Update for March 26, 2021

Salem High School

Happy Friday!

Here is what is in this week's newsletter.

  • Student Shout-Outs
  • Senior Winter Athletes
  • New Department Update: Internships!
  • Progress Reports and Teacher Conferences March 30
  • Amnesty Days
  • No School April 2
  • Spring 2021 MCAS
  • SHS News
  • LEAP Center for Teens
  • Appointments with Dr. Meier
  • Student COVID-19 Testing
  • SHS Community Office Hours
  • SHS Department Updates
  • Upcoming Events
  • Weekly Reminders and Resources

Student Shout-Outs

Senior Winter Athletes

Congratulations to all of our senior winter athletes!

New Department Update: Internships!

Starting this week, we'll have a regularly update JUST for internships. We're excited to showcase the community- and work-based learning Salem High students are experiencing! Make sure to check it out below!

Progress Reports and Teacher Conferences

Progress Reports were posted to Aspen on March 25. If you would prefer to receive a paper copy, and you haven't already requested this, please contact Ms. Pimentel in the main office (email here, phone number is 978-740-1123). Virtual Parent/Teacher Conferences will be held on Tuesday, March 30th from 2:05-3 pm in 10-minute time slots. Teachers will make alternate arrangements via email with parents/guardians whose requests could not be accommodated. Conference appointments will be confirmed via email by end of the day today. We look forward to discussing your student(s) progress with you!

Amnesty Days

We will be holding Amnesty Days on April 9 and April 12 for Quarter 3. This is an opportunity to pause in new material and work on assessments that will show your proficiency in standards for Quarter 3. Make sure you are using WIN Wednesdays, and communicating with your teachers about how you can show your proficiency, so that you can focus on a few high-leverage assignments during Amnesty Days.

No School April 2

There will be no school this Friday, April 2, due to the Good Friday holiday.

Spring 2021 MCAS

We have established dates for the administration of the MCAS exams this year. Successful completion of the ELA, Math, and Science MCAS is required for students in grades 9, 10, and 11. The Spring 2021 MCAS Dates are as follows. All MCAS Exams must be given in person. There is no remote option to take this exam.

Classes of 2022 and 2023 (11th and 10th grades)

  • ELA : May 3 and 4
  • Math: May 10 and 11

Classes of 2024 (9th grade)

  • Biology: June 7 and 8

Please see the attached letter for more information.

Please use the attached form to indicate whether your student(s) will be participating in the Spring 2021 administration of the Math, ELA, or Biology MCAS exams. Please note that successful completion of these exams is a graduation requirement in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for students currently in grades 9, 10, and 11, and that if your student does not take and pass this administration, they will be required to take and pass it at a future date in order to earn a diploma. This form is only intended to gather information about participation so that we can arrange for a safe testing environment. Please complete one form for each student you have at Salem High School who is required to take the MCAS exam(s).

Survey in English

Encuesta en español

Inquérito em português

SHS News

Salem High News for Mar 26 2021

LEAP Center for Teens

Please see the opportunities available at the LEAP Center for Teens. LEAP is here to make sure that students feel supported with their academics, and to hold programs that help them explore things that interest them and connect them to the community. The teen center is open from 2-7 Monday through Thursday, located at 35 Congress Street.

The following are year-long programs:

Brothers for Success - a peer support group for young men. This is a place to talk about challenges, successes, and things that come up in day-to-day life.

Social Justice Initiative - A space where we talk about the injustices that exist both in the country and our community. We have had conversations about US history, racism, housing inequality, the judicial system, and the election.

Writing Club - A group that works to improve their creative and academic writing.

Tech Club - In this program students learn how to code, make graphic designs, design websites, and about STEM careers like engineering, architecture, and the medical field.

EL Street - A group for students who are learning English as a second language to improve their language skills. This year, students are working on a project in collaboration with PEM, and students in this group are paid for their participation!

You can register for the Teen Center by filling out this link, https://forms.gle/J6w9tVtEezgeZsFSA

Appointments with Dr. Meier

Do you have a question or concern? Come talk to me Tuesday afternoon! If you can't make this time slot, please feel free to email me.

Sign up here!

Student COVID-19 Testing

Remember that we offer free COVID testing to all in-person students! I encourage everyone who is attending in person to take advantage of this opportunity. It is an added layer of protection that helps us keep our schools open. If you would prefer a paper consent form, please puck one up at the nurses' office, the front desk, or Mr. Mruk or Ms. Mullen's offices on the first or second floors.

Please click here for more information.

If you are over 18, you can provide your own consent.

Students under 18 must have parent or guardian consent.

SHS Community Office Hours

Salem High School Students:

•Need a place to study?

•Need extra help?

•Want a change of scenery?

Pop into the Salem High Community Office, located at the Saltonstall Auditorium, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5-8pm. We would love to see you there Witches!


Witches Volleyball played two great matches vs Saugus and Peabody this week. Our track team had the week off from competition this week but is working hard getting ready for winthrop next week. Football is getting ready for their game vs Winthrop on Saturday . Game Schedules can be found on : www.northeasternma.org.

The following eligibility guidelines have been developed for the remainder of the 2020/21 school year.

-Students who are failing/have Incompletes more than 50% of their courses will not be eligible to practice or participate in competitions. They will have access to support from the student study hall after school with the Athletic Department Academic Coach and the potential of reattaining eligibility mid-season.

-Students who are failing/have incompletes for up to 50% of their courses and passing the majority of their core content/graduation requirement courses will have the ability to try out and participate in practices under conditions outlined in an agreement with the Athletic Department Academic Coach to be signed by the student athlete and their parent/guardian. These students will have the ability to earn their way back into competitions once they have 2 or fewer failing/incomplete courses.

-Students who are failing 1-2 courses are eligible to practice and participate in competitions but must continue to check in with the Athletic Department Academic Coach in regard to their academic progress.

-Students failing no courses will have full eligibility and access to the Athletic Department Academic Coach and the student athlete study hall as needed. Study Hall will meet on Monday and Thursday in room 316 or via zoom from 2:30-4:00.

Athletic Department Academic Coach- Graeme Marcoux

Email: gmarcoux@salemk12.org

Google Voice: 978-219-4390

Thank you and Go Witch !!!!

Career and Technical Education

My Time in Woodshop: A Student's Perspective

From: Dylan Huntley

When I passed middle school I had to choose my high school freshman classes. I knew I really wanted woodshop because all my life I have been good with my hands. I applied to the class and hoped I would get a spot after some time went by. I finally got a print of my freshmen classes and sure enough I got it. When classes start you take Wood 1 which is where you learn the basics and the teacher Mr L puts you through some small tests to see where your skills stand. I exceeded his expectations. I passed all the tests and had enough time to build a very nice bird house just with the basic knowledge he taught me. Once Wood 1 was over because it's only a half year class, I was certain I was gonna take wood my entire time in high school.

As time went on I would go on to build multiple projects sharpening my skills and adding to my knowledge. I just finished my latest project which was a coffee table that looks like something you would find on a furniture business showroom floor and now I'm looking at the future and I think I have the skills and desire to go on and work in the wood industry.

College and Career Readiness Center

Featured Scholarship: The Cabrera Scholarship

This scholarship honors the resilience, dedication and vision that is required of immigrants that wish to be successful in this country. Education is one of the best equalizer’s immigrants have in order to provide themselves and their loved ones with a fruitful life. Preference will be given to hispanic and black students who are committed to education after high school.

This scholarship is for Seniors from Salem High, giving them $1,200 each year they attend school. At the average American college, the cost of books is around $1000 per year, so that scholarship should cover the cost of books for a typical four year college. The scholarship can be used for books, tuition, or board.

Four Year Scholarship: Application

North Shore Community College-On The Spot admissions-


When- April 09th

Where- Click to Register

Time: 12:30

You will be emailed a confirmation and Zoom Link once you register.


Check Out: College Guidance Network- for up to date information and webinar on planning for your senior year.

Looking for Scholarships now: Sign Up for RaiseMe

PSAT for 9th and 10th

SHS is offering the PSAT to 9th and 10th Grade. The Collegeboard PSAT assessment will be administered on April 28th at Salem High School. The exam is free.

To ensure proper health and safety guidelines we are asking all 9th and 10th grade students to register by completing the attached form by April 1st to ensure safety guidelines.


As we move closer to the transition to a full-time in-person learning model there are so many factors to consider. This week the Parents Supporting Parents group will focus on this transition and how it impacts the family as a whole. Facilitators will also be gathering information about what caregivers need from schools in order for a successful transition. This information will be utilized to create a resource for parents. Please join us this week.

Group Schedule

Monday, March 29th at 7:00 PM EST BIPOC Group FLYER

Tuesday, March 30th at 7:00 PM EST

Wednesday March 31st at 7:00 PM EST

Thursday April 1 at 7:00 PM EST


- This group will be offered the 3 different days and times listed above.

Thursday April 1st at 6:00 PM EST Spanish Group FLYER -


Peabody Essex Museum Teen Advisory Internship

We are excited to partner with the Peabody Essex Museum to develop a new internship for Salem High School students. The Peabody Essex Museum Teen Advisory Internship provides students with an opportunity to engage with art, culture and history and learn about a range of career paths. Teen Advisory Interns will work with peers, professional artists and PEM staff to evaluate and make recommendations on how to engage teen audiences through events, exhibitions and special projects. Students will meet with PEM staff and special guests virtually each week with a monthly in person visit to the museum. The internship began on Tuesday, March 23rd featuring a visit to the PEM exhibition Where the Questions Live and a workshop with the artist Wes Sam-Bruce.

Pictured below: SHS/PEM Teen Advisory Interns: Jayden Ramos, Jenna Boudo, Sarah Cayouette-Gluckman, Conor Clyne, Calvin Martin, Amy Jimenez, Eros Fernandez

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Student Activities

Teaching and Learning

This sample of student work (Jarlin Hernandez Ortiz from Ms. Melendez’s Algebra I for Newcomers class) highlights the intentional teaching of the English linguistics of mathematical expressions. The student was asked to highlight operational words in blue, number words in pink, match operational words with their correct mathematical function, to translate words into numeric expressions and vis versa. Teaching the linguistics of math creates a strong foundation for mathematical comprehension for all future math courses taken.

Upcoming Events


  • 30 - Teacher Conferences 2:05-3:00


  • 2 - No School (Good Friday)

  • 5 - ALICE Drill

  • 6-9 - Seal of Biliteracy Testing

  • 9 & 12 - Amnesty Days

  • 12 - End of 3rd Quarter

  • 13 - SATs

  • 13 - Ramadan begins

  • 14 - Early release professional development

  • 19-23 - April Vacation

  • 20-23 - Senior Academy

  • 27 - SATs

  • 28 - PSATs (9th & 10th grade)

  • 29 - Picture Retakes

  • 29 - Report Cards posted

Regular Reminders and Resources

Chromebooks and Headphones

All students should ensure that they are coming to school with a charged Chromebook, as well as headphones with a microphone. This includes in-person learners!
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Safety Protocols and Logistics for In-Person Learners

Please remember the following protocols for students coming to the building for in-person learning. This is to ensure that we are keeping all students and staff safe - this is a team effort!

  • Arrival/Dismissal procedures

    • Arrival - All students enter through the main doors. Masks must be worn and students must sanitize their hands with hand sanitizer when they enter.

    • Dismissal - Students taking the bus or getting picked up will exit through the main entrance. Students who are walking or drive themselves to school will exit through the “auto doors.”

  • Travel between classes

    • The main hallways have clearly marked travel “lanes;” smaller hallways and stairwells have been designated and marked as one way.

  • Assigned seating charts in every class

    • Classroom teachers will create a seating chart for each period.

    • Desks in common areas will be assigned an identifier and students will complete a Google form with the date, period, location, and desk number.

  • Bathroom usage and distancing enforcement

    • Only one student will be permitted out of the classroom at a time.

    • Reduced occupancy has been identified for each bathroom to allow for physical distancing.

    • Markers have been placed outside of bathrooms to allow for physical distancing.

    • Bathroom monitor is present at each bathroom to ensure that safety protocols are followed.

    • Electronic passes will be used instead of paper passes to reduce the chance of transmission.

    • Bathrooms will not be open during passing periods. Students may only use the bathroom during class time.

  • Lunch

    • Students will be assigned to a lunchroom.

    • Lunches will be grab and go.

    • Students will wipe desks and chairs before passing to next class.

  • Signing in and out of a classroom

    • Electronic passes will be used instead of paper passes to reduce the chance of transmission.

  • Safety procedures

    • Masks will be worn at all times except when eating. Gaiters, bandanas, and masks with valves may not be worn.

    • Physical distancing will be maintained in all spaces.

    • Students will wipe down their desks and chairs before passing to the next class.

    • Bathrooms will be disinfected by custodial staff four times per day.

  • Nurses

    • Students will not be allowed to go to the nurses’ office this year.

    • Nurses will go to the students’ classroom for any medical needs.

Problems with Internet?

Are you having problems with, or do you have no Internet? Salem Public Schools is still actively working to help families connect. If you're having problems, please contact:

Shamus Mruk for 9th, 10th, grade and the Newcomer Academy (smruk@salemk12.org)

Lynne Mullen for 11th, 12th, and the Bridge Academy (lmullen@salemk12.org)

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School Reopening FAQ

As a helpful resource, I am linking to the Salem Returns School Reopening FAQ here.

Expectations for Synchronous and Asynchronous Learning

Below is a guideline of what you should expect in terms of synchronous ("live") versus asynchronous ("independent") learning:

Teachers will record the direct instruction of the synchronous (live) portion of their lessons and upload them to Schoology, allowing students the flexibility to access the lessons at their convenience. The expectation is that the majority of synchronous lessons will be recorded so that students can access the learning in the future.

At least 50% of each lesson should be synchronous so that students have the opportunity to interact in real-time with their teacher and peers to support their learning. At Salem High School, we have determined that the beginning of each lesson will be synchronous.

Posted student assignments include a total of 2 hrs worth of learning activities such as: watching instructional videos, accessing resources posted by the teacher, and completing assignments.

Class assignments, updates, and feedback will be posted on Schoology by end of day each Friday for the following week.

Transportation Protocols

The Salem Public Schools transportation department, and all transportation contractors used by Salem Public Schools, will follow the DESE released on July 22nd, 2020. This section refers specifically to in district transportation, however, the procedures will be followed for out of district transportation, as well.

The bus riding experience will be different this year than it has been in the past. While “big buses” usually have a capacity of around 72, because students will be required to sit one student per seat, alternating window and aisle seats, only 24 students will be able to be on a school bus at one time. Transporting the same number of students at the same time as in previous school years would therefore take three times as many buses. This is a challenge all school districts are facing, compounded by a lead time of six to eight months for acquiring new school buses, and a nationwide school bus driver shortage. To mitigate these challenges, SPS has requested that only people who have no other way to get to school fill out an application for transportation. While the reduced usage will help, we anticipate staggering bus times and providing before and after school supervision, as routes will have to be doubled in order to accommodate all students. This will depend on the school schedule and final ridership.

Core health and safety practices

Several core practices will support safe school bus operations this fall:

  • Masks: All staff and students on the bus, regardless of age, are required to wear masks at all times. Exemptions for students due to medical and/or behavioral reasons – and associated protocols – are further described later in this guidance.

  • Distance: Students should be seated no more than one student per bench, alternating sides for each row, which allows students to maintain approximately 3 feet of physical distance. Children from the same household may sit together and in closer proximity (e.g., two students per bench). See diagram above.

  • Ventilation: Keep windows open at all times during operation, unless not possible due to extreme weather conditions.

  • Seat assignments: Students should be assigned to a single bus and a particular seat.

  • Hand Hygiene: Students and staff will use hand sanitizer upon entering the bus. Dispensers will be at the entrance to the bus within view of the driver or monitor.

The guidelines for families and children taking the bus are as follows:

  • Parents or guardians of students will be asked to do a wellness check on their children before they leave the house to ensure that they are symptom free.

  • If a child has any of the symptoms mentioned above, they must be kept at home. The family should also contact their health care provider.

  • All students will be required to wear a face mask while waiting at the bus stop and for the duration of the bus ride. There are no exceptions to this requirement on the “big buses.” Families with students with disabilities should check with their child’s Special Education Team Chairperson if an exception is needed for door-to-door transportation.

  • Students must be reminded to maintain 6ft physical distancing from other students at bus stops.

  • Once the bus arrives at the bus stop, the children will board the bus one by one. The monitor will instruct them to sanitize their hands.

  • The monitor will also observe the student to ensure that they are not exhibiting any of the symptoms of COVID-19. If possible, an adult should wait with the student at the bus stop in case they need to be sent home. If that is not possible, and a student is displaying symptoms on the bus, the driver will alert dispatch, who will alert the school. The symptomatic student will be the last student to leave the bus, and will be isolated with the school nurse as soon as they get to school.

  • Students will be assigned seats, starting from the back to the front, and will be asked to board the bus in that order.

  • Students will sit one student per seat, alternating between window and aisle seats.

  • Once the bus arrives at the assigned school, the students will exit the bus one by one from front to back.

  • The bus will be cleaned and disinfected after every load of students.

In order to protect all students and staff, students who do not wear masks, or who remove them during the bus ride, will be addressed by the bus monitor. If the mask is still not worn, the child will conference with a counselor and/or administrator. If the child refuses to wear the mask, families will be contacted, and a solution will be agreed upon, including up to loss of bus riding privileges.

Guidelines for Families who are Transporting their Own Child

It is essential for all families to follow all arrival and dismissal procedures. If you are dropping off your child at the high school, please use the outer driveway (not the one closest to the building, which is designated for busses and emergency vehicles). ONLY the main entrance will be open for student entry. Students will be required to don their mask before exiting the vehicle, and families must complete the daily self-screening before dropping their child at school. Drivers must stay in their cars the entire time. If a parent or guardian needs to enter the school, they must park their car and enter the main entrance only. Everyone who enters the building must wear a mask.

Stop the Spread COVID Testing

Massachusetts residents can receive free COVID-19 testing as part of the state’s “Stop the Spread” initiative.

Testing in Salem is available via a drive-through outside of Salem High School, 77 Wilson Street, on the following days and hours: Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays 4pm-8pm; Saturdays 10am-3pm. You can pre-register by clicking this link to speed up the testing process; pre-registration is not required. On weekdays, do not arrive at the High School site prior to 3:00 p.m. due to school dismissal traffic. Please be aware that during testing at this site, the line may be temporarily closed to new vehicles when traffic reaches Willson Street; the queue will be reopened to new vehicles once the line clears enough to allow more cars to enter. If the line is temporarily closed when you arrive, return in 15-30 minutes to see if it has opened back up again.

Testing is also be offered via walk-up inside at Old Town Hall, 32 Derby Square, on the following days and hours: Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesadys 9am-2pm; Thursdays 1pm-6pm; Fridays 9am-1pm. You can pre-register by clicking this link to speed up the testing process; pre-registration is not required.

Testing will not take place on holidays. No proof of insurance or citizenship is necessary. Testing is via nasal swab, administered by EMTs from Fallon Ambulance, and processed via RT PCR at the Broad Institute Laboratory. Test results are returned, whether positive or negative, to the resident within 48 hours. You do not need to be symptomatic, quarantining, or have been in proximity to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 in order to receive this testing. If you have been tested and have not received your results within 48 hours, or have additional questions, please call 617-745-2100, extension 513.

Residents can also receive free COVID-19 testing at any of the Stop the Spread sites throughout the Commonwealth. For a complete list of Stop the Spread testing sites in Massachusetts, please visit www.mass.gov/stopthespread.