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News and campus highlights connecting the New Way Academy family. Spring 2017 | Volume 1 | Issue 3

Transition at New Way

CORE Students have explored some various options this year through field trips to nearby programs and colleges: •U  niversity of Advancing Technology • Grand Canyon University •U  niversity of Arizona and their SALT Program •N  orthern Arizona University • Scottsdale Community College • Paradise Valley Community College • Maricopa Skills Center While many of trips have revolved around college campus tours, our programming and high school culture are designed to support students in any and all pathways, without ever placing one above any other.

At New Way, our goal is to support students throughout their educational career while preparing them to be successful adults. Our Senior CORE programming aims to prepare each high school student for their unique path after graduation. In the fall, every senior enrolls in the Career CORE program. Students participate in career exploration, job simulations, and internship opportunities, while developing skills for success as an independent adult. This year, Career CORE explored various opportunities for job skill development at New Way and in the community. Students created and refined their resume and cover letter skills and explored how their strengths could be applied to careers of interest. At mid semester, The “Bulldogz Jolt” coffee business debuted and was a huge success. The students planned every detail including choosing labels, preparing drinks, creating sales projections, and marketing. Students noted that they loved delivering the morning coffee to their favorite teachers each week. Career CORE also partnered with SMILE Biscotti to learn about running a business from creation, packaging, and sales perspectives. They visited the SMILE office and participated in mock job interviews with the team. Students shared that they learned a lot from the SMILE team about patience and creativity within their business. Both projects required teamwork and independent growth as students used their strengths and abilities to see an idea grow from a vision into actual products.

by Laura Keathley & Laura Morgan

In the spring, students transitioned to the College CORE program where they enrolled in a community college success course. Students gain the valuable experiences of registering for accommodations with Disability Resource Services, navigating the enrollment process, purchasing school materials, and adapting to the college environment, all while receiving instruction and support from New Way. Mrs. Morgan’s CORE students are enrolled in Introduction to College Success at Paradise Valley Community College. Students attend class off campus where they learn note taking, self-advocacy, accommodations and more! Mrs. Keathley’s CORE students enrolled in a Math or English class through Rio Salado Community College. In transitioning to an online curriculum, the students practice self-monitoring, task initiation and organization skills. This proves to be a positive and growth-producing experience. During the 3rd quarter, both classes participate in a financial literacy curriculum in which they play an extended game of “Life”. Students are assigned a job, receive monthly paychecks, plan a budget, buy a car and find an apartment. They explore credit, debt, the importance of a high credit score and the value of informed financial decisions. Our goal is to support 100% of our students as they identify their unique pathway rather than encouraging all of our students to follow a predestined pathway that might not be right for them. We continue to support our seniors as they finalize their post-secondary plans for next year. We have students transitioning into professional settings, attending public or private universities, transition programs, and community colleges.

5048 E. Oak Street | Phoenix, AZ 85008 | 602.629.6850 |

campus events Meet the Newest Bulldog, ’Pride’! by Melissa Vallejo Lower School STEM students (and the whole campus for that matter) joined forces to create a semi-permanent habitat for New Way’s latest mascot, Pride, the desert tortoise. Sixth grader, Grace Michael, woke to an unexpected visitor on her doorstep, a six inch tortoise. As the Michael family already have their share of critters, they thought donating the tortoise to school would create a wonderful opportunity for New Way students to learn about their fellow desert residents. After some collaborative research, Mr. Vallejo, with the extra muscle of the high school boys, gathered materials and provided supervision as students designed and constructed a habitat for Pride. STEM classes gathered soil, rocks and landscaping materials, giving special attention to features suitable for tortoises. Thanks to the LeGrand family for providing Pride with his favorite snack, hibiscus flowers.

Along with the first winter rains, came a need to manage the water flow from Pride’s home to the storm grate. Fifth grader Jovanni Cenerini engineered a system of gravel, dams, and canals allowing for efficient drainage of the habitat and keeping Pride dry, while ensuring our campus walk ways are free from flooding. Pride is a terrific resource for encouraging respect for our environment and the creatures we share it with, as well as for studying reptiles, adaptations, biomimicry, engineering, making math connections, and inspiring creativity. Plus, he is just cool to be around! Ideally, we will be able to construct a permanent habitat in which Pride will thrive for years to come. Pride had been hibernating and waiting eagerly for our desert nights to warm up. Now he has emerged from his winter slumber, and is providing us with continued possibilities to observe and interact with him.

Mr. New Way is Coming Your Way by Lauren DuBois

On Friday, April 7th, at 6:30 p.m., New Way Student Government will proudly present the Second Annual Mr. New Way Pageant. Please join us for an evening of entertainment brought to you by our very own senior men. Participants will perform special talents and dances. Who will be crowned “Mr. New Way”? It will be a night of New Way history you won’t want to miss!

Fashion Show Recap by Lauren DuBois #NoLabels was the theme of the New Way Academy Fashion Show. As students hit the runway wearing the latest fashion trends, they also took a stand against stereotypes, name-calling, and labels. In addition, during “fashion week” the student body collected 577 pairs of jeans for Family Promise of Greater Phoenix. The students set a goal to raise one dollar for each pair of jeans to donate to Family Promise and were able to accomplish this goal, thanks to the generous New Way community.


The “Let Your Dreams Take Flight” Auction & Gala is preparing for takeoff!

There’s No Place Like New Way

Please join us Saturday, May 6th, for a night under the stars at the Jetlinx hangar at Scottsdale Airpark.

by Alyssa Johnson

Invitations will arrive in your mailbox soon. Our fun-filled flight will include: • In-Flight entertainment featuring some of our very own New Way students! • New and exciting silent & live auction items! • Fabulous Teacher Treasures! • Exclusive new, trendy Bulldog clothing items, available for purchase at THIS event only! • A $20 per cork Wine Pull! • Classroom Creations, and so much more!

We’re soaring to new heights this year and looking forward to our best Auction & Gala ever! For more information, visit

The much anticipated performance of “The Wizard of Oz” is quickly approaching! Get ready to see many of our talented students starring in this magical and memorable theatrical production! Our lead roles include the talented Ava Rosenberg as Dorothy, Bryce Knox as Scarecrow, David Bragelman as Tinman, Sean Raimbeault as The Cowardly Lion, and Maggie Noren as a sweet, yet sassy, Toto. You will not want to miss this wild adventure through the land of Oz, coming to the New Way stage May 12th and 13th. By the end of the performance, you will be assured that “there’s no place like New Way!”

Meet the Two Amazing Lauras Behind the New Way Transition Team! Tell us a little bit about your background: Laura Keathley (right): After graduating with a Psychology degree from U of A, I completed my Masters in Special Ed with an emphasis in Learning Disabilities and Behavior Disorder at the University of Texas. I was an academic counselor and instructor at Texas Tech University’s TECHniques Center, a program designed for college students with learning differences, ADHD, and Autism. It has been a great joy and honor to be a part of this incredible community since January 2016. Laura Morgan (left): I grew up and attended college in St. Louis, Missouri. I went to graduate school in Nashville, TN focusing on children with disabilities and behavioral health needs. I spent the next few years working in different settings, supporting some pretty awesome kids and families. I am SO excited to be a part of the New Way family and love the unique opportunity to help our students as they participate in all things transition!

Share an interesting fact about yourself: Laura Keathley: I was diagnosed with learning differences at age 16. While challenging, I would never wish to change my educational journey as it shaped me into the person I am today. I value and appreciate that I am able to connect with students and families on this personal level. Laura Morgan: I love to listen to a radio show out of Nashville, The Bobby Bones Show. These ordinary friends who talk about country music also use their radio influence to help people all over the world through charity events. They remind me that even little “pay-it-forward” moments make a difference in someone’s life.

What is the best part about working so closely with the other Laura? Laura Keathley: Laura cares so deeply for the people around her. She leads with empathy and compassion in a way that serves our students so well. She is a selfless teammate and a joy to collaborate with. Her past experience brings a wealth of knowledge to our team and I cannot imagine New Way without her by my side! Laura Morgan: She is the “yin to my yang” and balances me out when I need it most. She is patient, gracious, and kind. Her first instinct is to jump in and support wherever and however she can all while making students and staff feel loved and heard.

Share a favorite New Way moment: Laura Keathley: Our High School Trip to The Pali Institute was an all time highlight! I loved connecting with our high school students and team outside of the classroom. Laura Morgan: Yes, the trip to the Pali was incredible! We got to see students in their element and some out of their comfort zone. The teachers were able to bond and participate all together with the amazing mountains as our backdrop. It was pretty magical.

PALI Trip Recap by New Way High School Sophomore, Hunter Brice-Nash This year our high school was given the opportunity to go on a trip to the Pali Institute. I was not fully comfortable with the idea of leaving warm Arizona for the cold mountains of California, but I became sold to go on the trip when I heard there was a chance to see snow. It’s been a long time since I have seen the snow.

New Way high school students were challenged to their personal limits and participated in team bonding and leadership exercises.

When the time finally came to go to Pali, we were transported in really nice buses with wifi, which everyone was excited about. During the ride to Pali, I mostly looked out the window, looking out into the wilderness. Watching the changes in the landscape from city to desert to city to forest. After about 6 hours, we finally made it to Pali!

Registration is Open for “Adventures in Learning” Summer School! Five-Week Session, June 5–July 6, 2017 Monday–Thursday, 8:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m. New Way’s summer program offers K–12 students a perfect blend of academics and fun! Classes focus on the most important areas of academic need (math, phonics, reading, and communication), with occupational and/or speech therapy available as well. Weekly adventures will allow students to experience fun activities outside the classroom, leaving them feeling more confident in their academic abilities and energized from their adventures! Learn more and register online:



If you would like more information on how you can get involved in our Moms’ or Dads’ Clubs, please contact Carmen at 602-629-6850 or email her at

For complete listings of all sporting events, visit our sports website at

When we first arrived we were already baffled by the pure beauty of the environment around us, and luckily the day before it had snowed, so we got to experience that too. Snow is something we don’t see a lot of in Arizona. At Pali, we did many fun activities like rope climbing, night hikes, different kinds of student bonding activities, survival skills, and, my favorite, just hiking in the snow. In between theses activities, we would eat lunch and dinner, and don’t get me started on the food! It was amazing. In the end, I was very glad I had the privilege to go to Pali. If I ever have the chance to go again, I would not hesitate to do so.

There’s Still Time to Take the Credit! There is still time to donate your tax credits to New Way Academy! Private School Tax Credit Limits: • $1,087 individuals • $2,173 married couples Donate online by April 17, 2017 at:

april Friday 4/7 2nd Annual Mr. New Way 5:00–6:30 p.m. Friday 4/29 High School Prom 7:00–10:00 p.m.

may Friday 5/5 (April’s) Spirit Assembly 8:30–9:30 a.m. Saturday 5/6 Auction and Gala 5:30–10:00 p.m. Friday 5/12 “Wizard of Oz” dress rehearsal 1:00–4:00 p.m. Friday 5/12 “Wizard of Oz” evening performance 6:00 p.m. Saturday 5/13 “Wizard of Oz” matinee performance 2:00 p.m. Thursday 5/18 Senior Dinner 6:00–8:30 p.m. Tuesday 5/23 Lower School Awards Ceremony 8:30–10:00 a.m. Wednesday 5/24 Junior High School Awards Ceremony 8:30–10:00 a.m. Wednesday 5/24 8th Grade Promotion Ceremony 5:00–7:00 p.m. Thursday 5/25 High School Awards Ceremony 8:30–11:30 a.m. Thursday 5/25 High School Graduation Ceremony 5:30–7:30 p.m.

New Way Academy Spring Newsletter (2017)  
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