Students & Families
Welcome HMS Students & Families!
Our Dragon Pride Expectations
Hamden Middle School uses Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) to ensure that all students succeed. PBIS is a proactive approach to improve school safety and to promote positive behavior. The focus of PBIS is prevention, not punishment. At its heart, PBIS calls on schools to teach students positive behavior strategies, just as they would teach about any subject-- like reading or math.
At Hamden Middle School, we work together to teach our adolescent students how to embrace Dragon PRIDE!
P: Present & Prepared
R: Respect Everyone
I: Insist on Safety
D: Determined to be YOUR Best Self
E: Engage in the Community
Contents: General Information
- Administration, Faculty & Staff
- Acceptable Use Policy
- Address Change
- Automated Phone Calls
- Attendance/Reporting Absences
- Arrival & Dismissal
- Bell Schedules
- Bullying Prevention
- Bus Transportation
- Communication: Stay Informed!
- Core & Encore Teams
- COVID-19 & SAFETY
- DELAYED OPENING & SCHOOL CLOSING
- Dress & Grooming
- Electronic Device Policy (including Cell phones)
- Emergency Drills
- English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
- Enrollment: New Students, Transcripts & Withdrawing
- Field Trips
- Health Services
- Honor Roll
- Important Links
- Important Phone Numbers
- Inclement Weather
- Late Bus
- Lost & Found
- No Place for Hate
- Office Hours
- Open House Programs
- Portrait of a Graduate
- Report Cards
- SBAC: Connecticut Smarter Balanced Assessments
- School Meals
- SRBI: Scientific Research-Based Interventions
For a Complete Listing of our HMS Faculty and Staff:
Acceptable Use Policy
Hamden Public Schools offers students access to technology, including the computer network and Internet to enhance and support student learning. It is important for students to use all technology in a safe and respectful manner.
Students who wish to use the technology must have an Acceptable Use Policy signed by a parent or guardian and by the student. This document will remain a part of a permanent record for students. A student may be denied use of the technology if the Acceptable Use Policy is not signed. Inappropriate use of or damage to a computer or other equipment will result in a consequence and a possible replacement fee.
Students and parets should be aware that e-mail communications and social media sites should be used responsibly at home. Misuse of media at home, if found to seriously impact the learning environment, can result in school consequences.
It is critically important that we have the correct contact information documented in PowerSchool.
Report change of address, all phone numbers, and emergency contacts promptly. In the event of a new address, parents must complete a Change of Address Form and provide two proofs of residency. Ms. Gayle Colburn, guidance clerk, can assist parents with this process. Please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 203-407-7189.
Automated Phone Calls
HMS uses an automated communication system to efficiently and effectively contact parents. Emergency closings, delayed openings, and reminders of important events are some of the reasons for an automated phone call. Please keep the office informed of accurate and current contact numbers. Parents may opt out of the notification system by completing a form.
Hamden Middle School provides students with many opportunities to get involved in organized sports. For a complete listing of sports, seasonal announcements, and the required forms and medical assessments to play, please visit our Hamden Public Schools Athletics Page.
HMS Athletic Facilitator
Hamden Middle School
Hamden Public Schools
Reporting an Absence
Regular attendance and punctuality is highly encouraged for all students. A student is considered to be in attendance if s/he is present for at least half of the regular school day. If a student is going to be absent, parents must call the main office by 9:00 a.m. Parents may also leave a voicemail or send an email to report an absence with the student’s name, grade level, reason for absence, and the name of the person calling.
- Grade 7: Call 203-407-7207
- Grade 8: Call 203-407-7180
The State Board of Education, in accordance with Connecticut General Statute 10-198a, established two levels of criteria for an absence to be excused. While the first nine absences in a school year can be deemed excused without documentation, the 10th and each subsequent absence thereafter requires a parent note and may only be excused or the following reasons:
Student illness (all student illness must be verified by an appropriately licensed medical professional, including the school’s health office, to be deemed excused, regardless of the length of absence);
Student's observance of a religious holiday;
Death in the student's family or other emergency beyond the control of the student’s family;
Mandated court appearances (additional documentation required);
The lack of transportation that is normally provided by a district other than the one the student attends (no parental documentation is required for this reason);
Extraordinary educational opportunities pre-approved by district administrators and in accordance with Connecticut Department of Education guidance.
The school doors open at 7:45 a.m. and our students can arrive between 7:45 a.m. and 8:00 a.m.
Students who travel to school by bus will be dropped off on the side of the building. Faculty and staff members will be present to greet students and guide them into the building.
Drop Off Arrival
Students are dismissed from school at 2:30 p.m.
Students who are riding a school bus home will wait in their period 7 class until their bus number is called. There are three bus waves, and the dismissal process concludes at 2:45 p.m.
Students who are being picked up by a parent or family member will report to the front of the school building. They will wait for their ride by standing on the sidewalk under the portico. Students can safely enter the vehicle on the right-hand side, and depart from school. Parents are reminded to drive slowly and be mindful of staff directions.
When it is necessary for a parent to pick up their child prior to 2:30 p.m., please note the following procedures. There are no dismissals from the main office after 2:15 p.m. for safety reasons as our main office can become very busy during school-wide dismissal. The adult picking up the child must report to the main office; students will be called to the main office for early dismissal once the identity of the authorized adult is verified.
If you need to change the dismissal plan for your child, please call the main office at (203) 407-3140 before 1:30 p.m. After 1:30 p.m., we may not be able to get a message to your child prior to dismissal.
REQUESTING A BUS CHANGE
Each student is assigned to a specific bus. Students should only change buses due to child care issues, and this request must be submitted in writing by 9:00 a.m. each day. When we work together, we will alleviate any confusion for students, teachers and the bus company during dismissal.
HMS follows a bell schedule that pecifies the start time and duration of each period, as well as passing times. There are seven 48-minute periods in each school day. Students have 22 minutes for lunch. Please review the Master Bell Schedule, as well as the following alternate schedules:
- 90-Minute Delay Bell Schedule
- 2-Hour Delay Bell Schedule
Students may ride bicycles to and from school as long as they follow the safety rules and have permission from a parent. Students must obtain a bicycle permission form from the main office and return the completed form signed by a parent. HMS is not responsible for theft or damage to bicycles while on the school property.
Riding the bus is an extension of school and appropriate behavior is expected. For the safety and comfort of all children, students are expected to follow the DRAGON PRIDE expectations:
Links to bus assignments are listed below. Please contact the school should you have any questions.
Students may only ride their assigned bus and may only exit the bus at their assigned stop unless prior written permission has been provided by a student’s parents to the main office.
Parents may call First Student at (203) 288-2887 if a bus is extremely late, either picking students up or dropping students off.
Students must always engage in safe behavior while riding the bus and while waiting at a bus stop or returning from the bus stop to their home. If a student’s behavior is unsafe or does not correspond to the DRAGON PRIDE expectations, the student may be referred to administration who may assign disciplinary appropriate consequences, including possible bus suspension. Disciplinary action is at the discretion of the school principal, or her designee, in accordance with the Hamden Board of Education School Policy.
Parents are invited to conferences three times per academic year. Please make note of the following dates: November 16, 2021, February 1, 2022, and April 12, 2022.
Teachers will host 12 10-minute conferences between 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Parents will have an opportunity to register for conferences approximately two weeks in advance of the designated dates. In order to accommodate as many students and parents as possible, we limit one conference per Core Team. Parents can request additional conferences with the Encore teachers.
All students will be assigned to a Core Team or House. Each Core Team is composed of five teachers, English, math, science, social studies, and special education. Students in a common house will learn with the same teachers and students.
COVID-19 & SAFETY
Daily Health Assessment
Parents are asked to review the Daily Health Assessment every day. If your child has any of these symptoms, do not send your child to school. Notify us and contact your child’s medical provider for guidance. Contact the school nurse if you have any questions.
If a student or staff member demonstrates COVID-19 symptoms during the day, he/she will be checked by the nurse and dismissed as soon as possible. Consultation between District leadership, HPS medical staff, and the Quinnipiack Valley Health District (QVHD) will determine next steps, guided by HPS procedures and Addendum 5 of the CT Department of Education Reopening Plan. Decisions will be made in accordance with this guidance and communicated to all families and may involve isolation of individuals, an entire class, or closure of the school. Families will be notified of a positive diagnosis of COVID-19 at WWS (within medical privacy requirements). Specific steps will be shared for a return to school for anyone testing positive for COVID-19.
Mask and Face Shield Protocols
All adults and students will wear a mask in HPS buildings and on buses. Mask breaks throughout the day will minimize “mask fatigue”. Masks are not required when outside.
Students will maintain a 3-foot distance when feasible with available space. Distancing will be increased to 6 feet when students are unmasked and eating in the cafeteria when possible.
Opportunities for frequent hand washing will be provided. Hand sanitizers are available in classrooms and throughout the building, especially at entrances.
While visitors are permitted, HMS staff are able to accommodate virtual meetings whenever possible to minimize access to the building.
Delayed Opening, Early Dismissal & School Closing
A delayed opening, early dismissal, or an emergency closing for the day may occur at any time during the school year. These are done for emergency reasons that can be the result of, but are not exclusive to inclement weather. When school is closed for the day, all afternoon or evening activities are canceled except when special permission is granted by the superintendent. Media outlets will report these closings as “Hamden Public Schools”.
During a delayed opening, school buses will pick up your child at the normal time plus the time of the delay. (Ex: If the bus normally picks your child up at 7:25 a.m. and there is a 2-hour delay, the bus will pick your child up at 9:25 a.m.)
There is no set time to dismiss school for an emergency school closing. An automated call and/or text message will be made from the district in the event there is an emergency closing so it is imperative that we always have current contact information.
Hamden Public Schools District Policies
Policy 5132 - Dress and Grooming
The Hamden Board dress code policy aims to maintain a safe and stable learning environment while allowing students to respectfully express their individuality.
Students are encouraged to dress in clean clothing. Student attire and grooming restrictions apply whenever the mode of dress in question:
Is unsafe either for the student or for those around the student.
Is disruptive of school operations and of the educational process in general.
Is contrary to law.
Depicts or advocates violance criminal activity, use of alcohol or drugs, pornography or hate speech.
Contains or can be construed to be racist, misogynistic, lewd, vulgar, or obscene, defamatory, or threatening.
No restrictions on freedom of dress and adornment will be imposed which:
Enforce particular religious tenets or codes of morality.
Attempt to dictate or adjudicate style or taste.
Do not fall within the direct or implied powers of the Board of Education.
Reflect discrimination as to civil rights.
School-directed changes to a student's attire or grooming should be incremental starting with the least restrictive and disruptive measures to the student’s school day. Any school dress code enforcement actions should aim to minimize the potential loss of educational time. Students shall be given the opportunity to adjust their attire in the most immediate and least disruptive manner so they can continue to participate in class or school related activities.
Enforcement of the dress code shall be gender neutral. School staff shall enforce the dress code consistently, incrementally, and in a sensitive manner that does not reinforce or increase marginalization of any group based on race, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion, cultural observance, household income or body type/size.
If the attire or grooming of a student poses a threat to the health and safety of any other person, the appropriate solution as stated in the administrative regulation will be followed.
For special cases that require specific exceptions the reasons must be documented and approved by the school administration in writing.
(cf. 5144 Discipline)
(cf. 5145.2 Freedom of Speech/Expression)
Connecticut General Statutes
10-221 Boards of Education to prescribe rules, policies and procedures.
P.A. 11-55 An Act Concerning Discrimination
P.A. 11-232 An Act Concerning the Strengthening of School Bullying Laws
January 14, 2020
June 8, 2004
Electronic Device Policy (including Cell Phones)
Students must be focused on learning throughout the school day. The use of handheld games, electronic devices, and cellular phones are prohibited. These items must remain turned off and stored appropriately during the instructional day. Students will be reminded of our school expectations, and directed to place their devices in their school bags. If a device is improperly stored or is being used during the school day, it will be collected by a staff member and turned into the office. A parent or guardian must come in to claim the phone. The school is not responsible for the loss or damage to any of these devices. Additionally, students are not allowed to bring laser light pens to school. These devices can cause possible harm to eyes and can be disruptive to the learning environment.
English Learner Teacher
VISIT OUR WEBSITE: English Learner Program
Hamden is proud of our community's diversity - and that includes our students who are not native English language speakers. We have over 40 different languages spoken by our students! Hamden offers a number of services and activities to meet the needs of our English language learners.
The mission of the English Learner Program in Hamden Public Schools is to promote and support the linguistic and academic language learning so that all students can succeed in a global environment.
Joining our HMS Community?
Welcome to Hamden!
Enroll Your Child Here!
Still Need Assistance?
Contact Gayle Colburn, our Guidance Clerk, for enrollment information at email@example.com or 203-407-7189.
Leaving Hamden Public Schools?
Complete the Required Withdrawal Form & Request Transcripts
If your child is NOT attending Hamden Middle School OR High School next year (and you are 100% sure of this), please complete the attached withdrawal form. This completed form can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to HMS Attn: Gayle Colburn.
This form gives HMS permission to send all of your child’s records to their new school at the end of the year.
Teachers plan opportunities for enrichment throughout the academic year, including field trips. Specific objectives are determined in advance and activities are planned both prior to and after the field trip. It is expected that students follow the same standards of behavior on field trips as in school.
A signed permission slip from a parent or guardian is required for every student in order to participate in any field trip.
Students who demonstrate inappropriate or unsafe behavior in school may be excluded from a trip or may require supervision on the trip by a parent or guardian.
If your child complains of "not feeling well” or was sent home ill the previous day, please assess his /her condition before sending him/her to school.
Students who come to school ill or return too soon are often unable to function at their best and may cause other students to become sick. Please note the following guidelines:
Any child with an elevated temperature of 100 degrees or more should remain home until his/her temperature has been normal without medication for 24 hours.
If your child vomits or has diarrhea in the morning before school, he/she should stay home. Generally, children should stay home at least 24 hours after the last episode of fever, vomiting or diarrhea.
If your child has a rash which you would like to be checked by the school nurse, please accompany him/her to school in the event exclusion from school due to suspicion of communicable disease is necessary.
Inform the school nurse regarding any diagnosis of communicable disease (strep throat, chicken pox, mononucleosis, head lice, pinkeye, etc.). Children being treated for a communicable disease may return to school after a full 24 hours of antibiotic therapy. Students must also be fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medication. Please contact the school nurse if you have any questions.
Administration of Medication in School
If your child must take medication while at school, including any over the counter drugs, it can be administered under the following conditions only.
An authorization form provided by school personnel is completed and signed by both the primary health care provider and parent/guardian (even for over the counter drugs).
Medication, not to exceed a 45-day supply, comes to school in the original bottle or container, properly labeled with the child’s name; the name, strength and dosage of the medication; time for administration; date and number of prescription.
An adult delivers the medication to the school nurse or the principal.
Children are not allowed to transport medication to and from school. Please contact the school nurse if you have any questions or need the proper forms for these authorizations.
Change in Health
Please report any change in the health status of your child (injury, illness, surgery or family stress, etc.) as it could affect your child’s school performance. Health records are kept on each child and are strictly confidential.
For More Information, visit our health services webpage:
Homework will be assigned in accordance with Hamden Board of Education homework policy guidelines. Additionally, homework assignments should have an authentic and meaningful focus that is relevant to the learning experiences that take place in the classroom. Students should be committed to their homework. In the case of incomplete homework assignments, teachers will use discretion as to the appropriate and reasonable consequences that students may serve to complete their work. With the exception of reading, long-term projects (i.e., book reports, research projects, make-up work) or other activities requiring a longer process to complete, students will usually not be assigned homework over a weekend. Every attempt will be made to avoid administering any tests on a day following a weekend or holiday vacation.
Students may achieve academic distinction through two different honor roll levels:
High Honors – A student must earn all A’s in all subjects within a marking period.
Honors – A student must have all A’s or B’s in all subjects within a marking period.
Click the link below to view the list of students who have earned this distinction:
HMS Honor Roll
We offer transportation services three days per week for students who choose to stay after school. After-school programs and Office Hours are offered on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays between 2:45 p.m. and 3:33 p.m.
Visit our Late Bus Webpage for Information about Late Bus Routes.
Each student is assigned a locker at the start of the school year. Students will also be given an additional locker to use during physical education classes. School lockers are located near each homeroom and have combination locks built into the lockers. These combinations are changed each summer.
Students should be aware that school administration may inspect student lockers or other storage spaces assigned for student use when there is reasonable suspicion. Students are responsible for the contents of the locker assigned to them and contents should remain appropriate.
Students must only use the lockers assigned to them and should not share lockers. Students are to keep their lockers locked and are not to give other students access to their locker or locker combination.
Items of major value or large sums of money should not be brought to school as the school cannot accept responsibility for the security of these items. Each student is responsible for keeping his/her locker neat and clean. No graffiti or stickers should ever be placed on the inside or outside of a locker.
Lost & Found
Yes, it happens! Students misplace their belongings or forget to retrieve them. Items are turned into a Lost & Found table on the first floor near the school cafeteria. Eyeglasses, house keys, and other “valuable” items are kept in the school office. To avoid the loss of personal items, please be sure a student’s belongings are clearly marked with his/her name. The lost and found will be cleaned out on the last day of each marking period, and items will be donated to GoodWill in Hamden.
Open House Programs
Members of the HMS faculty will host two Open House Programs.
Grade 7 Open House
Grade 8 Open House
Portrait of a Graduate
The goal of Hamden Public Schools is to produce graduates who exhibit Dragon PRIDE. As your child moves throughout the grade levels and schools, we will focus on creating learning experiences that promote the development of these traits, persistence, responsibility, inquiry, diversity, and empathy.
Report cards are each issued four times a year. Parents may use the school’s “Parent Portal” to regularly check on their child’s academic progress. Per Board of Education policy 6161.2(a), students who owe obligations such as lunch money, overdue media center materials, or payments for other lost or damaged materials will be denied report cards, transcripts, copies of any other records, access to the Parent Portal, and recommendations from the school system.