SHMS Family Newsletter
June 18, 2023
Greetings Stuart-Hobson community,
After recognizing and celebrating Juneteenth tomorrow, we only have three instructional days left in the school year! Please remember that the 4th term officially ends at the close of business on Thursday so all late, missing, or revised work must be turned in to teachers by then. Teachers will work to finalize grades by the close of business on Friday before starting their summer break.
I am excited to join our 8th grade students and families this Wednesday for our annual promotion exercises where we will celebrate students who are on-track to complete all middle school requirements and transition to high school next year. In addition to promotion, we have class trips for 6th and 7th grade scheduled for this week and all students will clean out their lockers and should check the lost and found prior to leaving school on Thursday. All unclaimed lost and found items will be donated to a charitable organization by the PTA next week.
I hope everyone finds time to celebrate Juneteenth this weekend and look forward to seeing you all on Tuesday to begin closing out the school year!
Upcoming Dates: June 19-23
- Juneteenth observed, schools closed
- 6th Grade Trip
- 7th Grade Trip
8th Grade Promotion, 10:00 AM
- End of Term 4, last day of school for students - all work due by end of day
- Records-Keeping and PD Day, teachers & staff
- Math 6 Readiness Workshop registration deadline, register here.
July 10-12, Capitol Hill Cluster Band Camp, 9:00-12:00
July 17-20 & 24-27, Math 6 Readiness Camp, 9:00-11:00
August 7-11, Panther Pride Academy (summer bridge for rising 6th graders)
All students must complete a participation packet every school year. Additionally, the medical forms must be completed within the prior 365 days. We encourage you to have your healthcare provider complete these forms before the school year and attach them to your participation packet.
Click on the link below to submit the athletic forms online.
Boys' Cross-Country: DCIAA 2nd Place
Girls Soccer: Advanced to the DCIAA Semi-Finals
Volleyball: Advanced to the DCIAA Semi-Finals
Archery: Advanced to the DCIAA Semi-Finals
Girls Basketball: Advanced to the DCIAA Semi-Finals
Boys Basketball: Advanced to the DCIAA Semi-Finals
Unified Basketball: DCIAA 2nd Place
Baseball: DCIAA 2nd Place
Tuesday: 4:00pm - 6:00pm (Practice)
Wednesday: 4:00pm - 6:00pm (Practice)
Stuart-Hobson Summer Football Camp
Days: June 27 & June 29
Time: 9:45am - 2:00pm
Head Coach: Stanley Stancil
Athletic Coaches Vacancies
Head Coach Boys Soccer
Head Coach Softball
Head Coach Swimming
Shout Outs and Celebrations
Thank you Ms. Tomlinson for spearheading preparations for the Terrific Taco Party that we hosted on Wednesday evening for new SHMS families. It was a great opportunity for current students and staff to connect with new students and their families in the library. Thank you to everyone who joined us!
Shout out to Mr. Herr for organizing a Climate Symposium where students in his 6th grade classes were able to present and demonstrate their learning about climate change to community members and members of the environment and energy policy and work worlds on Friday afternoon!
A belated thank you to Ms. Tamara Hunter (Lovelock) for organizing the first annual SHMS Career Week for students the week before last! Ms. Hunter recruited a diverse array of community members to present to students about fascinating careers ranging from engineering and architecture to cosmetology and emergency services. Thank you to everyone who joined us!
Thank you to SHMS parent and GW Law Professor, Kate Weisburd, for working with Ms. Boccardi to organize out first mock trial team in recent history. The students who participated all year were able to try a case in front of SHMS staff, their families, and federal justice Jia Cobb, this past Monday evening. It was a wonderful event for the students and they were overly impressive litigators! Thank you to everyone who supported the participants this year!
Thank you to AP Turner and the 8th grade team for maintaining tradition and organizing last week's annual 8th Grade Dinner Dance and Cruise on the Potomac! We were fortunate to have lovely weather and students enjoyed their time dancing, dining, and celebrating the end of their time in middle school together!
The Social Studies department congratulates Stuart-Hobson’s representatives at the National History Day tournament at College Park last week. We’re so proud of all our national finalists, who competed with thousands of students from as far away as Singapore. Below are the Panther representatives for 2023!
- Siddharth Kravetz, documentary
- Kennedy Starke, performance
- Maia Birkmeier, paper
- Connor Jensen, website
- Dasia Moore, exhibit
- Evelyn Webster, website
- Maya Smith, website
- Anna Sullivan, exhibit
- Madison Thorpe, exhibit
- Mossi Tull, Jr, documentary
- Sebastian Ko, performance
- Terry Franklin, performance
Additionally, special shoutouts to Siddharth Kravetz, Dasia Moore, and Mossi Tull Jr, whose projects were also featured at the Climate Symposium, the American History Museum, and the National Museum of African American History and Culture last week.
Grade Level Enrollment (rising grades)
New Information and Important Updates
Math 6 Readiness for Rising 6th Graders
Math 6 Readiness is an in-person course for rising 6th graders attending Stuart Hobson next school year. Students will revisit essential skills in preparation for Math 6 in the fall and get an early introduction to math class expectations at Stuart Hobson.
The course runs from Monday, July 17 - Thursday, July 20 and Monday, July 24 - Thursday, July 27, from 9:00 - 11:00 AM. Students meet at Stuart Hobson and are expected to attend each day.
Please register here. Registration closes on Friday, June 23 at 5:00 PM.
Final details will be emailed to families in early July.
Please email Ms. Latagan at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
DCPS Strategic Plan Community Update
We are excited to share a community update on the 2023-2028 DCPS Strategic Plan. Your input has been instrumental in shaping the direction of our strategic plan and ensuring that it aligns with the needs of our community, and we want to make sure we hear from your school on how this plan will be implemented. Please take and share this survey with your contacts in our school community. To review the “What We Heard” report summarizing our community engagement last fall, visit dcpsstrong.com/strategic-plan.
Previous Announcements & Resources
**The information below is new or an updated version of something announced previously! **
Apply to the Technology Advisory Committee (6/19)
Join the Technology Advisory Committee (TAC) and shape equitable and inclusive education in DCPS classrooms through technology. Together, we'll discuss, identify, and solve challenges, revolutionizing technology integration. Your unique perspective matters and school leaders, instructional staff, tech POCs and DCPS families are encouraged to apply here by Monday, June 19, 2023 to make a meaningful impact and advance digital equity.
2022-23 SHMS Yearbook
Online orders are closed. If you would still like to preorder a yearbook, have your child bring $20 cash to Ms. Smith, either at phone collection in the morning or in room #314. Receipts will be provided and yearbooks will be distributed in June.
Lost & Found
This is a reminder that the school's Lost and Found is located in the main lobby. We will donate anything that is not claimed at the end of May and belongings continue piling up (photo above). Per our school policy, we collaborate with the PTA to donate any unclaimed clothing around the end of each term.
If your student is missing anything, or you recognize any clothing in the recent photos below, please stop by or encourage your student to check the lost and found and retrieve their belongings.
May Emergency Drills: Evacuation & Lockdown
Dear Stuart-Hobson MS Parents and Families:
The safety of our students is always a high priority for us here at Stuart-Hobson Middle School. One of the best ways to ensure a safe school environment is to practice our emergency drills and procedures. District of Columbia law requires our school conduct several drills throughout the school year, one of which is a Lockdown Drill.
A Lockdown Drill is used to secure our school building and campus during incidents that pose an immediate threat of violence in and around the school. During a lockdown, teachers and staff quickly clear hallways and lock or secure classroom doors. Additionally, no one is allowed to enter or exit the building. Parents and/or guardians will not be permitted to enter and should not come to the school during a lockdown.
While we cannot always inform parents when we conduct a drill, this message is to inform you that our school will conduct a Lockdown Drill on Friday, May 5th at 2:45 PM. This routine exercise protects our school community from potential dangers in the building or campus. Please know that every school in DCPS is required to complete two lockdown drills per year.
We are sharing the information in advance so families will not be alarmed if they hear about the drill from their child during the day or when they come home from school. We encourage you to talk to your child about the exercise and reassure them that this is being done to help keep them safe and that they should not be scared or stressed about practicing these emergency procedures. We hope there will never be a time when we must face an actual emergency. However, by practicing drills, we prepare our students and staff to remain calm and take proper action if an emergency arises.
The safety of our students is our priority, and drills like this one help our school community prepare in case of an emergency. Please call the school office with questions at 202-671-6010 or contact me via email at email@example.com
I appreciate your support.
1st Period Attendance Challenge
The attendance team has organized an attendance challenge for first period classes for the next four weeks. Each week, the 1st period class in each grade level with the highest attendance will be eligible for awards like a pizza party, gift card raffle, and a Union Station lunch trip. Please remind students that on-time arrival to school and first period is essential for setting the tone and succeeding all day long!
Please contact Ms. Lovelock or Ms. Hargrove with any questions.
Reminder: Hiring for SY 2023-24 is Underway!
Fiscal Year 2024 school budgets were recently published for all DCPS schools. Our recruitment and hiring processes are underway for the positions listed below. Some of these positions will be added to our budget this year, others reflect expected staff shifts and transitions. Please share this list of opportunities with colleagues and acquaintances who would be a great fit for our school community. In addition to applying to the DCPS pool of applicants by following the links below, interested candidates can express their interest in an opportunity by emailing our hiring team and/or Principal Fraser.
Thanks everyone for spreading the word about these opportunities!
Enrollment for School Year 2023-2024 is now open!
I am so excited to report that 77% of families have already enrolled for the upcoming school year! If your student is joining us next year, please complete your enrollment online or by contacting the main office for support as soon as possible. Again, we hope to have at least 90% of our students enrolled for next year by the end of May!
Thank you for being a part of DCPS this school year, and we look forward to welcoming your family again next year. If you haven’t already, be sure to first learn about your in-boundary school and feeder school. If you received a lottery match – congratulations! To secure your seat at your matched school, you must complete enrollment by Thursday, June 1.
Enrollment can be completed in the following three steps:
Submit your completed enrollment packet to your DCPS school.
DCPS Chancellor’s Parent Advisory Board SY 2023-24 Application
Applications are now open for the DCPS Chancellor Ferebee’s Parent Advisory Board for the 2023 - 2024 school year. Applications are available in English, Spanish, French, Chinese, Vietnamese and Amharic (see attached flyers). For more information, visit: bit.ly/dcpschancellorparentboard.
DCPS Calendar Updates for SY 2023-24 & 2024-25
Dear DCPS Community,
I am writing to share updates to the DC Public Schools (DCPS) calendar for the upcoming 2023-2024 and 2024-2025 school years, including an adjustment to the first day of school.
At DCPS, we work to develop a calendar that reflects the needs and preferences of families and staff, honors agreements with our labor partners, and adheres to the requirements of local regulations. To learn about our community’s calendar preferences, we engaged over 1,300 community members representing every DCPS school to provide feedback on the calendars that were released last spring.
Thank you to those who participated!
The recently passed Elections Modernization Amendment Act of 2021 necessitates a shift in the upcoming school year calendars as it requires DCPS to close on DC’s primary election day in June. As we explored options for this adjustment, we prioritized the feedback from the initial development of a calendar that included ending school prior to the Juneteenth holiday and minimizing the number of partial weeks.
Please note the following adjustments:
School Year 2023-2024
School will start on Monday, August 28, 2023, instead of Tuesday, August 29.
Tuesday, January 2, 2024, will be a professional development day for staff. There are no changes to the announced student schedule for winter break; classes will resume on Wednesday, January 3, 2024.
Schools will be closed for teachers and students on Tuesday, June 4, 2024, for DC’s primary election day.
School Year 2024-2025
School will start on Monday, August 26, 2024, instead of Tuesday, August 27.
Friday, January 17, 2025, will be a professional development day. School will be closed for students.
There is no DC primary election day in June 2025.
We also anticipate adjustments to the School Year 2025-2026 calendar, and we are working with city leadership to finalize those updates. It is our hope that sharing this information supports your planning for the years ahead with DCPS. You can review updated school calendars at dcps.dc.gov/page/dcps-calendars.
Lewis D. Ferebee, Ed.D.
Registration Open for DCPS Summer Programs
Every summer, DC Public Schools (DCPS) offers summer learning opportunities for elementary, middle, and high school students. Students who take part in summer programming can form new friendships, strengthen academic skills, and prepare for the year ahead. There is no cost to attend a DCPS summer program!
From acceleration academies for elementary students, career exploration for middle schoolers, or credit courses for high school students—there is something for every DCPS student this summer.
Most programs will take place on weekdays between July 3 to August 4 for full or half-days and include breakfast and lunch.
There is also a focused English Learner Summer Academic Program for students learning English, an Extended School Year opportunity for students named by Individualized Education Plan (IEP) teams, and credit accelerators and credit recovery for high school students. Students eligible for these summer programs will hear directly from their school.
Additionally, rising 6th and 9th graders will have the opportunity to attend a “summer bridge” week at their new middle or high school this August. Please take time to check out the DCPS Family Guide for Summer Learning and explore the options available to you.
Registration for students currently in PK4 to 8th Grade is now open.
Click the registration button at dcpsstrong.com/summer, and you can complete the sign-up form on a phone, tablet, or computer.
Summer 2023: Camp Forget-Me-Not/Camp Erin DC
Camp Forget-Me-Not/Camp Erin DC is a free bereavement camp for youth who are grieving the death of a significant person in their lives. Campers enjoy a full day of traditional camp activities and grief-focused workshops to help them explore a variety of ways to express themselves while developing skills in a safe, supportive environment. All the activities are specially designed to help campers express themselves and develop bonds with others. The Wendt Center believes that grief impacts the entire family system, therefore a portion of each session is dedicated to intentionally integrating caregivers and family members.
Attention Medicaid Beneficiaries!
Did you know all District residents who access healthcare services via DC Medicaid, Alliance, or the Immigrant Children’s Program must start renewing their health coverage again? Don’t miss out on important information- take time today to update your address, phone number, and email at districtdirect.dc.gov so the Department of Health Care Finance knows where to send your Medicaid renewal letter. If you need help, please call the Public Benefits Call Center at (202) 727-5355.
Student Clubs & Extra-Curriculars
Craft and Chat Club Returns!
Join us to craft (or just doodle!), chat, and have community with each other! Crafts provided!
When: Wednesdays 3:30-4:30pm
Where: Office #117
Why: To have fun, relax, and craft!
Who: YOU! ALL students are welcome!
Questions? See Ms. Harrington (firstname.lastname@example.org, office #221)
Stuart Hobson Debate Team Tournament Schedule 2022-2023
Tournaments start at 8:30 am and end (roughly) by 5:30 pm
Breakfast and lunch are provided
Participants are responsible for transportation to and from host sites. Should a last-minute change in location occur, every effort will be made to spread the information.
Questions? Contact Mr. Plaisted, email@example.com
Policies & Daily Operations
School Mental Health Supports
Field Trip Eligibility
- Passing ALL classes
- In-seat Attendance (ISA) is 90%+
- Fewer than 5 tardies (late arrival) to class per month
- Zero Tier 3-5 behavior infractions
- Fewer than 3 behavior referrals in term (or previous month)
- Mandatory testing (e.g. iReady, RI, etc.) complete
Administrators and teacher teams will review student eligibility prior to any scheduled trips. Please reach out to a grade-level administrator or field trip organizer with any questions about your student's participation or eligibility.
SY 2022-23 Uniform & Dress Code Policy
School uniforms are required while on school property, field trips (before or after school day hours), while attending After School All Stars and school-approved activities after 3:30 PM, unless athletic, dance or other specific apparel is required by the coach/leader.
o Long or short-sleeved solid red polo shirt/t-shirt. SHMS logo optional. Any non-SHMS logo on uniform shirts or sweatshirts must be the size of a $1 bill (1 dollar) or smaller
o Plain black cotton sweatshirts (front zip or pullover) and knit vests. No hoods.
o Khaki pants, skirts/shorts, worn at waist level.
o Comfortable closed-toed shoes or sneakers covering the entire foot. No sandals, slippers, or Crocs.
o Tops like crewneck t-shirts, sweaters, and sweatshirts (no hoods) that show school pride (e.g. SHMS or CHCS logos).
While students may wear some of the following to and from school, they are expected to avoid wearing all of the following during the school day, on trips, and in after-school activities:
• Hoods over student's heads while inside school,
• Outerwear like jackets, fleeces, parkas, windbreakers, etc.,
• Metal studs on headbands and other accessories
• Khaki-colored leggings/ tights (worn in place of Khaki pants).
• Small purses or fanny packs
An SHMS logo is NOT required for any uniform attire. School uniforms may be purchased via Lands End, Target, Old Navy and other retailers. More information regarding our school uniform policy will be shared via our school handbook.
Uniform Non-Compliance PolicyStudents should comply with the uniform policy daily. Uniform policy violations can be documented in Live School. Some uniform deficiencies can be remedied by the support team but the loss of instructional time should be avoided when supporting students in complying with the policy. If for some reason a student is out of compliance in your classroom you may reach out to a grade-level administrator or dean for support or remedy. Patterns of infractions should be handled like other Tier 1 and 2 infractions outlined above in the “Disciplinary Policy” section.
Reminder: Uniform & Personal Belongings Policies
Teachers, staff, and administrators will be monitoring adherence to the following policies as students return from the Winter Recess:
1. Crewneck / V-Neck sweaters and sweatshirts: Students may wear crewneck / V-neck sweaters or sweatshirts that are solid RED, BLACK, or WHITE. Sweaters and sweatshirts in those colors with a logo smaller than a dollar bill are also acceptable.
2. School gear: Students may wear sweaters, sweatshirts, t-shirts (long / short sleeved), and polos that display the school logo. The dollar-bill size logo is waived for clothing showing school / Cluster pride.
3. Not Allowed: There is no change to the policy on other colors, outerwear, or hoodies. Outerwear, hoodies, and shirts that are not red/black/white are NOT ALLOWED to be worn during the school day.
4. Lockers: Students are expected to visit their lockers four times a day - before school, before lunch, after lunch, and at the dismissal bell. Outerwear (may be retrieved for outdoor recess before lunch and returned after lunch) and backpacks should remain in lockers throughout the day.
Failure to adhere to the above policies will result in redirections, student conferences, parent conferences, and the temporary confiscation of belongings that are out of compliance with the policy.
Aspen Family Portal Access
Aspen Family Portal
Returning families should be able to access their account using their username and password from last school year. New families will receive an email from Aspen Family Portal when their family portal account is available to use.
The Portal allows you to keep up with progress in school - including grades, assignments, attendance, and more. The goal of DCPS' new digital portal is to create an open line of communication between home and school.
To Access the Portal:
1. Visit https://aspen.dcps.dc.gov
2. Make sure pop-up blocking is disabled for your browser
3. Your user name will be provided via email
4. Your temporary password will be provided via email
NOTE: Both user name and password are case sensitive
5. Click Log On to access the system. You will be prompted to fill out some information to change your password so that in the future you can click "I forgot my password" to receive a new password.
How to Navigate the Portal:
This flyer gives you the Parent Portal basics:
We strongly recommend that families using iOS devices also download the "Grade Corner" app, which allows you to login to Aspen and monitor your student's grades and attendance in a streamlined app. The app was actually developed by an SHMS parent a few years ago.
Additionally, we will discuss student schedules during the family information sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday and hope you can join us for one of those virtual meetings!
Supports for Students & Families
LGBTQ+ Resources & Supports
DCPS is an inclusive school community and makes every effort to support all students. Below and attached are resources for LGBTQ+ youth, their families, and allies. We are grateful that Mr. Thrift is our liaison for this work at SHMS. Our Panther Pride club has resumed their meetings and you should expect more information in upcoming newsletters.
Please feel free to reach out to Mr. Thrift (contact information below) to support a student in building a relationship with this support network.
Office Hours: Mondays – 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Schedule a Conference with Mr. Thrift @ https://calendly.com/john-thrift2/30min
Mental Health Supports
Molly Smith, Social Worker, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jessica Thompkins, Social Worker, email@example.com
Kimberly Harrington, DBH Social Worker, firstname.lastname@example.org
Montrice Williams, CIS Social Worker, email@example.com
Jessica Schimmerling, Guidance Counselor, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tomicula Willams, Guidance Counselor, email@example.com
Kristin Dezen, firstname.lastname@example.org