To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
From: James F. Jette
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: April 8, 2021
FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT
This week we welcomed our elementary students to our schools as they transitioned from a hybrid model to a full day model. Our elementary students who remain in the remote model are also getting used to new routines and enjoying a full day of school with their remote classmates and teachers. Overall, this week has been a success as teachers, staff, students, and families worked collaboratively to problem solve for the benefit of all in this new model.
Our elementary principals have been communicating with families regularly, especially during this transition. If you are not receiving school based emails, please reach out to your principal or administrative assistant now. As each school has individual characteristics and challenges, it’s important to stay abreast of updates within your school community.
Tucker students and staff were excited to welcome United States Representative Ayanna Pressley to Tucker School this week for an opportunity for her to commend the students and staff on a job well done with this new transition! Representative Pressley also took some time to share a video message with all students to ensure she reached those participating in our remote model. In addition to commending their hard work in school she reminded everyone to continue to follow health and safety expectations and thanked our hardworking teachers and staff. It was an exciting and appreciated visit for the Tucker Community!
Pierce and MHS students will begin the full day in person model on April 12, with many students attending school every day for a full day of school while some students will remain in our full remote model. Please be sure to read all principal communications so you understand expectations going forward. MHS and Pierce teachers and administrators are working with all remote and in person students to ensure they are aware of all guidelines in the new model.
As we transition to full days, our Food Service model is changing. All details on lunch at your child’s school can be found in your principal’s weekly emails and we will also continue to support remote families with meal pick up at our schools. I want to take this opportunity to thank and recognize Jackie Morgan and her Food Service staff who have pivoted and adjusted their model multiple times and creatively kept our school community supplied with tasty and healthy food since March of 2020. From the initial days of full remote to summer food distribution, to the hybrid model, through holidays and school vacations, Jackie and her team have responded to the changing needs of our community in thoughtful and creative ways. Please join me in thanking Jackie Morgan and her Food Service team for their exceptional work over the last 13 months.
The Milton School Committee invites you to participate in the Open Public Hearing to discuss all matters relating to the proposed Fiscal 2021-2022 School Budget on Wednesday, April 14, 2021 at 6:30pm Milton Access Studio, Rm 245 Milton High School. If you are unable to attend, please feel free to email comments/questions to the Milton School Committee at email@example.com.
The next regular School Committee meeting will be on April 14, 2021, at 7pm in the Milton Access Studio, Rm 245 Milton High School. All information about upcoming School Committee meetings can be found on the Town of Milton webpage. You can watch School Committee meetings live on Milton Access TV online, live on Milton Access cable channels (Comcast 22, RCN 15) or watch on-demand in the days following the meeting.
IMPORTANT UPCOMING DATES
- Apr 12 6-12 Full In Person Model Change
- Apr 19-23 April Break
HEALTH AND SAFETY
COVID REPORTING: Each week, school districts report the number of positive cases in the Hybrid Model only to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE). For the weeks of April 1 – April 7, MPS reported: 1 staff positive and 10 students positive.
The COVID page on our website continues to be updated with new FAQs added regularly.
While positive Covid numbers are down from our winter peak, after a recent plateau, numbers are now climbing in Milton and in Massachusetts. We need Milton Covid numbers to stay low to Protect the Paw and keep our students and staff safe in school. With the upcoming April break, now is not the time to let our guard down. Please continue to follow all CDC and MA Department of Public Health guidance on mask wearing, social distancing, hand hygiene, and social gatherings.
HIGH SCHOOL HAPPENINGS
MHS Art teacher Miyoung Lee shares that students in Digital Photo recently took black and white photographs inspired by abstract photographer Aaron Siskind. Students zoomed in on interesting art elements such as shapes, forms, values, textures and space, and practiced creating asymmetrically balanced compositions. You can see more student work inspired by Aaron Siskind at this link.
Administrator for Pupil Personnel Services, Sue Maselli shares the following.
April is Autism Awareness Month! This year, the theme is Inclusion in the Workplace: Challenges and Opportunities in a Post-Pandemic World. Check out this article to learn about the history of Autism Awareness Month.
SEPAC: Please join the Milton SEPAC on April 12 from 6:30-8:00pm as we welcome School Committee candidates Lizzy Carroll, Beverly Ross Denny, Susannah Harwell Hegarty and Kristin Kociol to a Candidates Forum.
The intent of this forum is to give parents and guardians the opportunity to learn more about their respective platforms and to ask the candidates questions about topics that are important to you. This forum is open to all Milton residents. Please use this zoom link to attend.
We will welcome Cunningham parents of students in special education to our next coffee. We will meet virtually on April 13 at 7pm. The link to join can be found here or join by phone at 1 336-914-1213 (PIN: 317159998)
Unified Sports are starting in the spring season. Unified Track Team is an inclusive sports team consisting of students with and without disabilities. These student athletes will be competing together as teammates. If you are interested in learning more, please email Coach Ashley Assarian at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learning Prep School invites you to their free Speaker Series event: ADHD In Depth: From Identification to Management on Wednesday, April 14, 6-7:15 PM with Dr. David Stein, Pediatric Psychologist & Director at New England Neurodevelopment, LLC. All Speaker Series events are open to the public. This is a Virtual Event via Zoom. Please register here.
Somaly Prak-Martins, Senior Director of Education Equity, shares the following. Please see her full newsletter with more information about the topics below at this link.
April is Celebrate Diversity Month, National Arab American Heritage Month, Ramadan and Autism Awareness Month. There is so much to learn and to elevate. In this week’s edition of Behaving Equitably we will explore some celebrations within the Southeast Asian communities, Easter, bringing awareness to Autism and share some upcoming important dates.
MILTON COMMUNITY SCHOOLS
Camp Cunningham: Camp Cunningham is looking forward to a great summer! The CC team is working to implement a series of adjustments that will ensure a safe and fun environment for our campers. We are able to accommodate 72 campers and participants must be currently enrolled as MPS students entering grades 1- 6 in the fall of 2021.
After School Enrichment: As our schools have now returned to a full-day model, Milton Community Schools (MCS) is very excited to announce the reopening of ASE as an outdoor pilot program this spring. Please read the full letter about ASE here.
Thank you to all of our elementary families for your patience as we rolled out new bus passes, routes and schedules this week. All elementary riders should have their new blue passes at this point, please note that students can only board the bus with this new blue pass.
All Pierce and MHS riders who were riding in the hybrid model and new registrants who have not been notified that they are on a waiting list will receive their passes this week. No student will be allowed to board the bus on Monday without a blue pass.
We ask for your help in reinforcing expectations on the bus. Please remind your student not to eat on the bus, to adhere to their seat assignment, wear a mask at all times and to keep the windows open at their seat.
Please continue to arrive early for the bus and monitor the schedules posted on the MPS Transportation page, as the schedule continues to be adjusted as traffic patterns and increased ridership/new routes are monitored for impact on the schedule. Registration to ride the bus is currently closed. If there are seats available on routes we will notify families in the Superintendent’s blog and look to add riders after April vacation. Please email email@example.com with any questions.
With the return to a full in person model throughout MPS, we have ended our weekly drive through pick up. We have emailed a survey to our fully remote families to schedule weekly pick ups.
Students who are in school for a full day will have the option to receive a school lunch each day. All school lunch continues to be offered free of charge to all students. All menus and details can be found at this link.
There are additional resources available to our community, including Project Breads Food Source Hotline. If you need food assistance, please call 800-645-8333 to learn about resources available to help you. Additional local resources are listed at this link.
The Milton Public Schools is committed to being a resource for you. At any time, please reach out to Marti O’Keefe McKenna, MPS Family Outreach Liaison, at 617-980-7343 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. All calls and emails are confidential.
The Glover School PTO shares the following about the Glover School – 2021 Brick Fundraiser!
Calling all Glover Families – PAST and PRESENT! Reserve a prominent place in The Glover Elementary School history for yourself or a loved one by purchasing a commemorative brick with a personalized message to be installed at Glover. This is the perfect way to recognize a birthday, graduation, commemorate the years your family has been at Glover, or to show sympathy or appreciation. Please place your order by April 17.
Your contribution will go towards the creation of a brick pathway by the main entrance and additional proceeds will benefit the 2021 Glover School 5th Grade Class to celebrate their last year and class gift. All details can be found here.
The Milton Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition shares that prevention starts early and it starts at home. Tip #5 is at right. For lots of tips and resources for parents and guardians about steps to take to help prevent teen use of drugs and alcohol, please visit our website and follow us on Facebook.
The MSAPC also has a variety of social-emotional learning webinars available on its website. Listen and watch on your own timeframe to these recorded webinars.
Please see the following from AD Ryan Madden.
Thank you to all who attended the MHS Spring Sports information meeting this week. The PowerPoint with information about the spring season is linked here.
Students must be registered on Family ID and have turned in a valid physical to the Main Office. Please confirm that your student is cleared here.
We are happy to provide Community News on behalf of local organizations. We recommend checking with the organizations below for any changes to the following events.
The Milton Interfaith Clergy Association invites the community to join together for the following event. Commemorating our Journey through Covid-19: A Community Gathering of Consolation, Healing and Hope. Presented by the Milton Interfaith Clergy Association on Sunday, May 16 from 3:00pm-4:00pm at the Milton Town Gazebo
The Forbes House Museum Lincoln Contest deadline is Monday, April 12. There’s still time to enter your drawing or essay into the Forbes House Museum’s Lincoln Contest. Winners will be awarded prizes and have their work featured on a special Milton Access TV program this spring. Winning drawings will be featured in a special exhibition at the Forbes House Museum, with the chance for the grand prize drawing to become a temporary mural on the museum grounds this summer.
Submit your drawings and essays by placing them in the red bin located at the side entrance to the museum by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 12. For all the contest details, visit our website. Good luck!
Milton Early Childhood Alliance shares their spring programming below. All MECA programs are free! Please see this link for information about:
- Preschool Playgroup Series
- Nature Tales – Animal Movements
- Getting Ready for Kindergarten
- Nature Tales – Animal Five Senses
- Children’s Concert
- StoryWalks® Around Town – Part of Milton Moves! Found at the Trailside Museum, Milton Cemetery, Houghton’s Pond
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: Jackie Morgan, Ellen Lohan, Jon Redden Karen McDavitt, Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Ryan Madden, Miyoung Lee, Susan Maselli, Tanya Walsh and Martha Sandoval.
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 a 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: Asst. Superintendent for Curriculum & Human Resources, Dr. Karen Spaulding, (617) 696-5040 ext. 5582.