SMS Jag E-News
Week 2: August 16-20
A Message from Mrs. Oglesby
We have had a busy and exciting week as we welcomed students back. The energy and excitement coming from our students and staff is unmatched and we appreciate your ongoing support as we embrace the 2021-2022 school year. We recognize that ongoing concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic may cause parents, students, and staff to wonder what we are doing to keep everyone at SMS safe. As always, we have no higher responsibility than to attend to the safety of everyone at SMS and communicate those ongoing efforts with you.
As the principal of Sartartia Middle School, I am often required to send communication created by other departments so that communication across the district is consistent. I know that this sometimes comes across as impersonal and can be frustrating as you seek clarity and understanding. Please know that you can always reach out to our campus leadership team with questions and concerns. Please see the contact information below so that you can direct your communication to the appropriate grade-level administrator and counselor.
In an effort to clarify any ongoing confusion or concerns, I want to share with you what I know now. Guidelines are constantly changing and notifications continue to be sent. We will always continue prioritizing communication with our Jaguar parents, students, and staff.
Virtual Learning Program
The application for FBISD's Virtual Learning Program (VLP) closed on August 13. Families will be notified of their student's acceptance into the program on August 16. Agreeing to attend the VLP is a semester long commitment and the VLP is a FBISD program. Details regarding this program will be communicated from the Virtual Learning Program. The Virtual Learning Program will begin for students on August 30. Parents may choose to keep their students at home pending the admission decision into the VLP. Students not in attendance at Sartartia will be counted absent, however these absences will not be held against the student.
Notification of Positive Cases
Each day, I will receive a report that indicates how many positive cases have been reported since the day before. I will then send out an email to notify the Sartartia community of that number. If the number is zero, no email will be sent. Any positive cases on Saturday or Sunday will be reported on Monday. The intent of this letter is to keep you informed about positive cases at our campus. The letter is the same every day. The only thing that changes is the number of positive cases in the first sentence of the letter. Please remember that what happens at Sartartia is a reflection of what is happening in the community. As community numbers go up, the SMS numbers will go up. As community numbers go down, the SMS numbers will go down.
Possible Exposure Letter
When a positive case has been reported and that person has been on campus, a generic letter is sent to parents of students that have been in close contact with the positive case. The letter gives parents options but does not tell them what to do. If you receive that letter, please know that you may choose to quarantine your child for 10 days, seek medical advice or test for COVID-19, or continue to send the student while monitoring them for symptoms. Contact tracing will occur and recommendations can be made, but ultimately it is the parent’s choice for how to address the exposure.
Absence Due to Exposure, Quarantine, or COVID-Positive
When students are home in quarantine or isolation, the current plan is for them to access schoolwork through their Schoology Courses. Students will be counted absent with a special COVID-19 absence code and will not be penalized for the absences. The absences will accrue until the district finalizes the procedures for coding. I anticipate this process may change as the year progresses, but this is the plan as of today.
Our community has varying views on how to move forward in the pandemic, and schools are caught in the middle trying to serve everyone. Some are for masks and others are against masks. The decision to mask or not is made at a much higher level than myself and our school. Right now, mask wearing is a choice and highly encouraged for students and staff. Communication will come directly from the district if this changes.
I know that some policies have been divisive in our community and I don't know exactly what the year ahead will look like for each of us. I do know that I am committed to keeping you informed and doing the best we can to educate our students everyday. Please know that we are here to help your child and family have an awesome middle school experience and we continue to look forward to the year ahead. We are Sartartia Strong!
Sartartia Middle School
Important Contact Information
Associate Principal: Dr. Sunday Johnson
Counselor: Tanya Johnson
Assistant Principal: Paul Wells
Counselor: Kat Friedel
Assistant Principal: Courtney Border
Counselor: Amy Melby
Attendance: Glenary Williams email@example.com
Registrar: Michelon Hodson firstname.lastname@example.org
Nurse: Christine Ferguson email@example.com
Week At A Glance
Monday, August 16th
Tuesday, August 17th
6th Grade Assembly
Wednesday, August 18th
College Shirt Wednesday
7th Grade Assembly
Thursday, August 19th
First Day of Football Practice
Math Club Entrance Exam (see below)
Friday, August 20th
Jag Spirit Day
School Picture Day
PE Uniform Distribution in Class (order uniforms here)
SAVE THE DATE
September 2nd: Fall Open House
September 7th: PTO Volunteer Meeting (AM & PM options)
September 8th: PTO Meeting 6:00pm
Fall Picture Day
SMS Fall Picture Day is Friday August 20th. Portrait packages can be purchased at www.mylifetouch.com using the Picture Day ID below or by sending a check with the order form on picture day.
2021-22 Math Club Registration
Did you know you can already pre-order your SMS Yearbook?! If you order online before September 17, 2021, you will save $5. Don't miss out on the opportunity to commemorate an amazing year at Sartartia Middle School. Order your yearbook here.
Student Drop-Off & Pick Up Procedures
Safety is our top priority at all times and we need the support of parents in ensuring that all students are safe as they arrive to school in the morning and when they are leaving campus in the afternoon. The car rider line is moving quicker each day, however, how quickly the car rider line moves depends completely upon the readiness of students to enter/exit their parent's vehicle once it pulls up in the circle drive. Please be sure your student is ready to exit the vehicle when it comes to a stop in the drive and you are following all of the safety expectations below:
- Drop-off and pick-up are only in the front circle drive at Sartartia Middle School.
- Parents may not pick up or drop off students in the front parking lot, staff parking lot, bus ramp, or neighboring businesses such as Kids R' Kids.
- Parking in the front parking lot is for staff and visitors and is not to be used for arrival or dismissal.
- Pull all the way forward in the circle drive to maximize the number of vehicles in the drive.
- Students should only enter/exit the vehicle on the passenger side.
- Parents must remain in the vehicle at all time during arrival and dismissal.
- Do not block the entrance/exits to any school or business.
- Ensure your student is looking for you at dismissal by reminding them of arrival and dismissal procedures.
We are aware that bus transportation was less than expected last week and we are working with the transportation department to have a smoother week. Any late buses that occur this week, SMS administration will send an email to the parents informing you that the bus is late.
FBISD Student Code of Conduct
School Breakfast & Lunch
Throughout the 2021-2022 school year, the District will continue to provide NO COST breakfast and lunch meals to students at each campus. While no application or eligibility determination is required for students to receive free meals this school year, income eligibility requirements will likely resume in the 2022-2023 school year. As such, to establish eligibility for free or reduced-price meals for the 2022-2023 school year, parents must complete an application for free or reduced-price meals this school year (2021-2022). Parents that received a notification letter stating a child is directly certified for free or reduced-price meals, does not complete an application. However, they must let Child Nutrition know if any children in the household attending school are not listed in the letter.
Students will need to go through the cafeteria serving line during their campus breakfast and lunch serving times to receive free breakfast and lunch meals. À la carte items will be available for purchase. We encourage families to apply money on to their student(s) meal account where students can use the SchoolCafé app to scan for additional purchases.
Requests for Dietary Accommodations
The Child Nutrition Department can offer dietary accommodations for students at no extra cost for students or families when it is medically necessary. The request form can be accessed here and must be signed by a physician or recognized medical authority and submitted to the Child Nutrition Department by fax, 281-634-1862 OR by email: DLCNDSpecialDiet@fortbendisd.com. A new Request for Dietary Accommodations form does not need to be submitted each school year unless there are any changes. Dietary accommodations may take up to 2-4 weeks to process, especially at the beginning of a school year. Please note, this form is different from the allergy forms collected by Student Health Services.
Emergency Broadband Benefit
The Emergency Broadband Benefit is a temporary FCC program to help families and households struggling to afford broadband internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic. See attachment on what benefits it provides, who is eligible, and how families can apply for the service. Also, families can visit our FBISD website regarding all this information and more at https://www.fortbendisd.com/Page/137910. Please share this information with Teachers, Social Workers, Parent Educators, Counselors, and all other staff on the campus that can help spread this information. Also, all campuses will be receiving flyers to post in the front entrance and around the schools.
Class Shirts (Order by September 7th)
Don't miss the opportunity to purchase a grade-level shirt. Shirts that were ordered as part of Jag Camp before July 12th have been distributed to students. If you missed the opportunity to purchase a grade level shirt, it's not to late to still order one. Click on the links below to order before Tuesday, September 7, 2021.
Sartartia PE & Athletics
Are you a 7th or 8th grader interested in playing sports this year? Don’t forget to get your physical first! Football equipment pick-up is scheduled for August 11th and practice begins on August 12th. Volleyball tryouts start on August 16th.
All students need a valid and up to date athletic physical on file before they can participate in extracurricular activities. Students can download an athletic physical form off the FBISD athletics page and bring it with them to submit to their coaches. All students need to visit www.rankonesport.com and fill out all of the electronic forms (include leading zero "0" in your child's student ID number when logging into RankOne). All forms need to be submitted electronically, AND the physical form must be turned in before a student athlete is eligible to tryout/participate.
Need more information regarding sports? Be sure to checkout the Boys' & Girls' Athletic newsletters below.
PE Uniforms & Lockers
All students will need a PE uniform to dress out when attending PE and/or Health or Kickstart. This year we are offering SMS PE joggers as a full coverage option. Below is the sizing chart for the joggers. Students are always allowed to wear their own athletic pants as long as they are black with minimal branding or markings. Uniforms can be purchased through RevTrak on the SMS website. Many students at SMS purchase two PE uniforms, however there is no limit to the number purchased. Students are encouraged to take uniforms home on Friday to launder and bring back on Monday.
- Order the size you think will best fit your child as all uniforms are true to size. We will allow exchanges before the uniform is worn in PE class if necessary.
- PE uniform distribution will happen August 20th during all PE classes
- All students will be expected to dress out on August 23rd
You will need to order a PE uniform if your child is in PE 6, *PE 7, or PE 8. Every 7th grade student will take health for one semester, but still needs a PE uniform for the semester of PE.
PLEASE ORDER UNIFORM NOW. DO NOT WAIT UNTIL JANUARY.
You will receive information from Ms. Rivera about a Kickstart uniform if your child is in: KS 6, KS 7, or KS 8. If your child is scheduled into kickstart, do not purchase a PE uniform.
You will receive information from the coaches about athletics practice uniforms if your child is in: 1st period girls athletics (8th grade ONLY) or 7th period boys athletics (8th grade ONLY). If your child is scheduled into 8th Grade athletics, do not purchase a PE uniform at this time.
This year all students will be given a PE locker. Only clothes, shoes and electronic devices will fit inside. When dressing out for PE students will take their clothes, shoes, and will remove any electronic devices they want to secure from their backpack and place them into their locker to be locked for the entire period. Students are not allowed to use electronic devices while participating in class. Please keep in mind students will be using physical education equipment and we are not responsible for any electronic devices brought into the gym and accidentally damaged.
Upcoming PTO Events
9:30-10:30am OR 6:00-7:00pm
PTO September Meeting
SMS Campus Updates & Reminders
Fort Bend ISD encourages the use of District facilities in a manner that best serves the needs of the community within the laws, rules and regulations that govern the operation of a public independent school district. District facilities are designed for educational purposes and for that reason we ask all those who we share our facilities with to do so in a way that preserves their condition, providing a safe and healthy place for children to learn. We ask that you please abide by all laws and policies when using our facilities and help us by placing trash in appropriate receptacles, be considerate of other patrons and avoid any activity that could damage or alter school property.
Sartartia Middle School is no longer an open campus year round and the new Outdoor Facilities for Public Use is posted below. Facilities that are not open for the time frame will be locked beginning Monday, August 16, 2021. As always, facilities are closed to community use during paid rentals.
Backpacks will be allowed during the school day because we will not be issuing lockers during the 2021-2022 school year. Please note that rolling backpacks are not allowed. More detailed information regarding lockers is listed below and titled: Lockers and School Supplies.
BYOD: Bring Your Own Device
We are continuing the use of electronic devices for educational purposes this year. While we encourage children to bring their device to use with teacher permission for instructional purposes, it is important to know they are not required. The FBISD Responsible Use policy is located in the FBISD Student/Parent Handbook. Sartartia’s guidelines are listed in the SMS Supplemental Handbook located on the SMS website. Please know that your child is responsible for his/her device at school and SMS is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
The SMS dress code policy is available on the SMS website and in the Parent/Student Handbook on the FBISD website (page 69). As you begin shopping for new school clothes, please refer to the policy as dress code is enforced.
Lockers & School Supplies
Sartartia Middle School, along with nearly all district middle schools, has made a decision this year to discontinue the use of the hallway lockers for students. We recognize that this may come as a surprise (and maybe even a disappointment) to some students and their parents. The reason for this decision has many aspects:
- We did not use lockers last school year when students came F2F, as we allowed them to carry their backpacks from class to class, and it worked very well. Students who had lockers the previous year did not miss having them.
- We have created a supply list for each grade-level to limit the amount of items that students need to carry in their backpacks. Remember, not everything on the school supply list is meant to be carried around daily.
- We do not issue hardcover textbooks to students, but rather we use class sets and encourage all students to access their textbooks online.
- With the continued concern regarding COVID-19, eliminating the locker means significantly less time being near others in a confined space between before, between, and after classes.
- Students will go directly from class to class with no need to go to their locker, which means students will arrive on time and not have a stop that could make them late for class.
Students should bring a plastic or metal water bottle to be used throughout the day. Our campus has several bottle fillers that are available to students. Water fountains are not available and disposable water bottle are not distributed to students. Please remind your student to bring a water bottle to school every day.
Adding an Additional Parent
Below you will find a job aid on how to verify information in BlackBoard (our district emailing system) and how to add any additional contact. The system is currently set up to only email Family member #1.
Assistant Principals & Counselors
Dr. Sunday Johnson-Associate Principal
Tanya Johnson-Lead Counselor
Paul Wells-Assistant Principal
Courtney Border-Assistant Principal
Click this button if you want to access Jag E-News for previous weeks. We have an archive of all of them on our campus webpage.