Amesbury Public Schools Update

From the Office of the Superintendent - November 18, 2020

Dear Amesbury Public School Families,

I am writing to you with an important update about a change to the learning models for Amesbury Middle School and Amesbury High School. Yesterday, an agreement with AFT, our Teachers' Union regarding the hybrid models for AMS and AHS, was reached. While the Amesbury School Committee must still vote to approve these documents on Monday, November 23, 2020 in order for us to move forward, I do not anticipate any challenges in this process. Our target date for implementing these plans is Monday, November 30th contingent upon metrics and public health scenarios.

You should anticipate hearing from Dr. Ricci and Mr. Gill tomorrow, Thursday, with many more details than I will be providing in this correspondence. Both hybrid plans contain revisions to our original plan that benefit students in many ways. I have included a few details about each plan to help you begin to understand what the hybrid model will look like in both buildings.

Both schools will follow the Monday/Tuesday and Thursday/Friday cohort schedules. In both schools, Wednesdays will remain as they currently are - opportunities for students to seek additional support from their classroom teachers accompanied by asynchronous work.

At AMS, those cohorts will be based on TEAMS and not last name as originally proposed. We understand that this may result in students from the same family having different in-person days for those families who have children in multiple buildings. However, by structuring it in this way, we allow all hybrid students to have live, synchronous instruction for four days. Two of those days will be in-person with their current teachers and two will include remote, synchronous instruction also with their current teachers. For fully remote students, they will have access to their current teachers on their TEAM’s remote days along with the hybrid students. There are additional time periods where fully remote students are able to access their current teachers for support and other support opportunities which will be outlined by Mr. Gill and Mr. Denio in their communication tomorrow.

At AHS, the cohorts will be based on last name as originally planned. Hybrid students will have two in-person days and two remote days. The significant change to the AHS plan is that every teacher will be using a hotspot as a way for those students who remain fully remote to access the instruction each day. Hybrid students who are remote will also have the ability to access instruction remotely. As a result, all students, whether hybrid or fully remote, will have access to live instruction four days a week. Additionally, there are multiple opportunities for all students to access support from their own teachers as well as from a teacher within each content area. This will be fully explained by Mrs. Ricci and Mr. Gearin in their communication tomorrow.

I truly appreciate the support and patience of the AMS and AHS communities as we worked collaboratively with our Teachers’ Union to make the revisions to our existing hybrid plan. To that end, I am requesting that you refrain from calling AMS and AHS for additional information today and instead allow them to share with you the specific details of what hybrid will look like in their buildings. If, after you receive that information tomorrow, you do have questions, please reach out to the administration in each school.

Thank you,

Elizabeth McAndrews

Acting Superintendent

Amesbury Public Schools

Thanksgiving and Holiday Travel Information

Please Read this Guidance Carefully

As the upcoming holidays rapidly approach the possibility of out of state travel increases. Especially during this time, we cannot underestimate the importance of spending time with family. However, we respectfully ask that you comply with all of the Massachusetts travel rules.

Please review the link below for updated and constantly evolving travel advisories for all Massachusetts residents who plan to travel out of state.

Here is a summary of important takeaways:

  • Currently, only Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine are considered low risk states that do not require quarantining upon return to Massachusetts (please monitor for changes).

  • You must quarantine for 14 days upon returning home to Massachusetts. Children age 10 and under do as their parents do, i.e. if the parents quarantine, so does the child. Children 11 and over must quarantine as is required for an adult.


  • You may obtain a negative PCR molecular test no more than 72 hours prior to your return and provide the school with documentation of said test. Children age 10 and under do not require a test if their parent has tested negative. Children age 11 and over must be tested as an adult.

If you have any questions or need additional clarification, please contact Nurse Leader Rita O'Neill at

Thank you in advance for your cooperation and assistance with keeping our school community well!

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Thank you for reading this newsletter! Be well and safe!