August 24, 2021
Dear Beagle Middle School Parents,
We wanted to reach out to you at this time to provide you with some updates regarding: Beagle construction, schedules and lockers, and the open-building tour/open house tentatively scheduled for Thursday, September 2nd. In addition, we will also use this opportunity to introduce our Check and Connect class for the year as well as address some questions regarding school supplies.
Beagle Construction Updates
At this time, Beagle continues to be an active construction site. Inspections will occur later this week, and we are hoping for final occupancy of the building as soon as Monday, August 30th. Please note that occupancy of the building hinges upon successful approval on a variety of inspections, which are beyond the control of Grand Ledge Public Schools.
As we noted last week, there will be a few areas of Beagle that will remain under construction throughout the first trimester of the school year. The good news is that the cafeteria has been completed at this home. However, the pool area, which connects the main building to our STEM, Band, and Choir rooms will remain under construction through the fall. This will impact students taking a STEM class with Mr. Buckland in room 700, Band with Mrs. Zerman room 703, and Choir with Mrs. Burton room 701. Students that need to access Mr. Buckland’s STEM room will do so through the cafeteria; students that need to access Mrs. Burton or Mrs. Zerman’s classroom will do so by exiting the building out of the main entrance to go around the cafeteria and into the classroom. Additional supervision will be in place in appropriate areas for these transitions to ensure the safety of our students. In addition, we will continue to work closely with Clark Construction to ensure the safety of our students during the final phases of construction inside the building.
Schedules and Lockers
As we noted last week, schedules will be released to students and parents on Monday, August 30th in PowerSchool. When logging into PowerSchool, please be sure that you have selected the year 2021-22; this will allow parents and students to view all of the elective courses throughout the year as some electives change each trimester. We will have more detailed information regarding schedules and electives in next week’s communication on Monday morning.
For the start of the school year, we will be holding off on assigning students lockers. Lockers and locker combinations take a great deal of time to program appropriately. We will use the first two-weeks of the year to ensure lockers and combinations are programmed appropriately. Our goal is to provide students with a locker and accurate combination by the third week of school. Students will have ample opportunities to work their locker combinations with staff support during Check and Connect class at the end of the school day. Please note that one of the many changes we are bringing to Beagle this year is the use of backpacks; students will be permitted to carry their backpacks throughout the school day.
Open-Building Tour/Open House
At this time, we still intend to host an open-building tour and our district-wide open house on Thursday, September 2nd. The open-building tour is an opportunity for students and parents to:
- Tour the building locating classrooms
- Update, sign, and submit Emergency Contact Forms
- Obtain a printed schedule if unable to print at home
- Drop-off medications with medical staff
The open-building tour is scheduled as follows:
7th grade: 8am-11am
8th grade: 12pm-3pm
The district-wide open house is scheduled for 4:30pm-6pm at Beagle. This is an opportunity for families to meet teachers. Unfortunately, we will not be able to complete the tasks listed above for the open-building tour during the open house due to time constraints and the potential for high traffic volume through the building. We strongly encourage parents and students to come to the open-building tour with the open house being completely optional later in the day.
Check and Connect Class
We are very excited to introduce our Check and Connect class for this year! After sixth hour, students will attend a 25-minute class at the end of the day, which will--to the greatest extent possible-- be instructed by a teacher they see at some point throughout the school day--mainly their first hour teacher. The goal of this class is to help our students work on the following skills: executive functioning; organization; planning; and building strong, positive relationships with other students. This class also provides an opportunity for students to make a strong connection with an adult in the building that can support their learning needs throughout the year. All students will be provided a planner at Beagle, and planners will be reinforced and supported during Check and Connect time.
School Supplies at the Middle Level
At the middle level, it is recommended to hold off on purchasing specific school supplies until students work with their teachers the first week of school. Given the fact that students will be working with six different teachers makes it challenging to make recommendations for school supplies before school begins. Just as an observation, many students move towards a single binder with tab dividers to house all of their handouts in one spot during the middle school years. From a developmental standpoint with a focus on supporting executive functioning skills, we endorse the use of a 3-ringed binder (1.5 or 2 inch) with 6-7 tab dividers to help keep school materials in one spot. For now, here are some additional, universal school supplies that can be purchased before the school year begins:
- Backpack (students may carry these throughout the year, class-to-class)
- Spiral notebook
- 2-pocket folder
- Black or Blue ink pens
- Small pack of highlighters
- Small pack of dry erase markersPlanners (will be provided to all students at Beagle in Check and Connect class)
- Chromebooks (will also be provided to all students mid-September)
These are all the updates that we have at this time. On Monday morning next week, we will send out another update to our families. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns.
Dave Kushman and Eric Leopold