McGovern News!

April 16, 2021

Despite the crazy weather today, next week marks our spring vacation. I hope you all take some time to rest, relax and recharge with your families!


Please review the information below and we look forward to welcoming all of our students on Monday, April 26th!



Best,

Amy McDonald, Principal

Placement- 2021-2022

During the month of April, we begin the process of constructing classes for next year. It is a very complex and time-consuming task, but it is, perhaps, one of the most important things we do to ensure a quality learning program for every child. Class lists are planned carefully, sensitively, thoughtfully, and with great deliberation. When placing students into classes, we base our decisions on the following goals:


  • To balance classes with respect to the physical, academic, social, and emotional needs of the respective members.

  • To ensure appropriate instructional groupings within each class.

  • To provide a gender balance in each classroom, whenever possible.

  • To consider the effects that individuals have on one another in order to provide an optimal learning environment for the entire group.

  • To maintain an equitable teacher-pupil ratio.


While we believe that we are in a position to know your child’s learning needs, we recognize that parents have insights that may help us in the placement process. If you have information about your child’s learning style or needs that you would like taken into consideration, please share it, using one of the below Google forms, by Tuesday, April 27, 2021. Letters received after this date will not be taken into consideration. Please understand that this is not an invitation to choose your child’s teacher or classmates. We ask that you refrain from requesting a specific teacher or writing personal descriptions of staff members. Letters naming specific teachers or stating personal descriptions of staff members will not be considered.


McGovern Forms:

Placement Parent Information- Entering K (current preschool students)

Placement Parent Information- Entering 1st (current kindergarten students)

Placement Parent Information- Entering 2nd (current 1st Grade students)



Instead of naming or describing a teacher, tell us about the type of learning environment in which you feel your child will be most successful. If you have had a prior personal experience with a teacher through an older child, and prefer not to have a younger child be assigned the same teacher, you may include this information in your letter.


The decision for the placement of each child rests with the building principal based upon the goals listed above and on what is fair and equitable for all children.


Welcome to Kindergarten Night

We will host a “Welcome to Kindergarten” Night on Wednesday, April 28, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. for all incoming kindergarten families. This will be an opportunity to come together virtually as a community and for you to learn about McGovern School, the transition to kindergarten, and ask any questions you may have.


Even though we can’t be together in person, we are eager to meet you and welcome you and your family to the Medway Public Schools! This will be the first of many events we will hold before the start of the school year. You do need to register for this event which you can do by clicking here. We can’t wait to “see” you!


As a reminder, kindergarten registration is coming up in May. School staff will be calling soon to schedule a 30 minute appointment for May 24-26, 2021. Finally, you can click on this link to find a list of all of the events leading up to the first day of kindergarten!


Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.

Kindergarten Screening

We are in the process of setting up kindergarten screening appointments which will take place on May 24, 25, and 26th. Screening is an essential component of us getting to know your child. Your child will meet with one of our teachers for approximately 30 minutes and do some interactive activities. There is no way to "prepare" for screening. This helps us understand how each child will be coming into kindergarten and helps us prepare for placement.


If your child speaks another language, our ELL teacher will do a language screening as well, which also takes about 30 minutes. Please feel free to contact the school if you have any questions.


If you have not been scheduled yet, we will call you after the vacation.

Chromebook Updates

You may be aware that the school provides updates to Chromebooks remotely when they are connected to school internet. The updates can only be completed if a Chromebook is fully shut down and restarted. Please make sure, that your student shuts down the computer over the weekend. Sleeping is great for computers and humans, but a full restart is certainly needed from time to time!

Updated Transportation Guidance: Bus Service for the Remainder of the Year

The state updated their guidance on school transportation. The District has studied this guidance and will be making changes to bus transportation. The guidance shifts capacity limits to allow more students on the bus, doubling capacity. The state guidance can be found here.


If you are interested in moving your child onto a bus for the remainder of the school year, please reach out to our transportation director, Don Aicardi daicardi@medwayschools.org to see if there is room on your child's bus. He will communicate with you and the school if moving to school bus service is possible.


Thank you to all of our families who have been so patient with our drop off and pick up procedures!

Scholastic Book Fair

McGovern's Online Scholastic Book Fair will be from April 28, 2021 - May 11, 2021. More information and the link will be shared closer to the date.

Picture Day

We have been working with LifeTouch to develop safety procedures and protocols in order to make picture day a reality this year. Student Picture Day will be Friday, April 30th. Students who are in virtual school are welcome to come to McGovern from 3:30-4:00 PM to have their photo taken. All photos will be taken inside the school.


Picture order forms have already gone home. Here is the link to order your photos. Our Picture Day ID is: EVTKXGQRW

MEPTO NEWS!

Each year MEPTO graciously volunteers time and energry to put together an Elementary Yearbook. In a typical year, we use our Lifetouch Photos to include individual pictures of students and volunteers come in throughout the school year to capture special events, exciting milestones, and make sure each class and student is represented in the book.


This year, due to the complications of COVID, their ability to produce such a book is next to impossible. I am very grateful that MEPTO has tackled putting together a modified version, a "Memory Book."


Please see the image below for directions on how to purchase a Memory Book for your child. If you have any questions, please reach out to McGovern's yearbook advisor: Meagan Wilde Meagan.mckenna@yahoo.com

Big picture

Reminders!

Kindergarten Camp


The summer kindergarten program, Kindergarten Camp is for incoming Kindergarten students; it will be held during the week of July 12-16, 2021. The program will introduce our incoming kindergarten learners to the kindergarten experience and help them to begin to feel comfortable with a typical kindergarten day. This experience also allows the students to become better acquainted with the McGovern School. You can find out more information about our program by clicking on the Kindergarten Camp Flyer.

Travel Reminder

From Dr. Pires' recent communication:


As a friendly reminder, as you prepare for February break, please keep in mind the State’s travel policy and general guidelines. The Governor’s order requires you to quarantine for 10 days or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72-hours prior to your arrival in Massachusetts. If not obtained before entry to Massachusetts, a test may be obtained after arrival. However, all such arriving travelers must immediately begin the 10-day quarantine until a negative test result has been received.


For additional information, please refer to the gathering guidance and the Massachusetts Travel Form, click on the links below:

CDC Guidelines on Safe Celebrations

Massachusetts Travel Form


In addition there have been changes to the travel restrictions regarding children. Testing for children, 10 years and younger, who are traveling with an adult from their household is not required. Children 10 years and younger should mimic the quarantine requirement and testing options completed by the household adult they accompanied for travel. If the accompanying adult chooses to quarantine, the child must also quarantine. If the accompanying adult chooses to obtain a test, the child and adult must quarantine until the adult’s negative test result is received. The complete Travel Order can be found here.

Close Contact Guidelines Definition

Please see the below message from Dr. Pires regarding an update on the close contact definition.


DESE recently updated their guidelines to reflect an updated definition of a close contact. The new definition is An individual who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.

An important caveat to this definition is that multiple brief or transitory interactions (less than a minute) throughout the day are unlikely to result in 15 minutes of cumulative contact and do not meet the definition of close contact.

This change will certainly make the definition of close contacts more challenging and will likely lead to more close contacts being identified. It is important that all staff are aware of this definition and take active steps to ensure that we are not unnecessarily creating close contacts, particularly with other staff.

Yearly Student Information Update - Online Registration- ACTION REQUIRED!


We request that all families complete the beginning of year packet [Online Registration] in the parent portal to ensure we have the most up to date information for you and your child. To access OLR in the portal, login and choose MORE > Online Registration. Please follow the prompts to complete this information. If you are new to Medway or in need an access code to create an account, please email support@medwayschools.org.


We are only at an 18% completion rate and it is critical that all families update their information so that we have the most up-to-date contact information.

Covid Response Hotline

In order to ensure confidentiality and begin Contact Tracing as soon as possible, the District has established lines of communication if ever you need to report a positive COVID Test.

Report a student positive COVID test results by either emailing or calling the hotline below:



Medway Public Schools COVID-19 Information Hub


To provide families with the latest information and resources related to COVID-19, we have created a COVID-19 information hub, which can be accessed here, and by visiting our district’s homepage. Please visit this site for information about school/community COVID-19 health data, positive test reporting, student protocols, and local testing sites.

Meal Access for Remote Learners

As we prepare for more students to make their full return to school, remote meal distribution will now take place on Thursday mornings from 7 am to 9 am. Beginning Thursday, April 1, 2021 students who have opted for remote learning may pick-up meals at Medway Middle School on Thursdays from 7 am to 9 am at the Door # 24 on the Kelly Street entrance side of the building. A week's worth of meals will be offered during this pick-up date each week. Please see the food services website for menus. https://medwayschools.nutrislice.com/ Please contact Shawn Fallon at sfallon@medwayschools.org if you have any questions or concerns.

Dressing for Recess and Outdoor Time

Please be sure to dress your child in layers. Students go out for recess daily for 25 minutes. In addition, students may have music or wellness classes, which are also taught outside for 40 minutes.


Now that the weather is getting nicer, it is often cooler in the morning and there is up to 30 degrees difference by afternoon. In addition, please remember that we keep windows open on the bus and in the classroom to increase air flow.


Students can always take a layer off if they are hot, but the same can't be said if they are cold.

Communication

If you are not receiving email communications from the district or the schools, we are here to help. Please email parent@medwayschools.org and a team will work to ensure that you are connected.

Important Dates!

April 19-23: No School, Vacation

April 28: Welcome to Kindergarten, 6:00-7:00 pm (virtual)

April 28-5/11: Scholastic Book Fair (electronic)

April 30: Picture Day

May 12: School Site Council, 3:30 PM

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