Casimir Pulaski Middle School Handbook
A Guidebook to Success in the Seventh and Eighth Grades
You are an important part of our Casimir Pulaski community. For this community to run effectively and to be productive, everyone must behave in respectful, reasonable and tolerant manner. The rules in place are set in order to provide a pleasant and orderly atmosphere. As you continue through middle school, you will be given more responsibility and are expected to live up to those expectations.
In this Handbook, many of the rules, procedures and policies of the Casimir Pulaski Middle School are discussed and clarified. It is important that you understand what is expected of you. We want your middle school years to be productive and successful.
The Middle School Core Area Teachers,
Ms. Piccoli – Math
Dr. Piccirella – Science
Mrs. Oliveira – Social Studies
Mrs. Flaherty – English
Our middle school philosophy is one that creates a supportive work environment for all. There is a social awareness including field trips, service opportunities and community events. These are expected to aid students in building a sense of community and pride. Our goals for our students are to create leadership, self-esteem, respect for others and the realization of the students’ highest potential. Students are lead to an increased awareness of responsibility. We are preparing students with 21st century learning skills to navigate a complex future world which demands hard work, critical thinking, problem solving and perseverance.
As a team, we are committed to providing students and families with clear and consistent updates on student progress and goals. Our hope is that our students leave here as better students and community members who are aware of their role in contributing to society.
How Parents Can Help
Create Successful Habits
- Join our school’s PTA to keep involved in activities and events related to our community.
- Provide your child with a quiet place to work.
- Encourage your child to use their planner, and regularly check their planner for homework and upcoming tests and projects.
- Check to see that your child has completed their work neatly and completely.
- If your child does not have a specific homework assignment, he/she should review notes or reading text material.
- Ask to see your child’s tests and quizzes.
- Check to see if your child has the appropriate materials for class.
- Periodically help your child organize his/her backpack and binders.
- Keep updated on homework and assignments through our school’s website https://www.yonkerspublicschools.org/pulaski.
- Communicate with your child’s teachers regarding their progress via echalk; ask for updated gradesheets.
Foster Personal Responsibility
- Urge your child to participate in class discussions.
- If your child is absent, make sure he/she has a dependable buddy for each class to discuss material he/she may have missed. Assignments can also be seen on echalk.
- If necessary, encourage your child to see their core area teachers during lunch time extra help.
- If your child is questioning his/her progress in a specific subject area, encourage your child to speak with their teacher. We want to instill a confidence and initiative to be involved in their own learning.
What is Expected of Students?
- Come to class prepared and on time. Bring all necessary books, tools and assignments.
- Take care of any textbooks or resources you are trusted with.
- Respect the rights and property of other students.
- Respect yourself.
- Respect school property.
- Be in your assigned classes and areas of the building at the appropriate and designated times.
- Follow the classroom routines set by your teachers.
- Maintain a positive, cooperative attitude.
- Ask questions of a teacher if you do not understand class material.
- Respect any and all adults that are in charge of you at any particular time (teachers, substitutes, teacher’s aids, etc.)
- If you are absent you are responsible for making up work within a week of your absence. You are responsible for showing missing assignments to your teachers.
- Students will receive a warning and verbal correction for an initial infraction.
- For a more serious infraction, any or all of the following discipline procedures may be followed:
- Removal from class
- Lunch detention
- Removed from an activity or event
Substantially and consistently disruptive students may be suspended from school and/or removed from events/activities.
Regular attendance is extremely important and will be closely monitored. If a student is ill he/she should remain home until well. Information pertaining to absences should be provided to the school in the form of a note after each absence, including a doctor’s note if appropriate. Accompanying documentation to the main office, it is encouraged that you contact your teachers in regards to any periods of extended absence in regards to the work you need to make up. If a student is absent for any period of time it is expected that he/she make up all work in a timely manner. Please utilize echalk and contact your classmates to find out about assignments you need to work on.
Students in grades 6-8 should enter the building through the main door by the flag pole at 8:25 am. Proceed immediately to second floor classrooms or to the cafeteria for breakfast. Students are expected to eat breakfast in a timely manner, and report directly to their first period class. Any student entering class after 8:45 is considered late.
Early Pick Up
Parents must sign their child out in the Student Sign-Out Book located at the Security Desk opposite the Main Door when picking their child up before dismissal time. Parents are encouraged to call or send in a written note when signing their child out early. All adults picking up students must be authorized on the student’s Emergency Card. Anyone picking up a child early must sign in at the security desk and present a form of identification. They will report to the main office to sign their child out of school. No child will be released without a parent’s consent.
Early dismissal disrupts class and interrupts your child’s education as well as the education of other students in the class. Please plan appointments accordingly. If there are any changes in the dismissal of your child, especially bus students, please put them in writing. We need to know early enough in the day so that we can inform monitors and teachers. Early dismissal disrupts the orderly process of our regular dismissal procedures; therefore early dismissal must occur before 2:45pm.
Bus Safety Rules
- Get on the bus quietly
- Fasten seat belt immediately
- Remain in seat until the bus monitor gives permission to leave the seat
- Keep arms and legs out of the aisle
- Get permission from bus personnel before opening a window
- Follow directions of bus personnel
- Act in an appropriate, responsible manner so that everyone can have a safe bus trip
Students must NOT:
- Talk to the driver while he/she is driving
- Leave an assigned seat until told to do so by bus personnel
- Engage in disruptive or dangerous behavior
Use of the Restrooms, Facilities and Nurse
- Students must get permission from a teacher to use the restroom and the water fountain during all times of the day. STUDENTS ARE NOT TO USE THE FACILITIES IN BETWEEN CLASS PERIODS.
- Students must sign-out of the classroom or area of the building they are leaving in order to use the facilities. An appropriate sign-out includes student’s name, date, time left, destination and time returned.
- Loitering (hanging out) in the restroom during class time will be considered a “cut” and appropriate discipline measures will be followed.
- In order to see the nurse, students must obtain a pass from the teacher who is in charge of them when they were injured or sick. The pass must specify the date and time. In order to return to class, students must have a return pass from the nurse that contains the date and time they are returning.
- If a student needs to be picked up because they are sick and injured, the nurse will call parents/guardians for a pick up. Students are not permitted to use their cell phones on school grounds to contact their parents for a sick pick up.
- Proper table manners will be expected at all times
- Students must be seated during the lunch period
- Students are responsible for the cleanliness of the table and the area under it (where they are seated). Lunch trays and paper are to be removed when leaving the table. Recycling rules apply in the cafeteria. Students are to follow the staff directions for recycling.
- Food/drinks are NOT to be carried outside of the cafeteria
Academic Lunch Periods/Extra Help
Middle school students are given the opportunity to come up for extra help during lunch periods under the following conditions:
- Students are REQUIRED TO GET A PASS from the teacher who is working with them during the lunch period in order to utilize this privilege.
- Students must obtain a pass BEFORE lunch time from their teacher. They must show this pass to the lunchroom monitors in order to get lunch or snack and return upstairs to work.
- Students are not permitted to work in a classroom or area that is not supervised by a teacher; students must be in the classroom that is specified on the pass.
- Classrooms during lunch are only for the purpose of extra help, makeup work or any other academics specified by a teacher.
- Any student who does not follow the procedures for utilizing Academic Lunch Periods, is disruptive or disobedient during these work periods, or is not in the appropriate area of the building during this time will have this privilege revoked.
The use of lockers is a middle school privilege:
- Lockers must have locks on them at all times. Each student must give their homeroom teacher their locker combination in case of an emergency or if the student forgets their combination.
- Lockers must contain only possessions that belong to the student who is assigned that locker.
- Lockers must be kept clean and orderly; please remember to throw out old lunches, food etc.
- Middle school students are only allowed to visit their lockers THREE TIMES during the school day: in the morning before first period begins, before lunch period and after the 3:10 bell rings (dismissal). Please pack your book bags accordingly for the day (morning class items and afternoon class items). If you need to visit your locker during any other time during the day, you must get permission to do so from a teacher.
As winter approaches, the following procedures have been put in place by the Superintendent of Yonkers schools. The Superintendent will make the decision to open or close schools due to unsafe weather conditions. A Connect Ed message will be sent to a telephone number on file. Reports on school closings due to weather or other emergency conditions are posted on-line at yonkerspublicschools.org, Cablevision channel 75, FIOS channel 38 and several other radio and television stations.
In case of a delayed school opening, the Superintendent may announce a two-hour opening delay citywide. Please be advised that regular school buses will run on a two hour delay. In the event of a delayed school opening, all scheduled school trips are cancelled.
It is essential that each year parents complete the following documents:
- White Emergency Cards
- Application for School Breakfast/Lunch
- Denial of Media Release Form (if applicable)
- Internet Usage Form
- Medical forms with a listing of all immunizations
- Emergency Early Release Form
The New York State Department of Education and the Board of Health require that documentation be secured proving that all students who come to school are fully immunized. We are required to exclude students if they are not immunized and do not have documentation from a physician indicating that they have received all required immunization.
All current medical information should be on file with the school nurse. Please be sure that the nurse is aware of any medical condition a student may have, including allergies. Please be aware that students may take medication in school if there is:
- Written permission from parent or guardian; and
- Written statement from prescribing physician with dosage
- Original dated medication bottle which contains a legible label
Medication will be kept in a safe place and administered, at times directed by the prescribing physician, by the school nurse. The school nurse will monitor careful administration of medication. Detailed records, as they pertain to the administration of oral medication, will be maintained at the school.
Please be sure to keep the school nurse updated on any changes in your child's medication or dosage. If you have any questions or need to call the school about the change in your child's medication, please contact the school nurse, Ms. Nicoletti. Please make sure that you renew your child's medication before it runs out.
If at some time during the school year your child becomes ill, we will notify you immediately. It is your responsibility to come to the school and pick up your child. If you are unavailable, the person designated on the white emergency card will be contacted.
Honor Roll Criteria
At the end of each marking period, students will earn academic achievement awards based on the following criteria:
Principal’s List: Students must have at least a 90% average or higher in all subject areas including physical education.
High Honor Roll: A cumulative average of 90% or higher including physical education.
Honor Roll: Students must have at least an 85% average in all core area classes combined.
Report Card and Progress Report Distribution Dates
First Marking Period Interim Report: Week of October 17th
First Marking Period Ends: November 11th
Second Marking Period Interim Report: Week of December 19th
Second Marking Period Ends: January 27th
Third Marking Period Interim Report: Week of March 13th
Third Marking Period Ends: April 7th
Fourth Marking Period Interim Report: Week of May 8th
Fourth Marking Period Ends: June 23rd
New York State Assesments and Regents
English Language Arts: Week of March 27th
Math: Week of May 1st
Living Environment: June 14th
Noncore: Week of January 17th
Core: Week of January 23rd
Noncore: June 5th
Core: June 12th
*Midterm and final exams each count for 10% of a student’s average in that subject area. Each marking period grade counts as 20% of the subject’s final average for the year.
Teachers will initially address academic and behavior concerns with the student. If teacher intervention with a student does not produce desired results, teachers will contact parents/guardians to schedule a team meeting. Parent/teacher team meetings are usually scheduled for 8 am. If a parent is concerned about a student’s progress, please schedule an 8 am meeting with the 7th and 8th grade team. Unfortunately, due to class scheduling we are not able to meet during school hours.
Homework is consistently assigned approximately 4-5 times a week by each core area teacher. Homework assignments are due the next day unless specified otherwise. It is our belief that homework is integral to the retention required in the learning process. Students that are absent are expected to communicate with their teachers regarding any assignments they missed or did not understand due to their absence. Students will have one week to make up any homework assignments missed due to absence. Late homeworks are not accepted and students will receive a zero as part of their homework average for each late or missing assignment.
Personal electronic devices are prohibited from use in the school building. If you deem it necessary for your child to have a cell phone, your child’s cell phone must be turned off while he/she is in the building. If a parent needs to contact a student, they may do so by contacting the main office. School time cannot be spent attempting to retrieve, repair or return equipment or to resolves student disputes over cell phones and electronic devices. Electronic devices that are not turned off or are visible on school grounds will be confiscated and parents may be required to pick them up from the principal’s office. Please note that the school may not be responsible for misplaced, broken or stolen electronic devices.
It is expected that students adhere to the district student dress code as detailed in the Yonkers Public Schools’ Code of Conduct. The Yonkers Public Schools has adopted a School Uniform Policy for all students in grades PreK through 12. The wearing of a school uniform enables school personnel to identify students assigned to the school building. The use of uniforms has also been shown to reduce absenteeism and competition over clothing. Clothing should appropriately cover the body and not interfere with student safety. Students cannot wear clothing that is likely to cause a disruption in school or is deemed inappropriate by school staff.
The Pulaski School uniform is as follows:
Boys: White shirt, blue pants
Girls: White blouse, red plaid or navy blue jumper, skirt, skort or pants
Gym uniform: White or red t-shirt, gray or blue sweatpants, sneakers
Middle School Events, Activities and Committees
Student participation in any and all events, activities and committees is contingent upon behavior and academic standing. Students who are consistently diligent, respectful and demonstrate Pulaski attitudes and profiles will be allowed the opportunity to participate in middle school extracurricular activities. Substantially and consistently disruptive students may be suspended from school and/or removed from events/activities.
Middle School Musical
*Please be advised that we do not use school or class time to celebrate individual birthdays. Please do not bring birthday treats to school.
8th Grade Events and Activities
Student participation in the following events and activities is contingent upon academics, behavior and passing all four core area classes for the 8th grade year. If a student is failing two or more core area courses for the year, they are not able to participate in the Moving Up Ceremony (please see the attached table which outlines requirements). Students will pay a graduation fee which will cover the following activities:
- Graduating Class t-shirt
- Dinner Dance
- 8th Grade Moving Up trip
- Moving Up Ceremony
*Class rings are an optional purchase; students will be given the opportunity to order class rings during their 8th grade year. This purchase is separate from the graduation fee.
Casimir Pulaski Middle School Handbook Agreement 2015-2016
We are requesting your support and cooperation in having your child read, understand and follow the procedures and guidelines of this Middle School Handbook. After you have read and discussed this handbook with your child, please sign below. Your child will return this signed page to his/her homeroom teacher.
Middle School Team
Brian Curtis, Principal
Jelia Honeywell, Assistant Principal
We have read, understood and agree to uphold the policies discussed in this handbook.
Student’s signature: _____________________________ Date: ___________
Parent/Guardian’s signature: ______________________ Date: ___________
Class:________ Homeroom Teacher:______