Frequently Asked Questions


 
 

 


When did Tapestry open?
We opened in August 2014.

What is Tapestry’s mission?
The mission of Tapestry Public Charter School is to offer an inclusive, individualized learning environment that is academically engaging, both for neurotypical students and those on the autism spectrum, and to create a positive school culture that empowers all students to take possession of their innate talents and become creative builders of their own future.

Where is Tapestry located?
Tapestry rents from Northeast Baptist Church, located at 4046 Chamblee Tucker Rd, Atlanta, GA 30340.  The church has adequate space in their Education Building to accommodate the needs of our school. However, we are actively seeking a more permanent facility, including surplus buildings within the DeKalb County school system. We also welcome any leads from the community.  

Does Tapestry charge tuition?
No. Tapestry is a public school and does not charge tuition.

What is the difference between a public charter school and a traditional public school?
Quality charters provide parents and students with unique, creative, and innovative approaches to education. Those who submit petitions to start a charter school must demonstrate that their proposal does not replicate a program already available in the school system. They must also demonstrate they have the expertise and financial backing to successfully open and run the charter school.  Parent participation is also an important element in charters. Many of the DeKalb County School District charters require parents to sign participation contracts to serve a certain amount of volunteer hours per school year.

Does Tapestry require school uniforms?
No, Tapestry does not require school uniforms.  We understand that a student’s comfort impacts his/her ability to learn.  Students will be asked to wear attire that does not interfere with the learning environment for other students.

What are the class sizes at Tapestry?
Because research supports small class sizes as the best learning environment, a priority is to keep a low student - teacher ratio. Class sizes will be fluid depending upon the subject being taught and the needs of the students in the class. All core classes will contain 16 students and will be co-taught by both a general education and a special education teacher (an 8:1 student teacher ratio) to optimize differentiation and flexibility.

What grades will Tapestry serve?
Tapestry currently serves grade 6, 7, 8 and will add a grade each year through the end of the five-year charter (adding Grade 9 in 2015, 10 in 2016, 11 in 2017, and 12 in 2018).

How will discipline be handled?
Discipline will be handled in accordance with our Student Code of Conduct with recognition that behavior is a form of communication often related to a regulatory issue or developmental deficit.  Staff, teachers, parents, and students will work collaboratively to ensure effective communication, problem solving, and positive outcomes to any behaviors that disrupt the learning environment.

Will parents be required to volunteer?
Parents will be asked to contribute a certain number of volunteer hours. The number of volunteer hours expected as well as different opportunities for volunteering with be shared with parents prior to a student's enrollment. Parents sign volunteer agreements when they enroll their children. In no case will a student be penalized for his or her parents' inability to fulfill volunteer hours.

Will Tapestry comply with my child’s current IEP?
Any student who is selected by lottery to attend Tapestry will be allowed to enroll, and if that student has an Individualized Education Plan, it will be followed.  IEPs will be developed collaboratively with members of the child’s IEP team. Tapestry staff will work closely with DeKalb County School System (DCSS) and families to ensure that every student is served in a DCSS school or setting that provides the Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) for that child. If it is determined that the Tapestry model is not the LRE for a student, he/she will be afforded access to the school and/or setting within DCSS that provides the LRE for him/her.

What standardized tests will be required?
Tapestry will be a public charter school and must comply with all state-mandated testing. However, we recognize that all assessment instruments have inherent limitations and that standardized measures alone cannot provide a full picture of a student’s ability, knowledge, or progress. Therefore, student learning will be assessed using a range of instruments, such as portfolio pieces, summative assessments, and student-based projects.

What if my child excels in one area but struggles in another area?
Each student enrolled will have a personal education plan designed to build on strengths while supporting deficits.  Through the use of these plans, an RTI framework, enrichment, multi-age classrooms, a positive school culture, and a supportive learning environment, students will have the greatest ability to meet their full potential.

How will you teach to the individual child?
Upon enrollment, families will be asked to complete comprehensive enrollment forms, and an assessment will be done in order to develop a comprehensive learning profile and personal education plan for every student.  Teachers will be trained in the principles of Universal Design for Learning in order to differentiate instruction and alter educational strategies to support the needs, gifts, and learning styles of the individual child.  Tapestry may utilize multi-age classrooms and teacher looping to provide for the most flexible learning environment.

Why would a parent choose to send a typically developing child to Tapestry?
There are many great reasons! Tapestry offers a positive school culture – a safe and nurturing environment – which is an ideal educational setting for all students. There is truly a feeling of community at the school, where everyone knows and is accountable for each other.  In addition to the individualized attention students receive, typically developing students develop tolerance, self-esteem, and compassion for others with special needs.  The development of unique talents and skills and positive character building, which are central in Tapestry programming, are especially important during the challenging adolescent years. Furthermore, Tapestry’s commitment to the arts and daily physical exercise, programs that are often cut in traditional educational environments, make us unique. Supported by a partnership with the Alliance Theater, Tapestry offers performance arts for all students, which may include theater camps, an afterschool drama program, and community performance opportunities.  In addition, all students are given Chromebooks and Kindles, affording them opportunity to develop their technology literacy.

How many students does Tapestry serve?
In order to create a strong community and learning environment supportive of every student, limited school and class size is critical. Each grade has two classes of 16 students per grade, i.e., 32 students per grade, and we will serve 224 students at capacity. Ultimately, Tapestry hopes to create an inclusion school model that can be replicated in DeKalb as well as in other school systems.

Who may attend Tapestry?
Tapestry is a public charter school authorized by the DeKalb County School District.  Any student residing in the DeKalb County School District in grades 6th – 8th (and rising 9th graders for the 2015 – 2016 academic year) is eligible to attend, subject to lottery.  Please note that parts of Atlanta and Decatur are also in DeKalb County, but they are zoned for Atlanta Public Schools and City of Decatur Schools respectively. In order for your child to attend Tapestry, you must provide proof that you live in the DeKalb County School District. The only exception is for children of board members or full-time employees.

How do I apply for admission for my child?
Enrollment for the 2014 – 2015 school year is ongoing based on seat availability; parents/guardians may apply online anytime.  We maintain a large waitlist (over 50 students) for the 6th grade, but there are significantly less students waiting for 7th and 8th grade seats.  Parents may apply online here.

Apply for the 2015 – 2016 waitlist here.

How many new students will Tapestry admit in the 2015 – 2016 school year?
32 seats will be available for the 6th grade; however, some of these seats may be reserved for siblings of currently enrolled students and children of board members or full-time staff. The number of seats available for 7th, 8th, and 9th will depend on how many students will be returning. Families of currently enrolled students will be guaranteed seats for their children, but they must submit Letters of Intent to re-enroll by February 13, 2015.

If my child is currently attending Tapestry, must I put him/her in the lottery again for next year?
No, your child will be guaranteed a seat next year. However, you must sign a Letter of Intent to re-enroll form by February 13, 2015.

When will the lottery for admission be held?
The lottery will be held on Friday, March 13 at 12:00 noon at the Tucker-Reid Cofer Library, 5234 Lavista Road, Tucker, GA 30084. Families will be contacted via email by Monday, March 9 with their child's lottery number and further information.

Does Tapestry have any enrollment priorities?
Charter law prohibits the school from prescribing a ratio of students, such as having separate lotteries for special needs students and typically developing students.  Therefore, all students are selected in the same open lottery.
Our charter does allow for priority enrollment to be given to children of full-time employees or board members and to siblings of currently enrolled students.  The sibling policy is in place in order to support families and afford them the convenience of sending their children to the same school.  If a student is selected to attend Tapestry either in the lottery or from the waitlist, his/her sibling(s) will also be offered a seat.  In no case will a seat be given to a sibling who is lower on the waitlist instead of the student who is originally selected. 

If I want my child to attend Tapestry, do I also need to enroll him/her through the DeKalb County School Choice Open Enrollment?
No.  In order to apply to Tapestry, parents will only need to fill out our online application.

May I apply to Tapestry and also enter my child in another lottery through the DeKalb County School Choice Open Enrollment?
Yes.  You may do both.

Who can I contact to learn more?
Dr. Amanda Chilvers, Principal: achilvers@tapestrycharter.org
Marjorie Vaughn, Admin Asst/Registrar: mvaughn@tapestrycharter.org
Denise Martin, Parent Teacher Organization President: pto@taptestrycharter.org
Tonna Harris-Bosselmann, Co-Founder: tonna@tapestrycharter.org
Devon Christopher, Co-Founder: devon@tapestrycharter.org