News from Marshall Simonds Middle School- October 23, 2018

News from Marshall Simonds Middle School- October 23, 2018

News from Marshall Simonds Middle School

October 23, 2018


It is hard to believe that Halloween is next week and Thanksgiving is right around the corner!  There are a number of “no school” for student days in November, including conferences, Veteran’s Day, Professional Development, and the Thanksgiving Break.  


11/5 - No School Parent Conferences BHS & MSMS

Professional Development Elementary

11/6 - No School Governor's Election

11/12- No School Veterans Day Celebrated

11/21 - Half Day of School (MSMS Dismisses at 10:45 am )

11/22 - No School Thanksgiving Break

11/23 - No School Thanksgiving Break

11/29 -  No School Professional Development BHS & MSMS

Parent Conferences Elementary


Evacuation Drill

Today, we conducted a school-based evacuation drill to practice our newly established evacuation procedures.  We were pleased with the improvement that we saw in students’ behavior as they left the building and assembled in a designated space.  In the coming days, we will work with our faculty to continue to make improvements to our emergency protocols. We are planning on having one more fire drill before it gets too cold!


Student Meetings

In the next week or so, Mr. Murphy and I will be meeting with students by team.  The purpose of these meetings are to acknowledge the many positive things that we are seeing around the building and to discuss opportunities for continued growth.  We are working with teams to schedule these brief meetings to minimize interruptions to instruction.


On October 30th and October 31st, we will be holding grade level assemblies.  During these assemblies, we will be introducing MSMS PRIDE to students, engaging in some friendly competitions, and will hear a performance from the MSMS House Band!


Student Presentation, October 17, 2018

Last week, due to the generosity and efforts of the Burlington Education Foundation and the MSMS PTO, we had representatives from the United States Attorney’s Office present to students in grades 5 through 8.  The presentation included information about a child’s digital footprint, the impact that their present actions can have on college and career, the negative impacts of “sexting” (the sharing of inappropriate pictures with peers), and how online predators may use social media to connect with adolescents.  We feel that communicating and educating students in a variety of ways will help them develop the understanding and skills to make good decisions in their digital world. This week, students will bring home a booklet with some of the strategies and information that was included in the presentation. We have a limited number of parent companion booklets in the main office.  You can also find the resource sheet shared by the presenters here.


Principal and Assistant Principal Coffee Hour- Thursday, October 25, 2018 6:30 pm-7:30 pm

Mr. Murphy and I are excited to host the first Coffee Hour of the year!  The purpose of the Coffee Hour is to provide a forum for two way communication between families and the administration.  These regular informal meetings will provide us invaluable feedback about what makes Marshall Simonds great and will assist us in identifying opportunities for growth.  The Coffee Hour will take place in the Learning Commons.


School Picture Retake Day - Friday, October 26, 2018

Students who were absent on the original picture day or students who were not happy with their picture packages will have the opportunity to retake pictures on October 26, 2018.  If you are having your child retake the picture, be sure your child has the original picture package with them on October 26th.


Family/Teacher Conferences

We are excited to provide families the opportunities to meet with their child’s teacher to discuss their current progress.  Conferences will be scheduled during the day on Monday, November 5, 2018 and in the evening of Wednesday, November 7, 2018. Teams will be sending out additional information about how they will be scheduling conferences in the coming days.


Aspen Family Portal Accounts

Each BPS Family has an Aspen Family Portal Account.  The accounts are automatically created when families first register their child for school.  


The URL for the Aspen Family Portal is


If you forget your password, there is an “I forgot my password” link on the login screen. If you do not know your families Login ID or are having trouble resetting your password, please email the Student Information Office at


  Family Portal Resources:


    Aspen Family Portal - First Time Users


    Aspen Family Portal Reference Sheet


Morning Drop-off and Afternoon Pick-up

Now that the school year is in full swing, we wanted to remind everyone of our drop-off and pick-up procedures.  Families who are dropping their child off, should use the drop-off loop at Peach Orchard Road. Please make sure that you are pulling all the way forward in the loop before dropping off your child.  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. We are noticing on “bad weather” mornings, that there is an increase in traffic volume.  In order to get to school on time and reduce the morning traffic volume, students are encouraged to ride their assigned bus, rain or shine, in the mornings.


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 do not pass a bus with their lights on and exercise caution, patience, and model respectful behavior for our students.  


Late Buses

We are excited to continue to offer students a late bus two days a week. The late bus can be used by students who have stayed for after school activities, such as staying for extra help with a teacher or participating in an extracurricular program or club. This year, late buses will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  The buses will leave the middle school between 3:10 pm and 3:15 pm and depending on the number of students riding the bus, they may take up to an hour to complete their respective routes.  Just a reminder that students should be staying with a teacher or participating in an organized after school activity when staying at school after dismissal.


Please click here to see the late bus routes.


After School Activities

Marshall Simonds Middle School is excited to continue two, popular after school programs.  Please read below and complete the appropriate pre-registration form if your child is interested in either of these programs.



The Marshall Simonds Middle School Intramural program is a fun, low stress learning opportunity for all students in grades 6-8. This after school program aims to expose students to a variety of sports and fitness related games and activities. Students will learn rules, techniques, and game play strategies. They will also develop positive communication skills, team building, and sportsmanship throughout their time in the Marshall Simonds Middle School intramural program.   This program is offered at no cost to any MSMS student. More details about the program will be communicated soon. If your child plans on participating, please complete this brief, pre-registration form.  This form will help us with programming and staffing.


Homework Clinic

Each year, Marshall Simonds Middle School offers Homework Clinic.  Homework Clinic is a quiet, supervised place for students to complete homework.  This is a fee based program and more specific details about the program will be communicated soon.   If you are interested in having your child participate in this fee based program, please complete this brief pre-registration form.  


Project Explore

Recently, Shawsheen Technical Regional High School sent information about their Project Explore program to families of students in 7th grade.  The Project Explore program is a free quality after-school program offered to 7th grade students who reside in the Shawsheen Tech Regional School District.  It provides a great opportunity for students to visit the school and explore 6 of the 14 vocational-technical shops offered over a three-week period.  The program also works to cultivate interest in students who may want to attend high school at the Tech. School buses will transport students from MSMS to Shawsheen Tech as well as to a bus stop near their home upon completion of the program each day.  Shops are randomly assigned and students are offered a small snack at the beginning of each session. The program begins on Tuesday, January 8 and will end on January 24, 2019. There are only 40 slots available for this program. If your child is interested, please complete the forms that Shawsheen sent to your home.  


Board of Health Director Visits 8th Grade Health Classes

Prevent. Protect. Promote.  This is the motto of the public health profession. Several 8th grade homerooms were recently visited by Burlington’s own Board of Health Director, Susan Lumenello, to learn what public health means to us here in Burlington.  Mrs. Lumenello explained how the Board of Health works to keep us all healthy through educational programs such as teaching people about the health aspects of having a pet, inspectional services, and health promotion events, such as the annual health fair and flu vaccination clinics.  Mrs. Lumenello also led the students in an experiment about how quickly contagious illness can spread by asking students to use a special hand lotion and then shaking hands with their classmates. Students had to analyze how the “illness” spread through their class and who was patient zero.  This was a helpful reminder of the importance of staying home when sick, and good handwashing.


Special thanks to Mrs. Lumenello for sharing her public health knowledge with us here at MSMS.

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