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Back to School

Dear JLS Families,

Welcome to the 2023-24 academic school year!  The staff and I are proud of our school, our exemplary programs, and the learning experiences we create for students.  At JLS we share high expectations for ourselves as well as for your children – our students.  Our mission is to educate and nurture all students in ways that will assist them to discover their potential as young adults.  We value and appreciate partnering with you to make 2023-2024 a fabulous year!!

Below, please find

  • "do now" list,
  • back to school forms
  • key dates,
  • communication channels, and
  • introductions to your administrators and counselors.

Thank you very much for supporting our school community.  We – the JLS staff team – look forward to a positive and productive year, and we hope your family is too!  For questions, visit the JLS website or contact us at (650) 856-5188.

See you soon,

Chris Grierson, JLS Principal

Do Now

  1. Complete the Annual Data Update* (ADU) in Infinite Campus. Having your family’s current contact information is critical to accurate and timely communication. The ADU must be complete for students to start school, in accordance with district policy.

    • Log in to
    • Launch Infinite Campus
    • On the left side menu in Infinite Campus, click "More"
    • Click "Online Registration"
    • Click "Start" next to 23-24 Annual Data Update
  2. Complete the PTA Back to School Forms

    • Join our PTA and fund our JLS programs
    • Learn about fun events this year, middle school sports, and ways to get involved

  • Make school purchases  - specifically, PE uniform purchases, club/activities donations, 6th grade panther camp/curriculum donations, and/or library and music donations. The form is here. 

  • Donate to Partners in Education (PiE). PiE funds important electives, music programs, counselors and classroom support. Learn more on PiE’s website. Donate here:


  • Read the list of recommended school supplies.  Individual teachers or teams may have additional requests during the first week of school.

  • Discuss digital citizenship with your child. Students will demonstrate they can make good choices by earning their Digital Driver’s License.  After students have passed their quiz and earned a badge, they will be entered into a raffle to earn prizes.  

  • Check out the FAQ for more questions and answers.



  • Verify up-to-date Tdap vaccinationTdap vaccination must be verified in order for students to start school, in accordance with district policy.

Back to School Forms

This year, the JLS Back-to-School information is online only. Please go through all sections of this Back-to-School packet to make sure you receive all of the necessary information to start the new school year. The PTA Back to School Forms are online at

For purchases and donations to JLS (Yearbook, PE Uniform, ASB, Library, Music, and 6th-grade), you can pay online by clicking this link (Requires ParentSquare account). To pay by cash or check, please go to the JLS main office and request a purchase form.

 JLS Purchases and Donations for 2023-24  


  • PE Uniform  A JLS logo uniform is not mandatory, but clothes worn in PE classes must be navy blue shorts & a short sleeved navy blue shirt.  

    • PE Uniform Shirt $12

    • PE Uniform Shorts $12


  • Associated Student Body – This important $50 donation helps pay for student activities such as clubs, spirit weeks, and lunch time activities.  No other fundraising effort supports these valuable student activities. 

  • Library Donation – $10 donation goes to expanding our library collection.

  • Musical Instrument Donation – $100 donation helps maintain instruments used by our students.

  • 6th Grade Donation – $125 donation helps enrich the 6th grade program:

    • Panther Camp - an orientation program for 6th graders.

    • Exploratory Wheel - contributes to the supplies used by the Wheel classes.

    • Curriculum - helps pay for school supplies, Scholastic magazines, classroom materials.


  • You can pay using a credit card by filling out this form.

  • To pay by cash or check, please go to the JLS main office and request a purchase form.

Key Dates

  • July 31, Monday – JLS Office opens. Regular Hours are 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM Monday-Friday. 

  • August 8, Tuesday – STUDENT SCHEDULES available at 10am.  To view your student’s schedule, log in to Infinite Campus.  If you have questions, contact your child’s counselor. 

  • August 9, Wednesday – First Day of School - School starts at 8:30 AM and ends at 2:30 PM. The bell schedule for our first week can be found here

  • August 10 & 11, Thursday and Friday – Panther Camp (orientation program) for 6th graders -  On these two days, the 6th graders will not be in traditional classes. 

  • August 11, Friday – The first PTA-sponsored Principal Coffee will be held at 8:45 AM on the brick patio outside the JLS front office.

  • August 16, Wednesday – (Tentative) Welcome Back Pizza Night at 5:30 PM. 

  • August 16, Thursday - Middle School Athletics registration. The City of Palo Alto runs the after school sports programs at all 3 Palo Alto middle schools.  Please note that registration for Fall Sports offerings starts for JLS Students on August 16 at 8:30am. For registration, parents need to create an "Enjoy!" account here. For further information about the Middle School Athletic program, please see this link

  • August 17, Thursday and August 18, Friday – School picture days! More information will come through ParentSquare.

  • August 18, Friday – Principal’s Community Zoom starts at 8:45 AM.

  • August 21, Monday – NO SCHOOL for students. This is a staff development day.

  • August 23, Wednesday – Our Back-to School Night – Mark your calendars. More information will come through ParentSquare.

  • September 26, Tuesday – First Digital Driver’s License raffle for those students who have successfully completed the quiz.  

Stay Connected

In addition to email, phone calls, or in-person meetings with JLS staff, other channels of information that help families stay informed and engaged are: 

  • ParentSquare messages (all JLS staff/admin and PTA messages will come from ParentSquare)

    • All parents who are registered with PAUSD are automatically enrolled in ParentSquare

    • On the app or website, it’s a good idea to check your email preferences. Messages can be delivered instantaneously, or batched to the end of the day. Parents can change their preferences to make sure they are receiving messages at their preferred pace.

  • Principal-Parent Conversations via Zoom, called “JLS Community Zooms” (Here's a collection from 2022-23.)

  • Principal Coffees (Monthly, in-person gatherings at JLS, sponsored by the PTA)

  • JLS Weekly eNewsSign Up here! 

  • WhatsApp groups (not moderated by JLS)

  • JLS Social Media

Meet the Administrators and Counselors

The counselors invite you to reach out to talk! Learn more about them and the many ways they contribute to student wellness.

Meet the Principal, Assistant Principals, and Administrative TOSA who work closely with teachers and counselors to support JLS students. 

Sixth Grade:

Seventh Grade:

Eighth Grade:

Welcome to JLS - Day 1!

Connect with the PTA

The Parent Teacher Association (PTA) supports a range of important work at JLS. Sign up for eNews, volunteer to help, and donate at the JLS PTA website.

Support JLS through PiE

PiE raises money from parents and the community to provide all Palo Alto Unified School District students an educational experience beyond what is possible with public funding. Learn more on PiE's website. At JLS, your PiE donation funds electives, music, counselors, and classroom support.