Fri, 02/24/2017 - 2:02pm

From the Principal’s Desk…

Something interesting has been happening here at school that has me reflecting on our Gallup Student Engagement survey results that we recently received. This survey assesses the degree to which our students are involved in and enthusiastic about school. It also determines the level of hope, entrepreneurial aspirations, and financial and career literacy. Here at Patapsco, our grand mean was 4.06/5 which is quite good as compared to the overall mean for all HCPSS students (3.89). What we know is that our kids feel both engaged and hopeful and for that we are grateful. Where our students did not report high marks was in the area of entrepreneurial aspirations. That’s where our story begins. Apparently, some of our students have decided to right the ship in regard to this score and start a business of their own. You may have read about this sensation on social media: it’s slime. I mean, it’s literally slime. They are making and selling it: you can even special order the stuff. While we applaud the industry it takes to start and run a business, school really isn’t the place to operate said business. So, if your middle schooler is mixing up laundry detergent and borax with a sprinkle of glitter or a few drops food coloring, please ensure the loot is not transported to school for retail sale. While we applaud their entrepreneurial spirit, we aren’t happy when the slime gets stuck to textbooks or stains the carpeting. Thanks so much for helping us direct their energies toward learning so we can maintain and maybe even improve that engagement score.

Before I leave the topic of the Gallup Survey entirely, it’s worth mentioning the statements students respond to, when phrased as  questions, are great dinner table or car conversation items. To save you the time of looking, below are the statements students score on a scale of 1-5:


  • At this school, I get to do what I do best every day.

  • My teachers make me feel my schoolwork is important.

  • I feel safe in this school.

  • I have fun at school.

  • I have a best friend at school.

  • In the last seven days, someone has told me I have done good work at school.

  • In the last seven days, I have learned something interesting at school.

  • The adults at my school care about me.


  • I know I will graduate from high school.

  • I have a great future ahead of me.

  • I can think of many ways to get good grades.

  • I have many goals.

  • I can find many ways around problems.

  • I have a mentor who encourages my development.

  • I know I will find a good job in the future.


  • I will invent something that changes the world.

  • I plan to start my own business.

  • I am learning how to start and run a business.  [Help them pick something other than slime, please.]

This afternoon, students in the 6th and 7th grade will be bringing home course recommendations for the 2017-18 school year.  We ask that you review these recommendations with your student, then sign and return the form. If you have any questions about the courses your student will be enrolled in next year, please contact the staff member who made the recommendation as soon as possible to discuss your questions or concerns.

Hot off the presses is the approved calendar for 2017-2018 school year.  The first day of school for students will be September 5, 2017. While the start date is probably the most noteworthy detail, you should also know the entirety of Spring Break is not guaranteed. The dates set aside for this break may also be used for snow make-up days. So, keep this in mind if you plan those trips a year in advance as students may be required to attend school for the second half of that week in the event of snow closures.

Finally, the winter sessions set aside for parent/teacher conferences are now open for scheduling. Each teacher has 28 ten-minute time slots to offer for this purpose. Please log on to you Parent Portal to schedule a conference with teachers if your student is struggling or for classes where you have other pressing concerns to discuss. In general, if your student is earning A/B’s and is not expressing concerns or frustration for a particular subject, winter conferences are not necessary.

Enjoy your weekend,

Cindy Dillon

P.S. I can not believe I almost forgot to say this, Daylight Saving Time starts in two weeks - March 12th! That means we have to start making adjustments to our evening routine now in order to avoid the shock of losing an hour of sleep. I’ll check for some resources and post them on our Facebook page for you soon.


03/08/17 - Interim progress reports issued  :  More Upcoming Dates

Parent/Teacher Conferences

Parent/Teacher Conferences are scheduled for March 8 & 9, 2017. Parents and Guardians of Patapsco Middle School students will once again be able to schedule conferences through Connect.  Read more.

Heart and Sole Program

Heart & Sole is a Middle School program that aims to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. Read more.

Speakers and Volunteers Needed for Career Day

Career Day is coming back to Patapsco - and soon! Read more.

Patapsco Performers will be presenting "Peter Pan Jr."

Shows are March 31st, April 1st, and April 2nd and in order to put on a successful show, we need your help. Read more.

2017 yearbooks are available online NOW!

Go to to order.  Read more.

HCPSS Connect Text Messages



Our next Patapsco Music Booster Meeting will be Tuesday, March 14th at 7pm in the Media Center.  We hope to see you there.  

Don't forget to like us on Facebook at:  If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email us as

"Music in the Park" Festival

Permission packets were sent home with students and forms and payment are due back to Music teachers by Friday, March 3rd.  Please contact your child's music teacher if you would like to arrange a payment plan.

Chaperones Needed

We currently have less than half the amount of chaperones signed up for the Hershey Park trip than we need for a safe and successful event.  If you can join us, please return the chaperone paperwork and payment ASAP or contact a music director with questions.  It's a great time every year and we hope you can come! 

Patapsco Music Boosters

Help Support the Patapsco's Music Program!  Donate to the Giving Club today!  The Giving Club is the primary funding source of the Patapsco Music Boosters.  We are currently $1,000 short of our annual goal.  Beyond the normal operating budget that funds sheet music, adjudicator scores, accompanist fees, bowties and cummerbunds, and special events, we are also looking to fund two tubas and a bass clarinet as soon as possible.  Please consider supporting the Patapsco Music Boosters through a Giving Club, and complete and return the giving club form which can be found here Thank you for your support! 

Also from the Music Department

Our annual 8th Grade Recital Night: "A Little Knight Music," will be held at 7pm on Wednesday, April 26th in the school's cafetorium.  All 8th grade students with a musical talent are welcome to register to perform-- first come, first served.  We are also looking to have a diverse set of musical talents and genres represented in the program.  Students can participate as soloists, in an ensemble, with parents, or with teachers (given ample notice).  This is a very memorable event for our 8th graders.  Registration forms are available outside Ms. Mills' room, D-11.

Support the PTA and Music Boosters When You Shop On Amazon

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


PTA Meeting March 8, 7:00pm - Media Center.  Everyone is welcome!  

(April 5, May 10, June 7)

Patapsco Staff luncheon

PTA Hospitality Committee

Parent/Teacher Conferences are right around the corner. The PTA parents like to provide the staff with a lunch the during conferences.  We can always use extra donations and help. Please check out the link and see if you can help.

Spring Fling March 24 8:00-10:00pm

Bring on Spring!  We’re celebrating the end of the snow and the start of the warm season with the Spring Fling at school on Friday, March 24 from 8-10pm.  There will be a DJ and dancing in the cafeteria, concessions for sale, games and activities in the gym, and BINGO in the media center.  Will we have more of those cool Under Armour prizes to give away?  You’ll have to show up to find out!   As always, we can’t do it without your help.  We’re in need of chaperones, concessions help, and cleaner uppers.  Please check out  to see if there’s a job right for you!

Tickets will be on sale for $3 (cash or check made out to Patapsco PTA) March 22-24 during all lunches.  A signed permission slip is required for ticket purchase and can be found on the PTA’s website here: .  Forms will also go home with students the week before the event.

*Parents will be called to pick up if student:  is destructive with decorations, mishandles games, shows disrespect to adult chaperones, exits the building.  Students with more than one offense will not be allowed to attend the next PTA social event.

Please contact Caroline Bodziak at with any questions.

International Committee

Interested in celebrating Patapsco’s many cultures?  Patapsco Middle School employs an International Liaison, Ms. Jamie Kim, who is interested in partnering with the PTA to explore ways to celebrate the diverse cultural heritages of our students and their families.  If this type of activity interests you, please contact the PTA Volunteer Coordinator, Erin Lanthier, at

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


Mt Hebron HS Mulch Sale

Spring is just around the corner! Time to think about sprucing up your yard.  The Mt Hebron HS Mulch Sale runs from February 15-March 15, 2017. Read more.


Mt Hebron HS Viking 5K and Fun Run

The Viking 5K and 1 Mile Fun Run will be held at Mount Hebron High School on April 22 at 9AM. The 5K is a cross country course around local neighborhoods and trails. There are many prize categories at many levels of experience. The race is organized by the Viking Backers, a volunteer parent group that supports all the athletics and extracurricular clubs at MHHS.  Please see the race WWW site for more information:


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