What ACA’s High Schoolers are Doing

Cheyenna Hall The Charter Features  5/11/2020 Students have been put in a difficult and trying situation along with the rest of the world. So while students try and get all their homework done at home they also are trying to think of ways to occupy their time.  Cameron Burch, a freshman at ACA, has been spending more time in the great outdoors.  “I’m a very … Continue reading What ACA’s High Schoolers are Doing

NWEA Warns Of COVID Learning Slump

Tazwell Brandabur The Charter Features 5/5/20 Educators worldwide have been scrambling to keep kids engaged and learning during the ongoing lockdown, with mixed results. New research from the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) forecasts that this extended disruption of conventional schooling will create major educational hurdles that could continue to trip students up years down the line. “NWEA is widely used and proven for growth and … Continue reading NWEA Warns Of COVID Learning Slump

The Effects COVID-19 and Technology are having on Schooling

Jack Taggart The Charter News 4/01/20 Governments are meeting the spread of the novel virus, COVID-19, with many strategies to slow the contagion, such as social distancing, health precautions, and even stay-at-home orders from multiple state governors, including Oregon Governor Kate Brown. Among these initiatives is the temporary closing of schools in all states (some are scheduled to close in certain districts, some have or … Continue reading The Effects COVID-19 and Technology are having on Schooling

What COVID-19 Looks Like In Our Community

Siena Geren  The Charter Features  3/20/20 COVID-19 is changing our public spaces inside and out. While people begin to get clear instructions on how to stay safe and keep others safe, most are taking meaningful action. Advice about social distancing is everywhere and the community seems to be taking it seriously. But has it actually changed the look of our community? Has there been a … Continue reading What COVID-19 Looks Like In Our Community

Tough Love Grading Practices Produce Results

Tazwell Brandabur The Charter Features 3/15/20 Teachers themselves determine how students are graded, creating a spectrum of severity as complex and varied as the teachers themselves. This spectrum may lead to long-term consequences. A study published by the Fordham Institute in February, 2020, found that the way teachers grade students dramatically affects the students’ long term academic success. Students in classes with higher grading standards … Continue reading Tough Love Grading Practices Produce Results

Milwaukie Declares Climate Emergency. Where Does Oregon City Stand?

Tazwell Brandabur The Charter Features 3/15/20 “NOW BE IT THEREFORE RESOLVED, by the City Council of the City of Milwaukie, Oregon, that a climate and ecological emergency, which threatens our city, region, state, nation, civilization, humanity and the natural world, is hereby declared.” This statement is part of a resolution passed by the Milwaukie City Council in January, 2020. The resolution, Council Resolution No. 7-2020, … Continue reading Milwaukie Declares Climate Emergency. Where Does Oregon City Stand?

The Other Side of Dyslexia

Siena Geren  The Charter Features  3/11/20       In a typical classroom of 30 students there are on average three dyslexics reports, reports APM. Although there is no class at ACA as large as this, the proportions of students affected by dyslexia in a typical ACA classroom would be one to two.        According to Learning Disabilities, as many as 43.5 million … Continue reading The Other Side of Dyslexia

Border Wall Creates Unintended Consequences for Wildlife

Madalena Larkins The Charter Features 2/20/20               Whether or not a wall should be built at our southern border is an intensely debated topic, however people often overlook the effects doing so would have on wildlife in the area.                Around half of the official 1,954 mile long U.S.-Mexico border is made up … Continue reading Border Wall Creates Unintended Consequences for Wildlife

Do Relationships in High School Have Value?

Haladar Wright  The Charter Features 1/28/20 In popular culture, high school is painted as a landscape full of turmoil. Saturated with battling cliques, rampant emotions, and constant drama, Hollywood high school has many stressors. While typical “teenage” movies can be wholly inaccurate, a mainstay in fictional and real high schools is romance and young love. Romantic relationships are a common part of high school life. … Continue reading Do Relationships in High School Have Value?

Live Action Disney Remakes

Chloe Lute The Charter Features 1/13/20 Over the past few years Disney has released a number of live-action remakes of the classics. Dumbo, Alladin, and The Lion King are just a few of the many that have been made, or are set to be released in 2020. A live-action Mulan will be released this coming March. This school year Drama Club Jr. is performing Disney’s … Continue reading Live Action Disney Remakes

Excuses Used at School

Cheyenna Hall  Featured News  12/20/2019 Teachers and students alike have heard many excuses at school. Even if they aren’t the ones making the excuses they still remember them.  “There was homework??” and “What’s today?” are both excuses used by Kailyn McKay who is a ninth grader at ACA. These excuses make it sound like she was oblivious to the homework that was due and makes … Continue reading Excuses Used at School

Is ACA Safe?

Tazwell Brandabur The Charter Features 12/21/19 Charter schools have long been the center of an intense debate at the local and national level– a debate that’s intensified with the coming presidential election. At this point, the three frontrunning Democratic candidates, former Vice President Joe Biden, Senator Bernie Sanders, and Senator Elizabeth Warren, have openly called for a ban on charter schools. Sort of. Daunting as … Continue reading Is ACA Safe?

Inside The Charter Newsroom

Madalena Larkins The Charter Features 12/20/19 The class of nine and their teacher, Michael Lancaster, gather in the dimly lit media arts room for the last time before winter break. Kailyn and Cheyenna toss a half full plastic bottle back and forth across the room, Jack and Tazwell seem to be absorbed in something on their Chrome books, and Mr. Lancaster pauses in his explanation … Continue reading Inside The Charter Newsroom

Beginning Band Class Created

Haladar Wright The Charter News Feature 11/18/19 You may hear the musical sounds of wind instruments emanating from room 114 on Mondays and Wednesdays. ACA has created a new class, the Beginning Band. It’s purpose is to teach students wind instruments and bring Band music to ACA. Valerie Johnson, the director of the class, created it to teach more instruments. “There was no music class … Continue reading Beginning Band Class Created

Jellyfish and Their Superpowers

By Matthias Armstrong The Charter News 5/17/19 From their bloodless brainless bodies to their extreme ability to regenerate and survive in extreme environments, jellyfish or more properly, sea jellies, are quite an extraordinary group of organisms. What’s so interesting about sea jellies? Well for starters they have been around for nearly six hundred million years appearing in the fossil records during the Cambrian Period. This … Continue reading Jellyfish and Their Superpowers

Volunteer Hours

By Natalie Ramsey The Charter- 4/15/18 Volunteering is an important piece of ACA. It keeps the school safe and clean while giving back to the community. Each school year, families are encouraged to complete thirty volunteer hours which equals about fifteen minutes of volunteering a school day. According to the Alliance Charter Academy handbook if families are unable to complete the volunteer hours, they could … Continue reading Volunteer Hours

Goodbye ACA, Hello Singapore!

By Rylie Young The Charter News – 05/01/19 Expanding your horizons doesn’t mean moving to Singapore for everyone, but for ACA’s art teacher, Todd Ingham, it does. After this school year ends, Ingham will not be returning to ACA because he, his wife and two sons are moving 8,283 miles away to Singapore. Ingham’s wife, who has been wanting to do an international job for … Continue reading Goodbye ACA, Hello Singapore!

ACA Student Going to Costa Rica in Exchange Program

By Sydney Starr The Charter Features – 5/2/19 Siena Geren, a 16 year-old ACA Sophomore, will be going to Costa Rica as an exchange student in 2019-2020 for six months. Geren will be the first student from ACA to be a part of an exchange program, according to Diana Brainerd, lead ES and Associate Director. Geren says that there are still many details that need … Continue reading ACA Student Going to Costa Rica in Exchange Program

Jilene Modlin and Her Seamstress Endeavors

By Matthias Armstrong The Charter News – 4/10/19 Her days of sewing zippers in Campfire Girls are over, but she still finds happiness and passion in her hobby of being a seamstress for a ballet studio. Jilene Modlin is an ES here and a parent of two ACA students. She has been with ACA since before the beginning, and for many years taught sign language. … Continue reading Jilene Modlin and Her Seamstress Endeavors

Hercules Livens Up the Poetree

By Matthias Armstrong The Charter News – 4/5/19 The Poetree has been given new “life” and decoration through Hercules, a taxidermied squirrel whose purpose is to get more students of all ages interested in the writing poems. The squirrel was placed on the poetree, which is just outside room 210 in the main hallway, around a month ago, and his purpose is to intrigue students … Continue reading Hercules Livens Up the Poetree

ES meetings

Rachel Shulikov The Charter News – 3/18/2019 ACA is one of the only schools that has ES meetings. And that’s another reason what makes it so different from other schools. ES meetings are for students to have a teacher to “helps to make sure that all areas of education are covered, [and] all the different subjects and standards for those subjects.” said Diana Brainerd, Lead … Continue reading ES meetings

Meet the Autism Service Dogs Training at ACA

By Sydney Starr The Charter Features – 3/11/19 You’ve likely seen two adorable white/golden dogs strutting around campus sporting green ASDA (Autism Service Dogs of America) vests — who are they? Stella Stella is a two-year-old labrador, poodle, and golden retriever mix. Trainer Jill Mohr remarks, “Stella is a more bold, curious, loving Labradoodle.” And Grana Khan, a student trainer, says a quirk of Stella’s … Continue reading Meet the Autism Service Dogs Training at ACA

An Evening of the Spoken Word

By Natalie Ramsey                     The Charter Features – 2/1/19                           Recently, members of the Language Arts Committee have been working on organizing An Evening of the Spoken Word. This event is not only for students and their families to enjoy the spoken word, but is also to promote the literary works of students On February 20, 2019, from 6:00-7:30pm, the ACA library will be opening its … Continue reading An Evening of the Spoken Word

The National Honors Society at ACA

By Matthias Armstrong The Charter News Feature – 1/23/19 What is the National Honors Society (NHS)? Many people do not know the answer to this question, and the truth, according to members, is that their society is motivating students to achieve amazing things within their community. It is more than just a club or meeting point for kids; the NHS is the leading organization, according … Continue reading The National Honors Society at ACA

Diana Brainerd Adopts a New Role at ACA

By Miriam Lee The Charter News/Feature – 12/13/18 A rose by any other name is still a rose. Diana Brainerd with another title is still Diana Brainerd. From the start of ACA, to now, Diana Brainerd has always had an important role in the ACA community—whether that be as a parent, friend, OBOB coach, ES, teacher, or associate director. “Diana has the experience, from her … Continue reading Diana Brainerd Adopts a New Role at ACA

ACA Student Saves Endangered Wildlife

By Rylie Young The Charter Features – 12/12/18 Milarae Rymsza, a sixth grade ACA student, is just twelve and has already raised hundreds of dollars for wildlife. Milarae loves to paint, and she loves animals. She is a soft spoken person, but her actions speak louder than words. For the past six years she has combined these passions by painting pictures and selling them, giving … Continue reading ACA Student Saves Endangered Wildlife

How to Donate to ACA’s Library

By Sydney Starr The Charter News Feature – 01/24/19 Like many of us, you may have boxes of cast off books sitting in your garage collecting dust (and mold), from your KonMari tidying frenzy. You’ve been meaning to donate them for months, but you have no idea how to go about it. Thankfully Jennifer Hitchcock, ACA’s librarian, sat down and explained how you should donate … Continue reading How to Donate to ACA’s Library

Suzanne Edwards Brings Many Musical Skills to ACA

Evalina Shulikov The Charter Feature- 12/12/18 This year, Suzanne Edwards has joined the team of ACA. She loves to sing and plays many different instruments. She teaches choir, piano, and marimba. She loves music and is said to have an immense amount of musical talent. Suzanne Edwards has many musical talents such as singing and playing many instruments. Her main instruments are voice and piano, … Continue reading Suzanne Edwards Brings Many Musical Skills to ACA

How Can ACA Benefit From Reading The Charter?

Journalism, many are divided upon what its use is and why we need it. Recently, there has been an uproar in calling out “fake news” in many journalist platforms. Even though the art of reporting and writing may be sketchy now a day’s, there are still many reasons on why we need journalism. About three years ago,an ACA teacher, Michael Lancaster decided to add a … Continue reading How Can ACA Benefit From Reading The Charter?

ACA Battles Animal Hunger Alongside F.I.D.O.

By Matthias Armstrong The Charter News – 12/10/18 The volunteer-run organization FIDO is working vigorously to combat the problem of animal hunger and ACA is helping out. The problem gained attention when volunteers involved in the Meals On Wheels program noticed people feeding their food to their pets instead of themselves. This sparked the creation of the Animeals program and later the Friends Involved in … Continue reading ACA Battles Animal Hunger Alongside F.I.D.O.

The Shoes That Live

By Sydney Starr The Charter Features – 12/14/18 Everyone at ACA has walked by them at least once, probably many times a day without noticing. The shoes have been in the display case for 10 years—ever since Colin Couch designed them through the Doernbecher Freestyle program. How The Shoes Were Designed Couch was a student at ACA, and he graduated in 2009. Along with the … Continue reading The Shoes That Live

Senior Prank 2018

By Faith Burton Although the origin of senior pranks are unknown, we do know that they are prevalent as ever in schools across the globe. In America we call it “Senior Prank”, and Europe and Australia its called “muck-up-day”. In previous years, the pranks have been unruly, and without censorship, these days most schools require that a staff member must be present and all prank … Continue reading Senior Prank 2018

Special Olympics

       By. Taylor Younger          In the 1950’s and early 1960’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver saw how unjustly and unfairly people with intellectual disabilities were being treated. A couple years later in 1962 Eunice started a summer camp in her very own backyard in washington D.C for those who were being treated unfairly. Eunice’s idea and her movement on this situation was revolutionary at the time. … Continue reading Special Olympics

Oregon City Main Street Named One of Three 2018 Great American Main Streets

By Luke Burton, The Charter Feature News Oregon City’s Main Street named 2018 Great American Main Street, at a national conference in Kansas City, Missouri, on March 26.   Oregon City (OC) was nominated as a semifinalist, along with nine other cities, the week before the national conference. At the conference, OC was named one of three 2018 Great American Main Streets. The other winners … Continue reading Oregon City Main Street Named One of Three 2018 Great American Main Streets

Gun Control Looking Forward

The Charter Features By OLIVIA SILBERNAGEL Now that the media buzz surrounding the Florida shooting has faded almost to silence, students are still fighting for change. An anonymous student who participated in the March walkout says they would like to see more protest,  “Any opportunity to protest against violence or give respect [to] those who need it is one I will take…yes. I would like … Continue reading Gun Control Looking Forward


The Charter Features By SAMANTHA RANDS   What is bullying? “Bullying abuse and mistreatment of someone vulnerable by someone stronger, more powerful, etc. : the actions and behavior of a bully Her own childhood had been made miserable by bullying … —Michael Holroyd … underestimates the plain meanness behind the pleasure people take in bullying. —George F. Will” https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bullying Bullying is defined by someone of larger … Continue reading Bullying

Story about our Best

By Taylor Younger, The Charter Features Joy Best is one of our math teachers here at Alliance Charter Academy, she teaches geometry classes as well as several others. Mrs. Best also teaches math concepts at warner pacific college.           Mrs. Best was not sure what she wanted to do as a career. All throughout her elementary and high school years she believed she would be a … Continue reading Story about our Best

Behind the scenes of Mrs. Heppner

Mrs. Heppner is beloved by teachers and students alike. She travels around the world to judge gymnastic events, and has many admirers from the many years of teaching she has accomplished at Alliance Charter Academy (ACA). Mrs. Heppner has been a role model for every student at ACA and has impacted every one of her students, “She remembers and cares about her students. She’s a … Continue reading Behind the scenes of Mrs. Heppner

Clubs and Electives

BY CONSTANTINE VAN SICKLE 4/14/2018 Electives and Clubs are heading your way for the 2018-2019 Alliance Charter Academy school year. Fun and interesting classes make school a little more bearable. Not only will there be fun classes like cooking and drama, but these electives and clubs will prove to be an influential part in developing the new class schedule for ACA.     Clubs and electives … Continue reading Clubs and Electives

Science and Technology offerings at ACA in 2018-2019  

By Elizabeth Tarsia    Here at Alliance Charter Academy we offer many classes and among those many classes are our unique Science and Technology offerings. Though not all the classes are guaranteed to be offered next year all the teachers have a wide range of spectacular possible offerings.  In our Science department we have Margo Edinger, Ann Heppner, Denise Monte, Drew Holland, and Michael Lancaster. In … Continue reading Science and Technology offerings at ACA in 2018-2019  

ACA Admin team makes next year’s schedule

By COLIN HUGHES The process of making a master schedule and a course catalog for a school is a huge project. Here are some of the people who worked behind the scenes at ACA and all about how hard they work and how much they care about meeting the needs of their students. Director Nic Chapin says he’s excited about when their teachers teach courses … Continue reading ACA Admin team makes next year’s schedule

New Languages Coming to ACA?

By LUKE BURTON Throughout the years ACA has offered a variety of languages and english language arts (ELA) classes. There have been different language classes ranging from French, Spanish, and American Sign Language, although most have disappeared due to lack of staffing. “We are open to new languages it just depends on teachers and proposals.” said Nic Chapin, Principal of ACA. “For other languages students … Continue reading New Languages Coming to ACA?

Social Studies in the Future

The new course catalog is coming soon, allowing kids to finally learn about the new classes next year. This story will review the Social Sciences section of the catalog. If you noticed in past catalogs, there aren’t very many Social Sciences classes. This is has to do with our part-homeschool style of the school. According to our schools director, Nic Chapin, many families tend to … Continue reading Social Studies in the Future


Special Edition- By Kenzie It’s almost time to choose students classes for next year! The math department offers various different choices to help support every student’s learning style. There are 12 different math classes and 4 separate math lab classes if students  need extra help. All math classes start at 5th grade and go up to 12th. Multiple teachers have proposed new classes to teach … Continue reading ACA MATH


 Special Edition – By Rylie Young Art Explorers, Drawing and Printmaking, Drama Club, and Illustration Storytelling; these are just some of the arts and drama classes offered to students at ACA. It is the time of year for teachers to turn in their class proposals. So what classes are teachers proposing for the art/drama department?     Art Explorers with Todd Ingham and Exploring through Printmaking … Continue reading ACA ART & DRAMA

Physical Education/ Health of 2018-2019 classes

By VICTOR HEIMBIGNER Physical Education is wanted by most students and is required to graduate.  P.E. is a great way to get your body in shape or if you just want to be healthier exercising helps too.  Our teachers at ACA do there best to help out each student in fulfilling their goal. The teachers are getting many ideas for next years classes and are … Continue reading Physical Education/ Health of 2018-2019 classes

PAT Fundraisers

By SAMANTHA RANDS The PAT puts on many fundraisers to support ACA, for example the rummage sale, plant sale, and the Snack Shack. The next upcoming fundraiser is the biannual rummage sale. On Friday, April 27 and Saturday April 28, from 8:00am-4:00pm, the rummage sale will be held in the cafeteria. Families of ACA have donated their old items (furniture, clothes, etc.) to be sold. … Continue reading PAT Fundraisers

ACA and the GSA

By Olivia Silbernagel, The Charter Features The Gay Straight Alliance/Gender and Sexuality Awareness (GSA) club at ACA has had its share of controversy over the years, but that has not stopped the members from advocating for what they believe. These issues have included: parent concerns, who oversees the meetings, how they can spread their message, and even what the club is to be called. However, GSA … Continue reading ACA and the GSA

Alumni form Dreadlight

By Kenzie Waterman, The Charter Features Alliance Charter Academy has been around for eleven years now and many students have come and gone, but what they took with them, the life lessons, the experiences, and the friendships, those are just as important as the education they got.  I interviewed two ACA graduates, Kandra Tolvstad, class of 2017 and Toria Beck, class of 2015, to see … Continue reading Alumni form Dreadlight

Luke The Ballerino

By Faith Burton, The Charter Features Luke Burton, teenager, skateboarder, pre-professional guitarist and something that may surprise many, ballet dancer. At fourteen years old, Luke was invited by his friend from school, Natazia Head, to join her at Classical Ballet Academy (CBA), one of Oregon’s finest ballet schools. “I didn’t think he would be bad or good at ballet… I just thought it would be … Continue reading Luke The Ballerino

Building Our Airplane While We’re Flying: A History of Our Homeschool-school

By Nicole Engelke The Charter Feature Alliance Charter Academy (ACA) is a unique school for equally unique students and staff. It is a K-12 charter school created by parents that were dedicated to their children’s well-being and education. Lara Fabrycki, the founder and former director, principal, and “Queen Bee” of ACA, says, “We needed that choice…a choice for kids who didn’t want to go the … Continue reading Building Our Airplane While We’re Flying: A History of Our Homeschool-school

The Cantrell of Alliance Charter Academy

By Elizabeth Tarsia Kathleen Mixer-Cantrell, a greatly appreciated Educational Specialist (ES) and staff member. Cantrell has been working at Alliance Charter Academy since our program started in 2007. After so many years working at Alliance Charter Academy she says she enjoys it just as much as she did when she first started working here in 2007. Kathleen says she loves working with her ES students … Continue reading The Cantrell of Alliance Charter Academy

ACA Through The Ages

  By Samantha Rands and Olivia Silbernagel We interviewed six students at ACA questions about their futures, school, and worries. The goal was to look at the diversity between what different age groups worry about; where an elementary schooler would have fewer worries, and a senior would worry more about the future. We interviewed two elementary students: Gwyneth Lute and Love Best. Two middle school students: … Continue reading ACA Through The Ages

Genuine, Caring, and Humorous

By Rylie Young Genuine, caring, and humorous. That’s how Megan Coggins, our school counselor, would describe herself. Counseling has always been an interest of Megan’s, “It kind of like is my life, in some ways,” she admitted, Growing up, she was the person her friends and other people would go to when they wanted to talk. “I was like ‘Oh, I should be a counselor, … Continue reading Genuine, Caring, and Humorous

Sarah Head’s Many Faces

By Mackenzie Waterman Sarah Head isn’t just a ES and teacher. She is a wife, mom, and farmer, as well. She enjoys reading, farming, and hanging out with her kids. Her favorite book is “ Pilgrim at Tinker Creek” by Annie Dillard. She has two kids (both girls), as well as a lot of animals.  She owns around thirty through thirty five farm animals and two … Continue reading Sarah Head’s Many Faces

Is Daylights Savings Time Really Saving Our Time?

By Elizabeth Tarsia Most of you guys might remember the day in November when some of your clocks magically go backward an hour. Well here is a little background information and insight from different people on how this strange day affects their days following. Jaden Schnoor a sophomore at Oregon City High School stated, that he did not like Daylight savings time due to his … Continue reading Is Daylights Savings Time Really Saving Our Time?

“I Love You Guys”

  The I Love You Guys is a safety protocol that Alliance Charter Academy and many schools in America use. Most people wouldn’t think that a foundation named I Love You Guys (ILUG) would be a safety program for schools and some businesses. Ellen and John-Michael Keyes lost their daughter in a school emergency in 2009, from that accident the I Love You Guys Foundation … Continue reading “I Love You Guys”

ACA Teacher Kidnapped — Decades Ago

By Victor Heimbigner, The Charter News Features – Kristen Kohl is an Alliance Charter Academy Spanish teacher and an Educational Specialist. She loves to travel and has an exciting life.  She loves teaching and has been a teacher for a few years now and had an interesting story to tell her fellow coworkers and students before she was a teacher. Kohl was kidnapped at the … Continue reading ACA Teacher Kidnapped — Decades Ago

Preschool at ACA

By: Olivia Silbernagel, The Charter Features — Just like ACA, the ACA preschool is unique from other preschools. To start with, the preschool is held inside Park Place school, making ACA able to offer a Preschool through 12th grade education. The preschool and K/1 Enrichment program are taught by Kerry Wright who has been the lead instructor for both since 2011, just 2 years after the … Continue reading Preschool at ACA

Respect the Vest

By: Taylor Younger, The Charter News Features —        What is autism? Autism is a condition that creates challenges, this includes social skills, repetitive behavior, speech and nonverbal communication, as well as unique strengths and differences. Autism has an estimated prevalence as one in sixty eight children in the united states. Which includes one in forty two boys and one in a hundred eighty nine girls. … Continue reading Respect the Vest

Sultana Johansen

By: Elizabeth Tarsia, The Charter Features         Sultana Johansen isn’t just your average office secretary; she has her four year medical assistant degree, as well as being very well educated in the medical field. She went from high school into college.     Prior to working at Alliance Charter Academy she was working as a children’s director at a church. She had been working there for nine … Continue reading Sultana Johansen

Chapin’s Changes

By Kenzie Waterman, The Charter News Features You might have noticed the changes happening around school, and I’m not just talking about the leaves. Our Principal/Director is determined to make this a better place to learn. One of the changes he is most proud of is math program and now language arts programs help students who are struggling, by adding on more specialists to help … Continue reading Chapin’s Changes