EMS Newsletter

November 2, 2018

Notes from the Principal

Dear EMS Families,

We have fully embraced Restorative Practices this year as a district. Last week our ½ day inservice was spent working as a full BSD faculty on considering what Restorative Practices look like in our schools and classrooms specifically. Annie O’Shaughnessy has been leading much of this work in the district and describes below the desired effect of Restorative Practices for students, families and faculty.

Safety • Belonging • Voice • Re-spect

  • feel safety through self-regulation, rituals, and strong, grounded presence of educator.

  • feel a sense of belonging—as valuable members of the community, despite challenges.

  • have equal opportunities to have a voice—to be seen and heard, to feel respected.

  • feel re-spected because adults drop assumptions and show students unconditional positive regard.

Oftentimes we think of circles when we think of Restorative Practices; circles are a powerful tool but they do not capture the entire practice. Restorative Practices is a philosophy, a mindset that drives the language, actions and choices of a community. Knowing that all children deserve a school community like this, EMS set forth the following goals for 2018-2019:

  • ALL EMS students and staff will feel connected to our school community - safe, respected, seen, heard, and valued.

  • All EMS students will find meaning in the work they are tasked with.

Our work with Restorative Practices, as a district and a school community, is supporting us in moving toward these school goals.

The traditional Restorative Circle is beginning to happen at EMS as well - most students are experiencing at least one a week. Though your child might not recognize the term Restorative Practice, check in with your child about circles he/she/they are experiencing and how the experience is impacting his/her/their connectedness to school and our EMS community.

As we continue to work toward our EMS goals we have surveyed the faculty and staff to assess where we are and where we need to go. We welcome your feedback as well. Please don’t hesitate to reach out with what you notice or wonder. mmcdonou@bsdvt.org.

Below are a few resources on Restorative Circles and the philosophy behind why schools are embracing this practice.

Excerpt from Circle Forward by Carolyn Boyes-Watson, Kay Pranis

Article by IAA Principal Bobby Riley

In partnership,

Megan R. McDonough

Friendly Reminders

  • November 2nd - End of Quarter 1

  • November 3rd - 9-12 noon - Band District Music Festival auditions

  • November 5th - Quarter 2 starts *report cards will be mailed by November 9th

  • November 9th - District Jazz Festival

  • November 12th - 16th - Basketball tryouts

  • November 14th 5-6:00 p.m. - EMS PTO meeting in MakerSpace/Library

  • November 19th & 20th - Parent Teacher Conferences

  • November 19th - 23nd - No school

Community Announcements

  • Josh Sinz has joined EMS as our new art teacher. Josh has been in the Burlington community for many years as an artist and educator. Please join me in providing him a warm welcome.

  • Daylight Savings - Sunday - November 4th

  • EMS is still hiring paraeducators. If you know of a strong candidate, please encourage them to apply or be in touch directly with Mia Marinovich - mmarino@bsdvt.org

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Our school is using PTCFast.com to make signups as convenient as possible this year. You may be familiar with this platform from your child’s elementary school.

Please copy and paste the following web address into your browser window:

https://www.ptcfast.com/schools/Edmunds_Middle Then you can follow these steps to successfully schedule a meeting with your child’s teachers:


If you do not have internet access , please call the guidance office 864-8486 x 41003 to schedule a conference time.

District Budget Survey

A Budget Survey is open on our District website. Please put your suggestions into the form to ensure that those suggestions have been seen by both the school (or program) leadership, as well as district leadership.

Here is the survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Q76H2LF

American Mathematics Competition

This year EMS will be offering students the opportunity to take the AMC 8 on November 13th at the start of the school day. The AMC 8 is described by the MAA as a “25-question, 40-minute, multiple choice examination in middle school mathematics designed to promote the development of problem-solving skills. The AMC 8 provides an opportunity for middle school students to develop positive attitudes toward analytical thinking and mathematics that can assist in future careers. Students apply classroom skills to unique problem-solving challenges in a low-stress and friendly environment." Students should see Ms. Bedard if they would like to sign up.

The Library Corner

Come to the EMS Book Fair!!

Day/Time: Monday, Nov. 5th through Friday, Nov. 9th

Monday & Tuesday 8 a.m.– 3:30 p.m.

Wednesday 8 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Thursday extended hours 8 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Friday 8 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Location: EMS Library/Makerspace

Big picture

Winter/Holiday Support

Dear EMS families,

The winter months can be especially difficult financially due to increased utility bills, holidays, winter clothing, etc. It has been wonderful to see all the different ways that families in our community have stepped up to support one another and our school -- chaperoning, transporting, and making baked goods for events; cheering for our students at sporting events or performances; walking other students to school; donating clothing, food, and gifts; as well as many other forms of support. Our wish is for all in our community to feel safe and valued, and we can't thank you all enough for doing your part to support this goal!

This winter, we are organizing a winter/holiday support system and are looking to gather names of families who are REQUESTING support as well as families who would like to OFFER support. This system will be totally anonymous (only guidance staff will have access to names). We will do our very best to fulfill all requests, but our ability to do so will depend on donations received. Below is a link to our Winter/Holiday Support survey. Please fill this out if your family could use some support during the winter months, or if you are able to donate -- every donation, no matter the size, will be much appreciated by a family in our EMS community!

Click here for Winter/Holiday Support Survey

Thanks everyone!

Hello from the Health Office!

Do you have any extra water bottles at your house collecting dust? If you do, please donate those you don’t use to the Edmunds Middle School nurse’s office. Hydration is the number one way to rid ourselves of most acute medical afflictions such as dizziness, stomach ache, and headache. Most kids don’t drink enough water at the water fountain in a given school day. All donated water bottles should be clean and in working condition. You can bring any donations to the nurse’s office! Thanks!