• April 30, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 4/30/2021
     

    Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS
    Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!

     

     
    April 30, 2021  
     

    Dear ACSD Community,

    As we prepare for the 2021 - 2022 school year the two of us have been meeting regularly to ensure a smooth transition of leadership and to continue to thoughtfully plan for the addition of the 6th grade to MUMS.  During April break we were able to meet in person and with the help from a few MUMS students and Kurt Broderson from Middlebury Community TV, we filmed a short video of the school to give families an opportunity to see our facility virtually.  Please follow this link to take a peek into the hallways of MUMS.

    During the next few months, we are eager to collaborate more and find ways to have Michael in the building to meet students and staff in person.  In addition, we are excited to host our incoming 6th and 7th graders to MUMS on June 2nd.  See you all soon!

     

    Andrew Conforti, MUMS Interim Principal 
    Michael Dudek, MUMS Incoming Principal

     


     

     


    Move Up Day

    Move up day for incoming 6th and 7th graders is June 2nd. 

    More details to come.

     

    Language and Literature

     

    The study of Language and Literature at MUMS is grounded in a conceptual and inquiry-based approach to learning.  Thus, as students read and analyze short stories, poetry, drama, novels, a variety of nonfiction texts, and film clips, they continually explore overarching questions related to meaningful and relevant topics. Within each unit of study, students have elements of choice and opportunities to direct their learning.  Between 6th and 8th grade, students will incrementally gain essential skills as writers, speakers, and thinkers, strengthening their ability to communicate with the greater community.

     


    Literacy Intervention - SOAR

     

    Next year at MUMS Literacy Intervention will have two full time teachers, one licensed in English/Language Arts and a Special Educator. The Literacy interventionists will work with students who require targeted literacy instruction through scheduled classes, literacy assessment and progress monitoring, targeted intervention and consultation with families, teachers and teams.

     


    Language Acquisition

     

    Language Acquisition (French & Spanish) is an integral part of the IB Middle Years Program (MYP) at MUMS. The study of additional languages in the MYP provides students with the "opportunity to develop insights into the features, processes and craft of language and the concept of culture, and to realize that there are diverse ways of living, behaving and viewing the world." 

    6th grade language acquisition classes will explore both languages to inform students’ choice of which language to  study for the duration of their MYP years.  7th and 8th grade language acquisition classes focus on communication skills, reflection and exploration of our own and other cultures, multi-literacy skills and attitudes, and international-mindedness. In the MYP, there are multiple phases of language; students in 7th grade will begin in Phase 1 of their chosen language, and will continue studies in this language through 10th grade (or beyond, if they so choose). Students must stay in their chosen language until they have reached a level of proficiency. Proficiency is defined by the successful completion of a Phase 4 world language course.

     
     
    Student Ambassadors

     

    The Student Ambassadors came out of a merge between our Student Council and the Pride Panel at MUMS three years ago. Students are nominated by other students noting how they demonstrate IB Learner Profile traits. Teachers from each team choose 4 students to represent their team. It is a one year commitment and facilitated by MUMS teachers Jan Fraga and Sara Nadeau. 

    Student Ambassadors are the voice for their team. They are also ambassadors representing the student body. They meet regularly to bring up concerns and plan school-wide activities.  Over the last few years our student ambassadors have coordinated fund raisers, planned assemblies, brought concerns to our administration, addressed the school board, and have helped on numerous projects.  They just completed a successful fundraiser selling MUMS sportsware to promote school pride and help fund student activities at MUMS. They are currently helping to plan a schoolwide MUMS Survivor adventure for the end of the school year. 

     


     
    New Website for Incoming Students
    For Students by Students
     
    The 8th grade students in Jan Fraga’s Design class have been working on a website for our rising 6th and 7th graders to help students and their families learn about MUMS.  They created chatbots to share information on topics that they were worried about before they came to MUMS. They have posted answers to questions they received from students and started to post infographics about specific locations around MUMS.  We hope information posted on this website will help answer some of your questions. There will be more bots and infographics added by students as the quarter progresses.  Check out their website by following this link.
     

     

    MUMS Staff Members

    2021 - 2022


    Denise Bérubé-Mayone
    Language Acquisition
    Teacher

    Bonjour! I’ve been teaching French in Vermont for several decades, after teaching at private schools in my native Maine and in Massachusetts. Language Acquisition is such a critical component of not only the IB curriculum, but also of any solid and rewarding 21st century education. Sharing my knowledge of French and of French-Canadian language and culture as well as my love of travel are my true passions, and there is simply nothing else I’d rather do! To hear my students speak (and sing!) in French is incredibly rewarding to me. Our special school is about to embark on a new adventure! I’m sure that our new 6th and 7th graders will nicely complement our awesome 8th graders, making wonderful contributions to our already vibrant culture. Bienvenue!
     
     
    Eileen Sears
    Language and Literature Teacher


    I have been a Language and Literature teacher at MUMS for 16 years, and I live in Cornwall with my two children, Erin and Lachlan, and my husband, Bjarki, who teaches at the high school. I love the MUMS community! It's welcoming, supportive, and full of awesome learning opportunities. What's neat about these opportunities is that they don't just exist within the walls of our classroom. They extend out far beyond it, into our own lives, our experiences, interests, mindsets, and backgrounds. What makes our school excellent, in my opinion, are the many chances we have to share these different parts of ourselves with each other. This helps us all grow. Hence, my advice to you: Don't be afraid to use your voice here. We want to hear who you are and what you have to say.

     

     
    Connie Mosquera
    Language Acquisition Teacher
     

    ¡Hola a tod@s! Bonjour à tous! Hello everyone! I am thrilled to be part of the MUMS community after two years of being a PYP Spanish Teacher at Mary Hogan, Weybridge, and Ripton Elementary Schools. I am looking forward to continuing my journey with the incoming 6th grade students and meeting all of the new and old members of the MUMS Community. I started my teaching career as a third grade ESL Teacher in several bilingual schools in Cali, Colombia, where I come from. After that, I moved to the UK as part of a program sponsored by the Colombian Government and the British Council to give opportunities to Colombian teachers to experience new learning and teaching techniques and methods used in public schools in the UK. I have been fortunate to travel, live and work in rural and urban areas in Central and South America, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and Southeast Asia. In the years working as a Spanish teacher, I have taken great advantage of this position to show my students how rich and diverse the Spanish-speaking community is, around the world and in the United States. Next year, I will be in a position where I will not only continue doing this, but I will also be introducing students to the richness and diversity of the French-speaking communities around the world. I am truly excited to be part of the new 6th grade adventure!

     
    Dana Cray
    Literacy Intervention Teacher

    For the past twenty-three years, I’ve had the privilege of being a teacher of literacy (in one form or another), with the last fifteen of those years at MUMS. If you walk into my classroom while I am teaching, you can tell that I absolutely LOVE middle school students and think they are the BOMB! I truly believe that middle school students make everything in life simply awesome!  Students who have had me over the years will tell stories of me teaching while standing on tables and sharing my love of learning! You should believe those stories because they are not lies! Even though I have high expectations for my students, we manage to have fun in my room each day. For the last four years, I’ve enjoyed being the Mosaic Language and Literature teacher; I've loved every minute of making memories with and providing instruction for Mosaic students. Even though these years have been terrific, I have decided to return to teaching Literacy Intervention for the 21-22 school year. I am super excited about this teaching position because I get to share my love of reading, writing, and thinking with my students in a way that places emphasis on process, strategy, and growth over time. What’s better than literacy and middle schoolers? NOTHING! I’m looking forward to meeting you all!

     

     
    Martha Santa Maria
    Language and Literature Teacher


    I am a native Vermonter and a National Board Certified Teacher of English who loves working with adolescents. Since Fall 2000, I have been a classroom teacher and a designer of several recognized inquiry-based summer programs, like "Shark Tank Start-Up" and " Wild SCIde" with expert colleagues at MUMS.  Learning alongside my students brings me joy and challenges my professional practices.  I look forward to more hands-on learning experiences in 2021-2022 and welcome all the new students to the middle school.

     

     


    Laura Hall
    Language Acquisition Teacher

    My name is Laura Hall. I am one of the Spanish teachers at MUMS. I finished the graduate program MATESOL in 2011 at Saint Michael's College. This is my sixth year teaching at MUMS, and I love working with the great staff and colleagues at school. I am very excited about welcoming the sixth and seventh graders into the school program. This will be a great experience for all of us. I can't wait to see the returning students that will start eighth grade for a fun and successful year together.  

    Barbara Collette
    Literacy Intervention Teacher

    I began teaching as Special Educator in Salisbury Community School in 2010 and moved to the Middle School in 2013. Four years ago I shifted to the Literacy Intervention role. I feel so fortunate to work on literacy skills with middle school students, there's never a dull moment and it is so much fun to see our students learn and grow as readers and thinkers. I am so looking forward to seeing our new and returning students next fall!
     
    Sandy Celauro
    Language and Literature Teacher

    I have taught middle school English Language Arts for 15 years, and I have been a Language & Literature teacher at MUMS since 2018. While I am passionate about reading, writing, and sharing ideas in an effective way, I am equally excited about middle school students. As grade 6 joins this wonderful learning community, we all embark on this new adventure together. 
     

    Frequently Asked Questions


    Can students participate in more than one after school activity at MUMS? 
    Yes, many students participate in multiple activities after school.  If there is a conflict between two activities, students can work it out by talking with the club leader or coach.
     

    Will both breakfast and lunch be available?
    There will be several choices for students to choose from daily for both lunch and breakfast.  Breakfast is available in the cafeteria before teacher advisory each morning and lunch will be served in the cafeteria during three separate lunch blocks (one per grade) in the middle of the day.  To learn more about lunch at MUMS, check out the Lunchroom Chatbots made by 8th grade students in Design class.
     

    When will students receive their schedule? 
    Schedules will be mailed to students in early-mid August.
     

    When will students learn which teacher they will have for their Teacher Advisory?   
    Students will learn who they will have for their teacher advisor when they receive their schedule in early-mid August.
     

    How does drop off and pick up work? 
    Families enter the drop off and pick up line by driving along the route marked in red.  Students can be dropped off and picked up along the sidewalk.

     

     

    MUMS Questionnaire


    The MUMS Questionnaire is still open.  Please take a few minutes to complete this questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.
     

    Virtual Tour


    Take a virtual tour of MUMS by following this link.

     

     
     
     
    Comments (-1)
  • April 9, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 4/9/2021

    Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS
    Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!

     

     

    Dear ACSD Community,
     

    Many of you have asked about student visits to MUMS. ACSD 5th and 6th graders will visit MUMS during a move up day in June. During move up day students will tour the school, learn more about their teachers, and their day to day schedule. We are still coordinating with Elementary Principals and will share specifics about this soon. All incoming sixth and seventh graders will also attend a half day new student orientation on August 24th, so please mark your calendars.  During the orientation students will have the opportunity to meet students in their Teacher Advisory, do some fun activities, practice moving between classrooms by attending an abbreviated schedule, try out their locker, and say hello to friends.

    The example schedule shared during the town hall meeting last week is included in this communication with further details to address questions that arose during and after the meeting. We hope this information provides further clarity on the MUMS schedule next year and how it works.  If you have further questions, please feel free to add them to our questionnaire.  Your feedback has been very helpful in developing our transition communications.  

    If you weren’t able to join us at the town hall meeting, this MUMS Town Hall Meeting recording is posted on our website along with the presentation slides Welcoming 6th Grade to MUMS.pdf.  We are thrilled with the turnout and your continued interest in learning about MUMS and supporting all of our students!


    Best Regards,

    Andrew Conforti            
    MUMS Interim Principal    
     

     

    MUMS SCHEDULE
    2021-2022 School Year



    These MUMS Example Schedules will give you an idea of what the school day will look like for MUMS students next year.

     

    A Few Notes About the Schedule

     

    "A"/"B" Days:  MUMS classes will run on an "A" Day/"B" Day schedule, meaning students will attend each of their classes every other day. (If the schedule on Friday was an "A" day, the schedule the following Monday will be an "B" day.)

    Schedule on Wednesdays:  The length of class time on Wednesday each week is slightly shorter than on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday to allow for extra time in the morning for an extended Teacher Advisory.

    Lunch:  
    MUMS will have three grade level lunch blocks daily - each grade will attend a lunch block that is separate from the other two grades.  Students can use a portion of their lunch to go outside and be active, attend the library, attend restorative lunches, and possibly join lunch groups through guidance and/or SEL groups.

    Flex Time:  All students will have two “Flex Time” blocks in the middle of the day.  Flex Blocks will be supervised by the students grade level teachers and students will have a variety of opportunities that include but are not limited to band and/or choir, outdoor time with peers/class, math/literacy intervention, special education services, grade level team activities, and/or study hall time.  

    What I Need (WIN): WIN consists of 2 learning sections/opportunities for students to access grade level instruction by trimester that includes Skillz4Life and Media Literacy.  The additional section during a WIN block will be fulfilled with personalized learning that provides flexibility based upon what students need at the time. The WIN block is divided into two shorter blocks so students will have the opportunity to participate in more than one option during a WIN block time.  Some of the additional options include music lessons, student interest groups, exploratory classes, Guidance Counselor time, intervention services in Math and Literacy, Advanced Math, direct instruction from Special Educators, academic support, or study hall. 

     

    Class Size:  Class sizes will be approximately 20 students per class based on a grade level size of 120 students.

     


    MUMS WELLNESS PROGRAM


    Welcome to the MUMS Wellness Program! During a student's 3 year journey here, they will progress through a combined health and pe curriculum that promotes health and physical literacy. Our students will experience class in a variety of learning environments, including our extensive outdoor grounds, our state of the art gymnasium and a teaching classroom conducive to safe and standardized learning.

    Our philosophy here in the Wellness program is to develop students that make healthy and safe choices while enjoying a wide variety of physical activity. Some examples of these fun activities include Nutrition, First Aid, Geocaching, Skateboarding, Pickleball and Lifetime Recreational Activities. We foster an environment that is social and collaborative. We are incredibly excited to welcome our incoming students to the Wellness Program and looking forward to the 2021-2022 school year!

     

     

     


    Middle Years Program (MYP)

     

    MUMS is a special place, and it often feels like just as students arrive here, we blink and it's already time to transition them to the high school. It's exciting to add another year to our MYP because it will give students three solid years at MUMS, where they will have access to subject-specific experts. MUMS teachers have been planning all year to readjust and align a middle school curriculum that includes 6th graders, and we are already seeing how the effects of this move stand to strengthen our entire 6-12 curriculum sequence for students.

    Like in the PYP, MYP courses revolve around units of inquiry that prioritize hands-on learning, real-world experiences and explicit skill instruction. The main difference is that while PYP units are transdisciplinary (encompassing all subjects in one unit), MYP units are subject-specific. Instead of having one unit of inquiry at a time (like in the PYP), students will engage in 4-8 units of inquiry per year for each class they take at MUMS. The MYP offers the following courses: arts (visual arts and general music), design,  individuals & societies,  language acquisition, language & literature, math, science, and wellness.   

    There are three aspects of the MYP we would like to highlight: collaboration, skill development and "Service as Action." 

    Approaches to Learning (ATL): The Approaches to Learning are specific skills that are written into our units and explicitly and implicitly taught in classrooms. These skills fall into 5 big categories: Communication Skills (exchanging ideas through written and spoken opportunities); Social Skills (interacting and collaborating with others); Self-Management Skills (organization, reflection and managing one's state of mind); Research Skills (information and media literacy); and Thinking Skills (creative, critical and transfer thinking). 

    Collaboration: At MUMS, teachers are collaborating in academic departments to create a thoughtful 6-8  program for each subject. They are also working with colleagues of other subjects to design interdisciplinary units. Interdisciplinary study is an important aspect of the MYP, as it invites learners to consider how their learning can be transferred from class to class (and beyond).  

    Service as Action: In the MYP, service is seen as another opportunity for students to apply their learning outside the walls of the classroom. This might be something as simple as sharing new ideas at the dinner table; however, it could also mean taking action through broader  opportunities. Some examples of Service as Action from our current MYP units include sampling watersheds and sharing the data with local river watchers; organizing  public awareness campaigns on important topics, and writing letters to elected officials. 

     

     

     

    MUMS SPORTS AND CLUBS

     

    MUMS strives to provide athletic and activity programs which excite and challenge students.  The programs function as an integral part of the MUMS learning environment.  The athletics and activities offered at MUMS promote dedication to excellence, hard work, self-discipline, teamwork, self-control, citizenship, physical, mental and emotional growth.

    The values and attitudes learned in the athletic and activity programs enhance what the students learn in the classroom and help contribute to the complete education of the individual.  


    We are excited to be able to offer both athletics and activities to our sixth grade students.  Our goal is to have every student at MUMS participate in at least one sport or after school club during the school year.

     

    MUMS SPORTS

     

    All MUMS students will be able to participate in organized sports, some will be offered at MUMS and some 6th grade opportunities will be offered in partnership with Middlebury Parks and Recreation.  It is very important to us that our students have a positive experience when they participate in sports.  For many, this will be their first time trying out these activities.  MUMS has been collaborating with the high school, Midd Parks and Rec, and other Vermont Athletic Directors to help determine which programs it would be developmentally appropriate to combine sixth grade athletes with the 7th and 8th grade athletes while at the same time providing a positive experience for participants.  Several factors were considered in determining which sports will be offered at MUMS and which sports will be offered in partnership with club programs.  Some of the considerations include:

     

    • Would it be safe or developmentally appropriate for a 6th grader to participate in the athletic activity with an 8th grader?

    • Do we anticipate having enough student interest to support a separate 6th grade team and if so, are there other schools with 6th grade teams within Vermont that are not too far away for our students to play?

    • If we combined the 6-8th grade would we create a situation where all players would have little to no play time due numbers?

    • Will we have gym/field space available, access to coaches, and adequate numbers to field a team? 

    • Is there a club program that is accessible to our students after school that would offer a better experience?

     

    Fall sports sign ups occur during the first week of school and practices start shortly after.


    Fall Sports for 6th Graders 
    Field Hockey (Combined 6 - 8) 
    Soccer (6th grade team)
    X-Country  (Combined 6 - 8)

    Winter Sports for 6th Graders  
    Basketball (Middlebury Parks and Rec.)
    Gymnastics  (Combined 6 - 8)  
    Wrestling  (Combined 6 - 8)

    Spring Sports for 6th Graders
    Baseball (Club*) 
    Lacrosse (Club*)
    Softball (Club*) 
    Track & Field  (Combined 6 - 8)
     

    *We anticipate these sports will be in partnership with club programs located in Middlebury that our students can walk to after school. Details and decisions are still being worked out and this is subject to change.
     

    MUMS CLUBS
     

    All MUMS students are encouraged to participate in a variety of clubs offered after school.  Clubs typically meet once or twice per week after school and many run throughout the school year. Students can participate in more than one club.  The clubs offered each year are flexible depending upon the interests of the students and the availability of leaders.  Students are sent an email with information about the club and directions on how to sign up electronically. Students will have an opportunity to learn more at the beginning of the school year and information will also be shared with students during daily announcements when new clubs are offered.
     

    Past Clubs Offered at MUMS

     

    Art
    Composting 

    Creative Writing
    Gaming
    Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA)

    GeoBee
    Mathcounts
    Memory Book

    Social Justice
    Student Ambassadors
    Theatre 

    Tiger TV
    Unified Bocce

    Unified Basketball
    Xtreme Winter Running

     

     

    MUMS Staff Members

     


    Kristen Carra 
    Wellness Teacher
     
    I have been a PE teacher in the district for 5 years, and teaching at MUMS for one year. I'm excited to teach Health and welcome new and former students to the middle school. I look forward to seeing everyone in person next year and introducing new activities and units!
     
    Isabel Gogarty
    Wellness Teacher


    I am finishing up my first year at MUMS as well as my first year as an educator. I am one of three Wellness teachers here at MUMS and I am so excited for the 2021-2022 school year. This coming school year, I will be the 7th grade Wellness teacher. Current 6th graders, I am excited to meet you! On top of teaching Wellness at MUMS, I am apart of our SEL (Social and Emotional Learning Team). 

     

     
    Justin Martelle
    Wellness Teacher
     
    I am excited to welcome back our returning students as well as the 2 new grades! I am entering my 9th year at MUMS as a Wellness teacher. The first 8 years at MUMS I taught just Physical Education, but I am excited to announce that with our new Wellness approach I will be teaching both Health and Physical Education to all 8th graders. I am looking forward to seeing the school full of all the new faces!
     
    Sara Stevens
    Administrative Assistant


    Welcome!!! I have been working at MUMS as the Administrative Assistant in the Guidance Office for 2 years. The best part of my days are when students stop by just simply to tell me about their day and ask about mine! I look forward to next school year when our hallways will be filled again with students hustling to class while conversing and laughing with friends. I hope you stop by Guidance from time to time and say hello!!

     

     
    Shelley Harrison
    Administrative Assistant


    I started my MUMS adventure in 2001. I am currently the Administrative Assistant to the Assistant Principal/Athletic Director and absolutely enjoy what I do. My main focus is activities and athletics. I believe these extracurricular activities add some very valuable lessons beyond the classroom. I am optimistic that all of us will return as one large group in August! I am eager to have our current 7th graders return for their 8th grade year and I know they will be as enthusiastic as I am to welcome the 6th and 7th grade students to MUMS! Each new school year offers us so much opportunity and excitement. I will be ready to see the daily smiles, friendships and learning as I hear the sound of chitter chatter, pencil strokes and bouncing basketballs beyond the office walls. Enjoy the sunshine of summer and I will see you all in the fall!

     


    Courtney Krahn
    MYP Coordinator

    I taught English/language arts at public and private schools in Vermont and Wisconsin for 8 years, before joining the MUMS team in 2012. For the past five years, I have worked with the ACSD Teaching & Learning Team at both MUMS and MUHS as a curriculum coordinator. One part of my job that I especially love is seeing our students start at MUMS, grow, and transition to the high school. In their 10th grade year, students design an independent inquiry on a topic of their own choosing called the Personal Project, which I also coordinate and oversee. I am SO EXCITED about the units of inquiry that our teachers have been designing for students this year, and it will be an honor to watch our 6th, 7th and 8th graders come to MUMS and help bring those units to life. MUMS is a special place! 

    Kandy Kinne
    Administrative Assistant
     
    I am the Administrative Assistant to the Principal at MUMS.  I have worked here for 30+ years and have enjoyed every single year I have been here.  I've been through different transition processes throughout my time here starting with moving from what was Middlebury Junior High School, located at the High School, to Middlebury Union Middle School on 48 Deerfield Lane.  I am excited to have the 6th graders in our community join our team and be a part of the MUMS Family.  
     
    Pam Stearns
    Administrative Assistant

    This is my 5th year at MUMS working as the Administrative Assistant to Finance.  As well as working with the finances, I'm also involved with many aspects of the everyday operations within our main office.  I've seen lots of changes happen within our school and our district over the past few years, and am excited with this new change in welcoming our incoming 6th grade students to MUMS!  I'm looking forward to a wonderful year and meeting you all.
     

     

    Frequently Asked Questions 

     

    How are the students’ 6th grade team determined? 
    Each grade at MUMS next year will be one team, so all sixth grade students will be on the same team.  Similarly, all 7th grade students will be on one team and all 8th grade students will be on one team.
     

    Are there opportunities for students to be with their friends? 
    There are multiple opportunities for students to see their friends during the school day.  Sixth grader students will be changing classrooms as shown in the schedule in this communication.  The make up of students in each class will be different from class to class, so they will see different sixth graders throughout the day.  All sixth grade students will attend lunch at the same time in addition to attending flex block classes together. 
     

    Do sports start before the school year? 
    Fall sports practices at MUMS start shorly after the first day of school.
     

    What is the cell phone policy at MUMS?  
    MUMS expects all cell phones to be turned off and kept in school lockers during the school day.  They are permitted to be used after dismissal.
     

    My current 5th grader did not play an instrument in elementary school and is interested in band for 6th grade, will this be a problem? 
    All MUMS students who would like to play an instrument can participate in the band.  Every year we have students who have not played an instrument before attending MUMS learn a new instrument.  We will be offering music lessons during the WIN block next year. 


    MUMS Questionnaire


    The MUMS Questionnaire is still open.  Please take a few minutes to complete this questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.
     
     
    Past MUMS transition communications can be found on our website at https://www.acsdvt.org/Page/6434.
    Comments (-1)
  • March 26, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 3/26/2021 8:00:00 AM

     

    Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS
    Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!

      

    Dear ACSD Community,

    Happy Spring!  We appreciate the feedback we received in our MUMS Transition questionnaire.  Many of the answers to questions we received have been addressed in this newsletter and we will continue to address your questions and concerns in future communications.  It is not too late to send us your questions, the questionnaire is still open and we would like to hear from you.  

    We look forward to meeting with parents of incoming MUMS students during the Town Hall Meeting on Tuesday, March 30 from 5 - 6 pm via this zoom link.  This is an opportunity for all families to learn more about MUMS classes, schedule, sports, after-school activities and more!  We will also have the opportunity to address your questions.


    Best Regards,


    Andrew Conforti            
    MUMS Interim Principal    
     

    MUMS STAFF

    2021-2022 School Year

     

    Language and Literature
    6th - Eileen Sears
    7th - Sandy Celauro
    8th - Martha Santa Maria

    Math
    6th - Jennifer Billings
    7th - Jan Broderson
    8th - Alison McNamara

    Individuals and Societies
    6th - Darcy Annino
    7th - Sara Nadeau
    8th - Brian Lisko

    Science
    6th - Amie McCarthy
    7th - Katie McDougall
    8th - Janelle Perry-Askew

    Wellness (PE and Health)
    6th - Kristen Carra
    7th - Isabel Gogarty
    8th - Justin Martelle

    Special Education
    Cassie Santo
    6th - JT Henley
    7th - Jim Robinette
    8th - TBH*

    Language Acquisition (World Language)
    6th - Constanza Mosquera
    7th - Laura Hall
    8th - Denise Berube-Mayone

    Guidance 
    6th - Illana Brett  
    7th - Darcey Wijsenbeek
    8th - Lauren Daley
    Art
    Lisa Maggio

    Music/Band/Choir
    Rob DeBruyn
    TBH*

    Design
    Randy Barnes

    Media Specialist
    Katie Ford

    Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Coach
    Liam Battjes

    Literacy Interventionists
    Barbie Collette
    Dana Cray

    Math Specialists
    Paul Cherrier
    TBH*

    Paraeducators
    Alex Nicosia
    Whitney Barber
    Wendy Brouillard
    Stacy James
    Helyn Anderson
    Gretchen Cole
    Phoebe de Noronha


    *TBH - To Be Hired




     
     

     

    A few highlights on MUMS Classes Next Year


    We will have one team of teachers for each grade. 

    MUMS students will have the same team of teachers for 6th and 7th grade, the teachers will loop with their classes.

    6th grade students will take both Spanish and French.  At the end of 6th grade, students will commit to one language and will continue studies in this language through 10th grade (or beyond, if they so choose).

    All MUMS students will rotate through Art, General Music, and Design classes taking one class per trimester each year.

    We are in the process of hiring staff to fill a few more MUMS staff positions for next year.  We will update this document with up to date staffing information as it becomes available.

    We will be sharing more details about MUMS classes in future communications!


     


    MUMS SCIENCE PROGRAM

     

    With inquiry at the core, the Science Department aims to guide you to independently and collaboratively investigate real world issues through research, observation and investigation. In science class, you will ask questions, solve problems, construct explanations, design and perform investigations, and evaluate evidence to make data-driven conclusions. 

    During your time at MUMS, you will engage in many investigations that help you better understand the amazing world around you. Some of these explorations include designing solutions for reducing impacts from human activities on the environment, analyzing data on bee traits to increase honey and fruit production, and evaluating your dream car based on safety, performance, and environmental impact. 

     

     

    MUMS Staff Members

     

    Amie McCarthy
    6th Grade Science


    I have been a Science teacher at MUMS for almost 6 years now. 

    Next year I am really excited to incorporate living models of different biomes into the Ecology unit. We will use these models and complete many hands-on activities and investigations to explore ecological concepts, learn how humans have impacted the environment, and how humans can help to reduce these negative impacts on the environment at both a local and global scale.

    I am very much looking forward to meeting all of the incoming 6th and 7th grade MUMS students as well as welcoming back the 8th grade students! The Science teachers at MUMS have so many exciting hands-on learning activities planned for each grade level!   

     

    Katie McDougall
    7th Grade Science

     

    I have been a Science teacher at MUMS for 7 years now. I coach the girls basketball teams (& sometimes a girls soccer team) and help lead our MUMS compost club.

    Next year I am really excited to reframe our matter units to include applying chemistry to real world applications in materials science. Our 7th graders will also be exploring heredity and the impacts genetics has on the declining bee populations and therefore honey and fruit production.

    In the fall, I am excited to welcome back our 8th grade students, and meet all of our new 6th and 7th graders, as our MUMS community continues to grow!

     

    Janelle Perry-Askew
    8th Grade Science


    This is my 25th year of teaching 7th and 8th grade science at MUMS!  I am fortunate that I get to share my passion for science with middle school students.  I am looking forward to building new relationships with kids this new school year and sharing my nerdy science jokes with them.  I am excited to help students continue building a foundation of science knowledge and inquiry skills that look at how and why things work they way they do in the world around them so that they can apply this knowledge to their every day lives and make good decisions.  

    To our returning students, you rock!  You did such a great job with PRIDE (positive attitude, respect, integrity, dynamic behavior, and empathy) in this most challenging of times.  It's you who makes MUMS such a wonderful community of learning.  I will be teaching you physical science and I will make sure the "force is with you!"  To our new incoming students, a BIG WELCOME!  You are going to have fun making new friends and learning new things.   

     

    Gretchen Cole
    Paraeducator
     

    Next year will be my 4th year at MUMS. I have been a Paraeducator for 14 years, including 10 years at Mount Abe in Bristol. I am excited to welcome 6th Graders to our MUMS community. I look forward to a safe and lively year!

    Stacy James
    Paraeducator


    I have been a paraeducator at MUMS for 8 years now and before coming here I did childcare in my home for 19 years. I am excited about the sixth graders joining us next year and having new team names! Looking forward to seeing our returning students as well as meeting new ones too!

     

    Whitney Barber
    Paraeducator


    I have been at MUMS since 2006 as a paraeducator. I am so excited to be welcoming the 6th graders to our school, as well as hopefully returning to a regular school schedule. Let’s make it the best year ever!

    Phoebe de Noronha
    Paraeducator


    I have been working at MUMS for three years. My first year was as a student teacher getting my license to teach Art and Theater. My second and third year have been working as the assistant to the SEL leader in Zone 109. One of the things I'm most excited for in the 21-22 school year is the opportunity to grow as a community and focus on our social and emotional wellbeing.

     

    Alexander Nicosia
    Paraeducator


    This will be my fourth year being a Paraeducator at MUMS in the Addison Central School District.  I was a substitute teacher in ACSD for two years prior and have been teaching Theater and Acting in Vermont for a total of 6 years now. I am looking forward to new adventures after this pandemic is over when life can get back to normal. 

    I am extremely excited to meet and get to know the new students arriving at MUMS. New MUMS students, just remember during your time here at the Middle School: "Little by little one walks far." - Peruvian Proverb

    Wendy Brouillard
    Paraeducator
     

    I have been working in the ACSD district for over 30 years, I have played many roles during this time. I began working here as a one on one paraeducator, worked in a diverse classroom, and I was also a classroom paraeducator. My current role is a classroom paraeducator on the Paragon Team.

    I am excited to be welcoming the new sixth graders to MUMS as I feel its going to be a challenge for some, but it will be exciting to be a part of the new change to the MUMS community. Welcome sixth graders!

     



     

    MUMS Town Meeting


    March 30th
    5:00 - 6:00 pm

    Learn more about MUMS next year

    Rising 6th, 7th, and 8th grade families are welcome to join

    Principal Michael Dudek will also be joining us to introduce himself and say hello

     

    Please join us by following this Zoom link.

     


     

    MUMS Grade Level Team Names

     

    MUMS Student Ambassadors have been surveying MUMS students and ACSD 5th and 6th graders to help name our 6th, 7th, and 8th grade teams as we will be retiring our current team names at the end of this school year (Mosaic, Ohana, Paragon, and Phoenix).   So far, places around the world, constellations, and trees are the top three choices for themes.  Once students have decided on the theme the team name development will be going to teachers to consider team names. This has been a lot of fun!

     



    Frequently Asked Questions

     

    What time is drop off and pick up?

    Students arrive between 8:00 and 8:15 am.  Dismissal is at 3:15 pm.
     

    What are the teaching certification implications of moving the 6th grade to MUMS?

    6th graders at MUMS will have a team of teachers with a different teacher for each subject area.  All 6th grade teachers at MUMS will be licenced in appropriate grade level/subject areas. 
     

    Will our family be able to take an in-person tour of MUMS? 

    We are hopeful that as the COVID guidance changes, we will be able to have families visit our building.  We will keep you posted.


    Will MUMS return to full time classes in the fall?

    We certainly hope so!  Ultimately, we have to follow state guidelines, but from what we know, things look promising for us to be able to return to fully in-person classes this coming fall or before!

     


    MUMS Questionnaire


    The MUMS Questionnaire is still open.  If you haven't already done so, please take a few minutes to complete this questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.
     
     
     
     
     
    Comments (-1)
  • March 12, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 3/12/2021

    Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS
    Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!

    MUMS Word Art
     
      
    Dear ACSD Community,

    This week MUMS is excited to welcome our newest addition and next Principal, Michael Dudek! Michael brings a wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm to MUMS, and we look forward to everyone meeting him soon. 

    We are in the process of scheduling Town Meetings for parents of incoming 6th and 7th graders.  The first of these meetings is Tuesday, March 30 from 5 - 6 pm via this zoom link. Similarly, I will be visiting ACSD elementary schools to meet with students in 5th and 6th grade to talk about MUMS programs for next year and answer questions. I will be attending Mary Hogan's MESA meeting March 18 at 7:30. There will be multiple opportunities for both parents and students to attend these meetings, and I look forward to getting to know all of you as we prepare for the 21-22 school year.

    This week we are sharing the MUMS floor plan to help the community see how we have intentionally grouped grade level teachers and classrooms to maximize an intimate team atmosphere. Having our 6th and 7th graders on the second floor helps support students' developmental needs and minimizes unstructured interactions between our oldest and youngest students.

    We hope you can take a few minutes to fill out our questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.

    Best Regards,

    Andrew Conforti            
    MUMS Interim Principal    
     
    Michael Dudek

    Welcome Michael Dudek

    2021-2022 MUMS Principal

    It gives me great pleasure to be joining the Middlebury Union Middle School community as your Principal.  During the interview process and having the opportunity to meet so many of you already, it is apparent that this learning community fully supports one another.  The students at MUMS are eager to return to school to learn and grow, staff members are ready to welcome children back into their classrooms, and families and community members are ready to support all of us in providing the best possible learning experiences that will now host grades 6-8.  

    I do realize that this grade configuration is new to everyone, but I am excited about this opportunity for all of us.  With change, comes opportunity.  With opportunity, comes new experiences and personal growth.  As we begin to prepare for a new and exciting school year, it is my goal that together we will celebrate one another and build upon all that MUMS has to offer.  I am also excited to work with all of you to reflect on and identify additional opportunities to enhance students’ experiences to ensure positive and valuable outcomes.

    To date, the MUMS team has been thoughtfully planning for our transition to a 6-8th grade learning community. I look forward to working with them to establish and continue to build a culture that supports all learners.  I am particularly excited to delve into specific systems and structures that have been put into place including teacher advisories, a new trimester schedule, a “What I Need/WIN” block, and a “Skills 4 Life” course emphasizing social and emotional learning.  

    Additionally, the members of the Addison Central community have worked tirelessly to become an authorized IB World School District.  We will engage in deep reflection and collaboration as we continue to grow our unique and forward-thinking school and district.  Equally important, I am eager to meet all of our students, staff, parents and community members.  We may first be introduced through a virtual ZOOM call, but that will soon transition to in-person meetings!     

    Go Tigers!
     

    Music Notes
    MUMS MUSIC PROGRAM

     
    At the heart of the MUMS community is the MUMS Music Department. Our music students have the opportunity to develop music literacy, learn rehearsal techniques, and create beautiful music. Music ensembles at MUMS foster a sense of teamwork, community, and dedication. Over 50% of the MUMS community is involved in a music ensemble. Students are able to participate in concert choir, concert band, and jazz band. Choir and band will be divided by grade level, and depending on the size of the ensembles, they will meet daily or every other day. We hope that all students consider being part of our ensembles and look forward to the 2021-2022 school year! 
     

    MUMS Music Teachers


    Elizabeth LeBeau

    Elizabeth LeBeau
    Choir

    Welcome to MUMS! The music department is thrilled to have you involved and a part of our musical ensembles. We look forward to creating, performing, and getting to know you!   There are so many things to look forward to in the 2021-2022 school year: full-time school, creating music together, in-person events, new students, and staff joining the MUMS community. 
     
    At the young age of twenty-one, my teaching career began at Fair Haven Grade School and Benson Elementary. My roles included beginning band, elementary general music, chorus, and enrichment coordinator. After a few years, I decided to explore outside of Vermont and moved to Sommers Point, NJ. I worked in an elementary school with 2000 students. 
    In the summer of 2001, a friend notified me that Middlebury had a choral position open, and I applied. As a native of Addison County, I knew that I wanted to raise my family in the beautiful state of Vermont and decided it was time to move home. After twenty years, I have never regretted that decision. Throughout the journey, I have been eternally grateful for my many mentors, colleagues, students, and the ACSD community.

     


     

    Rob Debruyn

    Rob DeBruyn

    Band

    To the incoming 6th and 7th graders: Welcome to MUMS! I can't wait to make music with all of you, and I'm so excited to meet new people!  To the returning 8th graders: Welcome back! With so many new students in the building, I'm looking forward to watching all of you step into the role of student leaders. It's your job to help the newcomers feel comfortable, and to show them what it means to be part of the MUMS community!

    After a brief stint teaching band and choir in Fall River, Massachusetts, I came to work at MUMS and have been the band director ever since! I have been conducting the concert band and jazz band for the past 8 years, and have been teaching general music classes for the past 4. 

    I am so excited to welcome 6th grade to MUMS! I can't wait to work with all three grades, and I'm looking forward to meeting twice as many students as usual next year!  

     


    Music image
     
    Audio Recordings of Past MUMS Performances

     

    MUMS Choir Concert 

    MUMS Band Concert


     

    MUMS Floor Plan

    Click on floor plan to view larger image.

     

    MUMS Town Meeting


    March 30th
    5:00 - 6:00 pm

    For parents of incoming 5th and 6th graders
     
    Please join us by following this Zoom link.
     

     

    Questionnaire


    Please take a few minutes to fill out this questionnaire to help us better understand your questions and what information would be helpful to include in upcoming transition communications.
     

     
    MUMS Student

     

    Past MUMS transition communications can be found on our website at https://www.acsdvt.org/Page/6434.

    MUMS Pawprint

     

    Comments (-1)
  • February 26, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 2/26/2021
    Welcoming the 6th Grade to MUMS
    Our Transition to a 6 - 8th Grade Learning Community!
    MUMS Word Art
     

    Dear ACSD Community,

    MUMS could not be more excited to welcome our 6th through 8th grade students to the 2021-2022 school year. We have been thoughtfully planning this long anticipated transition and can not wait to embark on new beginnings for an exciting school year.  At MUMS we believe in being a team, and we support each other accordingly. Our teams range from being a part of the entire school community as a MUMS Tiger, to being part of a grade level team, to being part of an intimate Teacher Advisory (TA). 

    Transitioning to anything new comes with all kinds of thoughts, feelings, and questions. We are confident we have the people and systems in place to support all of these things and most importantly we will support all of our students.  

    As we embark on this journey together we welcome you to always reach out as we are here to support all members, and believe our ACSD community is an integral part in supporting us and supporting all students. We hope you find the information below to be informative and will be sharing more details regularly to keep you abreast about the coming year regarding the specifics on academics, Social Emotional Learning (SEL), music, art, design, community partnership, sports, extra curricular activities, and getting to know our staff. 

    We look forward to offering the best possible educational experience that our community has come to expect and we are excited to move us forward as an IB world school. 

    Sincerely,

    Andrew Conforti
    MUMS Interim Principal

     

    Teacher Advisory (TA)


    Teacher Advisories have been the foundation of membership at MUMS for many years and will be extended to include students in 6th grade next year.   Each TA is made up of a faculty member and 5 - 10 students within the same grade level.  The purpose behind this small group is to ensure that all MUMS students, staff and families have a trusted cohort and to provide support and build community.  The TA faculty member will act as our students’ and families “point person” for questions, concerns, or celebrations that may arise over the course of the year. Students will have a 30 minute extended TA weekly so staff and students may come together and build meaningful relationships and to support each other to create a fun and engaging experience. 
     
    MUMS Lockers

     

    Trimesters


    The MUMS school year will be broken up into three trimesters (approximately 13 weeks each) during the 2021-2022 school year.  The change to trimesters will give us more flexibility with our class schedule to ensure students may experience art, music, and design classes during the school year.  

     

    Block Schedule and Classes


    MUMS classes will run on an "A" Day/"B" Day schedule, meaning students will attend each of their classes every other day (2 - 3 times per week).  Each student will take the following classes:
     
    • Math
    • Science
    • Language & Literature
    • Individuals and Society
    • Wellness (P.E. and Health)
    • Language Acquisition 
    • Art, General Music, and Design class (one trimester each)
     
    In addition to taking the classes listed above, students will have a “What I Need” (WIN) block every other day.  WIN is a personalized learning section that provides flexibility on how students use this block of time based upon what they need at the time.  This is in addition to our IB curriculum so that no student misses out or has to choose one thing over another as we value inclusion for all. We are very excited to be able to offer this flexibility to our students. Some of the options students will have during this block of time include: 
     
    • Skills 4 Life Class (see article below with more details about these new classes)
    • Music lessons
    • Media Literacy
    • Student interest groups 
    • Exploratory classes
    • Guidance Counselor time
    • Intervention services in Math and Literacy
    • Advanced Math
    • Direct instruction from Special Educators
    • Academic support or Study Halls
     

    New Skills 4 Life Classes


    At MUMS our Social and Emotional Learning team is developing 3 classes that will focus on different Skills 4 Life. 

    For 6th graders, who are entering a new level of development, we are inviting them to “Rock, Water, Light and Air.”  This class combines the IB Learner Profile with the Circle of Courage, a program based on the wisdom of First Nations.  “Rock” represents the places we stand strong, skills we are learning and how we can stay grounded.  “Water” invites us to be flexible in our thinking and caring toward others.  “Light” inspires us to reflect the colors of our personality and be reflective on how we are doing.  “Air” is the invitation to take a breath and manage our emotions.  These are all basics, because we are all made up of Rock, Water, Light and Air.

    For 7th graders, we are encouraging them to take a step in leadership development through “Circle Up, Don’t Spiral Down.”  This class is built upon restorative practices and circles of courage.  We will touch on communication skills and then empower students to participate in and lead important conversations.  These conversations may address big social issues (anti-racism or climate change) or important interpersonal issues (micro-aggressions or cyber bullying).   The ability to have a constructive conversation to deal with issues facing our community is the basis of Vermont town hall meetings and the foundation of a healthy democracy.

    Finally, for 8th graders we are exploring “Living with my Brain.”  This class focuses on neurology and psychology, giving students practical vocabulary and strategies for doing their best thinking.  “Why do certain experiences trigger an emotional reaction in me?  Why do I have trouble remembering something I just read 5 minutes ago?  What helps me focus my attention?  What do you mean I have some emotional memories in my hippocampus?  There aren’t any hippos on the school campus!”  This class will give our 8th graders an understanding of how their brain works and prepare them for the challenges of high school and beyond.

     

    MUMS Teacher
    Comments (-1)
  • February 5, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 2/5/2021

    MUMS 6-8 Planning & Timeline

     

    The purpose of this timeline is to map a way forward through MUMS 6-8 Planning and to communicate clearly and consistently with all stakeholders   While this plan envisions welcoming all 5th and 6th grade students and current 7th grade students back to full time schooling in August of 2021, the work outlined here will be equally critical to being responsive and prepared as we transition from the pandemic.  

     

    Our MUMS focus is on extending a kind and caring welcome to all students and families, social emotional well being, academic needs, and data-driven decision making.  These priorities are essential to realizing our goal of IB for all.  We will emphasize inclusive instructional practices and ensure that we continue to build robust systems in place to support success for all students. To communicate and implement action steps that align with our values, we would like to invite you to be a part of this process.  

     

    The timeline below maps out our direction and with what we currently see as critical planning.  We look forward to meeting you in upcoming welcoming meetings to answer any questions and collect your input as we take steps forward.

     

    We want to share a sneak peak of the work of our students in Design class who have been making bots for our rising 6th and 7th graders. We look forward to sharing these information bots with our Elementary peers once they all are finalized. 

     

    Here is a sneak peak of Ethan's Chatbot courtesy of MUMS Design Teacher and Student Ambassador Advisor, Jan Fraga.


    MUMS 6-8 Planning & Timeline

    Planning Timeline

    Comments (-1)
  • January 22, 2021

    Posted by Andrew Conforti on 1/22/2021

     


    Welcoming 6th grade to MUMS!

     

    We are excited as we prepare for the 2021-2022 school year at MUMS.  This is the first of many updates to come regarding our transition to a 6-8 learning community. We look forward to sharing information with you about MUMS’ school, staff, and services as we embark on this journey and welcome you to join us in this exciting transition! 

     

    MUMS

     

    Getting Grounded: This Fall MUMS staff spent some time reflecting in depth on 4 questions.  1.)  What do I do?  2.)  How do I do it?  3.)  Why do I do it?  4.)  Why do I do it here at MUMS? We took the words they used to describe our values, purpose, and passion for teaching and learning and created some word art to support the grounding of our work.  As you read these words above, you will begin to understand the genuine and authentic nature of who MUMS teachers are and the gifts they bring to your children when learning. We are honored to be a part of this team and we are excited to welcome you all to join us soon!

     

    Laying the Foundation:  In planning MUMS 2021-2022 remodel, we started our work at the foundation. Faculty and leaders have been streamlining and enhancing current systems of support for students and staff. We continue to review our strengths, challenges, and implications for the finalization of any targeted focus.  

    Laying our foundation has included work around:

    • Staffing for the 2021-2022 School Year 
      • Next year MUMS will consist of three grade level teams, each staffed for Math, Science, Language & Literature, Individuals & Societies, Language Acquisition, Physical Education/Health, and Guidance. We will also have our mixed team spanning across grade levels including Design, Art, Intervention, Music, and our Librarian. The assignments of these teams will be finalized following the hiring process.  
      • Hiring for Principal, Design, Literacy Interventionist, Language Acquisition (World Language) and Guidance (In Process).
    • Student/Staff 21-22 Schedule/Model 
      • January 11, 2021 the Addison Central School Board approved the MUMS new model which will be voted on for budgetary approval by our community in March.
      • Teachers and administrative colleagues are reviewing the model to support this iterative process of finalizing details.
    • Building 6th grade curriculum in the Middle Years Program (MYP)
      • Staff and administrators are collaborating on curriculum scope and sequence for 6th grade in the MYP.
      • Curriculum planning for the MYP includes collaboration with elementary staff and MUHS staff as this impacts our k-12 pace, sequence, and purpose.
      • Team collaboration in weekly data team meetings to support IB unit lesson planning.
    • Community outreach and engagement
      • The Community Partnership at MUMS held its first meeting in January, and plans to meet monthly to build meaningful connections with families and to promote community partnership to support all stakeholders. Please let us know if you are interested in joining this effort.
      • Middlebury Parks and Recreation - Meeting with leaders to discuss how we might partner with them to maximize opportunities for students participating in sports at MUMS along with possibilities to supplement and balance opportunities with recreation.
      • Mary Johnson Children's Center - Meeting with leaders to discuss how we might partner in supporting summer programming opportunities for students transitioning to MUMS.
      • Addison Central Teens - Collaborating with leaders on supports and opportunities for our students.
    • Student Ambassadors 
      • Planning celebratory activities for memorializing current teams, and welcoming new students starting this spring.
      • Colorful corridor competition to recognize and celebrate our four current teams.
      • Students in Design class are working on bots to share with 5th and 6th grade students this spring to introduce them to MUMS and share information in fun and creative ways.
      • Taking the lead on a plan that will include our current 5th and 6th graders in naming our new grade level teams.

     

     

     

     

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