Fri, 09/08/2017 - 2:29pm

From the Principal’s Desk…

Greetings from Patapsco! We have had an outstanding opening week. Thank you so much for sending us your kids well rested, fed, and ready to learn. And, thank you for the positive feedback you’ve provided thus far; we appreciate knowing your kids are happy here at school. Bill Barnes, Chief Academic Officer, and Gina Massella, Director of Shared Accountability, were here on opening day and were very impressed by our students as we walked the hallways. We agree with that assessment!


Back to School Night is scheduled for Thursday, September 14th at 6:30 pm. We are looking forward to providing you with an informative experience and hope you’ll appreciate being able to hear from the grade level teams. In order to help us meet your expectations for a pleasant evening, we have arranged for shuttles to transport BTSN guests from nearby parking lots to the school grounds. It would be helpful if folks could car pool, and then hop on one of these shuttles: we don’t want to inconvenience our neighbors by blocking their driveways. Parking on school grounds will be reserved for staff and visitors in need of handicap parking. For the full scoop on BTSN at Patapsco Middle, check out the BTSN news item on our website. This year, we’re also inviting you to come for Back to School Days on September 18-20th. Parents are welcome to come sit in on a class or three or five on these days following our BTSN event.


This week, we reviewed school-based emergency procedures with our students and conducted a few practice drills. I am pleased to say the kids were pretty great. Today, we conducted a building evacuation and reverse evacuation drill. This is classically the type of evacuation drill students find to be the most routine: the bell sounds and they follow a staff member to the assigned assembly area.  Because they feel most comfortable with this type of drill, they were very effective getting themselves outside in quick time - just under one minute thirty seconds! What I need them to work on is keeping themselves in straight lines and relatively quiet so staff are able to take attendance once we get out of doors. Please reinforce this expectation with them as you talk about the week and our emergency drill procedures. We are required to conduct 16 drills throughout the school year. These drills will consist of a combination of building evacuations and in-place drills. We will do our best to strike a balance between getting in the required drills and maintaining our focus on teaching and learning. We need you to take some time over the weekend to review the guidelines with your student. Ask them to show you where the information is in their handbook (pages 1 and 3) and make sure they completed the assignment on the Emergency Procedures page.


As you review the information relating to building and environmental emergencies, we urge you to take some time to talk to your students about personal safety and awareness of surroundings. Last night, I sent an email about one of our students who was approached by an unidentified male yesterday as she made her way from the bus stop to her home. Thankfully, she was aware of her surroundings and knew just what to do to avoid the unwanted attention of this person. For more information about how to have a conversation about these safety issues, check out this article from


Speaking of safety and emergency situations, are you the parent or guardian of one of the 554 students with updated Emergency Contact Info? You rock! We don’t have 100% yet, but we are closing in on it at 78% (this is a 2% improvement from this time last year). I will be taking the time to email the families of each student without a current submission date.  So, if you receive an email directly from me this weekend, and you think you’ve already completed this task, please double check.  If you still think it’s been completed, we will need to check your account to ensure there is no problem with it. We need to be able to reach you in case of emergencies, so a proper and complete annual update is really important.


Finally, I want to thank the PTA on behalf of the staff for the fabulous breakfast they provided on our opening day. What a great way to start the year! As we head into the weekend, we want to extend our thoughts and hopes for the safety and well-being of our friends and family living in the path of Hurricane Irma as well as to those who are dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.


Wishing you a great weekend,

Cindy Dillon



09/14/17 - Back to School Night  09/20/17 - Student Picture Day  :  More Upcoming Dates


Parent Volunteer Information

Thank you for your interest in volunteering within the Howard County School System! We value our volunteers and the contributions they make to our students and schools. Read more.


Interested in joining an Enrichment Seminar?

Enrichment Seminars are open to all students at Patapsco Middle School. These seminars offer learning opportunities in an area of interest. Space for each seminar is limited. Seats will be granted on a first come, first serve basis.  Read more.


You’re Invited

Attention Parents/Guardians: All Patapsco students will be enrolled in Health Class for one semester of the school year. Human Sexuality is an important instructional unit. Anyone desiring information regarding the content objectives is invited to join Mrs. Sellner and Ms. Stielper in room F4 from 6:00 to 6:30 on September 14, 2017.



World Drumming Intramural

Come join Mrs. Shum's Drums, a world drumming intramural.  Rehearsals are on Monday mornings from 7:15-8:00 am beginning on October 2nd.  Permission forms and turn in folder are outside of room D-11 (the chorus room). Space is limited so get your form turned in as soon as possible to ensure your spot!


Attention Girls of Patapsco Middle

New this year - Patapsco Middle School will be offering the CodeHER Club after school on Tuesdays beginning mid October. This club offers a fun introduction to computer science for girls in grades 6 - 8. Learn to make emojis, LED dresses, games, apps, websites, music, and more with code! No experience is necessary.


Permission slips will be available beginning Monday, September 18th, and may be obtained from the bulletin board in the C hallway of school (across from Mrs. Cozzo’s room). Please return your permission slip to Mrs. Cozzo (room C1) as soon as possible.  PLEASE NOTE: This activity is limited to the first 25 girls who sign up!  No requests to call for permission over the telephone will be granted.


Professional learning Book Clubs

We are excited to invite you to join us this year for our professional learning through book clubs.  The teachers will be participating in four different professional books which we invite you to purchase and participate as equal members.  Read more.


Updates from the Music Department:

-Calling all piano players:  If you play piano at an advanced level and would consider performing with one of the school's choirs, please see Mrs. Mills to arrange a time to play for her.  Many former Patapsco students have accompanied the choirs and some have even won the Best Accompanist award at the Hersheypark trip!


-Would you like to experience playing African drums and xylophones?  If so, you might be interested in the "Shum's Drums" World Music Drumming Intramural!   Pick up a registration form TODAY in front of the music room, D-11.  The Intramural has limited space and seats will be given on a "first-come, first-served" basis.


-GT Chorus:  Auditions for the 7th and 8th grade GT Middle School Chorus will be held at Burleigh Manor Middle School from 4:30-6:30 PM on Monday, September 25th and Tuesday, September 26th.  We would love to have as many Patapsco students as possible representing us at the county level.  Interested Chorus students will need to return Registration forms to Mrs. Mills no later than Monday, September 11th.  Thank you!


6th Graders Head to Northbay

The 6th Grade class will once again travel to North East, Maryland to participate in a very exciting outdoor educational experience.  Read more.




The PTA will not have a traditional membership meeting on Sep 14th, but look forward to WELCOMING you back in the lobby of the school as you arrive for the nite!!  Please stop by to see us and see what we have to offer this year. Bring your credit card, check or cash to donate to and join the PTA. Magnets are $5. You can find the membership forms on our website as well as a link for the new online store!


Hope to see you on Wednesday, November 15th from 7-8 pm for our next regular meeting!


It's time for a Fun Knight

The PTA is kicking off the first of three "Fun Knights" on Friday, October 6 from 7:00-9:00pm.  This event has it all:  A DJ and dancing in the cafeteria, BINGO with prizes in the media center, plus basketball and an additional physical activity in the gym.  Tickets are $3 and will go on sale for students the week of the event.  Check out the Sign-up Genius.  Did you know that your PTA membership could get your child free admission to one or all three Fun Knights?  Check out the Gold Sponsor (three free) and Silver Sponsor (one free) options to your PTA membership on the PTA's online store.  We are looking for someone interested in shadowing this year's School Spirit coordinator as it is her last year at the school.  Contact Caroline Bodziak at for more information.


Like us on Facebook – search Patapsco Middle School PTA.



Please join us for our first Patapsco Music Boosters Meeting for the 2017 - 2018 school year.  

Patapsco Music Boosters Meeting September 12 at 7 pm - Media Center (10/10, 11/14, 01/09, 02/13, 03/13, 04/10, 05/08)

Please mark your calendars now.   There are no meetings scheduled for December or June.


The Patapsco Music Boosters is a volunteer group of parents just like you!  We provide logistical support to our school's music directions so that concerts, adjudications, and field trips go smoothly.  Plus, we raise monies to keep our band, chorus, and orchestra in quality instruments, equipment, and sheet music!  Please don't forget to fill out the Music Boosters form that went home with your students this week to learn more about how to get involved with the Music Boosters.


One of our biggest fundraisers is the BATTLE OF THE BOX TOPS is back!!  Get your box tops to the music directors as soon as possible-- this battle between Band, Chorus, and Orchestra will last until Wednesday, September 20th.  The ensemble with the most box tops per student at the end of the Battle will be awarded the coveted Box Tops trophy for their classroom.


We are also thrilled to roll out our new Patapsco Music Boosters website .  Come check us out!  You can also always reach at or on Facebook at


We hope to see you on the 12th!



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


Prudential Spirit of Community Award

No matter what your volunteer project, we want to hear about it read more.

HCYP is developing a Middle School Girls Basketball league!

Would your daughter enjoy playing basketball on a team with other girls from Patapsco Middle? If so, then this team is for her!


On September 20th and September 28th at 6:30-8:30 pm, we will be holding basketball tryouts in the Patapsco Middle School gym.

To sign your daughter up for tryouts, please send an email to and When you email, please include your daughter's name, contact information, grade and indicate that she goes to Patapsco Middle School.  You can send questions and comments to these two email addresses as well. If your daughter is interested or if she has friends at Patapsco that would be interested, please sign up and spread the word!.


Of note, this is sponsored through HCYP not the Howard County Public School system.





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