PM Knight 09-30-16

Fri, 09/30/2016 - 2:05pm

PM KNIGHT 09-30-16

From the Principal’s Desk…

Well, we did it. We were the first middle school to have 100% of our student Emergency Notification Information (aka Family File) updated! Thanks to all for working hard to ensure we have current information on hand should we need to get in contact with you. While we sincerely hope there is never a reason to use those emergency contacts, we feel better knowing we can reach you if we need to.

Next week, Interim Reports will be issued to 7th and 8th graders on Thursday, October 6th. The sixth grade class will receive their reports when they return to school on the 10th. I say, why wait for the paper copy? You can check out those grades now! If you haven’t established a routine for sitting down with your son or daughter to look over their Canvas accounts, there is no time like the present. We love being able to communicate in ‘real time’ information about student grades, notes about behavior, and announcements about upcoming classroom events. To maximize the effectiveness of this online tool, the following are a few tips to increase the benefits of the HCPSS Connect:

Log on Regularly: Set aside a time to review grades with your student(s) on a bi-weekly basis. Grades can change daily depending upon the schedule each teacher is using to enter grades so we caution against daily or even weekly viewing.

  • Each teacher may have a different routine/day for entering and updating information.  

  • The general guideline is that teachers will update grades a minimum of every two weeks.

  • Grades will be posted within two weeks following the due date or the date of the assignment.

  • Major assignment grades (e.g., tests, projects, etc.) will be reviewed with students before they are posted.

Foster Independence and Personal Responsibility:

  • Have your student tell you about their own data. Let them log on and walk you through the information.

  • Discuss what your student tells you and encourage them to talk to their teacher if they have any concerns. In general, middle school students should approach the teacher with questions before parents do.

  • Students have their own accounts. Encourage them to access their data regularly. After all, those grades belong to them!

Practice Patience:  Teachers will do their best to respond to emails from parents within two school days.  Please remember that teachers have the responsibility for over 125 students daily and planning time is limited during the school day.

While you’re on Canvas, make sure you haven’t missed any announcements. We are using the Lunch Course to send out some announcements that are grade specific and teachers are using Canvas to send out notices to their classes. Ask your student to show you where to find announcements. You should also take a second to check out your notification settings. In Canvas, you are able to set your notification method (email, text, etc) and frequency (each notice or as a daily or weekly digest). Taking care of adjusting your notifications is another way to ensure you are kept in the loop!

Yesterday, I posted a list of conversation starters on our school FaceBook page. In case you missed that, you can find it here.

Have a great weekend,

Cindy Dillon



09/30/16 - PTA Family Movie Night   10/03/16 - Schools and offices closed  10/06/16 - Interim reports issued  :  More Upcoming Dates


Family “Indoor” Movie Night at Patapsco Middle School

Rain or shine, the show will go on!  Doors open at 7:30pm and the film will start showing at 8:00pm.  Read more.


2017 yearbooks are available online NOW!

Go to to order. Special sales on icons with personalizations* through 9/30/16.    Read more.


Introducing the Canvas Parent Mobile App

HCPSS is excited to share a new mobile app, Canvas Parent, designed to help parents/guardians monitor their children’s progress on the go.  Read more.

HCPSS Connect Text Messages


College Fine Arts Night

Monday, October 10, 7–9pm, Mt. Hebron High School

Designed for parents and students in grades 8–11 interested in higher education in dance, music, theater or the visual arts, the event includes panels focusing on preparing for college, the admissions process, collegiate expectations and professional artists’ insights.


HCPSS Community 5K & 1M Fun Run | October 16, 2016

The Howard County Public School System is proud to present Let's Go HoCo - HCPSS Community 5K & 1 Mile Fun Run!


International Parent Leadership Program (IPLP)

The International Parent Leadership Program (IPLP) is designed to increase leadership capacity of international parents to step into leadership roles in schools and communities as advocates on behalf of the system’s nearly 6,000 international students. Read more.


Breakfast is Served Every Morning

Breakfast is served in the cafeteria from 7:50-8:10 each morning, student breakfast – $2.00. Use the side entrance near the cafeteria.  Read more.


Howard County Association of Student Councils

HCASC invites All Middle and High School students to attend the Howard County Association of Student Councils (HCASC) meetings on the 2nd Wednesday of every month.  Read more.



Students are invited to write an essay about their own dreams for a better community and a better world and what they envision themselves doing.   For additional information and contest rules.


Volunteer for Our Annual Book Fair!

November 14 – 21 in the Library Media Center

Sign up to assist students with their purchases.  All money raised helps support school technology and the library.


Volunteer to Help in the Library Media Center

Assist with checking books in and out to students and help with shelving.  Help is most needed mornings from 8:00 – 8:30 AM


Parent Volunteer Information

Thank you for your interest in volunteering within the Howard County School System! Read more.



PTA Meeting October 11, 7:30pm - Patapsco Conference room.  Everyone is welcome!

Do you love a good party?  Then join the PTA’s School Spirit Committee and help throw some great events for the kids!  This committee plans, promotes and brings to life the following events:

* The Snow Ball (Dance) – Thursday, Jan. 26  8:00-10:00pm

* The Spring Fling (Dance/Open Gym/BINGO) – Friday, March 24  8:00-10:00pm

* The Beach Blast (Outdoor Party) – June 6:00-8:00pm

Contact Caroline Bodziak at or call 443-812-5896.

The PTA website is up and running!  Check it out at



Patapsco Music Boosters Meeting October 11, 7pm - Media Center

Amazon Store

Please remember to use our Amazon link for your purchases...that yields both the PTA and Music Boosters big profits! Read more.



“Community Notices” events are neither sponsored nor endorsed by the Howard County Public School System."

The Mount Hebron Pancake Breakfast

Saturday, October 8, 2016  7:30AM – 10:30AM

MT HEBRON HIGH SCHOOL, 9940 Old Frederick Road

Tickets can be purchased from members of the Mount Hebron Football team or by emailing Kathy Norton at . Proceeds benefit the Mount Hebron Football Program.


Waverly ES Fall Festival

Waverly ES is hosting our annual Fall Fest on October 15 from 12-4pm.  Join us for games, music, entertainment, rock climbing wall, food, vendors and more!  For students who are interested in volunteering, please sign up using the link


Kennedy Krieger Institute

Behavioral Psychology

We can bring out the best in children.  Evening appointments and free parking at four convenient locations. Call 443-923-7508 or


Mt. Hebron High School Viking Backers Booster Club Basket Bingo

Friday November 18, 2016

At The Lodge in Catonsville -  Tickets can be purchased on-line at

All proceeds benefit student sports teams, clubs and organizations of  Mt. Hebron High School


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