Tumwater News

Back-to-School Edition ~ September 5, 2021

Principal's Message

Meeting so many of our students and family member in person at the recent School Dedication filled my heart with joy. The enthusiasm, curiosity, and unlimited potential of young adolescents drives my passion for working at the middle level. I'm not alone. As our building came alive during staff-led tours, our teachers were inspired by the students eagerness to return to school. For so many reasons, this week has been long awaited.

This newsletter is longer than a typical newsletter we'll send in the future, but we want you to have all the information you might need this week. This edition includes information on the first days of school, schedules, transportation, arrival and dismissal, Chromebooks, health and safety precautions, Picture Day, and PTO news too.

BSD is now using the ParentSquare platform for district, school, and teacher communications, primarily with email, text, and app notification. We've learned that some people didn't recognize the sender and haven't read our newsletters. Please be sure to carefully preview any emails sent by ParentSquare. We will begin the title of all our emails with TMS. Download the app or log into the ParentSquare web portal. Click here to access past newsletters on our school website.

On a more serious note, today marks the beginning of National Suicide Prevention Week. We care about your child’s safety and we take suicide prevention very seriously in BSD. Students may need additional support and resources as they return to busy schedules and their social and academic obligations. We encourage you to learn the warning signs of suicide and watch this video regarding talking to your students about the risk of suicide. Please reach out to your child’s school counselor if you feel your child needs additional support.

Nearly 9 months before I officially started in this role, when I first was selected as principal of this school, I began counting down the months (18+), weeks (78+), and days (550) until the first day of school. Time seemed to accelerate this summer, as our office team marked off days on a wall calendar. Every day the school felt more and more real to us. Our custodial team helped ACMA move out, made repairs, deep cleaned, and moved furniture. Equipment, signage, and supplies arrived. Staff was hired and welcomed. Teachers set up their classrooms. Two weeks ago our faculty came together for the first time as a team - and what an incredible group of educators they are! I'm no longer counting down the days . . . I'm down to hours (54) and can hardly wait for our first day together! Welcome Rapids!

Dedication Ceremony

Thank you to all our students, families, community members, and staff for attending the Tumwater Dedication ceremony. In addition to providing tours of the building, it was also a time to honor the original caretakers of this land, the Beaverton community for their investment in our schools, and the those who facilitated the construction of the community, as well as developing the instructional program and school culture. It was also a time to look to the future. For a recap of the night, please watch our Let's Be Grateful video.

As part of the school tour, guests were invited to watch "The Making of a Middle School" and a greeting from Gary Wesley, BSD's American Indian/Alaskan Native Education Coordinator. We invite you to watch it here.

6th Grade Orientation - Weds., Sept. 8th

The first day of school for 6th graders is Wednesday, Sept. 8th and they will have the school and all the staff to themselves!

An informational letter for 6th graders and their families will arrive this weekend in your ParentSquare account.

Wednesday morning you will be greeted by Tumwater teachers and staff who will guide you through a fun day designed to help you get to know your teachers, classmates, and our building throughout the day.

Whether you are dropped off by bus, by a parent, or are walking to school, you will arrive around 9:00 am, have the choice to eat a Grab & Go Breakfast in the cafeteria (optional), then go to your Advisory classroom.

In ParentVue/StudentVue, you will see a change in your Advisory teacher before the first day of school. In case you are not yet familiar with ParentVue/StudentVue we will send a ParentSquare message on Tuesday with your Advisory teacher’s name.

On the first day you only need to bring these supplies:

  • Tightly sealed reusable water bottle
  • Sack Lunch (if you are not getting a school lunch)
  • Pencils (sharpened)
  • Colored Pencils
  • Colored Markers (optional)
  • Highlighters
  • Light Towel or Yoga mat (optional)

7th & 8th Grade First Day of School - Thurs., Sept. 9th

Tumwater teachers and staff will greet you as you arrive Thursday morning.

Whether you are dropped off by bus, by a parent, or are walking to school, you will arrive around 9:00 am, have the choice to eat a Grab & Go Breakfast in the cafeteria (optional), then go to your Advisory classroom.

In ParentVue/StudentVue, you will see a change in your Advisory teacher before the first day of school. We will have lists posted near the entrances and staff who can help you if you don't know your Advisory teacher.

At the very beginning of the day your Advisory teacher will provide you a printed copy of your schedule and a school map. They'll help you develop a plan for traveling to all your classes.

On the first day you only need to bring these supplies:

  • Tightly sealed reusable water bottle
  • Sack Lunch (if you are not getting a school lunch)
  • Pencils (sharpened) and pens
  • Colored Pencils
  • Highlighters
  • Notebook with paper
  • Light Towel or Yoga mat (optional )

Reading your schedule

All student schedules are available in ParentVue/Student Vue. After logging in, select "Class Schedule" to view your schedule.

You will notice that Math and Science classes appear twice on your schedule. Note the column labeled "Rotation Days" on your schedule to see which classes meet on A Days and which meet on B Days. Here's a brief video tutorial on how to read your schedule for Math and Science Classes. Your teachers will explain this rotation on the first day of school.

All 7th and 8th grade classes are year-long classes. Most 6th grade classes also meet for the first year, including Band and AVID. Other elective classes meet for one semester and will change in early February. In the top right corner of the Student Schedule you'll see buttons for Semester 1 and Semester 2. To view Semester 2 toggle the appropriate button.

Our staff continues to adjust schedules to balance class sizes. Please understand that as enrollment shifts throughout the weekend, schedules may change. All student will receive a printed copy of their schedule, along with a school map, on their first day of school. Advisory teachers will help students prepare to rotate between their classes with support and confidence.

Promoting Good Health

Wellness Scan:
All families are asked to complete a wellness scan of their child(ren) each day before sending them to school. If a student is exhibiting a fever, cough, chills, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, a new loss of taste or smell or any of the symptoms on our Too Sick for School - Keep Ill Students Out of School flyer, the student should stay home.

A staff member will do another visual check as students arrive at school.

All students and staff will wear masks when on school grounds, with the exception of when eating at mealtimes or drinking.

Hand washing / Hand sanitizer:

Students will be encouraged to wash their hands frequently. Hand sanitizer will be available at entrances, classrooms, and common areas.

Staggered Arrival:

Students who are not eating breakfast will go directly to their Advisory Classroom the first two weeks of school. Beginning Sept. 20, they will go directly to their 1st Period Class.

Staggered Lunches & Alternative Eating Areas:

Typically we will have 3 grade level lunches, but as a precautionary measure each grade level lunch has been divided into two smaller groups. One group will eat lunch first, then have recess. The other group will have recess, then lunch.

During lunches we have made plans that allow students to be at least 6 feet apart while eating and drinking. We have divided each grade level lunch into 2 shifts. At each grade level lunch, half of the students will go to recess first, then to lunch. The other half will have lunch, then recess. Students will be able to choose to sit at tables in the Commons or outside on the Commons patio. If students bring a light towel or yoga mat, they can use these to eat on the steps in the Commons or in the Auxiliary Gym.

Learning Outdoors:

For at least the first 6 weeks of school, our PE, Band, and Choir classes will be held outside when student are engaged in physical activity, playing an instrument, or singing. Classes may meet indoors for attendance or instruction by the teacher.

Staggered Dismissal:

To avoid crowding in the hallways after school, students will be dismissed based on their mode of transportation. Students who walk/ride/roll to school or are being picked up will be dismissed first, then bus riders as individual buses arrive.

Locker Use postponed:

To help maintain 6 feet of distancing outside of classrooms, all BSD neighborhood middle schools are delaying the use of lockers for at least September. Principals will continue to monitor guidance on social distancing. Students will be able to carry their belongings from class to class. During PE their backpacks will be locked in the gym, or locker room if students choose to change for PE.

No volunteers or visitors:

Volunteers and visitors will not be allowed during the school day.

Stay Informed

For the most up-to-date information on the district's response to Covid-19, please see the Frequently Asked Questions on the BSD Back-to-School webpage.

Big picture

Breakfast & Lunch

All enrolled BSD students are eligible for free breakfast and free lunch daily. Students can access these free meals at their school. No registration is required. Students can simply pick up meals in their school cafeteria during meal service.

Learn more from Nutrition Services here.

Safe Routes to School: Plan Your Trip

Back to school planning includes how your student will travel to school this fall. Beaverton Safe Routes to School invites you to explore your options for safe travel on our website:

  • Suggested walk and bike routes for each school
  • Safety tips for all modes of travel (walk, bike, bus, car)
  • Arrival/Departure maps for each school (how students who travel by foot, bus and car should arrive and leave school)

The safety of our students depends on you! To learn more visit: www.beaverton.k12.or.us/safe-routes

Bus Information

By now, families of students who are within the transportation zone should have received notification from the BSD Transportation Department about routes, as well as pick up and drop off times. We encourage students to record their AM and PM bus numbers and pick up/drop off locations in a place they can easily access: inside their backpack, on their cell phone, etc.

To find your bus information, follow this link. If you need assistance with your bus information, please contact the Transportation Dept. at 503-356-4229 or using this contact form.

Parking Lot during Arrival and Dismissal

If students are planning to ride the bus this year, their first day of school is the best day to practice - our staff provides the most support that day. Families who are dropping off their children at school should pla

If you are dropping off your student, use the upper (north) parking lot, paying attention to directional signs and guidance from staff. Please be aware of staff and students walking through the parking lot and crosswalk. Our drop off area is shaped like an inverted U, so please turn through the curve and pull as far forward as possible before letting your child out of the car. This helps prevent traffic being blocked on 118th. Please say goodbye to your child in the car rather than walking them into the school. Students will use the sidewalk and crosswalk to safely walk to the building. After your child has exited the car and it is safe to do so, please pull to the left to exit the drop off lane. It is easiest to leave the parking lot onto 118th by making a right turn.

Students who are being dropped off can enter through the front doors of the school or through another entrance on the south side of the building by the fields. Look for the open gate and it will be the first doorway.

The lower (south) parking lot is for buses only. Students should not be dropped off here.

Walking, riding, or rolling to school? The two upper parking lot entrance and the lower parking lot entrance are all accessible to you!

During dismissal, please follow the same parking lot use instructions. Please stay in your car and wait for your child. To assist with social distancing, we will be staggering the release of students at the end of the day. They will wait on the sidewalk along the front of the school until they see you. After they are in your car and it is safe to do so, please pull to the left to exit the pick up lane. It is easiest to leave the parking lot onto 118th by making a right turn.


Closed Campus

Like all BSD schools, Tumwater Middle School is a Closed Campus. Once students arrive on campus they are not permitted to leave until the end of the school day or if checked out in the office by a parent/guardian. Families are encouraged to discuss this expectation together.


Most 7th & 8th graders already have their Chromebooks. Any students in these grades without one will have one checked out to them the first day.

6th Graders will visit the library with their Math or Science teacher on Thursday, Sept. 9th to check out their Chromebook.

BSD's Digital Resources webpage has helpful information has information about technology tools for students and families. If your child does not have access to wi-fi at home, please contact their counselor or the school office.

Common Sense Media has many great resources for families as they navigate new devices an online access at home. The "Parents Need to Know" tab on their website is very helpful! The start of the school year is the perfect time for parents/guardians and children to review family expectations and make agreements about the use of technology at school and home. Consider identifying a Chromebook "bedtime" and a designated place in a common area of your home for it to be charged each night. Students should completely turn the Chromebook off overnight so that updates will be loaded when it is restarted the next day.

Picture Day - Friday, Sept. 17

Tumwater's first ever picture day is coming Friday, Sept. 17th. Watch for Picture Day information coming home with your student this Friday.

Dorian Studio's Picture Day and online ordering information is also available here.

First Day of Schools PTO Welcome Coffee

All TMS parents/guardians are invited to the outdoor area of Market of Choice from 9-10am to enjoy coffee, pastries, and each other's company, hosted by the Tumwater PTO. It's been a looooong summer (and yet so short), so this is exactly what we need to get ourselves back in the groove for a brand-new year at a brand-new school.

Tumwater PTO Information

Tumwater PTO Launches Rising Tides

Your Tumwater PTO Board is excited & proud to launch our 2021-22 fundraising campaign: Rising Tides.

This effort is about coming together, forging a community, building new traditions, and giving what we can to raise all kids.

We began this organization with exactly $0. Our dreams are big as we brainstorm ideas to bring vibrancy and energy to Tumwater’s halls in this new normal. As we start this organization from scratch, the more successful our fundraising, the greater our impact on every student.

Every dollar helps this effort.

It's time for Tumwater to show up for each other & to build something from nothing.

2021-22 BUDGET: As our Rising Tides income increases, so will the breadth and scope of our proposed PTO impact. Head to www.tumwaterpto.org/fundraising to review the proposed budget at various income levels. As our funding picture becomes more clear, we will confirm our 2021-22 budget at our first PTO Community Meeting on Tuesday, 10/12 at 6:30pm. We humbly ask you to please donate as generously as possibly, and as early as possible.

PAY ONLINE: Donate directly via PayPal.

PAY via CASH/CHECK: Head to our PTO table at Dedication Day (near the entrance to the field) to turn in your cash/check donation.

MATCHING FUNDS: Please see our Matching Funds FAQ & hold onto your receipt!

FOLLOW ALONG: You can find Tumwater PTO on facebook, instagram or via our website.

QUESTIONS: Email Hannah (tumwaterpto.president@gmail.com)

Dear BSD Families,

We understand that it can be challenging to access current information regarding your child’s schooling in your own language. We do our best to send out messages about important updates, especially during these challenging times. However, you can access the BSD website — and specifically, our return-to-school page — at any time. Below, we’ve included a link that will take you to our website, where you’ll find it already translated into your language. Please know, the translation is generated by Google Translate. It’s not perfect, but we do hope it’s helpful.

If you need additional assistance, please contact our Multilingual Department at 503-356-3755.

View the BSD website in Arabic قم بزيارة الموقع الإلكتروني للقطاع التعليمي لمدارس بيفرتون باللغة العربية

View the BSD website in Chinese 请浏览中文版的BSD网站

View the BSD website Japanese BSDウェブサイトを日本語で見る

View the BSD website in Korean. 한국어로 BSD 웹사이트를 보십시오.

View the BSD website in Russian Посмотрите веб-сайт школьного округа Бивертон на русском

View the BSD website in Somali Ka fiiri bogga BSD ee ku qoran af-Soomaali

View the BSD website in Spanish Vea la página web del Distrito Escolar de Beaverton en español

View the BSD website in Vietnamese. Xem trang mạng BSD bằng tiếng Việt