Salem Public Schools Update

News for our families

Superintendent's Message

September 24, 2021

As we round out the first month of the school year, I wanted to share the Salem Public Schools’ approach to creating and planning events and experiences that are inclusive of all members of our community. We know that we have not yet achieved this goal, but appreciate your partnership and support as we work towards this end.

In our ongoing efforts to be an inclusive and actively anti-racist school system, we are committed to creating welcoming spaces for all students in the Salem Public Schools. In designing lessons, units, events, opportunities, and experiences for students, it is important that we consider the following:

  • Having equal representation from a wide range of ethnic and cultural groups when meeting as stakeholders to make decisions, establish guidance and plan events;
  • Removing barriers for families so that they might attend, access and actively participate in important school-based and district-level meetings that provide vital information about their child’s learning experiences;
  • Examining and dismantling existing inequities, racial or otherwise, that impact the ethnic and cultural groups that attend SPS (e.g.– enrollment in advanced coursework, access to extracurricular and enrichment opportunities and discipline disproportionality);
  • Approaching holidays and traditions as a part of learning and curriculum rather than as celebrations;
  • Examining school/district policies through a lens of meaningful inclusivity rather than “the way it has always been done”;
  • Ensuring that when texts are chosen, lessons planned and field trips organized that learners see both representations of themselves and other cultures and experiences in the content presented .

We believe that these practices are essential if we are to genuinely elevate the voices and experiences of all students, staff, and families. Thank you for playing an important role in ensuring that our school communities pursue justice and equity for all students.

Enjoy your weekend,


Staff Vaccination Data

We wanted to share with you the most recent data on our staff vaccination rate. We are up to 91% overall vaccination rate as a district. All schools are over 80%, with only 4 schools below 90%.

Percent Vaccinated

Bates 95%

Bentley. 87%

Carlton. 96%

Collins. 95%

ECC. 85%

HMLS. 96%

NLIS. 82%

SHS. 86%

Saltonstall. 96%

WHES. 90%

Salem Prep 100%

Cone of Excellence

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 Yohanny Comacho, driver of Bus 11, who is incredibly kind, positive, and nurturing as she welcomes students onto her bus each morning and afternoon. Every child is greeted with a smile and Yohanny takes great care to ensure her students are transported safely to and from school each day.

English Learner Parent Advisory Council

The English Learner Parent Advisory Council (ELPAC) is an organization of parents and families of English Learners in the Salem Public Schools. We meet every other month to discuss issues that affect English Learners, and to advise the school district on policies and programs that impact our children.

Our first meeting will take place on September 30th from 6:00-7:30 p.m. If you are the parent or family member of an English Learner and are interested in participating, we would love to have you join us! Please contact Daylin Muñoz: or Nancy Meacham:

Start Here, Stay Here

Stakeholder Advisory Team Members Wanted!

Are you passionate about the future of Salem Public Schools and how our buildings can best support the needs of our students and our staff?

This fall, Salem Public Schools is launching a process to develop a long-range Educational Facility Master Plan (FMP) in partnership with district, school, and community stakeholders, and seeks interested individuals to join our Stakeholder Advisory Committee. Check out this link for more information.

4th and 5th grade instrument signup and rental

The Music Department would like to remind our 4th and 5th grade families to complete registration for band and string orchestra as soon as possible and NO LATER than September 29! Click here for the link to register your child. Our instrument rental night will take place at Salem High School on Wednesday, September 29, from 6PM - 8PM in the 1st floor cafeteria.

Have a concern about the location of your child's bus stop?

We have received some feedback on bus stops. In an effort to be sure the locations are as safe as possible, please take a moment to complete this brief survey if you have a concern about the location of your child's bus stop. We appreciate your partnership in ensuring our students' safety!

Preschool Seats Still Available

Salem Public Schools has 3 seats left for our newly opened preschool classrooms!

If you live in Salem and your child turned 4 on or before 8/31/21 then we would love to welcome you into one of our free preschool classrooms. To enroll please call the Parent Information Center at (978) 740-1225 or fill out an enrollment form.

We hope to see you in preschool!

Back to School Forms

Back to school forms must be submitted by October 1st. These include contact information and permission to treat forms. The forms were emailed to all families. Printed forms will also be made available in each school for those who may need them.

These forms are REQUIRED for each student. Please fill them out as completely as possible. If you have any questions, please contact the front office of your school.

Salem Scholarship & Education Committee Now Accepting Applications for Education Fund Grants

The City of Salem’s Scholarship and Education Committee has announced that it is now seeking applications for small grants from its Education Fund.

Education Fund grants are available to provide supplemental education funding for local educational needs and to provide funding for existing adult literacy programs. Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on October 14, 2021. Grant funds cannot be used for salaries or stipends.

The application form and additional information can be found at Click the “Education Fund Application” button on the left side of the page. If you have questions about the application or to confirm if your project or program is potentially eligible, please contact the Mayor’s Office at (978) 619-5600.

“The members of the Scholarship and Education Committee are pleased to make this grant funding available to local educators, programs, and organizations,” said Tyler Carlton, chair of the committee. “We hope that all who are interested in supporting the educational needs of our community will apply for consideration to receive a grant from the Education Fund.”

“The success of Salem’s schools and support for our students is a community mission,” said Mayor Kim Driscoll, who chairs the Salem School Committee. “By once again offering this grant program, the members of the Scholarship and Education Committee are demonstrating their commitment to that effort and I would like to thank them for it, as well as all the Salem residents whose donations to the Education Fund make these grants possible.”

To donate to the Education Fund, visit and click on the donation button on the left side of the page.

Schedule a meeting with Superintendent Zrike

Dr. Zrike would love the opportunity to meet with any SPS staff or SPS family who would like to do so. It could be in a park, a coffee shop, your home, or anywhere else.

If you would like to schedule some time with Dr. Zrike, please email Mindy Marino to set up a time and place.

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.

Kickball / Flag Football Leagues

Family Scout Pack 83 Sign Ups

Cub Scouts Pack 24 Family Hike

2021 Salvation Army Holiday Food Assistance

LEAP College Success Program

LEAP Teen Center Flyer

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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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