Greenlodge Weekly Update 1/8/2021


Action Required: Complete the form below no later than 5PM on Sunday

Thank you for the rapid and honest responses to the health attestations this week. This is a very challenging time where we are balancing the increase of COVID-19 cases in the community with families doing their very best to work, learn, and have some much-needed recreation. We appreciate your patience as we navigate ways to keep school open and kids learning with friends. Understanding there are frustrating moments for many families, we have to make decisions with the health and safety of the entire school in mind.

Talking to Kids about the Attack on the US Capitol

The storming of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday was a shocking attack on an essential part of our democracy -- the peaceful transition of power from one president to the next. As Congress met to certify the 2020 electoral college vote, a protest outside the Capitol turned violent as the crowd unlawfully entered the building and temporarily disrupted the voting process.

While we adults continue to process the events from yesterday, kids are also trying to make sense of what they’re seeing and hearing in the news and on social media. To help, Common Sense Media recently sent out this article, which includes age-appropriate questions that may be helpful as our students continue to navigate these uncertain and worrisome times.

Kids age 2–7

Young kids aren't yet fully able to understand complex situations. Kids at the younger end of this group still can't tell the difference between fantasy and reality. If you can, try to turn off the news when young kids are around. Of course, they may still hear about scary news from their siblings or friends -- or overhear an adult talking about it. If they do, let them know that they and their family are safe, and use these questions to support them:

  • What did you watch/hear about what happened? (Ask follow-up questions without adding unnecessary information.)

  • How did that make you feel?

  • What would make you feel better?

Kids age 8–12

Older kids can have various reactions to what they see on the news and platforms where they spend lots of time, such as TikTok or Roblox. Some are more sensitive than others to news of violence. Think about how they've reacted in the past, and use these guiding questions to learn more about what questions they have and how they're feeling:

  • What did you watch/hear about what happened? (Ask follow-up questions, clarify misconceptions, and give them additional perspectives.)

  • How do you feel? How do you think your friends and other people in your family feel, including people from different backgrounds and races?

  • For more mature kids: What differences do you see in the way the media is talking about the situation compared to the Black Lives Matter protests? Do they use different words to refer to this event and the people involved?

  • What do you think about the lawmakers who came back and completed the job of certifying the election? What do their actions communicate?"

Intent to Switch from REMOTE only to In Person - deadline January 8, 2021

Please be sure to submit your request by January 8, 2021 if you intend to switch from REMOTE ONLY to an IN PERSON cohort. You may email your request to

Unfortunately at this time we are unable to move children between cohorts or from 2 DAY in person to 4 DAY in person. We are hopeful that we will be able to transition more students to 4 day in person learning in the coming months.

Save the Date... Share your voice!

The Annual Dedham Martin Luther King, Jr Community celebration will be held virtually on January 18th. We want to share the voices of our students by having them submit a poster. Click here for more details on this year's theme and deadline for submission.
Elementary Poster

Notes from the Nurse...

Happy New year! I am hopeful that we will have some normality in the coming months. Let’s continue to work as a community to get through the challenging weeks ahead.

Please make the safer choice if you have any exposures or symptoms--stay home and get tested.

Watch for symptoms

If your student has any of these, stay home and call their pediatrician. We require either a negative test or doctor’s note with alternative diagnosis to return to school.

  • Fever or chills

  • Cough

  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

  • Muscle or body aches

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Sore throat

  • Nausea or vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Fatigue, when combined with another symptom

  • Headache, when combined with another symptom

  • Congestion or runny nose, when combined with another symptom

Influenza Vaccine: Massachusetts extended the deadline to February 28th, 2021 for all K-12 students (including remote-only) to receive the vaccine per state guidelines. You can send me proof of vaccination via email or upload it into the SNAP Health Portal. **If you received your flu shot at one of the Dedham town flu clinics and did not receive paperwork/proof, please send me an email so I can retrieve the record.

Quarantine rules: Although Massachusetts has changed the guidelines around close contact quarantine, Dedham Public Schools will continue to exclude students and faculty/staff for a full 14 days for all close-contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases. This mandatory 14-day exclusion from schools will continue through the holidays and into January. If you have any questions on when your student should end state or school quarantine, feel free to call or email me.

Medication changes: if your student takes any medication at home and there is a change to the dose or schedule that may bring about side effects at school, please let the school nurse know so I can monitor how your student is doing.

Testing Sites: the lines can be long these days at the Stop the Spread Sites, but they are operating and provide relatively quick results. See also the City of Boston sites, some families are having a good experience getting tests done quickly there.

Call or email if you have any health-related questions: (781) 310-4248,


  • If your child is sick or will be out of school for any reason during REMOTE learning please call the attendance line. 781-310-4799 to report the absence.
  • All students will be expected to attend all scheduled remote and in-person sessions.
  • Attendance will be taken daily. Teachers will monitor and track student attendance for all scheduled remote sessions.
  • If your child is required to stay home due to illness, they may attend school remotely. You must call the attendance line to report this, as well as notifying your child's teacher.
  • The school will excuse up to 7 absences in a six month period. Students who are chronically absent will receive notification from the school.
  • Please see the student handbook for full details regarding attendance.

Notes from Ms. Blais : Feeling Stressed?

Self-Care Video Series for Parents

Feeling stressed? Take a few minutes for yourself this winter! Visit Committee for Children’s YouTube channel every Monday through the end of January for a short video about mental health, presented by a licensed clinical psychologist. The weekly self-care videos will also include a daily practice grounded in research and SEL.

Click this link to check out the videos:

Let your Voice be Heard!

Do you want to share your thoughts on what is and isn’t working in Dedham government? The Charter Review Committee is inviting all Dedham residents to complete a brief, anonymous survey on what they think of how our government is organized and operated. Questions relate to Town Meeting; elected and appointed boards and committees; the reporting structure for department heads; term limits; and your thoughts on being involved in town government as a citizen. The survey will close on January 15.

Take the survey at

Reach out to the PTO Board...

Please reach out to any member of the Board with questions or interest in volunteering.

Grade Level Representative Volunteers...

Great news! At this time we have the following reps:

1st grade: Katie McClorey

2nd grade: Kelley Downey and Jen Parnell

3rd grade: Isa Howley, Cheryl Pratt, Erica Huff

4th grade: Carrie Yandresevits and Kara McDermott

5th grade: Isa Howley and MaryEllen McDonough

5th Grade Yearbook

The 5th Grade committee has started the process of creating the yearbook for our class. We need your help more so than ever in providing pictures for layouts.

Please click on this flyer for information on how you can submit pictures to us.

The flyer includes a link for the Google Drive so that you can upload pictures.

Please do not hesitate to email us at if you need help or have any questions!

We would love to see every 5th grader included in our yearbook. Thank you!

Box Tops and Amazon Smile

Here are two easy ways to make a contribution to Greenlodge...

  • No more cutting Box Tops. Click here to learn more about scanning your store receipt to get credits for Box Tops.
  • Go to and choose to support Greenlodge! Amazon Smile app now available.

Library News from Ms. Bickel

Library Book Checkout Details

I’m so excited for students to be able to borrow books from the library! Students can borrow 2 books from the library at a time in two ways:

If students are learning remotely, I will send an email when the books are ready to pick up in the main office. If students are learning in school, books will be delivered to their classrooms to take home.

There is a bin in the main office lobby and in the library to return all library books. Please return plastic bags to quarantine and reuse as well.

The Greenlodge Library Website has more details about checking out books and other library news and links. Please reach out to me directly at with any questions. Thank you!

FREE Programs at Blue Hills Adult Ed

Blue Hills Adult Education is located at the former ECEC and offers excellent ESL and HiSet programs to adults.



Community Events and Flyers

Click on the GREEN bar above to take a look at the community events and flyers

Check-out the Greenlodge Homepage!

The Greenlodge Homepage is updated regularly. Go here to view:
  • Links to current and past newsletters and headlines
  • Food service information
  • Bus application
  • Families Digital Support Page
  • Counseling resources
  • Coronavirus Updates

Other District Information...

Dedham Public Schools has translated resource pages:

Please click here for translated curriculum and resources.

Haga clic aquí para ver el currículo y los recursos traducidos.

Clique aqui para obter o currículo e os recursos traduzidos.

Пожалуйста, нажмите здесь для перевода учебной программы и ресурсов.

Ju lutemi klikoni këtu për kurrikulën dhe burimet e përkthyera.

الرجاء الضغط هنا للحصول على المناهج والمواد المترجمة.

There is also a Parent Support Group for Spanish speaking families.

Learn more here:Parent Support Group Flyer (Spanish)

Video Overview of Parent Support Group (Spanish)

Substance Abuse Support Group for Children: Please see this flyer for information about a virtual group to support children dealing with the impacts of a loved ones substance abuse.