Principal Watry's February Update

Good Afternoon Erie Families, 


January was an amazing month at Erie Middle School. Teachers have been working hard to help students have a strong start for the third quarter with many engaging learning activities and events that prepare them for the rigors and expectations of high school. We are excited that so many eighth grade families were able to attend the registration night at Erie High School on January 29th. The transition from middle school to ninth grade is crucial to the success of our students, and we continue to work collaboratively with Erie High School to make this transition as seamless as possible.  


Educators at Erie Middle School have continued their schoolwide efforts to assure that our students are prepared for high school and any Advanced Placement courses they choose. While there are many skills and standards students develop throughout middle school to provide the tools to be successful in high school, there are some common themes you will see in all classes from sixth to eighth grade. 


For example, at EMS, we emphasize the development of study skills, time management and self-advocacy. Extra time is devoted in Pride Time to reinforce this skill development. Other schoolwide efforts include providing multiple opportunities for students to write with greater complexity. All of our teachers continue to guide students to explain their reasoning by citing evidence to support a claim. Increasing opportunities for students to engage in advanced math courses is another way we prepare students for high school. Research shows that receiving instruction and meeting the standards in Algebra 1 before ninth grade is a predictor of future success on the SAT. 


Connections and relationships are also important to support our students, and involvement in clubs and athletics at the middle school increases the possibility of involvement in extracurriculars at the high school level. As Erie High Principal Matt Buchler shared in a video with our 8th grade families during registration, students involved in co-curricular activities are more successful academically and have a higher level of social/emotional well being. We encourage good attendance habits for students to carry with them into high school. Thank you for helping us to assure that every student attends every class, every day.  We will continue to monitor the progress of our students in these areas and provide additional plans of support when needed. 


Parent Teacher Conferences this Feb. 10th and 12th are reserved as a time to create such plans of support for our students who are not yet fully on the path of preparedness for the next grade. We will bring the team of teachers together with the student and parent/guardian to develop a plan for what we can all do to support student growth and development and improve grades, attendance, and/or involvement in school. 


One final opportunity we would like to explore to prepare your student for ninth grade is to allow our 8th grade students to take an 8th grade PSAT exam. This practice exam will give students information to support growth and build familiarity with the exam before taking the PSAT in ninth grade. We will provide two different days when students can practice with this assessment. Please click HERE for more details and to register.   


We appreciate your support and are proud to work with you and your students as they pursue excellence in their academics and co-curricular activities. I am truly proud to be your principal. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact by phone or email. Have a great day.


Sincerely,



Kim Watry

Principal

Erie Middle School

watry_kim@svvsd.org