Bear Bulletin

July 29, 2021

Translate the Newsletter to Your Preferred Language! ¡Traduzca el boletín a su idioma preferido!نیوز لیٹر کو اپنی پسندیدہ زبان میں ترجمہ کریں ! 将新闻稿翻译成您的首选语言!

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Click on the translation feature button to the right and select your language of preference using the drop down box. Voila! The newsletter will be translated for you!


Haga clic en el botón de función de traducción a la derecha y seleccione su idioma de preferencia usando el cuadro desplegable. ¡Voila! ¡El boletín será traducido para usted!


دائیں طرف کی ترجمانی کی خصوصیت کے بٹن پر کلک کریں اور ڈراپ ڈاؤن باکس کا استعمال کرکے اپنی پسند کی زبان منتخب کریں۔ نیوز لیٹر آپ کے لئے ترجمہ کیا جائے گا!


单击右侧的翻译功能按钮,然后使用下拉框选择偏好的语言。 瞧! 时事通讯将为您翻译!

Topics Included in this Newsletter

  • Note from Mrs. Spencer
  • Mark Your Calendars, Bears!
  • SBISD Back to School Resources
  • Registration for New Students
  • Completion of 2021 Enrollment Paperwork for Returning Students
  • 7th Grade Immunizations
  • Introduction of SBMS Counselors and Assistant Principals
  • SBMS Bear Camp
  • Chromebook Paperwork, Insurance Payments and Deployment
  • Bell Schedule for 2021-2022
  • SBMS PTA Information for 2021-2022
  • School Supplies, Dress Code and FAQ Topics
  • Chromebook Distribution
  • MySchool Bucks Information

Message from Mrs. Spencer

Hello, SBMS Bears!


We are so excited about the start of the school year! 2021-2022 is going to be a great year. Teachers and staff return next week and the work in classrooms begins to unfold in preparation for our students' return! This newsletter has a ton of information in an attempt to answer questions, prompt planning and prepare you for the start of the school year. Please scroll through all of it so if you see a topic that is helpful to you, you don't miss it! A few things:


  • Skyward Schedules: Schedules will be viewable to students and families through Family Access on August 12th. If you need directions for using Family Access, click here.
  • School Messenger: Now that you have received this first newsletter, if you hear of friends who are not receiving this and should, please forward it to them and direct them to change their settings in School Messenger. School Messenger also has an app that helps you regulate how you receive communications AND warehouses your communications from the district and school in one place! Directions for changing school settings in School Messenger are here.
  • 7th Grade Parents: Please be sure you read the article below on immunizations so your student can access their schedules. Students in this grade level are required to have particular immunizations. We began this work last spring but still have a few more who need to submit documentation that immunizations have been conducted.
  • SBISD District Calendar: Be sure to keep this handy somewhere so you know when holidays and early release days are for all SBISD students.
  • MySchoolBucks: Be sure you also read the MySchoolBucks article so you are ready to go in terms of ease of use in paying for different things your child will participate in during their time at SBMS.


The articles below should contain the other information you need to get started on a new school year, and possibly a new school! I typically send a newsletter each Sunday once the new school year begins except during Thanksgiving, winter break or spring break. Please look for them. While I won't be able to provide specifics for every child, every class, my hope is that I provide enough information to get you started.


Welcome to our new Bears! See you on the 13th for Bear Camp and on the 16th for the new school year!


Stefanie Spencer, Principal

Stefanie.spencer@springbranchisd.com

Mark Your Calendars, Bears!

Mark your calendars for a few events, Bears:


  • August 16th at 8:40 a.m.: Back to School Parent Meeting in the SBMS Library: Meet your Principal, Stefanie Spencer, and PTA President, Stephanie Pancioli, and learn about initiatives and work of SBMS and our awesome PTA! Please allow your students to walk to their classrooms independent of you; there will be a lot of helpers guiding our students!
  • September 23rd at 6 p.m.: Back to School Night for SBMS: Travel your child's schedule and learn about what they will be learning this school year and hear tips for success from your child's teacher. Join us at the end of the evening for a meet and greet for new and returning families- meet the moms and dads of your student's new friends and meet some new for yourself, as well! Stay tuned for further details!

SBISD STRONG START Back to School

SBISD is so excited to enjoy a STRONG START back to school. As you work to prepare your family for a new school year, please click here to look through the Back to School website for this school year. Within the website, you can information about bus routes, athletics, health and safety, menus, registrations and much more!

Spring Branch MIddle School Assistant Principals

Spring Branch Middle School Counselors

SBMS Staff Introductory Slide Deck

Chromebook Paperwork, Insurance & Distribution

Spring Branch Middle School continues to be a 1:1 school, whereby each student will be provided a school device. Many of our students were able to retain the device they were given last year so they could use them over the summer. For students new to SBMS and our sixth graders, we will deploy new devices during the latter part of the first week of school.


All students, new and returning, will need to complete the required paperwork to be issued a chromebook, including the insurance paperwork. We highly recommend accepting the insurance program at $25, even if that means you request to take part in a payment plan (please speak to your assistant principal if that is a need and it will be kept confidential). Chromebook expenses for repairs can add up, so getting the insurance can help. Insurance does not cover screens or cords, so take great care with both. Forms are in the link above (required paperwork) or within the Skyward Family Access forms and payment can be made through MySchoolBucks.


We will have a help table during Bear Camp so parents can check to be sure their paperwork is complete online or for those who wish to do the paperwork online. Resources for you to use at home made by SBMS and the district are available here.

Frequently Asked Questions for SBMS

1. Where can I find the school supply list for Spring Branch Middle? Do you sell them via the PTA or school? You may find the school supply list by clicking here. Individual teachers may send home requests on their syllabi the first few weeks of school where they ask for particular supplies for their classrooms.


2. Do SBMS students use lockers? No, we do not issue lockers. Students will have access to textbooks within their classrooms and will be given a chance to check out textbooks during the second week of school for use at home if they would like to access them via print rather than online, as most of them have online resources. Students carry backpacks with their chromebooks and few school supplies for use during the day. If students need a locker for medical reasons or are truly struggling without one after a few weeks, they may see Mr. Barry for a locker application.


3. What is the cell phone policy for SBMS? We follow the cell phone policy for secondary schools whereby students may use their phones during non-instructional times. As they enter each classroom, they will be asked to stow their cell phone within a caddy at the door. They may retrieve them once class is dismissed. Please do not text your child during class as he or she will only be able to read and respond to them during passing periods and lunchtime. Should students refuse to stow their cell phones or use them inappropriately, they will be collected and a disciplinary consequence will be assigned to include a parent having to come retrieve them and possibly detention. Cell phones offer us great utility, but we want our kids to have the opportunity to focus on engaging in their schoolwork and with their teacher and classmates.


4. What is the dress code for SBMS? Click here for the dress code at SBMS.Students who have jackets with hoods on them may not wear the hoods within the school. Students wearing their hood in hallways, class or throughout the building will be asked to take it down or have it collected for a parent to come pick it up. For safety and monitoring engagement purposes, we want to see faces and greet students.


5. What time can students enter the building in the morning and stay at SBMS in the afternoon? Bus riders can enter the building at 8:10 a.m. when the buses arrive to our school. Car riders, walkers and bike riders may enter the building at 815 a.m. Students taking part in Athletics or Band may be guided to different arrival times and students taking part in Zero Hour may enter at 7:45 a.m. to attend their classes. Once tutoring begins, students may enter the building at 7:55 a.m. with a pass from the teacher or a note from the parent.


Please do not drop your child off in front of SBMS too far in advance of the 8:15 a.m. time frame as we do not have the staff to properly supervise students and we will not allow them into the building.


In terms of the afternoon, students may stay for after school tutorials with a teacher once those times and dates are published or take part in Athletics or Band/Orchestra/Choir, but otherwise should make their way home after school is dismissed.

Returning Student Verification of Enrollment Paperwork

Returning Student Registration:

  • Click here for information and a link to Family Access in Skyward.
  • Families are asked annually to confirm/update information for each child attending.
  • Returning families can update online most information collected in a school’s 1st Day Packet through Family Access. If you do not have a Family Access account, please contact your school to set up an account.
  • Parents are not required to print forms. Forms can be signed and submitted electronically.
  • If you would like to print out the forms for your records, please ensure that Adobe Reader is installed on your device. This process can be completed on a PC, Tablet or smartphone browser.
  • Please be sure to complete forms by clicking the submit button at the end of each form.
  • Please make sure you complete the nurse's form so Mrs. Mulvey (step 4) knows all the pertinent information for your child.

New Student Registration


New Student Registration:

New students may register online (as indicated below) or come in person to SBMS where someone will assist you in the registration process.


Online Registration:

  • Click here to access the online enrollment form.
  • Families new to SBISD or families who have moved within SBISD to a different school are encouraged to register students before the first day of school.

    • All necessary registration forms may be completed online in advance of registering the student at his/her attendance area school. (Alternately, the option to complete registration forms at the child’s attendance-area campus is also available during in-person registration dates/times. A parent or legal guardian must be present to enroll a student less than 18 years old.)
    • To complete forms online, you will need an Internet-ready browser, email address and phone number.
    • If you would like to print out the forms for your records, please ensure that Adobe Reader is installed on your device.
    • After registering online, appointments will be scheduled at the student’s attendance-area school to submit required documents (listed below)
  • What do I need to bring with me to register my student?
    • Immunization record certified by a doctor or public health official
    • Transcript or report card from the last school attended
    • Birth certificate or other document suitable as proof of a child's identity
    • Proof of residency is required upon enrollment. (Examples: lease agreement or mortgage payment book, district tax bill, utility bill with correct name and address)

Dates for In-Person Registration:
  • July 29
    Thursday

    • 1:00 - 3:30 p.m.
  • August 2 - 5
    Monday - Thursday
    • 8:00 a.m. - Noon
    • 1:00 - 3:30 p.m.
  • August 9 - 11
    Monday - Wednesday
    • 8:00 a.m. - Noon
    • 1:00 - 3:30 p.m.
  • August 12
    Thursday
    • 1:00 - 3:30 p.m. (afternoon only)
  • August 17 (second day of school)
    Tuesday

    School office hours or by appointment

Note:

  • Dates and times are subject to change.
  • There is no registration the first day of school.
  • Family may contact the campus for additional dates and times beyond what the district has scheduled for all campuses.

Bell Schedule for 2021-2022

At SBMS, students have a seven period day that begins with an advisory period we call Bear Pride Time. Bear Pride Time will cover the use of a weekly planner where students will learn Habits of Success in relationship to planning when to study, tracking their assignments , due dates and monitoring their grades. Additionally, they will have team building opportunities and participate in our Character Education program, Character Strong.

Mark Your Calendars: Bear Camp 2021!

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Mark your calendars, New and Returning SBMS Bears!


Each year, SBMS hosts a Bear Camp to orient our new Bears on the layout of the building and the practices of the school. This is also an opportunity to help new students and their parents get organized and prepared for their middle school journey! The SBMS Bear Camp for next year’s 6th graders (and new students to 7th and 8th) will be held on August 13th according to the following schedule.


  • 9:00-10:30 a.m.: New 6th-8th Graders with last names beginning with A-L
  • 1:00-2:30 p.m.: New 6th-8th Graders with last names beginning with M-Z


Students will be provided the opportunity to tour the building and visit different stations that will help organize and prepare them to start school on Monday, August 16th: schedules, immunization/medical, chromebook paperwork and insurance payment, band/orchestra check-in, spirit gear, MySchoolBucks set up and a presentation by Mrs. Spencer (Building Principal) and Mr. Barry (6th Grade Assistant Principal). Parents are encouraged to attend to hear the presentation and visit each of the stations.


Parents are welcome and encouraged to come. As students tour the building, parents will be able to ask questions of administrators and hear tips for a successful middle school year.


Students returning to SBMS may come at the following time to pick up a schedule, complete chromebook paperwork, and buy spirit gear:


  • 10:45-11:45 a.m.: All returning 7th and 8th graders
  • 2:45-3:45 p.m.: All returning 7th and 8th graders

A Word from the SBMS PTA

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SBMS PTA is looking forward to a fantastic new school year! The 2021-22 Executive Board has been busy over the summer planning for a “normal” year and we can’t wait to share everything with the entire SBMS community.


Please watch for emails about joining the PTA to help support our school needs throughout the year. Also coming soon is the Bear Pack (aka The Big Form). This will be filled with ways to update your directory details, buy spirit gear, donate specifically to the PTA committees you care about and more!


The PTA website is https://sbmspta.membershiptoolkit.com/ and will be updated regularly to help share information. Please also follow us on Instagram and Facebook at Spring Branch Middle School PTA.


During Bear Camp on August 13th, students and/or families can purchase spirit gear with cash, card or through the Bear Pack (aka The Big Form) as mentioned above.


If you have any questions or want to get involved, below are the PTA Executive Board contact details:


Procedures for Retrieving 2021 STAAR Scores

Parents may access STAAR scores for their child two different ways:

1. Accessing the TEA Parent Portal: Click here to access the portal and your child's STAAR results. If you don't know your child's unique access code, please click, "Look up unique access code." You will be asked to enter information such as first name, social security number and date of birth.

2. Accessing SBISD Skyward Family Access: Log-in to Skyward Family Access. Click District Links on the far right and select TEA Assessment to view the state testing results. If you have more than one student enrolled in SBISD, you will need to select one student at a time within the All Students dropdown within Skyward.


Please note that legislation has passed indicating that students in some grades who were not successful on last year's STAAR will need extra instruction within or beyond the school day in each subject area related to the test the child did not pass. Once we review this legislation and design the action we will take to provide this to students, we will let each parent know.

MySchoolBucks: A Convenient Online Payment Solution

Spring Branch Middle School will be using MySchoolBucks (MSB), a convenient online payment solution, in the 2020/2021 school year to streamline processes and make providing resources for resources easier for individual families. Parents can submit fees for athletics, choir, band, chromebook insurance and other fees that are collected throughout the year through this tool. This same tool is being utilized at many of our campuses, including Memorial High School.


The Optional Technology Coverage charge is now live and ready for you to pay on the MySchoolBucks application.


Directions for Setting Up Your MySchoolBucks: (You may do this on your phone or on your computer)

1. Go to www.MySchoolBucks.com

2. Select Sign Up for Free.

3. Complete all fields in the form and select Create Account.

4. Select Continue to Add a Student. This is an important steps as it links your account to your respective school. Here is a helpful video: How To Add a Student

5. In the add student form, please select your child's school, first name, last name, birthdate and student ID (SBISD lunch number without the sb in front).

6. Select Find a Student. In the next screen, please validate that the child listed is correct. If correct, select Add Student.

7. On the next screen, you may either Add Another Student or Finish.

8. Once you receive word that our items are added to the store, you will be able to wander around and select the items you need for purchase!


Questions or you encounter difficulty? Please contact Stefanie Spencer (stefanie.spencer@springbranchisd.com).

Required Vaccine Information for 7th Graders

Letters were sent home to families last year regarding the additional vaccines required for 7th grade entry (Texas Minimum State Requirements). The additional vaccines required for 7th grade are Tdap and Meningococcal (MCV4). If your child has not already had these vaccines it is advisable that you take care of this before the end of the school year. If your child is exempt for medical or religious reasons you must provide an updated notarized affidavit that includes these vaccines.


If you have not provided an updated immunization record, your child may not receive access to their Skyward schedule for this school year until an updated immunization record is provided. Please send the updated record to Mercedes.mulvey@springbranchisd.com or fax to 713-251-9472.