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Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 1

Avalon School Annual Report, 2014-2015
Submitted to:
Novation Education Opportunities (NEO) October 1, 2015, by Avalon School Staff

Armus, Nate

Avalon School Class of 2015 and Their Senior Projects:
Personal Choice and
Morse, Anna
Religion

Graphic Design
Transcendental
Meditation
Creating a Small
Business

Campbell, Carla

Barbies and Film

Peterson, Charles

Cantrell, Madison

Killer Whale Captivity
Issues

Peterson, Clay

Casper, Logan

Making a Cookbook

Redfern-Hall, Zane

Metalwork

Clark, Nick

Psychology

Ripley, Isaiah

Medicine

Dalton, Lauren

Domestic Violence

Sagarsky, Madison

Beekeeping

Frazier, Siara

Interior Designing

Sagarsky, Robert

Ethics of Torture

Freund, Daniel

Interior Designing

Smith, Wesley

Designing a Card Game

Gorman-Carter,
Elian

3D Printing

Strand, Brennan

Oil Painting

Green, Favion

US National Guard

Sylvester, Samuel

Crafts and Metalwork

Joles, Soren

Fashion Through Film

Tang, Evan

iOS app (for iphone)

Kyle Stickels,
Joseph

Public Art for Social
Change
Marketing & Small
Business

Victorin-Vangerud,
William

Digital Music/DJ

Villerius, Peter

Musical

Laing-Geisert,
Mirabeau

Artistic Choice

Vraa, Lily

Wilderness Survival

Mork, Sora

Forensic Geoscience

Wronski-Riley, Jie

Photography

LaFavor, Dane

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 2
Avalon School
700 Glendale Street
St. Paul, MN 55114
www.avalonschool.org
651.649.5495
This school is one of the hidden gems of the Twin Cities. It deserves attention. This is a
groundbreaking school that changes people’s lives.
–An Avalon Parent

Executive Summary
Welcome! This is Avalon School’s annual report for the 2014-2015 school year, Avalon’s
fourteenth year of operation. It helps our authorizer (Novation) and other interested parties
learn what Avalon School is and how it has been so successful for so long.
We consider this report critical because it serves as both a reminder and as an advertisement
that what we do at Avalon – project-based learning – creates a respectful, cohesive
environment of individuals dedicated to learning.
This report includes not only the requirements for our annual report as indicated by the
Minnesota Department of Education, but also embedded is our World’s Best Workforce
Plan, which can be found in Appendix J.
In our annual report, you will see how many students we have, where they come from, and
how they perform on a number of assessments. You will see that all of our staff members are
licensed in the areas they teach and that on average our licensed teaching staff of nineteen has
been at Avalon for an average of 7.5 years. You will also see how Avalon connects with the
larger community with other programs in robotics, art, theatre, and numerous connections via
senior projects to real experts doing real work in areas our students are passionate to explore.
Finally, you will get a glimpse into our dreams for the future as we work toward our new
strategic plan, developed during the 2014-2015 school year. This report gives a glimpse into
the heart and soul of Avalon.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 3
I. Table of Contents (page numbers to be updated once final changes are made)
List of Senior Projects..........................................................................................1
Executive Summary.............................................................................................2
I. Table of Contents.................................................................................3
II. Report Introduction.............................................................................5
III. Authorizer..........................................................................................7
IV. School Governance............................................................................8
A. 2014-2015 School Year Charter Public School Board
B. Policy Additions and Changes
C. Board Training/Staff Development/Evaluation
D. Strategic Plan
V. School Management............................................................................11
A. Teacher Governance and the Co-op Model
B. Site Operations Committees
VI. Staffing/Teaching Faculty..................................................................13
A. 2012-2013 School Management and Faculty Information
B. Teaching Staff Information
C. Staff Turnover and Staff Longevity
VII. School Admissions and Enrollment.................................................15
A. Admissions/Lottery Policies
B. Student Background and Demographics
C. Student Attrition
D. Student Enrollment and Attrition Rates
VIII. Academic Program/School Performance.........................................23
A. Overview of Academic Program Successes
1. Goals Set with Novation (NEO)
2. Student Testing Results (PSAT, SAT, ACT)
3. Percentage of Students Entering 2/4 Year School
4. Special Student Honors and Accomplishments
B. Report on the Meeting of Goals for 2013-2014
C. Rationale for New and Continuing Goals for School Year 2015-2016
IX. School Climate..................................................................................31
X. Finances..............................................................................................33
XI. Innovative Practices and Implementation.........................................34
A. Curriculum
XII. Program Challenges.........................................................................39
A. Race, Racism, and Whiteness
B. Strategic Plan
XIII. Future Plans.....................................................................................40

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 4
A. Strategic Plan
B. ELL Marketing
C. Grade-Level Projects and College and Career Readiness
D. Conclusion
XIV. Non-Profit Status....................................................................................42
Appendices......................................................................................................43
Appendix A: Novation (NEO) Site Visit Report
Appendix B: Avalon Application Form
Appendix C: Avalon Registration Form
Appendix D: By-Laws
Appendix E: Avalon’s Hope Study
Appendix F: Avalon Constitution
Appendix G: Financial Document
Appendix H: Financial Document
Appendix I: Avalon School Strategic Plan 2015
Appendix J: World’s Best Workforce Summary

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 5
II.

Report Introduction
Since Avalon's founding in 2001, it has been a force for educational innovation locally,
nationally, and internationally. While educating students from the Twin Cities, Avalon has also
attracted educators from as far away as the Netherlands and Japan to tour and study how the
students learn through projects.
Serving 196 students (as of June 2015) grades 6 through 12 at 700 Glendale Street in the Saint
Anthony Park community of St. Paul, Avalon has always been a project-based learning school:
students create projects as a way to become independent life-long learners.
Avalon’s mission statement is: Avalon School prepares students for college and life in a strong,
nurturing community that inspires active learning, engaged citizenship, and hope for the future.
We prepare students by helping them develop their independence; they must learn that doing it
yourself is not the same thing as going it alone. We know that a strong, nurturing community is
not primarily the result of the staff’s efforts but, rather, is due to the commitment of all members
of the Avalon community to work together to build a place in which learning can happen. We
push students to interact with the community – of Avalon, St. Paul, Minnesota, the United States,
and the world – in order to gain those critical skills that will help each student navigate the postAvalon environment.
Our vision is to, within five years, have a school grades 6-12 of 200 students, each of whom uses
project-based learning to learn about themselves and do meaningful work in their communities.
To support that learning, we aim to use our co-op model to best direct staff energies and talents
to maintain, sustain, and yet transform the school to realize this vision while also maintaining a
significant fund balance. To support that learning, we aim as a staff to model democracy,
acceptance, and passion for learning and living with dignity in the world. To support that
learning, we aim as a staff to maintain manageable advisory sizes of no larger than 23 students
and to use daily advisory check-ins, book clubs, problem-solving activities, and substantive field
trips to create roots and wings for each of our students. In sum, we plan to be a school that is
more just, more wise, more honest, and more effective in supporting the learning of each student
that enters Avalon School.
Avalon School has made all the difference to our daughter Julia, a ninth grader. She
came to Avalon knowing no one and nervous about attending a new school. Within days
she had made great friends and was happily planning multiple projects to aid her learning.
A month later, to our astonishment, she had joined the Academic Decathlon team and was
doing her homework independently for the first time. Avalon encourages kids to learn at
their own pace through projects that interest them and allow them to use multiple forms of
intelligence. The teachers are warm, smart, and supportive and the kids are diverse, fun, and
accepting of differences.
-An Avalon Parent

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 6
As outlined on our newly developed strategic plan (see Appendix I), Avalon School aims to
foster graduates who demonstrate six critical outcomes: Mastery of Core Content; Critical
Thinking; Collaboration; Effective Communication; Self-Directed Learning; and Academic
Mindset. These core concepts will guide our direction over the next five years as we work to
bring our vision into reality.
Some history: Avalon opened to grades 9 and 10 in the fall of 2001 with Hamline University as
its authorizer, and Hamline renewed its contract with us in 2004, 2007, and 2010. When
Hamline University found the new authorizer legislation to be too onerous for them to continue
in such a role, Novation Education Opportunities (NEO) became our authorizer beginning in the
2011-2012 school year. Also, Avalon is accredited by AdvancED.
Avalon, currently at 700 Glendale Street in St. Paul after many years at 1745 University Avenue,
was founded by a group of parents, students, educators, and community members interested in
using project-based learning (PBL) as a way to develop skills and explore interests. By using
projects in an environment where students met together daily, where peer mediation was used to
resolve disputes, where all students could attend Congress meetings to discuss and respond to
issues faced by the school, Avalon students developed both strong initiative as individuals and
commitment to community as a group. This has been our model, tweaked in some ways but
essentially the same, since the beginning.
From the start, Avalon has been committed to creating a supportive community within the school
by remaining small and promoting strong relationships: every student has an adult advocate and
a personalized learning plan. Students are placed in advisories of 20-23 students. This group will
work together for the entire year, and students have the option of remaining with this same
advisor (a licensed teacher who balances supporting the independent projects of 20-23 students
with teaching classes) for 6th through 8th grade years if the student attends the middle school
program; if the student is in high school, he or she can elect to have the same advisor for all four
years. This small advisor/student ratio allows advisors at Avalon to get to know their students
and the families of students well, forging a strong partnership between the families and the
school.
The school operates on a teacher-owner governance model and has no principal. Advisors share
all administrative duties. In addition, Avalon School is an affiliate member of EdVisions
Cooperative, an organization that encourages project-based learning as well as co-operative (flat)
management. Avalon School is an active 501c3 nonprofit trust institution as noted in the
Charities section of Attorney General Lori Swanson’s website (See section XIV.)

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 7
III.

Authorizer
Authorizer Information – 2014-2015
Novation Educational Opportunities (NEO) has been Avalon’s authorizer since June 30, 2011.
NEO’s mission is to oversee innovative charter schools through consistent, ongoing, and robust
evaluation to achieve significant and measurable student growth for the benefit of our school and
the community. NEO has published a charter school guide that outlines the conditions for
sponsorship and the accountability process for charter schools. You can find it on their website at
www.novationeducationalopportunities.org.
For a copy of NEO’s site visit report, see Appendix A.
The main contact for NEO is Wendy Swanson Choi, who can be reached at
executive.director.neo@gmail.com or 651-247-9101.
Our contract has been renewed with NEO, and the contract’s expiration date of the contract is
June 30, 2019.

.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 8
IV.

School Governance

A.! 2014-2015 School Year Charter Public School Board
This table contains information for ALL board members.
2014-15 Election Date: February 27th, 2015 (Seated June 30th, 2015-new members)
2015-16 Anticipated Election Month: March 2016
Teachers continue to be the majority on the school board (four members).
Group
Board
Affiliation
Date
Date
Term
Phone
E-Mail
Name
Position
(if teacher, Elected Seated
Exp.
Number
Address
file folder #)
anna
Anna
Teacher
Feb
June
651.649.5495
Trustee
2017
@avalonschool.org
Wesley
#414321
2014
2014
x257
Brian Board
Evans Chair

Parent

March
2011

June
2011

2017

651.690.9788

Chris
Secretary
Jandro

Teacher
#443825

March
2011

June
2011

2017

651.649.5495
x 202

Holly
Trustee
Marsh

Community
Member

Apptd.

Jan.
2014

2015

651-329-8178

Teacher
#419538

August
2014

Aug.
2014

2015

651.649.5495
x214

2015

651.221.0579

June
2012

2015

651.649.5495
x206

June
2014

2017

651.210.2834

June
2014

2017

651.649.5495
x203

Jo
Sullivan

Trustee

Laura
Savin Trustee

Regina
Treasurer
Goldner
Rinal
Trustee
Ray
Tim
Trustee
Quealy

Community
Member

Sept.
2011
Appt. /
March
2012
Elected
March
2012
(new
term)
Feb.
2014

Teacher
#453996

Feb.
2014

Community
Member

Teacher
#419047

Sept.
2011

brian.evans
@yahoo.com
chris
@avalonschool.org

Member
Meeting
Attend.
Rate
11/11
10/11
11/11

Hmarsh1221
@gmail.com

6/11

jo
@avalonschool.org

10/11

laura.savin
@gmail.com

regina
@avalonschool.org
Rinalray
@hotmail.com
Tim
@avalonschool.org

7/11

11/11
8/11
11/11

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 9
B.! Board Training and Staff Development
Board Training
All new Board Members participated in initial board training as required by Charter School Law.
In addition, Avalon School participated in a one-hour board training on November 11th, 2014,
from Booth Law Group, LLC. The topic was Top Ten Best Practices for a Charter School
Board.
Staff Development and Evaluation
The Avalon School staff does not have a principal. Therefore, in order to evaluate each staff
member, we conduct a 360 review process that includes feedback from staff, students, and
parents. That review specifically addresses the annual professional development plans (PDP)
created by each staff member. Each staff member at the end of the school year meets with a
committee of peers including at least one member of the personnel committee to review the
feedback and make a recommendation as to whether or not the staff person should return for the
following year.
C.! Policy Reviews, Additions, and Changes
The following policies were updated during the 2014-2015 school year:
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!

Employee Policy Manual 2014-2015 (Annually updated)
Student Handbook 2014-2015 (Annually updated)
Safe and Supportive Schools Policy, Appendix 5 Student Handbook, approved September 2014
Enrollment Policy #515, approved November 2014
ELL Policy #1010, approved November 2014
Weather Attendance Policy # 501B, approved February 2015
Avalon Whistle Blower Policy # 408 approved April 2015
Behavior Expectations and Code of Conduct #502, approved June 2015
To fully review Avalon’s policy reviews, additions, and changes, please refer to our website and
this link for more information: http://www.avalonschool.org/about/board/avalon-school-boardbylaws/.

D.! Strategic Plan - Avalon School Strategic Plan 2015
Throughout the 2014-2015 school year, staff drafted, revised, and published a new strategic plan
to guide Avalon School through the next five years. Always keeping the students front and
center, staff brainstorming began by envisioning the ideal traits of Avalon graduates in the year
2021. Through in-depth consultation and reflection with the local community, the Avalon
School Board, and other stakeholders, Avalon staff began to draft a vision of their ideal school.
Borrowing from Monica Martinez and Dennis McGrath’s insightful Deeper Learning (2014), in
which Avalon School was one of eight schools profiled, staff focused on six essential traits for
deeper learning.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 10

Guiding Outcomes of 2021 Graduates
1.!
2.!
3.!
4.!
5.!
6.!

Mastery of Core Content
Critical Thinking
Collaboration (Student/Staff/Community)
Effective Communication
Self-Directed Learning
Academic Mindset
Using these traits as guide posts, staff and stakeholders critically analyzed Avalon’s current
program. To truly engage students in deeper learning, staff identified four distinct areas that
needed to be added, improved or changed.
Overall Goals/Areas Identified

1.! Deeper Learning/PBL:
Expand opportunities for all students through project-based learning by using the
framework of deeper learning to strengthen our project-based curriculum and
increase student engagement.
2.! Community Connections:
Ensure that students have the skills and experiences necessary to feel connected to
the community and competent when seeking job opportunities.
3.! Commitment to Equity:
Deconstruct and identify the privileged systems/networks currently in place at Avalon.
Implement new systems to dismantle the privileged systems and replace them with
systems that distribute opportunity and resources to all students effectively and equitably,
in particular those students in disadvantaged situations and marginalized communities.
4.! Training/Support/Reform for Schools/Teachers:
Transform education locally and nationally by educating policy makers, teachers,
administrators, and students about Avalon’s democratic, project-based learning, and
teacher powered model.
(For further details regarding Avalon School’s 2015 Strategic Plan, please see Appendix I)

Avalon is a place where students can find challenge without pressure, where they are
given both choice and guidance. Students here are not siloed, funneled, or molded; they are
not acted-upon, processed widgets. Instead, students are given the opportunity to become
the prime actors and decision-makers in their own lives, with skilled advising, teaching, and
support throughout that process.
-An Avalon Parent

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 11
V. School Management
Teacher Governance and the Co-op Model
Avalon School since its inception has used the teacher cooperative model. Every member on the
staff regardless of position has equal authority in all decision making. The school is run by
committees that staff members join, and the committees work towards solving problems and
maintaining the school. No individual staff member may make a decision on his/her own;
instead, he or she must work with committees to come up with ideas or solutions. Those ideas or
solutions are then brought to the staff as a whole to be examined and voted on.
The staff uses the fist-to-five process so that each decision is made democratically. Because each
member of the staff has a say in what takes place at Avalon, that leads to the staff feeling
empowered and also leads to staff ownership of Avalon. Staff retention is high (averaging 95%
retention) due to the fact that staff does feel empowered and has a stake in the school. The
democratic running of the school and the lack of hierarchy translate well to the students. The
students see how hard the staff works to maintain the school, and they see how invested the staff
is in Avalon. The students understand that the advisors work on numerous committees to get
things done and help the school maintain its teacher cooperative model.
Our administrative tasks are shared co-operatively and several staff members include as part of
their professional development plans opportunities to further enhance their administrative skills
and capacities. For example, our Program Coordinators attend the Charter School Law
Conference and our District Assessment Coordinator attends all Minnesota Department of
Education training sessions
Site Operations Committees
Administrative Team: Carrie Bakken, Becca Merton, Gretchen Sage-Martinson, and Kevin Ward
Learning Program Team: Carrie Bakken, David Ball, Nate Christopherson, Regina Goldner,
Chris Jandro, Tyler Kutscheid, Anna Landes Benz, Lauren Leith, Hamid Masheye, Stacey
Meath, Monessa Newell, Tim Quealy, Gretchen Sage-Martinson, Jo Sullivan, Kevin Ward,
Mandy Weinkauf, Anna Wesley, Nora Whalen, Andrea Wood, and Becky Yuzna
Personnel Team: Nate Christopherson, Gretchen Sage-Martinson, and Mandy Weinkauf

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 12
Special Education Team: Nate Christopherson, Clinton Ferguson, Becky Yuzna, Brittany Perry,
David Johnston, Elizabeth Hanson, Randall Kinnamon, Tyler Kutscheid, Ian Noble , Andrea
Wood, Ian Noble, and Anna Landes Benz
Technology: Tim Quealy and Chris Jandro
As a teacher at Avalon School, it is important to me that we operate as a teacher-led
coop. We are all personally invested in the nurturing and the success of our school
community and possess the agency to help make it happen.
–An Avalon Teacher

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 13
VI. Staffing/Teaching Faculty Information
2014-2015 School Management and Faculty Information
Name

Social Studies
Art
Promise Fellow

Years
Employed
by the
School
14
3
1

Special Education

5
1
10
3
9
3

453996

Educational Assistant
Math
Educational Assistant
Science
Educational Assistant
Spanish/Educational
Assistant
Educational Assistant
Special Education
Special Education
Science
Math
Social Worker
Office Manager
Social Studies
Educational Assistant
Educational Assistant
Language Arts

2
4
1
7
1
1
4.5
9
1.5
6
7.5

336023

Language Arts

14

419538
391433
437441
414321
373721
407859
438077

Science
Language Arts
Social Worker
Language Arts
Social Studies
Special Education
Special Education

11
13
2
10
12
1
8

File
Folder
Number

Carrie Bakken
David Ball
Laura Behlke
Nate
Christopherson
Clinton Ferguson
Regina Goldner
Elizabeth Hanson
Chris Jandro
David Johnston

393773
468506

Michelle Kartz

997717

Randall Kinnamon
Tyler Kutscheid
Anna Landez Benz
Lauren Leith
Hamid Masheye
Stacey Meath
Becca Merton
Monessa Newell
Ian Noble
Brittany Perry
Tim Quealy
Gretchen SageMartinson
Jo Sullivan
Kevin Ward
Mandy Weinkauf
Anna Wesley
Nora Whalen
Andrea Wood
Becky Yuzna

415341
419047
443825

463654
469924
361091
404644
412743
443483
425988

Assignment

Left
During
14/15

Not
Returning
14/15

X

X

3

X

X

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 14
Teaching Staff Information
All teachers at Avalon are licensed in their area of instruction.
Staff Turnover and Staff Longevity
The nineteen licensed teaching staff account for 143 years of experience at Avalon – an
average of 7.5 years of experience at Avalon per staff member.
Of this nineteen, eighteen will return next year – a staff turnover of 5.3%. As remarkable as
this retention is, it technically above our average (technically) of 5% annual attrition. With a
program as unique and innovative as Avalon’s, this low turnover is critical: it allows
for a consistent, reliable core community to make decisions and operate the school.
Avalon is a gem of a school. There is no other like it. The staff are skilled and caring!
Avalon provides a whole person education, preparing students for real world experiences.
Students and staff together have created a community of caring, creative, responsible,
active, inclusive citizens. We are so grateful for our Avalon experience!
-An Avalon Parent

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 15
VII.!

School Admissions and Enrollment

I graduated from Avalon in 2011. If not for the staff and students, I may not have
graduated at all. It's hard to put into words just how powerful the Avalon community is. I
received personal, individualized support there that is rarely found anywhere else. Teachers
respect the students, giving them freedom and autonomy which helps them grow as
learners, and mature as people.
-Avalon Graduate, Class of 2011
In the past, Avalon School has been able to accept all students who wish to attend the
school. There have been waiting lists at times during the summer and into the school year, but
families intrigued by Avalon’s unique approach have always found a home here. This changed a
bit during the 2014-2015 school year. Some students stayed on the wait list from June 2014 to
spring of 2015. We also conducted our first lottery this year for the 2015-2016 school year.
Included below are the admissions policies in the Board manual.
Also included in this section is the demographic information about the students who attend
Avalon and have attended Avalon over the last few years. We tend to have more males than
females (119/93) and more white students than black or other racial or ethnic backgrounds
(152/43). Twenty-nine percent of Avalon students qualify for free and reduced lunch, and 39%
of students receive special education services or 504 support at Avalon.
Admissions/Lottery Policies
Policy # 515
Adopted: December 9, 2014
NEW POLICIES
I.!

Definitions:

Parent: The term “parent” as used in this policy refers to the legal guardian of a student as
defined in the State Statute.
Avalon School: Avalon School may also be known as Avalon or as “the School” throughout this
document.
Enrolled: A student will be considered “enrolled” at Avalon upon their first day of actual
attendance at Avalon.
Middle School: Grades 6-8. May also be referred to as MS.
High School: Grades 9-12. May also be referred to as HS.
Enrollment Team: Small group of Avalon staff members, to be determined at the start of each
school year.
II.!

Open Enrollment

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 16
A.! Deadline
ADMISSIONS CUTOFF DATE
Avalon School has an admissions deadline of March 1 of each school year for current students
and new applicants. If Avalon is over capacity at the time of the application deadline, a lottery
will be held for all new applicants who applied by the deadline. If Avalon has not reached
capacity, students will continue to be admitted on a first come/first serve basis until we are full.
The application deadline is at 4:00 PM CST on March 1. All applications to be included in the
lottery for the upcoming school year must be received by the school no later than 4:00PM CST
on March 1.
The lottery will be held on the first Thursday after March 1.
B.! Application
The Avalon application is only valid for one lottery. If a parent would like to include the student
in subsequent lotteries (upon being waitlisted), that parent must submit a new application.
III.!

Lottery Process

A.! General
When the number of applications exceeds the number of openings in a particular grade or
program, we will conduct a lottery to determine those students who will be admitted or put on
the waiting list. We will follow the steps outlined below to ensure this procedure is equitable to
all applicants. A completed enrollment application is required in order to be included in the
annual lottery and/or be placed on the waiting list. The Avalon lottery is held within 10 business
days of the close of the enrollment period. The lottery is open to observation by the public and
will be posted in our school calendar and on the website.
B.! Enrollment Eligibility
To be eligible for enrollment in Avalon’s 6th grade, a student must have successfully completed
the 5th grade or be at least 11 years old by Aug. 31 of the year for which they are applying. To
be eligible for 7th grade, a student must have successfully completed 6th grade. To be eligible
for 8th grade, a student must have successfully completed 7th grade. To be eligible for the high
school program, students must have successfully completed 8th grade.
C.! Enrollment Preferences
1.! Prospective students who are children of Avalon employees will receive enrollment
preference provided there is an opening in the grade to which they are applying. If staff
members are hired after the lottery, those staff members’ children will be placed first on
the waiting list, in the order in which the parents were hired.
2.! Siblings will be given second priority (after children of employees) provided there is an
opening in the grade to which they are applying. Siblings who submit applications after
the lottery will be placed at the top of the waitlist (after children of employees).

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 17
●! Siblings refers to those prospective students who have siblings currently enrolled
at Avalon in the academic year in which the lottery is being conducted.
●! Any child of a family unit related biologically, by marriage or adoption to one or
both parents.
●! Any child in ‘long-term’ placement within a foster-care situation with the family
of a current student. NOTE: parents must provide to Avalon documentation from
their case manager, a judge, or the court.
●! If the family of a current Avalon student plans to be a host family to a foreign
exchange student, that student will be considered a sibling (see above).
●! NOTE: A student will be considered “enrolled” at Avalon after completion of the
enrollment paperwork during the April Enrollment Event, or, if enrolling midyear, after completion of the first day as an enrolled student at Avalon.
D.! Process to determine the number of students to be accepted
1.! The staff of Avalon School will propose and the Avalon board of directors will
determine the number of openings in each grade, 6-8, and in the HS program, for the next
school year by the February board meeting of the application year. This number will take
into account the need to over-enroll grade levels and programs, depending on the
projected number of students who will either not return or who will not accept the
enrollment offer. This will be based on past data as well as current trends in enrollment.
2.! Names of all new applicants will be entered in to a spreadsheet with information from
their applications using a different spreadsheet for each grade in the MS, and one for the
whole program in the HS. Note on the spreadsheet which applicants have a sibling
currently enrolled at Avalon School, or who are children of employees.
3.! From the applications for each grade (MS) and for the program (HS) with openings, pull
out all applications from students who are children of staff members. These names will
be highlighted in yellow on the spreadsheet.
4.! Follow the same procedure for students who have a sibling currently enrolled at Avalon.
These names will be highlighted in yellow on the spreadsheet.
5.! If there are more children of staff members than there are openings in a particular grade
(MS) or program (HS), a lottery must be held amongst the children of employees.
6.! After the children of staff members are admitted, if there are still spaces, move on to
siblings. If there are more siblings than there are openings in a particular grade or
program, then a lottery must be held amongst the siblings.
7.! For each grade (MS) or program (HS), the number of siblings and children of staff
members in the prospective student pool will be subtracted from the number of total
students to be accepted. This is the number of openings that will be filled through the
lottery process. The appropriate number of applicants from each grade (MS) or program
(HS) will then be randomly drawn until the enrollment goals are reached.
E.! Lottery Process

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 18
1.!
2.!

Each remaining student will be assigned a number
Place the lottery sticks marked with legible numbers equal to the number of applicants
into the lottery box.
3.! Starting with the lowest grade, draw one numbered stick out of the lottery box and call
out that number.
4.! Match that number on the enrollment spreadsheet to the stick. Pull all numbers so each
applicant receives a number. Highlight the students accepted in yellow.
5.! After the total number of applicants to be accepted has been reached, write down the
order of the applicants on the waiting list according to the order in which their number is
drawn.
6.! Repeat this process for all grades (MS) and the HS program, using the number of current
Avalon students moving from one grade to the next to ensure that the desired number of
students is reached through the combination of re-enrolling and new students.
7.! Send “acceptance” letters to all prospective applicants; send “waiting list” letters to the
remaining applicants. Include enrollment agreements or waiting list forms as
appropriate. Families will have one month from the mailing date to return the enclosed
enrollment agreement accepting their enrollment.
Once the process is completed, the spreadsheets will be printed (and saved as a PDF) and an
affidavit certifying compliance with this policy and applicable state law will be signed by the
two staff members conducting the lottery. All other witnesses will be asked to sign a form
indicating they witnessed the lottery. We will attach a copy of this policy to the spreadsheets,
signed affidavit, and witness form to complete the documentation, which will be filed at the
school.
IV.! Waiting list
Following the lottery, those students who have not been admitted will be placed on the waiting
list and will be admitted as space permits. We will follow the steps outlined below to ensure the
procedure is equitable to all applicants.
A.! Underlying Considerations
1.! The goal of the waiting list is to have a list of students from which to pull to maintain
maximum class sizes for the next academic year.
2.! All students on the waiting list will know their waiting list number and we will post
online which number has been enrolled at Avalon.
B.! Waiting list Procedures
1.! All students will be assigned a waiting list number during the lottery procedures.
2.! Letters to those students on the waiting list will be sent at the same time as acceptance
letters.
3.! The waiting list is maintained by the Enrollment Coordinator and updated throughout the
year as students are enrolled off of the list. The waiting list will be posted on the website

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 19

4.!

(with no identifying information) and updated monthly. Families may request to be
removed from the waiting list at any point.
If a sibling of a currently enrolled student, or the student of a new staff member, submits
an application after the lottery, that student will move to the top of the waiting list
(behind any other siblings or staff children currently on the waiting list).

NOTE: The waiting list for Avalon School is intended for the sole purpose of enrollment and
distribution of information deemed appropriate by Avalon school to be of interest to those
parties. Avalon school will not sell, distribute, or otherwise disseminate waiting list information.
Avalon will not use this list for solicitation purposes other than to gather interest and
involvement in those things related to enrollment, expansion, or related interests at Avalon. The
waiting list will be published online- organized per grade level (MS) and program (HS) and
identified by student number.
V.! Enrollment of New Students after the Lottery
Openings for grades 6, 7, 8 will be filled on a grade level basis. Openings for the High School
will be filled on a program wide (grades 9-12) basis.
A.! Confirmation of Opening
The Enrollment Team will be notified when a position is open once the school:
1.!
2.!

Receives confirmation that a family is turning down an enrollment offer.
Receives a withdrawal form or confirmed enrollment from another school.

B.! Contact Next on Waiting List
As a space becomes available, the Enrollment Team will contact via phone and email the
first student next on that grade’s (MS) or program’s (HS) waiting list who has not already been
contacted for the current school year. Once a parent has been contacted, they must respond
within 72 hours in order to accept the position or the Enrollment Team may offer the position to
the next student on the list.
C.! Accepting a Position Mid-Year
When accepting a position mid-year, the following must be discussed with the parent:
The student’s start date (not to exceed ten school days from the offering date, unless otherwise
noted by the school, such as the beginning of a semester), grade level, transportation needs, and
siblings who may be on the waiting list, or want to be added to it. Once the decision has been
made to enroll, the parent/guardian(s) must provide the student’s birth date and the name of the
student’s current school so that Avalon staff can enter the student into the student information
system and request student records. Families accepting a position mid-year will be asked to
complete a mid-year enrollment form to provide the school with all required information.
VI.!

Re-enrollment after Long-Term Leave
The purpose of this subsection is to define the actions of Avalon school in the case of
students taking a ‘long-term leave’ from the school which under Minnesota state statutes
constitutes de-enrollment from Avalon, and the process for those students to be re-enrolled at

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 20
Avalon. This policy is to support families in situations such as an educational sabbatical, family
travel, mental health treatment or hospitalization, or a short-term relocation for work. Families
who request long-term leave and follow the process laid out in this policy may re-enroll their
child at Avalon without going through the enrollment process and the child will be immediately
enrolled upon returning.
A.! Long-term leave and re-enrollment procedures
All students are de-enrolled from Avalon School after not attending Avalon for fifteen
consecutive days. To qualify for re-enrollment eligibility, parents or guardians must request
long-term leave from the Enrollment Team at least 30 days before the start of the long-term
leave, giving the beginning and end dates of the student’s leave from Avalon, as well as the
reason and documentation for the long-term leave. Families who follow this procedure will be
immediately enrolled upon return.
In the case of hospitalization, treatment, or a court order program, the 30-day notification
may be waived, and the end date remain flexible.
B.! Open Enrollment Spots
When a student is de-enrolled at Avalon for any reason, their spot will be offered to the
next student on the waiting list IF the student is going to be out for longer than 15 days.
This may result in the over-enrollment of a class or grade when the student on long-term
leave returns. No further offers of enrollment will be made until that grade or program is
once again under-enrolled.
C.! Conditions and Limits on Long-Term Leave
1.! Students may not miss more than the equivalent of one year. The days on leave must be
consecutive.
2.! No more than 2 students at any grade level or advisory will be granted a long-term leave
at any one time. Only the first students to request long-term leave and meet all
conditions listed in the policy will be granted long-term leave. This may not include
students needing to take a long-term leave to enter a treatment facility, receive medical
care, or participate in a court ordered program.
VII.!

Student Withdrawal
When a student withdraws from Avalon, a Withdrawal Form should be completed and
returned by a parent to the Enrollment Team.

VIII.!

Enrollment Documentation
Before students begin at Avalon School, parents/guardians will complete an enrollment
packet. If transfer records from a previous district do not have a verified birth date,
parents/guardians will also provide proof of student’s age in the form of a passport, state ID, or
birth certificate upon enrollment.
IX.!

Non-Discrimination
It is the policy of the school board of Avalon School District No. 4075 to comply with
federal and state laws prohibiting discrimination to the end that no person protected by such law

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 21
shall, on the grounds of race, color, nationality, ethnic origin, religion, gender, marital status,
sexual orientation, status with regard to public assistance, age, or disability (hereinafter
“protected class status”) be excluded from participation in, be denied of, or be otherwise
subjected to discrimination under any educational program, in employment, or recruitment,
consideration, or selection, whether full time or part time under any educational program,
employment or activity operated by the district.
OLD POLICIES REPLACED BY THIS POLICY:
515 Sibling Preference (est. 9/18/2001)
Avalon will give first priority to enrolling students who already have a sibling enrolled at Avalon
515D Enrollment and Teacher Preference (11/10/09)
Avalon School will give preference for enrolling children of the school’s staff members before
accepting other pupils by lot.
515B Treatment/Hospitalization/Juvenile Detention and Enrollment (12/12/06)
If a student is (in)voluntarily removed from Avalon for reasons such as hospitalization,
treatment, juvenile detention, etc... and the parents/guardians request that he/she return to Avalon
at the end of the removal period, Avalon will hold the slot open for the student for a maximum of
30 school days. If the removal lasts for more than 30 days, Avalon will fill the slot with someone
on the waiting list and the student will be de enrolled. If there is no waiting list, the student will
have the opportunity to return to Avalon.
If the student is (in)voluntarily removed in order to enter a different program, the
parents/guardians must contact staff in a timely manner based on the situation to discuss
re enrollment and reassert student compliance with all the rules of Avalon. If Avalon is not
contacted in a timely manner, based on the circumstances, the student’s slot will be filled with
someone from the waiting list, and the student will be able to re-enroll if we have a space open
for them at the time their removal period ends.Otherwise we will place the student on the wait
list.
515C Enrollment and Pre-Approved Programs (1/13/09)
A student who is in solid academic standing may choose to take advantage of a unique
educational opportunity like a travel abroad program or other specialized academic program.
With pre-approval, a student may participate in the academic opportunity, and Avalon will
immediately re-enroll the student upon their return.
Please see Appendix B for a copy of the Avalon Application Form and Appendix C for a
copy of the Registration Form.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 22
Student Background and Demographics
20112012
October
192
83
109
7
10
33
11
131
63
62
9

Total # of Students
Females
Males
American Indian
Asian
Black
Hispanic
White
Free & Reduced
Special Ed
LEP

20122013
June
188
78
110
5
10
32
9
132
60
61
10

October
186
77
109
6
15
43
11
111
62
81
2

20132014
June
181
78
103
6
14
33
15
113
59
76
3

October
190
80
110
2
12
22
16
138
57
61
0

20142015
June
181
78
103
6
14
33
15
113
59
76
3

October
198
86
112
4
11
14
12
157
54
70
0

June
212
93
119
5
11
15
12
152
57
76
0

Student Attrition
We had 212 students enroll with us over the course of the 2014-2015 school year, and ended the
year at 196 for a retention rate of 93%. Our Average Daily Membership (ADM) for the 20142105 school year was 196.49. Some of the students we did not retain only stayed with us for a
week or two, and we were one of many schools on their transcripts. In terms of recruitment of
students for the 2015-2016 school year, we were full by March 1, 2015, when we held a lottery
and started a wait list. We will be able to start in the fall with a full school in all grades.
Historically, Avalon has had a retention rate at approximately 80%; last year we increased to
89% and went up again this year to 93%. This may be due to a number of factors: increasing
word of mouth and positive reputation in the community, a wonderful new building, a stellar
special education program, dynamic social workers, and a veteran staff of advisors committed to
the success of all students. We want students to find a place at Avalon, especially when they
have not been able to find it elsewhere.
Student Enrollment and Attrition Rates
This table identifies the number of students enrolled at the school during the 2010-11, 20112012, 2012-2013, 2013-2014, 2014-2015 and estimated 2015-2016 enrollment. Data based on
October 1 Average Daily Membership (ADM).
2010-2011

2011-2012

2012-2013

2013-2014

2014-2015

2015-2016

181.07

186.05

183.96

193.80

196.49

195

Our goal for the fourteenth year was to maintain an enrollment of 185 in the 6-12 program, and
we achieved that goal. Our ADM for 2014-2015 was 196.49.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 23
VIII.

Academic Program / School Performance

I am a Senior at Avalon and my experience there has been even better than I had
hoped. I transferred as a Junior because the traditional public schooling just wasn't working
for me. I needed to be able to take my education into my own hands, and Avalon proved to
be the perfect place to do that! The students are kind and accepting and the staff will do
everything they can to help you reach your goals. I never would have discovered all the
amazing opportunities I was missing out on in traditional public schooling if I hadn't
transferred. My parents have actually taken to calling my school "The Happy Place"
because of the noticeable behavioral changes after I started attending Avalon.
–Avalon Senior,
Class of ‘15
Project-based learning (PBL) is the bread and butter of Avalon: for a majority of the school day,
students work to design, implement, and execute independent projects fueled by individual
passion, interest, and state requirements. Students, with staff and family guidance, create the
entire project: students assign deadlines, determine how they will demonstrate knowledge
gained, and even establish the evaluation criteria. Projects can be any length and cover (almost)
any topic. Students may earn credit for a wide-range of activities, encouraged and supported by
staff to be rigorous and thoughtful in their approach to fulfilling state graduation standard
requirements.
While independent project work accounts for a large percent of student work time, Avalon
School also offers a small selection of teacher-led topical seminars and smaller guided projects
throughout the year.
Students are supported, recognized, challenged and honored at Avalon. More
importantly, they are taught the importance of work-life balance. Achievement is not
arbitrarily measured, but rather, based on the whole person, including abilities, goals and
passions.
–An Avalon Parent

Avalon uses the state required GRAD and MCA assessments as well as NWEA MAP, PSAT,
Accuplacer, and Hope Study assessments among other less standardized approaches including
student-generated rubrics and student-parent/guardian-advisor conferences to identify student
strengths and needs.
What follows in this section is the identification of student performance as measured by these
means.
A. Overview of Academic Program Successes

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 24
Goals Set with Novation (NEO)
Novation (NEO), our authorizer, requires one site visit per year. Avalon’s Program Coordinators
worked with NEO to schedule and plan those visits. Please see Appendix A for the Site Visit
Report.
Student Testing Results (PSAT, SAT, ACT)
PSAT
Year
14-15
13-14
12-13
11-12
10-11
09-10
08-09
07-08
06-07

Number Tested
30
33
30
34
36
27
39
42
n/a

Reading
49.2
51.6
48.8
46.4
53.1
54.3
47.6
53.8
48.8

Math
43.5
46.1
43.3
42.5
50.5
47.3
46.6
47.2
43.1

Writing
42.6
48.8
46.0
39.7
51.3
48.4
45.1
50.3
44.3

While scores fell from last year, they remain within the scope of the last five years. The writing
scores, however, were certainly among the lowest scores we’ve averaged; we will have to
investigate any possible cause of this drop.
SAT
Year
14-15
13-14
12-13
11-12
10-11
09-10
08-09
07-08
06-07

Number Tested
2
3
7
10
10
11
13
5
11

Reading
625
547
578
623
668
641
675
668
620

Math
625
540
525
568
583
573
635
596
536

Writing
625
530
521
548
609
611
602
638
575

SAT scores only reflect a small number of students, approximately one-tenth of the graduating
class.
ACT

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 25
Year

# Tested

English

Math

Reading

Sci Reason

Writing (Opt)

Composite

14-15
13-14
12-13
11-12
10-11
09-10
08-09
07-08
06-07

8*
17
13
15
8
8
19
15
12

22.8
23.8
21.4
24.1
28.0
28.1
26.7
25.4
23

22.3
22.1
20.5
21.5
23.6
25.1
22.6
23.3
21.3

22.1
27.1
21.3
26.9
30.6
28.1
28.5
28.3
24.2

22.3
24
21.9
21.7
26.9
25.6
23.8
24.2
21.5

20 (7 tests)
22.2 (15 tests)
20.3 (12 tests)

22.5
24.4
21.5
23.6
27.4
26.8
25.5
25.4
22.8

*These scores represent only seniors at Avalon School.
Percentage of Students Entering 2/4 Year School
Of Avalon 30 graduates, 10 (33%) enrolled in 2-year programs and 11 (36%) enrolled in 4-year
programs. Seniors reported receiving numerous scholarships and acceptances to schools across
the country, including the following institutions:
Augsburg College, Century College, Concordia – Moorhead, Evergreen College, Florence
Academy of Arts, Gustavus Adolphus College, Hamline University, Hennepin Technical
College, Illinois Institute of Technology, Maryland Institute of Art, Milwaukee Institute of Art
and Design, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Minneapolis Community and Technical
College, Mt. Hope College, Normandale College, Portland Community College, St. Catherine's
University, St. Olaf College, St. Paul College, University of Minnesota – Crookston, University
of Minnesota – Morris, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, University of Puget Sound,
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Avalon allows students to be who they are in order to become who they wish to be.
This freedom allows them to focus on learning, and learning in a way that is comfortable to
them. I would love for others who are struggling with the constraints of the traditional
school model to find out how great Avalon School truly is.
-An Avalon Parent
B. Review of Avalon School Goals 2014-2015
The staff and Avalon School Board review the goals annually as part of writing the annual report
in August. A mid-year assessment of goals is completed as part of the authorizer site visit each
year. The data collected is also used to set strategic yearly goals in August as part of the Board
retreat and a staff-planning meeting. After reviewing the data, the Board sets academic goals
targeted at improving student achievement. The Board also assesses professional development

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 26
needs at this time. The academic and professional development goals are also linked to our Q
Comp goals.
Avalon School and NEO set the following eight goals for the 2014-2015 school year.
1. Graduation Rate
Of the students enrolled as 9th and 10th graders beginning FY15, between 80 and 85% of the
students who remain with Avalon through their senior year will graduate from Avalon School
within 4 years with the exception of students who have an IEP that allows extended time.
Exceeded: Above 85%
Met: 80-85%
Analysis: Met
While we cannot yet comment on the students marked in the goal (they will be 10th and 11th
graders!), it is possible to look at our most recent class. Of the 33 seniors that started, 30
graduated at the end of the year (91%). One of those remaining, one dropped out and the other
two have plans in place to finish shortly into the 2015-2016 school year.
Of the senior class, 27 of the students were enrolled with us at least since their 10th grade year.
Of those 27, 22 graduated within four years (81%).
2. Participation in testing
Participation in testing will remain at or above 95%.
Analysis: Met
Of the possible 186 tests our students were eligible to take, they took 179 of them (over 96%).
Those tests were spread out among 60 middle school students taking both math and reading tests,
24 10th graders taking the MCA Reading test, and 37 11th graders taking the MCA math test.
3. Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) – Reading
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will demonstrate
improvement over time in the percent of students meeting or exceeding proficiency (scoring
"meets" or "exceeds") as measured by all state accountability assessments in reading.
Exceeded: More than 70.1%
Met: From 58.1% in FY13 to 70.1% in FY19
Analysis: Exceeded
Avalon school continued to improve its proficiency levels in reading during the 2014-2015
school year, increasing by 7% from our previous year. Almost 73% of our students either met
or exceeded proficiency requirements.

4. Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) – Math
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will demonstrate
improvement over time in the percent of students meeting or exceeding proficiency (scoring
"meets" or "exceeds") as measured by all state accountability assessments in math.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 27
Exceeded: More than 53%
Met: From 41% in FY13 to 53% in FY19
Analysis: Exceeded
Avalon school continued to improve its proficiency levels in math during the 2014-2015
school year, increasing by nearly 9% from our previous year. Over 53% of our students either
met or exceeded proficiency requirements.
5. Rate of Change – Comparable School (Math)
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will improve proficiency
at a rate of change greater than or equal to St. Paul Public Schools between 2014 and 2019 as
measured by all state accountability tests for math.
Exceeded: more than five percentage points above the rate of change
Met: within five percentage points of the rate of change
Attempted: more than five percentage points below the rate of change
Analysis: Met
Avalon School outpaced the growth rate of neighboring St. Paul Public Schools as measured
by state accountability tests for math. Avalon increased almost 9% from our previous
proficiency level (from 44% to 53%), while St. Paul Public Schools fell by almost 2% (for a
difference of 11 percentage points). Meanwhile, the state’s proficiency level remained
roughly the same.

6. Rate of Change – Comparable School (Reading)
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will improve proficiency
at a rate of change greater than or equal to St. Paul Public Schools between 2014 and 2019 as
measured by all state accountability tests for reading.
Exceeded: more than five percentage points above the rate of change
Met: within five percentage points of the rate of change
Attempted: more than five percentage points below the rate of change
Analysis: Met
Avalon School outpaced the growth rate of neighboring St. Paul Public Schools as measured
by state accountability tests for reading. Avalon increased almost 7% from our previous
proficiency level (from 66% to 73%), while St. Paul Public Schools slightly fell. Meanwhile,
the state’s proficiency level increased by almost 1%.
7. NWEA MAP – Yearly Progress (Math)
Avalon students below grade level as measured by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively
make at least 120% of their expected growth target average in Math as measured by the
NWEA MAP spring administration and students who are at or above grade level as measured
by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively make at least 100% of their expected growth

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 28
target average as measured by the NWEA MAP spring administration.
Analysis: Met
In the fall of 2013, 27 students (grades six through nine) scored below their grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring 2014, 23 took the test again. From fall to
spring, these students averaged gains of over 145% when measured against their expected
yearly growth.
In the fall of 2013, 86 students (grades six through nine) scored at or above grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring of 2014, 65 students took the test again.
From fall to spring, these students averaged gains of over 162% when measured against their
expected yearly growth. (Many of the remaining 21 students took the Accuplacer assessment
in the spring instead of the MAP Test.)
8. NWEA MAP – Yearly Progress (Reading)
Avalon students below grade level as measured by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively
make at least 120% of their expected growth target average in Reading as measured by the
NWEA MAP spring administration and students who are at or above grade level as measured
by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively make at least 100% of their expected growth
target average as measured by the NWEA MAP spring administration.
Analysis: Met
In the fall of 2013, 16 students (grades six through nine) scored below their grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring 2014, 14 took the test again. From fall to
spring, these students averaged gains of over 132% when measured against their expected
yearly growth.
In the fall of 2013, 87 students (grades six through nine) scored at or above grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring of 2014, 64 students took the test again.
From fall to spring, these students averaged gains of over 164% when measured against their
expected yearly growth. (Many of the remaining 23 students took the Accuplacer assessment
in the spring instead of the MAP Test.)
9. Attendance
Of the students enrolled at Avalon School on 10/1 of the given school year, those students will
maintain a 90% attendance rate for the year, excluding students who have a documented
situation that causes the student to miss five or more consecutive school days.
Analysis: Met
Avalon School met this goal for the 2014-2015 academic year, with an overall attendance rate of
94%. Another important milestone to be noted was the fact that no students were referred to the
juvenile justice system due to excessive absences.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 29
10. Hope Survey
All Avalon students will be given the Hope Survey. For students new to Avalon before 1/31 of
a given school year, the new students as a group will show at least one point gain in their
Hope score from Fall to Spring.
Hope Scale (up to 64)
Very Low <42
Low 42.00-45.99
Moderate 46.00-49.99
High 50.00-53.99
Very High > 54.00
Analysis: Met
New students’ Hope Score, as measured by the Hope Survey, moved from a score of 43 to a score of
47. This number represents an increase from “Low” to “Moderate.”
11. School Climate – Families
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of families will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a safe learning environment.
This data is even more impressive because our response rate is so high: roughly 90% of families are
included.
12. School Climate – Students
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of students will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that they feel safe at Avalon.
(In fact, of all the students surveyed, only two selected “I disagree” when asked if Avalon was a safe
environment.)
This data is even more impressive because our response rate is so high: roughly 90% of families are
included.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 30
Other Measures of success
Avalon School Conferences
For the year, we conducted 579 of a possible 596 conferences - a solid 97%!!! That total number
is astounding - 579 formal meetings with families. This doesn't even begin to touch the number
of informal meetings and conversations we have with families regarding student progress - walk
into Avalon on any given day and you will likely see at least one parent or guardian engaged in
conversation with Avalon staff. Again, we recognize and celebrate that family participation and
connection with the Avalon community builds and sustains our learning environment.
Q-Comp Goal- Math
Avalon students in grades 6, 7, 8, and 11 who have been continuously enrolled since October 1
of the 2014-2105 school year until scheduled MCA testing of that same year will improve their
performance in demonstrating proficiency on the MCA-II and MCA-III mathematics test by
increasing grade-level proficiency to 46%.
Analysis: Met
As discussed earlier in our authorizer goals, 53.3% of Avalon students earned scores that met
or exceeded proficiency standards. This represents a nearly 9% increase from the previous
year.
C. Rationale for New and Continuing Goals for School Year 2015-2016
Since we have renewed our contract with NEO and begun to work closely with our authorizer,
we have developed goals that make sense for the work we do at Avalon for the foreseeable
future.

As the parent of a current 10th grade Avalon student, I am amazed at how she has
blossomed at this school. It has truly changed her life - she went from being a shy and
bullied girl to a strong, independent leader. Avalon meets students where they are and let's
them express who they want to be in a safe, nurturing environment.
-An Avalon Parent

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 31
IX. School Climate
Avalon School continues to have a safe, supportive, encouraging school climate. This is
evidenced by the results of our school climate surveys and discussed first in our authorizer
goals and repeated below. As the survey is completed by a high percent of our families, we
are confident the results are genuine.
From our authorizer goals, first discussed in section VIII.:
School Climate – Families
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of families will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a safe learning environment.
School Climate – Students
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of students will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that they feel safe at Avalon.
(In fact, of all the students surveyed, only two selected “I disagree” when asked if Avalon was a safe
environment.)

These numbers are incredibly high and have been for many years. This is the result of
conscious, directed efforts from students, staff, and families to create such a positive school
climate. We are proud of our numbers: in our history, families have consistently commented
here and elsewhere about how safe Avalon School feels for them and for their children.
Why do we think these numbers are so high? There are number of reasons, a few of which we
can note here:
* The advisory model -- a nationally-recognized model that encourages students of no more than
25 in an advisory to connect with and meaningfully communicate with one another every day for
at least 20 minutes, the advisory is the Avalon student’s first community. It is here in this home
base that feelings of support, encouragement, and safety begin.
* The advisor -- students connect with their advisor(s) by meeting either daily, weekly, or biweekly to check in about student values, goals, and progress. As one advisor put it, advisors

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 32
help students bring the conversation back to what they value and how those values emerge
through the work they do. With no principal or director, the advisor(s) are the main source of
information and communication for parents/guardians and students. Students stay with an
advisor (or advisor pairing) for up to three years in the middle school and four years in the high
school.
* The larger Avalon School community -- Avalon students looking for other connections can
form or join clubs (such as the Social Justice Club, Young Men’s Group, Knitting Club, and
others). These student-run groups help foster the community and school climate that begins with
the advisory.
During a recent cold spell in Minnesota when the temp/wind chill was very cold, we gave
our daughter the option to stay home (we live 4 blocks away and we couldn't drive her that
morning). She chose to walk because she wanted to continue to work on her project and
didn't want to fall behind. This was definitely a "who are you and what have you done to
our daughter" moment.
-An Avalon Parent

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 33
X.

Finances
Avalon won the Novation Educational Opportunities (NEO) 2015 Stewardship Award in
Finance. The award recognizes excellence in legal compliance to both statute and contract fiscal
health and sustainability being a good custodian of the taxpayers' funds.
The overall financial picture for the Avalon Charter School at the end of FY15 can be stated as
healthy with a control on revenues and expenditures resulting in a healthy fund balance. Below is
a brief summary of the activities associated with the financial management of the school.
Oversight and monitoring of the school's financial position occur monthly at the meeting of the
board of directors who receive financial reports consisting of a YTD profit and loss, a detailed
budget versus actual, a projected cash-flow report, and a balance sheet. The board approved an
adopted FY15 budget before June 30th, 2014, and modified the budget midyear. The school has
met and continues to meet all guidelines and deadlines related to state reporting including an
annual audit of the school and its financial position. Areas of concern are consistently monitored
and procedures put in place to remove potential risks. The school remains financially stable and
healthy, and has set itself up for future growth and sustainability.
FY 15 Audit will be shared with Avalon between October 1 and October 15 of 2015.
Information regarding financial data and financial issues related to the school can be found on
the school's website www.avalonschool.org and any questions can be directed to Dean Walczak
at 612-396-3694.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 34
XI.

Innovative Practices
The Senior Project
The Senior Project continues to be a cornerstone of academic life at Avalon. Spanning the entire
school year, seniors are expected to spend over 300-hours on a topic of their choosing. To help
prepare students for such an endeavor, several staff join the senior class for a three-day retreat at
a farm in Osceola, Wisconsin. Volunteering their labor as the farm works to wrap up the season,
seniors spend time gardening, harvesting, building a greenhouse, building and removing fences,
and doing anything else the farm needs. During their downtime, staff lead students through
brainstorming activities as the initial visions for the students’ senior projects begin to form.
Seniors help each other set milestones and deadlines, write clear project proposals, and draft
rubrics that will be used to evaluate their work in May.
Once students return, they work with staff, their families, and outside experts to refine their plan,
eventually hosting a formal proposal during which they present their project outline to their
project committee. Once launched, seniors work tirelessly to complete their projects,
culminating in a 30-minute presentation to their peers and the broader community.
Projects this year – like every year - were diverse in interest, scale, and scope. Topics included
17th century Blacksmithing, Forensic Geoscience, Beekeeping, iOS App programming,
Wilderness Survival, Oil Painting, and many more. Projects are expected to be of professional
quality – a statement that rings especially true this year, as we now have a new school logo as the
result of a senior project on Graphic Design.
My son graduated from Avalon last year. It was far and away the best place for a hyper
creative soul such as him. Avalon is unlike other schools. There is a true community feeling
of support. The students all come from diverse backgrounds and interests that would be
squashed in a “normal” school setting. The tech kids work alongside the theatre kids who
are best friends with the science kids who in turn kick back with the art kids. On top of that,
their use of the 'senior project' idea where each senior spends a majority of their final year
working on one project that is then presented to the school is simply revolutionary.
-An Parent of a Graduate
Grade Level Projects and Presentations
This year each high school student completed a grade level project and then gave grade level
presentation. The ninth graders completed a 50-hour project and presented to their advisories in a
5 minute presentation. The tenth graders completed a 100-hour project and the eleventh graders
completed a 150-hour project. They then presented to the student body on March 23rd. Each
student was given feedback on their presentations by staff and other students. Each grade level

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 35
had a rubric for their project and presentation. We are using the rubric this year as baseline data
to then show improvement in all parts of the grade level projects. This all will give the
scaffolding needed for them to present as seniors their 300-hour project in a formal 20 minute
presentation. Seniors gave their presentations in May in either an afternoon or evening program.
Read Brave
For the third consecutive year, Avalon partnered with the Saint Paul Public Library for Read
Brave, a program that gets Twin Cities students talking about the same book with each other and
with the author of the book. This year How It Went Down by Kekla Megoon was chosen, and
high school students read the multi-perspective tale about a murder of an African-American
youth by a white man. Avalon students discussed the tale in light of the deaths of Michael
Brown, Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, and many others. We also continued to tackle what it
means to have white privilege and how that would work in the story and in responding to the
story. The month-long activity culminated in a visit to Avalon by the author, who spoke to
Avalon students as well as LEAP School, a Saint Public High School for students who are
English-language learners.
Opera Residency
Also for the third consecutive year, Avalon School teamed with IFP (Independent Filmmaker
Project) and the Minnesota Opera Company to study an opera (in this case, Carmen), make films
about a theme or themes in the opera, see the opera, and share our films with the larger
community. This year saw the largest group of Avalon students participating (over 40), and one
of the films was accepted into the EDU Film Fest. The Saint Anthony Park Foundation
contributed a $1000 grant that paid in part for this project.
Improv Group
The Avalon improv group continues to go strong, meeting for a fall and spring session and
offering two shows at the Huge Theater in Minneapolis. Over 20 Avalon students participated in
at least one class, lead by Twin Cities actor and writer Eric Webster.
Service Week
At Avalon, service learning week is a very important break from the regular day to day activities
as it embodies all of our core principles: active learning, engaged citizenship, strong community,
and hope for the future. Students brainstormed areas of need in the community and then went
out to effect change in the areas that they chose. Students worked as a team to identify problems
and work toward solutions, and students saw that they can actually make a difference in their
own world.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 36
To include students in the planning process, advisories worked as a team to come up with service
ideas. Advisors helped facilitate contacts, learning opportunities, service projects, and other
logistics. Many groups had learning opportunities in their advisories throughout the year. The
increased student input and decision-making have been valuable to make service week
successful.
Each year advisories come up with varied organizations to work with. Some examples of service
opportunities from this year include: Lauren’s advisory, who spent three days at the Audubon
Center; and Carrie and Gretchen’s advisory, along with Tim’s advisory, who spent time at Camp
St. Croix. Some students picked up garbage from local wetlands, while others learned about the
perils to birds along their migratory routes; still others learned all that goes into maintaining a
farm, including the immense amount of labor it takes to keep it functioning.
Jo's advisory stayed overnight and prepared an early hot breakfast for more than fifty adults who
were staying at Simpson House Homeless shelter. Students planned the menu, raised the funds,
purchased the food, and cooked and served the breakfast. They also spent time repairing fences,
hauling gravel, and working on other outdoor chores at the Hooved Animal Rescue Center
in Zimmerman, MN.
Young Men’s Group
Young Men's Group was held weekly for high school students during the 2014-2015 school year.
The open group was facilitated by a school social worker and an education assistant. Attendance
rates for the group averaged 15 students per week. The discussion format of the group allowed
the participants a space to dialog about effective communication, stereotypes, responsibility,
healthy decision making, self-awareness and personal growth.
Robotics
Students at Avalon had an opportunity to participate in FRC and FTC Robotics after school.
Avalon co-teamed with Great River School (GRS) and Twin Cities Academy, making team
2491, No Mythic.
This year during the pre-build session from September through December, the team met every
Tuesday and Thursday evening from 4:00-8:30 pm at GRS. The FTC team built their robot
during this time and competed. The FRC team upgraded the previous year’s robot and went to
practice matches with it. During build season the team met T/TH/ S for six weeks to build a new
robot. They competed in two regional competitions, one in Duluth and one at the U of M.
The team won a first place at the regional at the U of M qualifying them for the international
competition in Missouri. Almost all of the team members were able to attend. This was a once in
a lifetime opportunity to be part of a worldwide competition.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 37

The impact on the students that was significant. Several are now mentoring LEGO robotics this
summer. The students learned electrical skills, CAD, coding, mechanics, pneumatics, marketing
and teamwork.

Solar Boat Regatta
This year the Physics class entered two solar boats in Minnesota Renewable Energy Society’s
Solar Boat Regatta. The boats were student built and student driven. One boat won a 4th place
and the other won all races and won 1st place. The students that built the boats learned more
about buoyancy, force and speed. They learned how to wire solar panels and motors and work
with wood. They also learned to work as a team to get a project built so that all parts worked
together.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 38
MCIS Career Interest Survey
Per state requirements as well as Avalon School standards, all Avalon high school program
students do work to explore future post-secondary education and training options, to become
“college and career ready”. To that end, this year Avalon used the MCIS (Minnesota Career
Interest Survey) offered by the state to have each 9th grader explore the software and consider
college and career options (this included almost 40 students). The online program was used by
many high school students, and we plan to continue to have all 9th graders in the fall of the
school year create an MCIS portfolio and begin to entertain ideas about where their high school
education might lead them.
Kitchen and Garden
Over the past three years, our students have expressed a strong interest in Farm to School (F2S)
learning opportunities and so our staff has responded. Currently, Avalon has a raised bed garden
and chicken coop which are embedded into our curriculum for both general education and
special education students. We use produce from the garden and eggs from the chicken coop for
cooking projects and experiential learning opportunities with our students. We have a small, nonpermanent kitchen where students can prepare food. Students are familiar with the F2S concepts
and they align with Avalon’s existing goals and commitments. Avalon's F2S committee is
organizing and working toward the goal of having a full, licensed kitchen at Avalon in the future.
This year we have collaborated with closely-situated urban farms and urban farm coops. These
farms operate production plots and facilities within a 10-mile radius of our school. The
proximity of these farms, along with our unique project-based learning model, provides students
the opportunity to intern as part of their core curriculum. Beginning this summer and into the
2015-16 school year, students will intern at these sites twice per week. These internships will be
focused on developing student knowledge and competencies around local agricultural
techniques, embedding their activities around state academic standards, and coordinating
community outreach and education about the advantages of local produce.
In an attempt to link these activities with ultimate outcomes, Avalon will also, under the Federal
Child Nutrition Program, prepare and serve one lunch per week utilizing a large portion of local
produce. Produce will be sourced from the same farms where students work along with eggs and
produce from our school garden. Avalon students will be actively involved in the preparation
and service of the meals, providing them the full experience of growing, distributing and
utilizing local produce. To do this, we will use a local incubator kitchen and transport meals
back to our school for service. Avalon School actively participates in recycling and organic
waste programs available in our city, thus we can easily dispose of garden and food waste in an
environmentally responsible manner.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 39
XII.

Program Challenges
Race, Racism, and Whiteness
During the 2013-2014 school year, Avalon School contracted with Heather Hackman Consulting
Group for a number of sessions throughout the school year to address white privilege and
institutional racism both within and beyond Avalon. Through this training, staff identified the
following goals:
1)!
2)!
3)!
4)!

Identifying institutional racism within and beyond Avalon
Speaking openly and honestly with students about our observations and concerns
Encouraging reflection and dialogue about race, racism, and white privilege
Creating more opportunities to both bring people of color to our school and welcome
them once they are here
5)! Supporting our students of color to go out into the community to make connections with
people of color to deepen their learning.

Staff continued this work into the 2014-2015 school year in several ways, including leading
thematic book clubs, discussing relevant news issues in advisories, supporting a student-run
Social Justice Club, and – perhaps most importantly – by continuing to turn a reflective lens on
our own practices, attitudes, and culture.
Strategic Plan
For a comprehensive discussion of challenges Avalon is working to overcome, please see
section XIII. Future plans, or Avalon’s Strategic Plan 2015 document in Appendix I.

One semester at Avalon turned my seventh grader from a student who saw himself as "not
a smart kid" to one who saw himself as a really good student. It challenged his creativity
and initiative and gave him the tools to meet those challenges.
-An Avalon Parent

!
!

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 40
XIII.

Future Plans
Our son has been at Avalon for two years and has enjoyed it as his best school
experience so far. Avalon gives him freedom to be himself and focus his learning on the
areas that interest him. Avalon is based on values of respect, exploration, and creativity
instead of rules that everyone must conform to. Teachers ask students questions instead of
telling them what to do. I appreciate that my son's advisor knows him as an individual and
honestly encourages him toward accomplishment for himself. Avalon gives so much to
each student and thus in turn to every family involved in this community. Avalon turned my
seventh grader from a student who saw himself as "not a smart kid" to one who saw himself
as a really good student. It challenged his creativity and initiative and gave him the tools to
meet those challenges.
-An Avalon Parent
Avalon School Strategic Plan 2015
To read Avalon School’s Strategic Plan 2015 in its entirety, please see Appendix I.
Throughout the 2014-2015 school year, staff drafted, revised, and published a new strategic plan
to guide Avalon School through the next five years. Always keeping the students front and
center, staff brainstorming began by envisioning the ideal traits of Avalon graduates in the year
2021. Through in-depth consultation and reflection with the local community, the Avalon
School Board, and other stakeholders, Avalon staff began to draft a vision of their ideal school.
Borrowing from Monica Martinez and Dennis McGrath’s insightful Deeper Learning (2014), in
which Avalon School was one of eight schools profiled, staff focused on six essential traits for
deeper learning.
Guiding Outcomes of 2021 Graduates

1.!
2.!
3.!
4.!
5.!
6.!

Mastery of Core Content
Critical Thinking
Collaboration (Student/Staff/Community)
Effective Communication
Self-Directed Learning
Academic Mindset
Using these traits as guide posts, staff and stakeholders critically analyzed Avalon’s current
program. To truly engage students in deeper learning, staff identified four distinct areas that
needed to be added, improved or changed.
Overall Goals/Areas Identified

5.! Deeper Learning/Project-Based Learning (PBL):

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 41
Expand opportunities for all students through project-based learning by using the
framework of deeper learning to strengthen our project-based curriculum and
increase student engagement.
6.! Community Connections:
Ensure that students have the skills and experiences necessary to feel connected to
the community and competent when seeking job opportunities.
7.! Commitment to Equity:
Deconstruct and identify the privileged systems/networks currently in place at Avalon.
Implement new systems to dismantle the privileged systems and replace them with
systems that distribute opportunity and resources to all students effectively and equitably,
in particular those students in disadvantaged situations and marginalized communities.
8.! Training/Support/Reform for Schools/Teachers:
Transform education locally and nationally by educating policy makers, teachers,
administrators, and students about Avalon’s democratic, project-based learning, and
teacher powered model.
Conclusion
Avalon’s philosophy is to meet each student where he/she is currently, to help that student
establish meaningful and appropriately challenging goals, and, in the end, to support the
student’s accomplishing those goals. The way we support each student is through a combination
of projects and seminars to earn credit and complete standards. We work to wed student
interests and aptitudes with state requirements and student needs.
We believe each student can be a successful, independent, life-long learner. We believe projects
are a useful tool in achieving that end. We also believe that success happens in a supportive,
nurturing community that values each member of that community. That’s why we have
Congress, a gender sexuality alliance, peer mediation, advisory, and projects that are run for and
by students. It is also why we have a co-op to run our school. We do not have a director or
principal because we believe we must all come together as a staff to make the decisions that will
affect our community. This shared ownership and governance helps focus all stakeholders and
fosters a spirit of commitment and dedication to making Avalon an ideal place to learn.
We value respect for individuals, different cultures, the community, and the environment. There
is an atmosphere of tolerance, integrity, equity, and safety. Avalon believes it is the
responsibility of individuals to be engaged, active participants in their local and global
communities. Visitors to Avalon will immediately recognize the sense of purpose, quality, and
commitment that energizes this community.
Avalon’s future is bright. It is in this safe, positive learning environment of engaged students
that we must continue to help them to develop the skills they need to be successful in the 21st
century.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 42
XIV.

Non-Profit Status
Avalon School qualifies as a non-profit organization, and the appropriate information can be
found at http://www.ag.state.mn.us/Charity/SearchResults.asp?FederalID=311743023.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 43
Appendices
Appendix A
Novation Education Opportunities (NEO) site visit report and contract goals

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 44
Appendix B: Avalon School Application

AVALON SCHOOL
2014-2015 school year (grades 6 –12)

return to:

or

2015-2016 school year (grades 6 – 12)

AVALON SCHOOL, 700 Glendale Street, Saint Paul, MN 55114-1782
Phone 651.649.5495 or Fax 651.649.5462

Avalon Mission Statement: Avalon School prepares students for college and life in a strong, nurturing
community that inspires active learning, engaged citizenship and hope for the future.

Student Application
STUDENT INFORMATION
Date _______________________
First Name _______________________________ Last Name_________________________________
Home Address _________________________________________ Apartment # ___________________
City______________________________ Zip code ___________ Home Phone# ___________________
Grade in fall of 2014 ______________
Last school attended, year, and city
Siblings at Avalon: _____________________________________________________________________

PARENT/GUARDIAN INFORMATION
Parent 1/Guardian (please print)_____________________________ Work Phone # ________________
Email address (if any)
Parent 2/Guardian (please print)_____________________________ Work Phone # ________________
Email address (if any)
Signature of parent or legal guardian:
Last updated on 3.12.13

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 45
Appendix C: Avalon School Registration 2014-2015
AVALON SCHOOL
REGISTRATION 2014-2015
Student’s Legal Name ______________________________________________ Gender_____
Last Name
First Name
Middle Name
Date of Birth__________________ Birthplace ___________________________

Grade in ’14-15___________

SSN (optional) ________________________

Address ___________________________________________________________________Home Phone ____________________
House Number
Street
Apt.
City
Zip
Area Code
Number
Additional Parent/Guardian Contact Information: Cell _____________________ E-mail ___________________________________
List ALL previous schools attended (Middle/High): (School Names and Cities)
__________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Does your child have an IEP or 504 plan?

Yes, an IEP____

Yes, a 504 Plan_______

No, neither_______

Who does student live with? _________________________________________________________________________________
Name: (circle one) Parent 1/Guardian____________________________________________________________________
Place of employment________________________________________________________

Work Phone______________________

Name: (circle one) Parent 2/Guardian______________________________________________________________________
Place of employment_______________________________________________________

Work Phone______________________

List sisters and/or brothers. Specify if they are attending Avalon School.
______________________________________ Grade_____

______________________________________ Grade_____

______________________________________ Grade_____

______________________________________ Grade_____

Racial/Ethnic Group (Please circle):
African African American Cambodian CaucasianHispanic Hmong Laotian Native American Somali
Pacific Islander Vietnamese Other _________________
Home Language, if not English ________________________
List any Major Health Problems_______________________________________________________________________________
Family Physician _____________________________________________________________

Phone ______________________

Choice of Hospital ____________________________________________________________

Phone ______________________

EMERGENCY CONTACTS (IN ADDITION TO PARENTS): This is VERY important! If your child becomes ill at school or if
school closes for an emergency, we must be able to contact someone who can care for your student.
Name ________________________________________Relationship___________________ Phone __________________________
Name ________________________________________Relationship___________________ Phone __________________________
FOR SCHOOL USE ONLY * FOR SCHOOL USE ONLY * FOR SCHOOL USE ONLY *

FOR SCHOOL USE ONLY

ID #_________ MARSS #_________________________________________

Miles home to school __________________

Grade Level ________

Advisor _____________________________

20___

Records Requested____________ Records Received _____________

PF _____

Bus _____

JMC_______

Admit Date __________________ Withdrawal Date _______________

To _________________________________

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 46
Appendix D: Avalon School Bylaws
(This document can also be located here: http://www.avalonschool.org/wpcontent/uploads/2010/07/Avalon-Bylaws-2011.pdf.)

AMENDED AND RESTATED
BYLAWS
OF
THE AVALON CHARTER SCHOOL
(The “Corporation”)
ARTICLE I

PURPOSE
The Purposes of the Corporation are as stated in its Articles of Incorporation, including
inter alia, operation of Minnesota public (charter) school (the “School”).

ARTICLE II
OFFICES
The registered office of the Corporation in the State of Minnesota is as stated in the Articles of
Incorporation. The Corporation may have such other offices within the State of Minnesota as the Board
of Directors may determine or as the affairs of the Corporation may require. The registered office may
be, but need not be, identical with the principal office in the State of Minnesota.
ARTICLE III
MEMBERSHIP
Section 1. Members: Members of the Board of Directors of the Corporation shall be Members of
the Corporation.
Section 2. Annual Meeting. The annual meeting of the members and Board Elections of the
Corporation (pursuant to Section IV hereafter) shall be held at such time and location as
determined by the Board of the Directors. Board Elections and the Annual Meeting will be held
on a day in which Avalon Charter School is in session. Notification shall be by a posting on the
Avalon Charter School website, email notice, or postal service notice mailed first class at least
thirty (30) days prior to the meeting date. Such notice shall contain the date, time and place of the
meeting.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 47
Section 3. Special Meeting. A special meeting of Members may be called at any time by a
majority vote of the Board of Directors. Notification shall be by newsletter or other first class
postal service mailed, email, or posting on the Avalon Charter School website no fewer than
seven (7) days prior to date of the meeting. Such notice shall contain the date, time, place and
purpose of the meeting.
Section 4. Quorum. For any annual or special meeting, a majority of the voting members shall
constitute a quorum.
Section 5. Voting. At each annual meeting of the membership, every voting member shall have
one (1) vote. Members may vote in person or by proxy. The affirmative vote of a majority of a
quorum of voting members shall constitute a duly authorized action of the membership.
ARTICLE IV
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Section 1. General Powers. The affairs of the Corporation shall be managed by its Board of
Directors. Except as limited by the Articles of Incorporation, these Bylaws, Minn. Stat. 124D.10, and
by law, the Board of Directors shall have the power and authority to do all acts and perform all
functions that the Corporation may do or perform.
Section 2. Number, Tenure and Qualifications. The Board of Directors shall consist of not less
than five (5) nor more than eleven (11) members. A majority of the Board of Directors shall at all
times consist of the licensed teachers providing instruction under contract with the Corporation. The
Board shall have at least one licensed teacher, a community member (a person neither a licensed
teacher employed by the school nor a parent of a student currently attending the School) and one
parent or legal guardian of a student enrolled at Avalon Charter School. The Executive Director and
the chief financial officer (the person employed by the staff having responsibility for the financial
affairs of the School) shall be ex-officio members of the Board. The Board may, but shall not be
required to, designate an unlimited number of ex-officio members.
At this date, the members of the Board and terms to which has been elected is shown on Att. 1
hereto. From and after the date of these Restated and Amended By-laws, each director shall hold
office for a three (3) year term or until a successor has been duly elected and qualified, or until the
director dies, resigns, is removed or the term otherwise expires. The election of the Board of Directors
shall be in compliance with Section 124D.10 of the Minnesota Statutes.
a. Nomination Process. At least thirty (30) days prior to the Corporation’s annual
meeting, the Board of Directors will solicit nominations for all the Directorate
positions that will be filled at the next annual meeting. The Board of Directors will
compile the list of nominees and notify the Corporation’s Members of the nominees
for each position fifteen (15) days prior to the annual meeting.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 48
Section 3. Regular Meetings. All meetings of the Board or committees shall be conducted under
the provisions of the Minnesota Open Meeting Law, Mn. Stat. 13D.01 et.seq. Regular meetings
of the board of Directors shall be held monthly during the school year. Dates will be published on
the Avalon Charter School calendar and posted on the Avalon Charter School website. Board
meetings may be canceled with notice by email to members and by posting the notice of
cancellation on the Avalon Charter School website.
Section 4. Special Meetings. The Board Chair may call special meetings of the Board of
Directors at any time, for any purpose. The Board Chair shall call a special meeting of the Board
of Directors upon the written or verbal request of one-third (1/3) of the members of the Board.
Notice of every special meeting of the Board of Directors shall be posted on the Avalon Charter
School website at least five (5) days before the day on which the meeting is to be held.
Section 5. Quorum and Adjourned Meeting. A meeting at which at least a majority of the
members of the Board of Directors are present shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of
business at any meeting of the Board of Directors. If, however, such quorum shall not be present
at any such meeting, the director or directors present thereat shall have the power to adjourn the
meeting from time to time without notice other than announcement at the meeting, until a quorum
is convened, and later enough directors withdraw from the meeting so that less than a quorum
remains, the directors remaining may continue to transact business until adjournment.
Section 6. Voting. Each member of the Board of Directors shall have the power to exercise one
(1) vote on all matters to be decided by resolution of the Board. The affirmative vote of a majority
of a quorum of Board members shall constitute a duly authorized action of the Board.
Section 7. Resignation and Removal. Directors may resign at any time, effective immediately or
at a specified later date, by giving written notice to the Board Chair or the Secretary of the
Corporation. Unless otherwise specified therein, the acceptance of such resignation shall not be
necessary to make it effective. A director may be removed at any time, with or without cause, by
a two-thirds (2/3) vote of a majority of all remaining directors of the Corporation. Failure to
attend four (4) consecutive meetings or two (2) quarterly meetings shall constitute cause.
Section 8. Filling Vacancies. Vacancies on the Board of Directors caused by death,
disqualification, resignation, disability, removal or such other cause shall be filled by
appointment of a new director by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining directors,
even if less than a quorum is present. A director filling a vacancy shall hold office until the next
annual meeting of the members, or until his successor has been duly elected and qualified,
subject to his earlier death, disqualification, resignation or removal.
Section 9. Compensation. Except for licensed teacher directors, directors shall not receive
compensation for their services as a Director. In addition, the directors of this Corporation may
be reimbursed for the reasonable out-of-pocket expenses incurred by them in rendering services
to this Corporation, as the Board of Directors from time to time determines such services to be
directly in furtherance of the purposes and in the best interest of the Corporation.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 49
Section 10. Presence at Meetings. Members of the Board of Directors or of any committee, as
applicable, must be present to participate in making decisions.
Section 11 . Committees of Board. The Board of Directors may, by resolution passed by a
majority of the Board of Directors, designate, define the authority of, set the number and
determine the identity of, members of one or more committees. Committee members must be
natural persons, but need not be members of the Board of Directors. The Board may, by similar
vote, designate one or more alternate members of any committee who may replace any absent or
disqualified member at any meeting of the committee.
11.1. Authority of Committees. Any committee, to the extent provided in these Bylaws or
in the resolutions creating such committee, shall have and may exercise all of the powers and
authority granted by the Board of Directors in the management and business affairs of the
Corporation; provided, however, that no committee shall be granted any powers or authority
exceeding or the same as that granted to the Board of Directors. Unless otherwise stated in the
resolutions creating it, or in these Bylaws, committee actions shall be taken only upon the
affirmative vote of a majority of the members of the committee. Failure of a committee to reach
an agreement upon any issue before it shall require referral of such issue to the entire Board of
Directors.
11.2. Procedures for Conducting Meetings. The activities of all committees of this
Corporation shall be conducted in such manner as will advance the best interest of the
Corporation. Each committee shall fix its own rules of procedure and other regulations which
shall be consistent with the Articles of Incorporation, these Bylaws and the policies of the
Corporation. The Board Chair shall be an ex-officio member of all committees, unless he serves
as a member of such committee. The meetings of all committees shall be open to attendance by
all directors, which directors may participate in any such meeting but may not vote unless such
director is a member of the committee.
11.3. Limitation on Authority of Committees. Each committee shall be under the
direction and control of the Board and shall keep regular minutes of their proceedings, and all
actions of each committee shall be reported to the Board of Directors and shall be subject to
revision, ratification or alteration by the Board of Directors. Each committee shall meet as
provided by its rules or by resolution of the Board of Directors. Notice of all meetings of any
committee shall be given to all members of that committee as required by the Minnesota Open
Meeting Law.
Section 12. Conflict of Interest. Each director must complete a conflict-of-interest statement
for review by the Board’s Authorizer within thirty (30) days of their election, and shall annually
complete such a statement on the anniversary of their election or on such an annual date that the
Board may select.
12.1. Conflict of Interest Policy. The Board shall follow all laws regarding Conflict of
Interest as outlined in Minnesota Statute 124D.10 Subd. 4a.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 50

ARTICLE V
OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES
Section 1. Number; Election. The officers of the Corporation shall be elected for one (1) year
terms by the Board of Directors, and shall consist of a President (Board Chair and Chief
Executive Officer) and/or Co-President (Co-Chair and Chief Executive Officer), Treasurer
(Chief Financial Officer), Secretary and such other officers as the Board of Directors shall
determine from time to time.
Section 2. Vacancies. A vacancy in any office of this corporation occurring by reason of death,
disqualification, resignation or removal shall be filled for the unexpired portion of the term by
appointment of a successor by the Board of Directors.
Section 3. President (Board Chair). The president or Presidents shall:
3.1. Act as the chairman of the Board of Directors and exercise the functions of the office
of the president of the Corporation;
3.2. Preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors;
3.3. Perform such duties and exercise such powers as are necessary or incident to the
supervision and management of the business and affairs of the Corporation;
3.4. Sign and deliver, in the name of the Corporation, all deeds, mortgages, bonds,
contracts or other instruments requiring an officer’s signature, unless otherwise directed by the
Board;
3.5. Have the general powers and duties usually vested in the office of the president; and
3.6. Have such other powers and perform such other duties as are prescribed by
Minnesota Statutes, Section 317A.305, Subd. 2, and as the Board of Directors may from time to
time prescribe.
Section 4. Treasurer. The Treasurer shall:
4.1. Keep accurate accounts of all monies of the Corporation received or disbursed;
4.2. Have the care and custody of the corporate funds and securities;
4.3. Have the power to endorse for deposit all notes, checks and drafts received by the
Corporation;

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 51

4.4. Render to the Board Chair and the Board of Directors, whenever required, an account
of all of financial transactions as Chief Financial Officer and of the financial condition of the
Corporation; and
4.5. Perform such other duties and have such other powers as may from time to time be
prescribed by the Board of Directors or by the Board Chair related to financial matters;
Section 5. Secretary. The Secretary shall maintain the office of the Corporation and shall:
5.1. Attend all meetings of the members, the Board of Directors and all committees
(when requested);
5.2. Record all proceedings of the minutes of the members, Board of Directors and
committees in a book to be kept for that purpose;
5.3. Preserve all documents and records belonging to the Corporation;
5.4. Maintain a list of all members of the Corporation in good standing;
5.5. Give cause to be given notice of all meetings of the members and all meetings of the
Board of Directors and committees; and
5.6. Perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Board of Directors or the
Board Chair from time to time.
Section 6. Management and Administrative Employees. The Corporation will operate as a
teacher partnership model based on teacher ownership and shared decision-making. The teacher
partnership will define administrative employees as deemed necessary. Such employees shall
have the duties and responsibilities and hold their positions for the time prescribed by the Board
of Directors.
Section 7. Compensation. The officers and employees of the Corporation may be paid such
reasonable compensation, if any, for their services rendered to the Corporation in such capacity,
and may be reimbursed for reasonable out-of-pocket expenses, as the Board of Directors from
time to time determines to be directly in furtherance of the purposes and in the best interests of
the Corporation.
Section 8. Bond. The Board of Directors of this Corporation shall from time to time determine
which, if any, of the officers, agents or employees of this Corporation shall be bonded and the
amount of each bond.
Section 9. Removal of Office. Any officer may be removed at any time, with or without cause,
by the vote of a majority of a quorum of the Board of Directors at any regular meeting or at a
special meeting called for that purpose.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 52
Section 10. Resignation. Any officer may resign at any time. Such resignation shall be made in
writing to the President or the Secretary of the Corporation and shall take effect at the time
specified therein or, if no time be specified, at the time of its receipt by the President or
Secretary. The acceptance of a resignation shall not be necessary to make it effective.
ARTICLE VI
DISTRIBUTION OF THE ASSETS
Section 1. Right to Cease Operations and Distribute Assets. By a two-thirds (2/3) vote of all
directors, the Board of Directors may resolve that the Corporation cease operations and
voluntarily dissolve. Such resolution shall set forth the proposed dissolution and direct
designated officers of the Corporation to perform all acts necessary to effect a dissolution.
Written notice as required by these Bylaws shall be given to all voting members stating that the
purpose of the meeting shall be to vote upon the dissolution of the Corporation. A resolution to
dissolve the Corporation shall be approved only upon the affirmative vote of a two-thirds (2/3) of
a quorum of voting members of the Corporation taken at a meeting during which the resolution is
brought before the voting members. If such cessation and distribution is called for, the Board of
Directors shall set a date for the commencement of the distribution.
Section 2. Cessation and Distribution. When cessation of operations and distribution of assets
has been called for, the Board of Directors and the designated officers shall cause the
Corporation to discontinue its regular business activities and operations as soon as practicable,
and shall liquidate and distribute all the Corporation’s assets to other entities in accordance with
Minnesota Statutes, Section 317A.735 and in accordance with the Articles of Incorporation.
Notice of intent to dissolve shall be filed with the Secretary of State pursuant to Minnesota
Statutes, Section 317A.723.
ARTICLE VII
INDEMNIFICATION
Section1. Indemnification. Each director, officer and employee of the Corporation, past or
present, and each person who serves or may have serves at the request of the Corporation as a
director, officer, partner, trustee, employee, representative or agent of another organization or
employee benefit plan, and the respective heirs, administrators and executors of such persons,
shall be indemnified by the Corporation is accordance with, and to the fullest extent permitted
by, Minnesota Statutes, Section 317A.521. The Corporation shall not be obligated to indemnify
any other person or entity, except to the extent such obligation shall be specifically approved by
resolution of the Board of Directors. The Corporation shall have the power to advance such
person’s expenses incurred in defending any such proceeding to the maximum extent permitted
by law. This Section is and shall be for the sole and exclusive benefit of individuals designated
herein and no individual, firm or entity shall have any rights under this Section by way of
assignment, subrogation or otherwise, where voluntarily, involuntarily or by operation of law.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 53
Section 2. Insurance. The Corporation may purchase and maintain insurance on behalf of any
person who is or was a director, officer, employee or agent of the Corporation, against any
liability asserted against and incurred by such person in his or her official capacity, or arising out
of his or her status as such, whether or not the Corporation would have the power to indemnify
such person against liability under Minnesota Statutes, Section 317A.521, the Articles of
Incorporation or these bylaws.
ARTICLE VIII
AMENDMENTS
Subject to the right of the voting members to adopt, amend, and repeal these Bylaws as set
forth in Minnesota Statues, Section 317A.181, Subd. 2(b), the power to adopt, amend or repeal
the Bylaws is vested in the Board of Directors.

ARTICLE IX
FINANCIAL MATTERS
Section 1. Contracts. The Board of Directors may authorize any officer or officers, agent or
agents of the Corporation to enter into any contract or execute and deliver any instrument in the
name and on behalf of the Corporation, and any such authority may be general or confined to
specific instances. Unless so authorized by the Board of Directors or these Bylaws, no officer,
agent or employee shall have any power or authority to bind the Corporation by any contract or
engagement, or to pledge its credit or to render it liable pecuniary for any purpose of to any
amount.
Section 2. Loans and Pledges. No loans shall be contracted nor pledges or guarantees given
on behalf of the Corporation unless specifically authorized by the Board of Directors.
Section 3. Authorized Signatures. All checks, drafts or other orders for the payment of
money, notes or other evidence of indebtedness issued in the name of the Corporation shall be
signed by such persons and in such manner as shall from time to time be determined by the
Board of Directors or these Bylaws.
Section 4. Deposits. All funds of the Corporation shall be deposited to the credit of the
Corporation in such banks, trust companies or other depositories as the Board of Directors may
designate and shall be disbursed under such general rules and regulations as the Board of
Directors may from time to time determine.
Section 5. Corporate Seal. The Corporation shall not have a corporate seal.
Section 6. Documents Kept at Registered Office. The Board of Directors shall cause to be
kept at the registered office of this Corporation originals or copies of:

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 54

6.1.!

Records of all proceedings of the Board of Directors and all committees;

6.2.!

Records of all votes and actions of the members;

6.3.!

All financial statements of the Corporation; and

6.4.!

Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws of this Corporation and all amendments and
restatements thereof.

Section 7. Accounting System and Audit. The Board of Directors shall cause to be established
and maintained, in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles applied on a
consistent basis, an appropriate accounting and financial reporting system for the Corporation.
The Board shall cause the records and books of accounts of the Corporation to be audited at least
once each fiscal year and at such other times as it may deem necessary or appropriate, and may
retain such person of firm for such purposes as it may deem appropriate.
Section 8. Funding Limits. The Board of Directors shall not allocate more than seventy
percent (70%) of the total funding received from the State of Minnesota for wages and salaries.
The foregoing limitation does not include benefits such as medical and dental benefits or other
benefits deemed necessary by the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE X
MISCELLANEOUS
Section1. Gender References. All references in these bylaws to a party in the masculine shall
include the feminine and the neuter.
Section 2. Plurals. All references in the plural shall, where appropriate, include the singular,
and all references to the singular shall, where appropriate, be deemed to include the plural.
Section 3. Governing Law. At all times the Corporation shall abide the provisions of Minnesota
and Federal Law including, but not limited to MN. Stat. §124D.10, MN. Stat. §124D.11, the
Minnesota Open Meeting Law and Minnesota Data Practices Act.

Adopted at a properly noticed meeting of the Board of Directors on February 17, 2011.
Certified:
_______________________
Secretary

Behavioral
Emotional
Autonomy
Belongingn
ess
A/A
A/P
P/A
P/P
Goal
Orientation
Task
Mastery
Performanc
e
Academic
Press

Engagement

Hope

Construct

2.16
3.86

4.31
4
3.41
3.69

4.36
1.95
3.95

4.32
3.95
3.57
3.74

4.17

2.16

4.17

4.32
4.08
3.42
3.59

2.88
5.4
5.96

3.76
5.71
1.14

2.84
4.86
5.62

3.82

1.93

4.17

4.37
4.03
3.36
3.55

2.78
5.08
5.85

3.92

2

4.25

4.43
4.15
3.39
3.44

3.42
4.67
5.91

3.82

2.25

4.14

4.3
3.99
3.26
3.45

3.14
4.3
5.53

3.81

1.88

4.21

4.39
4.1
3.29
3.5

2.38
4.63
5.85

3.9

1.99

4.25

4.44
4.11
3.32
3.37

3.45
4.18
5.86

3.94

1.87

4.29

4.55
4.25
3.42
3.6

3.88
4.39
6

3.92

1.68

4.29

4.5
4.23
3.54
3.55

4.2
4.03
6.11

3.8

2.12

4.01

4.29
3.94
3.23
3.34

3.5
3.57
5.62

All Schools
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Spring
Avg
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010
2011
2012
2013
2014
2015
Spring
2015
51.91
50.34
48.08
49.69
49.24
49.78
50.35
49.61
49.63
49.89
49.59

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 55

Appendix E: Hope Study Report
Our scores on the Hope Survey this year fall well in line with our last ten years of data.
Compared to last year, our overall Hope Score rose a little, reaching a score or 49.89, our second
highest score in the last eight years. In several other categories, we were either just ahead or just
behind last years scores.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 56

Construct

Fall
2014

Spring
2015

Hope (up to 64)
Engagement
(-10 to 10)

45.03

Behavioral
Emotional

1.19
-0.19

4.2
4.03

Autonomy
(1 to 7)

4.17

6.11

!!

!!

Belongingness
(1 to 5)
Advisor/Academic
Advisor/Personal
Peer/Academic
Peer/Personal
Goal Orientation
(1 to 5)
Task/Mastery
Performance
Academic Press
(1 to 5)

49.89

4.06
3.44
2.78
2.94

4.5
4.23
3.54
3.55
!!

3.4
2.6

4.29
1.68

3.28

3.92

However, it is when you compare Fall 2014 to
Spring 2015 that the data is most useful. Every
single category improved over that time period,
often by considerable margins. This is useful
because the fall data shows students new to the
school, our culture, and our community. Once
within Avalon’s doors, their hope improves.
So too does how they view their relationships,
both with their peers and their teachers. And so
too does their attitude toward their work: they
begin to learn for the sake of learning. And
they do this all while gaining autonomy.
The story told in this directly reflects the
success of Avalon School’s mission: Avalon
School prepares students for college and life in
a strong, nurturing community that inspires
active learning, engaged citizenship, and hope
for the future.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 57
Appendix F: The Constitution of Avalon
Appendix 3
Revised (2013-2014)
The Constitution of the
School of Avalon
~Preamble~
We, the People of Avalon, in order to provide for a safe and productive learning environment,
promote the obtaining and usage of knowledge for the benefit of those around us, and ensure
general happiness, do ordain and establish this constitution for Avalon High School.
~Article I~
The Legislative Branch
Section I.
All Legislative power herein shall be vested in a Congress of Avalon, which shall consist solely
of that group of officials.
Section II.
Congress: Organization and Powers of Impeachment
1.
Congress made of any person choosing to take part.
2.
Any person attending may vote, regardless of prior attendance. The only reason a
person would not be allowed to vote is if that person were removed from Congress.
3.
For a person to be removed there must be a majority vote in favor of removing that
person. Length of removal will be judged by remaining Congress members. If a person is
removed three times, that person is no longer allowed to take part in Congress.
4.
No representative shall hold a position of higher power within the Congress,
therefore, there shall be no Speaker of the House, nor any similar position.
Section III.
Meetings Of Congress
Meetings shall be held on a weekly basis, at whatever time is found most convenient by
the members of Congress (if there is free attendance we need a set time).
Section IV.
Rules Of Procedure
Minutes must be recorded at every meeting.
Section V.
Privileges and Limitations
1.
means.

Representatives of Congress shall be compensated with credit, and by no other

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 58
2.
For a Congress member who has been removed three times to be reinstated, that
member must first go through mediation, as well as be approved by Congress.
Section VI.
Procedure for passing bills, executive veto
1.
Congress is charged with passing bills.
2.
Any member of the school may propose a bill to the Legislative body, whether they
are a student or a staff member.
3.
A bill must pass through congress with a majority, after which it must be passed
through the Executive branch, also with a majority vote.
4.
For a bill to be vetoed there must be a majority vote within the Executive branch in
favor of such a veto.
5.
A bill may not be re-proposed for three weeks.
Section VII.
Powers delegated to congress
1.
The Representatives of the student body shall report all meeting information to their
peers.
2.
Congress may make, modify, or disband any law applying to students or the
student/advisor relationship so long as it is not unconstitutional or against any higher-level laws.
3.
Congress reserves the right to declare emergency or follow up meetings that are not
scheduled.
4.
Congress may form committees to organize, control, and lead any and all social
events, including but not limited to the All School Meetings, Presentation Nights, Public
Relations Tours, School Dances, and other events called to order.
Section VIII.
Powers denied to congress
1.
Congress may not override decisions made by higher-level laws, including, but not
limited to the School Board, School District, Minnesota Government, or US Federal Law.
2.
Congress may not be involved in or perform any disciplinary actions, as those are
reserved for the Mediators.
3.
Congress may not override the Executive veto.
4.
Congress may not place restrictions on other branches of Government.
~Article II~
The Judiciary branch

1.
2.
Group.
3.

Section I
Division of branch, tenure of office
The Judiciary branch of Avalon should consist of the Mediation Council.
The Mediation Council will consist of Peer Mediators as well the Circle Process
Any student who attends the mediation training may be a Mediator.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 59
4.
Mediators will facilitate communication to resolve individual student/student issues
or student/staff issues.
5.
There will be a minimum of three trained Peer Mediators.
6.
The Circle Process Group will address school issues through a Talking Circle and
bring resolutions to Congress.
Section II
Jurisdiction
1.
2.

The Judicial Branch will be committed to Restorative Justice.
The Judicial Branch will handle all cases that are not in violation of higher laws.
~Article III~
Executive branch

1.
2.
3.
4.

Section I
The Avalon Staff shall form the Executive Branch.
The executive branch shall be responsible for upholding all higher laws.
The Executive Branch is permitted to veto laws made by Congress.
It is the responsibility of the Executive Branch to enforce the laws.

~Article IV~
Governing Body
Avalon School guarantees all students that it is a Democratic single party government, and will
follow all procedures as such.
~Article V~
Amendment Procedures
Any member of the school may propose an amendment or bill, whether they are students or staff,
to the Legislative Branch.
All proposed amendments to the Constitution must first be passed by a majority of the Executive
Branch.
After the approval by the Executive Branch, the Legislative Branch will present the proposed
amendment to the Avalon Community in an all school meeting. All amendments to the
Constitution must be passed by a majority of the Avalon School community in a simple vote.
~First Amendment~
BILL OF RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES
1.
Every person has the right to bring someone to mediation.
2.
Every person has the responsibility to attend mediation when asked at a reasonable time.
3.
Every person has the responsibility to resolve interpersonal problems. Avalon will
provide time and space for mediations to facilitate better communication and resolve conflicts.
4.
Every person has the right to be treated with respect and dignity.
5.
Every person has the responsibility to treat others with respect and dignity.
6.
Every person has the right to his or her own personal space.
7.
Every person has the responsibility to respect other people’s personal space.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 60
8.
Every person has the right and responsibility to try.
9.
Every person has the right to ask why.
10. Every person has the responsibility to question themselves and their actions in times of
duress.
11. Every person has the right to speak and communicate his or her views as long as they are
respectful to others.
12. Every person has the responsibility to listen at all times to whoever is speaking.
13. Every person has the right and responsibility to be involved and participate here at Avalon
High School
~Second Amendment~
Congress is responsible to review and revise the Avalon School Constitution and Laws
List a minimum of every other year.
~Third Amendment~
This amendment removes the text which states that “The Person that records minutes at
one meeting leads at the next.”
~Fourth Amendment~
This amendment removes the text which states that "The Circle Process Group will
address school issues through a Talking Circle and bring resolutions to Congress."
~Avalon Laws~
Law 001: Sex Ed
(2002) (Revised fall 08)
Be it enacted that Avalon will provide a sexual education seminar two times each year. The
seminars shall:
1.! Be one block long.
2.! Be exclusively on sexual education.
3.! Address relationships, personal values, birth control options, pregnancy
options, sexually transmitted infections, sexual health rights, sexual abuse, sexual abuse rights,
and sexual orientation.
This requirement would facilitate Avalon students’ access to information on sexual health so that
they can make informed decisions on sexual issues.
1.! for graduation standards
2.! meet one time per a week
Law 002: Mandatory Advisory Cleaning Period

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 61
(2003) (Revised Fall 08)
This bill proposes that:
1.! Each advisory will remain in the advisory and clean their respective learning areas during
the last 10 minutes on Fridays (3:30-3:40pm). Each advisory can vote to have their
advisories clean at a different time.
2.! A clean area will be defined as:
Void of all unnecessary rubbish (bottles, cans, scraps of paper, etc.), both on and
under desks.
o! Being or having the appearance of being neat and organized (books in a pile, no
loose papers, etc)
o! Furthermore, if any rubbish receptacles exist in the advisory, a designated person
or volunteer will dump said receptacle into one of the larger bins in the cafe´.
o!

3.!
Students and advisors will take care to ensure that during the cleaning period, all
recyclable materials will be placed into their proper receptacles.
4.!
The said period of time may not be more frequent than once a week.
5.!
The said period of time may not be shorter than a quarter-hour.
6.!
The preferred period of time will be during advisory time.
7.!
Both advisors and students will take part in the cleaning.
8.!
For Advisory credit, if students don’t clean during that time, they do not receive credit for
that time.

Law 006- Student Group Guidelines
(2005) (Revised 2014)
This bill is to insure that Avalon student group guidelines will be respected and followed.
Student will be given one warning by the facilitator or can be suggested by another student. The
second warning will result in the student being asked to leave that student group. This decision
will be made by the facilitator but can be later discussed if it was seen as unacceptable. If so, it
will not count as one of the student’s three dismissals. After being asked to leave three meetings,
the group will vote to decide if the student may return. ¾ opinion will decide this for the rest of
that school year. If the student is allowed to return and another incident occurs, another vote will
take place. This will happen for each situation that may follow.
Law 007-Guardian
(2005) (Revised 2014)
When a student reaches the age of 18, given that they have parental consent given in
person at a conference with the parent and advisor, they have the right to sign their own project
proposals, seminar registration and seminar drop forms, and permission slips for field trips.
Students who are under 18 may drive to and from school and field trips. Students may not drive
during the school days and they may not drive other students to and from field trips.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 62
Law 010-Executive Veto
(2007)
Although the Executive Branch retains the power to veto bill, the Executive Branch must
provide academic or social reasons in writing to the next Congress meeting.
Law 011-Avalon Cleaning Crew
(2008)(Revised 2014)
Avalon students effective as soon as possible, will be responsible for the cleaning of the
café after lunch.
Law 012- Redaction and Discussion Perimeters
(2009)(Revised 2014)
Any new policies created by the Avalon School staff which directly affect the student body must
be examined and discussed in Congress. The Avalon School staff may not prohibit Congress
from discussing any issue or policy that directly affects the student body. In Congress students
will not discuss the personal information of any staff member or student. Specific students will
remain nameless in conversation.
Law 013- The Student Removal Policy
(October 2009)(Revised 2014)
If a student is disruptive or disrespectful to the point that an advisor asks them to leave the
seminar, visited advisory, etc., and their request is denied/ignored, the student will be given one
warning and if further action is necessary, the student will be permanently removed from the
visited advisory, seminar for the rest of the block with the exception of students with an IEP or
other programs that require their presence.
Law 014- Pass Policies
(October 2009)(Revised 2014)
In order to be in the café, students need have their pass signed by their advisor. Passes cannot be
written for periods of more than an hour. If a student wishes to be in the café for more than one
hour per day, this is allowed. The student would need to go back and check in with their advisor
and get another pass for another hour; at that time the advisor should ask to see what work
they’ve done and make the decision to sign the pass based on the work that has been completed.
Conduct in the café is to be as follows:
· When working in the café, all students must be quietly working and showing respect for each
other, the advisors, and the café. All students in the café must have a pass.
· The maximum number of students working at each table is 5 3.
· If an advisor needs to send a student back to their advisory, that student loses the privilege of
working in the café for one week and/or the cafe is closed for that day.
· If an advisor needs to ask a an individual or a group of students to be quiet more than once, that
group or individual loses the privilege of working in the café for the remainder of that day.
Law 015- Cafe Closures
(February 2010)(Revised 2014)
Avalon’s congress has determined that the café will close to students during non-lunch hours on
16 Feb 2010 to 19 Feb 2010. This was proposed due to extensive pass violations, excessive

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 63
volume and the noticeable lack of work. After this week, the café will reopen, but should close
again for as long as necessary (duration determined by congress) if these or other problems arise
again. Congress and/or the staff may close the Cafe at any given time, providing they have a
good reason.
Passed 27-9 on 11 Feb 2010
Law 019 Gender Nuetral Bathroom times
(March 2012)(Revised 2014)
Congress voted to have gender-neutral bathrooms all day.
Law020 Bandana Rule/Dress Code update.
(September 2012)(Revised 2014)
On the behalf of a large group in Avalon School, students should be able to wear bandanas in an
appropriate ways(Not in the back of pockets). Students may also be able to wear bandanas with
polka dots, stripes, different designs so on and so forth. Students may NOT “gang-bang” with
ANY color or ANY design of ANY bandana on or they will have to remove the bandana
immediately and take any consequence imposed at that time. Bandanas must be only worn the
way showed in pictures A and B or any way that is very similar to those ways.

Law 021 Café Rules
(April 2013)(Revised 2014)
Students may work in the café with advisor approval from 9:20-12:00pm and from 1:20-3:00pm.
Students must have:
1.Special orange pass
2.Specific reason with advisor's permission
3.Three person limit at tables
Law 022- Pass Exceptions
(2014)
The Executive Branch (Staff) has the power to waive pass limits at their own discretion on a case
to case basis by putting it in writing.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 64

Law 023- Food Box
(2014)
A box is provided in the cafe, in which students may place unwanted and untouched food items,
school provided lunch or otherwise. Anyone may remove food from said box for personal
consumption. At the end of each lunch period the contents of said box will be sorted between the
compost, recycling, and trash bins respectively. Any non-perishable food items will be moved to
the Avalon food shelf. The sorting process will be facilitated by the students from the advisory
who are responsible for cleaning the cafe that week, and/or student volunteers.
Law 024- Hallway Passes
(2014)
This law allows students to work in the hallway as an extension of the cafe. So, if the cafe is
closed so is the hallway. In addition, the hallway should be used for silent, individual work.
Students can work in the hallway with the approval of their advisors and that advisory’s
laminated hall pass.
~Past Laws~
This section is for laws which are passed by the staff and by congress but are out-dated or are no
longer in effect.
Law 003- Cafe Clean-up Crew
(2014)
This law creates the addition of a group which cleans the cafe every day in the place of the
advisory cleaning rotation. The members of this group would volunteer for the role and would be
able to log community credit for cleaning the cafe. The advisory cleaning rotation will be
reinstated if attendance to the volunteer group is too low. If attendance is high enough it will
replace the advisory cleaning rotation. Students volunteer through a sign-up sheet posted around
the school. New sign-up sheets will be posted every two weeks, and students who signed up
before may volunteer again.
Things that must be cleaned:
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!
•!

Sweep floors
Wipe down tables
Pick up garbage off of table and floors
Clean microwaves and sink
Check that the stage is clear and in between the stage boxes (biweekly)
Clean out remaining items in lunch bin

This law is not currently in use but can be enacted whenever Congress and Staff see fit.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 65
Law 004-Moment of Silence
(2005)(Revised 2014)
We have voted to no longer have a moment of silence at the end of the Monday morning
meetings. The vote came out 16-14 in favor.—Avalon School Board Approved.
Law 005- Comfort Committee
(2005)(Revised 2014)
Avalon students have shown significant need for a comfortable meeting area. The
Congress Comfort Committee would like to request the permission of the Avalon staff to allow
us to bring two to three medium sized cushioned chairs (as seen in photo or smaller) and a small
coffee table to provide a more comfy and welcoming place to work in the back of the café to be
used by the students and staff with one person per chair. Monitoring the students’ activities will
be simpler in this location, and since there will be chairs rather than couches problems faced in
previous years will not be an issue. While the comfort committee does not currently exist, it
could be recreated in the future.
Law 008-Math Law (removed in 2007-2008)
(2005)(Revised 2014)
Any senior may be use the hour here on referred to as the “math hour” (9:20 am – 10:20
am) that Avalon school has, to work on any projects. This includes their senior project,
outstanding work, or any other obstacles that are threatening them from graduation. They may do
this once the following guidelines are met:
The student must be ahead in math by one week, which by the standards now, would
be 3-4 objectives.
•! The student must be a senior or above.
•! The student attends school on time
•! The student is in Algebra 2 or Pre-Calculus
•! The student must have permission by signature from both advisor and math
teacher.
If the student falls behind for whatever reason, at the advisor’s/math teacher’s discretion, this
privilege will be revoked.
At any time, this privilege can be revoked at advisor’s/math teacher’s discretion.
Student will have a sheet that they must have with them, here on referred to as a “pass”. Student
must have this “pass” signed, and sign it themselves. This pass will work as a regular pass does.
Advisors may check it, and if the pass is lost the student will need to get another.
•!

•!
•!
•!

Students may only work in their own advisory.
Students must have pass with them.
Students must be working during this time.

Law 009-Reading
(2005)-Amended (Revised 2014)
Students have the right to read in the café provided they have turned in their annotated
bibliography for the previous block. If the student is disruptive while in the café they will no

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 66
longer be allowed there for the rest of the block. Students must return to the advisory on time
from lunch to be able to read outside the advisory.
Law 016- Cafe Monitor Law
(March 2010) (Revised 2014)
Passed, but not enacted
We as Congress propose that a student position be created for the purpose of keeping the cafe
quiet and enforcing the rules of the cafe entitled, cafe monitor The cafe monitor will be
responsible for remaining quietly on schoolwork while periodically checking passes and asking
or reminding students in the cafe to work. We think this will help to keep students who are not
working in line.
We propose that the cafe monitor be allowed to ask students who do not have passes to return to
their advisory in which they belong. The cafe monitor will be allowed to ask students who are
loud, disruptive, or not working and do not rectify their behavior after being asked twice to
return to their advisories. The cafe monitors will keep their voices at a normal and respectful
volume. In the event that a student refuses to leave the cafe, the cafe monitor is to alert an
advisor of the issue and request that the advisor solve the issue. The cafe monitor should keep a
list of students who were asked to leave and give it to an advisor at the end of the cafe monitor's
shift for the advisors to decide punishment for the students.
We also propose that there will be a cafe sign-in for students to sign their names so the cafe
monitor will have an easier time keeping track of who belongs in the cafe.
We believe the requirements for becoming a cafe monitor should be approved by the student's
advisor and at least one other advisor. The applicant should not have had previous problems in
the cafe for the year they are applying.
While this law is not currently active, Congress and staff have the right to enact it if deemed
necessary.
Law 017- The Lunch Law
(March 2010/repealed Sept. 6th, 2010 after Open Lunch was reinstated).
The Students and Congress of Avalon feel that in order to facilitate mental health and academic
development, and that exposure to fresh air being essential to both, we should be provided the
opportunity to leave the building but remain in Dickerman Park on Avalon School property
before the sidewalk at Metro Lighting during the Lunch Period from 12:20 to 12:55. This
privilege will operate under the same availability as Open Lunch passes, and will be supervised
by staff members.
Congress and staff may affect open lunch
Law 018- Back Burner Law
(June 2011)-Not enacted 2012-2013(Revised 2014)
If attendance to Congress is less than one representative from each advisory, Law 18 is enacted.
According to this law, each advisory must select one or more members from their advisory to
attend Congress. To be a representative, one must be a member of an advisory and attend
congress at every meeting, but no other requirements.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 67
With approval by the Avalon School Board, Congress has also revised the following policies in
the Avalon Student Handbook:
Dress Code (2003)
Tardy Policy (2005)
Attendance Policy (2005)
Open Lunch Policy (2007/Revised 2010)
Revised Avalon Constitution (2008), (2014)
After the approval by the Executive Branch, the Legislative Branch will present the
proposed amendment to the Avalon Community in an all school meeting. All amendments to the
Constitution must be passed by a majority of the Avalon School community in a simple vote.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 68
Appendix G: Financial Document

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 69
Appendix H: Financial Document

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 70
Appendix I: Avalon School Strategic Plan 2015

Avalon Strategic Plan
Guiding Outcomes of 2021 Graduates
1.! Mastery of Core Content
2.! Critical Thinking
3.! Collaboration (Student/Staff/Community)
4.! Effective Communication
5.! Self-Directed Learning
6.! Academic Mindset
Overall Goals:
1.!
Expand opportunities for all students through project-based learning by using the
framework of deeper learning to strengthen our project-based curriculum and increase student
engagement.
2.!
Ensure that students have the skills and experiences necessary to feel connected to the
community and competent when seeking job opportunities.
3.!
Deconstruct and identify the privileged systems/networks currently in place at Avalon.
Implement new systems to dismantle the privileged systems and replace them with systems that
distribute opportunity and resources to all students effectively and equitably, in particular those
students in disadvantaged situations and marginalized communities.
4.!
Transform education locally and nationally by educating policy makers, teachers,
administrators, and students about Avalon’s democratic, project-based learning, and teacher
powered model.
Strategic Planning Areas Identified
1.!
Deeper Learning/PBL
2.!
Community Connections
3.!
Commitment to Equity
4.!
Training/Support/Reform for Schools/Teachers
Other Questions to Consider as you develop tasks in your group in the spreadsheet:
Budget Implications
Enter relevant implications for budget. Consider curriculum, staff, and technology costs. Identify
available funding sources (if known).
Curriculum Implications
Enter relevant implications for curriculum

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 71
Policy Implications
Enter relevant policy or compliance implications.
Professional Development(PD) Implications
Enter relevant implications for PD. Consider level of training, days and times
Staffing Implications
Enter relevant implications for staffing.
Scheduling/Space Implications
Special Education or ELL Implications
Enter relevant implications for SPED students.
Enter relevant implications for ELL students
Technology Implications
Enter relevant implications for technology. Consider bandwidth requirements, hardware,
licenses/software, and technical support.
Communication to Staff, Parents/Students and other Stakeholders
Consider how you will communicate changes to staff, parents, students and other key
stakeholders.
Risks:
Identify the risks and constraints that might throw the work off course and how these risks will
be managed.

Action plan: Deeper Learning/PBL
Item# Deliverable(s) and action steps

Start
Date

Projected
End date

1.

Overall Goal: Expand opportunities for all students through
project-based learning by using the framework of deeper
learning to strengthen our project-based curriculum and
increase student engagement.

1.1

The deeper learning group will conduct an analysis of our current Sept.
curriculum, through the lens of the Deeper Learning language,
2015
and facilitate discussions about long-term program alignment.
1.! Utilizing the Deeper Learning handbook, we will conduct
an audit of our current curriculum.
2.! We will present findings and facilitate a discussion during
an L.P. meeting.
3.! Based on staff feedback, the deeper learning group will
develop a list of recommendations.

June 2016

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 72

1.2

1.3

1.4

1.5

Analyze existing space and organization toward empowering
Sept. 2016
students to engage in independent deeper learning projects.
1.! Based on the deeper learning recommendation list, staff
will analyze existing space and and organizational
systems.
2.! Staff will interview other schools with a deeper learning
focus to see how they organize and utilize their space.
3.! Based on both the internal audit and school interviews, we
will create a list of recommendations regarding how
Avalon could better organize and utilize existing space in
order to meet our deeper learning goals.
Analyze existing staffing and schedule demands in order to assess December
current availability to staff opportunities that align with deeper 2016
learning.
1.! Based on the deeper learning recommendations, the staff
will connect curricular goals with staffing needs.
2.! Staff will utilize an outside consultant to conduct a
workload analysis of our current staffing.
3.! Looking at needs, current staffing and budget
implications, the deeper learning group will create a list of
staffing recommendations.
Create an inventory of deeper learning opportunities.
September
2015
1.!

December
2016

June 2017

December
2015

Based on the deeper learning groups curricular, space,
organization and staffing recommendations, Avalon will discuss
and implement.

Action plan: Community Connections
Item# Deliverable(s) and action steps

2.

2.1
2.2
2.3

Start
Date

Overall Goal: Ensure that students have the skills and
experiences necessary to feel connected to the community and
competent when seeking job opportunities. This work
helps students become truly career ready when their unique
interests are paired with real-world work experiences.
Create a tiered system that helps students to participate in
9/1/2015
internships (internal to external) (through all seven years and tied
to grade level projects). (possibly through schools)
Explore the potential to develop a work-release program.
3/1/2015
Create a catalog of connections and especially cultivate
4/1/2015

Projected
End date

6/1/2017
9/1/2016
4/1/2016

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 73

2.4
2.5

connections that are inclusive for all students. Include also a list
of Service Week contacts.
Develop curricula or programs and staffing that allow students to 3/1/2015
use the school facilities to undertake building/creation projects.
Create opportunities for students to develop work skills
9/1/2015
(presentations, resumes, interviews). (Tied to Senior project)

on going
9/1/2017
6/1/2017

Action plan: Commitment to Equity
Item# Deliverable(s) and action steps
3.

3.1

3.2

3.3

3.4

Start
Date

Overall Goal: Deconstruct and identify the privileged
systems/networks currently in place at Avalon and implement
new systems to dismantle the privileged systems and replace
them with systems that distribute opportunity and resources
to all students effectively and equitably, in particular those
students in disadvantaged situations and marginalized
communities.
Recruitment: Do more direct relationship building with Parks & 9/1/14
Rec, YWCA, and other local community organizations and
programs (AVID).
a. Market our open houses to rec centers, examine our marketing
messaging in contrast to the realities of attending Avalon.
b. Examine our intention in contrast to our actual action.
c.Clarify: what do we have to offer a more diverse student
population?
Retention: Access for ALL
3/1/15
a. Continuous racial equity training.
b. Access to project materials and community connections:
Designated space in every advisory to promote opportunities and
access
c. New student support: fostering connections within the Avalon
community, i.e.mentoring
d. Designing advisories to be safe spaces for all and to community
building
Postsecondary: Preparing all students for independence after high 3/1/15
school
a. More required and available resources for ALL postsecondary
options.
b. More proactive and uniform school-wide practice of
postsecondary and career counseling.
c. More outreach to diverse training and academic institutions and
organizations.
Review curriculum for restorative justice and racial and social
5/1/15

Projected
End date

on-going,
review
annually

In place by
9/1/15

In place by
9/1/15,
ongoing,
twice
annual
review
Create a 5-

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 74
equity competency in collaboration with subject and grade-level
advisors and student focus groups
a. Middle School
b. High School
c. Clubs and extracurriculars
d. Seminar sign-up and dropping process

year plan
by 9/1/15

Action plan: Training/Support/Reform for Schools/Teachers
Item# Deliverable(s) and action steps:

Start
Date
4.0 Overall Goal: Transform education locally and nationally by March
educating policy makers, teachers, administrators, and
2015
students about Avalon’s democratic, project-based learning,
and teacher powered model.

Projected
End date
Fall 2020

4.1

Schedule for
2015-2016
by April
2015.
Fully
developed and
operational
2020
August
2015
Review
annually
2016ongoing

Develop a schedule for tour days, payment, and immersion
experience.

A.!

Develop materials, marketing plan

B. Review schedule and make changes annually.
4.2

Educate interested staff in how to do tours, immersion
experiences. Do research to support dissemination such as CTQ
(Center for Teacher Quality) and Teacher-Powered websites.

August
2015.
Review
Annually

A.!
Train all staff in message points/Training staff for
immersion visits

August
2015,
annually
Start
October
2015,
annually

C Training students for immersion visits.

4.3
4.4

School visits, research other programs that disseminate
information, Big Picture, Summit Schools, Coalition of Essential,
High Tech High, and Green Schools.
Identify University and College partners to place student teachers,

May 2015

June 2017

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 75

4.5

4.6

clinical students, and potential credits for a summer institute for
educators.
A.!
Identify University/College partnerships
B. Educate College/University education programs about
Avalon.
Offer technical support for schools who want to start TeacherPowered Schools or do Project- Based Learning.
-identify funders
-Contact Authorizers, new school start-ups.
Plan summer staff development for Partnership School or
Summer Institute.
A.!
Develop professional development for Partnership School
and assess/review summer professional development for
Partnership School.
B. Design professional development days for
educators/educator teams.

June 2017
June 2017
In process,
June 2019
August
2015,
review
annually
Summer
2015
June 2020

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 76
Appendix J: World’s Best Workforce Summary
In accordance with 2013 Minnesota Statutes, section 120B.11, a school board, at a public
meeting, shall adopt a comprehensive, long-term strategic plan to support and improve teaching
and learning that is aligned with creating the world's best workforce. The school board must
transmit an electronic summary of its annual report to the commissioner of the Minnesota
Department of Education each fall.
The report summary must include:
-A summary of progress toward improving teaching and learning and striving for the world’s
best workforce (specifically, progress toward closing the achievement gap); all students ready for
kindergarten; all students in third grade achieving grade-level literacy; all students attaining
career and college readiness before graduating from high school; and all students graduating
from high school.
-Information about best practice strategies that were implemented and that are showing evidence
of impacting closing the achievement gaps and working toward creating the world’s best
workforce in Minnesota.
Identified Needs Based on Data
To determine needs, Avalon utilizes data from several sources: state-required GRAD and MCA
assessments, twice-yearly NWEA MAP tests, as well as the PSAT, PLAN, Accuplacer, and
Hope Survey. Additionally, we use results from internal measures such as student-generated
rubrics, our newly created Grade Level Project Rubrics, and surveys from both students and
guardians.
This data guides our work as we strive to produce the World’s Best Workforce, specifically with
regard to three goals: 1) Closing the achievement gap; 2) Making sure all students are career and
college ready by graduation; and, 3) Supporting all students to graduate.
Needs
Together with our authorizer, Novation (NEO), we identified twelve goals for the 2014-2015
school year. Nine of those goals are aligned directly with our World’s Best Workforce plan.
These goals concern math and reading proficiency, as measured by both the MCA and NWEA
tests, and our graduation and attendance rates. These goals will be specifically discussed in the
Broad Outcomes Impacted section later in this report. Additionally, data from the Accuplacer
test helped us identify students who were not on track to be career and college ready.
Support Category

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 77
Students
Several supports were put in place to help students achieve their goals:
-Active Learning
Active learning through independent and guided projects is the cornerstone of Avalon
School. Students are encouraged to explore their own interests through ways that suite their
learning styles. This year, staff encouraged hands-on, active learning by increasing the access to
the necessary materials, tools, and resources. Students used geometry skills in our wood shop to
build life-size versions of connect four and other games. Students applied concepts from physics
as they zipped across a lake in a boat of their own design, powered only the sun. They raised
bees, bred fruit flies, and fried eggs in our new kitchen from chickens they raised themselves.
Students designed apps for android devices, programmed a competitive robot, and created
mechanized Barbie dolls.
Projects like these increase engagement, student outlook, and attendance.
-All-School Book Clubs
School-wide reads were developed to increase reading engagement, helping give staff
time for direct instruction and for students to engage directly with the text in a meaningful way.
This year, all students in the high school read the novel How It Went Down by Kekla Megoon.
This culminated in a visit by the author.
-Problem of the Week
Similar to all-school books clubs, Problem of the Week provided a weekly math prompt
that was solved in advisory groups. This allowed staff to increase time spent on math in a fun
and challenging way. Groups often compared solutions in a friendly competition. While directly
improving math skills is important, we found that this type of support also helped shift students’
overall attitude toward math as well.
-Community Engagement
Several opportunities were created or supported to increase community engagement,
including a student-run Congress, a Feminist Club, and a Social Justice Club.
-Real World Academics
Staff created or supported several opportunities for students to engage in challenging,
academic competitions, including Academic Decathlon, a Solar-Boat Regatta, and FIRST
Robotics. Additionally, students received feedback on their writing from real editors through a
local non-profit. Finally, students were encouraged to take advantage of Minnesota’s PSEO

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 78
program.
-Increased Social Supports
Staff created or supported several opportunities for increased social support for those that
needed it. These included a Young Men’s Group, an Improv Class, and Conflict Mediation.
These social supports helped Avalon School increase our attendance rate to 94% on the year.
-Individual Support
Students at Avalon receive direct, individual support in many ways. First, through our
project-based learning model, all work is tailored specifically to the student’s interests, abilities,
goals, and passions. Second, through our advisory model, students work directly with their
advisor for the duration of their time, fostering a real and supportive relationship.
-College and Career Focus
Students utilized the Minnesota Career Interest Survey (MCIS) to help visualize where
their high school career may take them. This allows students, staff, and families to begin honest
discussion around the idea of “college and career ready” as early as ninth grade.
-Applicable Assessments
Avalon has begun to use the Accuplacer assessment tool for its 11th and 12th graders.
Internally, it is a useful tool to measure yearly growth and identify students who are not yet
college and career ready. Even more importantly, because it is the exact assessment many
students will take as they enter the MNSCU system, it has a relevance to the students that
previous assessments lacked. The outcomes were more meaningful and the motivation greater.
Teachers and Principals
-Increased support
-Avalon added a social worker position to support advisors as they work with students.
This helped staff better serve each student and provide time and resources previously
unavailable. Social work support helped Avalon School increase our attendance rate to 94%.
-Weekly Learning Program
-Avalon Staff meet for an hour once a week for professional development. With topics
chosen and developed by staff, this weekly meeting provides direct support where it is needed
the most. Topics included how to best use student data, technology improvements, and other
best practices.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 79
-Grade Level Rubrics
-Staff developed rubrics to help define expectations for project work as students move
through the grade levels. This helped staff be consistent from student to student and year to year.
Systemic, Building or District
As our own district with no administration, many of the supports to staff are also building-wide
supports. However, there are a few other supports that would qualify here.
-360 Review Process
- Staff utilize a 360 evaluation process which garners feedback from multiple areas of the
school community. Advisors get feedback from their advisees, parents/guardians, and
colleagues. Parents/guardians and students fill out paper surveys. All staff members complete
online evaluation forms. This year, we narrowed the number of staff offering feedback for each
staff member to 12 (down from the entire group of usually 24) while still allowing any staff
member to fill out the online survey for any other staff member. This approach helps the
personnel committee support staff in determining continuing needs as well as deciding whether
or not continued employment for that staff member makes sense.
-Social Justice trainings
-These ongoing trainings help staff understand and move to improve issues around race,
racism, and white privilege. This in turn helps staff support students and engage in meaningful
conversations.
-AmeriCorps Promise Fellow
-This year, we hosted an AmeriCorps Promise Fellow. This position was specifically
designed to support those students who were at risk of poor attendance or behind in credit
completion, and were not already receiving services through Special Education. This addition
served wonderfully as an intervention and we are excited to continue and improve the position in
the 2015-2016 school year.
Best Practice Strategies and Action Steps
While we certainly have work to be done to fully achieve our goals, we attribute our successes so
far to these best practices.
1. Increase student ownership
Increasing student ownership is a vital practice. Students who are in charge of their own
education are more engaged, more motivated, and have a greater sense of self-efficacy. They
show up to school more often. They learn about themselves – their strengths and passions as
well as areas that need improvement. There are lots of ways to create ownership; these are some
that have worked for us:

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 80
-Provide authentic choice within a student’s day (and beyond!).
-Allow students to impact change on a local level (Student Congress)
-Ask students to run their own “parent-teacher” conference
2. Increase student engagement in the real world
As with increasing student ownership, increasing engagement in the real world fosters
student motivation and provides students with an authentic audience for their work. We do this
in several ways.
-Create and foster active learning opportunities driven by student interest.
-Senior Projects with Community Experts
-Focused Grade Level Projects, with increased support through specific Grade Level
Rubrics
-Job Shadows
-PSEO
-Service Learning Opportunities
-Internships
3. Build community
Vital to success in all our goals (Increased skill proficiencies, closing the achievement
gap, and increased graduation rates) is simple attendance. Students that attend with consistency
make improvements. The best way we’ve found to increase student attendance (not to mention
engagement and ownership) is by working tirelessly and consciously to build community. We
do this in a variety of ways.
-Closer teacher/student relationship
-High conference participation (over 97% of all families)
-Advisory model with a group of mixed-grade students
-Safe and Supportive environment
-Mediation
4. Give teachers autonomy
Just as student ownership increases engagement and speeds growth, so too does teacher
autonomy. When teachers are allowed to make meaningful decisions not just in their own
classrooms but at the school and district levels, everyone benefits. The teachers become more
engaged in their work, and the schools and districts can react directly to the needs of the
students. This is done at Avalon in a number of ways.
-Cooperative decision making
-Time for collaboration
-Aligned vision

Current Student Achievement Plans
Q Comp Plan, Avalon Strategic Plan 2015, 360-Staff Review, Accredidation Plan through
AdvancED

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 81
Key Indicators of Implementation Progress (implementation and/or outcome data)
Avalon School uses several Key Indicators to assess progress:
MCA Math, MCA Reading, NWEA MAP Math, NWEA MAP Reading, ACT, ACT PLAN,
PSAT, Accuplacer, Hope Survey, annual Grade Level Project Rubrics, School Climate Survey –
Families, School Climate Survey – Students
Broad Outcomes Impacted
All Students Ready for Kindergarten
N/A
All Students in Third Grade Achieving Grade-Level Literacy
N/A
Closing Achievement Gap(s)
Avalon School’s enrollment numbers are small and so have only a single subgroup with enough
students to qualify: Students that receive special education services. Here we use District
Achievement Gap data from the MDE reporting website.
Proficiency Index
The proficiency index rate of all students receiving special education services within Avalon School
District who earn an achievement level of Partially Meets the Standards, Meets the Standards or Exceeds
the Standards in mathematics on all state accountability tests (MCA) will increase to 26.9% in 2015.
Anaylsis: Met
The proficiency index rate of all students receiving special education services was 37.9%, exceeding our
goal by 11%.

All Students Career- and College-Ready by Graduation
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) – Reading
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will demonstrate
improvement over time in the percent of students meeting or exceeding proficiency (scoring
"meets" or "exceeds") as measured by all state accountability assessments in reading.
Exceeded: More than 70.1%
Met: From 58.1% in FY13 to 70.1% in FY19
Analysis: Exceeded
Avalon school continued to improve its proficiency levels in reading during the 2014-2015
school year, increasing by 7% from our previous year. Almost 73% of our students either met

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 82
or exceeded proficiency requirements.
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA) – Math
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will demonstrate
improvement over time in the percent of students meeting or exceeding proficiency (scoring
"meets" or "exceeds") as measured by all state accountability assessments in math.
Exceeded: More than 53%
Met: From 41% in FY13 to 53% in FY19
Analysis: Exceeded
Avalon school continued to improve its proficiency levels in math during the 2014-2015
school year, increasing by nearly 9% from our previous year. Over 53% of our students either
met or exceeded proficiency requirements.
Rate of Change – Comparable School (Reading)
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will improve proficiency
at a rate of change greater than or equal to St. Paul Public Schools between 2014 and 2019 as
measured by all state accountability tests for reading.
Exceeded: more than five percentage points above the rate of change
Met: within five percentage points of the rate of change
Attempted: more than five percentage points below the rate of change
Analysis: Met
Avalon School outpaced the growth rate of neighboring St. Paul Public Schools as measured
by state accountability tests for reading. Avalon increased almost 7% from our previous
proficiency level (from 66% to 73%), while St. Paul Public Schools slightly fell. Meanwhile,
the state’s proficiency level increased by almost 1%.
Rate of Change – Comparable School (Math)
For Avalon students enrolled by 10/1 of a given school year, Avalon will improve proficiency
at a rate of change greater than or equal to St. Paul Public Schools between 2014 and 2019 as
measured by all state accountability tests for math.
Exceeded: more than five percentage points above the rate of change
Met: within five percentage points of the rate of change
Attempted: more than five percentage points below the rate of change
Analysis: Met
Avalon School outpaced the growth rate of neighboring St. Paul Public Schools as measured
by state accountability tests for math. Avalon increased almost 9% from our previous
proficiency level (from 44% to 53%), while St. Paul Public Schools fell by almost 2% (for a
difference of 11 percentage points). Meanwhile, the state’s proficiency level remained
roughly the same.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 83

Avalon School outperforms the state average in reading proficiency. Although Avalon School
outperforms the resident district by a significant margin, Avalon students do not outperform the
state average in mathematics. Therefore, math proficiency remains the target content area. We
made significant gains in the number of students proficient on the math MCA’s in 2015 and will
continue to push students to improve math proficiency in 2016.
The percentage of all students enrolled October 1 in grades 6,7,8,11 who earn an achievement
level of Meets the Standards or Exceeds the Standards in Math on all state accountability tests
(MCA, MTAS, MOD) will increase from 53% in 2015 to 55.5% in 2016.
Participation in testing
Participation in testing will remain at or above 95%.
Analysis: Met
Of the possible 186 tests our students were eligible to take, they took 179 of them (over 96%).
Those tests were spread out among 60 middle school students taking both math and reading tests,
24 10th graders taking the MCA Reading test, and 37 11th graders taking the MCA math test.
NWEA MAP – Yearly Progress (Math)
Avalon students below grade level as measured by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively
make at least 120% of their expected growth target average in Math as measured by the
NWEA MAP spring administration and students who are at or above grade level as measured
by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively make at least 100% of their expected growth
target average as measured by the NWEA MAP spring administration.
Analysis: Met
In the fall of 2013, 27 students (grades six through nine) scored below their grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring 2014, 23 took the test again. From fall to
spring, these students averaged gains of over 145% when measured against their expected
yearly growth.
In the fall of 2013, 86 students (grades six through nine) scored at or above grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring of 2014, 65 students took the test again.
From fall to spring, these students averaged gains of over 162% when measured against their
expected yearly growth. (Many of the remaining 21 students took the Accuplacer assessment
in the spring instead of the MAP Test.)
NWEA MAP – Yearly Progress (Reading)
Avalon students below grade level as measured by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively
make at least 120% of their expected growth target average in Reading as measured by the

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 84
NWEA MAP spring administration and students who are at or above grade level as measured
by RIT NWEA MAP in the fall will collectively make at least 100% of their expected growth
target average as measured by the NWEA MAP spring administration.
Analysis: Met
In the fall of 2013, 16 students (grades six through nine) scored below their grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring 2014, 14 took the test again. From fall to
spring, these students averaged gains of over 132% when measured against their expected
yearly growth.
In the fall of 2013, 87 students (grades six through nine) scored at or above grade level as
measured by the NWEA MAP test. In the spring of 2014, 64 students took the test again.
From fall to spring, these students averaged gains of over 164% when measured against their
expected yearly growth. (Many of the remaining 23 students took the Accuplacer assessment
in the spring instead of the MAP Test.)
Further indicators for College and Career Ready:
Below are Avalon’s percent of students designated “On Track” in Math (left) and Reading (right)
from 2010 through 2014. These graphs are drawn from Minnesota Department of Education’s

Percent
of students
Track”
in Math
(MDE)
Report
Card “On
feature,
under
Student

Progress.

Percent of students “On Track” in Reading (MDE)

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 85
Here, it is clear that Avalon’s overall proficiency in Reading, Math, and Science has increased:

Percent of Avalon students scoring proficient from 2011 to 2015, per MDE’s School Report

ACT:
Year

# Tested

English

Math

Reading

Sci Reason

Writing (Opt)

Composite

14-15
13-14
12-13
11-12
10-11
09-10
08-09
07-08
06-07

8*
17
13
15
8
8
19
15
12

22.8
23.8
21.4
24.1
28.0
28.1
26.7
25.4
23

22.3
22.1
20.5
21.5
23.6
25.1
22.6
23.3
21.3

22.1
27.1
21.3
26.9
30.6
28.1
28.5
28.3
24.2

22.3
24
21.9
21.7
26.9
25.6
23.8
24.2
21.5

20 (7 tests)
22.2 (15 tests)
20.3 (12 tests)

22.5
24.4
21.5
23.6
27.4
26.8
25.5
25.4
22.8

*These scores represent only seniors at Avalon School.
Accuplacer:
Of the 38 students that took the test in both the fall and the spring, 25 (65%) improved in three or
more categories (of five possible) on the Elementary Algebra portion of the test. Next year, we
hope to better use the data from the fall to target specific areas where growth is needed.
Of the 17 students that took the test in both the fall and the spring 10 (59%) improved in three or
more categories (of five possible) on the Reading portion of the test.

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 86
All Students Graduate
Graduation Rate
Of the students enrolled as 9th and 10th graders beginning FY15, between 80 and 85% of the
students who remain with Avalon through their senior year will graduate from Avalon School
within 4 years with the exception of students who have an IEP that allows extended time.
Exceeded: Above 85%
Met: 80-85%
Analysis: Met
While we cannot yet comment on the students marked in the goal (they will be 10th and 11th
graders!), it is possible to look at our most recent class. Of the 33 seniors that started, 30
graduated at the end of the year (91%). One of those remaining, one dropped out and the other
two have plans in place to finish shortly into the 2015-2016 school year.
Of the senior class, 27 of the students were enrolled with us at least since their 10th grade year.
Of those 27, 22 graduated within four years (81%).
Avalon School’s graduation rate over time:

Avalon School's Graduation Rate from 2010 to 2014, per MDE's School Reports

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 87
Other Authorizer goals:
Attendance
Of the students enrolled at Avalon School on 10/1 of the given school year, those students will
maintain a 90% attendance rate for the year, excluding students who have a documented
situation that causes the student to miss five or more consecutive school days.
Analysis: Met
Avalon School met this goal for the 2014-2015 academic year, with an overall attendance rate of
94%. Another important milestone to be noted was the fact that no students were referred to the
juvenile justice system due to excessive absences.

Hope Survey
All Avalon students will be given the Hope Survey. For students new to Avalon before 1/31 of
a given school year, the new students as a group will show at least one point gain in their
Hope score from Fall to Spring.
Hope Scale (up to 64)
Very Low <42
Low 42.00-45.99
Moderate 46.00-49.99
High 50.00-53.99
Very High > 54.00
Analysis: Met
New students’ Hope Score, as measured by the Hope Survey, moved from a score of 43 to a score of
47.
School Climate – Families
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of families will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-100% of parents surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a safe learning environment.
This data is even more impressive because our response rate is so high: over 90% of families are
included.
School Climate – Students
Avalon will survey individual students and their families concerning school climate each year of the
contract term during February conference, and achieve the following results:

At least 95% of students will comment that Avalon School is a safe place to learn
Analysis: Met

Avalon School Annual Report 2014-2015 Page 88
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that Avalon is a positive learning environment
-97% of students surveyed agree or strongly agree that they feel safe at Avalon.
(In fact, of all the students surveyed, only two selected “I disagree” when asked if Avalon was a safe
environment.)
This data is even more impressive because our response rate is so high: over 90% of families are
included.