topperMiddleUpcoming Important Dates

  • April 29 – NWEA Testing Window Begins, schedule will be forthcoming
  • May 2 – Early Release Day for students
  • May 8 – Faculty Meeting in the Library 2:30 – 4:00 (food provided by all Males)
  • May 10 – MEA Science Assessment for all 8th graders
  • May 10 – School Dance sponsored by 8th grade Physics day

The Events of Thursday and Friday

Unfortunately, Gorham Middle School is not immune to the outside influences, as I had once thought! We are all too painfully aware of the furor and, quite frankly, the inconvenience of a student, or two, writing inappropriate “stuff” on our bathroom walls.

Because of this, we had to invoke our safety protocols that have been developed.

I am pleased to say that all of the protocols worked “to a tee”, and we were able to respond quickly, and in some very unusual circumstances, to keep our kids safe and to get them home to their families. I am also sure that there were some questions that may have arisen, but that all of our communication systems worked very well and gt facts home to parents in a very timely manner.

We continue to take the safety of our students very seriously and work with each instance to complete a review of our protocols to help us get better. Thank you for your continued support for our students and our schools.

I would like to remind all staff to have the students sign out and back into your classrooms with legible handwriting and with the proper time out and in. This is always very helpful in determining timelines for events as well as the people who may have had access.

Gorham Middle School Wins Zero Waste Challenge

You probably noticed over the past few postings on this blog that we had set aside time on the Monday we returned from vacation to hold an All School assembly. Since this is something that we do very rarely, people were asking lots of questions, mostly, “Is Riley off his rocker (more than usual)”?

I think, judging from all of the great “press” we received in the local television and newspapers, it was a great success.

I also want to report to all that, because of our success in winning the Zero Waste Challenge, one of our local businesses read about us in the newspaper and felt compelled to meet our students. His business, LKQ, is actually in the Zero Waste Business for the automotive industry. He spoke to the students about how they recycle every part of the old automobile for use in running the physical plant here in Gorham and how each item on an old auto is recycled.

LKQ also added to the prize that was awarded on Monday by presenting the students with a $200 check to help them continue their work!

MLTI 2013-2014

I have heard considerable talk about the decision of the state to change from the Apple platform to that of Windows 8. While we do not yet have any of the specific of what this change will mean for all of us, we can assume that any change will require work on our part.

There will be a meeting of all Administrators on Wednesday and MLTI will be an agenda item. I would expect that we will have many more details of the proposal and some options for us as we try to make heads-or-tails of the Governor’s plan.

Sea Dogs Appreciate Our Teachers
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On April 19th, the Portland Sea Dogs, AA minor league affiliate of the Boston Red Sox 15 Gorham Middle School teachers were honored in pregame ceremonies. All of the teachers received a free ticket to the game, a “nifty” certificate from the Sea Dogs and their names were prominently posted on the center field message board. Congratulations to all of our teachers.

NWEA Testing Schedule

It is that time of year again where we administer to all of our students the Northwest Educational Assessment (NWEA). These assessments are adaptive computer assessments that can be used to assist us in understanding the progress our students have made over the academic year. The assessments yield an abundance of raw information that, when used properly, can aid us in determining net steps for our kids.

These assessments usually take a period a day to complete and we have 3 assessments that we need to complete. Sometimes we have a “monkey wrench” thrown at us because of connectivity issues or other technical problems. In any event, with make ups for students who are absent and the (un)expected glitches, we an usually complete a whole grade level in one week.

Please refer to the schedule we sent out last week.

Team Leaders Meeting

We will meet in Melanie’s room (as usual) on Wednesday at 2:30. We have several items to discuss regarding step up day and the first days of school next year. Please bring your ideas with you on Wednesday.

Early Release Day Activities

Our last Early Release day of the year will be this Thursday, May 2nd. Denis Albert has devised and organized an great day of wellness and health activities of our students. Your advisees should have signed up for their desired activities through the Google Doc link sent our by Terri Dawson. If they haven’t signed up or a session, they will be assigned to one for each of the four session times.

The afternoon time will be spent in Content Area meetings. We have several items to discuss in each of the content areas regarding the implementation of the Common Core in September 2013.

English/Language Arts and Social Studies will again join together to discuss some of the area where shared responsibility for the CCSS in History should be, as well as the shared responsibility for how we create and log evidence of student learning.
Science will continue to review the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) to insure that all of our current units of study are in alignment.
Math will continue with the assessment of the current math program and how it is bringing our students into a better alignment with the expectations of the CCSS
Health and PE will meet to review changes made this year and make suggestions for the coming year.
World and Classical Languages and Visual and Performing Arts Will have received information for their work from the Curriculum Leader.

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