March 16, 2021
Reopening Update from the Principal
April 5th - Reopening of School
It has been quite a year to say the least. One year ago we started our journey of teaching and learning remotely. In that time so many things have changed yet the essence of what is important for school has not. The school continues to focus on students’ physical and mental health while providing key academic instruction. Lancaster is a terrific community that supports their children and the school staff.
Hybrid learning, remote learning, Seesaw, Google Meets, Clever, Jamboard, mitigation efforts, masking, etc. are all things we could not have imagined a year ago but are routine now. Although this year has brought its challenges, everyone has stepped up and done the absolute best under the circumstances. The teachers have found ways to build strong connections with students and classroom communities. Students have learned so many new technological skills, and developed a new level of independence. With all the positives that have occurred, there are real struggles that students and families continue to face. To help address these challenges, the State is requiring the school reopen for five day a week instruction beginning April 5th.
The process of reopening began two weeks ago with a survey to families to gain a commitment to either send their children to school or to have them attend the Remote Learning Academy for the remainder of the year. I am pleased to report we had 100% participation in the survey. This is helping us make detailed plans and decisions about classroom placement, lunches, recess, schedules, and services. We are currently working on classroom placements. This process will take at least this week to complete. About 40% of students who were learning remotely have decided to return to school in-person. This will necessitate some shifts in homerooms. Next week, I will be in contact with families if a change in teacher is needed. We are trying to keep as much the same as possible when students return to school. Also, the Remote Learning Academy will continue to exist for the duration of this year.
With students returning to school, we will continue to focus on safety first with the mitigation efforts we have been using all year. Those include:
Families continue daily symptom screening before coming to school
Continue wearing masks
Mask breaks outside when possible
Continue to wash and sanitize hands throughout the day
Maintain Social distancing
Maximize space in classrooms
Six foot distance at lunch
Utilizing outside spaces
7 small tents
2 larger tents
75% of staff are either partially or completely vaccinated with that number continuing to grow
The next three weeks leading up to welcoming students back will be very busy in terms of planning and transitioning students back to school. Classroom placements will be completed and communicated to parents early next week. Transition activities and opportunities will be provided to students moving from the Remote Learning Academy to in-person learning. For those families who chose the bus for transportation, new schedules will be published shortly before school re-opens. Pick-up and drop off information will be updated for families. Lastly, the end of Term 2 has been adjusted to align with students returning to school. The term will end on April 2nd and report cards will be sent via email on April 9th.
Remote Learning Academy students will continue with their current teacher and schedule with the exception of kindergarten. RLA class will be minimally affected by the changes.
I appreciate your continued support and patience as we move forward April 5th.
With the warmer weather and spring break coming, we have been getting many questions about travel guidelines. The district continues to follow the state guidance for students to return to school after traveling. This guidance is subject to change and does so regularly. It can be found here. Massachusetts Covid Travel Order
Below are the current guidelines for students who travel.
The school nurse would need one of the following prior to any traveling student's return to school:
Quarantine for a full 10 days, or
Produce a negative PCR (not antigen) test result within 72 hours prior to arrival or upon return to MA and you must quarantine until test results are obtained, or
Testing for children, 10 years and younger, who are traveling with an adult from their household is not required as long as the adult provides their negative PCR test results within 72 hours prior to arrival or upon return to MA
In our Nashoba Community
Click here to learn more details about this and other great upcoming events
Nashoba Regional Dollars for Scholars --- See's Candy Fundraiser
Nashoba Regional Dollars for Scholars awards scholarships to Nashoba seniors each June. Last year, we awarded over $50,000 to deserving graduates. We are once again asking for your sweet support in raising money to recognize students’ academics, service, and leadership. Purchase yummy See’s candies for Easter to help support Dollars for Scholars and spread a little sunshine at the same time! Candy also makes a great gift for St. Patrick’s Day, Passover, or even Earth day! Just remember to let the recipient know that something sweet is on the way.
Click the links below to choose your favorites and buy your candy online.
Easter candy can be purchased too! Easter candy sales end March 19, while the entire fundraiser ends May 15.
Helpful Quick Links
Subject to change, our anticipated last day of school this year is June 23rd.