Greetings Pershing Community,
It is hard to believe that we are already at the end of June and that the 2022-2023 school year starts in just under two months. I hope that all of you are enjoying the summer break and that you are finding ways to get relief from the hot weather we have been having.
I am writing to share some updates about Pershing Middle School for the 2022-2023 school year. We feel some of the changes that we have made are necessary to help move Pershing forward in being the best middle school in HISD.
Assistant Principals & Counselors
The Assistant Principals and Counselors will no longer be grade-level based, and instead will serve an alphabet listing within each grade level. This allows us to balance out the student case load more efficiently and allows the Assistant Principals and Counselors to work with all grade levels.
Assistant Principals by Alpha Split
A-E Tyesha Beller
F-K Maria Jackson
L-Q Carrie Curtis
R-Z Alberto Fernandez
Counselors by Alpha Split
A-K Qiana Rankins
L-Z Sherman Parker
Historically, the Counselors have been responsible for student scheduling. Beginning with the 2022-2023 school year, that task is transitioning to the Assistant Principals. Our current Counselors have almost completed the initial scheduling for 2022-2023, but the APs will take on all scheduling related tasks when the new school year starts, including schedule changes and schedule creation for newly enrolled students.
6th & 7th Grade Required Enrichment Class – This past year we noticed that many of our students struggled not only academically but also socially and emotionally due to the pandemic. We saw a huge increase in the number of students experiencing anxiety and struggling with how to interact with their peers. We have decided for the 2022-2023 school year that all 6th and 7th graders will take a required enrichment class that follows the Rethink Ed scope and sequence. Within the scope and sequence, students will be exposed to various topics that focus on social/emotion well-being and will have assignments related to those topics. Several other schools have or will be implementing the same curriculum as data shows that focusing on these skills is helping students and improving the school culture and climate. Beginning with the 2023-2024 school year, only 6th graders will have the required class.
Alternating Block Schedule – We will be following an alternating block schedule for the 2022-2023 school year. Students will alternate between Red (Periods 1-4) and Grey (Periods 5-8) each day. We have eliminated the Panda Day where students attend all 8 classes. Our new bell schedule is posted on our website.
Clustering – Students will be clustered within their grade level, meaning they are part of a cohort of students who take the same four core teachers. This allows for more collaboration
among teachers and eases the parent-teacher conference process. It also means that students who require schedule changes out of one core class will have to be scheduled in an all new cluster as we will not be cross clustering students.
Wraparound Resource Room – We are excited to announce that Ms. Rushing will have a new Wraparound Resource Room. Resources that will be available include school uniforms, hygiene products, food pantry, and computers for parents to use that may not have access to one at home. More information on our new Wraparound Resource Room will be made available in August.
Communities in School – Our CIS Social Worker, Ms. Vallejo, is returning for the 2022-2023 school year. I am excited to announce that through a CIS grant, we will also have a Mental Health Support Specialist on campus. This will allow more students to access the help and support they may need throughout the year.
Dress Code – A strict dress code policy will be enforced next school year. This includes students wearing the correct grade-level-colored shirts, the required bottoms, non-hooded sweatshirts with a Pershing logo, and appropriate footwear. I have attached the dress code for your review.
These are just some of the changes and updates for the 2022-2023 school year that we wanted you to be aware of.
Here are a few important dates to place on your calendar:
Thursday, August 18
Panda Camp for Incoming 6th Graders – students only (8:30 – 3:00)
6th Grade Parent Orientation (8:30 – 9:30)
School Uniform Sales (8:30 – 4:00 - cafeteria)
Friday, August 19
7th & 8th Grade Parent Orientation (8:30 – 9:30)
Student Schedule Pick-up (8:30 – 11:30; 1:30 – 3:30)
School Uniform Sales (8:30 – 4:00 - cafeteria)
Saturday, August 20
School Uniform Sales (9:00 – 12:00 - cafeteria)
Again, I hope that everyone has a restful summer. As always, if you need any assistance, please feel free to reach out to any member of our staff.
Dr. Steven Shetzer, Principal
8th Grade Activities