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As some of us approach the next big step of returning to campus, while others continue with distance learning, let’s take a moment to thank one another for the journey. 

If your homes are like many of ours, we are wearing multiple hats, working and being a learning coach to our own children. Serving as a learning coach for me has had its own challenges. But challenges are not a bad thing. We have also had some once-in-a-lifetime memories. 

I also know I’ve had to take a deep breath and remind myself that my daughter is being her lovely self (playing instead of doing SeeSaw and struggling through sounding out words) and my son is being his amazing self (gaming and watching TikTok immediately after his teacher logs off Zoom instead of doing his calculus work). We can all be reminded that we are doing our best, and so are our children. 

Routines, schedules, and interactions are about to shift for students returning to campus, so emotions and stress levels may also shift. During this time, I’ve reached out for support from friends and family. It’s brightened my outlook. 

At times, it can feel like this transition to on-campus is the start of a whole new school year, where we are covering so much information and there are some changes to which we must adjust in a very short time (PikMyKid, bell schedule, one-way halls, masks, etc.). For our teachers, streaming, zooming and having students in person simultaneously will be a new challenge. 

But it’s these challenges that support our growth. It’s these times that will give us lasting memories and new ways of learning and doing. It’s these experiences that make us stronger, especially if we support one another. If you are feeling excited, overwhelmed, scared, nervous, just remember it’s normal and you are not alone! 

In the words of Helen Keller, “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.” 

Think about how you can show someone else you care and how you might build up someone who needs it, be it your own child or another parent. Think about if you need to reach out for support. Know that we are here for you. While we may want to do all and be all, sometimes we need to recognize that getting help makes us stronger!

We'll see you at the Parents' Meeting Sept. 17 at 6 pm!
New Bell Schedule Goes into Effect Monday, Sept. 21
Because students are coming to school for in person learning Monday, please note that this new bell schedule goes into effect for ALL STUDENTS (including those not returning to campus until later) as of 9/21.

The breaks between classes will be different, which means that, other than 1st and 5th period, the start times of periods will be different. And lunch time returns to 30 minutes (with a small break before and after) and there are three lunches: A & B for Middle School and C for High School.

Middle School students, please make sure your 3rd and 7th period teachers tell you Thursday/Friday whether you have A or B lunch for their class!
Device Survey to be completed by Parents of all secondary students in Grades 6-12

Mrs. Holcombe emailed a survey directly to parent email addresses that asks whether or not your student will have a family owned device to use if your student is one who will return to campus. If you have not completed this survey, please do so here. Thank you!
Return to Campus Guidelines

A presentation by the principals with some return to campus guidelines will be given at Thursday nights parent meeting. See here for an overview of some of the highlights of the Return to Campus Guidelines relevant to secondary, including uniform and mask information.


Reminders for Return to Campus

Please send students with the much-needed school supplies that we request each year and leave in Front lobby upon entry. We will have a designated space to just drop off the items.

  • 2 reams of copy paper
  • 2 boxes of tissues
 
In our efforts to limit visitors on campus and face-to-face contact, please remember the office will not accept other items for drop off for students throughout the school year. (ie: if a student left a book at home, forgot homework or something at home, etc). Deliveries will also be turned away. Thank you for understanding.
 
Please label all items (lunch boxes, water bottles, outerwear, etc). If an item is brought to Lost & Found, the office staff checks for names and makes a good faith effort to notify the owner that we have their belongings. Clothes will be put in the lost & found space for students to claim. After one week, if clothing is found without a name it will be taken to the uniform exchange. Water bottles, lunch boxes, etc will be thrown out.
Phone interface PikMyKid
Car Line Details: Important Updates for those returning to On Campus Instruction

Car tags have been mailed to 6th and 12th Grade students who will be learning on campus starting Monday. Car tag numbers will change due to the new PikMyKid app.

We are finalizing set up for PikMyKid this week. The app includes a daily health screening for you to complete each morning before bringing your child to school and a way to announce when you're on campus for pick up in the afternoon.

Once we have finalized set up, we will send out an email later this week detailing how to register for PikMyKid and how to use the app, as well as more information on your new car tags. We have training materials ready to help this process run as smoothly as possible!

You will only need to download the app when you return to campus. (If you're choosing distance learning, do not download it. You'll get irrelevant push notifications.)

If you have already downloaded the app, please wait before making delegations or calendar changes until after we send the PikMyKid email later this week, or your changes will not be saved, as we are still making updates on our end.

Car tags will be sent out to additional grades/distance learners at a later date.
Arrival Procedures

Our secondary campus is open from 7:30 am to 8:30 am for arrival. Please do not arrive earlier; we will not have staff onsite. All vehicles should enter via Mays St. 

Dismissal Procedures

Secondary dismissal starts at 4:05 pm (1:35 pm on Wednesdays). All vehicles should enter via Mays St. 

If you have middle school students only, follow the blue car line. If you have middle school and high school siblings to pick up, follow the orange car line. If you have high school students only, follow the green car line.
Fall Picture Day for K, 1st and 6th Graders Thursday, September 24

Lifetouch Photography will be here Thursday, September 24 to take Fall Pictures of Kindergarteners, 1st graders, and 6th graders who have returned to campus. These are the head shots that are used in the Meridian yearbook; students should wear regular uniform (secondary students can now wear blue jeans on Monday-Thursday in addition to Friday). 

Parents, you will be able to order pictures from proofs that will be sent home with your student in a few weeks. Students who are continuing with Distance Learning will be offered an opportunity to come take Fall Pictures on a later date. 

Note:  Seniors do not take Fall Pictures with Lifetouch; they will take professional outdoor shots (per our tradition) with a private photographer in our school courtyard in October. 

Questions about picture day can be directed to s.holcombe@mwschool.org
Secondary Principals Coffee slideshow

Information on the return to campus, as well as feedback from the Distance Learning survey, was shared at the Secondary Principals Coffee this past Monday. See here for the Secondary Principals Coffee slideshow.


Google Classroom and ManageBac Help

For those struggling to remember how to submit work on ManageBac or Google Classroom, here are a written checklist and a video for each process: 

1 - Submitting work on ManageBac with Google Doc files

2 - Submitting work on Google Classroom


Team Leads 

If parents have a question or concern about a specific class, they should contact the teacher. If, however, they need to request a conference regarding several classes, the grade level team lead should be contacted to schedule a meeting.

See here for the Grade Level Team Leads.
Senior Parking Space Painting Event

Our seniors had fun painting their senior parking spaces this past weekend! Come by the student parking lot and checkout their artwork when you are in the neighborhood!  
Extracurriculars Update
Clubs

Model United Nations - Mandatory Parent & Student Meeting, Wednesday, Sept. 23 from 6-7 pm via webinar.
2020-21 MUN Registration - opens Sept. 23 at 8 pm; closes at 10 pm Sept. 30.
Athletics

Fall Dance - Registration ends Sept. 16 at 10 pm. 
Fall Swimming - Registration ends Sept. 16 at 10 pm
Fall Tennis - Registration ends Sept. 16 at 10 pm.
Volleyball - Registration opens Sept. 23.

Physical Forms - Due the day the sport’s registration ends.
Athletics Town Hall - Find the recording of the Sept 10 webinar here.  
Upcoming Events and Useful Links
Upcoming Holidays, Holy Days and Observances
  • Constitution Day - The United States Constitution was signed by the Constitutional Convention on September 17, 1787. Read more.
  • Rosh Hashanah begins the evening of Friday, September 18 and continues until the evening of Sunday, September 20 (2020). Read more.
  • Monday, September 21, the International Day of Peace is recognized worldwide. Read more.
  • Tuesday, September 22 is the Autumnal Equinox, the mid-point between the Summer Solstice (the longest day of the year) and the Winter Solstice (the shortest day of the year). Read more.
Events At-a-Glance
Questions or Concerns? We're here to support you.
Counselors

Middle School Counseling: Nicole “Coco” Cole
High School Counseling: Carrie Proctor
College Counseling: Kathy Gregg

Student or Curricular Concerns

Assistant Principal for grades 6-7: Matthew Castaneda
Assistant Principal for grades 8-10: Crystal Lane
MYP Coordinator for grades 6-10: Kristen Machczynski
Assistant Principal for grades 11-12: Stela Holcombe
IB Diploma Program Coordinator: Stela Holcombe
Secondary Special Education Coordinator: Haley Weisbrod
Secondary Librarian: Tina Van Winkle

Additional Contacts

Middle School Attendance: Olga Alexander
High School Attendance: Shawn Seaman
Cafe: Chef Leslie Sterzinger


Principals

Middle School Principal: Melina Berduo
High School Principal: Charles Ryder