SHMS Family Newsletter
November 6, 2022
Greetings Stuart-Hobson community,
Congratulations! Tomorrow marks the end of the first term and we are off to an incredible start this year! I hope that everyone enjoys the opportunity to rest and refocus with the short instructional week to start the second term.
We will have a few trips on Wednesday and Thursday to build community and celebrate students who have met and upheld our field trip eligibility criteria during the first term. I encourage everyone to remind students that Wednesday is the official start of the second term and an opportunity to start fresh in all classes and areas of school.
Please remember that the opportunity to submit work for the first term closes on Monday night at 11:59:59 PM. Even though there is no school for students, the school building will be open from 9:00-3:30 PM tomorrow for students who need to hand in any late/missing work in person. All other submissions should have a digital timestamp on Monday.
I hope that everyone enjoys any trips this week and the opportunity to ease into term two when students return for a two-day instructional week on Wednesday. Have a great week everyone!
Upcoming Dates: November 7-11 & 14-18
- End of Term 1, Professional Development & Records Keeping, no school for students
- Election Day, No School for Teachers or Students
- First day of Term 2, a great instructional day!
- 7th Grade Skate Trip
- 6th Grade Trip to Terrapin Adventures - Group #1
- A great instructional day!
- 8th Grade Trip, TBD
- 6th Grade Trip to Terrapin Adventures - Group #2
- Veterans Day observed, Schools Closed
November 14 - 18
- 6th grade Dress Down Day (Pep Assembly winners)
- A great instructional day!
- A great instructional day!
- A great instructional day!
DCPS FY24 Public Budget Hearing, 6:00 pm
- A great instructional day!
- SHMS High School Fair, 6:00-8:00 PM
- A great instructional day!
- November 22, Pep Assembly
- November 23-25, Thanksgiving Recess
- November 30, Town Halls
- December 2, Staff Holiday Party, no after-school programming, including ASAS.
- December 9-11, Winter Musical Performances, times TBD
- December 10, EdFEST (virtual), 10:00-1:00 PM (revised time)
All students must complete a participation packet every school year. Additionally, the medical forms must be completed within the prior 365 days. We encourage you to have your healthcare provider complete these forms before the school year and attach them to your participation packet.
Click on the link below to submit the athletic forms online.
Congratulations to the Stuart-Hobson student-athletes and coaches for their success in the classroom and in athletic competition this fall season. Go Panthers!
Boys Cross-Country: DCIAA 2nd Place
Girls Soccer: DCIAA Play-off #4 Seed
Volleyball: 11 - 0 (Currently tied for 1st in league)
Archery: 3 - 2 (Currently 2nd place in division)
Fall Sports Season
Wednesday: 3:45pm - 5:00pm (Practice)
Head Coach: Myron Alston
Boys' Indoor Track
First Practice: Monday, November 14 @ 3:45pm - 5:00pm
Head Coach: Taurus McGhee
Girls' Indoor Track
First Practice: Monday, November 14 @ 3:45pm - 5:00pm
Head Coach: Mark Smith
Wednesday: Stuart-Hobson vs. Hardy @ Hardy 5:00pm (Game)
Thursday: 3:45pm - 5:45pm (Practice)
Head Coach: Ronald Dorsey
Assistant Coach: Linda Hilliard
Next Match: Monday, November 14 4:00pm @ Bolling AFB (Practice)
Head Coach: Tomicula Williams
Wednesday: 5:00pm - 6:30pm (Try-Outs)
Thursday: 5:00pm - 6:30pm (Try-Outs)
Head Coach: Sylvester Robinson
Wednesday: 3:30pm - 5:00pm (Try-Outs)
Wednesday: 3:30pm - 5:00pm (Try-Outs)
Head Coach: Troy Henderson
Wednesday: 3:45pm - 5:45pm (Practice)
Thursday: 3:45pm - 5:45pm (Practice)
Head Coach: Sheritha Dixon
First Practice: Thursday, November 17 @ Dunbar High School 3:45pm - 5:00pm
Head Coach: Stanley Stancil
Candidates interested in coaching or volunteering. Send your resume to Richard.Strong@k12.dc.gov
Coaching Vacancies: SY 2022-23
Head Coach: Wrestling (Winter Season )
Head Coach: Co-Ed Lacrosse (Spring Season)
Interested candidates or volunteers should send a resume to Athletic Director Strong, Richard.Strong@k12.dc.gov
Shout Outs and Celebrations
Welcome to the SHMS staff Ms. Gloria Naranjo Vela (Spanish II Teacher) and Mr. Jason Nicholsen (Social Worker)! You can reach our recent additions to the SHMS staff here:
Mr. Bowles (ISS Coordinator): firstname.lastname@example.org
Ms. Swann (Behavior Tech): email@example.com
Ms. Naranjo Vela (Spanish): firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Nicholsen (Social Worker): email@example.com
Congratulations to the SHMS Volleyball team on maintaining their perfect record and winning streak this past week with a victory over Johnson MS. Thank you to our coaches, including Ms. Hilliard, and good luck with your upcoming matches!
New Information and Important Updates
Join Stuart Hobson’s new Mock Trial Program!
This is a great program for any student - introverts, extroverts, wanna-be lawyers, actors, writers, free thinkers, good-at-arguing-with-siblings, and everyone in between.
Over the course of the year, students will prepare to conduct a mock criminal trial, with students taking on roles as lawyers and witnesses. The program culminates in June 2023 with a full mock trial before a real judge in a real courtroom (and before an audience of family and friends).
During class, students will learn the nuts and bolts of trials and effective trial advocacy skills. We will also discuss the legal system, some current events that pertain to the law and careers in the law. The majority of class time will be spent preparing for the mock trial. Students will work in teams (the defense team or the prosecution team) to get their “case” ready for trial. Depending on their role, the students will write opening and closing arguments, as well as questions for direct and cross examinations of witnesses.
This class is taught by Kate Weisburd, a Stuart Hobson parent. She has taught this class before, most recently for 5th graders at Ludlow Taylor. By day, Ms. Weisburd is a professor at George Washington Law School and previously worked as a trial attorney for many years. She has taught this class several times and is excited to bring it to Stuart Hobson. Some GW Law students may also provide additional coaching via zoom and/or join occasionally as guest speakers.
You can watch a video of the Ludlow Taylor mock trial here (on zoom because of COVID).
Questions? Feel free to reach out to Ms. Weisburd at firstname.lastname@example.org
Ready to join?
Interested students (or their guardians) should complete this form so that Ms. Weisburd can communicate directly with you.
Does my child have to have an interest in the law?
Absolutely not. It's great if they do, but it's equally great if they don't. This program is designed to expose students to what it's like to be a lawyer, but it's also a great chance to practice written and oral advocacy. Mock trial is also a great fit for students who like to perform and who might enjoy playing a witness.
What happens during class time?
Each class will be structured with a set lesson plan that includes lots of opportunity to practice advocacy skills. Over the course of the year, the students will work towards preparing for a final mock trial.
What is required of the students?
The most important requirement is that students attend class each week between mid-November and the trial. Missing class every now and then is inevitable and fine. But this is a full year commitment. There will also be very short and low-key homework assignments. In the spring, students will work on writing witness questions, as well as opening and closing statements.
Is there a min or max number of students?
The ideal class size is 12-15 students but we may be able to accommodate more students.
REMINDER: End of Term Reminders
We hope that all students finish the term strong and pass all of their classes with high levels of success. As the term wraps up we want to remind everyone of some key policies and deadlines.
November 4: This was the last instructional day of the term for students.
November 7: This is the last day of the term and all work must be turned in by 11:59:59 PM to count towards their Term 1 marks.
November 7 - 16: Teachers will grade all Term 1 work and finalize student marks in Aspen.
November 16 - 23: Term 1 report cards will be prepared and mailed home. They will also become visible in Aspen during this timer period.
"WS" Marks - Any assignment with a grade of "WS" (Waiting for Submission) has not yet been turned in and graded. Students have through the end of the term to hand in any late or missing work and the highest grade that late assignments will receive is a "B".
Aspen - Aspen is the official record of student academic performance. While other platforms (Canvas, Reading Plus, Zearn, etc.) may include information about student performance and growth, Aspen houses their attendance, lists of assignments, and grades. Please remember that teachers have up 10 days from when an assignment is turned in until a grade must be posted for that assignment in Aspen.
Grade Appeals - Families and students may appeal student marks AFTER receiving their student's report card. If you believe that a term/final mark was is inaccurate because of a miscalculation or unfairly calculated you can appeal to a counselor or administrator within two weeks of receiving the report card.
Previous Announcements & Resources
**The information below is new or an updated version of something announced previously! **
Student Clubs & Extra-Curriculars
REMINDER: 8th Grade Travel Abroad!
Are you interested in traveling and learning about other cultures?
The DCPS Study Abroad application for Summer 2023 is open now until 11:59 PM on November 13, 2022! Click here to apply.
REMINDER: Space Camp Returns!
It brings us great pride to announce that one of our school’s signature programs will be returning. Because of the hiatus that the pandemic put on this tradition, we are collaborating with the PTA to offer students in all grade levels the opportunity to participate in Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama in 2023. Typically, we take our incoming 6th grade class, but we want to accommodate students who missed this great opportunity during the past two years. Below is some information for interested families so you can begin planning for your students participation:
Space Camp Dates:
- April 10 to 12, 2023 6th Grade
- May 22 to 24, 20223; 7th and 8th Grades
How can I participate?
- All grade levels are invited for this year’s Space Camp Trip
- The 6th grade trip has a capacity of 90 students
- The 7th and 8th grade trip has a capacity of 90 students (45 per grade level)
- Chaperones: Please reach out to Ms. Lovelock or Mr. Howard if you are interested in chaperoning this trip. All chaperones, must be DCPS employees and/or have passed the clearance process for school-based volunteers
Criteria for Attending Space Camp:
- Students shall not have accrued 9 or more unexcused absences from start of school until November 2022
- Students shall have not received 4 or more behavioral referrals
- Students shall meet general criteria for field trip eligibility
Space Camp Payment Schedule and Process:
- Payments must be made as money orders, payable to "Stuart-Hobson Middle School"
- Families will receive a receipt after each payment.
- Funding will go towards transportation, food, and admission to Space Camp
- Our goal is to fundraise as much as possible to help offset costs for trip participants
- Payments can be received by Ms. Lovelock before school from 8:30 am to 9:30 am and evenings 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm Monday through Thursday
1st Payment of $250 due Nov. 14th
2nd payment of 250 due Dec. 2nd
3rd and final payment $205 Jan 6th
Spots will be reserved on a first paid basis and failure to meet subsequent payment deadlines may result in the loss of a student's spot on the trip roster.
- 8 scholarships will be available for both trips
- 4 scholarships for 6th grade
- 4 scholarships for 7th and 8th grade (2 per grade level)
- Scholarships are available to families that demonstrate an economic hardship/need and whose student qualifies otherwise
Reminder: Panther Pride School Store: Additional SHMS Clothing & Gear!
STUART-HOBSON MIDDLE SCHOOL SPIRITWEAR 2022
Find items that I've picked out specifically for our team. There is also spirit-wear available for your family and friends. Check out the shop details below.
Shop Opens:September 21
Shop Closes:October 03
Use this access code to shop our gear: Bsch4LHYwJ
Craft and Chat Club Returns!
Join us to craft (or just doodle!), chat, and have community with each other! Crafts provided!
When: Wednesdays 3:30-4:30pm
Where: Office #117
Why: To have fun, relax, and craft!
Who: YOU! ALL students are welcome!
Questions? See Ms. Harrington (email@example.com, office #221)
Stuart Hobson Debate Team Tournament Schedule 2022-2023
Tournaments start at 8:30 am and end (roughly) by 5:30 pm
Breakfast and lunch are provided
Participants are responsible for transportation to and from host sites. Should a last-minute change in location occur, every effort will be made to spread the information.
Questions? Contact Mr. Plaisted, firstname.lastname@example.org
Policies & Daily Operations
Lost & Found
If your student is missing anything, or you recognize any clothing in the recent photos below, please stop by or encourage your student to check the lost and found and retrieve their belongings.
Immunization Compliance Reminder
If you have any questions you can reach out to our school nurse or AP Turner.
DCPS Impact Aid Survey Opens November 1st
This SY22-23 Impact Aid Survey is available starting November 1, 2022. Each year, DCPS asks all families to complete the Impact Aid survey to generate additional federal funds for DCPS. This year, the surveys will be fully electronic using the Seamless platform. All eligible applications received by December 22 will be submitted as part of the initial application due on January 31, 2023. Using the surveys linked below, all DCPS families should complete one survey per child, not household, in their preferred language. While December 22 is our initial deadline, families will have until April 30, 2023 to complete the survey. All additional eligible surveys will be included in our application amendment due June 30, 2023. Please refer to this FAQ document for additional guidance.
If you have questions, please contact us at DCPSImpactAid@k12.dc.gov.
School Mental Health Supports
REMINDER: Student Schedule Changes & Staffing Update
On Tuesday, October 11th we will launch some revised student schedules that reflect our goals outline above. Most of these changes will impact 7th and 8th grade schedules. In most cases, students will maintain the same teachers, though the period that their class meets may change. Where students are assigned a new teacher, please know that it was to help us balance class sizes and leverage our new teachers. All grades and attendance records will transfer with students through any class change. As always, you can reach out to a guidance counselor or grade-level administrator with any questions or for clarity about your student's schedule.
Lastly, we expect these revisions to start being visible in Aspen later this week and will expect students and teachers to follow new schedules on Tuesday, October 11 when we will also hand out revised schedules to any impacted students.
Field Trip Eligibility
- Passing ALL classes
- In-seat Attendance (ISA) is 90%+
- Fewer than 5 tardies (late arrival) to class per month
- Zero Tier 3-5 behavior infractions
- Fewer than 3 behavior referrals in term (or previous month)
- Mandatory testing (e.g. iReady, RI, etc.) complete
Administrators and teacher teams will review student eligibility prior to any scheduled trips. Please reach out to a grade-level administrator or field trip organizer with any questions about your student's participation or eligibility.
Reminder: Uniform Policy Updates
1. Crewneck / V-Neck sweaters and sweatshirts: Students may wear crewneck / V-neck sweaters or sweatshirts that are solid RED, BLACK, or WHITE. Sweaters and sweatshirts in those colors with a logo smaller than a dollar bill are also acceptable.
2. School gear: Students may wear sweaters, sweatshirts, t-shirts (long / short sleeved), and polos that display the school logo. The dollar-bill size logo is waived for clothing showing school / Cluster pride.
3. Not Allowed: There is no change to the policy on other colors, outerwear, or hoodies. Outerwear, hoodies, and shirts that are not red/black/white are NOT ALLOWED during the school day.
Title I Scholar-Family-School Compact Feedback
As mentioned in Title I family meeting sessions, the draft of our annual Scholar-Family-School Compact is up for review. If you have any recommendations for revisions or additions to this document we encourage you to share them here. We will review any recommendations and publish a final version of these year's compact by the first parent-teacher conference event on October 6. Thanks in advance for your feedback!
Student Device Updates
Lost/Stolen DCPS Technology
If your student's DCPS laptop is lost or stolen, email Ms. Tomlinson at email@example.com immediately. Notification of lost or stolen technology must be provided to the school in writing. Phone calls or a conversation with a teacher or other staff member does not count as official notification of a lost or stolen item.
For stolen devices, you must file a police report and send a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org. After the police report is received, DCPS will activate location tracking on the stolen device.
For lost devices, there is a waiting period before the school issue a replacement. Starting from the date the school receives written notification that a device is missing, the waiting period is 10 business days for a replacement laptop and 5 business days for a replacement charger or keyboard. During the waiting period, the student must diligently search the school each day, including in classrooms and common spaces like the gym and cafeteria. Most missing laptops turn up after a proper search. If the missing items have not been located after the waiting period, the student's parent or guardian must out to Ms. Tomlinson to schedule an appointment to sign the paperwork for a replacement.
Most accidental damage is covered under warranty. If a student's laptop is damaged, they should see Ms. Tomlinson in the library during first period or after school.
Technology Support at School
Ms. Tomlinson is available for technology support during first period (9:00 am - 10:10 am) and after school from 3:30 - 3:45 pm. Students must obtain a pass from their teacher in order to visit the library for tech support.
Technology Support at Home
Students and parents may call the DCPS Help Desk at 202-442-5715 for assistance outside school hours.
Spanish - We have selected a candidate and expect them to begin reporting in the next 1.5-3 weeks after finishing the onboarding process.
CES (self-contained Special Education) - We have selected a candidate for hire and are waiting for them to complete the onboarding process.
6th & 8th grade Social Studies - We are still seeking a candidate for this position.
Substitutes - We are seeking substitute teachers to report and cover teachers on leave and/or to assist with daily coverage needs.
Please connect any interested candidates directly with Principal Fraser (email@example.com) or an assistant principal.
Free Meals for Students at SHMS!
We are delighted to remind everyone that school meals are free for all students at SHMS again this year! School menus can be found here: dcps.dc.gov/menus.
If your student needs any dietary accommodations, please complete the Dietary Accommodation Forms. Any student that requires a different meal than what is being served (due to medical, food allergy, or philosophical reason) must complete the appropriate form and submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org or to the cafeteria lead. Please note that a new form is no longer required each year; only when the student requires a new accommodation or a change to their accommodation. Dietary accommodations from SY 19-20 and later will carry forward.
Adults, including teachers, school staff, and parents can purchase meals by creating an Adult Meal Account.
Follow us on social media to stay tuned with our latest events on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter using @DCPSEats.
More Helpful Links:
SY 2022-23 Uniform & Dress Code Policy
School uniforms are required while on school property, field trips (before or after school day hours), while attending After School All Stars and school-approved activities after 3:30 PM, unless athletic, dance or other specific apparel is required by the coach/leader.
o Long or short-sleeved solid red polo shirt/t-shirt. SHMS logo optional. Any non-SHMS logo on uniform shirts or sweatshirts must be the size of a $1 bill (1 dollar) or smaller
o Plain black cotton sweatshirts (front zip or pullover) and knit vests. No hoods.
o Khaki pants, skirts/shorts, worn at waist level.
o Comfortable closed-toed shoes or sneakers covering the entire foot. No sandals, slippers, or Crocs.
o Tops like crewneck t-shirts, sweaters, and sweatshirts (no hoods) that show school pride (e.g. SHMS or CHCS logos).
While students may wear some of the following to and from school, they are expected to avoid wearing all of the following during the school day, on trips, and in after-school activities:
• Hoods over student's heads while inside school,
• Outerwear like jackets, fleeces, parkas, windbreakers, etc.,
• Metal studs on headbands and other accessories
• Khaki-colored leggings/ tights (worn in place of Khaki pants).
• Small purses or fanny packs
An SHMS logo is NOT required for any uniform attire. School uniforms may be purchased via Lands End, Target, Old Navy and other retailers. More information regarding our school uniform policy will be shared via our school handbook.
Uniform Non-Compliance PolicyStudents should comply with the uniform policy daily. Uniform policy violations can be documented in Live School. Some uniform deficiencies can be remedied by the support team but the loss of instructional time should be avoided when supporting students in complying with the policy. If for some reason a student is out of compliance in your classroom you may reach out to a grade-level administrator or dean for support or remedy. Patterns of infractions should be handled like other Tier 1 and 2 infractions outlined above in the “Disciplinary Policy” section.
Student Schedules Live This Week!
Student schedules have been posted in Aspen and should be visible to anyone with an Aspen account. Students or families without an account should soon receive an invitation to set one up by email. We will provide students with copies of their schedule during the first week of school as well.
Aspen Family Portal
Aspen Family Portal accounts will be available the week of August 22nd. Returning families should be able to access their account using their username and password from last school year. New families will receive an email from Aspen Family Portal when their family portal account is available to use.
The Portal allows you to keep up with progress in school - including grades, assignments, attendance, and more. The goal of DCPS' new digital portal is to create an open line of communication between home and school.
To Access the Portal:
1. Visit https://aspen.dcps.dc.gov
2. Make sure pop-up blocking is disabled for your browser
3. Your user name will be provided via email
4. Your temporary password will be provided via email
NOTE: Both user name and password are case sensitive
5. Click Log On to access the system. You will be prompted to fill out some information to change your password so that in the future you can click "I forgot my password" to receive a new password.
How to Navigate the Portal:
This flyer gives you the Parent Portal basics:
We strongly recommend that families using iOS devices also download the "Grade Corner" app, which allows you to login to Aspen and monitor your student's grades and attendance in a streamlined app. The app was actually developed by an SHMS parent a few years ago.
Additionally, we will discuss student schedules during the family information sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday and hope you can join us for one of those virtual meetings!
IEPs, 504 Plans, and Language Acquisition
If your student is an English language learner (ELL), has an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 plan, or you are interested in learning about these different supports, please know that our team is ready to connect with you to answer questions and connect you with supports.
Please see the points of contact for each type of inquiry below:
Tamara Lovelock (email@example.com): Special Education and IEPs
Molly Smith (firstname.lastname@example.org): 504 Plans
AP Rennie Taylor (email@example.com): English language learners, IEPs, or 504s
Back-To-School Vaccination Checklist
DC Public Schools works closely with DC Health to ensure the health and safety of our students, staff, and community. District law and regulations require all schools to ensure students are fully immunized to attend school, and we know that childhood immunizations are critical to keeping our community safe. Now is the time for families to schedule an annual wellness visit with your child’s doctor or attend a neighborhood or school-based vaccine clinic.
New for the 2022-2023 School Year, all students ages 12 and older are required to have the COVID-19 vaccine to attend school. If you need a COVID-19 vaccine or booster, visit your local COVID Center.
Where to Obtain a Vaccine
The best place for DC families to access childhood immunizations is at their primary medical provider. If a family does not have a health care provider for their child or has difficulty securing an appointment before the first day of school, they can select one from a list of pediatric locations, located in every ward. There are DCPS School Based Health Centers to consider on that list, and mobile units that will visit schools through August and September.
- DC Health – Religious Exemption Seeking Process
- OSSE – COVID-19 Compliance Steps
- OSSE – Best Practices for School Leaders
For more information on obtaining immunizations by the first day of school, visit dcpsreopenstrong.com/vaccines.
SY 2022-23 Kids Ride Free Program
The Kids Ride Free (KRF) program allows students to ride for free on Metrobus, Metrorail, and the DC Circulator while traveling within the District. The SY22-23 KRF cards will be delivered to schools starting 8/9 through 8/16 and will be activated as soon as they are assigned to a student. Please note that:
- SY22-23 KRF cards will be assigned to students without KRF cards first
- SY21-22 KRF cards will remain valid through September 30th
- Always tap the KRF card before rides
- Don’t leave home without the KRF card
- There is no fee for replacement cards
- For more information, visit KidsRideFree.dc.gov or call (202) 673-1740.
Please reach out to our Attendance Counselor, Ms. Clara Hargrove, with any questions or requests for support.
Stay Connected At Stuart-Hobson!
There are many ways that you can stay connected with the PTA and other families at SHMS. Here are a few popular spaces in our community:
Families can sign up for individual campus listservs (Peabody, Watkins and/or Stuart-Hobson) through our school website. Our listservs are designed to be open forums for Cluster parents to connect with other Cluster families and stay updated on school-related issues.
CAPITOL HILL CLUSTER SCHOOL WEBSITE
The Cluster School website has general school information, school news including weekly newsletters and the school calendar with events for all three campuses.
Follow us on Instagram! Photos of our Cluster community including Peabody, Watkins and Stuart-Hobson events.
Follow us on Twitter! The best way to see frequent posts and reminders of upcoming school events at all three campuses.
FACEBOOK: Capitol Hill Cluster School
Follow us on Facebook! General information and photos of recent and upcoming school events.
LINKEDIN: Capitol Hill Cluster School Parents Group
Join us on Linkedin! Network with other Peabody, Watkins and Stuart-Hobson parents. Lend your professional expertise to help the Cluster!
Supports for Students & Families
LGBTQ+ Resources & Supports
Please feel free to reach out to Mr. Thrift to begin building a relationship with this support network in the mean time. He works out of room 111 and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Mental Health Supports
Molly Smith, Social Worker, email@example.com
Jessica Thompkins, Social Worker, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kimberly Harrington, DBH Social Worker, email@example.com
Montrice Williams, CIS Social Worker, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jessica Schimmerling, Guidance Counselor, email@example.com
Tomicula Willams, Guidance Counselor, firstname.lastname@example.org
Kristin Dezen, email@example.com