Parent Email


Aug 29, 2019

Parents/Guardians of Penn Middle School Students,

I hope the start to the school year has been a good one in your home.  We have had a great start to our year - a highlight has been our new Personalized Learning Time (PLT) and new bus dismissal.  They have worked wonderfully.    Students and parents have reported they like the end of day PLT for organizational purposes.  Not to brag, but we had a record low number of students miss the bus on the first two days of school - one.  I have had as many as 17 one year.  WOW!  

Here are a number of points to serve as reminders:

  • Buses - For safety reasons and because most of our buses are full, students are NOT to ride the bus home with students on another bus route.  They should ride their assigned bus. As stated in our handbook only the principal can authorize another student to ride another bus.
  • Absences- If your child is absent please send in the proper excuse within three days of that absence. You should include name, date of absence(s), the reason for the absence, grade level, Homeroom #, and Parent/ Guardian signature.
  • Family/Educational Trips – If your child is going to attend a family/educational trip, please write a note or email me to request approval at least two weeks prior to the trip.  The note should contain the students name, school dates missed, and a brief reason why the trip must occur during the school year.  Any work that will be missed while the student is away should be "made-up" via the teacher lesson plans, which are posted on our Website.   There will be no "work-packets' created by teachers.
  • Communication - We will continue to use this type of email and texts as a key method of communication.  Important messages, events, and documents will be electronically sent home using this system.  Please make sure you email Mrs. Beck ( with important informational changes such as cell phone and email addresses.  
  • Security - For safety reasons, all visitors must provide a driver's license or other government ID upon entering the building to pick-up a child. If you come in for a meeting, please bring your ID.  After your ID is verified, you will be assigned a badge to wear while in the building. Please know, this system (known as Raptor) is designed to protect our children and only searches visitor records for offenses against children.
  • Parent Pick-up - Please only drive your children to and from school when there is a definite reason.  You pay taxes, let them ride the bus.  Our drop-off and pick-up car lines are twice as long when there is rain.  I don't want to sound careless, but our kids won't melt if they get a little wet.  The main problem is the pick-up line at dismissal.  The congestion is tight.  We get cars lining up on Watt Road, blocking other cars, our busses, and potentially emergency vehicles in transit.  Please pull over in the Triple-D lot or Giant Eagle road, do not block Watt Road.
  • By now you should have registered for your child's Chromebook (there is no cost) and completed his/her Emergency Information via Family ID.  If you haven't done one or both of these, do them today.


Parenting Suggestion

  • Put their phones "to bed" - I suggest your son or daughter's cell phone charge overnight in your bedroom.  There is no reason for them to have them from 10 pm to 6 am.  I hear of kids texting each other through the night - 2 & 3 am, and if they are texting they're not sleeping.


Important Dates to remember

Aug 30 - Youth Night at Varsity Football Game 7:30 pm

Sept. 2 – Labor Day – No School

Sept 5 - Teen Savers (Cha-Ching Day)

Sept. 9 - Picture Day - Forms will be sent next week, but you can register and pay via the Lifetouch site using the code EVTDZ7N4V.  You will have to create an account to pay online.

Sept 10-11 - Drama Club Sign-up

Sept 17-18 - Club Sign-ups

Sept. 13 - Middle School Band Night at Varsity Football Game 7:30 pm

Sept 20 - Fundraiser Kick-off

Sept 24 - Mid-point of Q1

Sept 30 - Homecoming

Oct 3 - Slam Tour Assembly


Thanks again for a fantastic opening of the school year.  I am excited about your child's experience and the ability of our teachers to meaningfully engage him/her each day. 

Enjoy the long weekend.

Please contact me if you have any concerns or questions,


Jim Simpson