Families

The Oshkosh Area School District strives to provide families with the resources they need to ensure their children's success.  This page contains a wide range of information for Merrill Middle School parents/guardians. If there is something you are unable to locate, please use the search tool in the upper right-hand corner of this page to search within the Merrill Middle School website, or contact the school office and we will be happy to assist you. 

NOTE: To search for district resources, please navigate to the district homepage and use the search tool in the upper right-hand corner.

Important Information for Parents and Students

Become a Parent Observer in Canvas

canvas parent logoTeachers will be working hard to publish their Canvas courses in order to better communicate how to see the most up to date grades.  Teachers who use Canvas will provide you with a transparent look into their course content and daily task expectations so you can assist your student daily as well as see real time feedback.  Teachers who do not use Canvas will let you know how to view their grades in Infinite Campus and provide you with a link to get there.  The Canvas app on your phone may be the best tool you ever had to keep an eye on student progress.  Click on this link to get simplified directions on how to become a Canvas parent observer. Contact Tim Kohl (ext 6381)at Merrill Middle School if you have any questions or would like some help getting connected on  your phone or computer.

Directions for Parents to add a Student Pairing Code

Directions for Students to Generate a Pairing Code

School Supplies List

Student Handbook - Merrill Middle School

Merrill Middle School
Student Handbook 2019-2020

Ryan Peterson
Principal

Amy Hughes
Dean of Students

108 W. New York Avenue
Oshkosh, WI 54901
www.oshkosh.k12.wi.us

Merrill Office:  (920) 424-0177                          Attendance:      (920) 424-0177x4105
Food Service:   (920) 424-4936                          Fax:                     (920) 424-7512
Health Room:   (920) 424-0177x4150               Kobussen Bus:  (920) 424-7575


                                              Counselor:                      Sue Xiong
                                              Social Worker:                Hannah Dumke
                                              School Psychologist:      Amy Van Grinsven
                                              School Nurse:                 Kerri Tuma
                                              Police Liaison Officer:   Tony Flaig

             
                                                                              Mission
Merrill Middle School is committed to instilling a passion for learning in a culture that balances curriculum and social/emotional development via an environment promoting collaboration and problem solving.

                                                                              Vision
We will be a safe haven of multicultural existence, which promotes parent, students and staff accountability for the social, intellectual, physical and emotional learning environment for students of all ability levels to become lifelong learners.

                                                                             Values
                                                            Merrill Middle School will . . . . 
                                                         Promote community involvement
                                                            Uphold fair rules and respect
                                                         Advance cultural responsiveness 
                                      Practice differentiation in a smaller learning community
                                        Communicate with parents, students, and educators
                                            Collaborate, problem solve, and be team builders
                                                               Practice current pedagogy
                                                                            Be flexible

Hello Students and Families:

The staff of Merrill Middle School extends a warm hello to you.  Your school is a hub of learning activities, opportunities, and experiences.  We believe you will find a dedicated and caring staff, academic excellence, and attention to individual students as hallmarks of this school.  The school community that you are a part of excels in knowing about and working with young adolescents.

This agenda is made up of two parts.  The first part contains information that you and your family will need to know to make your middle school year a success.  Please take the time to go over this information.  The second part of this agenda is a student planner that will assist you in staying organized and keeping up with your daily responsibilities.  Using the planner will be a requirement of all your teachers.

We are a PBIS school.  (Positive Behaviors, Interventions and Supports).  That means we believe in teaching you the expected behaviors we want to see at school.  We call those behaviors Trojan Pride: Respect, Responsibility, and Kindness.  It is the expectation that all students, staff and parents conduct themselves with Trojan Pride in all school settings and at all school events.  The Merrill Middle School environment must be physically, socially and emotionally safe for everyone.  

We extend to your family a warm greeting.  We welcome feedback, calls, concerns, and kudos.  Our school office is staffed from 7:45 a.m. until 3:50 p.m. daily.  You are welcome to call (920) 424-0177 at any time.

         We hope you and parents feel comfortable at Merrill.  Welcome and have a wonderful school year!

Fondly,


Merrill Middle School Staff

                                                                    Student handbook at a glance


                    Daily Schedule                                                                                                  Page 5
                    School Calendar                                                                                                Page 6
                    Whom to contact                                                                                              Page 7
                    Parental Involvement and Academic information                                          Pages 8, 9
                    Co-curriculars and fees                                                                                    Page 10
                    8th grade events                                                                                               Page 10
                    Attendance information                                                                                   Pages 10, 11
                    Student Behavior                                                                                              Pages 12 -14
                    Student Services                                                                                               Page 15
                    Lunch information                                                                                            Page 16
                    Policies                                                                                                              Pages 17, 18

                                                                      Daily Schedule

                                                     Early Release Wednesday Schedule

 

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BUILDING HOURS
The school day begins at 8:19 and ends at 3:37. Students should not be at school earlier than 8:00 a.m. unless working with a teacher.  Students will wait outside until 8:10AM and enter through the doors on the North end of the building (Door 23).  All students must be out of the building by 3:45 PM unless they are with a teacher in a supervised activity.  

Early entry into the building, in supervised areas, is allowed for inclement weather.  This occurs in the event of heavy rain, hail or if the air temperature is below 10 degrees or if the wind chill is at or below 0.


Merrill Middle School Community Learning Center Grant – Middle Extended Learning Time                                     Merrill Middle School was awarded a CLC grant.  The M.E.L.T. program will continue in 2019-2020.  All students are welcome to attend. It runs after school from 3:45-5:15.  Students receive homework help from classroom teachers and have opportunities to engage in hands on learning and fun to enrich their literacy and math learning.  Throughout the year Merrill families will be contacted about different after school activities for students and parents/guardians that will take place at Merrill.  

                                                                Merrill Middle School Calendar
                                                                              2019-2020


                            August 26                                            Teacher Work/Staff Development Day
                            August 27                                            Open House 4:00 – 6:00
                            September 3                                        First day of school (Tuesday)
                            September 18                                      Early Release (1:26 pm)         
                            October 9                                            Early Release (1:26 pm)
                            October 17                                          Early Intervention - Parent Teacher Conferences (4:00 – 7:00 PM)
                            October 25                                          No School
                            November 13                                      Early Release (1:26 pm)
                            November 14                                      Parent Teacher Conferences (4:00 – 7:00 PM)
                            November 19                                      No School - Parent Teacher Conferences (4:00 – 7:00 PM)
                            November 28, 29                                No School: Thanksgiving Break
                            December 11                                       Early Release (1:26 pm)
                            Dec 23 – Jan 1                                    No School: Winter Break
                           January 2                                              Resume School 
                           January 8                                              Early Release (1:26 pm)
                           January 17                                            End of 1st Semester
                           January 20                                            No School
                           February 12                                          Early Release (1:26 pm)
                           February 17                                          No School
                           March 11                                              Early Release (1:26 pm)
                           March 23 – March 27                         No School: Spring Break
                           April 8                                                   Early Release (1:26 pm)
                          April 10                                                  No School
                          May 13                                                  Early Release (1:26 pm)
                          May 25                                                  No School: Memorial Day
                          June 2                                                    8th Grade Promotion
                          June 3                                                    End of 2nd Semester – Last Day/Promotion
                          June 4                                                    No School / Snow Day Make-up #6

                                                          WHOM SHOULD I CONTACT
                                                                        2019-2020

As hard as we try, schools can be confusing places to parents/guardians and community members.  In our ongoing effort to be more customer service oriented, the following chart has been prepared.

Questions/Concerns First Contact Second Contact Third Contact
Academic Progress Teacher/Class Counselor Principal
Alcohol/Drug Use or Abuse Counselor Psychologist/Social Worker Dean of Students/Principal
Attendance Middle School Office Social worker Principal
Behavioral or Emotional Issues Counselor Psychologist/Social Worker Dean of Students/Principal
Busing (Routes and Behavior Issues Kobussen Bus Company, LLC. (920)424-7575 Dean of Students  
Calendar for School or Co-Curricular Activities Middle School Office Dean of Students Principal
Class Schedule/Class Selection Counselor Principal  
Discipline in a Particular Class Teacher/Class Dean of Students Principal
ELL Program ELL Teacher Principal  
Financial Assistance Social Worker Counselor  
Food Service, Student Lunch Accounts Food Service Manager Middle School Office  
Gifted/Talented Programming Instructional Support Teacher Principal  
Grades/Assessment Teacher/Class Counselor Principal
Health Concerns and Medications School Nurse Secretary  
Projects/Field Trips Teacher/Class Principal  
Registration Fees, Bus Passes, Lockers Middle School Office Dean of Students  
School Involvement with Outside Agencies (Community, Mental Health, Human Services) Counselor/Social Worker/Psychologist Principal  
School policies/procedures Principal Dean of Students  
Special Education Special Education Teacher Principal  


Middle School Staff                                                                                                       (920) 424-0177
Principal:                                                      Ryan Peterson                                          (920) 424-0144 x4102
Dean of Students:                                       Amy Hughes                                             (920) 424-0177 x4132
School Social Worker:                                Hannah Dumke                                        (920) 424-0177 x4005
School Psychologist:                                  Amy Van Grinsven                                    (920) 424-0177 x4144
Instructional Support Teacher:                  Kay Weber                                                (920) 424-0177 x4120
English Language Learners:                       Stephanie Jansen                                      (920) 424-0177 x4126
                                                                     Kayla Schwalbe                                         (920) 424-0177 x4126   
School Counselor:                                      Sue Xiong                                                  (920) 424-0177 x4117
Food Service Manager:                              Michele Stahmann                                    (920) 424-4936
School Nurse:                                             Kerri Tuma                                                 (920) 424-0177 x4150
Attendance                                                 Chris Hayes                                               (920) 424-0177 x4105
Special Education                                      Paul Smith                                                  (920) 424-0177x4144
Kobussen Bus Company, LLC.                                                                                      (920) 424-7575

PARENT INVOLVEMENT
We welcome parents as an important part of your child's learning community.  Parents have many vital roles to play in middle school.  The Parent Teacher Network is a collaborative group made of parents and teachers.  This group meets every other month to plan and work to make Merrill an even better school. 

Merrill Middle School Parent Teacher Network Vision Statement:  Merrill Middle School Parent – Teacher Network provides a community approach to supporting student growth through collaboration, communication and caring for kids.  This partnership between families and school staff benefits the entire Merrill community.  The Merrill Middle School Parent Teacher Network provides a network for families and school staff to make Merrill the best place for kids.

If parents are interested specifically in their child's class work or progress, or if they have a concern about class work, they should speak first directly with their child's teacher.  If there are school-wide issues, or a concern is not resolved with a faculty member, feel free to contact the principal.  A list of staff members is included in the first parent newsletter.

CONFERENCES
Parent conferences are an opportunity for parents, teachers, and students (when appropriate), to discuss student work, progress, and learning abilities.  Conferences are held in a variety of ways including scheduled conferences and drop-in opportunities.  Each parent may expect an invitation to conferences at least twice yearly.  Parents can call teachers directly, between conference times, if they have specific questions about their child's learning.

TELEPHONE
There is a phone in the office available for student use before and after school and during lunch.  Phone calls are not to be made during class time.  

EMERGENCY CLOSING AND WEATHER ANNOUNCEMENTS
All announcements concerning the closing of school or a late school start because of emergency or inclement weather will be made on local television and radio stations and the district website www.oshkosh.k12.wi.us.  The district tries to make announcements as early as possible.  We will use Infinite Campus Messenger to alert families as well.

VISITORS
Student visitors are not allowed during the school day or at school sponsored events.

ACADEMICS
Our most important goal is to provide sound and thorough educational opportunities for all students.  Our staff, curriculum, and facilities are all directed toward that end.  Letter grades (A – 90 – 100, B 80 – 89, C 70 – 79, D 60 – 69, F 59 and below) are earned each quarter for academic achievement.  An effort grade will also be recorded.  
Progress Reports
During the school year, parents can check their child’s academic progress online by going to www.oshkosh.k12.wi.us and looking for the Infinite Campus Parent Portal.  At “For Parents” select Infinite Campus.  If you are unsure of your user name and password, contact the office at (920) 424-0177.  Progress reports are one way of staying in touch with parents about the academic progress of your child.  Progress reports are sent electronically to parents’ midway through each quarter.  If you would like a hard copy, please contact the office.
Report Cards
Report cards are are available at the end of each semester.  More information about student progress may be obtained through Infinite Campus.  If you have questions regarding parent access, please call (920) 424-0177.
Electives
Careful thought and consideration must be given to your course selections prior to registration.  Students will not be permitted to change courses after the 1st week of school.  

Homework
An important part of middle school academics is homework.  Homework may occur each night.  It is expected that homework assigned be completed by the due date.  Late work policies are established for each grade level and may change, at the teacher’s discretion, for papers, projects, science labs, emergency situations, or others deemed necessary and appropriate.
Parents can help by providing a consistent time and place for their child to do homework.  Talk with your child about his or her class work.  Each child has a daily agenda.  Parents should check their child’s agenda each night for assignments.  See that s/he works, uninterrupted, for a set period of time on homework, reading, or reviewing class work every evening.  Check to make sure work is done and that on long-term projects some work is completed each night.
Physical education
Students are required to dress in purchased ($6) physical education t-shirt, shorts or sweatpants and tennis shoes each class period.  

GRADES AND ASSESSMENT
Students and parents will notice that the middle school uses a variety of student assessment forms.  These may include traditional grading systems, portfolio demonstrations and student self-reflection, standardized tests, and narrative reporting.
Promotion Requirements are based on school board policy 5410.  Parents and students will be involved throughout the school year as needed to discuss concerns regarding promotion and retention.

INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT TEACHER (IST)
IST seeks to promote continuous progress for all students in the learning environment.  The IST, Kay Weber, helps to develop advanced educational plans based on the input of students, staff, and families.  If you have concerns or questions about your child's academic progress, feel free to contact Kay Weber at (920) 424-0177 x4120 or Kay.Weber@oshkosh.k12.wi.us

ACADEMIC DISHONESTY/CHEATING/PLAGIARISM POLICY

Academic dishonesty, cheating, or plagiarism, either with or without the use of computers, is prohibited in all education classes in the Oshkosh Area School District.

Dishonesty, Cheating, Plagiarism is defined as:
•    Copying or stealing another student's or author's work and submitting as one's own.
•    Allowing others to copy one's own work.
•    Doing another person's class work.
•    Copying or stealing teacher's answer keys, test keys, teacher edition texts.
•    Cheating or providing another person with the answers on tests or quizzes.
•    Altering any document already graded (unless suggested or approved by the teacher).
•    Altering any records or grade book.
•    Selling stolen answers and/or material.
•    Any other method used in not being honest with the work one does.

Students violating this policy may be subject to, but not limited to:
1.    Personal conference
2.    Parental notification
3.    Administrative notification
4.    Partial credit for assignment/project/exam involved
5.    No credit for assignment/project/exam involved
6.    Loss of privileges in given area(s)
7.    Suspension
8.    Citation (Legal ref. Section 943.70 Wisconsin Statutes)


CO-CURRICULAR
All middle school students are strongly encouraged to get involved in one sport or club each year of middle school.  This is another way to be engaged in you school community.  Students can get involved in:

Sports Boys Girls
Cross Country * X X
Basketball X X
Wrestling* X X
Volleyball   X
Track X X

*6th grade eligible to participate

There are also several co-curricular activities to get involved in for all grades:
Dance Team    Newspaper club*    Drama*        Jazz Band    Student Council*    
Forensics        Lego League*        Yearbook         
*6th grade eligible to participate    
        
FEES
A $50.00 general fee is required of all Middle School students.  This covers instructional fees, ID card, student planner, and calculator batteries. Each student is issued a school owned lock.  Additional fees are charged for a PE Shirt ($6 – this can be reused each year), Art ($15 for Art Explore, Art 2D, Art 3D, and Art that Pays), Family and Consumer Science ($10 for Teen Life and Teen Work), Technology and Engineering ($15 for Applied Technology, Problem Solving and Design, and Manufacturing and Engineering) and yearbook ($15 pre-order, $17 paid for at the end of the year).  

Students involved in any extracurricular activities (except school service activities like Student Council) are required to pay an athletic fee of $20.00 per sport ($40 individual cap and $60 middle school family cap).  Any family who has difficulty paying a fee at the time it is due may contact the guidance counselor or the school social worker and the fee payment will be postponed or waived.  Fees for students qualifying for free or reduced lunch are waived.  A fee waiver request form must be completed.

Fines will be assessed for misuse of and/or loss of textbooks, padlocks, and media center materials.

EVENTS AND REQUIREMENTS
Middle School Promotion, June 2nd 
This program is expected to last no more than one and one-half hours and is intended to be a celebration of your child’s middle school years. Because of seating limitations, we ask that only members of your child’s immediate family attend the ceremony.  Students are encouraged to dress-up but not in formal style. We discourage dresses that are floor length. Tops or dresses that are halter, off the shoulder, spaghetti strap or strapless, are inappropriate. Clothing must meet dress code. Tops and dresses should have at least two one-inch straps.  Ties, dress pants and button up shirts are appropriate. Limousines are not permitted for this event.

ATTENDANCE
School attendance is an important factor in learning and the continuity of instruction.  Our attendance policy reflects Oshkosh School Board Policy and State Statute 118.15 which concerns mandatory school attendance.  
Excused absences are granted for personal illness, illness in the family or family emergencies, personal appointments of a professional nature, death in the family or funerals, religious holidays, court appearances, special educational events, approved school activities and special circumstances that show good cause and are approved in advance by the school attendance officer.  A parent may excuse their child for up to ten days per school year.
If a student is going to be absent from school, please call the school office by 9:15 a.m. (Middle School Office: (920) 424-0177 x4105) on each day of the absence.  Please give the reason for the absence.  You may call 24 hours a day.
Students are responsible for work missed during the absence.  If the absence is excused, students may have the number of days missed, plus one, to make up work without penalty.  In order to participate in an after school or evening activity, a student must be in attendance for at least half (four periods) of the school day.  Missed work during an unexcused absence is at the discretion of the teacher.

Appointments
If a student needs to leave the building at any time during the day, the student should bring a written excuse to the office attendance window prior to 8:19 a.m.  The student will receive a pass to show teachers so that she/he can leave class.  Students must sign out in the office before leaving for the appointment, and sign in upon returning.
If a child has an illness or injury during the school day, s/he must report to the office first before leaving the building to sign out.  Parents who come to school to pick up a sick child need to sign their child out with the attendance office before leaving the school.

Pre-Excused Absences
To obtain a pre-excused absence for a family trip, doctor appointment, or activity, a student should bring a note to the attendance window prior to the day(s) of absence.  The student will receive a slip to show teachers to find out about upcoming work.
Up to five days, excused, are granted for pre-excused absences, pending no other attendance issues.  The work is due on the day the student returns to school unless another date is pre-arranged with the teacher(s).

Unexcused Absences
Unexcused absences are given for any absences which do not meet the excused or pre-excused criteria.  By state statute, ten or more absences in a given year are considered an excessive number.  These may be excused, pre-excused, or unexcused absences.  If a child has ten or more absences, the parents will be notified by phone or letter and an opportunity to conference with the attendance officer and/or counselors made available.
Tardies
A student is considered tardy if s/he is late to a class.  If a student is more than ten minutes late to class, the student will be marked unexcused absent/truant for the period.  Being tardy to a class is the same as missing “part” of a school day under State Statute 118.16.
 Truancy
Truancy is when a student is missing from class or school without the permission or knowledge of the school office or the parents.  A child may be considered truant if the student is absent beyond the number of days that can be excused by the parent and no medical excuse is provided.  If a child exceeds the policy limit of 30 days of medical excuse, the student also may be considered truant.  If a child is truant, every effort is made to contact parents as soon as possible.  Consequences for truancy include making up time missed, referral to the Truancy Review Board, and possible referral to court.

WITHDRAWAL OR TRANSFER OF STUDENT RECORDS
Prior to the withdrawal or transfer of students to another school, the student should bring a note to the office.  The office will give the student a withdrawal slip for teachers to sign.  When a student is transferred to another school, we will mail student records to the new school.
Pupil records are confidential.  If a parent wishes to view them, they may do so in the presence of a person qualified to interpret them for the parents.  Pupil records may be released only with written, signed permission.  

STUDENT BEHAVIOR AND SCHOOL REGULATIONS
We believe in setting high standards for student behavior.  Students are expected to follow school rules and are responsible for their behavior.  Discipline starts first with self-discipline.  To ensure success for all students we continue to use Positive Behaviors and Intervention Strategies (PBIS).  PBIS involves specifically teaching and practicing behaviors we want students to display and then acknowledging them for doing what is expected.  We will be giving students “Trojan Tokens” (Be Respectful, Be Responsible, Be Kind) when they are meeting expectations.  Tokens will be turned into the office for a weekly drawing that will take place during morning announcements.  We will also have quarterly assemblies; Pack the Gym, where we recognize students that participate in co-curricular sports and clubs and students that are going above and beyond in the school setting.  

Behavior Expectations – TROJAN PRIDE
At Merrill, we practice Trojan Pride!  A series of specific school-wide procedures and behaviors that we expect from students so that they can be as successful as possible in our school. It is based on Respect, Responsibility and Kindness.  This expectation system is linked to the Oshkosh Area School District Student Discipline Policy (5600)

Every student behavior situation is unique.  We will use a variety of strategies to help correct mistakes and regain trust.  These actions may include, but are not limited to the following:  written or verbal student apologies, discussions between the teacher and student, team conferences with a student, behavior improvement plans, functional behavior analysis, parent conferences with staff, restorative plans or suspension.  When students are sent to the office, the focus will be on addressing the issue, not judging the student. 

PERSONAL PROPERTY
Security of personal property is the responsibility of each student.  The school cannot and will not accept responsibility for the valuables of students.  Some suggestions are:
•    If you ride your bike to school, lock it when it is in the school bike racks.
•    Keep your school locker closed and locked at all times.
•    Keep your gym locker locked at all times.
       •    Do not keep valuables, particularly money, in your locker.  You must have a school lock on your locker.  Do 
          not share the combination with anyone.

APPROPRIATE DRESS
The following are the Oshkosh Area School District guidelines for Appropriate Personal Dress.  The main responsibility for personal appearance of students enrolled in the Oshkosh Area School District shall normally rest with the students themselves and their parents/guardians.  Student dress and grooming should not,  A.  Affect the health or safety of students; or B.  Disrupt the learning process within the classroom or school (policy 5511) therefore the following guidelines are in place:

Garments bearing inappropriate, offensive, or vulgar slogans are not allowed.  These include reference to sexual activity, alcohol, tobacco, 
and other drugs.
Shoes must be worn in and around school at all times.  Shoes with wheels on the bottom are not appropriate for or safe to wear in school.  
Shirts must cover midriffs, back, halter tops, and have two one inch straps that go over the shoulders and connect to the back of the shirt.  
Neckline should be even with or above armpits.  ANY top that is too revealing or provocative will be considered inappropriate and the student will be asked to change.
Skirts, shorts or dresses must not expose buttocks or undergarments at any time.
Pants worn in such a way that undergarments are visible will not be allowed.  Neither wallet nor hip chains will be worn at school.
Bandanas and hats are not allowed at any time during the school day.
Coats must be kept in lockers.
Gang-affiliated jewelry and/or dress of any kind will not be allowed at any time.
Backpacks (all other bags) must be left in lockers throughout the day.

Per OASD Policy (5511)  The principal is designated as the arbiter of student dress and grooming in his/her building.

SERIOUS OFFENSES
Any student who demonstrates behavior harmful to themselves or others or disruptive to the school day will be held accountable for their actions.  This may include staff intervention, referral to the office for (in school or out of school) suspension, expulsion, and/or involvement of local law enforcement officials.
Inappropriate Language:  Student delivers obscene messages that include swearing, name calling or use of words in  
an inappropriate way.
Defiance / Insubordination / Non-Compliance / Disruption: Student engages in refusal to follow directions, talks 
back, and/or delivers socially rude interactions.  A student’s actions make it impossible for the teacher to teach.
Fighting / Physical Aggression: Using physical force to cause harm or with the intent to cause harm to a person or 
property.  Taunting, baiting, encouraging or in-sighting a fight.
Gang identification and gang related behavior:  will not be tolerated at school, on school grounds or at school 
sponsored events.  
Theft: Unauthorized possession of property belonging to another person.
Bullying/Harassment:  conscious, willful, or deliberate act or attempted act, through the use of words or actions, 
which are intended to cause physical injury, emotional distress/ suffering or property damage or which impact the 
learning environment. (See policy 5517.01) 
Threats: Verbal or written communication with the intent to harm or intimidate others physically or emotionally.
Cheating / Lying: A severe dishonest act including, but not limited to, plagiarism, stealing others’ work and 
cheating.
Property Damage: Student participates in an act that results in the destruction or disfigurement of property.   
Weapons: Possession of a knife, gun, ammunition, or anything associated with causing harm towards another person.
Influence or possession of alcohol or other substances: Students may not use, be under the influence of, possess, 
furnish, or sell alcohol, non-prescribed drugs, prescribed drugs or drug paraphernalia at any time on school grounds.  
(See board policy 5530)
Dress Code Violation: exceeds the ability to solve the problem in one class period.

SUSPENSION (IN SCHOOL OR OUT OF SCHOOL)
Suspensions are a punitive measure given as a consequence for serious behaviors by a student which violates school safety policy, but as they are school determined, students may make up work missed during this time.

In all cases of suspension, due process shall be observed.  This includes a thorough investigation of the issue and an opportunity for the student to present his/her side of the issue.  If the suspension is necessary, parents will be notified in advance, when possible, of the reason for the suspension and the length of suspension.  Under state law, students may be suspended for up to five days.

Suspensions occur in-school or out-of-school. In some cases a Restorative Justice conference may be held as an intervention practice.  During an out-of-school suspension, parents are to assume all responsibility for the student.  Parents may need to return to school with their child for a reinstatement conference at the end of the suspension period.  If a student has three or more suspensions in one year, a pre-expulsion conference may be held and could involve the superintendent of schools.

POLICE REFERRAL
Offenses that are a violation of city ordinances and/or state statute may be referred to the police department.

PERSONAL ELECTRONIC DEVICES – MIDDLE SCHOOL POLICY
Personal electronic devices may only be used for academic purposes during the school day under the direction of school staff.  (Policy 5136).

Merrill Middle School Usage Guidelines regarding Personal Electronic Devices
Personal electronic devices are to be kept in their student locker and turned off from the time they enter the building until the end school day. The school day, as applied to personal electronic devices, is defined as the time a student enters the building until the bell rings at the end of the day.  Students may have their personal electronic devices with them if requested by a teacher.  The device needs to be turned off and kept out of sight until directed it can be taken out and turned on.  If the device is on or becomes an issue, the device will be turned off by the student, confiscated by the teacher and kept in the office.  Merrill Middle School students that are found to be in possession of their personal electronic device and the device has become an issue during the school day will first have the device taken away, and turned over to the office, the second time the device is taken away and turned into the office, parents will be notified and the student will be given it back by an administrator, the third offense will require a parent to come pick it up from the school administrator and the fourth offense may result in loss of privileges for a determined length of time at the administrator’s discretion.
Students may not talk or text on their personal electronic device including cell phones during the school day unless specifically directed by staff.  Use after the school day ends is permitted. The use of a camera phone or recording device to take pictures in the locker rooms and restrooms is prohibited.  If a student needs to use a phone, they may request to use the phone in the main office or a classroom phone. Students may not, at any time during the day, text, digitally record or photograph others or play games on their device without permission from school staff. When students are not using their device, it should be turned off and put away in a safe place such as their locked locker.  Students are encouraged to take their personally owned devices home daily. When students are using service provided by other carriers, OASD is not responsible for data access, content, or costs incurred.  The OASD Guest wireless network provides filtered Internet access.   Neither students nor staff is required to bring personal electronic property to school. Technology is available for student use at school. The District accepts no responsibility for the loss, theft or damage of personal property brought to school.  

BUSING
Bus Riding
Bus service for the Oshkosh Area School District is provided by Kobussen Bus Company, LLC.  If you have questions about bus service, you may contact the bus company directly at (920) 424-7575.  Bus riding is a privilege and behavior expectations on the bus and at the bus stop mirror those of the school.  The bus driver reviews the rules and expectations on the bus with riders.  If a student engages in inappropriate behavior while on the bus, s/he will receive a bus report.  Receipt of a bus report can result in disciplinary action ranging from a warning to suspension of bus riding privileges. (policy 8600)

BICYCLES
Bicycles should be locked in the bike racks on the Merrill Middle School side of the building with a lock.  Riding on the grass, playground or sidewalks adjacent to the school grounds is dangerous and not permitted.  We also encourage students to wear a helmet.  If you arrive at school and realize you do not have your lock, please see an adult in the office for safe bike storage.

LOCKERS
Lockers are provided for storage of student materials and coats.  It is the student's responsibility to keep the locker clean, orderly and locked.  No stickers, photos, or signs may be placed on the outside of the locker.  The locker is not the student's private property.  These areas are subject to random searches.   and may be opened and searched by school authorities when reasonable suspicion arises.  Students may not share lockers.  Any unauthorized items found in the locker may be removed.  Students who damage their lock or lockers will be held accountable.  Students are required to have school provided combination locks on lockers.  If their lock is lost or damaged they will need to purchase a new lock from the office. 

LOST AND FOUND
Items should be turned into the office.  Unclaimed items will be on display in the MPR.  

BULLYING (OASD Board of Education policy 5517.01)
The Oshkosh Area School District strives to provide a safe, secure and respectful learning environment for all students in school buildings, on school grounds, in school buses and at school-sponsored activities. Bullying has a harmful social, physical, psychological and academic impact on bullies, victims and bystanders. The District shall consistently and vigorously address bullying so that there is no disruption to the learning environment and learning process. Bullying behavior is prohibited in all schools, buildings, property and educational environments, including any property or vehicle owned, leased or used by the District. This includes public transportation regularly used by students to go to and from school. Educational environments include, but are not limited to, every activity under school supervision. “Bullying” is defined as deliberate or intentional behavior using words or actions, intended to cause fear, intimidation or harm. Bullying may be repeated behavior and involves an imbalance of power. The behavior may be motivated by an actual or perceived distinguishing characteristic, such as, but not limited to: age; national origin; race; ethnicity; religion; gender; gender identity; sexual orientation; physical attributes; physical or mental ability or disability; and social, economic or family status. Bullying behavior can be:
1. Physical (e.g. assault, hitting or punching, kicking, theft, threatening behavior) 
2. Verbal (e.g. threatening or intimidating language, teasing or name-calling, racist remarks) 
3.    Indirect (e.g. spreading cruel rumors, intimidation through gestures, social exclusion and sending insulting 
    messages or pictures by mobile phone or using the Internet – also known as cyber bullying)

COUNSELING PROGRAM
The middle school offers counseling services for all students.  Through classroom activities, small group discussions and individual meetings with students, counselors help the students better understand self and others, learn about opportunities in the world of work, and improve their ability to make good decisions and solve problems.  The guidance counselor can be reached at (920) 424-0177 x 4117.

HEALTH SERVICES
The school nurse’s office is located in the main office. The health room is available 8:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. and for emergencies. School nurse, health assistants, and secretaries provide first aid and assessments for students. Parents will be contacted for serious injuries and illnesses, such as fever, vomiting, or diarrhea. Parents are encouraged to keep children home when ill. Students with communicable disease symptoms will be excluded from school. Injuries and illnesses occurring during the school day or during extra-curricular activity must be reported to the office. Medications are administered at the office and require written parent permission. All prescription medication requires written physician consent. Medications will only be sent on field trips if they are prescription or if parents request over the counter medications specifically.  Contact your school nurse to discuss health concerns.

LATEX Policy
Due to the increase in Latex allergies among our students, our building is “Latex Free”.  Latex balloons are not to be brought in or sent to school.  Latex free gloves are used in all areas of the school.  Parents are asked to provide information to the school office regarding their children with sensitivities or allergies to latex.  Parents should provide antihistamine and epinephrine for treatment should an allergic reaction occur.

ACCIDENTS
All accidents must be reported to a staff member immediately.  An assessment will be conducted and based on the need of the matter the appropriate personnel will be involved.

CAFETERIA INFORMATION
The school provides an opportunity for breakfast and lunch.  Breakfast is served from 7:50 a.m. – 8:10 a.m. and is $1.40 for full price and $0.30 reduced.  

At lunch, there are two meal choices available.  Lunch is $2.30 for full price and $0.40 reduced price.  

Cash and checks must be deposited at the office prior to lunch.  Please put your family lunch ID number on all checks and correspondence.  Make checks payable to the Oshkosh Area School District or Merrill Middle School.  The school has a computerized lunch program.  This is a prepayment program.  Parents are asked to deposit $12.00 per child in their family account.  Families receiving reduced lunch should deposit $4.00, and families receiving free lunch do not need to deposit money in this account.  Families will be notified of account balances by mail or telephone call.  

LIBRARY MEDIA CENTER
The Library Media Center is the information and reference center of the school.  It provides chromebook support, books, magazines, newspapers, A-V materials, and research materials for students and staff.  It is also a quiet place to study or read.  Books may be checked out for two weeks and can be renewed for an additional two weeks.  Students are responsible for promptly returning all materials and are responsible for any damage or loss to materials.  

CHROMEBOOK & TECHNOLOGY ACCEPTABLE USE POLICY
This policy states the board expects staff to use the Internet throughout the curriculum and provide guidance and instruction to students in its proper use.  Access to the internet allows students to explore libraries and databases while exchanging messages with people throughout the world.  Chromebooks are available to students.  Students are issued a network user ID and password.  They are responsible for good behavior on school networks just as they are in the classroom or a school hallway.  Access to the Internet and other networked services will be provided to students who act in a considerate and responsible manner.  While the district is committed to providing access to the internet, it does not warrant that it will be able to prevent access to all inappropriate information.

The district’s “Acceptable Use Policy” governing media and District technology systems is made available to all students/parents/guardians at the time of registration on a yearly basis.  You can also view the “Acceptable Use Policy” (Policy and Rules 7540) on the District website:  www.oshkosh.k12.wi.us under “school policies”.  Students must follow the guidelines found in this policy regarding acceptable use of the District’s technology systems. Students not abiding by the OASD systems “Acceptable Use Policies” may have their privileges removed for part or all of the school year, or other restrictions.  

VENDING MACHINES
Vending machines are located in the New York Avenue hallway and are for after school use only.  

DIRECTORY DATA – ELEMENTARY/MIDDLE SCHOOL 
The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), a federal law, requires that the Oshkosh Area School District, with certain exceptions, obtain your written consent prior to the disclosure of personally identifiable information from your child’s education records. However, Oshkosh Area School District may disclose appropriate designated “directory information” without written consent, unless you have advised our District or the contrary in accordance with District procedures. The primary purpose of the directory information is to allow the Oshkosh Area School District to include this type of information from your child’s education records in certain publications. Examples include: name, address, e-mail address, telephone listing, photographs, videotapes, audiotapes, date of birth, participation in official recognized activities and sports, weight and height of athletic team members, a play bill, the annual yearbook, dates of attendance, years in school, degrees, awards received, honor roll, graduation programs, and the name of a school previously attended by your child. Directory information, which is information that is generally not considered harmful or an invasion of privacy if released, can also be disclosed to outside organizations without a parents’ prior written consent. Outside organizations, include, but are not limited to, companies that manufacture class rings, publish yearbooks, and take graduation photos. Forms are available at the district office or in any school office. Forms should be returned to the district office within 14 days of registration. Any previous notices on file are voided each year.

PUPIL NONDISCRIMINATION
Notice of Pupil Nondiscrimination Policy (2260) (STUDENTS) 
If any person believes that the Oshkosh Area School District or any part of the school organization has inadequately applied the principles and/or regulations of: 
1. Title VI or in some way discriminates on the basis of race, color or national origin, he/she may bring forward a complaint to the appropriate Equal Opportunity Officer listed below. 
2. Title IX or in some way discriminates on the basis of sex, he/she may bring forward a complaint to the appropriate Equal Opportunity Officer listed below. 
3. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 or in some way discriminates on the basis of handicap, he/she may forward a complaint to the appropriate Equal Opportunity Officer listed below. 
4. Section 118.13 of the state statutes or in some way discriminates on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, race, national origin, ancestry, color, creed, religion, pregnancy, marital or parental status, or physical, mental, emotional or learning disability, he/she may forward a complaint to the appropriate Equal Opportunity Officer listed below. 

Equal Opportunity Officers 


Section 504 (disability) & Americans with Disabilities Act: Mr. Matt Kaemmerer, Director of Pupil Services 

Title IX (sex) and/or Title VI (race, color, & national origin) and All other discrimination complaints: TBD, Executive 
Director of Human Resources 

INFORMAL COMPLAINT PROCEDURE 
The person who believes he/she has a valid basis for complaint shall discuss the concern with the appropriate building administrator. The building administrator or his/her designee shall investigate the complaint and reply to the complainant in writing within five (5) business days. If this reply is not acceptable to the complainant, that individual may initiate formal procedures according to the steps listed below. 

FORMAL COMPLAINT PROCEDURE
Step 1: A written statement of the complaint shall be prepared using 2260 Form1 (F1) by the complainant and signed. This statement shall name the complainant, state the facts giving rise to the complaint, identify all of the provisions of the rules and regulations alleged to be violated, state the contention of the complainant with respect to those provisions, indicate the relief requested, and be signed by the complainant. This statement shall be presented to the appropriate Equal Opportunity Officer (EOO) within five (5) working days of receipt of the written reply sent to the complainant after the meeting utilizing the “informal procedure” above. The Equal Opportunity Officer or his/her designee shall further investigate the matters of the complaint (including the reply under the informal procedure) and reply in writing to the complainant within five (5) business days by certified mail or by hand delivery (sign off required).

Step 2: If the complainant wishes to appeal the decision of Equal Opportunity Officer, he/she may submit a signed statement of appeal to the District Administrator within five (5) business days after receipt of the initial response. The District Administrator shall meet with all parties involved, formulate a conclusion and respond in writing to the complainant within ten (10) business days by certified mail or by hand delivery (sign off required). 

Step 3: If the complainant remains unsatisfied, he/she may appeal through a signed, written statement directed to the Board of Education and addressed to the District Administrator within five (5) business days of his/her receipt of the District Administrator's response to Step 2. In an attempt to resolve the complaint, the Board of Education will designate no more than three of its members to meet with the concerned party(ies) and their representative(s) within fifteen (15) days of receipt of an appeal. A copy of the Board's disposition of the appeal shall be sent by the District Clerk to each concerned party by certified mail or by hand delivery (sign off required) within ten (10) business days of the next regular scheduled Board of Education meeting.

Step 4: If, at this point, the complaint has not been satisfactorily settled, further appeal may be made within thirty (30) days to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Also, an appeal may be made to the: 
Office of Civil Rights - Region V
8th Floor, 300 S. Wacker Drive
Chicago, Illinois 60606
Phone: (312) 353-2520
COMPLAINTS RELATING TO SPECIAL EDUCATION 
Discrimination complaints relating to the identification, evaluation, educational placement or provision of free appropriate public education of a student with a disability shall be processed in accordance with procedural safeguards specified in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

COMPLAINTS RELATING TO FEDERAL PROGRAMS
Discrimination complaints relating to programs specifically governed by federal law or regulation shall be referred directly to the State Superintendent of Public Instruction.

CROSS-REFERENCE: Policy 2260 
Approved: September, 1985; March 28, 1990; June 23, 1999; (Clerical – 11/01) 
Reviewed: District Admin. Team - 5/16/06 OSHKOSH AREA SCHOOL DISTRICT 
Revised: October 6, 2010 Oshkosh, Wisconsin

STUDENT RECORDS
The origination and maintenance of appropriate student records are essential to the effective operation of the Oshkosh Area School District.  Student records shall include all records relating to an individual student maintained by an elementary, middle, or high school, but not including notes or records maintained for personal use by a teacher or other certified personnel if such records and notes are not available to others, nor including records necessary for and available only to persons involved in the psychological treatment of a student.  

All student records are confidential and shall be maintained in accordance with state and federal laws and established procedures.  Student record notices shall be published in accordance with state law and the district shall inform parents and students of federal rights under the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) by annual notification.

Records requests must be in writing.

LEGAL REF.: Sections 118.125 Wisconsin Statutes
118.126
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. Section 1232g, 45 C.F.R. Section 99)
No Child Left Behind Act of 2001
CROSS REF.: 346-Rule, Guidelines for Maintenance and Confidentiality of Student Records
APPROVED: June, 1987
REVISED: March 28, 1990; June 27, 2001; February 23, 2011

Thanksgiving Letter

Please click on this link to see the Thanksgiving letter