The Compass

From the Head of School

This morning we had our first fire drill of the year and I was delighted by how efficient and organized our classes are in the Early Years Program. GPS has a complete protocol for dealing with emergencies and a schedule of practices throughout the school year. These are included in our GPS Parent Handbook, which has now been posted on Renweb. To find the Parent Handbook, go to ‘Family Portal’ and then click on ‘Resource Documents’

We had a good turn out for our Back-to-School Nights on Wednesday and Thursday. Thanks to all of our parents for joining the various Google Meets to find out about our program for the year and thanks to our teachers for their informative presentations. In addition to our curricular goals, GPS is very focused on addressing our students’ social and emotional growth. As part of our IB program, we will continue to promote the IB Learner Profiles at all grade levels. For those of you new to the IB program, I encourage you to watch the following short video put out by the International Baccalaureate, which talks about the Learner Profile. You can find it here.

More Lower School Workbooks

Many thanks to all of the Lower School parents for picking up the new math workbooks this week. Some of the publishers that we use have had production and delivery slowdowns caused by COVID 19. We had one last delivery of materials that arrived this week, which includes Lower School Spanish and Language Arts workbooks. These will be available for pick up from the GPS office starting Monday from 8:00 am - 3:45 pm. Please come and get them as soon as possible so our teachers can start using them for assignments. 

New Sports Court Ready and Waiting With the paving and stripping completed, our new sport court is ready for use. We are excited that this will be ready for the basketball season, which will start later this fall. As practice sessions for team sports are allowed by the County, look for more information and sign ups for our basketball teams in the weeks ahead. 

Staff Spotlight

Meet Jessica McClure

This week we are pleased to introduce a new member to our talented and dedicated faculty. Mrs. Jessica McClure joined us this summer to teach the combined Grades 2/3 class. We were very fortunate to find a teacher of her caliber with 20 years of experience in private schools. What most impressed our search committee when we interviewed Jessica was her obvious passion for teaching. When asked about this she stated, I have the great pleasure of doing what I love every day. I knew I wanted to become a teacher at a very young age. It is my job to facilitate minds, listen to questions, encourage risk, support the struggles, and cultivate dreams. Every day that I teach, I learn as well. I am thrilled to be a part of the GPS family.” This week was also Mrs. McClure's birthday and it is obvious that she has already won over the hearts of her students and their parents.  

From the Head of School

We have come to the end of our second full week of school and our students have gotten back into the rhythm and routines of school life, be it on line for Lower and Middle School or on campus for the Early Years Program. To end this second full week of classes, we had our first exciting Friday morning assembly, which we held in the Junior Kindergarten classroom and on line. As part of the assembly we were delighted to meet our Junior Kindergarten students, who shared a project that they had completed as part of their first IB unit. It was great to see so many aspects of our educational goals come into play. Students were risk takers by speaking in front of an audience, they were caring to their classmates and demonstrated good listening skills. During the assembly Ms. Shibel and Ms. Green told us about the Student Council for this year and invited students in grades 5-8 to apply for positions on this body. Elections will take place in a few weeks and we will meet the candidates at our next assembly.


All parents are urged to attend Back-To-School-Night, which this year will be done using Google Meet. We have divided this event into two evenings, one for Lower School and one for Middle School. The details are the following:

Middle School Back to School Night will take place on Wednesday, September 16 starting at 7:00 pm. Parents are asked to use their child’s school email to access the Google Meet for their grade level.

Lower School Back to School Night will take place on Thursday, September 17 starting at 7:00 pm. Parents are asked to use their child’s school email to access the Google Meet. There will be two presentations, the first by the special subject teachers starting at 7:00 pm. This will be for all parents. The second will be by the homeroom teachers.

Preschool parents can join the Lower School event at 7:00 pm to listen to the Specialist teachers talk about their programs. Instructions for setting up your student's school email will be sent to you next week.

Staff Spotlight

Meet Luisito

Each week we have been introducing a member of our talented and dedicated staff or faculty. This week we are pleased to introduce Luisito Buhey, who is responsible for school maintenance. Luisito has been responsible for school maintenance at CHA for the past 6 years and we are very pleased that he moved with us to our new campus on Zelzah Ave. Being responsible for school maintenance is a very important and diverse job. Luisito is extremely talented in many areas and able to solve electrical, plumbing and mechanical problems as well doing projects that involve building, painting and wiring. He is very good at problem solving and coming up with clever and unique ways to get things done and keep everything functioning at school. In recognition of his outstanding work this summer in getting the campus ready and never missing a single day, he was awarded a certificate of appreciate at our assembly this morning. 

Calendar Events

Next Week

  • Monday, 9/7 - Labor Day, No School

  • Friday, 9/11 - Friday Virtual Assembly at 8:30 am

From the Head of School

First Week of Lessons at GPS

Our academic program took off with a full week of scheduled on-line classes for our students in Grades K-8. Because of the months of practice with distance-learning that we had at the end of last year, getting back in gear was not that hard. While we have encountered a few technical glitches, these have been addressed and overall our first week of the school year was a great success. We thank all of our hard working faculty and staff and supportive parents for the launch of yet another outstanding school year. Although we currently cannot hold classes on campus we will keep you updated as to the information we have regarding the safe re-opening of schools. We are participating in weekly telebriefings with LA County health officals for information on K-12 schools. As of Monday, August 31 the county of Los Angeles will be monitored using a four-tiered, color-coded system that tracks the number of new cases each day and the percentage of positive cases of those tested. Although LA County is under the required positivity rate of 8%, we are at 5.1%, we have not met the requirement for new cases per 100,000. We are currently at 13 cases but need to be 7 or fewer. Once we have met those benchmarks, LA County will need to be on the red tier for 2 weeks to be able to open schools, we are currently at purple. For this reason, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has not made their waiver applications available to any schools in LA County. As soon as they do we will be submitting our application. In the meantime, GPS is getting ready for a safe return to school. Our faculty and staff are being trained in COVID-19 prevention, safety protocols, and containment strategies. We will continue to inform our families and update you on any health and safety protocols that will be used while student are on campus. As a reminder, our current plans can be found on the GPS website. School Assemblies Whole school assemblies take place on Friday mornings. For the time being, the assemblies will be held online starting at 8:45 am and our first scheduled assembly will be on Friday, September 11th. We will send out a link next week so that anyone interested can watch the assembly from a distance.

Back to School Night

All parents are urged to attend Back-To-School-Night, which this year will be done via Zoom. We have divided this event into two evenings; one for Lower School and one for Middle School. The dates and times are the following: Middle School Back to School Night - Wednesday, September 16 at 7:00 pm Lower School Back to School Night - Thursday, September 17 at 7:00 pm Preschool parents are welcome to join the Lower School event on September 17 at 7:00 pm to listen to the Specialist teachers talk about their program.

Labor Day

We will be closed on Monday for the holiday. Have a great and safe long weekend!!

Staff Spotlight

Preschool with Ms. Donna

Each week we have been introducing a member of our talented and dedicated teaching faculty. This week we are pleased to introduce Donna Furukawa, who teaches our Preschool class. We are fortunate to have such a qualified member of our team. Donna received her Early Childhood Credential in Florida before moving to California in 2002. She began teaching preschool 28 years ago and taught for five years at First Presbyterian Preschool. Donna loves watching children as they discover new things and strives to make school a fun, exciting place to be. When she is not teaching, Donna enjoys volunteering with the children at church, where her husband is a pastor. She also loves spending time with her three adult children and eight grandchildren (plus one on the way!). We are happy that Donna has joined the GPS team. 



Don't forget to send us a photo of your student to be added to our community board. Preschool can bring a photo in to their teacher. K-8 students can drop off their photo in the office or email it to gmitas@gpsschool.org.


GPS is committed to doing our part to reduce landfill waste and is collecting crayons/markers that would otherwise be discarded, for recycling. Drop off crayons/markers, used or unused to the main office any time during the school year. Last year we collected over 15 lbs!! Check out the Crazy Crayon website or contact Ms. Fonvergne for more information.

Granada Preparatory School
10400 Zelzah Avenue, Northridge, CA 91326
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