The Firebird Flash

August 17, 2020

Updates from the Principal

Greetings Firebird Nation Families -


We are excited to officially launch our 2020-2021 school year! We will definitely miss seeing our students in the hallways, but look forward to seeing them online in the meantime. We will keep you informed as we learn more about our eventual return to In-Person Learning.


This newsletter contains information related to the start of E-Learning at FMS. E-Learning at FMS has been completely redesigned to meet the needs of our students and we look forward to seeing its implementation this week!


Our staff have been working hard to build a system that will support the synchronous learning of our students. Teachers will be providing live instruction and help sessions each day. Everything that students and parents will need during this time is directly linked through our FMS E-Learning webpage. The website contains landing pages that teams will be updating each day by 4pm. These pages contain lessons, learning plan information, virtual classrooms, and links to live instruction sessions with our teachers. We have put together a tutorial video (included in this newsletter below) that will help you see how the E-Learning site works.


Please look at all of the information in this newsletter very carefully. We have included the following items:


1. Our Annual School Kick-Off Tradition - "The Firebird Egg". Watch the video below! This is ALWAYS a favorite of our students...we didn't want them to miss it this year!

2. How we are supporting this season of E-Learning

3. A video tutorial of our FMS E-Learning Page

4. A copy of our bell schedule so students know when to attend their classes virtually

5. Health Information Forms

6. Information on Meal Service and Free/Reduce Lunch


If you still would like to request a Chromebook for your student, please contact our office directly. We can be reached by email or by phone at (719) 495-5232.


Again, Welcome Back! We look forward to working with you in this year to come. We appreciate the continued collaboration as we best support our students and help them with their learning endeavors. Let's Rise Together and help everyone achieve a whole new level of excellence this year at Falcon Middle School!


Sincerely,


Brian Smith

Executive Principal

Falcon Middle School

Firebird Egg

How we are supporting this season of E-Learning


Schedule

  • Students at Falcon Middle School will be following the regular bell schedule. Please see this schedule below.
  • Classes will take place Monday through Friday each week, based on the district calendar.


Instructional Delivery

  • Students will participate in live instruction from their teachers and engage in tasks during each scheduled class period time.
  • Students need to make sure to attend each of their core classes, explore classes, and their advisory class.
  • To start the year, teachers will not be assigning homework on top of what is taking place during class time. Students may have some independent work, but the teacher will remain available on Zoom and by email during the class periods for students to ask questions.
  • After piloting Zoom™ video conferencing with students last year, we have found that this is an incredible instructional tool for our teachers. Teachers have been trained on the security features and will be utilizing waiting room features to control who is able to enter their classrooms at given times.
  • Student work will be completed and submitted online through Schoology. Teachers will show their classes how to navigate to their pages and what to do to submit work.
  • Teachers will be grading submissions as like before, providing students feedback, and updating their grade books in PowerSchool as assignments are graded. Parents will be able to view grades through the portal same as before.


Attendance

  • Attendance will be taken each period. It is important for students to engage with their teachers during the scheduled class times to be counted as present.
  • If students are unable to participate in class activities or join the zoom sessions, they will initially be marked absent.
  • We understand that some families may have schedule conflicts and a student may miss their scheduled class. Teachers will be uploading recordings of the lessons for students to view and still complete their work. As long as work is completed within the same day, then the absence can then be changed in the system.
  • If you ever have questions about a student's attendance, please contact the teacher first. Further questions can be directed to our attendance office.


E-Learning Webpage

  • All of our work will be posted through our new FMS E-Learning Page.
  • Go to www.d49.org/fms and click on "E-Learning" at the top of the page.
  • Teachers and teams will be updating their landing page daily by 4:00pm for the next day. The previous days will auto-archive below the current day so that if a student was absent, they immediately know what the exact work missed was.


Social Emotional Learning

  • We know that being away from school for as long as we have will require time to build relationships, check in on our students, and step them back into the learning process. Because of this, we will slowly build towards a normal academic routine over the first two weeks of school.
  • Students will also participate in lessons connected to our Sources of Strength program to help them build new relationships and learn how to support each other in this new year.
  • Counselors will also be available to support students. Information related to this will be contained on the counseling landing page through our E-Learning webpage.


Communication

  • As always, we allow teachers 24 hours (next business day) to respond to correspondence from parents and families.
  • With having our classes live, students will have a much easier time connecting with their teachers during their scheduled classes. This should help reduce the email load overall.
  • Due to the increased screen time, we are asking our teachers to also sign off of their computers at the end of the school day to recharge for the next day.
  • Team announcements, school announcements, and other communication will all be posted through our Landing Pages. This helps provide a one stop area for parents and simplify the process overall from what we had in the past.



We thank you for your hard work, your trust, and understanding as we walk together through this new season of E49 - 2.0.

FMS Landing Page Tutorial

Please watch the video below. It will show you how to access our Landing Pages at Falcon Middle School. These are the main sites teams and teachers will be updating regularly to facilitate E-Learning and eventually In-Person Learning as well.
FMS Landing Page Tutorial
Falcon Middle School E-Learning Page

Click here for our main FMS E-Learning portal.

Big picture

From the Health Office

Hello Parents,

Please take a few minutes to fill out the medical form for each one of your children. The form is included below.


The Health Room must have a new form on file each year for each student. Once you have completed the form, please print it out or send it directly to our Health Assistant, Wendy Barnett, at wbarnett@d49.org. You may also contact her for any questions.


If your child requires medication (including over the counter medications) once we are back in the building, you will need to have a doctor completed form with the medication, per state rules. The medication form is available on the D49 website https://www.d49.org/domain/261

We are trying to keep as much paper as possible from going back and forth. Thank you for understanding.


Hola padres

Tómese unos minutos para completar el formulario médico de cada uno de sus hijos. El formulario se incluye a continuación.

La Sala de Salud debe tener un formulario nuevo archivado cada año para cada estudiante. Una vez que haya completado el formulario, imprímalo o envíelo directamente a nuestra asistente de salud, Wendy Barnett, a wbarnett@d49.org. También puede contactarla para cualquier pregunta.

Si su hijo necesita medicamentos (incluidos medicamentos de venta libre) una vez que estemos de regreso en el edificio, deberá hacer que un médico complete el formulario con el medicamento, según las reglas estatales. El formulario de medicación está disponible en el sitio web del D49 https://www.d49.org/domain/261

Estamos tratando de evitar que la mayor cantidad de papel se mueva de un lado a otro. Gracias por entender.


Wendy Barnett

Health Assistant

Falcon Middle School

(719) 495-5227 Fax: 719-495-5237

Meal Services During E-Learning

Dear D49 Families,


We are pleased to resume our grab-and-go meal service as we return to learn in our virtual, E49 status. Starting Tuesday, August 18, we will serve lunch and breakfast to D49 registered families at three of our campuses (note the locations have changed) from 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.


We are offering meal service as we would during a typical school year. We invite families who would normally take advantage of our meal program to come join us. For families qualified for free, or reduced meal benefits for 2020-21, there is no cost.


Our families without meal benefits are welcome to purchase meals. Please note this is not the same program we could offer to our entire community this spring and through the summer. We thank you for your understanding.


Meal Pickup Information:

  • Families who would like to purchase meals:

    • PreK-5: $2.70 lunch, $1.65 for breakfast

    • 6-12: $3.00 lunch, $1.85 breakfast

    • Checks are accepted

  • Families who qualify for free or reduced meals can collect meals at no charge

  • All families need to reapply annually for Free and Reduced benefits-- Click here to reapply


We are excited to serve you as we kick off the 2020-21 school year! Thank you for your trust and your hard work during this unprecedented season of learning. See you soon!

Menu:

8/18: Chicken Patty Sandwich

8/19: Three Cheese Cavatappi

8/20: Hamburger

8/21: Chicken & Waffles

8/24: BBQ Pork Rib Sandwich

8/25: Oven Fried Drumstick

8/26: Grilled Chicken Sandwich

8/27: Twin Beefy Tacos w/Rice

8/28: Hot & Spicy Chicken Sandwich

Offered daily: Salad Mix, Carrots sticks, Cucumber slices, kidney Beans, Fresh Fruit, Canned Fruit, Juice and Milk

Free and Reduced Lunch Meal Program Information

All D49 families are welcome to apply for the federally assisted free and reduced meal program. Many who apply are surprised to discover they qualify. The free and reduced-price meal program provides more than healthy meals for qualifying students, it provides much needed funds for school districts, and can provide many other benefits to your family as well!

New to District 49? Register and apply online by clicking the link to PaySchools Central

Returning for school year 20-21? Update your D49 PaySchools meal account and re-apply by clicking here. Families must apply annually.

*Paper copies of the application can be picked up and turned in at school as well.

Falcon Middle School

Executive Principal: Brian Smith


6th Grade Assistant Principal: Tim Scheck

7th Grade Assistant Principal: Kava Lientz

8th Grade Assistant Principal/Athletic Director: Elena Forehand


6th Grade Counselor: Carrie Clay

7th Grade Counselor: Amber Villani

8th Grade Counselor: Lisa Murdock