The Mt. Tabor Tribune

A Weekly Newsletter for the Mt. Tabor School Community

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A Message from the Principal


Good evening, MTMS,

It's been a week of high energy and spirits here at MTMS. We hosted our third Spirit Week with a very wintery theme; it was delightful to see our students dressed up in pajamas, dress clothes, wacky sweaters, warm weather gear, and white. Our WEB leaders sold Peppermint Posts, a fundraiser to support the WEB program, by the literal hundreds during lunch--and will be handing out those candy cane purchases and notes to students next week. We collected 114 warm coats and in just one week, raised over $5,000 to support out families who need it the most right now. It was a lovely week to be an MTMS Eagle.

As I write this, our staff is working feverishly to finish up progress report grades for Quarter 2. While it may take some time for paper copies to hit your mailbox, please know you can check on your student's grades later next week on StudentVUE or ParentVUE. These grades are an indicator of where your student currently stands in their classes, and unless your student is in danger of failing or falling below the proficiency standards, you may not see a progress report from us. In this case, no news is actually good news. I would also encourage families to keep in mind that the grades you see are reflective of merely 13-18 school days due to the large number of days off in November--for perspective, there are 23 more days of school between now and the end of Quarter 2, so there is plenty of time for students to continue growing and learning

There is a lot of information in this week's newsletter, with more updates to come in January regarding our new Test to Stay program for unvaccinated students exposed to COVID-19. Today, however, you can learn more about the following:

  • SUN School Sign-ups
  • Important High School Information for 8th grade families
  • How to provide input on current SEGC proposals

I will be out of the office at the end of next week, so this will be the final newsletter message to you all prior to Winter Break. I hope, no matter how you choose to spend your time during those two precious weeks of time that you have the ability to recharge and spend time with those you love. I wish all of you the very best.


Ms. Tonya Arnold

Principal, Mt. Tabor Middle School

Winter SUN School Sign Ups Open Monday!

Is your child interested in participating in our Winter SUN School programs here at Mt. Tabor? Registration opens on Monday, December 13.

To register, please do the following:

  1. Complete the paper registration packet (pdf attached below for you to print at home; paper copies are also available in the main office). Homeroom teachers distributed these packets on December 1.
  2. Complete the online registration process at using the course registration numbers.

If you need help with registration, please reach out to Jeff Persell, our MTMS Sun School Program Manger at 503-916-2915.

New Bus Route Serving Mt. Tabor MS

We now have a new bus serving MTMS - #336AM. This route replaces 146A and 148A. Prior to this, route 148A was consistently 20 minutes late to MTMS, so many families did not use the bus. This new route is scheduled to arrive at Mt. Tabor soon after 9:00am. For full details on times and stops, see the PPS transportation page linked below.

Help Us Provide Support MTMS Families

Dear Mt. Tabor Middle School Community,

Like many communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, Mt. Tabor Middle School families are experiencing an increased need for help. As we do every year we are inviting families to participate as receivers or givers, creating a community of support through winter break. Last year, our MTMS community contributed over $16,000 to support the needs of MTMS families.

To date, we have raised $5,675 for our families for our Winter 2021 support! Our heartfelt thanks to all of our families who have been able to donate. You can continue to make donation through Monday.

This year we are asking families who are able to help to purchase Fred Meyer Gift Cards (Kroeger Co. Stores). As a team, we will work together to distribute raised funds equitably and with anonymity.

Here's how it works:

  • If you're experiencing hardship, or just need a bit of help through the winter break:
    • Please fill out this online form.
    • If you prefer, you can contact your student’s counselor.
    • We handle giving and receiving with discretion and all recipients' names remain confidential.
    • Please complete the form as soon as possible so we can work as a team to provide the support you need.
  • If you're able to help:
    • Please drop off Fred Meyer (Kroger) gift card donations at the main office at Mt. Tabor Middle School (we appreciate cards in $20 increments so that we can more evenly distribute the funds across multiple families).
    • OR Use these links below to mail a physical or electronic gift card to our school.
      • eGift: If you choose an electronic gift card the e-mail address for e-Gift Cards is
      • Physical: Mail physical gift cards to Mt. Tabor Middle School - 5800 SE Ash Street, Portland, OR 97215

Thank you for everything you do to help our students and for allowing us to participate in their learning.

With gratitude and appreciation,

Mt. Tabor Middle School Counseling Team

No School December 20-January 2

Due to Winter Break, school will be closed beginning December 20. Students will return to school on Monday, January 3, 2022.

114 Jackets...and counting!

The MTMS community is the best! This week, as part of Spirit Week, we asked families to consider donating a new or gently used winter coat. I am happy to report that over the last two days, we have collected 114 coats! Many thanks to the WEB leaders and the PTA for promoting the collection and supporting our efforts to ensure that these warm jackets make their way to families that need them.

If you still have coats you would like to donate, we will have a collection box outside the main office all of next week.

Impacted by COVID-19?

Has your family been impacted by a positive COVID-19 case, quarantine, or COVID-related issue? Our social worker has compiled a list of resources that may be helpful, from rental and utility assistance to food resources. You can find details below, or reach out to the MTMS Social Worker, Maureen Brennan, for more information.
8th Grade Info 2021 - English

8th Grade Families: Important High School Information!

If your student is interested in Benson Polytechnic High School, Jefferson Middle College or Metropolitan Learning Center, they can participate in the PPS lottery, which opened on November 29 and closes on December 17. You should have received a letter in the mail from PPS with your child's current forecasted high school, as well as information and directions about the lottery. You can visit to apply. Lottery results will be available mid-January.

Many of our MTMS students attended an in-person presentation from the staff of Benson High School on Thursday afternoon. If students or families have additional questions about Benson programs, applications, etc, please reach out to us at MTMS as soon as possible so we can support you through your decision and application process.

Whether your student is planning on going to their neighborhood school or a lottery option, here are some more resources around high school choices and preparation:

  • PPS 8th Grade Info website, including information about every neighborhood and lottery high school, including videos for those of you who were not able to attend the session live.
  • Dates and times for all 8th Grade High School Information Nights (see below)
  • Lesson that all MTMS 8th grade students received before Fall Break -- you can review this with your student if you like

In January, your student will begin the process of choosing high school classes for next year (called "forecasting"), and will receive two more high school preparation lessons. If you have any concerns or questions about high school, please contact the MTMS 8th Grade School Counselor, Emory Oeding, at This is an exciting time for 8th graders and their parents, and I am here to help!

SEGC Wants to Hear From You!

Many thanks to the families who attended the SEGC Open House on Wednesday evening and for the many more who have attended specific listening sessions this week. The SEGC members were in attendance during the Open House and were able to see the many comments in the Q & A chat.

If you were not able to attend, you can view a recording of the session and fill out a survey that will go to the district and members of the SEGC. All of the information can be accessed at the Open House website available at

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Your Weekly PTA Update

Your Weekly PTA Update

The PTA has had several requests from MTMS staff so far this year. Funds that we raise through our fundraisers and activities help us meet the needs of students and teachers at MTMS. There are many ways to support the PTA, including: a general donation, donation through our direct appeals for specific needs, participating in restaurant partners and other events like Dairy Hill Holiday Fundraisers, attending the Trailblazers game(s), ordering MTMS spirit wear (t-shirts and sweatshirts), signing up as a PTA member and paying annual dues, and signing up for Fred Meyer Community Rewards and AmazonSmile. This is a great time to participate in these last two community giving programs before your finish all your holiday shopping. It is quick and easy to sign up and costs you nothing. Visit the PTA website for details on these programs, and link and instructions for signing up However you choose to participate we definitely appreciate your support!

Trailblazers Game

MORE SEATS AVAILABLE! Join MTMS community at the Trailblazers game on January 25, 2022. There are still some tickets available. We will have Early Entry reserved for the night, so families can arrive early to watch the team warm-ups. The Trailblazers are playing the Timberwolves. Order through the following link and use promo code ‘MTMS’ - I have seen some coordinating between families and students to get seats together. Don’t miss out, secure your tickets ASAP! DEADLINE TO PURCHASE TICKETS IS FRIDAY, DECEMBER 24TH.

As of this Friday afternoon there are still options for groups to get seats together.

  • Section 224 ($42.00 per seat) - A row was added in this section and there are several seats together.
  • Section 304 ($25.00 per seat) - 6 seats left together


Check out the Mt Table Middle School spirit wear at the following link. T-shirts and hoodies are available in two different designs. Items are ordered on demand from the local company, Big Frog. You order online, pay online, and items can be picked up locally in Portland or mailed to your address. This is a nice holiday gift for your student(s) or yourself! You can place your order online at this link:

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Weekly Asymptomatic COVID-19 Testing Every Tuesday

Our tests are here!!! Students who had already opted into the OHSU program received their first testing kits on Monday, November 15 along with instructions on how to collect the samples. See the Welcome Letter and Test Collection links and spit collection videos below:

Welcome Letter (English) (Spanish)

Test Collection (English) (Spanish)

Our schedule here at Mt. Tabor will be for students to return tests every TUESDAY to the cooler outside the main office when they arrive on campus.

If you have completed the form for your student and did not receive testing kits and labels, it may be that OHSU has not yet processed your application. Please feel free to check in with Tania Trujillo in the main office.

If you have not yet had an opportunity to sign your student up for this free testing service, you can still do so. Simply complete the two forms below and bring them to the main office:

OHA Consent Form

OHSU Authorization Form

How to collect spit for Oregon's K-12 COVID-19 testing program
Cómo recolectar la saliva para el Programa de pruebas de COVID-19 para K-12 en Oregón

My Child Is Out Sick

If your child is feeling under the weather and is missing school, please be sure to call the MTMS Attendance Line. If you leave us a message, please give us a list of your student's symptoms as we are tracking these as part of our health and safety protocol. A member of the office or admin team may call you back regarding the symptoms you report.

It is also essential that you notify the school if your student has a positive COVID test or is a close contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive. Please call the school office, and they will connect you with our School Health Assistant, Julia Mudgett; our school nurse, Catrina Luna; or Principal Tonya Arnold to follow up with you on these protocols. If you need to reach someone after hours, please email

Mt. Tabor Middle School

Home of the Eagles. Be sure to follow us on Instagram at mttabormiddleschool