Palisades Charter High School

Working For Academic Achievement!

AA Team








The PCHS Academic Achievement Team: Moving Pali Forward!

PCHS Executive Director/Principal Dr. Pam Magee and Director of Student Achievement Monica Iannessa presented at yesterday’s Charter School Development Leadership Conference.

After high turnover in the Director of Instruction position, Ms. Iannessa proposed, and Dr. Magee agreed to, the formation of an innovative new structure: the Academic Achievement Team. Now in its second year, the AA team is composed of Dr. Magee, Ms. Iannessa, academic coaches, coordinators, and classified support staff.

The AA team’s primary goals are to develop and execute a plan for the shift to Common Core Standards, retool the school’s Pyramid of Intervention, support integration of technology in the classrooms, improve instructional strategies, support teachers in the implementation of strategies to address program improvement (PI year 3), and improve the effectiveness/efficiency of Infinite Campus (the PCHS Student Information System).

The AA team uses student data and teacher surveys to measure success.

There has been notable progress made with team members with the following projects:

  1. Math Lab
  2. Schoology service and training
  3. Individual teacher coaching
  4. Professional Development in Infinite Campus, Mastery Manager, Instructional Strategies, Intervention Strategies, Grading Systems, Common Core, and PLC Assessments
  5. Refinement of the Pyramid of Intervention or Pathways of Intervention
  6. Mentorship Programs
  7. Salary Point Program for Teacher Professional Development
  8. New Teacher Outreach
  9. Student Data Delivery
  10. PLC Development and PLC Internal Assessment Development

These projects are essential to improving student achievement at PCHS!

Fantastic Turnout of Parent Volunteers!

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This morning, over 40 Pali parents attended an 8:15 am informational meeting for parent volunteers.

Human Resources Director Jim Schiffman and HR assistant Amy Nguyen administered the activities. Catherine Monkarsh, parent of a Pali 9th grader, was among the parents who had TB tests and Live Scans done: “I have always been involved with my child’s school; it’s part of being a parent. The involvement of parents helps determine the success of a school.”

IMG_4066 parent vol catherine monkarsh TB shot

The volunteers will assist and provide customer service in various offices at Pali, and serve as liaisons for the Pali parent community.

Thank you, parents!

Creating a SAFETY KIT

great shake out steve yusi directs teachers

Steve Yusi directs staff during the Great Shakeout


Hi everyone. Your child’s safety is paramount to all of us at Pali High. And we have well-trained people, combined with appropriate protocols, to ensure every student’s high school experience here is a safe one. If our community were to experience an earthquake or a brush fire, our staff has the training and resources to handle things effectively until students can be reunited with their families.

However, we can always do things better. And one of the things that might help your child in the event of an emergency is a personal ‘Student Locker Safety Kit’. What’s that? Well, think of it as a little something extra to make it easier for your child to ride out a difficult situation a bit more comfortably.

In our area we should be prepared for two possible events: earthquake and fire. And Pali High is prepared to deal with both of these events. But it would be beneficial if each student had certain items in their lockers to help ameliorate (SAT word) their predicament. First and foremost, make sure your child has any medications they might need over a 12 – 24 hour period, especially if it’s an asthma inhaler. Smoke from a fire or dust kicked up from an earthquake could exacerbate (another SAT word) any underlying respiratory condition. Another must is a liter of water, as well as a broad-brimmed sun hat. Students may have to sit out on the football field for hours before being reunited with family members and protection from the sun will be important. Also include sun-block and lip balm. A space blanket wouldn’t hurt, as it takes up very little room and can be quite useful in an emergency, either to create shade or give warmth. I’d also store some wet wipes, the kind you get at CVS or Ralph’s. Being able to freshen up can make a world of difference when things get stressful.

A few health bars would be nice. Kids need food, and it will take a while before emergency supplies are distributed to students on the field. A Cliff Bar or two would help while your child is adjusting to the new situation. A dust mask wouldn’t be out of line, either. In a brush fire the smoke might be heavy and a dust mask will make everything more manageable. A few band-aids, a flashlight and artificial tears would round out my ‘Student Locker Safety Kit’. Again, smoke and dust might be present in a critical situation, and eye drops can literally take the sting out of a miserable experience. Also, be sure your child has contact numbers of family members and close friends, as well as out-of-area phone numbers. Local calls may not go through in an emergency, but calls to an aunt in Sacramento or a brother in Toledo could.

Preparing well for emergencies is one way to reduce the anxiety associated with a challenging situation. A ‘Student Locker Safety Kit’ is a great way to help your child feel in control if things ever get out of control. Just knowing your child has the things they may need in an emergency will make them, and you, feel a lot better. And that’s what a ‘Student Locker Safety Kit’ is all about. If you have any questions or suggestions about what you or your child might need in an emergency, for your car, home, office, or your child’s school locker, please feel free to contact me at 310-230-7232. Or email me at Thank you. Steve Yusi

RUN for PALI – 2K/5K Run for Education on Oct. 25th


Come Celebrate Palisades Schools and Halloween!  

On Saturday, October 25th, there will be an easy 2K Run through the Palisades Village, from Pali High’s Stadium by the Sea to Pali Elementary and back, OR you can choose a challenging 5K race which will end with a run down Temescal Canyon to the Pacific Coast Highway and back up the hill!

100% of the proceeds benefit Palisades Charter Complex schools!

Pali High Teacher and Author Hosts National Coming Out Day on Friday, Oct. 10th

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On Friday October 10th, Palisades Charter High School will host the event “Give A Dime – the Noble Pursuit of Spreading Kindness.” In Celebration of National Coming Out Day, Local author and Pali teacher Mystic Thompson will launch her new novel, Fighting Kudzu, as well as her non-profit “Give A Dime”

The mission of the Give A Dime Foundation, is to spread the simple message of the importance of kindness, while raising awareness & funding for LGBT Youth.

The program will consist of theatrical readings from the novel performed by professional actors and Pali High drama students. A panel discussion and Q and A will follow the readings. “Out” panelists include Mystic Thompson; as well as actor, screenwriter and director, Guinevere Turner; and Managing Director of Musa Publishing, Jeanne De Vita.

The event will include a reception and book signing.

Admission is free and open to the public, but donations are welcome and will benefit Pali High’s literacy program and the Gay-Straight Alliance.  The program will be held in Gilbert Hall on Friday October 10 from 6:00 to 8:30 pm. Visitor parking is free on campus.

Media inquiries and RSVP’s should be addressed to

Copies of Fighting Kudzu can be purchased through Amazon, or


September 27, 2014 at PCHS –

For the first time at Pali, more than 65 Pali PIQE parents attended a technology training on Infinite Campus (IC) and Schoology (PIQE: Parent Institute for Quality Education).

As part of the Saturday training, PIQE parents obtained their usernames and passwords which allowed them to open their student’s file. They learned about grades, attendance, report cards, and homework assignments, among other things.
Special thanks go to Infinite Campus and Schoology trainers; Mr. Burr, Ms. Cervantes, Ms. Iannessa, Ms. Martin, Ms. Najar and Ms. Saiza.

PCHS at the 2014 STEM Symposium!

Donna Mandosa presentation STEM conference 9.22 MAX

PCHS Technology Supervisor Donna Mandosa heads a workshop at the 2nd Annual STEM Symposium: Building the STEAM Shop: Makerspaces in Public Schools.

Palisades Charter High School has built one of the few public school Makerspaces in Southern California, and is tackling the challenges of fundraising, tool safety, curriculum innovation, and UC requirements, while working directly with local institutions of higher learning to bridge the gap between curiosity and career.

PM STEM Conf - SD - 9.22

Executive Director Dr. Pamela Magee with State Superintendent of Public Education Tom Torlakson. Dr. Magee and Director Mandosa also participated in a roundtable discussion on implementing 1:1 iPad programs.

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