Friday, April 29, 2016

Week of 4/25/16

Good afternoon-

I hope everyone had a wonderful week back after a relaxing vacation.  It's hard to believe May is here.  The end of the school year will come quickly.  It was nice to be outside watching some of your sports teams today.

If you haven't had a chance please take some time to review the Senior and Underclassmen Exam schedules which are both posted on the AHS website.  

I will share the "Senior Week" schedule and relevant graduation information at the end of next week. Senior parents, please mark your calendar now for Class Day on June 3rd. This is a wonderful event where student accomplishments are recognized.  The entire school attends and parents are invited!

Next week will be a busy week at AHS with AP exams starting and our Chinese exchange students arriving.  We are looking for a couple of more students to host a student during the day since some student are living with Mindess and AMS families.  

GPA's are still giving us an issue and I have had several communications with our software company over the course of the week.  Please hang in there.  It is important to us that accurate information is available.  If you need a GPA for any reason now you can always reach out to your guidance counselor.  

Please join us Tuesday, May 10, 2016 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM Ashland High School Auditorium 

Summer Send Off - Family Conversations for a Safe Prom & Grad Season

 All are welcome to attend this special Community Programming event. We especially encourage Ashland High School Juniors & Seniors and their parents/guardians to join us for an evening dedicated to celebrating safe choices during prom & senior week. The Middlesex County DA's office will present on Social Host Liability followed by an exciting performance by the Improbable Players!  

“I’ll Never Do That” Students & adults will both enjoy this original performance depicting the roller coaster of substance use. Witness mostly humorous, but also thought provoking scenes about a family torn apart by substance abuse - how they are all affected - and how they all deal with it.

As a part of this event will raffle the huge prizes listed below- all who attend get a ticket!

F R E E R A F F L E ! E X C I T I N G P R I Z E S ! 

1 prom ticket 
1 senior week ticket 
10 priority seating passes for graduation 
2 priority parking spaces at graduation 
1 free parking pass per term (2016-17 school year) 
1 VIP parking spot per term (2016-17 school year) 

There is no cost for the raffle. Attendance entitles you to a ticket. 

~Please check out the flyer in our Parent's Flyer section!~

Senior parents: the senior class officers are in the process of finalizing Senior Week, and one of the traditions it to put together a slideshow.  The slideshow is made up of pictures of all of the kids - both individual and in groups - throughout their lives.  Primarily they use pictures taken during their high school years, but it is the pictures when they were little that usually gets the best and biggest reactions!  The officers would be greatly appreciated if you sent them electronic versions of your favorite pictures of the kids. You can e-mail submissions to Courtney Thurber, Class Historian, at  Please indicate in the e-mail who everyone is in the picture.  Thank you!

Healthy Sleep Habits for Kids of All Ages
  1. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule – Your child's bedtime and wake up time should be about the same every day of the week, regardless if it is a school day or not.
  2. Exercise daily – Have your child make exercise part of his or her daily routine. Physically tired kids sleep well!
  3. Don't go to bed hungry – Make sure your child doesn't go to bed hungry. Provide a light snack such as a glass of milk, a piece of fruit, or cereal and milk.
  4. Avoid caffeinated products – Your child should avoid products that contain caffeine in the late afternoon/evening. Be aware caffeine-containing products include iced-tea, some sports drinks, and chocolate.
  5. Plan up to 1 hour of quiet time before bed – Before bedtime every night set aside up to 1 hour for calm, enjoyable activities, such as listening to quiet music or reading. This means NO SCREENS!
  6. Maintain a bedtime routine - This may include taking a shower or bath, brushing teeth, reading out loud or silently, saying prayers or a statement of gratitude, and a hug and kiss goodnight.
  7. Take phones/ipods out of kids' rooms when they go to bed- The buzzing, vibration and lights of texts and notifications can disrupt sleep.

The AMS Art Club is collaborating with Jake Hogan, an APS employee, to create Paracord Spirit Bracelets. Chose the bracelet style of your choice and ROCK the Ashland school colors!

Spirit Bracelets can be purchased in the main office for a $3.00 minimum donation! All proceeds go to support fundraisers in the Ashland Public Schools!

The Ashland School Bands will be hosting their 3rd annual mattress fundraiser Sunday May 1 from 10 am - 5 pm in the Ashland Middle School Cafeteria.  Simmons Beautyrest, Therapedic, and Restonic Mattresses will be up to 50% off retail with the proceeds going to the Ashland School Bands. Floor models will be displayed at the sale. Come out and take a look, and get a great bed, at a great price while helping the Ashland School Bands!  You can even get a $50 off coupon for you or a friend by visiting the Facebook event page:  Not only will the coupon save $50 on a purchase, but the band program will receive an extra $50 for that purchase as well.

In addition, we will be having a Bedsheet Fundraiser - available at the Mattress Sale  - May 1st, $39 on site or $49 shipped to your house - any size (twin, full, queen, king)!

  • 100% of proceeds from this fundraiser will be used to purchase and maintain instruments for the Ashland Band program. The school instruments include percussion instruments and larger, more expensive wind instruments such as tubas, baritone saxophones and horns, bass clarinets etc.
  • Student enrollment in the Ashland band program has more than doubled in the past few years creating an urgent need for more school instruments.
  • PLEASE help us publicize this fundraiser. Having the right ratio of larger wind and percussion instruments in the band greatly enhances the band experience for ALL band students, not just the students playing those instruments.
  • You can even get a $50 off coupon for you or a friend by visiting the Facebook event page:  Not only will the coupon save $50 on a purchase, but the band program will receive an extra $50 for that purchase as well.   Invite all your Facebook friends in the area to the event
Thanks for your support!   Questions?  contact

Friday, April 15, 2016

Week of 4/11/16

Happy April Vacation!  I hope everyone has a wonderful and restful week.

Term 3 grades are available now in iStudent/iParent.  Unfortunately, our GPA window is not showing correctly once again.  I have reached out to our Student Information System and will let you know when it is available.

Host families are still needed for the Chinese students coming to join us at AHS from May 1-8.  If you are interested please contact Melissa Yuan at The Cambridge Institute directly at

Six Ways to Stop the Mental Illness Stigma
Stigma is one of the most challenging aspects of living with a mental health condition. It causes people to feel ashamed for something that is out of their control and prevents many from seeking the help they need. Stigma is not something that will go away on its own, but if we work together as a community, we can change the way we perceive mental illness in our society.
  1. Talk openly about mental health.
  2. Educate yourself and others about mental health.
  3. Be conscious of your language. Try to not use word like psycho, lunatic or crazy when describing people.
  4. Encourage equality in how people perceive physical illness and mental illness. If someone is diagnosed with cancer, friends and neighbors bring meals and gifts. If someone is being treated for a mental illness, people tend to avoid them rather than support them.
  5. Push back against the way people who live with mental illness are portrayed in the media.
  6. See the person, not the illness. A person with depression, bipolar disorder, any mental illness, is much, much more than their diagnosis.

ASHPAC - Please join ASHPAC for our upcoming May events, each starting at 7pm in the AMS Activity Room.
Tuesday, May 3rd - Monthly meeting:  Learn what ASHPAC is doing in our community.
Tuesday, May 10th - Parent Relaxation Tips and Techniques with Mary-Ellen Kramer
ASHPAC board member Mary-Ellen Kramer will be giving a free workshop about using gentle yoga postures, the Ayurvedic healing system and breathing techniques to help reduce stress. You will learn techniques that you can use while in meetings or during a stressful day, and the importance of taking care of yourself first. Please bring a yoga mat and wear comfortable clothing for this workshop. Mary-Ellen is a certified yoga instructor (RYT-200) and a Reiki II Healer.

Finally, please be sure to check out the information in the Parent Flyers link!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Week of 4/4/16

Good afternoon and happy Friday!  

I absolutely can not believe that today was the last day of Term 3. The year is moving so quickly. The iStudent/iParent window will open with Term 3 grades next Friday, April 15 at 2pm...just as we are heading off for April vacation.  

We have a busy week coming up so everyone will be ready for the break. I hope to see many of you at Student Council's Annual BINGO night on Wednesday, April 13 at 6:30pm. They have amazing prizes ready for you to win!  
Our Chorus department will present their Vocal Solo Night on Thursday, April 14 at 7:00pm. They will have a variety of performances with a Disney theme!

We are still in great need of families willing to share your homes with a Chinese student for the week of May 1-8. Students will shadow your child during the school day and participate in your family activities after school. We will also set up some activities after school for the students to participate in.

Mental Health “Red Flags” Parents Should be Alert For
Most people, especially children and teens, cannot identify when they are suffering from depression, anxiety or other mental health problems. Below are some signs to look out for and, if worrisome, should be discussed with your child’s doctor or therapist. Remember, parents know their children best, don’t ignore symptoms, and follow your “gut” feeling.

The Ashland Cultural Council will be holding auditions to select high school kids to perform at our annual grantee reception in May. Auditions are on Tuesday April 12th at 6.30pm at the Ashland Public Library.Those who are interested in auditioning can email with their name, email address, cell phone number, musical genre and what they will be performing.  See the parent flyer's section for more information!

Have a wonderful weekend and let's keep our fingers crossed for no more snow.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Week of 3/28/16

Good afternoon and happy April!

What a great day it was today at AHS.  We were so lucky to host the 4th Annual 5-Town Special Olympics.  We welcomed Holliston, Medfield, Medway, and Millis for a wonderful day of football skill building.  We were grateful to the Special Olympics Massachusetts for supporting our schools and to the Patriots.  (I still can't believe Gronk was here.)  It was a truly memorable day for the 80+ athletes and we are thrilled they had such a great experience.

 Have a wonderful weekend!

Be sure to check out the Parent Flyer's!

The Ashland High School Student Council is running it's 8th annual BINGO Night on Wednesday, April 13 at 6:30pm in the high school cafeteria.  This family-friendly event is open to participants of all ages, featuring prizes donated by local businesses and restaurants.  $10 will get you a pack of 6 cards good for entire night (or $20 for 12 cards, $30 for 18 cards, etc.)  Bring your own Bingo dauber or bring $1 to buy one.  Complimentary coffee and baked goods are included; pizza can be purchased.  The evening will be MCd by high school teachers DJ Jost and Randa Istfan.  For more details on the event, including the current list of prizes donated, please see our website at:   And check out our commercial at:

Five Ways to Promote a Positive Body Image in Children

  1. Focus on health, not weight. Concentrate on delicious nutrition and fun physical activity, rather than the number on the scale or size on clothing tags.
  2. Compliment kids on what they do, not how they look.
  3. Myth-Bust the "Perfect Body". Help your child become a savvy media critic by talking about what they see on television, in magazines and online. Help them understand that the pictures of models they see in ads may have been retouched or otherwise manipulated to appear "perfect”.
  4. Discuss your child's struggles as they arise. Fight your knee-jerk reaction to immediately comfort your child and dismiss their concerns with comments such as, “No honey you're perfect”. Instead, respond with open-ended questions such as, “help me understand that comment” or “that surprises me, can you tell me more” in order to begin a dialogue about their concerns.
  5. Be aware of how you talk about your own body. If you are criticizing your body or others, expect that your children will mirror this thinking. You are the first window through which they view the world; evaluate what that looks like.