The Grizzly Growl

Parent and Student Newsletter for GFH--May 2020

Big picture

From the Bear Den


The shock of the school closure has worn off and we are settling in and trying to make the best of the situation. While we can't control the circumstances that led to the school closure, we can control our responses to it. We can lean into this situation and make it meaningful through service, connections, and a positive attitude. We encourage you to make May meaningful.

We are making plans to honor the accomplishments of our students for their academic achievements, citizenship, scholarships, and of course, graduation. Please monitor our social media and the CPS website for more information.

We'd also like to thank our parents and school community who have stepped up to enable and encourage our students to continue to learn at home.

Please encourage your child to finish the school year strong. The more engaged a student is in learning during time away from school, the better their long-term academic performance will be. Even having your child complete one activity per week will help reduce the risk of any potential learning gaps and help set them up for continued academic success. All students are required to participate in Phase 3 learning activities to receive credit in their current classes. Please see additional information about Phase 3 below.

Finally, please join us in thanking our incredible teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week. They miss the students so much! We hear from them daily as they check on students' physical and emotional health and help them with their remote learning. They have truly kept the Grizzly family together as we have learned apart.


Congratulations to Mrs. Alicia White, our SCA advisor and awesome geometry teacher, who was selected as the 2020 VSCA High School Advisor of the Year. Watch a heartfelt message from her council students here. Congratulations to our student-run SCA for being named a National Council of Excellence.
Big picture

Grassfield is an Award Winning W!SE School--Again!

Thanks go to our amazing economics and personal finance teachers for helping our students learn financial literacy and responsibility. For the 4th year in a row, Grassfield has scored in the top 10 in the nation for large schools on the W!SE test. We rank number 6 among large schools and 30th overall in the nation.

Teacher Appreciation Week

Join the PTSA and SCA as we thank our teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week May 4-8. Get creative! And post how you honor your teachers using #ThankATeacher. We love seeing all the awesome ways you celebrate the “T” in PTA!

  • Email heartfelt letters, cards and messages of appreciation
  • Create artwork, poems and video messages to celebrate your teachers
  • Send your teacher a virtual award
  • On Thursday, upload a #TBT of you and your favorite teacher and thank them using #ThankATeacher.

Give a SHOUT OUT to our Grizzly teachers through the SCA on this form. We'll feature our teachers on Grassfield social media. Complete by May 3.

Senior Success

We LOVE our seniors!

Send your information to the Senior Instagram account @grassfield_hs or any senior class officer if you'd like to participate in the senior shout-out. (see the graphic)

Graduation plans are in the works and CPS is seeking the opinions of seniors and their families on the best way to celebrate and honor this accomplishment. Please check your email for a link to the graduation survey and respond by May 1.

Information about caps, gown, and other graduation regalia will be coming soon. Check our social media pages often for the most updated information.

Phase 3 of the Continuity of Learning plan has begun and will continue through Thursday, June 11, 2020. During this phase, school counselors will be reaching out to all seniors. A checklist will be provided to each student through their google classroom to inform students of their current graduation requirements. With your support, teachers and school counselors are working hard to get our seniors across the finish line.

Seniors should join the new Class of 2020 Google Classroom page. The class code is 34agr1k. This is where we will post important senior news, events, and graduation information. PLEASE JOIN AND STAY IN THE KNOW. Information can also be found on Grassfield website and on Twitter and Instagram. Follow us @grassfield_hs and @grassfield 2020.

ACCESS College Support

Hello from Mrs. Moorhouse!

Seniors: if your family has experienced significant financial changes due to COVID-19, you can ask for a review of your financial aid. Each college has a different process for financial aid appeals, so contact the Office of Financial Aid at your college (or Mrs. Moorhouse) for more information.

ACCESS is available to help juniors and seniors at home! Mrs. Moorhouse is happy to provide virtual college counseling during regular school hours. Email her at or find more contact info here:

Some helpful websites for college research & important updates: (Virtual tours of over 600 colleges) (College Board updates on SAT/AP testing) (ACT updates)

Note: Many colleges are releasing admissions updates for the c/o 2021, including test-optional policies (i.e., students will not be required to submit SAT/ACT scores as part of their application). However, the full impact of test-optional policies is not clear yet, and it will likely vary from college to college. For example: in the past, students who applied test-optional were often ineligible for merit-based scholarships (based on achievement, not financial need). Many colleges have not yet clarified if applying test-optional will impact a student's chances for these scholarships next year. Bottom line: the decision to apply test-optional should be made very carefully and only after more information is available.

The Counseling Corner

Hello Grassfield High School community! First and foremost, we miss seeing you at GFH and we hope you are all staying safe and healthy.

Chesapeake Public Schools Counseling Department has created activities to support instruction during the extended school closure. Some of the topics include anxiety, coping, relaxation, independent life, creating a routine, career exploration, etc. Please click on the link below for more information.

School Counseling Resources

Some students may be struggling with online learning. Try the tips in this article to encourage good learning habits.

Now is also a great time to apply for Scholarships! Use the link below for scholarship opportunities.


Please contact your child’s school counselor with questions during their office hours or email for assistance if you have any questions or concerns. Thank you for your support as we work to serve our school community remotely during this difficult time.

A-Co Ms. Annette Thompson

Cr-Gr Mrs. Nicole Lewis

Gu-La Mrs. Elizabeth Creamer

Le-O Mrs. Tiosha Macklin

P-Sm Mrs. Haylee Davis

Sn-Z Ms. LaRhonda Brinkley

AP Testing

Thank you to our AP teachers for their ingenuity these past few weeks as they continue to prepare our students for the very important AP test. Our students will be ready!

  • AP tests will now be administered at home during the weeks of May 11-22. College Board has a comprehensive Coronavirus updates page with lots of important information. View that information here.
  • Students who were granted accommodations by College Board will still receive those accommodations on the home-based test. Learn how those accommodations will be provided here.
  • Students should test on the main testing dates. Makeup testing (June 1-5) should only be used when the student is unable to test on one or more of the May dates or has a technical difficulty on exam day.
  • College Board has made available a variety of free online study resources to help students prepare and practice for the test. AP teachers can provide that information to students.

Student Expectations for Successful Completion of the School Year

Phase 3 Grading Information

Teacher Office Hours

Utilize Teacher Office Hours!

Teachers are available to provide additional assistance each day during their office hours.

Students may email teachers to schedule an appointment unless otherwise noted on individual Google Classrooms.

We are here for YOU! If there are special circumstances that may prohibit you from completing assigned work, email your teacher and/or schedule an appointment to meet during office hours.

Here are some tips from your own Grizzly teachers!

Mrs. Cotterell: When asked how students can be successful in Phase 3, my mind immediately goes to Nike's famed trademark, "JUST DO IT." During times of uncertainty, it can be difficult to stay motivated. Set a routine, use a planner, or make a to-do list--whatever works best for you. Just don't give up!

Mrs. White: Make a daily to do list the night before. This does not just need to be school work but also things that will help you stay healthy physically and mentally. Have fun with the list and enjoy crossing things off as you complete them.

Mrs. Whatley: Find a place in your home where you can work uninterrupted, if possible. With 4 of us working from home here, I have worked in my garage, on my back patio, and even in the middle of my front yard in the sunshine on nice days. Take time to unplug! I know technology is providing your primary means of connecting, but too much screen time is also unhealthy.

Mr. Blacketer: You don't have to learn a new skill or self-actualize during this time. You're allowed to just exist for a while without having to constantly work on yourself

Ms. Knight: Learning from home won't be perfect and it won't be the same. But if you put in the effort, it will be worth it!

Mrs. Anderson: Everybody always talks about the difference that a teacher can make in a student's life, but they never talk about the difference a student can make in a teacher's life. Know that you are missed by so many teachers and that you have made a wonderful difference in our lives. We just didn't get the chance to tell you.

Keep that in mind as you FINISH STRONG!

What is Google Meet?

Google Meet is an OPTIONAL resource for teachers

  • Although many teachers have chosen to hold office hours and present classroom instruction using Google Meet (or now, Zoom); participation in these meets is optional for teachers and students.

  • Teachers will provide the link for student access to Meet in their Google Classrooms. For student safety, students may only access Meet with their CPS Google accounts.

  • Students using Google Meet may join without using video and may mute audio.

  • Since students are only allowed to join if they are using their CPS Google account, they are not anonymous. Please see CPS Google Meet Student Expectations.

  • CPS Phase 3 guidelines state that all instruction during this time is asynchronous.

  • Teachers who choose to provide new instruction via Google Meet will record the session and post it on their Google Classroom sites so that all students will have access to it during the week.

  • Teachers may invite parents to use Google Meet for online IEP meetings. The access codes for these meetings are private.

Big picture
While so many things are on pause right now, the City has not stopped making plans for the future. The Facilities Master Plan study for


is still ongoing & we’re looking for your input. Submit your comments through our online survey by May 14:

Grassfield High School

Enjoy this edition of The Grizzly Growl, yet another way we strive to increase communication and strengthen our Grizzly community. Your feedback is welcome.

Don't forget to follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @grassfield_hs. Our website is updated regularly for additional information.