Spartan Herald October 2018

Building Community Empowering Learners Inspiring Creativity

Curious Learners Sharing Their Accomplishments

Dear Schmucker Students and Families,

Curiosity - a strong desire to know or learn something. This school year we have talked about embracing curiosity to inspire learning. Now it is time to share with families what our students have learned!

We are happy to invite you to this year's student-led conferences on Monday, October 22 and Wednesday, October 24 from 5:00 pm until 8:15 pm. Students are building Google Slides using their Chromebooks to share their progress this year. They will have practiced the skills necessary so they can lead their own conference to celebrate their accomplishments and set goals for the future.

In addition to students sharing their hard work with you, we will also be hosting other events during conferences. The NJHS will be holding a bake sale and pumpkin sale in the cafeteria as a fundraiser to support their organization’s charities, and the PTO will be hosting a book fair in the Seminar Room. The PHM Young Adult Program will have its store open. There you can find many items created by students in the program. Parents, guardians, and students who need help with HAC or Canvas can go to the LGI for assistance. Mrs. Hoover and Mrs. Walton will also be available in the IMC to share information about the 21st Century Scholars program.

You will be receiving more detailed information about conferences in the mail along with an attendance confirmation sheet. Please be sure your child returns the form to his/her Advisory teacher, or you can email your child's Advisory teacher by October 12, 2018 to confirm your attendance for one of the evenings. Our goal is to have 100% participation. We look forward to seeing you at conferences!

With your child in mind,

Lavon Dean-Null


Internet Safety/Anti-Bullying


During the last few weeks, your children have been learning about internet safety precautions through their Advisory classes. These lessons are designed to educate students on the potential hazards of social media and overall internet usage. P-H-M's Chromebook Guidelines and the Acceptable Use Policy includes great tips for both students and parents. You can find that information here.

At the same time, students have also participated in anti-bullying lessons with the goal of bringing awareness about what bullying is and the lasting impact it can have on both the bully and bullied. If you are made aware of any instance that might involve bullying, it can be reported on the corporation's webpage here, or by contacting Schmucker administrators. P-H-M is committed to making school a bully-free zone!

It would be appreciated if you would continue these conversations at home, and reinforce the ideas they are learning at school about these two very important topics.

Important Reminders

What a great start to the year! Our students are doing incredible things every single day in their classrooms and we could not be more proud of our Spartans! A couple of friendly reminders:

  • Cell phones are NOT to be out during the school day. The first offense is confiscation for the day. The second offense is confiscation until a parent picks the phone up at school.
  • Now that we are well into the swing of things and students know their schedule and routine, it's important to remind students to be on time to class. After both a verbal warning and a contact home, students will have consequences which could include after school detention. Please remind your students about the importance of being on time and ready to learn.
  • This year a no gaming policy has been put in place so that students have fewer distractions. Please encourage students that their Chromebook is to be used only for academic purposes during the school day
  • Thank you to all parents who drop off and pick up their students in the car rider line. We are moving much faster and still keeping kids safe. Just a reminder to please pull forward when directed so that we can get as many cars as we can along the south side sidewalk.
  • "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted." -Aesop

Important Dates

Oct 2 - Five Star Kick-Off

Oct 17 - Picture Re-Take

Oct 22 - Student Led Conference

Oct 22-25 - Book Fair

Oct 24 - Student Led Conference

Oct 24 - End of 1st Grading Period

Oct 25 - Sparty Party!

Oct 26 - Fall Recess

Oct 29 - Fall Recess

Nov 2 - 6th Grade Dance, 4pm.

Check out all events on our Website calendar: SMS Calendar

Please read our October PTO newsletter by clicking the link below

Preparing for ILEARN - Practice Tests Available

As you know, Indiana is moving to a new assessment this year called ILEARN. ILEARN measures student achievement and growth according to Indiana Academic Standards. ILEARN is the summative accountability assessment for Indiana students and assesses all our students in math and language arts. The science assessment will be administered to 6th grade students only. We continue to use AIRWays to give students and teachers authentic practice with ILEARN, as the vendor for that product is AIR (the American Institute for Research). You can see example test questions on the AIRWays website. Click the link above and select "Take the Practice Test." You can sign in as a guest and look at an example assessment. We encourage you to view this practice test, so you are aware of what the new assessment will look like for your child.

Advisory Schedule

We are excited to unveil our plan for Advisory Period. For years, Advisory Period served as an ideal opportunity for our students to reflect on their academic progress and set goals. During this time, teachers and students focus on building relationships that offer social/emotional support. Students will continue to start each day with Advisory Period. Listed below are the themes for each day. We look forward to all that students will accomplish during this important time of our day!

Monday: Ever Spartan Reads

During this period, the whole school reads!

Tuesday: Every Spartan Lives a 5 Star Life

Students will discuss ideas related to 5 Star themes like how students set the bar for respecting their peers.

Wednesday & Thursday: Every Spartan Works, Learns, and Succeeds Together

During these two days, students will participate in school wide lessons or activities. During the first quarter students will learn about anti-bullying strategies and internet safety.

Friday: Every Spartan Sets Goals

Students will participate in academic reflection and goal setting.


NJHS will be sponsoring a BAKE SALE during Student-Led Conferences later this month. We will be selling many delicious baked goods and decorated pumpkins! All proceeds will help the Student Council fill Thanksgiving Food Baskets for Schmucker families in need of some help this holiday season. NJHS Spartans Make a Difference!


Schmucker students recently created 'Pop-Art Portraits' in the style of Andy Warhol!

IMC Shared Space

Ms. Smith's class utilized the new shared space in the IMC. Check out these writing partners in action!

A message from our Gold Star Counselors

Mrs. Hoover and Mrs. Walton (sub for Mrs. Eck) are available to parents through voicemail and email.

Students can make an appointment to see their school counselors by using the online google form.

  • Go to Schmucker’s website and select “Guidance” and “Counselor Appointment Form”
  • Complete the “School Counselor Appointment Form”
  • Be sure to CHECK YOUR EMAIL. Your counselor will email you with an appointment date and time.

Five Star Life Volunteers

We are looking for community members who are interested in participating in our Five Star Life After-School Program. To learn more about this program, check out their Facebook page: If you are interested in this opportunity, contact

Second Coat Ministries at River Valley Church

Friday, October 6, 6-8pm

Saturday October 7, 9am-12pm

Second Coat Ministries wants to make sure you are warm this winter! If your family needs a little help providing outerwear this year, please come and shop with us. Each person present may select one free coat, scarf, winter hat, and a pair of gloves, pending availability. They are prepared to fit all sizes, both adult and child, from 6 months through 3XL!

*Guests are served on a first-come basis and inventory is limited. Adult clients are responsible for the supervision of any minors in their care. Limited to one coat, scarf, hat and pair of gloves per person and you must be present to receive.*

Calling all 6th Graders!

There will a dance after school on Friday, November 2 from 4:00-5:30. Students will be able to buy dance tickets during their lunch periods on October 29-November 1. Dance tickets are $2.00. Pizza will be sold at the dance for $1.00 per slice. The concession stand will also be open so that students can buy a sweet treat! Come for the fun music and make some great SMS friends! Parents will need to pick-up their child at 5:30 by Door "F". Hope to see you there!


Schmucker Middle School has schedule picture re-take day on Wednesday, October 17, 2018.


Canvas is a LMS (Learning Management System) that is used in PHM. Teachers can put content online for students, make announcements and provide assignments. All parents are enrolled in the Canvas course of their students as observers. As observers, you can see the content, but are not able to interact with it. Please access the links below to learn more.

To keep you organized, you can also download the Canvas app for your phone or tablet.


WSMS is recorded to Youtube ALMOST every day. (Technology!) If you would like to watch our daily announcements, check it out!

Here is the link to the channel if you want to publish it to parents.

A Special Message from PHM Technology


If you missed the deadline to enroll in the school Chromebook repair plan, there is still a chance to participate. After further review, the PHM Technology department has decided to offer insurance throughout the school year. To participate you will need to bring in the filled out repair plan form, payment, and your student's Chromebook for review. The Chromebook must be damage free and in working order to participate in the repair plan.


Every student should now have their Chromebook. I would encourage all parents to review our expectations for using technology with your child.

SMS Technology Expectations

  • I will use technology to achieve my learning goals.

  • I will be responsible with my use of technology and will remember that this is an online public representation of me and our school.

  • I will report to a teacher any inappropriate posts, comments or use.

  • I will use school-associated social media appropriately during the school day.

  • I will use appropriate grammar instead of texting language when communicating.

  • I will not reveal any personal information such as: telephone numbers, names, addresses, email addresses etc.

  • I will not post photos or video showing myself or classmates unless authorized by a teacher.

  • I will bring my Chromebook to school everyday fully charged.

  • All school rules and consequences apply.

transportation policy

If your child is planning on going home on another bus with a friend, it is important to remember that the bus driver needs permission from the school office. The office will grant permission if we have a note from both parents (sending and receiving) and if the bus is not full as determined by the Transportation Center. We cannot, however, permit boys and girls to go home together even if they have parental permission. Parents would need to make these arrangements on their own after school hours.

Consent To Publish student work and photographs

PHM requires schools to receive permission from parents to publish student photos and work. If you have not returned this document, please access the link below, print the document and return signed to school. We must receive this document from every student.

Consent To Publish Student Work and Photographs

21st century scholars

We want to remind the 21st Century Scholars or their parents to contact the North Central Regional Support Program Office if there as been a change of address or phone number. This is necessary to help ensure that Scholars and parents do not miss opportunities such as: college campus visits, workshops, informational sessions or activities for parents. Most importantly, it will help ensure that Scholars do not miss their scholarship opportunity. A roster of the 21st Century Scholars will be forwarded to Schmucker's Guidance Office. The 21st Century Scholars phone number is 574-239-2380.


Schumcker 8th grade students are invited to attend the Washington , D. C. field trip from May 28 to June 1. If parents are interested in traveling, background forms are due by Oct. 31st.

Save the date! Attention 7th Grade!!

On Wednesday, April 10, 2019, the seventh grade will take a class trip to Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry.

Estimated student cost will be approximately $40 to $50. We will also need about 35 parent chaperones. Look for a letter with more details coming soon.

Homework Requests

When a student is absent, we urge the student or parent to check Canvas and/or Home Access Center for homework information.

Families Can Get help with Lunch & Textbook Fees

We encourage families who are struggling to meet expenses to apply for the National School Lunch Program's free and reduced-price lunch. The application is easy to complete (one per household) and includes a place to indicate that you also want to apply for textbook assistance. It's a good idea to take advantage of this program early in the school year. For answers to frequently asked questions, application or more information, click here:

School Messenger

The corporation uses a School Messenger tool to announce snow days and delayed start days. Our plan is to utilize School Messenger this year as an additional communication tool from our administrators to parents and students. Please make sure that your student's emergency card contains your most current, preferred email address to facilitate our use of this communication.

Protected by Raptor

The Raptor security tool is a visitor management software that will scan a visitor's information against the National Sex Offenders database. All parents and visitors will need to report to the main office with a valid, government-issued ID. This ID is needed only on your first visit. Once you are entered into the Raptor system, your information is saved for any future visits. A picture ID tag will automatically be printed which you will wear for the duration of your visit that day. You are asked to submit your ID tag to the office when you leave the building. Our goal is and always has been to keep our students, staff and visitors from any and all harm.

Wellness Information

Clothing necessary for participation in Wellness class activities throughout the school year is as follows:

Shorts: athletic style, any color, five inch inseam or longer (no cut offs)

T-shirt: yellow or gold - short sleeves

Shoes: tennis shoes with ties for securing to the feet - no vans, mules, canvas ballet flats


All clothing should be labeled with student's first initial and last name (no nicknames). Please visit our Schmucker website for further instructions, guidelines and policies for our wellness classes:

Student/Family Opportunities

Often during the school year an opportunity for your child or your family arises where you believe that the educational value of an experience is a good reason to miss school. In most cases, however, these opportunities are not considered "excused" absences. In order to take advantage of this experience and still be considered "excused", a parent or guardian must receive permission from the principal at least one week in advance. You can contact the principal by phone or email. However, if he does not receive any notification of the absence, it will be considered "unexcused".

Boys Basketball

The boys basketball team will host basketball open gyms for 7th and 8th graders trying out for the boys basketball team on October 4th and 5th after school until 5:30 pm. Boys basketball try-outs will begin on Friday, October 5th after school until 5:00 pm. They will continue the following week. Please check the schedule on the SMS website for try-out times. Please contact either Mr. Modlin @ or Mr. Snoeyink @ if you have questions.


Students should keep their eyes on the SMS website calendar and their ears on the WSMS morning announcements to learn of the fun activities to enjoy through our intramural program. The intramural coordinator will be making arrangements for space and supervision for a number of activities as the year progresses. Come and join in the fun!


The PHM Board of School Trestees' policy requires that any prescription medication must be accompanied by written permission from the student's parent or guardian, and in compliance with written instructions from a physician. Prescription medication forms are available in the school's Main Office or Health Office or by clicking:

Prescription Medication Form

Also now for middle school students - pain relievers, Tums and cough drops will be supplied and provided by the school's Health Office if proper documentation is on file. This form can be obtained by clicking: NON-Prescription Medication Form This option is only available to students 12 years of age and older who follow the package instructions for people 12 years of age and older. If you or your doctor request a dosage other than the recommended dosage on the bottles/packages of our stock over-the-counter medications, documentation would be required the same as if it were a prescription medication.

Student Hours

8:50am - Bus Arrival

9:00am - First Bell

9:05am - Classes Begin

4:00pm - Dismissal

4:10pm - Bus Departure