November 21, 2014 - Parent Bulletin

Thanksgiving Break

We are quickly approaching the Thanksgiving Break, scheduled for November 24-28. School will resume on Monday, December 1. We hope everyone has the opportunity to relax and spend time with family.



Trail Ridge Middle School Parent Events Calendar

Click here to see the calendar of events.

Open Enrollment for 2015-2016 school year

Trail Ridge Middle School will be accepting open enrollment applications for the 2015-2016 school year.  The window for new students wishing to open enroll opens on December 1st.

For information and specifics please visit the St. Vrain Valley School District Enrollment page.

A few things to note about open enrollment:

  • If your child is going from 6th to 7th or 7th to 8th, you DO NOT have to fill out another form.  Your child is automatically accepted.

  • Siblings of students who have been granted open enrollment status will be approved for open enrollment, as long as the sibling will have concurrent enrollment at Trail Ridge Middle for the 2015-2016 school year.  You still need to fill out a form for the younger sibling.

  • We will have many openings available at 6th grade for next year.  If you know of anyone looking to open enroll, please encourage them to put in an application on December 1st.

Student Drinks

In an effort to keep our school clean we want students to finish their breakfast Starbucks or other drinks in the commons before going to 1st period. Students are always welcome to bring water to their classes.


CMAS Student Reports

CMAS 2014 Science and Social Studies student reports are now available in the school office for parent/guardian pick up. Last Spring, current sixth grade students took the CMAS Science assessment, and current eighth grade students took the CMAS Social Studies assessment. The information contained in these reports is baseline data and reflect the rigor of the new standards. These results are ready and available for parents/guardians. Please see Marie Chavez in the counseling office to pick up the report for your student.

Holiday iPad Information

We wanted to send you a five tips about iPad use and support over the holidays. We want to make sure you know where to go and what to do if you have questions or need help while our school offices are closed.

Tip 1: Store it

If you are going away for the holidays or just want to ensure the iPad is safe, it’s perfectly fine to ask the school to store the iPad. Please make sure it is charged and shut down before storing it. It will put it in a locked, safe location and be ready to go after the holiday.

Tip 2: Cover it

If you and your student want to use the iPad over the holiday please remember to keep it in the protective case so it’s protected and out of the elements.

Tip 3: Find it

Make sure that your student has turned on Find my iPad (Settings | iCloud) and that you know how to use the service. Information on this can be found on the LTP Parent page located on your student’s device or at the website (you might want to bookmark this site for future use).

Tip 4: Lost it?

If your iPad is lost over the holidays, FIRST, try to locate it using these directions. If that doesn’t work, please use this form to submit a request. When you do so, the iPad be locked and that will give us your permission to attempt to assist you in locating it. Your school will follow up with more information after the holiday break.

Tip 5: Enjoy it

Enjoy your holiday!


Skyline Open House

You are invited to an Open House at Skyline High School to learn about all of the Academic Programs that Skyline has to offer, including the STEM and VPA Academies. It will be held on Monday, December 8th, at 6:00 pm at Skyline High School. Click here to find out more information. We hope to see you there!

Estimados Padres de Familia: Están cordialmente invitados a conocer nuestra Escuela Preparatoria de Skyline.  Durante esta noche usted recibira nformacion acerca de los programas académicos que ofrecemos incluyendo nuestras academias de STEM y VPA. Esta noche informativa se llevara a cabo el lunes 8 de diciembre de las 6:00 de la noche en la Escuela Preparatoria de Skyline. Deseamos verlos esta noche!

NJHS Winter Giving Project

The National Junior Honor Society are sponsoring the Giving Tree Project. We are looking for brand new toys and clothing as part of our holiday drive to help those in need in Longmont. We are in need of any type of brand new winter children's clothing items, such as socks, pants, shoes, jackets or any type of clothing that could potentially cloth middle or elementary school students.  Any type of brand new toy or game is acceptable.  All proceeds from this drive will go directly to TRMS students in need and local Longmont charities. The drive starts December 2nd and goes through December 18th.  Donations can be dropped off at the office.  Any and all donations are greatly appreciated.

Digital Commons

Technology Tip of the Week


Coffee Talks - Past Agendas

Are you struggling with iPads? Do you feel like your child knows more than you do? Do you have questions about security, digital footprints, usage, etc? Do you just want to talk with other parents about iPad issues at home? Come join us at TRMS for our monthly coffee talk hosted by Kara Jostes, Our next meeting will be held on 12/02/14 from 5:30-6:30pm (no morning meeting this month).


Counselors Newsletter

The Secret Language of Girls on Instagram

Rachel Simmons @RachelJSimmons   As taken from Time Magazine 11/10/2014

Nov. 10, 2014

Girls have quietly repurposed the photo-sharing app into a barometer for popularity, friendship status and self-worth. Here's how they're using it.


Secrecy is hardly new on Planet Girl: as many an eye-rolling boy will tell you, girls excel at eluding the prying questions of grown ups. And who can blame them? From an early age, young women learn that to be a “good girl” they must be nice, avoid conflict and make friends with everyone. It’s an impossible task (and one I’ve studied for over a decade) – so girls respond by taking their true feelings underground.

Enter the Internet, and Instagram: a platform where emotions can run wild – and where insecurities run wilder. The photo-sharing app is social media’s current queen bee: In a survey released earlier this month, three quarters of teens said they were using Instagram as their go-to app.


Instagram lets users share their photos, and “like” and comment on their friends’. The competition for “likes” encourages creativity in young users, who can use filters and other devices to spruce up their images. And its simplicity – it’s just pictures, right? — comforts parents haunted by the cyberbullying they hear about on Facebook and Twitter.


But Instagram’s simplicity is also deceiving: look more closely, and you find the Rosetta Stone of girl angst: a way for tweens and teens to find out what their peers really think of them (Was that comment about my dress a joke or did she mean it?), who likes you (Why wasn’t I included in that picture?), even how many people like them (if you post and get too few likes, you might feel “Instashame,” as one young woman calls it). They can obsess over their friendships, monitoring social ups and downs in extreme detail. They can strategically post at high traffic hours when they know peers are killing time between homework assignments. “Likes,” after all, feel like a public, tangible, reassuring statement of a girl’s social status.


That’s not what the app creators intended, of course, but it does make psychological sense: as they become preteens, research shows that girls’ confidence takes a nosedive. Instagram, then, is a new way for girls to chase the feeling of being liked that eludes so many of them. Instagram becomes an popularity meter and teens learn to manipulate the levers of success.


Here are a few of the ways that girls are leveraging Instagram to do much more than just share photos:


To Know What Friends Really Think Of Them

In the spot where adults tag a photo’s location, girls will barter “likes” in exchange for other things peers desperately want: a “TBH” (or “to be honest”). Translation? If you like a girl’s photo, she’ll leave you a TBH comment. For example: “TBH, ILYSM,” meaning, “To be honest I love you so much.” Or, the more ambivalent: “TBH, We don’t hang out that much.


To Measure How Much a Friend Likes You

In this case, a girl may trade a “like” — meaning, a friend will like her photo — in exchange for another tidbit of honesty: a 1-10 rating, of how much she likes you, your best physical feature, and a numerical scale that answers the question of “are we friends?” and many others. Girls hope for a “BMS,” or break my scale, the ultimate show of affection.


As a Public Barometer of Popularity

Instagram lets you tag your friends to announce that you’ve posted a new photo of them. Girls do the app one better: they take photos of scenes where no person is present – say, a sunset — but still tag people they love and add gushing comments. It’s a kind of social media mating call for BFFs. But girls also do it because the number of tags you get is a public sign of your popularity. “How many photos you’re tagged in is important,” says Charlotte, 12. “No one can see the actual number but you can sort of just tell because you keep seeing their name pop up.”



That broken heart necklace you gave your bestie? It’s gone the way of dial up. Now, girls use Instagram biographies – a few lines at the top of their page — to trumpet their inner circle. It’s a thrill to be featured on the banner that any visitor to the page will see — but not unusual to get deleted after a fight or bad day, in plain, humiliating sight of all your friends.


A Way to Retaliate

Angry at someone? Don’t tag the girl who is obviously in a picture, crop her out of it entirely, refuse to follow back the one who just tried to follow you, or simply post a photo a girl is not in. These are cryptic messages adults miss but which girls hear loud and clear. A girl may post an image of a party a friend wasn’t invited to, an intimate sleepover or night out at a concert. She never even has to mention the absent girl’s name. She knows the other girl saw it. That’s the beauty of Instagram: it’s the homework you know girls always do.


A Personal Branding Machine

Girls face increasing pressure not only to be smart and accomplished, but girly, sexy and social. In a 2011 survey, 74% of teen girls told the Girl Scout Research Institute that girls were living quasi-double lives online, where they intentionally downplayed their intelligence, kindness and good influence – and played up qualities like fun, funny and social. On Instagram, girls can project a persona they may not have time, or permission, to show off in the classroom: popular, social, sexy. Cultivating a certain look is so important that it’s common for girls to stage ‘photo shoots’ with each other as photographers to produce shots that stand out visually. (Plus a joint photo shoot is more evidence of friendship.)


A Place For Elaborate Birthday Collages

Remember coming to school on your big day, excited to see what you’d find plastered to your locker? Now girls can see who’s celebrating them hours before they get off the bus. Birthday collages on Instagram are elaborate public tributes, filled with inside jokes, short videos, and pictures of memories you may not have been a part of. “There is definitely a ‘I love you the most. I’ve loved you the longest edge to these birthday posts,” one parent told me. Collages that document the intensity or length of a relationship are a chance to celebrate a friend – or prove just how close you are to the birthday girl. Although most girls know to expect something from their closest friends, not getting one is seen as a direct diss, a parent told me. And it can be competitive: another parent told me her daughter’s friend stayed up until midnight just so she could be the first to post.

While girls may seem addicted to their online social lives, it’s not all bad — and they still prefer the company of an offline friend to any love they have to click for. (In a survey that would surely surprise some parents, 92% of teen girls said they would give up all of their social media friends if it meant keeping their best friend.) And, of course, likes aren’t everything. As 13 year-old Leah told me, “Just because people don’t write me a paragraph on Instagram doesn’t mean they don’t like me.”


Rachel Simmons is the co-founder of Girls Leadership Institute and the author of the New York Times bestselling book, “Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls” and “The Curse of the Good Girl: Raising Authentic Girls With Courage and Confidence.” Follow her on Twitter @racheljsimmons.