Mrs. Buss

Phone: 818-548-0740 Ext#2


Degrees and Certifications:

Mrs. Buss

January 15, 2021

Reminder: Monday is Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

We will not have any meetings that day. Here's a brief video about this Civil Rights icon: The Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Here is a video from the MLK celebration video in Glendale on Jan. 14: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Togetherhood Celebration 2021

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For my new students, here's a recap about how to get started with your lessons: 

1) To get into the English work, go to The username and password are in the Verdugo Academy Documents part of the Classwork page.
2) To get into math, go to Follow the math handout in Verdugo Academy Documents.
3) Complete the work on the lesson plan for each week. Upload your work to the week's folder. So, all of your work for Week 18 should be uploaded to the Week 18 folder.
4) For January's Curiosity Pursuit, you'll choose a topic. Then spend at least an hour exploring that topic. Fill in what you did on the calendar in Week 18. You'll turn the calendar in on Jan. 29th. There is no project to go with your Curiosity Pursuit this month.

Have fun! I'm cheering for your success. :)

-Mrs. Buss

January 14, 2021

Reminder: The Verdugo Academy campus will be CLOSED for 2 weeks. If you have anything to drop off or pick up, you must do so by 3:00 on January 15.

January 7, 2021

Happy 2021, Verdugo Academy families! I hope your break was wonderful.

I emailed all middle school families to let you know we'll be doing "Curiosity Pursuits" this semester. This is simlar to Genius Hour or Passion Pursuits, but scaled down. This will be assigned with English. When we meet next week, we can discuss this further if you have questions.

On another note, several students still haven't picked up their new math textbooks and AR books. If you haven't, please return your previous math textbooks and AR book to the Verdugo Academy lobby and pick up the new books.

December 17, 2020

Students and Families,

As we finish up 2020 and move into the new semester soon, I just wanted to let you know I appreciate you!
This is a strange time, and everyday is both mundane but also brings new surprises. It can be stressful! We are all learning through this, even me! Thank you for being patient with me as we deal with new, unexpected issues.
I hope you feel valuable and important, because you are. The kids in this program are remarkable, and the parents are too. Studying independently is not easy! I am impressed and delighted every single day when I meet with you and see the assignments you've worked so hard on.
If you have some work to catch up on, you'll have plenty of time over the next few weeks, but please remember to enjoy the winter break. It is vitally important to rest and decompress. Listen to music. Enjoy your family. Get lost in a book or a video game. Play board games or do some Mad Libs. Go outside to see Jupiter and Saturn 'touch.' Take some time to not worry about school. 
Take care, and I'll see you in 2021!
Mrs. Amy Buss


December 9, 2020

There is a drive-thru food bank on Friday, December 11 from 12-2. They will provide fresh produce and other groceries. Please click here for more information:

December 8, 2020

Seniors: The CSU has extended the deadline to apply for fall 2021. The new deadline is Dec. 15. CSUN is providing one last opportunity for students to get help filling out the application. If you want to participate in the session, register in advance: When: Dec 10, 2020 03:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada) After registering, students will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

December 6, 2020

Free ART class, December 12 at 2:00 via Zoom! In this fun and hands-on creative session, participants will make two holiday-inspired luminaries from glass, paper and recycled materials and learn how to decorate using decoupage and other techniques. Keep one for yourself and give the other as a gift -- nothing spreads cheer like a beautiful glowing luminary! Sign up here:

December 4, 2020

Hi Students and Parents,

I wanted to take a minute to say THANK YOU for all of your hard work. I know it isn't easy to work independently, especially while the world around us is strange and confusing.   
I emailed some free resources I got from an educational company that might be helpful if you're struggling. Take a look at them; if they're helpful, please use them, if not, disregard. Also, on December 9, the district is hosting a forum to help with mental health. I posted some information below this post.
I appreciate all that you do. Give yourselves a hug! And remember, winter break is only 2 weeks away!

December 3, 2020

Glendale Unified is hosting a mental health forum on December 9, 5:30-7 pm, on Facebook. They'll discuss maanaging difficult emotions during the holidays.

December 1, 2020


UC Application deadline extension

The University of California's online application system experienced intermittent outages for three hours on Sunday, Nov. 29, that prevented many students from submitting their applications for fall 2021 undergraduate admissions and scholarships. 

In order to make sure students have time to thoroughly complete and review their application, UC has extended the application deadline for all freshman and transfer applicants and all campuses and majors to Friday, December 4 at 11:59 p.m. PST

We do encourage applications to be submitted as soon as possible. 

Please note, the UC Application Center’s hours have been extended as well:
November 30: 8 a.m. – midnight PST
December 1: 8 a.m. – 10 p.m.
December 2-3: 8 a.m. – 11 p.m. PST
December 4: 8 a.m. – midnight PST
December 5: 9:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. PST

CSU Application deadline extension

To better serve high school and community college students facing university admissions challenges caused by COVID-19, the California State University (CSU) will extend its fall 2021 priority application deadline to December 15, 2020 at 11:59 PM PST. The Cal State Apply Support hours have been extended as well.  

We do encourage applications to be submitted as soon as possible. 

If student and their family have experienced a significant change in income they may qualify for an application fee waiver appeal. Fee waiver appeals are handled by the individual CSU campuses. The student would need to contact each campus(es) they are interested in applying. Contact information for campuses can be found at:


November 25, 2020 8:30 PM

Middle schoolers: I have updated all of your spreadsheets. If there's anything missing, have it ready by your next appointment.

High schoolers: I opened up more lessons on Apex so you can catch up/work ahead.

I hope you're enjoying your week! Make sure to take a day or two to rest and relax. If you have all of your work in, that's ALL the days!


-Mrs. Buss

November 13, 2020

Organizing your time can be a challenge in independent study. Here's a video to help you plan for success: HOW TO ORGANIZE YOUR NEW ELEARNING LIFE | A Time Management Tutorial for Students.

November 12, 2020


The Glendale Community College Dual Enrollment Team is hosting a Dual Enrollment Family Night on Thursday, November 19 from 6:30pm-7:30pm. All high school students, parents, and guardians are welcome to attend. It is an opportunity to get their questions answered about the program and learn how high school students can enroll in courses for free. We will be conducting the presentation in 3 languages: English, Armenian, and Spanish. I have attached the flyer to this email in each of those languages. The Zoom links will be posted on the Dual Enrollment website:

Thank you,

Dual Enrollment
Glendale Community College (818) 240-1000 Ext. 4767 

November 10, 2020

Reminder: There are no appointments tomorrow due to Veterans Day. 
To our veteran community - We appreciate you!

October 26, 2020

I added Prodigy, a math game, to Clever last week. Students are already improving in math! Look at this report:

Prodigy Game Progress

October 12, 2020

NewsELA isn't working for my classes right now. Try to go through via Clever. I've contacted ETIS for help.

September 30, 2020

Students, check your Google Classrooms to learn more about this extra credit opportunity!

The PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs (SRL), in partnership with MediaWise, will host Face the Facts: Election 2020 Youth Town Hall, a one-hour, virtual youth town hall streaming on NewsHour digital platforms on October 6 at 7pm ET. The event will engage students and first-time voters on how to be prepared and better informed ahead of the November elections - to RSVP, register on Eventbrite.

Amna Nawaz, senior national correspondent and primary substitute anchor for the PBS NewsHour, will host. Special guests will also include Hari Sreenivasan, NewsHour senior correspondent and anchor for NewsHour Weekend, and Savannah Sellers, NBC News and MSNBC correspondent and co-host of Stay Tuned, NBC’s twice-daily news show on Snapchat and Instagram. Nawaz, Sreenivasan and Sellers are MediaWise Ambassadors who work with MediaWise — a digital media literacy project from the Poynter Institute — to teach people of all ages how to sort fact from fiction online.

The livestream will feature conversations with young people about how to spot election misinformation and engage in the democratic process as they’re making decisions about how to cast their vote. The event will culminate with Nawaz and guests taking questions from viewers. The event is open to the public — to RSVP, register on Eventbrite.

September 29, 2020

Panorama Survey: Students in grades 4-12, please log in and complete the Panorama Survey. Here are directions, in case you haven't done the survey before: Panorama Survey Presentation

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This resource was shared with me today: Distance Learning Guide. I thought it might be helpful for Verdugo Academy families. :)

From Khan Academy: Distance learning guide for parents and caregivers

This school year will be different from any other parents and caregivers have experienced before. Your kids may be returning to school on modified schedules or learning full-time at home. No matter where or when your child will be learning this year, we’re here to help. We’ve put together this parent and caregiver guide to share advice, tips, and resources to help your child get a #StrongStart to an uncertain school year. This guide covers three key components for successful sustained learning: setting up for success, keeping your kids motivated, and making time for personal well-being.


September 28, 2020

Virtual College Career Fair (including FAFSA Workshops)

October 14, 2020 - Virtual College Career Fair (including FAFSA Workshops) (4:00 - 6:00 pm) Click here to Register:

September 24, 2020

Hello Middle School Families!
As we finish up Week 6 (Week 6! Can you believe it?!), students will be taking a test on AR/Renaissance Learning. Go to Clever, look for the Renaissance Learning logo, and click. Your child will search for the title and take the reading test for their assigned book.
(A side note - on Clever, there are links to free tutoring! Look for the "Need Help?" section.)
Beginning Week 7, the next book will be your child's choice. Naturally, it should be appropriate for their reading level. Please check here to ensure the book they choose is on Renaissance Learning/AR
Thank you for being such excellent supporters of your children's education. 

September 22,2020

Latinx seniors:

The Hispanic Heritage Foundation's (HHF) 2020 Youth Awards educational grants program is now accepting applications! Our 22nd Annual Youth Awards will award students who are in the graduating Class of 2021 with up to $1000 in educational grants to fund their higher education or a community-based project.
Recipients will be selected for their accomplishments in the classroom, community and for their excellence in various educational categories. Recipients will also be celebrated in virtual ceremonies.
The deadline to apply is December 6th, 2020. Students can apply and find more information at To download the flyer, click here:
Please feel free to email us at if you have any questions. 

September 18, 2020

High School students: If you're interested in attending USC, there's a virtual meeting with a USC counselor on Wednesday, September 23, 2020 at 5:00 PM Pacific Time. Register using this link:

September 17, 2020

PE can be a challenge when there's smoke in the air! Here are some links to online workouts, which can be done in limited space, indoors: 

Yoga for Teens

Daily 30 Minute Workouts for Kids with Coach Joe

Coach Byron and Coach Jaliyah - Virtual PE

15 Min Workouts for all Ages

Be cautious - don't bump into any furniture! Don't forget to write your time on your PE log. :)

September 10, 2020

The Glendale Library is offering an Information Savvy Challenge for teens: 

Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy? Familiar words popularized by the rock band Queen from their 1975 hit song Bohemian Rhapsody. These lyrics can easily be applied to how many of us are feeling today, as we navigate the labyrinth of information accessible with a swipe of a screen, or a click of a button. With the sheer volume of information at our fingertips, how do we know what’s real, and what’s ‘fantasy’? How can we tell what’s legitimate news, and what’s fake, or at least misrepresented?

Take this challenge, comprised of three activity badges, to find out! For ages 12-17. 

Once you complete the challenge, email Michael Whitehead, the Teen Services Librarian, at, and include your full name and username/ contact information you used to sign up. From there, your completion of the challenge will be verified, and you will receive an email with a certificate confirming six hours of community service credit.

If you complete the challenge, send me the certificate, and I'll give you extra credit in social studies (for middle school) or history/government (in high school).

September 2, 2020

Middle school: I'm working on your lesson plans for the week - they'll be uploaded to your Google Classroom today. There are 2 English activities already in there, and Apex is open already.

August 20, 2020

I have created a Google classroom for every student. Please log in to your student GUSD email account for access. Also, today I emailed everyone with your weekly meeting day and time.

August 19, 2020


I emailed this to every student. If you haven't seen it yet, here you go!

Hello Verdugo Families!

Wednesday, August 19, is the first day of school. Since you're a returning student, you're already set up to get started on your classes. I have enrolled everyone into 2 classes each on Apex. Beginning tomorrow morning, you can log in and get started!

Remember, you need to work at least 4 hours per weekday. Now is the time to schedule out your day. You are on independent study, so you don't have to sit down for 4 hours straight and work on these classes - You can break that up however you need to. You do need to continually make progress, however.

As you can imagine, we've been overwhelmed with inquiries about our program. Being a part of Verdugo Academy is special, and we're happy you're here! Please continue to study as expected so you can remain a part of the Verdugo Academy family.

On a personal note, I am now teaching middle school in addition to high school. I was quite sad to send several of my students to different teachers. They're all wonderful teachers though, so I know they're in good hands. If we get more middle school students, there is a chance we'll have to transfer you to a different teacher. I just wanted you to know ahead of time so there will be no surprises in the future.

Some important information for students:

- If you haven't done so already, please join my class on Remind:

- We will not have face-to-face video meetings this week. I will get in contact with you soon regarding video meeting expectations.

- All of our communication moving forward will be using your GUSD student email account, so log in daily to check it.

- I have attached a syllabus for you to go over. Happy 2020-2021 school year, Verdugo Academy! :)

Mrs. Buss

Posted on Google Classroom:


August 14, 2020

Parents, check your email for the DocuSign I sent. After you fill it out, it will be emailed to the students to sign. After that, it comes to me. Please complete it ASAP, as it MUST be done before the first day of school. Thank you!

August 13, 2020

Hello, Verdugo Academy families!

I hope that this finds you well and that you're enjoying your Summer break!

If you have withdrawn from Verdugo Academy, please email me to let me know.

If you are returning to your home high school, please do the following immediately:

  1. Contact Sonia Antezana via email, requesting a check out form. 
  2. Email needs to Include the following information:
  • Student Name
  • Student Date of Birth
  • Elementary and middle school students parent phone number,
  • High school students' parent or student phone number.
  • Student/Parent Email Address
  • Information of the school that they will attend next school year

       3.   Parent/Student will receive response thru an email with check out form and/or transcript or report card attachments.


If you are returning to Verdugo Academy - congratulations, that means you had full attendance and completed your courses last semester! - please read the following:

As you may already know, GUSD is set to start a new school year on August 19th. All returning Verdugo Academy students are required to fill out paperwork each year in order to be enrolled. I will be emailing your contract (to one parent and the student) and other documents via DocuSign. These documents will go to a arent, then the student, then back to me. Everything must be dated prior to 8/19/20. 


To keep in contact:

Join my Google Classroom.

If you're on Twitter, follow our class account here:

Join our NewsELA classroom: Mrs. Buss on NewsELA.

Add Remind.


Thank you for your patience!

Mrs. Buss



Please read and and adhere to the guidelines in this document: Avoiding Plagiarism.

Students, please submit your papers through this link: Turn It In


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