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Current 6th and 7th graders watched an elective video presentation on Wednesday, April 16.  Students will be picking electives for 2014/2015 through the PARENT PORTAL, beginning April 16.  They will have 2 weeks to pick their elective.  The deadline is Wednesday, April 30.  Please go to the Guidance page  for elective course descriptions and instructions for entering elective course requests through the PARENT PORTAL.  You will need to select a 1st choice and an alternative choice.  Next year’s 8th graders, who would like a zero period, must pick zero period PE AND must select 2 elective choices AND an alternate choice.  Elective offerings will be based on sufficient enrollment and availability of staff. 
The presentation of ‘OVERTAKEN’ that was originally scheduled for tomorrow is being rescheduled.  We will send out new dates and times when we know them.  The permissions slips that have been turned in will still be honored for the new date.  If you have not signed a permission slip for your 8th grade son or daughter, please do so and send it in to his/her 6th period teacher.  Thank you.
Alcohol & Drug Advisory Board Presents: Don’t Give Up on Your Power as a Parent: Understanding Youth Drug Trends
**A community meeting to raise awareness and share information on how to prevent youth from engaging in prescription and others drugs* *
Date: Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Time: 5:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Location: Dana Hills High School
**Porthole Theater**
33333 Golden Lantern
Dana Point, CA 92629
Orange County HCA; Alcohol and Drug Prevention Program
OC Sheriff’s Department - School Resource Officer
Orange County Superior Court Judge
Community Development Specialist
Person in Recovery – Personal Testimony
Start Talking Before They Start Using! Get involved in your community. Learn about various programs in Orange County. Be a part of the solution.
County of Orange Health Care Agency
Behavioral Health Services
For more information contact,
Danielle Daniels at (714) 834-5481 or
Thursday, April 17                                                                                              PTSA Meeting – 10:00 a.m. - Staff Lounge
Monday, April 21                                                                                                Teacher Work Day – No School for CUSD Students
Friday, May 2                                                                                                      7th/8th grade dance – 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 3                                                                                                 MAES field trip to UCI
Thursday, May 8                                                                                                 PTSA Meeting – 10:00 a.m. – Staff lounge
Thursday, May 15                                                                 7th Grade Medieval Fair (DATE CHANGE) 
Thursday, June 12                                                                                               PTSA Meeting – Time and Location TBA
Friday, June 13                                                                                                    8th grade dance – 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at Wood Canyon
Previously Announced
It is our pleasure to announce that the NHMS PTSA has received a very prestigious award from the California State PTA.   The SPOTLIGHT AWARD recognizes the achievements of local units and councils in eight different categories; Leadership Development, Student Achievement, Environmental, Family Involvement, Membership and Outreach, Collaboration, Advocacy and Student Involvement.  There is only one winner in each category which means the NHMS beat every PTA Unit in the state of California for Student Involvement.   
We are unique in the fact that we are the only California PTSA that has their own “Student” run board.  Our students have accomplished so much since the start of our Student lead PTSA, the students have formed a debate team, raised over $1000 for baby showers for the military, adopted a seal, provided support to the YMCA’s basketball league and currently selling books to feed the hungry. 
During the California State PTA Convention, we will be recognized on stage and we will conduct a workshop so other schools can learn how they too can create their own Student PTSA.   
Congratulations to all of our 200+ students over the last three years that have made this such an amazing PTSA experience.  I would also like to thank the founding parents who helped our students get this off the ground; Kara Ahmann, Katherine Amoukhteh, Eileen Bradley, Mara Hornby and Julie Reinhard. 
Student works in art, drama, dance and music from schools across Capistrano Unified School District will be showcased at the first annual Capo Arts Festival. The Capistrano Council of PTSA’s is planning and sponsoring the event Saturday, May 3rd from 1-4pm
at Aliso Niguel High School, 28000 Wolverine Way, Aliso Viejo, CA 92656. There will be hands-on arts projects for everyone, including original sidewalk chalk drawings. The event is free; food and drinks will be available for purchase. For more information and entry forms go to or contact Capo Arts Festival Coordinator Courtney Fielder at
As we begin to get more requests for transcripts, especially 8th grade transcripts, we would like to remind everyone that the quickest, easiest way to get your child’s transcripts is through parent portal.  If you have a parent portal account, you will be able to print your child’s transcript yourself. 
All students will be registering for classes through the parent portal, so if you don’t already have an account, you will need one.  If you have not created an account, you can go to the district website an sign up.  If you are having trouble, please feel free to call the school at 234-5360 for us to assist you.
We are asking that all students bring a pair of personal headphones or earbuds to school. We have begun practicing the new Smarter Balance Assessment with students and some of the questions require students to listen to items from the computer. While we do have some on hand here at school, we know that most parents prefer their child have their own set to utilize.  Students will also need their own set for the state testing that will take place beginning May 19.  We will provide some that students will share from period to period, but of course students would always prefer to have their own.
You may be aware that the state of California is moving to the new Common Core Standards.  This year all Niguel Hills Middle School students will be taking the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) online test this spring. Please be aware this is a field test so the state can “test the test”.  No scores will be released to the district, schools, or parents since this is a test of the assessment  
Most students will take a test in English-Language Arts and Mathematics, as well as a performance task, which requires students to read, answer questions and write a response. Students will utilize a computer to complete the entire test.
Students have an opportunity to preview the test by going on line and taking the sample test. Our suggestion is to have your child go on line at home with you to view a simulation of the test at
One part of the test requires students to listen to an audio clip, for which headphones or ear buds will be necessary. We will have a pair of headphones or ear buds for every computer. However, if your child has a set of ear buds or headphones he or she would like to use, please send them to school during the test window.
Students will begin taking the SBAC practice test with their English teacher between now and the testing window (May 19th through June 6th).  Your help in having them view the Practice Test at home is appreciated.
The dates for our remaining dances are:
Friday, May 2                                                                                                      7th/8th grade dance – 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Friday, June 13                                                                                                    8th grade dance – 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. at Wood Canyon
Tim Reece
Niguel Hills Middle School