Hornet Buzz

October 10, 2021

Message from the Principal

Hornet Nation,

We will return to the Green/Gold lunch hour starting tomorrow. I ask that students review where they go during this time and have a purpose each day. We will be on a two-hour early release bell schedule this Monday, October 11, and Friday, October 15. The PSAT test will be administered to students in grades 9-11 this Wednesday from 8:00 am to 12:00 noon. This is shaping up to be a busy week. Please work on being in class on time and completing all your assignments. The end of the first marking period is October 29, so let's finish strong and get our grades up as much as possible. Thank you for all your efforts and have a great week!

We Are...Great Mills!


Dr. Heibel

Upcoming Events

Monday, October 11, 1:00-3:00 pm: Parent/Teacher Conferences: No appointments are necessary. Two-hour early release day for students.

Wednesday, October 13: PSAT for Grades 9-11.

Friday, October 15: 2 Hour Early Release--Teacher Professional Development Day.

PSAT Reminders

Some Reminders for PSAT Testing next Wednesday, October 13, 2021 (8am - 12 pm)

Cellphone, headphone and smart device requirements:

To ensure that no one gets an unfair advantage on test day, test center staff are required to collect and hold cell phones and other prohibited electronic devices (smart watches, headphones of any kind, etc.) during the test administration. You may not use or access the device until testing is complete.

Test centers are serious about security and quiet, so prohibited devices must be turned off and collected. Whenever possible, leave these devices at home.

If your device makes noise or you are seen using it at any time before testing is complete, including during breaks, it is grounds for immediate dismissal and score cancellation. The device may be confiscated and its contents inspected.

Seniors, James Forrest Technical Center buses will be running for you next Wednesday! You can wait for your bus in the cafeteria.

Breakfast bags will be served on your way in to testing! Eat your breakfast before you proctor begins or keep the bag under your seat for snacking during your breaks.

Big picture

Students enrolled in an AP Class: AP Exam Deadlines, Registration, Ordering Information 2022


Students not enrolled in an AP Class, but want to take an exam: AP Exam ONLY Deadlines, Registration, Ordering Information 2022


Big picture

The PSAT will be administered to all students in grades 9-11 on Wednesday, October 13, 2021. This is a regular school day with test administration taking place from 8am - 12pm.

All freshmen, check out this link:


All sophomore students, check out this link:


Covid Communication Update

Effective Immediately, SMCPS has changed its method for communicating positive cases of the covid-19 virus. When a member or members of our school community test positive for the virus, ALL members of the school community will receive one email notification for that particular day. Receiving such notification does not mean your child has been directly exposed. It does mean that parents should monitor their children for potential symptoms and react accordingly, which I know is happening already. We will continue to do our best to manage the potential risk for exposure knowing that we can never truly eliminate it. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we navigate through this issue during the school year.

An example of the letter is below for your reference.

One Lunch Clubs and Open Rooms

Pick a club or open room for each day of the week. Plan ahead!

One Lunch Green/Gold Map of Open Rooms

Do you know where to go during one lunch? Check out the map of open rooms during green and gold lunches.

Home Sporting Events This Week

Tuesday: Boy's Soccer vs. St. Charles

Wednesday: Field Hockey vs. Calvert

Volleyball vs. Calvert

Thursday: JV Football vs. Leonardtown

Friday: Boy's Soccer vs. Huntingtown

Big picture

Senior One Acts

Are you interested in acting or design? Like comedy or drama? Come audition for a One Act Play! The shows being directed this year are “The Marriage Proposal,” a comedy about petty arguments and an engagement gone wrong, directed by Alora Rivera, and “Doubt: A Parable” A drama about rumors in a Catholic school in the Bronx in 1964, directed by Anabel Eschenbrenner. Auditions will be held Friday, Oct 15, 2021, after school in the auditorium. Go to Ms. Wilhite in room G05 for forms!
Big picture
Big picture
Big picture

Career Center Updates

Senior Parents/Students,

Many students and parents feel anxious about filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. In order to guide you through the application process, Great Mills would like to invite you to the following workshops to assist in completion.

FAFSA FSA-ID Completion Virtual Event – Tuesday, October 5th at 6:00 p.m.

FAFSA Completion Night – In-Person – Wednesday, October 13th at 6:00 p.m. – Great Mills High School Media Center

Great Mills is hosting a FREE FSA-ID Completion Virtual Workshop on Tuesday, October 5th at 6:00 p.m. This is a virtual event through Google Meet. Financial Aid Counselors will be available to walk students and parents through the process of completing their FSA ID. FSA ID RSVP HERE

What is the FSA ID?

The FSA ID ― a username and password ― has replaced the Federal Student Aid PIN and must be used to log in to certain U.S. Department of Education websites. Your FSA ID confirms your identity when you access your financial aid information and electronically sign Federal Student Aid documents. Students and parents will create a username and password and enter a valid e-mail address. Students and parents will need full names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, contact information and to complete challenge questions and answers.

FAFSA Completion Night – Wednesday, October 13th at 6:00 p.m. – In-Person Event

Great Mills High School is hosting a FREE FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) Completion/Financial Aid Night on Wednesday, October 13th from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. College Financial Aid Counselors will be available to assist parents and students in the completion of their FAFSA. This event will take place in the Great Mills High School Media Center. (All MD Department of Education COVID Safety Protocol will be followed).

In order to accommodate our families safely, we are asking that if you are planning to attend, please RSVP through the google form with the link: FAFSA RSVP Here

What is the FAFSA?

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is the first step in the financial aid process. You use the FAFSA form to apply for federal student aid, such as grants, work-study, and loans. In addition, most states and colleges use information from the FAFSA form to award non federal aid.

For more information or to complete the FAFSA, visit www.studentaid.gov

Big picture


Make sure to contact the attendance secretary (Ms. Arteaga syarteaga@smcps.org) to update your absences, email your teachers, and log into Schoology regularly to complete all your missed assignments.


Students are reminded to bring their SMCPS laptops, charged and ready to go each day as part of their instructional day.

Technology and Resource Accountability:

All students in SMCPS are issued a device and print resources throughout the school year. Students are held liable for damage and loss for all of their SMCPS issued resources. Please take a moment to review the policy by clicking on the following link:

Student Device and Resource Accountability Document.

Meal Benefits Application

Even though lunch will be provided free to students this year, parents should still complete the meal benefits application as there may be other benefits/assistance available to students who qualify for free or reduced meals.

Big picture
Here Comes the Bus App

Click on this link for instructions on how to download the app

No Food Deliveries

Due to growing covid related concerns and the fact that the management of the demands on the main office is too great, we will not be accepting food deliveries of any kind this school year. In the event that a student forgets their lunch, every student is eligible for a free lunch. Thank you for your cooperation and understanding.

Employment Opportunities

  • SMCPS has multiple positions available to support our students and staff, including full-time and part-time positions in various areas. Employment opportunities can be found on the SMCPS website: https://www.smcps.org/hr/employment-opportunities

  • The Abacus Corporation provides part-time/temporary positions to support SMCPS as well. Various positions are also available through the Abacus Corporation and can be found on their website: https://www.abacuscorporation.com/find-jobs

St. Mary's County Government

  • County Government has asked that we share this link to their press release asking for community input into the revisions of the St. Mary’s County Comprehensive Plan. According to the county, “results from the survey will provide ways to document shared goals and objectives and maintain and enhance the quality of life in St. Mary’s County for years to come.”

  • If possible, please share this link in your weekly newsletter to families. You can include the text above as an explanation:


For Our Spanish Speaking Families

¡Saludos! Para leer en español, hay un botón para traducir en la esquina superior derecha de los anuncios de Smore cuando se abre por primera vez. Pueden hacer clic en el botón y después selecciona de la lista de lenguas disponibles