Principal’s Weekly Message

Dear Pinnacle Families,

 

Another week full of events, activities and opportunities for our students!
     The survey results for the First Month Parent Impression are just in. It is obvious that we still have room for growth, but the overall satisfaction rate is very promising.

 

     This week, all our teachers  received training on the effective use of the Promethean Active Panels. I attended the training as well. I believe it is a revolutionary opportunity to improve the student engagement process.

 

     This past Saturday, we purchased a prime spot at the Fair Oaks Mall Private School Exhibition. Ms. Jones and her students did an awesome job generating the highest of interests from visitors. They were initially very shy on handing out the fliers, but you should have seen them later in the day! Our students received congrats from other schools’ reps as well. I would like to thank them on their hard work for our school.

 

     As of October 1st, 2017, we started accepting applications for the 2018-19 school year.  Our goal is to have a wait list for all grade levels by the end of February. In other words, I encourage all Pinnacle families to hurry and enroll their students as soon as possible.

 

     Puma Pride Awards were distributed to students who have performed outstandingly as responsible citizens at Pinnacle Academy. Before the event we watched the mini video below and brainstormed on that with our students briefly. Congrats to all our Puma Pride Winners!

 

     After school piano lessons are on their way! Pinnacle students will have an awesome opportunity to take piano lessons from an expert, Mrs. Luy. Please see the attached flyer and the registration form. She will be working with a group of 6 students and they will be presenting a concert in Spring. Auditions will be held in the auditorium and open to all interested students.

 

     Please enjoy the October 9 News from our broadcasting team.
 
Have a wonderful week!
Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
       Once again, our Country was hit by a major terrorist attack in Las Vegas. It is a major tragedy. We share our most sincere condolences for the victims of the tragedy and strongly condemn any and all acts of terror. Please click on the links below to see the resources we utilized while addressing the situation with our upper grade level students.
       I hope you all had a very positive first month of the school year at Pinnacle Academy and we would like to hear from you. Please click on the link below for our First Month Parent Impression Survey. If you have multiple grade level students, please complete one survey for each child.
      If you are shopping on Amazon, you can use the link below for all your Amazon shoppings and not only shop but also support Pinnacle Academy. The link below is dedicated to Pinnacle Academy. Please note all the shopping conditions will remain the same when you use the link below. Show your support, anytime you can.
          Our students are heavily into broadcasting this year. We will be uploading their news stories on our YouTube channel and all families are welcome to spread the word. Please click on the link below for our students’ initial products.
              Pinnacle Academy held two first time initiatives for our sporting programs. We held our first soccer tryouts and the Golf Team is on its way.
Students and parents were very excited and we are off to a great start.
              The Promethean Active Panels are in our classrooms and mounted. Our lower elementary students were highly excited about their new “Huge TV” in their classrooms. Our goal is to engage all our students to their own learning process and the Active Panels will be just another mean of accomplishing such a goal.
            We are thrilled to visit our students families and get to know each otehr during our initial brainstorming sessions. The PA Parents’ hospitality is unheard of and we sincerely appreciate that.
Have a wonderful week!

Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,

Spring Break is over and we are all back to business. Business of supporting all our students to reach their highest academic and social potentials…
I believe this strong shared value will become more of a tangible outcome, the more positive initiatives we introduce to our learning community. As promised during the parent orientation session in August, we conducted PSAT test for all our high school course taking students. It took place in the auditorium and you could almost hear the sound of the silence in the room. All students were very motivated and engaged. We will receive the results in a month which will lead us towards more initiatives for our students.
Another promise we announced during the parent orientation session was, to implement the released SOL tests for all applicable grades and subject areas. This promise was also kept and we were able to collect another set of data on our students’ academic progress. Both of the interventions above were implemented for the first time and just like any learning curve, the process and the products are anticipated to get better and better along the way.
Parent teacher conferences are here again. We look forward to have all the PA families to attend and help these meetings to become a productive, two way traffic brain storming sessions on supporting our students. In other words, the staff will shed light on what else can be done to improve the student outcomes, based on their observations at school and we also expect to have the parents to shed light to help us understand our students better, based on their observations at home. Team work, works!
We have two new teachers joined us after the Spring Break. Please welcome Ms. Allen and Ms. Sule to our learning community. Ms. Allen is teaching 4th and 5th grade math and science classes and Ms. Sule is teaching our middle school math groups.
One of our main themes this year has been building more and more partnerships for our learning community. One of our 4th grade level students, Asude has participated in research project, in partnership with a NOVA Manassas college student. They worked on the same topic and conducted a very nice presentation to the audience. Thanks to Mrs. Aksoy for facilitating it with her college students at NOVA and 4th grade student at PA!
Sunny days are  here and our high school students are enjoying their recess times under the Pinnacle High School Tent. Many had a lot of doubts about the high school. Were we able to enroll any students? How about recruiting teachers? How about the students’ social growth? Many did not believe that it was going to come true. Patience was the virtue and hard work paid off. Now, we see them each and every day growing both socially and academically. Please see recess performance of our high school students.
We held our third quarter award ceremony. A lot of awards and recognitions were in place. One thing got my attention though. We had the highest number of award winning students since the beginning of the school year in an award ceremony. Sounds like we are on the right track and we will keep moving ahead. Please see the attached.
Last but not the least, our MathCon mathletes were in Chicago this weekend, participating in the Nationwide Math competition. Three of our finalists, Fetin, Yigit and Omer received the honorable mention award and on their way back home with a lot of experience. Congrats to the entire Team!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle AcademyFamilies,
The Spring Break is almost here and we certainly observe the Spring Fever all over the place but it does not mean that we should go into the vacation mode.
We will implement the PSAT test for the first time at Pinnacle’s history. It may sound like it is just a test but it is more than that. It is building mindset towards successful college education completion. It will be our first common indicator to see where our students are compared to all the local and national, public and private school students.  Last week we conducted the practice module, for the past five weeks our parent volunteers supported our students and our teachers have been teaching them for  the past so many years… And now it is time to see the fruition of all the hard work invested in their academic growth.
The parent teacher conferences were to take place on April 17th but based on the feedback from many staff and families, we moved it to April 25th. More information will come soon. April 17th will still be a no School Day for students and on April 25th the meetings will take place between 12:30p.m.-6:00p.m.We will have early dismissal on April 25th and students will be dismissed at 11:45 a.m.
And the Talent Show…. It was a treasure hunt for so many hidden skills at PA. Special thanks to Ms. Richardson and Mr. Martinez for the entire event. They worked very hard with our students and made it happen. The magic shows, the songs, the instrumental performances and many more from our students simply rocked and Mr. Martinez’s Beat Box Show was the icing on the cake…
And the Spring Break! Please make sure that you have plans to spend quality time with our students. When we come back, we have more to lift and we would like to make sure that our students are energized for the last round of our school year.
Have a wonderful week!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Families,
Hope  you all enjoyed your weekend!  Pinnacle students had tons of curricular and extracurricular opportunities through which they kept finding another venue of enjoying their learning process at Pinnacle Academy.
I am sure you all received the informative email from Mr. Dokur last Monday. Pinnacle middle school students are now introduced to Python Programming Langue. A practical mean of CODING will be introduced to our students. Lucky them!
Last Monday, one of Pinnacle Alumna students, Rabia who is currently a tenth grader at FCPS, visited PA as a guest speaker and offered a speech on life after middle school to our 7th, 8th and 9th grade level students. It was as part of her Speech Course assignment. It was so nice to see our students continue to blossom not only at Pinnacle but wherever they continue their education with the foundation they received at PA.
The delayed Pie Day could not be any more fun at all. In the morning students enjoyed their activities within their classrooms and in the afternoon we had cafeteria full of events and activities during which we all got excited about our students’ hard work. The PA Faculty pie eating competition made us all cheer and support our teachers’ commitment for all PA students.
Pinnacle Academy STEAM Night was also another fun initiative with a lot of STEAM activities. I would like thank to the entire PA Staff who made it happen. The 3D Elective Course students did prepare another gift for me this week. The STEAM Night Hat decorated by them. It’s almost like having a birthday every week and I love it, except I feel like I am getting older at a faster pace:)
The Competition season is still on… This weekend PA High School participated in the Fairfax County Regional Science Fair Competition. Due to our total enrollment, we were allowed to have only one student represent our school and the first place winner at our school wide competition, Sami, made us all proud. It was the 62nd annual competition and it was our first one in our history. Sami won the Honorable Mention award. Congrats to him for his hard work!
As you will remember from last week, our FRC Robotics team advanced to the next level of competition and they will need additional funding to move on. The registration of this next level competition is $4K and they also need an additional $6K for upgrading their robot. Please let us know if you can think of any individual or organization who would be interested in becoming a sponsor for these promising students. We will follow  up.
Our high school students had their second round of visit to Sunshine Senior Resident home as part of our Adopt a Grandparent partnership. The experience was very unique both for our students and the Seniors at the residence. More seniors were present to this time which was a great indicator that we are on the right track on our partnership.
This week is the Spirit Week! Please make sure to read the emails from Ms. Ezeobi on the specifics of each day and support your students school spirit boosted.
Last but not the least, this month’s Principal‘s Coffee Hour will be dedicated to introduction of a very Special Event we have been working on. We would like to invite all the PA Families to join us on the Introduction of PA Scholarship Fundraising Gala. The event is aimed to be a mile stone on our school’s growth. Hope to see you all there. The venue is reserved, the invitations are ready to go and before we push the START button, we wanted to make sure that we are all on the same page. Please join us. Btw, breakfast, coffee and tea will be ready for all. This coming Tuesday, at 8:00 a.m.
 
Have a wonderful week!

Best,


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BREAKING NEWS!!!
 
 
Pinnacle Academy high school robotics team participated in their second FRC competition and won two critical awards! They won the Highest Rookie Seed Award and  the Rookie All Star Award and made us all proud! Please hear the attached recording first and see the attached photos of the event. The announcement itself talks for volumes and I get goose bumps every single time I heard it. Now they advanced to the Regional Competition which will lead to the International Competitions! I would like to thank to all parents, staff members for their support for our students on this huge success. There was a total of 39 participating schools of which only four of them advanced to the  regional, Pinnacle being one of them.
 
A big Kudos  to all our Pumatech students for their hard work and special congrats to Captain Kemal for initiating the opportunity!
 
Last but not the least, it could not happen without our generous sponsors! Special thanks to:
 
USA Cabinet Store, Amity Store, Providence Management Company, Hussain Family, and PA PTO.
 
Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
Despite the anticipated cold weather news, I have many heart warming news to share with you all.
Happy International Women’s Day! Please see the gorgeous window card from our second graders to all the Women of the World!
The Fairfax County Spelling Bee was today. PA 6th grader, three consecutive year school-wide Spelling Bee Champion, Fetin,  represented our community with pride and honor. Congratulations on his hard work!
Four Pinnacle Academy mathletes have made it to the National Finals which will take place in Chicago, IL. Congrats to Coach Ferhat and his mathletes! We wish them the best in Chicago.
Our partnership efforts with the local community continue to blossom. Please see the attached Pinnacle Art Exhibition photo from the Oakton Public Library. This is our second exhibition. During the Fall exhibition the marble art projects of our students made us all proud at the public library. Please make some time and visit the exhibition and let the library staff know our appreciation. As you know, there are so many schools in the area, them, choosing to work with us and highlight our students’ products is very exciting.
As mentioned a few days ago, our character education teacher  and her students proposed to visit the Gesher Jewish Day school and show them our support against the threats being made. I said “Yes”. Our students put together a nice best wishes card and hand delivered it to them. They were extremely impressed and touched by the initiative. I believe this is one of the goals of quality education, respecting and showing empathy for  all human beings despite our differences… Then we can talk about a peaceful World for All.
Please mark your calendars for a Hair Cut Fundraising day at Pinnacle Academy on Sunday, March 26, 2017, between 2:00p.m.-5:00p.m. Professional, licensed hair stylists will be at our cafeteria, hair cutting for fundraising! It will be $15 for students, $20 for parents. A sign up genius will be sent for reservations, or you can simply call front desk and let us know when you are coming.
Last Friday, I had two surprise visits to my office. Mr. Yilar and his Science Elective class printed a miniature Eiffel Tower via using their 3D Printer. This very meaningful gift already occupied one of the best spots in my office for viewing. I am proud of them. We keep hearing a lot about the 3D Printers and indeed, there is an amazing potential in this technology. Please click on the link below for more information.
This House Was 3D-Printed In Under 24 Hours At A Cost Of Just $10,000.
The second visit was from two members of our robotics team, Ayse and Hande, hand delivered the Team T-Shirt gift to me. I was humbled. All credits to those wonderful students and their teachers…
We held our first ever Curriculum EXPO at PA. Parent participation was minimal but our teachers have done a phenomenal job getting their booths ready. I would like to thank them for their preparations and also thanks to the families who chose to make it to the event.
I have received some feedback about  Pinnacle Academy Fundraising activities and how the funds are being utilized. The raised funds are channelled to our tuition assistance program. As mentioned before, we are in the process of coming up with a new scholarship fundraising event, which will allow PA to reach out to more diverse background students who would be eligible to participate in the program based on the academic and financial criteria. Such an initiative will not only help more high achievers to gain the opportunity to excel at PA, but also allow PA to become a more diverse and integrated community with the communities around.
Last Tuesday, I was privileged to go out for lunch with NOVA Dean of Students, Dr. Dr. Francher-Ruiz, Dr. Hilbert, NOVA Provost and Dr. Eftekhari, NOVA Dean of Science, Math and Engineering Departments. The lunch was facilitated by Dr. Eftekhari and various opportunities for our students at PA were discussed. As you can tell, we will continue to seek for more outreach venues through which we can mobilize more resources for all PA Students. Special Thanks to Dr. Eftekhari.
And some pedagogy… I have a favor to ask to all the PA families. Please, please, please make sure to listen and hear your children about their concerns. But please allow us to study the case and come up with a thorough conclusion before you judge a situation and allow the student learn your decision, based on a one sided story. I believe such may have negative impact on the development of sense of justice in our students’ minds. My 2 cents…
Best,
Have a wonderful week!

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
Hope you all had a very nice weekend. It’s been another high adrenalin week at Pinnacle Academy. Many academic initiatives, many competitions, many parental involvements and they were all for the good of all our students at our learning community.
As you know, we will be implementing the PSAT exam soon. Two of Pinnacle Academy mothers who are experienced in the field of education had a nice surprise for us. Mrs. Garbia and Mrs. Ghannam proposed to offer PSAT math prep sessions to all our high school course taking middle school students, once a week until the test time, which means five weeks in a row. I gladly said “YES” and we had our first session this past Friday. Special thanks to both Mrs. Garbia and Mrs. Ghannam for the initiative.
As mentioned before, Pinnacle Academy partnered with the Lions Club and conducted hearing and vision screening for our K-6th grade level students. PA parent volunteers and the Lions Club volunteers did an awesome job with our students. Due to our limited space, we had to use the principal‘s office for the hearing test and I believe the office served its purpose… An office where all voices should be heard 🙂
The Lions Club reps suggested to follow the recommendations they had on the screening forms and I ditto. A huge thanks to Mrs. Trimner for facilitating the entire event for all our children!
Mrs. Trimner has also been coaching our Odyssey of the Mind team for the competition which took place yesterday. Our students have developed team building, leadership, communication and acting skills throughout their preparatory sessions. They conducted an awesome performance and made us all proud. Thanks to Coach Trimner and all her students!
Last week our Science Olympiad Middle School team won two 2nd place and one 5th place awards, bringing home three medallions. Please see the attached mini video from our second place winning competition and enjoy their winning excitement during the tournament. That is the adrenalin which will hopefully feed the future scientists of our Nation. Thanks to all the coaches and the students who made it happen.
Our high school robotics team, the PUMATECHs participated in their first competition. It was a two day long, long competition. Very high energy and adrenalin demanding session.They have impressed many judges and guests during the competition. They met with many experienced students from other schools and learned from them. It was full of variety of learning opportunities and our students did took advantage of such. I congratulate them for their courage! In particular seeing majority of other teams, almost coming with UHAUL trucks to carry their robots, made us all feel more proud about our students’ courage. Your resources may be limited, your experience may be next to nothing but none of those hurdles detoured them from completing their robot, participating and even winning some solid games.
Last but not the least, Pinnacle Academy is coming up with a summer enrichment program. Mrs. Ozturk has sent an email on this initiative and it is offering opportunities to strengthen our students’ academic backgrounds further. Since such will take place during summer, fun is unavoidable… Please take time and read the email and the information carefully. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Mrs. Ozturk.
Pinnacle Academy is a small learning community with tons of stakeholders who invest their hearts into all our students’ academic and social growth and to me it is priceless. I feel privileged serving at Pinnacle Academy.
Have a wonderful  week!
Best,

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
Spring is rapidly approaching and the warmth of its flowers are already smiling at us from left and right. Please see the attached photo of the first spring blossoms of our campus.
One of our promises earlier in the year was to introduce PSAT test to our community. The tests are ordered from College Board and will be conducted by the end of March. The test will be introduced to all our high school course taking Pinnacle Academy students, including the sixth graders who are taking Algebra I this year. Our goal is to implement this test every year at Pinnacle Academy. According to research, chances are higher that the students who are more familiar with the PSAT test, will complete their college education. This test itself does not only introduces students to higher academic challenges but at the same time builds a mindset and motivation towards successful college education.
Scholastic Book Fair is here! Our students will be introduced to various recently published, very exciting books at Pinnacle Academy. Our teachers will escort them and introduce them to age and grade level appropriate options, however, we believe parents should also join their students during the shopping process. What a quality time spent with your child! You are all invited. Please note that this event itself is another mindset construction activity, instilling love of reading in our students.
The School Improvement Fundraising bake sale was a success! I would like to thank to all the members of our wonderful community making it happen. However, the organizing parents approached me and told me that they are well aware that our school is in need of much bigger projects and we should be considering a greater mean of fundraising such as a fundraiser dinner, spiced with a silent auction. An event to raise $100,000.00… Well, we are all about high expectations at Pinnacle Academy and this would be a great way to prove it. I met with them at the end of the bake sale day and we discussed the possibilities of coming up with one by the end of April. As always, we need more hands to lift this exciting burden. Therefore, any parents who would be interested in joining the committee is more than welcome to join. You can simply reply to this email and let me know your interest. I will facilitate the rest for you.
Please mark your calendars for March 7, 2017. We will hold an evening event called Pinnacle Academy Curriculum EXPO. It will be at the school, between 5:00p.m.-6:15p.m.The purpose of the event is  to introduce the curriculum offered to your children during the school year 2017-18, at Pinnacle Academy. All grade levels will have their expo booth available with their relevant curricular materials for your review and questions. All families and students are invited!
Last but not the least, our Science Olympiad Middle School Team has brought 3 medallion to Pinnacle Academy yesterday. Our high school team has participated in this competition for the first time as Pinnacle Academy High School team and gained a lot of experience. Congrats to all our students, their coaches and families! I will share more on this accomplishment next week.
Have a nice week!
Best,

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,

I would like thank to all the parents who were able attend the parent
teacher conferences. Parent participation was much higher compared to
the previous one and as the PA staff, we appreciate that.

The PA Mathcounts and Odyssey of the Mind teams are working hard on
their upcoming competitions. Mrs. Trimner has been coaching the Odyssey of
the Mind and Mr. Ferhat has been coaching the Mathcounts teams. Thanks to
both for their commitment to our students success!

Mrs. Trimner has also facilitated another PA partnership for our
students. She has reached to Lions Club and organized a vision screening
event. Vision screening plays an important role on students’ academic
and social growth. In particular, if it is not identified during early
ages, it may be the cause for some delayed growth.

The event will take place on March 2nd, 2017 at our own campus.

Special Thanks to Mrs. Trimner and the Lions Club!

Our high school robotics team has been working diligently and they were able
get their robot moving. Once again, please remember, they are
competing at the college league, with limited resources and
experience, however, with the support of a huge Pinnacle Academy
Family, they are overcoming all their challenges one at a time.

Please watch the attached.

Second quarter is over and we have fifty percent of the year before us
to reach our academic goals for our students and our learning
community. We have some initiatives in place and we will implement
them one at a time. One of the most important intervention we will
introduce is coming up with Monthly Academic Indicators for all our
grade levels. The indicators will be SOL aligned and will give us
clear feedback on our students’ growth, way before the third MAP
testing.

Last but not the least, our second place winning Future City Team,
 has received an invitation from the Missile Defense Agency at Fort Belvoir Base
for exhibiting and presenting their project to the children of the MDA employees.
The event will take place on April 27, 2017 at the MDA Headquarter.

Way to go Pinnacle Academy! Way to go!

Have a wonderful week!

Best,


Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
I know it is not the best time to write, send or read an email, however, I will try to multitask on my end 🙂 Hope you all are enjoying the Super Bowl 2017! I know it is tough for Patriots fans for now, but game is not over!
Tuesday is the big day. It is the day when we are willing to brainstorm and team up with our students’ families at a deeper level so that we can continue to support them as best as we can. We hope to see the 100% of the families attend and help us help their students. We have a favor to ask though. Please bring your student with you and have them participate in their own learning process. Such will not only increase their awareness but at the same time help them own the recipe for more success.
Our teachers are prepared to discuss our students’ academic and social progress and present an intervention plan to be implemented both at home and at  school for some of our students who needs additional support. We will be utilizing our MAP test results, our students’ graded materials and your feedback during our brainstorming sessions.
Please remember, any student who participates in their parent teacher conferences will receive a one dress down pass.
Pinnacle is back on twitter again. Please follow us for last minute news and announcements. We will also use it for inclement weather announcements and other Pinnacle related news. Stay tuned!
Last but not the least, while we are enjoying our time with our families, some of our students are working on structure building Science Olympiad projects in Greensboro, NC. Since we have limited facilities at our own campus, we were able to make arrangements for our students at my previous school, Triad Math and Science Academy. The attached photos are just taken few moments ago and they are still working. We wish them the best of luck and thank them for their hard work representing our community at the high school Science Olympiad Competition.
Have a wonderful week and hope to see you all at the parent teacher conference.

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
Pinnacle Academy Staff began the week with a very sweet surprise from our wonderful PTO. A very nice goodie box, filled with variety of chocolates, a heartfelt message on a heart shape card and love, addressed to our awesome Pinnacle Academy staff. Another example of a strong community at Pinnacle Academy… Thanks to the entire Pinnacle Academy PTO Team!
The 7th Annual PA Science and Engineering Fair was a success. It may appear like a lot of busy work to some, but indeed it is a very comprehensive long term investment. We are investing in the STEM future of not only our Nation, but also the entire World. It is a comprehensive process through which we are trying to instill the love of learning STEM topics in our students. According to research, students’ interest in STEM areas are declining after 4th  grade, while the nation-wide STEM area workforce gap has been getting bigger and bigger every year. PA’s efforts to close the gap will pay off in the long run.I would like to thank to all our participating students, staff and parents in this invaluable project. Please click on the link below for the photos of the event.
The competition season is still on and our school-wide spelling bee contest was held last Friday at our auditorium. The tight competition ended with a historical repetition. Fetin and Ezo made it to the final round and Fetin won the first place award for the third year in a row. Congrats to Fetin, Ezo, their families, teachers and judges. The winner will represent our school at the regional competition.
Our Future City Team’s second place accomplishment in the Mid-Atlantic region has been celebrated via various activities. Coach Yilar offered a skiing trip to his winning team and the parents of the PA Future City Team students held a cook out for the team members, their coaches and families. The Cook out took place today and Mr. Ismael did it again. Delicious burgers, well seasoned, crispy and juicy chicken tenders with tons of home made deserts,  crowned by a freshly prepared Turkish Tea for the guests. Parents of the Future City Team Players recognized Coach Yilar and Coach Ferhat with a token of appreciation gift card at the end of the event.
Dr. Ficici, one of Dr. Renzulli’s former PhD students, and our school Social Impact Club sponsor has organized a field trip to the Newseum Exhibition for the club members. The museum is looking at the World through the eyes of national and international news. They did not only take a look at our near history through different lenses but at the same time, did some role play as the anchor students of the day. Thanks to Dr. Ficici for facilitating the trip.
This week Fairfax County  Government has had the Stuff the Bus unit fundraise for the needed ones of our county. The Stuff the Bus representatives were also at the Oakton Giant asking for support. As you can see from their sign on the bus, they are not only asking for food supplies but they also provide rent, utility and medical bill support. Pinnacle Academy joined their efforts via offering tuition assistance to three different students from different families who are in need of support. The representatives were very surprised to see the innovative approach of our school and they thanked to our generous Governing Board for their commitment.
Last but not the least, Parent Teacher conferences coming up. Ms. Ezeobi has been contacting families to schedule the visits for all elementary grade levels. Our goal is to have 100 % of the families joining us for the third round of parent teacher conferences at PA.
Have a wonderful week!
Best,
P.S. We will be checking the weather closely on the anticipated snow and will send out school-wide email this coming morning, if we need to close the school due to inclement weather.

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
I hope you all are enjoying your long weekend. As a school we are certainly discussing the topics around what made the MLK Day the MLK day but I believe it is equally important that we discuss such sensitive issues with our students at home. The United States of America has come a long way and in order to add more positive value to our country, our children must understand the values gained through Dr. KIng’s efforts.
MAP testing is almost over. We have few more make up sessions to be completed and results will be shared accordingly. Now that we will have the second set of MAP test results we will have a better comparison data on our students’ academic growth. Also we will discuss the results in parson with our families during the upcoming Parent Teacher Conference which will be held on February 7, 2017.
It is the season for competitions. Pinnacle Academy students will continue to show off and represent us all with pride.  Last week, we had our school-wide Geo Bee competition and identified our winner for Pinnacle Academy who will represent us at the next level of competition. Congrats to Adan! We hope to see him at the Nationals this year. The school-science fair is on schedule for this coming Saturday, along with the Future City Competition. We wish the best for all participating students. It will be a lot of fun and excitement.
Last but not the least, tomorrow, we will hold the Principal‘s Coffee Hour during which we will serve our parents with morning coffee and tea, but also a brief presentation from our high school robotics team, Puma Techs. We look forward to having you all join us and hear from them about their robotics goals and competition.
Thanks you and have a wonderful week!
Best,

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,

Happy New Year! It is so exciting to have you and all your awesome PA students back. You all are missed and I mean it.

I hope you all are enjoying the nice and soothing snow in the most warmest and safest way possible. Along with many initiatives at PA, we have another unique one rising slowly but very steadily. The PA FRC team Pumatech is getting ready to participate in the college level robotics competition FRC. First time ever at PA…
Eleven PA high school students, their principal and our powerful school van hit the road today to participate in the Season Kickoff event sponsored by the Madison High School FRC team at the Vienna Fire Station. Our students carried themselves very well and met with many Madison High School students who have been participating in the event for the past few years. They will be our mentors on the event.
They have around 80 students, 30 volunteer parents and fundraised amount of $50,000.00 They also had some non-parent volunteers as the mentors for their students. On the other side we have 11 students, fundraised $7,000.00, one parent volunteer. Obviously we need more parent volunteer hands to be extended but we are very excited with what we already have in hand. You got to start from somewhere. The entire initiative was instigated and facilitated by Captain Kemal F and grew into where it is today. After the kickoff event we came back to school and Captain Kemal F. introduced the road map for the upcoming 6 weeks. I encourage all the PA parents to support them in any way possible. They need support on programming, chaperons, mentoring on robotics, meals for late evening and weekend practices and more funds for more supplies. They are thrilled today and we, as the adults around them should support them. They will take care of the rest.Please feel free to contact me for any support you can provide and I will channel you accordingly.
We reached out to the wikileaks info on the NOVA professors’ testimonials for PA students. Please see the attached. I darkened the student names as I did not have their parents’ permission for release.
Also see the most recent badge of PA Early College Program students receiving their NOVA ids. Our program is growing and growing rapidly. I would like to thank to all our students for dedication and their parents for their confidence in Pinnacle Academy. We have more to lift and we will with your ongoing support. Their attached photo talks for volumes.
The Renzulli School Enrichment Model is almost tailored for many  existing PA traditions. Pinnacle Academy’s efforts helping Syrian refugees is not something new and it is back again. In partnership with Embrace Relief we are collecting coats and blankets for the Syrian Refugees in Northern Iraq. Please see the attached.
New year came with three new teachers to Pinnacle Academy as three new gifts.
Ms. Kim-Music Teacher
Mr. Martinez-Middle School Math
Mrs. Asma- Third Grade Classroom Teacher
Please see their brief letter of intro messages below.

I am so excited to be a part of the Pinnacle Academy team. I recently moved from Houston, TX, where I was a fourth grade English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher. I was born and raised in the state of Texas. I attended Sam Houston State University for undergrad majoring in Political Science with a double minor in Middle Eastern studies and general business administration. I am ec-6 certified in all subjects as well as ESL certified. I am also currently working on my Master’s in ESL/Bilingual education (M.A.Ed) from The University of Texas Permian Basin. I have a passion for teaching and academia. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns. I look forward to meeting you all throughout the semester.

Mrs. Asma

______________________

Hello fellow parents,

My name is Bruce Martinez. I have been teaching for roughly 4 years and I have since realize that my passion is to shape the minds of future leaders. I have a Bachelors Degree in Cellular Biology and am working towards my masters in Education. I love playing the guitar and in my spare time I like playing video games. I hope to have a great year in Pinnacle! Thank you for having me!
_______________________

Hello my name is Sophia Kim, and I will be teaching music to kindergarten through 8th grade class at Pinnacle Academy.  I began my piano study at the age of six, and continue to study piano at the University.  I continued my study and earned Master’s Degree in Education from Pacific Lutheran University, located in Washington State.  I have taught in China, as well as in Japan, before coming to the U.S.  Aside from teaching music at Pinnacle Academy, I serve as a piano accompanist for a Church in Arlington, and teach private piano lessons.  I currently live with my husband, Andrew, and my daughter Emma, in Reston, Virginia.  

I look forward to teaching your children!

Respectfully,

Sophia Kim

__________________________

Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
One would assume that since it is the last school week of the year 2016, we would be more laid back and more in holiday mode. However, Pinnacle Academy community was fully occupied with more enriching and engaging events and activities for all.
The Food Drive winning 6th graders enjoyed the movie theater award with their homeroom teacher Mr. Yilar. As you will remember we collected more than 1400 lbs of food as the PA Community and the 6th graders got the heaviest load of donation for Food for Others organization. Congrats to all the 6th graders!
Pinnacle Academy reached out to the surrounding communities and invited them for a holiday dinner at PA. Oakton Public Library, Unity of of Fairfax, Sunshine Senior Residence representatives were among the invitees. The event took place at our cafeteria. PA staff, and the staff from our neighbors enjoyed a nice dinner at a very cozy environment. We were able to get to know each other and also introduce our communities to discuss opportunities to support each organization such as adopt a grandparent initiative, an art, essay and poetry contest on dialogue, and finding judges for our events at PA. The event was very promising and we have already identified such opportunities to benefit our stakeholders within our communities.
Ms. Gonzalez, Mrs. Culha and their students had a community field trip to Vienna Police Department. I was privileged to be their bus driver as well. The officers at the Police Department were very pleased to host our students. They gave us a very informative facilities tour. Our students loved to spend time in a police car with full lights on. Some checked the police computer, some visited the back seats. It was a very cold day but the visit was such a bond building, warm activity. Thanks to Ms. Gonzalez and Mrs. Culha for the initiative.
The PA PTO sponsored two successful events this past week. The Winter Bazaar and the Bake Sale… Our PTO’s hard work and dedication shined as always. They raised almost $1400 on those two events and I truly appreciate their invaluable support for our community. Way to GO PA PTO, Way to Go!
The PA staff holiday dinner was the icing on the cake. Mrs. Teber hosted the PA staff with an awesome dinner treat. We had the white elephant game as our bond activity and welcomed the upcoming winter break which is well deserved by all the PA staff.
The NOVA-PA Dual Enrollment students completed their first semester courses. Now we call them our A Team. Not only because they are our pioneers on this unique success journey but also they have proven that the program is the right fit for them. 100 % of our high school students, taking college courses, passed all their college courses with “A”. A heartfelt Kudos to all of them!
I wish you all a warm and nice winter break with all your beloved ones. Please make sure that our students receive a relaxing break which would energize them for more academic task of the 2017 Spring Semester.
Have a wonderful winter break!
Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
Another busy and exciting week before the Winter Break… Our search for more opportunities and resources for all our students continued while we are introducing them the best  education we can at Pinnacle Academy.
We recently purchased the online student portfolio development program called Naviance. It has been one of our promises for our students and it is finally here. The program allows the students develop their college application portfolio as early as 8th grade. By the time students need to apply for the colleges, all they will need to do is provide their view only username and password for the college admission officers and show of with their accomplishments in the so many past years. It is a right fit for a 21st Century STEM school like Pinnacle Academy.
I had the privilege to meet and talk to Dr. Ari Soltes, a renown theology and fine arts professor at Georgetown University. I was fortunate enough to present our NOVA Dual Enrollment initiative and asked his thoughts. Dr. Soltes stated that it was an excellent idea and initiative and congratulated Pinnacle Academy on the move. When asked about the possible maturity concerns,Dr. Soltes stated that it is even better for the PA students being around more mature students which will allow them to grow stronger from the social aspect. Dr. Soltes also stated that there were no downfalls of the initiative. We knew we were on the right track, but it is nice to be reassured by an expert like him. Dr. Soltes earned his PhD at Johns Hopkins University and speaks 8 languages.
Our after school clubs continue to enable our students while they continue to become better and more knowledgable World Citizens. Please see the attached photos of our students designing and producing costumes from Greece, Germany, Egypt and Scotland.
You just received a quick survey from Ms. Ezeobi’s office. It is about our future growth plans for PA. Please take a few minutes to complete the survey. Your feedback matters.
This coming coming we have the monthly Principal‘s Coffee Hour at PA. This coming Tuesday, we will have Dr. Taban and Mrs. Ozturk to host the event for all. We thought this would be a nice way of increasing maternal participation for the event. All parents are welcome!
Our wonderful PTO will hold the Winter Bazaar on Thursday and Friday and also a Bake Sale on Friday. I am sure you all know what that means at Pinnacle Academy. A lot of delicious food, baked goods… This will be the third time I would be ruining my diet but it is OK. All families are invited.
Last but not the least, I would like to thank to all the PA Families who have been spreading the positive rumor about their experience at PA. During the past two weeks we have received many families for family school tour. They were highly interested in our program and willing apply for the upcoming school year.
We are and we will continue to grow and glow at Pinnacle Academy. Thanks for your ongoing support for all the Pinnacle Academy students and staff.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
An 83 year old young man, residing in Crownsville, MD, driving all the way down to Oakton, VA to address our students about the post election thoughts…Our students asked lots of questions and he answered them all tirelessly. He delivered some very important messages and they were not only great for the students but also for adults.
Mr. Spear Lancaster, a long time mentor to me, introduced the students the U.S. Constitution, read the very first sentence and reminded our students that “We the people” statement was referring to them, not to a leader or an admiral or any other entity. He also stated that we live in a country where our hard work will payoff. Mr. Lancaster also said that the system that was established in USA will continue to support us all on reaching our goals and making our dreams true, as long as we believe we can do it.
I worked with Mr. Lancaster on several projects and I have always seen him as a man of action. He always remained positive, avoided whining and success followed him. Again, and 83 year old young man, driving hours with the hope of helping others.
Pinnacle Academy Social Capital Club has facilitated a unique event last week. Four of our 9th grade levels students, with the guidance of Coach Ficici, decided to work on helping the recent refugees coming from Turkey. If nothing helping them tell about their stories. The PA Social Capital Club, in partnership with Rumi Forum, facilitated an interview between one of those recent Turkish Families and a reporter from Fairfax County Times. Our students translated the dialogue, hoping to be a voice for the unheard ones in Fairfax, VA. Kudos to the PA Social Capital Club!
We finally hired a music teacher and she will start teaching after the winter break. The positive impact of music teaching on STEM learning is a fact and we will be able to utilize it as of January 2017.
Pinnacle Academy is a small school and it allows us to observe our sensitivities at a higher level compared to larger settings. It was brought to our attention that nut allergy has also become an area of concern within our community. Therefore, we appreciate if you can help our students avoid all types of nuts at PA on their lunch or snack choices. More information will be shared with the students and the families accordingly.
Last but not the least, our FLL Team participated in the Statewide competition this past weekend. They were able gain to lots of experience, team building skills and had tons of fun. We are proud of all and Congratulate them for their hard work!
Have a wonderful week!
Best,

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
I hope you all enjoyed the Thanksgiving break with your beloved ones and energized for the last few weeks of 2016.  We had many exciting events and activities before and after the break and I did not want them to go unnoticed.
First of all, we would like to thank to the entire PA parents who have put together the delicious meals for our entire community. Our students and staff have enjoyed a true feast due to the dedicated PA parents’ support. The food was so much and so delicious that not gaining a few lbs here and there was not even an option. We all enjoyed it and thanks to the entire PA Community for establishing and maintaining such a tradition for our all.
The PA 9th graders were introduced to their MacBooks. Each PA 9th grade level student was promised to receive a MacBook and the promise was fulfilled as of last week. We wish them the best of academic growth through the resources PA has been and will continue to offer. As you all know, all our middle school students have been utilizing  ChromeBooks on daily basis, our elementary school students have daily access to ChromeBooks, IPADs and Nooks and all are becoming very tech-savvy citizens at Pinnacle Academy.
As you may know Pinnacle Academy, in partnership with GeorgeMason University, has been organizing the regional middle school Science and Engineering Fair sponsored by Broadcom Masters. We just received a congratulation letter from Broadcom Masters, indicating that one of the students competed through our event has been announced to be one of the 30 finalists in the Nation. Kudos to the entire PA Community! We are on the right track to become a STEM hub in the NOVA area.
Today we have delivered all the 1400 lb food drive campaign products to the local charity organization Food for Others. Food for Others officials congratulated PA students and community for collecting so much within such a small community. Thanks to all the families for their contribution!
This morning our lower elementary school students enjoyed a nice puppet show from the local fire department staff. Just another great opportunity to engage our students with their local communities. It was fun, informative and very engaging. Thanks to our Lower elementary school team for facilitating this unique event.
Please see the attached and have wonderful week!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
As I mentioned in the last week’s message, we held our end of the quarter awards ceremony. At one point I noticed that the round of applaud was fading away and felt a need to remind our students that what makes a community, a true and strong community is, the sense sharing for happiness and sorrow among the stakeholders. I asked them to celebrate the accomplishments of their friends as if they were their own success.
One of our hidden treasures at Pinnacle Academy is the quality of our school climate. Home visits, after school activities, competitions, field trips, evening and weekend activities…All involving staff, students, parents… In other words members of our community reaching out to one another and spending quality time outside our school. Thanks to the Nabiyeva Family and Mr. & Mrs. Ismail making our community a stronger one at an evening ice skating activity. I would like to encourage all the members of our community to do more of such and at the end our students will benefit from such a warm school/family environment the most.
I am sure you all are proud of our FRC, college level competition team. Please remember all of them are high school students and they are doing some great stuff. Immediately after they received the $4K grant, they held a meeting with the regional supervisor f, Dr. Lindsay, for the competition. Dr. Lindsay stated the Pinnacle Academy team was the only one which has submitted the proposal among all the rookie participants which includes some college level groups as well. Kudos PA FRC Team!
We had an awesome Principal‘s Coffee Hour this past Tuesday.  We had our usual coffee, and team but a phenomenal fundraiser for the orphanages in India. As you will we hosted the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Mr. Satyarthi who was awarded mainly for his commitment to stop the children’s right violation. The PA moms did an awesome job for the fundraising preparations under Ms. Geeta’s leadership and dad’s did a wonderful job buying and consuming delicious baked goods. At the end we raised $734.10 and best part is all the proceedings will be hand delivered by the Trehan family. I would like to thank to Mrs. Trehan and the entire Trehan family for their commitment to PA community climate and the children of the World!
Last but not the least, the season for Thanksgiving is here. We will enjoy some delicious meals of the season together. I am sure we all have tons of things to be thankful for and the season encourages us all find our own ways of doing that but practicing together. Are we raising true global citizens at PA or what? Thanks to the entire PA Families for making Pinnacle Academy a better place to teach and learn for all.
Have nice rest of the weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
This week was a very busy week from various aspects. Parent-Teacher conference, Presidential Elections, Veterans Day Celebration, the end of the first Quarter Award Ceremony and rapidly approaching Thanksgiving break is before us. It has been not a busy week only but also a busier rest of the school year based on what we have before us. The STEM Fair, Science Olympiad, search for a new home for Pinnacle Academy, Spelling Bee, Map Tests, Future City and many more Renzulli activities and partnerships…
This year we have reached out to the Wounded Warriors Project and invited a guest speaker for the Veterans Day celebrations. Ret. Lieutenant Colonel Brooks has joined us for our assembly as our keynote speaker. He addressed our students and received almost 100 questions from our students during his 30 min session. He talked about the importance of service and making positive impact on others’ lives. Our students were so engaged throughout his speech. We also agreed to discuss additional partnership means with the Wounded Warrior Project, so that our students could also engage in additional Renzulli Projects supporting our troops. Please see the attached photos from the event. Trust me, the one with students racing to ask questions is not a shopped photo.
Our busy bee students and their coaches are working diligently on getting our students ready for more challenging and engaging activities both inside and outside of PA premises. The construction of this year’s Future City of Pinnacle Academy has had it’s ground breaking activity and cut Mr. Ferhat’s former  classroom white board. We will recycle his ex-whiteboard as our base for our future city. Please see Aydin in action resizing the white board into the required dimensions for the competition, in the attached photo for the club.
Success will be even more awesome if it is crowned with meaningful celebration. We  were fortunate enough to celebrate our students’ academic and social accomplishments during our end of the quarter awards ceremony. We did not only celebrate the students but also the staff of the month. We thank to Ms. Ezeobi for her hard work and commitment for Pinnacle Families. She is selected to be the Staff of the Month for the month of September. As always, our wonderful PTO recognized her with a token of appreciation and we appreciate the PA PTO’s sincere efforts making Pinnacle Academy a better place for all. Our staff also received an excellent lunch treat from our PTO parents during the teacher work day. It’s a blessing to have so many loving and caring families at PA.
There was another celebration at the Hussain Family’s house tonight. A Pot Luck celebration event was held to recognize our FLL winning students, the Techno Pumas. During this cozy social event, we were introduced to awesome dishes, deserts, and a mini award ceremony, congratulating the Techno Pumas, Coach Dokur and Coach Geeta for the victory they brought home. We wish them the best of luck at the State Finals.
In addition to the Renzulli School Wide Enrichment committee, we are also willing to establish a School Safety Committee. The purpose of the new committee is to review the current safety and security measures we currently have in place and also look into additional interventions to help our students and community members to feel better at Pinnacle Academy. If you would like to be part of this new team, please reply and let me know.
We will hold our third our Principal‘s Coffee Hour this coming Tuesday at 8:00a.m. I truly enjoyed the first two sessions and loved the feedback provided. Please come again and bring another parent who missed the first two, with you. During the event, in addition to our brainstorming discussion, we will also have a cupcake sale for a great cause. Please see the below invitation.
Have a wonderful weekend!
Best,

Join Us!!!!

4th annual fundraiser to 

help support orphan children that are victims of child trafficking

 

November 15, 2016

Breakfast Bake Sale During Principals Coffee Hour

Sale-At Dismissal

and Decorate Your Own Cupcake $2 

Pinnacle Academy has proudly raised over $5,000 and the funds have been used to buy Math and English books and Clothes for the children in the orphanage.  Our fundraising goal for this year is to raise at least $1,500.

Bachpan Bachao Andolan (BBA) symbolizes the grassroots movement for the protection of children, ensuring their quality education. As of October 2014, BBA has rescued more than 83,500 victims of trafficking, slavery and child labor and has helped them re-establish trust in society and find promising futures for themselves.

BBA Vision

To create a child-friendly society, where all children are free from exploitation and receive free and quality education.


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,

As we all are experiencing this year, Pinnacle Academy is going through many transitions and going through them all concurrently. Some of those initiatives that have been introduced have been settled, some are settling and some are on their way.

I would like to write about one of the most recent, supplementary initiatives called IXL. All web based, progressive and designed based on VA standards of learning. All students have received their username and password information, received their training on how to utilize it. Our faculty has real time access to student usage and accuracy on their work which saves a lot of time from grading. The IXL intervention is a nationwide tool that hundreds of thousands of students are taking  advantage of.We are very pleased to observe that majority of our students enjoying the program, however, we still have some of our students who are not fully utilizing the resource. I appreciate if all our parents can make sure that their children are also using IXL for reinforcing their learning experience and remediation. Thank you all so much for your support.

PA is also in the process of redesigning the nook and the IPAD usage in our classrooms. We will assign them to our elementary rosters so that the faculty can utilize them as their technology station through which students can practice various academic applications as well as IXL. Such will also allow the instructors to further differentiate their delivery accordingly with our students’ needs.
You may also have heard from your students that we have modified the dismissal protocol for our students. They are no longer being dismissed from their classrooms. All upper building students report to the auditorium, all K-1 students report to the cafeteria along with the high school students and dismissed from those locations once their ride arrives. This practice has many benefits to our operation. The transition is smoother and more organized, we can utilize the gathering for announcements and mini assemblies, last but not the least, teachers gain additional 20 minute per day planning, meeting time which is a well needed resource for all the teachers in the World.
We also have come up with two more initiatives for our staff. Every Wednesday, PA staff receives a baked potato treat! The idea came from Mrs. Wilder-Bushey and Mrs. Aksoy. And the admin said “YES”. In addition to that our lunch vendor agreed to offer lunch treat for the entire PA staff every last Thursday of the month. Just started last month and we appreciate their support. The PA staff certainly deserves more and our community does work hard recognizing their dedication which at the end makes us a great community. Next week, I will announce the first Staff of the Month recognition. Happy Teachers😀 will give us happier students 😁 and happier students will produce the happiest parents😂
Last week, one of PA parents, Dr. Ficici facilitated a meeting with Dr. Renzuli himself and Pinnacle Academy team. Dr. Renzuli has come to a conference on Gifted and Talented education in West Virginia and was generous enough to meet with us in person during his busy schedule. We had two major projects required his attention and if all works out fine, Pinnacle Academy students will have access to more opportunities in terms of their social and academic growth at PA. Stay tuned.
Field trips are on and have a Renzuli theme attached to them. Ms. Mackenzie took her elective course students to Fairfax County Animal Shelter on a field where students found out ways to help the animals in need. Kids loved it which is where the motivation begins, and the rest will come.
The PA after school clubs activities continue to engage our students through various activities, I was able to stop by at our chess club and saw the kids all excited about what they were doing. My special thanks to Mrs. Ahmad for running the club for our students.
We had an awesome PUMA fest event today. I will have more on that next week.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,

I hope you all are enjoying the marvelous colors of the season with your families. I certainly recommend a visit to DC  and guarantee that you will almost find another version of Cherry Blossom there. If you will not  have time, just click on the link below for a mini virtual tour.
Grace Art program has been initiated at PA already. Special thanks to our PTO for the hard work and dedication making it happen. Please see the attached samples from our students.
Water Marbling club is another venue that our students are privileged to entertain gaining more artistic skills at PA. Special thanks to Mrs. Yildiz for making it happen. Please see the attached student products from this past week. In the mean time, we are still in search for an  art teacher to integrate art, more in our teachings.
We are in the process of coming up with a school climate survey for our learning community. Yes, we already have various avenues of communication in place, however, this research based school climate survey will allow us to assess our overall operation from a more cumulative angle. It will be sent this coming week and we appreciate all your feedback. Your voice matters at PA.
It’s the field trip season… Apple picking, Team Building and visiting National Geographic Museum. Last week our 7th graders had a very interesting field trip. They witnessed so many great figures from the Ancient Greece and also were privileged to meet with an internationally renown photographer, Bertie Gregory. I heard so much about the trip from my 7th grader at home and sound like they loved it. Special thanks to Ms. Bush for the opportunity. Mr. Gregory is a photographer and has a you tube tv show about wildlife. The TV show is on every Wednesday. You can only find it on the National Geographic you tube channel.
After taking so many steps helping our students become globally oriented and well rounded citizens, I believe this trip itself was just icing on the cake. Stay tuned! More field trips are coming before the winter cold hits.
Important Reminders!
Principal Coffee Hour- 10/18-8:00a.m. @ school cafeteria
School Climate Survey-10/21 via email
PUMA FEST-10/22-@ school parking lot
Barnes & Nobles Book Fair- 10/29 at Barnes & Nobles
Picture Day-10/31
The more parents participate, the more students succeed!
Look forward to seeing you all!
Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Families,
I am very excited to announce another partnership we have just established with another K-6 Grade level program from California.  Pinnacle Academy and Laurence School has become sister schools as of today.
Laurence School has a global education program called Global Garden that touches all aspects of the school and its community.  At the heart of the program is a network of sister schools in countries including China, Mexico, Liberia, Kenya, Netherlands, England, India and Israel.  Their youngest grade, Kindergarten level students, will begin with Pinnacle Academy Kindergarten students, and explore their identity as Americans before connecting with schools abroad. The Global Garden program is also a perfect match with our Renzulli School Wide Enrichment Program. Special thanks to Mrs. Arasli, Pinnacle Academy Proud Parent, for facilitating the opportunity.
Pinnacle Academy made the news twice this past week. The 2014 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Mr. Kailash Satyarthi’s visit attracted local media’s attention and provided a nice coverage opportunity for our community. Please click on the links below for more information.


I would like to thank to our families for observing necessary safety measures for our students. Adjusting speed, avoiding cell phone usage, and utilizing the designated areas for pick up and drop off…We are doing much better now.
The Friday Family Fun night was FUN. It was fun enough that even some former PA students joined their friends till 9:00 p.m. A lot of board games, refreshments, and smiling faces. That’s what it was all about and I thank to our dedicated staff and parents making it happen.
Last but not the least, progress report cards are coming soon. Please make sure to spend quality time with your students reviewing their grades. Please allow them to share their perception on their current performance and encourage them to come up with their own action plans for further improvement, if it is needed. If the academic performance is already beyond satisfactory, then allow them to identify the next level of academic achievement they should be shooting for. All our children are gems and all we have to do is polish a little at times and the rest will come.
I also would like to share a very powerful TED talk with you all. Just to give us all an idea on how we should approach our students while guiding them in the most positive directions possible. I have witnessed this approach in action many times and learned that it works whether you are dealing with a child or an adult.

Please click on the link below for  the short video.


Have a wonderful weekend!
Best,

Dear Pinnacle Academy Parents and Guardians,

I know you all have received the press release on Thursday, but I would like to remind you all that this coming Monday, at 8:30a.m., the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, Mr. Kailash Sathyarthi will address our students and the members of our learning community. Introducing such an important international figure is a great gift to our community and I would like to thank to Mrs. Geeta for facilitating the entire event for our students.

The first round of parent teacher conferences has begun. The PA faculty will reach out to you for a brief parent teacher conference, during which the main agenda item will be the MAP test results of our students. Additional student products will also be included in the discussion. Please follow up with your child’s teacher accordingly.

Recently we heard another great news from NOVA. 4 additional students applied for the Pinnacle Academy Early College Program and all 4 students were accepted by the office of President due to their academic accomplishments. All these 4 students will start taking college courses for the Spring 2017 semester. Kudos to all 4 Pinnacle Academy Champions.

Electives courses have hit the road with a lot of excitement. Students are working on various content areas with their teachers. These electives will allow students to experience wide variety of real life applications. I was privileged to witness and test the lego bridges, built by our dedicated students. It was their first step in engineering and they were all champions. Please see the attached.

After school club activities are on their way and we will begin offering those to our students 3 days a week. Research supports that students succeed more and enjoy their learning process better when they have more avenues of engagement with their learning environment. We have identified the clubs that will be offered by the staff members and working on the ones which will be offered by the dedicated Pinnacle Academy parents. We did a preliminary study and figured our that, based the diversity of our community, we will be able to introduce at least 7 different language and culture related activities. The after school clubs will start effective by the week of October 3rd. Stay tuned and allow your students to participate in at least one that they would love to join.

I would like to thank to all the parents who made time to join me at the Principal Coffee Hour session. We enjoyed our bagels, coffee and tea. We also had great opportunity for a Q&A session during which parents had opportunity to share their observations and ask their questions. I was very pleased to respond to the questions and hear the feedback of our students about their experiences during the first two weeks. Mr. Hussain approached me at the end said, “It was a great start!”. I took it on behalf of the entire PA staff. Parent support and encouragement is always appreciated. Please do not get me wrong. We need all the constructive feedback and criticism.

Last but not the least, please, please, please! We appreciate if you can stay in your vehicle and wait for your child’s arrival, rather than trying to enter the building to pick up your child early. Such attempts will slow down the process further and cause further delays. Pre-school and the preK families are the only ones allowed to come inside the building for regular pick up. If you have an emergency, please come the main desk earlier and we will have your child come for early dismissal. Your cooperation on this matter is greatly appreciated.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Parents and Guardians,

MAP results are in and they were sent home today. Please take your time and review your child’s initial academic reference point. Their teachers have been chewing on those data and will utilize such on adjusting their instructional delivery accordingly.

Decision making at PA

Pinnacle Academy has been going through some major transitions this year. Combination of the Pre-school and Pre-K, adding the high school component and dual enrollment partnership with NOVA and other educational interventions… Some of these initiatives may make more sense compared to some others at this point, however, please give us some time and you will begin to observe the positive changes all those initiatives are designed for. As the Pinnacle Academy staff, we have three common questions for all our growth plans and decision making processes… Those are as follows; “What is in the best interest of each student at PA? What is in the best interest of a particular grade level at PA?  What is in the best interest of the entire PA Learning Community?” Once we figure out an answer that is supported by the majority consensus, we go for it. This decision making process usually produces the best results for all. It is Pinnacle Academy staff’s responsibility to introduce you the rationale behind all the academic and operational initiatives and practices however, please feel free to communicate with the appropriate PA staff member, if any particular initiative is not clear to you for any particular reason.

Principal’s Coffee Hour

All parents are invited for the Principal’s Coffee Hour. The social event will take place on Tuesday, September 20, 2016 at 8:00 p.m. This will be my first event Principal’s Coffee Hour event and I am very excited about it. Please make no mistake, event is not designed for the fathers only but all the parents and guardians. Fresh tea and coffee will be served along with some cookies. I foresee this opportunity as an awesome medium to further discuss our growth plans for Pinnacle Academy. We also will have raffle with a surprise gift from the principal which will take place at the end of the coffee hour!!! You are all Invited!

Tuesday Office Hours for remedial teaching

Office hours service will begin as of this coming Tuesday after school. Please make sure to coordinate the sessions with your child’s teacher. Sessions are designed to provide additional support for our students on the academic areas where they will benefit the most.

After School Club activities

We are in the process of designing our after school club activities. The PA staff has already come up with a list of opportunities for our students. However, we would love to offer more choices, through which our students can experience further components of life under an expert’s supervision. In other words, we encourage the PA parents to offer an after school club activity as well. This can be on a curricular area or an extracurricular area, may be in the field of athletics… We will need you to offer something that you are very good at and passionate about. We would like you offer it during the after school hours and to be held at least once a week. We would like the students to learn from this particular after school club and use such skills for competitions, exhibitions or presentations, in and outside PA Community. It will be your club, your passion, on your schedule for the benefit of all our children. If you are interested, please contact Dr. Taban at htaban@pinnacleacademyva.com and provide brief information on what you are willing to offer.It can be coaching our soccer or golf team or running a 4H club… You name it and let us know.

Internship opportunities for PA High school students

Pinnacle Academy students will be introduced to a very structured internship program which will be available as early as second quarter. The program will be accessible for all high school students and will help our students complete their community service hours. Appropriate training will be offered for the organizations and institutions which would agree to offer such a work force developing process for the market and career determination window for our students. The high school internship practices are designed to help students build their resume and their college application packets.  If your company or yourself or a company that you can trust is interested in participating in such a “giving back to community” opportunity, please contact Mrs. Oz at gozturk@pinnacleacademyva.com .

Back to School Night

Yesterday we were happy to hold our back to school night event and it was a success. Parking lot was full and we had such a great opportunity to introduce the academic promises of the school year 2016-17 for all the PA students. 

VERY VERY IMPORTANT REMINDERS!!!

Please make sure to drive with a  max speed of 5 MPH on school premises, at all times. I also appreciate if you could remind your students to use the cross walk only. Safety comes first and your cooperation is greatly appreciated.

If your child has fever or any other sign of a communicable disease, please do not allow them to report to school. Also please contact Ms. Ezeobe, the PA administrative assistant, and update her on the status. Please make sure to have your student receive necessary medical attention and one he/she feels better with no signs of fever, have them return to school. Your student will be entitled to receive all the make up work and assignments with no credit loss.

Last but not the least…

There is nothing like taking a nap on the rocking shoulder of your principal after a long morning learning process. Please see the attached:)

Have a wonderful weekend!

Best,


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Dear Pinnacle Academy Parents and Guardians,
The first week is over. Many great things took place. As the PA staff and faculty, we planned to utilize the first week for icebreaking, establishing the school and classroom routines and diagnostics for all our students. In other words the groundworks…
We have completed the MAP testing for all our students, except few make up sessions. Therefore, most results are in and will become our 2nd week agenda. The PA faculty will utilize the scores to determine the accurate academic needs of all our students. We will utilize the most recent MAP results, the Spring MAP results from last school year (for the new comers, most recent standardized assessments from their previous schools), most recent report cards and the first week observations in order to  diagnose our students’ current academic performance levels.
Music and art courses
We had all the intentions and plans to have both art and music courses this year. Vacancies posted, interviews conducted, jobs offered and even master schedule was developed accordingly and no luck securing a teacher. We had to modify our plans few days before the labor day and offered elected courses offered. We have included some art skills teaching through some of our electives. However, we did not give up. After our first PTO meeting of the year and receiving some great suggestions, we decided to reach out to an outside art program vendor, in order to introduce our students to professional art teaching throughout the school year. We are still open to suggestions, as we are still searching for avenues to integrate fine arts into our program.
 
Pre-School/Pre-K combined
This year we have modified our approach for PreS/PreK structure.  While you can find research supporting both approaches, we would like to utilize the combined model for this year.
We have identified somehighlights on our current, combined model;
  • our teachers have necessary background and training addressing the social and academic needs of students together
  • 4 year old students will have more opportunity to develop leadership skills, sense of responsibility and ownership
  • 3 year old students will have a stronger pace of academic and social growth while socializing with the 4 year old ones
I am confident that our staff will continue to support all our students in the best way possible.
The high school classroom
The Labor Day Monday came with a surprise to us. The painting crew did not show up the day before and did not get the painting done. Mr. Ismail and I had no other choice but celebrate the Labor Day together. 🙂   We like the outcome and hope that you all do the same. If  you did not already notice the change, check the attached photos.
First PTO Meeting
 
It was today and it was a lot of fun. Due to the by laws, the terms were up for most of the offices and elections were held. Former PTO President Mrs. Andican led her last PTO meeting as the president which was another success. President Andican, introduced the roles and responsibilities, encouraged the candidates for the offices. After a tight election race, Pinnacle Academy Officers for the 2016-17 were announced.
Please see the list of new officers below
President- Mrs. Akpinar
Vice President-Mrs. Trimner
Treasurer-Mrs. Eftekhari
Secretary-Mrs. Kamal
Communication Committee Chair-Miss Cakmak
Fundraising Committee Chair-Mrs. Dagdelen
Congrats to All!
We thank to all the members of PA PTO from 2015-16 for their dedication and selfless hard work and wish the best of of luck for the PA PTO 2016-17! Please
Brainstorming and feedback
 
During the entire first week, PA staff has held a 10-15 minute meetings at the end of each day, assessing how the day went, what else needs to be done to serve our students better and the next steps. Such brainstorming sessions have helped us assess ourselves on daily basis and grow on daily basis. I would like to also invite you all to share your observations with us about the first week at PA. In particular, your students’ feedback on their first week experience at Pinnacle Academy please…
Your feedback matters!
Have a nice weekend!
Best,

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Dear Pinnacle Academy Parents and Guardians,

We held two parent orientations last Saturday and I would like to thank all
the parents, students, and staff members who chose to attend at least one
of the sessions. The orientation sessions were informative, educational and
fun.

I had a presentation on  the overall school expectations for the
stakeholders, Dr. Taban informed us about the general school routines, Mrs.
Ozturk has stressed the importance of individualized approach we will have
for all our students’ academic and social growth and Mrs. Aksoy, our 4/5th
grade level math and science teacher has conducted some hands on… well, I
should have said feet on science experiment while she was introducing the
newest version of Project Lead the Way teaching approach, that we will
adapt this year. Name of the experiment was ” Parent’s on the Eggs” and
they literally were:) Please see the attached photos from the event and
thanks to the Courageous TMSA Parents.

PA staff has completed their orientation weeks and look forward to meeting
and greeting their students on September 6th. They had the opportunity to
get to know each other, shared resources and best practices among each
other and discussed about the goals for this coming school year. They also
had various hands on experiments, thanks to Mrs. Aksoy.

New rosters, new friends, new teachers, new admin structure and brand new
opportunities. Most importantly we have a new school mission for Pinnacle
Academy.Now that we are growing into high school and even college, the
previous school mission could not express the magnitude of our goals for
all our students. Please find below the brand new Pinnacle Academy mission
approved by our Board.

The guiding school mission for Pinnacle Academy is;

*”to immerse all students in a dynamically STEM-focused, college oriented,
community embraced environment that fosters industry ready and globally
competitive leaders.”*

First day of the school and the entire first week will be crucial for all
our students. Please find the tips below from Dr. Taban’s office, for our
students and parents, on the smoothest transition possible.

Arrival and Dismissal Procedures

Students may arrive to school between 8:00 and 8:15. After 8:15 they are
considered tardy and must receive a pass before entering the classroom.
Upper building students who arrive after 8:30 must come to the lower
building office to receive their tardy pass.  Students will be dismissed
from their classrooms beginning at 3:30. If you need to pick your child up
before this time, please come to the office. Please note that unless you
have a child in Preschool or Pre-K, we ask that all parents remain in their
cars during arrival and dismissal.Preschool and Pre-K parents are required
to come in to the building and sign in and sign out their children.

Please make sure to provide lunch during the first week. Students may
continue to bring lunch after the second week. However, daily lunch will
also be provided by a local food vendors of second week. Monthly menus will
be provided for your students.

Your child will receive various forms and paperwork during the first week.
Please make time to review them carefully and respond for all the
applicable inquiries.

Last but not the least, please see the below homeroom and classroom
assignment for the 2016-17 school year.

Preschool-1st grade: Lower building

2-8th grade: Upper building

9th grade: Remodeled Trailer (High school campus)

Homerooms:

6th: Mr. Yilar

7th: Ms. Bush

8th: Mr. Ferhat

9th: Ms. Togia

Upper Building Classrooms:

Classroom 1 —–6th grade

Classroom 2—- 4th grade

Classroom 3 — 5th grade

Classroom 4 —- 2nd grade

Classroom 5 —- 3rd grade

Classroom 6 —- Middle school Social Studies ans Spanish

Classroom 7 —- Middle school Science

Classroom 9 —- Middle school Language Arts

Have a wonderful long weekend!

Best,

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