Brown MS Weekly Update
June 17, 2022
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Dear Brown MS Community,
It is hard to believe we are about to enter the last week of the school year. It has been quite a ride for us all and I want to thank each of you for the supportive words and actions you have shared with me over these past 10 months. I am truly blessed to be part of this terrific community!
The end of the year is always a time to let go, and this year, we must let go of two of our beloved faculty members. Ellen Waite, special education teacher and Robin Miller, drama teacher are retiring. The faculty celebrated them this past Wednesday (see picture) with heartfelt stories, laughter and cake. They each have dedicated their lives to working with middle schoolers and have a special place in heaven just for that. We will miss them dearly and wish them the best as they move on to new adventures!
While the year is winding down, we had a wonderful showing at the No Place for Hate march yesterday afternoon! It was a certainly a welcome, positive activity and the Brown community represented so well with lots of students, teachers and parents! See below for pictures and a description of the event.
This coming Monday marks the celebration of Juneteenth. History.com shares that "Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) marks the day when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed. The troops’ arrival came a full two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth honors the end to slavery in the United States and is considered the longest-running African American holiday. On June 17, 2021, it officially became a federal holiday" We do not have school on Monday in honor of this day. There are events in Newton and the greater Boston area that you can check out below. For all who are celebrating, I wish you a wonderful holiday!
We have a big week ahead of us (details below), so make sure to take some time to rest up!
Kim Lysaght, Principal
Newton's Juneteenth Celebration - Presented by Newton FORJ this Sunday!
Newton's second annual Juneteenth Celebration promises to be a fantastic family day out, with food by Gourmet Kreyol and others, vendors including Black-owned businesses, music by DJ Firestarta, kids' activities, art exhibits, and performers. All are welcome!
NPS is No Place for Hate
This past Thursday on the North and South side of the city, students, teachers and parents gathered for a march and rally to proclaim that Newton Public Schools is No Place for Hate. In response to the antisemitic graffiti we have experience this year and with help from the ADL, principals from the six secondary schools in Newton set aside this afternoon to give all members of our community a chance to show their solidarity against all acts of hate.
At our South side march, over 200 individuals came from Brown, Oak Hill and NSHS with signs, flags and one message - that we reject acts of hatred. We were joined by elementary students from our feeder schools along with their families. Teachers brought their own children and we even had a few dogs along for the walk! We assembled at NSHS stadium and signed banners representing each school. Then we marched around NSHS and returned to the football field where high school students gave speeches and shared their truths. They spoke of antisemitism, racism, xenophobia, homophobia, transphobia and gun violence. It was a truly special afternoon.
Special thanks to our FORJ leaders, Rachel Pytel and Jingjing Hu as well as former FORJ leaders Kerry Prasad and IJ Anyanwu for their communication and support to help make this a true success.
End of Year Events
June 20 - Juneteenth (observed) - no school
June 22 - 7th grade trip to Castle Island
June 23 - 6th grade trip to Cove & 8th grade trip to Canobie Lake Park
June 24 - half day - last day of school & 8th grade graduation at 10:00AM at NSHS football field (if rain, then in NSHS field house). Dismissal is at 11:20AM.
8th Grade Year End Events
- 8th grade graduation rehearsal & Yearbook distribution - June 21 - A block (2:00PM)
- 8th Grade Party - Tuesday, June 21 - 3:00PM at Brown
- Canobie Lake Park Trip - Thursday, June 23
- Families should pay attention to the weather to determine appropriate clothing.
- Students need to be at school by 8:15 and go directly to the buses (not into school). School buses should get them here on-time. Attendance will be taken at the buses.
- Students should bring lunch or money to buy lunch / a snack at the park.
- Brown teachers will be throughout the park - speak to any of them or a park employee if you need help.
- Behavioral expectations are the same as for any school activity.
- Buses will leave Canobie in time to be back at Brown for the 3:00 buses.
- Graduation - Friday, June 24 at 10:00AM
- Graduation will take place at the football stadium at Newton South High School weather permitting. In case of rain we will moved the event into the field house of Newton South. You may bring as many guests as you like. The 8th graders will be sitting in the bleachers and the audience will sit on the field. Please bring a chair or blanket to sit on for the ceremony which will take about 1 hour.
- Oak Hill has their graduation right before ours, so parking will be at a premium. Please be prepared to park at a distance and walk to the field.
Returning library books!
5th Grade Information
- Thursday, Sept. 1 from 9:00-9:45AM - incoming 6th grade visiting We will welcome all incoming 6th graders into the building, to receive a map and find their homebase. (You will get an email the third week of August telling them which team and homebase they will be in.). This is an exciting and informal tradition that we are happy to bring back this September!
Additional 5th grade information:
PTO information: click here for their website
5th grade parent night: click here for the slide deck
World language selection: click here (The form also gives you an opportunity to sign your child up for our optional band, orchestra or chorus electives.)
The selections for this summer's reading for middle schoolers are below. Consider reading one of these with your child. It makes for a terrific way to connect over the summer!
Incoming 6th Graders: Frazzled by Booki Vivant and another book of their choosing
Incoming 7th Graders: When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead and another book of their choosing.
Incoming 8th Graders: Select 1 book from this list and another book of their choosing.
NSHS incoming 9th Graders: Read one book on this list. Students will be expected to complete an assignment based on their reading in English classes in the fall.
This week there was only 1 individual that reported testing positive for Covid this week! This is great news!
Please have your child continue to follow the daily health assessment guidelines above each morning. Students enrolled in our testing program should all take their tests on Tuesday morning as usual.
To “opt-in” to the testing program.
Only positive results need to be reported by completing this Form - Positive Result from At-Home Rapid Antigen Test - State Program. Nurses will provide follow up information to families, including the date for return to school, following a positive test.
The data dashboard can be found here: COVID Testing Data Dashboard and on our website here: COVID Testing Webpage. For information on COVID cases and vaccination rates in the Newton Public Schools, please visit this page on the City of Newton Website: Newton HHS COVID Data.
Bus registration 2022-2023
Bus registration for the 2022-23 school year opened on Wednesday, June 1, 2022. Please watch your email for instructions on how to register your student(s) for the bus. NPS strongly recommends that you complete your registration prior to the end of this school year. As always, please visit the NPS Transportation website for more information.
Food Services for 2022-2023
As Newton plans to return to the National School Lunch Program for the 2022-23 school year, pricing needs to be set for lunches at the elementary and middle/high schools. The School Committee reviewed paid-meal recommendations during their 5/23 meeting. Please review that presentation on the Food Services/Updates/Meal Pricing tab on the NPS website.
Please note that families eligible for free or reduced-price lunch will still receive financial support based upon the federal guidelines. Please check eligibility on the NPS website under the Food Services/How to Pay for Meals/Financial Assistance tab
Please send questions or comments to Amy Mistrot, Director of Business Operations - firstname.lastname@example.org. All comments will be shared with the School Committee for their review prior to voting on 2022/23 prices during either their 6/6 or 6/20 meeting, agenda to be confirmed.
Financial Assistance and Waiver Application
Please note that the application for financial assistance and fee waivers is now available through the Aspen Parent Portal. Below is the process and timeline:
Follow instructions to complete the form: Instruction to Complete Financial Assistance and Fee Waiver form.
Complete one form for each student.
You will receive a response to your application in 24-28 hours or 1-2 business days.
Upon approval, register for the activity or service. Select the assistance/waiver option.
The necessary staff will be informed of the approval to facilitate participation in the activity or service. Confidentiality will be maintained.
Once approved, your approval is good for one year. You must reapply each year. Please visit our Financial Assistance and Waiver webpage for more information.
How to report an instance of harassment, discrimination or retaliation.
NPS has recently updated their non-discrimination protocol and reporting process. Here is a link to a document that gives an overview of the process and how to report incidents. If you experience an incident that you feel needs to be reported, you can contact the school directly or you can fill out this Online reporting form.
Discrimination includes, but is not limited to, excluding from participation, denying the benefits of, or otherwise discriminating against individuals on the basis of a Protected Class, or any other category protected by state or federal law.
Harassment includes, but is not limited to, unwelcome, inappropriate, or illegal physical, verbal, written, graphic, or electronic conduct that relates to an individual’s actual or perceived Protected Class, that has the purpose or effect of creating a hostile education or work environment. Examples of harassment include, but are not limited to, conduct that denigrates, demeans, or stereotypes a person and/or group based upon disability, gender identity, national origin, ethnic background, ancestry, race, color, religion, or sexual orientation. Sexual harassment is also included in this category.
Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, coercion, intimidation, interference, punishment, discrimination, or harassment against any member of the school community in response to that member’s oral, written, formal or informal reporting or filing a complaint, cooperating in an investigation, aiding or encouraging another member to report or file a complaint.
Calendar and School Hours
8:20AM - 2:50PM - Mon., Tues., Thurs., Fri.
8:20 AM - 2:05PM - Wed.
Click here for the NPS 2021-2022 school calendar.
Click here for the NPS 2022-2023 school calendar.
Click here for the Brown Middle School 6-day rotation calendar 2021-2022 with early release days and days of the cycle.
Click here for the Brown Middle School 6-day rotation calendar for 2022-2023 with early release days and days of the cycle.