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May 26 - Community Message

Hello JLS Families,

I hope your last full week of school is going well.  Ours has been busy, but also fun and exciting; we have enjoyed some special events today!

  • We celebrated Pride Day today during Lunch with online and in-person events
  • Our JLS String Orchestras shared their district-wide collaboration of "A Festival Rondo." String players in Grades 6-12 contributed to the project spearheaded by Tiffany Ou-Ponticelli at Gunn High School.
  • Tonight we are also debuting the JLS Choir Concert at 7:00 PM!   

Today’s JLS Principal Chat had about 60 participants, and we reviewed information about our unique Last Week Of School Schedule, 8th grade Promotion and talked about the Bell Schedule for next year.  Here’s the slide deck. Looking ahead to next year, we are considering ways to communicate to all families and maintain awareness.  We will likely continue using the Zoom platform to help families tune in from wherever they are, but we are also looking forward to having some in-person events held at JLS too!

Our Last Week of School Schedule will be different from what we are used to.  Please remember that Monday, May 31 is Memorial Day, and we have no school for students or staff.  Tuesday, June 1, Wednesday, June 2 and Thursday, June 3 will follow a special schedule (pictured below) to accommodate all classes meeting one time during the shortened week, as well as intentional time for materials return and promotion practice. Note: Thursday, June 3 is the last day of school and a district-wide minimum day.

Materials Return: Check out this checklist! 

  • IN-PERSON STUDENTS: For families who have students attending classes on campus, please return materials to your classroom teachers during class as instructed by your teachers.  
  • REMOTE/DISTANCE LEARNING STUDENTS: For families whose students are attending classes remotely, please plan to return school materials during one of the time slots below to the north end of the Gym.   
    • Wednesday, June 2: 8:00-10:00 AM and 3:00-4:00 PM
    • Friday, June 4: 11:00 AM-4:00 PM
  • If you are unable to return your materials during these time slots, please call our front office at (650)856-5188 or email to make an appointment to arrange an alternate time.

2020-21 Yearbooks Available for Purchase:  
(A Message from Karen McKinlay, JLS Budget Secretary)
Hello JLS Families, Fantastic News! The yearbooks have arrived and will be distributed the last week of school. If you would like to purchase a yearbook and haven’t done so already, please write a $45 check payable to JLS Middle School and drop it off at the JLS front office or mail it to:
JLS Middle School
480 E. Meadow Dr.
Palo Alto, CA. 94306
Please put “Yearbook” and your child’s name on the check so we know who the yearbook is for.
If you’re unsure whether you have paid for a yearbook or have any other yearbook purchase questions, please contact Karen McKinlay at

7th and 8th Grade Students: Increase for In-Person Opportunity
In the last weeks, we have had around 460 students on campus for in-person learning.  Our 7th and 8th grade students are still able to return for four days (Tuesday-Friday) for in-person instruction without being assigned specific days or groupings.  As a result, 7th and 8th grade students may attend any day they choose. If/When your student decides to attend in person, please remember to fill out the Parent Square Health Screener every day, before school begins.  While students may select days they wish to between Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, they must have the Health Screener completed, wear their masks and student ID with lanyard  at all times, and be physically present the entire day.

Drop Off/Pick Up Table Outside JLS Attendance Office:
If you would ever need to deliver an item to your child during the school day - such as a forgotten lunch or musical instrument - please leave the item on the Drop Off/Pick Up Table outside the JLS Attendance Office. While we will not contact the student to coordinate the pick up of the item, this is a fast and easy way to get students their forgotten items without interrupting classes.

8th Grade Promotion Update:
Our Promotion Ceremony will take place at 6:00 PM on Thursday, June 3 on the JLS Field.  It will also be streamed live.  All 8th Grade families should look for a post called “JLS Promotion Details” from yesterday in ParentSquare.  Tickets and seat assignments will be emailed on Friday, May 28.

Lawn Signs Available for Families of 8th Grade Students!
In celebration of the eighth graders being promoted to high school, JLS has handed out lawn signs for families. Many were distributed over the last weeks, but please come to the JLS Office (or connect with Joan Scherer, if your family would like one. We have enough for every 8th grade student to receive one lawn sign.

Survey Re: Waverley Bike Path Improvements: 
The City of Palo Alto would like your feedback on how to make walking and biking better along the Waverley Bike Path, East Meadow Drive and Fabian Way.
Student safety is a goal of this project, so the City would like to design this with as much student and family involvement as possible.
Take the survey here and share your experiences using these corridors.
Visit the project website at for more information.
If you have opinions about the South Palo Palo Alto Bikeways project but can't go to any of the remaining meetings to give your feedback in person, identify yourself as a member of the JLS PTA Exec Board and anything other identifiers you think are relevant (where you live, where your other kids go to school, etc.)

Thank you!

PiE and CASSY Event - Save the Date!
Join CASSY and PiE for an educational and interactive evening as your kids return to school campuses in the fall. You will learn what to expect from their behavior and tips on how to help them adjust. Thursday, August 19, 7:00-8:00 PM via Zoom (Note: Zoom link

Thank you for taking the time to read this message from JLS. If you have questions, please reach out to any member of our staff team.

Take care,

Chris Grierson, JLS Principal (

JLS Contact Information: