MRHS Parent Newsletter

Volume 31, Issue 8


ALLERGY SEASON IS UPON US Please give allergy medications to your students at home. We do not keep any in the Health Room. For students with sore throats and coughs, we can offer salt water gargles. We have cough drops, but a limited supply. We will give them to a student the first day they are needed, and after that request you send them from home. Please remind your child to drink lots of water – that helps ease symptoms. Many students take a daily allergy medication such as Zyrtec or Claritin. We recommend they take these medications at bedtime as they often cause tiredness. Leave the pill container where your child will see it, and remember to take it, every single night, such as near their toothbrush. We do not keep cough, cold or allergy medications at school – these must be taken at home.

PLEASE FOLLOW UP ON VISION AND HEARING REFERRALS Parents of 10th graders: if you received a letter of concern for your child’s vision or hearing, please follow up with the appropriate health care provider, and then send the results back to the nurses at Minnechaug. Our goal is to help our students learn better by having corrected vision and hearing, if needed. Thank you for helping us, and helping your children. If you have followed up but can’t find the paperwork, please call and let us know at 279-3815. Thank you!

APRIL IS NATIONAL HUMOR MONTH Laughter really is good for your health. It decreases stress in so many ways, from mood elevation to pain relief. Read more about the health benefits of laughter at Mayo Clinic online: . April is the perfect month to pull out a corny joke book or family favorite comedy movie – enjoy some time together laughing. Have fun during April break!

TENTH GRADE PHYSICALS Massachusetts requires physicals to be sent in to school for all 10th grade students. For those in 10th grade this year, a valid physical is one completed by the health care provider between June 15, 2018 and August 31, 2019. If you have not yet sent in a physical for your child, please do so. We appreciate your cooperation.

APRIL IS ALSO DISTRACTED DRIVING AWARENESS MONTH – please remind your teen drivers to buckle up and drive safely. Any use of electronics is a danger while driving. Eating and drinking are also distracting and should be avoided. Taking your eyes off the road to converse with passengers can result in an accident. We love our students and want them to arrive at school, and every other destination, safely.


Check out the “Counseling Center” tab on the under the “For Students” tab. Parents and students are encouraged to regularly visit the site for important college and career information as well as summer opportunities for juniors and upcoming events.

Guidance Advisory Council (GAC)

The next GAC meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 3:30 p.m. in the Counseling Center conference room. Parents and students are encouraged to attend to provide feedback on our services and programs.


All students are encouraged to attend the National College Fair at the Big E on April 8, 2019. It is never too early to start looking at colleges and academic programs to help you decide what career field you may want to pursue after high school. To register for a barcode to help things go faster while you visit college booth go to:


Seniors and Parents – Financial Aid Presentation “Paying the College Bill Seminar” Once you have received your acceptance letters, the next step is to choose a college and figure out how to pay for it. All college bound students and parents are encouraged to attend this seminar on Wednesday, April 10, 2019, in the MRHS Auditorium at 6:30 p.m.

You can also visit to download MEFA College Financing eBook, access helpful tips, financial aid applications, calculators and worksheets. Utilize the “Ask the Expert” link on the website to email financial aid questions, and sign up to receive MEFA emails to help you stay on track throughout the senior year. It is also important to communicate with the financial aid office at the colleges you have been accepted to; they can answer specific questions concerning your specific financial aid question. There is also a short video on the FAFSA on Edline, under the Counseling Center tab.

Be sure to tell your counselor and update Naviance when you have made your final decision about your post-secondary plans. Seniors who have been wait-listed or denied by colleges should discuss alternative post-secondary plans with their guidance counselors.

S.T.C.C. “College Now” Dual Enrollment Program

The S.T.C.C. Collegenow Program offers free college courses for incoming high school juniors and seniors. Courses can be taken over the summer or during the school year. Please see your guidance counselor as soon as possible for approval and to complete the required MRHS application for this program. Application deadlines are as follows: Summer 1 due May 1, 2019 Summer 2 due June 1, 2019, fall 2019 due July 1 and spring 2020 due December 1.

More detailed information can be found at:


An advisor from Holyoke Community College, HCC, will be at Minnechaug for a Decision Day on Tuesday, April 9, at 9:15. Students that have applied and students who will be applying to HCC should see Mrs. Lavoie in the counseling center to request transcripts be sent to the college.


All juniors attended the College Workshop on March 19. Juniors were given important documents and information to get started in the college application process. All materials and a copy of the power point presentation can be found on the Counseling Center tab on the MRHS website and hard copies are also available in the Counseling Center. The four most important tasks for juniors to accomplish are: (1) identify, ask and hand to three teachers, the Student Evaluation sheet (2) complete their junior profile on Naviance, (3) ask parents to go on Naviance and complete the Parent Brag Sheet which provides the student’s guidance counselor information to write their letter of recommendation and (4) ask two teachers for Letters of Recommendation. Parents are encouraged to log on to Naviance with their students (each student has a log in password that should be used as a family log in.) The college search and application process is a family activity so we encourage parents and students to explore and utilize Naviance together. Parents and students are also encouraged to visit college campuses during April vacation.

Many colleges offer summer programs for juniors. Visit the website of a college you are interested in and check out what that college has to offer. Many of these opportunities are also listed on the Counseling Center website.

Juniors and their parents are encouraged to start going on college visits. Visits on college campuses is the best way to find the “right fit” college. April vacation is an ideal time to visits colleges.

Test Dates

Juniors who are planning to continue their education at a four-year college or university should plan to take the SAT Reasoning Test on May 4 or June 1 (day after graduation). Sophomores and juniors, who need to take the SAT Subject Tests in courses they are currently in, should take them in June upon completion of the course. The ACT will be given at Minnechaug on April 13. Be sure you meet the registration deadline! (Normally 30 days prior.) Direct links to the websites for registration can be found under the Counseling Center tab.


Juniors interested in applying to a US Military Academy or College ROTC Scholarships, are highly encouraged to attend Academy Day hosted by Congressman Richard Neal. It will take place on Saturday, April 27, 2019, at Noon at the Springfield Museums, 21 Edward Street, Springfield, Massachusetts. Registration forms are available in the Counseling Center. The registration deadline is April 15. For more information go to



Through Naviance, all students can use Family connections to research colleges that will match your unique set of traits and preferences, explore scholarship opportunities, track the application submission process, explore career possibilities and match them to potential college majors, develop your “resume” for those writing references for you and create “to do” lists. The Family Connection on Naviance aids communication between you and your counselor concerning college-related information. In addition, you will be able to check when everything has been submitted through Family connection.

Sophomores and freshmen are encouraged to keep Naviance up to date using the tools with Naviance. If students or parent have questions about Naviance please contact the appropriate guidance counselor.


Registration must be made on-line at least 30 days prior to the test date.

SAT ACT AP May 4 April 13 May 6 – May 17

June 1

Aug 25


Credit for Life

Country Bank will once again sponsor the Credit for Life event for all seniors on Tuesday, April 2. Seniors will learn about the importance of budgeting, protecting their identity and all the other important elements of managing their money.

The annual Mentor Appreciation Evening is planned for Wednesday, May 8 from 7 – 8 p.m. in the MRHS Auditorium. All Internship mentors, interns and their families should have received invitations. Please RSVP to the Career Center by April 30. Attendance at Mentor Appreciation Evening is mandatory for all fall and spring Interns.



Mark your calendar for Tuesday, April 30th to hear the bands and strings perform their Baltimore music festival pieces at this encore performance! You’ve enjoyed our winter concert followed by “Phantom” & “The Incredibles” from Pops, now come listen as our students delve a little deeper into specific literature that demonstrates the depth of their learning over the course of the entire year. The curtain will go up at 7:30pm. Tickets are $5.00 per person, $4.00 for senior citizens and Renaissance card holders. Children under the age of 12 will be admitted free!


If you were one of the many who enjoyed, “Shallow” or “La La Land” at the Pops Concert, perhaps you’d like to purchase a keepsake CD of the performance? You can access digital singles or place an order to have a CD mailed to your home by visiting the following website: . Also know that this website has audio files for our concerts ranging back as far as twelve years, so if there are any other concert recordings you are interested in, be sure to ask- a mix CD of your child’s performances makes a great end-of-year or senior gift!


The basket raffle at the Pops concert brought in over $1700. this year, a terrific boost to our bottom line - A sincere thank you to all of our generous donors and to the many parents of the Minnechaug Music Association who made the baskets, sold the tickets and organized the winners on the night of the concert. IT’S TIME FOR ALL OUR MUSIC PARENTS TO JOIN THE MINNECHAUG MUSIC ASSOCIATION!


A reminder to all that Mr. Ingram’s field trip to New York City to see, “Dear Evan Hanson” is on Wednesday, May 1st, the day AFTER the band & strings concert. The bus will leave the school at 6:30am and return by 9:30pm. Although there will be the opportunity to grab a quick lunch once we arrive in the city, it is a good idea to bring food for the bus! We are open to your bringing G rated films to watch on the ride…please be on time for our before-school departure at 6:30am!


Anyone interested in training to become one of our future drum majors needs to consider attending the UMASS Drum Major academy for 5 days, July 27-31 on the Amherst campus. For extensive details about this national program rooted right in our own backyard log onto


A week or two at summer music camp can make a world of difference in your child’s social development as well as give them the opportunity to explore deeper layers of music making and understanding. The music department has several brochures and flyers for camps around the country, give a call if you’re interested. 596-9011 x 6173 or

Annual Spring Visual Arts Showcase

We invite you to the Annual Spring Visual Arts Showcase on May 9th, 2019 which will be held in the Minnechaug Cafeteria. We will be showcasing artwork created by this semester’s students in the Art 1, Art 2, Ceramics, Graphics, and Photography classes. We will be kicking off the evening at 6pm with our Annual Empty Bowls Sale to to benefit Rachel’s Table with food provided by the Chaug Nutrition classes. For planning purposes, please follow the link below in order to let us know if you will be attending. We look forward to seeing faculty, students, family, and community members come out to support the Minnechaug Art Department!

Link to Survey:

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Class of 2019 Notes and Upcoming Dates

Flag Football Saturday April 6th Starting at 5:30pm

High Meadows Friday May 3rd 9:30am-4:00pm

Senior Breakfast Wednesday May 29th

Prom Wednesday May 29th 6:00pm

Graduation Friday May 31

Fundraising: Hand Crafted Painted M’s on Residential Driveways $20.00 contact to order your M and schedule a date.

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It’s time to spring into reading!

There are currently four displays in the IRC!

New Books


Dear Parents and Members of our School Community,

I write to you to as a reminder of and to bring awareness to the Bay State Textiles White Collection Box located on our school campus.

Why is the box placed?

The box is placed as a solution to the problem of unwanted textiles. In Massachusetts alone there are 520 MILLION pounds of unwanted textiles that end up in the waste stream of which 95% can be reused or recycled. The country as a whole is only recycling 15% of unwanted textiles.

What goes in the box?

Bay State Textiles accepts clothing, shoes, pocketbooks, household linens and stuffed animals in ANY condition as long as they are not wet or contaminated with hazardous material. Visit for a list of acceptable items. ****Items NOT Accepted: Mattresses, Couch Cushions, Lawn Furniture Cushions, Foam Products (mattress pads, etc.), Carpet Remnants, and Rugs (larger than 2’ x 4’) For the safety of the drivers please bag your items and tie the bags!!!

What happens to the items in the box?

Collecting unwanted clothing, shoes and linens, creates economic opportunity all over the world. Bay State Textiles employs Massachusetts residents, contracts with local vendors for supplies and exports the material throughout the global market. As the material is shipped to graders, the useable items are resold creating jobs and economic benefit for those wanting to purchase inexpensive quality clothing. Additional jobs are created in the wiping cloth and fiber conversion industry. Please refer to SMART for additional information on the benefits of textile recycling. The good is NOT shredded!!!

How does our school benefit?

Bay State Textiles services the box weekly, weighing the items. Bay State Textiles sends a rebate check monthly based on the weight of donation. This is a “Feel Good” program to support our school community with your unwanted textiles. Tell your friends, neighbors, relatives, coworkers, etc. when cleaning out their closets, re decorating or updating their household linens, to support our school community. The convenience of the box is that it is available 24/7, 365 days a year.

Thank you for your support of our Textile Recycling/Reuse Program!

Jim Bisnette

District Head Custodian

Green School Coordinator

Hampden-Wilbraham Regional School District


2019 Minnechaug Car, Truck, and Bike Show

Once again the Minnechaug Management and Marketing class will be hosting the 2019 Minnechaug Car, Truck, and Bike Show on Sunday, June 2nd with a rain date of Sunday, June 9th from 12:00-4:00 p.m. This will be the 5th year that the class has planned, organized, and executed this large community event. In the past there have been over 100 show cars on display and the students run this entire event which includes; prizes for top show car categories, raffle prizes, vendor displays, and refreshments including hot dogs, hamburgers, snacks, ice cream, and lemonade. Come spend an afternoon or a couple of hours and support the students at Minnechaug. Thank you to the many sponsors who have supported this event.

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Interested in Traveling?

There will be an informational meeting for anyone interested in a trip to France and Italy on Wednesday, April 24. The meeting will take place in room B129 at 6:30 pm. This trip is not school sponsored. Further information about the trip including dates and itinerary will be discussed at the meeting. Information packets will be available soon. Interested individuals should attend the meeting or contact Mrs. Sheila Franklin at for further information.

Celebrate Life Club

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We would like to thank the Luso Credit Union for sponsoring our February Renaissance Snack.