“If I were president, I would make more schools like Hiawatha because the teachers care about you and want you to go to college.”
Hiawatha Academies scholar
To create a safe, welcoming environment that fosters learning, Hiawatha Academies provides parents with guidelines on school expectations and policies. For complete policies and procedures and a copy of the Family Handbook, please visit the “Family Central” page on each school’s website.
A few highlights follow:Test Refusal Parent Guardian Guide and Refusal for Student Participation in Statewide Testing
- Attendance + − Hiawatha Academies believes that daily attendance is critical to academic achievement and learning. Parents should make sure that their scholars are in school all day, every day. Please see school individual school Family Central pages for policies on tardiness and absences.
- Family involvement + − Hiawatha Academies believes educational success depends on a close partnership between our scholars, their families, and the school. To that end, we offer a FREE six-week Family Academy and events and volunteer opportunities throughout the year.
- Lunch + − Our scholars need fuel for learning! All scholars receive a complete, nutritious lunch and breakfast daily at no cost. We can usually accommodate special dietary restrictions when needed. See school websites for sample menus.
- Post-Secondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) + −
Postsecondary Enrollment Options (PSEO) is a program that allows 10th-, 11th- and 12th-grade scholars to earn both high school and college credit while still in high school by completing college-level courses at local colleges and universities.
Most PSEO courses are offered on the campus of the college/university, and some courses are offered online.
Eleventh and 12th-grade scholars may take PSEO courses on a full- or part-time basis; 10th-grade scholars may take one career/technical PSEO course. If they earn at least a grade C in that class, they may take additional PSEO courses.
Each participating college or university sets its own requirements for enrollment into the PSEO courses. Scholars must also meet the PSEO residency and eligibility requirements and abide by other rules set by state law.
If Hiawatha Academies determines a scholar is not on track to graduate, s/he may continue to participate in PSEO.
There is no charge to PSEO scholars for tuition, books or fees for items that are required to participate in a course. Funds are available to help pay transportation expenses for qualifying scholars to participate in PSEO courses on college campuses.
How to enroll
Scholars must notify their school by May 30 if they want to participate in PSEO for the following school year. For more information about the PSEO program, visit the Minnesota Department of Education’s PSEO webpage.
- School supplies + − Each year we provide parents with a list of supplies their children will need for classroom learning.
- Special education + − Child Study Team (CST)
Each school has an on-site Child Study Team (CST) composed of teachers, student support personnel, and school administrators. This team meets regularly to help create academic and behavioral interventions for scholars who need extra support. If you feel your scholar may benefit from the CST process, please contact their advisory teacher.
Scholar with documented medical or mental health disabilities may be eligible for a Section 504 plan. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act requires schools to provide students with certain program changes that will allow them access to educational opportunities that are similar to their peers. A 504 Plan may provide additional accommodations, modifications, or services for your student. If you would like to meet or have a phone conference to discuss a Section 504 evaluation and whether a Section 504 would be a good fit for your student, please contact your school’s office. Read your 504 rights in English and Spanish.
Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC)
In order to increase the involvement of parents of children with disabilities in district policy making and decision making, Hiawatha Academies has a Special Education Advisory Council (SEAC). The SEAC annual meeting occurs each spring. Please contact our Network Student Support Services Director, Alex Gallagher, firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in serving on the Hiawatha Academies SEAC.
Special Education Evaluation
Hiawatha Academies conducts full and individual evaluations before special education and related services begin. This helps us determine whether a child has a disability that adversely affects their educational performance. We ask parents/guardians for their permission before we evaluate scholars. This permission is for the evaluation only, and is not the same as giving us permission to provide special education services. Parents have the right to refuse this evaluation and any possible re-evaluations.
If you feel your scholar may need a special education evaluation, then please contact our Network Student Support Services Director, Alex Gallagher, email@example.com
The U.S. Office of Special Education Programs has created an English-Spanish glossary of special education terminology.
Here are some agencies that may help you in understanding your rights and your scholar’s rights under state and federal special education law:
- Parent rights (procedural safeguards) in English and Spanish
- ARC MN (Advocacy for Persons with Developmental Disabilities): 651-523-0823 or 1-800-582-5256
- MN Department of Education: 651-582-8689, TTY: 651-582-8201
- MN Disability Law Center: 612-332-1441, 1-800-292-4150, TTY: 612-332-4668
- PACER (Parent Advocacy Coalition for Education Rights): 952-838-9000, 1-800-53-PACER, TTY: 952-838-0190
- Student health + − Your child’s health is important to us! We have clear guidelines about when to keep your child home, immunizations, medication, and more. Complete school policies can be found on each school’s website.
- Transportation / busing + − Hiawatha Academies provides free transportation to all of our scholars in grades K-8. However, we can only guarantee busing within the enrollment zone: north to I-94 (including the Cedar River Side neighborhood between I-35W and I-94), east to the Mississippi River, south to I-494, and west to Lyndale Avenue South (see map). Scholars can expect to receive bus assignments by the start of the school year.
As with most schools high schools in Minneapolis, Hiawatha Collegiate High School scholars will receive a free bus pass for the year so they can get to and from school using Metro Transit light rail and buses.
For transportation questions, please contact the individual schools.
- Uniforms + − Hiawatha Academies believes school uniforms support learning. School uniforms reduce distractions and create a sense of community, teamwork, and ownership. Each school has its own uniform, which scholars must wear every day. Visit the school websites for details and where to purchase the items.
- Weather policies + − Hiawatha Academies makes every effort to avoid school closures, however, sometimes they are necessary in the case of severe winter weather. When this happens, we communicate with parents in a variety of ways, and as soon as possible.
Hiawatha Academies will consider canceling classes in buildings without air conditioning if the heat index (a combination of temperature and humidity) reaches at least 105°F for more than three hours per day for two consecutive days, or reaches more than 115°F for any period of time. This is the threshold used by the National Weather Service https://www.weather.gov/safety/heat-index to issue heat alerts. However, each Hiawatha Academies building is unique in how heat is retained in the building. The Executive Director may consider canceling classes, in the interest of student and staff safety, if the indoor heat index exceeds the above thresholds even if the outdoor heat index does not.
Hiawatha Academies will likely cancel classes if the wind chill forecast for 6:30 a.m. the following day is -35° or colder, with winds of at least 5 to 10 miles per hour.
Hiawatha Academies will cancel classes if road conditions are such that travel becomes too hazardous for buses and cars. Hiawatha Academies will consider canceling classes if travel delays become so great that staff cannot reach the buildings in order to teach students or students will be out at bus stops for an excessive amount of time.
These conditions are likely if it snows 6 inches or more in 12 hours, or 8 inches or more in 24 hours. However, every winter storm is different, so it is possible that classes will still be held even if snowfall reaches these limits.
Facility damage or other event
In the event of large-scale facility damage or similar event that creates a hazardous or unsafe environment, the Executive director may cancel classes in the interest of student or staff safety.
- Scholars who are homeless, highly mobile, or in temporary living situations + − Hiawatha Academies adheres to all federal and state laws protecting the rights of homeless scholars and scholars in highly mobile living situations. Additionally, homeless scholars will have all school fees waived. Please contact Conor Leonard, Title One Coordinator, at 612-547-8640 or cleonard@hiawathaacademies with any questions or for more information.