NPS District News
February 10, 2021
Message from the Superintendent
This first newsletter falls during Black History Month and while the history of Black Americans is embedded in our curriculum and practice throughout the year, this designation gives us unique opportunity to highlight the contributions of Black Americans. Our new Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Kathy Lopes, has provided our educators with resources and ideas to celebrate Black History Month and, as Kathy says "to honor stories of celebration and not solely victimization, and to inspire your students of their possibilities." "
It also gives our district opportunity to highlight the anti-racist work we are doing at all levels. For example, in our English departments at the high school level, our faculty have been working to infuse anti-racist themes into the curriculum. This means inclusion of more diverse texts and perspectives within the literature selected. It also means creation of new electives, such as the new English course at North “Action Through Literature.” In this course, students explore their role as global citizens and what it means to make meaningful and effective change. Building anti-racist skills is happening throughout our curriculum and we will share more examples with you in the coming months.
In the meantime, I look forward to providing you with district information via this new newsletter format. Please share any feedback on content or format at firstname.lastname@example.org
COVID-19 Health Updates
In the meantime, please be sure to create Project Beacon account if you would like your student tested if they become symptomatic while at school (hybrid students only.) It is important that you create a profile for YOUR STUDENT and not yourself on the Project Beacon site. You can find details instructions at this link.
Finally, a reminder to abide by the Massachusetts Travel Order if you plan to travel during February break. Please visit this link for a message from NPS School Health.
Planning for the 2021-22 School Year
The medical advisory group will meet during February break and the planning team will meet immediately after the break. The focus of both groups is expanding in-person learning, especially for our youngest students, in the 4th quarter of this year and preparing for full-time in person learning in the fall. Information on the progress of these two groups will be shared regularly.
The Work and Challenges of Being Anti-Racist: A Virtual Event with Dr. Edward Fergus and NPS Leaders
Wednesday, Feb. 24th, 7pm
This is an online event.
During these historic times, the commitment to anti-racism is more important than ever. This work is challenging and bias-based beliefs may cause even the most well-intentioned individuals to feel discomfort when equity is put into practice.
Join the Newton Public Schools in a discussion led by Dr. Edward Fergus, author of Solving Disproportionality and Achieving Equity: A Leader's Guide to Using Data to Change Hearts and Minds to discuss these challenges and how to overcome barriers in implementing change in the practice of equity. Joined by a panel of NPS leaders, we will share some of the opportunities and obstacles that face us as we strive to be a more equitable and just district for all. Advance registration is required. Register here.