Summer Newsletter

July 23, 2019

This summer the administration team has been busy preparing for the upcoming school year. We have hired 8 new staff members, finalized student and staff schedules, and have prepared for the NEASC visit in October.

Our custodial staff has been working diligently throughout the summer to prepare the building for the return of students in the fall.

This Summer Newsletter will provide some helpful information as begin thinking about next school year.

Summer Reading

The goal of our summer reading program is to encourage students to experience the joy of reading by promoting a wide range of books. We hope that you will find reading a pleasurable experience that enriches your literary background. The books on this list have been thoughtfully selected and connect to our BHS Core Values. The Bellingham Public Library will receive copies of this list.


Respect Accountability Academic Focus Perseverance Compassion

Those who read one of the selected books below and complete the Summer Reading Reflection will be invited to BHS Literacy Day in September and awarded four bonus points towards the final average of one first quarter course of your choice.

The Summer Reading Reflection is designed to support creative and critical thinking, develop skills in the area of inference and analysis, and support our core values.


Step 1: Select ONE book from the list below.

Step 2: Read your book and take notes as you read to help you complete the reflection guide.

Step 3: Complete the Summer Reading Reflection prior to the start of school

Step 4: Participate in the BHS Literacy Day-Core Values advisory activity in September.

Step 5: Use your four bonus points towards the final average of one first quarter course of your choice.

From the Athletic Director

Bellingham is a proud member of the TRI-VALLEY LEAGUE and while we are one of the smaller schools in the league the direction of our program is definitely on the up-swing.

It's worth noting that over the past 3 years, participation in sports has increased 23.6% and during that time our tournament teams have jumped from 2 to 4 to 8 this past year.

2018-19 saw our boys cross-country, golf, girls volleyball, fall and winter cheer, boys basketball, baseball and softball reaching the MIAA tournament with most every other team seeing year-over-year improvement in the results over the prior.

Summer ... is still a busy time in the athletic department with a steady stream of student-athletes participating in summer programs and/or Captain's practices. It is a pleasure to see so many student-athletes putting in the time on the turf, in the weight room, in the gym and running the streets of Bellingham in preparation for the upcoming season. Knowing what it takes to be successful is a great first step - WELL DONE!

REGISTRATION UPDATE ... as of this week we have more than 225 players registered for one of our 8 fall sports with as many as 100 more still expected to register.

If you have registered but have yet to pay you can either return to your FamilyID account and link to Unipay to pay via credit card or debit ACH.

If you have yet to register, log on to and search on Bellingham (link provided below).

The School Committee has approved the following fee structure for our sport offerings; Hockey is $350, football is $300 with other sports being $250.

Middle School and Unified Sports are $125.

Additionally, there are discounts available. Recipients of free and reduced lunch receive free or half-price athletic fees.

Attention parents of incoming 8th grade students ... getting involved in athletics is a great way to immediately join the fabric of BHS. We have multiple "no-cut" teams that guarantee a spot on the team for anyone interested in joining a sport that they may have never participated in before AND ARE WILLING TO PUT THE TIME AND WORK IN.

START DATES for the FALL Season vary by sport

Football starts Friday August 16

Our 7 other sports begin Thursday, August 22

Middle School cross-country will begin week of Labor Day

Unified Basketball will begin 2nd or 3rd week of September

PHYSICALS are required by the MIAA (Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association) and are considered valid for 13 months. This means that in order to have a valid physical for the Fall teams (ending in November) the most recent physical must have occurred on or after October 2018. If you are in need of a physical, contact your pediatrician or visit one of several walk-in clinics in the area.

IMPACT testing is required every two years and for anyone unfamiliar with the process, we are required to establish individual baselines so that we have a history to compare to if someone is determined to have a concussion. Our trainer, Jen Dowd coordinates this for the athletic department.

SCHEDULES for both the Fall and Winter seasons are available on the MIAA web site at Downloading the App and connecting to BHS is the easiest way to get the current schedule and be alerted to any changes (you must specifically follow Bellingham to have the changes sent to you) that occur.

Follow us on Twitter ... @BhamAthletics

If you are looking for a great way to support the Blackhawks, consider joining Bellingham Athletic Booster Club "B.A.B.C." for a great afternoon of golf at New England Country Club. On Monday, August 19th, enjoy lunch at noon followed by a 1:00 shotgun start (18 holes). This is our third year and B.A.B.C. has to date raised $20,000 which has purchased upgrades to the fitness center, video cameras for games along with food and giveaways during the Varsity Challenge, an event for our athletes.

We are looking for sponsors and can support another 15 foursomes. To register, go to

Enjoy the rest of your summer - GO BLACKHAWKS! If you have any questions, please reach out directly by phone 508.966.4283 or email

Big picture

Blackhawk Experience

We look forward to welcoming the Class of 2024! Please sign up your child if he/she is able to attend. Click here to register

Student Volunteers are still needed - please email Mrs. Masterson if you are interested.

AP Courses at BHS

Beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, The College Board, the organization which regulates and supports Advanced Placement courses and testing, has restructured AP course registration and examinations. Please note the revised BHS protocols around registration for AP courses and AP exam ordering.

  • September 1-The window opens for AP Exam Payments (cash/check to BHS, or online using Unipay on the district website).

  • October 1- Students must commit to the AP course(s) for which they are registered.

  • November 1- Deadline for all AP exam payments.

  • November 15- Exam orders are submitted to The College Board. Refunds may not be possible after this date.

In the 2019-2020 school year, the cost is $94.00 per exam. If you feel you qualify for an exam fee waiver, please contact Mrs. JoAnn Masterson as soon as possible.

1:1 Chromebook Continues

Bellingham High School is pleased to continue our 1:1 Chromebook Initiative at the high school during the 2019-2020 school year.

In order to have a successful 1:1 Chromebook roll out, we have learned from other districts and from our past, that we need to first meet with the parents of the students who will be accessing this technology. Therefore, in order for students to be assigned a Chromebook, both the student and the parent/guardian must attend a Chromebook information meeting and sign the Student/Parent Chromebook Agreement form. The Chromebook information meetings will review highlights from the handbook, the acceptable use policy, internet safety & digital citizenship, and responsibilities of students, parents/guardians, and the school.

Students/Families who are entering Grade 9 and who have already attended a Chromebook meeting, do not have to attend and each student's Chromebook will be redistributed the first full week of school during WIN Block.

Incoming Grade 8 students will not receive a Chromebook until both the parent and student have attended the mandatory information session.

Chromebook Meetings will be offered in the High School Auditorium on the following days and times:

  • August 20, 2019 at 12:30 after the Blackhawk Experience

  • August 21, 2019 at 7:00pm

  • September 4, 2019 at 7:00pm

It is also important to note that in the 2019-2020 school year, families will be responsible to purchase their own insurance for the Chromebook. If a Chromebook is damaged or stolen, the family is responsible for the replacement cost of the Chromebook.

If you are not able to attend one of these sessions or if you have any questions, please contact Deb Conroy at

2019-2020 Schedules

Student schedules are being finalized and will be published to the School Brains Portal on August 16th.

Counselors and administrators have been working throughout the summer to make sure students are placed in core academic classes as required and then student electives are placed based on request and availability.

If there is an error on your student's schedule: your student has been placed in a class he/she has already taken and passed, or he/she student has a blank in his/her schedule, or he/she is scheduled for the same class twice, please contact your student's guidance counselor.

Guidance Counselors return to BHS for limited office hours on August 20th.

Please note the following excerpt from the Program of Studies: Students are expected to carefully consider the course of study they select and are discouraged from changing courses. Our entire master schedule is built around the course selection process, so only under extenuating circumstances should a request to change or drop a course be made. Changes will be made only for serious academic reasons only AND if there is availability in another course.

Class of 2020 Store

Here's another opportunity to buy a senior t-shirt if you didn't get your order in earlier this month.

You can also purchase additional "BHS Class of 2020" gear like sweats, sweatshirts and long sleeve tees. All purchases will be distributed by Mrs. Larkin and Mrs. Masterson at BHS during the first week of school so you don't have to pay for shipping or pick it up yourselves. Our online store is open now until August 18th.

Please see the link for ordering information.