News from Marshall Simonds Middle School- August 30, 2018

News from Marshall Simonds Middle School- August 30, 2018

August 30, 2018

Dear MSMS Families,

It’s, finally, almost here! The first day of school for the 2018-2019 school year is Tuesday, September 4, 2018.  This week, our incredible custodial staff finished getting the building ready and it looks amazing! It was also great to spend some time with and learn alongside our faculty this week!  With every passing day, I am more impressed with the educators of Marshall Simonds Middle School, their passion for teaching and learning, and I am inspired by their commitment to our students!  

The highlight of this week was Wednesday night’s Welcome Night!  The building came alive, as students and their families toured the building.  While the hot weather was not in our control, we do apologize that the building was so warm!  The presentation from Wednesday can be found here.  Mr. Murphy and I enjoyed getting the opportunity to meet so many students!  I want to give a special shout out to the 50 eighth grade students who volunteered to welcome students and families that night!  You did a great job welcoming everyone who was able to attend! Mr. Murphy and I are looking forward to the first day of school and know we will have a wonderful year of learning!

Enjoy the beautiful weather and the long weekend!
 

Cari Perchase

 

Opening Day Information
Here is some important information about the first day of school, especially for the newest members of our community.  

  • We ask that families do not drop their child off at the school before 7:15 am, when our morning supervision begins.

  • For the first week of school, students in grade 6 will report to the cafeteria for the first week of school and be dismissed to to homeroom from there.

  • On the first day, grade 6 homeroom teachers will meet students in the cafeteria.  

  • For the first week of school, students in grade 6 will be seated by team for lunch in the cafeteria.  This will help reduce the anxiety about “where to sit”, allow us time to communicate the expectations for them in the cafeteria, and give students enough time to eat their lunches.  An allergen free table will be available for each team.

  • For the first week, we will stagger dismissal.  This will allow students in grade 6 the opportunity to find their bus or make their way to to pick up area.

Grade Level Assemblies
Mr. Murphy and I will regularly meet with students, throughout the year, to communicate our expectations and to celebrate our successes.  We have scheduled meetings with sixth grade on Tuesday, eighth grade on Wednesday, and seventh grade on Thursday. The focus of these meetings will be to introduce ourselves to students and share our expectations with students.  

Activity Block

Marshall Simonds Middle School’s current schedule includes Activity Block; 2 days a week when students signed up for different activities offered by teachers.  The activities ran for about 4 to 6 weeks and then students were able to choose another activity. This structure allowed students to explore different interests and connect with students and teachers in a less formal way.  It is our intention to continue to offer students Activity Block for the 2018-2019 school year.

As we enter into the new school year, establishing and maintaining positive relationships with members of our school community, teachers and other students,  is our first priority. It is also important to provide students opportunities to learn and practice other important skills, including social, emotional, and organizational skills, throughout the year.  In an effort to provide students a foundation for success and additional opportunities to connect with teachers and peers, we are adjusting the format of Activity Block for the month of September. Each grade level and team will approach this time differently, to meet the developmental needs of their students. The list of potential themes for September Activity Block may include:

  • Relationships

  • Team Building

  • Disability Awareness

  • Learning Styles

  • Cooperative Groups

  • Zones of Regulation

  • Kindness/Erase Meanness

  • Growth Mindset

  • Mindfulness

  • Study Skills

  • Executive Functioning

  • Time/Material Management

 

In the upper grades, teachers may also use this time flexibly to give a beginning of the year assessment, as they have in the past.  The activities students will engage in will continue to have less of an academic focus and may include some opportunities for physical activity as well.   The previous Activity Block structure will resume beginning in October.

New Faculty
Please join us in welcoming the  three new members of the Marshall Simonds Middle School faculty.  

Leigh McGillivray, School Nurse

Lindsay Appleby, Art Teacher

Marissa Bellio, School Psychologist

Guidance Structure
Guidance counselors play an important role in supporting students in middle school.  Below, is a listing of the guidance counselor assignments for the 2018-2019 school year.

Teams 6A, 6B, and 6C Mr. Bobby Conceison

Teams 7B, 7C, and 8A Mrs. Trish Gibbons

Teams 8B, 8C, and 7A Mrs. Dianna Wyllie*

*My apologies for spelling Mrs. Wyllie’s name incorrectly in last week’s message.

Morning Drop-off and Afternoon Pick-up
In order to get to school on time and reduce the morning traffic volume, students are encouraged to ride their assigned bus in the mornings.  Families who are dropping their child off, should use the drop-off loop at Peach Orchard Road. Students should not arrive to school before 7:15 am, as there is no guarantee that adequate supervision will be in place.  Students who arrive past 7:35 am, will be marked tardy and should be dropped off at the main entrance. In the afternoon, we ask that you form a single lane around the perimeter of the back parking lot. The bus loop in the front of the school is closed to families in the morning and the afternoon for buses.  Please always exercise caution, patience, and model respectful behavior for our students

Bus Routes
The bus routes for the 2018-2019 school year were previously posted on the Burlington Public School’s website earlier this month.  Please follow this link to review the MSMS bus stop and approximate times.  It is very helpful if you can assist your child with identifying the bus that they should ride home in the afternoon.  

Marshall Simonds Middle School PTO
The MSMS PTO is provides support to students and student programming throughout the year.  Please add your support to this amazing organization that supports each and every child at MSMS.  Visit their website to learn more and stop by their table at Welcome Night to volunteer!

Textile Bins
You may have seen the white textile boxes located at each of the schools in Burlington.  These boxes are part of the Bay State Textiles program that focuses on spreading awareness and seeks to educate the public about the problem of unwanted textiles. There is no cost to the program and Bay State Textiles handles all of the logistics.  When you drop your unwanted textiles in any of the boxes (MSMS’s box is down the hill by the football field), that school receives a financial donation from the company. A list of textiles that will be accepted can be found here baystatetextiles.com.  Please make MSMS your destination for donating unwanted textiles!

Back to School Nights- Save the Dates
We are excited to provide families the opportunity to meet their child’s teachers and learn about the curricular program that Marshall Simonds Middle School offers all students.  As has been the practice, we have scheduled two Back to School Nights for early this fall. Please mark your calendars. More information about the format of the evening will be provided as we approach the dates.

Grade 6 Back to School Night Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Grade 7 & 8 Back to School Night Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Picture Day
Picture day has been scheduled for the morning of Wednesday, September 12, 2018.  More information about ordering will be shared with families once it is received from the photography company, Geskus.

School Calendar and School Hours
Regular and punctual school attendance is essential for school success.  While school work due to absence can be made up, it is difficult to replicate the learning experiences in the classroom  The Burlington Public Schools School Committee has established an attendance procedure policy (File #JH) that states, “The administration and faculty of Burlington Public Schools believe that attendance by students at school is vitally important to a successful education”.  

The 2018-2019 school calendar, approved by the School Committee, can be found here.

The Marshall Simonds Middle School day begins at 7:35 am and ends at 1:55 pm.  Students are expected to be in homeroom by 7:35 am. Students who are not in homeroom by 7:35 am are considered tardy and must sign in at the main office to receive a pass to class. Students who are to be dismissed from school should bring a note signed by a parent or guardian to the office prior to the start of school and will receive a dismissal slip.   Students must be picked up from the main office by a parent, guardian, or other adult who has been given permission, in writing, to pick up the child.

In the event that a student is absent for school, it is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to inform the school of the absence.  Parents/guardians must call (781) 270-1781 ext. 1 prior to 8:00 a.m. to report a student absence. In the event that the school is not contacted by the parent/guardian about a child’s absence, the school will contact the family to confirm the child’s absence.