Hilltop Herald - Parent Edition

Be Respectful ~ Be Responsible ~ Be Resilient

Volume 1 ~ Issue 9 ~ September 11, 2023

Wonderful Falcon Families,

"Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength. No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful experience is, if we lose our hope, that's our real disaster." ~Dalai Lama XIV~

Tomorrow, we will celebrate Patriot Day in remembrance of September 11, 2001. Many of us remember exactly where we were on that day. I just woke up and my husband was getting ready to go work. My daughter was 2 1/2 years old and my son was just born four months before. My husband had turned on the TV and I saw this plane fly, in what appeared to be in slow motion, toward the Twin Towers and just before it struck the South Tower. I sat on the edge of the bed and watched in disbelief. I remember thinking about my role as a teacher and how I was going to teach my students that day. It was not a day for science teaching; rather, it was a day of comforting each other in my classroom as well as all classrooms around the country. For those of us who witnessed this world-changing event in 2001, the indelible images of the airplanes flying into the towers and subsequently watched them collapse still ring fresh after 21 years. The San Diego connection is that the terrorists lived and trained here in San Diego before carrying out their suicide missions. And while we, in the west, watched these events unfold from the comfort of our homes, I cannot imagine the continued long-lasting impact of 9/11 on New Yorkers. I am thankful for our first responders who went in there to save citizens in spite of knowing that they, themselves, may not come alive. To our Falcon First Responders, thank you for putting yourselves on the line daily to protect us from harm. If you are part of our Falcon family and you have moved here from New York and you have experienced 9/11 firsthand, we continue to pray for you and send positive thoughts your way. Thank you for being examples of resilience and growth mindset. We will never forget.

Students, you were not born yet and you do not know the significance of why it is called Patriot Day. Twenty two years later, our nation is more divided than ever; however, 9.11.01 brought our nation together like no other day in history. We were united. The real heroes, firefighters, policemen, first responders, doctors, nurses, the passengers of United Flight 93 gave up their lives to rescue people from the burning towers and the Pentagon as well as thwart the pilots Flight 93 to prevent another attack. Husbands, wives, partners, sons, daughters, mothers and fathers of the victims were heroes also. Tomorrow, you will have an opportunity to hold conversation with your advisory teacher and classmates about the significance of this day. Parents, please take time to share your memory of 9/11 with your children.

Celebrating Patriot Day on September 12

As part of our remembrance of 9/11, we will hold a one-day Real Superhero Day. Real heroes, in this instance, include firefighters, policemen, first responders, doctors, nurses, just to name a few. Please dress up as a real superhero or wear red, white and blue. Advisory teachers will have a video to show to students and hold a discussion about the significance of this day. Please take time to share your memory of 911 with your children.

Falcon Scholars is Open for Tutoring

Students, do not go into fall break behind in your academics. If you need to make up work, get extra help, or have a space to do homework, please attend Falcon Scholars on Mondays - Thursday.

One Saturday Academy Left before Fall Break

Students, if you have been absent and need to make up work, please come this Saturday for the final Saturday Academy of Quarter 1.

Falcon Flight Fall Break Supplemental

Students, if you are part of Falcon Flight, there will be a week-long supplemental program during fall break. If you want to be a part of this fun-filled week, please email Ms. Pulido at jessica.pulido@sweetwaterschools.org or Mr. Horton at joshua.horton@sweetwaterschools.org.

Reminder of Behavior Expectations

Please read the section below on Behavior Expectations for all Falcons.

Let's have an amazing week!


Ms. Finley

In Remembrance of 9/11

We will never forget! Celebrate Patriot Day by committing to doing something for someone and help them feel loved. #iwillfor911day

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Real Superhero Spirit Day

Come to school dressed as a fightfighter, policeman, doctor, nurse, EMT, or wear red, white and blue.

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Behavior Expectation Reminders

All behavior expectations are outlined in the student/parent handbook. Click on the Title Bar to access the handbook.

As we head toward Fall Break, I want to remind you of a couple things on behavior expectations:

Tardy Policy:
If you are not in class when the second bell rings, you are tardy REGARDLESS if I say there is a tardy sweep or not. All tardies will result in lunch detention. Do not excuse your tardy to your teachers that it was not announced or that I did not say it was a tardy sweep. If you are on the wrong side of the door when the second bell rings, you will be marked tardy and you will get lunch detention. It is not your responsibility to walk your friends to their classes.

Bathroom Passes:
No bathroom passes are allowed 10 minutes after the bell and 10 minutes before the end of a period. There is enough time during passing periods to go to the bathroom and make it to class on time. This assumes that you are not walking your friends to class or wasting the passing period.

Cell Phone Policy:
All cell phones must be put away in the backpacks and turned off. No cell phones allowed in the bathrooms either. Both violations will result in phones being taken away. See flyer below

No-touching Policy:
As we have seen an increase in amorous behavior on campus. To ensure the safety of all students, keep hands to yourself as well as no kissing. Following our no-touch policy will prevent someone from accusing you of unwanted behavior.

All Fighting is Prohibited

Some of you are starting to show your behavior is aggressive manner. Anytime you get involved in an altercation, you will be potentially suspended.

Foul Language/Hateful Slurs are Prohibited

Words have power to lift or bring people down. Please watch your language, especially when it comes to hateful slurs against protected status. Hateful slurs against protected status can lead to an automatic suspension. Protected status include: Race, Color, Religion, Sex/Gender, Gender Identity, Gender Expression, Sexual orientation and Marital Status.

Bullying is Prohibited

Be aware that you are not participating in behaviors that could be viewed as bullying or cyberbullying. Please read flyer below.

Parents, please discuss these expectations with students on a regular basis to remind them of appropriate behavior. While we follow the district's guidelines on progressive discipline, some behaviors will receive severe consequences, if merited.
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The Epic Dodgeball Match between Students and Staff

Thank you to all who participated!!

HTM Student-Staff Dodgeball Game

September 10-26 is National Suicide Prevention Week

#BeThe1To is the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline’s message for National Suicide Prevention Month and beyond, which helps spread the word about actions we can all take to prevent suicide. The Lifeline network and its partners are working to change the conversation from suicide to suicide prevention, to actions that can promote healing, help and give hope.

Here are some important dates for increasing our own awareness:

  • September 21, 2023 - SUSDH Suicide Prevention Forum; more information to come
  • September 26, 2023 - SDCOE Suicide Prevention 101 for Parents. Click HERE to register

At HTM, we are now one of San Diego County Schools to begin a Mental Health Club sponsored by the San Diego County Office of Education. The faculty advisor is Ms. Esparza (RP Teacher), Ms. Burress (Nurse) and Ms. Santana (Counselor). If you need this support or if you have an HTM student who need this support, please reach out to Ms. Esparza at lilly.esparza@sweetwaterschools.org or Ms. Santana at sharri.santana@sweetwaterschools.org or Ms. Burress at kimberly.burress@sweetwaterschools.org.
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HTM Intervention Programs

Students, do not get behind in any of your classes before Fall Break. Attend Falcon Scholars and/or Saturday Academy.

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Falcon Flight Before & Afterschool Program

Families, our Falcon Flight Before and After-school program September Calendar.

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Click HERE to Access the Student/Parent Handbook

Click on this title bar to access the student/parent handbook.