SMS Trojan News

Principal's Corner

April 20th - April 24th


The first week of remote learning is in the books, and we are continuing to learn how to best meet the needs of students and families in this ever-changing situation! We are trying our best to funnel all communication and assignments through our SMS "Learn at Home" website. You will be able to find assignments and links to Google Classroom sites here.

Packets will be available on Monday and Tuesday mornings from 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Thank you for swinging by if you need to submit assignments from last week or pick up work for this coming week. Remember, all the information in packets can be found on the SMS "Learn at Home" website, so there's no need to grab a packet if you are able to complete all of your work online.

THIS WEEK, we will be having all locker items & contents to be picked up at South Middle School from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. on Thursday (April 23rd) and Friday (April 24th). We WILL be bagging and placing these items in tagged bags in the gym: clothes, binders, backpacks, notebooks, shelves, mirrors, books, band apparel, instruments (band, orchestra), and other personal/essential items. We WILL NOT be bagging: pens, pencils, hi-liters, post-its, and other non-essential items.

Remember that work students should be engaging in should take anywhere from 1-3 hours, potentially a little more with supplemental activities (reading, working out, watching videos, listening to podcasts, or doing virtual experiments/field trips, Imagine Math, etc.) to complete. This week's learning will be due by Monday, April 27th, either online or at South where you picked packets up.

ATTENDANCE: We have been charged with "taking weekly attendance" during the school closures. At the middle school level, teachers will indicate for the week any contact they have had with or from the student/parent that indicates the student is engaged in the school work. This can include:

  • Phone call,
  • Email,
  • Virtual meeting (Zoom or Google Meet),
  • Student logged into to Google Classroom to count for participation, or
  • Student hands in printed work.

Teachers will be turning in a list of students from their classes who did not engaged for the week. We will be reaching out to those students and families to see if any needs are present that we might be able to assist as we continue to partner with families.

We will also be coming out with our plans for 8th Grade Moving-On Ceremony and all of our end-of-year awards. Please let us know if you have questions, concerns, or if there is anything we can do to support our community at this time!

Have a great week! And remember to be grateful!

-Mr. Sale

Suggested Schedule for Learning at Home

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Norms and Agreements for Distance Learning

  • Staff will use pre-existing district communication methods – school provided email addresses, phone numbers, web sites, etc.
  • Staff will not be using personal text messaging, personal emails, Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook for distance learning purposes.
  • Staff will be public in their practice – when staff are at home, they are encouraged to have others in the room (physical and virtual) to the best of their ability so others can hear and see. Students should also be in a room where others can see and hear the communication.
  • When using Zoom and/or Google Hangouts, staff will meet with groups of students as much as possible vs. individual students.
  • If possible, when having a one-on-one phone call with students, staff will ask the student to put them on speaker phone so others in the room can hear them.
  • During one-on-one phone calls or virtual meetings, staff will be keeping brief notes about the conversation (time, date, content).
  • Staff communication will be related to schoolwork; when inquiring about a student’s health or well-being, staff will be sure to ask all students the same questions.
  • Staff will not be recording and/or posting a Zoom meeting (or other video-platforming meetings) that contain video of students as it would require consent from the parent to have their student recorded. If it becomes necessary to record any sessions, parent permission will be received prior to recording any session. Staff are encouraged to record themselves teaching a lesson and/or sending a video message and posting for students to view at a time convenient for them. Students should not be recording meetings either as we want to ensure the rights of all are protected. There may be consequences for students not complying with this expectation.
  • When a staff member becomes aware of a problem with a student (i.e. concerns over mental health and/or safety), they will report the concern to the students’ counselor and/or administrator immediately. Mandatory child abuse reporting still applies and the educator may be required to contact DHS to file a report.
  • Students are expected to maintain appropriate use of all electronic devices and communication using appropriate language, etiquette and to ensuring to report any bullying or harassment experienced immediately to a school administrator.

Please email Mr. Sale if you have any questions or concerns.

Thank you for supporting your student in our GP "Learn at Home" plan which will begin on April 13th.

Day #16 of “21 Days of Gratitude”

South Middle School

At South Middle School, we are a community dedicated to learning while promoting integrity and respect.