Blue Jay Broadcast

News and Notes from the Hallways of MHS

Coffee talk with Mr. Guzman

As parents, we want to protect our children and send them into the world with a solid foundation to learn and explore the world around them. One challenge our students face is the accessibility of drugs and the lure to try something you’ve always been told not to. We can’t be with our children 24 hours a day, but we can prepare them to make the best decisions they can with the understanding that it may not always be the most popular decision. I know that this topic comes up quite often and it may seem like the information is repetitive, but I feel that it is my responsibility to continue to encourage the conversations between our students and parents.

I wanted to tell you about a program, Operation Prevention, that is working “…to combat a growing epidemic of prescription opioid misuse and heroin use nationwide.” This partnership between the DEA and Discovery Education has reached 2M students since its launch. They share some startling facts, including:

  • There are 129 drug overdose deaths per day in the US – 61% of those deaths are related to pharmaceutical opioids or heroin

  • · About 15 million people indicated misusing prescription painkillers in 2014

  • · Nearly 1 in 5 teens say they have used prescription medicine at least once in their lifetime to get high

  • · Opioids have been linked to 60% of drug overdose in the US

  • · In 2015, 58% of 12th graders reported a “great risk” in trying heroin

It’s not an easy conversation to start, but Operation Prevention offers a Parent Toolkit, which I have attached, that will help guide you in learning about opioids, how to talk to your children and also attend a virtual field trip to learn more about the opioid epidemic we are currently facing in the U.S.

For more information or resources, please visit

News & Notes

The results are in for Winter Spirit Week!

Monday - Superhero Day Seniors

Tuesday - PJ Pant Day Juniors

Wednesday - Hat Day Seniors

Thursday - Class Color Day Seniors

Congratulations to Bryan Velasquez & Tatia Tchrikishvili! Their ceramic vessels have been selected for the National Ceramic Exhibition, which this year will be held in Pittsburgh. They competed against more than 800 students from across the country for five spots. We are so proud of them!

Congratulations to Nikki Strang - winner of MHS Idol 2018!!

Have you heard about High Five Friday? Mr. Brenner and Mr. Chismar are outside of Room 205 every Friday morning from 7:45-8:00am for high fives. T-shirts are available to order and students can pick up order forms outside of Room 205.

The Class of 2019 is currently selling Blue Jay Nation Spirit Wear. Students can pick up order forms from any Junior Class Officer or Mr. Perez in Room 504. Sale ends on February 23rd.

On March 4th, JaysFest Dance Marathon will be hosting a Dine to Donate fundraiser at Chipotle in Bridgewater. Please see the flyer below for additional information.

Academic Highlights

John Neugebauer from Pennco Tech spoke to Ms. Clark's Ceramics classes about careers in the trade fields, technology school programs and demonstrated wheel throwing for advanced classes.

Ms. Stringer & Ms. Mutek invited Christine Benato, RDH, BS to speak with the students in Project ACT, MD and LLD classes about oral health. The students learned about good oral health hands-on with a model of teeth and jaw, a few students were also asked to be teeth in order to learn the proper way of flossing.

Each month our teachers participate in Tech Playground, an opportunity for them to learn to integrate new technology into their classes. During one Tech Playground, Ms. Ziomek created a Breakout for her students' final project for Great Expectations. The clues were based on plot points, sequencing and a website she found that was an overlay with google maps. They used a Breakout Edu box and locks provided by Ms. Logue and the students had 30 minutes to complete the breakout and open the box.

The story given to students is below:

You need to get the money out of the locked box to pay your debts or you will be sent to debtors prison. You must use the clues given for access to get the shillings. Completion of this will result in a 100 score on your final project for Great Expectations, failure to obtain your shillings and pay your debts will result in a 0 for your final project grade, why you ask? In the words of Miss Havisham, “Who am I, for God's sake, that I should be kind!” Good Luck!

Community Support

Have you ever watched the military surprise homecomings on YouTube? Did you ever wonder what it would feel like to witness it in person? Middlesex High School got to experience this first hand and it was an incredible experience.

On February 16th, the staff and administration of Middlesex High School welcomed Julian Miller, Class of 2016, back to MHS for a surprise homecoming for his brother, Daemon. Mrs. Macarone contacted the Main Office to see if it was possible to arrange a surprise for Daemon. Julian will be deployed with the U.S. Army in the coming weeks and the brothers, who are very close, had not seen each other in quite awhile.

In order to maintain the surprise, the only staff members who knew there would be a surprise during lunch were Mr. Guzman, Mr. Walsh, Mr. Inciong, Ms. Malt, Ms. Guiliano & Ms. Sviderskis. Please watch the video below to see the surprise unfold.

For the best viewing experience, please use Internet Explorer

Did You Know?

In addition to studying at U.S. art schools, Middlesex alumni have also studied at Royal Academy of London, University of the Arts - London and ESMOD in Paris.

Shout Outs

Shout out to Coach PJ Jankowicz! Mr. Jankowicz was chosen by the Bill Denny/Rutgers Football Letterwinners Chapter of the National Football/College Hall of Fame as Coach of the Year! This has been an incredible year for Coach Jankowicz and the MHS Football team.

Shout out to our teachers who got a pie in the face at the pep rally: Mr. Chismar, Mr. Lewis, Mr. Bollin, Mr. Konel, Mr. DeLude, Mr. Goldstein, Mr. McCarthy, Ms. Ziomek, Ms. Stringer and Ms. Pietrowski!

Shout out to Mr. I and his students, who visit Mauger each year to mentor and encourage the students to pursue music in high school.

Alumni Spotlight

Greg Macher, Class of 2009 is currently an Aquarist/Aquaculturist at Absolutely Fish in Clifton.

“Absolutely Fish’s Aquaculture facility is a 5,000 square foot center promoting sustainability with the aquarium hobby. Between more than 50 tanks, there are 6,000 gallons containing over 60 species of hard and soft corals, numerous plants, 25 varieties of freshwater fish and three distinct freshwater shrimp species. These animals are kept in pristine conditions which promote breeding and raising of tank-raised specimens for sale in our store.”

Greg earned his Associates at a local community college before attending Stockton University (then The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey). As part of the Aquaculture team, he is raising clownfish and corals. Each year, Absolutely Fish is committed to conservation and partners with other organizations in their efforts for our environment.

His advice for our students: Do not just think of 4 year schools, community college saved money which enabled him to earn both an Associates degree and a Bachelors degree. Also, do what you love and always welcome challenges.

Are you on social media?

If you're on social media, we have a few recommendations...
Middlesex High School Twitter

Follow the latest tweets from the Official Middlesex High School Twitter account!

Mr. I's Twitter

Follow the latest tweets from Mr. I's Twitter account!

Middlesex High School Ceramics Instagram

Follow Middlesex High School Ceramics on Instagram!