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The General Gist (Week of Aug 8, 2022)

The General Gist Weekly Newsletter
Dream Big Dare To Fail - Generals

Welcome Back!

Welcome to the 2022-23 school year and the first edition of this year’s General Gist weekly newsletter.  For those who are new to Sedgwick, you can count on the General Gist to outline important news and events at the start of each school week.  We are sending out this first edition early to help you prepare for this year.

In spring of 2018, our Guiding Coalition and Unity Council leadership teams identified a three-pronged, long-term mission: to be a National Blue Ribbon School, an AVID Schoolwide Site of Distinction, and a Washington STEM Lighthouse School.  Hence, our theme for the following year was “One Team…One Mission”.  At that time, the mission seemed daunting, but we enter this year having met two of our three goals, and those who have been here since the start of the mission know how much collaboration and community support have gone into these achievements.

Anyone who has ever dared to dream greatly can tell you that failure is a possibility.  Not only is it a possibility, it’s often a reason for not trying.  At Sedgwick, we want to encourage our students, staff, and families to reach for the stars.  That’s why we have chosen “Dream big…dare to fail” as this year’s theme.  You may be wondering how big your dreams should be.  According to the late, great Muhammad Ali, “If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.”

Change is the one constant in our world, and it can be challenging to stay focused on our dreams.  It can also be tempting to lose sight of family, friends, and colleagues who help us achieve our dreams.  Let’s keep each other in mind throughout this year as we pursue our dreams – together. 

Events on the Horizon (Tentative)

  • Aug. 16: Offices open to the public, 8:00 am-3:00 pm
  • Aug. 23: General Admission, (Last names A-K) 9:00 am-12:00 pm
  • Aug. 24: General Admission, (Last names L-Z) 9:00 am-12:00 pm
  • Aug. 30: First day of track practice, 4:30-6:00 pm
  • Sep. 5: Labor Day, (Building Closed)
  • Sep. 7: First Day of School, No Late Start
  • Sep. 8: First day of baseball and fastpitch tryouts, 3-5 pm
  • Sep. 9: PTSA Panda Express Takeover, All Day
  • Sep. 20: PTSA Membership Meeting, Library, 6:30 pm
  • Sep. 22: Open House, Time and Details TBA
  • Oct. 7: PTSA Cookies and Canvas, Commons, 5:30 pm
  • Oct. 10: Columbus Day/Indigenous People’s Day (No School)
  • Oct. 11-Nov. 10: PTSA Pie Fundraiser
  • Oct. 18: PTSA Board Meeting, Library, 6:30 pm
  • Oct. 19: Picture Make-Ups & Retakes, Aux. Gym, All 3 Lunches
  • Oct. 21: PTSA Panda Express Takeover, All Day
  • Oct. 25-28: Fall Conferences, Early Release, 11:25 am
  • Nov. 11: Veterans Day (No School)
  • Nov. 15: PTSA Membership Meeting, Library, 6:30 pm
  • Nov. 19: PTSA Auction (tentative)
  • Nov. 22: PTSA Pie Fundraiser Pick-Up, Commons, 3:00-6:00 pm
  • Nov. 23: Early Release, 11:25 am, No Late Start
  • Nov. 24-25: Thanksgiving Break (No School)

Building Hours
Our building opens to public on Tuesday, August 16 and will remain open through September 6 from 8 am to 3 pm (closed on Labor Day).  Teachers, librarians, and counselors will not be available until school starts on September 7 at which point our regular office hours will shift to 7 am to 3:30 pm.

General Admission
We are excited to welcome our students back into our building for General Admission student orientation on Tuesday, August 23 (last names A-K) and Wednesday, August 24 (last names L-Z) from 9 am – noon.  At General Admission, students will pick up their preliminary class schedule, take their school photo for the yearbook, and register for sports.  Payments may also be made for ASB card, school supplies, PE clothes, yearbook pre-orders, and lunch accounts.  Our PTSA will also be selling memberships, taking spirit wear orders, and distributing school supplies to those who pre-ordered through our PTSA website.

Building tours will be provided independently or with our 8th grade WEB (Where Everybody Belongs) leaders.  Lockers, Chromebooks, and textbooks will be assigned at the start of the school year, NOT at General Admission.  Parents and guardians are welcome to attend this event with their students.

School Pictures and Retakes
Quality School Portraits will be at General Admission to take each student’s photo for ASB cards and our yearbook.  Pre-payment is encouraged; a link will be sent to families prior to picture day.  Order packets will also be available at General Admission.  Make-ups and retakes are scheduled for Wednesday, October 19 during lunches.

Class Schedules
Preliminary class schedules will be distributed at General Admission.  Students may check Skyward Family Access the night before the first day of school for a finalized schedule.  Paper schedules will be provided during Advisory on the first day of school.  Schedule errors may be brought to our counselors’ or registrar’s attention at General Admission.  All other schedule change requests will be accepted in writing after the first day of school.

First Day of School
Our 8th grade WEB leaders will be available to welcome our students on the first day.  All 6th grade students shall report to the main gym where their advisory teachers will escort them to class and distribute their final schedule.  We will release a video via email, website, and social media on Friday, September 1 to show families our plans for first day arrival and departure.

Transportation/Bus Routes
Families may look up their students’ bus routes on our Transportation website.  Bus routes are tentative and will be available by September 6.  Bus passes are required if students ride a different route or get off at a different stop.  Passes can be obtained until 2:00 pm by calling 360-874-6098, emailing our Office Assistant, Sharon Rice (, or sending a note to school with students.  Transportation runs roughly 45 minutes behind normal schedule on Wednesdays for late start.  There is no late start on the first day of school.

School Meals & Payments
This year, our district will resume charging for breakfast ($2.40) and lunch ($3.75).  Applications will be available at school during General Admission, but it expedites the request if they are completed online through our Food and Nutrition Services website.  Payments can be made on-campus with cash/check or online through the MySchoolBucks portal with debit/credit.  Students will use their ID card or student number for meal purchases, so please encourage your student to memorize their Student ID number.

PE Clothes
PE clothes are required ($20 for t-shirt and shorts) and available for purchase at the General Store (check/cash) or on the Web Store (credit/debit).  Financial assistance is available through our counselors.  Students will not dress down for PE during the first week of school.

Good news…there will be no sport fees again this year!  Students who wish to play sports are required to pay an ASB fee of $30.  Registration should be completed online in advance of turnouts.  Sports physicals must be current within the past 13 months, no exceptions.  Our fall sports will be Track & Field (practice starts on August 30), Baseball, and Fastpitch (tryouts start on September 8 for both).

We have several great clubs for students to join.  Clubs usually don’t start meeting until around October.  We will publish clubs and their meetings days/times in future editions of the General Gist, on our website, and on the displays in the building.

School Supplies
A list of school supplies can be found here and is also published to our website.  School supply kits are being offered through the PTSA for $35. Pre-orders are required.  Planners will be provided to each student free of charge, but there will be a fee of $5 for lost/stolen planners.  AVID binders can be purchased for $5 through the General Store and include 8-tab dividers and a pencil pouch.  Please contact our counselors if you need assistance paying for supplies.

Our PTSA is healthy because of our strong membership.  You can become a member for only $10!  This year, we already have plans for takeovers in September and October through Panda Express, and we have a Cookies & Canvas paint night planned for October.  To learn more about how you can be involved, visit our PTSA website.

Student Drop-Off and Pick-Up
If you plan to drop-off or pick-up your student in a personal vehicle, please follow the directional signs upon entering school property.  Here are the basics:

  1. Turn RIGHT upon entering the school.
  2. You may drop-off or pick-up your student in the roundabout OR the parking lot.
  3. If you are dropping off, picking up, or planning to park in the parking lot, USE THE THRU LANE ON THE RIGHT.
  4. If you are dropping off or picking up in the roundabout, USE THE LEFT LANE UPON ENTERING, THEN MOVE OVER TO THE CURB WHEN TURNING INTO THE ROUNDABOUT.

Most importantly, DO NOT BLOCK TRAFFIC IN THE RIGHT-HAND THRU LANE.  Instead, continue into the parking lot to drop-off or pick-up.  If you park in the lot at the end of the day, please be aware that you will be blocked in until around 2:50 pm.

Celebrations and Thanks

  • We celebrate our students, staff, and families and welcome everyone back for what promises to be a great school year!
  • We thank everyone for showing great fortitude over the past couple years. 

Quote of the Week
“If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.” – Muhammad Ali

Stay Connected
We love keeping in touch with our families!  Here are some ways to stay up-to-date on important information and events throughout the year:

Links to Important Resources
JSMS Website
General Guide
Skyward Family/Student Access

Dream big...dare to fail!

Your JSMS Admin Team

John Sedgwick Middle School
8995 SE Sedgwick Rd.
Port Orchard, WA 98366

Office: 360.874.6090
Fax: 360.874.6430      

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