October 4, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: October 4, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

I hope you will join the Milton Community at Celebrate Milton 2019 on Sunday, October 6th from 12-4 at Pierce Middle School. Celebrate Milton is an annual fall event run by a group of volunteers committed to bringing diverse people together from across the community.  At Celebrate Milton, there is music and entertainment, a food tent sponsored by the MHS Ski Team, children’s amusements, a silent auction and raffles, and a true sense of community. Celebrate Milton takes place rain or shine at Pierce Middle School this Sunday, October 6th from 12-4.  This year, I am thrilled to share that Tucker Principal Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai will be honored for her work as a Community Builder for her inclusive practices at 1:30 on Sunday.More information can be found on their website. We look forward to seeing you there!

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On September 27, 2019, all MPS faculty and staff, along with teachers and leaders from across the commonwealth, rose up at Milton High School and Raised the Bar on Teaching & Learning! Milton Public Schools’ first annual full-day professional development conference included an inspiring keynote speaker, Dr. Kenneth Wesson, four breakout sessions with 20+ incredible options for each breakout session, breakfast, lunch, and snacks!

More than five-hundred educators attended the event with ninety-six of them facilitating break-out sessions. The day was a huge success! Here are some quotes from MPS staff:

“I just wanted to say thank you for organizing such an incredible PD day. It allowed us to move around, collaborate with other staff across the district, and really tap into specific interests. It also gave a platform for those of us looking to grow and lead PD sessions in a small dose of 45 minutes instead of one giant 7-hour strand right away. So THANK YOU!!! the best PD day yet!”

“Thank you so much for one of the best experiences (besides being hired!) I have had at the Milton Public schools. The keynote speaker gave me a new outlook of my own classroom practice.”

“I just wanted to say a big Thank you for putting on the best PD ever. I felt inspired, sincerely. Thank you for all the hard work you put in to make this an absolute success. I feel so lucky to be part of this team of wonderful educators.”

“It was the best PD I participated in: so many choices, very good and very inspiring classes.”

“I really got a lot out of today’s PD. For all those that made it happen – great job!!! It was really well done and such a meaningful professional development!”

Thank you to our Professional Development Day organizers AJ Melanson, Ben Kelly and Amy Tom. This day was the success that it was because of your creativity, hard work  and commitment to this day of learning.

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The PARENT Speaker Series is pleased to present PARENT University on Thursday, October 17th from 6-8:40pm at the Pierce Middle School. PARENT University is a series of short educational and skill-building workshops for parents and guardians that cover a wide range of topics. Workshops focus on promoting the academic and social and emotional well being of children and teens. We offer a variety of workshops in one evening, each lasting just one hour and each workshop offered twice-back to back.

The evening will begin at 6:00pm in the auditorium at the Pierce Middle School. The first session will begin at 6:30pm. The second session will begin at 7:40. Click here for course descriptions. Click here to complete course selection registration.

Childcare is available. However, space for childcare is limited. Registration is required and can be found on the registration link above. Children must be of school age and toilet trained to access childcare. If you have any questions or need additional information, please email Family Outreach Liaison Marti O’Keefe McKenna  or 617-980-7343. I would like to thank Ms. McKenna, our MPS Family Outreach Liaison for her work on bringing this “first of its kind” evening to the Milton Public Schools.

MILTON GOES GOLD

It is safe to say that our 1st annual Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness was a success! Our goal was to raise awareness and funds and show support for children who are battling cancer and thanks to huge community support, those goals were achieved. How did we GO GOLD?

  • You donated GOLDOur schools had GOLD boots in the main offices for two weeks and students and staff donated change – and LOTS of it! We are thrilled to report that thousands of dollars were raised through the GOLD boots. This money will be donated to Wicked Good Cause and the Michael C McHugh Fund.  For “Milton Goes Gold ” the MHS Key Club ran a successful donation drive to support the One Mission Resource Room at Boston Children’s Hospital. Key Club members decorated collection boxes, made posters, promoted the collection drive and collected items at the MHS football game on Friday night. MHS nurse Kim Coughlin suggested the Key Club create a Milton Goes Gold Amazon account, with a donation wish list. As a result of these efforts, the Key Club received bags of donations and over 100 boxes and packages. The Pierce Middle School community also collected over 100 items for the One Mission Resource Room. Items collected include colored pencils, paints, craft paper, puzzles, electronics, fleece blankets, hats, pajamas, phone chargers, legos and more. All items donated will go to patients and patient families who need to stay at the hospital for an extended period of time. The One Mission Resource Room serves as the hub or ‘living room’ for families and patients who are staying for 45 days or more. Their website says “Whatever it takes to get kids through cancer” and Milton Public Schools is grateful to support such an important effort. The Key Club and Pierce thank everyone who donated to this amazing cause!
  • You gave blood – more valuable than GOLD100 pints of blood went to Children’s Hospital from the town of Milton last week between the two blood drives! These donations have the potential to save 400 children’s lives. Thank you for your overwhelming support of the blood drives.
  • You raised GOLD for our charities!Through a series of lemonade and bake sales (many of them spontaneous) almost $1500 was raised for charity!
  • You wore your GOLD1000 pair of GOLD shoelaces could be found all over Milton last week! Go Gold day on Thursday, September 26th was a big success with GOLD found throughout all of our schools. Pierce teacher Millicent Hartgering shared that when she went to Joann Fabrics to buy gold material to make accessories for the teachers to wear on Go Gold Day and mentioned what she was doing, they discounted most of the material, and another customer who heard what she was doing insisted on paying for her entire purchase. Milton Goes Gold definitely spread to other communities!
  • You played for GOLDIn addition to being a great game, the MHS Football game on Friday, September 27th was a big hit for Milton Goes Gold with money raised, swag sold and awareness for childhood cancer gained. The Pierce Volleyball team held their Go Gold game the day before and played for specific children they knew who have been impacted by childhood cancer.
  • You cheered for GOLDSome of our brave students who have been deeply affected by childhood cancer spoke to their fellow students about their disease. Students were respectful audiences and cheered on their classmates.

Thank you to MPS staff and families, Athletic Director Ryan Madden,  the Town of Milton, the Milton Fire Department, the Milton Police Department, the MHS Key Club, the Milton School Committee, the McHugh Family, the Serpa Family, the Albanese Family and the Kociol Family for an amazing year one of MiltonGOES GOLD!

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES 

Oct 9 No School – Yom Kippur
Oct 14 No School – Columbus Day
Oct 16 Milton School Committee
Oct 17 PARENT University – Pierce Middle School
Oct 23 Early Release Day
Oct 27 MFE Monster Dash
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV.  The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, October 16th at 7pm.

HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

MHS teacher Kay Kelley shares that Milton High celebrated the fourteenth year of cultural exchange with Sakae Higashi High, of Japan this past week. This year five hundred Japanese students with their teachers arrived on thirteen buses to meet new friends, share cultures, and practice their English language skills. MHS students prepared for their arrival for an entire month. Some planned and coordinated the event while others volunteered to be an ambassador, and bought gifts for their visiting friends.

Gift giving is part of the Japanese culture and Milton students have adopted the Japanese tradition and make sure they have a gift to present to their Japanese students. Once Sakae students met and exchanged gifts with their Milton ambassadors, the entire student body was invited to the fieldhouse for an assembly. The assembly started with the MHS chorus singing the National Anthem. Representatives from both schools gave speeches and the MHS marching band performed, Moanin’ Mambo, Libertango and Maritza. The Japanese gymnasts performed Mass Games and their cheerleaders also presented.

When the performances were complete all students traveled to classes and lunch together. Teachers included the Japanese students in the curriculum for the day. In Ms. Gonzalez’s Spanish class, Ms. Gonzalez asked questions to the Milton students in Spanish and they translated the questions into English for the Japanese student. When the Japanese students answered in English, the Milton students translated the answer to Spanish to report back to the teacher.

Many students still communicate with Japanese students from years past. Senior Sara McDonnell, one of the student leaders of the program this year, is still in contact with the student she met her freshman year. This year Sarah was elated to meet the younger sister of her exchange student from freshman year!

At the end of third lunch the MHS students shared contact information and said goodbye to their new Japanese friends. The Japanese students boarded their buses and continue their tour of the United States. Milton High is the only school these students visit on their American tour.

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Fall has officially hit the Gile Road Preschool Program! Last week we learned all the parts of the Apple and worked on spelling out our fall words with playdough.

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The MHS Earth Club celebrated Climate Action Week with a Milton Climate Strike on Friday, September 27th. Students and community members met at Milton High School and walked to Town Hall to gather and listen to a speech by MHS senior Maggie Haley.  The event promoted environmental awareness and a call for sustainable practices in our community.

PIERCE PAGES

Our Pierce 8th graders spent the morning this week at Milton High School today, for 8th grade Step Up Day. Students gathered in the auditorium to hear from Mr. Jette and Director of Guidance Karen Cahill before leaving on a school tour facilitated by MHS student leaders. Students visited the activities fair in the field house and spoke to dozens of MHS students who represented their clubs and teams. The energy level in the field house and halls of MHS was high and we look forward to welcoming these 8th graders to Milton High School next September!

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Pierce 6th graders  visited the Starlab, and the Pierce library to use computers and work on character analysis connected to the novel Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly that students are reading in English class. The Starlab is similar to a planetarium and enables students to look at celestial objects. Upon entering the star lab, students were able to view the zodiac constellations. They were told some of the Greek Myths associated with each constellation and were given information about which constellations we can see in the night sky right now.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS 

Glover 2nd graders  in Mme. Cardiasmenos’ class are hard at work reading and responding to text through discussion and writing. This activity is part of the Gafi curriculum that focuses on building the foundational blocks of French Literacy. The importance of engaging in discourse before writing is highlighted throughout this lesson.

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International  Walk to School Day is a global event that involves communities from more than 40 countries walking and biking to school on the same day. Our elementary schools participated this week with great success!

MILTON FOUNDATION FOR EDUCATION 

The Milton Foundation for Education is thrilled to announce the 2019 Monster Dash 5K run/walk and Kid’s Fun Run. Sunday, October 27th at Cunningham Park, 75 Edge Hill Road, Milton.

The Monster Dash, now in its 21st year, benefits the Sam Cichello Memorial Fund. The Cichello family created this fund in memory of their young son, Sam, who died tragically in a 1999 playground accident at Tucker Elementary School. Sam’s Fund supports the science curriculum in all Milton schools. Register now for this fun family event!

FOOD AND NUTRITION

WBZ CBS Boston visited Milton High School for a story on our Achieve students and the grow racks they are cultivating. Stay tuned for the link – we will share it as soon as it airs!

ART AND MUSIC 

Collicot and Cunningham have been glowing lately! Students in 5th and 2nd grades have been working on art projects incorporating fluorescent colors and painting under the black light. 2nd graders are making 3-D fish while reviewing lines and patterns. 5th graders are working on using their names to create a radial design masterpiece.

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The music department is currently accepting instrument donations for the Sponsor A Lesson Program. In particular, half sized violins are needed for beginners interested in starting lessons this fall. Instruments in good condition with minor repair issues are especially appreciated! They may be dropped off at Milton High School during office hours or please contact Director of Fine & Applied Arts, Dawn Sykes or Applied Lessons Director, Gary Good with questions. Thank you for considering donating to Sponsor A Lesson!

ATHLETICS 

The Cats beat the Rebels as Milton caps off the #MiltonGoesGold Campaign. Complimentary football is winning football. The Milton Wildcats proved that once again this season as they dismantled the Walpole Rebels 33-14 at The Cage Friday evening, with a balanced offensive attack, amazing special teams play and a stifling defense. The win closed out a 3-0 September for the Wildcats and gave coach Steve Dembowski his 150th win in his coaching career. Thanks to all of the MPS families, Principals and committee members who made  #MiltonGoesGold happen! The Milton Cats will travel to Weymouth on Friday night to take on the other Wildcats!

Swim improves to 5-1 after wins over Brookline and Framingham. Milton won a tight swim meet against Brookline last Tuesday with a final score of 93-90. Friday was another victory against Framingham with a final score of 97-84. Emily Dobrindt battled out a tough 200 freestyle to win the event as well as the 100 yard butterfly. Sebastien Yunger won the 50 yard freestyle, Madison Crummey the 100 yard freestyle, and Rose Gillooly the 500 yard freestyle. Andrew Tran won both the 200 yard IM and 100 yard breaststroke. Eliza Callahan, Amalia Halpin, Liv DiSandro and Adri Halpin all had impressive swims. They take on Needham tomorrow.

Girls XC beat Brookline & Needham while the Boys beat Brookline for the first time in over a decade! Christina Sullivan was Milton’s 7th runner in the varsity race, shaving more than 2 minutes off of her best time on the course last year! Norah Affanato, Sarah Grace Chave, Marilyn Roche, Christina Sullivan, Olivia Duggan, and Ilisa Risal all made the list of Top 50 Milton Performers to race at Houghton’s Pond since 1996. They are numbers 19, 31, 37, 38, 39, and 45 respectively. Personal records (PR’s) on the varsity course: Anna Cakouros, Christina Sullivan, Ilisa Risal, Bobby Carew, CJ Sullivan, Ross Tejeda and John Carew. They have since gone on to beat Weymouth as well! The Boys are 5-2 on the season and the Girls are 6-1, only dropping one meet to Natick.

All game schedules can be found on our  MHS Athletics website.

NEWS AROUND TOWN

Tickets are now available for the 2019 Milton Library Foundation Literary Gala on Wednesday, October 16 at Granite Links, Quincy, MA.

The evening will feature New York Times Bestselling Author, Milton Academy Graduate, & Dorchester Native Patrick Radden Keefe, the author of Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland. The evening begins at 5:00 pm  with a VIP Cocktail Reception with Patrick Radden Keefe where you can meet the author and have your book signed and personalized. At 6:00 pm, general admission to dinner includes a signed book and the author’s presentation and a Question and Answer Session with Mr. Keefe. Tickets and more information are available here.

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Teams are now forming for the 2019-2020 season of Destination Imagination (DI). DI is non-profit, volunteer-led organization that provides unique educational experiences across seven project-based Challenge types–Technical, Scientific, Engineering, Fine Arts, Improvisational, Service Learning, and Early Learning. MPS parent Cindi Melanson mentored a team of four 4th grade girls last year and they had a wonderful experience designing and presenting their creative solution to the 2018-19 STEAM-based (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) engineering challenge called “Monster Effects”. The girls placed 3rd at the elementary level in the Massachusetts Regional Tournament for Destination Imagination last March and plan to enter again. Ms Melanson would be happy to talk to any interested MPS parents/guardians about mentoring a team for this year’s tournament.  DI would love more Milton teams to get involved! Learn more at Massachusetts DI!

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Milton Early Childhood Alliance is pleased to present Come and Play Be A Kid Again! Wednesday, October 23, 7-9pm at the Discovery Schoolhouse, 101 Blue Hills Pkwy, Milton, MA for parents of children 2.5 to 4 years old.

Parents, come learn why play is so important to a child’s development and how it contributes to achieving developmental milestones. And, yes, you will be playing!! In this parent workshop, you will partake in hands-on play at learning centers, learn how play informs your child’s development, have some fun, and maybe even get a bit messy. Childcare will be provided and requires registration. Registration is required: email cpcmecasld@verizon.net or call 617-696-2262.

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The Forbes House Museum presents Portraits in Silhouette on Saturday, November 2nd
from 9am – 3pm. In plenty of time for the holidays, the Forbes House Museum is hosting a mother/daughter team of silhouette artists to create a treasured  likeness of your child. Each sitting takes only ten minutes! Learn more and reserve your spot today by visiting our website and  clicking on “Portraits in Silhouette” under Events. A portion of the proceeds from each appointment and additional items purchased will
benefit the Forbes House. Thank you for your support!

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The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through October.

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Run or walk the THIRD annual Mike’s 5k to Crush Substance Abuse to raise money for substance abuse prevention and treatment programs! Mike’s 5k was founded in 2017 in memory of Mike Mulcahy who passed away on December 1, 2016 after a heroic battle against addiction. In 2018, we were very proud to dedicate our 5k in memory of Michael Jesson of Milton, who passed in 2017 after valiantly fighting addiction. Race day registration starts at 9 AM at the Collicot/Cunningham School Cafeteria and the 5k begins at 10 AM on October 19th through the beautiful streets of Milton. All details can be found here. 

AMBASSADORS

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

STUDENTS and STAFF: We want to recognize a large (and growing!) group of students and staff who are supporting Collicot student Ben Doak as he goes through treatment for Perthes Disease.  Yesterday, Ben and his friends gathered for Walk to School Day, wearing blue for Perthes Awareness and Ben was touched to see so many faculty in blue.  These small but significant gestures serve to show support and encouragement for Ben and his family and we are grateful to the Collicot community for their ongoing support of Ben.

STUDENTS: Congratulations to MHS students Amalia C. Halpin and Sarah Mitchell who have been designated as eligible to apply for the National Hispanic Recognition Program as offered by the College Board. The invitation is extended to test takers who score in the top 2.5% among Hispanic and Latino PSAT/NMSQT test takers in the region. The College Board National Recognition Programs are academic honors that can be included on college applications. It’s not a scholarship, but colleges use it to identify academically exceptional students. Congratulations to Amalia and Sarah on this recognition!

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week: Noel Vigue, Zeina Hamada, Ryan Madden, Dawn Sykes, James Jette, Jon Redden, Cat DesRoche, Holly Concannon, Karen Cahill, Laurie Stillman, Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Marti McKenna, Maggie Randall, Kay Kelley, Sara McNeil, AJ Melanson and Laurel Bernini.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

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September 25, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: September 25, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

This week, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) publicly released the MCAS assessment and accountability data for the 2019 test administration. I have asked MPS Director of Data and Analytics, Vy Vu, to summarize this information below.

In the past three years, Grades 3-8 MCAS tests, including ELA, Math and Science, have all transitioned to the Next-Generation version. The computer-based Next-Generation MCAS is an updated version of the nearly 20-year-old, paper-based MCAS assessment. The updated MCAS focuses on students’ critical thinking abilities, ability to apply their knowledge, and ability to make connections between reading and writing. It gives a clearer signal of readiness for the next grade level and is much more rigorous than the Legacy MCAS. 

This Next-Generation assessment was developed after the MA Board of Elementary and Secondary Education found that despite being the top public school system in the nation, Massachusetts still sends students to college who need remedial courses to catch up and engage in college-level work. In fact, more than a third of the state’s public school graduates who attend Massachusetts’ public colleges or universities are placed in remedial courses. In raising the standards across the board for all grade levels, DESE hopes to bridge that gap and prepare more students for the rigor of college and career.

In school year 2018-19, students in Grades 5 & 8 took the Next-Generation MCAS test in Science for the first time.  Students in Grade 10 took the Next-Generation MCAS in ELA and Math for the first time also; their Science test will transition to Next-Generation in Spring 2020. 

Across all grade levels and content areas, Milton schools continue to outperform the state, even as the assessment suite has become more rigorous. This is a testament to the hard work and effort of our students and teachers, who have been asked to adapt to new technology, new curriculum, and higher standards. In the elementary schools, we have implemented a new literacy curriculum for the past two years – National Geographic Reach for Reading. The program is yielding promising results for our students, as is evidenced by our third grade ELA scores that are rising every year since adoption. This literacy initiative has been expanded to the middle school, where a district team, composed of teachers, curriculum leaders and literacy experts, is reviewing the middle school ELA curriculum to make recommendations for improvement. In math, the district has reviewed the middle school math curriculum and will now begin the curriculum review process for the elementary level. These review efforts are very timely given all the new changes to standards and expectations at the state level.   

The high school data is an area of focus for the state in the next couple of years, as DESE will have to determine the criteria for high school graduation. Even though the high school just completed its first administration of Next-Generation tests for Grade 10 ELA and Math, Legacy graduation and scholarship standards remain the same while students become familiar with the new tests—at least for the next two cohorts of students. As such, while students are tested and scored on the higher Next-Generation standards, the passing score for graduation remains at the same level as that of the Legacy MCAS. 

This year, we see the impact of the new higher standards for the Grade 10 ELA and Math assessments in our own data. In past years, the percentage of our students achieving in the Proficient/Advanced category was in the 90s for both ELA and Math; this year, the percentage of students in the Meeting/Exceeding Expectations category is around 75% in both subjects. Statewide, that percentage is around 60% for both ELA and Math in this first year of the Next-Generation test. Because the Science test has not changed yet, Milton still maintains its 92% of students in Proficient/Advanced; this percentage may decline when the higher standards are applied for Spring 2020 testing. As the state spends the next few years grappling with what the new high school graduation criteria should be, Milton Public Schools will continue to examine our curriculum and program supports at all levels to prepare students for the higher state testing standards.

To learn more about the Next-Generation MCAS and how to interpret results, visit www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/parents. Please contact your children’s current teacher/principal if you have any questions regarding your children’s performance.

In Milton, we are committed to preparing our students to achieve academically. A standardized state assessment is a useful measure of what our students have learned during the year and whether they are on track to meet the rigor of the next grade level. Please be reminded that the state assessment is one of multiple measures – including homework, quizzes, internal assessments, class participation, projects, etc. – that we use in the district to evaluate your children’s performance. We firmly believe that the tremendous value of an education greatly exceeds any one singular measure.

Milton GOES GOLD

We are in the final days of  Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness.  Our goal is to raise awareness and funds and show support for children who are battling cancer.

HOW CAN YOU GO GOLD?

  • DONATE YOUR GOLD: Until September 30th, send spare change in with your child to help fill the GOLD boots at all elementary schools. You can also donate directly to the Michael C. McHugh Memorial FoundationWe are also collecting items for the One Mission Resource Room from this list at Pierce and MHS. Our Key Club students have created an Amazon wish list and you can order directly from this link and items will be delivered to MHS and sent on to the One Mission Resource Room.
  • GIVE BLOOD – AS VALUABLE AS GOLD: We are thrilled to report that both blood drives (last Saturday and tomorrow 9/26) are sold out! One pint of blood potentially helps 4 children so if we total 150 pints/donors – that’s 600 lives impacted! We are in need of a few volunteer greeters for Thursday’s blood drive at Cunningham Hall. Please click here if you can help out.
  • WEAR YOUR GOLD: On Thursday September 26th, wear as much gold as you can! Gold clothing, accessories, socks, earring, headbands, nail polish, shoelaces – we can’t wait to see your gold. No gold in your closet? No worries – yellow counts, too!
  • CHEER FOR GOLD: Attend the MHS Football game on Friday, September 27th at 4pm for Milton GOES GOLD night! Support the Milton GOES Gold lemonade stand, cheer on our honor team captains who have been affected by childhood cancer, donate to the Michael C. McHugh Memorial Foundation and bring your donations for the Key Club collection. Due to our 6pm curfew (precautionary measures to lower risk of our students contracting EEE), the Walpole vs Milton Football Game on 9/27 will be played at 4pm instead of the previously listed 7pm start.

Thank you for your support as Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness from September 16-30th! All proceeds will be donated to Wicked Good Cause and the Michael C. McHugh Memorial Foundation.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Have you ever asked yourself one of the following questions? Or perhaps the better question is – who hasn’t asked themselves several of the following questions!

  • Is my middle schooler social enough? Too social?
  • How can I help my child develop more academic and social confidence?
  • How can I make the most of my Parent/Teacher conference?
  • How can I best navigate Special Education resources for my child?
  • Raising kids in our digital world – please help!
  • How can we send more time together as a family in a mindful way?
  • What does this behavior that my child is exhibiting really mean?

We have a terrific resource for these questions and more!

The PARENT Speaker Series is pleased to present PARENT University on Thursday, October 17th from 6-8:40pm at the Pierce Middle School. PARENT University will offer a series of short educational and skill-building workshops for parents and guardians that will cover a wide range of topics. Workshops will focus on promoting the academic, social and emotional well being of children and teens. We will offer a total of 12 workshops in one evening, each lasting just one hour and each workshop will be offered twice–back to back—so that parents and guardians can attend their two top choices. Sign up details will be coming in October.

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Last night, Maureen Blazejewski presented “Designing Inclusive Schools-Ideas for Effective Advocacy” regarding supporting all learners.  Her humor was refreshing and her passion was ever present throughout. She provided a plethora of resources and strategies for parents and guardians of students that may have learning challenges or require special services.  She graciously provided a link for anyone to access her resource materials:  Maureen Blazejewski Resource Link

For those unable to attend, the presentation was taped by Milton Cable Access and we will announce when it is ready for viewing. Thank you to our SEPAC group and PTOs for helping to bring Ms. Blazejewski to Milton.

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES

Sep 16-30 Milton GOES GOLD
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive at Cunningham Hall
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
Sep 27 MHS Football Game  – Milton GOES GOLD
Oct 2 Milton School Committee
Oct 3 MHS 8th Grade Information Night
Oct 9 No School – Yom Kippur
Oct 14 No School – Columbus Day
Oct 16 Milton School Committee
Oct 17 PARENT University – Pierce Middle School
Oct 23 Early Release Day
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV.  At the last School Commitee meeting on September 25th, MPS Social Emotional Learning Facilitator Laurie Stillman, MHS Principal James Jette, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Karen Spaulding, and MPS Director of Health and Physical Education Noel Vigue presented the findings of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey administered this past March at Milton High School. The survey illuminates the behaviors of our students, particularly around substance use and mental health status. This link will bring you to the PDF of the presentation.

The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, October 2nd at 7pm.

HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

During this school year, Milton High School will partake in a Self Reflection process as part of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) Accreditation process. NEASC Accreditation is a respected, effective, and time-tested methodology for school improvement and growth. It is not a single event, but rather an ongoing, voluntary cycle of comprehensive internal and external assessments, short- and long-term strategic planning, and periodic reporting sustained by professional partnership and support. It is intended to serve as a framework for schools to meet their own unique goals for student learning while maintaining alignment with research-based Standards for Accreditation that define the characteristics of high quality, effective learning communities. It also serves to assess the systems in place for ongoing institutional self-reflection and a school’s commitment to and capacity for continuous growth and/or transformation.

As part of the NEASC Accreditation process, Mr. Jette is asking all parents/guardians to complete this family survey as soon as possible but no later than Friday, September 27th. The link to the parent/guardian survey can be found here. 

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Almost 50 Milton High School students were able to register to vote yesterday during all three lunches as part of National Voter Registration Day. Students had to be 16 years of age or older and they had to have with them their Driver’s License or Social Security Number. Our volunteers from the Divine Nine Sisterhood, who coordinated the registration process, were impressed with our students and shared that Milton has a high level of registered voters each year.

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8th grade parents and guardians – Please join Mr. Jette for Milton High School 8th Grade Parent/Guardian Information Night on Thursday, October 3rd at 6:30pm. This event will afford parents/guardians an opportunity to learn about course offerings, academic and extracurricular programs, athletics and activities that prepare students for college and life beyond high school. Parents/guardians will meet faculty and students and also have the option to take a tour of the building. All details can be found here.

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MHS Guidance would like to share this information about a Financial Aid Night being held at Stonehill College. Topics covered will include: What kinds of financial aid are available? What must you do to be considered for these funds? What deadlines must be met? How do you complete the PROFILE and the FAFSA (FreeApplication for Federal Student Aid)? How does income and assets affect eligibility for aid? How do you calculate your expected family contribution (EFC)? How do you compare award letters? All details can be found here.

MHS Guidance also wants to share information about a FREE seminar, the 11th annual “College Readiness for Parents: What Every Parent Needs to Know” seminar being held at Framingham State University. It is scheduled for Thursday, October 17 from 7-9 PM. The focus of this event is not on financial aid but rather on helping parents and guardians  understand the difficulties students have with the transition to college in order to help build the habits needed to become successful. This free event is geared towards  parents and guardians of students in grades 7-10. All details can be found here. 

PIERCE PAGES

Pierce guidance counselors hosted a new student lunch on Wednesday to check in with our newest students and continue to support their transition to Pierce. In the picture at left, Mrs. Jaquette facilitates a discussion on participating in Pierce’s club and other after school activities.

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Sixth grade ELA classes recently experienced the Starlab, our inflatable planetarium. Through this activity, students explored various constellations to support their reading of Erin Entrada Kelly’s Hello, Universe. The Starlab was funded by the Milton Foundation of Education several years ago.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS 

Glover is joining schools across the nation to bring “Start With Hello Week” to Glover. This special project has been created by the Sandy Hook Promise, a national non-profit organization founded and led by families who lost loved ones in Newtown. The organization is focused on preventing violence before it happens by mobilizing and educating parents, schools and communities on mental health and wellness programs that identify, intervene and help at-risk individuals.

These past two weeks, we’ve been focusing on welcoming in our Second Step program and this will allow us to put our learning into action. The mission of this project is to make a difference in someone’s life and make them feel included. Through this project, we will learn about how to continue to build a school culture where everyone feels connected and included. It starts with three simple steps: see someone alone, reach out and help, and start with a smile.

On Monday, each student received a special nametag on a lanyard that they personalized with “conversation starters” for when they meet new friends.

On Tuesday, we held a “No One Eats Alone” day. We encouraged everyone to reach out and meet someone new during lunch to make sure that no one eats alone. Students wore their nametags so that they had the opportunity to address each other by name and start conversations with new friends.

On Wednesday, we held a “No One Plays Alone” day. Again, all students were encouraged to invite someone new to play at recess and they wore their nametags so that they could get to know each other. Teachers joined students both days to facilitate and support conversations.

On Thursday, the whole school will participate in “Hey Day!” All of us, educators, administrators, staff, and students, will wear nametags and students will be encouraged to greet each other by their first names in the hallways, cafeteria, playground, and classroom. Students will be encouraged to say “hey”, smile, or nod when passing others in the hallway.

Why are we doing this? The purpose of this project is to help us create a more connected and inclusive school community, to hopefully inspire others and create lifelong friendships, and to make a difference in someone’s life and help them feel accepted, included and valued.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

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Ms. Windwer shares that her Cunningham 3rd graders had the privilege of having two impressive 5th graders come to their classroom for a lesson this last week. Caroline Melanson and Sara Callahan have been working with Adjustment Counselor Ms. Germano during their recess times to create mini lessons to share with younger students.

Last week, they read a book titled Be Kind. They stopped during their read aloud to ask students to connect to the story and asked them what it means to be kind. After the story, they introduced a Kindness Tree. Sara and Caroline handed out leaves and asked each student to write down one way that they can be or  show kindness. Our new Kindness Tree with all of its leaves is now proudly hanging in our classroom.

It was wonderful having former students come in to read, teach, and encourage these younger students to always be kind!

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Students in Mrs. Spitz’s 3rd grade class at Collicot have been working hard in Reach for Reading. The small reading books in Unit 1 answer the question “How do People help each other?” This week in centers each student received a book about a person that has helped others. The books included are Martin’s Big Words, The Jackie Robinson Story, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Nelson Madela. Students were asked to explain how these people changed the lives of the people around them. Students were then asked what all these people have in common. Is it heroism, bravery, grit?

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Collicot students in Ms. Mc Dermott’s  3rd grade classroom know that greeting students sets a positive tone for the day – because they have begun this practice in the new school year. Students feel welcome and safe when they arrive to the classroom and greetings help strengthen relationships by providing a personal connection. The greeting choices in Ms. McDermott’s classroom are handshake, high five, fist bump, wave, thumbs up, or a verbal hello. What a welcoming way to start the day!

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International  Walk to School Day is a global event that involves communities from more than 40 countries walking and biking to school on the same day. It began in 1997 as a one-day event. Over time, this event has become part of a movement for year-round safe routes to school and a celebration – with record breaking participation – each October. Today, thousands of schools across America – from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico – participate every October. MPS will participate next week. Look for details from your Principal and PTOs!

MILTON FOUNDATION FOR EDUCATION 

The Milton Foundation for Education is thrilled to announce the 2019 Monster Dash 5K run/walk and Kid’s Fun Run. Sunday, October 27th at Cunningham Park, 75 Edge Hill Road, Milton.

The Monster Dash, now in its 21st year, benefits the Sam Cichello Memorial Fund. The Cichello family created this fund in memory of their young son, Sam, who died tragically in a 1999 playground accident at Tucker Elementary School. Sam’s Fund supports the science curriculum in all Milton schools. Register now for this fun family event!

TECHNOLOGY

The saying goes that it takes a village to raise a child, but when that saying was first said, that village probably didn’t have WiFi. There’s also a good chance the people in that village weren’t too concerned with Instagram captions and when too much screen time is becoming a problem.

Ana Homayoun, an education consultant in Silicon Valley and author of several books, including Social Media Wellness, said, “I always say, it takes a village to raise children; it takes an online village to help keep them safe.”

NPR’s Life Kit podcast asked for her thoughts on questions they got from listeners around the U.S. about parenting and digital technology.

So when should your child get their first phone? And can a phone help with homework? How do you deal with cyberbullying? What about online porn? Click here to read and listen.

FOOD AND NUTRITION 

Students in our  Achieve classroom recently planted three types of lettuce in the new MHS grow racks. Yesterday they harvested their lettuce and the food service department served it for lunch at Milton High School. Next week they will be harvesting their kale and basil and look forward to making kale chips and adding fresh basil to their salads. This first harvest was featured in the Patriot Ledger this week! 

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Principal Jette, Vice Principal Kelly, Superintendent Gormley, Dr. Sabet, Vice Principal Mackinaw and Laurie Stillman and Margaret Carels from the MSAPC at Milton High School.

Laurie Stillman, from the MSPAC,  shares the following. Dr. Kevin Sabet, President of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) in Washington D.C., Senior Drug Policy Advisor to three U.S. Presidents, and Fellow at Yale University, was the distinguished guest speaker at Milton High School on September 19th at a morning assembly. In the evening, he addressed town leaders as well.

Addressing all high school students, his remarks helped them to understand the economic, political, historical, and personal context of the rapidly growing marijuana industry. He also explained the current research on marijuana’s impact on the adolescent brain, and how today’s formulations are much more powerful than they ever were. His style and words seemed to resonate; you could hear a pin drop during his presentations to over 800 students. The students asked some really thoughtful questions afterwards.

Because marijuana is consumed by many Milton teens (21%) through smoking, edibles and vaping, the Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition believed it was important for our town’s students and adult leaders to be as informed as possible as the industry develops and grows in Massachusetts. Thanks to generous funding from Mike’s 5K to Crush Substance Abuse , as well as from BID Milton Hospital, the coalition was able to bring this informative national speaker to our community.

VAPING RESOURCES

On September 24, 2019, Governor Charles D. Baker declared a public health emergency in the Commonwealth due to severe disease associated with the use of e-cigarettes and vaping products and the epidemic of e-cigarette use among youth. As of September 19, 2019, the CDC had confirmed 530 cases across 39 states and U.S. territories, including seven fatalities in six different states. The commonality in all reported cases is a history of vaping, and a history of using vaping products containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), nicotine, or a combination of both. Dr. Monica Bharel, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, sent a letter to school MHS Nurse Kim Coughlin, which you can read in its entirety here. The letter is excerpted here.

A combination of medication and counseling has been shown to triple chances of successful cessation:

  • Refer to QuitWorks. QuitWorks is a free, evidence-based referral service that connects patients with phone-based counseling through the Massachusetts Smokers’ Helpline to help them stop smoking. Once a referral is made to Quitworks, providers receive feedback reports to stay informed of their patient’s progress.
  • Encourage patients to call the Massachusetts Quitline 1-800-QuitNow (7 days per week/24 hours per day, holiday hours may vary) to receive counseling online, by phone or through eChat and at least four weeks of free nicotine patches.
  • When appropriate, recommend or prescribe quitsmoking medications.Many medicines help with withdrawal symptoms and are not addictive. The nicotine patch, gum or lozenges, are available over the counter without a prescription. The prescription medication include Chantix, Zyban, inhaler, and spray.

Encourage young people to ask their school nurse or counselor, athletic coach, doctor, parent or other trusted adult for help, and recommend that youth and young adults consider these resources:

  • My Life, My Quit has youth coach specialists trained to help young people by phone or text. Call or text “Start My Quit” to 855-891-9989 for free and confidential help. For more information or to sign up online, visit mylifemyquit.com.
  • This is Quitting powered by truth® is a free and confidential texting program for young people who vape. Young people can text “VapeFreeMass” to 88709 to get started. In partnership with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health.
  • Visit teen.smokefree.gov for tools and tips.
  • Visit mass.gov/vaping to learn about vaping addiction, health, and quitting.
  • Information for parents/adults is available at getoutraged.org.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 

Susan Maselli, Administrator for Pupil Personnel Services, shares that Milton Public Schools staff participated this week in an extensive training regarding Crisis Management. This curriculum is designed to provide staff with Verbal and Physical De-Escalation Skills to be used in a Crisis or Emergency Situation. More than 50 staff, ranging across buildings and departments, completed this valuable training as part of the district’s annual requirement for Crisis Team  Certification.

TRANSPORTATION 

Milton resident Lee Toma shared with us that MassDOT plans to completely re-build Route 138 in both Milton and Canton, in line with the ‘Complete Streets’ design philosophy to make the road safer for pedestrians, bicyclists and transit users. They plan to add sidewalks along the whole corridor and make safety improvements at a number of intersections, including the Oak Street crossing near the Tucker School.

MassDOT will present their plans Tuesday,  October 22 at 6:30 p.m. at Fuller Village and offer an opportunity for the public to comment on them.  This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to get real safety improvements in this densely-populated neighborhood and encourage more people to walk to school. More info on the meeting can be found here. 

Background info on the Route 138 study, including recommendations can be found here.  Please note that the design has evolved a bit since then based on interactions with Town of Milton staff, so expect to see some changes from what is currently posted online.

SPECIAL EDUCATION 

The Inclusion Task Force and Office of Pupil Personnel Services want to share information about a sensory friendly family movie, Finding Nemo,  on Saturday, September 28th from 2:30-4:30pm at the Milton Public Library Keys Room. No registration, all ages are welcome.  Feel free to get up, dance, talk, or sing! This program is sponsored by the Friends of the MPL.

ART AND MUSIC 

The music department is currently accepting instrument donations for the Sponsor A Lesson Program. In particular, half sized violins are needed for beginners interested in starting lessons this fall. Instruments in good condition with minor repair issues are especially appreciated! They may be dropped off at Milton High School during office hours or please contact Director of Fine & Applied Arts, Dawn Sykes or Applied Lessons Director, Gary Good with questions. Thank you for considering donating to Sponsor A Lesson!

ATHLETICS 

The Wildcats Football Team take on the Walpole Rebels on Friday at 4:00pm in what looks like will be the Boston 25 “Game-of-the-Week”! Vote here to be sure Milton gets the nod.  The Wildcats are 2-0 in non-league play and they will look to stay perfect on Friday. Make sure to come out and support the ‘Cats as this game is also the “MiltonGoesGold” game as part of Milton Goes Gold for Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

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All game schedules can be found on our  MHS Athletics website.

NEWS AROUND TOWN

BID- Milton will hold its Annual Community Benefits Meeting on Wednesday,
September 25 from 5:30 – 7 pm in the Nangeroni Education Center. At the meeting, the hospital’s 2018 Community Health Grant recipients, including Tucker School and Milton Public Schools, will present the results of their grant funded programs.

The hospital will also present an overview of its new Community Health Needs Assessment and Implementation Strategy, which will guide the hospital’s Community Benefits Program for the next three years. The public is invited and refreshments will be served. Please RSVP to via email Laureane Marquez or at (617) 313-1590.

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Tickets are now available for the 2019 Milton Library Foundation Literary Gala on Wednesday, October 16 at Granite Links, Quincy, MA

The evening will feature New York Times Bestselling Author, Milton Academy Graduate, & Dorchester Native Patrick Radden Keefe, the author of Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland. The evening begins at 5:00 pm  with a VIP Cocktail Reception with Patrick Radden Keefe where you can meet the author and have your book signed and personalized. At 6:00 pm, general admission to dinner includes a signed book and the author’s presentation and a Question and Answer Session with Mr. Keefe. Tickets and more information are available here. 

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The date for Celebrate Milton 2019 has been set! Save the date Sunday, October 6th from 12-4 at Pierce Middle School. Celebrate Milton is a group of community volunteers who run an Annual Fall event and provide grants to individuals and organizations whose activities support our mission of celebrating diversity within our town. More information can be found on our website. We look forward to seeing you there!

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The Forbes House Museum presents Portraits in Silhouette on Saturday, November 2nd
from 9am – 3pm. In plenty of time for the holidays, the Forbes House Museum is hosting amother-daughter team of silhouette artists to create a treasured  likeness of your child. Each sitting takes only ten minutes! Learn more and reserve your spot today by visiting our website and  clicking on “Portraits in Silhouette” under Events. A portion of the proceeds from each appointment and additional items purchased will
benefit the Forbes House. Thank you for your support!

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I received the following information from Town Administrator Michael Dennehy to share with the MPS community regarding Central Ave closures in the coming days. Please see this links for more information. 

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The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September.

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Run or walk the THIRD annual Mike’s 5k to Crush Substance Abuse to raise money for substance abuse prevention and treatment programs! Mike’s 5k was founded in 2017 in memory of Mike Mulcahy who passed away on December 1, 2016 after a heroic battle against addiction. In 2018, we were very proud to dedicate our 5k in memory of Michael Jesson of Milton, who passed in 2017 after valiantly fighting addiction. Race day registration starts at 9 AM at the Collicot/Cunningham School Cafeteria and the 5k begins at 10 AM through the beautiful streets of Milton. All details can be found here. 

AMBASSADORS

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

L-R Principal Jette, Clarissa Waldman, Catherine Le, Emily Dobrindt, Alisa Lorden Michael Daly, Cameron Pentland and Mrs. Cahill. Not pictured, Maria Koudounas.

STUDENTS: We are pleased to share the news that seven exceptional Milton High School students are being recognized as Commended Students in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Program.

Of the 1.6 million entrants, only 50,000 students with the highest PSAT/NMSQT Selection Index scores (calculated by doubling the sum of the Reading, Writing and Language, and Math Test scores) qualify for recognition in the National Merit Scholarship Program. These Milton High School students were notified this week by Mr. Jette that they have qualified as a Commended Student in recognition of their outstanding academic promise.

Please join us in congratulating Michael Daly, Emily Dobrindt, Maria Koudounas, Catherine Le, Alisa Lorden, Cameron Pentland and Clarissa Waldman on this impressive accomplishment.

STAFF: I would like to recognize Laurie Stillman, who has shared her talents with the Milton Public Schools in the many roles she has played. Ms. Stillman and her husband Robert Rosofsky were involved and supportive PTO leaders and parents of Anna and Gabe who attended Tucker, Pierce and Milton High School.  Laurie also served as a Milton School Committee member from 2002 to 2008.  

Ms. Stillman returned to the Milton Public Schools three years ago and has served as our Social and Emotional Learning Facilitator.  She worked with staff at all levels of our district to integrate SEL into every aspect of the lives of our students and staff. 

Ms. Stillman has implemented an array of programs and initiatives ranging from developing our district’s Strategic Plan’s SEL Goal to strengthening our partnerships with BID Milton and the Milton Health Department to implementing an action plan in response to our 2017 Youth Risk Behavior Survey data.    

As Ms. Stillman moves on from her current role in the Milton Public Schools, we are grateful for her leadership and we look forward to continuing our work with Ms. Stillman in her role as the Director of the Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition.

VOLUNTEERS: I would like to recognize the members of the Transportation and Traffic Safety Advisory Committee listed below.  The charge of the Transportation and Traffic Safety Advisory Committee is to “coordinate the development of solutions to identified transportation and traffic safety issues with the Milton Police Department, the Department of Public Works, the Milton Traffic Commission, and Town Administrator.” The Advisory Committee is comprised of one or more School Committee members, MPS Assistant Superintendent for Business, one parent from each elementary school, the middle school and the high school (appointed through the respective PTO Presidents/School Principals). The committee also has a liaison from Mass DOT to consult and assist with all Transportation concerns and solutions. The committee meets once a month on the last Monday of the month and  had their first meeting on Monday, September 23rd. If you have any Transportation and Traffic Safety concerns with regard to your school. Please reach out to your principal or school representative.

Thank you to School Committee members Margaret Eberhardt, Sheila Varela and Kevin Donahue and additional members (parents) Jim Mulligan (Glover), Libby Dunphy (Tucker), Jane Greene (Collicot), Rachel Shanor (MHS), Brian Canavan (Cunningham and Pierce) and MPS Assistant Superintendent for Business, Dr. Glenn Pavlicek, for their dedication to the charge of this Advisory Committee.

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week: Noel Vigue, Vy Vu, Jon Redden,  Zeina Hamada, Ryan Madden, Dawn Sykes, Jackie Morgan, James Jette, Taylor Windwer, Liz Spitz, Laura McDermott, Bill Fish, Karen Cahill, Kim Coughlin, Laurie Stillman, Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Marti McKenna, Sheila Varela and Karen McDavitt.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on September 25, 2019

September 19, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: September 19, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

I want to share with you that Milton has been awarded another Green Communities Competitive Grant. I have asked Director of Consolidated Facilities , Bill Ritchie, to share some history and information about the Green Communities Competitive Grant below.

The Town of Milton recently received $104,661 from the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) for two lighting upgrade projects – one at Collicot/Cunningham and the second at the Tucker School. In addition, we applied for supplemental incentive funding through Eversource and to date, have received $35,000. The Town will only need to come up with roughly $10,000 to pay for the project shortfall. Consolidated Facilities is working on better pricing with vendors and working to secure additional incentive funding to lower the Town’s obligation by another $5,000, possibly bringing the total out of pocket cost for the Town to $5000.

Since 2011, with these latest grants and incentive funding, the Town of Milton has received approximately $1,300,000 through a combination of  Green Communities Grants, utilities incentives, energy program grants and other rebates. Because we installed these energy measures over the years we anticipate a yearly savings of approximately $350,000 town wide.

We have done very well as a Town in energy conservation measures and are recognized in Massachusetts as an energy leader. As a Town,  we have to guarantee DOER a 20% reduction in  town wide energy usage. This is not an easy task but one we have worked diligently at for almost a decade.

Thank you to the Town of Milton team who spends countless hours each year designing energy projects, applying  for grants and utility incentives, negotiating procurement, performing quality inspections, overseeing project management and managing annual reporting.  Town Planner William Clark, Operations Manager for Consolidated Facilities  Robert Mayhew, Administrative Assistant for Consolidated Facilities  Diane Colligan and Director of Consolidated Facilities , Bill Ritchie are to be commended for these successful efforts on behalf of our schools and the Town of Milton.

Milton GOES GOLD

Hopefully you know about Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness from September 16th-30th! Our goal is to raise awareness and funds and show support for children who are battling cancer.

HOW CAN YOU GO GOLD?

How can you purchase your Milton GOES GOLD shoelaces? We are temporarily out of stock at most schools. Good news –  we have more laces coming next week!  Please visit this website for your order to be delivered to school next week or purchase your laces  in school next week.  If you order online for delivery to school or wait to purchase until they are in stock at your school, you will get them on the same day.

Please join us as Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness from September 16-30th! All proceeds will be donated to Wicked Good Cause and the Michael C. McHugh Memorial Foundation.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Our first event in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series is almost here! Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School. 

Be a Cheerleader for Your Child’s Team! Strategies for Supportive Advocacy to Foster Meaningful Inclusion will be the topic for the evening.

Are you looking for ways to communicate with and support your team around developing inclusive educational opportunities? If so, then join us on September 24 as we explore strategies and tools that will help families articulate their vision, and help teams design a program that matches that vision. Effective communication is key in any collaborative partnership and this workshop will give you the tools to get there!

FREE and open to the public. This presentation is relatable to parents/guardians of ALL AGES.

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The PARENT Speaker Series is pleased to present PARENT University on Thursday, October 17th from 6-8:40pm at the Pierce Middle School. PARENT University will offer 10 sessions for parents and guardians to choose to attend throughout the evening.

PARENT University will offer a series of short educational and skill-building workshops for parents and guardians that will cover a wide range of topics. Workshops will focus on promoting the academic, social and emotional well being of children and teens. We will offer a total of 10 workshops in one evening, each lasting just one hour and each workshop will be offered twice–back to back—so that parents and guardians can attend their two top choices. We are excited to introduce our session topics and sign up details in the coming weeks.

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES

  
Sep 16-30 Milton GOES GOLD
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 21 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive  –  Cunningham/Collicot Driveway
Sep 24 Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski, PARENT Speaker Series
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive at Cunningham Hall
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
Sep 27 MHS Football Game  – Milton GOES GOLD
Oct 2 Milton School Committee
Oct 3 MHS 8th Grade Information Night
Oct 9 No School – Yom Kippur
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, October 2nd at 7pm.

HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

Bullying education continues K-12 at the Milton Public Schools. This week, Vice Principal Brian Mackinaw, aka Mr. Mack, presented to all MHS students on this important topic.

Later in the week, students attended a substance abuse presentation by Dr. Kevin Sabet, President of S.A.M. Smart Approaches to Marijuana. He spoke about not only the dangers of marijuana to young people, but also the tactics corporations are using to get kids hooked. His goal is to help kids make the right decisions. This speaker was sponsored by the Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition.

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MHS Guidance wants to share information about a FREE seminar, the 11th annual “College Readiness for Parents: What Every Parent Needs to Know” seminar being held at Framingham State University. It is scheduled for Thursday, October 17 from 7-9 PM. The focus of this event is not on financial aid but rather on helping parents and guardians  understand the difficulties students have with the transition to college in order to help build the habits needed to become successful. This free event is geared towards  parents and guardians of students in grades 7-10. All details can be found here. 

PIERCE PAGES

Ms. Devin’s sixth graders recently worked as archeologists as part of a unit of study in ancient civilization. During this activity, students dug up artifacts and drew inferences about the function and origin of what they found.

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PASS classes are an opportunity for Pierce teachers to identify an interest, talent, or a hobby and create an e​ight week​ after school experience for students. PASS classes begin the week of September 23, 2019 and end the week of November 11, 2019. Each class is a total of eight sessions and costs $50 with the exception of the Pierce Soccer Program, which costs $100. We want all Pierce students to have the opportunity to participate in after school activities. If your family requires financial assistance, please contact Mr.Fish via email​. ​There will be a late bus with limited stops for bus students only on Wednesdays and Thursdays beginning the week of September 23, 2019. The late bus will pick up at Pierce at 3:25 p.m. All details on our PASS classes can be found here.

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You’re invited to join the Kindness Friday Movement! For the past three years, we have promoted the wearing of the color red or our Kind is the New Cool t-shirts on Fridays to build community and promote kindness as a school. This isn’t just a movement for our students — teachers, staff, and administrators will wear their Kind is the New Cool shirts and families should feel welcome to join in too! The last day to order shirts is Friday, September 20th.

While it’s not required in order to get involved, if you are interested in purchasing a red Kind is the New Cool t-shirt you can order them by clicking HERE.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS 

Collicot families, students and staff came to the Back to School Picnic on Friday, September 13th at Cunningham Park. It was a beautiful late summer evening to see old friends and meet new ones.  The children had so much fun dancing to the music played by the Boosterthon team and had a blast playing games of football, tag, and soccer in the field.  What a great way to kickoff the new school year!

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5th grade Glover  students kicked off their 1st unit of the year “Sun, Moon and Planets” by tracing their shadows outside. Students trace their shadows in the morning and afternoon. They use this information to draw conclusions about the position of the sun as it moves across the sky each day.

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Ms. Fradette’s Tucker students began their Energy and Electromagnetism unit by introducing students to electricity and energy. In alignment with the science standard         “Make observations to show that energy can be transferred from place to place by sound, light, heat, and electric currents”, students discovered how to make a complete circuit using a D-cell, wires and a lightbulb. Upon successfully lighting their bulbs, students discussed the electricity’s pathway in the circuit and the function of each of the system’s components. They also took a close look at the anatomy of the lightbulb. By the end of the lesson, students were able to answer the focus question: What is needed to light a bulb?

The Tucker Running club enjoys a sunny post-run stretch!

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Tucker kicked off its fall running club with an unprecedented 60 students this week. The biggest group yet is led by coaches and Tucker faculty members Stephanie Young and Rachel Spitz. Look for many of these athletes at the MFE Monster Dash on October 27th!

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The 5th grade gift from the Cunningham class of 2019 class is complete. These positive messages greet all visitors and students on multiple stairways at Cunningham each day.

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Glover 3rd grade teacher Sarah Hammond has implemented “Full Flex Seating” in her classroom with the support of Occupational Therapist  Sarah Whitten who attended a workshop this summer  about “Hacking the House”. “Hack the House” refers to redesigning classroom space to encourage a collaborative environment and asks the question ” How can you redesign your space to encourage student centered learning?”

MILTON FOUNDATION FOR EDUCATION 

The Milton Foundation for Education is thrilled to announce the 2019 Monster Dash 5K run/walk and Kid’s Fun Run. Sunday, October 27th at Cunningham Park, 75 Edge Hill Road, Milton.

The Monster Dash, now in its 21st year, benefits the Sam Cichello Memorial Fund. The Cichello family created this fund in memory of their young son, Sam, who died tragically in a 1999 playground accident at Tucker Elementary School. Sam’s Fund supports the science curriculum in all Milton schools. Register now for this fun family event! 

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The Milton Foundation for Education is looking for artwork to print on the front of race t-shirts for the Milton Monster Dash. Create your best design and submit one entry by Wednesday, September 25th. The winner will see their drawing on race t- shirts, and help start the runners on race day, October 27th.

  • Artwork should have a Halloween theme
  • Children living in or attending school in Milton are eligible
  • Entries must be on white, unlined 8 ½” x 11” paper
  • Entrants should use a black, thick Sharpie for their artwork
  • Include child’s name, school and age on back of artwork
  • Submit the artwork by Wednesday, September 25
  • Deliver drawing and entry form to the main office of your school
  • Artwork will not be returned
  • All decisions of the Milton Monster Dash Committee are final
  • Contact Liddie Sutter with any questions .

All details on the t-shirt contest can be found here.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Help your kids make choices that will support their well being. Participate in the SUPPER Project to learn how!

  • Are you a parent or guardian of a child in  5th –  8th grade?
  • Do you live with your child or are you in the same place as your child at least five days a week?
  • If YES, you may be able to participate in a research study
  • Families will be paid for their time
  • The purpose of this research study is to understand how to help young people make choices that will support their wellbeing.

Please take a moment to read through the details found here and consider participating in the SUPPER Project. If you are interested, simply email the SUPPER Project team at with the subject line “Interested in the SUPPER Project” and in the body of the email include your name and the name of your child’s school.  A member from the study team will reach out to you with next steps. You can also give them a call at (617) 636 – 3587.

***

In our effort to bring you as much information as we can about vaping and the accompanying health risks to your children, I wanted to share this recent article from the Boston Globe, entitled Why the vaping lung illness crisis is exploding now, according to Boston doctors.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 

On September 27th, MPS will host an “ed-camp” style conference for all of our MPS educators and colleagues from surrounding communities. Our administrators, teachers and paraprofessionals will participate in a Keynote Address from Dr. Kenneth Wesson (“The Neuroscience of Learning: What Works, What Lasts and Why?”), and then choose from a menu of 85+ hour-long sessions to attend, facilitated by MPS teachers, administrators, community members and other education professionals. In addition to 85+ professional learning opportunities, lunch and snacks will be provided throughout the day. Next week, the conference website will be up and running, and all participants will sign up to choose the sessions they would like to participate in throughout the day.

Questions? Please contact: Ben Kelly, Vice Principal, Milton High SchoolAJ Melanson, Educational Technology Director, MPS ; Amy Tom, Science Department Head, Milton High School  

FOOD AND NUTRITION

Breakfast provides benefits to our students  – make it a priority! Did you know that Milton Schools serves hot breakfasts everyday school is in session?

Your child can get a healthy, balanced meal with whole grains, fresh fruit, skim or 1% milk and 100% fruit juice at school. They can choose from whole grain muffins, cereals, pancakes and breakfast sandwiches. They will also have more energy and get important nutrients like calcium,  Vitamin D, protein and fiber.

  • Higher Test Scores: Research has proven that children who eat breakfast have higher math and reading scores. Students who eat school breakfast score 17.5% higher on standardized math tests. Source: Share Our Strength
  • Improved Attendance: Studies show that students who eat breakfast are absent and tardy less often. Students who eat school breakfast attend on average 1.5 more days of school per year. Source: “Share our Strength”
  • Fewer Trips to the School Nurse: When students eat breakfast, nurses report fewer hunger related office visits.
  • Improved Classroom Behavior: Principals confirm that they see fewer discipline problems when students have eaten breakfast. Students who participate in school breakfast show improved attendance, behavior, standardized achievement test scores as well as decreased tardiness. Source: Food Research & Action Council
  • Better Learning: Students are better able to pay attention in class when they have eaten. When students have eaten, they are better able to concentrate and behave in the classroom. This allows teachers to spend more time on teaching and less time on discipline.

Eating breakfast gives each student in the Milton Schools a chance to be their best throughout the day. Save yourself time in the morning and get your child out the door faster knowing they will have a nutritious meal when they get to school. Breakfast is $1.25 for a complete meal and children who receive free or reduced lunch also receive free breakfast. Drop in any day, 20 minutes before school starts.  Questions about school breakfast? Email Director of Nutrition ServicesJackie Morgan.

TRANSPORTATION 

The MPS Transportation Department is excited to roll out the FirstView Parent App provided by First Student, our bus company.  FirstView is comprehensive and secure bus tracking and parent communication app.  The FirstView app is easy to download, set up and use to provide estimated bus arrival times, transportation messaging regarding delays or issues and customizable alerts for when your student’s bus is a chosen distance or number of minutes away.

Please visit FirstViewApp.com or find FirstView in the App Store or Google Play to download to your smartphone.  Additionally a desktop version of FirstView is available at  FirstViewApp.com.

Be on the lookout for emails from the transportation department with specific instructions and school codes to upload your student’s route into your app.

ART AND MUSIC 

The work represented below is from Mrs. Hughes’ Foundations of Arts class (grades 9-12). This project asked students to personalize their sketchbooks, which are used throughout the term. The sketchbook cover is a collage representing a student’s life, identity, culture, and experiences. Utilizing the elements and principles of design, students construct compositions using a variety of images and text.

Do you have an instrument collecting dust in your home? Donate it to the music program in the Milton Public Schools! Small size violins are especially needed. Contact miltonfame@gmail.com to donate.

ATHLETICS 

Swim beat Braintree tonight 96-82, winning every event except for one. Joe Pezzini, Christian Bartiewicz, Andrew Tran, Rose Gillooly and Madison Crummey all won their individual events. They made another boys state cut in the 400 freestyle relay, sophomore Kevin Carberry made his first ever sectional cut in the 50 freestyle, and freshman Liv DiSandro made two sectional cuts in the 200 and 500 freestyle events.

Football is 2-0 after beating non-league opponents Bishop Feehan and Framingham. They have a bye this week and will take on Walpole at 4pm to start divisional play next Friday, September 27th. Note the 4pm start time next week due to EEE restrictions.

Volleyball is 3-1 with wins over Braintree, NDA and Framingham.

Boys and Girls Cross Country both started with wins over Framingham last week. The Girls improved to 3-0, beating Needham and Brookline last night. The Boys are 2-1, having lost to Needham but beating Brookline for the first time in over ten years!

All game schedules can be found on our  MHS Athletics website.

 NEWS AROUND TOWN

BID- Milton will hold its Annual Community Benefits Meeting on Wednesday,
September 25 from 5:30 – 7 pm in the Nangeroni Education Center. At the meeting, the hospital’s 2018 Community Health Grant recipients, including Tucker School and Milton Public Schools, will present the results of their grant funded programs.

The hospital will also present an overview of its new Community Health Needs Assessment and Implementation Strategy, which will guide the hospital’s Community Benefits Program for the next three years. The public is invited and refreshments will be served. Please RSVP to via email Laureane Marquez or at (617) 313-1590.

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The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September.

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A special collaborative partnership of South Shore synagogues and Jewish organizations recently announced the launch of Shalom Children Activity Program (SCAP). SCAP is for families with children up to age 8 who are looking for fun, social, engaging activities infused by Jewish values and experiences, whether it’s about taking care of our planet, going on an archaeological “dig,” being kind to animals, helping others, and more.

SCAP’s opening event, entitled “Hey World – Happy Birthday 5780!” will be at Blue Hills Trailside Museum, 1904 Canton Avenue, Milton on Sunday, September 22nd from 1:15- 3:15 p.m. It is for families with children up to 8 years old (siblings welcome), and is FREE, but registration is required. Celebrate the beauty of nature with other families with young children as you experience a hands-on Presentation of Animal Habitats led by a trained naturalist, go on a nature scavenger hunt, and eat apples and honey to mark the earth’s 5780th birthday.

This event has a maximum of 50 children, with priority by date of registration. Check in from 1:15 -1:40 p.m. in front of the Trailside Museum building. The program begins promptly at 1:45 p.m. Registration here for this event. All information can be found on their website. 

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Milton Early Childhood Alliance event cancellation notice: Unfortunately, The Milton Early Childhood Alliance has to cancel their workshop, Beyond Remote Controlled Childhood due to the speaker, Dr. Diane Levin, being ill. The event was scheduled to take place this Thursday, September 21, 2019. They hope to reschedule it soon. Please visit their website at www.miltonearlychildhoodalliance.org where further announcements will be made.

AMBASSADORS

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

VOLUNTEERS:  I would like to recognize Martha Cusick for her donation to Glover in honor of her aunt. Ms. Cusick’s aunt, Claire Mullin, taught 3rd grade for 39 years, mostly at Glover. When Ms. Mullin died this past January, at the age of 93, Ms. Cusick decided to donate $300 to Glover in her name. Principal McDavitt and her team have put the money to good use with the “Our Wish for You” bulletin board pictured below.  All staff at Glover are represented on the bulletin board and all teachers, paras, specialists, and more shared a wish that they have for all Glover Kids this year. Glover has had assemblies about trusted adults and a visual reminder of all of the grownups who surround and support our students every day. Thank you to Ms. Cusick for this generous gift which funded this welcoming and beautiful bulletin board.

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week:  Noel Vigue, Bill Ritchie,  Jon Redden,  Zeina Hamada, Ryan Madden, Karen Hughes, Dawn Sykes, Rachel Schewe, Jackie Morgan, Janice Mazzola, Bill Fish, Kerri Devin, Taylor Fradette, Sarah Hammond, Eileen Keaney, Alison McGrath, Margaret Carrels, Cat DesRoche, Karen Cahill and Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Marti McKenna and Karen McDavitt.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on September 19, 2019

September 12, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: September 12, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

In the spring of this year, several Milton parents emailed me with an idea. Would the Milton Public Schools consider “Going Gold” in support of Childhood Cancer Awareness in the month of September? Many planning meetings later, in collaboration with the Town of Milton, the Milton Police Department, the Milton Fire Department, our 6 schools and multiple community members, I am proud to share with you that Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness from September 16th-30th! Our goal is to raise awareness and funds and show support for children who are battling cancer.

HOW CAN YOU GO GOLD?

Please join us as Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness from September 16-30th! All proceeds will be donated to Wicked Good Cause and the Michael C. McHugh Memorial Foundation.

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES  

Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 16-30 Milton GOES GOLD
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 21 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive  –  Cunningham/Collicot Driveway
Sep 24 Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski, PARENT Speaker Series
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive at Cunningham Hall
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
Sep 27 MHS Football Game  – Milton GOES GOLD
Oct 2 Milton School Committee
Oct 3 MHS 8th Grade Information Night
Oct 9 No School – Yom Kippur
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, September 18th at 7pm. At this meeting MPS Social Emotional Learning Facilitator Laurie Stillman, MHS Principal James Jette, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Karen Spaulding, and MPS Director of Health and Physical Education Noel Vigue will present the findings of the Youth Risk Behavior Survey  administered this past March at Milton High School. The survey illuminates the behaviors of our students, particularly around substance use and mental health status.

HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

Milton High School will host its annual “Back to School Night” on Thursday, September 12th at 6:30pm. Back to School Night is a great opportunity for you to get an overview of the high school, receive information from various organizations, familiarize yourself with your child’s schedule, and meet teachers and administrators. The Back to School Night will start promptly at 6:30 p.m with a greeting from Mr. Jette.

PIERCE PAGES

L-R: Mrs. Kerry Callender, Crystal Carter, Mrs. Leslie Pouliot, Ella Forgues-Gilbert

8th graders at Pierce have started the school year with a unit on Power, Tolerance, Responsibility, Survival and Courage.  Within the unit, students create a poem or visual representation highlighting and honoring the individual heroes and victims of the September 11th attacks as well as the historical significance and impact of September 11th.

Pierce observed a moment of silence before 8th grade students Crystal Carter and Ella Forgues-Gilbert shared their poems with students and staff as part of Pierce’s 9/11 remembrance on Wednesday.

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You’re invited to join the Kindness Friday Movement! For the past three years, we have promoted the wearing of the color red or our Kind is the New Cool t-shirts on Fridays to build community and promote kindness as a school. This isn’t just a movement for our students — teachers, staff, and administrators will wear their Kind is the New Cool shirts and families should feel welcome to join in too!

While it’s not required in order to get involved, if you are interested in purchasing a red Kind is the New Cool t-shirt you can order them by clicking HERE.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS 

Mrs. McClain’s 1st grade students at Cunningham were working this week  with their STEM partners on a “Paper Tower Challenge”. They were  given three pieces of construction paper, a roll of plastic tape, and 15 minutes to design and build the tallest tower they could. Students enjoyed sharing their strategies for building the tallest tower and working together as a team. They especially enjoyed comparing the height of their tower to their own height!

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Collicot held its PBIS Assembly , “All are Welcome” , on September 11th with all students from  kindergarten through 5th  grade. During the assembly the Collicot Code as well as school and classroom expectations were reviewed and students were re-introduced to the Collicot Compliment Cards and Cardinal Classroom of the Week. Mrs Caruso read “ All are Welcome”  to students” by Alexandra Penfold.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS – VAPING

The dangers of vape/e-cig use made National headlines this summer with several teens suffering from severe lung issues and Congress questioning vape/e-cig manufacturers about targeted marketing to youth.  In our efforts to keep your children safe and to keep you informed, I want to bring to your attention the use of E-Cigarettes, Vape Pens or Juul Pods.

As many of you may know already, the popularity of these devices are creating many challenges for communities  throughout the country as well as compromising the health and safety of our youth.  Milton Public Schools has been diligently addressing the issue and will continue to remain vigilant.  Some of the actions we have taken or plan to take include: offering two parent/guardian training sessions this past spring regarding substance use prevention.  At the same time, Vape detectors were installed in the bathrooms at MHS.   All grade 5 students had lessons in tobacco/vape/e-cig prevention due to a grant from BID-Milton which will continue again this year. Students in grades 6-12 have health education classes that address substance use prevention and the dangers of vaping were included in an updated curriculum last year and the lessons will continue.  Thanks to the Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition(MSPAC), we had the substance abuse prevention troupe “Drug Story Theater” present to MHS students and they held a community event. We look to work with the MSAPC again to bring in more programs to educate students this year.  We’ll look to bring in a speaker to address “Vaping Prevention” as a part of our PARENT Speaker Series.  We continue to offer numerous clubs and after-school activities to keep students engaged and involved.  We conduct brief screenings (SBIRT) to 7th and 9th grade students regarding health behaviors including substance use.

We will continue to provide resources to assist parents/guardians as you look to continue the conversation with your child about the dangers of vaping.  Don’t hesitate to contact Director for Health and Physical Education, Noel Vigue  or your child’s principal or school nurse with any questions. Please see the following resources:

Vaping: What You Need to Know and How to Talk to Your Kid 

Quit Vaping – from the Truth initiative – texts to help youth quit vaping/juuling. While we’d like to prevent youth from using in the first place, this resource can help users quit. Text Quit to 202-804-9884, Check out this 4 minute video introducing the program on NBC Today.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School.

Coming together with your child’s team each year can be both exciting and stressful, as you reflect upon your child’s progress and plan the new areas of focus. This workshop will offer parents information, insight and tips that will lead to more effective communication and advocacy as you come together with your district team to plan for your child’s educational needs.

FREE and open to the public. This presentation is relatable to parents/guardians of ALL AGES.

MPS STAFF HIGHLIGHT

The Milton Public Schools is proud to have a vibrant staff of instructional assistants who support the ongoing and daily needs of our students across the district.

Beginning in the integrated and specialized preschool programs, our instructional assistants work collaboratively with preschool teachers to support our youngest students. These staff provide a wide range of assistance, from transition support, self-care, and facilitating positive social behavior to communication support, promoting developing play skills and encouraging participation.

At the elementary level, most families are familiar with the kindergarten paraprofessionals who support each classroom as many children begin their first MPS full school day experience. There is one paraprofessional in each of our kindergarten classrooms and these instructional aides work in tandem with the classroom teacher to ensure a smooth, productive and enriching year for our kindergarten students.

Across all grades, K-12,  we have special education instructional assistants who support students who have an Individualized Educational Plan, or IEP.  These staff are trained to provide support in many areas, including  accessing classroom materials, following daily routines, maintaining positive and pro-social relationships and navigating the school environment. As students often work in small groups, these educators may be supporting different learners in a classroom throughout the school year. Additionally, some of our instructional assistants have specialized training in the field of Applied Behavior Analysis, or ABA. These staff are skilled in providing 1:1 instruction and behavioral support to our students with Autism and related disabilities.

At Milton High School, job coaches and instructional assistants also have the added responsibility of supporting our Achieve and 18-22 year old students who have pre-vocational and community based employment.

We are fortunate to have an incredibly dedicated and strong cadre of support staff in the Milton Public Schools. Their work is vital to the operational success of our schools and the personal achievements of our students.

MILTON FOUNDATION FOR EDUCATION 

The Milton Foundation for Education is thrilled to announce the 2019 Monster Dash 5K run/walk and Kid’s Fun Run. Sunday, October 27th at Cunningham Park, 75 Edge Hill Road, Milton.

The Monster Dash, now in its 21st year, benefits the Sam Cichello Memorial Fund. The Cichello family created this fund in memory of their young son, Sam, who died tragically in a 1999 playground accident at Tucker Elementary School. Sam’s Fund supports the science curriculum in all Milton schools. Register now for this fun family event! 

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 

On September 27th, MPS will host an “ed-camp” style conference for all of our MPS educators and colleagues from surrounding communities. Our administrators, teachers and paraprofessionals will participate in a Keynote Address from Dr. Kenneth Wesson (“The Neuroscience of Learning: What Works, What Lasts and Why?”), and then choose from a menu of 85+ hour-long sessions to attend, facilitated by MPS teachers, administrators, community members and other education professionals. In addition to 85+ professional learning opportunities, lunch and snacks will be provided throughout the day. Next week, the conference website will be up and running, and all participants will sign up to choose the sessions they would like to participate in throughout the day.

Questions? Please contact: Ben Kelly, Vice Principal, Milton High SchoolAJ Melanson, Educational Technology Director, MPS ; Amy Tom, Science Department Head, Milton High School  

FOOD AND NUTRITION 

In a few days, our MHS grow racks will look like this!

The Milton School Food Service Program is partnering with EvanLee Farms to provide sustainable gardens to our schools. This past Friday we installed the second indoor “Grow Rack” at Milton High School. Our students in the Achieve Program planted romaine lettuce, green leaf lettuce, micro mix, kale and basil and lemon basil. Students will harvest the greens in three weeks and they will bring it to our kitchen so we can serve these amazing items at lunch.

These racks will be growing within the school by our students and for our students. Students will learn how to make  informed food choices, how to grow their own food and garden and how to process their food in a  sustainable way.

These racks also serve to educate our students in the science of soils – how soils work to give our plants their nutritional value and understanding the root system of plants. Students will also be learning the history of agriculture and changes due to pesticides, climate change, and what we must do to adapt. The students along with their teachers will plant, maintain and harvest what they grow for consumption in our cafeterias.

TRANSPORTATION 

The MPS Transportation Department is excited to roll out the FirstView Parent App provided by First Student, our bus company.  FirstView is comprehensive and secure bus tracking and parent communication app.  The FirstView app is easy to download, set up and use to provide estimated bus arrival times, transportation messaging regarding delays or issues and customizable alerts for when your student’s bus is a chosen distance or number of minutes away.    

Please visit FirstViewApp.com or find FirstView in the App Store or Google Play to download to your smartphone.  Additionally a desktop version of FirstView is available at  FirstViewApp.com.

Next week be on the lookout for emails from the transportation department with specific instructions and school codes to upload your student’s route into your app. 

ATHLETICS 

The Football Team beat Bishop Feehan 17-7 last Friday. Their game this Friday will be at 3:45 at Framingham High School.

Volleyball has started their season 3-0, with wins over Framingham, Notre Dame Academy and Braintree.

The Swim Team made history last night. Andrew Tran, Joe Pezzini, Christian Bartkiewicz and Sebastien Yunger made the state cut in the 200 Medley Relay! They also had Amalia Halpin, Madison Crummy, Adri Halpin and Emily Dobrindt make the state cut in the girls 200 Medley Relay as well. Madison Crummey, Rose Gillooly and Emily Dobrindt all made state cuts in two individual events. Amalia Halpin made a state cut in the 100 butterfly. The girls also made states in the 200 free relay and 400 free relay. Christian Bartkiewicz made a sectional cut in the 200 IM and 100 breaststroke, Sebatien Yunger in the 50 freestyle, and Liv DiSandro also in the 50 freestyle. The boys 200 free relay a made a sectional cut as well.

All game schedules can be found on our  MHS Athletics website.

Rescheduled to this weekend! The MHS Boys Basketball team will be hosting a “Cans for Cats” bottle and can drive on September 14th, 9am-12pm  at Milton High School.

 NEWS AROUND TOWN

The Girl Power Running Program elementary school aged girls is ongoing! This is a FREE (parent run) program. The purpose of this program is to provide a come when you can, low pressure, confidence and self esteem building activity that encourages girls to work towards a goal, push themselves at a healthy pace and comfort level while supporting one another and participating in an outdoor, good for your body and soul activity. Occasionally we will have a woman that embodies “girl power” join us. We try to have women from a wide range of professions to demonstrate to our girls their limitless options. We will start with a walk/jog, everyone go at their own pace, one mile loop and slowly increase our mileage with the end goal being to participate (if your child wants) in the Monster Dash on Sunday, October 27. The program will meet at the Cunningham Park tennis courts on Mondays and began on Monday, September 9th. We will meet at 3:45 for sign in and warm ups prior to our run. All details can be found here.

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The Town of Milton invites you to a Community Housing Forum on Saturday, September 14th at 10am at the Milton Council on Aging, 10 Walnut Street. The town is in the process of preparing a Housing Production Plan that will provide up to date information on local housing issues, identify priority housing needs, and propose short and long-term strategies to address these needs.

Please come to hear what the Town has learned about shifts in demographic and housing trends and needs. Participate in a special program to offer your perspectives on the Town‘s future housing agenda. This is the first of two planned public meetings. A draft summary of the plan can be found on the Town website. Free childcare will be provided. Please call the Select Board Office at 617-898-4843 with any questions.

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The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September. 

***

The Forbes House Museum is looking for a Saturday Docent. This is a paid, part-time position, with work hours 10:30 am – 2:30 pm on alternating Saturdays throughout the year. If you enjoy history, art,  ongoing learning, and sharing your passions with others, but are also able to work independently, this is a great opportunity to represent the museum and Milton to visitors of all ages and backgrounds. To learn more about the specific duties and requirements of the position, please visit  the Forbes House website.

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Brookwood Community Farm’s 7th Annual Farm Dinner is Sunday, September 15th. Funds raised support the farm’s mission to improve access to fresh food in surrounding communities. We donate to more than 5 food pantries and work in cooperation with Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition. In 2018 over $21,000 worth of produce was donated and in 2019 we are well on our way with over $11,000 donated so far. We are thankful for our partnership with the Department of Conservation and Recreation and with The Trustees of Reservations for land use and for our many volunteers and local supportive businesses that help to sustain this farm community. Please join us to enjoy the beautiful setting at Prowse Farm and a dinner filled with Brookwood produce! Tickets can be purchased online at this link.

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Milton’s Plastic Bag Ban takes effect on September 14, 2019. Our town’s ordinance was designed to limit the use of single-use plastic checkout bags to protect our streets and public spaces from litter and reduce our environmental impact. We encourage shoppers to remember to bring reusable bags along with them when shopping in Milton. More information can be found here. 

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Milton Early Childhood Alliance (A program of Discovery Schoolhouse, Inc.) in partnership with Learning Circle Preschool & Curry College Education Dept.
present BEYOND REMOTE CONTROLLED CHILDHOOD; Creating and Finding Balance in the Media Age, by Diane E. Levin, Professor of Education Wheelock College, Dept. of Early Childhood Education. Join us as Dr. Levin discusses ways in which families can effectively manage media and technology in the lives of their children, describes their effects on learning, play, and development, and explains the value of concrete hands-on play experiences for learning. To learn more about Dr. Levin’s work as an educator, author, and children’s activist, visit her website at dianeelevin.com.

AMBASSADORS

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

STAFF: As you read above, our paraprofessional staff are a crucial part of our mission at the Milton Public Schools. We would not have the excelling district we do with out these dedicated and professional staff members. Please join me in thanking them for all they do for our students throughout the year.

STUDENTS: I am pleased to announce our student’s Advanced Placement (AP) exam results. In the spring of 2019, Milton High School students took AP exams across almost 20 disciplines. Advanced Placement courses expose students to introductory college level coursework and a score of 3 or above on an AP exam indicates that students would perform well at the college level. Once again, our students have demonstrated excellence in their AP results with 150 Milton High School students recognized by the College Board as AP Scholars with various distinctions. These results are a testament to the hard work, dedication and preparation of both our students and faculty. Please join us in congratulating the following students on their achievement in AP exams and on their recognition from the College Board.

The National AP Scholar designation is granted to students in the United States who receive an average score of at least 4 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 4 or higher on eight or more of these exams. We are very proud of Aidan G. Braithwaite, Justin M. Chan, Sarah P. Hancock, Penelope C. Holland, Samuel A. LeLacheur, Hannah J. Mitchell, Julia L. Nerenberg, Eliza C. O’Donnell, Suvan Shukla for achieving this impressive benchmark.

The AP Scholar with Distinction is granted to students who receive an average score of at least 3.5 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on five or more of these exams. The following students are to be commended for their AP achievements: Lucas B. Alvarez, Grace L. Baker, Alexandra K.Boursican, Aidan G. Braithwaite, Justin M. Chan, Frances M. Collins , Colleen l. Conley, Lilja J. Cormack, Julia C. DeFilippo, Alex Dhima, Emily R. Dobrindt, Michael C. Doyle, Grace M. Dwyer, Edward M. Enyedy, Katherine M. Fahy, Jada M. Farrar, Aemilia A. Ferreira, Mark R. Guerra, Jeremiah J. Hainline, Sarah P. Hancock, Caitlin E. Heelen, Penelope C. Holland, Jackson T. Hoy, Alexandra Kelly, Meghan C. Kelly, Amanda I. Kwong, Jordan H. Lawrence, Samuel A. LeLacheur, Alisa Lorden, Claire V. Mandel, Kara A. Milliken, Hannah J. Mitchell, Julia L. Nerenberg, Philip M. Ng Pack, Thanh Nguyen, Grace C. Noonan, Mary C. O’Connell, Eliza C. O’Donnell, Laura K. O’Hanlon, Nessan F. ODonnell, Madison N. Pellegri, Alexandra C. Rene, Madeline W. Riordan, Sagar Risal, Emily S. Schewe, Suvan Shukla, Isabel C. Smith, Mary Leigh Sullivan, Amanda R. Tam, Clarissa M. Waldmann, Darragh P. Walsh, Dietrich I. Werner, Yatchun Yip and Onn Ye Young.

We also wish to recognize both our AP Scholar with Honor students who received an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP Exams taken, and scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams and our AP Scholar students who received scores of 3 or higher on three or more AP Exams.

Congratulations to AP Scholar with Honor students Molly K. Baker, Neamhain L. Berry , Alex R. Caputo, Joseph S. Charles, Nicola A. Cross, Zachary D. Danner, Raquel C. Gallagher, Paul J.Goodman, Margaret C. Haley, Veronica G. Harris, Patrick J. Hoey, Abdur Hosein, Jeremy A. Killingback, Matthew E. Laine, Francis X. Lalley, Karisa R.Lasoff,Thomas Newell, Margaret M. Pellegri, Abigail A. Rogers, Brandon Seeto, Max Winkler and Shannon M. Young

Congratulations to our AP Scholars Ayla S. Alsebai, Kianna A. Barrett, Samantha Baum, Katherine A. Biagiotti, Annabel V. Botsford, Luke H. Botsford, Aine Buchau, Alannah M. Corcoran, Kyle S.Coull, Brendan D. Cox, Michael R. Daly, Sophia L. Deal, Isabelle B. Driscoll, Ava M. Duggan, Simone L. Elfer, Guinevere A. Ferreira, Matthew M. Finnegan, Daniel P. Flaherty, Mary K. Fox, Julia E. Francesconi, Maya S. Galeano, Madeline L. Gray, Lorna R.Grey, Nicholas J.Griswold, Amalia C.Halpin, Wallace P. Heller, Katherine E. Kates, Bridget M. Kelly, Lauren M. Kelly, Patrick J. Kennedy, Catherine H.Le, Esme A.Link, Vanessa Lorden, Kyle T. Loria, Vincent H. Luong, Jenny Ly, Cooper J. Madigan, Matteo C. Mastandrea, Ryan J. McGroarty, Sarah G. Mitchell, Katherine R. Morrissey, Molly F. Murtagh, Kami H.Nguyen, Minh-Anh Nguyen, Andrew T. Nilsen, Matthew J. Noris, Rebecca C.Noris, Jordan M. Pascal, Cameron Pentland, Audrey R. Pugh, Mohammed A.Rahman, Isabelle L. Richer, Coleman L. Rose, Brendan M. Scott, Caleb J. Smith, Grace K. Stenson, Grace A. Sullivan , Jonathan T. Truong, Kennedi D. Van Allen, Hanganh T. Vo, Taylor A. Vrettas, Douglas B. Walko, Connor P. Withington and Austin C. Wright.

Congratulations to these students on their achievements on the AP exams!

VOLUNTEERS: I want to recognize the parents and guardians who serve on the PTOs (or PTSFO at MHS) at each our six schools. These dedicated volunteers give countless hours to our schools, in the service of enhancing and enriching the Milton Public Schools experience for all students, staff and families. Please join me in thanking our PTO boards and leadership teams. If you have ever considered a role with the PTOs at one of our schools, I encourage you to reach out and see how you can be a part of these vibrant and welcoming organizations.

Cunningham PTO Leadership Team: Suzanne Fitzsimons, Erin Burke, Karin Roethke-Khan, Marybeth Doyle, Stephanie Doyle, Christina Carlin, Laura Phelps, Abigail Callahan, Emily Dwyer, Marianne Kinsella, Sheila Hume, Sammi Yee, Deb Lynch, Jackie Barkowski, Megan Pallai, Megan Dietrich, Brittany Rist and Mandy Susi.

Tucker PTO: Meena Tondravi and Lacy Stoneburner – Co-Presidents; Rebecca Allen – Treasurer; Lateefah Franck – Diversity & Equity; Stacey Soloman and Vanessa Foster – Hospitality; Tanjirene Smith – Communications and Dawn Beckman – Fundraising.

Collicot  PTO: Christine Morrow and Rebecca Stover – Co-Presidents; Stephanie Oldfield – Secretary; Colleen Fogerty and Heidi Naumes – Co-Treasurers.

MHS PTSFO: Annellen Lydon and Trisha Sullivan serve as co-presidents.

Pierce PTO Leadership Team: Colin Delaney, Kristin Dembowski, 
Michelle Cardoza, Stephanie O’Keefe, Lisa Weinstein, Suzanne Moynagh, Sarahkate Feloney and Denise Leonardo.

Glover PTO: Christine Sullivan and Emily Duffy  – Co-Presidents; Erika Doherty- Vice President; Sheila Armstrong  -Treasurer and Suzanne Bridges  – Secretary.

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week:  Noel Vigue,  Jon Redden,  Maureen McClain, Zeina Hamada,  Susan Maselli, Ryan Madden, Rachel Schewe, Jackie Morgan, Janice Mazzola, Bill Fish, Cat DesRoche,  Karen Cahill and Dr. Karen Spaulding.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on September 12, 2019

September 5, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: September 5, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

Rabbi Benjamin, of the Congregation Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills recently emailed me to share the passage below. He did not write this passage and I regret to say I don’t know who did write it so I can not credit the author. The words are powerful and I hope you will take a moment to read the paragraph below and share the sentiment with your children.

As we begin a new school year soon, take a minute to say a little prayer for the kids that don’t fit in.
The kids that come home in tears because they don’t understand why no one likes them, or maybe there’s too much of everything around them and just can’t hold it together anymore.
Pray  for these kids who no one will talk to because someone else spread rumors about them.
The kids that don’t have the right shoes , haven’t gone to the right places on vacation, or think/act a little different.
Right now, those kids are dreading going back to school .
Right now they are crying  and begging their parents to let them stay home or go to a different school. Pray they know they are loved, Pray they know they are special, and pray they find their group of friends.
NOW is the time to tell your children to be nice, kind, and get to know the kids who are wanting friends. You will never know how much this can make a difference in someone’s life.

A mother of one our students sent me this article at the beginning of school and it also speaks to Rabbi Benjamin’s sentiment above. She wrote that ” A first day of school picture is going viral, in a really good way. Two elementary school boys began the new school year with a lesson in kindness. We wanted to share this as we are all hoping for a good, kind, inclusive school year for all of the students and staff of the Milton Public Schools.

***

This week we welcomed our newest and youngest students – our kindergarten and preschool students!  Welcome to the Milton Public Schools and we look forward to walking beside you on your educational journey over the next 13 years!

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES  

Sep 10 Instrument Registration Night
Sep 11 Pierce Middle School Open House
Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 16-30 Milton GOES GOLD
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 21 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive  –  Cunningham/Collicot Driveway
Sep 24 Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski, Parent speaker Series
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Children’s Hospital Blood Drive at Cunningham Hall
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
Sep 27 MHS Football Game  – Milton GOES GOLD
Oct 2 Milton School Committee
Oct 3 MHS 8th Grade Information Night
Oct 9 No School – Yom Kippur
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Recent School Committee meetings can always be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, September 18th at 7pm.

PIERCE UPDATES

Science is up and running at the Pierce Middle School. Mr. Fish stopped by Mr. Romeo’s 8th grade science class and joined in on the fun! Students began the year with a team building STEM challenge that allowed them to apply scientific ideas to design and construct the tallest freestanding tower. Their work designing and testing towers not only served as a review of the Design Process but also emphasized the science practice of Developing and Using Models, an integral component of the 8th grade science curriculum.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS 

The Glover Sensory Pathways are off to an amazing start as you can see in this recent Patriot Ledger article.

MILTON GOES GOLD

Join us as Milton GOES GOLD this September to raise awareness and show support for children who are battling cancer! From September 16-30th, Milton GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness and there are several ways for families to participate. How can you Go Gold?

  • DONATE YOUR GOLD: From September 16-30, send spare change in with your child to help fill the GOLD boots at all elementary schools. We are also collecting items from this list at Pierce and MHS.
  • GIVE BLOOD – AS VALUABLE AS GOLD: We are holding TWO blood drives in September. Saturday 9/21 9am-4pm (75 slots) and Thursday 9/26 8am -3pm (75 slots). Sign up in the links above.
  • WEAR YOUR GOLD: On Thursday September 26th, wear as much gold as you can! You can wear your own gold clothing/ accessories and/or purchase Milton GOES GOLD shoelaces ($3) in your school office (next week) or online here. 
  • CHEER FOR GOLD: Attend the MHS Football game on Friday, September 27th for Milton GOES GOLD night!

This week several of the families involved in Milton GOES GOLD visited the MPD and MFD to place gold ribbon magnets on MPD and MFD vehicles. 

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Teenagers are often told that they have their whole lives ahead of them. The idea that a teen could be thinking about ending that life might be hard for their friends, families, or other people in their community to believe.  But the risk of suicide should be on the radar of anyone who interacts with teens, says Dr. Jane Pearson, a mental health expert at NIH.

The rate of teen suicide has increased over the last decade. Suicide is now the second leading cause of death for teens and young adults in the United States.  Experts don’t know why this rate has been rising. But NIH-funded researchers are working on better ways to find and help teens who are thinking of suicide.  In the Milton Public Schools, we have a dedicated staff (including counselors, nurses, educators, admin) who are trained to provide support and resources for students struggling with mental, emotional, and/or behavioral health issues.  As part of our health education curriculum, students in grades 5 through 12 learn about healthy strategies to manage stress, how to recognize if a friend is struggling and how to advocate/support them, and where to go to get help.  Learn more at this link.

Some common suicide warning signs are below.  The more warning signs, the greater the risk of suicide.

  • Talking about wanting to die
  • Looking for ways to kill oneself
  • Talking about feeling hopeless or having no purpose
  • Talking about feeling trapped or in unbearable pain
  • Talking about being a burden to others
  • Abusing alcohol or drugs
  • Acting anxious, agitated, or reckless
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Withdrawing or feeling isolated
  • Having extreme mood swings
  • Giving away belongings, including treasured objects

Get your teen help from a mental health professional or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK. You can also text “HOME” to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School.

Coming together with your child’s team each year can be both exciting and stressful, as you reflect upon your child’s progress and plan the new areas of focus. This workshop will offer parents information, insight and tips that will lead to more effective communication and advocacy as you come together with your district team to plan for your child’s educational needs.

FREE and open to the public. This presentation is relatable to parents/guardians of ALL AGES.

FROM THE READERS

I often receive articles or videos from parents and staff that are worthy of sharing with you. MHS English teacher Dyanne Crowley sent me the video in this link about how to teach your kids to love reading. As a life long reader and educator, this resonated with me.

This recent article in the Boston Globe may be interesting to you, as it pertains to the ever evolving MCAS test and the controversy over a passage and question that were included on some tests last year. 

Milton Access TV is a valuable member of our community and provides a way for many of us to stay abreast of local issues. Their most recent news letter can be found here.

SPECIAL EDUCATION  

This link contains information from SEPAC, Special Education Parent Advisory Counsel regarding multiple upcoming opportunities to meet SEPAC representatives and learn about this vital role they play in our community.

FOOD SERVICE

There is a terrific opportunity for part time jobs or substitutes in our food services department. We are hiring for substitute positions at all schools. You’ll be serving healthy food to kids and be home when your kids are home due to the school schedule – what’s better than that?! This can be a great opportunity for parents and retirees and food service experience is a plus, but not required. The starting pay for the food service substitute position is $15.05 per hour. Please email Jackie Morgan or call (617-696-5040 X 5514)  for more information.

ART AND MUSIC

Please join us for the ALP Beginner Registration Night on Tuesday, September 10, 7-8pm at Milton High School.

What is the Applied Lessons Program? The Applied Lessons Program (ALP) is a partnership between the Milton Public Schools and local, private music teachers, which provides reduced cost music instruction on band and string instruments.

Checking out the instruments and getting advice from our music students at the Instrument Petting Zoo in June.

Who can participate in ALP? ALP welcomes any Milton child interested in studying an instrument.  Students may begin as early as the 4th grade but beginners of any age are welcome!

Lessons for which instruments are provided? ALP offers a wide range of instruments: flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon, saxophone, trumpet, French horn, trombone, baritone horn, tuba, percussion, violin, viola, cello, bass and guitar.  Vocal instruction, and lessons on piano and recorder are NOT provided.

When and where do ALP lessons take place? All lessons last 30 minutes, occur weekly, and take place at Milton High School between 3-9pm.

How are lessons structured? ALP teachers offer private (one student) and semi-private (two students) lessons.  Semi-private lessons are for students studying the same instrument, and must pair prior to signing-up for a time with a teacher.  No semi-private lessons will be scheduled if only one student is registering.

What is the cost of lessons? Lessons are divided into two semesters, and payment for SESSION I (15 lessons) must be provided at registration night: private lessons (1 student) are $420 and semi-private lessons (2 students) are $270.00 each.  Payment is made directly to the lesson teacher on registration night.  Payment for SESSION II is collected by the ALP teacher in January.

How do I obtain the instrument my child will study? Milton partners with several vendors from which families can purchase or rent an instrument. Rental fees are most typical, and vary depending on the instrument and rental plan. The following vendors will be onsite during instrument registration night:  Johnson String , Spencer Brook Strings  , Needham Music and Leonards Music .

I pre-registered for lessons online during the summer.  Should I attend? Yes!  You will need to complete registration for lessons with your assigned ALP teacher, provide payment for session one, and rent an instrument (if you do not already have one) from one of the music vendors available that night.  You can also buy/rent an instrument from any other company you choose.

I didn’t pre-register.  Can I still sign-up? Absolutely!  When you attend ALP registration night, you will be directed to an instructor for the instrument of your choice to schedule a lesson time, and then to the vendor area to rent or buy the instrument if needed.  Please note that lesson slot can fill quickly so plan to arrive early to secure instruction on the instrument of your choice.

If my child already participates in ALP, do I need to attend? Registration night on Tuesday, September 10th is for beginners only.  Continuing students should contact their current lesson teachers directly to register—they do NOT come to beginner registration night.

I wish to participate but cannot attend registration night.  Who should I contact?n Please contact Applied Lessons Program Directors Rebecca Damiani or Gary Good with questions or concerns. Further details on the program and registration night can be found here. 

ATHLETICS 

Please see the following communication from MPS Athletic Director Ryan Madden.

I hope everyone enjoyed their summer and is excited to be back in school!  The Milton High School Fall Athletic Season is now upon us which means Friday Night Football and many other sports!  Please take a few minutes to read through some information that you may find useful regarding athletics at MHS.

2018-19 Brief Recap: A tremendous fall season was highlighted by our Golf Team winning the Division II Sportsmanship Award, as voted by coaches in the state.  Wrestlingstole the show in the winter, taking home the Division II Metro Championships, while Coach Ted Carroll won Division II Coach-of-the-Year! In the Spring, Rugby returned to the “Big Game”, beating Cambridge Rindge & Latin en route to their second straight championship. The highlight of the spring season, however, was the newly formed Unified Track Team.  We had nearly 40 students participate in the first every Unified Sport at Milton High School, and we hope to build on that for next season.  Four more Milton High School student-athletes signed Division I Letters of Intent.  Ella Affanato and Elise O’Leary both signed on for Cross Country and Track at Merrimack College and the University of Connecticut, respectively. Elias Deaibes signed on to Temple to continue his rowing career, while Smith Charles will shift to a darker shade of Red, as he takes his trade to Cornell University for Track.

New Coaches: We would like to introduce two new coaches to the MHS Coaching Staff.  Patrick Ellis is our new Boys Varsity Soccer Coach. Coming to us from Weymouth High School, Coach Ellis is also teaching Business at Milton High School.  Jessica Gillooly takes over as our new Coed Varsity Swim Coach after serving as the Varsity Assistant last season. She teaches Art at Tucker Elementary.  We will also have new coaches for Girls Ice Hockey, Girls Lacrosse, Boys Indoor Track, and Boys Outdoor Track.  These positions will not be announced until all have been filled. See here for our full list of coaches.

MHS Athletics Website: I would also like to take this opportunity to remind you of our Athletics Website. Nearly all questions you may have regarding the Athletics Department can be answered on this website.  You can find rosters, schedules, and All-Stars.  A coaching directory, list of sports offered, and news page with highlights can also be found.

Registration and Winter/Spring Seasons: Below are some key dates for the winter and spring athletic season.  Students must register on Family ID each Athletic Season.  The concussion course only needs to be completed once per year.  Most importantly, once a student’s physical expires, a new one must be provided in order for the student to be cleared. Registration steps can be found here.

Schedules: For those of you that have been looking for the High School Athletic Schedules, you can find them on the front page of the MHS Athletics Website.  You can also sign up for Game Alerts and Notifications here. Also, for future planning purposes, tryouts for fall 2020 begin on Friday, August 21st for Football and Monday, August 24th for all other fall sports.  Tryouts are mandatory for all students, including incoming freshmen, and missing tryouts may impact a student’s chances of making a team.

Student-Athlete Handbook: New this year is our Student-Athlete Handbook.  Starting in the winter season, students and parents/guardians must read this handbook.  Confirmation will be marked on the Family ID Registration. A copy of this handbook can be found on the MHS Athletics Website as well as here.

Parent/Guardian Feedback Form: This feedback form for athletics will be kept live all academic year.  Parents and Guardians may complete this form at any point during their season.

 NEWS AROUND TOWN

The Girl Power Running Program elementary school aged girls starts next week! This is a FREE (parent run) program. The purpose of this program is to provide a come when you can, low pressure, confidence and self esteem building activity that encourages girls to work towards a goal, push themselves at a healthy pace and comfort level while supporting one another and participating in an outdoor, good for your body and soul activity. Occasionally we will have a woman that embodies “girl power” join us. We try to have women from a wide range of professions to demonstrate to our girls their limitless options. We will start with a walk/jog, everyone go at their own pace, one mile loop and slowly increase our mileage with the end goal being to participate (if your child wants) in the Monster Dash on Sunday, October 27. The program will meet at the Cunningham Park tennis courts on Mondays beginning Monday, September 9th. We will meet at 3:45 for sign in and warm ups prior to our run. All details can be found here.

***

The Town of Milton invites you to a Community Housing Forum on Saturday, September 14th at 10am at the Milton Council on Aging, 10 Walnut Street. The town is in the process of preparing a Housing Production Plan that will provide up to date information on local housing issues, identify priority housing needs, and propose short and long-term strategies to address these needs.

Please come to hear what the Town has learned about shifts in demographic and housing trends and needs. Participate in a special program to offer your perspectives on the Town‘s future housing agenda. This is the first of two planned public meetings. A draft summary of the plan can be found on the Town website. Free childcare will be provided. Please call the Select Board Office at 617-898-4843 with any questions.

***

Milton’s Household Hazardous Waste drop-off day will be on September 7th at the DPW Yard.  As this is the first Saturday of September, and the recycling center’s typical first-Saturday opening will be moved to September 14th.

***

The Milton Historical Society will be hosting an open house commemorating the annual Suffolk Resolves Day for its 245th anniversary, on Sunday, September 8, 2019 from 1 to 3 p.m., at the Suffolk Resolves House, 1370 Canton Ave., Milton, MA. The event is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be offered. Historical reenactor Michael LePage will be portraying Paul Revere.

The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September. 

***

The Forbes House Museum is looking for a Saturday Docent. This is a paid, part-time position, with work hours 10:30 am – 2:30 pm on alternating Saturdays throughout the year. If you enjoy history, art,  ongoing learning, and sharing your passions with others, but are also able to work independently, this is a great opportunity to represent the museum and Milton to visitors of all ages and backgrounds. To learn more about the specific duties and requirements of the position, please visit  the Forbes House website.

***

Brookwood Community Farm’s 7th Annual Farm Dinner is Sunday, September 15th. Funds raised support the farm’s mission to improve access to fresh food in surrounding communities. We donate to more than 5 food pantries and work in cooperation with Mattapan Food and Fitness Coalition. In 2018 over $21,000 worth of produce was donated and in 2019 we are well on our way with over $11,000 donated so far. We are thankful for our partnership with the Department of Conservation and Recreation and with The Trustees of Reservations for land use and for our many volunteers and local supportive businesses that help to sustain this farm community. Please join us to enjoy the beautiful setting at Prowse Farm and a dinner filled with Brookwood produce! Tickets can be purchased online at this link.

***

Milton’s Plastic Bag Ban takes effect on September 14, 2019. Our town’s ordinance was designed to limit the use of single-use plastic checkout bags to protect our streets and public spaces from litter and reduce our environmental impact. We encourage shoppers to remember to bring reusable bags along with them when shopping in Milton. More information can be found here. 

AMBASSADORS

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

STAFF: Congratulations to Milton High School English teacher John Radosta, on the recent publication of his book, “Bob Dylan in Performance: Song, Stage, and Screen”. The book explores the different ways Dylan chooses to express his genius. Mr. Radosta and his college roommate Keith Nainby (who became almost as obsessed with Bob Dylan as Mr. Radosta when they lived together at Boston University) co-wrote the book.

Mr. Radosta shared that, ” A lot of people say they like his lyrics, but he can’t sing.  We argue that he makes very deliberate choices about how he sounds, as shown by the way he manipulates the sounds of words to convey more meaning, plays with rhyme, and even changes his voice from song to song, even on the same album. We look at the different periods of his career, and how, even though people thought he was betraying them every time he made a turn in his performance style, they all eventually decided to follow him anyhow.

It was a lot of fun to write the book, because I don’t usually get to do that kind of research, and it was especially strange collaborating with someone who lives in California. Going through the process of collecting material, drafting ideas, sharing them back and forth, and then having to format it in a professional scholarly way taught me all kinds of things I can use in my classroom when I’m teaching the research process.”

We are delighted to be able to share the link to purchase the book (enter the title in the search bar and use LEX30AUTH19 for a 30% discount) and very proud of our newly published author, John Radosta. More information can be found here and the book is also available online at additional booksellers.

VOLUNTEERS: I want to give a big thanks to Bill Resnick of Proforma , who thought of MPS when one of his suppliers had a large amount of new, quality pens to donate. Our students and staff are always in need of new pens and this large donation at the beginning of the year is most welcome!

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week:  Christie Chiappetta, Noel Vigue, Rabbi Alfred H. Benjamin, Dawn Sykes, Rebecca Damaini, Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai,  Jon Redden,  Karen McDavitt, Holly Concannon, Susan Maselli and Dr. Karen Spaulding.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on September 5, 2019

August 29, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: August 29, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

On Wednesday of this week, we welcomed our 1st-12th grade students for the 1st day of school. These two days of school (following two days of preparation and Professional Development for our staff – capped off with a terrific performance by the MHS Marching Band) provide students and teachers an opportunity to work together to learn new routines and schedules, establish classroom and school expectations and begin partnerships that will last throughout the school year and beyond. The excitement of seeing old friends, meeting new teachers, making new friends and experiencing new adventures is evident on the faces of our many students and staff on these opening days.

Tucker students and staff were excited to start the morning with their annual visit from Senator Walter Timilty who led the Pledge of Allegiance and welcomed all to a new school year. Tucker ended the day with a surprise visit from Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley who wanted to wish our Tucker students a wonderful year! As you can see in this short video, Congresswoman Pressley took the time to greet many Tucker students on their way home and had a message for them – I work for you everyday in Washington, DC.  Following dismissal she visited the Tucker after-school program briefly and shared with them a wonderful message about reaching their career aspirations. The students repeated back for her to hear “If it is to be…. it is up to me”. Thank you to Senator Timilty and Congresswoman Pressley for taking the time to visit Tucker this week.

On Friday, August 30th and Monday, September 2nd, the Milton Public Schools will be closed for Labor Day weekend.  Follow our MPS Facebook page and MPS Twitter account for news and information throughout the year. The full MPS calendar can be found here.

Please enjoy the long Labor Day weekend and we look forward to seeing all students, including our kindergarten and preschool students, on Tuesday, September 3rd.

SCHOOL SPECIFIC INFORMATION

MILTON HIGH SCHOOL 
Principal Mr. James Jette and Assistant Principals Mr. Ben Kelly and Mr. Brian Mackinaw
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Maureen Kennedy and Mr. Brad Spindle and Ms. Meghan Connors
Please see Mr Jette’s latest summer letter for all MHS information
MHS Open House – September 12th
MHS Athletic Website
MHS Website

PIERCE
Principal Mr. William Fish and Assistant Principals Dr. Nick Fitzgerald and Ms. Janice Mazzola
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Sandy Wyse and Mrs. Susan Higgins
Meet Mr. Fish – The PTO invites you to meet Mr. Fish in the Pierce lobby on Thursday, September 5th 6:30-7pm and Friday, September 6th 8:15-8:45am
Pierce Open House – September 11th 6:30pm
Pierce School Supply lists 
Pierce Webpage
Pierce PTO email contact
Pierce PTO Facebook page

GLOVER
Principal Karen McDavitt and Assistant Principal Sara MacNeil
Administrative Assistant Ms. Deb Woods
BooHoo/Yahoo Gathering (Kindergarten families) Tuesday, September 3 after drop off
Glover Open House- September 26
Glover Webpage 
Glover Twitter account
Glover PTO FB Page
Glover PTO email contact 

COLLICOT
Principal Mrs. Holly Concannon and Assistant Principal Mrs. Zeina Hamada
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Joanne Barker
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K parents – cafeteria – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off
School Picture Day – Monday September 9th
Back to School Picnic at Cunningham Park – Friday night, September 13th
Collicot Open House – Wednesday, September 25th
Collicot Webpage
Collicot PTO email 
Collicot PTO Facebook page

CUNNINGHAM
Principal Mr. Jon Redden and Assistant Principal Mrs. Bernadette Butler 
Administrative Assistant Ms. Erica Cadigan 
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K and PreK parents – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off
Cunningham Open House – September 19th
Cunningham Webpage 
Cunningham PTO email 
Facebook Page
Cunningham School Twitter 
Cunningham School Instagram

TUCKER
Principal Elaine McNeil – Girmai and Assistant Principal Maggie Dillier
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Eileen Keaney
Picture Day-September 6th
Open House-September 26th
Tucker School Supply lists
Tucker Webpage 
Tucker  PTO email contact
Tucker  PTO Facebook page

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES  

Aug 30  No School
Sep 2  No School
Sep 3  First Day for Preschool and K
Sep 4  Milton School Committee
Sep 10  Instrument Registration Night
Sep 11  Pierce Middle School Open House
Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 24 PARENT Speaker Series Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

The July and August  School Committee meetings can be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, September 4th at 7pm.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Cunningham 5th graders Caroline Melanson and Sara Callahan held their 2nd annual “Getting Ready for Kindergarten” camp this summer.  The girls had 4-6 K campers each week who practiced kindergarten readiness skills through fun craft projects, read alouds and outside play. Cunningham teacher Ms. Windwer visited the group on the last day for an exciting finish!

***

Thanks to a very generous Collicot Class of 2019 gift and a successful partnership with Sustainable Milton, the Collicot PTO and the town of Milton, Collicot has new water bottle filling station. This gift reflects the great respect and responsibility Collicot students model. Morgan refilled her bottle this week and so far we have already helped eliminate the waste from 187 water bottles!

The past few weeks have been busy with popsicle playdates, kindergarten meet ups and fun story times. We hope all of our young students had fun and feel comfortable starting school this week and next.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

We are excited to announce that Grade 5 Health classes will continue for the 2019-20 school year. Thanks to a generous grant from the Beth-Israel Deaconess Lahey Hospital – Milton, all 5th grade students in the Milton Public Schools will participate in health education lessons using the Botvin LifeSkills curriculum. The grant provides funding for a health educator and curriculum materials. This evidence-based curriculum addresses all of the most important factors leading adolescents to use one or more drugs by teaching a combination of health content, general life skills and drug resistance skills. There’s years of documented evidence of the curriculum’s effectiveness through extensive evaluation and has been proven to prevent or reduce tobacco, alcohol and other drug use. Part of the curriculum will be supplemented with vaping prevention strategies from the Stanford University School of Medicine – Anti-Vaping Toolkit.

The Botvin LifeSkills Training Elementary School program is a comprehensive, dynamic, and developmentally appropriate substance abuse and violence prevention program designed for upper elementary school students. This highly effective curriculum has been proven to help increase self-esteem, develop healthy attitudes, and improve a students’ knowledge of essential life skills – all of which promote healthy and positive personal development. The program learning objectives are as follows:

  • Personal Self-Management Skills: Students develop skills that enhance self-esteem, develop problem-solving skills, help them reduce stress and anxiety, and manage anger.
  • General Social Skills: Students gain skills to meet personal challenges such as overcoming shyness, communicating clearly, building relationships, and avoiding violence.
  • Drug Resistance Skills: Students build effective defenses against pressures to use tobacco (including e-cigs), alcohol, and other drugs (including marijuana and opioids).

The lessons include the following topics:Self-Esteem, Responsible Decision-Making, Tobacco/Vaping Prevention (supplemented with Stanford’s Anti-Vaping Toolkit), Media Influences and Advertising, Coping with Stress, Communication Skills, Social Skills/Peer Pressure and Assertiveness.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School.

Coming together with your child’s team each year can be both exciting and stressful, as you reflect upon your child’s progress and plan the new areas of focus. This workshop will offer parents information, insight and tips that will lead to more effective communication and advocacy as you come together with your district team to plan for your child’s educational needs.

FREE and open to the public. This presentation is relatable to parents/guardians of ALL AGES.

SPECIAL EDUCATION  

This link contains information from SEPAC, Special Education Parent Advisory Counsel regarding multiple upcoming opportunities to meet SEPAC representatives and learn about this vital role they play in our community.

MPS GOES GOLD

Join us as the Milton Public Schools GOES GOLD this September to raise awareness and show support for children who are battling cancer! From September 16-30th, MPS GOES GOLD for Childhood Cancer Awareness and there will be several ways for families to participate. We will share all details next week.

As part of MPS GOES GOLD, we are holding TWO blood drives in September. Saturday 9/21 9am-4pm (75 slots)and Thursday 9/26 8am -3pm (75 slots).  Please support this valuable effort and sign up in the links above.

FOOD SERVICE

Children need healthy meals to learn. Milton Public Schools offers healthy meals every school day. Breakfast costs $1.25; lunch costs $2.00/$2.25/$2.50 (Elementary, Pierce, MHS) Your children may qualify for free meals or for reduced price meals. Reduced price is $.00 for breakfast and $.40 for lunch. The packet linked here includes an application for free or reduced price meal benefits, and a set of detailed instructions. Below are some common questions and answers to help you with the application process.

Who can get free or reduced price meals? 

  • All children in households receiving benefits from MA SNAP, MA TAFDC, FDPIR, or specific categories of Medicaid are eligible for free meals.
  • Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals. 
  • Children participating in their school’s Head Start program are eligible for free meals.
  • Children who meet the definition of homeless, runaway, or migrant are eligible for free meals.
  • Children may receive free or reduced price meals if your household’s income is within the limits on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Your children may qualify for free or reduced price meals if your household income falls at or below the limits on this chart. 

All information on free and reduced school meals can be found here. More information on our Nutrition Services program can be found here. 

***

There is a terrific opportunity for part time jobs or substitutes in our food services department. We are hiring for substitute positions at all schools. You’ll be serving healthy food to kids and be home when your kids are home due to the school schedule – what’s better than that?! This can be a great opportunity for parents and retirees and food service experience is a plus, but not required. The starting pay for the food service substitute position is $15.05 per hour. Please email Jackie Morgan or call (617-696-5040 X 5514)  for more information.

***

All school lunch menus for the month can be found here. 

SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING

Laurie Stillman, MPS  SEL Facilitator shares the following.

Did you know that children perform better in school when they learn how to manage their emotions, constructively handle challenging situations, establish positive relationships with peers and adults, develop caring and concern for others, and make responsible decisions?

These qualities not only help students to achieve academically, but they also build character, self esteem and engagement in learning. These social emotional skills can be learned and practiced, and are the underpinnings of having successful careers in a 21st Century economy.  They are characteristics that employers value most, and are associated with higher wages. Here are some tips for raising caring, confident and capable children, recommended by the state of Illinois:

  • Set fair and thoughtful consequences for misbehavior, and then stick to them
  • Ask your children how they feel, and show them that their emotions are important to you
  • Find ways to stay calm when you’re frustrated and angry. Don’t lose control. It sends the wrong message.
  • Give your children room to make mistakes when learning new skills.
  • Give children choices, so they can learn to solve problems
  • Ask questions that help children solve problems on their own
  • Encourage sharing and helping

Fostering these skills will help support children’s resilience in dealing with life’s pressures.

TRANSPORTATION 

Bus passes for all assigned students have been mailed home and routes and schedules for the 2019-2020 school year are posted on the MPS website under the transportation page. All riders are REQUIRED to present their bus pass to ride the bus every day.  Students will not be allowed to board without their pass.

Please note that in the first week or two of school buses can run early or late based on traffic and new route patterns, please plan to have your student at their assigned stop at least 10 minutes early as we ask for patience as the routes settle into regular patterns for the school year.

ATHLETICS 

The MPS Athletics Dept is busy preparing for fall. Please see  MHS Athletics website  with all you need to know about fall athletics. Roll ‘Cats!

The MHS Field Hockey team will be hosting a car wash on September 7th, 9AM-12PM at the Cunningham School.  $10/car.

The MHS Boys Basketball team will be hosting a “Cans for Cats” bottle and can drive on September 7th, 9am-12pm  at Milton High School.

NEWS AROUND TOWN

A Reason to Ride is an annual family-friendly event where participants can choose between a 5K walk or a bike-a-thon with the option of 10-, 25-, or 50-mile rides through the scenic north shore towns of Danvers, Beverly, Wenham, Essex, and Gloucester to benefit cancer care and research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

This event started out as a labor of love for brain cancer survivor and BIDMC grateful patient Tom DesFosses. Tom and his wife, Judy, their close friend, Bob Barry, and numerous grateful patients, friends, and family members, launched A Reason to Ride in 2008 to raise funds for Eric Wong, M.D., and the Brain Tumor Fund at BIDMC. In 2011, recognizing that cancer touches everyone’s lives in different ways, Tom and Dr. Wong expanded the ride to support care and research for other types of cancer at the medical center. We hope you will join us on September 8 as we continue our efforts to support critical research, better treatment options for patients, and someday, a cure.

***

Milton’s Household Hazardous Waste drop-off day will be on September 7th at the DPW Yard.  As this is the first Saturday of September, and the recycling center’s typical first-Saturday opening will be moved to September 14th.

The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September. 

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week:  Noel Vigue, Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Liz Spitz, Jackie Morgan, Marti McKenna, Karen McDavitt, Holly Concannon, Sara MacNeil, Bernadette Butler,  Jon Redden, Susan Maselli and Laurie Stillman.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on August 29, 2019

August 22, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: August 22, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

As we approach the beginning of school, I want to extend a warm welcome to our parents/guardians and staff who are returning to the Milton Public Schools and a special welcome to those of you who are new to the Milton Public Schools.

The beginning of the school year brings changes to our staffing as teachers and staff retire, resign or move to different positions within the district. Below, I will introduce you to some key new employees of the Milton Public Schools. All of these new staff members are replacing staff who have left the Milton Public Schools or have moved to other positions within MPS. The district does not have any new positions in the 2019-20 school year beyond two new elementary classroom teachers who were hired to accommodate increasing enrollment. Please join me in welcoming these talented educators to their new roles in the Milton Public Schools community.

See the video link below to meet the new MPS staff!

Our new staff members joined the Milton Public Schools on Monday, August 19th and attended a full day of orientation, meetings with their respective principals and coordinators and a cookout luncheon prepared by Milton’s Food Service Director JackieMorgan and served by our administrators. On Tuesday, August 20th, our new teachers spent the day with their mentors at Curry College. Thank you to our Mentor Leadership Team of April Allegrezza, Deanna Magill, John Radosta and Meredith Kempf as well as to our dozens of teacher mentors for their year long support of our new teachers.  I would also like to thank Curry College President Kenneth Quigley for sponsoring the day.

This short video will “introduce” you to many of the new staff members you will meet in the coming weeks. Thank you to Principal Karen McDavitt for this introduction to many of our new staff. Meet the new MPS staff here!

NEW MPS STAFF

I am pleased to share that Ms. Janice Mazzola will be the new Pierce Assistant Principal, joining Principal Fish and Assistant Principal Dr. Nick Fitzgerald at the Pierce Middle School. Principal Fish shares that Ms. Mazzola has served as the assistant principal of Norwell Middle School since 2009. During that time, she oversaw a student body of approximately 550 students, directly managed and supported the school’s special education program, and developed a variety of programming to meet the contemporary needs of middle school students. Ms. Mazzola has supported Norwell Middle School’s implementation of 1:1 computing, daily mindfulness programming for students, and language-based classrooms. Ms. Mazzola’s breadth of experience and passion for middle school students will be a tremendous asset to the Pierce community.

Pierce parent and screening committee member Becky Padera shares, “ I was immediately impressed with Janice Mazzola because of her extensive experience as both an English teacher and an Assistant Principal at the middle school level. Through her interview she demonstrated her focus on effective communication with parents and students, as well as the importance of listening to their concerns. She was able to convey her vision to help work with the leadership team to continue to create a safe, friendly and positive learning environment at Pierce Middle School. Her experience working with the Bridge Program in Norwell will bring a unique and helpful perspective to Milton. I know she will be a welcome addition to the Pierce Administrative team and I am so happy she will be working for the Milton Public Schools!” Pierce teacher Rachel Clancy adds, “I am excited to see what Ms. Mazzola, an experienced administrator, brings to the Pierce community for the upcoming school year.”

***

We are pleased to announce that Cat DesRoche has been appointed as our new K-8 Literacy Director. Ms. DesRoche, who has been the Assistant Principal and Curriculum Coordinator at Tucker since August 2016 (and prior to that served as the MPS Title One Director for 3 years) is a wonderful addition to our district wide leadership team. The K-8 Literacy Director is not a new position, rather a renaming and combining of existing roles within MPS. Tucker Principal Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai shares that Cat is a wealth of knowledge and has proven herself to be an exemplary educator at Tucker elementary school over the last eight years. As a classroom teacher, reading specialist and both Curriculum Coordinator and Assistant Principal she always brought creativity, high expectations and hard work to the role. We are excited for Cat to continue to support literacy further at Tucker and throughout the district in her new role. Her love of literacy is contagious and she will do great things in this new role.

***

Brian Selig is the new K-12 Math Director for the Milton Public Schools. In his role as the K-12 Math Curriculum Director for Whitman-Hanson Regional School District for the last four years, he developed a passion for working with teachers and students at the elementary level and his prior experience teaching math at Braintree High School from 2005-2015 gives him strong insight into our high school learners and curriculum. He believes in the importance of instilling strong number sense, problem solving skills, and a curiosity and excitement about math in all of our learners. Dr. Elaine McNeil-Girmai writes that she is excited for the wealth of experience working K-12 that Mr. Selig will bring to the district. His work reviewing and implementing elementary math curriculum and strong content background will provide for a smooth transition at all levels.

***

While remaining as MHS Humanities Department head, Ms. Barbara Wright will also assume the role of supporting our Social Studies teachers and curriculum at Pierce Middle School. Dr. Karen Spaulding shares that for many years Milton High School has benefited from Barbara Wright’s thoughtful, social justice stance toward leadership. We are very excited that she will bring her expertise and firm commitment to children to the Pierce Middle School history team as they continue their incredible work.

***

I am happy to share that Maggie Dillier has been hired as the new Tucker Curriculum Coordinator and Assistant Principal. Ms. Dillier is coming to us from Lawrence Public Schools where she served as the Assistant Principal of Curriculum and Instruction. She holds degrees from Northwestern and is very excited to join the Tucker Faculty.  When asked by Dr. Spaulding during the interview process “Why, the Tucker School?”, Ms. Dillier explained that she knew the moment she entered the room and met the Tucker interview team that it was the right school for her. She has dedicated her professional life to ensuring that joy remains a central part of teaching and learning, and she felt that joy and passion coming from those in the room.  Ms. Dillier looks forward to learning and leading alongside the educators, families, and students of the Tucker community.

BACK TO SCHOOL INFORMATION

The 2019/20 school year starts on Monday, August 26th for staff, on Wednesday, August 28th for 1st-12th grade students and on Tuesday, September 3rd for our kindergarten and preschool students. On Friday, August 30th and Monday, September 2nd, the Milton Public Schools is closed for Labor Day weekend.  Follow our MPS Facebook page and MPS Twitter account for news and information throughout the year. The full MPS calendar can be found here.  You will find school specific information below.

MILTON HIGH SCHOOL 
Principal Mr. James Jette and Assistant Principals Mr. Ben Kelly and Mr. Brian Mackinaw
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Maureen Kennedy and Mr. Brad Spindle and Ms. Meghan Connors
Homeroom assignments mailed out in August, schedules 1st day of school
New student orientation for all freshmen and new students August 26th 4-6 pm
Please see Mr Jette’s latest summer letter for all MHS information
MHS Open House – September 12th
MHS Athletic Website
MHS Website

PIERCE
Principal Mr. William Fish and Assistant Principals Dr. Nick Fitzgerald and Ms. Janice Mazzola
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Sandy Wyse and Mrs. Susan Higgins
Team Assignment Letters mailed the week of August 19th
New families night – August 20th at 6:30 PM
Schedules to be distributed on the first day of school
Back to school information night for rising 6th grade families  – August 27th at 6:30pm
Picture Day – August 29th
Pierce Open House – September 11th 6:30pm
Pierce School Supply lists 
Pierce PTO School Supply Order Program
Pierce Webpage
Pierce PTO email contact
Pierce PTO Facebook page

GLOVER
Principal Karen McDavitt and Assistant Principal Sara MacNeil
Administrative Assistant Ms. Deb Woods
Homeroom assignments – week of  August 19
Popsicle PlayDate /Building Tour (Kindergarten) Tuesday, August 20, 10am (playground)
and Thursday, August 22 at 6pm (playground)
Kindergarten Orientation Thursday, August 29 9:30-11am  (families will receive orientation time with homeroom assignment letter)
BooHoo/Yahoo Gathering (Kindergarten families) Tuesday, September 3 after drop off
Glover Open House- September 26
Glover Webpage 
Glover Twitter account
Glover PTO FB Page
Glover PTO email contact 

COLLICOT
Principal Mrs. Holly Concannon and Assistant Principal Mrs. Zeina Hamada
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Joanne Barker
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19
Tour for New Families (grades 1-5) Tuesday, August 27th, 2pm
Popsicles with the Principal- rear playground – Tuesday, August 28th 3-4pm
Kindergarten Orientation  – Thursday, August 29th
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K parents – cafeteria – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off
School Picture Day – Monday September 9th
Back to School Picnic at Cunningham Park – Friday night, September 13th
Collicot Open House – Wednesday, September 25th
Collicot Webpage
Collicot PTO email 
Collicot PTO Facebook page

CUNNINGHAM
Principal Mr. Jon Redden and Assistant Principal Mrs. Bernadette Butler 
Administrative Assistant Ms. Erica Cadigan 
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19th
Tour for new families (grades 1-5) Tuesday August 27th  – 5:15-6pm
Freeze Pops  with the Principal – rear playground – Tuesday, August 27th  – 6-7pm
PreK/K Orientation and Picnic – Thursday August 29th, 11- 2pm
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K and PreK parents – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off
Cunningham Open House – September 19th
Cunningham Webpage 
Cunningham PTO email 
Facebook Page
Cunningham School Twitter 
Cunningham School Instagram

TUCKER
Principal Elaine McNeil – Girmai and Assistant Principal Maggie Dillier
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Eileen Keaney
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19th
Popsicle Playdate for Pre-K, K, August 21st at 6pm, Tucker Playground
Picture Day-September 6th
Open House-September 26th
Tucker School Supply lists
Tucker Webpage 
Tucker  PTO email contact
Tucker  PTO Facebook page

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES  
Aug 28  First Day of School for Grades 1-12
Aug 30  No School
Sep 2  No School
Sep 3  First Day for Preschool and K
Sep 4  Milton School Committee
Sep 10  Instrument Registration Night
Sep 11  Pierce Middle School Open House
Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 24 PARENT Speaker Series Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

MPS SUMMER

The MPS staff recently shared their summer reading favorites and you can see what they are reading here.

Our summer reading at MPS has been strong with over one million minutes read by our elementary readers! The end of summer celebration at the Milton Public Library was a great success and attended by many of our MPS students.

Thank you to all who have sent in summer reading pictures. You can see some of the most recent pictures below.

Resources and assignments for grades K-12 can be found here: Summer reading requirements for Pierce can be found here.   All summer requirements for Milton High School can be found here. The high school and middle school summer assignments have been posted to PlusPortals. The summer work recording sheet for elementary can be found here. These math guidelines and resources will help you support your student this summer. Have fun and keep those math skills sharp! Summer Math Letter, 1-5,  Summer Math Letter, 6-8   Summer Math, 9-12 (scroll down for Mathematics)

HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

The Milton High School Guidance Department is closed for the summer and will reopen on Monday, August 26th. Please contact Maureen Kennedy or Brad Spindle  via email in the main office with any inquiries before August 26th.  The main office can also be reached by calling the high school at (617) 696-4470 and dialing 0.

Updated GPAs will be available in the fall once all summer school grades are submitted and recorded. Schedules will be given out to students on the first day of school Wednesday, August 28th, during homeroom. A welcome letter with homeroom assignments will be mailed home in late August. Freshmen and all other students new to MHS will receive their schedules at the New Student Orientation on August 26th.

All summer assignments are available on Plus Portals.  You do not need a password to access this information.

Enrollment in an AP course requires the student to complete prerequisite courses and mandatory summer work.  Summer work was assigned to all AP students at the mandatory AP information sessions held during the school year.  Failure to complete summer work may result in a student being dropped from the AP class. Please remind your student to complete their work.

Class of 2020: Please consider writing your college essay, update your activities list, complete your community service hours, do some college research and possibly visit some of the colleges/universities that you are interested in.

Don’t forget to sign up for your Senior Portrait sitting with Hayward Photography.More dates have been added to the schedule. More information can be found here: MHS appt instructions 201920 1 2.pdf; Milton Senior fee 201920 2 1 1.pdf; MHS parents letter 201920 1 1.pdf . If you have any questions or concerns please email Kelly@haywardphotography.com.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Duck foot prints, lily pads, frogs, puddles, sun flowers…you would think we were talking about Turner’s Pond or the Outdoor Classroom at Glover School. But the hallways that were once ordinary have been transformed into a structured movement pathway that encourages students to jump, hop, balance, and bounce. Staying true to Glover’s famous ducks, these stickers are designed to provide all Glover kids with movement opportunities throughout the day. Numerous research studies suggest that movement enhances students learning and engagement. These paths are anticipated for whole class transitions as well as a tool to support students who may need additional movement and input on their way to get a drink of water. Thanks to the generous support and funding from the PTO, each of Glover’s four hallways are lined with duck feet to stomp on, logs to balance across, lily pads to hop between, and much more. This project was the brainchild of Glover’s Occupational Therapist, Sarah Whitten, and her amazing father. They custom-designed the pathways to match Glover’s unique habitat and worked tirelessly to bring this project to fruition. We look forward to revealing the pathways to all 608 Glover Kids when school begins.  Until then, here is a little “teaser” video of our new sensory path!  

SCHOOL COMMITTEE

The July and August  School Committee meetings can be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, September 4th at 7pm.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Help your kids make choices that will support their well being. Participate in the SUPPER Project to learn how!

  • Are you a parent or guardian of a child in rising 5 –  8th grade?
  • Do you live with your child or are you in the same place as your child at least five days a week?
  • If YES, you may be able to participate in a research study
  • Families will be paid for their time
  • The purpose of this research study is to understand how to help young people make choices that will support their wellbeing.

We will be working with families over summer vacation (for parents/guardians of those entering 5th grade through those who just completed 7th). Please take a moment to read through the details found here and consider participating in the SUPPER Project. If you are interested, simply email the SUPPER Project team at with the subject line “Interested in the SUPPER Project” and in the body of the email include your name and the name of your child’s school.  A member from the study team will reach out to you with next steps. You can also give them a call at (617) 636 – 3587.

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School.

Coming together with your child’s team each year can be both exciting and stressful, as you reflect upon your child’s progress and plan the new areas of focus. This workshop will offer parents information, insight and tips that will lead to more effective communication and advocacy as you come together with your district team to plan for your child’s educational needs.

FREE and open to the public. This presentation is relatable to parents/guardians of ALL AGES.

FOOD SERVICE

Children need healthy meals to learn. Milton Public Schools offers healthy meals every school day. Breakfast costs $1.25; lunch costs $2.00/$2.25/$2.50 (Elementary, Pierce, MHS) Your children may qualify for free meals or for reduced price meals. Reduced price is $.00 for breakfast and $.40 for lunch. The packet linked here includes an application for free or reduced price meal benefits, and a set of detailed instructions. Below are some common questions and answers to help you with the application process.

Who can get free or reduced price meals? 

  • All children in households receiving benefits from MA SNAP, MA TAFDC, FDPIR, or specific categories of Medicaid are eligible for free meals.
  • Foster children that are under the legal responsibility of a foster care agency or court are eligible for free meals. 
  • Children participating in their school’s Head Start program are eligible for free meals.
  • Children who meet the definition of homeless, runaway, or migrant are eligible for free meals.
  • Children may receive free or reduced price meals if your household’s income is within the limits on the Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines. Your children may qualify for free or reduced price meals if your household income falls at or below the limits on this chart. 

All information on free and reduced school meals can be found here. More information on our Nutrition Services program can be found here. 

***

There is a terrific opportunity for part time jobs in our food services department. We are hiring for substitute positions at all schools. You’ll be serving healthy food to kids and be home when your kids are home due to the school schedule – what’s better than that?! This can be a great opportunity for parents and retirees and food service experience is a plus, but not required. The starting pay for the food service substitute position is $15.05 per hour. Please email Jackie Morgan or call (617-696-5040 X 5514)  for more information.

TRANSPORTATION 

Bus passes for all assigned students have been mailed home this week and routes and schedules for the 2019-2020 school year will be posted on the MPS website under the transportation page. All riders are REQUIRED to present their bus pass to ride the bus every day.  Students will not be allowed to board without their pass.

Please note that in the first week or two of school buses can run early or late based on traffic and new route patterns, please plan to have your student at their assigned stop at least 10 minutes early as we ask for patience as the routes settle into regular patterns for the school year.

ATHLETICS 

The MPS Athletics Dept is busy preparing for fall. Please see  MHS Athletics website.  with all you need to know about fall athletics. Roll ‘Cats!

The MHS Field Hockey team will be hosting a car wash on September 7th, 9AM-12PM at the Cunningham School.  $10/car.

The MHS Boys Basketball team will be hosting a “Cans for Cats” bottle and can drive on September 7th, 9am-12pm  at Milton High School.

NEWS AROUND TOWN

Tonight! Enjoy a Family “Happy Hour” at the Forbes House Museum, 215 Adams
Street. Thursday, August 22, 5:30pm – 7:30pm. As the carefree days of summer are winding down, spend a casual evening with friends and family at the Forbes House Museum. We’ll have live guitar music, lawn games and beer and wine available for purchase. Bring a picnic and enjoy the grounds. Free admission.

Milton’s Household Hazardous Waste drop-off day will be on September 7th at the DPW Yard.  As this is the first Saturday of September, and the recycling center’s typical first-Saturday opening will be moved to September 14th.

The Milton Public Library has terrific children’s programs all through September. 

AMBASSADORS 

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

VOLUNTEERS: We are so grateful to Driscoll Landscaping for their generosity to the Glover community. The Glover Outdoor Classroom is a courtyard within the confines of the Glover school and is a breeding ground for the Turner’s Pond ducks. Every year after the ducks have hatched, the Outdoor Classroom grows into a beautiful but very overgrown jungle! Thanks to the incredible generosity of Driscoll Landscaping, each summer the outdoor classroom is transformed back into a beautiful space where children can draw, explore, read, write, and learn. Asking nothing in return, Driscoll and his crew spend hours pruning, raking, mowing, and trimming. Under the watchful eye of outdoor classroom enthusiasts Mary O’Leary and Wendy Garpow Roth, the Outdoor Classroom becomes accessible again for all Glover Kids. We are very thankful to Driscoll Landscaping for always being so good to us here at Glover!

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email.

Thank you to my blog contributors this week:  Noel Vigue, Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Karen Spaulding, Jackie Morgan, Marti McKenna, Karen McDavitt, Holly Concannon, Karen Cahill, Deanna Magill, April Allegrezza, Jon Redden and Catherine Lee.

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on August 22, 2019

August 8, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update 
Date: August 8, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT 

As we continue to enjoy some beautiful summer weather, I wanted to share some information about back to school dates, as well as school specific information for each of our six schools. 

The 2019/20 school year starts on Monday, August 26th for staff, on Wednesday, August 28th for 1st-12th grade students and on Tuesday, September 3rd for our kindergarten and preschool students. On Friday, August 30th and Monday, September 2nd, the Milton Public Schools is closed for Labor Day weekend.  Follow our MPS Facebook page and MPS Twitter account for news and information throughout the year. The full MPS calendar can be found here.  You will find school specific information below. 

MILTON HIGH SCHOOL 
Principal Mr. James Jette and Assistant Principals Mr. Ben Kelly and Mr. Brian Mackinaw
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Maureen Kennedy and Mr. Brad Spindle and Ms. Meghan Connors

Homeroom assignments mailed out in August, schedules 1st day of school 
New student orientation for all freshmen and new students August 26th 4-6 pm
Please see Mr Jette’s latest summer letter for all MHS information
MHS Open House – September 12th 
MHS Athletic Website
MHS Website

PIERCE
Principal Mr. William Fish and Assistant Principals Dr. Nick Fitzgerald and Ms. Janice Mazzola
Administrative Assistants Mrs. Sandy Wyse and Mrs. Susan Higgins
Team Assignment Letters mailed the week of August 19th
New families night – August 20th at 6:30 PM
Schedules to be distributed on the first day of school
Back to school information night for rising 6th grade families  – August 27th at 6:30pm
Picture Day – August 29th
Pierce Open House – September 11th 6:30pm
Pierce School Supply lists 
Pierce PTO School Supply Order Program
Pierce Webpage
Pierce PTO email contact
Pierce PTO Facebook page

GLOVER
Principal Karen McDavitt and Assistant Principal Sara MacNeil
Administrative Assistant Ms. Deb Woods
Homeroom assignments – week of  August 19 
Popsicle PlayDate /Building Tour (Kindergarten) Tuesday, August 20, 10am (playground)
and Thursday, August 22 at 6pm (playground)
Kindergarten Orientation Thursday, August 29 9:30-11am  (families will receive orientation time with homeroom assignment letter)
BooHoo/Yahoo Gathering (Kindergarten families) Tuesday, September 3 after drop off
Glover Open House- September 26
Glover Webpage 
Glover Twitter account
Glover PTO FB Page
Glover PTO email contact 

COLLICOT
Principal Mrs. Holly Concannon and Assistant Principal Mrs. Zeina Hamada
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Joanne Barker
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19 
Tour for New Families (grades 1-5) Tuesday, August 27th, 2pm 
Popsicles with the Principal- rear playground – Tuesday, August 28th 3-4pm
Kindergarten Orientation  – Thursday, August 29th
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K parents – cafeteria – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off  
School Picture Day – Monday September 29th
Back to School Picnic at Cunningham Park – Friday night, September 13th
Collicot Open House – Wednesday, September 25th 
Collicot Webpage
Collicot PTO email 
Collicot PTO Facebook page

CUNNINGHAM
Principal Mr. Jon Redden and Assistant Principal Mrs. Bernadette Butler 
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19th
Tour for new families (grades 1-5) Tuesday August 27th  – 5:15-6pm
Freeze Pops  with the Principal – rear playground – Tuesday, August 27th  – 6-7pm
PreK/K Orientation and Picnic – Thursday August 29th, 11- 2pm 
Boohoo/Yahoo Coffee, K and PreK parents – Tuesday September 3rd, after drop off 
Cunningham Open House – September 19th 
Cunningham Webpage 
Cunningham PTO email 
Facebook Page
Cunningham School Twitter 
Cunningham School Instagram

TUCKER
Principal Elaine McNeil – Girmai
Administrative Assistant Mrs. Eileen Keaney
Homeroom assignments  – week of August 19th
Popsicle Playdate for Pre-K, K, August 21st at 6pm, Tucker Playground
Picture Day-September 6th
Open House-September 26th
Tucker School Supply lists
Tucker Webpage 
Tucker  PTO email contact
Tucker  PTO Facebook page

UPCOMING ALL MPS DATES  

Aug 19–21  Welcome to Middle School Camp
Aug 21  Milton School Committee Meeting
Aug 28  First Day of School for Grades 1-12
Aug 30  No School
Sep 2  No School
Sep 3  First Day for Preschool and K
Sep 4  Milton School Committee
Sep 10  Instrument Registration Night
Sep 11  Pierce Middle School Open House
Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 24 PARENT Speaker Series Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

MPS SUMMER

The MPS Calculus Project held its 6th summer mathematics enrichment program this summer with  over 65 MPS students from grades 8 through 12 attending. The Calculus Project is an initiative designed to increase the number of low income, African American and Hispanic American students who enroll in and successfully complete Calculus Honors or Advanced Placement Calculus.  The summer enrichment courses are used by students to maintain their standing in honors level courses or to make the move to honors or advanced placement level. This year was particularly exciting because some of our first cohort of graduates came back to speak to the younger students about their experience in Calculus Project and at Milton High School.  

Thank you to Ms. Capasso, Ms. Bachant, Ms. Conaty, Ms. Ritten, Ms. Pompilus, and Ms. Meunier for working with our students this summer. Our students  appreciate you and had plenty to say about what they liked most about the summer mathematics enrichment program: “I enjoyed digging deeper into my love for math. I also enjoyed the exposure to more kids that look like me.” “The teachers, meeting the seniors and talking about what high school is going to be like.” “Sitting together and working on worksheets, and going over the answers together.” “Being in a class where you weren’t the only non-white person.” “I got a lot of help on my summer work and I feel well prepared for next year.” 

***

Milton Summer Enrichment wrapped up last week with a terrific field day. MSE was recently featured in a Patriot Ledger article, which you can read here.  

***

MHS Math teacher Kristina Craven, English teacher Ayeola Davis, Special Education teacher Marcus Jones, and science teacher Jillian Pieciak led a group of motivated incoming 9th graders in the MHS Bridge program this summer. Over the course of the program, students completed their required Math and English summer work, wrote appreciation letters to soldiers and veterans (among other service projects), and used inquiry-based science investigations to construct their own inventions. Students also checked out their future classrooms, had visits from department chairs and other faculty members, and completed their concussion training in preparation for sports tryouts. The summer spent in the Bridge Program allowed students to have some fun, spending time with friends and beginning to feel more at home at MHS and ready to take on the high school in the fall! 

The pictures below are of some of the student creations from this summer – solar ovens used to “bake” s’mores in the sun, a spaghetti tower built for balance, and sunflower plants grown and cared for all summer long!”  

***

After seven busy weeks of endless fun and many great activities at Camp Cunningham, the fun will come to end on Friday. Campers enjoyed activities such as Science & Tap Dancing with Mrs. Roye, Coding & Comics with Jackson, Harry Potter Math with Rudy, Arts & Crafts with Mrs. B., Hip-Hop with Kristen, Multi-Sports with Andrew, Cooking with Mrs. Goodwin and our swimming lessons with Cullen. We enjoyed some terrific field trips to Ward’s Berry Farm, Starland, Edaville, Pirate Cruise Ship, Rock Spot Climbing, Drumlin Farm, Roger Williams Zoo and the movies. 

A special thank you to our counselors this year, as they have been amazing with the campers and truly made a difference this year. Thank you also to our support staff who contributed to an unforgettable summer for the kids. Thank you to Taylor Shockley and Paisley Sargent our camp nurses who always welcomed campers with

We could not have asked for better staff and we thank you for a successful summer  of Camp Cunningham.

a big smile and took care of them and thank you to CO/CU custodians for keeping the building clean and accessible. Thank you Supervisor  Susan Gionfriddo and Asst. Supervisor John Leazott  for another great summer at Camp Cunningham. To see pictures all of the fun at Camp Cunningham this summer, check out our website. 

***

 The MPS staff recently shared their summer reading favorites and you can see what they are reading here.

 

Resources and assignments for grades K-12 can be found here: Summer reading requirements for Pierce can be found here.   All summer requirements for Milton High School can be found here. The high school and middle school summer assignments have been posted to PlusPortals. The summer work recording sheet for elementary can be found here. These math guidelines and resources will help you support your student this summer. Have fun and keep those math skills sharp! Summer Math Letter, 1-5,  Summer Math Letter, 6-8   Summer Math, 9-12 (scroll down for Mathematics)

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HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS

The Milton High School Guidance Department is closed for the summer and will reopen on Monday, August 26th. Please contact Maureen Kennedy or Brad Spindle  via email in the main office with any inquiries before August 26th.  The main office can also be reached by calling the high school at (617) 696-4470 and dialing 0.

Updated GPAs will be available in the fall once all summer school grades are submitted and recorded. Schedules will be given out to students on the first day of school Wednesday, August 28th, during homeroom. A welcome letter with homeroom assignments will be mailed home in late August. Freshmen and all other students new to MHS will receive their schedules at the New Student Orientation on August 26th.  

All summer assignments are available on Plus Portals.  You do not need a password to access this information: 2019 Summer Assignments Summer Work 2019

Enrollment in an AP course requires the student to complete prerequisite courses and mandatory summer work.  Summer work was assigned to all AP students at the mandatory AP information sessions held during the school year.  Failure to complete summer work may result in a student being dropped from the AP class. Please remind your student to complete their work.

Class of 2020: Please consider writing your college essay, update your activities list, complete your community service hours, do some college research and possibly visit some of the colleges/universities that you are interested in.  

Don’t forget to sign up for your Senior Portrait sitting with Hayward Photography. If you have any questions or concerns please email Kelly@haywardphotography.com. 

SCHOOL COMMITTEE 

The July 10th School Committee meeting can be watched on Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, August 21st. 

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT 

Our staff participates in PD throughout the year, including over the summer. We’ve highlighted a few of the PD programs attended over the summer below. 

At right, Pierce Science teachers Allison Meleedy, Kristin Fraine and Rachel Clancy are heading out to Spectacle Island for a field study on the effects of climate change on island species.  They took a PD course through the New England Aquarium to help enhance our science curriculum with the latest research around climate change. 

***

Four MPS faculty attended the Learning Environments for Tomorrow (LEFT) course at the Harvard Graduate School. Sarah Whitten, Tina Greene, Mary Shapiro, and Amy Tom represented the MPS  21st Century Taskforce. The main program premise focused on reflecting and brainstorming about our people, programs, and principles to develop plans, and prototypes that would best answer our needs as a district. Facilitators presented innovative ideas around how space has the potential to positively impact learning. Our focus, “Hack the House,” involved ‘hacking’ the classroom to allow for small, but targeted spatial shifts designed to encourage collaboration.

***

Our MPS administrators attended the  2019 National Principals Conference in Boston . 3 days of world class education and PD happening right here in Boston. We are so lucky to have had this opportunity in our own backyard! 

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Help your kids make choices that will support their well being. Participate in the SUPPER Project to learn how!

  • Are you a parent or guardian of a child in rising 5 8th grade?
  • Do you live with your child or are you in the same place as your child at least five days a week?
  • If YES, you may be able to participate in a research study
  • Families will be paid for their time
  • The purpose of this research study is to understand how to help young people make choices that will support their wellbeing.

We will be working with families over summer vacation (for parents/guardians of those entering 5th grade through those who just completed 7th). Please take a moment to read through the details found here and consider participating in the SUPPER Project. If you are interested, simply email the SUPPER Project team at with the subject line “Interested in the SUPPER Project” and in the body of the email include your name and the name of your child’s school.  A member from the study team will reach out to you with next steps. You can also give them a call at (617) 636 – 3587. 

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School.

FOOD SERVICE

There is a terrific opportunity for part time jobs in our food services department. We are hiring for substitute positions at all schools. You’ll be serving healthy food to kids and be home when your kids are home due to the school schedule – what’s better than that?! This can be a great opportunity for parents and retirees and food service experience is a plus, but not required. The starting pay for the food service substitute position is $15.05 per hour. Please email Jackie Morgan or call (617-696-5040 X 5514)  for more information.

SPECIAL EDUCATION

Milton Public Schools is  conducting Child Find. In accordance with Federal and State regulations, Milton Public Schools provides special education programs for eligible students designed to meet the needs of children attending not only public schools but also those attending private school at private expense and whose parents reside in Milton.

Anyone can refer a child in need.  This includes a teacher, parent or guardian, or medical provider. You should refer your child for Special Education Eligibility/504 if you feel he or she has a disability and is not making effective progress/deriving educational benefit from his or her current school program. To qualify for special education, the child will be evaluated by district staff, with your consent, and if the Team determines the child has a disability, he or she may be eligible for services and or accommodations documented within an IEP or 504.

Milton Public Schools provides all children with an opportunity to participate in the public school programs using a continuous and systematic effort to identify children in need of special education services.

Milton Public Schools will arrange for screening and evaluation of those students ages 16 through 21 who have not graduated from high school and who are not now attending school or children ages 3 through 21 who are unable to progress effectively in a regular education program due to a suspected disability consisting of a developmental delay or intellectual, sensory, neurological, emotional, autism, communication, physical, specific learning or health impairment or combination thereof.

For any child who has been under medical care for mental health/emotional difficulties, a screening or evaluation may be appropriate in conjunction with your child’s health care provider’s recommendations. If you have concerns about a child, please notify your child’s principal or contact the Registrar’s office in Milton

***

Please refer to the  Pupil Personnel website for additional resources throughout the school year. 

TRANSPORTATION 

Bus passes for all assigned students will be mailed home the week of August 19th and routes and schedules for the 2019-2020 school year will be posted on the MPS website under the transportation page. All riders are REQUIRED to present their bus pass to ride the bus every day.  Students will not be allowed to board without their pass.  

Please note that in the first week or two of school buses can run early or late based on traffic and new route patterns, please plan to have your student at their assigned stop at least 10 minutes early as we ask for patience as the routes settle into regular patterns for the school year. 

ART AND MUSIC 

Marching Band camp will be held at Milton High School on August 12-16 from 8 AM- 3 PM.  Please remember that band camp is mandatory for all students who wish to participate in marching the show. This is the only week the marching band has to learn the entire show. At this point, the show is written and we are depending on your attendance!   All parents/alumni invited to attend a run through of the show at 2 pm on Friday, August 16 at Brooks Field.  If you have questions or need additional information, please contact miltonfame@gmail.com.

ATHLETICS 

The MPS Athletics Dept is busy preparing for fall. Please see  MHS Athletics website.  with all you need to know about fall athletics. Roll ‘Cats!  

The MHS Field Hockey team will be hosting a car wash on September 7th, 9AM-12PM at the Cunningham School.  $10/car.

The MHS Boys Basketball team will be hosting a “Cans for Cats” bottle and can drive on September 7th, 9am-12pm  at Milton High School.

NEWS AROUND TOWN

MPD Night out – TONIGHT – Join the fun!

The Milton Police Department will host a community event at the police station on Thursday evening, August 8th, 2019 from 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM. It will be modeled after what the department has done in the past the day after National Night Out. This event is free and open to the public. It will include station tours, K9 demonstrations, bounce houses, SWAT exhibit, refreshments & more. Please check the MPD Facebook page as details become available.

Milton’s Household Hazardous Waste drop-off day will be on September 7th at the DPW Yard.  As this is the first Saturday of September, and the recycling center’s typical first-Saturday opening will be moved to September 14th.

AMBASSADORS 

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

VOLUNTEERS and STUDENTS: Thank you to MHS students Mercy Osifo, Osas Osifo and Gifty Johnson who joined our Pierce garden “Fairy Godmother” Beth Neville in planting flowers at Pierce Middle School Outdoor Classroom this past week. We are so grateful for all of our volunteers!

BLOG SUBSCRIPTION

If you do not receive the Superintendent’s Weekly Update and would like to, please enter your email here to subscribe to this one weekly email. 

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on August 8, 2019

July 18, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update 
Date: July 18, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT 

We are four weeks into summer vacation and I hope your family is relaxing and spending time together during these beautiful days. While summer may seem like a time that our schools experience a slower pace, in reality we are as busy as ever! There are multiple summer programs taking place in each school, which keep our buildings humming with activity. Our custodians perform regular maintenance and deep cleaning  as well as special projects throughout the summer. We are also continuing to plan for the 2019/20 school year that will start on Monday, August 26th for staff, on Wednesday, August 28th for 1st-12th grade students and on Tuesday, September 3rd for our kindergarten and preschool students. There is plenty of summer left however, so please enjoy it! But first, please take a moment to read the summer update below. 

MPS SUMMER

Our elementary summer reading program is well underway and MPS librarian Josh Coben has a message for our elementary students. 

Mr. Coben reads a fan favorite.

Hello, summer readers! I hope you’re enjoying these beautiful, lazy July days. I always look forward to having extra reading time during summer break, whether I’m at home, at the beach, or on a family trip. Remember that any kind of reading is great, from curling up with a book in a quiet spot, to listening to audiobooks (a new favorite of mine), to reading with a family member. With so many choices-chapter books, picture books, eBooks, graphic novels, magazines-you’re bound to find something you enjoy. Stop by the library to see what’s new. Don’t forget to log your reading minutes here and have fun! 

Pierce Middle School librarian Jess Royster also wanted to say happy summer to Pierce students and send along the following message: I hope everyone is enjoying a relaxing, fun filled summer. While you’re enjoying your summer, don’t forget to pick up a book. Whether you are outside on the beach or inside in the air conditioning, remember that summer reading doesn’t have to be serious! Parents and students can pick up a magazine, listen to an audio book or even reread an old favorite. Read a book that is being turned into a movie, see the movie and then debate which was better. Summer reading is critical for improving students’ reading skills and engagement, but it doesn’t have to be a chore for students (or parents)! 

MHS Librarian JT asks: Are you still looking for that perfect book for your free choice summer reading option? In addition to asking friends, family members, teachers and librarians for recommendations there are many great online resources available. The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) will open the polls on August 15th for the 2019 Teen’s Top Ten awards. Check out the nominees for new book ideas or vote for one of your favorites. YALSA also created the Book Finder database that you can use to search through titles that have won awards at their conferences. You can browse by genre or author. Goodreads, a social media site dedicated to books, also offers a variety of recommendations based upon titles you have already read and enjoyed (no need to create an account you can search booklists and recommendations at the bottom of the site).

If you are looking for audio or eBook versions of a specific title don’t forget that MHS subscribes to Sora through the state consortium. The website and app provide access to hundreds of titles. Instructions on how to access Sora through your school Google account can be found on the library webpageEnjoy the days of summer. Happy Reading!

JT’s summer stats: Currently Reading: The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan and Everything In Its Place by Oliver Sacks. Recently Finished: There, There by Tommy Orange; On the Come Up by Angie Thomas and Shout by Laurie Halse Anderson

Our students and staff have been doing their summer reading in some interesting places! Send your summer reading photo to sokeefe@miltonps.org and we’ll share it with the MPS community. 

Resources and assignments for grades K-12 can be found here: Summer reading requirements for Pierce can be found here.   All summer requirements for Milton High School can be found here. The high school and middle school summer assignments have been posted to PlusPortals. The summer work recording sheet for elementary can be found here. These math guidelines and resources will help you support your student this summer. Have fun and keep those math skills sharp! Summer Math Letter, 1-5,  Summer Math Letter, 6-8   Summer Math, 9-12 (scroll down for Mathematics)

***

On Monday, July  8th, we welcomed over 500 students to MHS for the first day of Milton Summer Enrichment!  We have a dedicated staff of more than fifty instructors engaging students in hands-on classes each hour from 8am-12pm.  Students are enjoying courses ranging from Wildcat Soccer to Chess and Harry Potter Math to Hip Hop! In addition to the course instructors, we have 70 High School student ‘Red Shirts’ assisting students to get from one course to another, accessing course material and ensuring safety and efficiency during arrival and dismissal. You can reach our program directors Cat DesRoche and Ellen Lohan with any questions or comments at mse@miltonps.org.

***

We have had a fabulous start to summer in our ESY (Extended School Year) Program! Students have been participating in engaging and inclusive learning opportunities including trips to Cunningham Pond, attending Milton Summer Enrichment courses, visits from Gracie the Golden Retriever, and community outings. The fun and learning continues at both Cunningham and Milton High School until August 2.

***

On Monday, June 17th, Camp Cunningham welcomed the summer 2019 season. The theme for our first session was Super Heroes. Campers are enjoying a variety of activities such as cooking, science, tap dancing, hip-hop, sports, arts & crafts and of course swimming at Cunningham Pond. Field trips have been so much fun; the first week, campers visited Ward’s Berry Farm in Sharon where they picked delicious strawberries after a fun hayride. Week two, a group of campers went to Starland in Hanover where they had a blast with mini-golf, go-cart racing, laser tag and bumper cars!

The theme for session 2 is Pirates and Princesses. Besides enjoying a variety of theme related activities on site, a group of campers went to Plymouth and had a great time being pirates for one hour on a real boat!  Mr. Moonan came and brought SHOWTIME! The campers had so much fun, dancing, singing, and acting on stage. There was music from, the Broadway Show Annie and music from Peter Pan. Once again this year, Grand Master Mike McNamara and Master Instructor Ms. Camille had many campers for Karate Summer Camp.

To see more pictures and what else is happening at Camp CU, please visit our website.

***

Please join us for the next 3 Summertime Stories for preschoolers and incoming kindergarteners. Our 1st storytime was a great success!  Despite the very humid day we had almost 50 people attend and all the children enjoyed the stories and songs by the Milton Public Library’s Miss Sara.  

SCHOOL COMMITTEE 

The July 10th School Committee meeting can be watched on On Demand at Milton Access TV. The next School Committee meeting is on Wednesday, August 21st. 

PIERCE UPDATES

New Pierce Principal Bill Fish has been busy settling in at Pierce, connecting with staff, parents and others over the past two weeks. Mr. Fish can be reached via email or phone ( 617-696-4568). The Pierce PTO will host two opportunities to meet Mr. Fish during the first full week of school. Please join us in the Pierce lobby on Thursday, September 5th from 6:30-7pm or on Friday, September 6th from 8:15-8:45am. Please see the letter Mr. Fish recently sent to the Pierce community here.

***

We are pleased to welcome Janice Mazzola to Pierce as the new Assistant Principal who will join Mr. Fish and Dr. Nick Fitzgerald. Please see the  announcement from Mr. Fish regarding Ms. Mazzola’s appointment here. 

***

School  supplies already? Yes! The Pierce PTO has partnered with Yubbler to bring quality, economical school supplies to Pierce families. All supplies are delivered right to your house! All details, links and coupon codes can be found here.

INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

The Collicot garden is in full bloom this summer! You can see all the growth and perhaps learn something about gardening in this short video

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The newest residents of Turner’s Pond are home! Thank you to the Glover School teachers and students who helped us usher out the latest duckling family over the 4th of  July weekend.

***

The Tucker Garden had a bountiful harvest last weekend! Tucker parents and a rising-fifth grader picked 10 bags of produce and delivered it to the Milton Food Pantry on Saturday morning. Beautiful Swiss chard, tons of kale, salad greens and some of the biggest cucumbers around went from our garden to members of the Milton community all within a few hours. 

COMMUNITY SCHOOLS 

Registration for After School Enrichment started July 1 and will close on July 31. Children registered during the month of July will start the first day of school. Grades 1-5 start on August  28th and Kindergarten starts September 3rd. Please see this ASE registration letter with all details. 

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

Help your kids make choices that will support their well being. Participate in the SUPPER Project to learn how!

  • Are you a parent or guardian of a child in rising 5 –  8th grade?
  • Do you live with your child or are you in the same place as your child at least five days a week?
  • If YES, you may be able to participate in a research study
  • Families will be paid for their time
  • The purpose of this research study is to understand how to help young people make choices that will support their wellbeing.

We will be working with families over summer vacation (for parents/guardians of those entering 5th grade through those who just completed 7th). Please take a moment to read through the details found here and consider participating in the SUPPER Project. If you are interested, simply email the SUPPER Project team at with the subject line “Interested in the SUPPER Project” and in the body of the email include your name and the name of your child’s school.  A member from the study team will reach out to you with next steps. You can also give them a call at (617) 636 – 3587. 

PARENT SPEAKER SERIES

Save the date for our first event  in the 2019/20 PARENT Speaker Series. Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski will discuss Supporting All Learners on September 24th at Milton High School. 

FACEBOOK AND TWITTER

Our Milton Public Schools Facebook page and Twitter account are great ways to keep up with events and activities throughout the Milton Public Schools. Be sure to follow both!  

TRANSPORTATION UPDATE

Please see the most recent bus transportation update from Dr. Glenn Pavlicek. The letter can be found in this link.

TECHNOLOGY 

AJ Melanson, Director of Instructional Technology, has information for rising 9th-Graders concerning Chromebook Declaration & Pick-Up Information. 

Thank you to the 219 families who have declared for Milton High School’s Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) next year.  We still have 90 families who have not declared for BYOD. If you have not declared, please complete this short declaration survey as soon as possible.  

All MHS students are asked to bring their own device, other than a smartphone, to school with them each day.  For students who will not be able to meet this request, a Chromebook will be loaned out to the student by Milton Public Schools for the school year.  For more information regarding the MHS BYOD initiative please visit the FAQs document.  

Rising 9th-grade students who will be loaning an MHS Chromebook will pick-up their device immediately following MHS new student orientation on Monday, August 26th.  Students must bring a signed Chromebook Loan Agreement in order to pick-up their device.

Please see this  flyer for more information regarding, Loan Agreement,  BYOD Student & Family Manual, and Acceptable Use Policy, and Chromebook Care & Use Policy.

FOOD SERVICE

There is a terrific opportunity for part time jobs in our food services department. We are hiring for substitute positions at all schools. You’ll be serving healthy food to kids and be home when your kids are home due to the school schedule – what’s better than that?! This can be a great opportunity for parents and retirees and food service experience is a plus, but not required. The starting pay for the food service substitute position is $15.05 per hour. Please email Jackie Morgan or call (617-696-5040 X 5514) for more information. 

SPECIAL EDUCATION 

The Milton Public Schools is currently undergoing the new Tiered Progress Monitoring System, formally referred to as the Coordinated Program Review(CPR). Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) will be on site this fall to conduct site visits.

Unlike with past CPRs, this review does not include extensive review of student records. This self assessment is designed to target our instructional practice, policy and procedures and ensure they are compliant with regulations. This past spring we also participated in two self studies in the area of Civil Rights and Special Education. 

Also this summer, Milton Public Schools will undergo self study for our supports and services that meet the regulations pertaining to a Student’s Right to Educational Stability. This review looks at the students we support who qualify under the McKinney -Vento Homeless Assistance Act, Military Status and Foster Care as well as students who are unaccompanied (enrolling without a guardian or as their own guardian). 

MPS policy and procedures are being reviewed to align with current regulations. This information also includes review of staff training, community outreach and systems in place regarding identification of students in these categories, (as well as special education) via the Student Find Process (often referred to as Child Find). The Department of Education will complete their review this fall. 

UPCOMING MPS DATES  

Aug 5  School Committee Retreat 
Aug 19–21  Welcome to Middle School Camp
Aug 21  Milton School Committee Meeting
Aug 28  First Day of School for Grades 1-12
Aug 30  No School
Sep 2  No School
Sep 3  First Day for Preschool and K
Sep 4  Milton School Committee
Sep 10  Instrument Registration Night
Sep 11  Pierce Middle School Open House
Sep 12 MHS Open House
Sep 18 Milton School Committee
Sep 19 Cunningham Open House
Sep 24 PARENT Speaker Series Inclusion Specialist Maureen Blazejewski
Sep 25 Collicot Open House
Sep 26 Glover Open House
Sep 26 Tucker Open House
Sep 27 No School-Professional Development Day
The 2019-20 calendar can be found here.

ART AND MUSIC

If you are interested in instrumental lessons for your student grade 4 or higher, you can find all of the details here. Pre-registration for instrumental lessons will close on July 31st. 

ATHLETICS 

Congratulations to the MHS Rugby Team who successfully defended the MIAA Division II State Title with an undefeated, 8-0 season and a final score of 41-12! 

The MPS Athletics Dept is busy preparing for fall. Please see this link for a letter from AD Ryan Madden, with all you need to know about fall athletics. Roll ‘Cats!  

All game schedules can be found on our  MHS Athletics website. 

 NEWS AROUND TOWN

The Town of Milton shares the following: A very high heat index has been forecasted for Milton MA. Please use this link for tips to keep cool. Please also check on pets & elderly neighbors to ensure they are safe. And, as always, call 911 for an emergency.

Looking for something to do next week? The Milton Public Library has great programs for families all summer long!

MassDOT will be hosting a public information meeting regarding the Rt 28/ Chickatawbut Road (Milton) intersection improvements on July 23rd at 6:30 at the Milton Council on Aging, 10 Walnut Street, Paul Kelly Community Room, Milton, MA 02186. All details on the meeting can be found here. 

The Milton Historical Society will be hosting an open house on August 11 from 1-3 p.m. at the Suffolk Resolves House, 1370 Canton Ave. The event is free and open to the public.

The Eustis Estate has two programs this month you may find interesting. Explore and Create Sculpture at the Eustis Estate on Saturday, July 20th from 10am-1pm and a Sunset Concert at the Eustis Estate on Thursday, July 25th from 6:30pm – 8:30pm. Both events take place at Eustis Estate, 1424 Canton Avenue, Milton, MA 02186. Details can be found here.

Milton’s Household Hazardous Waste drop-off day will be on September 7th at the DPW Yard.  As this is the first Saturday of September, and the recycling center’s typical first-Saturday opening will be moved to September 14th. 

The Milton Police Department will host a community event at the police station on Thursday evening, August 8th, 2019 from 5:30 PM – 8:30 PM. It will be modeled after what the department has done in the past the day after National Night Out. This event is free and open to the public. It will include station tours, K9 demonstrations, bounce houses, SWAT exhibit, refreshments & more. Please check the MPD Facebook page as details become available.

AMBASSADORS 

As part of our E-blast, we highlight students, teachers or members of the community whose hard work deserves recognition.  Please read about some of their accomplishments below:

Many in the MPS community came to celebrate at Friendly’s with Sophia and her friends.

STUDENTS:  You may remember Cunningham rising 3rd grader Sophia Cassini from her annual sock drive, which has generated thousands of new donated pairs of socks for homeless men and women in Massachusetts. Recently Sophia was honored by Friendly’s and used the event to start a Summer Sock Drive! So far she has collected 112 pairs of new socks during her Summer Sock Drive. If you would like to donate to this summer drive, please drop your socks at 3 Phyllis Lane.

Thank you to Senator Timilty and Sophia’s 2nd grade teacher Tanya Walsh for joining her for some Friendly’s fun! Mr. Redden sent a surprise note and Sophia’s friends and family had a great time while raising awareness for her worthy cause. Senator Timilty invited Sophia to come into the Senate Chamber this summer to talk about her Summer Sock Drive and meet the other Senators. You can follow Sophia’s sock drives on Instagram @sophias.socks and donate by dropping off socks to 3 Phyllis Lane.

STAFF:  While our teachers relax and recharge over the summer, they also learn and grow as educators! Case in point – Pierce science teacher Alison Meleedy at the Smithsonian Science Education Academy for Teachers. (SSEAT) is a week-long summer PD that provides teachers with an opportunity to learn about science concepts and pedagogy, meet professional scientists, visit the behind-the-scenes at Smithsonian museums and other world class research facilities. Ms. Meleedy will bring her enthusiasm and creativity back to PMS in the fall!

STAFF: Pierce guidance counselor, Erin MacCurtain, helped to build a home in Thailand with Habitat for Humanity this past June. The group was able to get most of the house completed and Habitat’s local volunteers finished the project and the family has now moved in. The group  also completed two fish ponds for a local school. Erin and her now husband have done three trips with Habitat. Erin recently got married and as a special treat the villagers gave them a traditional Thai wedding! We are so proud of our staff who continue to learn and give back over the summer months. 

VOLUNTEERS: Thank you to the parents/guardians, MPS staff and community volunteers who served on our Pierce Assistant Principal Search Committee. This committee comprised of Teacher Representatives Deanna Magill,Rachel Clancy and
Sarah Pullia; Parent Representatives Charlie Drane, Becky Padera, I’Man Soloman and Elizabeth Thomas; Assistant Principal Nick Fitzgerald and Principal Bill Fish worked together  in July to identify and screen Assistant Principal candidates. We thank them for their dedication to the Milton Public Schools and for giving up some precious summer days to help us identify some excellent candidates.

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The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on July 18, 2019

June 17, 2019

From: Mary C. Gormley
To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date June 13, 2019

FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT

As I write this, there are just a few hours left in the 2018-19 school year. Teaching your children throughout the year is a joy, a privilege and a responsibility that the administrators, teachers and staff of the Milton Public Schools do not take lightly.

We delight in their public accomplishments – academic, artistic, athletic – and celebrate their private moments of personal triumph. We watch friendships grow and change, see challenges acknowledged and worked through, witness their growth and maturity and encourage them through difficult times. I can not imagine another career where one individual can have such an impact on a child’s life. Thank you for the opportunity to leave an imprint on your child’s educational journey.

I hope that you and your family are finishing this school year on a high note and are looking forward to a summer with family, friends, exploration, relaxation and learning. The teachers and staff of the Milton Public Schools will also be relaxing and recharging this summer and will return at the end of August ready for another wonderful, challenging, fun, academic and busy school year. And we wouldn’t have it any other way!

The 1st day of school for students in 1st-12th grade is Wednesday, August 28th and we will see our kindergarten and preschool students for their 1st day on Tuesday, September 3rd.

***

Last week many in the MPS community enjoyed an evening wishing Assistant Superintendent Janet Sheehan a wonderful retirement. Thank you to all who attended and as I said in my remarks last week, Mrs. Sheehan has left her mark on the Milton Public Schools and she will be missed more than she knows.

MPS SUMMER

Below you’ll find summer reading and math guidelines for each grade level as well as details on our Summer Reading partnership with the Milton Public Libraries.  Thank you to our librarians and curriculum coordinators for their work on summer requirements and guidelines.

Every year the Milton Public Schools create a summer program to challenge students and foster a love of reading. Research has shown that reading builds empathy and knowledge, reduces stress, improves memory, focus, vocabulary and critical thinking skills. Don’t wait until the end of summer to benefit from a universe of stories!

3..2..1, BLAST OFF  to “A Universe of Stories”,   this year’s summer reading theme.  All four MPS elementary schools are once again partnering with the Milton Public Library for an exciting summer reading challenge. K-5 library classes will be learning how they can have fun, become stronger readers, and beat the “summer slide” by soaring into reading during the summer months. Teachers sent home registration forms as a homework assignment on June 10th  inviting families to create a summer reading account at this link.  From June 17- August 27, students can log their reading minutes along with any library events they attend, winning prizes along the way. We’re looking for 100% participation, so be sure to return the bottom section of the registration form to your child’s classroom teacher. We hope to see many families at the Milton Public Library for the Summer Reading Blastoff Event on June 20th at 4pm, featuring Mike the Bubble Man. Let’s lift off into summer reading!

Summer reading requirements for Pierce can be found here.   All summer requirements for Milton High School can be found here. The high school and middle school summer assignments have been posted to PlusPortals. The summer work recording sheet for elementary can be found here. 

These math guidelines and resources will help you support your student this summer. Have fun and keep those math skills sharp! Summer Math Letter, 1-5,  Summer Math Letter, 6-8   Summer Math, 9-12 (scroll down for Mathematics)

Milton Summer Enrichment is one way to keep students engaged in learning, while still allowing for plenty of family time. MSE starts on July 8th and runs for 4 weeks, 5 days per week from 8:00-12:00. Families can also choose to start at 9:00 or leave at 11:00. Students choose the classes that interest them, play to their strengths and challenge them – or just plain sound like fun!  I encourage you to explore if this option for summer engagement is right for your family at the the MSE website.  Any further questions can be directed to Cat DesRoche and Ellen Lohan.

Summertime Stories for preschoolers and kindergartners will be on July 11 and August 8 at 10 am at Parkway United Methodist Church and July 18 and August 27 at 10am at Cunningham Hall.

Let’s all avoid the Summer Slide and take advantage of these wonderful resources our educators have prepared for all students.

***

The last days of school bring some fun activities and projects to our schools. Enjoy these photos below!

***

Congratulations to the Milton Wildcats Rugby team who beat the  Hanover Indians 24-0 last Friday at Brooks Field. The ‘Cats will play Cambridge Rindge and Latin on Saturday for the State Finals. Good luck! Thank you to Roy Chambers for these terrific photos and for our header photo this week!

***

The Milton Music Festival and Fireworks team are this  weekend  –  June 22-23rd  – at “The Trustees” Gov. Hutchinson Field on Adams Street in Milton across from the Forbes House Museum. Saturday’s festivities begin at 4 PM with lots of family friendly events , food, music, and fun including Volleyball, Cornhole, Gaga Pit, a Giant Inflatable Slide (“The Log Jammer” ) and Milton’s largest children’s sandbox and culminate at dark with the stunning fireworks. The fun continues on Sunday, June 23rd with Celtic Sunday starting at 1 PM including a full afternoon and evening of family fun and Irish music.

All weekend you can dance to live music and enjoy great food and beverages ( beer and wine too! ) that will be available for purchase from fabulous vendors. This year’s delicious food options include the Wahlburgers and Ahhh Roma Pizza food trucks!

The Milton Public School system does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, gender identity, transgender status, gender transitioning, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its programs, activities or operations. These include, but are not limited to, admissions, equal access to programs and activities, employment, provision of and access to programs and services, as well as selection of volunteers, vendors and employers recruiting at the Milton Public Schools.  We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, students, volunteers, subcontractors, and vendors. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, 617-696-4812

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 17, 2019