A Message from Mr. Soviero and Mr. Smith
We are very excited about the start of our 2017-2018 school year here at the Barkalow Middle School. One reason for the excitement is the Positive Behavior Support (PBS) Program. The PBS program continues to be a great success enhancing the positive learning environment existing in our school. Our motto being, “Soar for Four”, Be Respectful, Be Prepared, Be Kind and Be Safe. Our goal is to further enhance the family/community environment at Barkalow by recognizing the positive behavior of students and establishing clear consistent expectations that everyone can understand. Our kick- off during the first week of the past school year was extremely successful as lessons were presented on how to conduct oneself in the cafeteria, hallways, bathroom and on the bus. Students that are recognized have their name put in a collection bin and a drawing will be held once each month in which the winner can choose from an assortment of prizes or activities. With the mascot “Wingo Starr” we look forward to the continued success of the program as we “Soar for Four”.
We continue to focus on our math and language arts initiatives, enhancing the success students are showing on their State test scores. All of our Algebra students passed the Algebra PARCC test this past year scoring in the met or exceeded expectations categories. We also continue to increase our use of technology in the classroom and challenge our students to utilize higher level thinking skills and problem solve in a very diverse and demanding world. We have computer labs along with mobile lab carts to assist students with their technological needs. The 1 to 1 initiative for sixth, seventh and eighth graders has been a great success to student achievement. As part of the Freehold Township Education Foundation initiative, it has become a S.T.E.A.M. center. S.T.E.A.M. focuses on science, technology, engineering, arts and math. Students have the opportunity to express their creativity through the use of technology in these five different areas. Some activities students are utilizing include the 3D printers, green screen studio, sphere balls and Skype. Students had a conversation with a scientist in Antarctica last year utilizing Skype. Students have also engaged in Project Ignite where with coaching from staff, students work on projects that are of interest to them outside of the normal curriculum. Students have shown a great deal of initiative and enthusiasm with these projects which they have a personal interest in.
Our entire staff is committed to the service of students and parents. Our appearance has continued to improve throughout the entire building this summer thereby giving our students an inviting academic work environment. We continue our “green” initiative. All progress reports as well as report cards, schedules and other correspondence and information are available online and on the Genesis Parent Portal. Please be sure to check our website on a regular basis for any and all updates. We welcome our new sixth graders to the Barkalow Family. We hope that they get involved in the many programs and activities that will enhance their transition to Barkalow. Whether it be sports such as soccer, field hockey or cross country, or activities such as newspaper, student council or the many other activities available, we encourage student involvement.
We invite our parents to join a very active and dedicated PTO which has been tremendous help in servicing our students. They have just completed the make over of our second courtyard, much thanks going to our PTO president Mrs. Gandolfo. Meetings are held on the third Wednesday of every other month at 7:30pm in the Media Center. As I have stated many times at our honors recognition nights, research shows when parents are involved with their children at school, student achievement is higher, attitude is better and behavior much more positive.
Please review the handbook with your children and refer to our website for the monthly school calendar and for any school information or events. Mr. Smith and I have an open door policy. Please feel free to contact us at any time. It is because of the commitment and dedication of our Board, Central Office and the caring qualified staff and support of you, our parents, as well as the caliber student that attends Barkalow that we are so successful in preparing your children for the culturally diverse technological world that awaits them.