UHMS Principal's Newsletter
Any items from PE lockers belonging to 8th graders that are not picked up on this day will be donated. If you cannot come on this day, but wish to have your student's items held, please contact Mrs. Grimble or Mrs. Cisneros via email to set up another time to collect them.
Any promotion certificates or awards not picked up on this day will be mailed to students over the summer.
We are still awaiting final details on yearbooks. If they have been delivered, then they will be available for pickup this day as well. Please keep an eye on our social media and website for announcements.
Note from Mrs. Grimble
Dear Uni families,
It is hard to find the words to express how saddened I am as both an educator and parent in the wake of the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery (and so many others before them). These last days should have marked the first weeks of summer vacation for students-- a joyous time of celebration for completing another year of school. I was overjoyed to be able to see so many of you at our item pick up event this week and hand over so many promotion certificates to the students who worked so hard here for the last two years. At the same time, I also feel an even heavier burden than normal to find ways to be sure that we are serving our students and families in the best way we can.
Riverside is a diverse city and our school is no different. University Heights serves students of many races, ethnicities, socio-economic status, and needs. Our superintendent, Dr. Hansen reminded staff earlier this week that it is our job to do more than operate schools where we can teach content. It is our job to teach future generations tolerance, compassion and respect for one another. I want to reinforce my genuine belief in this statement and commitment to doing all I can as the principal of UHMS to ensure students leave us with a deeper understanding of the value of differences along with increased tolerance, compassion, and respect.
Over the last several years, we have tried as a staff to become better equipped to support students both academically and social-emotionally. We try to find ways to empower students to get involved on campus and in their own education. However, we are nowhere near perfect and I will be the first to acknowledge that we still have a long way to go. In order to continue to grow as a staff and a school, we need to have difficult conversations with students, staff, and parents about how we can do a better job of serving our community as a whole.
I write this letter in hopes of opening the door for both students and parents to join these conversations and help us as a staff learn to do better for each and every one of our students. During the month of July, we will be holding two types of virtual listening sessions. It is our hope that these sessions will help us to gain a deeper understanding of the needs of our families and students. Further information will be sent out with session links in the July newsletter.
First, we would like to hear from our students. All of our students have incredible leadership potential and we want your voices in a conversation about what supports and systems you would like to see on our campus. Second, we would like to hear from both families and community members. During these sessions, we will not have any presentation or information to give out. Rather, we want to hear what you have to say. We will pose some questions to spark the conversation then sit back and listen and take notes. We want to learn from you.
We will continue to engage in staff development around equity, culturally responsive pedagogy, and social-emotional support for students. When we know how the school year will begin, we will share details of how parents and students can get or stay involved in what is going on at UHMS throughout the year. In the meantime, please know that we plan to continue learning and growing to be sure that we can work together to guide our students to do the same.