Amesbury Public Schools Update

From the Office of the Superintendent - November 6, 2020

Dear Amesbury Public School Families,

I hope that this communication finds you well. It is crazy to think that I have just completed my first week as the Acting Superintendent for Amesbury Public Schools and what a week it has been! I am so appreciative for this opportunity to work with the Amesbury Community. During this week, many of us have taken advantage of our right to vote and are eagerly anticipating the results from the presidential election. As a former high school history teacher, I am truly missing being able to participate in the dialogue, learning, and passion that I know is occuring in our classrooms throughout the district.

Since assuming the responsibilities associated with the Superintendent's position, I have been working diligently to get caught up to speed on all of the happenings within the Amesbury Public Schools. As someone who loves to learn, I have embraced my newest challenge with a sense of excitement, curiosity and passion about the possibilities for our district. I have met with members of the Central Office, School Committee, as well as several other key members of our school community. This has proven to be time well spent as I have gained a much deeper understanding of the needs of our district and have begun to develop a plan for moving us forward. I am continually impressed by the dedication, commitment, and perseverance of our staff and our students. We are very lucky to have so many people, including our parents, guardians, and caregivers, who care so deeply and passionately about our schools.

It has been fantastic having our AES, CES, and Innovation High School students back in our school buildings. Teachers and students alike have enjoyed the opportunity to teach and learn in-person. One of my top priorities is getting our AMS and AHS students back in their buildings as well. We continue to meet and strategize with important stakeholders, including the Director of Technology, to make this happen. Our conversations this week have been very encouraging and all of us involved in this process understand the importance of our students returning to in-person learning. I realize that we are rapidly approaching the next checkpoint contained in our Reopening Plan which is scheduled for Friday, November 13th. Despite our hard work, we will not be able to begin hybrid at the middle and high school levels immediately following that date. However, we will continue to work collaboratively to make that happen as soon as we possibly can. Both the Governor and the Commissioner of Education continue to emphasize the importance of students returning to school. We share their passion and their belief!

As we look outside today, it is extremely difficult to imagine that it is cold and flu season. The Governor’s new orders that went into effect today indicate just how seriously we must continue to take the Coronavirus. We are aware that there are school-aged children in Amesbury who have tested positive for COVID. As you know, in anticipation of this situation, we have developed protocols in coordination and with guidance from the Amesbury Health Department, the MA Department of Public Health, and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. We continue to implement those protocols daily with the hopes of keeping the disruptions to learning at a minimum. Our greatest priority is to keep all of our students and staff safe. I have included some reminders about safety protocols as well as symptoms of COVID below.

I appreciate this opportunity to work with the Amesbury community in an expanded role. Please continue to look for this newsletter, in addition to the outstanding one the Carol Bartlett produces, to remain up-to-date with the fabulous things that are happening in the Amesbury Public Schools.


Elizabeth McAndrews

Acting Superintendent

Amesbury Public Schools

Signs and Symptoms of COVID-19

Big picture

Precautions to Prevent the Spread of the Disease

  • Stay home if you are not feeling well. Students should stay home from school should any new or unexplained illness, no matter how mild arise. This precaution is meant to keep all staff and students safe.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.

  • Avoid close contact with others. When outside your home, please adhere to social distancing guidelines and keep a distance of at least 6 feet between yourself and others.

  • Wear a cloth face covering that covers your mouth and nose to protect others when in public areas.

  • If you have been tested for COVID-19, do not return to in-person learning until your test results have been returned and you have received a negative result.

Thank you for reading this newsletter!