SMS Newsletter

May 2023

May Core Value: Grit

The Sacajawea community is committed to

ensure high levels of learning for all students.

We are a compassionate community that honors grit

and celebrates growth in order to face the future

with a level head and a critical eye.

Principal's Corner

The final few weeks of school are always a time of intensity before the joy which comes at the close of a successful year.

We have just concluded our Smarter Balanced Tests which provide the opportunity for students to demonstrate their learning over the past year. Thank you for supporting your kids in being fully present for these assessments. Preliminary results will be shared with our school in the coming weeks; families should receive scores and explanations in the latter part of the summer.

Our benchmark STAR tests will be conducted during the month of May. The third round of these tests will provide information on the progress of each student in math and reading through the course of the year. We have already seen significant growth in reading in the Lexile data collected through Achieve and anticipate similar positive results in the other assessment data.

These tests provide further evidence of not only your student’s growth, but also our progress toward our identified goals of reaching 70% of our students at proficiency in reading and math. Thank you for all you do in partnering with us on behalf of your students.

Gordon Grissom

Sac's New Principal!

Congratulations to Ashley Henigman who has accepted the principal position at Sacajawea for the coming school year. With her previous experience as a teacher, a behavior specialist, and as the assistant principal at SMS for the past three years, she is the ideal choice to continue leading our students and staff at Sac. Her recognition of each student’s value and potential, her understanding of instruction and learning, and her support of teachers and the multitude of responsibilities in their positions will serve as the foundation for her success. The Sacajawea Community is fortunate to have her leading our school into the future.

Important Note to Parents and Guardians

If you know your student will need to be picked up early during the school day, it would be incredibly helpful if you could call the attendance office before 10:00 am to let us know. We can then write a blue pass to give to your student so they can meet you at the office at the designated time. This will eliminate the disruption and disturbance of us having to call into the classroom to have them sent to the office.

Thank you so much!

Front office staff

2023-2024 7th & 8th Grade Registration

6th Graders

Our sixth grade had a 7th grade Elective/Exploratory Registration presentation on Friday in Advisory! Here is a link to the updated slides with course descriptions.

As clarification, students who would like two music classes will have one each period and no other electives. Apologies, this is different from what is printed on the purple form.

Counselors will be in Science classes on Thursday, May 4th to help students enter their requests into PowerSchool. Students, please be prepared with your completed purple registration forms, this includes a parent signature. You can turn your form into your HE or Science teachers or bring it with you to science class on the 4th.

We look forward to seeing you in science class on Thursday, May 4th to make your registration for 7th grade official!

7th Graders

Our seventh grade had an 8th grade Elective/Exploratory Registration presentation Monday morning in Advisory! Here is a link to the updated slides with course descriptions.

As clarification, students who would like two music classes will have one each period and no other electives. Apologies, this is different from what is printed on the blue form.

Counselors will be in Health Enhancement classes on Monday, May 8th to help students enter their requests into PowerSchool. Students, please be prepared with your completed blue registration forms, this includes a parent signature. You can turn your form into your HE teachers or bring it with you to H.E. class on the 8th.

We look forward to seeing you in HE class on Monday, May 8th to make your registration for 8th grade official!

Fly Falcons, Fly!

Attention Parents of all 6th Grade Students:

Prior to attending school, ALL incoming 7th grade students must provide documentation of the Tdap booster (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) vaccination OR a notarized religious exemption form. Incoming 7th graders cannot attend without providing documentation.

Vaccination appointments can be scheduled with Well Child Visits with your doctors. Alternatively, the Gallatin County Health Department has walk-in clinics. They can be reached at (406) 582-3100 for more information.

Documentation may be shared through email with our registrar, Kayla Fortier (, faxed to the school (406-522-6474), or dropped off at the main office.

If you are in need of a religious exemption form, please contact Kayla Fortier

or call the SMS main office at (406) 522-6400.

Para Familias de Habla Hispana


Días Libres
26 de mayo: No hay clases en ninguna escuela de Bozeman ya que los maestros recibirán capacitaciones.

29 de mayo: No hay clases en ninguna escuela de Bozeman en honor al Día de Conmemoración (Memorial Day).

Último Día de Clases
El 8 de junio se clausura el año escolar. Los alumnos saldrán de clases a las 12:45 p.m. y los autobuses escolares los llevarán a casa a esa hora.
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Talking Points: Para comunicarse en Español

Nueva plataforma para comunicarse en Español con el personal escolar en Bozeman. Haz click aquí para obtener más información

La Comunicación con el Personal Escolar de Sacajawea

Haz click aquí para obtener información importante sobre cómo mantenerse en contacto con la escuela de su hijos

Eighth Grade Celebration!

We will be celebrating our eighth grade students and their successful journey through middle school at 2:00 on Tuesday, June 6, at Van Winkle Stadium on the Bozeman High School campus. The time has been chosen to allow all students to participate; students will be bussed from Sacajawea to the stadium. We ask that parents/families arrange for transportation home from the Celebration. Please plan to join us to recognize the achievements of our departing eighth-graders.

Teacher Appreciation Week

Wonderful Sacajawea families,

We are so excited to show our incredible teachers some love. Randi Lanning, our new PAC VP, has spent countless hours planning for this week. We can’t wait for all the fun to begin! Pictured is an itinerary of the events along with a suggestion of ways you can contribute to the fun of showering our teachers with the appreciation they deserve:

  • Send notes of love, gratitude, or thankfulness
  • Treat your teacher to his/her favorite snack or beverage, homemade treat, or candy
  • Does your teacher have a favorite flower? (fresh or hand drawn)
  • Pick up supplies your teacher is running low on
  • Gift cards are always fun… massage, favorite restaurant, or local store
  • Write a poem
  • Give your favorite teacher a big high five!
  • Do a good deed for your class
  • As the weather warms up, teachers need fun things to play with outside (basketballs, volleyballs, kick balls, etc.)

The ideas above are all optional suggestions! If you have other ideas or would like to show your appreciation to teachers in different ways-please feel free!

Celebrate Teachers and Staff with Apple Awards!

Looking for a way to honor your teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week? The Apple Awards program through the Bozeman Schools Foundation is in full swing! Show your teachers how much you appreciate them. Each donation made allows you to recognize up to three teachers with an Apple Awards certificate and an apple.

This link will be open and accepting donations now through Tuesday, May 9th:

Funds raised work to help support the Bozeman Schools

Foundation to provide district-wide programming.

Learn more about Apple Awards here:

Thank you!

Bozeman Schools Foundation

News from the Library

The Poetry SLAM was a HUGE success! We had over 20 performers and over 50 appreciative audience members! Congratulations to all performers!!


  • May 7th - Bozeman Public Library “card” drive. Bozeman Public Library will be at SMS to encourage students to sign up for a FREE public library card.
  • All eighth grade students - Be aware that all library fines and materials need to be turned in before June 5th to clear your records for the High Schools.
  • Used Book Sale - Please start collecting books that you have outgrown. We accept all levels of books for the sale. The sale is open to the community. We will collect books until May 25th and the sale will begin on May 30th - June 2nd. (Please - no textbooks)


Remember to check your email for overdue notices.

Overdues are sent out to student & family emails ONLY - no paper copies are sent.

May is Asian American & Pacific Islander Month!

A Message from Thrive

Inexpensive Summer Activities for Middle Schoolers

Hoping to keep your kid active this summer without breaking the bank?

  1. Check out FREE passes to area attractions including the Museum of the Rockies and Montana Science Center here: Passes go fast—so book in advance, if possible. Dates must be specified.
  2. Many local organizations offer volunteer opportunities for middle schoolers. From shelving books at the Public Library to cuddling cats at Heart of the Valley—opportunities abound. Connect directly with each organization.
  3. Did you know that many local summer camps have scholarships available? The comprehensive summer guide is here: Reach out to the camp itself to explore scholarship opportunities—scholarships go fast!
  4. Avoid the Summer Slump— The local public Library has an incredible teen summer reading program here

For these and other parenting tips, contact Ashley Mares Jones, your SMS

Thrive Parent Liaison, at

or by phone at (406) 922-4230.

8th Graders to Costa Rica 2024

Great news Sacajawea families!

The school board just approved a 9-day trip to Costa Rica for next year's 8th graders! This trip is coordinated by EF Tours and led by Kelly Hayden (8th grade math and science teacher). This trip will also provide the opportunity for new perspectives, to develop a sense of independence, and to build skills for the future through this experience.

Proposed dates are June 14th-22nd, 2024

I’ll be going over all the details in my info session in the 8th grade commons on

May 11th at 6pm. Use this link to register for the meeting:

Reach out to if you have any questions.

-------------- Expand Your World -------------- Host an Exchange Student

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The Rotary Youth Exchange program is a high school exchange program

sponsored by Rotary International that provides an opportunity for students from around the world to come to the United States, and for local American students to spend a year

abroad on an international exchange.

We are accepting applications for host families for these students.

The students will live with two to three different families during their exchange and

offer knowledge of their country and its culture.

Host family criteria:

• A safe and secure home for the student

• Room, board, and transportation for the student

• Financial ability to provide room and board (no other expenditures are expected of the family)

• Willingness to learn about the student and their culture

• Desire to provide a wonderful, life-changing experience for both the student and your family

The student will attend a high school in your area and will participate with your family in the same way as your own child. Help the student improve English, learn US customs, and meet

and make friends through school and other local activities.

Need more information? Contact:

John S. Patterson

Bozeman Rotary Club

(406) 581-9767

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World Language Initiative Summer Camps

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Upcoming Safety Drills

Throughout the year, we will have a series of drills to practice and standardize protocols to respond to emergencies which could occur. Upcoming drills will be conducted on the following dates:

  • Fire – May 16th

2022 - 2023 SMS Yearbooks

Yearbooks are on sale!

Books can be purchased at: or by using the QR code below.

Familles will be able to order online until May 31st. June 1st through the last day of school, yearbooks can be purchased via cash/check in the counseling office

(this is quantity dependent).

Books are $25.00

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If you have any questions regarding yearbooks, please email Kace Doornbos at

Kace Doornbos M.S.

Student Assistance Specialist


(406) 522-6471

Counseling Connection

Who are our school counselors:

Meghan Powell- Assigned teams: All 8th-grade teams, 6th-grade Mountain Team

Leah Kreitinger- Assigned teams: All 7th-grade teams, 6th-grade Prairie Team

Kace Doornbos- SAFE-TI Program counselor

Natasha Fraker- School counselor, Natasha is at SMS two mornings a week

Clodagh Shortt- Counseling Intern, working across all grade levels, Tuesday/Friday

Lexi Phelps- MSU Counseling Practicum Student, working across all grade levels, Thursday

School Counselors at Sacajawea help all students:

  • Apply academic achievement strategies

  • Manage emotions and apply interpersonal skills

  • Develop awareness of postsecondary options (higher education, work force, etc.)

We do this by providing:

  • Classroom-based lessons (i.e. school-wide Tuesday morning advisory counseling lessons, SOS curriculum for 6th and 8th grade, Organizational Skills Bootcamp in 7th)
  • Small group interventions to support student needs
  • Short-term individual counseling with students
  • Collaboration with families/teachers/administrators/community for student success
  • Advocacy for students at student-focused meetings (IEPs, 504s, or family/team meetings)
  • Data analysis to identify student issues, needs, and challenges
  • Acting as a systems change agent to improved access, achievement, and opportunities for all students

Tuesday Morning Whole Child Character Building Lessons:

This year we will be using the curriculum Character Strong. This program focuses on the Whole Child by teaching skills and strategies to build on character and emotional regulation. This program is aligned with both ASCA and Casel standards. Please click here for more information. The topics we will cover for the remainder of the year are below:

Clubs & Extracurricular Activities

Sacajawea is pleased to provide a number of activities in which students can be involved outside of the classroom. Encourage your kids to be involved in ways to develop their skills and interests!

We have student councils at each of the grade levels that meet during their respective lunch times, in addition to the following clubs, most of which take place from 3:30-4:30 pm on the designated days, unless otherwise specified:


Yearbook – SMS Cafeteria

Outdoor – Room A24


Knitting – Room F14 at lunchtime (11:24 - 11:57 AM)

Computer – Room C8

Art – Room C5

Archery – B27 (No previous experience necessary)


Book Club – Library in the morning (8:20 - 8:48 AM, during Falcon Red)

Ice Rink (6th graders) – Room F22 at lunchtime (11:24 - 11:57 AM) every other Wednesday

Forensics (Speech and Debate) – Room C7


Forensics – Room C7

Robotics/3D Printing – Room C8

Archery – B27 (Previous experience required)


Knitting – Room F14 at lunchtime (11:24 - 11:57 AM)

** Some clubs may require permission slips prior to participation. **

Clubs are free and students may participate when able; however, some clubs may be

limited in number, so students should contact the teacher, if interested.

Upcoming Dates and Events


  • 2nd: Jazz Band Concert, GHS
  • 3rd: Parent Showcase Speech & Debate, SMS Rm.C7 after school
  • 4th: Parent Showcase Speech & Debate, SMS Rm.C7 after school
  • 9th: PAC Meeting, 8:30 am
  • 11th: 2024 8th Grade Costa Rica Trip Parent Meeting, SMS 8th Gr. Commons 6:00 pm
  • 11th: Choir Concert, Willson Building 7:30 pm
  • 13th: Speech and Debate Meet, Gallatin High School 8:30 am - 3:30 pm
  • 17th: Band Concert, BHS 7:30 pm
  • 24th: 8th Grade to Washington D.C.
  • 26th: PIR Day, NO SCHOOL
  • 29th: Memorial Day, NO SCHOOL
  • 30th: Used Book Sale Begins, SMS Library
  • 31st: Last Day to Order Yearbooks


  • 1st: SMS Orchestra Concert & Cookout Social, 6:00 pm
  • 6th: 8th Grade Celebration! BHS Van Winkle Stadium 2:00 pm
  • 8th: LAST DAY OF SCHOOL, students out at 12:45 pm - Enjoy your summer!
  • 9th: PIR Day, NO SCHOOL
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HRDC's Healthy KidsPack

What is Healthy KidsPack?

A partnership between your school and the HRDC that provides free,

nutritious bags of snacks and simple meals to students to take home for the weekends.

Bags contain healthy, kid-friendly items that are easy to prepare. Items cycle each

week and include many local products.

How does the program work and why should I sign up?

Every Friday afternoon, your child will receive a KidsPack bag from

school in their backpack or locker. Participation is discreet and

confidential. With Healthy KidsPack, you can stretch

your family’s budget and save time and energy on meal prep!

Who can sign up?

Healthy KidsPack is for everyone! Any family with children in

grades K-12 can sign up.

Signing up is easy! Click on the corresponding button below to print out a sign-up form.

Fill out the bottom portion and return to the SMS front office.

You can unenroll at any time.

Free and Reduced School Lunch

Click this link for the online or printable application for free and reduced lunch rates OR to make a donation to assist students and families with a negative school lunch balance.

Box Tops for Education

Did you know Sacajawea Middle School is part of the Box Tops for Education program?

It has changed to a mostly digital program. Traditional clip out Box Tops are being phased out but you can still send them to school (make sure it doesn’t say scan) to be turned in to the library.

The new process is so much easier!

1. Get the free, new and improved Box Tops mobile app on your phone.

2. Buy your groceries and ask for the receipt.

3. Take pictures of your receipt with the app within 14 days of purchase.

4. It will find any qualifying products and give 10 cents for each one to the school!

The money adds up and is used to enhance the book selection at our library.

It’s costs you nothing but 30 seconds of your time and you can help ALL the students at your child’s school. Encourage your friends and relatives to do the same.

On the Box Tops for Education website, you can find coupons and special deals.

Thank you so much for giving back to others!

Your PAC Team & SMS Library

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