Kulshan Connect

November 12, 2021

In our Kulshan Community, we are courageous, kind, and committed!

KMS Veteran's Day Assembly

Thank you to our Kulshan ASB for organizing and delivering an awesome Veteran's Day Assembly last Wednesday, Nov 10. Here is a link to the video if you want to watch the assembly. Thank you to all of our KMS friends and families who have served across all military branches. Also - a special thank you to KMS staff members Jen Newbauer and Logan Hilgers, both active in the service, for serving as special guests during our presentation.

Learning Together

To recognize and celebrate Native American Heritage Month in November, we want to highlight this short video which explains the Point Elliot Treaty of 1855. The video was made by Children of the Setting Sun. The video recognizes one of the most important events of Pacific Northwest chronology, the Point Elliott Treaty of 1855. Recently, our 7th grade Social Studies teachers were able to visit the Hibulb Cultural Center in Tulalip to see the actual 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott as well as other significant displays on Coast Salish history and culture.

Now Hiring in BPS

We are hiring in Bellingham! If you have questions about jobs available in our schools, please visit the district website at and click on “jobs”. For assistance with questions about temporary substitute assignments, you may contact Gabrielle Roberts, Substitute Coordinator by emailing or by calling the office at (360) 676-2784 or (360) 398-5572. We love having KMS parents as KMS employees and subs!

Practice starts Monday, Nov 15

Practices start Monday for our Boys 7th and 8th grade Basketball and All Gender 6th - 8th grade Dance/ Tumbling. Basketball practice is after school in our gym from 4:00 - 5:30 PM. Dance & Tumbling takes place before school at 8:00 AM. Registration is due TODAY in Final Forms. More information can be found on our KMS Athletics page. If you have any questions about sports registration or Final Forms, please email Lisa Scott, our Athletics Registrar or call 360-676-4886 x4708.

Boys Basketball: Rapid Testing

Because basketball is considered an indoor high-contact sport, unvaccinated students will be rapid tested for COVID two times per week. If you have registered your student via Final Forms, look for an email early next week explaining our Rapid Testing program and a Parent Consent to Test form. Consent forms are also available in our main office. If you are interested in getting your child the COVID vaccine, the Whatcom County Health Department has good information here about available locations for walk-up and appointments.

COVID Vaccine Card to KMS

It is important for us to know your student's vaccination status for contact tracing, as well as indoor events such as high impact sports. If you haven’t already, please email a photo of your student’s vaccination card to our registrar, Tatiana Samora at Tatiana.Samora@bellinghamschools.org. Thank you!

YMCA Youth Program

The YMCA is accepting 8th grade students into our After School Youth Institute Program! There is no registration necessary- youth are welcome to the FAC at the downtown YMCA on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays from 3:00 - 6:00 PM. Learn the skills needed to become proficient with technology, ace your next exam, and become a leader in your community. If you are interested in learning more or have questions you can contact your school counselors: Aaron Tiger, Michelle Strobel, or Lacey Bachman. Or you can contact the YMCA directly at: Libby Teerink, Teen Coordinator.

Cell Phones Off Please

If your student carries a phone to school, please remind them to keep it turned off and put away between 9:15 AM - 3:45 PM. We ask families not to contact their middle schoolers on their cell phones during the school day. If you need to contact your student, you can always call our school’s main line. In the cases where students are on phones during class repeatedly, we may need to direct students to check phones into the office during the day, potentially leading to having parents or guardians picking up the phone at school. Thanks for partnering with us to help your students learn healthy phone boundaries.

Child Tax Credit

Did you know?

  • All families should be receiving up to $300 a month for each child through the Child Tax Credit. This is your money to help with the cost of raising your children.
  • Even if your family doesn’t typically need to file taxes, filling out the Non-Filer Form this year could help you claim the Child Tax Credit, worth up to $3,600 per child.
  • Visit the Child Tax Credit Information page to learn more about eligibility and the program, or to sign up. #ChildTaxCredit
  • The deadline for non-filers to sign up for the tax credit payments is November 15.

COVID vaccines for students ages 5-11

The Pfizer vaccine against COVID was authorized for children ages 5-11 this week, with a very limited number of providers being able to give shots beginning Nov. 8. We are working on a BPS vaccine clinic, but because of staffing shortages in the health care sector and limited vaccine availability, this is not yet scheduled. We will update you as we learn more. You can find out where pediatric doses are being offered on the Health Department’s Pediatric COVID vaccine page or on the Vaccine Locator by filtering for “Pfizer-BioNTech Pediatric, ages 5-11”.

Attendance Office Reminders

Parents: If you need to pick your student up early, please send them with a note to the front office when they arrive to school. You can also email Jeneen Durand or call 360-676-4886 before 9:00 AM. Then your child will be ready in the office when you arrive. Also, our automatic attendance messages to parents will now only go out one time per day, at 3:45 PM. (not twice per day). Let us know if you have a question about this change.

Need Holiday Support?

When you think about the holidays, are you feeling anxious about trying to buy presents and put food on the table? We have many communiy groups who provide various items and services to families in Whatcom County during this time of the year. Please check out this list of resources on our district website. You can also reach out to one of our KMS counselors for advice and support.

Kulshan Food Pantry

Our Kulshan Food Pantry is back! Please use our Sign Up Genius if you can. If you are dropping off non-perishable food or healthcare items for the pantry, please deliver to our KMS front office and let them know it's for the food pantry. We greatly appreciate the ways our families come together to support our Kulshan community. If you and your family are in need of food support, please reach out to any of our Kulshan counselors: Aaron Tiger, Michelle Strobel, or Lacey Bachman.

Free Dinners Mon - Thurs @ 5:00 pm

Bellingham Public Schools Community Meals Program:

What: Dinner for children (up to age 18) and parents

How much: Free for kids up to age 18, parents pay $4.75

Where: Shuksan Middle School’s Cafeteria (2713 Alderwood Ave.), Meals must be eaten on site and can’t be taken home

When: 5:00-6:00 pm, Mondays-Thursdays

* No dinner on all-school early release Thursdays

Kulshan Garden Update

Hello this is an update from your Food Educator Karey! We had an amazing end to fall garden lessons last week. Students helped prepare the garden for winter, played garden games, and searched for plants in the same family. Unfortunately, this year we will not be able to teach winter cooking lessons due to the pandemic. However, I will be back in the spring to teach fun and interesting garden classes. If you are interested in volunteering over the winter to prepare the garden for the spring please contact: kulshan@commonthreadsfarm.org>

COVID Vaccines Available

If you are interested in getting your child the COVID vaccine, the Whatcom County Health Department has good information about available locations for walk-up and appointments.

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Kulshan Instructional Spotlight

In Mr. Thran’s 8th Grade Social Studies class, students are embarking on a new project where they engage in a legislative bill drafting process, complete with a mock congress to simulating the experience of passing laws. The whole 8th grade team Social Studies and English Language Arts team is involved with Mr. Macleod, Ms. Fischer, and Mr. Han all partnering together on the process so the entirety of 8th grade is involved as one community. What is most inspiring about this project is that students are doing their own research about topics that they care about, brainstorming a list together, and everyone has a part to play. Some students will present their ideas as they finalize the bill, some students will play a role as an active member of a committee, and some students will preside over the Senate or the House to facilitate the process.

At Dismissal this Wednesday, a student came out of the school talking about how excited they were about doing mock congress. Asa a teacher, it is always a slam dunk when kids are talking about your lessons the minute they leave school. If you have any 8th grade student, ask them a few questions:

  • What have you learned about our civic processes?
  • What bills are you thinking about writing about?
  • What role do you want to play in this process?

Written by Tyler Dockins, Instructional Coach

Progress Reports Coming Nov 17

We will be printing Progress Reports on Nov 15 and sending them home with students in backpacks. To access electronic copies of progress reports, login to Skyward Family Acces. Then click on Gradebook to see weekly updates. (OR) Click on Portfolio along the left margin, then click on the report that you would like to view, which will open as a PDF document.

If you need to reset your password, go to the Skyward login webpage and click “Forgot My Password.” If you are not sure what your account login is, contact our registrar, Tatiana Samora at tatiana.samora@bellinghamschools.org

Safe Schools Zone

This fall, contractors installed security cameras inside and outside of several of our schools, including here at at Kulshan Middle School. This project was approved by voters in our community as part of the 2018 school facilities bond. Security cameras will help us maintain the health, welfare and safety of students, staff and visitors, and protect our school’s equipment and beautiful campus. For more information, see policy 6610.

Open House and Teacher Videos

If you missed our Open House, no worries! Here's a video of the Oct 14 event. ALSO - each KMS teacher made a video showcasing a little bit of their personality, teaching style, and curriculum. Click this link to view a list of all of the KMS videos. Then take a minute to find your child's teachers' videos. Enjoy!

Kulshan Spirit Gear

Our KMS Spirit Gear is on sale now in our Main Office! We have KMS T-shirts ($5.00), KMS hoodies ($8.00), Cinch Sacks ($3.00), Beanies ($10.00), Blankets ($10.00), and Trucker Hats ($15.00). Buy all your bling and represent our Kulshan Thunderbirds in the community and at our sporting events! This is a limited sale while quantities last. We take cash or check.

Raincoat Donations?

Do you have a raincoat to donate to Kulshan? Our students use these raincoats for Plant Science, Garden Classes, and other outdoor activities. Use this SignUp Genius link or just drop off raincoats at our Main Office. Thank you for your donations!

Photographers Needed!

Do you enjoy taking photos? Are you often at KMS events with your camera or iphone camera? Our Yearbook Advisory Club is asking KMS parents to email photos from school sporting events and clubs. They can send them via email to Katherine Hendricks. Thank you!

Water Bottles

We encourage students to bring a water bottle from home. We have a water bottle filling station in our Commons. This helps students stay hydrated all day long and it saves them multiple trips to the drinking fountain.

Kulshan Clubs

Our Kulshan Club are going strong! For most clubs, students can just show up if they have already arranged for transportation either to school (morning club) or home (afterschool club). If students wish to participate in Building Solutions, they should check in with the main office or Mr. Hendricks before coming to the club. You can see a complete list of club times on our website here.

Mask Reminder

Masks at School: Our students are doing a great job following mask guidelines at school. Middle school is a time when students can grow rapidly, and it can be a challenge to keep up all that. One thing that would be worth checking is how your students’ masks fit when they leave for school. Masks should fit snugly over the top of the nose down to underneath the chin. We have extra masks we can and do provide students when they need them as well. Thanks for supporting the safety of all kids, and we are proud of how our kids have responded to our safety protocols.

Support for Tribal Affiliated Students

Did you know we have over 400 students in our district with tribal affiliation? Lummi Behavioral Health can serve students with ANY tribal affiliation/status. Here is the interest link for starting MH services with Lummi Behavioral Health.

If you are interested or have questions please talk to your school counselors:

Michelle Strobel michelle.strobel@bellinghamschools.org

Lacey Bachman lacey.bachman@bellinghamschools.org

Aaron Tiger aaron.tiger@bellinghamschools.org

College Bound Application

Did you know college is free for qualifying families? Middle school is the only time that families can sign up for the College Bound Scholarship Program. The College Bound Program covers the average cost of tuition, some fees, and a small book allowance at over 65 Washington State colleges, universities and technical schools. Please fill out our district Free and Reduced Lunch Form to apply. Please let your KMS counseling team know if you have any questions.

Skyward Family Access

Is your contact information for your student up-to-date? You can do this online now through our Skyward Family Access program. Please take a few minutes to log into Skyward Family Access to review your contact information, mailing address, emergency contacts and to complete the Annual Health Concerns form for your student. If you need your login and password information for Skyward Family Access, please contact us. Do you need help with Skyward/ Family Access? Here are some great online resources and videos.

LGBTQ Support for Families and Youth

Dear Families - Did you know that we have many local and online supports to help you with your LGBTQ+ or questioning student? Middle school is a time of growth and many students in middle school are figuring out who they are. These resources are just a few to help along the journey. Please feel free to reach out to our KMS counselors if you have any questions or need more support Aaron Tiger (cell 360-739-3991) or Michelle Strobel. Here is a list of local and online supports.

Bellingham Food Bank Schedule

Our local food bank (1824 Ellis Street) is open Monday, Wednesday & Friday from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM. The team at Bellingham Food Bank works tirelessly to make sure they have great food to give families. Anyone can visit the food bank as often as needed, regardless of address. The food bank is proud to be of service to our families—always striving to serve them with dignity, respect, and a smile. Check out the Food Bank website to learn more about their satellite food banks, home delivery and Whatcom County Foodbanks. You can also make a donation here.

WTA Bus Fare: FREE for Youth

Did you know that youth can ride WTA busses for free? If you're not yet in high school, you can just step on and ride. You don't need a bus pass of any kind. If you're high school aged, you will need a FREE TouchPass/Umo Youth Pass. You can pick up your free TouchPass/Umo Youth Pass at WTA's Bellingham Station. Please bring proof of your age, or your current school ID. Or, you can request a card by sending an email from your school email address to buspasses@ridewta.com . Provide your first name, last name, full birth date and current grade. Students at High Schools in Bellingham can pick up their Youth Cards at school.
School Tip Line text or call 844-310-9560 or report online at bellinghamschools.org/safe

Kulshan Contacts