Spartan Herald

May 2015

From the Desk of the Principal (Mr. Galiher)

Dear SMS Families,

This school year has gone extremely fast and I continue to be grateful for the many positive relationships I have made with students and parents. With one month of school remaining, teachers continue to plan engaging and relevant learning experiences for our students. I am proud of the hard work I am witnessing from our students in the classroom and during ISTEP testing. Students are persevering through this new assessment and will finish testing during the first week of May. Please help your child prepare for this assessment by getting plenty of rest and eating a healthy breakfast each morning. The language arts testing schedule is outlined below.

I want to provide parents with an update regarding our status as a 4 Star school. Our school did not receive this distinction for the 13/14 school year from the Indiana Department of Education. A 4 Star distinction is awarded to schools if a school's ISTEP results are in the top 25th percentile in six different categories when compared to all middle schools in the state of Indiana. We just missed this distinction in one category and will be working diligently to ensure we continue with 4 Star success. Schmucker is an "A" rated school, thanks to the excellent partnership between our parents, teachers and students.

SMS will continue with an advisory period next year and students will loop with their current Advisory teacher. The goal of this program is to cultivate stronger relationships with peers and help develop interpersonal and team building skills with increased opportunities for self-reflection. We have had great success with this program and are excited to continue to provide this experience to our students.

Lastly, we will be sending out a June newsletter this year with important information about next school year. Please look for this communication.

Enjoy the warm weather and Go Spartans!


ISTEP testing continues during the week of May 4th. All students will be participating in Language Arts ISTEP testing this week. Please review the schedule below. Students will take their Language Arts ISTEP test during their regularly scheduled class time.

5/4: ISTEP (Language Arts) Periods 1,2,3 (Block Schedule)

5/5: ISTEP (Language Arts) Periods 4,5,6 (Block Schedule)

5/6: ISTEP (Language Arts) Periods 1,2,3 (Block Schedule)

5/7: ISTEP (Language Arts) Periods 4,5,6 (Block Schedule)

5/8: ISTEP (6th Science): Regular Schedule

5/11: ISTEP (6th Science): Regular Schedule

It is extremely important that students are in attendance during testing days to ensure a smooth schedule for the students. We recommend that students not bring their cell phone to school on testing days.

Teacher Appreciation Week: May 4-8

Next week is a special week to celebrate our wonderful teachers, and thank them for the encouragement and guidance they lovingly give every day! Our PTO has planned a few activities to celebrate our teachers. Please take some time throughout the week to be sure all of our teachers are full and overflowing with thanks!

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American Cancer Society

Schmucker is full of great teachers. We are proud of this group of teachers who attended the Relay for Life event in support of the American Cancer Society. Great job SMS Staff! We also have some talented dodgeball players on staff!
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One Book, One School

Schmucker Middle School is currently reading Maze Runner by James Dashner as part of One Book/One School. Students and adults alike are having a common reading experience. Students will be able to sign up as teams to take part in a Battle of the Book – Maze Runner that will take place on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend. Students may have up to 6 people on their team, and we are taking the first 24 teams to sign up. It will be an exciting time. Encourage your students to keep reading, so they can enjoy all the activities.

Important Dates

05/01 ISTEP Makeups (Math)

05/02 Academic Super Bowl Competition

05/04 NJHS Executive Committee Meeting

05/05 7/8th Boys Track & Field vs. Pierre Moran (home)

05/05 7/8th Girls Track & Field vs. Pierre Moran (away)

05/06 5-Star- Spring Season

05/07 7/8th Boys Track & Field vs. Grissom (away)

05/07 7/8th Girls Tarck & Field vs. Grissom (home)

05/11 ISTEP Testing Make-Up

05/11 8th Grade Awards Night @ 6:00pm

05/11 PHM Board of School Trustees Meeting

05/12 ISTEP Testing Make-Up

05/12 7/8th Boys Track & Field - Big 11 Prelims

05/12 7/8th Girls Track & Field - Big 11 Prelims

05/13 5-Star - Spring Season

05/13 Washington D.C. Parent Meeting @ 7:00pm

05/14 NJHS Meeting

05/14 Art Show @ 5:00pm

05/15 7/8th Boys Track & Field - Big 11 Finals

05/15 7/8th Girls Track & Field - Big 11 Finals

05/18 NJHS Executive Committee Meeting

05/18 6th Grade - 4.0 Pizza Party for 3rd Quarter @ 11:30am

05/18 8th Grade Choir Concert @ 6:00pm

05/19 Cheerleading Practice for Tryouts - next year's 7th/8th

05/19 5th Grade Walk Around

05/20 5-Star - Awards Night

05/20 Sports Physicals @ SMS

05/20 6/7/8th Grade Band Concert

05/21 7/8th Grade - 4.0 Pizza Party for 3rd Quarter

05/21 6/7/8th Orchestra Concert @ 6:30

05/22 Cheerleading Practice for Tryouts - next year's 7/8th

05/26 8th Grade Depart for Washington D.C.

05/26 Cheerleading Tryouts

05/26 PHM Board of School Trustees Meeting

05/27 Cheerleading Tryouts

05/28 6/7th Choral Concert

05/29 7/8th Cheerleading Parent Meeting - Football @ 5:00pm

05/29 7/8th Cheerleading Parent Meeting - Basketball @ 6:00pm

05/30 8th Grade Returns from Washington D.C.



The end of the year is approaching quickly. Please make sure your Schmucker student has all of their library materials returned.

Thanks for your help.

From your Guidance Counselors

Looking for summer plans? Consider enrolling your student in a summer residential camp hosted by the Gifted Education Resource Institute (GERI) at Purdue University. GERI has been serving gifted, creative, and talented students since 1974. Every summer, students from around the world come to Purdue and experience programs designed to stimulate their imaginations and expand their abilities. Students also enjoy a variety of recreational activities and a chance to get a taste of college life while living on campus in Purdue’s residence halls. Sessions are in July and run one week for those who have completed 5th or 6th grade and two weeks for those who have completed grades 7-12. Scholarships are available on a limited basis, so please act quickly to apply. For more information, please review the GERI 2015 Summer Residental Camp Application or Further questions can be directed to Elizabeth Yoder at

8th Graders – Washington, D.C. Trip

We will be having a Student/Parent/Chaperone information meeting on May 13th starting at 7:00 pm. It will be held in the cafeteria. Please try to attend because we will be passing out information needed for the upcoming trip.

8th Gd Year End Backyard Carnival Celebration

Thank you to the PTO for planning a great 8th grade party.

Schmucker Sports Physicals

Sports Physicals will be offered at Schmucker Middle School on Wednesday, May 20 starting at 4:00. They will be offered by Dr. John Graham for a reduced price of $20.00. Physical forms are available online or can be picked up in the main office at Schmucker. Checks should be made payable to Schmucker Middle School and should be brought on the day of the physical. Cash will also be accepted.

2015-2016 Freshman Sports Physical - Penn

Penn will host the annual Sport's Physicals with the doctors from St. Joseph Regional Medical Center. This event will take place on Tuesday, May 19th in the Aux gym at Penn from 3:15 pm - 5:00 pm (approx) and is only for high school students and incoming freshmen. This physical will cover them to participate in athletics for the 2015-16 school year. The cost is $25 (checks made payable to: Penn High School) Please spread the word and encourage your athletes to participate in this wonderful opportunity. Saves us from the hassle of waiting on physicals!

The physical must be completed on this IHSAA Physical Form, or the Penn Athletics website. Athletes and/or parents must complete the form, including all parent/student signatures, prior to attending. The doctor will fill out their portion (page 2) during the physical.

Penn Fitness Center

It's getting close to the end of the school year!!

We would like to let the 8th grade students know that they are allowed to use the Penn Fitness Center after June 11th as long as they have their middle school ID to enter. They can come Monday - Thursday 3:30-8:00 and on Saturdays 8:00 - Noon.

2015-2016 Immunization Information


The Indiana State Department of Health has released the immunization requirements for school year 2015-2016.

Please note:

· Current 5th grade students: to enter the 6th grade in August, you must have a Tdap, meningococcal (MCV4), and 2 varicella vaccines BEFORE the first day of school August 19, 2015.

· Current 11th grade students: to enter 12th grade in August, you must have a meningococcal (MCV4)l booster vaccine BEFORE the first day of school August 19, 2015


Kindergarten and Grade 1:

3 Hep B, 5 DTaP, 4 Polio, 2 MMR, 2 Varicella, 2 Hep A


Grades 2-5:

3 Hep B, 5 DTaP, 4 Polio, 2 MMR, 2 Varicella


Grades 6-11:

3 Hep B, 5 DTaP, 4 Polio, 2 MMR, 2 Varicella, 1 Tdap, 1 MCV4


Grade 12:

3 Hep B, 5 DTaP, 4 Polio, 2 MMR, 2 Varicella, 1 Tdap, 2 MCV4

Please call your health care provider to discuss getting appointments now so that your student’s education will not be interrupted in August 2015. If this is not taken care of by the first day of school August 19, 2015, you may receive a letter notifying you of the possibility of exclusion from school.


The Silver Mile Run for Education and Health and Fitness Fair will take place on May 9 this year at Penn HS. This event is the largest fundraiser for your P-H-M Education Foundation where we work every day to enhance the educational experiences of our P-H-M students! Please go to to register for either the 5K run/walk; 1 mile timed run (NEW); or 1 mile fun walk for more information. The Run for Education events will start and finish on our Penn Track again this year! The new 1 mile timed run, a great event for kids and adults, will run entirely on the Penn Track. Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center will again provide free health screenings. The Silent Auction will have many items to choose from including braces, golf certificates, ND tickets, and many restaurant gift certificates. Come on out and support our event! There is something for everyone! for more information

DNA Learning Center - Summer Camp

The DNA Learning Center at The University of Notre Dame is now offering summer camp opportunities for Jr. High and high school students. Several weeks and themes are available to choose from as well as residential and day camps.

The DNA Learning Center, located in the Jordan Hall of Science, offers a hands-on environment in which children can explore and enhance their interest, knowledge and scientific skills in the area of genetics and biology. Whether simply interested in science, or planning to pursue a teaching, medical or research career, please forward this information to your students and parents so they can consider including it when planning their summer.

Day camps run for 1 week and are offered for students who have completed grades 6 through 9.

Day Camps - $625 per student – 9:30 to 3:30 Monday through Friday and includes lunch and lab supplies.

July 27-31 DNA Fun! - Students who have completed grades 6 and 7.
August 3-7 DNA Science! - Students who have completed grades 8 and 9.

Residential camps run for 1 week and are offered for students who have completed grades 7 through 10.

Residential Camps - $1350 per student - includes Notre Dame dorm housing (with a roommate), all meals, entertainment and lab supplies.

June 14-19 DNA Science! - Students who have completed grades 9 and 10.
June 21-26 DNA Science! - Students who have completed grades 9 and 10.
June 29 - July 3 DNA Fun! - Students how have completed grades 7 and 8.
July 5-10 DNA Fun! - Students who have completed grades 7 and 8.
July 12- 17 DNA Fun! - Students who have completed grades 7 and 8.
July 19-24 DNA Science! - Students who have completed grades 9 and 10.

All of the camps will include experiments such as genotyping themselves for particular traits, DNA barcoding, and genetically testing for GMO foods.

More information and registration forms can be found at Please feel free to contact us for any questions or concerns. I have attached a poster with basic information for distribution as well.

In addition, I invite you to contact us regarding educational opportunities available to your students during the school year. As you are planning your curriculum for next year, keep in mind that we offer field trips tailored to your classroom needs as well as serve as a community resource for the development of STEM clubs and science programs.

Penn Booster Club (Current 8th Grade Parents)

Help us help our kids!

The Penn Booster Club needs your help!

The Penn Booster Club is a not for profit volunteer organization. Our mission is to help our kids succeed in the classroom, athletic fields and in other competitions.

What do we do?

*We raise money through concession, clothing and gear sales and other fundraisers to give back to our kids. You have probably seen us at the concession stands and in the Gear Shack.

*We offer scholarships to our graduating seniors.

*We meet every second Monday of the month at 7pm in the teacher’s dining room at Penn HS.

* Organizations we help: Every Penn Club, Team or Organization that applies.

In the past year alone we have given back over $50,000.00 to our kids!

We would love to have you on Board. It is a great way to be involved in your child’s high school career.

If you are interested please email Joe Makowski, our Booster President at: Please include your name and contact information so we can get back to you!

Thank you!

21st Century Scholars

We want to remind the 21st Century Scholars or their parents to contact the North Central Regional Support Program Office if there has been a change of address or phone number. This is necessary to help ensure that Scholars and parents do not miss opportunities such as: college campus visits, workshops, informational sessions or activities for parents. Most importantly, it will help ensure that Scholars do not miss their scholarship opportunity. A roster of the 21st Century Scholars will be forwarded to Schmucker’s Guidance Office. The 21st Century Scholars phone number is 574-239-2380.

From the Library

World Book online is now available at school AND at home. You can access this site by typing in the following URL: The log-in is schmucker, and the password is spartans. This link is also available on the Library home page within the Schmucker website home page. Enjoy!

Homework Requests

When a student is absent, we urge the student or parent to check the Home Access Center for information or call and listen to teachers’ voice mails, which often give the homework information for each day. If a student has been absent three days, and you still feel the need for a formal homework request, you may call the office to do so and then pick up the work at the end of the next school day. Please refer to p. 19 in the Student Handbook found in the front of the Student Planner for further information.

Transportation Policy

If your child is planning on going home on another bus with a friend, it is important to remember that the bus driver needs permission from the school office. The office will grant permission if we have a note from both parents (sending and receiving) and if the bus is not full as determined by the Transportation Center. We cannot, however, permit boys and girls to go home together even if they have parental permission. Parents would need to make these arrangements on their own after school hours.

Social Media

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