McGovern News!

October 2, 2020

How is it October already!

The month of September has brought so many firsts for everyone. The first day of school. The first movement break. The first line to snack and recess. The first special. The first lunch. The first bus ride and pick-up.

At McGovern School, we are thrilled to have arrived at the first first full month of school. Everyone's daily experience is starting to feel more typical and our faculty and staff, students and families have really acclimated to all of our new routines. October offers teachers and students the ability to build momentum and create those inspiring moments that make school such an integral part of a child's upbringing and development as a lifelong learner.

Beginning of Year diagnostics have been completed by the majority of students and we aim to reach 100% completion by the middle of next week. In addition to the diagnostics, teachers

also complete other beginning of year assessments in order to get to know your child as a learner. This has proven to be extremely beneficial each year, but even more important this year. Teachers use this valuable information in order to differentiate their lessons and small group activities for students. In addition, we use this data to build intervention groups in reading and math. If your child qualifies for reading and/or math intervention, you will be notified by the school. We hope to finalize our first intervention cycle within the next 2 weeks.

In grades K-1, teachers will also complete the Panorama Survey, which is a social emotional screener. We complete this 3 times a year (beginning, middle and end of year). The results from the Panorama Survey help us identify students who would benefit from tier 2 social emotional support. In addition, we use the data to create a cycle of whole class social emotional curriculum implementation by our guidance counselors. Finally, teachers use this data to inform their Responsive Classroom Morning Meetings and use that time to explicitly teach social emotional skills at morning meeting and throughout the day.

Lastly, it is imperative to address the unfortunate circumstance that an individual at Medway Middle School and an individual at Medway High School tested positive for COVID-19. Communication is and will continue to be a priority at the school and district levels. Moving forward, we want to assure everyone that if this were to happen at McGovern, then we would inform the school and communicate in more detail with the specific individuals through contact tracing.

Please see below for additional reminders and updates. As stated in my last communication, I am returning to bi-monthly communication, which means the next McGovern News will go out October 16th. I wish everyone a happy and healthy weekend.


Amy McDonald, Principal

Photos from the Week!


We have phased up to our more traditional dismissal time this week. On Monday, we will be back on our regular schedule for dismissal, which means we will start loading students into cars or buses at 3:00 pm (our regular dismissal time). These first 9 in person days have allowed us to tweak our process and make it as efficient as possible! We are so appreciative of everyone's support, understanding, and patience. Our goal is to finish pick-up by the traditional 3:20 pm time.

Dressing for Recess and Outdoor Time

Well Monday and Tuesday morning reminded us what Fall is capable of, even if the temperature did end up warming up toward the end of the school day. Here is a helpful graphic to ensure that students are arriving to school with the best layers and apparel as we transition from summer temperatures to the crisp air of fall. This is also helpful in the classrooms and on the bus, if your child is a rider, as we are trying to keep windows open as much as possible.
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Beginning on Tuesday, September 29, 2020, students at McGovern School, will not need to bring their chromebook back and forth from home to school, until we go 1:1 for all students. We have chromebook carts at school that teachers can use and it is easier to keep the cart together as a unit. This process may change in the future, but for now, students can leave their chromebook at home. I will update you if this process changes.

Please note, this is a process for McGovern only and if you have children at other MPS, you should follow the process delineated by the principal.

Thank you MEPTO!!!!!

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Thank you MEPTO!

Our fantastic parent organization, MEPTO, donated these beautiful benches, tables, and wooden stumps for students to use as outdoor learning spaces. We have used these areas for mask breaks and music class already! I am excited for our teachers and staff to utilize this additional outdoor space this year.

Virtual Lessons and Virtual Allied Arts

Please remember when attending a scheduled virtual session it is imperative that your child is on time. Our Allied Arts teachers are teaching both virtual and hybrid classes throughout the school day, and there is a finite window in which they must engage students, present lessons and allow for questions. This is also true for our virtual teachers who are moving between whole group and small group lessons throughout the day. When students are late, teachers have to stop presenting their screen, allow the child in, and restart the lesson. Having to stop and restart lessons when there are late arrivals can be a distraction for such young students and having to review information just taught can waste valuable time on learning.

It can be very helpful to use a smart device or watch to set alarms for the daily/weekly sessions about 5 minutes before they are scheduled to begin, so you can ensure that you are logged on and ready to go.

Although Allied Arts supplies a choice board on Wednesdays, it is important to note that your special on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday are mandatory. Teachers are tracking attendance daily for morning meeting, each whole group, small group, and allied arts class and attendance is mandatory in these sessions.

If you have any technical questions or need support, please email Thank you so much for your continued support from home.

Virtual School Announcements

If you have not picked up your child's materials, please do so by the end of the day on Monday. These are critical in supporting your child's learning from home.

In addition, a tradition at the McGovern School is for students to receive a book on their birthday. MEPTO graciously donates the books to McGovern School. For our students in the virtual school, I will sign the book and put it in our bins so you can pick up at your convenience. The boxes will stay out daily from 8:35-3:45 daily. We want to be sure our students in the virtual school model also get to celebrate their birthday in a special way!

Principal Office Hours

In an effort to continue to stay connected to families, I will offer 2 office hour sessions this month. Mr. Kelly and I will do the first one together and it will be on Friday, October 9, 2020 from 1:00-1:45 pm. We will utilize go to webinar for this and you will need to register for the event which you can do here. The second one will be for just McGovern families and it will be on Monday, October 26, 2020 at 10:00 am. I will share meeting credentials as the events gets closer.

School Site Council

McGovern School is looking for one parent who is interested in serving as a parent representative on our School Council. Council members are responsible for assisting the principal in four major areas:

Establishing goals for the school

Identifying the educational needs of students

Reviewing the budget

Formulating a school improvement plan

Additionally, the council will be asked to provide general feedback to the principal and to suggest recommendations for improvement.

Due to the role of the council in guiding our school, members are asked to make a two year commitment and be available to attend all council meetings. Meetings will be held on Wednesdays this year and last approximately one hour. Dates for the 2020-2021 council meetings are as follows:

October 28, 2020

December 9, 2020

January 27, 2021

March 31, 2021

May 12, 2021

State guidelines specify that the number of parent representatives must be equal to the number of teachers who serve on the council. In addition, the school principal serves on the council. State law also requires that parent members be selected by the parents of students attending the school, in elections held by the local recognized parent-teacher organization. Therefore, elections for school council parent members will be sponsored by the Medway Elementary Parent Teacher Organization (MEPTO) and held virtually, if more than one person is interested in the parent seat.

Prospective candidates are asked to indicate their availability and interest in serving on the council in an email to me at before the close of the school day on Friday, October 9, 2020. Please include “School Council” in the subject line.

Photos from the Week!


Contacting Our Nurse

Please feel free to make an appointment with our school nurse, Mrs. McKay if your child/children have any medical needs, allergies, you have medicine to be dropped off, and/or questions. Nurse McKay will be reaching out more regularly to families regarding absences. If you'd like to connect with nurse McKay, she can be reached at

Flu Clinic

Medway Public Schools is offering a flu vaccine clinic for our community. Please see details and registration link below. Unfortunately, CVS does not offer the flu vaccine for children under the age of 9. This will have to be scheduled with your pediatrician.

Pharmacy Information:Clinic Information:

Clinic Date/Time: October 07, 2020, 2:00 PM - 6PM

CVS Pharmacy #01852



(508) 533–677188 Summer St.

Medway, MA 02053

Pharmacist Contact Information:

Name: Lauren Barakian

Phone: (508) 353–0862

Clinic ID: CI088845

Clinic Registration Link: Click here to register

Nancy Whitehouse RN NCSN

Nurse Leader

School Lunch

Medway Public Schools and Chartwells Introduces Plans for Serving Up Happy and Healthy at Mealtime For the new school year of 2020-2021!!!

While the start of the school year looks a little different for everyone, I wanted to share with you some good news that schools nationwide have received. The USDA extended a waiver that allows schools to serve free breakfast and lunch to ALL students, through 12/31/20. We are thrilled with this news as it means that we will be able to provide all Medway Public School students with nutritious and tasty food that will support them, both in school and at home.

Please click here to see the entire Chartwells Fall Update

The monthly menus will be posted online at


Every child needs a healthy, nutritious meal to learn. Medway Public Schools offers nutritious meals to children each school day, often at a free or reduced price for those who need it. Medway Public Schools participates in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Program (NSLBP), a federally funded program that helps children receive free or reduced meals.

Click here for additional information and to find out if you qualify.

Nutritional Support / Remote School Lunches

In order to ensure that children’s nutritional needs are satisfied during this period of remote learning, we are offering any Medway resident under the age of 21 the opportunity to access free school meals every day of the week and/or food to prepare meals at home. For more details about these offerings and to sign-up for remote meals please click here.

School Pictures

As we are trying to limit the number of visitors to our schools, and given the complexities that are involved in our school schedules, students in Grades K-8 will postpone Fall School Pictures. We will reassess the situation in the Spring and communicate our plan with families in advance of our picture date. We appreciate your understanding as we continue to put student safety first.


If you are not receiving email communications from the district or the schools, we are here to help. Please email and a team will work to ensure that you are connected.


MEPTO's Creative Arts program chair has created a fun calendar for the K-4 families, for the month of October. Check out the calendar for some fun activities! You can view the calendar here.

Important Dates!

Oct 12: No School, Columbus Day

Oct 28: School Site Council

Oct 29: Back to School Night, (virtual, details to follow)

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