The Panther Pulse

Pershing Middle Community Newsletter (Vol. 1, Issue 25)

Principal's Message

Dear Pershing Families,

As you can see from the picture, we had some "interesting" weather last week - students in Ms. Reading's and Mr. Polyn's science classes got a chance to see a meterological event in real time when it hailed on Tuesday morning. This week more storms are expected - please make sure you are planning for the inclement weather during student drop off and pick up.

I also want to take a moment to address a safety concern with families. We had a few incidents this week where family members tried to pass items to their children through the fenceline rather than dropping the item off in the main office. If a child forgets their chromebook, a needed school item, etc. please bring that item to the main office and we will make sure the item gets to your child.

At Pershing Middle School, however, we have a no lunch drop off policy in the main office. This helps ensure disruptions to the classroom are minimized and helps ensure our office staff is able to stay focused on their normal responsibilities. Please know all students are able to receive a free breakfast and lunch every day at Pershing so if they forget their lunch they will not go hungry. We also ask that families not attempt to circumvent the no lunch drop off policy by setting up a separate meet up time with their child during the school day to give them the lunch through the fence. Our most important responsiblity is to keep your children safe and we thank you in advance for your support and understanding regarding this policy.

Melanie Kray

Pershing Scholars Academic Achievement Celebrated During Our First Annual Fall Semester Recognition Night

Important Announcements for the Week of February 26th


At our Site Governance Team (SGT) meetings and through the Principal's Round Table Mrs. Kray hosts with ASB students each month we have been exploring the pros and cons of shifting to a single lunch for the upcoming school year. Currently students only have a common lunch on Wednesdays and the other 4 days of the week 6th graders have a separate lunch from 7th & 8th graders. Some of the benefits that were identified: students would have access to a greater number of clubs and intervention supports like tutoring. Right now many clubs try to meet on Wednesdays because that is the day all student are together, having a single lunch means club meetings could be spread out to different days creating more opportunities for students to participate in more clubs. Another benefit would be greater vertical alignment and collaboration between our 6th grade teachers and their 7th & 8th grade counterparts. Some of the concerns that came up were insufficient seating and a need for additional lunch serving stations if we shift to a single lunch so students get their food in a timely manner.

Despite those cons, the general consensus among SGT members was a shift to a single lunch next school year makes sense and would be better for students. I have ordered additional lunch tables to address the seating issue and am working with our cafeteria manager to add two additional lunch serving stations for a total of four for the upcoming school year in order to address the two main concerns students had about shifting to a single lunch. Do you have strong feelings about this change? Please email Ms. Kray at with your thoughts and she will share them with SGT at their next meeting.


There a lots of a ways to stay involved and support Pershing Middle School starting with our fabulous Pershing Parent Foundation. Be sure to check out their website: and visit them on facebook @parentsofpershingpanthers. On their facebook page they have information on how to sign up for Amazon Smile so that a portion of your amazon purchases support our school.


Do you have suggestions for our school website? CLICK HERE to complete our website feedback survey.

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Click on the maroon bar above to access the sign-up form.

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SDUSD MSA Flag Football: "This is it! Do you have what it takes?"

Check out our fabulous Pershing students who were lucky enough to be featured in SDUSD Middle School Athletics' commercial for the upcoming Spring Flag Football Season. Great work Panthers!

Each team will have two regularly scheduled practices per week: Middle School Winter 2023 Practice Schedule.



· Spring Flag Football Sign Up Form

· Flyer

· Parent/Guardian FAQs

· MSA Website


Click the maroon bar to visit Pershing Foundation's website and get additional information about 6th Grade Camp. Below is a PDF of the presentation Camp Cuyamaca gave at the parent information night

The families of 6th graders attending Cuyamaca Outdoor School March 20th - 24th need to be aware of the following items:

COVID Testing Requirement - Before coming to camp, each student, regardless of vaccination status, is required to provide proof of a negative COVID test or provide proof of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis from within the last 90 days. This FAQ from Cuyamaca Outdoor School has more details. The Foundation and school are coordinating a COVID testing event the morning of Sunday, March 19th at Pershing. More details to come on this. Please put this on your calendar.

Volunteers Needed - We will need help with the following items. Please use the SIgnUp Genius links below.

Volunteer to help with COVID Testing

Sunday, March 19th

9:30am - 12pm

Setup testing, help administer COVID tests, put away tables

Volunteer to help with luggage

Monday, March 20th

8am - 9am

Friday, March 24th

11:15am - 12:15pm

On Monday, help load the truck that will carry luggage to camp.

On Friday, help unload the truck.

Informational Items

Cuyamaca Outdoor School FAQ

Student Packing List | Qué Llevar a la Escuela al Aire Libre

For students needing medications administered at camp: Medical Authorization Form

Para estudiantes que necesitan medicamentos administrados en el campamento: Formulario de Autorización Médica

Souvenir T-shirts & Hats Order Form - Help support Cuyamaca Outdoor School and get a fun memory for your student

Address to send postcards/letters while students are at camp:

Cuyamaca Outdoor School

Attn: student name

12561 Hwy. 79

Descanso, CA 91916

Please address any questions to the Foundation’s 6th Grade Camp Coordinator

Carlos Ramon



Does your child need help with Spanish? Mr. Barry is offering tutoring support on Tuesdays in Rm. 104 afterschool.


If you were not able to attend the meeting CLICK HERE to see the slide deck the Henry team presented.

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COVID Health and Safety Updates

Pro-Tip: Click on the grey bar to visit the District's COVID Updates Page

COVID-19 cases are on the rise in our area, with San Diego County recently entering the Medium COVID-19 Community Level. Other illnesses such as the influenza virus (flu), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), and the common cold also remain highly prevalent and easily transmissible. Practicing good health hygiene habits – washing hands, staying home when sick, and considering wearing a mask indoors and in crowded areas – can help prevent the spread of illness and is especially important during this time when many will be traveling or gathering with family and friends.

The district is providing all students and staff with at-home COVID-19 test kits to help our school communities have greater peace of mind about returning to school safely on Tuesday, Jan. 3 after the winter break.

The California Department of Public Health now recommends self testing for COVID-19 the day before coming back to school and two or three days after returning. We encourage students and staff to test on Monday, Jan. 2 and again on either Wednesday, Jan 4 or Thursday, Jan 5.

Testing before returning to school is recommended but not required. Additional test kits for students and staff are available at the Ed Center COVID-19 testing facility. If you test positive for COVID-19, please do not attend school and report your illness here.

Please do not send your child to school if they are feeling sick or experiencing symptoms of any cold-like virus, until those symptoms start to improve and there is no fever for 24 hours (without use of fever-reducing medication). Keeping your sick child home will be a great benefit for the health and wellness of our students and staff.

What Symptoms to Look For

  • The flu and COVID-19 are both spread from person-to-person, especially indoors and in crowded places. Symptoms for both viruses can include nasal congestion, fever, headache, and muscle and joint pain, as well as a sore throat and coughing.
  • RSV is a respiratory virus that has been detected in previous cold and flu seasons. Symptoms of RSV include cough, runny nose, and fever. Treatment consists of managing symptoms.

Tips to Avoid Getting Sick [English | Español)
Public health officials offer these tips to prevent getting sick:

  • Consider wearing a well-fitting, good-quality mask, especially indoors or in crowded spaces
  • Wash hands thoroughly and often
  • Use hand sanitizers, if unable to wash hands
  • Stay away from sick people
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Clean commonly touched surfaces and/or wash/sanitize your hands after using them.
  • Stay up to date on COVID-19 and flu vaccines
Review Previous Community Newsletters

Want to review information from a previous community newsletter? No problem, just click on the bar above.


Mar 3 - P3 Grading Window Ends

Mar 15 - Coffee with the Principal @8:30 AM via zoom

Mar 20 - 6th Grade Camp

Mar 27-31 - Spring Break (NO SCHOOL)

Jun 8 - 8th Grade Evening Awards Assembly

Jun 12 - 8th Grade Promotion Practice

June 13 - 8th Grade Promotion Practice & Dave & Buster's Trip

Jun 14 - 8th Grade Promotion