Frequently Asked Questions
The School Day, School Calendar, and Location
What are the school hours?
- 8:00 am - 3:15 pm - daily
- Early release days - once a month, GVA-N has an early release day on Mondays. Students are released at noon.
When will the new building be open and where is it located?
- The new building will be open for the 2022-2023 school year.
- The address of the new building is 12415 Grant St., Thornton, Colorado
Does the school have the same calendar as the Adams 12 Five Star School District?
- GVA-N has many similar holiday and break schedules as Adams 12.
- GVA-N does follow Adams 12 for inclement weather when necessary.
Are there fees for Village Square, the Before and After school program?
- Yes, please see the information on the website for the before and aftercare program.
Does Village Square, the before and after school program, accept CCAP?
- No, Village Square is not set up for CCAP.
Are there any fees or tuition to attend the school?
- No, there is no tuition. GVA-N is a free public school and offers tuition-free full-day kindergarten.
- A materials fee of $30.00 per student is due at the beginning of each school year.
Do students have to live in the Adams 12 Five Star School District?
- No. Any Colorado student may enroll.
Do you provide transportation to and from school?
- No, GVA-N does not provide transportation.
Do you provide lunch and do you offer free and reduced lunch pricing?
- GVA-N’s food service program is catered by Michael’s of Denver.
- Yes, GVA-N offers free and reduced lunch pricing. Details and the application for free and reduced lunch are available on the website under Menus and Lunch Programs.
Do you require student uniforms?
- Yes, students are required to wear a GVA T-shirt or polo shirt with blue, black, or khaki colored pants.
- Students may wear blue, black or khaki dresses or skirts.
- Plain-colored polo shirts are also acceptable uniform shirts.
- GVA T-shirts and polos can be purchased on the GVA website directly from the supplier or through Land’s End.
What about school safety?
- GVA-N has a School Safety and Emergency Response Plan in place.
- GVA-N employs a full-time School Resource Officer.
What is the average student-to-teacher ratio?
- This varies from year to year and between villages.
- Classes have a minimum of 8 students and a max of 30.
Are your teachers licensed?
- GVA-N teachers meet or exceed all state and federal requirements for highly qualified teachers.
- Language immersion teachers are all native-language speakers with elementary and middle school teaching experience.
What extra-curricular options and non-core classes will be offered?
- The after-school enrichment program is called ENCORE and is a fee-based program offering a variety of classes by local specialty instructors. These may include cooking, skateboarding, art and more depending upon student interest and availability of instructors.
- Middle school students have the opportunity to join athletic programs offered throughout the year such as cross country, flag football, volleyball, basketball, and baseball. There is a fee for each sport.
- GVA-N also has annual events such as a science fair, the oratorical festival, and an end-of-year cultural festival.
Do you issue regular report cards?
- Yes, report cards are given out quarterly. Fall and Spring report cards are given out during student-led conferences.
- Report cards are standards-based in that they show each student’s progress compared to state standards by subject.
Do your students take the state CMAS tests?
- Yes, all students starting in 3rd grade take the state CMAS test.
- Starting in kindergarten students take the DIBELs assessments for reading fluency, iReady diagnostic assessments in math and reading to measure academic progress, and the STAMP test to measure fluency and literacy in the immersion language.
- These standardized tests are in addition to regular unit tests and quizzes.
- Student records can be requested by calling or stopping by the front desk.
- Copies of student records can be picked up or will be emailed within 48 hours of the request.
- Open Court Reading
- EnVisions Math
- Pearson Realize Science
- Estrellita (Spanish Phonics)
- Yabisi Spanish
- Eureka! Math
- Orton Gillingham Intervention Program
- iReady Math and Reading
- iChinese Reader
- Level Learning
- Empowering Education (Social Emotional Learning)
What is language immersion?
- Language immersion is an instructional approach that enables students to learn a second language.
- It’s the approach that Europe has used for centuries and it’s based on the fact that the brain of a younger student is more flexible and adept at learning a second language when it’s naturally incorporated into instruction.
How is this different from just learning a foreign language?
- Most foreign language classes are limited to a couple of hours per week and not offered until upper-grade levels. The primary focus is on basic speaking skills and grammar.
- Immersion is about learning core subjects within a new language; preparing GVAN students to be fluent in discussions about math, science, social studies, and cultural events in addition to literacy.
- Eighth graders who have gone through our program enter high school as freshmen with skills that are generally at or above AP (Advanced Placement) level.
What does language immersion look like in the classroom?
- Core classes are taught in the immersion language in order for students to gain reading, writing and speaking skills.
The instructional pattern in GVA-N is as follows:
- Kindergarten through 5th grade - students spend 50% of their day learning in their target language (Mandarin, Russian or Spanish) and 50% in English.
- Middle school - have 33% a day in their target language following their AP (Advanced Placement) track. Our goal is for our students to achieve a higher level entrance in their target language by high school.
How can kindergarten students learn a new language they don’t know?
- It becomes natural because the brain is developmentally still very open to accepting language skills.
- Learning to read or do math in Spanish, Russian or Mandarin actually strengthens the capacity for learning math or reading in English.
- The neural brain pathways that enable this great capacity for learning actually being to close off as we get older, making it more difficult for older monolingual learners to add new language skills.
- Even though you might think so, it doesn’t.
- Research has proven this and Global Village Academy’s experience in the Northglenn, Aurora, and Douglas County's campuses have demonstrated that students are at or above grade level learning through immersion.
- Third graders, who had ⅔ of their instruction in a new language, actually ended up performing in the top 15% of their peers within their school district.
- Plus, by the time these students reach 8th grade, their reading, writing, and speaking skills in the new language are the equivalent of a native student speaking their target language.
How can I help my student with homework if he’s learning Chinese and I don’t know Chinese?
- Homework in the immersion language is very limited.
What has research shown as the benefits of learning more than one language?
- Research has shown several benefits including improved overall academic progress, enhanced student sense of achievement, increased cultural awareness, enhanced career opportunities, improved chance for college admissions, and better critical thinking skills.
English Language Learners, Gifted and Talented Students, Special Needs Students
How does this program work for English Language Learners?
- This is an exceptional program for ELL or ESL students because learning through immersion builds upon each student’s current language skills.
- Therefore a Spanish-speaking student will be able to build their English skills without discounting their Spanish skills.
- ELL students in the GVA-N program have repeatedly shown significant academic achievement growth that far exceeds that of students in traditional ESL programs.
Do you have programs for Gifted and Talented Students?
- GT students are provided expanded study and learning opportunities within the GVA program.
- Parents can contact the gifted and talented coordinator, Adrienne Doherty at [email protected].
Does GVA-N provide services for special needs students?
- Yes, as a public school, GVA-N provides services in accordance with state and federal guidelines that are based on the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) that is developed by specialists and staff members.
Do you have a school nurse?
- GVA-N has a part-time nurse overseeing the school as required by state law. Additionally, there is a full-time health aide who helps each day and assists when the nurse is not in the building.
Does GVA-N have any working relationships with other countries?
- GVA currently has partnerships with the Beijing Foreign Language School and the Spanish Ministry of Education.
- GVA is also one of the nation’s first Confucius Classroom programs and has received nearly $2 million in federal grants to develop a language curriculum and train foreign teachers in language immersion instruction.
If my student is accepted, will his sibling automatically be enrolled?
- Yes, siblings are given priority in the enrollment process.
Who governs the school?
- The school is governed by a local Board of Directors that includes community members with education, business, and government experience.
- The local board also has some of its members serving on the Global Village Academy Collaborative Board, which guides the central administrative services provided to all GVA schools.
How large is the Global Village Academy network?
- The first Global Village Academy started in Aurora with 220 students.
- Today there are over 2,000 students enrolled at the three GVA campuses.