Snow Days, Snow Daze!

topperMiddle

Important Upcoming Dates

March 13 – Parent Teacher Conferences 3:00 – 8:00 pm
March 14 – Parent Teacher Conferences 8:00 am – 2:00 pm. No School for students.
March 14 & 15 – GMS School Musical presentation 7:00 pm in the GMS Auditorium.
March 18 – GHS Principal and Department Heads present to 8th Graders
March 18 – 8th Grade Parent Night for all students attending GHS next fall, 6:30 pm in the GHS Auditorium.
March 18 – Southern Maine Middle School Math Meet at GMS beginning at 3:00 pm
March 19 – Drugs 101: What Parents Need to Know, GMS Auditorium 6:00 – 8:00 pm
March 20 – PIE Meeting 6:00 pm in the GMS Library
March 28 – Teacher Workshop Day, No school for students.
April 2 – Early Release Day Students dismissed at 11:10 am

8th Grade to High School Transition

And so it begins…

GHS/GMS Transition School Counsellor Ryan Watts has been meeting with several different groups of 8th grade students over the past month to prepare them for the process of registering for classes next year. Students were given lots of information about the types of classes available to them, how important these next few months will be for their availability to join some classes.

The next step in the transition process will to have GHS Principal Chris Record, along with several members of the GHS Faculty meet with the 8th graders. This will be the first time they will have seen the 8th graders as a whole group and they usually come away very impressed. Mr. Record, and crew, will be at the Middle School on Tuesday, March 18 at 8:00 am.

Later that same evening, Mr. Record will host an evening event for the parents to explain to them the process of registration and what they can expect to receive from the High School during the registration process. He will also review what families can expect as an experience for their child during High School.

While we are still working our what this is going to look like, he will also discuss the idea of the newly legislated Proficiency Based Diploma that this class of 8th graders will be expected to meet. I suggest you arm yourself with lots of good questions for Mr. Record and his staff.

The Emperor’s New Clothes

You must plan to spend either Friday or Saturday evening in the audience at the GMS Auditorium to be entertained by the GMS students and their presentation of The Emperor’s New Clothes.  The students and Señora Krohn have created a wonderful kingdom of song, dance and laughter in our beautiful auditorium. It is a guaranteed night of fun and enjoyment of students singing, dancing and playing. Please mark the date on the calendar.

Drugs 101: What Parents Need To Know

Wednesday evening, March 19th in the GMS Auditorium, Claudine Emerson, Substance Abuse Counselor for the Gorham Schools will be presenting an evening of very valuable information that all parents need to know. In an effort to improve the awareness of parents about their children and the substances that prevalent in our community, Claudine will discuss how students are hiding their paraphernalia and their substance in plain sight in their bedroom.

Claudine will have a mock bedroom set up that parents can get up close and personal with to try to find the many possible hiding places our kids can employ. She will also inform those in attendance of the kinds of substances that seem to be popular with some of our students and how parents can detect when their child may be under the influence.

This will be a very informative evening that promises to open some eyes and some minds to help all of us protect our kids. Join us at 6:00 pm for a close look at the mock bedroom and for the 6:30 presentation.

PIE Meeting

Our next PIE meeting will be Thursday evening at 6:00 pm in the GMS Library. At this meeting we will begin the planning process for the Celebration of Middle School that is held for our 8th graders moving on the the High School.

There really is quite a bit of planning that needs to be done for this wonderful event and memorable evening for our 8th graders. So, come to the PIE meeting on Thursday evening at 6:00 complete with your great ideas and your ambitions.

Parent Survey

We have closed the link to the SurveyMonkey Parent Survey and we are very busy compiling the results (when I say “we”, I mean Dennis Crowe and our crack technology crew.) When we get the results broken down into manageable information, we will share those results. Personally, I can’t wait to see them!

Another Teacher Workshop Day

On March 28, students will not have school so that our faculty, district wide, can undertake a complete review of what the legislation about Proficiency Based Education will mean for each of our schools. We intend to complete this review as well as reconcile this with the coming of the Common Core State Standards. This really is doing to be a new way of doing business for schools across the state and it will require us to be far better in communicating your child’s progress through the grades.

In past posts to this blog, I have commented on the Common Core State Standards. I am always on the lookout for articles and other information that I can share here with our parents in the hope that we all will become more aware of how these standards will change our school. In this piece from Jessica Lahey that was published in the New York Times last month, she correctly states that the “Common Core standards are intended to raise performance expectations for our students.” She notes that the debate is heating up and that there are far more issues at stake than what appears on the surface.

I an including a link to the article for your perusal. New York Times. If you have any feed back or comments you’d like to share, please feel free to post a comment or email me directly.

April 2nd, will be an early release day for students, with our students being dismissed at 11:10am so that we can complete the work we will begin on March 28.

The students’ day will be filled with arts and music as we hold our second annual Music and Arts in our Culture Day. This is being organized by Tracy Williamson, our Steel Drum and Chorus teacher. She has lined up many great activities for our students to participate in and to observe. If this year’s day is half as good as the day we had last year, our kids are in for a real treat.

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