Speak Up Survey

Dear Sutherland Parents & Guardians:

You have a unique opportunity to provide input for Albemarle County Public Schools’ technology plan.  Since 2003, data from over 2.6 million SpeakUp surveys have been shared with local, state, and national leaders. Staff, student, & parent opinions are used each year to help make decisions about how to improve education at schools around the country.  The division will use the data to inform and measure our work related to our educational technology plan as well as professional development programming.  Our staff members are taking the survey, and your child is having an opportunity to take this survey as well.

We want you to share your input, too. This brief survey, which takes about 20 minutes, will inform our school division on topics of technology availability and use in Sutherland households. Your participation in the survey would be greatly appreciated.

The link to the survey is http://www.speakup4schools.org/speakup2014/ .    Our “secret word” is acps2014.

Thank you in advance for your participation in this helpful survey.  The survey closes on December 12th.


Susan Washko, Library Media Specialist

SCAvanger Hunt

SCA will be hosting the 3rd Annual Scavenger Hunt in December.  Collection of items will begin the week of December 8-12, 2014, before school near the flag pole.  This activity is used to creatively collect items for community and national organizations.  This year items that will be collected will help out the Leukemia Lymphoma Society, Salvation Army, SPCA, Blue Ridge Food Pantry, PTO, and Sutherland Middle School.  The Scavenger items include the following:  6 Quarters dated before the 90’s or 6 State Quarters (substitution:  $1.50 in change dated before the 90’s), 1 box of cereal, 1 box of tissues, 1 dozen #2 pencils or pens, 10 box tops, 1 can of vegetables or soup 26 ounces or greater (substitution:  2 cans that add up to 26 ounces or greater), 1 box of macaroni & cheese, packet of noodles or rice mix, 10 soda can tops, 1 new or gently used book, 1 SPCA item (blanket, toy, food), 1 gently worn pair of child or adult shoes, 1 hand sanitizer (any size), 1 hat, scarf or pair of gloves, and 20 points in Labels for Education.  Students will earn prizes for turning in items.  Prizes include: a ring pop, skittles, a chocolate bar, and an ice cream coupon.  As your child turns in more than 12 items, he/she will begin to earn raffle tickets for the following:  Laser Tag certificate, Movie Theater certificate, and 4 UVA Men’s Basketball Tickets. 


Big Tuesday Message

Good morning, Sharks –

We have several important pieces of information to share out today as the week we return is a very busy week. This will take a bit as there is a lot of information here, but I have tried to Bold Face the key words for those that scan.

First, we wanted to inform you about a new tutoring program that Sutherland will start right after Thanksgiving Break on Thursday, December 4th. We will provide tutoring in all four core subjects – math, history, science and Language Arts. Tutoring will be available on Tuesdays and Thursdays both before and after school. Our before school tutoring hours will be from 8:15 – 9:00 AM and after school hours will be from 4:15 – 5:00 PM. Students will need to have a ride home promptly at 5:00 PM.

In order to participate, students must sign up for tutoring each week. Parents may sign up a child by calling Mrs. Saulle in Guidance at 434-975-0599 before the day of tutoring. Students may also self-register in Guidance the day before tutoring. Tutoring is open to all grade levels. Students should make sure they come to tutoring with something to work on. It is fine to bring homework from the prior night, notes from class they did not understand, or an in-class assignment they need extra support in. Students that come with no work will be directed to the morning study hall that takes place in the cafeteria. Tutoring will not run if we have an early release or a delayed opening due to weather.

The following schedule can be used as a guide to help you know what options are available:

  • Tuesdays from 8:15 – 9:00 AM
  • Tuesdays from 4:15 – 5:00 PM
  • Thursdays from 8:15 – 9:00 AM:
  • Thursdays from 4:15 – 5:00 PM

Second, we have multiple events happening the week we return for parents to note for your calendars as things will move quickly before Winter Break.

  1. Monday, December 1st: 6:30 PMPTO Meeting. The PTO has two speakers at this meeting that you should be aware of. From 6:30-7:00pm, Deputy District Attorney Darby Lowe will be discussing cell phones (sexting/texting), technology awareness for parents and cyber bullying. From 7:00 to 7:30pm, SMS guidance counselors Lisa Wright & Cabell Guy will be discuss taking the right classes in middle school and addressing any questions and concerns that parents may have regarding the upcoming scheduling window and how to help your student plan for high school. This talk will focus on all 3 years at Sutherland, and will not be limited to high school registration. Starting at 7:30 PM, the general PTO meeting will take place.
  2. Wednesday, December 3rd 6:00 – 7:00 PM: 8th grade parent meeting regarding the transition to AHS. This parent meeting is open to both 8th grade students and parents. The focus will be on the registration process for 9th grade classes at AHS. We will have a 30 minute presentation from Mrs. Wright and Mr. Guy in the Gathering Area about the transition process, course offerings, and class registration. From 6:30 – 7:00 PM, representatives will be at Sutherland from the AHS Counseling Department, MESA, Health and Medical Science Academy, and the AHS Gifted Services and Special Education departments to answer questions parents and students may have. We encourage all parents to look at the SMS Counseling Website for information on the registration window for this year: https://sites.google.com/a/k12albemarle.org/sms-counseling-department/
  3. The Grand Canyon deadline has been extended to 12/12/2014. We will send home flyers regarding the trip with interested students as soon as we return from break.

Sorry for the length, but a lot of events happen that first week in December when we return. If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Guy at cguy@k12albemarle.org or Lisa Wright at lwright@k12albemarle.org. Thanks and have a great vacation!

Friday message

Happy Friday, Sharks!

We had a great week here at SMS as we geared up for several special events. The one receiving the most attention is today’s Corn Hole Tournament. NBC 29 ran a story this morning about today’s events. The raffle and tournament start today at 4:00 PM. Students must have a ride home at 6:00 PM. Thus far, we have raised roughly $1200.00 for the HEADStrong Foundation, a group dedicated to raising money for cancer research. Walking around the building today, one will find a lot of strange hairstyles and facial hair to celebrate today’s event. This week was also Spirit Week hosted by the SCA. Students have gone through Dress to Impress Day, Divergent Day, Geek Day, and Wacky Tacky Day. Today, in honor of the tournament, we have Shark Out Day.

This year, Sutherland is celebrating its 20th anniversary. This week, Mr. Vrhovac and Mrs. Morris hosted a luncheon for the former principals of the school. It was great to see four of the five former/current principals in the same room and hear stories about the school’s construction and earlier years. We have a few photos of the event on our Twitter Feed.

Along with all of this, our 8th grade drama students took a field trip to the Live Teen Arts Festival today. Students are always excited for special events such as this.

Finally, although this happened this past weekend, a special shout out to Nick Anglin in 7th grade. Nick and several other students from Mr. Bredder’s technology classes presented at Start-Up Charlottesville last weekend. This competition allowed students and adults alike to pitch ideas for startup companies or new and innovative technology. Nick took first place in the competition, beating out multiple adults with his baseball simulator. Amazing to see what our students can do both inside and outside of school.

Coming up next week:

Remember, we only have school Monday and Tuesday due to Thanksgiving Break

  1. Monday, November 24th: Teal Day
    1. Birthday celebrations 1t 3:30 for those students with a November birthday
  2. Tuesday, November 25th: Black Day
    1. Thanksgiving Break begins at 4:00

Have a great weekend and a great Thanksgiving, Sharks!

Cornhole Help Needed

SMS staff and students alike are eagerly anticipating the Cornhole Tournament at our Mustache Madness event happening after school this Friday from 4 to 6pm.  Teams of teachers and students will compete in the gym to determine who will be the Cornhole Champions for the year! During this event we will have music and refreshments available for purchase. We greatly appreciate the parents who have helped make this event be a success in previous years. Now we are asking for parent chaperones to help supervise students in the building and to sell concessions. If you are able to volunteer any time to this entertaining event, please email Gayle Rainey at grainey@k12albemarle.org, or phone at 975-0599, ext #310 to add your name to the list.

NBC 29 will also feature a story on the fundraiser tomorrow morning on their sunrise show. Thus far, we have raised about $1000.00 for the HEADStrong Foundation. We are still asking for help as we are short of our goal this year. Please visit our fundraising site at: https://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/SutherlandMiddleSchool/lacrosse-mustache-madness-2014

Thanks and have a great day!

Spirit Wear



It is NOT too late to get your brand new Sutherland Spirit Wear!

We have black, teal, pink, and green shirts in a variety of sizes, black shorts and black sweatshirts in stock.

Shirts are $12

Sweatshirts are $20

Shorts are $18

Email Summer White  summer.white@me.com to purchase.

All orders can be picked up tomorrow before or after school or Friday before school.

Go Sharks!

Chess Club

Hello Parents,

Sutherland is forming a new Chess Club.  All levels of experience are welcome. The only requirement is a strong interest in playing chess.  We will have an informational meeting this Thursday, November 20, from 8:00-9:00 in room A-10. We will be meeting Thursdays before school.

The purpose of the club is to allow students to improve their game.  We hope to send students to informal local area tournaments as well as the Virginia Chess Tournament in March.

Please let me know if you have any questions.


Diana McCullough

Gifted Resource

Sutherland Middle School

Friday Message

Happy Friday, Sharks!

We have had another busy week this week as students re-adjusted to a full, five day school week. We celebrated Veterans Day on Tuesday with a variety of activities in our classes. A heart-felt “thank you” goes out to those in our SMS community who have served or have family members who have served. We have been busy selling raffle tickets and cornhole tickets to students during lunch. Today, we are on a shortened class schedule to make way for the Mustache Madness rally at the end of the day and then jump right into our November dance at 4:00 PM. A few items before we look at next week:

  1. The next ICA is Fri 11/21 from 3 – 4pm.  The ICA sign up is available on the Sutherland Website under Students.  The access code is 2801, Sutherland’s address.  Each student should sign up for only ONE activity with their first and last name and answer the question at the end about what grade they are in.   You do not need to put your email. Students should sign up by Tuesday, 11/18.   The ICA sign up genius will be taken down on Tuesday night at 8pm so Ms. Davis can generate the lists.
  2. Sixth grade students who are interested in broadcast journalism and/or video technology should think about joining the Sutherland Video Club. Applications are available in the Media Center. They should be returned (with a parent signature) to Mr. Wynne Taylor in room A-3 by Thursday, November 20th. This is the only opportunity for students to join this year, so don’t hesitate.
  3. Picture retakes will be next Wednesday, November 19th beginning at 9:30 AM. Students will be called by announcement. Retake forms can be picked up in the front office or in guidance.

Next Week:

Monday, November 17th: Black Day

Tuesday, November 18th: Teal Day

Wednesday, November 19th: Black Day –

  • 9:30 AM: School picture make-up date

Thursday, November 20th: Teal Day –

  • 8:00 – 9:00 AM: Faculty Meeting
  • 5:00 – 6:30 PM: Monticello Health and Medical Science Program Open House @ MHS

Friday, November 21st: Black Day –

    • ICA Schedule
    • 4:00 – 6:00 PM: Cornhole Tournament in the gym

Have a great weekend!


Deadline for Grand Canyon and Cornhole Tournament

Happy Wednesday, Sharks!

A quick update for two items whose deadlines are fast approaching.

  1. The Grand Canyon registration is due this Friday. Information about the trip can be found at https://trips.grandclassroom.com/Trip/Index/Sutherland2015
  2. The 2014 cornhole tournament and student raffle takes place on November 21st. We have a huge goal this year of trying to raise $2,000 for the HEADStrong Foundation. This is a group dedicated to funding cancer research. Sutherland has tried to help raise money each November for the past four years for this group and we need your help. Please visit our parent site at https://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/SutherlandMiddleSchool/lacrosse-mustache-madness-2014 to see more about our efforts. Also, we have the big raffle that includes Game Stop gift cards, ITunes gift cards, and other assorted contributions from the community. This year, we also have a grand prize of tickets to the Redskins/Eagles football game. Students are able to buy tickets for $1.00 at lunch all this week and next. Finally, the cornhole tournament is open to parents as well. Mr. Criscione can register students at lunch, or if you want to register yourself, you can send him an e-mail at jcriscione@k12albemarle.org. This is a great chance to come out and spend two hours at school with your kids. This will be on November 21st from 4 – 6 PM. The more, the better! Come on out and help us reach our goal.


PTO Thank You

The yardsale was a huge success!! We made $1546 for the PTO to be able to use on items that the teachers need this year!!!  Thank you to all the volunteers!! It was great having so many fun people come and help out throughout the times we needed!!  Thank you to all those who donated baked goods and items for the bake sale!! All of those items were sold out on Saturday!! Thank you to all the people who donated their items from their house they were someone else’s treasue!!  Thank you to all who helped!!!