Principal's Newsletter 9.1.2023

Sellwood Principal’s Newsletter – September 1, 2023

Greetings Sellwood Community,

It has been a joyous first week of school, with 6th-graders starting on Tuesday with a “Jump Start” orientation.  I would like to thank all of our wonderful 8th-grade WEB leaders who made the orientation day a success.  Our counseling team, Ms. Katie and Mr. KB, provided WEB leaders with training that helped them prepare for the event.  7th and 8th graders returned to school with a lot of energy and enthusiasm, and I can tell it is going to be a great year.  Sellwood’s PTA decorated our sidewalks and courtyard with inspirational chalk art that welcomed all students back to school. Thank you to staff, students, and families for the amazing kick-off.  We are all happy to hear childrens’ voices ring in the hallways once again.

As of today, most 6th-graders are able to navigate the school and find their way to all of their classes.  We have spent a lot of time providing locker support, and almost all students are able to confidently open their lockers.  We will continue to help fix any remaining locker challenges next week.

I wanted to re-share two important documents.  The Sellwood Student & Family Handbook 2023-24 and the PPS Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook 2023-24.

Here are a few photos of new staff members so when you see them, you will be able to say hello.

Maria Fuhrmann – 7th grade English Language Arts and Social Studies Teacher

Maia Kirkelie – ESL Teacher

Kate Canfield – Restorative Justice Coordinator

Matthew Mortensen – School Climate Specialist

Kasey Bond – Instructional Coach (you may remember Kasey as a Sellwood math teacher)

Garrett Hampton – Campus Security Associate

Don't forget, on September 12th, from 5 - 6:30 PM, we will be hosting Sellwood's Ice Cream Social (Thank you PTA!).  We look forward to seeing you there in person!

Enjoy the three day weekend,


Jeandré Carbone

Sellwood MS Principal


General Building entry

After the first day, students will use one of 4 entrances based on how they came to school: by bus, drop-off, walking, biking, or skating.  Remember that during arrival and dismissal times we do not allow drop offs or pickups on 15th Avenue or in the staff parking lot due to safety concerns.  The parent drop-off area is on Umatilla, 16th, or Sherrett.  Please refer to the map below.


The SMS PTA Board welcomes you and your student to the new school year!  We are excited to continue to support the SMS staff and our school community. 

Join the PTA!

Please join the PTA and contribute your voice to the conversation on making this a great school year for our kids and SMS community.  Here is the link to join!

Join Konstella! 

The PTA uses the Konstella app to keep the parent community up to date with scheduled events, the school calendar, volunteer sign ups and PTA announcements. Here is the link to join!  Already on Konstella?  Please update your student’s grade.

First PTA Meeting Tuesday, 9/26 7pm

Please join us for our first PTA meeting of the year.  We will meet from 7-8:30pm in the SMS library after Back to School Night events.  We would love to see you!

Volunteers need to support PEAK program

The PTA is looking for volunteers to help coordinate our after school clubs and programs.  We have parents who have supported this program for the last couple years and laid the groundwork for future volunteers to keep the program running.  Please reach out if you are interested in learning more.

Ice Cream Social Tuesday 9/12; 5:00-6:30 pm

This is a family event for Sellwood families. Bring your lawn chairs, blankets, etc. and enjoy an informal evening at Sellwood. 

Find us on social media!

Instagram: @sellwoodmiddlePTA



We're thrilled to kick off another exciting school year and invite you to join our year-long fundraising initiative --**Blue Bag BottleDrop**! Last year, Blue Bag BottleDrop contributed over $6,000 to our school, making a significant impact on our programs.

 **What's Blue Bag BottleDrop?** 
Blue Bag BottleDrop is a simple and effective way to support our school. Collect cans, bottles, or any deposit-marked containers in the Blue Bags provided. These bags are not only convenient but also versatile – use them at home, the office, sports events, or any gathering with bottled or canned beverages.

 **Easy Drop-Off Locations** 
No more waiting in line for payment slips! You can drop off your filled Blue Bags hassle-free at various local BottleDrop locations, including New Season's, Trader Joe's, and QFC.

 **Get Your Blue Bag** 
Pick up your Blue Bags at the Main Office or designated locations within the neighborhood. Look out for the SMS Foundation Board at the upcoming Ice Cream Social and Back to School Night – they'll be distributing Blue Bags and answering any questions you might have.

Let's make this year's Blue Bag BottleDrop program an even greater success! Thank you for your continued support in enhancing our school's opportunities and experiences.

See you at the Ice Cream Social and Back to School Night!



Here is a link to Sellwood Bus Routes In order to find your bus, you will need to click on the various bus routes and find the bus stop nearest your house, along with the pick-up or drop-off time.


Students with last names A-L: Mr. KB –

Students with last names M-Z:  Ms. Katie –


The best way to reach us is by email.  

  • Melissa Whiteside ( is our school secretary and registrar.  
  • Claire Howard ( is our principal’s secretary and bookkeeper.
  • Our Sellwood website ( has many “Quick Links” to help you immediately.   

The Office Phone Number

The office phone number is 503-916-5656.  

When prompted:

  • press 4 for Melissa;
  • press 3 for Claire 
  • press 2 for all Attendance matters. 
  • press 5 for Records, Registration.
  • press 0 for the front counter; however, students may answer this line.  Do not discuss anything confidential or leave any confidential messages.  

Secured Building 

  • Sellwood is a locked and secure building.  
  • Please ring the doorbell to the right of the main doors to reach the office.  We will guide you accordingly.

Parent/Student Requests:  

Please email both Melissa and Claire for student pick up or if you must get a message to a student.  For student pickup, advance notice is strongly recommended to minimize classroom interruptions. No early pickups/dismissals will be allowed after 3:30 pm.

Guides to Help you:

  • To access your student’s attendance in Synergy: Log into ParentVue. 
  • To make changes to your student’s registration in Synergy:  ParentVue/StudentVue

Please email Melissa Whiteside ( for:

  • Passwords:  If you have forgotten your password, have been locked out of your account, or do not have login credentials
  • ParentVue (if your account has been disabled).   

Please email Claire Howard ( for:

  • School Pay/Bookkeeping/accounting issues.
  • Administrative Support:  Messages or matters of support to the principal or assistant principal.


  • September 4: Labor Day – No School
  • September 12: Ice Cream Social 5 – 6:30 PM
  • September 26: Back to School Night 5:30-7:00 PM
  • September 26: PTA Meeting 7PM
  • September 27: Picture Day
  • October 4: Two Hour Late Opening
  • October 13: No School - Oregon State in-service Day
  • November 2: End of Quarter 1

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