Murray Messenger 9/21/18

Murray Hill Middle School

Murray Messenger 9/21/18

A Note From The Principal

Dear MHMS Families,

This year students will engage in the fall administration of the MAP test through their content classes.  The Reading MAP test will be conducted through three periods of ELA classes, and the Math MAP test will be conducted through three periods of math classes.  All students will engage in both tests, except 7th grade Algebra students and 8th grade Geometry students will not take the Math MAP test.  Please see the calendar below for the specific dates for MAP testing.  Please do all that you can to avoid scheduling appointments during testing; research shows that students perform better on standardized tests when taken during the scheduled testing time.  If a student is absent during the test administration or is unable to complete the test during the three class periods set aside, we will facilitate make-up sessions so that all students have ample opportunity to engage in the test.  If you have any questions regarding MAP testing, please feel free to contact Ms. Couch, Assistant Principal. 

At this time 57% of our families have completed Family File, through HCPSS Connect (this is a 3% increase from last week)!  If you have not completed this very important task yet, please do so this weekend.  Your Family File must be updated and verified at the start of each school year.  Among other things, Family File provides MHMS with contact information, emergency contact information, health information, and different preferences which helps us to ensure the safety of your student.  Please visit: to update your Family File.  If you have any difficulties accessing or completing Family File, please contact our Front Office Staff at 410-880-5897.

Finally, please be patient as we continue to work towards balancing our class sizes in order to provide the best learning environment for all of our students.  As we work on this, students may potentially receive schedule changes through next week. 


Lisa R. Smithson


Murray Hill Middle School

Important Dates:

September 25th and September 27th

Mary Poppins Jr. Auditions (contact Ms. Hersey)

October 2nd, 4th, 5th

ELA MAP Testing (during ELA class)

October 3rd

3-Hour Early Dismissal

October 4th

MHMS Flu Clinic

October 4th

MHMS Tech Night Out Parent Event

October 8th-10th

6th Grade Field Trip- Outdoor Education

October 9th

Interim Progress Reports Issued

October 15th

Fall Pictures

October 16th, 17th, 18th

Math MAP Testing (during math class)

October 19th

Schools Closed For Students

October 24th @ 7:00 p.m.

Change Matters Concert

October 26th @ 6:30 p.m.

Fall Fling (formerly known as the Blue Jean Ball)


News From The Hill

School News

Yankee Candle Fundraiser:  Please consider supporting the MHMS Yankee Candle Fundraiser.  Get an early start on your holiday shopping; buy something for yourself, a family member or a friend! Fundraiser packets were sent home with students on Thursday.  Profits will benefit the MHMS PBIS program along with other initiatives for our school community.  The fundraiser will run through October 12th.  Products will be delivered before Thanksgiving, and will be available for pick-up during the November Parent Teacher Conferences.  We thank you in advance for your support.  You can also make online purchases.  See the attached flyer with information regarding online ordering options:   MHMSYankeeCandleOnllineOrdering.pdf

Flu Clinic:  MHMS will host a Flu Clinic on, Thursday, October 4th.  Only students who complete a consent form, either online or hard copy, will have the opportunity.  Flu Clinic Consent Forms and information about the Flu Clinic was sent home today with students.  Please complete the paper consent form, or online consent form by September 21st (DO NOT complete both the online and paper form). FluClinicInformation.pdf 

MHMS Tech Night Out:  MHMS Family Involvement Team (FIT) Presents Tech Night Out

When: Thursday October 4th 2018

Time: 6pm-8pm

Where: Savage Branch Howard County Library @ 9525 Durness Ln, Laurel, MD 20723

What: Need help with Canvas?

Have questions regarding completing the HCPSS Family file? Want to know more about the innovative resources offered at the local library?  

Let the Family Involvement Team lend a helping hand!

Light refreshments will be provided.

El Equipo de Participación Familiar de MHMS (FIT en inglés)

Presenta “Noche de Tecnología”

Habrá un intérprete.

Fecha: Jueves el 4 de Octubre 2018

Hora: A las 6:00 - 8:00 de la tarde

Lugar:  Savage Branch Howard County Library 9525 Durness Ln, Laurel, MD 20723


Ayuda con Canvas

Ayuda para llenar el HCPSS expediente de la familia.

Ayuda para contestar algunas preguntas sobre el HCPSS expediente de la familia.  

Para darse algunas informaciones sobre los recursos que tienen las bibliotecas locales.

El equipo de Participación Familiar está aquí para ustedes. ¡Permítanos ayudarle!

Se ofrecerán refrescos.


African-American Community Roundtable Forum:  Please consider attending the African-American Community Roundtable Forum scheduled for September 24th at Wilde Lake High School.  More information is attached: AACR Education Forum Sept 24 (1).pdf 

The Council of Elders Community Academy:  Save the dates for the for The Council of Elders 2018-2019 Parent Workshop Series.  More information is attached:  TCOE workshop_SaveDate_2018-19.pdf 

PTA News

PTA Membership and Spiritwear:  Please show your support by joining the MHMS PTA for the 2018-2019 school year.  Also, consider pre-ordering our awesome spirit wear!  Use the form to show your support:  PTAMembership:SpiritWear.pdf 

MHMS Music Boosters News

Music Boosters Board:  The following MSMS Music Boosters Board Members will serve as officers for the 2018-2019 school year:

  • President: Erin Strovel
  • Vice President: vacant
  • Secretary: vacant
  • Treasurer: Debra Rhoades

In addition to our board members, we are fortunate to have our amazing fundraising chair, Isabel Sheeley, return for another year.

We are currently in need of a Vice President and Secretary for this year. If you are interested, please let me know at


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)

Howard County School News

Reservoir High School Yard Sale:  The Reservoir High School Music Foundation will sponsor the RHS Yard sale on Saturday October 6th from 8:00 am to 12:00 noon (rain date:  October 13, 8:00 am to 12:00 noon).  Why not rent a space to get rid of all that extra stuff?  For just $20 (early bird registration) you will receive plenty of space on our school’s parking lot to sell your items.  We do the advertising.  We provide a super location.  You clear out the clutter and make some money.  It’s a win-win for everyone.  Use the link to complete your space rental form. OR if you just want to clear the clutter out of your home, gather the items and donate them to the RHS Music Foundation.  Bring the items to the school on 9/21, 9/24, 9/26 or 10/1-10/5 from 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. or 10/5 from 2:10 pm to 7:00pm.  

 Please contact Davita Alston at with any questions.   See you on October 6th! 


Hammond High School Homecoming Events:  Hammond High School Homecoming is October 13th.  Festivities begin with a Pancake breakfast in the Hammond HS Cafeteria from 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM (adults $7/kids 6 & under $3).  The Parade begins at 10:30 AM at the Amherst House in the Kings Contrivance Village Center.  The Homecoming Football Game will follow at 1PM.  Bring your family, friends and neighbors and join us for this fall tradition!  Future Golden Bears are encouraged to march in the parade, as well as scouting groups, school safeties, etc.  Please give advanced notice.  We are in need of volunteers who have flat bed trucks, convertibles or soft top jeeps to drive in the parade.  Volunteers/questions, please contact Karin Bruce at (410) 381-6694 or  GO BEARS!!!


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.



Friday, September 21, 2018 - 12:45pm