Hastings Hotline - April 2016
The Hastings Hotline is a bi-monthly newsletter for Hastings students, families and staff.  Click on a category below to read more.

Message from Principal Robb Gonda

April/May Newsletter

Hastings Families,

It is hard to believe the end of the year is upon us and that we are busy preparing for all of the end of the year events that celebrate the many accomplishments of our students. With the school year ending prior to Memorial day I would encourage all families to keep up with the weekly events outlined in our Friday Flier. Some adjustments have needed to be made to accommodate our many events in a shorter time frame. If you have any questions about any of our end of the year events, please contact our main office at 487-5100, and we will be happy to assist.

I want to also encourage all families to come out and support our musicians and athletes as they put their various talents on display. The excitement and energy our students bring to these events is one of the main reason I love the middle school level. Our daily events can be found on our HMS website and will be highlighted through our school twitter feed @HMSbears. Additionally, over the next few months be on the look-out for communication on laptop collection, summer reading, and information for the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year.

Thank you for your continued support of Hastings. As always, I appreciate all of the people who make Upper Arlington a unique and caring learning community. If I can be of any assistance in your child’s education, please do not hesitate to contact me anytime.


Robb T. Gonda

Principal, Hastings Middle School

Email: rgonda@uaschools.org

Twitter: @robbgonda

Message from Assistant Principal Jim Buffer

Hello Hastings families. It is hard to believe that we have reached the end of our third quarter. Please

feel free to contact me if I can be of any assistance as we head into the home stretch. My direct number

is 487-5103, and I can also be reached at jbuffer@uaschools.org. A few reminders as we finish our

academic year:

ATTENDANCE REMINDER: Students who participate in school-sponsored after school

activities must be in attendance a half day (11:45 a.m.-3:20 p.m.) in order to stay after school for a

practice, contest, or event. This includes athletics, clubs, and all other functions.

LOST AND FOUND: The lost and found at Hastings is brimming with clothes. Feel free to stop

outside the cafeteria and browse through the bin to see if you recognize any of the belongings. Lost

clothing and lunch boxes are deposited in the lost and found bin, while books, glasses, keys, and other

valuables are kept in the main office.


Preparing to Build the 2016-2017 Schedule

Thank you for returning your child’s 2016-2017 course registration information. We are in the

initial process of generating each individual student’s schedule for next school year. The faculty at

Hastings takes the placement of students into classroom groups as an important, professional task.

Classroom teachers, elementary colleagues, counselors, specialist staff, Mr. Buffer and Mr. Gonda

work together to make the best possible decision for individual students and groups of students.

Where possible and appropriate, we are committed to developing classroom combinations that are

balanced with regard to student strengths and needs. It is our belief that heterogeneous class

groupings maximize learning opportunities for students.

We consider the following variables to arrive at a placement decision for individual students:

• Special Education needs

• Math placement

• Concilium placement

• Grade 6, 7 and 8 global language placement

• Study skills and work habits

• Achievement

• Social and emotional needs

• Gender balance

Please contact your child’s school counselor, Mr. Buffer, or Mr. Gonda if you have any


questions regarding these placement procedures.

Notes and News

Save the date! The ninth annual Hoops for a Cure will be held on Friday, April 29, in the main gym of Upper Arlington High School.

Doors open at 7:00. Tipoff is at 7:30. The staff of Hastings Middle School will take on the staff of Jones Middle School in a fun-filled basketball game to raise money for the cause of defeating cancer.

As you are well aware, cancer affects many women, men, and children every year. Statistics show that 1 out of every 3 Americans will contract cancer, and 1 out of 4 will eventually succumb to the disease. More specifically, 1 out of every 8 will develop breast cancer in their lifetime.

Unfortunately, cancer has affected every Upper Arlington family, directly or indirectly. One way to combat this silent killer is through research.

Already, incredible discoveries have been made that are helping prolong the lives of many around us; however, these discoveries have taken years of research, and scientists are still working to find a cure for cancer.

All money raised from Hoops For a Cure will be donated to the Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research at The Ohio State University James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute. The staffs of Hastings and Jones are very excited about continuing to support this important cause and sponsoring this spirited evening of basketball and half-time entertainment.

‘Hoops for a Cure’ is an ongoing fundraiser; during the last eight years, we have raised almost $60,000. Our goal this year is to raise at least $10,000 through the sale of tickets, t-shirts, bake sales, bracelets, raffles and your generous donations. 

Make donations payable to Hastings Middle School; please put Hoops for a Cure in the memo. 

This year’s game will be played in special honor of Hastings Middle School teacher and one of the founders of the event, Beth Flory, who succumbed to the disease February 29, 2016 after a 13-year battle.

8th Grade Shadowing Day

Shadowing Day will take place on Friday, April 22. Eighth graders are encouraged to shadow a family friend or extended family member. Shadowing day activities will help students continue to reflect on how their own gifts, talents, and ideas might influence a career path one day. Eighth grade students who participate in Shadowing Day are excused from school on FridayApril 22.  All students must complete the initial paperwork for Shadowing Day. There is a link to the permission form in your student's lunch section on Schoology.  This must be completed and returned to your son/daughters history teacher no later than April 20, 2016.  Any questions about Shadowing Day should be directed to Cathy Johnson (cjohnson@uaschools.org) or Shannon Riley (sriley@uaschools.org)

Washington, D.C. Trip Update

What should our children pack?

How much spending money should they bring?

What about cameras/watches/cell phones?

These questions, and many others, will be answered at the required pre-trip meeting for students and their parent(s) on Monday, May 2, 7:30 p.m., in the Hastings Auditorium. There will be a great deal of information covered and you will have an opportunity to meet your child's chaperone.

If you are unable to attend Monday night, you are welcome to attend the Jones parent meeting on Tuesday, May 3, 7:30 p.m., in the Jones Auditorium. There will be a table at this meeting for Hastings parents to check in and complete final paperwork.

We're looking forward to a wonderful trip. Students are meeting with their chaperone regularly which is a time for the students to get to know the members of their chaperone group, learn about the trip and ask questions. (And they do have A LOT of questions!)

Any questions regarding the trip can be forwarded to Jim Buffer, Shannon Riley, Lisa Lloyd, or Alice Aichele.

State Geographic Bee Finalist at Hastings!

Hastings is proud that our 2016 National Geographic Bee champion, Austin Henley, has qualified for the Ohio Geographic Bee finals to be heldApril 1st.  Good luck, Austin!  

Three students from Hastings took part in the District 6/Central Ohio level National History Day event on March 12th at Ohio Wesleyan University including Cassie D., Greta S. and Sulekh M.  Congratulations on all your work!

National History Day is an academic enrichment program for students in grades 6-12. Students select topics connected to an annual theme and complete their own in-depth research on the topic. This year, the theme is "Exploration, Encounter and Exchange in History." Students present their conclusions by creating museum-style exhibits, media documentaries, research papers, interactive websites, and dramatic performances.

★"Respect Yourself":

Dear 8th Grade Parent,

Once again this school year Hastings Middle School will be continuing the “Respect Yourself” program to supplement the 8th grade Health Education Curriculum.  Statistics tell us that sexual activity at an early age is a problem for many young people. Teenage pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, relationship problems, and emotional abuse can result.

UAHS drama students under the direction of Greg Varner will perform several skits for 8th graders dealing with issues surrounding teen pregnancy, STD’s, relationships, and peer pressure.  All skits promote abstinence for middle and high school students.  This program supports the District Health Education Course of Study, District Curriculum

Goals, the Strategic Plan, and the Ohio Revised Code section 3313.6011.

The skits for students will be presented Friday April 29, 2016, at Hastings.  One presentation will be made to the 8th grade class.  Discussions will follow immediately after in a group setting.  There will also be a special preview performance for parents on Thursday evening, April 28, 2016 at 7:30PM at the Hastings auditorium.   It will last approximately 50 minutes. We encourage you to attend to preview what your children will see.  The program presents some very positive communication opportunities and a shared experience, reflecting on these difficult issues.  This experience may open the door for you to initiate conversations with your children about sex and related issues.

These skits were written by high school students and send a powerful message. We hope that the skits will have a positive impact on our 8th graders in reinforcing the message of “Respect Yourself!” and each other.  Questions or concerns, please contact Allison Tomlin (atomlin@uaschools.org) or Robb Gonda at 487-5100 (rgonda@uaschools.org).


Allison Tomlin

Respect Yourself Coordinator

Hastings Middle School

Congratulations to the cast and crew of "The Music Man, Jr."! This year's production involved over 120 students - the largest cast and crew ever assembled for a HMS drama production! Mr. Monseur would like to give special thanks to the Drama Club staff: Mrs. Stechschulte, Mrs. Guenther, and Mrs. Moyer; all who committed many hours contributing to the show's success. A final "thank you" to the parents and staff of the Hastings community. We could not have done it without your help and support!

Career Ed Update: 7th Grade Career Fair

The 7th grade Career Fair will be held on Friday, April 22. The Career Fair will take place the first two hours of the school day. Students will start by listening to a guest speaker who will share his story and the path he took to getting to his current career. After the morning speaker, students will rotate through sessions where parents will share their personal career journeys. We are still in need of several parent volunteers to share their stories. If you would like to be a speaker, please complete this survey or contact Diane Balog  dbalog@uaschools.org or Sarah Moyer at slmoyer@uaschools.org.

Upcoming Hastings Award Desserts

Every May, the Hastings faculty looks forward to inviting students to a grade-level program which highlights student accomplishments throughout the school year. These include honors achievements* as well as academic competitions and “House” awards celebrating community, promoting character and embracing challenge. Invitations to the grade-level Award Desserts will arrive by mail. The dates are:

--8th grade: Thursday, May 5 @7:30pm

--7th grade: Thursday, May 12 @7:30pm

--6th grade: Thursday, May 19 @7:30pm

*Invitations will be sent via email this year. 

*Honors awards are determined using the grade point averages (GPA) from the first three nine weeks of school. All students whose cumulative GPA is 3.50 or above will be invited to the program.

Mark your Calendars for Upcoming Testing Dates:

--Language Arts (Grades 6-8) is on Monday and Tuesday, April 4 and April 5

--Math (Grades 6-8 ) is on Tuesday and Wednesday, April 12 and April 13

--Social Studies (6th grade only) is on Monday and Tuesday, April 18 and April 19

--Science (8th grade only) is on Wednesday and Thursday, April 20 and April 21

Please help by...

• promoting adequate sleep the night before testing

• providing a healthy breakfast the day of the testing

• avoiding tardiness, absences, and/or the scheduling of appointments on these days during the testing times.

Thank you!

Athletic Department News

Athletic Department News

The spring sports contests have begun. Please check our website for the complete Spring game schedules. Our webpage can be found at uaschools.org click on schools and select Hastings, then athletics. You can also follow us on twitter at UA_MS_Athletics

Please remember that the spring athletic season can be and will be affected by weather. What is a beautiful day one moment can quickly turn into a terrible one. In most cases we must make game cancellation decisions by 1:30 p.m. as many of our opponent schools dismiss earlier than we do. We will make every effort to make the best decisions for everyone involved. All decisions on game/practice cancellations will be based on the best information we have available, and with student safety at the forefront. Our Coaches will notify parents by email and text message before 2pm, when games are cancelled. If you don't hear from the coach, the game is on.

OSU Offering $10.00 Sports Physicals on Thursday, May 26, 2016, 5:30-8:00pm at the Morehouse Pavilion Lobby, 2050 Kenny Road, Columbus. Cost is $10, proceeds benefit UAHS Athletic Boosters. Fast and Easy !

Spring Sport Coaches:

7th Grade Baseball

Jacob Schafer


8th Grade Baseball

Matt Tarnowski


7th Grade Softball

Diane Balog


7th Grade Softball

Emily Hollett


7/8 Boys Lacrosse

Dan Hendrickson


7/8 Girls Lacrosse

Rebecca Smock


7/8 Girls Track & Field

Bryn Rohlck


7/8 Boys Track & Field

Evie Lay


7/8 Boys Tennis

Jeff Shapiro


Spring Sports Recognition Night is Monday, May 23rd, at 7pm in the HMS Auditorium.

Fall 2016 Athletic Practices and Tryouts begin Monday, August 1st, so please plan accordingly.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Athletic Director Mike Elfers (melfers@uaschools.org).

News from the PTO President

Dear Hastings Parents,

As we approach the final quarter of the this school year, I have to say thank you for your continued support for the activities PTO has sponsored and the monetary donations we received for the No Fundraising Fundraiser. Through your generosity, the PTO has been able to accept and approve over 20 mini grants to the Hastings Staff which include projects big and small that directly impact our children.

Our kids will be experiencing some amazing field trips locally and nationally with scholarship support from PTO. As the district has moved to one-to-one technology, the PTO has helped teachers purchase software for the students to use. If you ever want to see the fine details you are more than welcome to attend any PTO meeting, they are open to all!

In the remaining quarter PTO will support the teaching staff by running the Hoops for the Cure Concession Stand as well as providing a Staff Appreciation Luncheon on Tuesday May 3rd.

The Book Fair will take place April 25-May 2 this spring and we would greatly appreciate your orders for the summer reading we all want the kids to do!

The next PTO meeting is Wednesday April 13th at 8:30 am. All are welcome.

PTO will provide refreshments and Rita's Ice at spring events where the kids gather to showcase their talents, receive awards and honors, and wrap up the school year.

A Sign up Genius for each event will be coming soon on the website.

8th grade parents are reminded to send pictures for the 8th grade video to Margaret Kennedy (with names if able) fmbkennedy@sbcglobal.net . In the next month we will create an online order form that you can access through our PTO website.

The Adopt-A-Chair program is still an ongoing project as we have nearly half of the chairs to go! If you are thinking about dedicating a chair to a graduating 8th grader or any other person or group please go to www.hastingspto.org and click on Adopt a Chair. Each Chair renovation costs $150. Some families do this individually and some do a group- anything is great! The annual pool party is coming as well. Details coming soon!

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email me at hastingspto@gmail.com

Cathy Pultz

News from the Media Center

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss!

The Hastings Media Center recently invited students and staff to celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday/ Read Across America Day. Students ate their lunch in the media center, enjoyed Cheryl’s Cookies for dessert, and then listened to Hastings staff (Mrs. Stieg, Mr. Prout, Mr. Niekamp, Mrs. Farbizo, Mrs. Meadows, Mrs. Tomlin, Caitlin Curran [student], Mrs. Slater, Mrs. Gadd, and Mrs. Kamdar) read their favorite Dr. Seuss book. 


Nurse's Notes

Hastings Health Office

Gini Barber, RN

487-5100 ext. 4003 vbarber@uaschools.org

Take Two Laughs and Call Me in the Morning After a Good Breakfast!

Laughter—Did you know that laughing is an aerobic exercise? According to medical researchers, a good, hard

laugh for 20 seconds has the same benefit as 5 minutes of hard rowing. Laughter leads to relaxation and stress

reduction by first raising your blood pressure and heart rate and then lowering it. By doing so, sensory

perceptiveness is increased, allowing you to perform tasks better. If you are having difficulty solving work or

personal problems, psychologist Alice M. Isen, Ph.D., of Cornell University prescribes a good comedy to get

the creative juices flowing.

Parents Remember to Eat a Good Breakfast—Your children will learn from your example. Providing a child

with a good breakfast before going to school is one of the most important things a parent can do to prepare a

child for optimal learning and interaction at school. Teachers report that a students who have not eaten since

the night before become tired and unable to concentrate by late morning, especially after physical education

class. The fast pace of our households in the morning should not interfere with having a good breakfast.

The traditional breakfast of eggs and toast or cereal can be replaced with whatever nutritional foods that your

child likes, such as a peanut butter or cheese sandwich, leftover pizza, cottage cheese, yogurt, muffins, fruit,

etc. Discuss with your child which foods he/she would like to have for breakfast and have these on hand!

The Health Office is staffed Monday through Friday, 8:00-4:00 PM. Call Gini

Barber, RN @ 487-5100 X 4003 if you have any questions.

HMS Calendar

1950 North Mallway Drive
Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221
(614) 487-5000

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