copy is kept on file at MCS and a copy travels with MCS chaperone to activity.
A. Parent/guardians are responsible for providing/arranging supervision for their students at activities that require parent participation. For students who will be supervised by an adult other than their parent/guardians, the parent/guardian must submit in writing who will be the supervising adult with parent contact information to Mat-Su Central School before the activity takes place.
B. MCS will verify that student supervision is in place for extended activities which use chartered busses.
Mat-Su Borough School District cancellation procedures will be followed. If school is cancelled, the activity of that day will be cancelled.
Activities may be cancelled due to circumstances beyond Mat-Su Central School’s control, such as weather or road conditions.
Mat-Su Central School will reschedule activities when possible. With all other cancellations, MCS will strive to return activity costs; but due to circumstances outside Mat-Su Central School’s control, some activity costs may not be recovered.
600 E. Railroad Ave., Suite #6
Wasilla, AK 99654
Ph: 907.352.7450 • Fax: 907.352.7480
Office Hours: 8am-4pm, M-Th 8am-3:30pm, Fri
Apple Distinguished School
Recognized by Apple as a distinguished school for innovation, leadership, and educational excellence.
Fully Accredited by AdvancedED