WPS Covid 19 Updates


A Message from Dr. Gough

June 25, 2020

Dear Members of the Walpole Public Schools Community:

Today, Governor Baker’s office and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released their initial guidance about reopening schools this fall. We applaud the level of thought and care that went into the development of this guidance. Similar to this guidance, our goal is to safely return as many students as possible to in-person learning. Your feedback is an important part of our planning for a fall opening. Parents/guardians are asked to check their emails in order to complete an initial survey.

Over the coming days, we will be reviewing the guidance to begin to understand how it impacts what we can do in WPS. We also acknowledge that these initial guidelines do not address every topic and that there will be additional guidance coming throughout the summer. The full document can be found here, but here are some key components:

  • Current medical research supports a safe in-person return to school - with preventive measures in place - as infection and transmission rates are lower for children than adults.

  • Preventive measures include masks/face coverings, physical distancing, handwashing, and cleaning frequently touched surfaces

  • Masks/face coverings will be required for all students in Grade 2 and above and for all adults; they are recommended for students in Grade 1 and below

  • Based on current medical research, and in conjunction with other preventive measures, a minimum physical distance of three feet has been established.

Districts will be required to develop three separate plans ranging from students returning to full in-person instruction with safety requirements, one for hybrid learning model that combines in-person and remote learning, and one for full remote learning. Based upon the current medical situation, the expectation today emphasizes students returning to full in-person instruction as the primary objective; however, that is subject to change based upon how the medical situation develops

We acknowledge that there are likely to be more questions than answers at this time and will continue to update you as we proceed with our planning process. We also encourage you to read the full document. Our leadership team will need time to review the guidelines. We are working through these issues at unprecedented times, which takes a great deal of time and planning. It will require patience and understanding among all of us.

Stay healthy and safe,

Bridget A. Gough, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

A Message from Dr. Gough

June 18, 2020

Dear Walpole Public Schools Community,

This week marks the last week of school. It goes without saying that this year was unique. I could never have imagined my first year as Superintendent would include a global pandemic and almost 4 months of remote learning. However, I remain grateful and humbled by working with so many great students, staff and families. It has been an honor to serve as your superintendent this school year.

Next week, after receiving initial guidance from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, we will be sending a parent survey to ensure we use your feedback to guide our grade level advisory groups as we plan for the next school year. Thank you in advance for your participation in this survey. We will be working through the summer to ensure a smooth reopening, and as always, we appreciate your patience and understanding as we respond to the guidance from DESE. I will not be sending weekly updates through the summer, but please rest assured that I will share all pertinent information as we coordinate for reopening.

Congratulations to the WHS Best Buddies for receiving the Best Buddies International Outstanding Virtual Chapter Award throughout Massachusetts and Rhode Island Area. Our current President, Evelyn Abbott, and our VP, Brendan Mahoney, worked tirelessly during the pandemic to make sure everyone stayed connected. Brendan Mahoney, our future President, accepted the award last night on the Instagram Live Ceremony. We are so proud of the resilience, dedication, and commitment of all of our members!

Finally, congratulations to all of our students in PreK-12. I hope you have a great summer. I leave you with the link to our Walpole Public Schools Virtual District Art Show. Thank you to the art department for their dedication and for providing a format that features our students’ work.

Stay healthy and safe,

Bridget A. Gough, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools

Bridging the Gap

Grade 7 Informational Reading and Writing classes wrote human interest stories and learned valuable writing and interview skills. You can visit Bridging the Gap Website to read other stories they completed by clicking the Bridging the Gap bar above.

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