Hilltop Herald - Parent Edition

Be Respectful ~ Be Responsible ~ Be Resilient

Volume 1 ~ Issue 10 ~ September 18, 2023

Marvelous Falcon Families,

Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people.” ~John Adams~

“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” ~Nelson Mandela~

Annually, September 17 is celebrated as Constitution Day or Citizenship Day, and this week has been designated as Constitution Week. I am a naturalized citizen of the United States. I came to this country as an international student in December 1983 and received my citizenship in 2004, just in time for the 2004 Presidential Election. My eligibility to vote is protected by the 19th Amendment, which gave provisions for women to finally vote in 1920; that is only 103 years ago. Our constitution, while not perfect, provides freedom and protection for its citizens. Known as the most ardent advocate of the Constitution, John Adams once said, "Liberty cannot be preserved without general knowledge among people." While the original constitution did not provide protection and freedom for all its citizens, subsequent amendments were made to provide more rights for ostracized citizens of the nation. Providing women and people of color the right to vote were added because people began to scrutinize the constitution and obtained knowledge and questioned who benefitted from the Constitution, which begins with "We, the People..." As John Adams stated back then, our liberty is only preserved when knowledge is gained by the people who use it to strengthen the constitution. I believe this is why our constitution has withstood the test of time. On this day, we must continue to work together to uphold our constitution in order to protect ALL THE PEOPLE of this great nation. Happy Constitution Day and Week, Falcons!

Expected Behavior this Last Week of Quarter 1

Falcons, last Friday, we did not end on a good note because of a few individuals who decided to fight. And it was followed by many of you adding to the negative action of running to the fight thereby creating an unsafe environment. This led to a spontaneous sit-down lunch. I informed you right after lunch that I will be thinking about potentially extending the sit-down lunch to Monday. After much thought and deliberation regarding how you responded when I announced the sit-down lunch, I will not hold a sit-down lunch on Monday. However, a sit-down lunch this week is not off the table if unsafe behavior continues. If you do not know our behavior expectations, I suggest that you review the Student & Parent Handbook by clicking HERE. Or scroll down to the end of this newsletter where I have a summary of behavior expectations. Let's not go into Fall Break with a bad ending.

Celebrating September Babies This Thursday

Falcons, if your birthday is in September, we will celebrate you this week. You will receive a birthday card from ASB during Period 5. This is your ticket to get ice cream. Happy Birthday!

SUHSD Suicide Prevention Community Forum This Thursday Evening

Falcon families, please join us for this important forum on suicide prevention. There is a resource fair from 4:30pm - 5:00pm. The forum will start at 5:00pm and end at 7:00pm.

Districtwide Spirit Day on Friday

This Friday, September 22, 2023, all middle schools will participate in one spirit day. The theme is "Stronger Together”, and the spirit gear is sports. Please join all middle schools and wear a sport jersey of your favorite sport team. I will be there with my Lakers or Seahawks gear! What will you wear?

Pink-Out Lancer Game This Friday Evening

Falcons, you and families are invited to attend the Pink-Out Lancer game versus Castle Park on Friday evening. Wear your best pink gear and represent! This is FREE if you bring your HTM Student ID to verify you are a Falcon. I hope to see you there!

Last Week of Falcon Scholars before Fall Break

Students do not go into fall break behind in your academics. If you need to make up work, get extra help, or have a space to do homework, please attend Falcon Scholars on Mondays - Thursday.

Falcon Flight Fall Break Supplemental

Students, if you are part of Falcon Flight, there will be a week-long supplemental program during fall break. If you want to be a part of this fun-filled week, please email Ms. Pulido at jessica.pulido@sweetwaterschools.org or Mr. Horton at joshua.horton@sweetwaterschools.org.

Reminder of Behavior Expectations

Please read the section below on Behavior Expectations for all Falcons.

Fall Break on September 25 - October 9, 2023

Families, please remember that school will be out on fall break starting next Monday. Students return on Tuesday, October 10, 2023.

Let's have an amazing week!


Ms. Finley

Celebrating Constitution Week: September 17-23, 2023

Falcon Families, please read Congress Resolution on Designating September 17, 2023 as Constitution Day and this week as Constitution Week. You and I experience freedom because of this ageless document.

More than two centuries ago, our Founders set in motion the most extraordinary experiment of self-government the world has ever known with three simple words: “We, the People.” These timeless words from our Constitution help capture the very idea of America — that we are all created equal and deserve to be treated equally throughout our lives. On Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, and during Constitution Week, we recommit to doing the work of upholding our Constitution, defending our democracy, and building an America that is more prosperous, more equal, and more just.

History requires us to acknowledge that we have never fully lived up to the promise of America. But we have never fully walked away from it either. Burning inside each generation of Americans is the flame of liberty lit at Independence Hall that has guided our Nation from the horrors of slavery to the justice of abolition, from the tragedy of a Civil War to the preservation of our Union, and from economic turmoil and world wars to movements for universal suffrage and civil rights. Our commitment to a Government — of, by, and for the people — has ensured that our Nation remains a citadel of liberty.


America is founded on an idea — one stronger than any army, bigger than any ocean, and more powerful than any dictator or tyrant. It is the most powerful idea in the history of the world, and it beats in the hearts of the people in this country. It is the idea that America guarantees that everyone be treated with dignity. It gives hate no safe harbor. It instills in everyone the belief that, no matter where you start in life, there is nothing you cannot achieve. Whether your ancestors were native to these shores or they were brought here forcibly and enslaved — or whether they immigrated generations back, like my family from Ireland, or they just arrived in search of a better life for their families — the idea of America unites all of us. Today and every day, we celebrate this idea imagined in our Constitution and preserved through the noble labors of Americans past and present. And we reaffirm our commitment to ensuring this idea lives on for generations to come.

To honor the timeless principles enshrined in our Constitution, the Congress has, by joint resolution of February 29, 1952 (36 U.S.C. 106), designated September 17 as “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day” and authorized the President to issue a proclamation calling on United States officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on that day. By joint resolution of August 2, 1956 (36 U.S.C. 108), the Congress further requested that the President proclaim the week beginning September 17 and ending September 23 of each year as “Constitution Week.”

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim September 17, 2023, as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, and September 17 through September 23 as Constitution Week. On this day and during this week, we celebrate our Constitution and the rights of citizenship that together we enjoy as the people of this proud Nation.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of September, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-eighth.

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HTH Pink Out Football Game on Friday, 9-22-23

Falcons, you and your families are invited to attend the Lancers Football Game this Friday, September 22, 2023. Wear Pink! Please read Flyer below.

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Happy Birthday to all September Babies!

Please get your free ice cream on Thursday.

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SUHSD District-Wide Spirit Day This Friday

Falcons, let's represent and we will take a group picture on the stage!

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Behavior Expectation Reminders

All behavior expectations are outlined in the student/parent handbook. Click on the Title Bar to access the handbook.

As we head toward Fall Break, I want to remind you of a couple things on behavior expectations:

Tardy Policy:
If you are not in class when the second bell rings, you are tardy REGARDLESS if I say there is a tardy sweep or not. All tardies will result in lunch detention. Do not excuse your tardy to your teachers that it was not announced or that I did not say it was a tardy sweep. If you are on the wrong side of the door when the second bell rings, you will be marked tardy and you will get lunch detention. It is not your responsibility to walk your friends to their classes.

Bathroom Passes:
No bathroom passes are allowed 10 minutes after the bell and 10 minutes before the end of a period. There is enough time during passing periods to go to the bathroom and make it to class on time. This assumes that you are not walking your friends to class or wasting the passing period.

Cell Phone Policy:
All cell phones must be put away in the backpacks and turned off. No cell phones allowed in the bathrooms either. Both violations will result in phones being taken away. See flyer below

No-touching Policy:
As we have seen an increase in amorous behavior on campus. To ensure the safety of all students, keep hands to yourself as well as no kissing. Following our no-touch policy will prevent someone from accusing you of unwanted behavior.

All Fighting is Prohibited

Some of you are starting to show your behavior is aggressive manner. Anytime you get involved in an altercation, you will be potentially suspended.

Foul Language/Hateful Slurs are Prohibited

Words have power to lift or bring people down. Please watch your language, especially when it comes to hateful slurs against protected status. Hateful slurs against protected status can lead to an automatic suspension. Protected status include: Race, Color, Religion, Sex/Gender, Gender Identity, Gender Expression, Sexual orientation and Marital Status.

Bullying is Prohibited

Be aware that you are not participating in behaviors that could be viewed as bullying or cyberbullying. Please read flyer below.

Parents, please discuss these expectations with students on a regular basis to remind them of appropriate behavior. While we follow the district's guidelines on progressive discipline, some behaviors will receive severe consequences, if merited.
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HTM Intervention Programs

Students, do not get behind in any of your classes before Fall Break. Attend Falcon Scholars and/or Saturday Academy.

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Click HERE to Access the Student/Parent Handbook

Click on this title bar to access the student/parent handbook.