Welcome to Vista Verde Middle School. This student planner has been designed to provide each student with an orientation to the school and its rules and policies. It is our goal to encourage a sense of belonging and pride in this school, where students strive to do their best. The policies presented here are designed to protect the learning and safety of others.

ARTICLES PROHIBITED IN SCHOOL

Items that are disruptive to the school environment are not allowed and may be confiscated.

  1. Any items that are a disruption to the educational process are prohibited.

  2. Gum is not allowed on this campus at any time.

  3. NO sharpies or permanent markers of any kind.

ABSENCES/ATTENDANCE

Each student is expected to be present and punctual for all classes throughout the school year. When a student is absent, parents must call the 24-hour attendance line (602) 449-5301 by 10:00 A.M. each day the student is absent in order for the absence to be excused. If an absence is not excused within 24 hours the absence becomes unverified.

For the safety of our students at Vista Verde Middle School, we will only release students to those persons authorized on the emergency card. Please have your Government issued photo I.D. ready to show before you come to the Attendance Office to pick up your child.

ATTENDANCE PROGRAM (C.U.T.S)

Vista Verde uses C.U.T.S. (Court Unified Truancy Suppression Program) through the Maricopa County Juvenile Court Center. Its primary purpose is to improve school attendance.

Arizona State law 15-803 requires that children must attend school between the ages of 6 to 16 years. Parents are required to ensure that their children attend school during school hours. A child who is habitually truant or who has excessive absences may be issued a citation to court for violation of this law. Absences may be considered excessive when the number of absent days exceeds ten percent of the number of required attendance days. Paradise Valley Unified School District requires 180 days of school attendance for the 2019-2020 school year. Chronic illness and other documentation from a physician will be accepted as an excused absence and will not be considered an excessive absence or a truancy. It is, therefore, important that all documentation for illness or medical appointments be submitted to the nurse and attendance office.

BEFORE AND AFTER SCHOOL 

Students are not allowed on the school grounds before 7:30 A.M. unless requested by a staff member. Once on campus, students may not leave without permission from the office. Students should not be on the school grounds after 3:00 P.M. unless they are participating in a supervised activity, waiting for a bus or ride, or seeing a staff member at the staff member’s request. Please do not use the 29th parking lot. The east parking lot on 29th Street is to be used only for after-school activities.

BICYCLES/SKATEBOARDS

Students are not allowed to ride bicycles & skateboards on the school walkways at any time. While on school property, bicycles & skateboards must be secured with a lock and chain in the bicycle compound during the school day. The school assumes no liability for lost or damaged bikes, bike parts, skateboards or skateboard parts at any time.

BIRTHDAYS OR OTHER CELEBRATIONS

We understand that friends and parents like to celebrate various occasions; however, balloons, flowers, cakes, cookies, candy, presents, and bouquets cause many distractions and are not allowed on campus or on the bus. This policy helps protect instructional time and ensures that all students are treated equal. 

BULLYING

We, the students of Vista Verde Middle School, agree to join together to stamp out bullying at our school. We believe that everyone should enjoy our school equally and feel safe, secure, and accepted regardless of color, race, gender, popularity, athletic ability, intelligence, religion, or nationality. Bullying is any repeated behavior that subjects a student to insults, taunts, or challenges that are likely to intimidate or provoke a violent or disorderly response from a student being treated in this manner. Bullying can be pushing, shoving, hitting, and spitting, as well as name calling, picking on, making fun of, laughing at, and excluding someone. Bullying causes pain and stress to victims and is never justified or excusable as “kids being kids.” The victim is never responsible for being a target of bullying. 

We the students agree to:

  • Value student differences and treat others with respect.
  • Not become involved in bullying incidents or be a bully.
  • Be aware of the school’s policies and support system with regard to bullying.
  • Report honestly and immediately all incidents of bullying to a faculty member.
  • Be alert in places around the school where there is less adult supervision.
  • Support students who have been or are subjected to bullying,
  • Talk to teachers and parents about concerns and issues regarding bullying.
  • Work with other students and faculty to help the school deal with bullying effectively.
  • Provide a good role model for younger students and support them if bullying occurs.
  • Acknowledge that whether I am being a bully or see someone being bullied, if I don’t report or stop the bullying, I am just as guilty.

La version en español de la agenda escolar para el alumno esta disponible en la oficina.

If you need to report bullying or any other concerns, please use the Anonymous Tips website.

BUS RIDERS

If you live 1.5 miles or more from Vista Verde Middle School, you are eligible to ride the bus. Anyone making a disturbance is endangering an entire busload of students. Students who misbehave on the bus or at bus stops may be forbidden to ride school buses. Students must always get on and off at the same bus stops and ride only their assigned bus. Guest bus passes will be issued with a written parent authorization on the day of the request from the school’s front office.

BUS RULES

  1. Observe the Vista Verde school-wide rule at all times.

  2. Do not eat or drink on the bus.

  3. Keep the bus clean.

  4. Any form of drug/alcohol use is strictly prohibited.

  5. Any form of vandalism to the busses is strictly prohibited.

  6. Stay in your seat and keep head, hands, and feet inside the bus.

  7. The bus driver has the authorization to assign seats and issue referrals.

CAFETERIA

In order to keep the cafeteria clean, safe, and attractive, the students must observe the following guidelines:

  1. Walk to and from the cafeteria.

  2. Clean up after yourself. Place all trash in the garbage cans.

  3. Students must stay within the yellow boundary lines during the lunch period.

  4. No throwing of any kind.

  5. If a student goes into a teacher’s classroom or the Media Center at lunch he/she must have a pass.

  6. All food must be eaten inside cafeteria.

CONDUCT

Students are to conduct themselves in such a manner as to respect the learning and safety of others. Every person on campus deserves the utmost respect, consideration, and courtesy. Abiding by the rules and guidelines outlined in this planner will ensure student success at Vista Verde.

COUNSELING

Counseling services are available for all students. These services include but are not limited to: personal problems, assistance with educational planning, interpretation of test scores, and career information. Students may schedule an appointment directly with the counselor or school psychologist, or parent may arrange an appointment by calling (602) 449-5311 or 602-449-5314.

DANCES

The Student Council sponsors after-school dances during the school year for all students attending Vista Verde. The last dance of the year is for 8th grade students only. Parents are responsible for providing transportation to and from all school dances.

  1. All dances will require an admission fee.

  2. The school dress code applies for all dances. There are no formal or semiformal dances.

  3. Parents must pick up their child within 15 minutes after the dance has ended, or the student may not be eligible to attend the next dance.

DRESS CODE

Vista Verde is a place of learning; therefore, appropriate attire is required. Decisions as to the appropriateness of dress rest with any staff member. Students in violation of the dress code will be sent to the AC room and will be required to change into appropriate clothing.

  1. State law must wear appropriate shoes worn at all times.

  2. Shirts and blouses must have at least 2½ inches of coverage at the top of the shoulder. Anything less is considered a tank top. Necklines may be no lower than 2½ inches when measured from the collarbone.

  3. Shirts must cover the waistline of shorts, slacks, and skirts with no midriff or back skin showing at any time. Tank tops, backless or halter-tops, sheer garments are not permitted. Any clothing allowing undergarments to show is inappropriate.

  4. Shorts and skirts must pass the “fingertip rule” which means they may be no shorter than where the student’s fingertips touch the leg when the arm is naturally hanging straight down. Slits in skirts, pants and shorts must also pass the “fingertip rule”.

  5. “Sagging” is not allowed; pants must be worn at the waist and may not sag below the hip.

  6. Garments, jewelry, or other personal items promoting alcohol, illegal substances, offensive pictures and /or sayings, or gang affiliations are not permitted. Chains around the neck, long chains on wallets or hanging from pockets, and spikes of any kind are not permitted. Any straps on pants that connect the waist to the leg are not allowed.

  7. Bandanas are not permitted.

  8. Hats and hoods are not allowed at any time indoors.

  9. Any type of dress/attire that interferes with the learning of others is not allowed at any time.

  10. Discretion of dress code lies with school administration.

  11. Parent requests for exceptions (for religious, health-related or other reasons) to dress code policies shall be submitted in writing to the school administration. Parents may appeal a building level administrator’s decision regarding dress code to the area assistant superintendent for instructional support or designee at district office, and such requests will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

DRILLS

Fire, emergency evacuation, and lockdown drills are conducted periodically. Staff members will give directions for evacuation procedures according to the directions that are posted in the classroom. Students are to be quiet and listen for instructions from their teachers. Talking or misbehaving during a drill is dangerous and will be considered a discipline issue. Attendance is taken during these drills, so students need to remain with their teacher at all times, or they will be marked absent.

DRUG, ALCOHOL, “LOOK-A LIKES,” AND PARAPHERNALIA

The possession, use, or sale of drugs, alcohol, “look-alikes,” or paraphernalia at school or on the way to and from school, will result in suspension or expulsion and possible criminal prosecution (ARS 13-3401-3411).

ELECTRONIC DEVICES

Students are permitted to use cell phones and other electronic devices before/after school and at lunch only. Use of these devices is prohibited in classrooms and during passing period. Students are not allowed to take any photographs or video at school. Repeat offenders will receive school consequences. Teachers may allow students to use of electronic devices in the classroom for educational purposes. If students misuse electronic devices, the teachers will revoke privileges. Vista Verde is not responsible for the theft, loss or damage of these devises.

GANG ASSOCIATION OR GANG ACTIVITY

Students who associate themselves with gangs or gang-like activity through dress, hand signs symbols or disruptive and/or destructive behavior will be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the Governing Board policy.

HARASSMENT

Students and Staff of Vista Verde Middle School shall have the right to attend school without fear of harm, threat, intimidation, or harassment. Students shall not bother or annoy another person physically, verbally, or mentally. The use of language or gestures, which insult, intimidate, or negatively affect another person’s feelings, will not be tolerated. This includes, but is not limited to, sexual, ethnic, or religious harassment. Consequences will be immediate and consistent with Governing Board policy. Students are to immediately report bullying/ harassment to an administrator.

HEALTH SERVICES

If a student becomes ill at school, she/he should get permission from a staff member to report to the nurse. The nurse will do a health assessment. Students must not leave the school grounds because of illness without checking out through the Health and Attendance Office. The health office is stocked with over-the-counter medication including generic Tylenol, Ibuprofen, Tums and cough drops. The nurse will dispense OTC Meds when a permission card is signed by the parent/guardian.  Any other over-the-counter medication must be in its original container with written permission for its use provided by the parent. All medications and inhalers are to be kept in the nurse’s office. Students may carry an inhaler only with a doctor’s written permission. Inhaler must be properly labeled, and the doctor’s note must be reissued at the beginning of each school year. Possession of unauthorized medication of any kind at school is a serious offense and will result in suspension. You may call the nurse at (602) 449-5303 for further health issues.

HOMEWORK

Homework is an essential part of a student’s education, and both students and parents can expect homework to be assigned daily. Parents can monitor their child’s homework by regularly reviewing the student’s planner or our school’s website. Homework is a valuable learning activity and is appropriate at all grade levels.  Parents need to be advised of what is expected of their children and how they can reinforce the educational value of the assigned work.  Each school handbook must include information regarding homework.  Principals must communicate the district homework policy to all teachers. Governing Board Policy 4.4.1. Parents have the capability to look daily at their child’s progress through the Infinite Campus online gradebook. A confidential password may be obtained through your child’s counselor. Infinite Campus Internet access is available through our school’s library, front office or at the local library, if needed. If a parent has any questions concerning his/her child’s homework, please contact the teacher by email or by calling (602) 449-5300.

HONOR ROLL 

Academic excellence is encouraged and recognized through the Honor Roll. The Honor Roll is determined at the close of each quarterly grading period. A grade point average of 3.2 to 3.9 (no C’s) is required to earn Honor Roll status, and a 4.0 grade point average (all A’s) is required for inclusion on the Principal’s Honor Roll.

IDENTIFICATION

It is the expectation that all students and staff display their ID badge at all times. Replacement badges will cost $5.00.

INTERVENTION & ENRICHMENT HOUR

In order to better serve our students, and to ensure their success, we have added an Intervention and Enrichment Hour to our school day at Vista Verde.  This model is a Response To Intervention (R.T.I.) model that allows our teachers to work with specific students on targeted learning goals in a smaller class setting in order for them to succeed.  The main areas of focus will be for Math, English, and Science. With students who are performing in these areas, they will be receiving Enrichment with M.Y.P. International Baccalaureate thematic units (Science, Social Studies, Technology, and Physical Education).   

Students will be rotating every three weeks based off of new data from our classroom assessments to ensure we can support all students.  Students will rotate to their Intervention and Enrichment teachers on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Mondays and Fridays are designated days to stay in their assigned classes to work on strategies to help them succeed throughout the school year using our A.V.I.D. school-wide strategies.

LIBRARY/MEDIA CENTER

The library is open from 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM Monday through Friday. During lunch periods, a library pass must be obtained from the duty aides. The students may study, read, do research, internet use, or play games. Students are allowed to check out two books at a time using their photo I.D. and may keep them for two weeks. Lost or damaged items are to be paid by the borrower. Books returned late may result in assigned lunch detentions.

LOST AND FOUND

Students are responsible for their personal property. Should you find a personal or school property item, take it to the office. If a student has lost any property, she/he can check with the front office to see if the article has been turned in. Personal items turned in, but never claimed, will be donated to a welfare organization at the end of the school year.

MAKEUP WORK

It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that all assignments are obtained and made up upon return from any excused absence. If a student is absent 2 or more consecutive days, a parent may call the Attendance Office at (602) 449-5301 and request homework to be picked up. Students returning from an excused absence will have an amount of time equivalent to the number of days absent to complete and turn in assignments. For prearranged absences, including suspension, makeup work must be completed by the day of return or as individually arranged with the teacher. It is up to the parent and student to make sure that the homework is received by all teachers. 

PARENT CONFERENCES

Each year Vista Verde Middle School schedules two formal Parent/Teacher Conferences during the second and third quarters. Parents may also make individual appointments for conferences with teachers, counselors, school psychologist, or administrators by telephoning the school office at (602) 449-5300 or by e-mailing the staff member directly.

PARENT SHADOWING

Parents are invited to attend school with their child especially if the child exhibits behaviors that are inappropriate. As a courtesy to our faculty, we ask that shadowing initiated by a parent be arranged at least one day in advance. A visitor pass will need to be issued through the office on visitation days. Parents are encouraged to become involved with their child’s education.

PASSES

Students are not allowed to leave the classroom during class period without their student planner signed by a teacher, or a pass signed by a staff member.

PBIS (Discipline)

Vista Verde Middle School provides an environment for students, which is educational, safe, predictable, and positive. The PAWS and Positive Behavior Intervention and Supports (PBIS) systems are tailored to meet Vista Verde needs and concerns. PAWS is our systems approach for establishing the social culture and individualized behavioral supports needed for VVMS to be an effective, PAWSitive learning environment for all students. Campus-wide, it is expected that student will be:

  • Prepared

  • Accountable

  • Willing to Participate

  • Safe

Reasonable school-wide expectations are set, allowing the VVMS campus to be a safe and predictable school environment. These expectations are provided in the “VVMS Behavior Expectation Matrix.”

Discipline is based on whether the behavior is a major or minor incident as defined in the “Major vs. Minor Incidents” chart.

The goals of the PAWS and PBIS systems is to establish a positive learning environment where students are encouraged to do their best and are acknowledged for their success.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

A written parental excuse is required if your child cannot participate in P.E. up to 3 days. If your child cannot participate in P.E. for more than 3 days, a written doctor’s excuse will be required. The excuse must be specific and presented to the nurse prior to the start of class, and the nurse’s office will verify excuses.

Dress Uniform Required

  1. Plain gray T-Shirt – NO LOGOS (Name on left side).

  2. Solid black elastic waist shorts (Name on left outside leg).

  3. “Tennis” shoes, securely tied, NO street shoes.

PE Uniforms available in adult sizes from the PE Department. T-Shirts are $8.00. Nylon tricot shorts are $12.00. 

PROFANITY

When at school, appropriate language needs to be used at all times.

PROGRESS REPORTS

Deficiency reports are mailed home at mid-quarter for those students receiving a grade of D or F. The intent is to reflect the student’s current academic standing and to provide the student with ample time to improve his/her grades, if necessary. If you do not receive your child’s progress report in the mail, you are encouraged to contact the Registrar at (602) 449-5312.

PUBLIC DISPLAY of AFFECTION

All public displays of affections are prohibited.

REPORT ACADEMIC PROGRESS TO PARENTS

The Paradise Valley Unified School District is dedicated to the continuous development of each student. It is a Governing Board belief that teachers should make every effort to assure success of every student in every class. Teachers, in working with students and parents as partners, should document efforts that have been made when a student is not making adequate progress in a class or subject of study. The criteria for assigning grades or other evaluation marks should be developed to accurately reflect student learning and should be mathematically fair.

Parents of students in grades 2 through 12 will be able to monitor progress of their students in all classes through an electronic system provided by the district. Teachers will keep these records up to date by entering data no less frequently than once every two weeks. Grade reports, to serve as official records of progress, will be issued to parents of students in all grades at the end of each quarter. In grades 7-12, interim notices will be sent each quarter to parents of students who are failing or are in immediate danger of failing. Upon request and for a limited period of time, parents may receive a weekly progress notification in specific subject areas. In certain cases, a teacher may find it necessary to notify a parent directly to warn of the possibility of failure. In any case, no student may receive a failing semester or course grade if parents were not notified of that potential in time for remediation to occur. 4.3.1.

RESOLUTION OF RESPECT (No Place for Hate-NPFH)

I will:

  • Understand those who are different from me.

  • Speak against discrimination.

  • Support targets of hate.

  • Promote respect & foster a prejudice-free school.

  • Believe that one person can make a difference.

  • Respect individual dignity.

SCHOOL PROPERTY

Students are responsible for the proper care of all books, supplies, furniture, equipment, and school buildings. Students who damage school property or equipment will be required to pay for the damage or replace the item. If the damage is done deliberately, disciplinary action will also be taken.

SMOKING/TOBACCO

Tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or other similar devices, lighters, and matches are prohibited on any school property or grounds. Smoking and/or possession of tobacco are in violation of the Arizona State Law ARS 13-3622. Violations of this rule will result in consequences ranging from detention to suspension.

STUDENT ACTIVITIES/SPORTS PROGRAMS

Vista Verde has a variety of clubs and organizations for students of all interests. We encourage students to get involved in activities such as: National Junior Honor Society, School Council, Intramurals, Clubs, and a variety of other activities and sports.

STUDENT COUNCIL

The Student Council is an organization through which the students may provide input regarding school decisions and policies. The Council promotes leadership, initiative, and self-control among its members. Elections are held through the Social Studies’ classes in the fall.

STUDENT VALUABLES

Students are cautioned not to bring large amounts of money to school or any other items of value. The school is not responsible for personal property.

TARDY POLICY

Every student must be in his/her designated assigned seat in the classroom by the time the final bell rings, or that student will be considered tardy. Being late to class is a disruption and interferes with the learning of the entire class. School begins at 8:00 AM. Parents need to call the school office to excuse a child’s tardy before she/he arrives at school or sign the child in at the Attendance Office. 

THREATS

Verbal or written threats to bring harm to any person or group of people are unacceptable. All threats will be evaluated and treated seriously. Disciplinary consequences may include a warning, detention, suspension, or expulsion.

TRUANCY POLICY

Students will receive consequences for truancies in accordance with Governing Board policy.

A student is truant if she/he:

  1. Is absent from school without prior permission from the parents.

  2. Is absent from class without permission.

  3. Leaves school without signing out in the Attendance Office.

  4. Comes to school but does not attend classes.

  5. Obtains a pass to go to a certain place and does not report there.

  6. Reports to a designated place but does not return to class in a timely manner.

  7. Becomes ill and goes home or stays in the restroom instead of reporting to the nurse’s office.

  8. Is absent more than 10 percent (or 18 days) of the school year without a doctor’s note (parents cannot excuse a child after the child has missed 10 % (or 18 days) of the school days; at that point, only a doctor’s note can excuse the child).

VISITING TEACHERS

Visiting teachers are guests in our school. Students are expected to show them the same respect as they would any adult on campus. A student who misbehaves for the visiting teacher may receive a conduct referral and sent to the AC room for the remainder of the class period. There may be further consequences from the regular teacher upon their return.

VISITORS

All visitors must check in at the front office. No student may have a visitor on campus during class hours unless approved by the administration.

WEAPONS

Vista Verde takes pride in providing a safe environment for students and staff members. Weapons of any kind, including, but not limited to, knives, guns, firecrackers, or any other item, which could be perceived as a weapon, are not allowed on campus. Students possessing any item perceived as a weapon will face consequences in accordance with Governing Board policy.

Vista Verde Middle School School Supply List

Vista Verde students are expected to maintain an organized binder. Here are the suggested supplies for weekly binder checks:

  • 2.5-inch three-ring binder

  • Dividers with at least five (5) tabs

  • Zipper pouch for writing supplies

  • Four (4) separate spiral notebooks or composition books, depending on teacher

  • Wooden #2 pencils, not mechanical

  • Blue and black pens

  • Highlighters

  • Loose leaf paper

Some of Our Vista Verde Students Need Your Help

If you want to help, just pick up an extra item from the list and drop it off in the office at Open House or any other time. Thanks in advance.

Regular Day Bell Schedule

Period 7th Grade Schedule 8th Grade Schedule
Period 1 8:00 - 8:53 a.m. 8:00 - 8:53 a.m.
Period 2 8:57 - 9:45 a.m. 8:57 - 9:45 a.m.
Period 3 9:49 - 10:37 a.m. 9:49 - 10:37 a.m.
Period 4 10:41 - 11:29 a.m. 10:41 - 11:29 a.m.
Period 5 11:33 a.m. - 12:03 p.m. (Lunch) 11:33 a.m. - 12:21 p.m.
Period 6 12:07 - 12:55 p.m. 12:25 - 12:55 p.m. (Lunch)
Period 7 12:59 - 1:47 p.m. 12:59 - 1:47 p.m.
Period 8 1:51 - 2:40 p.m. 1:51 - 2:40 p.m.

Half Day Bell Schedule

Period Schedule
Period 1 8:00 - 8:30 a.m.
Period 2 8:34 - 9:00 a.m.
Period 3 9:04 - 9:30 a.m.
Period 4 9:34 - 10:00 a.m.
Period 7 10:04 - 10:30 a.m.
Period 5 10:34 - 11:00 a.m. (7th Grade Lunch)
Period 6 11:04 - 11:30 a.m. (8th Grade Lunch)
Period 8 11:34 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.