Friday, February 17, 2017

Weekly News and Notes

Our February break is upon us! After some challenges in terms of weather the past couple of weeks, which definitely led to some interruptions, we were able to get to the winter break fairly easily. We hope that our students use the time to recharge, knowing that the weeks ahead, including the month of March, are challenging for a number of reasons. To that end, we hope this newsletter gives some insight into what is ahead.

Snow Ball Spirit Week

Our Student Council will host its annual winter Spirit Week in the week after break. The group selected themes for the days:

Monday- Occupations
Tuesday- Twins
Wednesday- Dressy Uppy
Thursday- Red white and blue 
Friday- School Spirit

The Annual Snow Ball is held at UHS on March 4, beginning at 7:00 p.m. Semiformal dress is required. Guest contracts must be turned in to the high school main office before the close of school on Thursday, March 3.

In terms of the theme days, students are reminded to exercise good judgment. Face paint and masks are not permitted, nor is any attire that can potentially disrupt the educational environment. Be smart!

National School Breakfast Week
The Uxbridge Food Service is celebrating National School Breakfast week during 3/6-3/10 to encourage students to participate in breakfast and start their day off right.  Eating breakfast is associated with reduced absenteeism, tardiness, nurse visits and is more likely to allow students concentrate better, retain what they learn and participate more in class.

The School Breakfast Program makes it possible for all school children to receive a nutritious breakfast every school day. National School Breakfast Week (NSBW) was launched in 1989 to raise awareness of the availability of the School Breakfast.  We offer breakfast at each school 10 minutes before the start of the day for $1.25.

Students will receive a punch card for the week and those who purchase 5 breakfasts can submit their punch card to be entered into a drawing to win a prize.  We would love to see them there!

Scheduling for 2017-18
We will begin the course selection process for next year within a week or so after the break. On February 28, we host the 8th graders, reviewing for them our course enrollment procedures, providing insight on UHS, and having them hear from some of our students, before touring the building. On March 3, we will meet with the grade 9-11 students, so that teachers can have conversations and make recommendations the week of March 7.
Our plan will be to have recommendations for courses, including which courses may not run, in the hands of counselors before the end of March, so that adjustments can be made. As always, if you have questions about the full program, individual courses, or impact to post-secondary planning, reach out to your child's counselor, Mr. Barry or Ms. Hampton. 
For grade 8 parents, we invite you to our Open House on March 1, starting at 6:30. If that date changes because of athletic playoffs, we will notify parents as soon as possible!
For grade 9-11 parents, we invite you to our Program of Studies/Scheduling Night, scheduled for March 6, also at 6:30. 

Senior Week 2017
We will be providing some information for parents regarding end-of-year events for seniors in the weeks following break. Some families have already started asking some questions about the week; to plan ahead, it is looking like graduation rehearsals will take place on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 30 and 31, while baccalaureate rehearsal will be on Friday, June 2. On Friday June 2, around 10:30 a.m., our seniors will continue a tradition we started last year, parading through McCloskey, Whitin, and Taft Schools in their caps and gowns. Last year, the Class remarked how great an event it was - and the younger students and their teachers really love the opportunity to applaud our seniors one last time. It's a great photo opp for parents as well!
More details on all the senior events will be forthcoming.

State House Field Trip
Many kudos to Mr. Silbor and Ms. Bouchard for organizing a tremendous field trip to the State House on Thursday, February 16. We were hosted by Representative Kuros and Senator Fattman, both of whom helped provide students insight on the legislative process. Representative Kuros' office provided our students with the opportunity to sit in chambers, lead the Pledge of Allegiance for an informal House session, and visit the formal/ceremonial office of Governor Baker. 
On the way out of the State House, our tour guide remarked to Principal Rubin, "This group of students is the best I've ever had - they asked great questions, were insightful, and had a great mindset coming here for the experience. I'm super impressed." 
Some photos appear below of our students on the trip!

Parent Coffee/Open House
Over the past couple of weeks, we have hosted Parent Coffees for grade 8 parents. On March 1, we plan, tentatively, on hosting an Open House for Grade 8 parents and students, beginning at 6:30 p.m. While we have been impressed with the turnout and the questions people have asked, we are sure that many questions exist. Feel free to reach out to high school or middle school administration or counseling staff with any questions.

As we head to this next stretch of the school year, please help us keep students on point, our seniors focused on their graduation requirements, and our underclassmen on maintaining and improving their grades, habits, and skills. 

Please let us know if you have any questions or feedback.

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