Principal's Newsletter

Sam Barlow High School ~ November 5, 2020


By the time you receive this Newsletter the nation will still be grappling with the outcome of the 2020 election results. While we are aware of the outcomes of the state and local elections, the final outcome of the Presidential election is still being determined. I am sure all of us, regardless of desired outcome, will be anxiously awaiting a final decision on who our next President will be.

With elections in mind I wanted to take a brief minute to share some thoughts and to propose an idea. You see when I look at the current climate in our country, state, and region I see constant division and a winner take all attitude. I see people taking up sides without truly listening to the issues and concerns or taking the time to look at the facts and data. We have consistently found ways to gather charged information to support our viewpoints without being open to listening to actual experiences, feelings, and tackle historical context to truly gain an understanding of what our neighbors, friends, and community members experience. If we want to grow as a community we need to be able to put down our guard, open our hearts and minds, and be ready to address much needed change.

Since 1998 I have been a member of the Barlow Community. As a teacher, coach, Assistant Principal, Principal, and most importantly, a parent. I am all in when it comes to Barlow and a true Bruin. For twenty-two years I have believed in and bled blue and gold (even as a Thunderbird, I still supported the Bruins). While that is the case, none of those 22 years has been perfect, nor have the experiences of all students equal. We have serious work to do if we want to claim that we are "Inspiring and Empowering Each Student" and that we want "Culturally responsive graduates who will thrive in an ever-changing global community".

Now for the proposal. I want you all to know that over the next several months we will be asking students, parents, and staff members to share their experiences and perspectives about the Barlow experience. We will then be inviting student focus groups to join together and discuss what is working at Barlow, what is not working so well, and to identify things we need to change to make our school inclusive of all students, families, and community members. We will be putting down our guard, opening our hearts and minds, and addressing some much needed change. But no matter what, we are going to be kind to one another, we will not alienate or marginalize anyone, and we will continue to be Barlow Bruins throughout the process. I am truly looking forward to going through this process and building a stronger school community and can only hope you are all willing to participate as well.

Be safe, stay healthy and Go Bruins!


The first Quad of the year is coming to an end on Thursday November 12th and students will be receiving final grades in Periods 1-4. That's right, they will be earning a grade in these classes that will go on their transcript and serve as a final mark.

Please see the itemized list below so you can work with your student over the next week to ensure they have done everything possible to be successful.

  • Look at their current grade report in ParentVue to make sure they are not missing any work. If they are, teachers will be accepting all late work from 10/12-11/12. It is important to get work turned in, even if it is only partially done. Some points are better than no points.
  • Students will have until 11:59 pm on Thursday 11/12 to submit work. I would not suggest putting things off until the last minute so be mindful of the time.
  • If you have questions about work, assignments, or your students grade please don't hesitate to reach out to your student's teacher. They are there to help.
  • The week of November 9th only has three instructional days. 11/9, 11/10, and 11/12. Wednesday 11/11 is Veteran's Day and a holiday, and Friday 11/13 is a grading day. Make sure your student is using all available time to complete their assignments.

As the parent of a high school student, I know you may hear the "Don't worry, I've got it all taken care of" when you ask your student about their grade. While I support and work towards independent learners, sometimes a bit of oversight and the attitude of "Show Me" never hurts in times like these. Being involved is always a good thing.


On Monday November 9th and Tuesday November 10th from 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm some students will be returning textbooks and resources from Quad 1 classes. To return materials, students will need to go to the main entry of the building and return their materials to the Barlow Staff members under the tents. It is extremely important that these items are returned as we must issue them again for students in Quad 2. Items that are not returned will be charged to student accounts.

Please select the following link to determine if you will need to return your class materials: Textbook and Resource Return Quad 1.


Quad 2 will begin on Monday, November 16th. During this Quad, students will continue to meet daily in their Advisory Class and be focusing on Periods 5, 6, and 7. Students who are enrolled in either Jazz Band or Barlow Sound will meet during 8th period.

Your student will be receiving their new Google Classroom Codes by the afternoon of Friday, November 13th. Make sure they are checking their school email for the new codes. These are the codes that will get them access to their new teachers, new classes, and new lessons and assignments.

As a support, and with additional time to get caught up, students who are in need of finishing Incomplete Recovery from last spring, or are in need of completing Credit Recovery from past classes, will have the chance to use 8th Period to take care of those missing credits. If your student needs to make up credit, please have them contact their counselor to get additional details.

Please see the SBHS 20-21 HS Distance Learning Schedule Quad 2 for a printable version of the schedule.


Textbook and Resource checkout has been scheduled to take place on Wednesday, November 18th between 12pm-6pm. There are a limited number of classes that will require the use of a textbook or additional materials as many resources can be found online and teachers who are requiring students to check out a textbook will let them know in advance so arrangements can be made.

Students who do not own a graphing calculator, or can not purchase one of their own can check out a TI-84 on either of these two days. Your math teacher will let you know if you will need this type of calculator for the class you are enrolled in.

Please see the Textbook and Resource Checkout Quad 2 to determine if you need to visit Barlow to get a textbook or other resource for your student.


Even amidst a pandemic, the Barlow Yearbook students produced a yearbook for the 2019-2020 school year. We are very excited to distribute this to our students so they can look back on the year and relive some of the great memories that were made last year. There is so much to be proud of, even though the year was cut short.

We will be distributing Yearbooks on Wednesday, November 18th from 12:00pm-6:00pm at Sam Barlow High School. We chose this date because our Yearbook students will not be in that class until the second Quad and we wanted them to be a part of the distribution process. After all, many of them were involved in building this amazing book.

In addition to the Barlow yearbook, ninth graders who came from Gordon Russell will also be able to pick up their yearbook at the same time.


Each year we look forward to meeting with parents to discuss both the successes and challenges that students face in school during Parent/Teacher Conferences. Through these conversations, we learn so much about our students and families. We also learn what we need to do differently to help students be more successful as well as helping them to have continued success. This year, we are excited to announce that we will be hosting Parent/Teacher Conferences on Monday November 23 and Tuesday November 24 from 4:30pm-8:30pm each night.

Our Parent/Teacher Conferences will be organized through your student's Advisory teacher and take the format of a student led conference. Each family will have the chance to select a 15 minutes time block to meet with the Advisory teacher and to share: what went well in Quad 1, some of the challenges that your student might be facing during distance learning, and to design some strategies for Quad 2 success.

On Monday, November 16, you will receive an email from your students Advisory teacher with a link to SignUpGenius. This link will allow you to request a fifteen minute time slot for one of those two nights. Upon completing the request, you will get a confirmation email with a link to Google Meet where you will be able to virtually meet with your students teacher.

We look forward to meeting with each of our students and their family to share some of the great things happening in classrooms. Thanks for partnering with us to make this a possibility.


Over the past ten years we have partnered with KGW to contribute donations to their "Great Toy Drive". Each year we have worked hard to spread the concept of giving, supporting our community, and focusing on others during the holiday season. Now, more than ever, families are going to need the support of their community to bring some normalcy to the holiday season. Please join us in contributing each Wednesday.

Starting on Wednesday, November 18th, drop off toy barrels will be placed at our main entrance. You can drive through between the hours of 8:30am-4:30pm and drop off unwrapped toys, stuffed animals, or clothing items for small children to teens. We will run collections on the following dates: November 18th, December 2nd, and December 9th.

Let's work hard as the Barlow Community to help those in need and to spread some amazing holiday spirit.


In order to connect with our school community, Principal Bruce Schmidt will be hosting a monthly parent meeting on the fourth Monday of each month. During this meeting, Mr. Schmidt will present on a variety of topics to inform participants of what is taking place at Barlow. These meetings are never "one way" as Mr. Schmidt will gather input from parents and guardians to help make the Barlow experience quality for all.

The meeting dates for the 2020-21 school year are: 11/30, 1/25, 2/22, 3/29, 4/26, and 5/24. The meetings begin at 7:00pm and end at 8:30pm and will be conducted virtually through the use of Google Meets. Each month an invitation will be sent to you with an agenda via email outlining the topics for discussion along with the link to the Google Meet. We look forward to seeing you at the end of this month.

Who can help?

If you have concerns about your child’s schedule or other issues, the following are the staff to contact. Email is a quick way to get answers to the questions you might have.


A-E Michelle Kahan

F-J Erin Boelow

K-Ra Oscar Rethwill

Re-Z Molly Ninneman


Kimberly Louvin


Paul Quirke


Karen Galicia


Ryan Alexander


A-G Celeste Pellicci

H-O Melanie Marrone

P-Z Kelly Hart