Letter to Students and Families
Dear Parents and Guardians,
I am privileged to work with all of the wonderful students of City Hill Middle School. At City Hill Middle School we value and embody the district mission. I want to provide some information to ensure a successful 2018-2019 academic year.
Positive Behavior Support System -CHMS ROCKS
We will again implement our school wide behavioral and academic expectations, the CHMS ROCKS program. (The acronym stands for Respect, Organization, Cooperation, Kindness and Safety) In an extended homeroom during the first week of school, teachers will deliver lessons that explicitly teach our school wide expectations in each of the following settings: cafeteria, bus, auditorium, hallways, classroom and in the math lab. Additionally, we will specifically teach the rationale and rules of our electronic and attendance policies. We will host a back to school kickball tournament for students and faculty on September 27th. The game will reinforce the expectations and generate excitement around creating a positive school climate. Each month our Wingman Squadron leaders in conjunction with the faculty will teach lessons based on the ROCKS to the student body. We believe when everyone understands and adheres to the expectations, City Hill Middle School ROCKS!
Partnering for a Culture of High Expectations
The transition from middle school to high school can be challenging. The middle school and high school teachers will engage in regular professional dialogue to ensure consistent practices and expectations. Last year a panel of students, faculty and parents collaboratively worked to create a set of learner dispositions for students, educators and families. The learner dispositions outline how educators and families can partner to support high expectations for students. We will refer to the learner disposition regularly in an attempt to raise the bar for all.
Strive for Less than Five Program
We will employ an incentive program to encourage students to strive for less than five absences in one school year. Students will sign the pledge to get to school each day and keep absences to under five for the school year. Students will be celebrated regularly for maintaining consistent attendance. We recognize the need to utilize parent and community resources to address our problem of chronic absenteeism. Parents interested in joining with our school and Naugatuck Youth Services to help our students attend school daily should email our new assistant principal, Mrs. Fonseca at firstname.lastname@example.org
Power Down/Achievement Up
According to the Kaiser Family Foundation teens are spending eight hours a day on electronic devices. The addiction to technological devices is real. Educators and parents are charged with monitoring the use of cellphones and social media. When teens limit the amount of time spent on electronic devices, they sleep better, reduce anxiety, and improve interpersonal skills resulting in improved academic performance and relationships. At CHMS, electronic devices are permitted, but must be turned off and out of sight during academic class time. We urge parents to call the office when relaying a message to students. Students are not permitted to check their phone. Presently the cell phone is the number one academic disruption the day.
Please note this revised policy from the handbook.
All personal electronic devices must remain off and out of sight between 7:40 AM and 2:25 PM, including during passing times, lunch and study halls.
- First offense: Students may pick up their device from the office after 2:25 PM; parents will be notified of the offense.
- Second offense: Parents may pick up the device after 2:35 PM.
- Third and subsequent offenses will require parents to pick up the device and students may lose the privilege of carrying the phone at school.
Middle School Seminar
In addition to the core academic curriculum, we understand twenty-first century skills play a significant role in student success. Administrators and school counselors will co-teach a course titled, Middle School Seminar to all grade seven students. The lessons will serve to strengthen work ethic, organizational skills and interpersonal skills. Students will set goals and learn how to overcome obstacles that prohibit goal attainment. Engaging lessons will help students learn about emotional intelligence including stress and anger management as well as conflict resolution. A more comprehensive scope and sequence will be sent home with the students on the first day of the course.
Support for Students
Administration and counselors will review students’ grades regularly. Students who are passing each class with a seventy or higher will be deemed “academically healthy”. Those students will be permitted to choose an enrichment activity. Students with more than one grade below a 70 will be placed in a guided study hall and may receive additional interventions which may include our after school Math Lab and “Make It Right” program on Tuesdays and Thursdays until 4:00 PM. Transportation will be provided for students attending after school programs.
Celebrations of Excellence
We seek every opportunity to celebrate student success. Informal daily shouts are provided through our morning news show. More formally, students will be recognized each trimester for academic as well as athletic, musical and personal success in our Town Hall Assembly. Parents are encouraged to nominate a child for recognition in our Town Hall Assembly by filling out a form on our website. Each year we induct new members into the CHMS chapter of the Junior National Honor Society. Incoming seventh grade students will be invited to apply for this prestigious organization in early spring of the 2018-2019 school year. We celebrate students who exemplify our CHMS ROCKS matrix through their daily actions. These students are considered our ROCK Stars.
It is our goal to work collaboratively with you for the next two years. Please contact us with any concerns, questions or ideas. We encourage all parents to participate in our parent teacher organization and our governance council. The first PTO meeting will be held on September 12th at 6:00 PM. We look forward to serving your children and creating an environment with a focus on a positive climate, rigorous academic standards and expectations, and a lifelong curiosity for learning.
City Hill Middle School Principal