May 2018 Principal’s Newsletter

 Principal’s Message


Dear Parents, Guardians, and Friends of Griffiths Middle School,

The Griffiths Middle School community has many reasons to celebrate!  Congratulations to Griffiths Middle School students and staff for receiving the California and National Schools to Watch Award this year. Only 22 schools across California received this prestigious honor. Griffiths Middle School will be recognized in Washington DC in June as a high-performing model school that demonstrates academic excellence, social equity, and responsiveness to the needs of young adolescents.

Griffiths Middle School also received the California Gold Ribbon Award and the Title 1 Academic Achievement Award last year. The state department of education recognizes California schools that have made gains in implementing the academic content and performance standards adopted by the State Board of Education. These include the California Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics, California English Language Development Standards, and Next Generation Science Standards. Additionally, Griffiths Middle School was also honored last year as an Exemplary Program award recipient in career technical education for the amazing work done in our Gateway to Technology classes: Robotics, Design and Modeling, Computer Science, and Green Architecture just to name a few.


These extraordinary gains and recognition that GMS recently received were based predominantly on student achievement on the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) administered by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC).  These tests are administered each spring and measure how well students in California public schools are meeting the Common Core State Standards.  Our students are now in the process of completing these tests on the computer in the areas of English-Language Arts, Mathematics and Science (8th grade only). A letter explaining the entire CAASPP/SBA was sent home before testing. Please continue to support your student during this time of testing by encouraging him/her to do his/her best.


We have an extremely busy schedule at the end of our school year. Please refer to your list of upcoming events below. One message that I have conveyed to students is that school is not over until June 1st. I have asked students to put forth their best effort in these last weeks of school as we still have a lot of material to cover in each of our grade levels before students can move on to the next grade. Our students have been working diligently to reach their goals this school year. It is important that students understand that we must make the most of each remaining school day. Thank you for encouraging your students.


Thank you all again for your support in maintaining the high standards of excellence we have at GMS.




Rani Bertsch, Ed.D.











May Important Dates


May 1-8           SBA Testing – Block Schedule

May 7-11         Staff Appreciation Week

May 1              5-7 p.m. Honor’s Night @ Florence Avenue Foursquare Church

May 2              3:00 p.m. SSC Meeting – Room 27

May 3              2:00 p.m. Track Meet vs Doty @ WHS

May 4              3:00 p.m. Builder’s Club Jogathon – field

May 5              8-12 p.m. Saturday School

8-12 p.m. STEAM Saturday

May 10            2:00 p.m. Track Meet vs Stauffer @ WHS

7:00 p.m. PTA Meeting – Library

May 11            All library books are due

BYB Assemblies

2:38 p.m. ASB sponsors school dance


May 16            7:00 p.m. GMS Choir @ WHS

May 17            10:15 a.m. AVID Awards- lawn by Library

May 18            10:15 a.m. EL Awards – lawn by Library

4:00 p.m. All District Track Meet @ DHS


May 21            8:00 a.m. 8th grade parent meeting – library

6:30 p.m. 8th grade parent meeting – library


May 22            8:15 a.m. All School Award Assembly

6:30 p.m. Choir/Band Night – Outdoor Stage


May 24            CJSF Fieldtrip to Knott’s Berry Farm

6:30 p.m. Get Lit Poetry Presentation @ GMS


May 28            Memorial Day – No school

May 30            8:00-1:00 Long Beach State University Fieldtrip for 8th graders

May 31            8:00 a.m. Promotion Practice for 8th graders @ GMS – MANDATORY

9:30 a.m. 8th graders dismissed to go home to prepare for promotion

1:00 p.m. 8th graders report to WHS basketball courts

2:00 p.m. 8th grade Promotion Ceremony @ WHS Justice Stadium

June 1          8-11 a.m. 8th Grade Celebration @ GMS Field hosted by PTA

                        Last Day of School 

                        Dismissal at 12:24 p.m.


August 10        New Student Orientation

August 15        First Day of School