Principal's Weekly

Dr. Beth N. Choquette

Bridge Street School

2 Parsons Street

Northampton, Massachusetts 01060

413-587-1460 (phone) 413-587-1474 (fax)

Dr. Beth N. Choquette, Principal

Elizabeth Peterson, Administrative Assistant

Jordan Celino, Secretary

Nora DeJasu, Head Teacher

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Translation of the Principal's Weekly

Would you like this news letter translated? Here are the steps to have it translated:

At the top of the weekly email, there's a link that reads "View it in your browser," click that and it takes you to the post on a webpage.

Scroll to the bottom where there's a black menu bar and pick the option that says "Translate."

Select the language you would like it translated in and it will then translate it on the webpage.

Traducción del semanario del director

Le gustaría traducir esta carta de noticias? Aquí están los pasos para traducirlo:

En la parte superior del correo electrónico semanal, hay un enlace que dice "Verlo en su navegador", haga clic en eso y lo llevará a la publicación en una página web.

Desplázate hacia la parte inferior donde hay una barra de menú negra y elige la opción que dice "Traducir".

Seleccione el idioma en el que desea traducirlo y luego lo traducirá en la página web.

A Message from Principal Choquette

Good afternoon. I hope you all had a nice weekend and are enjoying our first afternoon and evening of more sun. This is always a hard time to change our clocks because we lose the hour of sleep, however, it also is a sign that spring is around the corner!

I did a lot of reflection over the weekend thinking about when we closed our doors a year ago on March 13th, that we thought it was only going to be for two weeks. Then quickly we were told that it was going to be much longer than anyone anticipated. I remember how sad I felt knowing that our students would no longer be able to learn alongside their peers and how sad I felt that I was not going to be able to work alongside my colleagues and our amazing faculty and staff. I remember saying to myself, "I don't know how we are going to do this, but we will find a way." I remember being so focused on everything that was wrong and the negative impact this would have on our kids and I remember personally how sad I was for my own family who had three graduates in 2020. One high school senior, one college senior, and myself graduating with my doctorate. Yet, somehow, we came out stronger than I could have ever imagined. I defended my dissertation over zoom, Jackson had an outdoor high school graduation, and Jacob graduated from Middle Tennessee State University virtually. I remember being so sad to cancel our "graduation trip of a lifetime" to Europe with the boys, and Jackson being so disappointed that his first semester of college would be all done virtually. My family was so sad and angry. Then there was a turning point. We were all sitting at the dinner table talking about our disappointments, when we realized, wow, look at how privileged we are. We talked with our boys about how so many people were out of work, and we were not. We talked about how so many people were struggling to put food on the table and we were not. We talked about how people have lost their friends, family, and loved ones to the virus, but we had not. A conversation that exposed our privilege quickly turned into a discussion about empathy, compassion, justice, and equity and how moving forward, instead of complaining about what we couldn't do and won't be able to do, to start thinking about how we can help those who were struggling.

Over the past year, I've tried so hard to be optimistic and positive, and believe me, there were days where it was so hard to do. My priority had to be about the students and families I served and my faculty and staff. The stress of learning how to teach again took its toll on our faculty and staff. The stress that caregivers felt while trying to manage a new learning mode for their children while trying to work themselves was on my mind every single night when I went to bed. But, each and every day that went by, I was amazed at the resilience, the perseverance, and the will our educators had to do and be their very best for our students. There were bumps along the way for sure, but they came out shining.

In closing, I just want to say thank you. Thank you to our caregivers for trusting us to in doing the work we love to do and most of all, thank you to the most dedicated, hard working group of educators I have had the honor to lead. They are my heroes, your children are my heroes and I am so grateful to have gone through and continue to go through this crazy difficult year with you all.

With love and gratitude....

Reopening April 5th

By now you know that elementary students will go back to fully in-person learning beginning on April 5th. Caregivers will have the choice to have their children be in-person 5 full days a week or to stay fully remote 5 full days a week. I want to be very clear that if a family decides to stay fully remote, their child will be part of the district-wide remote classroom. More specifically, if your child has been part of the hybrid learning model and you decide to stay fully remote, your child will no longer have their current teacher. They will have the district remote classroom teacher for their grade level.

On Friday, Dr. Provost sent out a robocall explaining that there is a survey that we are asking all families to fill out. The survey will ask you to decide between fully in-person or fully remote. Once we have those numbers, we will be able to share more details.

Students in the building will be required to have 3 feet of social distancing, and all protocols such as masks, the daily checklist, hand washing, and not coming to school if your child has any symptoms will still be in place. The exception is when we eat. During breakfast (if inside), snack, and lunch, we will maintain the 6 feet of social distancing that we currently have. We have also ordered tents for outdoor use during lunches, classes, etc. We will still use the same grade level specific entry/exits locations. Please reach out to me with any questions that you may have.

As I stated above, I will have more detailed information once ALL families have filled out the survey, so please do so asap. Below is the link to the district webpage where you'll find Dr. Provost's letter and the English and Spanish links to the surveys. Please make sure you fill out the survey under the Elementary School heading.

Article on 3 feet compared to 6 feet social distancing

The study of 3 feet compared to 6 feet of physical distancing in Massachusetts schools has bee published and is available at

Walking School Bus Information

Attention BSS Families!

The Walking School Bus is ready and waiting to take your students to school!

You can choose from either the Sheldon Field route that leaves the Route 9 commuter lot at 8:25 or the Lumber Yard route that leaves from the courtyard of the Lumber Yard Homes on Pleasant Street at 8:15.

Each route has multiple stops at which your student may join before ending at BSS. Visit the WSB site for more information about each route.

Please note that masks are required for the walk to school.

**With the ramp up to full in person learning, the WSB is in need of drivers in order to run at full capacity through the rest of the year. Please contact Stephanie Pouliot if you or someone you know can volunteer your time to walk students to school. We will gladly accept whatever time you can offer!**

Social Justice Corner

Three Things

Last week, three separate things occurred that I thought I would mention and to give us all something to reflect upon.

First, a random person walking by our kindergarten playground made a negative statement about Black Lives Matter. I'm assuming that this person saw on our BSS sign "Black Lives Matter at BSS." One of our kindergarten students pushed back on the negative comment and stood up for Black Lives Matter.

Second, at recess one day last week, students separated themselves during a soccer game by gender-boys vs. girls. A couple of our students noticed that that was not right and it made them feel uncomfortable knowing that we have students who are non-binary and use they, their, them pronouns.

Third, a student heard another student being spoken to in a derogatory way and stood up for that student by stating that it was not okay to speak to someone that way.

In all three of these situations, our students stepped up to the plate and stood up for what was right. They saw the injustices that were occurring and recognized that what was being said and/or done was not okay.

We work hard as a school to teach our children to have the courage to stand up for what is right. Standing up for Black Lives Matter, understanding that grouping each other by gender excludes people, and standing up for each other when derogatory comments are made teaches others to be kind. As you discuss these things with your children, it is important to also teach them that when we are standing up to others we should do it in a respectful and peaceful manner.

I am so proud of our students. They are the future and they will change the world!

New Family Engagement and English Learner Education (K-12) Pages on Website

Parenting While Black-Free Webinar

Please see the link below to sign up for this free webinar by the Brazelton Touchpoints Center.

REAL (Racial Equity and Learning)

NPS Community Conversation about Racial Microaggressions

REAL (Racial Equity and Learning- is happy to announce the re-launch of our hosted discussions about race. Our first zoom conversation will be on Sunday, March 14th from 5:00-6:30pm and will focus on racial microaggressions. Caregivers, educators, students in grades 6 and up, and anyone else connected with the Northampton Public Schools are warmly invited.

Please note that participation requires no advance reading/ preparation.

If you are interested, please email Jenny at for the zoom link. You can also email Jenny with any questions or concerns you might have.

Important Information from Nurse Jessica

Forbes Library

Forbes Library now offers pick up and delivery services of library materials to residents of Northampton, Leeds and Florence. Residents of any age with an underlying health condition or illness and anyone aged 65+ regardless of health status are eligible for this free service. Contactless deliveries are made within one week of request.

Library cards are now available to children starting at birth! Apply online using these links: Cards for children under 12 or Cards for children 12 and over.

Knitting workshop for ages 9 and up, March 22 - May 3: Knit Together: A Zoom Knitting Workshop

Workshop for educators on Tuesday, March 16, 7-9pm: Wee the People Presents: Decolonize This Space: Building Racial Literacy and Anti-racist Practice for Educators

Thank you, again!


Maria Sperduti, M.Ed.

Outreach Delivery Service Coordinator

Forbes Library

20 West Street

Northampton, MA 01060

Phone: 413-587-1019

Fax: 413-587-1015

Fifth Grade

I'm happy to announce that Nature's Classroom will be coming to BSS to offer their "NOW" program or Nature on Wheels program. They are scheduled to join us on 4/26 for Ms. Daniels class and on 4/30 for Mr. Dion's class. Remote students may join us on those days if they would like to participate. I will send more information out when we get closer to the dates. The program will be outside.

Fifth Grade Caregiver Meeting: Monday, March 29th 6-7 p.m. I will send the zoom link out as we get closer to the date.

It is that time of year again for the JFK transition. Please see the attached information from JFK regarding this.

REAL Resource Directory

Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment Program Applications (for resident students) will be available Feb 1 from our website under the ABOUT link. This program allows resident students the ability to attend a school outside of the assigned zone. Seats are limited and not all grades or schools will availability. Seats are filled through a lottery process. If applying for an incoming kindergarten child, please submit the application along with your registration paperwork (or if your child is already registered and attending our preschool program, please send the application in before the deadline). More information is on our website. Questions: (413) 587-1328 or

Emergency Rental Assistance for Northampton Families

Please see the attached for information.