Crusader Times

September 2017

Words From Our Principal

Hello Crusaders,

It’s hard to believe that we are fall break will start next week. We started this year very strong and our students already have had many accomplishments. In sports our flag football, softball, and baseball teams started their season by winning their games. At the SUHSD solar car competition BVM won 1st place!! Our mariachi and band have performed at various events and our art class makes sure our office always has beautiful student art work. Our students work very hard to achieve academically, but also participate in clubs, afterschool activities, and athletic competitions. I wish all of you a well-deserved break. Take this time to re-charge those batteries and spend time with family and friends. See you all in two weeks!

Eduardo Reyes, Ed.D.

Suicide Prevention and Support

Suicide is a serious public health problem that can have lasting harmful effects on individuals, families, and communities. While its causes are complex and determined by multiple factors, the goal of suicide prevention is simple: Reduce factors that increase risk (i.e. risk factors) and increase factors that promote resilience (i.e. protective factors). Ideally, prevention addresses all levels of influence: individual, relationship, community, and societal. Effective prevention strategies are needed to promote awareness of suicide and encourage a commitment to social change.

Need Help? Know Someone Who Does?

Contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Both are free and confidential. You’ll be connected to a skilled, trained counselor in your area.

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Students Speaking Out

School Violence

Violence and the threat of violence interfere with a positive learning environment. Violence never resolves conflict, and usually leads to more conflict. A violent environment breeds fear and retaliation. Violence can take many different forms including fighting, bullying, relationship violence, weapons on campus, and gang activity.

Why Speak Out?

All students are impacted when violence is tolerated at school. Witnesses to violence may live in fear of becoming a target.

Violence causes physical and emotional injuries. The victims of violence may be afraid to come forward. The witnesses of violence need to know that violence is not acceptable. The perpetrators of violence need to learn new ways to solve their problems.

You deserved a peaceful campus where you can focus on education and developing the skills you need to meet your goals in life.

Make an anonymous phone or web tip about dangerous activity or crime at school or in the community and be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

What to do?

If you know about violence or threats of violence at school, tell an adult you trust or contact Students Speaking Out. You can also utilize the P3 Anonymous Tip App.

Your voice can make a difference by creating an environment where violence is not tolerated and all students are safe to learn and grow.

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SUHSD Solar Car Competition

On September 9th, BVM competed in the district wide middle school solar car competition. BVM had 3 of the 6 cars in the final race and ultimately won first place for speed!

Congratulations BVM Solar Car Team: Tatianna Beltran, Samantha Bianes, Yamel Cardenas, Lourdes Castruita, Chase Church, Sofia Jackson, Ricardo Hernandez, Quentin Miller, Diane Ramirez, and Pablo Ishiro Shimizu.
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iThink Big Student Assembly

On September 8th, BVM hosted the iThink Big assembly crew. They played some fun games and spoke to our 7th grade students about the importance being kind to one another and building each other up.

BVM thanks the iThink Big crew for doing such a great job and delivering this important lesson.

We are looking forward to seeing them again on October 20th when they will be speaking to our 8th grade students.

San Diego Zoo Safari Park Field Trip

On September 6th, a group of students attended the San Diego Zoo Safari Park. The students learned about the science of saving animals worldwide, in the hopes of fostering an understanding of protecting our wild life.

The students specifically learned about the California Condor. In 1982, there were only 25 condors in the wild. Some of the threats were due to microtrash, power line collisions, and lead poisoning. Therefore, in 1987, the zoo rescued the wild condors and started a breeding program. Now there are more than 470 condors alive and growing. Over half of these condors were reintroduced into the wild.

The students learned how the scientists at the zoo collect and bank cells of different animals so that they can be saved at their frozen zoo, just in case an animal becomes extinct and/or to study the animal’s genetics. Once the students understood the process they did a hands-on lab where they used mock solutions to grow the cells of the California Condor. It was an amazing experience for the students and we are so grateful for this opportunity!

Community Based Learning

Today the BVM’s Special Ed Moderate program took part in a special community based learning opportunity. When studying Life Science in class, students have been learning about food cycles, food chains, and food webs. In a joint effort with our partners at the Living Coast Discovery Center, and our Special Ed Moderate class friends at National City Middle School, our moderate student’s got to connect the life science knowledge they learned in class in a hands on format. With the support of the Living Coast Discovery Center, the joint effort between middle schools was a great success. Students participated in the dissection of a squid in an effort to learn how pollution can effect a species on a food web, and the role that creature plays on other animals within their greater food web. Learning opportunities like this are a great way to connect the classroom experience with a hands-on experience to have a greater understanding of the curriculum, and work on social skills with peers, while making new friends.

ASB Little/Big Event

On September 1st, BVM ASB held a meet and greet with the BVH ASB at Bonita Vista High School. This was followed by BVM ASB assisting BVH set up for their 2nd homecoming game. A big thank you for BVH ASB and ASB Advisor, Chris Alvarez for hosting the event and providing the opportunity for BVM ASB to shadow. Our students had a great time! :)

Student Art Work

Super flowers in watercolor now on display in front office and library.

Staff of the Month

This month we would like to congratulate our Special Education Teacher, Gigi Romo, who is continuously going above and beyond for her moderate/severe students and ensuring that their needs are being met. The students are continuously participating in activities in and outside of campus which requires a lot of organization and management. On top of it all, you will always find Gigi with a smile at all times! She is a pleasure to work with and her students truly enjoy having her as their teacher. Thank you Gigi for all that you do for your students!

Health Corner

Keeping Emergency and Health Cards Current

I would like to remind parents and guardians to update their emergency contact information and phone numbers via the campus portal and also on their student’s emergency cards when any changes occur. You may have your student come to the health office to obtain a new emergency card or parents may request them in person. Health cards can also be obtained from the nurse if any medical conditions or other information needs to be updated. It is vital that the school has up-to date parent/guardian and emergency contact information for all students and current information for all health conditions.

Enjoy your Fall Break.

Christine Stoddard, BSN, RN, PHN

Office: 619-397-2206

Counselors Corner

7th Grade Students and Parents,

The Compact for Success visit is fast approaching and scheduled for Saturday, October 21, 2017. Counselors have distributed The SDSU Campus Visit registration forms in your Advisory classrooms. If you haven’t done so, please fill out the form and have parent sign it and return it to the Counseling Center. The Registration Form is also available on the school website and you can print from there. Make sure to check whether you/your parent will be taking the bus or driving to the event and include total number of people attending. Please note that a parent/guardian must attend with every student and must be 18 years of age or older.

Compact for Success is a great program that provides a wealth of helpful information on the college process. It is never too early to start planning and get student “college and career ready”! There will be a keynote address by the President of SDSU and Sweetwater Union High School District Superintendent. There will be informational workshops, campus tours, entertainment, including a music DJ, Compact for Success/SDSU t-shirt with lunch provided by Rubio’s.

This event is FREE. Please send in registration forms right away, as space is filling up quickly and is limited.

On an Academic note: As a reminder, progress reports have come out for the first quarter and as you have learned, navigating the waters of 7th grade can be challenging, yet exhilarating. Please continue to use all of the academic resources and interventions (i.e Tutoring, utilizing an Advisory pass, Saturday scholars) that we offer and remember that you have time to raise your grades if needed and to continue with your successes. The next progress report will come out on October 30, 2017. A final report card ends on December 15, 2017 where all your first semester efforts result into credits that are reported on a transcript. Here’s to powering through this first semester!


BVM Counseling Team

Digital Citizenship

Fake News is a hot topic in the digital world and middle schoolers must decide for themselves how best to avoid it. Let’s face it, we are bombarded everyday with media messages, many misleading and false. According to Green (2017) from KQED, a northern California public television and radio station, “the internet is also teeming with bogus information sites that masquerade as real news … [Snopes, a fact-checking site, maintains a comprehensive and growing list of fake news outlets.]”

Aside from fact checking, middle schoolers can begin to think critically about information they read every day online by using this question framework from Common Sense Media (

1) Who created this message? (Is it from a credible source?)

2) How does the message try to attract attention? (Does it use ALL CAPS in the headlines? Does it use powerful images?)

3) Why do you think this message was created? (What type of action do you think the author wants you to do after reading?)

4) When was the message published? (Is there a missing date? Incorrect date? Is it old?)

5) How did the message make you feel? (Do you think others might feel the same way?)

In addition to spotting fake messages, you may be wondering how to find resources you can trust for school projects. Where do you start? How can you find credible, reliable, and authoritative information consistently? Sweetwater Union High School District pays for resources that are available to you both at school and home via database links and passwords. Here is an example: Worldbook Encyclopedia

Username: sweet

Password: water

And you can find more databases on the library webpages here. Also, the library has many print nonfiction books on topics you are studying in class. Be sure to check out the library the next time you want accurate information.


Green, M. (2017). The Honest Truth about Fake News and How Not to Fall for it (with Lesson Plan). KQED News. Retrieved from

Technology Corner

Digital citizenship is the responsible use of technology in the digital communities we are a part of. As you begin to participate more in the digital world it is important to realize that the good citizenship skills you utilize in the real word are just as important in the digital world. Some examples of good digital citizenship skills would be:

  • an understanding of privacy and security
  • understanding how to have healthy communication and relationships online
  • avoiding and preventing cyber bullying
  • maintaining a positive digital footprint
  • developing digital literacy

This year we will be begin introducing and practicing these skills to prepare you for success in the digital world in the future. For more information on digital citizenship please visit:

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Important Dates

09/18 - 10/03 - Fall Break

10/07 - Saturday School and Saturday Scholars

10/11 - Picture Make-up Day and PTSA Meeting

10/14 - Saturday School and Saturday Scholars

10/18 - ELAC Meeting and Coffee with the Principal

10/21 - Saturday School and Saturday Scholars

10/24 - Middle School Success 101: Interventions and Promotion Requirements

10/25 - School Site Council Meeting

10/27 - Dia de Los Muertos Festival

10/28 - Saturday School and Saturday Scholars