Avery Moments

October 23, 2020

Dear Avery Families,

With the return of students to the building, it finally feels like a school year is in progress. We are now in Phase 4 of the Dedham Public Schools Reopening Plan. Our first grade students have joined us this week and students in the upper grades will be joining us at Avery next week as well. Just a reminder to families, as outlined in the plan, the first opportunity to request a change from remote to hybrid or hybrid to remote comes to a close on October 30. Requests sent to csullivan@dedham.k12.ma.us will be reviewed to determine next steps. Other opportunities to request a change will be in January and March.


Although there is some return to routine, school for those in the building is different. Teachers are teaching both remote and in-person groups simultaneously, trying to make the students at home feel included while meeting the needs of those students in front of them. This is an enormous task and the teachers are working extremely hard to provide each student with the best possible learning experience. Our students have shown remarkable patience through technology glitches and when they have been “knocked out” of the Zoom call yet again. Thank you to our families for supporting both the students and teachers as we continue in uncharted territories.


The beginning of every school year entails learning routines and procedures, primarily with large group instruction, discussion and review. As a typical year evolves, there tends to be shifts from whole group, all day instruction to minilessons and independent or group work. The students work towards increasing stamina in academic tasks and study skills. In the past this happened seamlessly as the year progressed. This school year began with all students spending the entire day linked to their Chromebooks with their teachers. Teachers were fearful of "sending" the students off to work independently for fear they may not be able to get back to the meeting. Our students have become more proficient in navigating the technology. You will begin to see a gradual shift from total teacher directed instruction to shorter lessons with time to read, write, and work independently. As students return to the classrooms, this will also impact what the school day entails. Teachers will need to make shifts in their schedules to accommodate mask breaks, transitions times when going to specials, etc. Please bear with the teachers as they navigate the dual world of today's instruction.


Thank you for your partnership in providing the best possible experience for our students!


Regards,

Clare


Clare Sullivan, Principal

Student Health Surveys

For all students who are participating in the hybrid model, a student health survey needs to be completed before they arrive at school every Monday or on their first day of the school week. A new link to the survey will be sent out each week.

Upcoming Dates

10/22/20- Cohort D1 (first grade students) starting

10/24/20- Dedham Arts Electronics/Metal Recycling 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.

10/26/20- Cohort C2 (students in grades 2-5) starting

10/29/30- Cohort D2 (students in grades 2-5) starting

10/30/20- First deadline to request cohort change

10/30/20- Annual Pumpkin Decorating Contest

10/30/20- Spooktacular Stroll- 5-5:45 p.m. for younger students; 7-7:45 p.m. for older students- Sign-up link below

Can My Child Go to School Today?

Being cautious is important for the health and safety of all. This flowchart was created by the nursing staff to help parents decide if a child should come to school.

Notes from the Nurse -

Just a reminder to parents that all students are required to get a flu shot by December 31st per state guidelines. Once your child has received the flu vaccine, please send a copy of the report to me or upload it to the Snap Health Portal.

We are working hard to keep everyone at Avery healthy and safe. If your child is sick, please do not send him or her to school. If your child is sent home from school sick, you will need to get a doctor's note clearing him or her to return to school.


Mrs. Bennett

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From the Secretary's Desk-

* Please contact IT for assistance if experiencing difficulties with your student's chromebook. hometechservice@dedham.k12.ma.us.


* If your child is going to be late or dismissed early please call or email so we are aware. This will make for an easier transition or dismissal.

* In order to avoid a large lost and found area please put your child's name or initials on their belongings. The weather changes daily and jackets and hats are being removed and forgotten during recess.


* If any of your contact information changes please let us know immediately. It is important to have several emergency contacts and your correct email addresses. If you are not receiving notices from Avery School please call 781-310-5501 or email me at rgianopoulos@dedham.12.ma.us . I will see that you get included. It is important that you receive the information from the school and Superintendent Welch. They contain valuable information regarding the Avery School and the Community; as well as the Dedham Public Schools District.


Mrs Gianopoulos (Mrs. G )

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Dedham Youth Commission Gift Program-Deadline Approaching!

The deadline for the Charlotte and Bob Castagnola Holiday Gift Giving Program, being offered through the Dedham Youth Commission, is October 30. No exceptions will be made.

The program is being run a bit differently this year. All requests are being accepted through the DYC directly. (All information provided is kept confidential.)The DYC will be distributing gift cards only.

In order to qualify for the program you must:


  1. Be an official Dedham resident,
  2. Qualify for Low Income Housing or Free/Reduced Lunch
  3. Be experiencing an unforeseen financial difficulty
It is important to note that applying for the DYC Holiday Assistance does not guarantee a $50 gift card.



The DYC is planning to distribute the gift cards the week after Thanksgiving.


To apply for a $50 gift card, please click the link below. Once you have completed the questions, remember to click submit.

https://www.emailmeform.com/builder/form/Xba02mIDF20c1tLddfYEl

Library News

Did you know our library is now open 24/7? You can request books at any time. Students learning from school will pick them up in their classroom. Students learning from home will pick them up outside of Avery in the bins by the door. Visit our library website https://bit.ly/averylibrary and go to Book Checkout. Directions and a video are included in the "News" at the top. Please reach out with any questions to Mrs. Garland wgarland@dedham.k12.ma.us.


Mrs. Garland

Specials

You most probably have noticed that your child is participating in the same special every day rather than rotating through the various arts. This is one of the measures we have taken to ensure the safety of our staff and students. The special in which your child participates will shift every few weeks. On November 9, the first sessions of art for some classes will begin. Mrs. Prata will be assembling some materials for the students who are learning remotely. More information will be forthcoming about the pick up of the materials.


On another note, although the specials may seem less important than the major curriculum areas, it is expected that students join these sessions on time and attend for the entire session.

Dedham Parents/Caregivers-Let's Talk

The Dedham Public Schools and Dedham Youth Commission have partnered to create a supportive forum for all PreK-12 parents and caregivers. Given the current health and social crises across our country, we wanted to provide a virtual outlet for families to seek out support and feel acknowledged during such a turbulent time. This is an opportunity to share and receive support from two mental health professionals and other parents/caregivers in the community.


Date: Monday, October 26, 2020

Time- 7-8 p.m.


RSVP for the October 26th support group by emailing adube@dedham.k12.ma.us or aoseimensah@dedham.ma.gov by Sunday, October 25th. A link to participate will be provided to all interested parents/caregivers on October 26th.


Facilitated by:

Technology

The Remote Learning for Families site provides a series of videos on the various learning platforms the district is using. Additionally, if you are having difficulty with your technology, you may reach out directly to the IT department for assistance by emailing hometechservice@dedham.k12.ma.us.