Principal's Newsletter

Sam Barlow High School ~ November 2022


Is it really November? It is unbelievable how fast a school year can go. It seems like we were just welcoming students into the building, finalizing schedules, and enjoying fall sports in the warm sun of September. Yet here we are with the dawn of winter approaching. Time just flies.

October and November can be challenging months for students. The newness of the school year has worn off, school has become a “routine”, and sometimes that results in settling into patterns of procrastination and complacency. During this time, it is great to ask your student to show you what they are doing in class, to explain what they have learned, or to simply sit down in a relaxed environment without technology or distractions and have a conversation. While often times it seems they don’t want us around, that is not the case, our kids want us to ask those questions as it lets them know we really care. Our kids are only with us for a fraction of their lives, the time we spend investing in them now will have a lasting impact on their future. Remember, time flies.


I am sure you have all received your student’s six-week progress report in the mail. However, we are now in the middle of the tenth week of the school year. Do you know if your student has improved their grade? Fallen behind? If the answer is “No”, there is a tool that you can use to find out about your student’s performance. ParentVue is a system that enables you to get up to date information on your student’s grades, attendance, and information about class assignments. This is an invaluable resource that can help you partner with your student and their teacher to monitor progress and set goals. I consistently use this application for both of my students, as well as for working with other students at Barlow.

You can find the free app in iTunes or Google Play. Simply go to those sources and search for “ParentVue”. Please send Brandie Seibel an email at: so she can send you an activation code for this information. Once your account is activated, you can access this information on either your computer or mobile device. If you have multiple students in the district you will be able to access all of their information from the same screen.

Parent Teacher Conferences

I wanted to personally invite all of you to our Parent Teacher Conferences on Tuesday, November 22nd from 12:00-8:00 pm. We are so excited to host in person conferences for the first time in three years. This is always a great time to step into the space where your student spends so much time, learn about their performance in classrooms, and get to put a face with a name as you meet the staff who work daily with your student.


We wanted you to be aware of some important upcoming dates:

  • Tuesday, November 8th - Career Exploration Day
  • Friday, November 11th - NO SCHOOL - Veteran's Day
  • Tuesday, November 22nd - NO SCHOOL for students
  • Tuesday, November 22nd - Parent Conferences - 12:00 - 8:00 PM
  • Wednesday, November 23rd - NO SCHOOL for students
  • Thursday, November 24th - NO SCHOOL - Holiday
  • Friday, November 25th - NO SCHOOL


We are hosting a Career Day on the afternoon of November 8th for all students. We have planned to utilize over 50 guest speakers who will be sharing information about their careers. Students will rotate to four sessions in order to learn more about careers they may be interested in.

If you will be picking up your student early on the afternoon of November 8th, please contact our attendance secretary, Erika Fuller, so we can send a note to your student prior to the start of the career day presentations to have them meet you at the arranged time in the main office.


Over the past ten years we have partnered with KGW to contribute donations to their "Great Toy Drive". Each year we have worked hard to spread the concept of giving, supporting our community, and focusing on others during the holiday season. Now, more than ever, families are going to need the support of their community during the holiday season.

Starting on Monday, November 28th, drop off toy barrels will be placed at our Main Entrance as we are acting as a community drop off site. You can drive through between the hours of 8:30am-3:30pm and drop off new unwrapped toys for small children to teens. Additionally, we will have drop off locations inside of the building and in the Athletics and Activities Office for students who bring items into the building. We will be collecting items until December 14.

Let's work hard as the Barlow Community to help those in need and to spread some amazing holiday spirit.


Each year we look forward to meeting with parents to discuss both the successes and challenges that students face in school during Parent/Teacher Conferences. Through these conversations, we learn so much about our students and families. We also learn what we need to do differently to help students be more successful as well as helping them to have continued success. This year, we are excited to announce that we will be hosting In-Person Parent/Teacher Conferences on Tuesday, November 22 from 12:00 - 8:00 PM.

Over the years we have worked to refine our Conferences to better meet the needs of all students and families. We know that meeting face to face is a great way to engage families and provide the opportunity for everyone to see where students spend so much time. We also know that sometimes a five minute conversation is not always enough. Finally, we recognize that the schedule for conferences has not always aligned with what takes place at the elementary and middle level for families that have multiple aged students. With that in mind, we have landed on the general format below:

  • All teaching staff will be available to meet with teachers between 12pm-8pm on Tuesday November 22nd in our Main Gym.
  • Report cards will be printed and available for you in the Cafeteria
  • Students who are in need of additional supports will be contacted by their counselor to set up appointments between 12pm-8pm on Tuesday, November 22nd.

So you can plan your time efficiently, the minute-minute schedule is given below:

Conferences Will Run From 12:00-8:00

12:00-2:00 Conferences in Main Gym

  • 2:00-2:15 (Main Gym) and 2:15-2:30 (East Gym) Break time
4:15-5:00 Dinner Break
5:00-8:00 Conferences in Main Gym
  • 6:30-6:45 (East Gym) and 6:45-7:00 (Main Gym) Break time

We hope to see you all at conferences and look forward to you all having the chance to speak with our staff.


If you happen to find yourself in our building during the month of November, please stop by and have a look at our annual Barlow Veterans Day Display in the Library. Every year for the last 23 years, the Barlow Library staff has assembled a display of artifacts, photos and more that celebrate our Barlow staff and/or their families who have contributed to the defense of our nation. For a preview, please check out our SBHS Library Events page. Our Library will be open during the November Parent Conferences if you want to see the display in person.


As you have seen there are references to the multiple modes of communication you all have access to in order to learn more about Sam Barlow High School, accessing student assignments, and tracking your student's progress. I wanted to take a brief moment to explain each system and how to best use these tools to both stay informed, and to work with your student.


ParentSquare is the system that we use to send written and voice communication home to parents and families. You can download the App in the App Store and Android Market and receive communications and notifications directly to your phone. You can also access features through the use of a desktop machine.


As a parent this is where I "live" with respect to tracking my student's performance. This app allows you to monitor grades, missing assignments, update contact information, and manage all the logistics of your student's information. This provides a very quick snapshot that will help you have conversations with your student.


If your student is absent from school and needs to find out what went on in class that day, if you want to review specific assignments in one of their classes, or you are going to be gone for an extended period of time on a pre-excused absence you will be able to view all assigned work. It is the expectation that our teaching staff post all of their assignments to Canvas for access to both students and parents.

PARENTVUE: Checking Student Progress

You can download the ParentVue App directly to your phone for free. It’s very simple to do and we have included the step-by-step instructions for you below.

  • Go to your App store or Android Market and search for ParentVue.

  • Click ‘install’ and then ‘open’ when installation is complete.

  • You will have a screen prompting you to swipe left to find your district. If location is activated on your phone, our district should pop to the top. If not, type in Gresham-Barlow School District in the search bar.

  • Once you choose Gresham-Barlow School District, you will be asked to log in.

  • Once you have logged in, you will have access to your student's information, such as;

    • Class schedule

    • Current grades in all classes

    • Progress reports

    • Attendance

    • Teacher communications

    • Access to update your contact information

    • Many more…

  • You can also select which language you prefer to use by clicking on ‘change’ at the bottom of the screen.

This is a great resource to have at the tip of your fingers. If you need assistance logging in or resetting your password, please contact Brandie Seibel at


Parent/Guardian Observer in Canvas

One of the greatest features available to you is accessing your student's classrooms via Canvas. Canvas is the learning management system we use to post all classroom expectations, assignments, and contact information for your student's teachers. This is a fantastic system that not only serves to provide work for students, but also enables parents to see what is being assigned in classes. To make life easy, all teachers have the same "landing page" that will provide easy access to information. See below for some details:

  • Modules: This is where you will find all of your student's assignments and daily work that has been shared with them along with additional resources teachers provide to students.
  • Class Information: This contains the syllabus for the class as well as other key information describing the course and expectations for students.
  • Contact Me: If you access Canvas, you can select this button to send an email directly to your student's teacher.

It is the expectation that all teachers post their assignments to Canvas for student access. If your student is absent, they can always go to their Canvas page to find out what they have missed and even complete assignments when gone. Realize that some of our project based elective classes may not have many traditional assignments posted. For example, it is quite difficult to post a welding project on a digital platform. However, in this case, if there were plans that needed to be drawn, safety information about equipment, or a project description then you should find that information.

Gaining Access to Parent/Guardian Observer in Canvas

  1. Download the ParentVue app (see above) and establish a ParentVue Account.
  2. Follow the directions for creating a Parent/Guardian Observer Password


The Foreign Language Achievement Testing Services (FLATS) test is scheduled for Wednesday, November 16th, from 8:45 am until 11:15 am. at SBHS. Students will be using their Chromebooks to complete the exam and testing will be conducted in our Media Center.

Bilingual students can earn up to 3.0 credits of World Language credit and there are over 50 languages available. This is a great opportunity for students to take advantage of their language skills and earn high school credit.

Testing is free. Please see your counselor for registration information.


Boys basketball tryouts begin on Monday, November 14. There will be a short meeting on Wednesday, November 9th at 6:00 pm in Room 107 to present information about the tryout process and ways to support your student during that time. Please park by the baseball field and enter by the Holevas Gym.


A long standing tradition of the boy's basketball program at Sam Barlow High School is our annual Veteran's Day Boys Basketball Clinic. The clinic will be held in our main gym for 3rd through 8th graders and is a fantastic opportunity to get your young athlete active and engaged as well as introducing them to the Home of the Bruins! Please see the Barlow Basketball Clinic flyer below for more information, as well as directions on how to register for the clinic.


Sam Barlow High School is home to an amazing College and Career Center. Patty Neuenschwander, our College Coordinator, is consistently finding ways to connect students with scholarship opportunities, hosting presentations from colleges and universities, and helping students with the college application process. LindaLee Frazier, our Career Coordinator, works to provide students with exposure to career opportunities by linking local businesses to classrooms, hosting presentations from business leaders, and connecting students to apprenticeship programs, the military, and local job options. These two work tirelessly to provide opportunities for your student.

Please see their newsletter for incredible details and current opportunities:

MARY POPPINS November 11th - 19th

Everyone's favorite practically perfect nanny takes the stage in this Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious musical adventure. The jack-of-all-trades, Bert, introduces us to England in 1910 and the troubled Banks family. Young Jane and Michael have sent many a nanny packing before Mary Poppins arrives on their doorstep. Using a combination of magic and common sense, she must teach the family members how to value each other again. Mary Poppins takes the children on many magical and memorable adventures, but Jane and Michael aren't the only ones upon whom she has a profound effect. Even grown-ups can learn a lesson or two from the nanny who advises that "Anything can happen if you let it."

Tickets at


Seniors, the time has arrived to turn in your Senior Class Portrait. The deadline to turn in your portrait is December 14th. Please see Senior Portrait Info/Submission for more information.

To access key dates and information regarding the Class of 2023, please visit the Senior Page on our website. You can also get more information about what Jostens offers on their website


In order for students to reach their full potential in the classroom, they must attend school. We want all students to attend at least 90% of all school days. Students should only miss school if they have a fever, have been vomiting, have a medical appointment, or a family emergency. We fully understand that students will sometimes miss school, but limiting the number of missed days is important. Students can’t learn unless they are in class. If we have more students attending at a higher rate, we can also increase the success of our students and our graduation rate.


In order to connect with our school community, Principal Bruce Schmidt will be hosting a monthly parent meeting on the fourth Monday of each month. During this meeting, Mr. Schmidt will present on a variety of topics to inform participants of what is taking place at Barlow. These meetings are never "one way" as Mr. Schmidt will gather input from parents and guardians to help make the Barlow experience quality for all.

The meetings begin at 7:00pm and end at 8:30pm and this year we are running a hybrid model with some meetings being conducted virtually through the use of Google Meets and some in-person in the Media Center. The meeting dates for the 2022-23 school year are: 11/28, 1/23, 2/27 (in-person), 3/20, 4/24, and 5/22 (in-person).

Each month an invitation will be sent to you with an agenda via email outlining the topics for discussion along with the link to the Google Meet for virtual meetings. We look forward to seeing you at the end of each month.

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What are the office hours?

7:00am - 3:30pm daily

Closed on holidays and some inservice days

What is the main office number?


Can I leave a message for my student?

Yes. If necessary, we can take messages from a parent or guardian only. Messages will not be delivered to class except in an emergency, but will be held in the office. Students are paged during designated paging times, and it is the student’s responsibility to pick up the note.

Can I bring a present or send flowers/balloons to a student?

We are unable to accept gifts, flowers/balloons for students. We will refuse all attempted deliveries.

Can I deliver coffee/specialty drinks to my student?

No. We will not accept any Dutch, Black Rock, Country Coffee, etc.

Additional questions?

Please call us! 503-258-4850

Who Can Help?

If you have concerns about your child’s schedule or other issues, the following are the staff to contact. Email is a quick way to get answers to the questions you might have.

COUNSELORS (Caseload by Last Name)

A-C Shae Morris

D-H Erin Boelow

I-M Paul Quirke

N-Sa Oscar Rethwill

Sc-Z Molly Ninneman


Kimberly Louvin


Amanda McLeod


Brinidey Gil-Salado


Miriam Ward


Brinidey Gil-Salado


A-G Heidi Husbands

H-O Jason Bhear

P-Z Doyle Huelsman