Kilmer Community gives to Food Pantry at KMS #14

food pantry

Thank you to our generous Kilmer community for the donations to our 

food pantry for those less fortunate during the holiday season!

A message from Principal, Amy Miller:

Dear Kilmer Community, 

I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving. It is hard to believe we are just two weeks away from winter break. Thank you so much to the Kilmer Community for the food donations that support our food pantry program. We are grateful to the PTA for partnering with us on the Food Pantry and for all the generosity from our community. 

The county has asked that all middle and high schools identify two work completion days (one odd day and one even day). This is in response to student feedback on the workload. The expectation for the work completion days is that students follow their regular schedule and attend their classes. During class the teacher will work with the students on completing assignments and will not be assigning new work. Kilmer’s work completion days for the second quarter are Thursday, December 17 and Friday, December 18.  


Amy Miller


New Attendance Code – UNT

Teachers will begin using a new attendance code, UNT to document students arriving late to class (10 mins or more), leaving class early (10 minutes or more), or not responding or engaging during class. In a virtual environment it is hard for teachers to tell whether a student is present, actively listening, and paying attention in class. Our hope is by using the UNT attendance code, students will increase their communication and engagement with their teachers and peers, and be prompt to class. If your student is having a technology issue that impacts class participation, please have your child email their teacher. We acknowledge that at times students need to step away from the computer or take a break. A teacher will only use the UNT code if a student is unresponsive more than 2 times in one period.


UNT is visible in SIS ParentVue and SIS StudentVue under the attendance tab. UNT does not count against your child’s attendance record, but will provide a record for both teachers and parents to accurately see the impact the lack of engagement and participation in the classroom has on student’s ability to show success on their assignments and assessments. Students will learn about this new attendance code on Monday, Dec 7 during their PAWS advisory check in at 8:30.


Return to In-Person Learning – Survey Reminder

On Monday, Nov 30 an email was sent to all parents who have selected in person instruction for their student. The current return to school date for in person instruction is Tuesday, January 26 for middle school students. Please see additional information from Monday’s return to school email.

All four days (Tues.-Fri.) of instruction will be led by your child’s teachers. On Mondays, all students will do  asynchronous/independent work while teachers use the day to plan lessons for the week.

  • Students with the first letter of their last name starting with A - K will attend school in-person on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and learn from home (concurrently) on Thursdays and Fridays.
  • Students with the first letter of their last name starting with L - Z will attend school in-person on Thursdays and Fridays and learn from home (concurrently) on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.


All parents must fill out this RETURN TO SCHOOL google form to indicate your student’s transportation and food services preferences by December 11, 2020. If you are the parent or guardian of multiple Kilmer students, please fill out one form for each child. We are looking forward to seeing your child soon! We are following recommended health guidance that focuses on student health, safety, and emotional well-being as we bring students back to our school. More information about returning to school for in-person instruction is available in the Family Guide for Return to School.

Please contact Sarah Groh, Director of Student Services at if you have questions about your child’s in person schedule. 


Wireless Updates

“To improve connectivity, we recommend that you update the wireless driver on the FCPSON laptop.  Below is a link to instructions on how to do this.  Please note that this update will require a reboot of the laptop, so please plan accordingly.  As always if you run into issues, you can place a ticket on the Parent and Student IT Support Portal found here:


Please remember to restart the FCPSON laptop weekly.”



Health and Physical Education 

The seventh graders will be starting their Emotional and Social Health Unit on December 10.  The eighth-graders will be starting their Emotional and Social Health Unit on January 5. 

The lessons are online for your viewing by following the directions below. If you decide to opt your child out of a specific lesson, your child will complete an alternative asynchronous assignment during their class time. 


Click on the link to read an overview of the materials at your leisure.


To view grade-specific lessons, log in to FCPS 24-7 Parent View: Click on E-Cart: Click Family life Curriculum.   

The School Board has approved a revision to regulation 3204 to allow FLE opt-out forms to be distributed electronically for the school year 2020-2021. Parents/guardians wishing to opt their child out of instruction may complete and return the opt-out form or scan or email a copy of the completed form to Sarah Groh at Click the link and scroll to the bottom for opt-out specifically for 7th and 8th grade. FLE Opt-Out Request Forms


If you have any questions, please contact your child’s Health & Physical Education Teacher.

Yearbook Portraits

Please sign up to get your portrait taken. Students have three options to include a portrait in our yearbook.

  1. As noted in last week’s News You Choose, all families received a communication from Lifetouch last week for an appointment on Photo Day - Thursday, December 10, Friday, December 11 and Thursday, December 17 from 3-7pm.  If you did not receive an email, the link to sign up is A make-up day will be held in February. Photos will take place in the gym and hallway with required health and safety guidelines.  All students must wear a mask except when their photo is taken.  Upon arriving at the Kilmer campus, parents should park around the bus loop and remain in their car until their student is finished (~20 minutes). Students will begin the photo process with the Health Screening Station at the school entrance by the trailers at the back of the parking lot. We will have people out directing traffic and showing students where to go. 
  2. We are also working with our yearbook publisher, Walsworth, to use a downloadable app in order to take portraits with plain backgrounds. This app will also be used to send in photos directly from families. More information to come within the next few weeks. 
  3. “Order by December 17th on using the Picture Day ID EVTFQNSJC.”


Photos to include in Kilmer’s Yearbook

Did you take pictures of the first day of “virtual” school? Did you have photos of playing with your local sports team? Did you dress up for Halloween?

Kilmer’s yearbook committee has begun collecting photos to include in this year's very unique yearbook. Right now, we are looking for photos of:

  •         First Day of School
  •         Halloween
  •         Playing on a team (soccer, basketball, etc.)
  •         Doing school work
  •         At home projects or experiments for class.

Go to the All Students Course in Schoology and open the purple Yearbook Folder for instructions on how to upload your photos!

Yearbook Purchase

Yearbooks are on sale now! Cost is $35 per book.  Follow the link to purchase your copy today. Supplies are very limited.

Kilmer Pantry

The Kilmer Pantry is being replenished to provide non-perishable food items to our families in need.  We plan to begin food distribution in mid-December.

We are collecting items through a drive thru donation every Monday from 3:00 – 5:00 pm. We look forward to seeing you next Monday, December 7th. We will also have bins for donations during our photo days on December 10th and 11th. . 

In addition families are invited to donate non-perishable food items by direct shipping from Amazon, Target, Walmart, or wherever you shop (send to the attention of Debra David at Kilmer). This Amazon WishList includes a list of potential items to donate. 

Donation requests include: Pasta sauce, canned tomatoes, pasta, rice, beans, cereal, oatmeal, cooking oil, peanut butter, crackers, microwave popcorn, granola bars, canned fruit/applesauce, canned tuna, canned veggies, instant macaroni and cheese.

We are grateful for the support of our Kilmer Community and are hopeful to see you at one of our Monday drive thru donation times. 

If you want your family to receive food, please contact your child’s counselor.

Kilmer’s NJHS: All Candidate Virtual Meeting on December 10


Kilmer NJHS Candidates are off to a great start through the five stages of the NJHS Service Learning Continuum with Stage 1: Investigation. All activities and information are located in the NJHS Schoology Course. NJHS office hours are every Wednesday in the NJHS BBCU from 3:00 - 3:30. The first all candidate meeting is in the NJHS Schoology BBCU  on December 10 from  2:30 - 3:30 pm. Parents/Guardians are welcome to join their student in this virtual meeting through the student’s course link.

NJHS is ready to Make a Difference!

Cougars Connect - Student Engagement

We realize how challenging it is to feel connected in the virtual environment and want to have some fun recognizing students making progress to engage and connect in their classes.

What does student engagement look like in a virtual learning environment?

It can look like…

  • using the mic or camera in class discussions and breakouts
  • being responsive in chat discussions
  • consistently participating in interactive class activities (e.g., polls, Padlets and Jamboard)
  • going to office hours to connect with a teacher
  • sending messages to teachers to ask questions

…really any way a student is an active participant in virtual learning! 

Teachers will encourage students to interact and engage on a variety of levels as it fits their classes. Please keep in mind that although we encourage camera use, using the camera is never required. If you or your student have concerns about any barriers to engaging in class, please connect with his/her counselor who can help.

Every month, teachers will nominate one (or more) students for student engagement from each of their classes. There will be a monthly drawing from the pool of nominated students. Monthly winners from each grade will be recognized through KTV and students recognized will be able to choose a reward from a variety of options. 

We hope this is a fun way to encourage student engagement in the virtual environment. 

What’s on the Shelf: News from the Kilmer Library

We encourage all students to use our curbside checkout service -- all books checked out from this point forward are not due until after winter break! It’s the perfect time to request a big stack of books! This month our evening “Third Thursday” checkout time is on December 17, 5:00pm - 7:00pm. For more information on Cougars @ the Curb, check out our flyer:

Upcoming Cougars @ the Curb Dates:

Monday, December 7, 1:00pm - 3:30pm

Monday, December 14, 1:00pm - 3:30pm

Thursday, December 17, 5:00pm - 7:00pm

On another note, if you happen to be shopping for books as gifts this season, one of our  favorite resources for book ideas for all ages is NPR’s Book Concierge. Need specific recommendations for the Kilmer student in your life? Reach out to Gretchen Hazlin, librarian, at

Afterschool At a Glance:



My Science Olympiad is a new program that complements Science Olympiad’s traditional tournament contests and is available to all middle school students, whether or not they are on a school team. Kilmer is not sponsoring a school team this year. 

As a reminder all students must have a completed Kilmer Middle Afterschool General Registration Form on file to participate. Updates, club descriptions and meeting details are located in  the Schoology  Afterschool Group (access code 2W54-ZSDS-BKJMV). Individual club enrollment requests, descriptions and the  Afterschool Activities Calendar are located under Resources. Contact  After School Program Specialist,  Kimberly Kardelis with questions.