Albany Middle School

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Student Handbook

ALBANY MIDDLE SCHOOL

1259 Brighton Avenue

Albany, CA 94706

(510) 558-3600

fax (510) 559-6547

 










Deborah Brill Kelly Britton

Principal Counselor


David Haupert Karen Friesen

Assistant Principal Counselor


Brandon Mohan

Counselor


Welcome students and families to Albany Middle School. We look forward to working with you and your student during the 2016-2017 school year. The purpose of this planner and handbook is to increase student organizational skills, make available information pertaining to Albany Middle School policies, programs, and procedures, and to increase communication between home and school.


Albany Middle School Vision


In a safe, engaging environment, each member of the AMS community strives toward excellence, acceptance of differences, exploration of ideas, and responsibility to a larger world.









Student Information

My Class Websites:

Website https://albanyusd.asp.aeries.net/student/LoginParent.aspx


User name


Password

Website


Log-On


Password

Website


Log-On


Password

Website


Log-On


Password

Others Passwords & Log On Info:








Locker Combinations:



 
 

Other Important Info:














6th Grade Bell Schedule


Regular Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:50 a.m.

Period 2

8:55 to 9:45 a.m.

Period 3

9:50 to 10:40 a.m.

Period 4

10:45 to 11:35 a.m

Period 5

11:40 to 12:15 p.m.

LUNCH

12:15 to 1:00 p.m.

Period 7

1:05 to 2:10 p.m.

Period 8

2:15 to 3:05 p.m.

Wednesday/Advisory Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:40 a.m.

Period 2

8:45 to 9:25 a.m.

Period 3

9:30 to 10:10 a.m.

Period 4

10:15 to 10:55 a.m

Period 5

11:00 to 11:40 a.m.

LUNCH

11:40 to 12:20 p.m.

ADVISORY

12:25 to 12:45 p.m.

Period 7

12:45 to 1:25 p.m.

Period 8

1:30 to 2:10 p.m.

Conference/End of Quarter Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:40 a.m.

Period 2

8:45 to 9:25 a.m.

Period 3

9:30 to 10:10 a.m.

Period 4

10:15 to 10:55 a.m.

Period 5

11:00 to 11:30 a.m.

LUNCH

11:30 to 12:15 p.m.

Period 7

12:20 to 1:10 p.m.

Period 8

1:15 to 1:50 p.m.


7th/8th Grade Bell Schedule

Regular Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:50 a.m.

Period 2

8:55 to 9:45 a.m.

Period 3

9:50 to 10:40 a.m.

Period 4

10:45 to 11:35 a.m

Period 5

11:40 to 12:30 p.m.

LUNCH

12:30 to 1:15 p.m.

Period 7

1:20 to 2:10 p.m.

Period 8

2:15 to 3:05 p.m.

Wednesday/Advisory Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:40 a.m.

Period 2

8:45 to 9:25 a.m.

Period 3

9:30 to 10:10 a.m.

Period 4

10:15 to 10:55 a.m

Period 5

11:00 to 11:40 a.m.

ADVISORY

11:40 to 12:00 p.m.

LUNCH

12.00 to 12:40 p.m.

Period 7

12:45 to 1:25 p.m.

Period 8

1:30 to 2:10 p.m.

Conference/End of Quarter Schedule

Period 1

8:00 to 8:40 a.m.

Period 2

8:45 to 9:25 a.m.

Period 3

9:30 to 10:10 a.m.

Period 4

10:15 to 10:55 a.m

Period 5

11:00 to 11:40 a.m.

LUNCH

11:40 to 12:25 p.m

Period 7

12:30 to 1:10 p.m.

Period 8

1:15 to 1:50 p.m.




Absent Work Planning Sheet




Period

Class

What To Do When Absent

Buddy + Contact Info

1

   





2

   





3

   





4

   





5

   





7

   





8

   











Studying Planning Sheet


Period

Class

Study Techniques to Use

Types of Assessments

(quiz, test, project, essay, etc.)

1

   





2

   





3

   





4

   





5

   





7

   





8

   











AMS STUDENT HANDBOOK

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Learning Environment , Student Support

Services, and Discipline pp. 7-9


  • Academic Integrity
  • Behavior and Conduct Code
  • BEST (Building Effective Schools Together)
  • Counseling/Mental Health Services
  • Disciplinary Procedures
  • Dress Code
  • Electronics
  • Grading
  • Harassment Policy
  • Sexual Harassment Policy
  • Substitute Teachers

Attendance pp. 9-10


  • Closed Campus
  • Extended Trips
  • Illness at School
  • Leaving School Early
  • Prepared and Ready to Learn
  • Requests for Homework when Absent
  • Tardy Policy

Communication and Community pp. 10-11


  • Aeries Student / Parent Portal
  • Albany Middle School Website
  • Back-to-School Night
  • Cobra Clarion/AMS eTree
  • Open House
  • PTA
  • Parent Volunteers
  • School Site Council
  • Telephone/Voicemail/Email

Policies and Procedures pp. 11-12


  • Balloons and Birthday Treats
  • Bikes, Rollerblades, Scooters, and Skateboards
  • Food Delivery
  • Grading
  • Immunizations
  • Lost and Found
  • Medication at School
  • Money and Valuables
  • P.E. Uniforms
  • Postings
  • Student Drop-off/Pick-up
  • Student Planner
  • Visitors to School
 

Student Life pp. 12-13


  • After School Sports
  • Athletic Eligibility
  • Clubs
  • Dances
  • Noontime Activities

Homework Philosophy and Guidelines  p. 14


Internet and Computer Guidelines p. 15

 

 


LEARNING ENVIRONMENT, STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES, AND DISCIPLINE


Academic Integrity Policy


Cheating includes, but is not limited to, the following: Giving or copying work from others, plagiarism (not giving credit for sources, including the Internet), looking at restricted materials during a test, getting or giving answers during or before a test.


Please see our school website for current information regarding our policy.


Behavior and Conduct Code


Albany Middle School strives to provide a learning environment in which the needs of each of its members are respected. Teachers have a right to teach and students have a right to learn. AMS has high expectations of its students and every effort will be made to support students in being responsible members of the school community.


Each student will:


  • Attend school punctually and regularly.
  • Follow school and classroom rules.
  • Treat others with respect and dignity.
  • Complete assignments on time and participate in classroom activities.
  • Treat all school personnel respectfully.
  • Carry a hall pass when out of class.
  • Respect public and private property. Take good care of furniture, books, restrooms, equipment and other facilities.
  • Refrain from any form of graffiti including writing on desks.
  • Refrain from chewing gum on campus.
  • Eat only in assigned eating areas outside and dispose of all trash appropriately by recycling and composting.
  • Be academically honest. Cheating (providing or copying work) and forgery are unacceptable.

Some further rules to follow:


  • Students may not borrow or loan money.
  • Do not buy, sell, or trade any item.
  • The school office is the center of many activities. Students entering any office shall conduct themselves in a respectful manner.
  • When problems cannot be solved in an appropriate way (talking it out), students will seek assistance from a counselor or other school staff member.
  • Show courtesy and awareness of others when walking in the school hallways and on the staircases. Keep to the right side, do not push, shove, or crowd into doorways. Make way for people to pass if you are in the way.
  • Walk when in the school building or courtyard. Students may run on the blacktop and Cougar Field. Playing with sports equipment is not permitted in the building or in the courtyard.  
  • Riding bikes, skateboards, or scooters in the courtyard or building is prohibited at all times. These items must be locked up in the cages during the school day.
  • Excessive tardies, referrals or suspensions by 8th grade students during the final semester may result in the loss of one or more end-of-year activities.

BEST - Building Effective Schools Together- A Positive Behavioral Support System


AMS implements the program, which is an integrated system of school wide, classroom, and individual student supports designed to provide effective tactics and strategies to improve behavioral outcomes for students.


Our four guiding principles are:


Be Safe.

Be Respectful.

Be Responsible.

Be an Ally.


Counseling/Mental Health Services


The counseling staff at Albany Middle School is an integral part of the AMS program. They are available to assist students with any school related problem, e.g. academic, social, interpersonal relationships, and crisis management. Services include individual and group counseling (support group, grief group, and conflict-resolution). Referrals are also made to outside agencies.


Teachers may allow students to see counselors during the school day if the need is urgent. Counselors are also available to meet with students before and after school and at lunch.


Parents/guardians may contact a counselor to talk about problems concerning student adjustment at school, discuss concerns they have about their children, consult about outside agencies or therapists, or make appointments for conferences. Our program also includes mental health interns for at-risk students.


Disciplinary Procedures


To encourage the success of our students, school staff, students, and families must work together to support appropriate behavior at school. Students need the adults in their lives to set clear guidelines and follow through with fair and consistent consequences for misbehavior. Students also need the opportunity to repair any harm they have caused and to resolve conflict. This goes hand in hand with restorative justice practices that help students to learn and grow from their mistakes while maintaining the integrity of our school community.


When a student is involved in some form of misbehavior, a review of the incident will occur. The student’s previous behavior record will be taken into consideration when determining appropriate consequences for misbehavior.

Parents/guardians may be notified via phone or e-mail depending on the individual circumstances.


Level 1 The first level of discipline is usually within the classroom. Teachers may assign detention, call parents/guardians, or withdraw classroom privileges, including being excluded from class field trips. (Depending upon severity of misbehavior, a higher-level consequence may be assigned immediately.)


Level 2 If misbehavior continues or is severe, the teacher will make a disciplinary referral to the administration. Disciplinary referrals become a matter of school record. Depending upon the offense, consequences usually include noontime detention, after-school detention, class suspension, or loss of school activity privileges.


Level 3 Severe or continued misbehavior will result in one or more of the following interventions: In-school suspension; suspension from school; Student Behavior Contract.


State education code also mandates a suspension and expulsion recommendation for specified serious offenses including but not limited to causing physical injury to another person, extortion, theft, possession, use or sale of alcohol or other drugs, or bringing a weapon to school.


Dress Code


Following is our school’s dress code. A student whose attire is not appropriate for school will be asked to change into P.E. or loaner clothes. Spare t-shirts and/or sweats may be borrowed from the school office. If a student continues to violate the dress code policy, families will be contacted per our policy as described below.


  • Shorts should provide adequate coverage. (A general guideline for shorts is that they reach close to the tip of your thumbs with arms at sides.)
  • Dresses and skirts may be worn if they come down to a student’s fingertips.
  • Markings or insignia on clothing or the body must not be obscene, suggestive, show gang affiliation, inappropriate language, promote cultural insensitivity, or advocate disruptive behavior.
  • Clothing must not advertise or promote alcohol, tobacco, or drugs.
  • Sagging is not permitted. The waistband of the pants must be above the hipbones.
  • Low cut tops, tube tops, tops that show bare-midriff or see through clothing (without clothes under), or backless clothing are not to be worn.
  • No hats/beanies, hoods or sunglasses (unless for medical or religious reasons) may be worn in class.
  • Spiked jewelry, costumes, masks, and other such items may not be worn.

Albany Middle School reserves the right to allow or disallow certain apparel and accessories deemed inappropriate. The judgment of school staff will be final.


There is a binder in the office where dress code violations are logged.


  • 1st time- warning to the student and student changes his/her clothing
  • 2nd time- warning to the student and student changes his/her clothing
  • 3rd time- parent/guardian is called and student changes clothing
  • 4th time- meeting is held with parent/guardian and student

Electronics (phones, devices, etc.)


At no time should electronic devices be on or visible during school hours. This includes but is not limited to, cell phones, iPads and iPods. Any electronic device visible will be confiscated.


If parents/guardians need to reach a child during school hours, please call the office. Do not try to reach your child via their cell phone. Call the school office at (510) 558-3600. Students may use the office phone in an emergency.


There is a binder in the office where we log confiscated items.


  • 1st time - student picks up after school
  • 2nd time – parent/guardian calls to release item to student
  • 3rd time – parent /guardian must pick up confiscated item
  • 4th time – parent/guardian and student must meet with school administrator before item is released

Inappropriate use of electronic recording devices such as recording any activities or events, classmates or teachers, on campus or in classes, or violating another person’s privacy will subject the offending student(s) to the full spectrum of disciplinary action available. For proper use guidelines, please see the AMS Student Internet and Computer Safety Rules on pages 12-13.


Harassment Policy


  • Harassment, often referred to as bullying, is defined as repeated, unwanted behavior toward an individual. It can be physical, verbal, emotional, or sexual. Cyberbullying and cyberthreats are also considered harassment. This includes sending offensive or harassing messages or pictures, spreading nasty rumors on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, or through text messages, disclosing someone’s intimate personal information, excluding someone from an online group, or using the Internet to intimidate. Students have the right to attend school in a safe and non-threatening environment.
  • If any student feels that he/she is being bothered or harassed, that student should let a trusted adult know about it. Such a report will be taken very seriously and the offending student will be told that the behavior needs to stop immediately. If the behavior does not stop, a harassment contract will be drawn up and signed by the harassing student, his/her guardian, and an administrator describing consequences for repeated offenses.

Sexual Harassment Policy


  • Albany Unified School District’s sexual harassment policy in part states: “The Board of Education recognizes that sexual harassment can cause embarrassment, feelings of powerlessness, loss of self-confidence, reduced ability to perform schoolwork, and increased absenteeism or tardiness. The Board shall not tolerate the sexual harassment of any student by any other student or any district employee.”
  • If a student feels sexually harassed, that student should tell a trusted adult, such as their teacher, a counselor, or administrator. School personnel will pursue the situation with the goal of stopping the harassment and giving consequences as appropriate.

Substitute Teachers


A substitute teacher deserves the highest courtesy and cooperation from students. Students will receive a referral to the vice-principal for any misbehavior with a substitute teacher.


ATTENDANCE


Regular and timely attendance is essential to student success. Additionally, the California Department of Education provides ADA (daily attendance funds) only for those students who attend school. Please have your student in school unless he/she is ill. We ask families to bring students to school before and/or after medical appointments if possible.


Per California Education Code, absences can only be excused for the following reasons: illness, medical appointments, court dates, religious observations, funerals, and approved Independent Study contracts.


To excuse your student’s absence, please:


  • Call before 10 a.m. on the day of the absence and each subsequent day the student is absent or
  • When a student returns after an absence he/she should go to the office with a note to explain the absence.
  • Students returning from medical appointments must sign in at the office and present a note from the doctor.

Closed Campus


Albany Middle School is a closed campus. To ensure safety, students must remain on campus at all times unless specifically excused by a parent. If a student must leave before the end of the school day, s/he must sign out in the office prior to leaving. Once students arrive at school, they are to remain until leaving for home at the end of the school day. The front of the school and the area west of the gym (near the BART tracks) are off-limits to students during lunch and breaks.


Extended Trips


Family trips should be arranged during summer and other school breaks as extended absences affect a student’s academic progress and grades. Alternative assignments while on trips do not fully take the place of daily attendance and participation in class. If an extended absence is unavoidable, parent/guardians must request an Independent Study form from the office at least 10 school days prior to the student’s departure. Independent study can only be arranged for absences of five days or more and cannot be granted the last three weeks of the year. Please also notify the teachers of the upcoming absence.


Illness at School


Students who are ill or have a fever should not be sent to school. If illness or fever develops at school, we will call a parent/guardian for pick-up. Students should stay home from school 24 hours after having a fever. Students who feel ill may rest in the office for up to ten minutes and then must go back to class or call a guardian for pick-up. Students leaving school must have permission and must sign out from the office.


Leaving School Early


If a student needs to leave before the end of the school day, a note must be presented to the office staff. The note must contain the student’s name, date, time of dismissal, and guardian signature. After turning in the note, the student must sign out, indicating the exact time of departure. Upon return, the student must sign in at the office.


Prepared and Ready to Learn


Students need to come to school ready to learn. They need a good night’s sleep and a nutritious breakfast. Middle school students still need guidance about eating and bedtimes. We recommend not allowing students the use of electronics in their bedrooms after bedtime.


Requests for Homework when Absent


Students are first encouraged to check with a classmate regarding missed work. Teachers may also post homework on Aeries or the class website. It is the student’s responsibility to obtain missed homework and/or class assignments from his/her teachers for any absences less than three days. Parents/guardians may contact the school office to request homework assignments for students who are absent from school for three or more days.


Tardy Policy


  • Students are expected to arrive to school on time as tardies interfere with a child’s learning. Students are considered tardy if they are not in their seats or designated spots at the start of class. Students arriving late to 1st period should report to the office for a pink admittance (tardy) slip. Arriving fifteen minutes late or more constitutes a class cut. The only acceptable reasons for tardies are: illness, medical appointments, court dates, religious observations and funerals verified by a parent/guardian.
  • Students with ten tardies in a quarter will be ineligible for the next school dance or other related school activity.

Tardy Consequences

Tardy 1 - warning via autodialer

Tardy 2 - warning via autodialer

Tardy 3 - warning via autodialer

Tardy 4 - lunch clean up (10 min)

Tardy 5 - lunch clean up (20 min)

Tardy 6 - after school detention (Wednesday) +

parent/guardian notification via e-mail

Tardy 7 - student, parent/guardian, administrator

conference

Tardy 8 - lunch clean up (10 min)

Tardy 9 - lunch clean up (20 min)

Tardy 10 - after school detention (Wednesday) +

loss of dance eligibility

Tardy 11 - after school detention (Friday)

Tardy 12 + - after school detention (Wednesday)


COMMUNICATION & COMMUNITY


Aeries Student / Parent Portal


Aeries features a parent communication module called the Aeries Parent Portal which is a student reporting tool for AUSD teachers. It hosts teacher reporting features like “Gradebook” which allow teachers to submit grades and progress reports directly online, making a student’s grades and assignments viewable for both students and parents/guardians throughout the year. Aeries Parent Portal also allows parents/guardians to view student attendance records. Aeries is not updated daily. We recommend checking Aeries weekly to monitor your child’s progress. To set up an account go to the portal. Click on the Aeries Portal link on the AMS web site or paste the URL, https://albanyusd.asp.aeries.net/student/LoginParent.aspx, into your browser.


Back-to-School Night


In September each year, Albany Middle School has a Back-to-School Night for parents/guardians (adults only). During the evening, parent/guardians follow their child’s class schedule. Teachers review the curriculum and class requirements. This is a great event for finding out about the AMS experience. We hope to see everyone there.


Electronic Communication


AMS maintains a website where news and other items of interest are posted including the Daily Announcements, our school calendar, a link to the Aeries Parent Portal, a staff directory, and links to other AUSD sites. We encourage you to visit and learn more about our school community. We are continually updating and modifying the website in hopes of making it an effective and useful tool for our school community. The URL for the web site is http://ams.ausdk12.org.


Daily Announcements and important school information are e-mailed home on a daily basis as part of AMS’ daily digest. Families are automatically opted into this digest. If you are not receiving these e-mails and would like to, please opt-in via our website.


In addition, the PTA communicates frequently using the AMS eTree. To subscribe to the eTree send an email to: AlbanyMiddleSchool-subscribe @yahoogroups.com.   


Open House


In the spring, Albany Middle School hosts an Open House. Parents/guardians, students, and community members are invited to come see what AMS students have accomplished during the year.


PTA (Parent Teacher Association)


The PTA meets once a month. All parents/guardians are welcome and encouraged to attend the PTA meetings. The PTA raises money for programs and assists the school with activities. Participation in the PTA provides guardians an excellent opportunity to stay current with school activities and actively participate in the process of meeting the varied needs of AMS students.


Parent/Guardian Volunteers


There are a number of opportunities for parents/guardians to volunteer in the classroom, around the school, on field trips, and with extracurricular activities. Volunteer forms are available in the office.


School Site Council


The Site Council is an elected body made up of parent/guardians, students, teachers, and other staff. Their primary responsibility is to oversee the School  Plan. Meetings are held approximately once a month. All interested parents/guardians are encouraged to attend.


Telephone/Voicemail/Email


Individual teachers can be reached by calling 558-3600 and then dialing the teacher’s voicemail extension. There is an extension address book that you can access if you do not know the teacher’s extension. Additionally you can email teachers using first initial + last name@ausdk12.org.  There is also a staff directory on the AMS website.


POLICIES AND PROCEDURES


Balloons and Birthday Treats


To promote an atmosphere of inclusion and to help avoid conflicts stemming from exclusion, we ask that students and families do not bring birthday balloons or treats to school. If balloons or treats are brought to school, they will be stored in the office until the end of the day.


Bikes, Roller Blades, Scooters, and Skateboards


Bikes, roller blades, scooters and skateboards are not to be ridden or stood upon on school premises before and after school, during school time, or on weekends. Students must lock up bikes, roller blades, or skateboards in the cages during the school day. Students must not bring items to school that can’t be safely stored.


Emergency Forms


Emergency Forms, available online through the Aeries Parent Portal, must be completed at the beginning of each school year and kept up-to-date and accurate throughout the school year. Incomplete or inaccurate data could endanger a student if an emergency occurs. Parents/guardians are required to update information anytime there is a change of residency.


Food Delivery


Students and families should refrain from having food delivered to school for a student’s lunch or other treat. If a student forgets to bring a lunch, their family is encouraged to drop their lunch off at the front office.


Grading


Albany Middle School students are given a letter grade in each subject area. Mark Key:


A  Excellent achievement

B  Good or above average achievement

C  Average achievement

D  Poor or barely passing

F  Unsatisfactory effort / failing


The Middle School year is divided into four quarters or grading periods. Report cards are generated after each quarter, posted on Aeries, and mailed home.


Immunizations


Incoming 7th/8th graders must provide verification of a whooping cough (Tdap) booster shot. Incoming 7th graders are required by state law to have all of the Hepatitis B and MMR injections. Incoming 7th /8th  graders will not be permitted to start school without providing verification to the school office that the student has completed these immunizations.


Lost and Found


Items brought to school should be marked with the student’s name. Bringing valuables to school is highly discouraged. If an item is lost, check the Lost and Found across from the library in the atrium. If the item is small and valuable, such as a watch, keys, iPod, cell phone, iPad, or jewelry, check with the secretaries in the main office.


Medication at School


Students who need to take prescribed medication during the school day must have a signed medication permission form on file in the office. The medicine(s) must be sent to school in a properly labeled container, detailing the method, amount, and time schedule by which medication is to be taken along with the signed permission slip.


Money and Valuables


Students are responsible for all personal belongings. Expensive electronic devices of all kinds attract thefts and should be left safely at home. The school cannot take responsibility for, or investigate, lost, damaged, or stolen articles. You are in danger of losing your item if you bring it to school. Students should bring to school ONLY the amount of money needed for lunch.


P.E. Uniforms


Albany Middle School students are required to wear an appropriate P.E. uniform as described below. Students who are not dressed in the uniforms described below will receive a “nonsuit”, which will negatively affect their grade. To help prevent uniforms from being lost or stolen, last names and first initial must be printed on all clothing. Students may not loan or give their uniform to another student. These clothes must be designated as P.E. only.


  • Shirt or Sweatshirt:  AMS P.E. shirt or sweatshirt; or plain, solid gold shirt or plain, solid gold sweatshirt.
  • Shorts or Sweatpants: AMS P.E. shorts or sweatpants; or plain, solid black shorts or plain, solid black sweatpants. The length of shorts must comply with the dress code.
  • Shoes: Laced athletic shoes.
  • Socks: Are required. Athletic socks are recommended. No leggings or tights.

AMS P.E. uniforms can be purchased through the P.E. department or from a local retailer.


Postings


Distribution or posting of materials, signs, posters, bulletins, leaflets, or announcements on campus must be approved by site administration. Please bring materials to the school office for approval prior to distribution.


Student Drop-off/Pick-up


To avoid congestion in the mornings and afternoons, we suggest that you designate a drop-off and pick-up point a short walk away from the school. Key Route and Masonic are two streets that might be good meeting places. Students should use the crosswalks. DO NOT let students off in the middle of the street, and DO NOT let your child jaywalk. We have had many near misses where students almost got hit by passing cars. Due to a mitigation agreement with the neighbors, parents must NOT turn north onto Spokane from Brighton, nor use the staff parking lot. Please do not use the cul-de-sac as a turn-around. Thank you for your cooperation.


Students are not permitted to be on campus earlier than 20 minutes prior to the start of class.  Please do not drop your child off or allow your child to walk to school earlier than this.


Student Planner


Each student at Albany Middle School needs a planner. We ask each family to contribute a donation of $5.00 for the planner to offset our costs. This can be paid at Orientation Day or in the office after school starts. The planner can be used as a communication tool. Students should write assignments and due dates in the planner and parents/guardians can check the planner to see if the student is completing assignments. Students are recommended to check off assignments in the planner as they are completed at home.  There is a Parent/Teacher comments section, which can be utilized on an as-needed basis.


Visitors at School


All visitors, including volunteers, must check in at the main office before proceeding to any part of the campus. Visitors must wear a visitor badge. Visitors who wish to observe classes must sign up in advance for a specified time slot. Visiting day is Thursday. Only adults may visit. Students or friends from other schools are not allowed to visit Albany Middle School while school is in session.


STUDENT LIFE


After School Sports


After school sports are offered. They include volleyball for girls, co-ed cross-country and track and field, co-ed soccer, and wrestling and basketball for girls and boys. Information on try-outs and practices is communicated through the Daily Announcements, which are read to students at the start of the day, posted on the AMS web site, and sent out via the daily digest. Teams compete against other middle schools. During the season, practice is 4-5 days per week, approximately 3:15 to 5:00 p.m.


Athletic Eligibility


Academic eligibility is based on grades from the most recent quarter, prior to the beginning of the sport. Students must also meet behavioral expectations during practices and games as well as during the school day


A student is eligible to participate in athletics if they receive a 2.0 G.P.A., (“C” average) or higher and has not received a “F” in any class. If a student is participating in a sport and receives a report card that makes them ineligible, the student will be dropped from the team. However, a student may be granted a “one-time-only” probation exemption if they fail to earn eligibility. This probation is valid only if the student has not received an “F” in their most recent quarter. A student who receives an “F” is not eligible for probation.


Once a student has been granted a one-time-only probation, the student may participate in athletics. This probation applies to only one quarter in the student’s years at AMS. Probation status is meant to be a second and final chance. No exceptions will be made.


In order for an athlete to be granted their Academic Probation, the athlete must have a conference with his or her parent(s)/guardian(s), the athletic director, and coach if possible, to discuss the terms of the probation.


Clubs


A variety of clubs and activities exist at the middle school. These change from year-to-year. Some are sponsored by staff and others are generated by student or volunteer interests. Look for information about these clubs and activities in the Daily Announcements and via the school website.


Dances


Evening dances will be held 4 times during the year. 6th and 7th graders do not attend the last dance as the final dance is for 8th graders only and is part of their promotion activities.


Attending a dance is a privilege that students earn. Students who have been suspended, have ten or more tardies, or three or more referrals in a quarter will be ineligible for the dance. Those students who are ineligible can earn back the ability to attend through the completion of community service. Please see the vice-principal for more information. Students start with a clean slate at the beginning of each quarter (except for 2nd semester for 8th graders).


Note: Guardians are asked to pick up their children at the stated ending time. Students must have a ticket and a current student ID card to enter the dance. The administration retains the right to send any student home for inappropriate behavior. The AMS dress code will be enforced at the dances.


Noontime Activities


Albany Middle School offers an excellent noontime program. The sport’s leagues and tournaments work in conjunction with the physical education classes. Activities include sports such as table tennis, basketball, volleyball, futsal and double dutch. For individual students, balls are available for checkout at lunch on the blacktop and on Cougar Field. Students’ personal sports equipment is not permitted at lunch. Students may also use the library at lunchtime.



Albany Middle School Homework Philosophy and Guidelines


Philosophy

Albany Middle School strives to provide a rigorous education, where all students can access the curriculum and learn positive life habits. Homework is one component of the learning process. At AMS we strive to maintain a rigorous curriculum while also valuing other important aspects of students’ lives outside of school, such as family time and extracurricular activities. We also recognize that it is important for students to balance their lives in a way that includes incorporating healthy habits, such as exercise and enough sleep.


Purpose of Homework

The purpose of homework is to enhance the learning that happens in the classroom, and to provide feedback to the student and teacher about how the student is progressing.  Therefore, teachers assign relevant homework tasks that are essential to student learning and can generally be accomplished independently at home.  These may be for pre-learning, checking for understanding, practice, and/or processing.  One size does not fit all, so in order to provide the opportunity for students to succeed, homework could be differentiated by teacher discretion.


Responsibility of the Teacher

  • Design relevant homework tasks that will help students to further their learning.
  • Post the homework in a consistent manner daily.
  • Provide feedback in a timely fashion using Aeries.
  • Use the results of homework to plan future instruction when relevant.
  • Avoid assigning new homework over holidays and vacations.
  • Minimize assigning new homework on weekends whenever possible.

Responsibility of the Student

  • Use an organization system, such as the student planner, to record your homework nightly and to check off assignments as they are completed.
  • When doing homework, reference your textbook, notes, and other materials to complete assignments accurately.
  • Keep your papers organized and have a designated place to put completed homework.
  • Clarify with the teacher any instructions that are not understood before leaving class.
  • Every student is different. Generally, spend up to 60 minutes (6th grade), 70 minutes (7th grade), & 80 minutes (8th grade) of focused effort (without electronics and other distractions) on your homework nightly.
  • Pick a location with the help of your family where you can do homework free of distractions (including electronics).
  • The next day, take the initiative to ask your teacher for help if you need it.

Responsibility of the Parent/Guardian

  • Children need monitoring until they prove that they can manage their homework independently. Help your child understand what he/she needs to do to earn independence.  Check Aeries with your child weekly at first, less often when your child proves to be on top of his/her work.
  • Help your child to pick a well-lit, distraction-free environment for doing homework.
  • Help your child by being sure that s/he is taking out his/her planner, checking off completed work, placing completed homework in a designated spot, and then putting it into his/her backpack.
  • Watch for signs of failure or frustration.  Troubleshoot with your child, encourage your child to talk to his/her teacher, and if needed, contact the teacher directly to problem solve.   
  • If your child is regularly spending more than the suggested time on homework, reach out to the teacher of the class that is taking the most time to problem-solve a solution.  If it is not a particular subject, reach out to your child’s counselor.
  • Consider having your child check in electronic devices while doing homework and at bedtime.  Make sure your child gets an adequate amount of sleep.

AMS Student Internet and Computer Safety Rules


Computers at A.M.S. may be used with a teacher’s permission to complete SCHOOL RELATED WORK.  

  • Using the Computers is a privilege, not a right.
  • You must immediately LOG OFF or QUIT a program when a staff member gives you a direction to do so.
  • No instant messaging, Facebook, personal email, cell phones, cameras or handheld devices (iPods, etc.)
  • You need permission to go to your email to send or print school-related work.
  • School computers are for school-related work only.

When using computers at school, please…


RESPECT YOURSELF

  • show respect for myself through my actions.
  • use school-appropriate language and images on the computer.

PROTECT YOURSELF

  • ensure that the information I post online will not put me at risk.
  • not publish contact details or personal information in public spaces.
  • report any aggressive or inappropriate behavior directed at me.
  • not share my password or account details with anyone else.
  • only use email for schoolwork and with teacher permission.

PROTECT OTHERS

  • report abuse.
  • forward only materials (including emails and images) that are appropriate.

RESPECT OTHERS

  • not bully, harass or stalk other people online.
  • only got to sites that are related to my schoolwork.
  • not share my password or login.
  • only change or modify other’s work with permission.

RESPECT COPYRIGHT

  • follow the copyright guidelines and cite my sources.
  • request permission of the owner if necessary.
  • not steal or share music or other media in a manner that violate their licenses.

PROTECT SCHOOL PROPERTY

  • not go into system programs or preferences.
  • not vandalize by causing physical damage, reconfiguring the computer system, or destroying data.

(*Based on an original by Andrew Churches at http://edorigami.edublogs.org)


 

First Offense

Second Offense

Third Offense

Fourth Offense




CONSEQUENCES

You will be given a warning and asked to quit whatever you are doing.

You will lose your computer privileges in school for 2 weeks. Your parents or guardians will be called to inform them of your loss of privileges.

You will lose your computer privileges for 1 month. Your parents or guardians will be called to inform them of your loss of privileges

Offenses beyond three will result in loss of privileges indefinitely and a parent/guardian conference.