2022-23 Back to School Information
Welcome to PSB! We're excited to meet you on September 6!
The communication below provides important information from the Public Schools of Brookline.
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Greetings PSB Families,
Welcome to the 2022-23 school year! Summer seems to have flown by so quickly, and it’s hard to believe that we’ll be back inside our schools and classrooms in three weeks’ time. I hope that each of you took some time to rest and rejuvenate over the break. There will be plenty of opportunities in the coming months for all of us to grow and learn together, and I cannot wait to work with you in making this school year a fantastic experience!
To our newest students and families - let me be the first to welcome you to PSB! In the coming months, you will meet and work with a dynamic group of faculty, staff, students, families, and community members within the vibrant community that encompasses Brookline. All of us are here to build relationships, eliminate barriers, and create a culture of care, and we are excited that you will join us in our pursuit of providing a high-quality education for our students.
My team and I have been busy preparing over the past few weeks for your student(s) return. As we continue to build on some exciting developments for our district, I want to outline a few important reminders:
Student and Medical Verification Form
At the end of every summer, PSB asks families to verify their contact and consent information for their enrolled PK-12 student(s). Accurate contact information helps us communicate with you about school information, progress reports, and when necessary, in emergency situations. We also want to ensure that we are taking good care of your student(s) personal information and only sharing it in ways that you approve.
The Student and Medical Verification Form allows parents and caregivers to do a variety of “Back to School" tasks ahead of the first day of the 2022-23 school year This form is required at the beginning of every academic year or when a student is new to a school. Providing this updated information allows your student(s) educators and nurses to safely provide care for your students. Your prompt attention to this form is appreciated as you review the following information:
Student Information, including Homeroom and Student ID
Physical Address, including Affidavit of Residency
Contact Information, including Emergency Contacts
Parent/Caregiver(s) Permissions and Consents
Student and Parent/Caregiver(s) Agreements
Health Information, including COVID-19 attestation. Please note that this section of the form replaces the “Health and Medical Card” we have sent to families in previous years via the back-to-school packet. You must complete this section to ensure that your student(s) school nurses have accurate and up-to-date health information of your student(s) prior to their first day of school.
Please follow the steps below in order to access the form:
Log into the Aspen Parent Portal.
Click on the “Initiate” button under the Student and Medical Verification Form widget to begin the process.
A new window will appear listing all of your students. Select the button next to the student for whom you would like to verify data. Click OK. If you have multiple children in the PSB and not all of them appear in this list, please let us know right away at email@example.com. We will amend your account accordingly. If you do not want to verify the information for the student whose name is showing, click on the magnifying glass again and select a different student in the list that appears
You have now begun the Student and Health Verification Process. Please review each section carefully and verify and/or update the information for the student you’ve selected. You can always click on Cancel or Save & Close as you are completing the form.
Your credentials to the Parent Portal involve your login ID (the email address associated with your PSB account and which you are receiving this email from) and the password associated with that account. If you need to reset your password, use the "I Forgot my Password" link on the login page. Follow the directions to reset your password. Please note that your email and the security question are both case-sensitive. If you still can't access the site, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Families who do not have a working digital device at home should contact their school admin team for help in completing this form.
All existing information will pre-populate. You only need to update new items or pieces that need to be changed. Please note that you must sign, initial, and click “finish” for PSB to confirm you have completed the process.
For our students in Kindergarten through 5th grade, you can access information regarding your homeroom teachers through the “Student” tab in the Student and Medical Verification Form. Students in 6th through 12th grade may also access their homeroom placements, and will be able to access the rest of their schedules directly from their school leaders. Finally, this information is also accessible in the "Families" tab in the Aspen Parent Portal itself.
Please refer to this guide if you have any questions or issues about accessing your student(s) information.
Verifying Emergency Contact Information and Protecting Student Privacy
We want to make sure we have accurate contact information for your family so that we can share school information, progress reports, and when necessary, emergency notifications in a timely manner. We also want to ensure that we are protecting your and your child’s personal information and only sharing it in ways that you have approved. To do so, we need your current contact and consent information. The permissions and consents we have on file for your student(s) will be reviewed in the Student and Medical Verification Form that is accessible through the Parent Portal (see above).
Change of Address
If you recently moved, or the address listed for your student in the Parent Portal is not correct, you must notify us of the change and provide documentation of your new Brookline address. It is very important that your address is correct in our records so that important letters and notices reach you without delay.
To complete a change of address with PSB, complete the following steps:
Open the Student and Medical Verification Form on the Aspen Parent Portal.
Submit supporting documentation of your new address. You may submit these directly through the Student and Medical Verification Form or by emailing the documents directly to email@example.com.
To attend the Public Schools of Brookline (PSB), a student must reside in the Town of Brookline. A student’s primary residence is the place where they dwell permanently, not temporarily, and is the place that is the center of their daily domestic, social, and civic life.
On the “Student” section, you will complete an affidavit of residency and attest that you and your student(s) meet Public Schools of Brookline residency requirements. Please note that the Office of Registration and Enrollment may request you to provide current proofs of residency. Please submit these documents within two weeks of receiving such a request from our office.
Health and Medical Information
Please carefully complete and review all of your student(s) health information in the “Health” section of the form. If you have updated health documentation of your student(s) (e.g. immunization records) please submit them with the form as well.
Please note that this section of the form replaces the “Health and Medical Card” we have sent to families in previous years via the back-to-school packet. You must complete this section to ensure that your student(s) school nurses have accurate and up-to-date health information of your student(s) prior to their first day of school.
Financial Assistance Application
In order to maintain their eligibility for the next school year, families MUST submit a new application, along with current supporting documents. Financial Assistance applications can be found here. The form can be filled out on your computer and, with the supporting documents, emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. PSB accepts photos and scans of all the documents. If you need assistance, please contact Qianna Price at 617-730-2425 or email@example.com.
Free and Reduced Price Meals Application
In July 2022, the Massachusetts state government passed legislation to provide funding to support universal free school meals. This means that all PSB meals will be free for all students for the 2022-23 school year. Regardless of the continuation of universal free meals in MA, income eligibility must be reestablished for all students effective July 1, 2022. Free/reduced eligibility status will be used by the state and Federal government to reimburse the district for meals served to families. If you feel you qualify for free and reduced meals please submit an application today so we can determine your status. Learn more here.
In an effort to better serve families in need of recreation who may not have the financial resources, Brookline Recreation and Brookline Public Schools have a coordinated effort to support our youth, reduce barriers, ease the burden of applying, and encourage the participation of young Town of Brookline residents in the available Recreation programs.
The Town of Brookline committed Federal ARPA funds to create free recreation opportunities, subject to conditions such as limited space, different programs each season, among other examples. Youth qualify for the available seats in programs that Recreation has selected each season, if they live in Brookline Public Housing or if they are eligible for free and reduced-price meals.
If you are interested in this new program, please complete the consent form here and return it to the Brookline Recreation Office (133 Eliot Street, Brookline, MA, 02467).
For more information, please contact Leigh Jackson at 617-730-2069 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
COVID-19 Update and Health Information
The transmission of COVID-19 continues to impact the operations and safety of PSB. It is our collective responsibility to keep our students, families, and each other safe. If you, your student(s), or any members of your family experience any COVID-19 symptoms, please stay home and get tested as soon as possible.
PSB remains a mask-friendly environment to begin the 2022-23 school year and will continue to encourage a school culture supportive and respectful of anyone choosing to mask. In addition, PSB will continue to consult with the Brookline Department of Public Health and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to monitor cases and positivity rates; we will adjust our mitigation strategies accordingly to enforce and maintain a safe environment for our community.
The following COVID-19 policies from the 2021-22 school year remain unchanged and in effect:
- Testing and Reporting: While we will not be reporting positive cases and close contacts every week this year, testing will still be available at school for symptomatic individuals. Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate for five (5) days at home, and can only return to school with an improvement in symptoms. Individuals who test positive are required to wear a mask around others for five (5) days when they return. We will continue to provide test kits and masks for students and staff to use.
- Vaccination: Vaccines continue to be the best way to protect individuals against the effects of COVID-19. DESE and DPH strongly recommend that all faculty, staff, and students, including children ages 6 months – 5 years, receive the COVID-19 vaccine primary series and all boosters as they become eligible for them. PSB will continue to host COVID-19 vaccine clinics this year. Please use the link below to sign up and check on the next available appointments: https://www.appointmentquest.com/scheduler/2180061935?schedule=brooklineschool
First Day of School
The first day of school will be on Tuesday, September 6 for students in grades 1-12. Students should arrive at school between 7:45 a.m. and 7:55 a.m. There will be many signs and friendly staff members helping every student get to where they need to go.
For students in Kindergarten, the first day is either Tuesday, September 6, or Wednesday, September 7 (not on both days) and will be dismissed at 12:00 p.m. noon. Your first-day assignment was sent with your kindergarten class information. All Kindergarten students will come to school on Thursday, September 8.
For students in BEEP, family meetings will be held with teachers on Tuesday, September 6, and Wednesday, September 7. This is a special meeting time for you and your student(s) acquainted with the teacher and the classroom setting, as well as to receive information about the start of school. It is also an opportunity for you and the teacher to begin planning for your student’s educational program. BEEP families will receive information from their classroom teacher regarding the date and time of your meeting. All BEEP students will then begin their first day of school on Thursday, September 8.
Finally, we are aware that the first day of school this year coincides with the state’s primary election. Seven Brookline school buildings serve as polling locations, representing ten of the seventeen precincts in town. As is the practice on election day, poll workers will actively guide voters to the polling locations while schools remain in session. The goal is to get our voters safely in and out of our schools with minimal disruption to our school operations. For this reason, we highly encourage you to participate via mail-in voting or early voting at Brookline Town Hall. Click here for more election information from the Town Clerk’s Office.
Pick-Up and Drop-Off Procedures
Consistent with the previous school year, PreK-8 students will continue to line up in their designated line spots at the start and end of school, and enter/exit the building through a designated door attended by school staff. Parents and caregivers are expected to remain outside during these transition times. School leaders will send out more information to you over the next few days with details specific to your student(s) school site.
Be sure to print out a copy of the district calendar and mark off the important dates of the school year!
It is with great pleasure that the PSB Office of Educational Equity launch their first Newsletter - Excellence in Equity -for students, educators, caretakers and all stakeholders of the Public Schools of Brookline. You can expect the newsletter to be delivered to your inbox once each month — EnE is being curated with you in mind. Topics will touch on Equity in Action around the district, Spotlights, better practices for Living and Learning and Info To Know about events, professional development opportunities and diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging resources.
We also want to share inspiring stories of our students. Let us know what you would like to see!
We look forward to seeing everyone back in our schools and classrooms in a few short weeks!
Linus J. Guillory Jr., PhD