January Newsletter

HNGA...For Students

Big picture

At the Habersham County Board of Education meeting on January 10, it was announced that HNGA's Assistant Principal, Mr. David Leenman, will be transitioning to HNGA's Principal, as Dr. Connie Franklin has been named the Superintendent of Stephens County Schools.

This change will be effective March 1, 2022.

A Message from Mr. Leenman

I am thrilled to announce that at January's Board of Education meeting, I was approved to be HNGA's new principal. This school has meant so much to me, and I am confident the relationships I've built and the lessons I've learned here over the last 6 years as the assistant principal will help me tremendously in this new position. Throughout my time here, I have always been so impressed with the parent involvement and community support, and I look forward to working with you all in my new capacity.

The plan for finishing this school year safely and with the objective of getting 100% of our students to HCHS in the fall, is as follows. Dr. Franklin's last day at HNGA will be Feb. 25, and my first day as Principal will officially be Feb. 28. On Feb. 14, we will be adding two Assitant Principals for the remainder of this school year, both of whom have multiple years of experience as a building principal. Dr. Darlene Hudson recently retired from Level Grove Elementary and will be working 60% for the remainder of the school year. Mr. Scott Kersh was previously an Assistant Principal at HCHS and a principal at Stephens County High School. He has been working at North Habersham Middle School for the last several years. He will be full-time at HNGA as of Feb. 14. I am excited to welcome these additions to our HNGA Family, and I feel so fortunate to have two former principals to help us finish out the year.

I would be remiss if I didn't thank Dr. Franklin for her investment in my life and career. Throughout the laughs and the tough times alike, she has handled every situation with the utmost professionalism and class. I will forever remember and heed the wisdom she's taught me, and I look forward to carrying on the tradition of excellence she built here last 8 years.

Even though there will be new faces here over the next several weeks, our mission will remain the same. We will always be FOR STUDENTS.

If I can ever be of assistance to you or your student, please do not hesitate to reach out to us with any questions or concerns. I look forward to continuing the high achievement for which HNGA is known.

For Students,

David Leenman

Credits & Graduation

Everything we do here at HNGA is done with our eyes on the ultimate goal, graduation from Habersham Central. After the first semester, most students are well on their way to earning the required 5 credits to go to Habersham Central as a sophomore in the fall.

One of the best ways to ensure our freshmen graduate on time is to pass all their classes. Research shows that 85% of students with 0 semester failures will graduate on time. It is vital that our students end the year without any course failures.

We will continue to motivate our students, and the first step towards graduation is to earn all 8 credits as a 9th grader, including core content credits in science, history, math, and English.

Report Cards will be sent home on January 11.

Big picture

Mark Your Calendar

Please mark your calendar for these important, upcoming events:

Report Cards go home - Jan 11

Martin Luther King Day (No School) - Jan 17

Progress Reports go home - Feb 8

HCHS Parent Night for Rising 10th Graders - Feb 15

Presidents Day (No School) - Feb 21

Teacher Work Day (No School) - Mar 14

College and Career Day - April 6

Spring Break (No School) - April 11-15

AP Human Geography exam- May 5

Algebra 1 EOC - May 12

Last day of school - May 27

Parent Survey

We are always looking for ways to improve our school and we value your feedback. In an effort to help us improve, please click on the following link and complete this short School Climate Survey:


Law Enforcement Appreciation Day

Law Enforcement Appreciation Day was celebrated on January 9th, and it allowed us to recognize our amazing School Resource Officer, Paul Kent. Officer Kent truly is a "resource" for our school and students. In addition to his daily duties, he is always willing to pitch in any way that is needed, which can include grabbing a broom or serving lunch when the nutrition staff is shorthanded!

We are so fortunate at HNGA to have an SRO who truly is For Students!

Attendance Counts!

Research shows that one of the main indicators of a freshman's future high school graduation is his/her attendance. While we ask that you keep your student at home if his/her temperature is higher than 100.4 or if he/she is experiencing any ill symptoms, good school attendance directly impacts a student's grades, emotional wellness, and more. It is our goal that each student is absent no more than 5 school days throughout the school year. Simply being at school each day moves a student closer to graduation!

Congratulations to Mrs. Russell (November) and Mrs. Irvin's (December) homerooms for winning recent monthly attendance trophies. And congratulations to the House of Uaminifu for winning the 2nd 9 weeks attendance challenge! Students and teachers in the House of Uaminifu will be treated to ice creams during their lunch!

Big picture
Big picture

After School Math Tutoring

Students who are enrolled in Foundations of Algebra, Algebra 1, or Geometry have the opportunity to attend after-school math tutoring. Tutoring will begin on Jan. 20 and will be available every Monday and Thursday, 3:30-4:30PM.

There is free transportation for all students. Please reach out to your student's math teacher with any questions.

Student Health

At HNGA we are taking steps to keep our students healthy by doing the following:

1. Use of alternative and outside classrooms

2. Assigned seating in classrooms for easy contact tracing

3. Scheduled classroom restroom and handwashing breaks

4. Students follow a hallway flow path during class transitions

5. No congregating of students during class transitions

6. Hand sanitizing stations on every hall throughout the building

7. Additional sanitation of high-touch areas by the custodial staff such as doorknobs, vending machines, water fountains, etc.

8. Teachers monitor students for symptoms of illness

9. Rapid response to positive test results and exposure

10. Assigned Chromebooks so students use the same Chromebook every day

11. Limited seating options available in the cafeteria

12. Alternative activities for students during school-wide assemblies

HCHS Parent Night

Habersham Central will be hosting a Parent Night for rising 10th graders on Feb. 15 at 6PM in the Performing Arts Center at HCHS.

For more information or questions, please contact HCHS's 10th grade counselor, Dan Keef at DKeef@habershamschools.com.

Big picture

Dress Code

The HNGA dress code is the same dress code as each of the middle schools. This includes pajama pants and bedroom attire. Dresses, holes in jeans, or shorts (for all students) must be no higher than 3" above of the knee, as well.

Also as a reminder, sweatshirt hoods are not allowed to be worn in the building as this is a safety issue.

For more information, please reference page 17 of your student's handbook.

Cell Phone Policy

Students are permitted to use cell phones at HNGA for classroom instructional purposes only and only with the teacher's permission.

Parents who need to communicate with their student throughout the day are encouraged to call the front office, where there is also a phone for students to use as needed.

Students may use headphones/earbuds for instructional purposes only, and should not be worn when not being used with the teacher's permission.

Big picture

Glow Dance

Friday, Jan. 21st, 9-11:30pm

Habersham Central High School

All HNGA students are invited to attend the Glow Dance following the basketball games at HCHS on January 21. This event is free with a game ticket or $3 without a ticket. It is casual dress and free pizza will be provided.

All HNGA students should be picked up no later than 11:30PM at HCHS gym.

Community Engagement Events

Big picture

About Us

Habersham Ninth Grade Academy will provide a positive, safe learning community, equipping and empowering students with skills necessary for graduation and post-secondary pursuits.