WGMS Tigers: Quarter 1 Recap

November 2020

A Message from Mrs. Brown

Autumn Greetings, Parents and Guardians,

We’ve had a very busy 1st nine weeks and are looking forward to a powerful remainder of the year. As the seasons change and we prepare for our students’ re-entry to school in January, we are busily preparing our school for students’ return per COVID-19 guidelines. It is our first priority to ensure that our school community is safe and healthy.

The GCS Board of Education voted on a plan to phase in students’ return to classrooms, Students with specific needs will return on Nov. 16, including those attending public separate schools and those in grades 3 through 12 who are served in self-contained EC classrooms. Sixth grade will return to their classrooms on Thursday, Jan. 7. Seventh and eighth graders will return to schools for in-person learning on Monday, Jan. 11. More details are posted at www.gcsnc.com/reopening.

To prepare for reopening, we have asked all parents to confirm their preference for their students’ instruction as we prepare to return in January. Please complete the survey below asap. We will use this information to confirm student schedules and transportation. Thank you if you have already completed the survey!

School Re-entry Parent Confirmation - English

School Re-entry Parent Confirmation - Spanish

Our Homeroom teachers are reaching out to each of their students to schedule conferences to discuss students’ current progress. Please be prepared to meet with parents virtually to discuss their progress before the Thanksgiving Holiday. It is so important that we work together to ensure your child’s success every day, especially this school year with remote learning. If your child is struggling, they should reach out to their teachers for support on Wednesdays, which is currently our flex day for instruction. Students can also apply to participate in Virtual Saturday Academy. Round 2 will be held on the following dates: December 18, January 9, 16, 23. If you are interested- please complete the link at https://rb.gy/bpyq9l asap- first come, first served!

As the holidays approach us, please continue to be safe and practice the 3 WWW’s as you enjoy your holidays! Wear your mask, wash your hands and wait as your practice social distancing. Parents, we truly appreciate are doing to support your children through these unchartered times. Please reach out to us if you need support- the front office is available from 8-4 each day, or you can email our staff as needed. We are in this together- and we are #WGMSTigerStrong!

Thank you for your partnership!

With Tiger Pride!

Patrice W. Brown


Congratulations to our September/October Students of the Month

This year our teachers are nominating students for our "Tigers Putting First Things First" month awards. Our first round of award winners are: Tenshi, Leila, Cole, Jacob, Sean, Fatou, Caiden, and Xavier! Well done, Tigers!
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Anti-Bullying Contest Winners

Please join us in congratulating the following students who submitted an original video or drawing for our Anti-Bullying contest last month on the Counseling Corner. Ms. Murray and I delivered a bag filled with several goodies and WGMS spirit wear. They were both surprised and appreciative. If you have them in class, please congratulate them:

Z. Davis – 1st place

J. Mustafa – 2nd place

V. Arredondo Salazar – 3rd place

Z. Davis also received recognition for his Red Ribbon Week submission!

Congratulations Alexis!

Earning a prize of Reverse Trick-or-Treating, Alexis C. earned 3,050 points in Ms. Fowler's Solfege (Do-Re-Mi) challenge!
Ms. Fowler & student
Weekly schedule begins September 8, 2020
This learning schedule continues until students return back to face-to-face classes, then Wednesday will continue to be remote learning days.

Video Chat with Mrs. Brown - October 6th Virtual Event

WGMS Chat MsBrown 10 6 20

Re-Entry Information

We are excited to start welcoming students back to our buildings two days a week in January. The middle school day will be from 8:35 a.m. to 3:25 p.m. Students will either attend on Monday and Tuesday, or on Thursday and Friday. Students will participate in remote learning on the three days each week they are home. Wednesday will be a remote learning day for all students to allow the buildings to be deep cleaned. Deep cleaning will also happen on Friday afternoons.

We will be working on the scheduling for A day/B day and will get that information to you in the coming weeks.

At the 11/10/2020 meeting, board members discussed the latest county health metrics, but also considered the long-term effects of remote learning on students’ academic outcomes, social-emotional well-being and mental health.

Data released from the Center for Research on Education Outcomes shows that students could be losing as much as 183 days of learning time in reading and 232 days in math in an online learning setting.

Academic trends in GCS reveal similar patterns and concerns. According to a recent analysis of first quarter grades this fall, only 22% of students earned an A in courses in the first quarter of this year compared to 26% last year. Overall, 40% of GCS students failed at least one Q1 course compared to 29% in 2019-20.

In addition, numerous scientific studies conducted in the U.S. and worldwide indicate that children age 10 and under are at less risk of transmitting the virus to each other or to adults, and that having schools in session does not appear to increase community spread.

“Our children and their families are really struggling on multiple fronts, and when parents are feeling stressed, their children are as well,” says Superintendent Sharon Contreras. “In addition to academic learning, school personnel help students develop important relationships with their peers and with additional, caring adults who can support their overall social and emotional well-being.”

To allow for social distancing on buses and to assess the need for transportation, we are asking all parents to fill out a transportation preference form asap indicating whether or not you need transportation. https://app.perfectforms.com/PresentationServer/Form.aspx/Play/_2IGggMo?f=_2IGggMo

This form can be found on our website at www.gcsnc.com/reopening and on our school page. If you are able, please consider alternate ways to transport your child to school. Parents of bus riders will need to sign an attestation verifying that the child is healthy before he or she gets on the bus.

We will be maintaining social distancing in our buildings, so some of our classes may be in alternate spaces such as the gym or cafeteria. Students will be eating meals in their classrooms to minimize movement throughout the building. Children will be required to wear masks while in the building, unless eating/drinking or exercising strenuously.

Students will have their temperatures checked and will answer a series of questions when they enter the building. We are deep cleaning the buildings on Wednesdays and on Friday evenings.

Also, school visits will be strictly limited and by appointment only. Those who are allowed to enter the building will undergo the same check-in process as students.

You can find more information about the reopening process, including specific health protocols and procedures for returning to the building, on our website at www.gcsnc.com/reopening.

Congratulations to the following parents who are in leadership positions at WGMS this school year!

2020-21 WGMS PTSA Officers:

President: Alicia Moultrie-Stewart- email- aliciastewart92@gmail.com

Co(Vice) President: Richard Dailey

Recording/Corresponding Secretary: Alison Ludemann

Treasurer: Latonya Allen

Staff Representative: Julie Pirtle

Our Parent Leadership/Lighthouse Team Representatives:

6th grade- Stacy Masters- email- stacyandcorey@hotmail.com

7th grade- Richard Dailey- email- richard4645@hotmail.com

8th grade- Natalie Torres-Castro- email- nctorres70@gmail.com

Please reach out to them if you have questions that you would like them to share with the leadership team on your behalf.

We are looking forward to working with our PTSA Board and Parent Leadership/Lighthouse Team representatives this year-Stay tuned for more information soon!

Red Ribbon Week - Virtual Spirit Week

To celebrate Red Ribbon Week, WGMS hosted a virtual Spirit Week! Students and Staff participated in the following themed days:

WGMS RED Ribbon/Virtual Spirit Week October 26th- October 30th

Students and staff can participate and share their photos on the counseling canvas page or FB Page.

Monday: “Sock It to drugs” – Wear crazy socks

Tuesday: “Give Drugs the Boot” – Western wear

Wednesday: “Red Ribbon Day”-Students and Staff wear Red

Thursday: “Team Up Against Drugs”-Students and Staff wear your favorite team jersey or t-shirt

Friday: “Book-O-Ween”- students and staff dress as your favorite book character

Our wonderful Student Support Team facilitated discussion questions on the Counseling Corner Canvas page each day. Our Virtual Spirit Week finished off with one of the WGMS Staff's favorite days of the year - "Book-O-Ween"!

Leader in Me - A Change in Thinking

The Leader in Me program at Western Guilford Middle School is part of a wider educational movement that focuses on more than just academics. Through the Leader in Me, students learn how to recognize the leadership qualities and potential within themselves and teachers work with their families to encourage students to truly believe that everyone has genius and talent in one way or another. It's a different mindset, or way of thinking than many students are used to considering. We want to cultivate a more positive, confident outlook for all our students as we know all things are possible and every one of our student tigers are leaders.
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Staff Introductions

Donald Flowers

Grade/Specialty: Counselor

Years Teaching: 23 years- all in Guilford County

What is your "Why" for teaching? To provide emotional and academic support for all kids- nothing is more important than a strong support system.

Other than teaching, what are your other areas of interest? Musician, songwriting, golf, movie buff

Share anything else you would like to share about yourself: Grateful to become part of such a great team at Western!

Julie Pirtle

Grade/Specialty: 8th ELA Years Teaching: this is 21 Schools/Districts you have taught at/in: 2 -- Guilford County (Rankin Elem, Brightwood Elem, SW Middle, Kiser Middle, McNair Elem and now WGMS!) and DeKalb County - Kelley Lake Elem (6th and 7th grade) What is your "Why" for teaching? To help prepare our kids for the future that awaits them. Relationship! Rigor! Relevance! Other than teaching, what are your other areas of interest? Church (Mercy Hill), grand kids, Music, live theater. Share anything else you would like to share about yourself: I'm really excited to be returning to 8th grade after eight years in 4th grade!

Jill McClanahan

Grade/Specialty: Curriculum Facilitator/Instructional Coach

Years Teaching: 24

Schools/Districts you have taught at/in: Edgecombe, Pitt, Guilford

What is your "Why" for teaching? To pique curiosity and help others realize possibilities are limitless.

Other than teaching, what are your other areas of interest? Jeep Adventures, Camping, Photography, Running/Walking, Reading, Quality Family Time

GCS Calendar November 2020 through January 2021

  • Please note that GCS school buildings will be closed from 11/25 through 12/4. Schools will be available by phone 11/30 through 12/4.

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Western Guilford Middle School

Vision: Inspiring community minded students who value life-long learning, are accomplished critical thinkers, and are prepared to be tomorrow's leaders

Mission: Western Guilford Middle School seeks to create opportunities for all stakeholders to work collaboratively. Staff, parents, and community members will model the characteristics students need to develop strong leadership skills. Our school promotes rigorous goal setting to support students in reaching their full academic, personal, social and cultural potential in a global society.