Comet Connect

February 8, 2021

Greetings Parents and Students

Dear Grace Snell Families,


Thank you for ensuring that all students are in attendance each day ready to engagement in their lessons.


Please listen to my weekly message https://youtu.be/P4wVL49Zv34


There will be no school Friday, 2/12 or Monday, 2/15 as we celebrate President's Day.


Early release is Wednesday, 2/17 and Thursday, 2/18. Please be sure to sign up for your parent conference with your child's teacher. See below for more information.


Parents, it is important that students are signed in for homeroom by 9:15. Students should also be signed in for Comet Time (extended learning, remediation/extension) at 9:25. Please use this link for digital learning day expectations and the daily student schedule.

Grace Snell MS Parent Guide to Digital Learning 2020-2021


Please be reminded that there were changes made to the Spring 2021. On the new calendar, 4 Digital Learning Days have been added (1/26, 3/2, 3/16, 4/20). Students will participate asynchronously(learning from home) as virtual learners on these days. Lessons will be posted ahead of time and teachers will be unavailable for assistance. Please make a note of these changes.


At Grace Snell, we are pursuing a culture of academic rigor and excellence. We all must diligently work together to ensure that we create graduates in the SG Cluster.

Keep up the great work and support as we begin the new semester. I ask that students continue to do their best!

We are Respectful, Responsible, and Ready - #R3


Your Proud Principal

Darlene Brown

Early Release


Early Release is Wednesday, February 17th and Thursday, February 18th.

Students will be dismissed at 1:15 PM on both days. This will allow teachers to meet with parents to discuss their child’s academic progress. If you would like to request a meeting with your child’s teachers, please click the link below to select a time and day to meet. Once your selection has been confirmed, your child’s homeroom teacher will send you a link to invite you to a virtual conference. Please be mindful that scheduled conferences are set for 30 minutes time blocks.

If you have any questions about scheduling conferences or locating your child’s homeroom teacher, please feel free to contact the school at 770-554-7750.


https://ptcfast.com/schools/Grace_Snell_MS


Click Here - Early Release Schedule

Comet Student Shout-Outs - Respectful, Responsible and Ready

During the week of January 25th the following students were recognized by Grace Snell Administrators for being Respectful, Responsible and Ready during our classroom visits.


Alan Walker - Alan was eager to share his learning with Principal Brown. He discussed the big ideas represented in the images and the text as well as shared how he refined his thinking using evidence from the text.


Keyshon Mills - Keyshon boldly shared his thinking with the class. He discussed that the bird changed its habits possibly because the prey was not available available during the day, but what they hunted could possible come out at night. The entire 3rd academic was engaged in the lesson and understood the concept of adaptation. Great job!


Jaylon Morgan - Jaylen was focused on annotating his text in Ms. Townes' Language Arts class. He demonstrated that he understood the text and shared information from his reading with Ms. Hickmon.

The School of the Arts at Central Gwinnett

The School of the Arts at Central Gwinnett has expanded its staff in DANCE and VOICE, and as a result, we are able to accept a few more applicants in both of these conservatories! If you’re a dancer or vocalist and you missed the first round of SOTA Auditions, we encourage you to join us March 4-6 for round two! Positions are available for rising 9th and 10th graders only. Applications available here. Auditions requirements available here.

AAP-Academic Assistance Program

Dear Parents/Guardians:


Last week you received information regarding Grace Snell Middle School offering credit recovery for students who failed first semester courses. Please note that all Gwinnett County students are required to pass Language Arts and Math, as well as five of six academic courses to be eligible for end of year grade promotion. According to the first semester report card, your child has been identified as not meeting promotion requirements. Therefore, he/she will be required to attend the Academic Assistance Program (AAP).

This program will provide five (5) weeks of instruction aligned to first semester curriculum standards. Students will take a post-test at the conclusion of the course. Those who successfully demonstrate mastery of the curriculum standards will earn a passing grade (70) for the course.

For those students who are digital learners, AAP courses will be offered Mondays-Thursdays at a cost of $75 for each course. Students are only allowed to take 2 classes. For those students who have failed more than one course Math and Language Arts will be the priority. Payment will be required for participation. Attendance is mandatory in order to earn course credits necessary for promotion.

We will continue to support your student during second semester in hopes that they will have a successful pathway moving forward.


Class Schedules:

Digital Students:

Classes will meet on Mondays-Thursdays from 7:00 am-8:30. Students will be required to log on for each session. There will be 2 sessions offered for those students who will need to take more than one class. Students attending Math will log in on Mondays and Wednesdays, those attending for Language Arts will log in on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Students who are attending for Social Studies and Science will be completing modules and will be able to log on throughout the week to ask questions and receive help as needed.

Dates for Digital Students will be: February 8-11, 16-19, 22-26th , March 1-5, and March 8-12


Face to Face Students:

Classes will meet digitally on the following Saturdays: February 6th, February 20th, February 27th, March 6th and March 20th. Sessions WILL NOT be held on February 13th and March 13th

There will be 2 Sessions. Students will either take Language Arts, Math, Social Studies or Science. Students will access all classes through eClass

Session #1: 8:00 AM – 10:00 AM

· Students will be expected to logon promptly at 8 am.

Session #2: 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM

· Students will be expected to logon promptly at 10:30

SOCIAL STUDIES/SCIENCE

These courses will be offered in a module format. Students will work at their own pace and will be able to log on throughout the week to ask questions and receive help as needed.

Completion Criteria:

· Credit Recovery will cost $75 per class for all students through MYPAYMENTS PLUS.

· Parents can also opt to pay via other means if they do not have access to MyPAYMENTS PLUS online.

· For successful completion of the Credit Recovery class, students must demonstrate mastery on classroom assessments given during the course and the retake of the locally created semester 1 final exam.

· Classroom assessments will weight as 40% of the student’s final average, and the semester 1 final exam will weight as 60% of the final average.

Expectations:

  • Students are REQUIRED to logon and participate in ALL 5 sessions in order to receive credit for the course.
  • Students are required to complete an additional hour of assignment for the week, due the following week.

Payment:

  • Students will pay $75 per class through MYPayments plus accounts. Two classes will be $150. Parents can arrange other forms of payments with the school if needed.
No payment can result in no credit for the course; consequently, resulting in Summer School or Retention. If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Tirrase Bishop at 770-554-7750.

Thank a Staff Member

We have received great feedback from parents to share with our staff members. Please continue to submit your positive feedback for teachers or staff members! This link will be continually monitored, so feel free to drop a notes in whenever you see or hear about your child's teacher or another staff member doing something great. We'll be sure to let them know and help brighten their day. Remember, if there is a staff member who has gone above and beyond to help your student(s) and you during concurrent learning, click on the link below and tell us about him/her. We will make sure they hear about the great job they are doing.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1cXkOtJemRTolH1glrNQOtoh1QpzbfmjVSzPYhUcmpOs/edit?usp=sharing

Water Bottles

PARENTS: Please make sure your student brings a water bottle to school everyday! While the water fountains have been turned off due to Covid restrictions, we do have a water bottle refill machine in the cafeteria for all to use. Only clear liquids are allowed.

Parent Empowerment Conference



Parent Empowerment Conference

In this annual event, GCPS will host guest speakers on how to best support your child in the areas of academics, emotional state, and mental state.


En este evento anual, organizaremos oradores invitados sobre cómo apoyar mejor a su hijo en las áreas académicas, estado emocional y estado mental.


The conference is sponsored by the Gwinnett County Public Schools Mentoring Program.


This is an opportunity for all Latino students and their families (not just HMP students).


Date and Time of Event:


Sat, March 27, 2021

8:30 AM – 12:30 PM


Space is limited so register quickly!


Click here to register

If I Make Up My Missing Assignments, What Could My New Grade Be?

The My StudentVUE App and the ParentVUE App now has the ability for students to gauge their semester average based on the score they'd like to earn on a missing assignment. This is a very nice feature because it does the calculating for you.


Please watch this StudentVUE Grade Slider Video for more details and information. This video is also on the Grace Snell Middle School main eCLASS Landing Page.

How to Check Student Progress - Have they logged into eCLASS? How long did they remain in the class/assignment?

Check out the video for more information on how to check the progress of your student. Great Information included.



https://drive.google.com/file/d/1VNsak5JbJ4EHSKysTHmfiSQlFDNGnnim/view?usp=sharing

UPDATED: GCPS Lunch Service Information


GCPS will provide meals free of charge to students and children 18 and younger through the end of the school year.


Students Attending School In-Person

Those attending school in-person will receive meals free-of-charge during their scheduled meal times.


Curbside Pick-up for Digital Learners

Digital learners may pick up meals through the curbside pick-up at each school. Grace Snell's curbside pick-up time is Monday - Friday from 11:00 AM through 1:00 PM. Each day's pick-up includes both breakfast and lunch. Individuals will NOT be allowed to enter the school to pick up or eat meals. Grace Snell's curbside-pickup will be the same as it was for material pick-up. The traffic flow for daily curbside lunch pickup will be at the rear of the school in the car rider lane.


**Gwinnett County Public Schools encourages families who are eligible for the Free Or Reduced Meal Program to complete the annual application to ensure meal benefits continue when the grant waiver expires. Please click HERE.

Students will not be charged for their meals, however please complete the Free or Reduced meals annual application at the link HERE.

Attendance - Important Message for Digital Learning Attendance

The new attendance procedure began in October. Teachers will now take attendance for digital learners who are online during live instruction. Digital learners who are not present during live instruction will be marked with the code “NPD“ which stands for “Not Present Digitally.” Students who are present during live instruction will continue to be marked present digitally with the “DL“ in their teacher’s gradebook.


The new process is more aligned to our normal attendance procedures and the expectations of in-person students. More importantly, it will help families to better support their students as they can clearly see that their student was online during class and interacting with their teacher and classmates, not just logging on to the computer at some point during the day. This information will help families as they partner with the school to maximize their child(ren)’s school experience.


If you have any questions about this new process for capturing attendance, please contact your child(ren)'s grade level office.

Life Touch Pictures

With picture day now complete, your child's image proofs have been delivered to the school. All in-person students who had their picture made should have brought home their picture proofs for review. All Digital Learning students who participated in Picture Day can pick up their picture proofs at the Grace Snell Middle School reception desk, Monday-Friday, 9:30am-3:30pm. Use the “Portrait ID” on the proof form as well as the unique “Access Code” to securely view and order your student’s images online at https://my.lifetouch.com/mylifetouch/#/ or October picture purchase.pdf


If you have any questions after receiving your proofs or want to order pictures over the phone, you can call the Lifetouch customer service number at 1-800-736-4753. The customer service center is open Monday-Friday from 8am-8pm EST.

Title I Parenting Tips and Tidbits

What Do Kids Really Want From Parents?

Parents, here are 11 things you can do to encourage and support your child. Remember, you are your child's first teacher!
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2019-2020 Yearbooks have arrived

If you ordered a 2019-2020 yearbook, you may pick it up in the front office. If you did not order one but would like a copy, we have extras available for purchase. Copies will be on sale in the front lobby during arrival beginning October 2nd for $35 (cash or check made out to Grace Snell Middle School). We will sell them for the week of October 5th or until we run out. Grab yours today!


Also, yearbooks for the 2020-2021 school year are available for purchase on MyPayments Plus.


Do you have a special talent with layouts? Or do you just want to help your child's school? One way to help is by joining the yearbook committee. No experience is required, you can do it from home, and it is a lot of fun. We'll train you with everything you need to know to help us design the school's yearbook. Please contact layla.bell@gcpsk12.org if you are interested.

Guidelines for In-Person and Digital Learners

PARENTS: Please make sure to frequently check the GCPS website for all updates regarding digital and in-person learning. You can also visit the Grace Snell website for information and updates at https://www.gcpsk12.org/GraceSnellMS.


We want to ensure your safety during your time at school. We are committed to keep learning as our number one priority. Please be reminded that students will take their backpacks with them throughout the day (no lockers will be available).


All students returning for in-person learning are strongly advised to bring a device with them to school each day as teachers will continue to utilize a digital learning platform to serve all of their students, and in-person students using their own devices will minimize sharing and reduce any potential spread of germs.


Attached are a few key points to expect during our face to face return to learning.


Parent Guidelines for In-Person Learning

Grace Snell MS Parent Guide to Digital Learning 2020-2021

Mypaymentsplus

Parents, please fill out the following forms on my payments plus. Please contact the school if you need additional assistance.


Those without an account will need to create one by going to MyPaymentsPlus.com; click on “Register” for a FREE account.


https://www.mypaymentsplus.com/welcome

Attendance Protocol Form - page 35 GCPS Student/Parent Handbook

GCPS 2020-2021 Student/Parent Handbook – Middle School

Grace Snell Middle School 2020-2021 Student/Parent Handbook

Parent AKS Brochure – 6th -8th Grade

Extracurricular Activities - page 35 GCPS Student/Parent Handbook

Car Riders and Walkers

Please click below for an important update to our car rider procedures for the 2020-2021 school year.

Morning Car Rider Hours: 8:55-9:20

Afternoon Dismissal will begin at 4:00

Please fill out the forms and return them to the homeroom teacher. If you are unable to print the form, please complete this information on a separate sheet of paper and we will attach it to the form.

GSMS Permission Form for Car Rider/ Walker

GSMS Car Rider Walker Parent Letter

IMPORTANT!!

Parents, please review and complete the form regarding GCPS expectations for students and parents (Click here to complete the form).

Does your student need a device/hotspot?

For families in need, we have a limited number of Chromebooks and internet hotspots for checkout available to assist students during digital learning.


Please contact Dorothy McCall at dorothy.mccall@gcpsk12.org or 770.554.7750 to request a device.

Have you signed up for Parent Portal?

Parent Portal is always important but especially as we begin this school year in a digital format. If you have not already signed up for Parent Portal, please contact Kimberly Arenas at kimberly.arenas@gcpsk12.org to complete the sign-up process. The Parent Portal allows parents to monitor student progress throughout the year. No more waiting for report cards to get an update on grades; you may simply check the Parent Portal at your convenience. Other features allow you to view attendance, lunch account balances, checked out and overdue books, and emergency contact information.


Click here for the Parent Portal form

Parent Portal & Student Portal Updates

Parents who already have an active parent portal account:


The new Parent Portal is now available for parents that have an active parent portal account. A link to resources including the new parent portal flyers, as well as the registration form are available on the GCPS website.


Click here for the flyers and the registration form


Student Portal Update:


A new link for StudentVUE is available on the student portal. This will replace the GRADES tab that students previously used to view their schedule.


Click here for StudentVUE Fall 2020 information


**Students can now get their grades, schedules, and more from an easy to use app for StudentVUE!**


Click here for the instructional flyer

Student App for eCLASS Course Pages eCLASS on the Go!

This is another useful App for students!! Please click below to find out more about the Student App!!


Click here

Parent Portal App is now live for GCPS families!


Available for both Android and iOS, all you'll need to do is download the ParentVue app and log in with your parent portal credentials. If you do not have a parent portal account, please email kimberly.arena@gcpsk12.org to get one set up!

Click here for the county's informational flyer

Resources

For more information about the the the transition to in-person instruction, please refer to the GCPS Return to Learning Hub

https://publish.gwinnett.k12.ga.us/gcps/myhome/public/schools/learninghub

Digital Learning Hub- Click here for videos, quick guides, and resources to help students and families this fall during digital learning and as we transition to in-person instruction.

Supply Lists

School Supply Lists (click here)

It is our goal to minimize the sharing or passing back and forth of any materials, technology, and/or papers while in the classroom. That is why we are asking that students attending in-person learning bring a device with them to school each day. Internet access will be provided for all district and personal devices while students are in school.

Sign up today to receive school system news online. Sign up to receive Gwinnett County Public Schools e-newsletter. In this newsletter, you'll find stories on teaching and learning, school leadership and governance, and the partnerships that make Gwinnett County Public Schools successful. Click here to sign up for GCPS eNews or check out online registration on the GCPS website.


Please use this link to read GCPS' latest community e-newsletter.


View eNews

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