Murray Messenger 2/9/18

Murray Hill Middle School

Murray Messenger 2/9/18

A Note From The Principal

Dear MHMS Families,

Well, winter weather continues to impact our school days, and I have a feeling that there may be more to come.  Please be aware that our Superintendent, Dr. Michael Martirano, shared a message regarding HCPSS’s plan to make-up the four inclement weather days that we have already incurred, as well as information regarding what will happen if there are additional inclement weather days.  At this time school’s will be open on April 4th, 5th, and 6th, and May 18th, will now be a ½ day for students.  The entire message from Dr. Martirano is posted on the MHMS website.  Please review it when you have the opportunity

Additionally, as a result of the inclement weather day closures and early dismissals that have already occurred, the A-Day/B-Day schedule in all HCPSS schools has been impacted.  Therefore, there has been an adjustment to the A-Day/B-Day schedule to gain back lost instructional time.  Please note the updated schedule:

  • February 20 will be changed from an A day to a B day
  • April 4 will be a B day.
  • April 5 will be an A day.
  • April 6 will be a B day.
  • May 18 will be a B day.
  • If Friday, June 15 is used as an inclement weather make-up day, it will be a B day



Lisa R. Smithson


Murray Hill Middle School

Important Dates:

February 16th

No School- Countywide Professional Development Day

February 19th

No School- President’s Day

February 20th

B-Day (this is an adjustment due to inclement weather days)

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


MAP Testing: The MAP assessment focuses on individual student performance in the areas of reading and mathematics.  In spite of the inclement weather days during this week, our 6th grade students were able to complete their MAP testing this week.  Any student who was absent during any of the testing sessions, will have the opportunity to engage in make-up testing in the coming weeks.  Our 7th and 8th grade students will engage in MAP testing during the next week.  Dates for testing are as follows:


Grade 6

February 5th and 7th

Grade 7

February 13th and 14th

Grade 8

February 9th and 12th


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


The 8th Grade class has a field trip coming up on Tuesday, March 27th. We will be going to the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture. Students can come into school at the regular time but will need to get picked up after school, as we will get back at approximately 4:30 p.m. If your student is going home with someone other than their own parent/guardian, please send a note to Ms. Schaefer. Permission slips were already sent home and are due back to Social Studies teachers as soon as possible. There are extra copies of the permission slip (and required medical form) attached here. Payment is $25 and can be submitted online through this link.

A few chaperones are needed for this trip so please consider coming with us. We will choose chaperones from a lottery of those adults who have signed up. Please enter the lottery by filling out the lower portion of the permission slip by March 9th. The fee for chaperones will be shared following the lottery drawing. For any additional information, please contact Ms. Schaefer at

We at Murray Hill want all of our students to enjoy the experiences we have to offer which is why we have created a Field Trip Scholarship Fund. This fund helps families cover some of the cost for field trips. If you would like to contribute to our Field Trip Scholarship Fund, we and our students, would appreciate it. Additional funds can be included into your current payment as cash, check, or through the Online School Payment website. Thank you for supporting our Murray Hill Family.


Valentine’s Day Shop:  The MHMS PTA will sponsor a Valentine’s Day Shop during the lunch shifts on Monday, February 12th through Wednesday, February 14th.  Students can purchase items for their families and friends in celebration of Valentine’s Day.  Items will range from $1.00 to $10.00.  We are looking forward to providing this service for our students. 

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.

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 Cafeteria.  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 



Friday, February 9, 2018 - 12:30pm