Academic Questions Q: What is the process for enrolling a new student? A: If you are intending on enrolling your child at NFMS, you must first fill-out the enrollment paperwork. Parents/Guardians can either pick this up from the front office or can access it online (http://www.shenandoah.k12.va.us/enrollment-registration-1cc51f7f). In addition to completed paperwork, the secretary must provide the school with appropriate documentation, including: a birth certificate for the child, immunization record for the child, and proofs of residency in Shenandoah County. We will request records from the school your child is transferring from. Mrs. Zimmon, the School Counselor, will create a schedule and meet with your child on their first day of school.
Q: How can I monitor my student’s grades? A: Parents/guardians can request electronic access to their student’s grades by contacting the front office (540-477-2953). Upon filling-out a form, parents/guardians will be given a username and password to our PowerSchool Public Portal. There, you will have online access to current grades, attendance, and teacher comments. You can also manage your phone numbers and e-mail addresses for weather-related and emergency notifications. One account includes all of your children. Also, at NFMS, students are given a Student Portal account, which allows students to access this information, as well.
Q: My student is doing poorly in classes. Where do I go to get him/her help? A: The best place to start is contacting the teacher directly. It is often easier to reach your child’s teacher via e-mail but you can also call the school and ask to leave a message. If your student is doing poorly in more than one class, it’s possible to request a parent/teacher conference! You do not need to wait until the official parent/teacher conference days in the fall and spring. If you need assistance with contacting the teachers, feel free to reach out to Mrs. Zimmon and she can help!
Q: What can I do to help my child get to school on time every day? A: Let your child know that you believe school and attendance are important. Talk to your child about the importance of regular attendance and about how your child feels about school. Set a regular bedtime and morning routine appropriate for your child's age. Lay out clothes and pack backpacks/lunches the night before. Develop a back-up plan for getting to school if something comes up. Find something about school that engages your child, such as a sports team, club, or another activity. Use that to motivate your child to go to school every day on time. Don't let your child stay home unless he or she is truly sick. Complaints of a stomach ache or headache can be a sign of anxiety, NOT a reason to stay home. If your child seems anxious about going to school, talk to his or her teacher, Mrs. Zimmon, administration, other parents/guardians, or to your doctor for advice on how to make your child feel comfortable and excited about learning.
Career Questions Q: How can I get a worker's permit? A: As things are ever changing, the title of “worker’s permit” has been changed to “employment certificate.” For more information on how to obtain one, please see the “Employment Certificate” link.
Q: What is being done at school to help my child plan for the future? A: A variety of activities are implemented by Mrs. Zimmon to help your child plan for the future. All students are invited to attend Lunch N’ Learn sessions. These presentations provide students with opportunities to learn about a variety of careers in our community. Please see the “Lunch N’ Learn” link for more information.
In 7th grade, the students attend a field trip to “World of Work.” This is an engaging and interactive career exploration event in which students participate in various hands-on activities that relate to careers in our community. Mrs. Zimmon also goes in to the 7th grade classrooms to do a career exploration lesson. Topics covered in this lesson include: taking an interest inventory and researching a career, talking about high school terminology, learning about post-high school options (college, community college, work, military, trade school), discussing the difference between college and community college, and learning about the types of post-high school degrees. In addition, the Virginia Department of Education requires that all 7th graders complete an Academic and Career Plan (ACP) which starts the conversation about post-high school plans. We also discuss what courses they should take between 8th grade and 12th grade to best align with their future goals. Mrs. Zimmon meets individually with 7th graders to complete a rough draft of the ACP.
In 8th grade, the students attend a field trip to Triplett Tech. When they get there, they are divided in to groups and take a tour of the different vocational programs offered at Triplett. The goal of this trip is to give the students an opportunity to explore and to begin considering possible career choices and the types of classes they will need to take in high school.
Q: What could I be doing to help my child plan for the future? A: Talk to them about their vision of their future. Know that some adolescents change their mind daily, others have their mind set on a plan and don’t intend to stray from it, while some have no idea what their future holds. Having conversations with your child about the variety of pathways shows your child that you are willing to support them in their endeavors. If you would like to further discuss your child’s future, please contact Mrs. Zimmon. Also, you can refer to the “Planning For The Future” links within the “Resources By Topic” webpage.
Personal/Social Questions Q: What if my child is being bullied or harassed? A: First, talk with your child about the situation. Find out what is going on and ask what they would like you to do about it. Sometimes students know exactly how they want to handle a situation and may just need your help. If your child really just wants you to fix it, a good first step is to contact the other child’s parents/guardians. Many times this is a great way to collaborate with the other child’s parents/guardians to come up with a solution. If this isn’t possible or is not successful, contact Mrs. Zimmon, Mr. Rice (Assistant Principal), or Mr. Lynn (Principal) to let him/her know about the situation. Many times the school isn’t aware of what is going on and a phone call can be a great start.
Q: What should I do if my child is self-harming? A: If you have recently discovered that your child is self-harming, you may feel at a loss as to what to do next. The reasons behind self harm - which can include cutting, burning, hitting and poisoning - are complex, and it is very bewildering as a parent to discover that your child is hurting him - or herself - on purpose. Try to be sympathetic rather than despairing or hyper-critical. Talk to your child and be a great listener. This means finding time for one-to-one conversations; listening without interrupting or judging; ‘reflecting’, which means repeating back the key things your child has told you; and empathising.
Although self-injury does not always indicate that a person is considering suicide, if you believe there is an emergency, call 911. For non-emergency support and/or for a list of local resources, you may call Mrs. Zimmon. You can also refer to the “Self-Harm” links within the “Resources By Topic” webpage.