Murray Messenger 2/2/18

Murray Hill Middle School

Murray Messenger 2/2/18

A Note From The Principal

Dear MHMS Families,

On Thursday morning, we hosted a very special visitor; HCPSS, Superintendent, Dr. Michael Martirano came to our building.  He visited several classrooms, and talked to lots of students and staff members.  Before leaving, he made an announcement on our P.A. system, thanking everyone for their hospitality and sharing how impressed he was by our students and our school community. 

I would like to inform the MHMS community that Assistant Principal, Ms. Andrea Harmon, will be going on an extended leave starting on Monday, February 5th.  To assist Ms. Armstead and me while she is out, Ms. Daniller and Mr. Miller will be providing administrative support. 

Please join me in welcoming new Teacher’s Secretary, Karin Bruce.  Ms. Bruce joined the MHMS community on February 1st, as a result of Ms. Lebe’s retirement. 

I would like to thank all of the parents for their cooperation this week as we instituted a new car loop pattern in the morning.  The feedback has been very positive, and we are pleased that our process is more efficient.   

If your student will be participating in our Vision and Hearing Screening, on Tuesday, February 6th (all 8th grade students and all students new to the state of Maryland), please be sure that your student brings his or her glasses with them on that day; they will need them for the screening. 


Lisa R. Smithson


Murray Hill Middle School

Important Dates:

February 5th

Report Cards Issued

February 6th

Vision and Hearing Screening

February 16th

No School- Countywide Professional Development Day

February 19th

No School- President’s Day

February 23rd @ 7:00 p.m.

MHMS Musical Production- “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”

February 24th @ 7:00 p.m.

MHMS Musical Production- “Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”

February 27th @ 6:30 p.m.

PTA Meeting

News From The Hill


Student Shout Out:  MHMS would like to congratulate 7th grade students, Alisa Hira and Saanvi Thakre, who participated in a First Lego League competition with other HCPSS students in December.  There project qualified them to attend the State FLL Competition, which will take place in a few weeks at the University of MD College Park.  Their accomplishments and the importance of their project was recently highlighted in The Baltimore Sun.  Check it out:

MAP Testing: The MAP assessment focuses on individual student performance in the areas of reading and mathematics. Dates for testing are as follows:

Grade 6

February 5th and 7th

Grade 7

February 13th and 14th

Grade 8

February 9th and 12th

School Arrival:  This is just a reminder that students are considered “tardy to school” after the ringing of the 8:25 bell.  Any student who enters the building after the 8:25 bell, must report to the front office to sign-in.  Students who arrive tardy to school 4 times within a quarter will have to attend a Friday Evening School.  We do understand that during these cold morning’s many parents are electing to drive their students to school, which causes our car loop line to back up.  Please plan accordingly for the potential back up in the car loop line, and also know that on cold morning’s we allow students to enter the building starting at 8:05 (rather than 8:15), and they are monitored in the cafeteria until the 8:15 bell rings.

Hearing and Vision Screening:  Hearing and Vision testing will take place for all 8th grade students and students who are new to Maryland schools, on Wednesday February 6, 2018.  Please see the attached information letter regarding screening.  If your student wears glasses make sure they bring them to school on February 6. Absent students will be screened on February 28.  HV letter.pdf 

If you have received a request for consent to have your child screened please return it to school no later than 2/1/2018.We are seeking volunteers to assist with our Hearing and Vision Screening during the morning of February 6th.  If you are available to help for any amount of time, please contact the Health Room at 410-880-5897.

Clothing to Cash Recycling Program:  MHMS has partnered with the Clothing to Cash Recycling Program.  The program not only supports environmental efforts, it also serves as a fundraiser for our school (we earned $66.00 during our first month of collecting items!).  So please, bring your used clothing, shoes and other items in plastic bags, and place them in our collection bin located at the entrance of our parking lot.  Please see the attached flyer to learn about all of the different items that can be donated.  MHMSClothingToCash.jpg 


Box Tops For Education:  During the month of February, there will be a Box Tops For Education competition amongst the grades.  The grade level that turns in the most Box Tops For Education from February 1st through February 23rd, will earn extra recess time.  Collection bins, by grade will be placed in the front hallway, outside of the main office doors.  Please support this initiative by supplying your Box Tops For Education.  All proceeds directly benefit our students. 

MHMS PTA Membership:  It is never too late to show your support for the MHMS PTA by becoming a member.  At any time during the year, you can join, by completing the attached form PTA Membership.pdf , and turning it in to the front office. 


MHMS Laura Wallen Scholarship Fund:  HCPSS in partnership with Bright Minds have established a scholarship fund to honor the life and legacy of former MHMS teacher, Laura Wallen.  The scholarship fund is intended to assist Wilde Lake High School students who plan to attend a 2-year or 4-year college.  Click the following link, to find out more information and to make a donation to the scholarship fund. 


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 MHMS 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.

Youth Day in Annapolis:  The Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, Inc. will host the 2018 Youth Day in Annapolis on February 10th.  This is an opportunity for students to learn about the power of civic engagement and how the government works.  Please see the attachment for detailed information 2018 Youth Day Packet.pdf  (This is not a HCPSS sponsored event). 

Tackle Teen’s Mental Health Challenges:  The River Hill High School PTSA encourages all parents to attend this session on February, 22nd, from 7:00 p.m.-8:30 p.m. in the River Hill High School Media Center.  Join Professor of Child Psychiatry, Jeff Q. Bostic, MD, EdD, at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital for the discussion of how to promote positive mental health in high school students, how to manage anxiety and stress, and how to engage with your teenager to recognize and respond to emotional distress. Professor Bostic has worked with approximately 100 school districts in USA and abroad regarding school mental health. 

Free Dental Health Clinic:  Please see the flyer regarding a Free Dental Health Clinic being held on Saturday, March 17th.  Pre-registration is required.  HoCo Dental Clinic, 2018.pdf 



Saturday, February 3, 2018 - 11:45am