Principal's Note - Sept 4, 2018

By Margaret Barnes
Principal's Note
September 06, 2018

Good evening, Holmes Families!  Throughout our school building this year, you'll see the artistic work of one of our former students - Molly Morimoto - who designed a Hawk to help us bring our expectations and school values to life.  One of those values is that we believe all of our student Hawks can soar to high levels, and another is that we should demonstrate the IB learner profile trait of Caring towards ourselves, others, and our environment every day.  

This morning during announcements, I referred to the picture above and emphasized the importance of us demonstrating that we are caring by looking out for each other in order to keep each other safe.  As we reflected on the information that I shared with you on Friday evening about a threat written on the wall in one of the school bathrooms, we were thankful that it was reported to us in a timely manner.  We know that it can be difficult for students to feel comfortable sharing information with school staff, but it is critical that they let someone know as soon as possible when they learn that another student is considering hurting themselves or others.  

As a follow-up to Friday's email to you, our School Resource Officer Becky Gray investigated today and will continue to investigate throughout the week.  Our staff is highly visible in hallways throughout the day, and I have asked our security team to do additional sweeps of the halls and bathrooms during classes.  As an additional security measure, students will be required to sign out of and sign into the classroom (in addition to having their agendas signed) whenever they request to leave class to go to the clinic, bathroom, locker, etc.  That additional step will allow us to identify students who are out in the halls during certain blocks of time if an incident occurs.  

I invite you to join us at our 1st PTA meeting tomorrow night - Wed., 9/5 - to learn more about how we ensure a safe and secure environment at Holmes, in addition to hearing about the PTA's plans for the year.  Please come and join us at 6:30 pm in the library!  We look forward to seeing you there!

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

  • This Week's Schedule
  • Digital Citizenship Tip of the Week
  • 2018-19 Holmes MS PTA Meeting Dates
  • Auditions for Winter Musical
  • Important Info for Music Students & Parents
  • My School Bucks
  • Online Free & Reduced Meals Application 
  • Important Dates
  • How to Stay in Touch


Margaret Barnes

Proud Principal, Holmes MS


This Week's Schedule of Classes: 9/3-9/7


This week:

Mon., 9/3 = NO SCHOOL

Tues., 9/4 = Blue Day

Wed., 9/5 = White Day w/ ER-8 (Lesson: Student Rights & Responsibilities, Part 1)

Thurs., 9/6 = Blue Day

Fri., 9/7 = White Day w/ ER-8

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


Digital Citizenship Tip of the Week

Helping students to become responsible digital citizens is a shared responsibility between schools and families.  Learn more about what that means HERE!  


    UPDATED: Save the Dates! 2018-19 PTA Meeting Schedule

    Great news: The Holmes MS PTA website is updated and live again!  

    We hope to see you all at our first PTA meeting of the year tomorrow evening at 6:30 in the library!  

    • Wed., 9/5
    • Wed., 10/3
    • Wed., 11/7
    • Tues., 12/11, 6:00 pm (prior to band concert)
    • Thurs., 1/17, 5:30 pm (prior to Curriculum Night; rising 6th grade parents invited)
    • Wed., 2/6
    • Wed., 3/6
    • Wed., 4/3
    • Wed., 5/8

    SAVE THE DATE for the PTA's first Dine-Out Spirit Night of the Year on September 25th at the Chipotle in Springfield Plaza!  See details below.

    My School Bucks



    Parents may access the EZ Lunch App to add money to student lunch accounts, see menu options, check ingredients and allergen information, and much more. The official FCPS mobile app is available on the iTunes Store and Google Play at no cost. The app links to to add money to student lunch accounts. Lunch menus may be viewed HERE.  (Note: Fees for certain electives may also be paid through this app.)

    Reminder: Parents/guardians must apply each year to determine eligibility for free or reduced lunch. Paperwork can be provided by the school, and must be sent directly to FCPS' Food & Nutrition Services office.


    Online Free and Reduced-Price Application Information

    Free and reduced-price meal applications may be completed online or by submitting a handwritten, paper application for the 2018-2019 school year.  Electronic meal applications are quick, easy, and available in the following languages:  English, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Filipino, French, and Vietnamese. 

    Both the online application and paper application now include a designated section with the consent to share information for other programs. This update allows parents/guardians to complete the free and reduced-price meal application and the consent to share information in the same document.

    Paper applications must be the original red print forms, which are available at school offices, school cafeterias, and other FCPS buildings.  Copied application forms cannot be accepted.


    For more information visit the Free and Reduced-Price Meals webpage.

    Auditions for Winter Musical: 9/10, 9/12, & 9/13


    Auditions for Elf The Musical, Jr. are going to be on Monday 9/10 and Wednesday 9/12. A bus will be provided for those students who will audition on Monday who requested a bus.  

    Any other students who wish to audition should sign up in I-Hall, where they can also pick up an information packet. A stage crew sign up page is also in I-Hall. 


    Mrs. Murphy (formerly Ms. Ferrante!) is happy to answer any questions. You can find her in I-12 or by emailing 

    Important Info for Band, Chorus & Orchestra Students


    All music students (band, chorus and orchestra) should plan to attend the Booster parent meeting and uniform sizing on September 11.  Enter through Door #10.  Parents will go to the gym for a brief meeting and students will be measured for their uniforms in I-hall.  Students with last names A-L should attend the 6-7 pm shift and last names M-Z should attend the 7-8 pm shift.  It is important that we get ALL music students measured for uniforms at this time.  If you have any questions, you can contact Karli Eddinger at or Kate Bongard at  

    NOTE for Band students: Luis Perez, our Band teacher, will be on leave for the first couple months of the school year, as he continues to recuperate.  (Visit HERE for updates on his progress!) We were incredibly fortunate to get Ms. Barbara Dobberstein - a retired Band teacher - to substitute for him while he is out.  

    Important Dates

    • Wed., 9/5, 6:30 pm - 1st PTA Meeting (Library)
    • Mon., 9/10, Wed., 9/12,  & Thurs., 9/13 - Auditions for Winter Musical After School
    • Tuesday, 9/11 - Music Booster Parent Meeting & Uniform Sizing
    • Monday, 9/17 - First day for Homework Rooms & Hawk Club in After School Program (parent pickup only)
    • Wednesday, 9/19 - 3-Hour Early Release Day (Student dismissal at 11:15 am) - No Homework Room or Hawk Club
    • Monday, 9/24 - First day for late buses, academic help with teachers, and after school clubs
    • Tuesday, 9/25, 5-9 pm - PTA Fundraiser: Chipotle Dine-out night (Springfield Plaza)
    • Mon., 10/1 & Tues., 10/2 - School Pictures (through PE classes)

    How to Stay In-Touch

    Please stay in touch with us throughout the year by: