September 19, 2018

Upcoming Events...

  • October 4 - NO SCHOOL - Teacher In-Service
    • PT Conferences - 2:00 - 8:30 p.m.
  • October 5 - NO SCHOOL – Comp Day
  • October 8 - NO SCHOOL - Native American Day
  • October 12 - PICTURE RETAKE
    • Picture Day ID:  ND208088Y1 (
    • Want Lifetouch to retake your picture?  Simply return your original package on Picture Retake Day.
  • October 26:  End of 1ST Quarter

From the Assistant Principal:


 It is an exciting time at South Middle School as each learner continues to get used to his/her new schedule, locker combination, and the procedures used in the classroom and the school. As the academic workload begins to increase, HSMS wanted to make sure parents/guardians knew what resources are available, and some of the communication used from HSMS.

Success Advisory/Directed Studies is a resource at Harrisburg South for those learners who are beginning to fall behind academically. By being paired with a grade-level facilitator and tutor, a plan is made at the beginning of the day, and then the learner will check out with the grade-level tutor at the end of the day. Parents/Guardians will receive an email notification on Monday morning, and learners will see on their Flex Scheduler their involvement starting on Tuesday. Success Advisory runs from Tuesday-Monday of each week.

Power Hour is a resource provided for learners who would like to complete their assignment before going home. At these sessions, there is a grade-level tutor as well as a facilitator who can help complete the assignments and get any questions answered. There are two sessions for Power Hour: morning (7:30-8:00) and afternoon (3:05-4:00). If interested, fill out the form: Power Hour Sign Up.

 With the increased academic expectations, come academic supports, and one of the communication tools we use at Harrisburg South Middle School to help bridge the gap between home and school--and make sure we hold every learner accountable for each assignment--is the program named ICU. In the event a learner gets a late assignment, an email will be sent home letting you know what assignment is not completed and when the assignment is turned in. If you would like text notifications as well, please contact the office.

Another communication tool used with parents/guardians is an email sent home on Wednesday for those learners who are beginning to show academic struggles. This tool is frequently a good indicator of learners who may be issued the academic support listed below.

  These grade-level tutors are the following:

•    Mr. Sam Lenz: Sixth-Grade Tutor

•    Mr. Adam Anderson: Seventh-Grade Tutor

•    Mr. Rob VandeLune: Eighth-Grade Tutor

Saturday School is a resource which both Harrisburg Middle Schools use to support academic achievement and help learners get up to speed as quickly as possible. If a learner has three+ outstanding assignments on the ICU database Thursday afternoon, an email will be sent to parents/guardians letting them know his/her learner has been issued the academic support of Saturday School either that week or the following week. More instructions will take place through this communication detailing the support.

We are excited about the upcoming year!                                                          






From the Nurse:

**ATTENTION ALL 6TH GRADE AND TRANSFER STUDENTS – South Dakota State Law requires one dose of Tdap and one dose of Meningococcal prior to school entry. If your student is non-compliant please follow up with your medical provider ASAP to get your child up to date on the required immunizations to attend school.

Note: This applies to ALL transfer students new to the district, regardless of grade. Please contact the school nurse with any questions.

*If your Learner will require medication for the 2018-2019 school year, Harrisburg School District requires a new Medication Authorization Form to be completed. This form is available on the Harrisburg School District website. A signed form will need to be completed by the parent/guardian for all over-the-counter medications. Prescription medications will need to have a signed Medication Authorization form signed by both parent/guardian and physician.  Medication must be delivered directly to the school nurse/aide or trained personnel by parent/guardian in the ORIGINAL pharmacy or manufacturer’s container.

If you have any questions and/or concerns, please do not hesitate to let me know.


Deb Backman, RN

605-743-2567 ext. 5205

From the Band Director:

·       LEARNERS Do you play piano, bass or electric guitar, trumpet, trombone, alto sax, tenor sax, baritone sax, or Drum set??  If you do the show choir band needs you!!  Come check out what the show band does on Friday the 21st at 7:30 in the band room!


·       Any Musician interested in being in the Show Band for Show Choir, our first practice will be September 21st at 7:30 in the band room.  Reminder to Show Choir practices are Tuesday and Thursdays at 7AM in the Choir Room

From the Counselor:

Backpack Program: HSMS is partnering with Feeding South Dakota again to provide the Backpack Program to youth in need.  This program provides food to identified children on Friday afternoons to ensure that they have access to food over the weekend.  Food packs are placed discretely in the student’s locker each week, they include meal items as well as snacks.  Please contact Betsy Atwood, HSMS Counselor, if your child could benefit from this program.

 LSS Mentoring: Interested in helping kids?  Do you have an hour to share each week?  Lutheran Social Services is always looking for new mentors.  The LSS Mentoring program matches community adults with a child who could use an extra caring adult in his or her life.  All mentoring happens at school, during the school year.  Most mentors meet their mentee for lunch once a week in a semi-private location at the school.  They enjoy lunch and often play a game or do crafts.  Mentoring relationships can make a huge difference in the life of a child!  If you are interested, apply at   You can also contact Lisa Falon-Schulz at 605-444-7804 for more information.  Make sure to indicate which schools you’d like to mentor at.  We’d love new mentors here at HSMS!

 PATH: Is your child struggling with anxiety or symptoms of depression?  Are they having trouble managing their anger?  If your child could benefit from mental health counseling but barriers like finances, insurance, travel or schedules are standing in your way, PATH could help!  PATH stands for ‘Providing Access to Healing’.  It’s a United Way initiative that works with Lutheran Social Services to place licensed mental health therapists in area schools to work with students who are in need of mental health services.  PATH is not a free service, rather it works with your health insurance to provide easy access to counseling.  If lack of insurance or high co-pays are an issue, LSS will work with families to explore ways to make counseling affordable.  For more information, contact Betsy Atwood, HSMS Counselor.

 Strengthening Families Program: Interested in having 7 nights donated to strengthening your family?  Carroll Institute is offering Strengthening Families at a low cost this fall!  Strengthening Families is a program for youth ages 10-14 and their parents.  The cost is $35 per family for the entire program.  They will meet Thursdays in September and October from 5pm-8pm at the First Methodist Church on South Spring Avenue in Sioux Falls.  The evening will include a meal as well as fun and helpful programming focused on communication, setting healthy limits for your child, managing the pressures of teen years and more.  Contact Carroll Institute at 605-336-2556 for more information.

Questions about any of these programs or other counseling needs can be directed to Betsy Atwood, HSMS Counselor, at 605-743-2567 ext 5143 or


For more information about our chapter and to follow us - please find us on:

Instagram:  HSMS_FCCLA         Twitter @ HSMSFCCLA             Facebook:  @hsmsfccla

 Other news:

  •  SMS Robotics practice will be every Tuesday & Thursday form 3:05-4:45 in the Tech Ed room  
  •  Video Game club will meet on Mondays after school 3:10-4:00 in room C115
  • Art Club will meet Thursdays after school until 4:00p.m.
  • Drone club will meet on Wednesdays before school @ 7:00 a.m., STARTING SEPTEMBER 26
  • Back by popular demand - Lunch Menus! Visit the Child Nutrition Link at the top of your school's webpage.
  • Activities link to calendar:
  • Volunteers of America Street Outreach is coming to Harrisburg! If you are homeless, runaway or at-risk of being, come visit with a VOA support person on Thursdays at the High School from 12-1, no appointment needed

From Harrisburg Food Services: This is a reminder that all parents and/or guardians should utilize the My School Bucks website to set low balance notifications and view their students account balances and purchases. To set up an account please go to and click on Sign Up Today! You can also find a link to the website on the Harrisburg School District website under Current Families & clicking on Food Services.. If you have questions or difficulties, please see the How to Video’s under the help tab or contact My School Bucks directly. Their toll free number is also listed under the help tab on their website.


Just a reminder if your student is going to be absent or late for school, to call the school office at 605.743.2567 option 4-1 before 9:00AM daily.  If your student is going to be out for an extended period of time and/or you would like classwork for the day, please let the office know about attendance and contact your students advisory teacher for missing work.

Parking Lot Drop Off/Pick Up Loop Safety:

  1. When entering our school to drop off or pick-up students, please use the South entrance. Drive forward through the loop and use the North exit. (see map below)
  2. The front loop of our parking lot is for drive-through and pick-up/drop off only.  It is a tow away zone since it is our Fire Lane to be used in the event of an emergency.  NO cars should be left unattended or parked in this zone for any reason and for any amount of time.  If you need to park, please use the designated “Guest” parking or the regular lot.
  3. When dropping off or picking up students, please use the RIGHT HAND LANE ONLY, and expect students to use the doors on the right side of the vehicle. In this manner, it is less likely for students to have to walk in front of a waiting car.   Please DO NOT PARK IN THE CROSSWALK, it makes especially dangerous for students and staff to cross the lane.
  4. When using the drop off/pick-up lane in the afternoon, please pull forward to where the bus parking starts by the library (see “X” on map below). Please do not block the handicap spaces or visitor parking if someone is parked in a space.
  5. Thank you for all your help and cooperation to keep everyone safe and still allow for everyone to get to school on time.

Parent Portal:

Are you signed up for Parent Portal?  Contact Jean Hudson at 605-743-2567, ext. 3010 if you need to sign up.