Sunday, February 7, 2016

Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Does it Again!

Quote of the Week: 

Monday is a B day.                                    

Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl - Eastern Regional Champs!

Our Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Team placed first out of 12 middle school teams competing in the Eastern Regional Competition this weekend in Greensboro. Our team will compete in three weeks in Statesboro for the Divisional competition. Way to go!

Photo courtesy of Leslie Gonzalez

Can We Talk? 

Our next Can We Talk? session will be just for 6th grade parents (we will hold sessions for each of the other grade levels in the coming weeks). This time together will give us an opportunity to have a conversation and share challenges as well as identify possible solutions to continue to support the work of each other and most importantly, our students.

I invite all 6th grade parents to join us on Tuesday, February 9th, from 6 – 7:30 p.m. in the Hilsman cafeteria. We will have a light meal and discuss how we can all partner together and develop ways to ensure that our students finish the year strong academically, socially, and behaviorally. We are all in this together – administrators, teachers, counselors, parents, community members and students. By working together, we can continue our strong record of partnering for student success.

In order to ensure that we have enough refreshments, please let us know you plan to attend no later than February 8th by either emailing Ms. Griffith at, or calling the school at 706-548-7281 and speaking to our receptionist, Ms. Postero. I look forward to seeing you on Tuesday, February 9th.


Our students will take the second round of benchmarks this week. The schedule will be as follows:

Tuesday 2/9/16                  Science
Wednesday 2/10/16           Math
Thursday 2/11/16               Social Studies
Friday 2/12/16                    Language Arts

Teacher and Staff Member of the Month

Congratulations to Meagan Nix and Leslie Gonzalez for being selected Teacher of the Month and Staff Member of the Month for February. Both of these ladies are incredibly busy giving their time and energy to making Hilsman a great place to be and succeed for our students. You ladies rock!

Go ahead and nominate teachers and staff members of the month for this month. Please follow the links below and nominate someone by February 29th!

FFE Award Nomination Window Open

Award nominations for the Foundation for Excellence in Public Education in Clarke County, Georgia opened on Monday, January 4th. The mission of the FFE is to encourage, recognize, and reward excellence in the Clarke County School District, and one of the primary ways this is accomplished is through monetary awards presented to deserving CCSD faculty, staff, and administrators. 

Parents, colleagues, students, and community members are encouraged to nominate stellar educators by going to the FFE website at and downloading appropriate application packets for the annual and even numbered year awards. Individuals may be nominated in more than one category if applicable criteria are met.

Please contact executive director C.J. Amason at 706/224-7636 or with questions or for more information. The nominating period will close on Friday, March 4th.

The FFE is accepting nominations for the following 11 awards in 2016:

  • Frusanna S. Booth Chair for Teachers of English and Language Arts ($1200 for two years)
  • Charlotte Brown Chair for Teachers of Special Education ($1200 for two years) 
  • Lamar Dodd Chair for Teachers of Fine Arts ($1200 for two years)
  • Jenny Penney Oliver Chair for Counselors and Student Support Personnel ($1200 for two years)
  • Margaret & Raymond Ponsoldt Chair for Elementary School Teachers ($1200 for two years)
  • Friends of Eve Carson Excellence in Teaching Award ($500 for two years)
  • Newland Family Foundation Excellence in Teaching Award ($500 for two years)
  • Walter Allen, Sr. Inspiring Teacher Award ($500)
  • Seasoned Teacher Award ($500)
  • Freida M. Thomas Teacher of Promise Award ($500)
  • Howard B. Stroud Community Service Award (please note that this is now for non-certificated CCSD employees ONLY)

Hilsman Middle has led the way in nominations for these awards over the past several years. We have many deserving educators, so please join me in recognizing their outstanding work by nominating a deserving educator for an FFE award!

Author Visit with Gavriel Savit

Hilsman had the wonderful opportunity to have author Gavriel Savit speak to some of our 8th grade students about language, writing, and his first novel, Anna and the Swallow Man. The novel is set in Krakow, Poland in 1939, and tells the story of seven year old Anna, the daughter of a Linguistics professor who goes to a meeting with some German officials and never returns home. Our students had many great questions and enjoyed taking pictures with the author at the end of the event. Thanks to Avid Bookshop for partnering with Hilsman and making the event possible!

Photos courtesy of Leslie Gonzalez

21st Century Open Saturday

Great conversation happened at our 21st Century Open Saturday session at Nellie B Community Center. Join us this Saturday, February 13th, at Hilsman from 9:30 - 12:30.

Scenes from Nellie B and 21st CCLC Open Saturday - including Mr. Oulevey calling to invite parents! Photos courtesy of Michelle Hayes.

Save the Date!

Click here to see the dates for 21st CCLC Open Saturdays!

Shout Outs!

Students, parent, and community members - Is there someone at Hilsman to whom you would like to give a public "shout out" for something positive they have done? We have so many positive activities going on here at Hilsman, and we need to get the word out! If you would like to give someone a shout out, please share it with us in the form below. You may give a shout out to a student, teacher, staff member, etc. and we will share it with them. 

Counseling News

8th Grade Students and Families

Rising 9th Grade Parent Night at Cedar Shoals High School will be on February 9th, 2016, at 6:00pm. You will receive information on elements for a successful transition to high school, Freshman Academy Summer Transition Camp, class/schedule information, and PTSA membership and volunteer opportunities. See you there!

Save the Date for Day as a Dawg

CALLING ALL 8th GRADERS! Inspire UGA is an organization that wants to make sure every 8th grader realizes that achieving a college degree is possible. Day as a Dawg is a full day event on April 16, 2016, that is completely FREE! The 8th graders will spend the day at the University of Georgia with a UGA mentor to inspire the students to earn a college degree. There will be speakers, workshop activities, the opportunity to attend the UGA football scrimmage game, and a chance to tour the campus. We hope that this day will leave you feeling that you are capable of accomplishing anything that you put your mind to. Applications for Day as a Dawg will be sent out in March and will be due in the beginning of April. We hope to see you there!


Yearbooks on Sale! They are $22.00. They will go up to $24.00 on February 25, 2016. Did you know you can order online? Order yours today by following this link: electronic yearbook form

Chess News

From Coach Pratt:
"Hilsman performed well at the Team State Qualifier and should receive an invitation to the State Championship in the next few days. Over 1,000 K-8 students were in attendance at the biggest Georgia tournament of the year. Our top five will face off with about ten of the best schools in Georgia on March 19."

Way to go, Chess Team!

PTO News - Spirit Day at Larry's Giant Subs

Monday, February 8th from 10:30 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. Larry's Giant Subs will be donating 10% of all Hilsman Middle related purchases! Please support Hilsman by dining out with your family and friends this Monday. Your student can show their Hilsman ID, or you can present the flyer below. Plenty of flyers are located in the front office of the school, and we will send some home on Monday as well.

November PAB Minutes are here.



Thursday 2-11-16        Hilsman Soccer @ Malcom Bridge 4:30        

Cedar Shoals:

Monday 2-8-16               Varsity Girls Basketball vs. TBA @ Clarke Central ( 1st Round Region 8-AAAAA Tournament )

Tuesday 2-9-16             Varsity Boys Basketball vs. TBA 7:30 ( 1st Round 8-AAAAA Region Tournament )
                                      Varsity Girls Soccer vs. Prince Avenue 5:30
                                      Varsity Boys Soccer @ Chestatee 6:00

Thursday 2-11-16        JVG/B Soccer @ N. Oconee 5:30/7:00

GO JAGS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Our announcements are now a daily Google Presentation, which can be viewed by clicking here. In these announcements there is information regarding sports tryouts, club meetings, etc. You can access the weekly Panther News video here.

Download the CCSD App (It's Free!)

Upcoming Events - Mark Your Calendars

February 8 Progress Reports Distributed
February 9 Can We Talk? session for 6th grade parents 6:00 p.m. @ Hilsman
February 9 Rising Freshmen Parent Meeting @ Cedar
February 11 Valentine's Dance 5:00 - 7:50 p.m.
February 12 District Honor Band
February 13 21st CCLC Open Saturday
February 15 District PL Day - No School for Students
February 27 Panther Cafe and 21st CCLC Open Saturday

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