The Lyme School •  Lyme, New Hampshire
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Lyme School Handbook
Middle School Section

Advisor Program

Middle School students will be assigned an advisor, not necessarily the homeroom teacher. The advisor will serve as a liaison between school and home and will be the middle school teacher most closely monitoring your child's progress in all school-related areas. The advisor will also facilitate Student-Led conferences. Of course, a student or parent is always free to speak with any staff member. We hope this will allow us to have better communication with you and better serve individual student needs.

Absence Policy

Absence Due to Illness or Family Emergency:

Students who are out of school due to illness, and who feel up to working on homework, should contact the school office to request books, materials and assignments. Teachers expect that missed work will be made up.
Absence Due to Vacation, Family Trips or other Non-Emergency /Illness Situations (including activities planned by the school):

Students who are absent for non-illness/emergency related reasons will be responsible for all work missed. Homework represents only a very small part of a six hour school day, and classwork instruction is the single most important element of the day. Parents must notify the office at least one week prior to these non-illness/emergency absences.

Tardiness

Students arriving after 8:15 am are considered tardy. Students who arrive after 8:15 must report to the office before continuing to the classroom. Tardiness caused by late school buses is not recorded.

Changes in Transportation Arrangements

Changes in transportation arrangements can be very confusing to children. They also add another dimension to our already complex dismissal and bus-loading procedures. Please try to provide private transportation for afterschool visits and activities. If your child rides a school bus, he or she will be expected to ride his/her regular bus and get off at the regular stop unless we have a signed note from a parent or guardian by 10 am. Please make afterschool plans in advance and avoid calling school with a message for your child.

Please provide a signed note if your child must get off at a different bus stop, if your child is to be picked up instead of riding the bus, or if your child will walk to another's house after school instead of riding the bus.

If a child is to be picked up at school by someone other than the parent or guardian, the child must give the staff a signed parental note to that effect.

Without a signed note, we have no choice but to send the child on the regular bus, regardless of what the child may tell us. Our concern for the safety of your child requires our strict adherence to this rule.

Dismissal During the School Day

Whenever possible, a child's medical, dental, and other appointments should be scheduled after school hours. Students requesting early dismissal during the school day for appointments, travel, etc., must have a signed note from a parent. If someone other than the parent will come for the child, that should be stated in the note. Students must check out through the school office, where the parent should meet the student. Parents should not take children from the playground or classroom. Returning students must check in at the office.

Raising Responsibility

The Lyme School has adopted a set of behavioral standards, developed by the students and faculty, to create a learning community that is positive, ethical, and based on personal choice. The purpose of the standards is to identify levels of behavior, on a scale of one through four, that identifies the spectrum from inappropriate to appropriate behavior. The levels are described as follows: Level 1: Chaos; Level 2: Bossing/Bullying/Bothering; Level 3: Communication/Cooperation; Level 4: Democracy. Behavior at Level 4 occurs because students are motivated to “do the right thing’ based on their understanding of what makes an ethical, safe, peaceful learning community.
When a student does not adhere to the school standards, he or she will be asked to “check your level”. If the inappropriate behavior does not improve, the student will be asked to write a reflection, and make a plan for improving that behavior. This philosophy is designed to empower students and give them an opportunity for self understanding and growth within the parameters of an environment where they feel safe and valued.

Expectations/Rules

Please refer to the section on School Expectations and Rules on pages 7 and 8.

Changes in a students schedule will only be made by the principal after consultation with the Instructional Assistance Team.

Each Middle School teacher will post his/her own classroom standards.

Students who do not comply with classroom standards will be assigned a reflection. A working lunch/recess will be assigned for missing work. Reflections and working lunch/recess are held during lunch and recess time everyday. Students bring their lunch directly to the assigned room.

Students assigned a reflection will fill out a form explaining why he/she was assigned the reflection and what he/she can do to avoid this situation in the future. The reflection needs to be signed by a parent and returned to the working lunch teacher the following day. If it is not returned by the next day, the student will be assigned a working lunch.

If a student isn’t in school on the day of an assigned working lunch or reflection, it will be made up on the next day the student is in school.

If a student receives three working lunches within one marking period, an advisor will contact the parents and the student may be asked to make a plan to avoid further working lunches. If a student is assigned three reflections within one marking period the principal will contact the parents and the student may serve an in-school suspension.

It is expected that students will be in good academic and social standing to attend all day and overnight field trips. Students who have had one or more out of school suspensions for illegal behavior and/or have had three or more out of school suspensions in the current school year will not be allowed to attend all day or overnight field trips.

Appropriate Dress

We feel that school is the student's "workplace." Appropriate and neat dress is expected in order to promote a respectful and non-distracting school climate. Our dress code states: Hats, pajamas, rollerblades, “roller sneakers” and other distracting attire are not allowed to be worn in school. The only exception is on a school spirit day sponsored by the student council and approved by the principal. Clothing that promotes alcohol, drugs, tobacco, sex, violence or weapons is unacceptable. Clothing that reveals too much skin or underwear is also unacceptable. Students not in compliance with the dress code will be provided with a t-shirt to wear.

Students and guests coming to school or school sponsored activities, inappropriately dressed will be expected to change.

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Grading System

Grade Scale:

98-100 = A+
94-97 = A
90-93 = A-
87-89 = B+
84-86 = B
80-83 = B-
77-79 = C+
74-76 = C
70-73 = C-
60-69 = D
Below 60 = F
Report Cards: Report cards are issued quarterly. The  report cards are sent home with the students in the Thursday envelopes a week after the marking period closes.  Student-led conferences will be held at the end of the first and third marking periods. 

Honor Rolls: The middle school supports two honor rolls to recognize the many accomplishments of our students. Requirements for the two honor rolls are:

High Honors - A's in all subjects.
Honors - A's and B's in all subjects.


Awards Evening: The middle school will host an awards evening at the end of the year to celebrate students who were on the honor roll at any time during the year.

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French Policy

It is not our practice to exempt students from the French program. Students who enter French as new students in the Lyme School in the seventh or eighth grade may choose to take French for Pass/Fail grade. Parents and students should be aware that this would impact the likeliness of their future High School to accept their work as replacement for a first year of French. Students may opt to receive a Letter grade at the beginning of each quarter.

Homework

Homework Guidelines: Please refer to the section on Homework in the main part of the Handbook.

We believe that homework is an integral part of the school curriculum. The purposes of homework are to enhance learning, aid in skill mastery, stimulate student interest, exploration, problem solving and promote successful, independent study habits. It is a way to assess their understanding and ability. We feel strongly that students should do the work themselves.

Each student will be provided with an assignment book (agenda) to keep track of their daily assignments. Students are responsible for entering their assignments. Teachers will check the assignment books periodically. We encourage parents to communicate with teachers with a note in the assignment book. Students will be charged for any lost assignment books. Middle School homework assignments are also posted on our web site at: https://sites.google.com/a/lymeschool.org/lyme-school-homework/Home

Developing good study habits may be one of the most important skills a student can learn in his/her middle school years. Parents can help children set up a realistic study schedule by coordinating family activities. Sports, meals, chores, lessons, T.V., daydreaming and play all have to be considered and the schedule may have to be changed seasonally!

Try to schedule half hour blocks of study time with a five minute break every half hour. Please remember that, in addition to any other homework, students are encouraged to devote at least one half hour to independent reading every school night.

Teachers try to coordinate homework assignments so that no one is swamped. A calendar with tests and long term assignments is posted in the Middle School hallway. If your child is not clear about what is expected, is feeling overwhelmed or is spending an inordinate amount of time on assignments, please contact a teacher or your child's advisor.

Notes about Homework:

  • Both the type and length of the assignment and the student's rate of work vary from student to student. Some students may need more time for homework on certain nights. More than the suggested time spent on homework per night is not intended. A note from home will excuse the child for that evening, but the student will still need to complete the assignment. Work habits, planning, use of class and study hall time and school absences can have a dramatic effect on the amount of time a student spends on homework.
  • Students who do not complete in-school assignments will be expected to complete these at home.

Students who find that homework directions are unclear should feel free to contact the teacher or another student.

Homework/Classwork Expectations

The following are guidelines for homework and class work. As always, the clearer we can be with all our expectations the smoother the total program will run.

  • Work should be neat and on time.
  • Each paper should have the appropriate heading.
  • Work should be folded only once, either vertically or horizontally.
  • Paper from spiral notebooks should have the loose edges removed before work is turned in.
  • If pen is used it should be blue or black ink and the work should not show scribbled cross outs. If a mistake is made, draw one straight line through the error and rewrite neatly. If pencil is used, cross outs should be avoided and mistakes should be erased and then corrected.
  • Students are expected to document all sources of information, including CD ROM encyclopedias and web sites.
Missing and Late Assignments

If a student comes to class without his/her homework or an excused note from a parent or guardian, the student will be assigned to a working lunch/recess for that day. If this happens after lunch and recess the student will be assigned to a working lunch/recess for the following day unless the homework is turned in to the teacher before lunch on the following day.

Short overnight assignments which are not completed by the the next time the class meets will not be accepted and will receive a "0".  

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Cheating

The consequences for cheating or plagiarism in the Middle School will be:

First Offense:

  • Automatic "O" on test, paper etc. in question
  • A loss of one full grade for term
  • Parent notification
Second Offense:
  • Automatic "0"  and 1 day of in-school suspension
  • Parent notification
Third Offense:
  • Automatic "F" for marking period
  • Parent notification


After School Help

The Lyme Education Association offers an afterschool study hour once a week, on Tuesdays from 3:00-4:00 pm, for students in grades 4-8. Pick up time is 4:00 pm. Teachers may be available for extra help upon request. If students stay after school for study hall or extra help, transportation will be the responsibility of the parents.

Double Activity Period

Students in grades 6-8 are offered Friday afternoon electives throughout the year. These electives cover areas from music and art offerings to carpentry, community service, drama, aerobics, photography, and much, much more. Students pick electives with the eighth graders getting first choice. We usually are successful at getting all students one of their top three choices.

Dances

The eighth grade conducts dances during the school year to raise money for its class trip. These dances are chaperoned by a minimum of two adults with at least one being a school staff member. These dances may be attended by 6th-8th grade students who reside in Lyme, with 5th graders being allowed to attend the last dance of the year. 8th grade students who attend the Lyme School may bring one guest per dance. A list of guests must be presented to the principal for approval at least 3 days before the dance. All guests must sign in when they arrive at the dance. Guests should be informed of and abide by all school rules.

Students are expected to conduct themselves properly. All school rules will apply, ie. dress code, language, peer interactions, including public displays of affection. Dances are scheduled from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m. Once a person enters the school dance he or she may not leave until picked up by a parent or guardian. If a student leaves during a dance, he/she may not return. Parents should pick students up promptly after the dance. Refreshments are available at the dances for a nominal cost.

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