Salem Public Schools Update

News for our families

Superintendent's Message

May 6, 2022


SPS families,


I want to first acknowledge the special people in our lives by wishing you all a happy Mother's Day. We hope your loved ones treat you like the incredible caregivers that you are. Thank you to all of you who sent positive and inspiring messages about our staff throughout the week. We received over 150 heartwarming shoutouts, many of which you can read on our Facebook page.


On Wednesday, I had the privilege of attending the Arts in the Evening event at Salem High School featuring musicians and artists from across our schools in grades 4-12. We were treated to performances from our bands, orchestras, ensembles, choruses and had the opportunity to view a series of art displays. The Star Wars themed music and the mid-performance lightsaber battle was a real treat!


I have never in my career seen such an extraordinary production - coordinating artists from multiple schools, grades and experience levels. Kudos to our fabulous educators who made the event happen again after 2 years of pandemic interference. This is one of the many educational experiences that makes the Salem Public Schools unique and special. The emphasis placed on the arts and the continuous investment made by this community speaks volumes about our values. We want our children to find joy and engagement as part of our definition of school success. As a reminder, you can catch our musicians again this Saturday as the Salem High School Jazz Band and the Collins Middle School Jazz Band will be performing at the Willows at 2 pm!


Enjoy the weekend,


Steve

You're A Rock Star!

At Salem Public Schools, we are recognizing one staff member a week who exemplifies our core values of celebrating differences, facilitating collaboration, fostering innovation, creating equity and access, growing all students, and upholding high standards for all. We are surprising a deserving SPS team member with a rock star trophy.


This week's Rock Star is Ms. Ghada Fneich, Food Service worker at Horace Mann School. She was spotlighted by Project Bread during School Lunch Hero Day this week for her participation in their School Food Fellowship program. As part of this professional learning opportunity, she developed a new chicken shawarma recipe that students and staff were able to taste test. The recipe has been so popular that it has been used by school kitchens across the state. Ms. Fneich clearly demonstrates a passion for her work and, above all, serving our students the highest quality meals every day!

Staff Appreciation Week - What a Week!

Staff Appreciation Week 2022 is officially in the books. We had a Salem gear giveaway, ice cream trucks for staff and more appreciative gestures throughout the week. We’d like to thank the small businesses in Salem that stepped up to offer discounts, free items like coffee, and other giveaways for our staff.


We are grateful to be in a community that cares about their schools. We are posting the staff shout outs that families, staff, and students have submitted. As of right now we have had over 140 submissions! Over the next couple of weeks, they will also be sent to the staff member for whom they were written.

Test-to-Return Policy Reminder

As a district, we continue to follow our test-to-return policy to ensure individuals who have tested positive for COVID are no longer contagious before returning to school. We wanted to clarify the policy for individuals that are positive after day 5.

  • Please do not test until individuals are symptom free for at least 24 hours to save tests until they are more likely to test negative.

  • If individuals test at home and test positive on day six or after, they may not return to school until they test negative or on day 11. School nurses should be notified if the student is unable to return on day 6 as planned.

  • If individuals test negative at home at any time between day 6 and day 11, they may return the following day. School nurses must be notified that the individual plans to return.

  • All individuals that return prior to day 11 must still report to the school nurse upon arrival to take a rapid test to confirm their negative status. Only students that are negative will remain in school.

  • If individuals return to school prior to day 11 and test positive at school, they will be immediately sent home and must remain home until the full 10 day isolation period is complete, returning on day 11.

  • Please call the main office or your school nurse if you need rapid tests at home. They can be sent home with neighbors, friends, or family members, if applicable.

SUMMER PROGRAMMING

Programming will take place between July 5th and August 4th. There are many different programming opportunities that include Special Education, Summer Academy including one specifically for multilingual students for grades PreK-K; Expanding Horizons and tutoring for 6-8 graders; and Not Yet Academy and summer work at the Community Office programs for 9-12 grades.


For more information about summer programs, contact your City Connects Coordinator (K-8) or Guidance Counselor (high school).


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Project Bread helps SPS serve fresh and healthy meals

Salem Public Schools has been serving free breakfast and lunch to students before, during, and will continue after the pandemic. We have been working closely with Project Bread as part of their School Food Fellowship program. School Food Fellows participate in monthly professional development training and onsite meetings with Project Bread’s Chef Educators, who develop new recipes such as a new Chicken Shawarma recipe.


We are grateful to Project Bread for their continued partnership and support to help us feed out students fresh and delicious meals.

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Don’t forget about the STU scholarship fundraiser!

Salem Teachers Union is awarding four (4) $1000 scholarships to SPS seniors. Tickets are $10 each. We are accepting Venmo (@STUEvents), cash or checks (annbermanstu@gmail.com). For Venmo payments, please include your name, email and phone number. Upon request, we will text you a picture of your entry! Great prizes, and if you win, your ticket goes back in for another chance!


No Venmo? No problem! You can mail your check to Salem Teachers Union, 10 Colonial Road, Suite 12, Salem, MA 01970. Include your email address or phone number and we will send you a pic of your entry form!

Kindergarten Scavenger Hunt

Beth White of the Early Childhood Center, in collaboration with Cindy Hatcher of Saltonstall, has received a grant from the Salem Education Foundation to develop an interactive scavenger hunt for all Salem Public Schools kindergarten families.


This interactive introduction to the City of Salem brings children to over 40 locations in the city, ranging from the Mayor’s office to the Post Office, and lots more. At each stop, scanning a QR code will bring up a brief video to explain that spot.


The QR codes will be located in different locations around Salem and can be accessed by anyone! You do not have to be a kindergartener to join in on the fun!

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May 7th Free Jazz Concert

The Salem High School Jazz Band will present a free Jazz Concert on Saturday, May 7th at 2pm. Due to the weather forecast, the concert will be held in the SHS auditorium at 77 Willson St. NOT at the Salem Willows as was originally planned. The concert will feature the SHS Jazz Band, the Collins Middle School Jazz Band, and guest artist Jay Daly on trumpet. Hope to see you there!

Come work with us! NOW HIRING CAFETERIA HELPERS

Cafeteria Helpers $16.16/Hour, 3, 4 and 6 hour shifts


Minimum Qualifications:

High School Diploma (or equivalent)

Ability to lift a minimum of 30 pounds

Enjoy working with children

Good organizational and communication skills

Sense of pride in serving healthy, nutritious meals


How to Apply

Visit https://salem.tedk12.com/hire or call 978-740-1230

Last day of school

With our two snow days and our one wellness day, the last day of school is currently Friday, June 17th (June 15th for our Pre-K and Kindergarten students). For Carlton Innovation School the last day will be June 23rd (June 17th for Kindergarten families) given that June 20th is a holiday for Juneteenth). Please know that this is subject to change depending on the weather over the coming months.

The Virtual Backpack

Welcome to the Virtual Backpack. This is a space where we will place items that in the past may have been a flyer in your student's backpack from friends and partners to SPS.


Head Start flyer

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Download the ParentSquare app today!

A reminder that ParentSquare is the district platform for communication. You will receive communication from the district, your school, and your student's classroom all in one space. You can communicate 1-to-1 with teachers, sign up for parent-teacher conferences, and more.


This is how the schools will communicate with families districtwide going forward. Please be sure you are receiving messages from ParentSquare. If you are having trouble, contact your school's front office. You can visit www.parentsquare.com for more information.

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