To: Parents/Guardians and Staff
From: Acting Superintendent Janet Sheehan
Re: Superintendent’s Weekly Update
Date: October 20, 2022
FROM THE DESK OF THE SUPERINTENDENT
Each October, National Principals Month recognizes the essential role that principals play in making a school great. Principals shape the culture of their schools, and it is their dedication, hard work, and vision that ensure the success of their students and staff. Principals are responsible for not only the academic achievement of students but also their social-emotional and physical health and safety. I am incredibly grateful to our six professional, caring, and accomplished Principals who so ably helm their individual schools. I hope you join me in recognizing their commitment to the Milton Public Schools and specifically to the students, staff, and families in their schools.
In MPS staff news, I want to share that Ms. Amy Dexter has resigned from her position as Assistant Superintendent for Business to begin a new career as the Director of Finance for the Town of Milton. Over the past two years, Ms. Dexter played an integral role in the district and was recognized by both school and town officials for her detailed and transparent work throughout the budgetary process. On behalf of the Milton Public Schools, I would like to thank Amy for her dedication and congratulate her on this new position.
At its most recent meeting, the Milton School Committee voted unanimously to appoint Dr. Glenn Pavlicek as the Interim Assistant Superintendent for Business. Dr. Pavlicek served as the Assistant Superintendent for Business for several years before retiring in December 2020. He is a respected member of the Milton community and is well known for his work on several town and school committees throughout his career. Please join me in welcoming Dr. Pavlicek back to the Milton Public Schools. We are grateful that he has agreed to return to this position.
The Monster Dash is fast approaching and this week we want to give a big congratulations to Cunningham student Asha Hallowell whose winning design beat out hundreds of others to be featured the Monster Dash t-shirts this year! Join the fun (and get a t-shirt with Asha’s fabulous design on it!) at the Monster Dash on Sunday October 30th. The race starts at Cunningham Hall, with a 5k and kid’s fun run, costumes, and fun for all. Register now for this fantastic family event.
Please read below for information about important upcoming MPS dates and events, the School Committee Forum on Personalized Learning, a reminder of COVID guidelines, food resources in our community, this weekends Kid’s Trail Run, classroom highlights and more.
MPS NEED TO KNOW
- Oct 23 MHS XC Trail Run for Kids
- Oct 26 Milton School Committee
- Oct 27 Technology Coffee Hour
- Oct 28 Late Start Day/Morning Teacher PD
- Oct 30 MFE Monster Dash
- Nov 1 Teacher PD Day No School
- Nov 2 School Committee
- Nov 5 Milton Holiday Shop
- Nov 9 School Committee Forum on Personalized Learning
- Nov 11 Veterans Day No School
Late Start Day 10/28 : Friday, October 28 is a late start day in the Milton Public Schools. MPS teachers will engage in Professional Development during the morning. Your child’s school day will begin 2 hours later on these days, buses will run two hours later,Before School Programs will be open only for currently enrolled ESAP participants, and lunch and afterschool activities will continue as usual.
Parents and Guardians of students in Grades 8-11, please save the date for the MHS School Counseling Department’s annual Post Secondary Planning Night on Thursday, December 1st, from 6:15 – 8:30 pm. More details to come!
Current CDC guidelines for COVID-positive individuals dictate a five-day isolation period. The day a person becomes symptomatic or tests positive is counted as day “zero.” One may come out of isolation on day six provided they have been fever-free for 24 hours without having taken any fever-reducing medication.
The nurses’ office does not require proof of a negative COVID test in order for a student to return to school. Mask use is suggested on days 6 through 10 unless they test negative for COVID on day 5 or later.
For individuals exposed to COVID, there are no restrictions regardless of vaccination status. If the exposed person wishes to test for COVID, they should wait 3-5 days after the exposure before testing (or sooner if they feel ill). Specific guidelines as they pertain to MPS families require notifying the nurses’ office of a COVID-positive individual. All COVID guidelines can be found on our Health Services page linked here.
The next regular School Committee meeting will be on October 26, 2022 at 7pm. All information about attending 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.
On Wednesday, November 9, from 7-8:30pm, the School Committee will host the first of four public forums for the Milton community. The forum will provide a brief presentation on Personalized Learning, a pillar of the MPS Strategic Plan. Personalized Learning is an educational approach that creates engaging learning experiences aligned with each student’s strengths, interests, and needs and ensures that students will experience a robust and academically rich school experience.
Community members will be invited to ask questions and share comments about Personalized Learning. MPS Administration, School Committee members, and Personalized Learning authority Cyndy Taymore, who is providing the district with Professional Development, will respond to questions and comments and share their perspectives on the issues.
The public forum will be held at the Council on Aging, at 10 Walnut St, just behind Town Hall. The meeting will be hybrid, with attendees able to participate in person and through Zoom and Slido. All links to attend will be posted on the main page of the MPS website linked here.
MPS GOOD TO KNOW
There are some local food resources we want to share with you today.
The next open dates for the Milton Community Food Pantry, located at the Parkway Methodist Church, 158 Blue Hills Parkway, are 10/22/22 and 11/5/22 from 9:15 – 11:15. Please bring proof of Milton residency if you haven’t been recently. The pantry provides monthly gift cards to Star Market for meat, eggs, and milk. For families who need assistance for Thanksgiving and December holiday dinners and have completed an application, the pantry will have grocery gift cards and extra food items. In addition, the pantry will be accepting applications for the Holiday gift program for Milton children on the above dates only.
QCAP (Quincy Community Action Program) offers a Community Food Center which is available to Milton residents. Families can call 617-471-0796 to complete an application and schedule an appointment to pick up food. Households typically receive one food order a month, or more often in times of extreme need or crisis. Food orders typically contain a balance of meat, produce, fruits and vegetables, and grains.
Please visit our Family Resource Newsletter or Milton Public School Resource Guide to find other valuable family support resources. If you need additional assistance, please reach out to Marti O’Keefe McKenna, MPS Family Outreach Liaison at 617-980-7343 or email@example.com. All calls and emails are confidential.
TECHNOLOGY COFFEE HOUR
It’s often overwhelming being a parent/guardian today in our technology-driven society. Keeping up with the latest trends and dangers can often seem like an impossible task. On Thursday, October 27th from 9-10 am in the Collicot/Cunningham cafeteria, all MPS families are welcome to join a discussion on how we can keep our students safe in the digital world. Areas of discussion will include managing devices at home, monitoring student devices, finding ways to put devices down, talking to students about privacy…and more! Come share ideas, ask questions, and build a support system to help keep our students safe in the ever changing digital world.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Tickets are on sale now at this link for Milton High School Theatre’s production of Beauty and the Beast. There are 4 shows to choose from on November 10, 12 and 13. You don’t want to miss this family friendly show and our uber talented high school theatre students!
MHS XC KIDS TRAIL RUN
Come support the Milton High School Boys and Girls Cross Country Teams at our Kids Trail Run at Cunningham Park on Sunday, October 23. There are races for students in K-8th grades, and this is a great opportunity to experience cross country. Registration is $10/person and starts at 10am on race day. The MHS XC team hopes to see you there!
Advocate, Participate, and Educate is SEPAC’s mission, and meeting the needs of exceptional, neurodivergent children is a parenting journey that calls for unique community support and wisdom. We are off to a great start!
At our first meeting on October 11, we had close to thirty parents in attendance. Many powerful stories and connections were shared. If you are still interested in joining our board and/or finding out how to become more involved, please reach out to your school rep We are still in need of a secretary. An election form will be going out soon. Our next meeting is Monday, November 14. The first item on the agenda will be electing and installing the new board.
2ND ANNUAL MILTON HOLIDAY SHOP
On Saturday, November 5th from 12-3pm at Steel and Rye, join our school PTOs, MHS Boosters, MHS FAME and more for the 2nd Annual Holiday Shop. Shop all things Milton and MPS in one stop shopping!
MPS NICE TO KNOW
MILTON HIGH SCHOOL
Congratulations to the Wildcat Marching Band, whose phenomenal performance of their show “The Sky’s the Limit” at the MICCA Northeast II Festival this month earned a three-star overall rating and the highest total scores in their division. The Wildcat Marching Band is led by Senior Drum Majors Claudia O’Neill, Sam McLaughlin, Sampreeti Fitton and Brynne Mershon, Senior Percussion Captain Bella Fiske and Senior Colorguard Captains Angel Leggett and Bowie Garvin. We are so proud of the hard work and dedication of every single member of the band!
The MHS American Experience classes recently traveled to the JFK library for a hometown debate simulation. Students met with other high school students across the state to discuss the issues of the upcoming Governor’s race between Democrat Maura Healy and Republican Geoff Diehl.
After breakfast all together, students were divided into small groups from all four schools. During group discussions, students became aware of how different their points of view could be, sometimes correlating to where they live and go to school. In addition to MHS, students from Somerset Berkley High School, Boston Community Leadership Academy, and Chelsea High School were in attendance.
Students discussed affordable housing in Massachusetts, transportation issues with the MBTA, inequality for black and brown students in the state, flat tax vs millionaire tax, safety in our schools and the need for bipartisan compromise.
After the group work, the four schools joined together for a traditional hometown debate. The representatives of the two political parties were Secretary Mike Kennealy, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development representing the Republican party and Dr. Yvonne Spicer Former Mayor of the City of Framingham, Professor at UMASS Boston representing the Democratic party.
For an hour, the students asked the delegates questions on the issues. Some quotes from Secretary Mike Kennealy included:We have just invested 140,000 into brownfields; We need a collaborative bipartisan legislation for climate change; We have shed the ‘taxachusetts’ label from MA due to republican governors.
Quotes from Dr. Spicer included: Where is the money coming from for those new electric vehicles?; Millionaires tax, when we think about it we hope the money will be used for education and transportation in the state; It will not go to education if we do not raise it, will it?
Students left with greater knowledge of the issues facing Massachusetts, growing awareness that different issues can vary from town to town, and the difficulties getting people to agree on the issues.
Got Milk? We hope Mr. Manning’s 6th graders do, so they can enjoy their new custom cereal creations! 6th grade artists were asked to create a custom cereal that combined two of their favorite cereals into one unique design. Some students chose cereals that had mascots, some chose sugary cereals, and some argued about what cereals were the best. 6th graders learned about marketing skills, color schemes, and character designs. Students also were asked to eat cereal for art homework so they could bring in empty cereal boxes – many obliged! Our students pushed their drawing skills to the max as you can see in the pictures below.
Pierce students recently experienced an all day geography & mapping field trip with Ms. Hartgering and Ms. Kinslow. At the Leventhal Map Center at Boston Public Library, they had the amazing opportunity to do a hands-on, in-depth study of ancient to recent world maps. Students studied the purpose of maps and the choices cartographers make while they looked for map clues and creatures! They then walked through an incredible 3 story stained glass globe, where the world surrounded them in the Mapparium. These experiences add depth and meaning as students continue their studies in geography and ancient civilizations.
Congratulations to Pierce technology teacher Deanna Magill who presented at this year’s Massachusetts Computer Using Educators (MassCUE) conference. MassCUE is the state’s leading organization for educators with a passion for technology in education. Ms. Magill’s presentation, Design for 3D Printing: How to Incorporate 3D Printing into Your Curriculum, was based on the amazing lessons she brings to our Pierce students all year!
INSIDE OUR ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS
Mrs. Novak’s Tucker 5th graders are teaching and learning about the science behind day and night. Students were tasked with investigating why and how it gets dark at night and light during the day and then demonstrated their understanding in a way that made sense to them. Students chose a variety of ways to show their learning; some made informative posters, one group made a clay model, another made a slide presentation, and two groups created skits to explain this phenomenon! Choosing how to “show what you know” is a foundational element of Personalized Learning, a pillar of the MPS Strategic Plan. Keep up the great work, Grade 5!
Collicot and Cunningham 4th grade artists have just wrapped up a charming cottage weaving project. Students created individual looms and learned how to thread a warp around the notches of their loom. The warp is the thread that is vertically strung and holds tension while weaving. Students learned the weaving pattern of “over and under” to create their house frame and then practiced dropping stitches in their warp to create a triangular shaped roof for the tops of their adorable cottages. Their completed cottages are a delightful addition to the art room.
There will be a Winter Athletics Parent/Guardian Meeting on Wednesday, November 9th at 6:00pm in the Field House. All student-athletes and their parents/guardians should plan to attend this meeting. The Athletic Director will speak for a few minutes before breaking into program specific meetings. Athletics Registration is always open. You can find the links and information on the website.
Thank you to all who attended the Milton Boosters “Swing Fore Sports” Golf Tournament this week. And a special thanks to organizers Debra MacNeil and Susan DiSandro! It was a fun and successful day for MHS athletes and their supporters!
The Boys Soccer Team hosts Walpole for their Senior Night tonight at 7pm on Brooks Field. They lost 2-0 to #2 ranked Needham in a great game after going 3 weeks without a loss on their record.
The Swim Team beat Natick last Friday 99-82. They had no meets this week and will end their regular season at Braintree next Tuesday before going to Sectionals and States!
The Girls Soccer Team beat Fontbonne yesterday as the Ducks wore their pink uniforms in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Both teams also honored National Officials Appreciation Week by gifting both officials a goodie bag and taking a great picture!
The Volleyball Team will host Walpole in their “Volley for a Cure” Match at 5:30pm. The Girls have won 6 out of their last 8 matches.
Ben Catudal shot an 80 and Johnny Gillooly shot an 83 at the MIAA D2 North Sectional Golf Championships on Tuesday.
The Field Hockey Team lost 2-0 to Walpole last night but are slated to return to the MIAA Tournament. They have three games remaining before they enter postseason play.
The Cheer Team will compete in the Franklin High School Invitational on Saturday.
Football will enjoy a much deserved bye week after starting the season 6-0. They will travel to Natick HS next Friday for the final regular season game before hosting the first round of the tournament on Friday, November 4th!
Boys and Girls Cross Country both beat Braintree for their Senior Meet! The Girls came in 1 thru 5 to win 15-47 and the Boys finished 23-33, rounding out their regular season with wins at Houghton’s Pond! Highlights of the meet include:
- In the girls JV race Garet Glenn, Lauren Cooper, Niamh Mannion, Jacque Timmins, Rebecca Domineau, and LC Caldwell swept 1st-6th places.
- Lauren, Niamh, Rebecca, and LC all set personal records and Penelope Jain ran a personal best by a minute!
- In the girls Varsity race Katie O’Toole, Mia Jilani, Zoe Panucci, Sarah Grace Chave, and Julie Affanato took 1st-5th places.
- Katie, Mia, Zoe, Julie, Megan Carew, and Meghan Riordan all ran PRs!
- Many of the girls’ times this season and in past seasons have put them on the list of Top 50 Milton Performers to race at Houghton’s Pond since 1996. Katie is 13th, Mia 27th, Sarah Grace 31st, Zoe 35th, Julie 38th, Megan C 41st, and Marilyn 43rd!
COMMUNITY NEWS & EVENTS
Please use the links below or visit the MPS Community News & Events page for information on these terrific community events and opportunities!
Join the fun at the Milton Halloween Stroll, Saturday, October 29th, 3-5pm East Milton Square Deck. Costumes are encouraged but not required. Bouncy House, music & other fun activities. All ghosts and goblins are welcome!
The Library is currently conducting a survey of the community to assess how to improve access and services within our town’s neighborhoods. Please access the survey here.
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Saturday, Oct. 29th from 10am – 2pm at the Milton Police Station, 40 Highland St.
As part of their community assessment, the Milton Coalition is asking parents/guardians of children in grades K-12 to complete this brief, anonymous survey about youth health and well-being.
The Milton Early Childhood Association’s Fall Newsletter is linked here and filled with free children’s programming, parent workshop, resources and information, farms to visit this fall, corn mazes, a fun fall activity to do at home, and some great fall book titles for your children!
The Forbes House Museum has planned a Weekend BARN-anza on October 22 and 23! We’ve planned a bonanza of barn-related events. Day 1 – Barn Tour and Lunch Program, 11am start. Day 2 – Halloween Barnfest, 5-8pm. All details are here.
Visit the Milton Public Library for some drop-in (no registration required!) Halloween festivities:
- Thursday, October 27 at 2:30PM – Grab your favorite Halloween treat and join us in the Keys Community Room to watch family-friendly movie shorts, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and Room on the Broom. Costumes are welcome!
- Saturday, October 29 (all day) – Channel your inner Dr. Frankenstein and create your very own monster in the Story Hour Room with Ms. Tory! Using miscellaneous materials, craft your spookiest (or silliest!) monster friend to take home just in time for Halloween.
Congratulations to Pierce 6th grader Nile Hennick who has been selected to exhibit his work as a comics artist at the Massachusetts Independent Comics Expo at Boston University on October 22nd and October 23rd. The event is open to the public. Event information can be found here.
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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 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: Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Human Resources Dr. Garth McKinney, (617) 696- 4808/4809.