Back to School Letter
Dear Parents and Students,
Welcome to the 2006 - 2007 school year at Mabry Middle School! In preparation for the new school year, I have some very important information to share with you. At the beginning of August, this letter is being mailed to all registered students.
Our website has met with an overwhelming response, serving over 1,000,000 files each month to people all over the world. We have received emails as far away as New Delhi, India, Tasmania, and Australia. You will want to visit our new site frequently as it contains a great deal of important information, including all of our teachers' blogs. If you navigate to our old site on the Cobb County server, you will be directed to go to the new address: http://mabryonline.org
Additionally, we have also created a secured site to provide access to important information that I do not want to go beyond our immediate school community. I am providing you with this access information and am requesting several things of you:
- Save this information in a safe place.
- Please do not call the school to request this information as we will not give it out over the phone to anyone, at any time, for any reason.
- If you stop by the school to pick this information up, you will need to be prepared to provide picture ID to demonstrate you have a child currently enrolled at Mabry.
- Please do not share this access information with anyone, at any time, for any reason.
As you know, I take safety and security very seriously. [INFORMATION DELETED FROM THIS ONLINE POST]
Charger Day, your convenient one-stop shopping experience for most of your back to school needs, is scheduled for Thursday, August 10, 2006, from 10:30AM to 1:00PM. You will have the opportunity to conveniently take care of all of these back to school purchases:
- Join PTSA ($3.50 each)
- Donate to PTSA (Your $40.00 family donation sustains their not doing fundraising!)
- PTSA Membership Directory ($5.00 if available)
- Selected School Store items (at significant savings!)
- School Pictures (Package prices vary. Click the picture to download the flier. Have your student come with you dressed appropriately for school pictures!)
- School Agenda ($5.00)
- School Lunches
- School Yearbook ($25.00 now; $30.00 on January 1st; $35.00 on May 1st if available)
- Performing Arts donations
Additionally, we will:
- Post pod and homeroom assignments for 6th, 7th, and 8th graders
- Post bus routes
- Allow all students to quickly find their homeroom so they will know exactly where to go on the first day of school. Teachers will not be prepared to visit with parents or students as they will be extremely busy getting their classes ready for the first day of school. Therefore, we are asking that everyone end their Charger Day by quickly locating their new homeroom and then exiting the building.
Please keep in mind:
- Last year, for those who came at the very beginning of Charger Day, this was a very congested and busy event that at times had long lines at different stations. Those who came later had significantly less or even no wait time at all.
- We are "closing up shop" promptly at 1:00PM.
- All of our volunteers will be wearing red. If you don't want people to think you have the answer to the meaning of life, don't wear red on Charger Day!
- Parking will be an issue, so please carpool.
- Students must be accompanied by their parent. No students are to be dropped off or left unattended.
- Enter from the back of the school in the bus parking lot off of Steinhauer Road. The main entrance will be for registration only.
- You may enter the building from any of the 3 double doors under the back covered walkway in the bus parking lot. These doors will not open until 10:30AM.
- Read the important information related to Charger Day posted at MabryOnline.org.
- Download, print, and bring with you the color-coded Charger Day Checklist and the color-coded Charger Day Map [use the information you received in the mail]. We can only provide you with black and white copies at the doors. The color-coded maps will correspond with the color of the balloons located at each of the different stations. These two items will help minimize confusion and facilitate your getting in and out quickly.
- We do not take plastic (yet), only checks. We will not be prepared to provide change for cash.
- You will need to write several checks as money goes to different organizations as indicated on the Charger Day Checklist.
- When possible, having your checks already made out before you arrive will help speed up this process. The information you need to accomplish this is located on the Charger Day Checklist.
While a bit hectic, we hope that Charger Day will be a convenience for our school community, providing you with the opportunity to get most of the major school year purchases taken care of at one time while learning your team assignments and homeroom location. Be sure to save all of your receipts.
Take the time to introduce yourself to me. I will have 500 MabryOnline.org magnets, suitable for hanging (on your refrigerator) which I will be giving out as I walk around. I hope you join me in looking forward to a wonderful year full of academic success.
Dr. Tim Tyson
Mabry Middle School
posted on: June 27, 2006
Changes in No Work Left Behind
I want to thank everyone for the significant contributions that have been made to our new No Work Left Behind homework policy. Our goal was to instill excellent work habits in our students so that Mabry has a work culture in which homework was expected, valued, and meaningful to the learning process. We have seen a significant increase in timely homework completion.
Since we have successfully implemented this program for 9 weeks, we are hopeful that our students have developed strong work habits that will persist in helping them reach our school goal: maximized student achievement. In an effort to maximize our teachers’ planning time and to minimize classroom disruption in PE and Connections, we are now transitioning the No Work Left Behind program.
Essentially, the goals for the program remain the same. The structure, however, will be slightly altered beginning on Monday, October 24, 2005. Students who do not turn in satisfactorily completed homework on the same day the assignment is due will:
- Be issued a slip to go home to the parent informing them that the child did not have satisfactory homework completion from the night before and are
- Required to attend an 8:15AM morning homework session in the theater on the next school day.
- Students who attend this session and turn in their completed work by the end of the session will be given at least half credit for the work.
- If a student does not attend the morning session and does not turn in the completed assigned work by the end of the morning session at 8:45AM, the student will receive a zero for the assignment.
- In order to avoid getting the zero for the work that was not completed on the day it was due, the student must have done two things: attend the morning session and turn in the completed assignment to the morning homework session teacher by 8:45.
- Work turned in after the 8:45 bell will not be given credit.
- Students who fail to complete homework 3 times in a given 9 weeks will not be able to participate in the grade level block parties which reward students for good behavior and homework completion.
At the teacher’s discretion, the student may be required to come to the teacher’s classroom for instructional assistance rather than doing the work in the theater with the morning homework session. In our effort to encourage greater responsibility for our students and have a less intensive intervention, students will no longer miss any classes as part of No Work Left Behind.
We look forward to your continued support of our efforts to maximize student academic achievement.
posted on: October 15, 2005
No Work Left Behind!
Everyone is at least somewhat familiar with the new federal education law commonly referred to as No Child Left Behind. Well, Mabry Middle School is introducing a new "law" of our own, No Work Left Behind!
Based in the deeply-held belief in our school community that homework completion is essential to our school goal, maximized student academic achievement, we are instituting a new homework policy at Mabry. And I must take a minute to brag on the extreme level of professionalism this represents in our certified staff! I have never heard of a group of teachers who were willing to give so much to their students as this policy represents! Your teachers at Mabry are unparalleled in their professional commitment to maximizing student academic achievement!
Having said that, let me take you through this new policy. All homework at Mabry must be completed on time as assigned by teachers. Period. We believe this is critical to our school goal. In most schools around the nation, when a child does not do their homework on time, they simply get a zero, or perhaps a greatly reduced grade when the assigned work is turned in late, irrespective of what they learn or do not learn.
When a child does not do his/her homework, that child fails to practice and master the educational objectives the teacher is expecting of all students. Our teachers are no longer willing to accept this lack of learning and initiative by dismissing this lack of commitment from students as a zero, which has been our standard practice. Teachers will require every child to complete all homework assignments. On the day a students fails to satisfactorily complete homework, s/he will stay with the teacher during PE and Connections time until the work is done satisfactorily. And while the student may not receive complete credit for the work, they will get partial credit as well as the practice the learning objective requires.
If a student fails to complete 3 homework assignments in a given 9 weeks for a teacher, the student will spend a day with the ISS teacher catching up on work and receiving an intensive help session with organizational skills and time management strategies. In fact, many of you are familiar with Stephen Covey's, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The help session these students will experience is based in that same work which he re-wrote for kids! Our goal is to facilitate work ethic, self-direction, and academic success. This will not be entered as an ISS assignment in your student's record.
At Mabry, we have excellent students who do what is expected of them. Becoming self-directed problem solvers is critical to their future success. We anticipate that once students understand that an integral part of Mabry's school culture is adequate and timely work completion, they will rise to this challenge and meet this expectation.
Since this is a new local school policy that initially requires more of the teachers' planning time, we will monitor it closely. Parents should never allow their child to fail to complete homework at home anticipating that they will be required to do it at school the next day. If we believe that the program is being abused or does not prove to be as successful as we anticipate, we may modify it or discontinue it altogether. And, this is a two-way street. If you feel you would prefer to not have your child participate, you may send in a note to that effect to the front office, and your child will receive zeros for homework not done. More detailed operational components of the plan are included in the student folder.
We appreciate your support in making certain that your child achieves to the best of his/her ability. And in that regard, we appreciate your support in making certain that your child does his/her homework. And I appreciate our teacher's professionalism in providing this opportunity to increase student success through accountability for timely and adequate homework completion. Managed appropriately, the No Work Left Behind policy at Mabry will greatly benefit your child!
posted on: August 10, 2005
Parents received a letter from Dr. Tyson which included access information to the secured site. Regrettably, in about half of the letters, the printer dropped an underline between the two words that make up the User Name. There should be no space between the two words, just an underline between the two words. The access is denied if you do not use the underline between the two words with no spaces.
We apologize for not noticing this printing error.
posted on: August 01, 2005