Pony Express – Week of May 22



Dear Mustang Families,

We have many ways we are celebrating our students this week. Show your #MustangPride this week supporting our theatre program, spring band concert, spring art show, spring orchestra concert, 7th grade mock trial, and 8th grade Graduation Dance. Be sure to check out our calendar on the school web page. Our students love to see you at their event supporting their passions.

Many of you will see the upcoming long weekend as a chance to re-charge before the last two weeks of school. Our students have worked hard and do need to take time to relax and enjoy time with family and friends. I am also hopeful this Memorial Day weekend you will have a chance to reflect and honor those who have served and died for our country.

Make it a great week! If you have a question, concern, or celebration, please don’t hesitate to send me an email, call, or stop by.

Marlo Malott
O. Henry Middle School
(512) 414-7100

Library News
Sadly, it’s time to return all those O. Henry library books. ALL student books are due on Monday, May 22. Please encourage your children to return their library books on time. Students who fail to return their books or pay for lost ones will not be able to attend end-of-the-year field trips and activities.

Tuesday, May 23, all O. Henry students who participated in the Bookspring Readathon and raised at least $3, which buys a new book for a low-income child in Austin, are invited to a special lunch in the library served by Chick-Fil-A. O. Henry readers raised more money than any other area middle school for the Readathon. Way to go, Mustang Readers!

Summer reading is around the corner, and even though the physical library is closed, we offer three ways for students to check out books online for FREE: Overdrive, MackinVia, and MyOn. For instructions, go to the home page of the O. Henry Library website: http://www.ohenrylibrary.com

Austin ISD 5 Book Dive!
In addition, all Austin ISD students are challenged to read at least FIVE books over the summer. There are two lists your kids may choose from to get ideas. Still, please know that we believe in free choice for all of our students as it leads to the habit of lifelong reading.
Here are the middle school and high school lists. Many of our students may want to choose off the high school list.



Happy Summer Reading!


The State of Texas vs. Lee Harvey Oswald
Our 7th grade Texas History Pre-AP students have been working very hard this six weeks preparing a mock trial of the assassination of President Kennedy. Everyone is welcome to attend one or more of these student led trials. Be there when Lee Harvey testifies! Be in the room when the jury deliberates! Be on the edge of your seat waiting for the verdict! The trials will take place almost every class period on Wednesday and Thursday this week in the library and the classroom. Please email Mrs. Cook if you have any questions: casi.cook@austinisd.org

Wednesday Trials
1st period 8:25-10:01- Mr. Scott (library)
3rd period 10:05-11:41- Mr. Rueter (rm 106)
5th period 12:19-2:00- Mr. Scott (library) Mr. Rueter (rm 106)
7th period 2:04-3:40- Mr. Scott (library)

Thursday Trials
4th period 12:19-2:00- Mr. Rueter (rm 106) Mrs. Cook (library)
8th period 2:04-3:40- Mr. Rueter (rm 106) Mrs. Cook (library)

Field Trip to Main Event on Wednesday, May 31st.
Field trip forms and a fee of $32.00 need to be turned into 7th grade science teachers as soon as possible. Scholarship forms are also available through science teachers. Thank you!!! Please contact your child’s science teacher for questions.

8th Grade UPDATES and NEWS

8th grade Science Movie – the 8th grade will be watching the PG-13 movie “Contagion” this week to conclude our disease unit in the Science classes. If you would prefer for your child to not watch the movie, please email his or her Science teacher. Here is a link to IMBD Parental Guide: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1598778/parentalguide.

8th Grade Class Trip: Schlitterbahn 2017
The Bus Lists have been posted on the 8th grade hallway for the 8th Grade Class Trip to Schlitterbahn. On Wednesday, May 31, students will go straight to their assigned bus at 8:25am. Students can wear their swimsuits on the bus as long as they are appropriately covered, but they should bring a change of clothes for the ride home. Students should bring a towel and any spending money they might need; however, lunch is included in the cost of the trip. We will return to O.Henry at 5:30pm. Please email Mr. Shack at michael.shackelford@austinisd.org if you have any questions about the trip!

How can you help?

The 8th Grade Graduation Dance:

We are looking forward to celebrating the 8th graders at the graduation dance. This year’s theme is The Emoji Ball! We hope all 8th grade OHMS (only) students will put their best face forward for this app-venture! Students may wear either casual or their Sunday best, just be ready for fun. The event is free and will take place Thursday, May 25th @7:00pm-9:00pm. Thank you to the many parent volunteers who help make this event possible for our 8th graders.

Please consider signing up to help decorate, chaperone or help with snacks/drinks at: http://signup.com/go/iXzainW Please email Jenkolerich@gmail.com with any questions.

We are getting to the final countdown!!! Graduation is less than a month away!!! We have now raised about $7,000! Please thank our generous donors that are listed on the O. Henry website! We only need about $3,000 more!!! With over 300 8th grade families…we know that we can reach our goal! No contribution is too small, and we are striving for 100% participation!! Please consider donating now because we are already purchasing the many items needed to make it a very special celebration for our children. You may send in a check or donate online (see link below).


  • 8th Grade Graduation Dance:
    Thursday, May 25th, 7:00-9:00 PM, OHMS
  • 8th Grade Assembly & Luncheon:
    Thursday, June 1st, 10:00 AM, OHMS
  • 8th Grade Legacy Gift to OHMS

Thank you in advance for your participation. Please contact Dana Kocurek with any questions at danakocurek@gmail.com.
See: http://ohenrypta.org/8th-grade-donation/

Yearbook Sales at Lunch
Yearbooks are still for sale! The Hoofbeat staff will be selling yearbooks on the stage during 6th, 7th and 8th grade lunch on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday next week for $48 dollars. Students may bring cash or a check made out to O. Henry Middle school. Make sure to get one before they sell out!

The Yearbook Staff will be creating the End of Year Videos and we need photos of 6th, 7th, and 8th graders! We want to include photos from special events, parties or after school activities. If you have a fun photo of your student that you would like to appear in the video, please submit it to: francesca.simonite@austinisd.org with the student’s grade level in the subject line.


O. Henry Round Up Carnival 2017
Friday, September 29th
5:30pm to 8:30pm
Round up your friends and family for a fun evening of booths, games, tasty food & middle school dance! More information coming in August…

The Austin Council of PTAs is creating a mentoring program. O. Henry’s parent volunteers have a wealth of knowledge, earned by working with other parents and schools. We are looking for people to share that knowledge with PTAs that are just getting started, or PTAs that are working to expand what they do.

Please consider sharing your experience and skills to help another school grow stronger! If you think you might be interested, please complete an online interest form to let us know more about what you have to share and how you would like to share it.

DONATION NEEDS—Enrichment Update and NEWS
O. Henry Makerspace Enrichment students are building an augmented reality topographic map sandbox and we need 120-140 lbs of kinetic sand for this project. Please contact Alexis Smith or Andrew Walch if you have kinetic sand to donate to this project. Thank you!

Students will have the chance to learn and work with our interactive topographic map in science classes in 2017-2018.

Interactive topographic map from a sand box! – Watch or Download

Young Adult Community Workshop
Teens 11-18 can build their résumé while learning and participating in the “Leave Your Mark” Community Art Workshop. Students will enjoy hands-on learning about the mosaic process and help with a City of Austin and Cap Metro public arts project, while learning about the art making of the Huichol Tribe and Capula pottery makers. Please visit Camp Director Wanda Montemayor’s website to see some of her previous projects and camps: http://communityarttherapy.com.

Students can earn community service hours while making a lasting mark in the community. Campers will make tiles and cut glass for this large community art project, becoming a part of Austin’s art history. The workshop will include one community day when campers will help to lead a workshop, and share what they have learned at the camp, at the Senior Activity Center in South Austin. The workshop will also include a day when campers are encouraged to invite family and friends to come make tiles. This camp will focus on leadership and community art. Parent volunteers are welcomed and encouraged throughout the camp.

Camp Director Wanda Montemayor, LPC/S/AT ATR/BC, is a Registered Art Therapist and has taught art in the Austin community for 17 years.

Dates: June 19th-June 22nd
Times: Monday, Tuesday and Thursday camps will meet from 9:00am-12:00pm
Wednesday 21st 9:00-11:00
Fee: $100 Snacks provided. Please bring refillable water bottle.
Location: Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday @ O. Henry Middle School, 2610 W 10th Street
Wednesday, June 21st – South Austin Senior Community Center
3911 Manchaca Rd, Austin, TX 78704 Meet at the center
Deadline: Registration deadline is June 1st

ATX Court Sports Summer Camp
When: June 12-15th
Where: O. Henry Gymnasium
Time: 9am-12noon
Who: Grades 4-8
What: Conditioning, Footwork, Teamwork, Confidence, Volleyball Skills and Knowledge (email about Basketball)
Coaches: Lisa Lindberg and Kristine Kobs
Email: lisa.lindberg@austinisd.org
See attached flyer

Great news! The Rough Rider Sports Camps are once again offering a Football/7v7 Conditioning Camp and Basketball for students to help improve their conditioning and coordination all while having some fun! Please see attached flyer and get registered as soon as you can!

Come and join Coach McKey and Coach Richter for some summer fun!
Football/7v7 Conditioning Camp: July 31st – August 3rd 8am-11am
Basketball Camp: July 31st – August 3rd 12pm-3pm

Health Clinic Update- attention incoming 7th graders
All sixth graders going into 7th grade need a meningitis shot and a Tetanus booster for entry into 7th grade. Letters have been sent out to those that do not have proof of these immunizations. These immunizations are due the first day of school and we are encouraging parents to just these immunizations now and not wait until summer is almost over.

Spring Break 2018: Washington D.C. and New York City
It is not too late to sign up for next year’s Spring Break Trip! Current 5th-8th graders and their parents are allowed to sign up! Information, Cost, and Sign-ups can be found at http://www.efexploreamerica.com/tour-website/1935333WB.

Please email Mr. Shack at michael.shackelford@austinisd.org if you have any questions!

LOST but not yet FOUND

Please send your student to the lost and found on the stage in the cafeteria to check for any lost items for the year.

BOND Update- Input and support
We want to make sure that as many folks as possible understand what will be included in the bond for O. Henry and have the opportunity for feedback.

AISD_Bond Planning_Austin HS Vertical Team Combined_FINAL may 16.pdf


Academic Excellence Fund
Since 2011 our O. Henry community has rallied to support staffing for the upcoming school year through the Save Our Teachers campaign. Over the years the contributions to the spring fundraiser have declined while our fall Round Up fundraising has grown. We have been asked by our families and community to consider consolidating our fundraising efforts. We think this is the right time to make this change.

If your financial plans for this spring included a donation to Save Our Teachers, we urge you to still make this contribution to support our newly broadened emphasis on Academic Excellence at O. Henry. All spring contributions will be credited towards 2017 Round Up. To donate, please click here.

Mustang Mall Volunteers
We are looking for new volunteers for Mustang Mall!

Mustang Mall is a kiosk in the lunchroom where we sell school supplies and little trinkets, scented erasers, perfumed hand sanitizer, locks, mechanical pencils and much more.

We have a limited number of openings for lunch shifts. This is a once-a-month commitment of an hour and a half (11:40 AM to 1:10 PM depending on lunch schedule next year), where you and another volunteer work at the kiosk. It’s a fun opportunity to see your child and his or her friends at lunch. (Incoming sixth grade parents, this can be a great way to see how your child is doing.)

We will fill the lunch shifts on a first-come, first-serve basis, so please submit your information as soon as possible if you would like to volunteer.

Next fall, we are also going to open Mustang Mall more often during breakfast. The breakfast volunteer commitment is once a month from Sept – Dec, from 7:45 AM to 8:10 AM, when the cafeteria is open for breakfast. We have more availability for breakfast shifts than for lunch so if you don’t get a lunch shift you might consider working one morning a month. This is quick volunteer gig and could be a fun time where your child and their friends can come buy supplies from you.

If you would like to volunteer, please use this link, Mustang Mall Volunteer Form, complete the information on the form and submit. Please indicate whether you are interested in lunch or breakfast, and include any notes regarding schedule conflicts. We will contact volunteers by email over the summer after we finalize a schedule and will have training in August for those new to the mall.​

If you have any questions, regarding Mustang Mall, please contact Karen Mauldin, kjmauldin@gmail.com or Jami Knause, at jamiculver@yahoo.com.

Austin High School Volunteer Opportunities
As the 2016-2017 school year winds down, we are busy getting ready for the 2017-2018 school year, and we need your help. Can you volunteer a few hours a month, a few times a month or even every week? This is a great way to get to know the inner workings of Austin High and it helps bridge the budget gap created by Austin High’s under-enrollment that prevents the hiring of additional employees. I invite you to join our volunteer team in working in the School Office at one (or both) volunteer positions.

Attendance Office Volunteer
Work alongside our fantastic attendance clerk Patty Ballin to sign students in and out, fill out tardy passes, and help with filing. The Attendance Office is always busy and these volunteers are of the utmost importance, in high demand and much appreciated by staff and faculty.
Volunteering in the Attendance Office at Austin High is a great way to get to know your child’s school better, gain insight into how it runs, and get to the know the faculty and staff who work with and mentor our children daily.

Phone Duty Volunteer – in the Main Office
Work in the main office answering and directing phone calls. This is a new opportunity for the 2017-2018 school year.

Volunteer Shifts
The shift times are either 8:30am -11:15am, 11:15am-2pm or 2pm-4:20pm. Volunteer monthly, weekly, whatever works with your schedule! We also need back up volunteers to fill in when someone can’t make their shift. Weekly (usually on Sunday afternoons), I send out an email reminding everyone of their upcoming shift as well as listing the shifts that need substitutes for the upcoming week.

Volunteer Training
If you are interested in helping, we have a 30-minute training during any of the shifts training alongside a previous volunteer (marked on the schedule with an asterisk). After that you are ready to go! If you ever have any questions, Patty Ballin and Linda Garcia will be there to help you out.

Sign Up!
If you would like to volunteer with attendance, please, check out our schedule of available slots with this link.

If you would like to help with answering phones, please, check out this link.

If you find a spot you’d like (or more than one) email to let me know and I will sign you up!
Thank you for your consideration,
Ali Clare aclare76@gmail.com

Parent Survey
Thank you in advance for participating in providing input about O. Henry Middle School. This is an exciting time as we embark on preparing our students for college and 21st century careers.

© 2011-2017 O. Henry Middle School
2610 West 10th Street, Austin, TX 78703 / 512-414-3229