Middle School iPad Turn-In

The end of the school year is right around the corner, and this means it is time to turn in iPads for the summer. Seventh and eighth grade students will be turning in their iPads and charging cords on Thursday, May 25th. Devices must be turned in that morning in order to go to the class party that afternoon. If you are planning to be absent the last two days of school, please make arrangements with your homeroom teacher to turn the iPad in early.

In addition to the iPad, eighth graders must turn in both pieces of their charging cord or they will be billed $20 per piece. Both pieces should look like this:

Seventh grade students will be assigned the same iPad next year and will not turn in their charging cord and box next week unless they will not be returning. They must turn their iPads in for summer maintenance though.

Each student will fill out a form describing any damage to their iPad, and homeroom teachers will verify it before it gets turned in. Please take a look at your child’s iPad before it is turned in so that you are not surprised if billed over the summer for repairs.

Netflix Series Recommendation

Recently, there has been increasing concern expressed on many levels regarding a Netflix series, 13 Reasons Why, which was released this spring. The series is based on a young-adult novel of the same name and centers around the suicide of a high school student. The intent of the producers was to help those who might be struggling with thoughts about suicide. Unfortunately, according to published reports, there appear to be many teenagers who are binge-watching the series without adult approval or guidance and support. The graphic nature of several episodes, as well as the difficult topics, is not appropriate for young teens, including middle school age students. Many educators, parents, and school counselors are now raising the alarm that the show glamorizes risky behavior, leading to potential copycat behavior. The National Association of School Counselors does not  recommend this series, particularly without parental presence and support. St. Michael’s does not recommend 13 Reasons Why for any middle school students as it is rated for mature audiences. You may choose to inquire if your child or any friend has viewed the series and follow up with your own family discussions around any questions or concerns that are raised by your child.

We take the mental and emotional well being of our students very seriously and offer listening ears and support without judgment. Should we have any concerns, our faculty and staff will always reach out to parents to share concerns and partner together on behalf of a student. For more information, please refer to the National Association of School Psychologists’ website for resource recommendations for parents as well as more information about this series (www.nasponline.org).

Class Placements

The question often comes up at this time of the year regarding the process used for class placements. The practice continues to be that the classroom teachers offer the best recommendations for placement of students. Much thought and consideration go into this, and it is the current grade-level teachers, working together as a team, who make the recommendations for placement. The first consideration is to place a student with the teacher and in the class where he or she can be most successful. In addition, teachers, knowing each child’s personality, chemistry with students, and learning style, make class recommendations to the division directors. We do not encourage parent requests for specific teachers; however, should a parent have particular requests, we recommend speaking with the child’s current teacher about the reasons for a request. All teachers work very hard and thoughtfully in composing recommended class lists with the ultimate goal of having balanced class groupings in which each student can have a successful school year. We appreciate the trust that is given by parents as these placements are made, and know that our partnership on behalf of each child yields a great outcome.

Yearbook Orders

Attention, K-7th Grade Families Only! We are now taking orders for this year’s Yearbook. Please see the form that went home with your student in his or her Eagle Express, or complete the attached form and submit a check to School Office by Monday, May 8.

P.S. Eighth Grade Families: your copy is complimentary, so you don’t need to submit an order!

Coach’s Corner

Middle School Sports – Both the Boys’ and Girls’ Basketball teams have advanced to the semi-finals for our league tournament. They both play on Thursday, May 4, at The Gregory School. The Girls’ team will play at 4:00 p.m. and the Boys’ team will play at 5:00 p.m. If they win on Thursday, they will play in the championship game on Friday, May 5, at The Gregory School. The girls’ championship game is at 4:00 p.m. and the boys’ championship game is at 5:00 p.m. Come out and support our teams! They are sure to be exciting games. ***Please note, there is a $2.00 entrance fee for adults to any of the league tournament games. Students and children are free. 
Spring Sports Celebration – We will be celebrating all of our spring athletes next Tuesday, May 9. Any athlete that participated in Track or Basketball is invited to attend. The party will run from immediately after school until 4:30 p.m. The school will provide pizza, plates, and napkins, and the kids are encouraged to bring the side dishes (drinks, chips, or desserts). We hope to see all of our athletes at the party to celebrate their hard work!

Fine Arts Night Flowers

Order forms for the 4-8 Fine Arts Night Flowers went home last week in the Eagle Express.  Additional forms are also available online via the school blog and middle school PlusPortals, or in the School Office.   They are due back by Wednesday, May 17.  Pre-ordered flowers will be available for pick-up at the Flower Stand from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. on the night of the performance.  A limited number of bouquets will be available for purchase the night of the show, so order early to guarantee yours!

Questions?  Contact Holly Hancock von Guilleaume at tucsonholly@hotmail.com or Heather Walsh at  hwalshis@yahoo.com

4-8 2017 Fine Arts Order Form

Chipotle Fundraiser

Please join us for dinner or takeout at the Chipotle on Grant & Tanque Verde this Wednesday, May 3, from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. There is so much to start celebrating with the end of the school year quickly approaching! Please mention St. Michael’s School when you check out. (If placing an order online, you must choose the pay-in-store option and inform the cashier of your participation before paying to ensure that your order is counted towards the fundraiser.) The proceeds support the Eighth Grade graduation fund. Hope to see you all there!

Chipotle Flyer

Notes from the Head

We have reached the time of the year when it feels that everything has shifted into high gear. As we return from our Easter break, suddenly the end of the year is in plain view. There is so much left to do and so little time remaining. The temptation for some is simply to sit back and coast to the end. My encouragement to all of us, however, is a bit different. Let’s revisit the dependable baseball / softball analogy as a way to plan for a sweeping conclusion.

For most baseball or softball players, getting a good solid hit is always one of the main objectives when at bat. The other important objective is to round the bases for a score. There are several ways to score a run, but probably one of the least inspiring is to score on a walk from third base. It’s certainly much more thrilling to race or slide into home base to score a run. There is a greater sense of accomplishment in that way, and there are many more “high fives” coming into the dugout.

So here’s my encouragement for our young charges here at school as the final weeks of the school year loom ahead. Let’s finish strong. Let’s give it our very best until the end. As cheerleaders and coaches on the sidelines, we can be ready to give high fives as they slide into home base. And what better way to end the year than coming to the last day feeling, “Wow, that was a terrific year!” Certainly for all of us, there are some days that are better than others. In the dark days of January, it may feel that the end of the year won’t come soon enough. As I look at our students now, however, I can see how much they have grown, not only from the victories but also from the challenges they have faced. I am so proud of each and every one. They are rising to the occasion and are ready and prepared to move ahead. Their accomplishments have come through hard work and the amazing support and instruction that come from our teachers and parents.

So I invite our students to step up to the plate. Take a glance at the coaches and cheerleaders that surround the field. Focus on the end goals and make solid choices with every swing. There will be much to celebrate at the end of the day, and I will be the first in line to give each a “high five” and a hug as they cross home base. Batters up!!! Let’s hit it out of the park.

Margaret Moore

Head of School

SMA News – Teacher Appreciation Week

Teacher Appreciation Week is already next week!  This year Amy Petrow and Haley Ochoa (Co-Chairs) have been planning the wonderful treats to be enjoyed by the entire St. Michael’s faculty and staff.  It’s always a special week, and the teachers feel the love and appreciation from our community.  There are still some ways to help out if you are interested and able.  If so, please contact Amy Petrow (apetrow7@yahoo.com) or Haley Ochoa (haleposh@gmail.com) to find out more.  Thank you for your support and for appreciating the faculty and staff at St. Michael’s!