Kulshan Connect

April 23, 2021

In our Kulshan Community, we are courageous, kind, and committed!

Gift Cards for Teachers

It's time to celebrate our amazing Kulshan Staff! Our PTSA is organizing our Staff Appreciation week a bit differently this year. They are asking parents to purchase $10 gift cards and drop them off in our main office or send the gift card(s) to school with your student to drop off in our main office. Click on this link to sign up! Gift cards are due in our main office by April 30. Please email our PTSA with any questions: kulshanmsptsa@gmail.com

April 23 Day of Silence

Day of Silence is one of the largest student-led protests in the U.S. Join us in learning more! The purpose is to silently and peacefully protest the bullying, harassment, and name calling directed towards lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ+) individuals and their community. As many students who are targeted for this bullying often do not identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ community, the Day of Silence represents a peaceful protest of a problem affecting all students, no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity. Student leaders will be sharing more information about Day of Silence with their teachers and classmates.

KMS Fishing Club

Our KMS Fishing Club meets Tuesdays and Thursdays after school until 4:00 pm. (Students will be assigned one day per week) We meet at Mr. Adams' portable (by the garden), then walk together to the Whatcom Falls Derby Pond. We return to KMS by 4:00 pm for pick up. Fill out this form if you are interested in participating. You will ALSO need to fill out a parent permission slip, available in the office or library. Start date is Thursday, April 29.

Kulshan Pantry Re-Stock

We are stocking up our pantry for our Kulshan community! Please sign up here to help stock up our pantry for our KMS families in need. Items can be dropped off in our Kulshan main office on Wednesdays 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM, during Wed food pick up from 4:00-5:30 PM, or on Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri from 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM. If you have any questions, please contact Sierra Truesdale, KMS school counselor. If you are a family in need, please don’t hesitate to reach out for support.

4-Days Per Week Option

As you know, we are so excited to be adding additional options for families and students. We will maintain our current hybrid schedule 9:15 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday/ Tuesday and Thursday/Friday. Families can choose for their child to attend all 4 days per week. We are starting this new 4-day/week option on Monday, April 26. If you have not already done so, please fill out the survey in your email or contact your child's Homeroom teacher with questions.

Essence of Bellingham Photography Contest

Student photographers are invited to join in the 16th annual Essence of Bellingham Photo Competition. Student categories are by age/grade: K-4, 5-8, 9-12. Complete competition details are available online, including a submission form and winning photos from previous years, at cob.org/eob​. Entries are submitted free of charge and are due by Saturday, May 1, 2021.

District Middle School Math Plan

Sixth grade families: On April 20th, you received an email update from the Department of Teaching and Learning regarding seventh grade math. With a few exceptions based on math assessment data, sixth graders will move into Math 7 next year. Math 7 meets all the learning expectations associated with state standards for seventh grade. We believe strongly in the developmental and academic importance of middle school math courses. Students in Math 7 will be on track to take Algebra 1 in their first year of high school, which is the expected math course for most ninth graders. For more information, please visit our middle school math Q&A webpage, or reach out your student's Math teacher or counselor.

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in BPS

We are happy to share this April 2021 newsletter listing heritage months, cultural celebrations, holidays and other information supporting the important work of equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in Bellingham Public Schools. Please visit the EDI webpage for an ongoing dialogue and focus on this key strategy of The Bellingham Promise. You can also reach out directly to the director of equity, diversity and inclusion Janis Velasquez Farmer.

May 12: Photo Re-Take Day

Did you miss school photos? Mark your calendar! Student retake day will be held on May 12th, 2:00-4:00 PM in the Kulshan Commons. If you ordered photos during the first round of photos, those will be going home with your student the week of April 26. Email Cindy Schuitema if you have questions about photo retakes.

Kulshan Intramurals

Our middle school intramurals will run from Monday, April 19 until Friday, June 11. We are offering Co-Ed Cross Country, Co-Ed Soccer, and Co-Ed Unified Soccer. Practices will take place at Kulshan from 2:30 – 4:00 PM. Students will participate on the days when they attend school. Students will participate with other students at our school and not with other middle schools. There are no fees and no sports physical required. Students will sign up using Final Forms. Parents were sent a link to Final Forms link in their email. If you have questions about intramurals, please reach out to Cindy Schuitema or Kevin Terpstra. More information can be found here.

Youth Peace Poetry Contest open for submissions

April is National Poetry Month, and the Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center (WDRC) Youth Peace Poetry Contest is open now for submissions! The contest is open to all youth ages 4 to 18 who live in Whatcom County. For more more information or to submit a poem, please visit the WDRC website. In related Poetry News, Bellingham Public Schools is sharing poems using the hashtag: #BPSPoetry. This is a great chance to share student poems in more public way.

Attention 8th grade Parents

As you might know we have an annual tradition of making "Star Photos" of our 8th graders. (because, well, they are SUPER STARS!) We will pull the photos from LifeTouch to make these Star Photos. If your 8th grader missed the LifeTouch photo days, you can send us a photo of your student. To insure the best Star Photo, the photos:
  • Should be of the student facing forward, with a simple background.
  • May need tp be cropped by us to feature the "head and shoulders."
  • Should be at the highest resolution image possible.
  • Should be sent via email to our PTSA President: Cyndi Johnson .
  • Must be submitted by Friday, May 14.

Energy Assistance Available

If you are in need of energy assistance during this ongoing pandemic, please contact 360-255-2912 to schedule an appointment or visit this website.

Please Bring a Water Bottle!

With the warmer water causing students to become thirsty more often, please remember to bring a water bottle with you to school, as our water fountains are closed. Students can fill up their water bottles at our sinks or at our new water bottle fill station.

Strengthening Families

The Strengthening Families Program 10-14 is offering a Virtual series of 7 evening classes on Tuesdays from April 20- June 1 6:30- 8:30 The Youth and Adults will learn and connect in a way that will make your family stronger going forward. All Kulshan Families with youth this age are invited and encouraged. A link to the zoom course will be given to registered families Click here to register and for more information

Now Hiring in BPS

We are hiring in Bellingham! If you have questions about jobs available in our schools, please visit the district website at and click on “jobs”. For assistance with questions about temporary substitute assignments, you may contact Gayle Wright, Substitute Coordinator by emailing or by calling the office at (360) 676-2784 or (360) 398-5572. Questions about other job opportunities in our schools may be addressed by contacting Kara Silsbee, Employment Specialist by emailing or by calling (360) 319-4999.

Health Attestation Form

If you plan on sending your child back to in-person school at Kulshan, parents are required to complete this Health Attestation form before each quarter starts. Daily health screens are mandatory for in-person school to take place. Parents will be expected to screen their students before arriving at school every day. We are required by the state health department, the county health department and the state superintendent of public instruction to have a health attestation. This attestation will be completed quarterly and will be kept on file as evidence of your agreement to the terms. Thank you!

Parent-Student Handbook

Do you have questions about safety protocols, lunch/ recess time, contact tracing, and dismissal? Then check out our newly updated Parent-Student Handbook. Our handbook is full of important information to keep you and your child safe, happy, and healthy.

Meal and Book Distribution

Meal distribution continues every Wednesday between 4:00 and 5:30 p.m.

The 12 school locations are now: Alderwood, Birchwood, Happy Valley, Northern Heights, Roosevelt, Wade King, Fairhaven, Kulshan, Shuksan, Whatcom, Bellingham, and Sehome.

The six community locations are:

Evergreen Ridge Apartment Complex, 3451 Woburn Street;

Regency Park Apartment Complex, 2050 Fraser St.;

Sterling Meadows Apartment Complex, 512 Sterling Drive;

Sudden Valley Community Center, 8 Barn View Drive;

Villa Santa Fe Apartment Complex, 804 West Bakerview Road; and Bakerview Mobile Park, 4015 Eliza Avenue.

Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center

The Whatcom Dispute Resolution Center has many valuable opportunities for families. These include information, education, mediation, conflict resolution, and more. Check our their website for events such as Parent Nights and FREE virtual workshop series for youth (ages 7-12) and teens (13-18). https://www.whatcomdrc.org/

Scholastic Book Orders

Did you know you can access Scholastic Book Orders through the Kulshan Library? Here is a link. Our class (library) code is GLB8R. You can browse flyers here or search for many, many other titles online. Books ordered can ship to homes or to Kulshan for pickup. Ship-to-home is free for orders over $25, and you can also get a free $5 Book Pick with the code READS. Scholastic is a great way to find books for a good price. Every purchase supports the library and classroom collections.

Is Your Information Correct?

Is your contact information for your student up-to-date? You can do this online now through our Skyward Family Access program. Please take a few minutes to log into Skyward Family Access to review your contact information, mailing address, emergency contacts and to complete the Annual Health Concerns form for your student. If you need your login and password information for Skyward Family Access, please contact me and I can provide that information. Please note that if you need to correct or update your address and/or mailing address, you will have to contact me with the new information (families do not have permission to update addresses online). If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our registrar Viry Ferreira.

KMS Counselor Corner

We acknowledge that these are challenging times for our students. Our school counselors, Sierra Truesdale and Aaron Tiger, want to provide you with some information and resources. Feel free to reach out to our counselors via email or phone as well so we can give you specific resources for your situation.

Aaron Tiger - Counselor (cell 360-739-3991)

Sierra Truesdale - Counselor (cell 360-739-4138)

Viry Ferreira - KMS Registrar

Updated WA State COVID Recommendations

Check this WA State COVID website for updates regarding restrictions and social gatherings. Specific information about travel recommendations can be found here. Bellingham Public Schools have also added their own COVID 19 dashboard, available on the district website and at this link. Governor Inslee's news and media releases can be found here. The CDC has listed their mask updates here.

Free COVID Tests in Whatcom County

Did you know that our Whatcom County Health Department has free, drive-up COVID tests? To arrange a COVID test, visit testdirectly.com or call 360-778-6075. Also, our Kulshan school nurse is Amy Eisenhauer, BSN, RN and she can be reached at 360-303-4667.

It's Easy to Join KMS PTSA

We currently have 74 members in our PTSA and we would love to reach 100 members by the end of this school year. Are you interested in joining? It's super easy to join. You can become PTSA member here! Membership rates are low and on a sliding scale. Meetings will be held once per month (normally about 1 hour) via Zoom. You can also follow Kulshan PTSA on Instagram by clicking this link. Do you have questions about our KMS PTSA? Email us here. Thank you!

LGBTQ Support for Families and Youth

Dear Families - Did you know that we have many local and online supports to help you with your LGBTQ+ or questioning student? Middle school is a time of growth and many students in middle school are figuring out who they are. These resources are just a few to help along the journey. Please feel free to reach out to our KMS counselors if you have any questions or need more support Aaron Tiger (cell 360-739-3991) or Jen Newbauer (cell 360-739-4138). Here is a list of local and online supports.

Weekly Announcement Videos

Did you know that we show a weekly announcement video in Homeroom? Well, we do! If you would like to watch these videos, click here. This is just one more way that we are trying to stay connected to you and your student. We miss you!

Power Outage?

If there is a power outage, our staff will help your student catch up. Please notify Jeneen Durand, our Attendance Secretary by calling 360-647-6877 or emailing kms.attendance@bellinghamschools.org . If a teacher loses connection during a class, students should stay on the class for a few minutes while the teacher logs back in. Then check students’ email and MS Teams for instructions from the teacher. More information can be found here on our KMS website.

Skyward/ Family Access

Do you need help with Skyward/ Family Access? Our friends at Shuksan Middle School made these great online resources and videos. Check them out! Or reach out to our Kulshan registrar - Viry Ferreira. viry.ferreira@bellinghamschools.org

Are you in need of family support?

If you are in need of services or help with domestic abuse or sexual assault the local agency DVSAS (Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services) is able to help. Here is a link that helps to explain their role and provides contact information. You can also call our KMS Counselors Aaron Tiger 360-739-3991 or Jen Newbauer cell 360-739-4138.

Bellingham Food Bank Schedule

Folks may visit twice per week and may choose among all locations which they visit. They will join a car queue and when it’s their turn, volunteers will provide pre-packed food boxes without requiring person to person contact. There will be a bike or walk-up option as well. Pick up for up to 2 families per visit, no paperwork required. Check out the Bellingham Food Bank to learn more or to make a donation.

District Resources Website

Do you still have a question that has not been answered via this newsletter or email? The Bellingham Public School website now has a (click here) one-stop resources page. On this website, you can submit a question about childcare, meals, learning resources, technology resources, mental health, and more. We are here for you.

Kulshan Contacts

Please email us if you have questions:

Meagan Dawson, Principal

Kevin Terpstra, Assistant Principal

Aaron Tiger, Counselor

Sierra Truesdale, Counselor

Viry Ferriera, Registrar

Jeneen Durand, Attendance Secretary

Family Handbook in English

Family Handbook in Spanish

We love you and we miss you and we hope you are staying safe and healthy!

Kulshan Middle School 1250 Kenoyer Drive Bellingham, WA 98229 360-676-4886