JW Killam Principal's Corner
Ms. Leveque's Weekly Newsletter
From the Desk of Ms. Leveque
I am pleased to share the 2020-2021 Killam School Improvement Plan. To access the plan, click here. Each year, schools are required to create overarching student learning and professional learning goals that support the forward movement of our community's educational experience. The goals support the District Improvement Plan and better address our individual school needs. We will be focusing on the hybrid learning experience and our equity, diversity, and inclusivity work. I want to thank the Killam staff and the Killam School Council for their guidance on this plan. I will send periodic updates on our School Improvement Plan throughout the year.
Killam Upcoming Dates
Week of December 6th: Cohort B
Thursday, December 10th: Hanukkah begins at sundown
Friday, December 18th: Term 1 Report Cards emailed home
Hybrid In-person Weeks Staggered Dismissal:
-Grades One and Two: 2:35pm
-Grades Three and Four: 2:40pm
-Kindergarten and Grade Five: 2:45pm
-All students taking the bus or attending Extended Day will be monitored by Killam staff until picked up.
-Remote learning weeks end at 2:45, Grades K-5
Rolling Car Drop-off
This year, we are not having bad weather flag days, meaning regardless of weather, students are entering from their external classroom doors. Again, we are not using the front entrance, cafeteria, or gym for bad weather days. The only exception to this is if it's after 8:25 in which we will have students enter the front door at socially distanced timings (please note that 8:25 is the tardy bell; corrected from previous communication). As overall reminders:
-drive like your own children go to school here! Safety is key!
-drive slowly, being mindful of the crosswalks in the driveway. We have a LOT of children and families using our driveway crosswalks so eyes need to be on the surroundings at all times.
-pull all the way forward in the driveway. This helps us get our students unloaded quickly and safely.
-have your child exit the car closest to the sidewalk and front face of the building. This helps us keep students out of the path of cars.
-only take a right hand turn out of the driveway. This helps us avoid a bottleneck traffic jam.
-drop-off prior to 8:10 AM.
-stop directly in front of the school. Pull forward to the end of the driveway.
-get out of your car. If your child needs extra help to unload or to say goodbye, park and walk your child to their external classroom door.
-pass any buses or vans. It's against the law to pass a school bus/van that is unloading.
-pass cars in front of you once you drop-off. Stay in a single line.
-park in the staff parking lot.
-use the rolling car line to drop off materials to your child or class. Please park and bring the materials to the door.
Cold Weather Gear
Gift Cards for Holiday Gifts
Gift Card Fundraising - $ for Killam while Shopping
Please consider supporting our school by purchasing gift cards through the Shop With Scrip Program. The retailers sell the gift cards at a discount, you pay face value and Killam receives the difference as revenue. Physical gift cards and ecards are available along with reloading options. This is a great way to support Killam with your everyday and holiday shopping. Physical cards are ordered in bulk and shipped in bulk to minimize shipping fees and maximize rebates. A full list of retailers and the rebate percentage can be found on the website, https://shop.shopwithscrip.com/Login. You can skip the login and click on SHOP to just browse. Killam’s enrollment code is D55318B4173L8 (more details in AtoZ Connect PTO email).
December order deadline for physical cards is Monday, December 7th
Please contact Kate DePalma at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Killam PTO thanks you for your support!
Student Services Office Hours
With the holidays upon us, we wanted to take a quick moment to thank all the families for their support and partnership during this most unusual school year. We hope that you all have a chance to relax, spend time with family and reenergize over the coming weeks!
As December is approaching, we wanted to share our office hours for the month of December. Jen Stys, Director of Student Services, and Allison Wright, Assistant Director of Student Services, are available for office hours on the following dates. Please sign up for an appointment through the link below.
December Office Hours:
- Tuesday, December 8 @ 9-10 am
- Wednesday, December 16 @ 2-3 pm
- Monday, December 21 @ 12-1 pm
Link to the DOODLE Poll to sign up for office hours:
We are all thankful to be working in such a wonderful community.
Jen Stys and Allison Wright
Attention 2021-2022 Incoming Kindergarten Families
Attention Reading Families: If you have a child born between September 1, 2015 and August 31, 2016, we are looking for you. The registration process for the 2021-22 school year will begin soon. Please contact Linda Engelson by phone (781 944-5800) or email (email@example.com) if you have any questions or would like to be sure your child is on our preliminary list. If emailing, please provide your child’s name, date of birth and address.
Registration packet available on the district website. Registration is due December 4th.
The Incoming Kindergarten Parent Information session took place on November 4th and is available for viewing through this link (Passcode: 35^CYsCs).
A Message from the Health Office
Oh, the Weather Outside is Frightful:
Students are spending more time outside this year; P.E. class and recess, as well as some mask breaks and snack times happen outdoors. Winter weather will be here soon. Though light clothing is comfortable inside, it is important students come to school dressed for being outdoors every day. Please help by having your student dress in layers on cold days and/or pack some extra outdoor gear. Mittens and hats are especially important.
Flu Vaccine Reminder:
Thank you to everyone who has sent me their student’s flu vaccine information! December 31st is the last day to comply with the 2020 flu vaccination requirement. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health made influenza vaccine a requirement for school attendance for the 2020 – 2021 school year; whether a student is attending in person or remote.
In past years, influenza vaccine was recommended annually for all people over 6 months of age. There are important reasons that led to the decision to make influenza a required vaccine:
- During the Covid-19 pandemic, influenza vaccine will play an important role in reducing the overall risk of respiratory illness for the general population.
- The vaccine may reduce the severity of the illness for anyone who contracts flu after receiving the vaccine.
- By potentially reducing significant respiratory illnesses, this may reduce the overall impact on the healthcare system.
For the current season, the influenza vaccine is being offered as both an injectable and a nasally administered vaccine. If your child has not been vaccinated, please contact your child’s physician at your earliest convenience to make an appointment for your student to receive their vaccine. Once your child has been vaccinated, please send me the documentation. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me at 781-942-9177. Thank you!
Thank you again and enjoy the weekend!
A Note from Food Services
Through the extension of the Seamless Summer Meal program, started in response to COVID-19, we are able to offer all Reading Public School Children FREE meals for the entire 2020-2021 school year.
What this means for your family–
- Your school-age children will receive a healthy breakfast (at Coolidge, Parker and RMHS only,) and lunch every school day, at no cost, in a safe and welcoming environment. This applies to students who are attending classes in school.
- Our other option for FREE meals for children, ages 0-21, is meal distribution. This includes remote learners, learnings participating in a hybrid learning mode, or any other children in your home. These meals will provide breakfast and lunch for each day, including weekends. Our meal distribution is provided under the bridge at Reading Memorial High School every Wednesday from 2:30 – 3:30 pm or Friday from 11:00 am – 12:00 noon.
This program allows Reading School District to provide the most nourishing and appetizing meals possible for your children. When your children eat school meals, it helps the school system by providing federal funds to the district. The more meals we serve, the more funding we receive, allowing us to focus on providing wonderful, nutritious meals for your family. If your children have never participated in school meals, consider trying the program this year!
The School Nutrition Office will be monitoring participation.
If you have any questions please contact Danielle Collins, School Nutrition Director, at Danielle.Collins@Reading.k12.ma.us or 781-670-2822
SHOP WITH SCRIP
The retailers sell the gift cards at a discount, you pay face value and Killam receives the difference as revenue. Physical gift cards and ecards are available along with reloading options. This is a great way to support Killam with your everyday and holiday shopping. Physical cards are ordered in bulk and shipped in bulk to minimize shipping fees and maximize rebates. See the writeup earlier in this newsletter for information.
TOYS FOR TOTS
We will have a marked bin outside of the main entrance of school from Monday November 30th thru Friday December 11th. We ask that you consider donating a new, unwrapped toy for a child this holiday. Please reach out to Nicole Crosby with any questions Crosby_777@hotmail.com.
Mandarin on a Friday? Yes please! Join us Friday December 11th for our December Dine-out at the Mandarin restaurant in Reading. Mention Killam when ordering and 20% of the proceeds will go back to the PTO. This is good for lunch or dinner!
5th GRADE CLOTHING DRIVE
We are still collecting clothes for our 5th grade fundraiser! Drop off your bags by December 5th by the main entrance of Killam.
GEAR AND BOOK FAIR PICKUP
If you chose to send books home in your child’s folder from the book fair they should be coming home soon! We are planning to do a drive thru pick up at Killam for both gear and books when the gear is ready. If you would like to get your books earlier, please e-mail JWKPresidents@gmail.com to arrange a pickup.
We know that many families are under greater financial strain right now, and we are reducing our dues estimates: this year, we ask families to consider paying $30-50 per child, or $75-$100 per family. As is the case every year, our highest priority is participation, so please consider paying ANY amount, no matter how small, to help support the work we do.
Please join the SEPAC (Special Education Parent Advisory Council) at our next business meeting on Tuesday, December 8, 2020 at 7:00 PM! New business to be discussed includes an update from the Director of Student Services, Dr. Jennifer Stys, regarding the special education program descriptions; a report from the SEPAC reading/literacy subcommittee; and a request for a SEPAC budget liaison volunteer regarding the Reading Public Schools FY 2021 Budget.
This meeting will be held virtually, via Microsoft Teams.
Join us for our next
VIRTUAL SEPAC MEETING
on Tuesday, December 8th at 7 PM.
Meeting link: Click here to join the meeting
All are welcome and ENCOURAGED to attend!
Connect with SEPAC by clicking these links:
- Join SEPAC's mailing list by emailing SEPACREADING@gmail.com
- Follow SEPAC on Facebook (please adjust settings so that you are sure to see our posts)
- Visit SEPAC’s website
The mission of the Reading Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC) is to work for the understanding of, respect for, and support of, all children with special needs in the community.
Resources to Setup Your Child for Remote Learning
All information is listed under the Distance Learning Resources tab on the Killam Homepage.
-How to Sign-in to Google Classroom
-Google – Teach from Anywhere: Google has established a website to help families and teachers (individual links) use Google and troubleshoot common problems, but all provide helpful hints. This is something teachers may want to share with families at some point. Click HERE to check it out!
-How to Login to Zoom
Social, Emotional, and Behavioral Support Resources:
In an effort to streamline locations that you can access for support, we've included all the information in one centralized location. On the Behavioral Health page of the Reading Public School's District website, you will now find all Covid-19 related resources, broken down by categories (upper right hand corner of the page). We are fortunate to have access to an incredible array of resources and we hope this helps you navigate this unprecedented time. Each page is set up in the same format, and hyperlinks are included to help get you quickly to the information you need.
Building (Hybrid) Safety Procedures, October 2020 (Passcode: 2*7M=v9S)