Finn Hill Falcon Flyer
Week of January 17, 2022
- Thank you to the families who attended this morning's Coffee with the Principals event! We appreciate your kind words and support, and we hope the time was well-spent and informative. Mark your calendars: our next Coffee with the Principals is scheduled for Tuesday, February 22 from 7:00-8:00 pm via Teams. A link will be sent out closer to the date for parents to attend this live event.
- We would like to recognize all of our staff at FHMS who are teaching in incredibly difficult times. They show up every day willing to do whatever it takes to help our building stay open and keep kids safe while still learning. Dr. Mehlberg and I are so proud to work alongside them. If you are so inclined, you may want to drop your children's teachers a quick message to let them know that what they are doing does not go unnoticed or unappreciated. We love our FHMS staff!
This Week at FHMS
Monday, January 17
- No School-MLK Day
Tuesday, January 18
- Registration Day (7th to 8th)
- Tenative-FHMS Incoming 6th Grade Virtual Open House
- PTSA General Membership Meeting, 7:00 pm, via Teams
Friday, January 21
- Registration Day (7th to 8th)
Week of 1/24
- FastBridge Winter Benchmark Testing-Math
Monday, January 24
- 9th Grade JHS Counselor Registration Visit
Tuesday, January 25
- Registration Day (6th to 7th Grade)
Thursday, January 27
- 9th Grade JHS Counselor Registration Visit
Friday, January 28
- End of 1st Semester
- Registration Day (6th to 7th Grade)
- Please do not send students to school who have symptoms. As a reminder, please do not send your child to school if they are experiencing any symptoms, have tested positive or have been identified as a close contact and are not fully vaccinated. In these instances, keep your child at home and contact the school for further instructions for when it is okay to return to school.
- Please call in your students' absences. As a reminder, please make sure to call the attendance line or email the attendance secretary to tell us the reason why your student is absent. This is especially important if your student is symptomatic. Knowing why students are absent helps our attendance team maintain accurate records and is crucial for our COVID team to perform contact tracing effectively and efficiently. Additionally, if you are choosing to keep your child home as a precautionary measure, we have a code for that and will excuse the absence and mark it accordingly. Thank you in advance for your help with record keeping!
Finn Hill Build and Fly Session: Sunday, January 16, 2022
This is a quick reminder that we are having a Build and Fly session in the Finn Hill Middle School gymnasium this Sunday, January 16 from 12:00 o’clock noon to 4:00 o’clock pm. Due to COVID concerns, we didn’t know whether or not there would be a Finn Hill build and fly session this month until just recently. In any event, please come to the gym wearing your face mask and be prepared to keep it on for the duration of the session. If you need to drink or eat something, you will have to do that outside of the gym away from all the other participants.
If you have already built the Finn Hill R.O.G. and want to build something more advanced, we have a new kit called the Blatter 40 R.O.G., which can fly for over 2 minutes with the right size rubber motor:
If you are new to this hobby and have only built a slip-together Guillow’s Sky Streak and the BEAMSBOX FP catapult glider, then you are ready for building the Mountain Lion MK. III:
After the Mountain Lion, we recommend building and flying the Student Cruiser:
After the Student Cruiser, you can build the Finn Hill R.O.G.: The Finn Hill R.O.G. features landing gear and aileron and rudder trim tabs. The Finn Hill R.O.G. requires cutting balsa sticks to the correct length and angle and gluing them together to make the wing, stabilizer, and rudder. The model takes off and lands on its own gear.
We also have other kits available that can be built and flown in one or two build-and-fly sessions.
I hope to see you at this upcoming session.
SAM 8 Club Volunteer
School Clubs/Music Ensembles Picture Day Postponed
LWSD Honor Ensembles Canceled
FYI: The LWSD honor events for middle school music have been canceled due to the recent COVID surge. They might be rescheduled later in the year if it happens to work out.
Cell Phone Policy
As you may be aware, FHMS has implemented a new collaboratively agreed upon cell phone policy that went into effect January 11.
We consider this a “trial run" with data collection throughout the month of January to assess the new system, collect feedback, and adjust as needed. We had 62 responses to staff survey, with several groups represented, including front office staff, paras and IAs, teachers, and counselors.
The new agreed upon policy is as follows:
- Students may have their phones during lunch. Students know that phones should not go to the restroom with them at any time, unless accommodations are given for medical reasons.
- If teachers or school staff see a student with their phone out during academic/learning time (so NO phones out in classrooms), they ask the student to put the phone away, and record the incident in a shared Excel tracking sheet. The tracking sheet will be monitored daily by Sandra Stevens, who will alert administration when students reach three (3) reminders. At that time, Sandra will reset the student totals, and note that those students have received their first consequence.
- As decided by staff, the threshold for consequences will be three (3) reminders over any period of time. Once a student has his/her/their third reminder entered into the Excel spreadsheet, they will have a phone conference with an administrator and a parent to reinforce the policy, and the purpose of the policy. The second time he/she/they reach 3 three (3) consequences, he/she/they will have a progressive consequence, to be determined by the administration.
It is important to know the reasoning for this decision: We recognize that students' phones are an important part of how they communicate, and we want them to know we care and want to work with them to make the school day great. We do also feel that their learning time suffers when they are distracted by their phones, and so we are all going to hold them accountable for their classroom actions. If we see a phone, it will be documented.
It is also important to note that this is a trial run. We want students to be successful, but we also need to make sure they are holding up their end of the deal by keeping all phones away during class.
As of Friday morning, NO STUDENTS received a consequence for having phones out in class.
Reminder: Turn in Required Planner Signature Pages ASAP
Students must turn in the form in the front of the planner signed by their parents and themselves and bring it to school. These forms were due in September, and Ms. Stephens is trying to complete this task for FHMS as soon as possible so we are in compliance with district expectations.
Season 3 Middle School Athletics Program Canceled
Given the new requirements to test all athletes in high-risk sports three times a week regardless of vaccination status, our middle schools will be unable to offer wrestling and girls basketball this February.
Our middle schools proudly provide an opportunity for hundreds of students at each school to engage in athletics each season. Under the new testing requirements, it was determined that the schools had insufficient staff or time to be able to meet the health department’s new testing requirements which both increased the frequency of testing and expanded the number of students that needed to be tested. The previous guidance for high-risk sports like wrestling and basketball was to test unvaccinated athletes twice a week.
To put this in context, in the fall an average middle school program had to administer 98 tests per week (at that time most 6th graders and many 7th graders we not eligible to be vaccinated). This winter, given our current registration numbers, the average middle school would need to administer 330 tests per week. At more than three times the volume from this fall, it is expected that the testing process would consume most of the practice time available to teams and need additional staff to enter the results of those tests into the public health database.
Refunds will be issued to all students that have registered and paid for season 3.
Middle schools will be exploring whether they are able to offer an intramural program for interested students as an alternative. Each school will communicate to its families and students should they be able to offer alternative programming.
Currently, all middle schools are planning on being able to resume athletic programs for season 4 as those sports (co-ed track and field, girls’ volleyball, girls’ tennis) are not currently subject to testing requirements.
Opportunity for Students!
JHS Registration Information for the Class of 2026
Registration Information for the class of 2026 will be posted to the JHS Counseling website (https://jhs.lwsd.org/counseling/course-registration) by January 20, 2022. Students and families will find a dedicated page for the class of 2026 that includes a detailed presentation, voiced by a JHS counselor. Course catalog information as well as tools to assist students in planning and information about required courses will be included. There is also a link for parents and students to submit questions that will be answered in our FAQ section.
For students attending Kamiakin Middle School (1/21 and 1/25), Finn Hill Middle School and EAS (1/24 and 1/27), counselors will be visiting later this month to present this information.
Come Work with Us!
We have three opportunities for employment at FHMS right now:
1. Part-Time Paraprofessional (4.75 hours)
This position is currently posted and accepting applications. A paraprofessional supports students with special needs in classrooms.
2. Instructional Assistant (3.2 hours)
This position will be posted next week. This position has the most flexibility with scheduling and job responsibilities, including clerical tasks, student supervision, and classroom support.
Contact the front office if you have questions about either of these two positions.
3. All Subs
As a sub, you can work the days you want in the area you want and be a hero for school staff and students by providing support. LWSD can open doors for various experiences and job openings. Many of our classified staff started out as subs. Apply at LWSD Frontline Teacher Substitutes to become a Substitute Classroom Teacher. Apply at LWSD Frontline Classified Substitutes to become a Substitute Instructional Assistant, Paraeducator, or Office Professional.
- Substitute Teacher: Starting at $27.28/hour
- Substitute Paraeducator: $19.51/hour
- Substitute Instructional Assistant: $16.86 per hour
- Substitute Office Professional: $22.44/hour
Any questions? Contact us Tina Ayer, Substitute Coordinator at email@example.com.
The PTSA Perch
- The next PTSA community meeting is Tuesday January 18th @ 7pm. Via Microsoft Teams, so please check your email for the meeting link. If you need a link, contact firstname.lastname@example.org .
- FHMS PTSA is hosting a Virtual Paint Night Fundraiser on Sunday January 23rd, at 5pm! We will be led by a FHMS parent in painting an adorable snowman. Cost is $25 for PTSA member, $35 for non-member. All are welcome. To sign up, go to: https://fhmsptsa.org/Packet/Painting/FamilyInfoSignedInPacketPage/0
- FHMS PTSA is hosting a FREE Family tech talk. Trend Micro and PTO Today present a virtual tech talk focusing on inspiring digital responsibility. All are welcome. To join the conversation, go to the following link: https://trendmicro.zoom.us/j/97488686785?pwd=TFVEWXFhQ3ZvTXU2dXI0T2RwNEtCdz09
Information about LWSD Levies
Finn Hill Middle School
Each student will graduate prepared to lead a rewarding, responsible life as a contributing member of our community and greater society.
Every student future ready: Prepared for college, Prepared for the global workplace, Prepared for personal success