Parents of Helen Keller Middle School students got a taste of middle school life during the HKMS’s back-to-school night. The annual open house was the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic that HKMS welcomed parents in person for the annual event.

About 400 parents attended the event, said HKMS Principal Steve Clapp.

“It was standing room only by the end. It was the first in-person open house in three years. A lot of parents hadn’t been in the school,” Clapp said. “It was nice to put faces to names. The pandemic has taught us that human-to-human interaction is better.”  

Parents spent the evening being middle schoolers. They followed their child’s schedule and moved from classroom to classroom to give parents a sense of their child’s “typical” school day.

Teachers from each class presented the curriculum and reviewed their goals for the year, and parents had the opportunity to meet secondary staff social workers and counselors. The HKMS’s Fine and Practical Arts ( FPA) team and other teachers presented on a wide range of subject areas, including art, music, physical education, health, as well as the school’s innovative STEM program. 

Parents and guardians were also entertained by the staff band  Raisin’ Helen, who kicked off the night with jazzy sounding vibes.  The playlist included “Sweet Home Helen Keller,” customized for teachers, school administrators and HKMS families. Parents sang along.

“The energy level was through the roof,” Clapp said.

Photos by Rick Falco

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