Middle School Matters

Whatcom Middle School Newsletter, August 2019

Welcome Back!

From the Wildcat's Den...

Greetings to you at the end of the summer! August 28th is just around the corner and those of us, who are here, are busy making preparations. At this writing only the administration, secretaries, and custodians are in the building. It’s still very quiet!

Some important information to be aware of:

  • Student Planners will be handed out on the first day of school by your child’s 1st period teacher.
  • 6th grade students will enjoy a “CAT” day on Thursday, August 22nd.
  • 6th grade schedules will be brought home by 6th grade students on CAT day, August 22nd or mailed home for those students who don’t attend.
  • 7th & 8th grade individual class schedules will be mailed home the week of August 19-23rd.
  • Please remember that as a part of Project Free Education, that we are providing nearly all school supplies for your student. Supplies will be provided to students in their classrooms.

Families still need to provide:

    • Back packs
    • PE Clothes
    • Band and Orchestra instruments

I hope you are all looking forward to the start of a new school year. This time of the school year always holds such promise, optimism, and anticipation. We all look forward to another great school year and to seeing you all soon.

Jeff Coulter


Summer Office Hours

The Main Office and the Counseling/Student Services Office will be open to the public Aug. 14 - 27, 9:00 - 12:00 and 1:30 - 3:30.

First day of school is August 28th!

Be sure to check the WMS website for up to date information about sports, clubs, schedules, contact information, and more!

2019-20 School Calendar

Upcoming Dates

  • 8/22 C.A.T. (6th grade orientation)
  • 8/23 New 7th & 8th Grader Orientation
  • 8/28 First Day of School
  • 9/2 No School - Labor Day
  • 9/6 All School BBQ
  • 9/19 Wildcat Day
  • 9/20 No School - Teacher Workday
  • 9/26 School Picture Day
  • 9/26 Back to School Night

New Student Orientation

6th Grade C.A.T. Day (Connections, Acceptance, Trust), Aug. 22, 1:00 - 3:00

6th grade students will gather in the Commons and have an opportunity to:

  • tour the school
  • participate in student led activities on Battersby Field
  • pick up their schedules and locker assignments
  • sign up for fall sports
  • return immunization forms

6th grade students who cannot attend the orientation will have their schedule mailed home on August 23rd.

Principal Jeff Coulter and Assistant Principal Tina Allsop will be available in the Auditorium at 1:00 for an optional meeting to answer parent questions.

7th & 8th Grade Students new to WMS, August 23, 10:00 - 11:00

Please meet in the Counseling Office. This orientation is only for students who are new to Whatcom.

Returning 7th & 8th grade students: Your schedule will be mailed to your home the week before school starts. Schedules will also be available on Skyward after Aug. 23rd.

Getting to School

Transportation routes will be published on the BSD website on Aug. 20. No bus varience requests will be accepted for the first month of school.

Halleck St. in front of the school is closed to all vehicles except school buses. Please do not attempt to drop off your student on Halleck St. Please use one of the side streets instead.

Students not riding buses should not arrive until 8:30 am. Students are to enter through the Commons doors and remain there until 9:00 am at which time they may go to their lockers and classrooms. The first bell rings at 9:10 am signaling the time to be in their seats and the late bell rings at 9:15 am.

Bike racks are available in front of the school. Bikes should always be locked to prevent theft. If a student happens to forget their lock, we can help with securing the bike in the building for the day. Scooters and skateboards can be stored in the main office.

Need to pick your student up early?

If you know ahead of time, send your student with a note in the morning to the attendance office. Your student will receive a pass which will allow them to meet you outside at a pre-arranged location. If this is an unexpected event, please call the attendance office (option #1) and then come in the school at the pick-up time. We will have your student waiting in the office. Please do not make arrangements with teachers.

Attention parents of 6th graders!

Certificate of Immunization (CIS) - TDAP Tetnus booster is REQUIRED for 6th Graders!

Please remember to sign the form. Updated immunizations are due no later than August 28th.

All School BBQ - Sept. 6th - Families are welcome!

7th gr. Lunch - 11:17 - 11:47

8th gr. Lunch - 11:47 - 12:17

6th gr. Lunch - 12:17 - 12:47

Adult lunches are $4.00.

Soccer and Track begin Tuesday, Sept. 9th.

Registration deadline for Soccer and Track is August 30th.

Soon, you will be receiving an email from a company called FinalForms inviting you to complete and sign athletic forms for your students. We want to verify that Bellingham Public Schools has now partnered with this company, rather than using a form within Skyward as in the past. The most exciting news is that FinalForms saves data from season-to-season and year-to-year, meaning that you will never need to enter the same information twice! FinalForms also pre-fills in information wherever possible, for each of your student-athletes, saving you time.

When you receive the email from FinalForms, click on the personalized link to get started. This Parent Playbook will also help you with step-by-step directions. If you require any support during the process, scroll to the page bottom and click “Use Support.”

In addition to registration, the following is required for participation:

  • A CURRENT sports physical exam, which cannot expire during the sport season, is required for the student to participate in athletics. Physical exams are considered CURRENT for 2 years. Please turn in to the Main Office.
  • All participants are required to purchase an ASB Card for $10.00.
  • Your student must come into the main office and put his/her name on the sign-up sheet. Your student will not be on a roster unless he/she signs up!

Note: Students need to have returned any uniforms or equipment from prior sports participation, or pay the fine associated with loss of uniform or equipment.

If you have any questions, please contact Beth Pelto-Fishbeck at (360) 676-6460, x.4348, or email Beth.Pelto-Fishbeck@bellinghamschools.org.


We are still in the process of lining up clubs and advisors. Dates and times will be announced once we have it all in place and will be available on our website under Activities. Some of the clubs we'll offer this year are:

  • Dungeons and Dragons
  • TSA (Technology Students Association)
  • Photo-Journalism
  • Drone/Lego Robotics
  • Leadership
  • Bike Club
  • QSA
  • Choir
  • Drama

...Stay tuned!

Picture Day

Picture day for this year is set for September 26, 2019. Retakes will be on Nov. 6th. All students will have their picture taken whether or not they are purchasing a packet.

Back to School Night, Sept. 26th, 6:30 pm

This is an evening for parents to learn more about Whatcom Middle School. After an introduction in the auditorium, parents will have an opportunity to visit with teaching teams and see individual classrooms.

This evening is geared toward general information only. If you need to speak with teachers regarding your student’s individual needs, please set up an appointment to meet with your student’s teacher and/or team at a different time.

Look for detailed information that will be sent home with students as the date approaches.

2019-20 Supply List

Student Planners, composition books, and other school supplies will be provided this year at no cost to the student. Families may wish to provide backpacks and pencil pouches. Students will need to purchase an ASB Card for $10.00 to participate in all sports and club activities.

Clothing for physical education: - all grades

  • Athletic shorts: black, gray, white or green (length – at least to the student’s fingertips with the arm/hand extended against the thigh)
  • Short sleeved t-shirt: white, gray, black or green (with last name written with permanent marker across the top back)
  • PE clothing must have no pockets, buttons or zippers
  • Lace up athletic shoes with non-marking soles
  • Absorbent socks (we recommend an extra pair to change into)
  • Optional: Sweatpants: black, gray or green Sweatshirts: white, gray or green

School Dress Code

Part of The Bellingham Promise, our strategic plan, strives to develop students and graduates who are respectful and compassionate humans. We want students to respect themselves and others. While we encourage individuality, the district’s dress code aims to foster a positive and healthy environment.

  • Students should dress casually and comfortably for school, while wearing clothing that is well-suited for a school environment.
  • Faces will be uncovered. Appropriate headgear may be worn for warmth and protection outdoors, and inside for religious reasons or special circumstances.
  • Clothing, drawings, tattoos and accessories that display or promote negative messages are not permitted. These could include drug, gang, weapon, alcohol or tobacco-related information, obscenities, put-downs, stereotypes, sexual innuendo, offensive words or graphics.
  • A violation of the dress code will require a change of clothing.
  • Special circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Update your contact information on Skylert

Skylert enables you to receive notifications concerning your children, including messages from Bellingham Public Schools and your child’s school. You have control over which notifications to receive and how you would like to receive them. Skylert is accessed via Skyward Family Access, so it is no longer necessary to login to a separate portal for SchoolMessenger to manage contact preferences.

Click here for step by step instructions to update phone numbers, email addresses and set your preferences.

Whatcom Middle School

Principal: Jeff Coulter

Assistant Principal: Tina Allsop

Secretary: Aileen Walton

(360) 676-6460

  • Attendance, option 1
  • Athletics, option 2
  • Registrar/Counseling, option 3
  • Main office, option 4