October 12, 2020


Dear Dawson Community,

Well, this weather is for the ducks, but at least the weekend was great! I hope everyone had a fantastic few days outside and with family. I unplugged and went to the deep woods of Vermont to recharge and rest.

This week, our biggest change is that there is no school on Monday; therefore, Wednesday will be a full day of school.

-PLEASE NOTE: Due to this change, on Wednesday (10/14) asynchronous afternoon the special schedules will follow a 'Monday afternoon' Specials Schedule. For example, if you have PE on Monday afternoon, this week you will have asynchronous PE on Wednesday afternoon.

I hope everyone has an awesome week.


Melissa Wallace, Principal

Important Dates:

  • October 23 - You must submit your decision on Hybrid or Remote Learning, and whether you are taking the bus or driving to school. Please go to your child's PowerSchool; on the left-hand side of the menu, click on forms to access the survey.
  • November 3 - No School
  • November 4 - FULL DAY OF SCHOOL
  • November 11 - No School
  • November 12 - Parent - Question and Answer vis Zoom at 7:00 pm ( link will be coming)
  • November 17 - Quarter One Marks Close
  • November 23 - Reports Available on Powerschool
  • November 25 - 27 - No School


Hello Dawson Families!

First I just want to thank parents for supporting all your young artists at home this year! I know it hasn't been easy figuring out how to take pictures of artwork and correctly upload them into the various platforms, so I appreciate your help and patience.

This week I will be starting a mask-making project with the whole school! Students will have the option of making masks with materials they can find around the house (paper, cardboard, fabric, etc) OR on a paper template that will be shared through Google Classroom and Seesaw. It can be printed at home or picked up from Dawson in a small white bin at the front of the building. Students can draw on these templates and upload the image to Artsonia, where families can purchase custom fabric masks with your child's artwork. This is intended for fun, and as a fundraiser for the art program here at Dawson, which as you can imagine will look a little different as we return to school this year! The art program receives 20% of the proceeds from Artsonia sales. You are absolutely not required or expected to buy anything, and doing so will not impact students' grades. Please contact me directly with any questions about this, or anything art-related!

Colorfully yours,

Casey Hickey

Artist Teacher



Hello Dawson Families,

Face masks have become the new normal in our society. As we reopen schools, facemasks are one of the main aspects for limiting the spread of COVID-19. From the CDC, DOH, and medical directors, we know that face coverings are key, but having these items become part of our new pandemic culture, especially for our younger learners, is not an easy task. Please be sure that your child's mask is either cloth or disposable and fully covers their nose and mouth while fitting securely over their face. Gaiters and valve masks are not safe for school use. Please send your child with a spare mask in their backpack. If needed, we will have spare masks available for students.

I am encouraging students, and families to use time at home to prepare for full-time mask-wearing. As much as you can, give kids time to practice wearing their masks before they might need to wear one outside of your home. Teach them how to put them on and take them off. Create “mask times” during the day. Examples can be while students are playing board games, reading a book, utilizing an electronic device, etc.

Modeling is one of the most effective ways to teach children how to wear masks. While wearing masks, consider looking in the mirror and having conversations with your children. But perhaps the two most important tools to utilize are:

1. Use positive reinforcement when they wear a mask. Use praise or small rewards.

2. Be patient. Young children are looking for ways to be independent and may want to leave their mask on.

Here are a few other ideas that you may want to explore.

Encourage kids to decorate their mask. This might help them feel a sense of ownership and control over the situation. A personal touch can help make it more of a normal part of their routine, and make it more likely they'll want to wear their mask. Depending on the type of mask, kids can draw on it with markers or put stickers on it. Draw masks onto pictures of their favorite characters: superheroes, cartoon characters, athletes, toys, etc.

Make them together. If you make masks or cloth face coverings at home, let older kids help you. There are no-sew masks that are easy to make, often with materials you probably already have (T- shirts, bandannas, etc.). If you sew masks, maybe kids can select the fabric or patterns for the masks they'll wear.

Help make it fun. With younger kids, introduce a sense of play. Kids can pretend to be a doctor or nurse while wearing their masks. They might want to use a doctor kit and "take care" of a stuffed animal or doll.

Have a few masks handy while kids play. This lets them use their imagination about how to use them during playtime. It also helps make masks a more normal part of their everyday world. You can ask your child to put a mask on a stuffed animal, and then ask follow-up questions about why the stuffed animal is wearing the mask. Depending on your child's response, you can clear up any confusion and offer reassurance.


Mrs. Salvadore


Return to School Reminders from Health Office

  • All Medication orders must be renewed each school year. New Medication orders and medication/s should be brought in by appointment to the school nurse by an adult. Students are not allowed to transport medications to school. (the two exceptions are: Epipens or rescue inhalers that a student carries in their backpack)The school nurse must be notified of any self- carry medications.

Medication order forms can be downloaded off the school website using the

Health tab on the website. Allergy action plans can also be downloaded.

  • ALL medications administered at school must have a physician order and parent permission (signature on form). This includes prescription and over-the-counter medications. Please see the medication policy on the website.

  • All students must be fully immunized by the first day of school. The only exceptions are written documentation from a doctor for medical exemptions or a written document by parent/guardian stating due to religious beliefs your child has not been vaccinated. The exemption forms must be renewed at the beginning of each school year. Those not fully vaccinated may be excluded from school if an immunization preventable disease occurs at school. Please remember that the influenza vaccine has been mandated by MDPH. You must send in one of the two exemptions if your child will not be receiving the influenza vaccine by December 31, 2020.

  • All new students including kindergarten students are required to have an updated physical and immunization record on file.

  • Students entering the 4th grade need to have an updated physical and immunization record on file in the health office. Please send in as soon as they get their physical.

  • Students in 5th grade who did not send in an updated physical and immunization in 4th grade will need to send in ASAP.

  • Please contact the health office - Michele Salvadore for any questions or concerns about any health-related issues.


Dear Parents,

To help families prepare for the eventual return to in-person learning, it is important that the following information pertaining to student illness is reviewed before students start school. As the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the medical community learn more about COVID-19, it is possible that this guidance will change. The information below is based on the most recent, reliable medical guidance.

Parents whose child has one or more of the following signs/symptoms of illness, that are also associated with COVID-19, should keep their child home from school. It is also recommended that parents contact their primary care physician for further evaluation:

  • Fever of 100.0° F or higher accompanied by chills

  • Persistent cough that is not due to another known cause such as chronic cough

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath

  • New loss of taste or smell

  • Sore throat

  • Headache in combination with other symptoms listed here

  • Muscle aches or body aches

  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea

  • Fatigue in combination with other symptoms listed here

  • Nasal congestion or runny nose that is not due to other known causes such as allergies and is in combination with other symptoms listed here
    Click here for the CDC’s COVID-19 Information Page

The following information, related to when child(ren) may return to school, is based on the WRSD School Reopening Plan and Department of Health guidance:

  1. If a student is referred for further medical evaluation for symptoms of illness, they may only return to school with a note from their doctor or following a 10-day quarantine IF symptoms have improved AND they are fever free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication.

  2. Close contact is defined by the CDC as someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic clients, 2 days prior to positive specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.
    If a student is considered to be a close contact, they may only return to school following a 14-day quarantine period, even if a negative COVID-19 test result is received.
    It is recommended that anyone who is considered close contact gets tested for COVID-19 four to five days following exposure.

  3. If a student has tested positive for COVID-19, they may return to school 10 days following documentation of the start of symptoms if they are fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication AND if their symptoms have improved.

  4. Important: All documentation must be faxed or emailed to the health office prior to returning to school.

As the District refines and finalizes school reopening plans, it is understood that there may be situations unique for families that require further discussion. Your child’s school nurse is available to discuss these situations, as well as to provide further explanation for the protocols outlined in this message. Please be aware that the WRSD school nurses have been integral in shaping the District’s protocols and procedures related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and they are a valuable resource for parents and guardians.

I appreciate the questions and concerns that have arisen in our outreach to the families of students. Our ability to work together and collaborate during this difficult period of time is integral to our success.


Mrs. Wallace