Weekly Update

Shields Middle School

Rock the block!

Shields Middle School Instructional Priorities 2022-23

Teachers will provide appropriate grade-level text and student-centered assignments through small group instruction and frequent checks for understanding.​

Shields Middle School and Hillsborough County's Vision Statement

Preparing students for life.

A note from the Principal

Good Evening, Shields Families!

This is Deanna Fisher, principal of Shields Middle School. I’m contacting you this evening with our first weekly newsletter for the 2022-2023 school year. This newsletter includes important information for our families to ensure students have a safe and successful school year. It also includes some of the exciting things happening at our school this year like Cambridge, block scheduling, and our 6th Grade Sailfish Academy.

Shields is a Cambridge International School:

Shields has been approved to be a Cambridge International School. As a Cambridge school, our students will be exposed to an internationally accredited curriculum that is recognized by high schools and universities throughout the world. Students in our Cambridge Academy will take honors and high school level courses that will ensure they are academically prepared to take Dual Enrollment and Cambridge AICE courses when they transition into to high school.

Block Scheduling:

Shields will follow an A/B block schedule this school year. Instead of taking seven, 49-minute classes, students will only attend three, 100-minute classes each day and will take six classes per year. On A days students will attend periods 1 – 3 and on B days students will attend periods 4 – 6. The advantages of block scheduling include a reduction in class transitions and more instructional time for student-centered engaging lessons. The block schedule also allows us to shorten the student school day with a 3:30pm dismissal time every day. Unfortunately, our afternoon bus schedule has not changed so students needing to ride a school bus in the afternoon will be assigned to an after-school tutoring class from 3:30 - 4:30pm. The tutoring class is free of charge and will give students an opportunity to complete homework with the assistance of a certified teacher. Our bell schedule is included further down in the newsletter.

6th Grade Sailfish Academy:

Our 6th Grade students will have a fully operational campus of their own this year. The school district has redesigned the modular area behind our main campus and has added a second cafeteria and main office building. This means our 6th grade students will no longer need to transition from the modular area to the main campus. The two campuses will be fenced off from each other, and only share a common bus ramp and car rider line. We hope that having a space of their own will make the transition from elementary to middle school a little easier for our students.

Other Important Information:

We look forward to our students returning to school on Wednesday, August 10. Please read through the rest of this newsletter for additional important information. Information includes:

  • Student Calendar
  • Bell Schedule
  • Back to School “Rock the Block” Community Event on Saturday, August 6
  • Open House on August 8
  • District Dress Code Policy – Shields NO Longer Requires School Uniforms
  • Bus Information
  • Boys and Girls Club Registration
  • Online Tutoring Programs
  • Athletic Information
  • Free School Meal Program
  • Canvas
  • Volunteer Services

Thank you,

Deanna Fisher


2022-2023 Student Calendar

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2022-2023 Bell Schedule

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Listed below the suggested, school-wide supplies needed. For more specific supplies by class, please visit your student's Canvas pages for each teacher.

  • Pencils
  • Blue or Black pens
  • Wired headphones
  • Highlighters
  • 6 - Two pocket folders
  • Notebook paper (Wide Rule)
  • Backpack

Teacher wish list:

  • Sanitizer
  • Tissues
  • Dry erase markers
  • Copy paper

Dress Code Information

Shields Middle School will no longer enforce a mandatory uniform policy. Shields will follow the guidelines established in the Hillsborough County Student Code of Conduct. The Code of Conduct states the following:

The dress and grooming of students shall be that which contributes to the health and safety of the individual and which is non-disruptive of the educational activities and processes of a school. The definition of appropriate dress shall vary with the age of the student, the program of instruction, and the heating/cooling system of the building.

Students have the right:

  • to dress as they choose as long as their dress meets the approved dress and grooming regulations, does not disrupt school activities, is not obscene or defamatory, and does not endanger the physical health or safety of themselves or others.
  • Students have the responsibility to dress and groom in such a manner to reflect cleanliness, modesty, safety and good taste; become familiar with and adhere to approved dress and grooming regulations of the School Board of Hillsborough County.
In accordance with F.S. 1006.07, students shall not wear clothing that exposes underwear or body parts in an indecent or vulgar manner.

Adherence to the Dress Code and Student Code of Conduct is a condition for participation in extracurricular activities. (F.S. 1006.15)

  • Shoes shall be worn. Skate tennis shoes (Wheelies) and bedroom slippers are unacceptable and not allowed.
  • Clothing that exposes the entire shoulder, tube tops, spaghetti straps, or similar type of clothing may only be worn with a blouse or shirt. Clothing exposing the torso or the midriff, either front, back, or sides shall not be worn. Underwear shall not be visible. Clothing shall not expose the mid-chest area. Clothing not properly fastened or with tears that are indecent shall not be worn. Clothing traditionally designed as undergarments or sleepwear shall not be worn as outer garments. All pants and shorts shall be secured at the waist. Boys’ shirts shall have sleeves. Mini-skirts, mini-dresses, and short shorts shall not be permitted. Hemlines shall be no shorter than fingertip length.
  • Head coverings shall not be worn in the building unless required for religious observance or health-related reasons.
  • Garments and/or jewelry that display or suggest sexual, vulgar, drug, gang, weapons, or alcohol-related wording or graphics, or that provoke or may tend to provoke violence or disruption in the school, shall not be worn. Wallet chains shall not be worn
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The safety of students is the number one priority of the Transportation Department. Students living two or more miles from the assigned school and exceptional education students with specialized transportation need to qualify for transportation services according to state statute. Students living within two miles may qualify for transportation due to hazardous walking conditions as defined by the State.

Students who are eligible for pupil transportation services are assigned to a specific bus and stop. Students must use the bus stop of record that coincides with their residence (as assigned by the student's bus pass) and are not authorized to ride other buses. To locate your student's bus route number and stop please see the list of bus routes attached below. Parent notes authorizing a student to ride a different bus are not accepted. Requests due to a family hardship or emergency situation must be submitted to a school administrator for approval by the principal and the General Director of Transportation or designee.

If a student boards at an unauthorized stop or on an unauthorized bus, the driver will notify a school administrator who will contact the parent. If the student continues unauthorized boarding, a disciplinary referral will be submitted to the school administration.

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Paper 24/7 Tutoring for Shields students

Help is Here. Anytime. Anywhere.

Hillsborough students grade 6-12 have unlimited, on-demand access to free academic support through Paper. Need someone to talk through a particularly tough math problem? A Paper Tutor will be there to assist students within seconds. Need someone to read an essay and make suggestions on how you can improve it before submitting? A Paper Tutor will be there to assist students.

No matter what a student's academic needs are, Paper’s expert learning assistants are available to help 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. Just log in and ask a question! Students can login through Clever by clicking on the Paper icon.

Unlimited, Expert Support for Students, No Costs for Families.

Paper is a free resource for all Hillsborough students grades 6-12. Any student can connect and speak with a tutor for 30 minutes or 6 hours. Their usage will never be capped and families will not have to pay a cent for seeking assistance.

When working with a Paper Tutor, students should not expect to receive answers. Instead, their tutor will ask them guiding questions to get students thinking critically about what they know, what they’ve tried, where any misunderstandings are, and how to move forward.

Try It Now or RSVP

To speak to a tutor immediately, students can login to their Clever accounts and click the Paper icon.

To learn more about how Paper works, parents and guardians can sign up for Q&A sessions in English and Spanish and speak with a member of the Paper team directly. Should you have any immediate questions, feel free to reach out to parents@paper.com.

https://youtu.be/WT1wB26qb9k (informational video link)
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Athletic Resources

Basketball season begins August 22, 2022, and all students must have a sports physical completed and turned in prior to participation. For information regarding requirements that must be completed in order to participate in an athletic event please visit our athletic resource webpage at Athletics Packet (hillsboroughschools.org)

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Please submit your Household Meal Benefit application

Please review the form below for Student Nutrition Services updates, protocols, and information. Please note that Shields is a Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) school, which means that breakfast and lunch are free for all students.

Parents are encouraged to submit a household meal benefit application either online at www.sdhc.k12.fl.us/sns, or via a paper application. A household application means that parents complete only one application for all children in the same home. Parents can learn about the status of their application by calling 1‐866‐544‐5575.
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HCPS will continue to use Canvas as a learning and communication tool in 22/23. The ATTACHMENTS Below provides parents and guardians with helpful information for using Canvas to support and monitor student academic progress.
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