Tumwater News

September 16, 2021

School Contact Information

Please consider adding the school phone numbers to your contact list.

Main Office 503-356-2720

Attendance 503-356-2721

Registrar 503-356-2731

Tumwater Middle School in Tumwater, Washington has been kind in passing along messages to us, but please pay close attention to location if looking up our number online.

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Principal 's Message

The school year is off to a great start, with student embracing learning opportunities, building new friendships, and becoming confident in navigating our building and their schedules. Earlier this week in Advisory they watched a short video message from a member of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, who spoke about the significance of our school name and the role we all play as stewards of the land. After the video, students discussed what it means to be a responsible steward of their neighborhoods and our school, then made individual commitments to be a steward of Tumwater Middle School. Some of the conversations I observed were remarkable for their depth and aspirational tone.

As it turns out, this lesson on stewardship was very timely. Many students have social media of some form, including TikTok. Some TikTok challenges can be silly but some can be dangerous or destructive. This week a discouraging pattern has emerged at BSD middle schools of students engaging in a TikTok trend known as Devious Licks #LicksfromSchool, which involves stealing items from school. The challenge is for students to take video of themselves stealing items from school, including restroom fixtures, other students' and teachers' belongings, and classroom materials and furniture. To a small extent, we've noticed this happening at Tumwater.

Parents and guardians, please help us by talking to your child about your expectations for their behavior. Monitoring your child's photos/videos and social media is important at this age. If you notice classroom materials, school fixtures, or other things you don't recognize turning up in their backpacks or at your house at your house please have them return it. Your child's counselor or a school administrator is willing to partner with you on addressing behavioral concerns.

I'm very impressed by our students and their commitment to making Tumwater a safe and inclusive place for everyone. Working together, as stewards of our school community, we can make it happen!

Picture Day - Friday, Sept. 17th

Picture Day is tomorrow! All students will have their pictures taken during their PE/Health class and will receive a Student ID Card.

Students received Picture Day information and order forms in Advisory last Friday. Extra order forms will be available at school tomorrow, but it is easy to order online or get additional information here.

Middle Years Program

Tumwater Middle School will be applying to become an authorized International Baccalaureate (IB) World School, offering the Middle Years Program (MYP) as a schoolwide program for all students. An IB education challenges students to think critically about their learning and how it connects to the world they live in. MYP teachers accomplish this by using Global Contexts, Approaches to Teaching and Learning skills, and Learner Profile traits. Students who study in the MYP framework develop the skills necessary to be successful in the IB Diploma Program (DP), which is offered offered at Sunset High School. IB Diploma Program courses are an option for all SHS juniors and seniors.

In the MYP classroom, you will notice that the students are at the center of learning; drawing connections between subject areas, and making connections to the real world. When possible, teachers will infuse global perspectives in order to promote awareness and understanding of the world around them. Within the MYP, students will receive a broad and balanced curriculum designed to address the whole child. Within the IB, students will study the five core subjects of Math, Language Arts, Social Studies, Science, and Physical Education and Health. Additionally, students will take a language acquisition class, an arts class, and a design class. Within these structures, teachers will have the flexibility to meet BSD learning targets and educational goals. For more information about the MYP, please visit the IB website.

Dropping off student materials or lunches

If you need to drop something off for your student, please bring it to the office. To avoid disrupting classroom learning, items will not be delivered to the classroom, but ask that students check in the office during passing periods or their lunch/recess if they're expecting a notebook, lunch etc. It may be helpful for you to email your student that you've dropped the item off and it's ready for them to pick up.

Picking students up early from school

Our hope is that most appointments for students can be scheduled outside of the school day, but occasionally some families need to pick up their student during the school day. When this happens, please send a note to school with your student. They should show it to their teacher or lunch/recess supervisor and will be sent to the office. A parent/guardian will need to check them out of the office. This process will help us reduce interruptions to learning in progress!

Communicating changes in PM transportation plans

Sometimes afternoon transportation plans change during the day and you may need to notify your child of the change. If this happens, please call the office by 3:20 pm so we have ample time to get the message to your student before dismissal.

If your student is riding a bus home with another student, please send a note with your student to school. They should turn it into the office and will receive a temporary bus pass from office staff. This is for one-time exceptions, not a regular transportation plan.

Cell Phone Policy

TMS recognizes the importance of communication and collaboration. We provide a 1:1 device for all students to use in the classroom; therefore, there is little need for additional personal devices during the student day. However, we also recognize that many of our families feel it is important for students to have access to their phones everyday.

To keep the focus on academics and to reduce unnecessary distractions, we ask that all TMS students keep their cell phones off and away from 9:15 am - 3:50 pm each day. If a student needs to check their phone, they can simply ask their teacher. Teachers will allow students to step outside their classroom if the student needs to contact a parent/guardian. If a pattern develops of frequent cell phone use during class time, the teacher will contact the parent/guardian to problem solve together.


Clubs will begin meeting the first week in October. When students forecast for classes last spring, they had an opportunity to suggest ideas for clubs they would likely join. We've compiled their interests and are identifying staff club advisors now.

During Advisory next week, students will learn more about the clubs being offered, including meeting days, as well as the process for forming a new club. All co-curricular clubs will be student-led and advised by a staff member. Clubs may request volunteers as the need arises and Covid protocols allow.


BSD Middle Schools do not offer competitive sports. One of our clubs will be a soccer club, but it is non-competitive and includes a homework help component.

TMS will partner with THPRD for their after school Cross-Country in the fall and Track and Field in the spring. They offer other recreational sports that are not school-based. Learn more about their Youth Leagues here.

Promoting Good Health

All families are asked to complete a wellness scan of their child(ren) each day before sending them to school. If a student is exhibiting a fever, cough, chills, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, a new loss of taste or smell or any of the symptoms on our Too Sick for School - Keep Ill Students Out of School flyer, the student should stay home. A staff member will do another visual check as students arrive at school.

All students and staff will wear masks when on school grounds, with the exception of when eating at mealtimes or drinking. Exceptions are in place for people with documented medical conditions that prevent a mask from being worn.

For the most current mask guidance and school mitigation measures see the FAQs on BSD's Back to School Information Page. Changes in guidance are updated frequently and will appear here.

Counseling Team

Your Tumwater Counseling Team is here to support you. On our Counseling website you will find helpful information and resources, as well as ways to contact us. On the student page, students can also find an appointment request form, to request an appointment if they'd like to meet with their counselor. We will be adding more to our website in the coming weeks, and look forward to meeting everyone, and building our Tumwater community together!

Tumwater Middle School Counseling


Every student has an Advisory class during Period 9. Prior to the first day of school each student's counselor was listed as their Advisory teacher, but then was updated to their actual Advisory teacher.

Our entire staff is deeply committed to the success of all students, so every faculty member is leading an Advisory. This enables us to create smaller Advisory communities averaging 22 students.

To build community, our Advisory classes met every day the first and second weeks of school. Starting next week, they will meet only on Thursdays and Fridays. During Advisories, we will spend time building our class community, learning more about how we will work together as a larger school community, participating in mini lessons that directly support technology integration, practicing executive functioning skills necessary for school success, as well as engaging in social emotional learning.

One of our primary goals for Advisory classes this school year to provide an opportunity for students to establish strong relationships in a small group of pears and with a teacher who they can rely on as an advocate.

Although we hope that your child will form a strong connection with all of their Tumwater teachers, an Advisory teacher is a student's “go-to” contact at the school that will do everything they can to ensure their personal success this school year. Please do not hesitate to encourage your child to reach out to your child's Advisory teacher if they have questions about procedures or are in need of support.

We are all here to help make this school year a fantastic one!

Future Fridays

Everyone is encouraged to participate in Future Fridays by wearing high school or college gear every Friday beginning next week.

Virtual Family Engagement

The traditional Back to School Night has transformed into a Family Engagement event, which this year will be held virtually. Watch for more information coming next week.

Parent/StudentVue, Canvas, & ParentSquare

There are three primary communication tools we will use to provide timely information to students and families. They each have related, but distinct functions.

ParentVUE is a web portal that allows parents/guardians to access real-time information related to their students, including Attendance, Calendars, Course history, Emergency contacts, Grade Book information, Report cards, Schedules, and School information. It is also used each fall to verify student enrollment information.

Access to ParentVUE requires a username and password, which parents/guardians set up with an Activation Key code. If you have questions or would like assistance with ParentVUE, please contact our Registrar at 503-356-2731.

StudentVUE is the student version of ParentVUE. It allows students to access near real-time information on assignments and scores, attendance, class schedules, class websites, course history, grade book, report cards and more.

Learn more about ParentVUE and StudentVUE here.

Canvas is used by middle and high school teachers as an extension to in-class instruction. Teachers use Canvas to post assignments, give feedback, and communicate with students. Students use Canvas to access lessons assignments, manage their time using the calendar feature, submit work, and receive feedback on completed work. Parent/guardian Log In ID and password are the same as ParentVue. Directions, informational videos, and FAQs can be found here.

ParentSquare is a simple tool that allows staff, students, and families to connect. You can choose to receive messages from the district and school via email, text or app notification. You can also choose whether to receive the information as it comes or all at once at 6 pm daily. It allows you to communicate in your preferred language and direct message teachers and staff. Learn more here.

Find more Parent Apps & Resources here.

Arrival & Dismissal

Every day, our parking lot is flowing more smoothly. Thank you to all who are riding the buses and to the drivers who are following our student drop off/pick up plans.

If you are dropping off your student, use the upper (north) parking lot, paying attention to directional signs and guidance from staff. Please be aware of staff and students walking through the parking lot and crosswalk.

The student drop off area begins just past the crosswalk - look for the blue sign. Our drop off area is shaped like an inverted U, so please turn through the curve and pull as far forward as possible before dropping off or picking up your child. This is considerate of drivers behind you and helps prevent traffic including our school buses from being blocked on 118th.

It is easiest to leave the parking lot onto 118th by making a right turn and is helpful in keeping traffic moving smoothly.

Students who are being dropped off can enter through the front doors of the school or through another entrance at the end of B. Hall. Look for the open gate and it will be the first doorway.

The lower (south) parking lot is for buses only. Students should not be dropped off here.

For the safety of our students who walk, ride, or roll to school we will be adding a crossing guard to Barnes & 118th Ave. as soon as possible.

Please help us with safety by not allowing your child to dart into traffic to get in/out of your car while you're on 118th Ave.


Tumwater PTO Information

Tumwater PTO Launches Rising Tides

Your Tumwater PTO Board is excited & proud to launch our 2021-22 fundraising campaign: Rising Tides.

This effort is about coming together, forging a community, building new traditions, and giving what we can to raise all kids.

We began this organization with exactly $0. Our dreams are big as we brainstorm ideas to bring vibrancy and energy to Tumwater’s halls in this new normal. As we start this organization from scratch, the more successful our fundraising, the greater our impact on every student.

Every dollar helps this effort.

It's time for Tumwater to show up for each other & to build something from nothing.

2021-22 BUDGET: As our Rising Tides income increases, so will the breadth and scope of our proposed PTO impact. Head to www.tumwaterpto.org/fundraising to review the proposed budget at various income levels. As our funding picture becomes more clear, we will confirm our 2021-22 budget at our first PTO Community Meeting on Tuesday, 10/12 at 6:30pm. We humbly ask you to please donate as generously as possibly, and as early as possible.

PAY ONLINE: Donate directly via PayPal.

PAY via CASH/CHECK: Drop off in school office.

MATCHING FUNDS: Please see our Matching Funds FAQ & hold onto your receipt!

FOLLOW ALONG: You can find Tumwater PTO on facebook, instagram or via our website.

QUESTIONS: Email Hannah (tumwaterpto.president@gmail.com)

Dear BSD Families,

We understand that it can be challenging to access current information regarding your child’s schooling in your own language. We do our best to send out messages about important updates, especially during these challenging times. However, you can access the BSD website — and specifically, our return-to-school page — at any time. Below, we’ve included a link that will take you to our website, where you’ll find it already translated into your language. Please know, the translation is generated by Google Translate. It’s not perfect, but we do hope it’s helpful.

If you need additional assistance, please contact our Multilingual Department at 503-356-3755.

View the BSD website in Arabic قم بزيارة الموقع الإلكتروني للقطاع التعليمي لمدارس بيفرتون باللغة العربية

View the BSD website in Chinese 请浏览中文版的BSD网站

View the BSD website Japanese BSDウェブサイトを日本語で見る

View the BSD website in Korean. 한국어로 BSD 웹사이트를 보십시오.

View the BSD website in Russian Посмотрите веб-сайт школьного округа Бивертон на русском

View the BSD website in Somali Ka fiiri bogga BSD ee ku qoran af-Soomaali

View the BSD website in Spanish Vea la página web del Distrito Escolar de Beaverton en español

View the BSD website in Vietnamese. Xem trang mạng BSD bằng tiếng Việt