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Principal's Post

"The Principal's Post"

Mr. McClure's Weekly Blog for Week 4: August 31 - September 4

In observance of Labor Day, school will be closed on Monday, September 7th. Classes will resume on Tuesday, September 8th.  Have a safe and enjoyable Labor Day weekend!


The first level review period for Trimester 1 . . . and the year . . . concluded last Friday, August 28th.  This week teachers will be reviewing and making determinations as to those students who earned “on-level” status for the first three-week review period.  For those student “on-level,” their rewards activity is planned for Friday, September 11thJ

As we look to the first level review reward on Friday, however, we begin the 2nd level review period today!!!  J  All BCMS students start with a “clean slate” as the work to be “on-level” for this second level review period (August 31st -September 18th) has begun.

And . . . as you might have guessed, we will be looking at and discussing our “on-level” vs. “off-level” data for the 1st Trimester when the students and I meet again in November!

As a reminder:  To be eligible for three-week Level Reward Activities and any scheduled after-school dances, a student must have:

                   No more than 1 incomplete homework/daily work assignment per class

                   No more than 3 incomplete homework/daily work assignments in total

                   No more than 1 detention

                   No discipline violations warranting a Wednesday School,

Saturday School, ISS (In-school Supervision) or OSS (Out-of-school Suspension) consequence

This final reminder:  To be eligible for an end-of-trimester field trip, a student must be “on-level” 3 out of the 4 level review periods during the trimester.

HIP (Homework Intervention Policy)

As your student’s teachers, we believe that we have the moral obligation to have programming in place to insure every BCMS student has the opportunity to succeed academically.  Our Homework Intervention Plan (HIP) was designed for this very purpose.

There are any number of reasons that students give for not having assignments completed . . . or not completed to the best of their ability.  These habits of inaction and indifference, if allowed to fester and grow, will determine more than just a grade in a given class.  It will determine the level of upward mobility and future career/employment opportunities afforded to them.  Part of our job is to help them, and to help you help them, understand the importance of conscientious work and study habits.

Students with chronic issues related to incomplete or missing school work may be subject to additional assistance through our Homework Intervention Plan (HIP).

HIP 1:

Students who have a total of 4-9 missing/incomplete assignments in a 3-week level review will have the following assistance assigned to them for the next level period.

  • The student’s gym time at lunch will be rescinded.  (Students who maintain “on-level” status are given the privilege of gym recreation at lunch.  Students “off-level” do not have this privilege.)
  • The student’s intramural event during TRIBE each week is rescinded until the time of the next level review.  “HIP” students work on completing homework during the intramural time.  Two BCMS teachers oversee student work and help facilitate student questions during this extra study time.
  • HIP students to do not receive extra gym time with their TRIBE class.

HIP 2 & HIP 3:

Students who have a total of 4-9 missing/incomplete assignments in two consecutive level reviews (6 weeks) or have a total of 10 or more missing/incomplete assignments in one level review will have the following assistance assigned to them for the next level period.

  • All of the assistance listed above in HIP 1
  • Wednesday School (from 3:20PM - 5:00PM) is assigned for each Wednesday afternoon of the following level review period.
  • One (1) Saturday School date served at BCHS.  (The assigned date will be provided.)
Other “HIP” program information:
  • The first time a student is assigned HIP status for a trimester, the student’s status is referred to as HIP 1.
  • If the student is reassigned to HIP during consecutive level reviews within that trimester, the status will be referred to as HIP 2 or HIP 3 (as appropriate).
  • If a HIP 1 student achieves “on-level” status for a level review but returns to HIP status in subsequent review periods for that trimester, the student would start the process at HIP 1 status.
  • The process begins with HIP 1 status at the start of each trimester.
  • If a student athlete, after-school organization participant, or teaching assistant receives HIP status, they will be put on probation for the next 3 week level review period.  If they are assigned HIP again (HIP 2), the athlete or participant will be ineligible for 3 weeks. HIP 2 status for teaching assistants will result in being re-enrolled in study hall for the remainder of the trimester. If HIP status is continued for three level reviews during the season, the athlete/participant will be dismissed from the team or organization. HIP status within a sport will restart at the beginning of each sport season.


On Tuesday last week, Gary Montgomery from Great American Opportunities met with each grade level to kick off BCMS’s fall magazine sale fund raising effort.  The profit from the sale of magazines helps to provide revenue for the school that enables the implementation of our student reward and educational activities (e.g. the level review reward activities).  All the profits from the magazine sales go directly back to the student body in the form of incentives and rewards for being “on-level” each level review period.

Thank you to all the students and parents/patrons (especially if you purchased or renewed a magazine through one of our BCMS students J) for your effort in making our magazine sale a success in the first week.  Our magazine sale concludes this Friday, September 4th.  There’s still time to sell . . . or buy.  J

If interested, click here to learn more about a student Tuition Reward opportunity through the sales.


Submitted by:  Mrs. McKinney, School Nurse

All  BCMS eighth grader students will participate in Vision Screening on Wednesday September 2.  If your 8th grade student wears contact lenses or glasses, it is very important that he/she wear them when they have their vision screened.

Thank you, Lions Club, for providing our BCMS 8th grade students this vision screening service!!


Submitted by:  Mr. Young, BCMS Athletic Director

Sporting events this week:

Monday, August 31

  • 6/8 Grade Volleyball vs Medora - HOME
  • Cross Country @ Seymour Invitational 

Tuesday, September 1

  • 7/8 Grade Volleyball vs Immanuel - HOME

Thursday, September 3

  • 6/8 Volleyball vs St. John Sauers- HOME
  • 7/8 Football vs Brown County- HOME
  • MS Cross Country vs Salem- AWAY
  • MS Boys Tennis vs Immanuel- AWAY

WINS this week for the Braves

  • 7th & 8th Grade Volleyball defeated St. Peters
  • 6th Grade AB Volleyball defeated Silver Creek
  • 8th Grade defeated Clarksville

Keep up-to-date with BCMS Athletics on Twitter: @btown_ms

Great job athletes! Keep working hard in all you do!


“Nurture your minds with great thoughts.  To believe in the heroic, makes heroes.”  -Benjamin Disraeli


“Conscience and Character:  Guides to Success”

Until next week,
Mr. McClure


"The Principal's Post"
Mr. McClure's Weekly Blog for
Week 3:  August 24 – August 28


Even though the “newness” of the year hasn’t worn off just yet, this is already the start of our third week . . . which means by week’s end we will be conducting our first level review for Trimester 1 . . . and the year. 

In your child’s orientation packet to begin the year, we included information about our level system.  Through our level program we try to accomplish two aims:  1) encourage and reward our students for their conscientious efforts to learn coupled with their choices to exhibit positive prosocial behavior, while 2) holding them accountable for missed and/or incomplete work which impedes learning and also discouraging behavior that would otherwise detract from an optimal learning environment for all.  (In last week’s post I shared the importance and benefits of homework in supporting and supplementing learning in the classroom.  In the coming weeks I will share the “Three R” philosophy that we embrace to promote character development.) 

In the event that you may have missed that original information (we provided you with a lot that first evening J), I wanted to take a moment this week to highlight the Level System.

The Level System program divide the school year into 12 level review periods (4 each trimester). Each review period is approximately 3 weeks in length.  The specific dates for these level reviews are listed on the school calendar.

Student assignments are monitored throughout each level review period.  A student who has an incomplete or missing assignment in Harmony is given a special notation by the classroom teachers for that assignment.  The codification system used is:  Ra, Rb, Rc, or Rd (ra, rb, rc, rd). For example, if the student did not complete an assignment, his score may be listed as “32 Ra.” If he did not do the assignment at all, you may see “Inc Ra” or

0 Ra.” The Ra indicates that this assignment is counting against the student during the 1st level review of the trimester. (Rb would indicate that we are currently in the second level review window and the particular assignment is counting against the student for that level review period of the trimester, etc.)

At the end of each three-week level review period, students are identified as being “on-level” or “off-level” for that level review.  The status of being “on-level” or “off-level” is used to determine participation in specially planned Level Reward activities, after-school dances, and end-of-trimester field trips.

To be eligible for three-week Level Reward Activities and any scheduled after-school dances, a student must have:

                   No more than 1 incomplete homework/daily work assignment per class

                   No more than 3 incomplete homework/daily work assignments in total

                   No more than 1 detention

                   No discipline violations warranty a Wednesday School, Saturday School, ISS (In-school Supervision) or OSS (Out-of-school Suspension) consequence

All students begin “fresh” with a “clean slate” to start each level review period. 

To be eligible for an end-of-trimester field trip, a student must be “on-level” 3 out of 4 times during the trimester

The parents/guardians of those students who are “off-level” for a review period will be notified by myself or Mrs. McCrary.  However, parents are encouraged to monitor the progress of their student’s three-week “on-level” status by accessing Harmony. 


On Tuesday this week, Gary Montgomery from Great American Opportunities will be meeting with each grade level to kick off BCMS’s fall magazine sale fund raising effort.  He will be sharing with the students the “how” and the “why” for having a school magazine fund raiser.  Not only do the students stand to benefit personally (Gary will explain that), the magazine sales also help to provide revenue for the school to implement student reward and educational activities (e.g. the aforementioned level review rewards and field trips). 

Please know that participation in the magazine sales, while encouraged, is not required.  Parents and students should feel free to participate, or not, according to their own interest and availability.  While homework is not optional, magazine sales are!  J

Parents can expect students to bring home more information on Tuesday.  What we like about this magazine sale campaign is that it does not require door-to-door selling on the part of the students or parent.  If you have a relative with internet, they can purchase a magazine online with your student, and are school, reaping the benefits.

Our magazine sale will begin Tuesday, as students receive their information and magazine sales packet, and conclude the following Friday, September 4th.


Submitted by:  Mr. Young, BCMS Athletic Director

Sports Results:

Thursday: 7th & 8th Grade Volleyball defeated Silver Creek

Sports this week:

Monday, August 24
  •  7/8 Volleyball vs St. Peters- HOME

Tuesday, August 25

  •  6 A/B Volleyball vs Silver Creek- AWAY

Thursday, August 27

  • 7/8 Volleyball vs Jennings County- AWAY
  • 7/8 Football vs Clarksville- HOME
  • MS Cross Country vs Jackson Creek- HOME
  • MS Boys Tennis vs Scottsburg- HOME
Keep up-to-date with BCMS Athletics on Twitter: @btown_ms

Great job this week athletes!


“The poorest man in the world is not the one without money, he’s the one without a vision for his life.”


“Choices:  Creating Our Future”

Until next week,
Mr. McClure


"The Principal's Post"
Mr. McClure's Weekly Blog for the 
Week of:  August 17 – August 21

Beginning the school year is always exciting, and we could not have been more pleased with our start.  As we enter our first full week we know that our work last week was only a preamble to all that remains for us to accomplish together this year.  

What is always encouraging in starting a new year is the good will shared by all.  My charge to the students and staff alike is to endeavor to exercise that good will the whole year through.  If we stick to our Three R’s (see below ), we’ll be in an excellent position to do just that.  

In visiting the sixth grade hall throughout the past week, I was reminded that even in the “small” tasks . . . learning to open a locker for the first time . . . confidences can be built and helping hands extended.  

It is very important for us as a school family to set the right tone, from the very first day of school, for success.  Parents, your cooperation and partnership has helped us to set that tone.  Thank you!!   

As mentioned at the 6th Grade Back-to-School night orientation, and as I informed the 7th and 8th grade students as I met with them this week, your child should begin bringing home school work this week to complete as homework.  Brownstown Central Middle School believes that learning occurs not only in the classroom by means of teacher instruction, but through student practice, repetition, and reinforcement of those classroom lesson concepts.  Our students engage in athletic practice, and rightly so, throughout the year.  We believe that they should also be engaged in academic practice.  The best way for our school to insure the optimal benefits for your child’s education is to provide your child the opportunities to practice and reinforce those lesson concepts at home that he/she learns at school.  

Please know that I have charged your child’s teacher teams to assign homework regularly.  If your child says that he/she doesn’t have homework and/or tells you that they finished all their homework “at school,” and this response persists, you have our permission to be suspicious.    Accessing your child’s teacher web pages on our school website can help to substantiate what they are telling you.  However, I would also encourage you to contact your child’s teachers directly.  We want to partner with you!

Research suggests that the amount of time that a student spends on homework should be reflective of the student’s current grade level equivalent to ten minutes per grade level.  For example: 1st grade=10 minutes; 3rd grade=30 minutes.  For BCMS students, homework is assigned according to the following parameters:  6th grade = 60 minutes; 7th grade = 70 minutes; 8th grade = 80 minutes.  Teachers work collectively as a grade level to ascertain who will be assigning homework each evening and how much is being assigned.  If a student is spending too much or too little time on homework, please call or E-mail us.  We value your input.

Click here to find additional information as to the benefits of homework and what you can do as a parent to help provide guidance and structure for your child’s homework assignments.

Last week I had the opportunity to meet with the 7th and 8th graders.  I’ll be meeting with the 6th grade students this morning (Monday).

Our “talks” provided me the chance to formally introduce myself to them and to outline our behavioral and academic expectations for them as students of Brownstown Central Middle School.  In a series of thirty minute team convocations, we discussed our “Three R’s” principles.  It was stressed that, when making any decision at school, at home, with friends . . . anywhere, the students could weigh their decisions against our Respect, Responsibility and Resourcefulness criteria to determine whether any given choice is good or bad.  

The students were also challenged to think about how they respond when someone asks them about their school?  It is our hope that they will begin to say that at their school we are about, “Respect, Responsibility and Resourcefulness.”  The point was made that how we talk, act, appear and perform will determine the perception, and ultimately the reality, of who we are.

Because the 2015 ISTEP+ results have not yet been released by the state, we did not have much school performance data to discuss at this first meeting.  However, we did discuss HIP program results from last year.  We also challenged ourselves to improve on that performance this year.

To view the individual grade level presentations:  click here for the 6th grade presentation, click here for the 7th grade presentation, click here for the 8th grade presentation.

"Success is the maximum utilization of the ability that you have." -Zig Ziglar
THIS WEEK’S PROJECT WISDOM THEME:  “Choices:  Choosing What’s Right”

Until next week,
Mr. McClure


"The Principal's Post"
Mr. McClure's Weekly Blog for the Week of:  August 10 – August 14

I would like to begin by thanking you for visiting our school’s website and welcoming you to the start of the 2015-2016 school year.  It is my pleasure to greet you, and it is my hope that you will make it a point to visit our school’s website weekly to view school announcements and to find out about scheduled school activities.  

Through our website you can also have access to your child’s homework assignments (in the event of an absence), find information regarding your child’s overall school attendance, his/her discipline and grades.  You will also find weekly reflections from me and members of the teaching faculty that are posted each Monday morning.

We are privileged to be given this opportunity to work with your child this school year.  Whether your child is a 6th, 7th, or 8th grader, whether he or she is returning to the school this year or starting as a new student, your child, and his/her experience at the middle school this year, is very important to us.  Whether it is academic, athletic, or personal, we want to insure that this year is a year of positive academic and pro-social growth for your child.  There will be some hard work involved, but we remain committed to working with you for your child’s healthy development.  We welcome, and thank you for, your partnership with us.

It is our hope that you and your child will view the challenges and the work ahead just as we do . . . as opportunities.


Please allow me to begin this first “Principal’s Post” by expressing how privileged and fortunate I am to be given this opportunity to work with your child this year.  On behalf of the entire Brownstown Central Middle School staff, I pledge to you our commitment in partnering together in your child’s education this upcoming school year.  With high stakes testing and student achievement accountability being a reality for our schools and our children, now is the time for us to resolve, again, our joint purpose . . . the psychological, emotional, physical, and cognitive maturing and well-being of our children.

Before becoming your child’s principal this year, I was principal for six years at Seymour Middle School, and an assistant principal at Seymour High School for ten years prior to that.  In my experience at the high school level, I formed an acute perspective of what character, social and educational traits our students require when leaving the middle school in order to be successful at the high school level.  These traits can be summarized in three words:  Respect, Responsibility, and Resourcefulness

These essential qualities are the “pillars” upon which we will build the middle school experience, climate, and culture for our children.  And, we will need your partnership in reinforcing these principles.  (In upcoming weeks I will share why these traits are crucial to your child’s success and how we can work together to instill and develop these “Three R’s.”)

When you visited the middle school last week during orientation, I hope you noticed the banners throughout the building.  These visual reminders will greet the students each day reinforcing these principles throughout the year.

In addition, each week we will have, and post, a “BRAVE Quote” for that week.  As speaker Zig Ziglar once said, “If you put the good stuff in you’ll get the good stuff out.”  The BRAVE Quotes is another way that we will put the “good stuff in” each week.  I encourage you to talk to your child as to what each week’s quote means to them . . . and to you! 

This week’s BRAVE Quote:  “Three grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.”  - Jose Addison

 To further reinforce “the good stuff in” concept, we will continue to utilize the “Project Wisdom – Helping Students Make Wiser Choices” program.  Each morning I will welcome the students to school by leading in the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, observing a moment of silence, and reading the Project Wisdom “Daily Message” for that day via the public address system.  The daily messages will follow an overall weekly theme.  Examples of weekly themes include:  “Choices,” “Conscience and Character,” “Courage and Confidence,” “Courtesy and Manners.”

This week’s opening Project Wisdom theme:  “First Week of School:  Education”

These are just a few strategies we will implement this year to reinforce our collective purpose. 

Thank you for all that you will do to support your child and our work with him/her this year.  It is going to be a great year, and we can’t wait to get started!


I would like to thank everyone who were able to attend our back-to-school orientations last week.  It is our hope that you and your student(s) found the information valuable and the time finding classrooms, meeting teachers and practicing locker combinations worthwhile.

A lot of very important information was shared in your orientation packet, and I would be remiss if I didn’t again encourage you to become familiar with its contents.  Our “Keys to Success,” “Keep School Attendance High,” the Level System and Homework Intervention Plan, Student Handbook, and new Harmony “Push Notification” were all included.  We also had required forms for parents to sign and return.  Field Trip Permission (grade 6, only), Extra/Co-Curricular random drug testing consent form (required for students electing to participate in our extra and co-curricular activities), and the updating of student/parent demographic information are examples.

If you were unable to attend orientation, please be looking for your student to bring the information packets home on Tuesday (the first student day).  You cooperation in reviewing, signing and returning the necessary paperwork in very much appreciated.

If you have any questions, please call, email or visit us in the main office.  We would be happy to assist in any way that we can. Thank you!


This week I will be holding a series of convocations to meet and speak with the students in their respective grade levels.  We will be laying the foundations of the academic and behavior expectations that we have for them as middle school students this year.  We will begin our conversation as to how we move forward this year as individual students and collectively as a middle school.  

Please inquire with your child as to what we discussed.  In doing so not only will you help the school, but more importantly you will be communicating to your child that you care about them and their success.  It will also communicate to them that you share our expectations regarding their effort and performance.  Your efforts in working with us to establish a school culture that maximizes your child’s learning potential, as well as the learning potential of all the children in our community, are greatly appreciated!!!   

Note: The convocation presentation will be available for parents as part of next week’s post.


Submitted by:  Mr. Young, BCMS Athletic Director
  • 7/8 Volleyball practice will start Tuesday, August 11 after school until 5:30.
  • 6th Grade Volleyball- Please listen to the morning announcements for information about practice.
  • Boy's Tennis- Please listen to the morning announcements for information about practice. 
  • 7/8 Football- Practice will begin Monday, August 10 at 3:30- 5:30.
  • Cross Country- Practice will begin Tuesday, August 11 after school at the shelter house by the high school baseball field and tennis courts. A parent meeting will begin at 4:30. 

All physicals and necessary forms need to be turned in to Mr. Young before you can participate in any athletic event.

Until next week,

Mr. McClure


"The Principal's Post"
Mr. McClure's Weekly Blog for the 
Week of:  August 3 – August 7

Whenever Fair Week concludes the end to the lazy days of summer is soon to follow, and the anticipation in beginning a new school year builds.  And as we gear up for the 2015-2016 academic year, we are glad that YOU are going to be part of our team!  Welcome to BCMS, and thank you for visiting our website!

BCMS students will be receiving their first trimester class schedules at the respective orientations this week. 
The 6th grade orientation is scheduled for the evening of Tuesday, August 4th.  We will begin at 6:30PM with a student/parent meeting in the gymnasium.  Students and their parents will them be directed to their respective TRIBE rooms.  (TRIBE lists will be posted as students and parents enter the gymnasium.)

The 7th and 8th grade orientation is scheduled for the evening of Thursday, August 6th, from the hours of 6:30PM-8:00PM.  All 7th and 8th grade students and parents are invited to visit the middle school during this time.

BCMS Athletic Updates
All fall sport athletes be sure to have your physical and all necessary paper work completed and correct by the first day of practice. If your physical is not on file and complete, you will not be able to participate until you do so. 

Fall sport sign-ups will take place at the Back-to-school Orientation. Check the BCMS website for the up-to-date Fall Athletic Schedules.

. . . some important back-to-school information.  If the “snail” happened to be a little slow with the “mail” we would invite you to click the links listed below to view the contents of the mailing.
To view important dates as they pertain to the 2015-2016 Brownstown Central Community Schools school calendar, please click here.

Rock’n Ready Race 2015 Stuff the Bus
Submitted by:  Jeff Davis, Leadership Jackson County

 On behalf of the Stuff the Bus/Rock N Ready school backpack program we would like to inform you of a 5k-10k run and 5k walk on August 8th. The proceeds for this race will help the students of Jackson County by providing for the backpack program.  Click here to view the race brochure.  

You may also go to the indianatiming.com website to sign up, see details, and see the new course that has been laid out especially for this race.  The more runners we have means we can help more children get off to a good start to the school year. 
If you are not a runner and would like to help, please considering volunteering on race day by calling Kay at 812-569-1863. Thank you!


Please allow me to invite you to visit us regularly online throughout the course of the year as our school web site is updated weekly . . . and sometimes daily . . . with relevant school/teacher/parent/student information. 

 Many parents have found this site to be useful in accessing our Harmony Login link.  The Harmony Login allows you, the parent, to access and monitor your child’s attendance, discipline, class schedule and grade information from home.

We’d also like to remind you of our Harmony “Push Notifications.”  Setting up your customized notification account allows you to receive automatic alerts regarding your student via text or email.  (Click here to view the easy three-step set-up process to begin receiving your notifications.  Please contact the school if you need your child’s Harmony User Log In information.  NOTE:  This information will be provided in your student’s orientation packetJ )

It is our hope that you would make us one of your favorite internet stops, and that you find our web page to be an effective vehicle of communication between school and home.

Until next week,

Mr. McClure



Follow @Btown_MS on Twitter for all BCMS athletic up-to-date schedules, events, cancellations, and scores.




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Contact Us at BCMS!

Brownstown Central Middle School
520 W. Walnut St.
Brownstown, IN 47220

Phone:  812-358-4947
Fax:   812-358-3940

Doug McClure, Principal
Alicia McCrary, Guidance Counselor
Marty Young, Athletic Director

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