Frequently Asked Questions
Is there a cafeteria on campus?
Hillview does not have a cafeteria on campus. Many students bring sack lunches and snacks. (First and last names are required on lunch sacks/boxes.) Milk may be purchased on a quarterly basis or students may bring their own drinks.
Monday through Friday we offer a pre paid hot/cold lunch program through our vendor, LunchMasters.
What do I do if my child forgot their lunch?
Parents should label forgotten lunches with the student's first and last name and deliver them to the school office. All such lunches wiII be taken to the playground or multi for students to claim.
LunchMasters offers an "emergency lunch" for registered LunchMasters students, parents are post billed for this service. Note that the emergency lunch option is not meant for regular use.
How does a parent get involved?
Parents have many opportunities to partner with us in making their child’s experience at Hillview top notch. The first chance to offer a hand is at the upcoming Arena Check-in (ACI) on August 20 or 21 (see p. 1 side bar for more details). There parents can sign up at the “Parent Involvement Opportunities” table. The Hillview PTO’s website also has an online volunteer form. Check it out by clicking here.
Which High Schools do your graduates attend?
Most of our students attend Menlo-Atherton High School, part of the Sequoia Union High School District. There are also several private high schools in the area.
What do I do if my child has an appointment during the school day?
Send a note with your student specifying the time they need to be released. Have the student give the note to their teacher and they will be released from class to meet you in the main office. Parents must sign students out in the main office before leaving campus.What is an academy?
In 2011, Hillview Middle School launched an organizational structure called the “Academy Model,” essentially grouping students and teachers into smaller learning communities in order to provide greater attention to individual student needs and develop a sense of community among a smaller group of students who share the same academic teachers. The Academy system remains today. The biggest changes to the program occurs this year as 7th and 8th grade math teachers will no longer be part of the academy to allow for great flexibility in scheduling math support or advancement. Sixth grade students have three academy teachers—their Humanities Core teacher whom they have for two periods (ELA and Social Studies), their math teacher, and their science teacher. Seventh and eighth grade students have three academy teachers, also, but those three consist of their ELA teacher, Social Studies teacher, and Science teacher; 7th & 8th graders share PE, math, and elective classes.
What is Qu3st?
Qu3ST, which stands for Quiet Sustained & Supported Study Time, occurs during “Open Session”—the last period of the day (except for Thursdays)—and is available to all students in grades 6-8. This important time provides students with essential academic support before the school day ends, allows busy students to get a jump-start on their homework or ask questions about difficult concepts, or gives more time to complete a task. This quite, friendly, and supportive environment is also a great place to catch up on outside reading demands or study for an upcoming assessment. Some students may choose to take a second elective instead of Qu3ST during Open Session; this option is only recommended for independent, organized, and motivated students with few conceptual struggles.
How is math placement determined?
Math placement is determined by a combination of assessments and a review of past student performance. Hillview takes great pains to properly place students, and parents are encouraged to support the recommendation of the school. If parents disagree with a placement, they are encouraged to contact their student’s counselor. Ultimately, parents will have the final say in placement; however, pushing a child into a math class that is too difficult can and often does lead to long-term math challenges and anxiety. Parents will receive a letter in the mail prior to ACI with information regarding their student’s performance on the Math Diagnostic Testing Project (MDTP) assessment in the spring. The MDTP will be administered again the first week of school in all math classes. Changes to placement can be made at that time. For more information about math placement, please see the Math Placement FAQ’s, which will be included in the Math Placement Mailing prior to ACI.
How do I request to change my students' schedule?
Students will receive a printed copy of their schedules at ACI (Aug 20 for seventh & eighth graders; Aug 21 for sixth graders). Students or parents desiring to request a change to the schedule will be asked to complete a “Schedule Change Request” Form at ACI or during the first week of school. If, for some reason, an error has occurred on the schedule, parents/students will be asked to explain the error; counselors will prioritize errors before all other requests. Please note…Hillview cannot honor requests for specific teachers or academies. Schedule change requests will be handled as time permits. Students are asked to attend their schedule as printed until a new schedule is provided. Our counselors try their best to accommodate schedule change requests (except for those involving teacher or academy change requests), though not all requests are possible due to high demand and conflicts.
Why does school end at 2:30 on Wednesdays and Thursdays, as opposed to at 3:05 on the other days of the week?
Unlike all other days of the week, Wednesays and Thursdays end a bit earlier – at 2:30, to be exact. This early release time is set aside so that our hard-working and innovative staff have a chance to collaborate regularly. On Wednesdays, Academy teachers use this time to talk about their students and how to meet their needs. On Thursdays, teachers meet in groups we call Professional Learning Communities (PLC's) - grade level and subject area teams - to plan enriching events and rigorous curriculum. With our transition to Common Core State Standards and making sense of data, this time is more valuable than ever!
What is Block H?
Block H is a recognition program that rewards Hillview students for their various contributions to the school. There are two categories: community service and school involvement. Over the course of their three years at Hillview, students earn points toward their Block H; 150 total points is the magic number, with a minimum of ten points in each category. While the Block H is a coveted award, the true benefit of participating in the program is the development of crucial skills that create a well rounded, civic-minded, and accomplished student.
Whom should I contact with QUESTIONS?
The Hillview office is standing by with any questions you may have. Give us a call any time during business hours and we’ll put you in touch with the right person to field your question(s). Keep in mind that our two counselors serve different groups of students depending on grade level and last name. Kristyn Cardosi is the counselor for all 6th graders with last names A – L, as well as for all 8th graders. Robyn Watts is the counselors for all 6th graders with last names M – Z, as well as for all 7th graders.