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New Parent Transition

Getting Started at MHS

There’s a lot to do and learn before you send your child to Milton Hershey School for the first time. It can be a bit overwhelming. We’ll help you prepare for the first day and the first year.

Grandparents walking with grandson at MHS.

Before Enrollment Day

Before you arrive at MHS with your child, you’ll receive a welcome packet from the school. It will include everything you need to know, such as:

  • What items to pack
  • What forms to bring
  • Contact information for your admissions recruiter

After Enrollment Day

Once your child is settled in at their new home away from home, your primary contact will be their houseparent.

Parent Portal

During a recent enrollment day, Milton Hershey School houseparents visited with new students’ teachers and participated in a schoolwide technology showcase.The MHS Parent Portal is an online tool. It lets you see your child’s class schedule, assignments and grades, and more. You’ll also be able to submit visitation forms and buy bus tickets through the portal. You can log in to your account from a desktop computer, tablet, or smartphone.

You received your username and password on Enrollment Day—email us if you need help remembering them. Be sure to keep your contact information up-to-date so you continue receiving school communication.

Portal App for Parents

There is also a smartphone app to help you stay connected when you’re on the go. Simply download the app, then follow the steps to select Milton Hershey School.

A Milton Hershey School student gets a visit from his parent/sponsor.

Visiting Your Child During the School Year

Throughout the school year, you and your child will have several chances to visit each other. Your child can visit home during school breaks, long weekends, and a select number of overnight visits.

You also can travel to MHS to visit your child on campus during weekend visiting hours. Visits help you keep an active relationship with your child. They also show your child that you are committed to their education and success at MHS.

a child playing a clarinet

Events On Campus

While you’re visiting MHS, we encourage you to attend campus events. Spend special time with your child at sports games, performances, and family weekend activities.

Campus Walking Path in Fall

Off-Campus Worship

Families that would like their child to spend additional time in worship off-campus can request arrangements.

Fifth grade student with her mother.

Spartan Sponsor Blog

Many of our parents and sponsors have shared their stories of sending a child to MHS. They’ve been where you are today and know just how you feel.

a group of children posing for a picture

The Role of Houseparents

Your child will live in a home with a group of eight to 12 students in the same age range. The students are cared for on a day-to-day basis by a married couple. These houseparents become an important support system for your child during their time at MHS.

Spartan Sponsor Video Series

There are many ways to invest in your student’s MHS experience, and your support matters. When the school, students, and parents/sponsors work together, Milton Hershey School “works” for each child it serves. See how the four MHS Sacred Values connect to the role parents/sponsors play in this important relationship.

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We choose to be honest with our students but also want to be honest with ourselves. We’re asking you to do the same in all of our interactions so we can best meet your child’s needs together.

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Commitment to Mission

Although you may face some brick walls at MHS, they are very important because they show us how important what’s on the other side is. We’ll support you as you support your child.

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Mutual Respect

As a parent/sponsor, one of the most challenging things you can do value your child’s successes and failures equally. Mutual Respect helps you keep perspective.

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Positive Spirit

We ask our entire community to demonstrate this important characteristic as we partner in the success of each child entrusted to our care.

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An MHS student meets with a thought leaders in whole child care at the Health Center.

Health, Wellness & Daily Needs

MHS provides your child with medical, dental, mental, behavioral, and social work services while on campus. We also make proper nutrition and physical activity a priority.

Family Relations Team

The MHS Family Relations team helps parents and sponsors build a supportive relationship with the school. If you have a question about your child’s education or home life at MHS, please reach out to our team.

Main phone number (call/text): 717-283-2555

Jay Garvey

Family Relations & New Student Transitions Coordinator

Email Jay

Sarah Pearson

Family Relations & New Student Transitions Counselor

Email Sarah

Jodie Shillow

Family Relations & New Student Transitions Assistant

Email Jodie

Tools to Stay Informed

Emergency Alerts

Parents get access to voice and email alerts through our emergency system.

Weekly Email

The Network email keeps you informed of campus activities.

Parent Blog

Get tips to help you cope while your child is away at school.


We know you have lots of questions. We have the answers.

Bus Tickets

Pre-order tickets for your child to take a charter bus home for breaks and holidays.

Live Stream Coverage

MHS shares free live streams of MHS athletics through NFHS Network online.

Hotels Near Campus

You may want to stay in a hotel when you visit your child on campus.


You’re invited to attend events on campus, watch important events live online, or join us at a Spartan Family Network event near you.

Social Media

Follow MHS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube for stories, photos, and videos.

Milton Hershey School does not discriminate in admissions or other programs and services on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, sex, religious creed or disability. Read important MHS policies on equal opportunity and diversity, equal employment opportunity, and more.