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It is hard to believe that I am well into my 19th and final year here HBR and the 16th at HBRMS and yes, I know this means Mr. Edwards, Mr. Bastian and Mr. Jourdan continue getting older. We have a saying at the middle school that the staff gets older, but the students seem to stay and act like 11- to 15-year-olds this keeps us all young. From the time I began at HBR, I continue to describe our school and the entire district to people as a place that is very special and an honor to work for and with day in and day out. I am excited to be working daily with Mrs. Torman to ensure a smooth transition the school is in great hands.  I am very proud of our students, families, staff, and administrators coming together to build a great culture here at HBRMS. The teachers, staff, and I work and take great pride in building meaningful relationships with ALL our students. One of the ways we have some fun is by having a riddle or a short quote on our sign out front. One of the recent ones that was shared with me was Where do math teachers’ vacation?  Times Square! This year’s Elf on the Shelf was a lot of fun and received great responses from our students and families. Stay tuned I hear that there may be something in the works with Leprechauns coming soon.

 (Taking a break on Mrs. T's desk)

HBRMS Staff School Improvement 22-23:
To support our student’s social emotional wellbeing our staff, with the guidance of Mrs. Torman, has implemented Character Strong curriculum. The goal of the curriculum is to improve engagement, increase belonging, and promote well-being. Throughout the school year our staff members have been involved in trainings and worked on implementation strategies. The weekly activities with our students allow for important conversations about coping strategies and overall mental health in small group setting. Students have also led assemblies to bring the entire school together for some fun. The groups are also currently growing a hedgehog chia pet which have started to grow!

New 6th grade exploratory teaching students to go to the beat of a different drum:

It has been entertaining to watch and hear our 6th graders participating this year in music class with Mrs. Slater.  The class has been exploring, African drumming, playing bucket drums and boom whackers.  The focus is also on reading rhythms and playing together as a group.

It continues to be a privilege to work with all the parents, community members, staff, and teachers throughout the school year. I am going to miss this place and it will be hard to leave, I was born a Mendota Trojan became a Fighting Illini taught in the home of the Lamoille Lion and Northbrook Spartans, but I will always be an HBR Royal. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me with your questions and concerns.  We are always looking for way to improve and make our school better.

Thanks for all your continued efforts,  
Jeff Strouss
HBRMS Co-Principal