Welcome to Senior English

Mrs. Garcia Starks


Dear Parents/Guardians and Students,


Welcome to Senior English! My name is Dalia Garcia Starks and I am looking forward to a fun and productive year with your student. This is my seventh year teaching English at Red Mountain, but my fourteenth year teaching English in the Mesa district. This newsletter will provide you with an overview of the various aspects of your student’s experience in our classroom this year. Please let me know if you have any questions.



Dalia Garcia Starks     

Contact Information

Our classroom is located in the main building, downstairs, room 114. My classroom number is #480-472-8171. Please leave me a voicemail, and I’ll return your call. My email address is dmgarciastarks@mpsaz.org  


All students will be required to keep, fill out, maintain, and utilize their planners effectively at school. Grades will be updated every Friday, please check your parent/student portal for student grades. 

Extra Credit

There will be rare opportunities for students to earn bonus points on some assignments. Extra credit will not be given to save a poor grade.

Suggested Materials

The following materials will help your Senior experience to be successful:

·       Spiral notebook                

·       Lenovo laptop & charger

·       Pencil/Black/Blue Pen

12th Grade Grading Policy/Make-up Work

            Grading - Grades in an English class primarily reflect a student’s proficiency on adopted state standards.


  • A= 90 -100%                (mastery or highly proficient)
  • B= 80 - 89%                 (proficient)
  • C= 70 - 79%                 (proficient or partially proficient)
  • D= 60 - 69%                (minimally proficient)
  • F= 59% and below       (not proficient or not enough evidence to determine proficiency)


Semester grades will be fully cumulative. Each assignment will fall into one of the following standards-based categories and will be weighted according to the following scale:

  • Speaking and Listening =        15%
  • Language =                              15%
  • Reading =                                 20%
  • Writing PROCESS =                 20%
  • Summative Assessments (including final exams and final essays) = 30%


Students in an English class will be expected to turn in work on time on assigned day. Students will be rewarded for completing assignments on time.


Late work, make-up work, missing work, and revised work will be accepted under the following conditions:

  • Work must be accompanied by a department or PLC generated cover sheet. There are two separate cover sheets--one for late work, make-up work, missing work and a separate one for revised work.
  • English teachers have final say in whether an assignment will be accepted late.
  • Students are solely responsible for getting make up work. All assignments are recorded on the large wall calendar, and corresponding papers are filed near the calendar.
  • As per district policy regarding make up work for excused absences, students are granted two days for every one day that they miss (the day they return, plus one) to complete all work that was missed, including tests and quizzes.



I will be available for tutoring every day before school, Lion Time and after school by appointment!


Curricular Focus

Our Senior English class is a year-long course that integrates writing for a variety of purposes and audiences with literature study. Writing includes a focus on “real world” skills, including expository, communication, research and analysis modes. Universal themes in literature are explored. Readings from a broad variety of authors is surveyed.



·  Senior Project

·  AVID strategies

·  Argumentative Research

·  Novels, 1984, Into Thin Air

·  Shakespeare’s Hamlet

·  The Glass Menagerie/Beowulf

·  Argumentative Writing

·  Red Mountain Paragraphs

·  Satire Pieces

·  Themes 

Student Expectations

•Students will come to class prepared and on time. This includes having all required materials.

•Plagiarism and cheating will not be tolerated. Anyone caught copying an assignment or cheating on a test will receive a zero.

  • Personal Electronic Devices – Use of cellphones in the English classroom is strictly prohibited unless the Teacher has given specific permission for an academic use. Cell phones must be turned off (or set to silent mode) and put away during the entirety of class. Some English classrooms may require students to place their devices into a cell phone holder during the class period. Violations will result in cell phones being confiscated and held until the end of the school day. It is the students’ responsibility to arrange pick-up of their devices after school. The instructor is not responsible for damage or loss of these devices.


  • Lion Time and Independent novels - Lion Time has been designated for academic growth and will be used in the English classroom for re-teaching, retesting, tutoring, practicing, and independent reading time. Students will not be allowed to watch movies or TV shows (Netflix), youtube videos, or participate in unsanctioned non-academic activities during Lion Time.

 Remember the Red Mountain Way:


Advocate for oneself and stand up for others

Own the results of your actions

Welcome challenges as opportunities 


Earn it through action

Positively impact the space around you

Honor yourself and others with dignity 


Get involved

Be the change

Be excellent