Principal's Note - Dec 2, 2018

By Margaret Barnes
Principal's Note
December 03, 2018

Good evening, Holmes Families! 

Here we are in December with just 3 weeks to go until Winter Break!  It will be a jam-packed month...see a little further below for all of the Performing Arts events this month!

Thank you so much for a wonderful Mini-Conference Night!  We value the opportunity to meet and partner with parents as we support our students and set them up for success!  A very special thank you to Carol Gabriel for organizing the dinner for teachers and for making amazing desserts and to Rob Hardin for the prep, set up and serving!   

For 7th Grade Parents

This is just a reminder that counselors will be working with 7th Grade Students the week of December 10th to work through the Signs of Suicide (SOS) lessons in History classes.  The order of classes on some days will be slightly different that week to avoid having the SOS lessons at the end of the day.  7th Grade Parents who would like to preview the video that students will see should join us for the parent coffee coming up this Wednesday, December 5th, at 8 am in the Lecture Hall.  Scroll down in the newsletter for more details.

Holmes Performing Arts

Here's what's coming up from our theater and music programs this month:

  • District Chorus Auditions: Tuesday, December 4th
  • Elf: The Musical, Jr.: 3 performances December 6-8 (scroll down for details and to purchase tickets online)
  • Winter Band Concert: Tuesday, December 11th, 7 PM (NOTE: PTA Meeting will be that night at 6 PM in the cafeteria, and the Scholastic Book Fair will be open for parents to browse and purchase items in the library!)
  • Voices of Now auditions will be after school on Wednesday, December 12th. Interested students should sign up on the bulletin board in I-Hall. 
  • Winter Chorus Concert: Thursday, December 13th, 7 PM (Scholastic Book Fair will be open for parents to browse and purchase items in the library!)
  • Winter Orchestra Concert: Tuesday, December 18th, 7 PM 
  • Winter Music Assembly: Friday, December 21st, 7th Period - This is primarily for staff and students.  5th graders from our main feeder elementary schools (Bren Mar Park, Columbia, North Springfield, Parklawn & Weyanoke) will also be invited to attend!

In today's newsletter, scroll down for information about:

  • This Week's Schedule
  • After School Program Information and Schedule
  • Next Lunch Bunch: Friday, December 7th 
  • Winter Musical: Elf, Jr.
  • Scholastic Book Fair (December 10th-18th)
  • Signs of Suicide (SOS) Program (December 10th-14th)
  • Digital Citizenship - Parent Survey
  • Winter Activity Day: Wednesday, December 19th 
  • G-love Winter Clothing Drive 
  • Student Information System - SIS Parent Account Overview
  • Important Dates
  • How to Stay in Touch 


Margaret Barnes

Proud Principal, Holmes MS



Do you know a Holmes Middle School staff member who does ordinary things in an extraordinary way or goes beyond what is expected? If so, then click here to submit your story so we can all acknowledge the good work of Holmes faculty and staff members.

This Week's Schedule of Classes: 12/3-12/7


This week:

Mon., 12/3 = Blue Day

Tues., 12/4 = White Day w/ ER 7 & 8 (ER 8 Lesson: Digital Citizenship)

Wed., 12/5 = Blue Day

Thurs., 12/6 = White Day w/ ER 1 & 2

Fri., 12/7 = Blue Day

 *NOTE: Students can always find the blue-white calendar in their agendas or on the website HERE.  

After School Program - Week of 12/3

For any specific questions related to the After School Program or to share new ideas for after school activities, please feel free to contact Mr. German Cabezas, our After School Program Specialist.  


Next Lunch Bunch is Friday, December 7th!


Students can sign up HERE

Winter Musical: Elf, Jr. - Dec 6 - 8

Elf, jr

To purchase tickets, you may click on the QR code above or the link below.

Scholastic Book Fair - December 10th-18th

The library is excited to invite you to our 2018 Book Fair! The Book Fair will begin on December 10th and run until December 18th. This is an exciting time of year for our students as they shop the fair to purchase their very own book and choose gifts for those on their holiday lists. It is also a critical fundraiser for the library to purchase more books, 50% of every dollar spent benefits the library!  

Students will have an opportunity to shop at the book fair with their English teachers and during lunch periods. The book fair will also be open during the evening hours on December 11th, December 13th and December 18th. 

Parents can use Scholastic eWallet Accounts to help manage payments with their students. More information here -

If you’re unable to make it, please consider supporting us by shopping online by going to our book fair website.

We are seeking volunteers to help, if you are interested in signing up please use the link below or reach out to Ms. Haywood at @email.

Signs of Sucide (SOS) Program

Signs of Suicide (SOS) Program

Holmes Middle School Student Services along with Clinicians will be presenting the SOS program to 7th grade students through History classes during the week of December 10th.  As you may know, anxiety and depression are all too common in our youth today.  Educating them about the signs of depression, and on steps they can take for themselves and/or their friends to get help is critical to healthy development and overall wellness. The SOS Program includes both a video and a Wellness Screening.  The psychoeducational video is child-sensitive, with language and images that are developmentally appropriate.  The characters in the video portray what a child might go through when suffering from depression, how it differs from sadness, and how they know when to seek help.  It also coaches students on when to seek help if a friend is exhibiting these behaviors using the acronym ACT (Acknowledge, Care, Tell).  The Wellness Screening used for FCPS in a short survey in which students will check off “yes” or “no” to questions about themselves.

Parents/guardians will have one more opportunity to view the “Time to ACT” video and ask questions about the wellness screening:

  • Parent coffee on Wednesday, December 5 @ 8AM

If you have any questions about the screening, please feel free to contact your child’s counselor. If you do not wish for your child to participate in the SOS Program, please indicate this on the permission slip (which will be mailed home with report cards) and return it to Mrs. Girón, Director of Student Services no later than Wednesday, December 5, 2018. 

Digitial Citizenship

What is Digital Citizenship? 

Digital Citizenship can be described as the norms of appropriate, responsible behavior (and its positive and negative impact on self and others) with regard to technology use. 

Why Digital Citizenship? 

It's important for parents to help their child become safe, ethical, responsible and respectful digital citizens. To do that, you’ll use the same successful parenting strategies you’re already using.  

We are committed to providing you with resources to support family learning and conversations around digital citizenship topics but need your voice. Please fill out this questionnaire to let us know where we can support.

SCA Winter Activity Day - Wednesday, Dec. 19th

We would love to have parent volunteers to support with this super-fun event for students!  If you are able to support in some way, please contact Mr. Cho at @email or Mrs. Lewis at @email.  


G-love Winter Clothing Drive!


Student Information System - SIS Parent Account Overview

Parent Vue

Library Updates

  • Wednesday, 12/5, 8 am - Parent Coffee (Topic: SOS Screening for 7th grade parents)
  • Thursday, 12/6 & Friday, 12/7, 7 pm - Winter Musical: Elf Jr. 
  • Saturday, 12/8, 2 pm - Winter Musical: Elf, Jr. 
  • Monday, 12/10-Tuesday, 12/18 - Scholastic Book Fair (Evening sales will be available for parents on the 12/11, 12/13, & 12/18 music concert dates)
  • Tuesday, 12/11, 6 pm - PTA Meeting (shortened due to Band concert)
  • Tuesday, 12/11, 7 pm - Winter Band Concert
  • Wednesday, 12/12, 5-9 pm - PTA Fundraiser Night, Flight Trampoline Park
  • Thursday, 12/13 - Beginning Theater Field Trip
  • Thursday, 12/13, 7 pm - Winter Chorus Concert
  • Friday, 12/14 Students Released Three Hours Early
  • Tuesday, 12/18, 7 pm - Winter Orchestra Concert
  • Wednesday, 12/19, 2:30-4:30 pm - SCA Winter Activity Day for Students
  • Friday, 12/21, 7th Period - Annual Winter Assembly (Rising 6th Graders from feeder elementary schools invited)
  • Monday, 12/24 - Friday, 1/4 - Winter Break - No School
  • Thursday, 1/10, 6-7:30 pm - Reunión de padres hispanos (Tema: Pandillas)
  • Thursday, 1/17, 5:30 pm - PTA Meeting (Rising 6th Grade Parents Invited)
  • Thursday, 1/17, 6:30 pm - Curriculum Night for Parents (Information about choosing courses for students' schedules)
  • Friday, 1/18  - Students Released Three Hours Early
  • Monday, 1/21 - Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Holiday  - No School
  • Thursday, 1/24 - Last day of 2nd Quarter (No Early Release)
  • Friday, 1/25 - Student Holiday / Teacher Workday

How to Stay In-Touch

Please stay in touch with us throughout the year by: