October 7, 2021

Dear DAA Middle School Families,

October brings a full school schedule for our students!  We have MAP testing underway, EXPO trips in a couple of weeks,  and all of the regularly scheduled activities that come along with middle school.  I am so impressed with our students’ attitude toward middle school and their academics.  We are very lucky to have such wonderful students in our care!

As the weather has begun to change, we are now able to seek out outdoor spaces during break, lunch, and classroom activities.  We understand that students (and teachers) need to have a change of scenery in order to help support their physical and emotional well-being.  As we do need to adhere to KHDA protocols, we are working with our teachers so students can have the opportunity to safely enjoy outdoor activities on occasion.

In addition to our outdoor activities, our lunchtime and after school activities have started!  We are thrilled to have so many students participating in activities from Junior Model United Nations to diamond painting to fantasy football!  This round of activities will go until winter break.  A new selection of activities will be offered for January.

Upcoming Dates

Upcoming Dates

For all events, click here for the K-12 Academic Calendar.

MAP Testing

We have finished our first week of MAP in the area of math and the students are doing very well!  We appreciate the perseverance and effort students have been putting forth.  This is a great opportunity for students to show what they know!  Our teachers will be using this data to help find areas of strengths and improvements with classes, small groups, and individuals to help every student realize their potential.  

Next week we will be doing Science and Language Usage MAPS during class time.  We will take our final MAP test in Reading during the week of Oct 24.  Please know that makeup tests for MAP will start the following week.

DAAPA Coffee morning

Thank you to those of you who were able to join us on our first DAAPA Coffee Morning earlier this week.  It was a great opportunity for parents to touch base with each other, DAAPA members, and the middle school leadership team about the great things happening in the middle school, and have some questions answered as well.  If you would like to learn more about DAAPA, get involved, or catch the next meeting, please follow this link!

expo 2020

We are so excited to let you know that our students will be attending EXPO 2020 this year with the school!  There are four different “journeys” that are available, and we have already booked three of them.  I would like to give a big “Thank You” to Felipe Sanchez and Barbara Hoyng for their help in getting this once-in-a-lifetime event scheduled for each of our students!

Prior to their respective trips, each CREW class will be presented with a set of slides that will inform their preparations for a successful trip. You can find a copy of the slides here. Please note that, depending on the group, your child may or may have not *yet* seen these slides. If you have any questions, you may initiate your queries via your child’s CREW teacher or our secretary Ms. Barbara Hoyng @ b.hoyng_daa@gemsedu.com.

Our first journey will be to “World of Opportunities” on the dates below:

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8

Oct 13/14 Oct 18 Oct 17


As you are aware, students have been coming home with an iPad agreement for you to sign.  The middle school is beginning the journey towards being an Apple Distinguished School, which not only means we will have iPads, but using that extra technology in order to enhance our learning.  Our teachers earned their first “Apple Badge” during our professional development time this past Tuesday.  Staff have recently been asked, with good reason, “why do students need two devices?”  The graphic below outlines the pros and cons of each device and, through teacher training, we aim to help students master the device and when it is best to use each.

Please know that we are cognizant of screen time as well, so having the iPad doesn’t mean that we’ll be doubling screen time.  It simply means that we will be using one device or the other, depending on what the activity calls for.  Having this option gives students agency in their learning and the ability to think critically about the medium they want to use to complete assignments.

Middle school staff directory

Would you like to contact a middle school teacher or staff member?  Please see the list of email addresses here.

slices cards

This week, all Middle School students received their Slice Catering Cards. For information on how to refill your child's account, please visit the Slices page or click here.

technical issues

If you are still having technical troubles, please make sure to raise a ticket if the teacher is unable to help your child with a fix.  Send an email to studenthelpdesk@gemsdaa.net and they will help resolve the issue.

I hope you all stay well,

Dr. Justin ReynoldsPrincipal, DAA Middle School

Counselors Corner

counselor's corner issue 5.pdf
10th October - Your Mindset Matters - End Stigma on World Mental Health Day - Dr. Farah.pdf

Legally blonde production

Want to audition for the CAST?

A reminder that this coming Sunday 10th October is the deadline for audition applications to be submitted if you are interested in being part of the cast for our combined Middle and High School Musical. Full details are available on the google slides.

Please read through all the information carefully, complete the application form and upload the required audition videos. 

Do you have what it takes to be in the BAND?

Mr. Holland is recruiting the finest musicians to join the ‘Legally Blonde’ band. The application process will require you to complete an introductory Google Form and upload a short recording. This application for audition closes at 3pm on Sunday, 10th October. The application form has been distributed via CREW but can be found here.

Interested in being part of the CREW? 

Set painting, costume designing, publicity, tech crew, props and backstage are all important roles behind the scenes. Crew sign up sheet is now open; please complete this google form


key contacts

MS General Email: 



Sonal Gandhi s.gandhi_daa@gemsedu.com / 04 704 9722

Middle School Attendance: 

msattendance_daa@gemsedu.com / 04 704 9728

Middle School Counselors

Grade 6 - Mrs. Christina DeMers - c.demers_daa@gemsedu.comGrade 7 - Mrs. Mira Nasr - m.nasr_daa@gemsedu.comGrade 8 - Mrs. Pushpa Dasari - p.dasari_daa@gemsedu.com
MS Principal: Justin Reynoldsj.reynolds_daa@gemsedu.com
Assistant MS Principal: Maggie Moffat Baxterm.moffat1_daa@gemsedu.com
Middle School Dean of Students: Sean McGarveys.mcgarvey_daa@gemsedu.com