Salem Public Schools Update

News for our families from Salem Public Schools

A note from Steve Zrike, Superintendent


SPS families,

With tomorrow’s temperature slated to be in the 70s, it is a reminder that summer is around the corner! We are busy planning for robust summer programming for K-12, SPS students. With the new COVID relief resources we have received, we are pleased to share that we are expanding the number of options available to our students. Our programming will balance academic enrichment and acceleration with opportunities for students to engage in structured and meaningful play. Some of our programs are designated for students with disabilities, English Learners and for students who are presenting with academic, social and emotional challenges.

Schools will be reaching out to specific students and families, but any family who is interested in the varied opportunities should reach out to the City Connects point person (K-8 schools) or guidance counselors (high school). If you are not sure who that person is, please contact the main office at your child’s school and they will be sure to help you.

I want to close by thanking the entire Salem Public Schools community for a smooth transition to full, in-person learning for our students in grades K-8. Everybody has played a role in offering this opportunity to students while maintaining a remote option for interested families. This is no small feat and a true testament to the collaborative and tireless spirit that exists across the SPS family. We look forward to welcoming our Salem High School students to full, 5-day a week learning on Monday, April 26th!

Cone of Excellence Award

At Salem Public Schools, we are recognizing one staff member a week who exemplifies our core values of celebrating differences, facilitating collaboration, fostering innovation, creating equity and access, growing all students, and upholding high standards for all. We are surprising a deserving SPS team member with a construction cone that displays the words: “Awesome,” “Well Done,” or “Great Job.”

This week's Cone of Excellence goes to Scarlet Grandt, Assistant Principal at Horace Mann Laboratory School. Her determination and drive to keep students at the center of every decision she makes is commendable. She has devoted her administrative life to work in urban settings as part of her commitment to educating students who are underrepresented.

She embodies the vision and mission of our school and district, especially when it comes to supporting students and staff to meet high expectations. She cares about families as well and is often looking for ways to engage and interact with the community from a strengths-based perspective.


We are pleased to celebrate and share the collaboration and creativity among 10 North Shore area high school band programs, including our very own SHS marching band! Check out this video. Great job, Witches!

MA Residents 16+ NOW ELIGIBLE FOR COVID-19 Vaccine

On Monday April 19th, Massachusetts residents ages 16 and up will be eligible to receive a vaccine to prevent COVID-19. At this time, there is no vaccine approved for children under age 16. Vaccines are available through clinics, pharmacies, some health care providers, and other locations. More information is available here.

Your child must be preregistered here to be vaccinated at a mass vaccination clinic, or here to secure a vaccination appointment at a pharmacy or other location. You can also contact your child's healthcare provider to ask if they provide vaccination.

Though the Covid-19 vaccine is not required for school attendance, SPS supports all eligible students, teachers, and staff to be vaccinated due to the many benefits of vaccination. If you have any questions on how to register your high schooler for the Covid-19 vaccine, please reach out to their school nurses (SHS at 978-740-1119 or NLIS and Salem Prep at 978-825-3470) or their health care provider. Thank you.

Spring Sports - Register by 4/25/21

Spring sports are happening! Lacrosse; Softball; Baseball; Tennis; Boys' Volleyball; Wrestling; and Track & Field - Register here by 4/25/21 for the sport of your choice. The coach will email you all the information needed once you register. Please also note that you need to upload a current physical. If you cannot upload it, please turn in a copy to the coach.

Meals for April Vacation

Please be advised of our meals distribution schedule for April vacation. There will be two distribution days - Friday, 4/16/21, we will serve meals for five days at the meal sites and again on the following Wednesday, 4/21/21 for five days of meals. Regular Monday, Wednesday, Friday distribution will resume on Monday, April 26th.

MCAS Updates

On Thursday, April 1, Commissioner Riley announced that he will recommend to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education that they modify the state graduation requirements for the Class of 2022. If approved, this year’s 11th graders would not be required to take the MCAS test. In addition, the timeline for administering the tests in grades 3 through 8 and grade 10 will be extended until June 11 in an effort to provide maximum flexibility for school districts.

Current juniors and seniors may still take the test this spring to qualify for the Adams Scholarship and Koplik Certificate of Mastery. Juniors who do not participate this spring will be able to test for scholarships during the retest period in fall 2021.

In addition, DESE will offer remote administration of the English language arts, mathematics, and science assessments this spring for grades 3 through 8 to accommodate families who chose to have their children learn remotely through the end of the school year. The Department will provide school districts with additional information in the coming weeks.

Temporary, Part-Time Lunch Monitor Positions Available

Salem Public Schools is hiring temporary, part-time lunch monitors for the remainder of this school year. Our kids would love to see your smiling faces! Minimum Qualifications:

  • High School Diploma (or equivalent)
  • Ability to work with adults and children in a positive manner
  • Ability to supervise large groups of students
  • Ability to regularly lift a minimum of 10 pounds and up to 25 pounds as necessary
  • $16.79/Hour, Part-time, Up to 2 hours per day

How to Apply

Salem Public Schools is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Keeping our community safe in a few simple steps!

We are still looking to hire part-time help to assist with testing on Thursdays. More details can be found here.

Reminder to keep up the health and safety protocols! We know that as many more people in our schools and our community get vaccinated, there is a feeling that we can let down our guard. This is not the case. We want to remind people that wearing face coverings, staying physically distant, not attending large gatherings unmasked, and washing our hands will help us all stay safe and healthy. The COVID-19 virus is still out there and there has been an uptick in cases throughout the Commonwealth. Please, let’s continue to be vigilant.

Call for Nominations - Teacher Recognition Award

Do you know an exemplary teacher from Salem or Marblehead?

Please nominate that individual for recognition.

What is the purpose of the award? Each year, The Margaret Voss Howard Teacher Recognition Award recognizes one Marblehead teacher and one Salem teacher as representative of all the excellent, dedicated teachers in the community who make a difference to children every day.

Teachers from the district schools in Marblehead and Salem, Massachusetts, are eligible. Each honoree receives an unrestricted cash award of $500. Anyone—educators, parents, students, citizens—may make a nomination.

Send a letter of nomination with your reasons for nominating the teacher. Please be as detailed and specific as possible. Please keep nominations confidential and do not inform individuals that they have been nominated. Nominations must be postmarked by April 30.

More information and the nomination form can be found here for download.

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The virtual Backpack

Welcome to the Virtual Backpack. This is a space where we will place items that in the past may have been a flyer in your student's backpack from friends and partners to SPS.

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North Shore IBD Club

Download the ParentSquare app today!

A reminder that ParentSquare is the district platform for communication. You will receive communication from the district, your school, and your student's classroom all in one space. You can communicate 1-to-1 with teachers, sign up for parent-teacher conferences, and more.

This is how the schools will communicate with families districtwide going forward. Please be sure you are receiving messages from ParentSquare. If you are having trouble, contact your school's front office. You can visit for more information.

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