The General Gist

Welcome to the General Gist, a weekly communication to John Sedgwick Middle School families and community members.  The General Gist for the week beginning, Monday, May 25, 2020:


Happy Memorial Day Weekend!


It has become tradition at Sedgwick to honor our nation’s heroes for Veterans and Memorial Day, so our closure is especially difficult as we celebrate Memorial Day this weekend.  Though we are currently apart, we are together in wanting our military families and our community to know how much we appreciate the bravery of those who fought and died for our protection and enduring freedom. 


It is easy to grumble during times like these, and, if we are not careful, we can begin to take things for granted.  Speaking of taking things for granted…on Memorial Day, The History Channel debuts a three-night mini-series on Ulysses S. Grant, former Commanding General of the Union Army during the Civil War who later served as US President.  The series is directed by Leonardo DiCaprio, and The History Channel website has a free preview and learning activities, so even if you don’t have a TV subscription to their channel, you can still watch online and discover some fascinating information about Grant.  What a great way to learn more about our nation’s history and develop a deeper sense of gratitude for those who paid the ultimate price for us!



Spirit Week Wrap-Up:

Thank you to our students and staff who participated in last week’s virtual Spirit Week!  Although it wasn’t the same, it brought some happiness to our lives and tears of joy to our eyes as we got a little silly together.  If you want to know which class won last week’s competition, tune into our Tuesday morning announcements on social media.  We can’t wait to announce the winners!!



2020-21 ASB Elections:

It’s time to elect ASB officers for next school year!  If you’re a 7th grader, you may run for President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Spirit Coordinator, or Media and Marketing Coordinator.  This year’s campaigns and elections will be virtual. Campaign ads will be posted on Instagram and Facebook from June 1 through June 5.  Campaign videos and voting will be open beginning June 4 and will close on June 5.  Voting ballots will be made available to ALL current 6th and 7th graders through their Science class. Winners will be announced on Monday, June 8 after the Zoom Meeting.  To learn more about requirements for running for office, read the attached document.

ASB Election Letter to Families.pdf 



Student Check-Out and Access to the Building:

The governor extended his stay-at-home order to May 31 with a phased return to normalcy.  In addition, we recently learned that yearbooks will not be delivered until June 19 due to nationwide restrictions.  We are currently planning for times, dates, and safe means for students to retrieve their belongings, clean out their lockers, turn in books, and pick up yearbooks.  The current thinking is that we will conduct student check-out the week of June 22-25.  We will announce firm dates and details very soon.


Our office is currently closed, therefore the best way to reach us is by email or by leaving a voicemail which all staff can access remotely.  This link will take you to our school website staff directory.



School Events:

Honor Roll and Dean’s List: We are in the process of creating virtual PowerPoint presentations to recognize students on this year’s Honor Roll and Dean’s List.  Students on our Honor Roll (average scores of 3.0 or higher in academic skills) will receive the President’s Education Awards for Excellence (3.5+) or Achievement (3.0-3.49).  Students on the Dean’s List (average scores of 3.0 or higher in work habits) will receive certificates.  These presentations will published via social media and our website no later than May 29, and awards will be available for pick-up when students check out of school at the end of the year. 


Student Recognition Awards: We also have plans for a recorded virtual student recognition assembly to recognize and honor our Students of the Year and our 5-Star General student-athletes.  We have some great ideas that we think you will enjoy.  This presentation will be published via social media and our website no later than June 19.


8th Grade Celebration: We are still in the planning stages for our end of year 8th grade celebration.  We want to send our 8th graders out in style, and we are confident that we will be able to do so.  Our hope is that we can do an in-person, outdoor picnic and celebration on Friday, June 26.  Stay tuned for details.


Back to School Events: Finally, we are awaiting the release of our district calendar for the 20-21 school year and directions from our state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) to schedule our traditional back-to-school events such as General Admission, 6th Grade WEB Day, and Open House.  We hope to announce plans for all of these in the near future.



20-21 Yearbook Club:

Are you interested in helping create next year’s JSMS Yearbook?  If so, apply to join Yearbook Club by filling out the attached, fillable application.  It’s a great way to celebrate the year, give back to your classmates, and gain valuable writing, photography, editing, and graphic design skills!

Yearbook Application 20-21 fillable.pdf 



2020-21 Course Registration:

On April 20, you received an email entitled “JSMS 20-21 Course Registration” which was accompanied by a phone message from Mr. Novick.  The email included instructions on how to register for classes.  If you have not already done so, please make sure your child completes the Google Form by clicking on the appropriate link, below, to request specific courses. 


  • If your student is going into 6th grade in September, CLICK HERE.
  • If your student is going into 7th grade in September, CLICK HERE.
  • If your student is going into 8th grade in September, CLICK HERE.


Our counselors have already begun entering requests into Skyward.  Questions?  Contact your child’s counselor:


Annie Kontos (last names A-K)

(360) 874-6105


Nicole Baker (last names L-Z)

(360) 874-6103



Hello ID:

Just about every technology application your student will need is accessible on HelloID.  Check out this video for instructions on how to access HelloID and Zoom meetings.



Google Classroom Codes:

A master list of Google Classroom codes for all three grade levels has been posted to the front page of our school website.  These codes may also be found on individual teacher webpages.  Once a student enrolls in their teachers’ Google Classrooms, those classes will appear on their Google Classroom homepage which is accessible on HelloID (click on the blue gear icon on our district homepage).



Celebrations and Thanks:

  • Thank you to our ASB Advisor, Courtney Willson, and this year’s ASB Officers: Fletcher Bergeson (President), Tyler Hansen (Vice President), Kate Sherwood (Secretary), Holly Hames (Treasurer), Daniel Stone (Spirit Coordinator), and Reese Willson (Media and Marketing Coordinator) for organizing and carrying out a fun virtual Spirit Week!
  • Thank you to our Honor Roll Advisor, Lynn Olson and our Dean of Students, Kevin Plutko, for organizing this year’s student awards.  Thank you to our Office Coordinator, Bridgett DeHoff, our Office Assistant, Sharon Rice, and our Registrar, Tara Zantow, for providing technical support!
  • Thank you to our fabulous custodial crew of Matt Bishop, Nathan Chapman, Dave Cole, and Ronnie Doyle for working so hard to keep our building clean and safe and tackling facility maintenance and improvement projects during our closure!
  • Thank you to our parents for being so patient with us as we launched a new model of learning, and thank you to our students for engaging in learning remotely…we are so proud of your efforts!
  • Thank you to our amazing teaching and support staff for building a new model of learning in such a short time.  We have an incredibly loving, talented, and dedicated staff!



Quote of the Week:

“The distant rear of an army engaged in battle is not the best place from which to judge correctly what is going on in front.” – Ulysses S. Grant





Your JSMS Admin Team


John Sedgwick Middle School

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