Hopkins Middle School Newsletter
February 14th, 2020
9th Grade Transition
Thursday, March 12, 2020, 6-7 pm
For all Parents and Guardians of 8th graders. The High School will be hosting a meeting to discuss the transition from Middle School to High School. Discussion points will include academics, schedules, and sports. As well as an opportunity to meet some of the staff and teachers.
Diversity and Inclusion Update from Mr. Stockwell
Dear Hopkins Students, Parents, and Community,
This past week I was able to get into each advisory classroom to have an important discussion. We talked about the recent emails sent home to parents by Mr. Wood, current behavior expectations and consequences for using the discriminatory language including the N-word, and a plan to ensure our building continues to be a place where ALL students feel welcome.
First, we discussed the district-wide email that Mr. Wood sent on January 29, 2020, addressing racial harassment. I was surprised to see that only about a third of our students reported having a discussion with their parents about this email. My first request was that all students go home and have parents check their email (it will be attached to this edition of the newsletter for your reference). In the message, Mr. Wood references an unfortunate middle school incident where the N-word was used in a derogatory manner between students. I told the students that this was unfortunate but true, and transitioned to our current expectations and consequences.
When discussing expectations and consequences, I wanted to make sure that all students understood words like the N-word fall into a category known as hate speech. I explained the only purpose behind using hate speech was to make a person or an entire group of people feel inferior or “less than human” and that type of language is not tolerated in this building. This type of language can never be used as a joke. I also referenced our “Rubric Flow-Chart for Aggressive Behaviors” and showed students that this type of language fits into the Level 4 “Crash or Major” which is considered the most severe behavior. Students saw that the first offense for this type of behavior is a day of suspension (HMS Student Handbook, pg. 15).
Next, we discussed solutions. On February 12, Mr. Wood sent out an email update which included plans for a community event on this topic to take place sometime in March. I asked students to share this information with parents and to be on the lookout for a future email from Mr. Wood with the specifics of this event.
We moved on to what the students could do to help make sure this type of language is not used in our building. I gave them three suggestions: first, don’t ever be the one to use these words. If you don’t understand the meaning behind words, don’t use them! Second, report when these words are being used. The teaching staff in the building have been asked to immediately address this behavior every single time they hear it. I reminded students they could talk to an adult, send an email, or click the “report bullying/harassment” link on our website to report anything that makes them uncomfortable. The third and most challenging suggestion was to speak up and be a good bystander. I suggested not making a big spectacle of speaking up, but instead, to simply say, “Hey, we don’t talk like that here.” Speaking out against their friends is a brave thing to do, but if they are able, it can be one of the best ways to create a positive change within their social groups!
Finally, I wanted to end my brief discussion with students on a high point. I shared that while we have had unfortunate incidents, the overwhelming majority of feedback I receive from new students and families is positive. I hear things like, “my student has already made so many friends here,” and that is a testament to the quality of students and families that make up the Hopkins Community.
In closing, I’d like to reiterate that I believe Hopkins Public Schools to be a special school district. Our teachers and staff consistently go above and beyond to provide instruction as well as care and concern for our students. Our community is supportive of every program the schools provide. When there is a need, the people of this community never fail to come together and make a positive impact. We need to continue coming together and through honest and deliberate conversation, we can ensure our district stays one that is known for making ALL students feel welcome.
Outstanding People for Education
There are only two weeks remaining to submit your Nomination for Outstanding People for Education!
Do you know someone who has made a difference to a student at Hopkins? Please consider nominating them for the "Outstanding People for Education" Award. Nominations are due by March 1st, 2020.
Paper forms are available at all school offices or you may use the following link:
If you have concerns over this policy and would be willing to volunteer to supervise students to open up another option for them, please contact me and we can discuss. Thanks!
Hopkins Middle School
For questions regarding our Athletics program, please contact the Athletic Director, Adam Valk (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the Athletic Secretary, Kelly Smith (email@example.com) at the Athletic Office. 269-793-7616 ext 1511/1504
Middle School Girls Basketball
2/17 - Kelloggsville (Home)
2/20 - Godwin (Home)
2/24 - Belding (Home)
2/27 - NorthPointe Christian (Away)
2/29 - Comstock Invite (Away) Time to be determined
7th Grade Games start at 4:15
8th Grade Games begin 10 minutes after the conclusion of the 7th Grade Games.
HYSO Summer Ball Registration
HYSO is now accepting registration forms for Summer Ball.
For more information e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, visit their Facebook page or contact Katy Price (269)-838-0420.
Baseball Open Gym
Fielding, Pitching, Batting
When: Every Sunday from 3:00pm to 5:00pm
Where: Hopkins High School
Age: 6th - 12th Grade
If you have any questions please email Coach O’Dell at email@example.com
Art in Nature
Free after school club for all
Hopkins Middle School students.
Meets in the Science Lab from 3-4 pm every 1st & 3rd Tuesday.
March 3 & 17
May 5 & 19
No meetings during Spring Break
or if school is canceled for any reason.
For more information contact
Piper Laforest (7th Grade) at PipeLafo@hpsvikings.org
or Jennifer Laforest at Jennifer@OutdoorDiscovery.org
Fly Tying Club
Where: Mr. Reszka's Room
Contact Mr. Reszka for details firstname.lastname@example.org
Vises and tying tools provided
Winter Choir Concert & Art Show
Wednesday, February 26th
Hopkins Middle School Cafetorium & Hallways
This evening will feature students from the
Hopkins Middle School &
High School Vocal Music and Art Departments
Art Shows run from 4 pm-8 pm
5:30 pm sharp--Call time for all M.S. Choir Students
Middle School Concert begins at 6:00 pm
6:30 pm sharp--Call time for all H.S. Choir Students
High School Concert begins at 7:00 pm
8th Grade Band Festival
East Grand Rapids High School
Start time 12:20 PM
Call Time 10:15 AM Band Room
You will be released from class to load the bus
Please bring a sack lunch to eat on the way to the performance and a snack for the ride back. We will not be stopping for food. Full Concert Uniform is expected. If parents are interested in chaperoning, please contact Mrs. Williams.
HMS Warm Hearts Blanket Drive
WHO: HMS STUDENT COUNCIL AND THE HOPKINS FIRE DEPARTMENT
WHAT: COLLECTING NEW BLANKETS AND GENTLY USED AND WASHED BLANKETS
WHY: TO HELP FIRE AND ACCIDENT VICTIMS
WHEN: FEBRUARY 24-MARCH 6, 2020
HOW: BRING BAGGED BLANKETS IN TO YOUR ADVISORY TEACHER. EACH DONATED BLANKET= ONE SPIRIT POINT
**THE ADVISORY CLASS WITH THE MOST DONATED BLANKETS WILL WIN A ROOT BEER FLOAT PARTY!!!!**
Upcoming Events and Important Dates
February 18 - Art in Nature Club Meeting 3:00 pm
February 19 - 1/2 DayFebruary 26 - M.S. and H.S. Winter Choir Concerts & Art Shows
February 27 - Fly Tying Club 3:00 PM
February 28 - Hopkins Elementary Winter Carnival 5:00 pm
March 3-5 - 7th/8th Grade Choirs—Choral Festival (one of these dates only, yet to be determined)
March 5 - 8th Grade Band Festival
March 6 - 1/2 Day, Trimester Ends
March 12 - 8th to 9th Grade Transition Meeting 6:00 pm
March 28 - Spring Fling Hopkins Viking Band 5:15 pm
April 5-10 - Spring Break
May 1 - Blue Man Group Concert (M.S. Choir Students Only)
Additional Information and Important Links
Please click on the link for this month's breakfast and lunch menu.
Please call the Middle School office at (269) 793-7407 within 24 hours of your students' absence. You may leave a message on our voicemail system day or night. When reporting illness, please inform the secretary of the type of symptoms your child is experiencing (fever, sore throat, ect.). If your child is absent 2 days or more, you may request homework. If your student is absent only 1 day, homework may be picked up from their teachers the following day. You may also email absences to email@example.com.
Telephones in the office are to be used for illness and emergencies only.
Please report all immunizations that your child has had so we are able to keep our school records up to date. All new students and all 6th graders must be completely up to date on all immunizations. Contact the HMS office if you have any questions.
ALL medications needing to be dispensed to students must be supplied from home. The school does not provide any type of medication. All prescription medication must be provided in a pharmacy labeled bottle. Tylenol/Aspirin must be brought to the office in an unopened bottle. All students requiring any type of medication must have a medication form completed by their parents and on file in the office.
CHANGES in Phone Numbers, Home Address & E-Mail
Please inform the office any time there are changes in your address or phone numbers. We need to have this information so we can update our records and successfully contact you if needed.
The Hopkins Public School District Board of Education complies with all federal and state laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, age, sex, marital status, height, weight, or disability in its programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies: Mr. Gary Wood Superintendent of Schools, Hopkins Public Schools, 400 Clark Street, Hopkins, MI 49328 Phone 269-793-7261.