Jordan News

Principal's Newsletter: October 13

posted Oct 16, 2017, 9:26 AM by Susan Pound

Now that we are mid-way through October, it’s time to reflect with students on their experiences and learning so far. There are a variety of ways we can do this, both at home and school. We understand that for middle grades students, the learning environment is comprehensive and complex, and school and home need to work together well to keep kids on track.

In the next few weeks, your students will be participating in the California Healthy Kids Survey (7th grade only) and also the Palo Alto Reality Check Survey. Please read below for a further explanation from Mimi Kwon, Assistant Principal.

Another way to check in is to sit down with your student and review their progress grades, and check in on their study habits and ability to balance healthy activities with academic progress. We all need both! I’m enthusiastic about the upcoming Parent Education opportunities that will help us reflect on some of these important issues.

Shout out for AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination)

For those of you unfamiliar with this program, AVID is a fantastic program for students who may be the first in their families to attend college or university. At the middle school level, much of the learning is about self-advocacy, academic organization and goal-setting. I am very pleased that we have both a 7th and 8th grade AVID class, and an exceptional school site team, which supports the students, teachers and the program at Jordan. AVID students go on college visits to gain the navigational capital necessary for a college-going culture. We love AVID!

From the Front Office: Student Item Drop Off

Starting, Monday, October 23rd, any items that need to be dropped off for students can be dropped off in the student item drop off area re-located to the front office lobby.  Please follow the directions for items that are left for students:  FIll out a “Drop Off Form” provided in the lobby, and be sure to label the item with your student’s first & last name, and grade level.  Please see Jena Babcock if you have any questions.  Thank you.

With Gratitude:

This Wednesday, several of the PiE volunteers and school staff held a rally in front of the school to thank parents for supporting PiE. Our band played music (quite a feat for 7:45am!) and I had the opportunity to reflect on all of the supports and programs we wouldn’t have if it weren’t for your PiE donations. Here is a generalized overview:

Mental Health Counseling & a portion of Guidance Counseling

Visual and Performing Arts


Career Technical Education programs


Thank you!!

Principal's Newsletter, September 29:

posted Oct 2, 2017, 7:57 AM by Susan Pound

Now that the year is rolling, I wanted to connect parents & guardians to some great things going on at Jordan!


Spirit week ended with a successful first dance for 7th and 8th graders that was completely organized and managed by our Leadership students. Approximately 400+ students danced the night away to tunes from the 80s and 90s.


International Night was a great success. PTA facilitated this event, which allowed students and parents to  share their cultural backgrounds with food, dress and traditions. As an interesting note, at Jordan, we have 7 major language groups: Spanish, Mandarin, Japanese, Arabic, French, Turkish, Tongan and Korean, and 7% of our school population that speaks a different language than English and those already named above. The wealth of culture and background in this school community is something to be proud of, and something to embrace and celebrate.


We are looking forward to our Ice Skating Party 2017/18! This event was held first in the school year 2013/14 and is loved by the school community. There are 2 parties both held at the Winter Lodge on Middlefield Rd.  One is held for 6th grade and the other is a combination 7th and 8th grade party.  Here are the dates:
October 25th, 2017 -7th & 8th Grade Party –  5:30-7:30
November 8th, 2017 - 6th Grade Party – 5:30-7:30

Buy your tickets and have your waivers signed at the following link.  Price includes skate rental, pizza, hot beverages and dessert.   Scholarships are available - please see Beti in the front office. Looking forward to seeing you all!   


As noted above, Jordan completed a great week celebrating School Spirit with themes, fun noontime activities and the first dance of the school year organized by the Leadership group.  Now Student Council, including recently elected 6th grade officers are now preparing for upcoming Spirit Assemblies. These are part award ceremony-part rally gatherings for each of our grade levels. Students from each grade level are recognized as Jaguars of the Quarter for their efforts socially, academically, and creatively, and practicing the principles of Jordan ROCKS.


These are the dates for this quarter’s Spirit Assemblies led by Student Council representatives and held in the Gym.

7th Grade: October 4, 1:00 - 1:40 pm

8th Grade: October 11, 1:00 - 1:40 pm

6th Grade: October 18, 1:00 - 1:40 pm

Parent volunteers who helped with the Sept 22 dance - chaperones and snacks! You were so brave ;)

Farewell Gordon!  

Thank you for your years of service to Jordan Middle School.

Introducing Jordan's New Family Engagement Specialist

posted Sep 18, 2017, 8:31 AM by Susan Pound

Dear Jordan Community,

My name is Ana M. Perez-Hood, and before my new position as a PAUSD Middle Schools Family Engagement Specialist (FES), I worked at JLS as an ELL Instructional Aide and Parent Liaison for 10 years. I was born and grew up in Mexico City. My two sons attended JLS and Paly. Andrew, my oldest, is a high school math teacher in the San Jose School District, and Christopher, my youngest is an electrical engineer in Atlanta. My husband Bob is a computer scientist working at NASA, and we have been married for 32 years.

One of the goals of FES is to help HUR (historically underrepresented students) families to navigate the school system: welcoming and supporting them, helping with interpretation, and connecting them with school programs.  We also send them information about important resources and events, and we a play a big role interpreting at school parent meetings and translating documents for our school sites and the DO. I am including my schedule at all three middle schools below. Look for me in the main office. I am looking forward to working with all of you!


Ana. M. Perez-Hood

Principal's Newsletter: September 15

posted Sep 18, 2017, 8:14 AM by Susan Pound   [ updated Sep 18, 2017, 8:14 AM ]

Building a Safe and Welcoming School Community

This week, two important elements of a safe and welcoming school community took place at Jordan. First, the Assistant Principals and I met with all of the 7th and 8th graders in their PE classes to discuss the important topics of respectfulness, open-mindedness, community, kindness and safety (ROCKS), as well as bullying and sexual harassment. Our goal is to empower our middle school students to take care of themselves and others, with the result of making Jordan a kind, respectful and safe environment for all students. The second part of our week was having many Jordan student clubs start all over campus! Students initiate their own clubs through ASB, and their interests are very broad and quite creative. It was exciting to see so many students interested and involved! Here is a list: Jordan Club List

Next week is Spirit Week (details below) so please encourage your students to have fun and participate! At the end of the week, we will have our first dance for 7th and 8th graders (Friday, Sept. 22 from 7-9pm.) Instead of charging an entry fee for the dance, the Leadership students are requesting a non-cash, non-perishable donation that they will deliver to a local charity supporting disaster relief.

JAWS Begins September 6:

posted Sep 5, 2017, 9:03 AM by Susan Pound

We are excited to announce the opening of our Jaguar Academics and Wellness Support (JAWS) Center for the 2017-18 school year. Our first day will be Tuesday, September 5th in the Jordan Library.  Our doors are open from 3:05 - 4:30pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. As we open this year, you may notice some differences from last year.  Our coordination team this year consists of Ms. Jennifer Pequegnat on Mondays, Mr. Keith Clarke on Tuesdays, and Mr. Garth Rogers on Thursdays.  They will be overseeing our JAWS services on their designated days.

Some of our procedures have been adjusted to maximize efficiency:

Student Sign in:

• Students must arrive in the library no later than 3:15pm.  If a student will arrive later than 3:15, he/she/they must come with a pass from a staff member in their binder reminder marked on that particular date.  Students are NOT permitted to leave campus then return for JAWS.

• Upon arrival at JAWS students will need to sign in on the JAWS iPads.  The sign in requests the student’s first and last names and grade level.  

• Next, the student will be assigned a work area where the student will be instructed to take out his/her/their binder reminder.  Binder Reminders are students’ tickets into JAWS.  It must already be filled out by the student with assignments to work on for the day.  

• Staff members will come around to check in with students using their binder reminders.


During the JAWS session, once all students have been signed in/checked in, snacks will be provided to students.  Please notify our coordinators of any food allergies upon arrival at JAWS.

Library services:

During a student’s time in the JAWS Center, he/she/they will be able to utilize the resources available in the library including computer use and textbook/library book check out/check in.

Cell phones:

While we understand the need for students to have a cell phone after school hours, please respect the students and staff working in the JAWS Center.  Cell phones should not be visible or audible (please turn it on silent).  If a student needs to make or receive a call, please use courtesy, notify/indicate to an adult and then step out of the library to use the phone.

Behavior expectations:

The JAWS Center is a place for students to have a safe and comfortable environment to work on their academic needs.  All behavior expectations during the school day apply during this after school program.  Any students who habitually disturb or disrupt the learning environment will be instructed to leave the JAWS Center and a parent will be notified.

Student dismissal/ sign out:

JAWS ends at 4:30pm, clean up will begin at approximately 4:20pm.  Students will use the JAWS iPads to sign out, providing the same information as when they signed in.  If any students complete their work early or need to check out early for appointments, please use the JAWS iPads to sign out.  Once students have signed out, they must leave campus immediately.  Any students found wandering campus in unsupervised activities may warrant disciplinary action/consequences.

Late bus/bus passes:

Students who ride the bus will be provided a bus pass for the late bus. The JAWS coordinators will distribute bus passes at the end of each day’s session to students who have stayed for the full duration of JAWS.  After dismissal from JAWS, students will have time to go to their lockers to return or retrieve belongings before the bus arrives at 4:45pm in our front loop for afternoon pick up.  


For students who take the Palo Alto Crosstown Shuttle, the shuttle stops at Jordan’s Middlefield stop at 3:23pm, 4:15pm, and 5:15pm.  Please plan accordingly if a shuttle ride is needed.

Principal's Message: September 1

posted Sep 5, 2017, 8:47 AM by Susan Pound   [ updated Sep 5, 2017, 8:48 AM ]

Thank you so much for your positive messages and energy on Back to School Night! It was lovely to meet so many of you, and the classrooms were bustling with information and participation from parents. We really appreciate your support and collaboration around building a great school community for our students!

Speaking of building school community...there are many collaborators in the school environment who help connect the pieces and support students when needs arise. This year, we have additional counseling resources for individual needs, teacher and student education, classroom support, and crisis management when necessary. If you feel that your student can benefit from checking in with a school counselor, please notify their grade level guidance advisor, and they will be referred appropriately.


Guidance Advisors:                 6th grade Kristen Hartley

                7th grade Betty Krumboltz

                8th grade Meghan Ben

Social emotional support: All grades Susan Curry Sykes

                        Kerry Smith

CASSY (Counseling & Support All grades Audrey Lee

             Services for Youth)

AACI (Asian Americans for         All grades Yifan Wang

Community Involvement)

School Resource Officers

The Administrative team had the opportunity to sit down with our new SROs this week, Chris Moore and Brad Young, and discuss norms and protocols for how we’re going to work together, and clarify roles and responsibilities. Building positive relationship with support providers is important, so if we need to do hard work together, we are starting with a healthy foundation.

Friday September 1st: Minimum Day

posted Aug 28, 2017, 8:28 AM by Susan Pound   [ updated Aug 28, 2017, 6:25 PM ]

School on Friday follows a minimum day schedule.  School will end at 12.20 on Friday.  Enjoy the long weekend.  

Back to School Night: August 30

posted Aug 28, 2017, 8:26 AM by Susan Pound   [ updated Aug 28, 2017, 6:26 PM ]

Come to meet with your middle schooler's teachers.  Begin the evening with a welcome from the Principal, Valerie Royaltey-Quandt in the MPR.  The 'school day' then continues from 7.00 to 8.45 your student's classes.  You will find out more about each class and course curricula.  Each class lasts 10 minutes.  

6th Grade Parents:  if you would like to learn more about the rubric for 7th grade math placement, please come to the meeting from 6.00 - 6.45 in the MPR.
Also for 6th Grade Parents, when your child has 5th and 6th period, meet the teachers for PE, Music, and Electives in the MPR.    

Principal's Weekly

posted Aug 11, 2017, 6:36 PM by Susan Pound   [ updated Aug 11, 2017, 6:38 PM ]

August 2017

Dear Jordan Families:

It is with great excitement that we welcome you to the 2017-2018 school year at Jordan! As Jordan's new principal, I am honored to be joining the strong team of educators who are supporting your students through the academic and social adventure of middle school. As long as I've been a school administrator, I've kept a photo of myself in 8th grade at my desk. In addition to being quite humbling, it reminds me every day that the middle school experience can be both exciting and perplexing at the same time, and that caring, knowledgeable and engaged school staff can partner with parents, guardians and community to help guide the way.

Starting Strong

Our first day of school is Tuesday, August 15th from 8:10 am to 3:05 pm. Very soon, your student will receive a letter that includes your student's advisory assignment and the name of their counselor. Students will attend advisory first on August 15th, and will receive their complete schedules during that advisory  period.

Transition into 6th grade is an exciting adventure for many students. Incoming 6th graders will participate in our two-day orientation, Jaguar Journey. This complete introduction to Jordan will include a campus tour, information about school procedures and many other necessary topics including class schedules, how to use lockers, PE uniforms, and school photos. On the morning of the first day of school, 6th graders should report to Hugh Center Court where they will gather by advisory teacher .After a short welcome, they will join their teacher and classmates and go to their new classrooms. 7th and 8th grade students should report directly to their advisory classrooms on the morning of the first day of school.

Families New to Jordan

All new Jordan students (including new ih and 8th graders) are invited to an informal student orientation and family social on Monday, August 16th from 3:30-s:oopm. New students will gather in Hugh Center Court for a student orientation. Parents are invited to join Jordan staff in the MPR for the brief orientation to Jordan. Information about these events is included in your packet.

Back to School Information

Enclosed are instructions about the required paperwork for the start of school, including contracts and guidelines requiring parent and student signatures. The packet may be turned in to the office between 8:ooam and 4:oopm any day between Monday, August ih and Tuesday, August 15th. Your student's emergency information card should have been completed online through the District. For the safety of your student, it is important to provide all three emergency contacts so that we can be certain to reach you or a trusted friend or relative if we are unable to reach in an emergency.

An important message for all incoming 7th graders- All 7th grade students are required to have immunizations (including Tdap) before school starts. You should have received previous notices from the district regarding the required immunizations with specifics on the new laws and requirements. I wanted  to personally bring this to your attention because at the start of 7th grade, any student without their immunization records current for the new law, will not be able to attend school until their records are submitted. I appreciate that it can take some time to get a medical appointment and immunization

records. Tdap immunizations can be sent to or dropped off at the district office at Portable A, on Monday through Thursday between the hours of 8 AM and 5 PM. Please indicate your child's name and Jordan Middle School when e-mailing or dropping off an immunization record. Thank you!

Prepare for Success

Please sit down with your student before school begins to review Jordan's Handbook. You will find important school procedures, the 2017-2018 activities calendar, a staff directory, and other frequently requested information. You can find the Jordan handbook under the 11About" tab on our school website.

And perhaps most importantly ...remember that for middle school students, academic work can become more rigorous and the social environment may become larger and more complex. Students may form new identities as secondary students. I believe the following skills and attitudes are essential, and can be supported by both parents and educators:

  • Embrace struggle

  • Ask thoughtful questions

  • Build intellectual stamina

  • Allow multiple solutions and pathways

  • Provide equitable opportunities

  • Encourage critical-thinking and problem-solving

Thank you for joining us on this journey! We look forward to working with you and your students this year.

Valerie Royaltey-Quandt

Principal, Jordan Middle School

Principal's Weekly

posted May 8, 2017, 10:09 AM by

For May 7, 2017:  ANNOUNCEMENTS
 - California Assessment of Student Progress and Performance (CAASPP) Assessments - As indicated in the Superintendent's Message to parents regarding upcoming state assessments, California students will be taking these assessments this spring.  Students at Jordan will be taking the assessments following the schedule below.  Please be mindful as you schedule appointments or events for your child(ren).

 - CAASPP Testing for the week of 5/7-5/11

  • This week we will be conducting CAASPP Make Up Tests during lunch and brunch. Students who need to complete their tests will receive call slips to report to the computer lab. 

For additional information regarding the assessments and practice tests, visit
For site based questions regarding the CAASPP testing please contact:

 - A Note on the New Netflix Series "13 Reasons Why" - Parents and guardians should be aware about a new television series with a sensitive theme that has become popular with teenagers. The series is based on a 2007 bestselling novel with the same Netflix title, "Thirteen Reasons Why." The topics covered in this book are: adolescent bullying, rejection, heartbreak, sexual assault, abuse, revenge, depression, and desperate but unsuccessful efforts to find help or understanding. These topics are depicted as many of the reasons for the character's suicide at the end of the series. Series like this can be difficult to watch and could trigger feelings of distress in viewers.
In the event your student chooses to view this Netflix series, parents and guardians may wish to discuss some of the issues mentioned above or may need support in discussing such issues. Although Netflix opened all 13 episodes for continuous viewing, metered viewing is advised to allow time to process and discuss themes and feelings that may arise.
All counselors in the Palo Alto Unified School District have been informed of this series. As always, they are a resource for all students. If parents have questions about how to have conversations with their students, the counseling team is available for parents and students.
Parents and guardians who would like to read more about this book/series, can use these two resources: Common Sense Media and 13 Reasons Why talking points.
Note: The intention of this message is not to recommend viewing this Netflix series; rather, it is intended to provide you with relevant information to the health and wellbeing of all PAUSD students and families.

Thank you for your partnership,  Principal Katie Kinnaman

Jordan Orchestra Concert
Orchestra will be presenting their last concert of the year. Please come and join them on May 11 in the MPR from 7:00- 8:00 PM.

Inspiration:   “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ― Mahatma Gandhi   
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” ― Martin Luther King Jr.

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