Murray Messenger 11/10/17

Murray Hill Middle School

Murray Messenger 11/10/17

A Note From The Principal

Dear MHMS Families,

This week our 6th and 7th grade students kicked-off their Annual Service Learning Project.  Throughout the year, the students will learn about and support Grassroots of Howard County.  One of the functions of Grassroots is to supports individuals and families who are homeless.  Our students attended an assembly to learn about how homelessness effects citizens of Howard County, and how Grassroots provides assistance for those in need.  Our first initiative in collaboration with Grassroots, is our Change Matters campaign.  During the 6th and 7th grade lunch shifts, we will collect spare change (bills are also excepted), to donate to Grassroots.  I would like to thank our phenomenal performing arts department, for hosting our Change Matters Kick-Off Concert on Wednesday evening.  Under the direction of Ms. Hersey, Mr. Burrows, and Mr. McFate, our students entertained a packed house, and the event raised over $1000.00 towards our Change Matter campaign!  Please continue to send donations for our collection containers next week.

Next week is American Education Week.  Parents are welcome to come and visit their student’s classes throughout the week, without giving prior notification of the visit.  We look forward to having parents visit to see all of the wonderful things that go on daily at Murray Hill Middle School. 

Please be reminded that HCPSS Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held, Monday, November 20th through Wednesday, November 22nd.  Parents can schedule conferences through HCPSS Connect.  The window to schedule conferences closes on Wednesday, November 15th at 11:59 p.m.  (Please see the directions on scheduling parent-teacher conferences- SYN073 Parent Conference Parent-1.pdf ).  If you are unable to schedule a conference during the parent-teacher conference timeframe, and would like to connect with your student’s teacher, please consider coordinating an email update, or holding a scheduled phone conference.  Also available, on limited basis, are team conferences, which can be set up through our Student Services Office, by calling 410-880-5838.


Lisa R. Smithson


Murray Hill Middle School

Important Dates:

November 17th

Report Cards Issued

November 17th

8th Grade Field Trip- Newseum

November 20th

3-Hour Early Dismissal (Parent/Teacher Conferences)

November 21st

3-Hour Early Dismissal (Parent/Teacher Conferences)

November 22nd

Schools Closed for Students (Parent/Teacher Conferences)

November 23rd-November 24th

Schools Closed- Thanksgiving Break

November 27th

Fall Pictures Retake Day

November 28th @ 6:30 p.m.

PTA Meeting

November 29th @ 6:00 p.m.

Passport to Success:  College and Career Night

News From The Hill


MHMS Tardy Policy Reminder:  It is important for students to arrive to school and to class on time each day.  Even a few minutes missed on a daily basis adds up to a significant amount of instructional time lost during the course of a school year.  Please note the MHMS Tardy Policy:

  • First Tardy- Reminder to the student of the expectation to be on time
  • Second Tardy- Reminder to the student of the expectation and alert of the potential consequence
  • Third Tardy- Parent Contact
  • Fourth Tardy- Office Referral and Friday School

We thank you in in advance for supporting this expectation. 

MHMS Winter Bazar:  The Winter Bazaar is back again this year!  The Winter Bazaar is a small “store” filled with donated items that students can purchase using their Gotchas.  We are currently looking for donations- small items such as books, candles, jewelry, games, household items, decorative items, baby items, toys, movies, CDs, etc.  Donations can be dropped off in Ms. Hodder’s classroom (Room 106) or brought in with your student and dropped off starting on November 6th.  We will accept donations through December 1st.  Thank you for your support!

Passport To Success; College and Career Night:  Save the date for November 29, 2017 at 6:00 p.m. for this annual event brought to you by our educational partners, The SEL/H Ladies of the Continental Society, Inc. Prepare to experience a college and career fair, and learn about financial aid and scholarship opportunities, explore career options, learn interviewing tips and tips for course selection for high school, and more. Students who attend will receive a homework pass and snacks will be provided.


Goucher College Theater Field Trip:  7th grade students received permission slips to attend a field trip to the theater at Goucher College on Monday, December 18th.  This is a great opportunity for your child to see live performances of stories read in English class during the Thrills and Chills Unit.  The cost is $25 and payment can be made with cash, check to MHMS, or online at  All signed permission slips and payment are due by Tuesday, November 21st.  

We are also looking for chaperones, so please complete that part of the permission slip if interested.  Chaperones will also need to pay $25 for bus transportation and a theater ticket.  Please contact Kristin Cullison with any questions at


8th Grade Report Cards:  Since our 8th grade students will be attending an extended day field trip to the Newseum on Friday, November 17th, all 8th grade Report Cards will be issued on Thursday, November 16th.  (6th and 7th grade Report Cards will still be issued on Friday, November 17th).


PTA Sponsored MHMS 20th Anniversary Gala: The MHMS 20th Anniversary Gala, planned for this Saturday, November 11th, has been postponed until the Spring.  Information regarding the event will be shared at a later time.  If you are interested in assisting with the planning of the MHMS 20th Anniversary Gala, please contact, PTA President, Femi Williams at

PTA Volunteers Needed:  The MHMS PTA has several committees that are in need of volunteers.  Please see the Committees, along with a brief description and contact, PTA President, Femi Williams, if you are interested in volunteering ( )

  • Art Show/Art Fair Studio (Chair Needed)- This committee will work closely with the art teacher, to put together an art showcase. This will be the 4th Annual Art Show. The Art Show is an opportunity to show-off what our students have been doing in art class. In order to create excitement and have non-art students excited about attending, we are planning on combining the event with “Make & Take Art Stations” or an art vendor sale where students who make their own jewelry or wallets or pens can come and set-up a booth to sell their products. The Band will also display their talents throughout the night. (May 3, 2018)
  • 5K/1k Run/Walk -Spring (Chair Needed)- This committee is a work in progress. We are striving to host our first 5k sometime in March. We are in the process of figuring out how to get a registered 5k track and all the details of planning such an event. If we successfully plan this event, it could be our biggest fundraiser. (March 24, 2018)
  • World Day for Cultural Diversity (Chair Needed)Week of May 2018 – 2nd Annual Event. The vision of this event will be in collaboration with MHMS Social Studies department. We will kick off the event with an activity on May 21 and each day we will have various activities during lunch time for the students. On May 22, 2018, there will be a school wide presentations where the students who wish to participate will have an opportunity to talk about their culture (parents etc.) to their grade level peers. On the evening of May 22, 2018, the parents of the students will then prepare a dish from their culture and the students will also present to the parents. The Cultural Arts activities will be held during lunch; The Murray Hill Band will assist with music from around the world.  More information to follow.


Communication is an essential component of a successful school experience for both students and parents.  There are many ways to stay connected to MHMS and to HCPSS.  Please consider the following ways to stay connected:

  • Visit the MHMS website often at:   
  • Follow TRES on Twitter at:  @hcpss_mhms
  • Visit Canvas often
  • Visit the HCPSS website often at:
  • Download the HCPSS app on your mobile device (search Howard County Public School System)

Community News

For more Community News visit the Community News and Programs page on the HCPSS website for announcements of upcoming events and programs sponsored by non-profit organizations.



Saturday, November 11, 2017 - 10:30am