Great Falls Middle School


222 TURNPIKE ROAD MONTAGUE, MA 01354  Telephone (413) 863-7300  Fax (413) 863-0298

Christopher Barnes, Principal

Loren Messina, Assistant Principal


Dear GFMS Parents/Guardians,

On behalf of the teachers and staff of Great Falls Middle School, we welcome you to the 2023-2024 school year!  We hope that your family has had a relaxing and enjoyable summer and we look forward to seeing your students very soon.  At GFMS, we are excited to begin the year, and we look forward to working in partnership with you to ensure that our students can reach their highest potential. 

COVID Guidelines:

Students will not be required to wear masks.  All students are certainly permitted to wear masks, and parents and guardians will be making that determination with their kids at home.  Each family’s decision will be respected by all members of the school community.

Bus Transportation:

The bus routes continue to be finalized, and we will have them up on the website ( under the “parents” tab) as soon as possible.  There is no “sign up” for bussing, and students who attend TFHS and live at least 1.5 miles from school will be included in the bus routes.  The routes are being built according to our enrollment in each building, and once the routes are compiled, they will be posted on our website for families to view.  Late bus service may begin the second full week of school, but more information on that will be coming. 

Meals at School:

We are a CEP district (Community Eligible Provision) which means that all students at GMRSD will be able to participate in FREE meals for breakfast and lunch. This also means no eligibility applications are required by the food service department. Families will continue to have the option to put money on student accounts through Details can be found under the Parents tab on the district website. can be used for purchasing a second lunch, but we will no longer be offering la carte items. All students will receive a bar code for their lunches. HS students can put them in the plastic holder for their ID’s. The menus will be online for community members to view. 

Family Communication: 

We will continue to utilize PlusPortals to support home-school communication. All of our communication will be managed through PlusPortals, so please be sure that we have the most current email address and phone number on file so that you are able to receive all of our communication.  Parents can access PlusPortals by using the link under the Parents tab on the district website, or by going directly to the web address, which is If you need assistance in accessing your PlusPortals account, please call our main office at 413-863-7300. If you do not have internet access, please notify the main office so that we can provide you with paper copies of our communications. We will also be using our Facebook page and the website ( to post information, updates, and photos.  I will be in regular communication with families, and I would encourage families to reach out to me or Ms. Messina with any questions or concerns. 

School Supplies:

We will be providing supplies for GFMS students this year.   

Supporting Your Child:

While we recognize and admire that our students are progressing towards independence, guidance and support by both family and school staff is essential to their success.  To this end, please be sure that your child is on time and prepared for school each day.  We will be utilizing our automated telephone system to call the primary number listed for a student who is marked absent, unexcused, or tardy unexcused, each day before 10:00 a.m. Calls will begin in the second full week of school. If you need to report an excused absence, please call 413-863-7300. 

Please contact the school with any questions. We look forward to welcoming new students on August 31st.


Christopher Barnes                                                                            Loren Messina

Principal of Secondary Education                                                      Assistant Principal                                              



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