Rolling Hills Record

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Upcoming Events

Principal's Message, September 13

This starts our fourth week of the new school year.  As we visit classrooms, routines and procedures are in place.  Students are diving deeper into content and teachers are integrating a number of engaging strategies aimed at leveraging a number of skills that were honed or acquired during professional development over the summer.  With the guidance of educational consultants, four teachers were on site designing lessons to accommodate all learners two weeks ago, and eight teachers were solidifying writing strategies for their students last week.  This week, five additional teachers planned ways to implement project based learning in their classrooms.  We are so proud of our teachers’ desires to be life-long learners and seek best practices as they work to engage students and to instill a love of learning.

Back to School Night

We were glad to see so many happy faces at our Back to School Night.  If you were unable to attend or arrived a few minutes late, there is a video link at  We also encourage you to contact your child’s teachers, as they want to be part of your child’s support system.

Future Site Changes

Many of you have seen the early stages of a new parking lot off of Pollard, between our drive through and Quito Road.  We are eager to have an additional dozen or so spaces for staff and after school activities.  It is our hope that by November our parking lot is in full use.

Nine CUSD schools currently have an array of video cameras, including eight elementary sites.  In the coming weeks, CUSD will start the installation of video cameras at RHMS.  Cameras have been successful at deterring graffiti and vandalism at sites.  With our new two-story building, the garden, continued classroom upgrades, and a number of weekend activities, we want our RHMS campus to have the benefit of added protection.


It is important to have students present during the hours of instruction.  CUSD’s Profile of a Graduate, including self-direction, innovation, critical thinking, collaboration, and empathy, as well the content standards in all classes are best received at school.  It is when students engage with content and soft skills that learning occurs.  We encourage you to schedule appointments and vacations at times other than during school hours.

Power School

We appreciate that many parents and students seek access to Power School.  Monitoring Power School grades, one measure of how a student is performing academically, is important.  We apologize for the delay as the parent Power School portal continues to be closed.  It is our district’s hope that the parent portal opens by Monday.  As an aside, passcodes are the same as in previous years.  We are looking at the most effective way to disseminate passcodes to all new parents.  We will print passcodes this week, and mail them on Friday.

Minimum Day for Teachers

During this week’s early release, teachers worked in grade level departments to begin the process of establishing a Professional Learning Community.  Departments will determine longer term goals and what Learning Targets are most relevant to achieving those goals on a short-term basis.  Determinations will be made regarding what formative assessment best provides evidence that students have achieved those learning targets and what might be next steps for those who have and have not yet met the agreed upon learning target.


Next Wednesday at 7:00 pm there is a PTA membership meeting in the RHMS staff room.  All families are invited to attend.

Best Wishes

We hope that you and your family continue to enjoy the waning weeks of summer, and we invite you to visit with school administration for an overview of the year on Wednesday, September 26th from 8:45 am to 9:30 am in the staff room.


Yearbooks are now on sale at the lowest price of $35.    Order directly at the Jostens Yearbooks RHMS Link:

Principal's Message

Happy second week of school!  We now have a bustling community of nearly 1200 students and staff.  In many locations that would be considered a town!  The initial days of school have been spent acclimating ourselves to agreed upon routines and protocols, while learning about each other in a safe environment.

Student Safety
So that we may ensure all of our students arrive to school and return to your homes safely, we urge everyone to be vigilant on the streets.  Students should travel in pairs or groups.  Those who bike or skateboard need helmets to protect their beautiful gray matter.  And for those parents who drive, please carpool and travel at a safe speed.  While it is our responsibility to help foster a love of learning in our students, it is our collective responsibility to make certain our children arrive to school and return home safely.

Minimum Day for Teachers
As you know, Wednesdays are shortened school days in CUSD.  Today’s minimum day allowed teachers to work in their departments, discussing assessment practices.  While grades are one measure of student performance, there is much to consider when generating a grade, including but not limited to:

  • Why do we grade?
  • What do we grade?
  • How do we assign value?
  • How do we weight categories?
  • How does a “0” affect a final grade?
  • What is the purpose of extra credit?
  • What if a child learns something previously unmastered later in the trimester?

The conversation was rich in many classrooms.  Staff shared their considerations with colleagues and will share with other departments in the coming weeks.  It is important to realize that while education has changed drastically over the last 50 years, grading policies have remained somewhat rigid.  If it is our goal to build an academic core while supporting students who demonstrate self-direction, innovation, critical thinking, collaboration, and empathy, how do grading practices reflect that?

Back to School Night
As you may know Back to School Night is this Wednesday, September 5th.  We will start promptly at 6:00 pm, and we ask that you are in your child’s first period classroom at that time.  Please ask your child or children for their schedule(s).  This is not a time for individual conferences, rather an opportunity for teachers to share with parents and guardians a preview of the trimester and potentially year.  Should you have individual questions, they are best answered during scheduled email conversations or meetings.

Many campuses have begun to discourage the use of lockers, as they have become targets for vandalism and have in some instances been used to store items that are inappropriate in an educational setting.  Additionally, as education starts to implement 1:1 technology, the need to store items has decreased.

In previous years lockers were distributed to certain grade levels when school started, prior to routines and norms being reviewed.  That proved to cause a number of issues that we hope to avoid this year. 

We are reviewing our locker expectations and usage and hope to have an application process for our upper grade students in the coming weeks.  Because the use of lockers is a privilege, the process will require a student to be in good standing, as well as a parent signature.

Best Wishes
We hope you and your children have enjoyed the opening full week at Rolling Hills Middle School, and we look forward to seeing you all next Wednesday evening.  The coming weeks will feature our first boys volleyball, girls soccer, and cross country competitions, along with district-wide iReady testing in both ELA and math.

Picture Days Next Week

(**Picture make-up date:  October 3**)

6th Grade - Tuesday, August 28th

7th & 8th Grades - Thursday, August 30th

Print the form or order online:

Learning Comes Alive When You Experience it Live

Please join us in helping students form the good attendance habits.

Children can copy notes or make up an assignment, but they can never get back what’s most important: the discussions, the questions, the explanations by the teacher, and the thinking that makes learning come alive.

We are asking that all families join us in helping students form the good attendance habits—being present each day and on time—that will help them succeed in school and beyond.

Attend Today, Achieve Tomorrow!