Friday Message 10.3

Happy Friday, Shark Family –

As predicted, this was another fast and furious week. We had a great turn out last night for our first round of Parent / Teacher conferences. It was great to see so many of you come out to meet with the staff. A big thank you goes out to the PTO for providing us with a terrific pasta dinner. We have a slew of informational items included in this e-mail, so I will keep this part of the message short and sweet. Here is this week’s schedule and then some items of interest:

Monday, October 6th: Teal Day

Tuesday, October 7th: Black Day

  • All-County Choir field trip
  • Strings picture day
  • 4:30 – 8:00 PM: Parent / Teacher Conferences round two

Wednesday, October 8th: Teal Day

  • National Walk To School day (see below for information)

Thursday, October 9th: Black Day

  • Writer’s Eye field trip

Friday, October 10th: Teal Day

News items:

  1. NATIONAL WALK TO SCHOOL DAY, WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 8TH Sutherland is planning to participate in the National Walk to school day next Wed Oct 8th. Students are encouraged to walk to school with a buddy and those who live too far to walk can be dropped off at North Forest Lakes pool and tennis courts or South Forest Lakes pool at 8:40 to walk with other students.  Some parents and teachers will be there to walk too!   PTO is providing snacks outside for walkers as they arrive at school.   Thanks PTO!
  2. BOYS AND GIRLS BASKETBALL GAME SCHEDULES are now posted on Sutherland’s web page under athletics.  Players will know what team they play on that corresponds to the times of the games.
  3. SUTHERLAND TENNIS has 2 matches: Oct 8th at AHS and Oct 15th at WAHS.  An information letter with all the details was given out in practice and any tennis player who missed practice can get the information next practice.
  4. Grand Canyon Trip: Finally, we are gauging the interest level among our families for a school trip to the Grand Canyon this coming summer early in vacation. Ideally, we are looking for 30 students for a 5 day trip out west with Grand Classrooms. The trip is costly, roughly $1900 per student, but would be an awesome educational experience. We are in the very early stages of planning this trip, but before we go do deep into the planning stage, we wanted to get a sense of interest. The trip would be open to all 3 grades and would have a strong focus on outdoor education/science. For a bit more information and a brief survey, please click here:

Thanks all and I hope you have a terrific weekend!

Mr. Guy

Writer’s Eye and Bake Sale

  1. The Sutherland Conference Management Team would like to apologize: There has been an error in the previous Conference Management Team email and the date of the bake sale we are having is not next Monday! The bake sale will be held two Mondays from now on OCTOBER 13TH – 17TH. Sorry for any confusion caused by this. The same time will apply however; every morning of that week from 8:45 to 9:00. All baked goods will be sold for a dollar each. The Management Teams job is to turn an old conference room at Sutherland into a space for students to use. In order to get the supplies we need, we need you and your child’s help! Please support us by buying some things at our bake sale or by just making a money donation at the bake sale!
  2. This is a reminder that if your child is planning on attending the Writer’s Eye field trip next Thursday, their signed permission form and bus fee are due to me by end of day tomorrow (Friday 10/3).

    Diana McCullough
    Gifted Resource
    Sutherland Middle School

Student run bake sale

Have you heard of the Conference Room Management Team? Well, to raise money they are having a bake sale here at Sutherland! The bake sale will start Monday next week! It will take place every morning of next week from 8:45 to 9:00! They will be selling lots of goodies all for only one dollar! Be sure and get to school 15 minutes early so you can get some treats! The team hopes to see you there!



Friday Message

Just about done with another great week here at Sutherland! Last week, we had our first dance. The students brought a LOT of energy to the table and I am sure were still wound up afterwards. A big thank you to our parent volunteers who came out and assisted in selling concessions or helped chaperone. Our first interim period came to an end last Friday as well, so grades should be rolling in through ParentPortal. We have our first ICA schedule today, so classes are shortened to make room for an extended recess from 3:00 – 4:00 PM. Students will be spread out all over our campus as they participate in kickball, nature hikes, crafts, and other assorted activities. A few items for your radar coming up:

  1. Monday, September 29th: No school for students. This is a teacher work day, so the staff will be here, but your kids get to sleep in.
  2. Tuesday, September 30th will be a Teal day when students return.
  3. Thursday, October 2nd:
    1. All-County Orchestra trip for selected students…see Ms. Finnegan for details
    2. 4:30 – 8:00 PM Parent-Teacher Conferences. There are still a few spots available on the Sign-Up Genius

The next two weeks are busy one, Sharks, so keep an eye on the SMS homepage for more news about upcoming events. Have a great weekend!

Chess Club Help

Hello Parents:

A few students at the school have expressed interest in beginning a Chess Club here at Sutherland.  Students would meet before or after school for about an hour once a week.

I am seeking a parent volunteer to run this club and to give the students instruction on how to improve their chess playing skills.  We could arrange a mini chess tournament towards the end of the year.

If you are interested in helping us out or have any questions, please contact me so we can meet and discuss.

Thank you!

Diana McCullough

Gifted Resource

Sutherland Middle School

434-975-0599 x53110

PTO Student Directory


The student directory is typed and ready to be printed. If you want your contact info included, please email Summer White with:

Name of student




Phone #

You do not need to include all of the above info, only what you want listed in the directory.

All replies need to be received by Wednesday, 23 Sep.

Thank you!

Writer’s Eye information

Dear Parents,

The Writer’s Eye fieldtrip will be on October 9th.  Any student interested in creative writing is encouraged to participate in this event.

For those of you that may be new to our area, every year the UVA Art Museum holds a writing competition open to students and adults.  They pre-select works of art from their current exhibit and provide tours for interested participants.  Students participating in the fieldtrip will go on one of these docent led tours.  Then the students select a particular work of art as inspiration for a story or poem.  Guidelines are given to the students for how to go about this during the tour. Your child turns their writing entry into me, and I will make sure these entries get to the museum by the deadline, November 21st.  For more information please see

If your child is interested in participating in this event, they need to stop by room A-10 and pick up an application form.  The form and bus fee are due to me by October 3th.

Thank you,

Diana McCullough

Gifted Resource

Sutherland Middle School


Change in Dismissal Notices

Good Morning SMS Parents and Guardians –


We wanted to give you a bit more information on a new check-out procedure that Sutherland is starting this year. If you know your child is leaving school early, please continue to have your child bring a note to the Main Office or Guidance Office for a pass at the start of the school day. We will write them an early dismissal note so that your child is ready at the appropriate time. The new part of this plan addresses changes in dismissal during the school day.

If you call the school to let us know of a change in dismissal, Ms. Saulle will write the message on a note for your child and post it in the Guidance Office window. We will train our students to look on the window periodically during the day. If they miss the note, we will have student helpers deliver the notes at 3:45 PM to any student who has not yet received notice. We hope this will cut down on the number of times we interrupt a teacher’s lesson during class.  Also, If your child is going to be absent or late, please leave a message on the attendance phone line. Thank you for your help during this process. 

Friday Message

Happy Friday, Shark Family –

We have had a very busy week here at Sutherland. Day of Caring, Constitution Day and the end of the first interim period have kept your children busy throughout the week. This morning, the students are coming into the building very excited about our first dance of the school year. Just a reminder, today’s dance runs from 4:00 – 6:00 PM. Students need a ride at 6:00 PM after the dance. Mr. Vrhovac sent out a message yesterday with a few important announcements. In case you missed it, the highlights include:

  • A parent/guardian climate survey located on the SMS website. Please take a few moments to fill this out. Your feedback is important to us.
  • Sign-up sheets for Parent/Teacher Conferences can be found on the SMS website as well for October 2nd and October 7th.
  • A new method for student notification regarding change of dismissal.

Starting today, a new method for ICA student-sign up will begin. ICA happens every six weeks and gives students the chance to sign-up for a club or activity from 3:00 – 4:00 PM during an extended recess-like period. Our first ICA day will take place on Friday, September 26th. Classes will run on a shortened schedule to allow for the extended recess period. Students can now sign up for their ICA activity online through the school’s website. This replaces the paper/pencil method that has traditionally taken place during their lunch. To access the sign-up page, please visit the SMS website. The sign-up page can be found on the STUDENT section or by clicking here:

Two notes regarding ICA sign-ups:

  • Students will need a passcode to use the site since we want to protect student names. The passcode is 2801.
  • Students will have a chance to sign up here at school next week using a school computer, so a weekend sign in is not required.

A few general announcements for this upcoming week:

  • Wednesday’s after-school Art Club will not meet this upcoming week, but Thursday’s session will run as scheduled.
  • From Mr. Bredder and Ms. Schneider: Students at Sutherland are working together to utilize locations within the school as community work and creative spaces. If you could help us in creating a more unique and comfortable Sutherland and have any of these things lying around, we would greatly appreciate it:

Finally, today marks the end of the first interim period. Student grades for their progress reports will be available next Friday (September 26th) on ParentPortal. We look forward to seeing a few of you at tonight’s dance. Hope you have a great weekend, Sharks!

Mr. Guy