Middle School Back-to-School 2022-23

Welcome to the 2022-23 School Year!


August 24 Update: Pre-K–Grade 12 Back-to-School Logistics

PLEASE READ:


To-Do Before School Begins

Subscribe to Student Schedules and Household Calendars:

Click here to go to the Veracross log-in to view your child’s schedule. The portal will also allow you to subscribe to your Household Calendar.

Purchase Textbooks:

After reading the Book Information section (on purchasing and renting), click the appropriate Grade Level Supply List link (just below) to purchase the required textbooks.

Gather school supplies:

Click on the grade-level links below to download the Grade Level Supply Lists.  

Review Summer Reading Booklist:

Each student should read at least one of the Required Summer Reading books. We also provide lists, by genre, of other suggested readings on our Middle School Summer Reading Libguide.

Get a Library Card:

For research purposes, all Park students are asked to have a Baltimore County Public Library Card. You do not need to be a resident of Baltimore County to register for a card. Click HERE to register.

Complete the Cafeteria Purchase Limits Form:

Click here to set monthly purchase limits on your child’s cafeteria account. (Note: prior limits set will remain in effect unless you resubmit this form.)

Complete all Medical Forms and Health Information:

Complete your child’s online medical forms. A fully completed Medical Statement must be on file for your child to participate in athletic activities (including gym class and after school athletic practice). To check the status of your child’s forms, log in to your Magnus Health Portal.

Review and Complete the Student Email and Acceptable Use Packet:

Parents and students should sit down together to read and discuss the Acceptable Use/Gmail Permission Form. It should be completed by Tuesday, August 30. If you have more than one child in Park’s Middle School, a separate form must be completed for each child. Please contact Samira Phillips, MS Technology Coordinator at sphillips@parkschool.net if you have any questions or concerns.

Review and update (if needed) The Park School Directory:

The Park School Directory will be accessible through the Veracross portal. In order to ensure we have the most up-to-date information for the directory, please update your information in the Veracross portal by Monday, August 23.

Update Grandparent information:

The Veracross portal includes a section in the “Family Update Form” called “Grandparents.” By updating contact information for grandparents, you will enable Park to share community news periodically, and invite grandparents to future events and other community activities.


Middle School Orientation 2022

The goals of orientation are to welcome our new students to Park and to help our returning students make the transition back into “school mode.” This year’s orientation will include multiple sessions on Tuesday, August 30th, focusing on: tech set-up, organization, community living and learning, tips for managing their digital lives, review of our harassment and device-usage guidelines, and more. Most importantly, students will have opportunities to meet their teachers and advisors. If you have any questions please reach out to MS Dean of Students, Shrijana Puri at 410-339-4148 or spuri@parkschool.net

Tuesday, August 30, 2022 — 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. (two start times)

Today’s events are for all new 7th and 8th Grade students, and all 6th Grade students. Please bring a day pack and a bottle of water, two masks, hand sanitizer and sunscreen. Pizza lunch will be provided. Drop-off and pick-up at the front of the school.

All New Students and 6TH Grade Orientation Agenda:

TimeActivity
9 AMNew 6th, 7th, and 8th ONLY 
Donuts Social & Folders (MSC and Middle School Deck)
Take Student Photos
Meet and Greet Faculty and Student Buddies
9:15 AMIce Breakers with Middle School Government
(Athletic Center)
9:30 AM6th Graders Arrive 
Welcome students! 
(Meyerhoff Theater)
10:15 AM6th Grade Main Visits with Teachers
Introductions
Walk Wednesday’s Schedule
Quick tour (Middle School Office, Cafeteria, Nurse’s office, PE Locker Rooms, etc.)
Wrap-up with Q&A session

7th/8th Technology Session
11-11:30 AMPower Session 1
6-1: Technology 
6-2/6-3: Community and Inclusivity 
6-4: Library
7th/8th: Community Living
11:40 AM-12:20 PMPower Session 2
6-2: Technology 
6-1: Community and Inclusivity
6-3: Library 
6-4: Community Living 
7/8: Ready2learn
12:30 PMLunch with Advisors 
12:30-1 PM: Eat Lunch/Relax  
1-1:20 PM: Set up lockers 
1:25 PM: Advisors to drop students off to their next Power Session
1:30 PMPower Session 3
6-3: Technology  
6-4: Community and Inclusivity 
6-1/6-2: Community Living 
7th/8th: Library
1:50-2:20 PMPower Session 4 
6-4: Technology 
6-1/6-2: Library
6/3: Community Living 
7th/8th: Community and Inclusivity
2:30 PMGetting Involved/Important Resources/Wrap-up
2:40 PMKona Ice
3 PMDismissal – Theater Overhang

Book Information (Purchasing & Renting)

Buying Texts:

We ask that students buy some of the books they use in particular classes. These are generally workbooks, novels, and short story collections where the expectation is that students will be filling in blanks, highlighting, underlining, and taking notes in the margins. The books that we ask students to buy can be found on the Grade Level Supply Lists. Please note, required book purchases for 6th Grade this year will be announced later on in the year.

Renting Texts:

The other way your children will get books is through book rental. These will be distributed to families before school starts and you will be charged a “user’s fee” for them. The fee is substantially less than the cost of buying the books and covers the cost of replacement when a book has become too dog-eared to use again or when the publisher comes out with a new edition. Math, Modern Language, and Language Arts teachers often use rental texts rather than ask you to buy them.

IMPORTANT TO KNOW ABOUT RENTALS:

  • If your child loses the text, you will be charged the full cost of replacing it.
  • You will be charged the full cost if the book is returned at the end of the year and has sustained more damage than we would reasonably expect (e.g., ripped pages, marked up pages, etc.).

Book Rental Fees

Math: all grades $20
Language Arts: all grades $5

Other Materials

These materials are from independent publishers or vendors and have been purchased by the school on behalf of the students. They will be billed to your account. 

French/spanish:

All Grades – between $8-$20

Technology/Computer Science:

6th Grade – $25

Concert Band, String Ensemble, Chorus, and Guitar/Ukulele:

6th and 7th Grade – $10    

8th Grade participants – $10

The Park School is committed to taking action toward diversity, equity, and inclusion, and one option for action is supporting Black-owned businesses. We hope that you will consider purchasing books for this school year from a Black-owned independent bookstore. The lists below of stores all over the U.S. can help you in that process. You might consider contacting a shop in a community to which you have a connection. Remember to give yourselves and the stores some lead time to process your order. 

Here is a link to a June 2020 article in Bustle Magazine listing Black-owned bookstores. It contains links for ordering.

Lit Hub also has an extensive list on their website.

Here is a link to a list at the website of the African American Book Club.


Middle School Guidelines for Digital Device Usage

Phones

Students may bring phones to school, but are only allowed to use them before 8:30 a.m. and after 3:15 p.m. During the school day, phones should be kept in students’ lockers and turned off. Mobile phones that ring, buzz, send or receive messages, disrupt class, or are used during the school day will be confiscated, turned into the Principal or Dean, and returned at the end of the day. Repeat offenders will have their devices returned at the end of the week. Parents should refrain from texting or emailing their child during the day and should remind their children that they may communicate with home (or parents with them) through the Middle School Office. Important messages can be relayed to your child through the Middle School Administrative Assistant, Natalia Johnson (410-339-4185).

Laptops and Other Devices

  • All students will need to possess their own laptop with a built-in webcam to be brought to and from school daily. Lower end Chromebooks, while sufficient for many school activities, tend to have difficulty running Zoom, and there are class-specific software needs that Chromebooks are not able to satisfy; therefore, a PC or Mac laptop is highly recommended. iPads are not sufficient as primary school devices for Middle School Students. The Park loaner program and payment plan options will be extended to families. Please note: the recommendation to buy a laptop is being made for newly purchased devices; if your child has an existing Chromebook, there is no need to purchase a new device, even if that device does not meet the recommendation above or minimum specifications below.
  • Minimum laptop specifications:
    • 13” minimum screen
    • i5 processor
    • 8GB RAM
    • 128 GB minimum hard drive (16 GB minimum if a Chromebook)
  • All students should have a lightweight headset (headphones and built-in microphone) that can be connected to their laptop or iPad, for use both in school and at home. Headsets may come with stereo plugs or USB connections; make sure that the headset will work with your child’s device. An adapter may be needed. We do not require a specific brand or model but here are a couple of examples to guide you: Cyber Acoustics Stereo Plug Headset, Logitech USB Headset.
  • Students will also need a USB to USB-C adapter for peripherals such as a document camera if their device does not have a standard USB port.

All student use of devices, whether personal or school-owned, must abide by the rules in our Acceptable Use Policy. It is our expectation that student-owned laptops will be brought to school only for academic use and will not be used for recreation or entertainment purposes at any time during the school day. Other electronic devices, such as e-readers, cell phones, iPods, mp3 players, or game systems may not be carried or used during the school day except at the discretion of individual teachers for classroom purposes. Students who do not respect these policies will have their devices confiscated, turned into the Principal or Dean, and returned at the end of the day. Repeat offenders will have their devices returned at the end of the week. Please note that for self-owned devices, students should bring their own adapters, power supplies, cables, etc. Students wearing smart watches should follow the above guidelines and only use them as tools for keeping time during the school day.

Device Usage During After Day

From 3:15-6 p.m., there are two places where students may use their personal devices:

  1.  in the library for completing homework assignments. 
  2.  in the Middle School Commons for work or entertainment purposes. 

Any devices that are used outside of the Commons or Library will be confiscated, turned into the Principal or Dean, and returned at the end of the day or week.

At Home

While the Middle School does its best to monitor digital device usage at school, we cannot do this at home, as only parents can. We recommend that parents regularly check their children’s phone, tablet, or computer, remove inappropriate apps, and that they speak with their children about what they post. Kids should know that everything they put online or send in a text or email becomes public information, regardless of how private they think it is. Our biggest concern is their safety, and this can be communicated by creating clear guidelines at home, such as a family Acceptable Use Policy (AUP). Below are links to several Family Media Agreements.

Family Phone Contract

Making a Family Media Use Plan

An iPhone Contract, With Love

The Middle School’s complete Digital Device Policy can be found in your Veracross portal.


Morning Drop-off and After School Procedures

Morning Drop-Off

All students are to be dropped off in the Middle/Upper School carpool lane next to the pond. Do not use the Lower School or Athletic Center entrances unless you are instructed to do so for a field trip.

Dismissal

Students may not leave campus without supervision, either during the school day or after school. They must be picked up at the end of their day by a parent, guardian, or authorized adult, unless they live in an adjoining neighborhood and have express permission from their families to walk home. 

Dismissal begins at 3:15 p.m.; all students will have 10 minutes to gather their books and materials, at which point they must report to carpool, after school athletics or activities, or After Day.

Bus riders need to move swiftly to the Lower School bus circle at this time. Buses depart at 3:25 p.m., sharp. Those getting picked up should proceed to the carpool area (next to the pond). Those staying at school will be required to sign in to After Day by 3:25 p.m. in the Middle School Commons.

If you are interested in exploring transportation options, including bus routes and late-run bus service, please visit our Transportation page.

Staying After School

Those staying at school have two choices:     

  1. Participate in a supervised activity (sports team, tutoring, music lesson, club, etc.). Once these activities or practices end, students must either go home (wait in the carpool area), or check in with After Day in the Middle School Commons.
  2. Attend After Day in the Middle School Commons. All students must sign in with the After Day monitors. Only after checking in with the monitors may students go to the library for Study Hall, play in a gym or simply hang out in the Commons or other approved locations. Monitors will regularly check each location, locating students when parents arrive and call the front desk for pick up. It is the students’ responsibility to update the sign-in sheet with their current location. Please note that students will be monitored during their time in After Day, but not directly supervised at all times.

IMPORTANT: After Day is not day care. It is a cost-free convenience provided for families who are unable to pick up their children after school. And while Park is able to sponsor athletics, various clubs, and some after-school care, we are not able to provide enough space or supervision for every Middle School student to stay at school at the end of the day. As much as we love that the kids want to stay at school, PLEASE RESIST YOUR CHILD’S REQUESTS TO STAY LATER THAN NECESSARY AND PLEASE PICK YOUR CHILD UP WHEN THE SCHOOL DAY ENDS OR AFTERNOON ACTIVITIES ARE FINISHED. Parents are encouraged to plan play dates where groups of students can hang out at home. 

Pick-Up

Students must be signed out by a signature or a phone call. Parents picking up children after normal carpool hours (3:25-3:50 p.m.) should do one of the following:

  1. Park the car and walk into the Middle School Commons to sign out your children. 
  2. Call the front desk (410-339-7070) and ask that your child be sent to carpool. You will be asked your name and relationship with the child. 

No food will be provided during After Day. Students should bring their own.

Trust

These guidelines will help us keep the students safe and accounted for, and we’ll need parental support for this to happen. Middle School students who have difficulty following these guidelines will be asked to leave school at 3:15 p.m. or at the end of their athletic practices/rehearsals. Parents will be expected to pick up children who cannot follow our Rule for Community Living.


Reminders, Opportunities & General Information

Reminders

Arriving late, missing school, or leaving early: Please call Natalia Jesus in the Middle School Office as soon as you know that your child will be absent from school (410-339-4185). You may also send her an email at njesus@parkschool.net. Similarly, communicate with Natalia if your child will be picked up early from school.

Technology: Students in Grades 6–12 will need to possess their own laptop (PC/Mac) or Chromebook with a built-in webcam to be brought to and from school.

Morning Announcements: Each day, those who sign up will receive an email containing the day’s Middle School morning announcements. They are updated daily and contain important information about life in the Middle School. Advisors read announcements with students during advisory time. Typical announcements will include changes to our regular schedule for special events or assemblies, student government information, early dismissals for sports, lost and found, and much more. Click here if you would like to opt out. Morning announcements may also be accessed through the Middle School Resources page of the Veracross parent portal.

Forms: Many forms can be found in the resources section of the Veracross portal. When logging into the portal, click on All School Resources, select Middle School, and scroll down to the “Forms” section.

Appalachian Challenge: Appalachian Challenge, builds students’ confidence and tolerance for adversity. Skills evolve through a cycle of three stages: communication, cooperation, and trust. Skill development is balanced with challenges of increasing complexity and difficulty through individual and group challenges. Director of Challenge and Physical Education teacher Jeremy Smith will offer Challenge activities as part of our 8th Grade Physical Education program during the school day.  These activities will also be integrated into the 6th grade orientation and the 7th grade SEAL course. There is no need to enroll in the course.

Student ID Card and ID Number: All students are given a 7-digit student ID number that they can use in lieu of their student ID card to make purchases in the Cafeteria. This number is the same as the number on their ID card and will be communicated to each student along with their locker combination at the beginning of the school year. It can also be found on students’ home pages when they log in to the Veracross portal.

Different Schedule on First Day of School: On the first day of school, all students should meet with their advisors in HOUSE at 8:30 a.m., then proceed to the Meyerhoff Theater for a special assembly. After assembly, students will go to an abbreviated first and second period, then meet with their advisory groups again in HOUSE. After House, students will resume a normal schedule, beginning with third period. Don’t worry if you forget this announcement. It will be posted in school as kids enter on the first day.

8:30-8:50 AM HOUSE

8:55-9:30 AM Assembly (theater)

9:35-10:05 AM First Period (30 minutes)

10:10-10:40 AM  Second Period (30 minutes)

10:40-11 AM House (20 minutes)

11 AM-3:15 PM  Resume normal schedule, starting with third period

Opportunities

Yoga: Consider joining Friday afternoon yoga practice for Middle School students. Our fun, energizing practice includes understanding of the cultural roots, philosophy, and many benefits of practice, all while building strength, balance, and flexibility. Led by Heather Freas-Kostic, we meet Fridays, 3:30-4:15 p.m. for 6-8 weeks sessions. The first session will run September 9–October 21. All levels of experience are welcome, including newcomers. The activity is free of charge, and the first 10 students to sign up will be accepted. Use this form to sign up.

Robotics: Technology Coordinators Tara Northcott and Samira Phillips will lead this year’s robotics team which will run from September through December. Meetings for the club will be held from 3:30-5pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. To accommodate students with multiple after school interests and to achieve our goals for the team, students must attend at least one meeting per week to participate. During the four month season, students will work together to design and build a robot to compete with other teams in regional competitions which will take place two weekends in December. The activity is open to all Middle School students. Please note: there is a suggested donation of $100 to participate in this activity. For more information, to volunteer, or to sign up, please complete this form or contact Tara Northcott at tnorthcott@parkschool.net. You can learn more about FIRST Tech Challenge at https://www.firstinspires.org/robotics/ftc.

Middle School Pi Club: Join the Pi Club for ten sessions this fall to learn about the history of multiplication as a mathematical operation. We will learn various algorithms as we study how students in ancient Babylon and medieval Europe did their assignments on multiplication, and we’ll discover how and why computers multiply better than humans! Conversations will be led by Park parent Alena Savonenko and will occur on Fridays from 3:30-4:30. The first session will be on September 9th. Location to be announced.

Before and After School Activities: Students will learn about additional activity offerings at an assembly in September. At that time, they will also learn about auditioned chorus and instrumental ensembles, which will meet weekly, before or after school.

After-School Music Program (ASM): A variety of music lessons are offered after the school day for an additional fee. Weekly instruction is offered with a variety of instruments. These lessons are in addition to the student’s regular participation in music class.

To register for lessons please visit: Individual Music Lesson Info and Registration

For more information, contact Chris Peterson at afterschoolmusic@parkschool.net.     

Co-curricular Ensemble Audition Requirements:

  • Chamber Strings and the B#s: This link will take you to a folder with PDFs of the suggested audition pieces for Chamber Strings and the B#s. Students have the option of playing the suggested piece, or a piece that they have already been working on outside of school. Students will also be asked to play a scale of their choice, and to sight read a provided excerpt.
  • MS Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB): MS Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB): Guitarists, bassists, and pianists that would like to audition for Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB) will be asked to play a song with chords. Drummers will be asked to play a swing rhythm and a rock rhythm. All students auditioning will be asked to sight read a provided excerpt.
ENSEMBLEDAY of weekTIMEDESCRIPTION
Middle School Jazz EnsembleThursday3:15–4:15 p.m.This auditioned group learns music from the classic eras of jazz and explores contemporary styles. Playing traditional and non-traditional jazz instruments, students focus on playing and improvising in an ensemble.
B#s (B Sharps)Wednesday7:40–8:20 a.m.The B#s is our Middle School auditioned soprano, alto, baritone, a cappella group. They work on advanced choral repertoire and have more performance opportunities than the Middle School Chorus.
Modern Music Band (MMB)Wednesday3:15–4:15 p.m.This auditioned group is composed of vocalists and instrumentalists who are enrolled in private lessons or have two or more years of experience. Students in this group will work through more repertoire and will practice their stage presence at various performances throughout the year. This group’s repertoire is modern music from rock to funk to soul.
Chamber StringsFriday7:30–8:20 a.m.Chamber Strings performs advanced popular arrangements, chamber orchestra, and small chamber group repertoire for a variety of events throughout the school year. Students auditioning for the Chamber Strings should have at least one year of experience on their instrument and, if in sixth or seventh grade, be enrolled in the Strings class.

CO-CURRICULAR ENSEMBLE AUDITION REQUIREMENTS:

  • Chamber Strings and the B#s: This link will take you to a folder with PDFs of the suggested audition pieces for Chamber Strings and the B#s. Students have the option of playing the suggested piece, or a piece that they have already been working on outside of school. Students will also be asked to play a scale of their choice, and to sight read a provided excerpt.
  • MS Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB): MS Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB): Guitarists, bassists, and pianists that would like to audition for Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB) will be asked to play a song with chords. Drummers will be asked to play a swing rhythm and a rock rhythm. All students auditioning will be asked to sight read a provided excerpt.

Athletics: The welcome letter from the Athletic Leadership Team can be found here.

Donate or Borrow Used Sports Equipment: Anytime this summer or fall, bring your lightly used shin guards, hockey sticks, cleats, etc., to the Athletic Center for donation. Families and students who are interested in trying out for a sport, but who don’t want to make an initial investment in equipment, should call Dia or Robin at 410-339-4140 or 410-339-4150 or email athletics@parkschool.net to see if equipment is available.

Athletics, Music, and After-School Activities: Middle School is a great time to try new things, and the following optional activities are available to students free of charge:

  • Fall Athletics (field hockey, soccer, cross-country)
  • Winter Athletics (basketball)
  • Spring Athletics (lacrosse, baseball, softball, tennis)
  • Before-School Music Ensembles (Chamber Strings, B#s)
  • After-School Music Ensembles (Jazz Ensemble, Modern Music Band)
  • Fall/Winter Robotics (7th/8th graders)
  • Spring Robotics Bootcamp (6th graders)
  • 8th Grade Production (winter into early spring)
  • Math Circle
  • Yoga

Keep in mind that many of these activities meet several times per week and participating in all of them is not possible. For example:

  • Athletic teams meet four or five afternoons per week.
  • B#s and Chamber Strings meet once a week before school, and Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band (MMB) meet once a week after school.
  • Co-ed Robotics meets two afternoons per week.
  • 8th Grade Production meets five afternoons per week during the winter and early spring

How often do activities meet?

4-5 DAYS/WEEK2 DAYS/WEEK1 DAY PER WEEK
Athletics (any season)Robotics (September-December)Before school Music Ensembles (B#s and Chamber Strings)
8th Grade Production (winter/early spring)Spring Robotics (more info. coming soon)After school Music Ensembles (Jazz Ensemble and Modern Music Band)
Private Lessons, tutors, religious school, etc.
Math Circle (Tuesday)
Yoga (Friday)
Pi Club (Friday)

In addition to the activities named above, many students have other responsibilities after school (private lessons, religious school, tutoring, etc.) as well as doctor’s visits, family trips, etc. It is important to consider that adolescents need unstructured time to unwind and to allow their creative minds to process the events of the day. 

We’ve identified combinations of activities that work well together as well as ones that do not. CLICK HERE TO SEE WHEN ALL MIDDLE SCHOOL ACTIVITIES MEET, and then use the table below to consider which activities your children might participate in this year. No commitments are required until after school starts. 

COMBINATIONS THAT WORK BETWEEN 3:15–5 p.m. COMBINATIONS THAT DO NOT WORK BETWEEN 3:15–5 p.m.
Athletics + Jazz Ensemble or Modern Music BandAT ANY TIME: Athletics + any 2 other afternoon activities (including Jazz Ensemble, Modern Music Band, religious school, after-school tutoring, etc.)
Athletics + any single-afternoon activityWinter/Early Spring: Have a lead role in the 8th Grade Production + Athletics
Athletics + an Ensemble/Non-Lead Role in the 8th Grade Production*
Athletics + Robotics (student would miss robotics 1x/week)
Morning Music Ensembles + any afternoon activity

Reminders:
The fall season begins in September and ends at the beginning of November.
The winter season begins mid-November and ends at the end of February.
The spring season begins in March and runs through late May.

The 8th Grade Production: Gina Braden will be inviting all students and families interested in participating in the production to an informational evening meeting in the fall.  There is no need to decide now whether or not your student can participate. Stay tuned for more details.

Library Programming: The library team, and especially Liz Proctor, our Middle School librarian, are excited to welcome students back this fall. We want to ensure that our students continue to have opportunities to access our rich and diverse collection of books for both personal and academic purposes.  We plan to keep in place our new system of book holds through the library catalog system. Books placed on hold will be made available for pick-up at our library cart located across from the MS/US Library entrance.  Instruction (or a refresher) for placing print books on hold will be provided early in the school year. In addition to helping our Middle School students access print and digital resources, Liz Proctor will be teaching library classes to the 6th grade on a rotating schedule throughout the year, and she will be working with the 8th grade on their Advoc8 projects.  The library team is looking forward to keeping our community connected to books, research and learning, and to building our Middle School culture of reading.



General Information

Library Programming

The library team, and especially Liz Proctor, our Middle School librarian, are excited to welcome students back this fall. We want to ensure that our students continue to have opportunities to access our rich and diverse collection of books for both personal and academic purposes. We plan to keep in place our new system of book holds through the library catalog system. Books placed on hold will be made available for pick-up at our library cart located across from the MS/US Library entrance. Instruction (or a refresher) for placing print books on hold will be provided early in the school year. In addition to helping our Middle School students access print and digital resources, Liz Proctor will be teaching library classes to the 6th grade on a rotating schedule throughout the year, and she will be working with the 8th grade on their Advoc8 projects. The library team is looking forward to keeping our community connected to books, research and learning, and to building our Middle School culture of reading.


Veracross Calendar

Logging into the Veracross Parent Portal will allow you access to the Veracross Calendars. Your Household Calendar will display important events and dates that specifically affect members of your household. For Middle School students, it will also display their classroom assignments. The School Calendar will display everything that’s on the school’s public calendar. You have the ability to subscribe to each of these calendar feeds and have the dates imported directly into your online calendar system (Google, iCal, or Outlook). For information on how to subscribe, click here. Try it out and know that you can always unsubscribe!


Backpacks that fit!

Not all backpacks fit in the student lockers. Before purchasing a new backpack this fall, be sure that the make and model will fit! Any backpacks or other personal items left in the hallway will be moved to the Lost and Found.

  • Height of lockers: 29 inches
  • Width of lockers: 14 inches
  • Depth of lockers: 16 inches

Communications Guidelines for Families

At the beginning of the school year, you can expect to hear from your child’s advisor who will establish the best ways for you to communicate throughout the year (by email or phone). At Park, we have determined that 24-48 hours is a reasonable amount of time for school personnel to respond to parent emails or phone calls. Messages left after 12:45 p.m. on a Friday may not be answered until the following Monday. Texting teachers or advisors is not appropriate unless specific permission is given by the school employee. In an emergency, families should call the Middle School Principal, Joshua Wolf, or a school counselor if necessary.


Student Support: Counseling and Wellness

You can read a message from the counseling department here.

Park’s Counselors also lead the Park Connects Parent Education Workshops for parents at each grade level throughout the school year. Refer to their calendar for education workshop dates specific to your child’s grade.


Tutors

Our Middle School Learning Resource teacher, Betsy Gerding, maintains a referral list of tutors who are approved to work on Park’s campus, and she can help pair your child with the appropriate support if necessary. Only vaccinated tutors will be allowed on campus. Please call or email Betsy Gerding if you have questions about tutoring  (bgerding@parkschool.net or 410-339-4119).


Lost and Found

Every day, students lose items here in the Middle School. The lost and found is often filled beyond capacity and many of the items go unclaimed. Please be sure to label all notebooks, books, calculators, pencil cases, lunch boxes/bags, water bottles, jackets, gym uniforms, sports equipment, musical instruments, etc. If we are able to determine an item’s owner, we will do our best to ensure it is returned.


Student Conduct and Discipline

All Middle School advisors and students will be reviewing Park’s Student Harassment Policy, as well as the school’s General Principles of Conduct and Middle School Disciplinary Process and Procedure document. Please review these documents yourselves and feel free to call Joshua Wolf (410-339-4186) with questions. Also speak with your child about the importance of respect for others.The one-page Student Harassment Policy and the Principles of Conduct and Student Discipline document can be found in the Veracross portal. When logging into the portal, click on All School Resources, select Middle School, and scroll down to the “Forms” section.


Park Bulletins

In an effort to streamline and improve communication between school and families, Park sends out a bulletin every Thursday for each division. The Park Bulletins are sent, as links, to all families and Park staff and contain news and information from the school, teachers, and community. To reduce the number of emails you receive, we ask that you scan the Bulletin weekly to be kept apprised of campus happenings and the latest changes to the calendar. The first Bulletin for 2022-23 will be sent to you at the start of the school year.


Permission to Be Away Form

This form is used for planned absences. It is the student’s responsibility to complete this form, listing all classes that will be missed during the absence. The student must turn in the completed form to the Middle School office at least one day prior to the planned absence. A Permission to Be Away Form can be picked up in the Middle School Office ( a paper copy) or found in the Veracross portal. When logging into the portal, click on All School Resources, select Middle School, and scroll down to the “Forms: Sign and Return” section.


Middle School Trips

Curricular field trips and outdoor education trips at Park aim to strengthen the social, emotional, moral, and practical dimensions of each student’s character, while simultaneously providing opportunities to extend classroom learning. Our program is designed to create transformational moments in children 11-to-14-years-old by taking students briefly beyond their comfort zones to a space where adaptation to changing circumstances is required for success, the confidence to thrive in unfamiliar situations is discovered, and bonds of community are deepened. 

The fall (6th grade) and spring (7th and 8th) grade-level camping trips will be celebratory experiences where kids explore the natural world, build community, and collaborate with their peers. Detailed trip information will be made available to parents prior to travel. Every effort is made to accommodate the individual needs of a child and safely manage medical conditions. Students’ participation is deeply valued and participation is expected. 

Tentative overnight trip dates:

  • 6th Grade: October 27-28, 2022
  • 7th Grade: April 27-28, 2023
  • 8th Grade: June 1-2, 2023

Field Trip Permission Forms

The Off-Campus Activities section of the enrollment contract includes authorization for the student to participate in off-campus activities; however, in advance of each field trip parents will be provided with an Off-Campus Activity Attendance Form to review and sign. Signing the form confirms that a parent/guardian is informed of the destination, duration, the mode of transportation, and any special instructions.


Save the Dates

DAYDATEnamedescription
ThursdaySeptember 1Back-to-School Night6:15–9:30 p.m. (details will be sent electronically)
MondaySeptember 5Labor DaySCHOOL CLOSED
MondaySeptember 198th Grade
Parent Coffee with Joshua Wolf
9–10:30 a.m.
Middle School Commons
Monday September 26Rosh HashanahSCHOOL CLOSED
Throughout SeptemberAuditions for Co-Curricular groupsYou will be able to sign up for an audition slot during the first week of school. Here is a link to the audition requirements
Wednesday October 5Yom KippurSCHOOL CLOSED
WednesdayOctober 126th Grade
Parent Coffee with Joshua Wolf
9–10:30 a.m.
Middle School Commons
FridayDecember 2Parent ConferencesSCHOOL CLOSED
WednesdayMarch 1Parent ConferencesSCHOOL CLOSED

Please stay tuned for important Music dates at the start of the 2022-23 Academic Year.

Note: All dates and times are subject to change. Please subscribe to your Household Calendar through Veracross for a complete and up-to-date calendar of events.