Friday Message

Good morning, Sharks!

Another week comes to a close here at Sutherland. We have now entered the second nine-week marking period. Yesterday, you should have received a call from Mr. Vrhovac announcing that grades are posted on ParentPortal for you to see. We will have grade-wide assemblies next week to recognize those students who achieved Honor Roll this quarter. Since we no longer have report cards to mail home, we do ask that you check the ParentPortal for your child’s grades. If you have any questions, always feel free to e-mail your child’s teacher(s) to see what is going on in class.

We had a short week this week, but it was action-packed! We started the week with grade-level meetings to set the tone for the new marking period. Mustache Madness is now underway here at SMS. Each year, we raise money for the HEADStrong Foundation with a lot of shenanigans here at school. A reminder that this year’s Cornhole Tournament will be on Friday, November 21st after school. You can always follow the goings on by checking out the SMS Twitter feed on the school’s website and/or by following us on Twitter @SMSSharks. We try and post things regularly so parents and guardians can see the good works in our building.

This Week’s Notes:

  1. Tomorrow (Saturday) is the PTO yard sale here at SMS from 8 AM to 12 PM.
  2. We have a new Guidance website that you can get to from the SMS page that contains information about this year’s registration process. For current 6th and 7th grade families, we have some time before we start talking about next year’s classes. However, 8th grade students will start the registration process for AHS next month! Please check out the website for information about dates, classes, and the registration process as a whole so that you know of upcoming events.
  3. The Orchestra poinsettia sale will end on Tuesday, Nov. 11.  Please contact Mrs. Finnegan at or see any orchestra member to place an order.
  4. November 14th is the final date for registering for this summer’s Grand Canyon trip with myself (Mr. Guy) and Ms. Shiflett. If interested, please make sure you see the school’s website.
  5. Next week is the Hardware Hackathon. There is a description posted on the SMS website under Announcements. See Mr. Bredder with questions.
  6. A quick parking lot note: we have seen an increase in car dings and dents in the parking lot here at school. Please be mindful of cars. For drop/off and pick-up, we ask that parents use the two lanes in front of the school rather than using the parking spaces. Thanks!

Next Week:

Monday, November 10th: Teal Day

Tuesday, November 11th: Black Day.    Band Boosters Meeting @ 6:30 PM

Wednesday, November 12th: Teal Day

Thursday, November 13th: Black Day

Friday, November 14th: Teal Day. Dance from 4:00 – 6:00 PM.
Final date to register for the Grand Canyon Trip.

Have a great weekend, sharks! See you next week.

Mr. Guy

Yard Sale

The yard sale is here!! The drop off for donations is Friday night from 5-8 in the Sutherland Middle School Cafeteria. Also if you are dropping off donations of baked goods please drop them off on Friday from 5-8.  If you have big things that need to be picked up please email Lynette Sanford at There are still plenty of spots for you to come and volunteer! More people will make the work go faster and of coarse more fun!! The sign up genius is

The yard sale and bake sale is Saturday November 8th in the cafeteria from 8-12!! Please come by and shop!!

Thanks!! Lynette

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween, Sharks!

Today is a very busy day at Sutherland. Students are decked out in black and orange to celebrate Halloween. It is also an ICA day today, so classes will be shortened to make way for a long recess period from 3:00 – 4:00 PM. After that, the Halloween fun begins!

Today also marks the official kick-off for Mustache Madness. This is the fourth year Sutherland has participated in this event. Each year, we do a big raffle, a cornhole tournament and a fundraiser to raise money for the HEADstrong Foundation – a group that helps with cancer research. For those new to Sutherland, we have a big event amongst the staff where the male teachers don’t shave for the month. For every $100 we raise, a faculty member will shave something ridiculous by the end of the month. Our female teachers also get in on the act by dying their hair. Towards the end of November, we hold the cornhole tournament. This event is open to students and parents alike. This year’s event will be on November 21st from 4 – 6 PM. The raffle is held the final week of Mustache Madness. We have some great prizes already, but need your help! If you have anything you would like to donate for the raffle, please contact Mr. Guy at Mr. Criscione has also started a FirstGiving website for those who want to donate to the cause. That can be found at:

A few other notes:

  1. Remember, no school for students on Monday or Tuesday next week. 8th grade parents: There is a MESA open house at AHS from 1 – 4 PM on Monday. For those interested, you should definitely check this out.
  2. The PTO YARD SALE is on Saturday November 8th from 8-12!!! DONATIONS NEEDED!! Start cleaning out your closets, attics, garages, etc. Your “junk” may be another person’s treasure! Please consider donating new or gently used items to our yard sale such as, but not limited to: Clothes, shoes, bikes, books, toys, furniture, electronics, jewelry, housewares, etc. The drop off date is Friday November 7th from 5-8 at the Sutherland Cafeteria.  If you have big items and need us to pick them up please email Lynette at and we will come by with a truck to get it!! VOLUNTEERS NEEDED!!  Please consider donating your time to help make this a success. Sign up at
  3. On Wednesday, November 5th, the All-County Honors Band will go to Monticello High School for a performance.
  4. The SMS Orchestra is now selling poinsettias for this Winter.
  5. New Sports information: Any students interested in co-ed flag football after school can pick up a registration form on the table by the gathering area.  It begins  Monday Nov 10th and forms are due in Fri Nov 7th. Any girls interested in indoor field hockey/ girls lacrosse can pick up a registration form on the table by the gathering area.  It begins Mon Nov 10th and forms are do in by Fri Nov 7th.

Next Week:

Monday, November 3rd: No school for students – All ACPS staff at Making Connections
Tuesday, November 4th: Schools Closed
Wednesday, November 5th: Black Day

  • All-County Honors Band
  • 6th grade watershed field trips resume

Thursday, November 6th: Teal Day
Friday, November 7th: Black Day 8th

  • Grade Band at AHS football game

That’s all for today, folks! Have a great and safe Halloween!

Timberwood Event

The Sutherland Middle Functional Skills Special Education classroom is having a Fundraiser Night at Timberwood Grill tonight, October 29.  Please come have dinner between 5PM and 9PM to support this classroom’s ability to help their students engage in their community.

Parent Meeting

Dear Parents and Guardians:

Just a reminder that we have a parent meeting from 6:00 – 7:00 PM tonight night in the Media Center regarding this summer’s Grand Canyon trip. Mr. Eddie Jones from Grand Classroom will be here to do a short presentation regarding the trip activities and will also be on hand for questions. The trip is scheduled for June 20th to June 24th. We hope you can come on out. For more information, please visit


Mr. Guy & Mrs. Shiflett

Coffee and Conversation

Good afternoon Sutherland Families,

SMS will be hosting our October PTO meeting, Monday, October 27 from 7:00-8:00pm in the Media Center. We would like to extend an invitation to attend a “Coffee and Conversation” with our Assistant Principal, Amy Morris and myself. This will take place prior to the PTO meeting in the media center from 6:30-7:00pm. We will give a brief overview of the beginning of school, discuss our 1:1 rollout and answer a few questions. If you are interested in attending we ask that you please RSVP to Jane Pritchett in the main office by 3:00pm on Monday, October 27. She may be reached at telephone number 975-0599.

Thursday Message

Greetings, SMS families:

A bit early this week since there is no school for students tomorrow. There are several informational tidbits to get to, so I will jump right in. Today marks the last day of the first quarter. Hard as it is to believe, summer is now nine weeks behind us. The good work your children continue to produce is inspiring. I got the chance to watch the boys’ basketball teams take on Jouett last night and the girls played earlier this week. From academics to athletics, there is a lot of talent in the school! As we head into the second nine weeks, be prepared for things to heat up. Workloads tend to increase and schedules get tricky as snow days become frequent. Before we look at next week’s schedule, here are some news blurbs:

  1. From the PTO: We still need lots of volunteers to help on Friday night, November 7th, and Saturday, November 8th with our Yard Sale. Please see the sign up genius if you can help…. if you can only do an hour we will take you!! All volunteers are appreciated!! Thank you!!
  2. Parks and Rec after school opportunities at Sutherland: Registration forms are on the table by the gathering area at Sutherland for both Co-ed Flag Football and Girls Indoor field hockey/lacrosse. Both programs will be on Mondays after school from Nov 10th through January 12th.  Registrations forms should be returned to the office for Ms. Davis for both programs by Friday Nov 7th.  Interested students should pick up a form for more details.
  3. ICA activity period is next Friday Oct 31st from 3:00-4:00.  The sign up will be on the Sutherland Webpage under the Student tab. Students should sign up for only ONE ICA activity with their first and last name and there is a question at the end for students to select their grade. (This will help with creating the lists.)  The access code is the same as last time, 2801 (Sutherland’s address)
  4. The tennis team will have a match on Monday 10/27 at Western Albemarle High School in Crozet.  A bus will take the team to Western after school but there is no return bus.  Tennis players should have their parents pick them up at Western Albemarle in Crozet at 6:30 and bring tennis shirt, jacket, healthy snack, and water bottle.   This match will conclude our tennis season.

Next Week’s Schedule:

Monday, October 27th: Teal Day

  • Tiger Sharks Watershed field trip
  • PTO meeting starting at 6:45 PM in the Media Center

Tuesday, October 28th: Black Day

  • Grand Classroom (Grand Canyon trip) informational meeting at 6:00 PM in the Media Center

Wednesday, October 29th: Teal Day

Thursday, October 30th: Black Day

Friday, October 31st: Teal Day

  • ICA Day schedule

Have a great long weekend, Sharks! See you on Monday!!!

Mr. Guy


Happy Friday, Sharks:

We have had a wonderful week here at Sutherland. The week started with our SCA elections. Students enjoyed hearing from the different candidates and voting for this year’s officers. A big shout out to those students who were elected into office for this year’s council. The SCA hosts a variety of activities throughout the year, so we are excited that we have a terrific team for 2014/2015. We have had students from Ms. Bergin’s class sing the Preamble to the Constitution on the WSMS news broadcast, 8th grade students rebuilding a dirt bike in Mr. Bredder’s Engineering class, a Band Booster meeting, and even an earthquake drill. Students are already excited for this afternoon’s dance from 4:00 – 6:00 PM. Things are starting to heat up in all the classes as we head towards the end of the first marking period, so we encourage parents and guardians to check ParentPortal regularly.

News and Notes:

  1. Parents can now register their child for the Grand Canyon trip this coming summer. The website for registration details can be found here: The trip is open to all current 6th, 7th and 8th grade students. There will be a Parent meeting on October 28th at 6 PM here at Sutherland in the Library for parents to learn more about the trip.
  2. Monday is school picture day. If you order pictures online (, you will need the payment code. That code is: SH124413Q1. Our school code is 68600.
  3. All Sutherland students will participate in a school climate survey starting next week. The survey is short, roughly 15 questions, and will help us measure a variety of topics, including; school safety, bullying, usage of online programs such as ParentPortal, Google Docs., and Blackboard, student-based research in classes, etc. If you would like to see a copy of this survey, a paper copy will be available in Guidance.

A few upcoming events for next week:

  1. Monday, October 20th: Teal Day. School picture day during PE.
  2. Tuesday, October 21st: Black Day
  3. Wednesday, October 22nd: Teal Day
  4. Thursday, October 23rd: Black Day. End of first nine weeks grading period. All assignments due in class.
  5. Friday, October 24th: No School for students. Teacher work-day.

One final note: Many of you may be aware of our highly successful design and engineering program now in its second year at our school. Students’ early work centered on use of such technology resources as 3D printers to re-create historical artifacts, such as the first working telegraph. This attracted the attention of the Smithsonian Museum, which is partnered with Sutherland for such projects as a leading edge math and science curriculum for middle schools across the country.

Recently a group of our students proposed a modernization of our engineering classroom and the addition of more technology and learning resources to broaden the benefits of the program.

Our students have enrolled this proposal on “Kickstarter,” which is a web-based application that invites contributions from donors around the country to fund innovative ideas. The cost of their project is $20,000 and funds must be raised within 30 days of listing, or by November 8.

The Kickstarter project, Maker Space, would benefit all of our students in all disciplines. It would encourage students to become producers, not just users, of technology and enable students to improve their creativity, critical thinking, teamwork and communications abilities. This in turn, will better prepare them for post-graduate success, whether in college or the workforce. For more information on the students’ proposal, visit:

Have a great weekend, Sharks! See you next week!

Mr. Guy

Dance help needed

We are in urgent need of parents to volunteer for this Fridays 6th grade sponsored dance from 4-6 pm. Please email Andrea Walkup at to let her know if you are able to come and help for any period of time. At this point we only have five teachers and need any and all to come out to lend a hand.

Thank you so much for your consideration.