Salem Public Schools' Weekly Update
A Message from the Superintendent
October 13, 2023
Salem Public Schools community,
It has been difficult to watch what has transpired in the Middle East over the last week. Regardless of individual views and politics, our hearts must go out to the Israeli and Palestinian victims and their families. We also condemn the attacks perpetrated by the terrorist organization, Hamas, which resulted in the extensive loss of human life. We know that the effects of the conflict have a profound impact on the social and emotional well-being of our children as horrific images are projected on TV and social media. Depending on their connection to the region and their own experiences with trauma and violence, children may feel scared, triggered and re-traumatized. We cannot underestimate the effect that this highly publicized war will have on our youth, families and staff.
As an educational community, we will continue to focus on teaching our students the importance of peace and respectful dialogue to resolve differences. Our core values of belonging and equity will drive conversations that are focused on ensuring that all students feel cared for and included across our classrooms and schools. To help guide these discussions, we will utilize some of the following resources that might also be helpful when speaking with your child about these current events at home.
National Association of School Psychologists Online Resources: Please find the page Supporting Youth Affected by the Violence in Israel and Gaza: Tips for Families and Educators .
Common Sense Media: Guidance on how to speak with children about disturbing and traumatic world events.
San Diego County Office of Education: This site has a wealth of information for educators and families that can be adapted for individual context.
October is National Bullying Prevention Month. During this month, our school community will focus even more than usual on respect, the value of kindness and encouragement, and cultivating communities in which all members feel safe and welcome. We are educating students on:
What bullying is and what it is not, see more information here
What to do if bullying is seen or heard
Strategies and resources in bullying situations
We also offer plenty of resources in bullying prevention including our district-wide plan and policy, as well as steps to report it. Throughout the month, we urge students, staff and schools to promote anti-bullying by facilitating activities and events that celebrate and model civility, compassion and empathy for others.
Enjoy the weekend,
And the Rockstar Award Winner is.....
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 rockstar award goes to Saltonstall's 7th/8th grade math teacher, Ms. Sam Claveau. Through small group instruction and effective use of data, she works tirelessly to ensure that her students are getting what they need to meet grade level expectations. Ms. Claveau's room is a busy place where students are constantly talking and working together to learn new concepts. She is definitely making an impact on the learning experience of so many students!
REMINDER: Early Release Day Wednesday, Oct. 18
These are the folks who make our schools run. National School Lunch Week, founded by President John F. Kennedy in 1962, promotes the importance of school lunches for students and the essential staff behind them. Offer our Salem Public Schools Food Service workers a thank you for a job consistently well done. (Photos: Dana Quigley at DJQ Media).
Good attendance habits pay off and now is the time to build them! Attending more school days increases a student's academic success, improves their chances to earn a high school diploma and a college degree, and cultivates good work habits, so they can earn higher pay in their careers. Additionally, regular attendance fosters a classroom community between teachers and children. 80% of success is showing up!
As a district, we are looking to engage the community in our mission to promote positive school attendance. You may receive a phone call from an SPS staff member on October 17, 2023 between 5:30-7:30pm. We hope to reach as many families as possible and look forward to your input on identifying barriers to school attendance.
Parent Information Center CLOSED 10/30 & 10/31
The Parent Information Center will be closed on Monday and Tuesday, October 30th and 31st for staff professional development training. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Download the ParentSquare app
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 the primary communication platform for all Salem Public Schools. All messages and alerts come through ParentSquare and the app makes 1-to-1 communication with your student's teachers and signing up for guardian/student conferences a breeze. If you are not receiving messages from ParentSquare or if you are having trouble, contact your school's front office. You can visit www.parentsquare.com for more information.