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Principal’s Report - December 15, 2017

posted Dec 15, 2017, 12:42 PM by Barbara Quintangeli   [ updated Dec 15, 2017, 12:44 PM ]
Mrs. Milligan
Dear PVMS West Families,


There are times when it is simply too hard to find the right words….  To say that this week was a difficult one for our schools and the community at large is indeed an understatement.  Please know that all of us at West not only appreciated but were strengthened by Dr. Russell’s comments:  “PV is a strong community that pulls together in time of crisis. I am confident we will come together in support of the family, the Schwenksville school community, and the district at-large in the days ahead. At this time, please join us all in extending comforting thoughts and sympathies to the family experiencing this terrible loss.”  As we move forward together in support of the family and each other, West plans to be actively involved in donations, drives, events, etc. 


from District Office – There is a section on our website for fundraising efforts and grief/loss resources related to the Schwenksville fire. Included are the fundraising efforts that we are aware of at this point.


New News:

Stuff-a-Bus, 12/15/17 – (Updated at 1:25 p.m.PVMS West’s annual Stuff-a-Bus event WILL take place.  (Families are advised to travel at their own discretion!)  The cost of admission is one new, unwrapped toy or $5.00.  All proceeds of Stuff-a-Bus will benefit Toys for Tots.  There will be raffles, stage events/competitions, dancing, Bruster’s, Chick-fil-A, and an old favorite – Pie the Teacher in the face!  All activities support the main objective of the evening – to stuff a decorated bus with toys!  (Food items and raffle chances do cost extra.)  We hope our students will join us for this fun-filled, charitable event! 

The Toys for Tots regional distribution center, serving all PVSD localities, is the (old) Red Hill, PA firehouse.  The scheduled distribution date is the morning of 12/16/17.


Heroes’ Breakfast – Due to the local tragedy and its impact on our local emergency services personnel, West postponed this event.  We plan to thank our local first responders properly in the near future.  Once again, we thank the PVYB board members for their support of this time-honored tradition.


A Message from the Journey Team – The Journey team’s eighth-grade trip to Philadelphia is coming up soon.  If your Journey student has not produced a permission slip, please check email.

Comprehensive Planning/Special Education Plan - It’s time to begin Comprehensive Planning here at PV.  Every three years, school districts are required to create a plan that helps “set the course” for the district over the next three years.  A Steering Committee made up of stakeholders (employees, parents, students, Board members, and community members) has been formed to lead this effort and is already working toward developing a mission, vision, and goals for our district.

We hope to provide helpful information throughout this process through website updates and emails.  Part of this process will also involve us asking you for feedback about our district through surveys.  Keep an eye out for future requests.  In the meantime, you can keep up to date on the Comprehensive Plan by visiting the district website for information.  Check the “News from around the district” for updates or click on the “About” tab and select “Comprehensive Planning” from the drop down menu.




MS West Musical Auditions - Our students worked very hard to prepare for their auditions; they were professional both on- and offstage, and treated the musical staff to their many talents. Miss Yerkes, noted, “I’m so grateful to be back at West, directing the musical and showcasing the talent of all students involved.”  The cast and crew lists for Beauty and the Beast, Jr. were posted on Thursday.


Character Education Program - Officers Stephen Rinker and Meghan Burns, of the Lower Frederick Township Police Department, and Montgomery County ADA Alec O’Neill, from the Family Protection Unit, presented informative programs for our students this week.  (The seventh- and eighth-grade program included cyberbullying and sexting content, and the sixth grade program featured cyber-safety and cyberbullying.)  Our students were excellent hosts; they were attentive, receptive, and asked very good questions.




Health Office Reminder -  Parents of sixth-grade students are required to submit a physical form for your child.  Physical forms can be found on the PV Website under Parents/Forms and must be completed by your physician and submitted as soon as possible.  In addition, parents of seventh-grade students are required to submit a dental form.  This form can also be found on the website.  Failure to submit these required forms results in examinations by our school physician and dentist in the spring.  If you are not sure if you've sent in the required forms, please contact the school nurse, Mrs. Lind at 484.977.7210, ext. 4.

Ski/Snowboarding Club – Informational packets and permissions slips have been distributed to students who expressed an interest in this club.  Please ask your child to share the materials with you.  Permission slips are due no later than 1/5/18; it is important to know that participation is limited to forty-five (45) students.  If you need to speak with an advisor, please email Mrs. Sabol (dsabol@pvsd.org) or Ms. Doran (ddoran@pvsd.org).


from the Counseling Center - There will be an eighth-grade class assembly concerning North MontCo Technical Career Center, NMTCC, in January.  There will also be a tour of NMTCC for interested eighth-grade students in January.  Please contact the counselors of PVMS West for more information.


Activity Fee Reminder – All seventh- and eighth-grade activities are subject to an activity fee.  These fees, including any/all materials fees, should be directed to Mrs. Barber in our main office.


Ankhor Math Tutoring – Ankhor Math Tutoring, based at PVHS, provides a free online service for students in grades K-8 in our school district.  Our own high school students provide online tutoring, outside of school hours, at a mutually agreed upon time between the high school tutor and younger student/student’s parent.  Tutoring occurs one hour each week through collaborative documents, video chat, and an online whiteboard.  This is all provided for via the Ankhor website (https://ankhor.org/).

Create an Ankhor Math Tutoring account - 

1.) Parents should go to the registration page on the main website, https://ankhor.org/#/register-here.

2.) Enter the PVMSW Verification Code: S001008B5m93.

3.) Select the type of account they wish to create (Learner).

4.) Follow the remaining instructions for signing-up.


Attendance/Absences – If you know your child will be absent from school, please be sure to contact Mrs. Brenda Continelli, our counseling secretary, at bcontinelli@pvsd.org or by calling our office at 484-977-7210.  Also, please remember to send in excuse notes, detailing the date of the absence, reason for the absence, and a parent signature, within three daysof the absence(s).


Reminder about Attendance Law Changes – In November, 2016, Governor Wolf signed into law new school attendance provisions.  Act 138 of 2016, rewrites a substantial portion of the Public School Code that addresses unexcused absences and truancy.  These new provisions are in effect beginning with the 2017-2108 school year.  Essentially, if a student is absent without a note from a parent/guardian citing an acceptable reason (as per the Student Handbook), the absence is classified as unexcused.  If students accumulate three unexcused absences, they are considered “truant.”  Six days or more of unexcused absences is considered “habitually truant” and subject to consequences that may include the filing of a citation in district court.  When students accumulate ten total days of absence, excused or unexcused, the district requires a note from a doctor for any subsequent absences. 

As part of the new legislation, the state is encouraging schools and families to work together in understanding unexcused absences and how students can be supported when they struggle with attendance for any reason.  The school district will develop a “Student Attendance Improvement Plan” in its efforts to address attendance issues.  For more information, please click on Attendance Guidelines under the Parents tab.  At MS West, Student Attendance Improvement Plans are initiated by district-adopted attendance letters and implemented by our social worker, a counselor, and/or an administrator in conjunction with a parent(s).

Fall/Winter Weather and Attire – With the winter months ahead, it is time to think about school delays, early dismissals, and school closures.  In the event of inclement weather, families will be notified via the Blackboard Connect/Connect 5 system, which informs families of delayed openings and school closures.  If a call is not received in your home and you listen to the radio or television stations, our school district closing number is 317.  Please talk with your child about procedures for an early dismissal from school.  Please be sure to update your contact information via the Home Access Center (HAC) or by notifying our office of any changes to your emergency contact numbers or email addresses.

Students are outside on the bus deck for five-fifteen minutes in the morning before the school day begins.  As the temperatures drop, please be sure your child wears appropriate attire to be outside.


Notes from Home and School –

West’s Home and School has been in communication with the local food pantry; as a result, West plans to keep a food collection bin in our main office.  As it is filled, H&S will empty the bin/deliver the food.  (Reminder – the Zieglerville post office is also a Daily Bread Food Pantry collection site.)

West’s Home and School will be running its second Box Tops contest.  Just clip Box Tops off specially marked products and send them in with your student in an envelope or baggie marked “Box Tops.”  Don’t forget to put the homeroom teacher’s name on the envelope or baggie.


Important Dates – December/January:

12/22 – Last (December) Day for Students, Winter break – 12/25/17-1/1/18

1/02 – First (January) Day for Students



Donna Milligan, Principal, PVMS West


A reminder to parents:  If you ever need clarification or assistance with anything mentioned in my reports or if you have general questions, please call (484-977-7210, ext. 3505) or email (dmilligan@pvsd.org).  I will be happy to assist you.