EMS Newsletter

September 18, 2020

Dear EMS Families,

We have had another amazing week with students. The building is calm and focused. Each day, I make sure that I am visible throughout the building. Let me share some things that I saw and heard in just one afternoon:

Some classes were working collaboratively with their remote peers on a project... thus, extending all students' abilities to succeed in a remote environment.

Some students were working with litmus tests.

Some students were working on combining like terms, utilizing the.distributive property, and factoring.

Some students were working on their first writing assignment in humanities.

Some students were creating a project that reinforced the principles and elements of art.

Some students were working on patterns while drumming.

Some students were learning the appropriate grip as they were swinging golf clubs on our upper field.

Each class was relaxed... the students were engaged... the relationships continue to be built, the students are increasing in academic technology familiarity, and curriculum is being ramped up.

Humanities Update

This year, instead of having separate Language Arts and Social Studies classes like we’ve had in the past, students will be taking a class called Humanities. Humanities will combine the best parts of LA and SS into one class. Students will still be doing all of the things they would be doing in an LA class: learning new vocabulary and improving their reading and writing skills. The difference is, the vocabulary we learn and what we read and write about will all be related to Social Studies through a social justice lens.

Our new superintendent Tom Flanagan shared, “The equity plan is framed around three priorities: equity, engagement and deep learning. This priority around equity is to...make sure that all students are valued and challenged and build on their strengths.” Our Humanities Department has aligned its curriculum with these priorities. As social justice will be the unifying theme throughout the year, seventh and eighth grade students will build on the existing sixth grade Humanities social justice curriculum and go into greater depth.

Students will explore social justice through the lens of historically marginalized groups. Students will learn about the experiences of these groups, analyze the historical roots of oppressive systems and attitudes, consider their role in shaping a more just society, and take specific action around an issue they feel strongly about. Through the Humanities curriculum all students will strengthen their writing and communication skills as they learn about our past and envision our future.

If you have any questions about this district-wide initiative, please feel free to reach out to me.

This has been a wonderful start to the school year. We are so grateful for your children...

Thank you,
James Kiefer

From the Superintendent

Superintendent Tom Flanagan is looking for families, students and teachers to join superintendent advisory groups. Read more from Tom:

"As part of my 100 day entry plan around engagement, I am forming three advisory groups with whom I wish to meet monthly to give feedback to me and the district around what is happening around the district and what is being planned. I want to engage families, students and staff as true partners in the educational process, to make sure that the needs of a broad range of people are included as decisions are made in the district. All of you play an important and integral role in promoting the social, emotional and academic success of all students, and I want to hear from you."

The goal is to include representation from families, students and teachers across all of our school district. Therefore, each group will have at least 12 members, including at least one representative from each of the schools. If needed, we may add additional members to ensure that the needs of specific groups of students are represented, such as those who are receiving special education or EL services, as well as diversity in terms of race, class/socio-economic background, and sexual and gender identity.

More information about each group and the quick application process can be found here.

Engage EMS

Greetings EMS Community,

A big welcome to all of our incoming students and families! And of course, a big welcome back to our 7th and 8th grade families!

We hope everyone is finding their way through this school year's new learning format. We hope the opportunity a hybrid or fully virtual schooling offers can be enhanced for different styles of learning. School events and activities may look very different this year, but as a community collective, we plan to engage in the day-to-day as much as possible and enhance the teaching and support teams' bandwidth with our fundraising, advocacy, and communication with all of you.

The Engage EMS Team (formally known as PTO) has 3 core guiding principles: Enhancement, Advocacy, and Equity. We seek to Enhance the educational scope offered to all EMS students, Advocate for and amplify student voices in their social-emotional and educational experience, and ensure Equity is placed at the forefront of all administrative practices and decisions. We are very much looking forward to getting to know you and hopefully working closely together as we navigate these interesting times.

Our 1st Engage EMS Meeting will be held next Wednesday 9/23. We are also kicking off our annual Mums fundraiser. Please see below for details!

With Gratitude,

Sage Lopez, Marni Slavik & Tyler Doggett

Engage EMS


  • Engage EMS Meeting - Wednesday, September 23rd 6pm - 7:30pm (outdoors, masked, socially distanced)

We will be holding our 1st Engage EMS (PTO) Meeting Wednesday, Sept. 23rd, 6pm - 7:30pm. The meeting will be held outdoors, socially distanced, and masked. Our new administrative team at EMS, Principal James Kiefer and Asst. Principal Sabrina Westdijk will be joining us! Also joining us will be our school nurse and COVID-19 Task Force Lead, Becca McCray, RN.

  • Annual EMS Mums Sale - $10! Pre-order your seasonal mums and support EMS! Pickup Wednesday, September 23rd 5:30pm - 7:30pm

We will be kicking off our first fundraiser of the year with the annual Edmunds Middle School Mums Sale! Traditionally we sell the Mums at our Open House but with so much uncertainty as we move more indoors, we will be asking folks to submit orders ahead of time and we will offer pickup times between 5:30pm - 7:30pm on Wednesday, Sept. 23rd. Mums will be sold for $10 each, color selection will be offered on at a first-come, first-serve basis at pick-up. Payment is due at the time of pick-up. Cash, Check or Venmo accepted.

INSTRUCTIONS on how to place an order for mums

  1. Email emspto@gmail.com
  2. In the Subject of the email please document your name and order total... *example: BERNIE SANDERS - 4 Mums
  3. In the Body of the email please leave a Cell Number.

Engage EMS | emspto@gmail.com

Website: https://engageems.wixsite.com/engageems

Food News

The Burlington School Food Project will be providing drive-thru/walk up meal box distribution every Wednesday and Friday, beginning September 16th at the following times and locations:

North Avenue Alliance Church: 3:00-4:30

Sustainability Academy: 3:00-4:30

Dealer.com parking lot: 3:00-4:30

B&G Club/Roosevelt Park: 5:00-6:00

The boxes will contain some ready to eat items and some bulk items. ALL FAMILIES ARE WELCOME with no eligibility requirements.

Much thanks to our Community Partners, North Avenue Alliance Church, Dealer.com, and the Boys & Girls Club of Burlington for their continued support!

Reminder from the Health Office

For those of you who haven’t completed your Annual Student Update through the parent portal, please do so. This form gives us valuable information about whom to contact in case your child is sick or has an accident here at school. It also allows you to select whether or not you’d like me to administer Tylenol or Advil to your child in case of a bad headache or an unexpected injury. Please complete all these documents and electronically sign them as soon as possible. If you are having difficulty doing so, please contact our main office.

Secondly, if you have a child with a prescribed asthma inhaler or EPI Pen, please be sure that it comes to school. These emergency inhalers and EPI Pens are necessary for keeping your child safe in school and especially on field trips! Keep in mind that asthma action plans are reviewed and updated by primary care providers and you may need to make an appointment before an action plan is presented to the school. If you have any questions or concerns please call or email me at 802-864-8486 x3 or rmccray@bsdvt.org.

Thank you! Happy Health to you all!

Becca McCray, MSN MA RN NCSN

Edmunds Middle School Nurse

Phone: 864-8486 x3

Big picture

Virtual Leadership Training for Students

Hello Students and Parents!

Hope your school year is off to a great start! I am very excited for what we at Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community have planned for students this year. Normally, this time of year would be spent organizing meetings for our Above the Influence high school group and BE Above middle school groups but thanks to COVID19 things have changed in many ways. Instead of meeting weekly with students, we have developed a series of virtual leadership trainings for students to participate in.

These trainings will be led by both national guest speakers and community members around topics related to youth advocacy. We will also provide additional opportunities in this series for students to learn more about themselves as well as physically distanced social gatherings every month. Weather permitting, we hope to use these distanced social gatherings to give students an opportunity to form bonds and share self care tips for coping during these challenging times.

I have attached the registration packet as well as a flyer for this series. I would greatly appreciate any help with recruiting students for this amazing opportunity! The sign up can be found right on our website.

Thank you!

Reagan Murphy (she/her)

Youth Programming Coordinator - Burlington Partnership for a Healthy Community

Office phone: (802) 652-0997

Cell phone: (603) 723-6651

E-mail: reagan@burlingtonpartnership.org

Address: Chace Mill, Suite 310, 1 Mill Street, Burlington


King Street Center Openings

Hello Families,

We are happy to announce that we have childcare openings at King Street Center! Please take a look at the message below from Vicky Smith, Executive Director, and pass along any families who may be looking for childcare.


Thank you!

Deena Murphy, Education Director, Tutoring and Enrichment Programs


King Street Center

Where kids and opportunity meet

802-862-6736 ext. 114


Girls Lacrosse Opportunity

Hello Burlington Families,

This is Bill Carter of Burlington Youth Lacrosse and dad to EES and EMS students.

I'm excited to tell you about a great opportunity for Burlington's girls to get outside and play at a 4-week girls lacrosse clinic beginning September 20 at 1pm at Starr Farm Park. Here are the basics:

  • Dates are Sundays 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, and 10/11 from 1pm-2:30pm at Starr Farm Park.
  • The participation fee of $50 includes all four sessions! Proceeds will support the Burlington High School Girls Lacrosse Team. We want EVERYONE to play, so please email us if a registrant needs us to waive a participation fee.
  • Sessions will be coached by Erin Malone (Burlington High School Head Coach), Lauren Gulka and Bill Carter (Burlington Youth Lacrosses Coaches), and members of the Burlington High School Girls Lacrosse Team.
  • All players are required to bring and use their own equipment which includes: lacrosse stick, goggles, mouthguard, water bottle and COVID-19 face covering.
  • COVID-19 protocols will be followed, including: wearing of face coverings by players and coaches, social distancing, and use of hand sanitizer. There are no bathroom facilities at Starr Farm Park.

We have limited space and expect it to run out fast, so interested kids/parents should please register here ASAP or at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/girls-lacrosse-fall-clinic-registration-119689930805

If you have questions, please contact me. Stay safe and healthy!