May 13, 2021

To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
From: James F. Jette
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: May 13, 2021


This week we welcomed our incoming kindergarteners to the Milton Public Schools! Kindergarteners visited their new school to pick up the well known “I’m Going to Kindergarten” yellow t-shirt, get some information about upcoming summer kindergarten events, meet their new principal, and connect with fellow kindergarten families. You can see our incoming kindergarteners in these Google album links: Tucker, Collicot, Glover and Cunningham. We look forward to welcoming this new class in September 2021!

Simultaneously, we are preparing to send our MHS Seniors, the Class of 2021, off in style. In this very different school year, we look forward to maintaining some traditions while introducing new events. Our seniors will graduate outside on Brooks Field on Sunday, June 6 (rain date, June 5). All details on graduation can be found here. Due to the overwhelming generosity of the Milton community, each of our seniors has been “sponsored” and will receive a gift bag on Friday with special treats and notes, signifying just how proud Milton is of these young people. Senior Comedy/Hypnotist Night, Senior Picnic, and Senior Breakfast are also planned and details will be shared with MHS Seniors and their families. Our festivities will conclude on Sunday, June 6 with our 2nd Annual Car Parade through Milton. Thank you to all who have made celebrating this special class possible. We are looking forward to the upcoming events!


Milton SEPAC and Milton Sports for All have asked me to share the following important information. 

Milton SEPAC (Special Education Parent Advisory Council) is partnering with a volunteer group of parents who are interested in organizing sports activities that are accessible to all children– including those with physical, cognitive, and emotional challenges as well as their more typical peers. Please see this link with a brief survey from this group, “Milton Sports for All,” inquiring about your child’s ability to access sports or other activities in Milton and your interest in new, less competitive, and more accessible sports options. The survey should take no more than 5 minutes to complete.

Your feedback will be very helpful in guiding progress toward creating more accessible activities and in providing critical feedback to the town and our schools regarding the accessibility of current offerings. We hope you will take the time to complete this survey. Thank you very much for your time and your interest in this issue. If you have any questions about the survey please email the SEPAC at


The next regular School Committee meeting will be on May 19 , 2021 at 7pm in the Milton Access Studio, Rm 245 Milton High School. This meeting is also the Open Public Hearing for School Choice. 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.


  • May 18 Getting Ready for Kindergarten Cafe (Virtual)
  • May 19 School Committee Meeting/Open Public Hearing for School Choice
  • May 21 Pierce DEI Workshop
  • May 22 COVID Vaccine Clinic at MHS
  • May 27 Music Awards Night, MHS Auditorium
  • May 27 PARENT Speaker Jon Mattelman
  • May 31 Memorial Day-No School
  • June 1 MHS Senior Picnic
  • June 6 MHS Graduation (Rain Date June 5)

The full MPS calendar can be found here.

Getting Ready for Kindergarten: Milton Early Childhood Alliance shares the following. Will your child be attending kindergarten in the fall? Do you wonder if your child is ready academically, socially, emotionally, or developmentally? Would you like to learn what you can do to make the transition easier for your child and your family? Then, this parent workshop is for you and is open to all parents/caregivers; your child will not need to attend Milton Public Schools to participate. We will hold this workshop virtually, via Zoom, on May 18 at 7pm. Registration is required. Please register here to obtain the Zoom link and passcode. Many thanks to our Kindergarten T-shirt sponsors for their generous support of this programming!


COVID Vaccine Clinic: The Milton Public Schools has partnered with Manet Community Health Center and Fallon Ambulatory Services to provide the Pfizer Vaccine for individuals 12 years of age and older. This opportunity is not mandatory but made available to all eligible Milton Public Schools students and their families along with our faculty and staff and their families.

The administration of the vaccine will take place in the MHS Copeland Field House in the back of Milton High School. 

  • Saturday, May 22, 9 am – 12 pm (1st shot)
  • Saturday, June 12, 9 am – 12 pm (2nd shot)

Please use this link to book an appointment for your child on May 22. Manet Community Health Center will internally book your student’s second appointment for June 12. By clicking on this link, the system will allow parents/guardians to select their preferred time on Saturday, May 22, and collect all relevant details.  Those who received a vaccination of any kind in the 14 days prior to May 22 will not be eligible, nor will anyone who is quarantining on May 22 due to a positive COVID19 test.

We hope many in our community will take advantage of this easy and free opportunity. This is not mandatory but strongly encouraged if you would like to have your student get the Pfizer vaccination.


PARENT Speaker Series: On Thursday, May 27 at 7pm, popular speaker Jon Mattleman joins the Milton community for a special parent and caregiver presentation on how we can manage anxiety, optimize resilience, and keep our families in balance as COVID-19 restrictions relax, kids go back to school, and we resume some level of normalcy. Bringing 35 years of experience as a counselor, Jon uses insight, warmth, and humor to share practical tools, tips, techniques, and resources to help guide us through challenging transitions to new situations. Jon is the Clinical Director of Minding Your Mind and is passionate about mental health education and supporting parents as they support their children. Thank you to the MFE, MSPAC, and BID Milton for bringing this speaker to Milton. Please register at this link.


COVID REPORTING: Each week, school districts report the number of positive cases to the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE). For the period May 6 – May 12, MPS reported: 0 staff positive and 3 students positive.

The COVID page on our website continues to be updated with new FAQs added regularly.


Mrs. Miller reports that the MHS orchestra is back together rehearsing 6 days a week! Please enjoy the following recordings of a Corelli Concerto Grosso excerpt and music from Ratatouille.


Pierce Art teacher Mr. Manning pushed his students’ creativity in the beginning of the 4th quarter as students were asked to hyper focus on part of an object that they would like to draw. Artists were not asked to draw the whole object but only part of the object, a part they would find interesting. Students then created large somewhat abstract value scale drawings of that object. Some projects are more identifiable than others but can you guess at what many of them are. Students learned about shading and using blending tools in their work. Students were surprised how professional their work looked when it was installed on the wall and really enjoyed sharing information from each design. 7th and 8th graders hit this one out of the park and were truly amazed when they got to look at others’ work.


In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, Mme Muhsin’s 4th grade remote class had a special guest join them for an exciting read-aloud. Mrs. Eng, a class parent, read Watercress, a story of special meals and the memories that connect us to them. The class then drew and shared about their family’s special meals and what they enjoy most about them. Many are now excited to try some of these unique dishes. Délicieux!


With the arrival of Spring, elementary students have been studying live organisms across the district. Our remote 2nd grade French students are enjoying their science unit on Insects and Plants. Students are studying mealworms and growing bean plants to learn more about biodiversity and the interaction between plants and insects. Our 2nd graders have named their mealworms and students love to make observations to help better understand the changes that take place to their structure and behavior throughout the lifecycle. Mme. Maliel shares that these lessons are a great way to wrap up the year with lots of engagement and enthusiasm throughout the class.


MPS elementary teachers Mme Muhsin, Mme. Koita and Ms. Hashem took some time this week to teach us a bit more about Ramadan and Eid Al Fitr! You can watch their video here. Thank you for taking the time to record and share, MPS teachers! 


Glover students enjoyed book club and Walk and Bike to school day this week!


After School Enrichment (ASE) has available spots! May 24-June 17:
Tuition fee for 4 weeks: $200.00
Register by Friday, May 21 at noontime to start Monday, May 24 For more information, please see our ASE handbook and registration link here. 


Pierce 8th grader Reilly Bergin is this year’s Project 351 Ambassador. Reilly has asked us to share the information below, so all in MPS can support the Cradles to Crayons clothing drive through Wednesday, May 19. 

Time to clean out your closets! Milton is hosting a clothing drive in support of Cradles to Crayons. Cradles to Crayons is a nonprofit organization that collects every-day essentials for local children who are facing homelessness and/or economic challenges. The donations will become part of KidPacks, which are bags that contain toys, books, clothes, school supplies, and more that are put together based on the child’s interests and needs. If you would like to learn more about Cradles to Crayons’ vision and impact, you can watch the Everyday Essentials video  or visit the Cradles to Crayons website. We are collecting new and like-new clothing, sizes newborn to youth large (10/12). Remember, quality equals dignity. Please make sure the clothing does not have any holes, rips, stains, or looks worn out. (Think: Would I wear this? If the answer is no, please do not donate it.) Please note that pajamas and socks have to be new. The drive will run from Monday, May 10th to Wednesday, May 19th. Collection boxes will be located at Pierce Middle School, Collicot Elementary School, Tucker Elementary School, Cunningham Elementary School, Glover Elementary School, and the Milton Public Library. The simple act of donating can change a child’s life. * Your donation will not only provide a child with the essentials they need, but it will also help that child be confident, restore their dignity, and help them be the best they can be.* If you have any questions, please contact Reilly Bergin at


Dominique Thomas, Project 351 Alumni Leadership Council member,  is also running a mask drive through Saturday, May 15. All masks can be dropped anytime at 106 Blue Hills Parkway. Email Dominique at with any questions. Thank you for supporting these important initiatives! 


Somaly Prak-Martins, Senior Director of Education Equity, shares the following. Please see her full newsletter here.  This newsletter has information about Memorial Day, Shavuot, Ramadan, the Milton Muslim Neighbors successful food drive and Asian Heritage Month. It also includes updates on the Quality Review Steering Committee and Selection Task Force. 


Summer will be here before we know it! MPS has some terrific options for your student below. 

Milton Summer Enrichment: Please see the MSE At a Glance document here to review classes, policies, and more about MSE 2021. Registration for MSE is open at this link. Questions? Email us at We hope your child will join the MSE fun this summer!  

Camp Cunningham: Camp Cunningham can accommodate 72 campers and participants must be currently enrolled as MPS students entering grades 1- 6 in the fall of 2021. All details on Camp Cunningham can be found here. Registration for Camp Cunningham 2021 is open at this link.

MPS Universal Summer Program:  We are busy planning for our new Universal Summer Program taking place this July at the Glover School.  This district-wide program, open to all current K-4 students will be a two-hour session focused on literacy, math, and social emotional learning skills. Families who have registered for the Universal Summer Program have been contacted over the last week with a confirmation email from If you have not received a confirmation, would like more information about the program, and/or would like to register your student, please email


The deadline for Teacher of the Year Nominees is this Friday. Remote, Hybrid, and In Person…2021 MPS Educators did it ALL! 

Please take a moment to nominate a deserving MPS Educator for TOY. The easy nomination form can be found here and more information is on the MFE website. Please help us in recognizing our excellent teachers and staff by nominating an outstanding staff member for Teacher of the Year 2021. 


The Milton Public Schools is committed to being a resource for you. Whether you are unsure how to connect with school staff or directly need a referral for services or supplies, please reach out to Marti O’Keefe McKenna, MPS Family Outreach Liaison, at 617-980-7343 or by email at All calls and emails are confidential. All updates on Family Resources – food, heating assistance, health insurance, financial assistance, contacts – can be found at this link.


All students are eligible for free meals  – breakfast and lunch – through June 2022. Each of our schools has multiple meal options every day. Please encourage your child to try our school meals!  

Looking for a part time job while your kids are in school? Join our Food Service team – this year or next! Please email Jackie Morgan to explore opportunities to join this terrific team. 


 Talk, They Hear You: Did you know that over 80 percent of young people ages 10-18 say their parents are the leading influence on their decision whether to drink or not?

How you talk about underage drinking and substance use can change as your child gets older. Parents and guardians can start the conversation early and find everyday moments to keep the conversation going. These talks can impact the decisions their children make, even in the face of increased peer pressure. Learn more and find tips about how to start the conversation at


Please see the following from AD Ryan Madden.

Baseball and Softball are both off to hot starts! Both teams are 4-0, having beaten Weymouth, Wellesley, Needham and Braintree. Junior Charlie Walker, Pitcher, is 2-0 for the Baseball team, while Senior Captains Ava Hillaire, Jill Vaughn, and Marilyn Carroll are leading the Softball Team to their best start in nearly 10 years!

The Rugby Team picked up where they left off in 2019, with a big win over Weymouth.

Some Information for the end of the Spring Season: All Varsity Team Sports (Baseball, Softball, Lacrosse, Tennis) will compete in a Bay State Conference Tournament. The dates are as follows, subject to slight change pending how the season goes with weather and any COVID shutdowns;

  • Baseball – June 7th, 9th, 11th (Championship @ Braintree 6/12)
  • Softball – June 7th, 9th, 11th (Championship @ Braintree 6/12)
  • Lacrosse – June 8th, 10th, 14th (Championship @ Walpole 6/15)
  • Tennis – June 8th, 10th, 14th (Boys Championship @ NN, Girls @ Wellesley 6/14)

Students will qualify scores and times for Track will continue to compete into late June. The MIAA Tournament starts Tue/Wed June 15th & 16th. As mentioned before, only teams warranting a tournament berth will enter the Tournament. All other teams will play up to 3 additional contests, pending availability of opponents.

All JV Teams will be done by June 16th, and most Varsity Teams, including Track, will be done between June 18th-June 24th. Teams that win a few MIAA playoff games may play until as late as June 30th. Look for updates on Twitter @Milton_Wildcats_


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.


Milton Early Childhood Alliance shares the following.

Nature Tales – Animal Five Senses: Join us for a STEM and Early Literacy adventure virtually at the Trailside Museum. This event will be held on Zoom on Saturday, May 22nd at 11:00 AM. You’ll enjoy a children’s story, a guided movement activity, meet and hear about two live animals and have the opportunity to participate in a question and answer period! This will be an interactive event, with as many questions answered as possible. For ages 2.9 through 7 years old. We strongly encourage parent participation. Registration is required to obtain the Zoom link and passcode and can be completed here. 


Saint Rock Haiti Foundation (SRHF) will hold its 13th Annual Building Hope Fèt on Friday, May 21 at 7:30pm. This year’s event is virtual and can be accessed by registering at The event is complimentary to all. SRHF’s origin dates back to a concerned group of Milton and Quincy citizens who joined together to bring hope and dignity to the people of Haiti, the most impoverished country in the Western Hemisphere. Today, SRHF delivers primary healthcare to 60,000+ registered patients and supports 5 schools in the rural community of Saint Rock. Please join us in our ongoing work and help us to continue to make an impact in Haiti.


Brookwood Community Farm, 11 Blue Hill River Road, Canton,
at DCR’s Brookwood Farm, is hosting the annual Seedling Sale.   For those interested in seedlings there is an online signup for a time to park and shop in person. (Sale FAQ’s). Brookwood is still accepting volunteer signups for the 2nd weekend of our annual Seedling Sale here. Many thanks to all the individuals who volunteered to help the sale run smoothly on May 8 & 9!


As we ended Teacher and Staff Appreciation Week, we celebrated two very important groups in our schools – our School Nurses and our Food Service staff. Under the direction of Director of Nurses Kim Coughlin and Director of Food Services Jackie Morgan, these two groups of MPS employees have worked tirelessly over this school year to keep our MPS students, families, and staff healthy, safe, and supplied with meals. Please join me in thanking our nurses and food service staff this week.


Daniel McAuliffe, Terrence Driscoll, Christopher Little and Declan Driscoll at the Change of Command Ceremony.

Congratulations to MHS graduate Daniel McAuliffe who was named the Regimental Commander for 2021-2022 at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy. The Change of Command Ceremony held this week is both the symbolic and physical transfer of leadership responsibilities from the graduating class to the Second Class who will assume their new roles in preparation for their senior year. 

The Change of Command Ceremony highlights the outgoing Commander passing the regimental colors to the incoming Commander. In the ceremony, the outgoing Regiment of Cadets Commander passed his responsibilities to 2/C Daniel McAuliffe,  as the incoming Regimental Commander. The Regimental Commander works directly with the Commandant of Cadets in all matters pertaining to discipline, military smartness, supply, and the coordination of the daily routine of the Regiment. 

In addition to Daniel McAullife, two other MHS graduates were promoted.  Congratulations to  Terrence Driscoll, Platoon Leader/6th Company and Christopher Little, Platoon Leader/2nd Company. All in the Milton Public Schools are proud of these three MHS graduates! 

Thank you to the office of State Senator Walter Timilty for the pictures of this special day!

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, Laurel Bernini, Marti O’Keefe McKenna, Ellen Lohan, Jon Redden, Karen McDavitt, Sara MacNeil, Elaine McNeil-Girmai, Ryan Madden, Susan Maselli, 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.

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