RTMS Review

December 1, 2022

Important Dates

  • December 7 - District Orchestra Concert

  • December 9 - Yearbook Club/Activity Pictures (all day)

  • December 12 - 6th Grade Chorus, Beginning Band, & Steel Drum Band Concert (6:30-7:30)

  • December 12 - Concert Band, Concert Chorus, Bucket Band & Jazz Ensemble Concert (7:45-8:45)

  • December 13 - Board of Education Meeting 7:00 p.m.

  • December 13 & 14 - MAP Testing

  • December 15 - PTC Dine & Share (Panda Express)

  • December 22 - Winter Carnival

  • December 23 - Winter Break begins (no school)


  • January 9 - Teacher Institute Day (no school)

  • January 10 - Classes Resume

  • January 16 - Martin Luther King Day (no school)

  • January 17 - Board of Education Meeting 7:00 p.m.

Please click on this link to see the 2022-22 District Calendar.

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Dear RTMS Families,

Last week's Thanksgiving Break gave us all the much needed time to think and reflect about all that we are grateful for in our lives. I am truly grateful to work in a district with such a supportive community of families, and with staff and students that work so incredibly hard each and every day. December is usually a very busy month, and we know this year will be no exception. We are working with our students to make sure that they take every opportunity to learn and grow, and we appreciate your encouragement at home.

We will be having our second round of MAP testing on December 13th and 14th. The winter MAP provides teachers and students a mid-point mark for overall learning and growth. Students and teachers alike use this information to set personal/individual goals, as well as class and grade level goals. You can help support your child's testing experience from home by making sure they go to bed at a reasonable hour (middle schoolers need extra sleep!), encouraging them to eat a healthy breakfast either at home or at school, reminding them to charge their Chromebooks the night before, and of course, encouraging them to do their best.

As temperatures are dropping, I would also like to take this time to remind families that students do wait outside before school begins unless it is snowing/raining, or if the temperature is below (or feels below) 15 degrees. Middle schoolers are not famous for dressing warmly in the winter (if you're looking for a laugh, The Holderness Family's song "This is a Coat" is pretty on the mark). Our LRC is available to students as early as 7:00 (with the exception of Thursday late start) to work or read quietly, and breakfast is served daily, as well. If students would like to come in and access one of these areas of the building, they simply need to stop in the office for a pass.

Please take a moment to read the rest of this newsletter, as there are several things that might be of interest to you and your family. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out.

In partnership,
Mary Krall-Meske


Parent Survey

For Fall 2022 Parent Teacher Conferences, we used a new appointment scheduling system called Meet the Teacher. Please take a moment to provide your feedback on Meet the Teacher.

Winter Carnival 2022

Students at River Trails Middle School will be celebrating

our 29th Winter Carnival on Thursday, December 22nd

Raffle Prizes and Holiday Boutique items are needed.

Raffle prizes are new items such as games, toys, sports equipment, accessories, gift cards, etc.

Boutique prizes can be new, gently used or re-gifted items such as jewelry, shirts, flip flops, hats, sweatshirts, stationary, stuffed animals and holiday items.

The proceeds earned from Winter Carnival will be donated to a charity chosen by our students and the Principal’s Fund. You can drop donations off in the office. Please place them in an envelope or bag labeled “winter carnival.”

Thank you very much for your support.

If you have any questions, please contact us,

Georgette Zitis and Alexandra Christopoulos



October & November Students of the Month

We are excited to announce the October students of the month, whose pictures have been proudly displayed in our main hallway for the past month. We also just announced our November students of the month during lunches this past week!

For October, congratulations to:

6th Grade

Academic (Core) - Alexia E.

Academic (Encore) - Laura D.

Character - Krystian R.

School Pride/Spirit - Jordan P.

7th Grade

Academic (Core) - Amber K.

Academic (Encore) - Nicole W.

Character - Marcel K.

School Pride/Spirit - Veer P.

8th Grade

Academic (Core) - Sofia C.

Academic (Encore) - Subin Y.

Character - Colin F.

School Pride/Spirit - Kayla K.

For November, congratulations to:

6th Grade

Academic (Core) - Sam M.

Academic (Encore) - Linnea S.

Character - Yana K.

School Pride/Spirit - Kyle C.

7th Grade

Academic (Core) - Sadaat A.

Academic (Encore) - Patricia P-O.

Character - Liam L.

School Pride/Spirit - Michael M.

8th Grade

Academic (Core) - Jayne K.

Academic (Encore) - Sofia F.

Character - Basil J.

School Pride/Spirit - Charlie S.

D26 Holiday Food & Gift Card Drive: December 5-16

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A Message from the SEL Team

This month during advisory, students continued to build upon their social emotional skills. The message of unity and being an upstander continued with a school-wide activity of Hate Has No Home at RTMS. In advisory, students took the time to identify how they can be upstanders and stand up and speak up against hate and bullying. Thank you to Mrs. Joob, RTMS art teacher, for her artistic talents in helping to create the RTMS Raven that displays the school-wide message.

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As a member of Wheeling Towhships LINK Together Coalition, the SEL Team and Mrs. Tracz (Health Teacher) was able to offer parents the opportunity to visit a Mock Teen Bedroom display during parent teacher conferences. The mock bedroom provided parents with the opportunity to learn about the signs of identifying substance use in their child’s bedroom. RTMS parents are invited to attend an upcoming Parent Night at Hersey High School on Wednesday, Dec. 7th. Please see the below flier for more information.

RTMS Social and Emotional Support Team:

Social Workers

Mandy Zavilla- azavilla@rtsd26.org 224-612-7648

Beth Kelpsch- bkelpsch@rtsd26.org 224-612-7704

School Psychologist

Ashley Nistor- anistor@rtsd26.org 224-612-7679

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D214 Electives Night

Attention Class of 2027 Families,

Please SAVE THE DATE for the Class of 2027 - 8th Grade Elective & Career Pathway Night on December 21st from 6:00 - 8:00 pm (in person) at John Hersey High School. See the link below for further information.

8th Grade Elective & Career Pathway Night

Hope to see your family on December 21st,

The JHHS Administration


Atención Familias de la Clase Graduanda 2027,

POR FAVOR GUARDE LA FECHA - Noche de orientación profesional y clases optativas de 8.° grado el 21 de diciembre de 6:00 pm. a 8:00 p.m. (en persona) en la escuela secundaria John Hersey. Consulte el siguiente enlace para obtener más información.

Noche de orientación profesional y optativa de 8.° grado

Espero ver a su familia el 21 de diciembre.
La administración de JHHS

PTC December Dine & Share

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Winter Break Show Choir Opportunity

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Avoid disappointment in May, order your yearbook right away!!

RTMS yearbook sales started Monday, October 3. Your student will receive a yearbook order form/envelope during Monday's Advisory period. Yearbooks can be ordered by:

1) Going to inter-state.com and entering the code 72523B.


2) Returning the completed order envelope with $25.00 cash or a check payable to River Trails Middle School. Thanks for your order!

8th Grade Yearbook Messages

It has been an 8th grade tradition at RTMS for family members to share a short personal message, including a picture of their 8th grader (typically from kindergarten, age 5 or 6) that will appear in the yearbook. The message typically offers an inspirational or congratulatory tone.

Messages and photos can easily be submitted electronically by using this link. You will need to be logged into a Gmail account. If you do not have a Gmail account, your message and photo can be emailed to sletzig@rtsd26.org.

The due date for submittals is January 13th 2023. The publishing company has set a hard deadline and we will not be able to accept photos or messages after this date!

THIS IS NOT A YEARBOOK ORDER! As noted above, to order your yearbook, follow this link and input the school code: 72523B

- - Reminders - -

Attendance Line: 847-298-1750, option 1

Bus Issues: Grand Prairie 847-640-2142

Daily announcements

Our daily student announcements are available for parents/guardians to access on our school website each day. If you scroll to the bottom of the homepage (Family Resources and Information), or if you click on Families at the top of the homepage, you will see a link to "Daily Announcements." If you follow us on Twitter or Facebook, you can also see a Week at a Glance graphic that will give you a quick view of all the weekly activities at RTMS.

How to Contact Us

Our office hours are 7:00-4:00, Monday through Friday.

Our main office number is 847-298-1750.

Main office

Elia Esparza-Viveros: eesparzaviveros@rtsd26.org

Jessica Escutia: jescutia@rtsd26.org

Lindsay Veller (nurse): lveller@rtsd26.org


Principal, Mary Krall-Meske:

mkrall@rtsd26.org or 224-612-7600

Assistant Principal, Kyle Henkel:

khenkel@rtsd26.org or 224-612-7601