What's Coming Up At A.D. Henderson & FAU High School
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A.D. Henderson University School &
FAU High School
Community Newsletter


Vol. 5, No. 3, November 2020

In this issue...

Upcoming Important Dates

Google Calendar

November 11
Veteran's Day
November 13
World Kindness Day

November 23-27
Thanksgiving Break
November 27
Random Acts of Kindness Day
December 21-January 1
Winter Break


November begins with the end of Daylight savings - make sure you turned your clocks back this weekend and enjoyed an extra hour of sleep! Hopefully, if you couldn't sleep in, you took a mindful moment and did a fun, socially distanced activity.

Despite not being able to host our traditional Halloween events - it did not keep us from dressing up and sharing smiles with our students. The children were certainly dressed for the occasion and brought all the holiday spirit with them as pirates, superheroes, Jake from State Farm, and so much more. We saw some very creative outfits! Thank you for following our safety measures to make this day fun for everyone.

We take pride as an educational institution in our teaching approach in innovative ways that also inspire students to excel. Because of this, I am pleased to announce that A.D. Henderson University School has been named the No.2 Best Public Elementary School by Niche. This honor would not be possible without our dedicated faculty. The week after we heard from Niche regarding our national ranking, we learned that FAU High School received the College Success Award!

Last year, in conjunction with our PTO, we launched the PTO Business Sponsorship Program as the perfect way to market your business while providing support to your school. We are happy to offer four different levels, ranging in marketing options from banners in our drop-off/pick-up circles to links on the PTO website. Each one crafted for different business-specific needs. For more information, please contact Valerie Rivera at or visit the PTO website

I want to thank every one of our students, parents, faculty, and staff during this school year. Although it has not been a traditional one, it has undoubtedly been filled with laughter, learning, and love.

#owlsimpact #owlsignite

Mrs. Bees
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” --Steve Jobs

PTO Business Sponsorship Program Sponsors

Law Offices of Franks, Koenig & Neuwelt
Builders Plus Tilt Up Contractor

We are excited to continue offering an opportunity to make a lasting impact through the A.D. Henderson & FAU High School K-12 Student Enrichment Annual Fund. This year, we instituted a crowdfunding platform that will allow you to easily share the annual fund with friends, family, and social media networks and encourage them to support the school!

Gifts to the K-12 Student Enrichment Annual Fund will impact your child and enhance all school experience areas, including academics, athletics, arts, extra-curricular activities, technology, and student life. Every gift counts regardless of the amount. Please participate at a level that is comfortable for your family. All contributions are tax-deductible and can be made by cash, check, credit card, or donated stock. Gifts can be made with recurring payments online, and most gifts qualify for corporate matching gift programs.

Make Your Impact Felt Today!

Elementary School Updates

This is How We Roll!

Elementary Specialist teachers continue to come up with innovative ways to enrich and engage our students. They've been teaching with traveling carts all around campus!   

Mrs. O'Sullivan is working on tech skills through literature and art with K-2 students and in 3-5 is wrapping up their digital citizenship units and beginning 3D design using Tinkercad. The goal is to have students laser cut & 3D print during the next STEAM rotation.

Mrs. Mattos is teaching students about a different author every day. They read the most popular books from that author, draw characters from the books and sometimes even take a virtual tour. 

Coach Santiago is keeping students active. His classes work on fitness and the importance of other healthy habits that will positively impact students' mental and physical health.  

Ms. Francani's students are amidst the performing artist's process. They are exploring terminology, rhythms, monologues, and festive songs while preparing, recording, and producing their virtual showcase that will be released in November!

Academic Games is Back!

We are so excited to announce that Academic Games is back. We are running Academic Games completely virtual this year; all competitions and practices will be held online. We started this past week with just over 75 students between grades 4-12. The first subject this year is propaganda. We will also have Mathematics, Language Arts and History. Any student grades 4-12 interested in participating, please contact Mrs. Palumbo.

Teams That Learn Together Stay Together

On Saturday, October 17, many of our teachers attended a fantastic day of learning and collaborating with literacy teachers worldwide. The day began with a keynote by award-winning author Grace Lin. The keynote was followed by more than 150 workshops on a wide variety of literacy topics from deepening comprehension, enhancing writing, using assessment to guide instruction, and increasing student engagement. This year's reunion focused on the demands of teaching in remote and hybrid classrooms. Staff developers shared their latest thinking about the best tools and platforms to help adapt teaching and learning for the current challenges educators face. And as always, Lucy Calkins reminded us to keep workshop teaching joyful and connected. She reminded us to keep "showing up" for our kids and families. Even though we couldn't all be together in NYC this year, it was still a great day of learning!

Middle School Updates

Middle School Offers Two New Scholar Programs!


One of the challenges students experience lies in taking the standardized tests required to progress through middle school, transition into high school, and onto future academic pursuits. These standardized tests are often used for course placements, school admissions purposes, or help identify students for future academic recognition and financial scholarship opportunities. In a coordinated effort to help students maximize their potential, we have created the A.D. Henderson Scholars Program for all interested 7th and 8th graders. The programs aim to support students in their application process for various rigorous high school programs. They will be completely online and offer weekly structured activities, lessons, videos, and practice tests.

This opportunity, funded through the Javits Grant, is a coordinated effort between A.D. Henderson, FAU High School, and FAU to support students working towards high-achieving recognitions such as Duke TiP and future accelerated programs in high school.

Participation in this free program comes with the expectation that interested students will commit to putting forth their best effort on lessons and practice tests every week. We are hopeful that this program's development brings awareness of our confidence in our students' abilities. We are committed to providing our students with the resources and tools necessary to excel!

High School Updates

Students have finished off a tremendous first quarter. Please take the time to review your child's report card. 
We are excited that some clubs are starting up virtually, so we encourage all students to get involved. Students will receive information regarding club opportunities directly from club student leaders or sponsors. 
As students begin their second quarter, they continue to work diligently in their classes and learn F2F or virtually. On October 23, students had the opportunity to receive additional learning and curriculum support during our first "bridge" support day - a built-in time during the week on Friday, where teachers can assist students in their learning and academic growth. During the last 90 minutes of the school day, students joined any teacher's Zoom room for additional feedback, support, or questions. They also joined S2S, where Mrs. Menard is offering extra tutoring and academic support sessions.

We look forward to continuing this "bridge" time for students and teachers.  


It is the time of year at FAU High School that we begin recruitment for the high school. One of the most distinguishing aspects of FAU High School is our diverse and driven student population. We are contacting our students and parents in hopes that you will assist us in reaching untapped communities who are unaware of the fantastic opportunities at FAU High School. To expand our reach, we are seeking support from our parents and students to assist us in marketing our virtual open houses on your social media accounts and/or assist us in getting into local churches/places of worship, non-profits, and corporations to present to students and parents/guardians about our phenomenal program. 

With the expansion of FAU High School to FAU High School - Jupiter Campus, in Partnership with Max Planck Academy, access to our program has increased, so we need our families and students to assist us in getting the word out, especially about our new Jupiter program!  We know that there is no more powerful strategy for recruitment than testimonials from students and parents. Year after year, when prospective students sign up for Open Houses, they select "word-of-mouth" as the number one way that they learned about our program. Please help us continue this tradition! 

September Rotary Student of the Month - Zachariah John

Congratulations to Zachariah John for being selected as September's Student of the Month for the Boca Sunset Rotary. Zach has been a shining star at FAU High School since day one. He did an excellent job representing himself, his family, and FAU high school at the virtual rotary meeting in September. The best part about the forum being virtual was that his family from out of state joined us in recognizing him. To provide you a better understanding of Zach's goal, I would like to share his own words, "I want to be at the frontier. When humanity chooses to leave Earth and persevere: I'll be there. My dream is to become a physician-astronaut, leading forward to the field of space medicine as not only a doctor but a pioneer. I'll pave my path, living a life that incorporates all that excites me. I choose not to abandon but build upon my dealt hand, no longer drifting along with the waves but rowing ​against​ the tide into the toil of life". 

October Rotary Student of the Month - Hannah Phelps

Congratulations to Hannah Phelps for being selected as October's Student of the Month for the Boca Sunset Rotary.  She will be recognized at the Rotary Meeting on Monday, October 21, 2020.  Hannah is an active student researcher working in the WEI lab. Recently, she was selected to represent FAU High as the Sunshine State Scholar.  With over 700 hours of community service, Hannah truly embodies the essence of an FAU High Student.


The Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholar Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) is administered to 10th-grade students in the fall and then once more in October of their 11th-grade year. The 11th-grade PSAT/NMSQT is the qualifying test designated for entry to The National Merit® Scholarship Program academic competition for high school seniors.

Although the scheduled plan was to offer the PSAT/NMSQT to all 10th and 11th graders this past October, the current situation mandated guidelines on social distancing, which subsequently limited the number of students permitted to test together. On Saturday, October 17, 11th-grade students took part in the PSAT/NMSQT test. 

Many of the students who walked on the A.D. Henderson & FAU High school on Saturday morning hadn't been inside of a classroom in months. "The Future is Bright," "You are amazing!" and "We believe in YOU!" were just some of the messages written on the sidewalk in chalk to welcome the students. "It went well! It was definitely a bit easier than the practice tests, at least for me, so I'm looking forward to seeing how I did," said an 11th-grade student after the test.

Math Day

On Saturday, October 24, 42 of our high school students participated in FAU Math Day. After a grueling 5-hour day of Mathematics, five students placed in the top 15 for scores. Christian Engman and Alaguvalliappan Thiagarajan tied for 9th place score, Christopher Cox and Dasha Selivoenenko tied for tenth place score, and Chancellor Gary tied with the 11th place score. We are so proud of all students for representing our school in an honorable and professional manner. Go Owls!  


We hope our students are enjoying the TCI STEM@Home mailer activities at home. Please continue to post on social media! Below are the results from everyone's data submission for the Alka-Rocket Challenge! 

Thanks to the power of collaboration, we could pool over 120 data points, creating a large data set and allowing us to show a very strong trend! Our combined results showed that our rockets traveled farther when less water was used, giving more space in the film canister for air pressure to build!

Thank you for the GREAT photos of all of our young scientists at work!  Here are just a few.

Remember, we have monthly challenges for the pocket microscopes! Send us your microscopic pictures of your school supplies this month and of various fabrics in November. Submit your photos here! Both TCI and the Research Program want to see those micrograph pictures!

The next STEM@Home mailer should take you to new heights as you explore the importance of center of gravity and center of lift to flight stability.

If you misplaced any of the TCI STEM@Home mailer instructions, please find the instructions at

Stay up to date with all events and announcements within The Cane Institute for Advanced Technologies by following us on our social media platforms:

Follow us on Twitter

Follow us on Facebook

OPK12 Research Committee / Research Collaborations

Our schools continue to support innovative research conducted by FAU and other universities. Here the current projects we are involved in:

  • Katie Miller from FAU's Department of Exceptional Student Education and Lara Costa from UNC-Chapel Hill received a grant from the Institute for Educational Sciences. They are gathering writing samples from 4th-5th grade students to see the relationships among writing skills, writing performance, and writing quality.
  • We are still recruiting for the RESCUE Project with Drs. Fumiko Hoeft, from UCSF & University of Connecticut, and Kenneth Pugh, from Yale & University of Connecticut. The RESCUE Project ( hopes to prevent the serious negative effects of "COVID Slide" on reading development and the goal of the project is to help K-2nd students learn to read at home using a computer-based game called GraphoLearn. If you are interested in signing up your child for this project, please follow this link: RESCUE Project Interest and Sign up Form.

The results from our past research collaborations have been published in peer-reviewed articles and presented at national and international conferences. Please review some recent publications and presentations from our past collaborations: Publications and Presentations from Research Collaborations.

If you have any questions about any future studies or generally about research being conducted at our school, please contact us or explore our website.

The Owls Imaging Lab virtually hosted Ms. Barzey, Ms. Celesti, and Ms. Picard's second-grade classes. The students learned about the various microscopes or magnifiers in the lab, and they also began to learn about the different types of matter and how they can use lab equipment to study matter. We also talked about the importance of sharing in research and all the different topics researchers can study. The FAU High School Research team looks forward to virtually hosting more students in the Owls Imaging Lab very soon!

(Virtual) Owls Imaging Lab

As a reminder, The Owls Imaging Lab (OI Lab) is now offering a virtual lab training experience to an unlimited number of students via Canvas. Students are introduced to the equipment in the OI Lab, learn how to operate the equipment, explore the research applications of the lab, and develop protocols for their specific research goals. Students involved in this self-guided course can advance their research experience by gaining useful skills for future research experiences, building their CV or resume, and creating a research foundation that will allow them to explore their research interests. Students interested in enrolling in this online training should register here.

Research Meetups

The FAU High School Research team is continuing to host monthly Research Meetups to connect high school student researchers. The next meetup will be held virtually on November 12th, 1-2 pm. Students can bring their research questions or just come to chat with fellow researchers about hot topics in the FAU research community. Interested students, please register for the meetup here.

Owls Athletics

We are happy to announce that our Cross Country and Swim Teams participated and competed well at the District Meet.

High School Swimming

The Boys Swim Team consisting of Gavin Murphy, Kristian Murphy, Paul Pokatragool, and Pete Pokatragool finished 3rd in both relays, while the girls, Ciana Han, Kaitlin Han, Amanda Levitt, and Laura Martinez finished 4th. Pete also finished 3rd in the individual 100m Breaststroke.

The Regional Meet will take place on Monday, November 2, at Indian River College.

High School Cross Country

The HS Cross Country Team competed at Districts, and both teams finished in 3rd and advancing as a team to the Regional Meet. Julia McDuffee finished 3rd overall, and on the boy's side, Clyve Gassant (5th), Daniel Saviano (7th), and Zachariah John (8th). 

Winter Sports Season Postponement

At this time, the winter sports season is postponed until January. Please continue to check our website for updates on winter sports.

Follow us on Twitter

Visit us for all A.D. Henderson & FAU High School Athletics Schedules, Information & News

General School Reminders

Mental Health

In November, we celebrate both World Kindness Day and Random Acts of Kindness Day. To honor these two important dates, we wanted to share the following resource for you to have. We hope this inspires you to continue your acts of kindness with your families. This would be an excellent opportunity to share all the amazing things you already do. If you have something you would like to share via social media, please hashtag #kindowls

For more information and resources, please visit!

  • Nov. 13-World Kindness Day
  • Nov. 27-Random Acts of Kindness Day

What's New in Tech?

As you can imagine, at a school that is rated top in the Nation, the Henderson faculty is tough to please when it comes to tech programs. We have high standards for quality, standards-alignment, data reporting, optimized growth, and student opinion. As a lab school, we have helped many growing companies by identifying faults in the programs and detailing improvements that helped emerging companies better their products. Different grade levels every year choose to pilot tech programs and bring the data back to the other teachers for evaluation. This year, the 4th Grade Team decided to pilot Edulastic, allowing teachers to create technology-enhanced, standards-aligned assessments in minutes and get immediate feedback on student performance. The virtual lessons, interactive assessments, and independent assignments help maintain engagement, whether at home or in school. Usually, teachers pilot a program for a year, but the team was so impressed with the standards-alignment and data reporting of Edulastic, they presented their findings within weeks of having the program. The other grade levels were so impressed, we purchased Edulastic for grades 2-5. We are eager to see how Edulastic helps to target student growth and enhance teacher lessons. 

Testing Information

Each year the school creates a schedule of state assessments. Thus far, 11th-grade students have participated in the PSAT/NMSQT test in October. Attached is the Draft 2020-2021 Testing Schedule. Although this document is subject to change based on multiple factors, you may use this to plan. 

Carpool Tags

Car tags must be posted on the right-hand side of your vehicle's dashboard as you enter the dismissal line at A.D. Henderson & FAU High School. Placing the carpool tag on the vehicle's dashboard before arriving to pick up your student is essential to our dismissal process. If you do not have a carpool tag for your car, need extra tags or replacement tags, please request the carpool tag using this Google Doc link. Please allow two days for a car tag request to be processed.

High School Substance Abuse Prevention Information

This month 9th-grade students will begin the Everfi Lesson titled "K12 Prescription Drug Safety." This lesson empowers students with the skills and knowledge they need to make safe and healthy decisions about prescription drugs and opioids. Additionally, all 9-12th grade students must complete the Everfi lesson titled "AlcoholEDU for High School." Alcohol consumption among young people is a growing concern, but early educational interventions have significantly reduced abuse potential. This course takes a public health approach to prevent alcohol abuse, incorporating evidence-based prevention methods to create a highly engaging user experience. 

The most crucial action you can take as a parent is to educate yourself on teen alcohol and drug use signs and symptoms. Then be sure to have honest conversations with your teen about the dangers surrounding drug and alcohol use. Let them know you care about them and are here to help if they ever need to talk (about this issue or any others!). Believe it or not, your teens do care about what you have to say!


Vaping has become common and normalized amongst youth. According to News in Health, "About 37% of 12th graders reported vaping in 2018, compared with 28% in 2017." Read this News in Health Article Vaping Rises Among Teens to learn more about the dangers of vaping. Please visit Lung Love's Website to review Parent Tools that will help you identify whether or not your teen may be vaping and what to do about it. Watch this Vaping Video to learn more about the dangers of vaping - share with your student! Read "I Caught My Kid Vaping. What Should I Do Now?" by clicking HERE.

Prescription Drug Use

The misuse of prescription drugs is a real danger for teens and young adults alike. To address the misuse of prescription medications, Lock Your Meds® has promoted a "national multi-media campaign designed to reduce prescription drug abuse by making adults aware that they are the 'unwitting suppliers' of prescription medications being used in unintended ways, especially by young people." Visit their website to learn more about how you can help stop the misuse of prescription drugs.

Under Aged Alchohol Use

Sadly, drunk driving is still the number one cause of death on roadways (MADD, 2020). Start the conversation NOW about underage drinking and drunk driving with your teen. You can find helpful information on starting this conversation by visiting the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) "Power of Parents" webpage. Find a compiled list of educational resources on drug and alcohol abuse prevention provided by the Red Ribbon Campaign Website.

What do you do if you find out your child is drinking?

  1. Try to be objective and open. 
  2. Ask open-ended questions. 
  3. Ask why your child is interested in drinking. 
  4. Let your kid know they're being heard. 
  5. Discuss the harmful effects of alcohol and what that means in terms of mental and physical health, safety, and good decisions.

Find more details on these tips here.

Safety - Code Yellow Lockout Drill

On October 28, we had a Code Yellow Lockout drill. The students and staff practiced what they would do in the event of a real emergency. During a Lockout, the classrooms are secured, but instruction continues as usual. Students remained at their desks; there was no compromise of social distancing.


FortifyFL is a suspicious activity reporting tool that allows you to instantly relay information to Florida law enforcement agencies and school officials. Click the appropriate link for information and download instructions in EnglishSpanish, or Creole.

Free School Meals

To ensure that families have access to healthy meals during this time of uncertainty, our school has applied for the "Seamless Summer Option" (SSO) for food service. Through this option, ALL students can receive breakfast and lunch free of charge. This benefit begins on November 9 and continues until the end of the school year. The SSO applies to free meals only. Unless your family has been approved for free or reduced-priced meals through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), participation in the SSO does not impact any school fees or other discounts offered to NSLP participants.

Yearbook Information

This year we will be constructing a virtual yearbook for our students, and we need your assistance in taking and submitting pictures to ensure that we have a robust number and variety of photos to represent all that our students are doing.

We ask that you contribute pictures throughout the year, such as students engaged in class activities, labs, using at-home STEM kits, wearing interesting masks, holidays, or other special events, etc. 

Place all photos in this Google folder or email Nan Hert.

If possible, please choose the largest size (Actual Size) photo to contribute for the best reproduction.

PTO Update

Join the ADHUS PTO and support our K-12 faculty, staff, and PTO will be holding a General Meeting on Thursday, November 5, at 5:30 pm via ZOOM. Please be on the lookout for an email containing details and the ZOOM meeting link.

We hope to see you there!


Business Sponsorship Program
The PTO kicked off a new initiative in partnership with the school this year, the A. D. Henderson & FAU High School PTO Business Sponsorship Program. There are four levels of contributions to customize your business donation. You can see their ads online and in the circles.

SLA Family Newsletter

SLA Management has redone the A.D. Henderson & FAU High online cafeteria portal. Please make sure to check the portal and find out about the great offerings our dining services provide.

Each month our cafeteria service, SLA Management, features a newsletter with health and nutrition information, upcoming features, and other interesting articles. This link houses the email archive from SLA Management.

A.D. Henderson & FAU High School Vision & Mission

Vision Statement

A.D. Henderson & FAU High School is a national exemplary model for school systems and teacher preparation programs improving education for diverse student populations through innovative, faculty-developed research and curriculum.

Mission Statement

The school has a three-fold mission of (1) being a demonstration site for teacher education; (2) developing curricula; (3) conducting research.
(F.S. 228.053)
A.D. Henderson University School & FAU High School is an Equal Opportunity Employer and a Title I Targeted Assistance Program.

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