West Sylvan Family Communication

March 17, 2023



*Women's History Month

*Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

Mon, MAR 27th ~ Fri, MAR 31st: NO SCHOOL / Spring Break


Tue, APR 4th: 8th Grade Panoramic Photo (during the last half hour of the school day)

Fri, APR 7th: End of 3rd Quarter

Mon, APR 10th: NO SCHOOL / Planning Day

Tue, APR 11th: Start of 4th Quarter

Dear West Sylvan Families,

We hope that you and your family have a wonderful weekend! The third quarter instructional work continues, with the quarter concluding for grades on April 7th. We also started a new cycle of Advisory Clubs for students this week. On most Fridays each month in Advisory, students can participate in a club they have chosen. Counselors make every effort to place students in one of their top three choices for club time. The purpose of these small windows of time is to give students ways to socialize, interact, and get to know peers who they may not naturally see throughout the school day or outside of school. In sharing a common interest, we hope to bring students together in new ways where they may foster new friendships.

Current 6th and 7th grade students will begin selecting their electives in the coming weeks. PPS is working to comply with statewide standards for P.E. and Health minutes, with a plan to be fully compliant by 2025. This means reimagining some scheduling for upcoming years to include at least three quarters of time in Physical Education for each grade. Currently, the model has been to take a quarter of P.E. and a quarter of Health each school year. That time will increase in the years ahead, and District leaders are in conversations now about how to start increasing those minutes for next school year.

Enjoy your weekend,

Jill & Ben

We’d like to celebrate everyone who was nominated for being a “Communicator” last month!

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Our Leadership class, led by Ms. Tew, has been spearheading the community service drive to support our Sparrow, Soleil. Soleil was introduced to WSMS earlier this year through an assembly, and community service hours will be matched by partner corporations, resulting in funds for the family’s medical expenses. Click the image below to view the presentation that was shared in Advisory classes to promote next week’s Spirit Week for Soleil.


Great performances last night at Lincoln High School! The West Sylvan Band looked and sounded fantastic on the big stage. Thank you, Mr. Arce, for all of your hard work getting the best out of your musicians.
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Click here to connect to your school community!

The WEST SYLVAN FOUNDATION exists to support Scholars and Staff and foster community connection through a broad range of fundraising and volunteer opportunities.


Our March MYP Learner trait is Inquirers. Throughout the month, students will be nominated for demonstrating this trait. We celebrate nominations at the monthly assemblies and through our school nomination posters.


Counseling SEL (Social & Emotional Learning) lessons are continuing with the next round of lessons that will focus on “How to be an Upstander.” All three grades will be engaging in these lessons with School Counselors throughout March. Both the 8th and the 6th Graders started engaging in these lessons over this last school week.



PPS has shared out the approved calendar for next school year for your planning purposes.


Scholars should have received notification at home in Winter about next year’s High School assignment. Assignments are based on families’ current address. Should families believe there is an error in the High School assignment, contact the Enrollment and Transfer office. Anyone residing out-of-district will need approval to be released from their resident district to apply to remain in PPS for high school. Families who currently do not reside in PPS boundaries will also need to apply to remain in PPS High Schools through the Enrollment and Transfer office.

Ida B. Wells Forecasting for 2023-24: About 30 of our current 8th Graders are in the boundaries to attend Ida B. Wells for High School next year. The forecasting items are here for these families.


University of Portland has begun accepting applications for their annual Summer Learning Program! In this program, the learning focuses on the Oregon State Benchmarks appropriate for each child in Mathematics, Language Arts (reading, writing, and speaking), and any other subjects in which the student needs help. Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) candidates tutor/teach students according to their learning needs. There are usually 4-5 students per 2-3 MAT candidates.

  • This year’s program will run July 5 - August 3, Monday-Thursday, 9:30am-11:30am, and they welcome students entering grades 2 through 11 in 2023-24. The cost of the program is $125, though scholarships are available.
  • Online registration is now available here. To request a printable PDF or registration packet via postal mail, please contact Amy Kwong-Kwapisz at kwongkwa@up.edu or 503-943-7752.
Notes of Appreciation

If you would like to send a kind note of appreciation to any staff member, please share here. The kind notes go a long way in making our Staff members feel seen and thanked!


Please encourage and remind your Scholar to bring their charged Chromebook to school each day. We have a very limited, and often depleted, number of loaner Chromebooks. Remembering to bring your PPS-issued Chromebook to school is crucial, as Chromebooks are needed for classes.


We appreciate all family members who have been volunteering in our Main Office, in our Library, and joining us for school lunch periods and recess to help with supervision! The additional adults around campus really help with these busier spaces and the busiest times of the school day! If you are already an approved PPS volunteer, you are welcome to come to campus any day of the week when your schedule permits, and we will find a way that you can help on campus! The periods from 11:00 AM - 1:30 PM and 2:45 PM - 3:45 PM are most needed for Lunch recess help and Office assistance!


Click here to submit your information to become a Volunteer


After ten consecutive school days of non-attendance, Scholars are un-enrolled from WSMS. Please be sure to officially excuse absences when there is a lasting illness.


Please help remind and reinforce our “No Cell Phone” policy during the school day in your discussions at home. This means that we ask that Scholars to either leave phones at home or put them in their lockers during the day so that they are not a temptation. If a Scholar has a phone out in class or around campus during the school day, it is confiscated and held in the Office. If a Scholar has three or more violations already this year, we will ask a Parent/Guardian to pick up the phone to help reinforce expectations. Please remember that Scholars do not have access to their phones during the day, and refrain from calling and/or texting them. If you need to get an urgent message to your Scholar, you may call the Office at 503-916-5690 or send an email to westsylvanoffice@pps.net.


Families are now able to record future absences for their Students directly in ParentVUE without needing to contact the Main Office. Please remember, if a student is going to miss multiple days, it is up to the Student and/or Parent/Guardian to communicate absences with each Teacher and make a plan for missing work and assignments.

  • If your Student is going to be Absent for a FULL DAY:
    Log in to the ParentVUE website or download and open the phone application. In either case, look for the ‘Report Absence’ button to the right of your Student’s photograph. Select start date, end date, and a reason from the drop-down list. Remember to click SAVE, and you should receive a popup confirmation.

No internet access? Call West Sylvan’s main line at 503-916-5690 and select the Attendance option.



All-Grade School Climate Specialist: Shawn McVicar [smcvicar@pps.net]

IB / MYP (Middle Years Programme)

We are submitting our application in the coming weeks to schedule a review to become an authorized Middle Years Programme (MYP) Middle School. If approved, we move to the final step toward Authorization. Our MYP Learner Trait for March is “Inquirers.” Scholars are spending this month discussing and demonstrating that trait. To find out more about the WSMS International Baccalaureate MYP authorization journey, please click the image.




(503) 916-5690


[Staff / Substitutes / Financial]

Jerda Solonche



[Students / Attendance / Enrollment]

Kirsten Crombie