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Phoenix – Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley students at the Mesa Arts Academy will start the 2021-2022 school year in style with new standing school desks by Vari, a workspace innovation company. The Vari standing school desks are designed to encourage and allow students to move during class. The $200,000 product donation is intended to help improve classroom learning and strengthen the company’s commitment to the Phoenix community.
“As schools start to return to the new normal, the question remains: ‘what does the classroom of the future look like?’” says Miranda Koperno, principal of Mesa Arts Academy, a charter school of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley.”Vari’s donation of new standing desks for our classrooms will allow students who have been connecting from couches and kitchens for a year to start their school year in a space that allows them the flexibility to learn in a way they are most comfortable.”
A Fresh Start and a Bright Future
Standing school desks are designed to encourage movement throughout the day. Research shows that learning in active classrooms can improve student cognition, health outcomes and behavior. Additional health and behavioral benefits include:
- Students with the freedom of movement in the classroom experience benefits including a 15 percent increase in engagement in the classroom.
- Moving more and sitting less in class can lead to a three to five percent improvement on test scores.
- Standing desks can increase calorie burn by 17-35 percent and decrease BMI percentile by five percent.
- Achieving and maintaining a healthier weight is linked to increased confidence and self-esteem, which are directly tied to attendance rates.
“I’m proud that Vari is among local volunteer agencies that support the wonderful mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley and the Mesa Arts Academy,” says Craig Storey, chief financial officer at Vari. “It’s incredible to see firsthand the powerful impact that the organization has in the lives of the children that they serve.”
Classroom of the Future
The Mesa Arts Academy will host an open house on Tuesday, July 27 for faculty and parents to preview the new active classroom environment. Storey and Lisa Teman-Rosenburg, Phoenix regional sales director for Vari, will attend.
In addition to standing school desks, Vari donated its best-selling electric standing desks and conference tables for Mesa Arts Academy faculty to use. Vari has a regional showroom for people to experience its products located at 5080 N 40th St Suite 455, Phoenix, AZ 85018.
Vari has donated more than $5 million worth of products to nonprofit organizations since 2018. The award-winning Vari Community Giving Program focuses on product donations to alleviate operational costs so nonprofits can put their resources back into the community.
“The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley is an organization that is critical to supporting the young people in our local community,” says Teman-Rosenburg. “We are looking forward to displaying the students’ incredible art in our showroom and continuing to serve as partners.”
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About Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley
Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley offers affordable after-school and summer programs for 16,000+ young people in grades K-12. At Clubs across the Valley, BGCAZ provides award-winning programs designed to change the lives of young people. For over 70 years, BGCAZ has been creating equity and opportunity for youth through academic, social, and workforce opportunities. We help young people make healthy decisions and focus on social and emotional development to build resilient young adults. Most importantly, we work to develop strong character and leadership skills by creating positive connections to caring adults and their community. For more information: visit bgcaz.org.
A workspace innovation company, Vari helps growing organizations unlock the potential of their space and their people. From a collection of office furniture to workspaces offering space-as-a-service, the company makes it easy for high-growth businesses to scale and flex their office space. Organizations all over the world — including over 98% of the Fortune 500 — use Vari products, which are tested and certified to the highest industry standards.
Dear Mesa Arts Academy Families,
Welcome Back! I hope you are enjoying a wonderful summer. I also hope you are relaxed, recharged, and ready to start a new school year. I am so delighted that you are part of our amazing learning community. I welcome and value your positive energy and dedication to excellence in education, and I look forward to working with you and your children. All signs point to another incredible and productive school year. Our skilled and devoted staff is already planning and preparing for your child(ren). Our enthusiastic office team is registering new families, ordering needed materials, and updating student files. Our much-appreciated parent group “MAAPO” is gearing up to welcome families, provide volunteer opportunities, and offer other exciting events and programs. We are indeed a joyous and caring community with the common goals of nurturing responsible, caring students and promoting high-level learning.
Each year brings positive change. This includes a few additions to our staff. We are delighted to welcome a counselor, a behavior interventionist, new aides, and a new janitor. Thanks to Vari, we received a furniture donation of state of the art student desks for each classroom, including new teacher desks and new office furniture.
As many of you know, Governor Ducey signed a budget with provisions that will impact schools throughout the state. One such provision prohibits counties, cities, towns, schools, and school districts from requiring students or staff to wear face coverings during school hours and on school property, regardless of age. This went into effect on July 1, 2021. Masks are no longer required and are optional. However, we remain committed to following public health guidance and encourage students and staff who have not been fully vaccinated to wear masks. We will also fully support the decision of students and staff who continue to wear a mask, whether vaccinated, or not. As an ongoing safety measure, we will continue to visually monitor members and staff with COVID-like symptoms and request they not attend school for their safety and to protect others. While we will no longer require the temperature checks, all other cleaning and sanitation protocols will continue. Students and staff will still be required to use hand sanitizer and wash hands frequently. Please refer to our Health policy on our website.
I look forward to seeing everyone at Meet the Teacher Night on Tuesday, July 27, from 5:00pm-7:00pm. I have a feeling this is going to be a great year!
Estimadas familias de Mesa Arts Academy:
¡Bienvenido de nuevo! Espero que esté disfrutando de un verano maravilloso. También espero que esté relajado, recargado y listo para comenzar un nuevo año escolar. Estoy muy contento de que seas parte de nuestra increíble comunidad de aprendizaje. Le doy la bienvenida y valoro su energía positiva y dedicación a la excelencia en la educación, y espero trabajar con usted y sus hijos. Todas las señales apuntan a otro año escolar increíble y productivo. Nuestro personal capacitado y dedicado ya está planificando y preparándose para su (s) hijo (s). Nuestro entusiasta equipo de oficina está registrando nuevas familias, ordenando los materiales necesarios y actualizando los archivos de los estudiantes. Nuestro grupo de padres muy apreciado “MAAPO” se está preparando para dar la bienvenida a las familias, brindar oportunidades de voluntariado y ofrecer otros eventos y programas emocionantes. De hecho, somos una comunidad alegre y solidaria con los objetivos comunes de criar estudiantes responsables y solidarios y promover el aprendizaje de alto nivel.
Cada año trae cambios positivos. Esto incluye algunas adiciones a nuestro personal. Estamos encantados de dar la bienvenida a un consejero, un intervencionista de comportamiento, nuevos ayudantes y un nuevo conserje. Gracias a Vari, recibimos una donación de muebles de escritorios para estudiantes de última generación para cada salón de clases, incluyendo nuevos escritorios para maestros y nuevos muebles en oficina.
Como muchos de ustedes saben, el gobernador Ducey firmó un presupuesto con disposiciones que afectarán a las escuelas de todo el estado. Una disposición de este tipo prohíbe a los condados, ciudades, pueblos, escuelas y distritos escolares exigir a los estudiantes o al personal que se cubran la cara durante el horario escolar y en la propiedad escolar, independientemente de la edad. Esto entró en vigor el 1 de julio del 2021. Las máscaras ya no son necesarias y son opcionales. Sin embargo, mantenemos el compromiso de seguir las pautas de salud pública y alentamos a los estudiantes y al personal que no han sido completamente vacunados a que usen máscaras. También apoyaremos completamente la decisión de los estudiantes y el personal que continúan usando una máscara, estén vacunados o no. Como medida de seguridad continua, continuaremos monitoreando visualmente a los miembros y al personal con síntomas similares a COVID y les pediremos que no asistan a la escuela por su seguridad y para proteger a los demás. Si bien ya no necesitaremos los controles de temperatura, todos los demás protocolos de limpieza y saneamiento continuarán. Los estudiantes y el personal aún deberán usar desinfectante de manos y lavarse las manos con frecuencia. Consulte nuestra política de salud en nuestro sitio web.
Espero verlos a todos en la Noche de Conocer a los Maestros el martes 27 de julio de 5:00 pm a 7:00 pm. ¡Tengo la sensación de que este será un gran año!
Dear Mesa Arts Academy Families,
The safety of your child/children is our top priority. As many of you know, we have been reviewing our health data every week. We have used data, science, and guidance from local, State, and National health officials to help make decisions. On November 12, our data went into the red in two areas. As of November 16, we returned to all virtual learning in hopes of return to hybrid in January.
We will continue to offer on-site support for parents who need a place for their child/children. Parents will need to call the office to sign up their child/children for on-site support. It is important that we know ahead of time who will be attending and who will remain at home. We want to be sure we have enough staff on campus to support this model. We are also limited in the number of spots for on-site support.
If you choose to keep your child at home, they will not be able to join on-site till March after Spring Break. If you choose on-site support, your child should be present each day. We cannot have students going back and forth due to the higher risk of spreading Covid.
It is important to note that while on campus, students must follow all COVID-19 health protocols listed in our mitigation plan posted on our website (Health Policy). Please remember that if you travel out of the country, you are required to quarantine for 10 – 14 days. Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call or email.
On-site Support Centers
Students will be able to log in and work on their remote learning in a supervised environment. These on-site support centers will not provide the same experience as an engaging classroom environment and do not include in-person instruction by a certified teacher. Transportation will not be provided.
Who’s eligible to attend?
The intention of the Governor’s Executive Order is that the district serve children of first responders, children in DCS custody, students with disabilities, students lacking adequate technology at home to participate in distance learning, and any student needing a safe place to participate in remote learning during school hours. Students must be previously registered with the district at their regular school of attendance to be eligible to register for on-site learning centers. Registration will be taken until the site is filled.
What will my child be doing at the on-site support center?
Students will participate in remote learning offered by their assigned teachers. MAA staff will assist students, as needed, to access daily lessons on the computer through Google Classroom and Acellus. Students will participate in Brain Breaks, recess, and lunch breaks. K-8th grade students are expected to attend the regular school day hours. If they wish to leave early, a parent or guardian must come to school to pick them up. Regular daily attendance will be taken. The school must be notified if any students will be absent. Students will still be required to mark attendance in Google Classroom. Families will be notified if students receive an unexcused absence.
Student and family expectations
- Students must follow MAA Health policies, including mandatory face coverings. If a parent does not want their child to wear a face covering, the child will be unable to attend the on-site support center.
- Each student is required to bring their MAA-issued device (fully charged), power cord, and headphones to complete school work.
- Each student should bring a filled water bottle.
- Free breakfast and lunch will be provided to on-site support students and virtual students.
- Meals will be served from 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
- Students are expected to follow the MAA Guidelines for Student Behavior. Failure to follow behavior guidelines could result in a student losing the option to attend an on-site support center.
Frequently asked questions
What is the staff-to-student ratio at the on-site support center?
The student-to-staff ratio is 15:1.
Who will help my child with learning while they are at the on-site support center?
Classrooms will be staffed with paraprofessionals and other hourly support staff to supervise students and assist them with logging on to remote learning. Teachers will continue to teach remote learning from home and will not be available at the on-site support center.
Will students be kept together by grade level?
Students will be clustered in groups of similar students to allow supervising staff to become familiar with the students in their assigned group, easily identify who is absent, and provide the safest tracking and distancing possible. The groups might be multi-aged clusters.
In what area of the school will my child be during the day?
Students will be supervised in classrooms.
Does my child have to wear a face covering?
Yes, students must wear a face covering at all times. If a parent does not want their child to wear a face covering, the child will be unable to attend the on-site center. Adjustments will be made for students who might have an existing medical condition that does not allow a student to safely wear a face covering.