GBMS 6th Grade Orientation

August 2022

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Hierachy of Consequences

Regarding behaviors and the hierarchy of consequences, one example is if a student is disrupting the classroom and interrupting the learning of others the first consequence would be to call home to the parents. If the same behavior occurs again the student’s consequence may be to have a lunch detention. And if it happens again the consequence may be an after school detention. And so on. Another example of a behavior and the consequences is a physical altercation. That type of behavior will always warrant an out of school suspension. We understand parents may feel these consequences are a bit harsh but it is important that students understand if they violate the code of conduct there will be a consequence. But it is important to note that throughout the process our first action is to contact parents and meet with students to give them an opportunity to offer an explanation.
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In elementary school, gym, music, art, etc. are called specials. In middle school, those classes are called exploratories.
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Arrival & Dismissal

During arrival 6th grade students who are bus riders and car riders will only enter the building through the South Staff Center doors, pick up a grab and go breakfast from the breakfast cart first and then report directly to homeroom.

Students who arrive to school after 8:15 am are considered late and will need to enter the building through the main entrance doors and report to the main office. This is the only time 6th graders will not enter through the South Staff Center.

Students are dismissed from school at 2:40 pm.

Car riders will be dismissed first and will exit through the gymnasium hallway doors. Car riders should exit the building through any other doors.

Students who ride the bus will exit the building through the South Staff Center doors during dismissal.

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Hall Passes

Reasons for needing a hall pass…

  • when using the restroom

  • visiting the nurse

  • early dismissal

  • visiting a counselor

  • visiting an administrator

  • visiting the main office

When students are in the hallway during class times they must have a paper pass or an agenda book pass with them. Your teachers will record passes on the bottom portion of the day’s date in your agenda book. At any point be prepared to show your pass. Staff members will check the passes of students in the hallway during non-hall passing times. We do restrict passes for students who are habitually in the hallway, or late to class.

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Student Council

At this time the only club offered at GB is the Student Council. Members of the Student Council assist in sponsoring many school events. Joining the student council is a great opportunity to show off your leadership skills.

Also, students, if you have an idea for a club be sure to let Dr. Thomas-Brown know so we can see if we can make it happen.

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Grading in Middle School

ELA, Science, Social Studies, and exploratory teachers follow the A, B, C, D, and F letter grade format with the corresponding percentages on the screen. Math is taught with mastery-based learning and is scored by standards-based grading. The purpose of mastery-based learning is to inform stakeholders about a student’s progress towards proficiency in the standards and to drive instruction to ensure student learning.

  • 8 indicates a student is meeting expectations for a particular goal.

  • 5 indicates a student is working below standard, but almost there.

  • 3 indicates a student has no understanding of a particular goal.

  • 0 represents no effort given.

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Home Access Center

Home Access Center is a tool to keep you informed. It allows parents and students to view student assignments and grade information. To access Home Access Center visit the Colonial School District’s website, and click parents and students. Then click parents and lastly click Home Access Center. When logging in please be sure to select the correct district - Colonial. You will receive login information at the start of the school year.
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Home Access Center - continued

Parents once you are logged into Home Access Center you can establish specific settings. For example, you can set the system to notify you by email when your student’s grade drops below a certain grade. You can set it to whatever you choose. Like 75%, 80%, or 85%.

This is a great tool for parents. With this information, it is also important to reach out to your child’s teacher for missed assignments to try to get the grades back up.

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Staying Informed

Schoology is another tool for staying informed. The content on the teacher's Schoology pages is created by the teacher to share with students and parents. Parents if you would like to access Schoology you can ask your child’s teacher for the access code to their course. Once you are given access you can view lessons, assignments, and messages.

Other forms of communication include:

  • Weekly Team Newsletters
  • Principal's Weekly Message
  • 6th Grade Administrator Monthly Newsletter
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Every student will receive a Chromebook to use throughout the school year. It is the student’s responsibility to take good care of them. If a Chromebook is broken intentionally by the student, the parent will receive an invoice for a replacement.

The plan is for 6th-grade students to receive new Chromebooks this year. In the event the new Chromebooks are not here in time, the students will receive used Chromebooks that will not be allowed to go home. They will stay here in school for in-school use only until we receive the new Chromebooks.

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Social Media & Mental Health

Based on last school year’s experiences here at Gunning Bedford, student use of cell phones during the school day hindered student learning and focus in classrooms. It also slowed their emotional and social intelligence. Cell phone usage contributed directly to peer conflict and at this age, many of the students were not capable of solving these conflicts in a reasonable manner. At a time when mental health is of such concern amongst young people, our school community saw cell phones as a significant and negative contributor to student well-being. Constant cell phone and social media use has exposed students to rumor spreading, unrealistic views of other people’s lives, and peer pressure.

Sadly studies have shown that 11-15-year-olds in the United States that spent more than 3 hours a day on social media might be at an increased risk for mental health problems like anxiety and depression.

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Cell Phones

As a result of the social media and mental health concerns, GB will be a red zone school for cell phones. In order to implement the red zone, all middle schools in the Colonial School District have adopted the Yondr Pouch system. Every day cell phones are expected to be put away in the Yondr pouch.

Yondr is a patented system that creates a phone-free space for educators. Cell phones are placed into a Yondr Pouch that locks when it is closed. Upon entry of the school building, all GB students will place their phones in their individual Yondr Pouch and will close them to lock them. This system will ensure that cell phones are not out during the school day minimizing certain distractions and/or disruptions.

At the beginning of this school year, each student will receive their own pouch that they are responsible for. If a student does not have their pouch their cell phone must be in their bookbag in their locker or at home. More information regarding Yondr will be available closer to the start of the school year. A quick video about how Yondr works can be viewed below.

Student Yondr Procedures & FAQ


  • When students arrive to school they will place the phone inside of the Yondr pouch & lock it before they enter the building. Cell phones will be out of sight while students are at school & their use restricted while in the building.

“I Need a Loaner Pouch”:

  • Students will inform the classroom teacher that they need a loaner pouch. The classroom teacher will notify the grade level administrator or the main office.

  • Students will be issued a loaner pouch for the day and is expected to turn it into the location that distributed the pouch.

  • Students that continue to arrive without their Yondr pouch may have their devices confiscated while at school.

“I Have an Early Dismissal”:

  • Main Office

    • Students will have their pouch unlocked in the main office prior to leaving.

    • The secretary will collect the student's pouch if it is a loaner before they leave the building.

  • Nurse

    • Students will have their pouch unlocked in the health office prior to leaving.

    • The nurse will collect the student's pouch if it is a loaner before they leave the building. The pouches must be returned to the main office.

The phone has medical necessary medical information

  • Phone will be unlocked at the health office by the nurse.


  • Students will unlock their Yondr pouch when exiting the building at the designated locations…

    • Car Riders

      • Car rider exit, (Auditorium adjacent) and select staff at car rider exit.

    • Bus Riders

      • 6th Grade Entrance/Exit & SSC, 7th Grade Exit/Entrance & MO, 8th Grade Entrance/Exit & Select Staff on Bus Court

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Digital Parenting Tips

  • Keep phones and devices out of their bedroom. Sleep is important for growth!

  • Know their passwords and let your child know you will regularly check the accounts.

  • Discourage your child from gossiping, spreading rumors, or harassing others online.

  • Ask your child how he or she is using social media and how it makes them feel. Remind them that social media is full of unrealistic images.

  • And finally, Remind your child of the permanence of anything posted online or sent electronically!

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Gunning Bedford Map

Here is a map of GB. The highlighted spaces show the areas of the building where the 6th graders will travel throughout the day.
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Yondr Pouch Cell Phone System

Yondr in Schools - Staff & Students