Fasten your seatbelt...
The next three weeks are going to fly by!
* Last week, teachers in Desert Sands Unified School District were recognized for retiring, years of service, and being selected at each site as Teacher(s) of the Year! We were proud to recognize Mr. McCoy and Ms. Knigge as DRA's Teachers of the Year! In addition, Mr. McCoy was honored as Desert Sands Unified School District's middle school teacher of the year!!!
* There is no school on Monday, May 30th, in observance of Memorial Day!
* Please continue to check your HAC for late and missing work. The last week of school will be here before we know it! Please do not wait until the last minute to check on grades!
* Students will not be allowed to bring backpacks, large purses, and over-sized bags to school during the last week.
* The last day of school is Thursday, June 6th! Students will be dismissed at 1:38 p.m.
* The last three days of school (June 4th, 5th & 6th) are all minimum days. Students will be dismissed at 1:38 p.m. Please mark your calendar so our students are not sitting in the heat waiting to be picked up.
* Our ASES after school program operates until the final day of school. We are not taking applications for next year yet. You can submit an application during the orientation days prior to the first day of school in September.
* The library is closed for AR testing and book check out during the school day. Students and teachers will begin returning textbooks this week for end-of-year clearance. Students can still take AR tests before and after school.
* Eighth graders are scheduled to return all textbooks and library books on Monday, May 20th and Tuesday, May 21st! Eighth graders will not be allowed to participate in the "free dress week" if they have missing books and/or unpaid fines.
* Seventh graders will begin turning in books on Wednesday, May 22nd!
* Sixth graders will begin returning books on Tuesday, May 28th.
* Incoming sixth graders from Reagan Elementary and James Monroe Elementary will visit our school on Tuesday, May 21st!
* The awards night for sixth and seventh grade students will be on Wednesday, June 5th! The sixth graders will be recognized from 5:30 - 6:30 p.m. The seventh grade assembly will be from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m.
* The eighth grade awards night will be on Tuesday, June 4th, from 5:30 - 7:00 p.m.
* It is very important for all eighth grade students and families to understand that the awards night for eighth grade students is NOT a promotion night! Students are not receiving promotion certificates on this night. Per school board policy, middle schools are not permitted to have a promotion night for middle school students. Awards will be presented for attendance, honor roll, staff acknowledgements, and other achievements made during the second semester.
* Students are not allowed to have laser pointers/pens at school and/or on the bus. This is a district policy. Students will receive disciplinary consequences for having laser pointers/pens at school.
* Students may not wear basketball and/or sports shorts to school!
* All students must wear their lanyard and ID while on campus. This rule will be enforced until the final day of school. In addition, students will continue to receive disciplinary actions for violating school rules.
* The eighth grade trip to Knott's Berry Farm is on Monday, June 3rd. Students can no longer sign up for this trip. Reservations have already been made.
I hope you have a great week and enjoy the weekend!!!
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My, my... We are Midway through May!
* Sunday is/was Mother's Day! I hope you had a special day!!!
* Thursday, May 16th is Mr. Borgen's birthday! Please stop by and wish him a happy birthday!
* We are recognizing and celebrating our Teachers of the Year this Thursday at the district ceremony! Our teachers of the year are Mr. McCoy and Ms. Knigge!!!
* The eighth grade Award's Night is invitation only. It is not a "Promotion" ceremony. Per school board policy, middle schools are not permitted to host a promotion night from middle school.
* We still have a lot of school left! We are not going relax on school-wide expectations and rules. Students are expected to wear lanyards/ID's at all times. In addition, we will enforce the dress code until the last day of school!
* There is no school on Monday, May 27th in honor of Memorial Day.
* Our teachers are not done teaching until the final day, June 6th! This means that our students are not done learning and working until June 6th either! Please keep up with your grades! Let's finish strong!
* Any type of physical horseplay is not allowed. Too many times horseplay gets taken too far and turns into a fight. A fight leads to a suspension and a citation via Indio Police.
* We will start collecting textbooks! Please begin organizing your school books for your check in day. Textbooks can range from $80.00 - $120.00. YIKES!!! Please clear your debt by either returning books or paying the book fine/fee. All unreturned books become fines on your record. Students cannot graduate from high school with any unpaid debts. We will start with 8th graders on May 20th!!!
* Please check your child's HAC account for grades, behavior, and tardies. Our tardy numbers are ridiculous!!! There is no excuse for students entering classrooms late. In addition, students who enter late disrupt the learning environment for everyone else. Unexcused tardies will lead to lunch detention, suspension from school, and exclusion from all eighth grade activities.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!!
Back to normal schedules, routines, and procedures!
Thank goodness!!! :D
* Sunday, May 12th is Mother's Day!!! I hope you all have a great day! I appreciate all you do!!!
* The state testing is complete for most of our students! We only have make-ups for the students who missed the regular assessment day!
* Therefore, we are back to our normal daily schedule!
* In addition, we will resume with our Tutorial periods on Tuesday and Thursday.
* There is no school on Monday, May 27th in observance of Memorial Day!
* Thursday, May 9th will be the final day for our after school tutoring program. Our ASES program will continue until the final day of school.
* The 6th and 7th grade Moving Up Dance is on Thursday, May 9th in the MPR from 3:30 PM to 5:00 PM. This will be the final dance of the year for sixth and seventh grade students.
* The eighth grade dance/ball will be on Thursday, May 30th from 6:00 - 8:00 PM. Students who are on the exclusion list CANNOT attend this dance/ball.
* The third and fourth quarter awards for sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students will be held after school. The eighth grade awards night will be on June 4th. The sixth and seventh grader awards night will be on June 5th.
* All awards nights will be invite only for students. Per school board guidelines, there will not be a promotion ceremony for eighth grade students. Eighth grade students will not be receiving promotion/completion certificates at the eighth grade awards celebration.
* We are getting close to the eighth grade end-of-year activities. I encourage all eighth grade students to stay focused and disciplined in order to stay on the active list. Students are placed on the exclusion list for being suspended, excessive absences/tardies, excessive referrals, poor grades, and/or excessive dress code violations (including P.E. and ID/lanyard).
* The final day of school will be here before we know it! The final day is on Thursday, June 6th!!! Students will be dismissed at at 1:38 PM. In fact, the last three days of school (Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday) are minimum days. All students will be dismissedat 1:38 PM.
* I would like to get us all on the same page with dress code issues. Here are some reminders regarding our dress code policy:
*** Basketball and athletic shorts are not allowed. Students will receive a dress code violation and will call home for a change of clothes.
*** Students have been coming through the gates with shorts meeting our dress code policy (finger tip in length). HOWEVER, once inside the gate, many students are rolling the shorts to where they are now out of compliance. Students will receive a citation and will be sent to the office for a change of clothes if any staff member sees a student with rolled shorts that do not meet our policy. No exceptions!!!
*** Students are also violating our dress code policy by changing clothes once they are on campus. Students will receive a citation and will be sent to the office for a change of clothes if any staff member sees a student who is not in compliance with school rules.
*** Students are not allowed to wear their P.E. clothes under their school uniform! Students will remove the shorts if seen by a staff member.
*** All undershirts are to be tucked in! Undershirts should not be longer than the polo shirt. After a warning to tuck in the undershirt, students will have to remove the undershirt and check it into the office if students continue to violate this policy!
*** Students should not be wearing stickers on their face! This is a distraction and disruption to the learning environment. Please have students remove stickers before they enter your room. Students may receive a referral and disciplinary consequences for disrupting the learning environment if they do not adhere to this policy!
*** Students are also drawing on their hands, neck, face, arms, and legs. This is also a distraction and disruption to the learning environment. Please have students report to the office to wash the ink from the body. Students may receive a referral and disciplinary consequences for disrupting the learning environment if they do not adhere to this policy!
*** Students are not allowed to wear temporary tattoos on their necks and faces. This is a distraction and disruption to the learning environment. Students should be sent to the office to remove the tattoo.
*** Students are expected to wear the school ID and lanyard at all times when on campus. Students receive a citation and face after school detention for violating this policy.
Have a wonderful weekend!!!
My, my, my... May has merged!
* We will continue to complete the CST state tests this week. Our students did a great job completing the language arts sections and the eighth grade science section.
* This week, our students will complete the math sections on Tuesday and Wednesday. The eighth graders will wrap it up with the social studies tests on Thursday and Friday.
* It is very important for students to have a good night of sleep and a healthy breakfast! In addition, it is important to minimize distractions and abnormal activities in students' normal routines.
* During the testing days, we will be on a modified schedule. The start and end time of each day will be the same. However, we had to adjust class periods and lunch to make time for testing.
* Testing will begin after first period. The testing block will be from 9:22 - 11:17. In addition, classrooms cannot be disrupted during testing. You must make arrangements to pick up your child either before or after the test window.
* Lunch will be from 12:53 - 1:33 during the testing days.
* Speaking of lunch, we have had a lot of parents come to pick up students during lunch. It is very difficult for us to locate one child among approximately 1100 students. In addition, our focus on overall students' safety is being distracted while looking for one student. Therefore, please try to check students out of school before or after lunch. You can find our lunch schedule on our home page.
* The district has adopted a new program for anonymous bullying tips. Visit www.PSSTworld.com for more information. You can also contact Mr. Cain, our counselor, and/or me if you are having problems or have witnessed bullying, fighting, and/or any other violating situations.
* Please remember that sandals are not allowed on campus for safety purposes.
* Please check your HAC account and help monitor your child's grades and attendance. Many students are receiving unexcused tardy citations for unnecessary reasons.
* Sharpies and permanent markers are not allowed on campus!
* Please do not allow your child to bring electronic devices to school. There is no need to have iPods, Nintendo DS's, or any other music or game device at school. Students cannot use these devices so there is no need to have them! DRA is not responsible for lost, damaged, or stolen electronic devices.
* Do you know what your child is bringing to school? Are you sure?!? If not, please make random backpack checks. It is your right as the parent/guardian to know what your child has in his/her possession. I know we want to give our children some freedom, but we also have to maintain our parental responsibilities!
* Celebrating birthdays and other holidays is not allowed at school. Students are not allowed to bring balloons, cupcakes, cake, gift bags, etc to share at school. These items will be checked into the office until the school day is over. Remember, our focus is on education!
* Students are expected to come to school prepared for learning! We expect our students to come to school with their Agenda, notebooks, pencils and other items necessary for academic excellence.
Have a terrific first week of May!
The BIG One is coming! State testing that is!!!
* Some students will begin taking the STS and CMA versions of the state test this week. This only applies to certain students, however I want to make everyone aware so our students are quiet and respectful in hallways.
* All students will begin taking the state tests (CST's) next week. The tests will begin on Tuesday, April 23rd! It is very important for our students to arrive to school on time, remain at school throughout the school day, eat healthy meals, and get plenty of rest/sleep.
* Students will review test procedures, tips, and strategies during this week's Tutorial periods.
* Many people think that the CST's only judge a school's performance. However; the state testing is important for each child because we use the test result to help place and prepare students' schedule for the next school year. The CST's help place students in appropriate math and language arts classes.
* The fourth quarter is officially under way. Please, please, please do not wait until the final days to check on your child's grade. I have been stressing the use of H.A.C. all year.
* I would like to congratulate our 2012 Teachers of the Year for DRA... Ms. Knigge and Mr. McCoy!!!! Congratulations on your deserved recognition!!!
* Mrs. Amidei is almost out of Yearbooks. Please see her as soon as possible to reserve your book. Once she has sold out... They are gone!
* Mr. Martinez and I have been meeting with eighth grade students to go over the eligibility requirements for the end-of-year 8th grade activities. Many students have been placed on a Probationary Exclusion list due to grades, tardies, attendance, and discipline issues. These students have a contract that will give them an opportunity to earn back their privileges.
* Some of the 8th grade activities will include a trip to Knotts Berry Farm, the 8th grade dance, Yearbook signing party, luncheons, uniform exchange for free dress days, and more.
* Dressing out for P.E. is not an option. Students are required to dress out in their PE clothes. In addition, students are not allowed to wear the P.E. clothes under their normal uniform/clothes. This is more of a hygiene issue than a fashion statement.
* Please remember that sandals are not allowed on campus for safety purposes.
* Lunch time is a busy time for us. Please try to pick up your child either before or after lunch if you have to check your child out for the day. It is a safety issue when we have to take our focus off the overall student population to try to find one student.
Have a great week! Get plenty of rest for the big test!!!
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