Your Weekly Update from Kennedy Middle School
Week 13 of the school year ... the weather outside is getting chilly!
Dear Kennedy Families and Caregivers,
I hope everyone had a nice break last week with family and friends. I know the students and staff seemed refreshed back at school this week. Before we know it December break will be upon us.
Trimeter 1 closes Friday, December 2nd
Trimester 1 closes today and the parent portal opens after 3:00pm on Friday, December 9th. Currently, the parent portal is closed for teachers to input final grades and comments. Once grades are released, the parent portal will re-open. Trimester dates for the year posted in the calendar section below.
Upcoming community workshop
December 13th 7:00 - 8:30 PM ET: Creating Healthy Tech and Media Habits with Your Teen
Are you worried your teen is too dependent on their smart phone and technology is taking up too much of their time? You may be left wondering how all this time with media could be negatively affecting teen mental health – or you might suspect there is already an impact. Fortunately, there are steps parents and caring adults can take to help teens navigate technology in a savvy and healthy manner.
Natick community partners are bringing Families for Depression Awareness to host a live webinar viewing of Creating Healthy Tech and Media Habits with Your Teen. Register for this Zoom webinar here.
Positivity Project News
This week our school community will be focusing on the character strength of Bravery. Bravery means you act with mental, moral, or physical strength even when you know things are difficult or scary. To practice and encourage the character strength of bravery with your child, please visit the Positivity Project’s P2 for Families (password: P2) where together you will watch a video, read a quote and talk about the answers to three questions.
Here is the Bravery Strength Family and Caregiver Letter for this week.
Upcoming presentations for students
In keeping with the Natick Public School's strategic goals around Social Emotional Learning and equity and belonging, we are bringing in an organization called Greater Boston PFLAG to provide two assemblies for our student body. Greater Boston PFLAG is an organization that provides support, education, and resources for parents, families, and allies of LGBTQ+ individuals. The organization provided a staff training last April and they will be coming in-person to Kennedy to provide education for the students on Wednesday, December 14 and Wednesday, March 15 this school year.
Session 1 in December will focus on providing students with baseline knowledge about LGBTQ+ definitions and terms so that all students can move forward with a common framework and understanding of the terms. Session 2 will focus on creating a safe space for LGBTQ+ students and becoming an ally for this population. The 5th and 6th graders will attend their sessions together while the 7th and 8th graders will be together for their sessions.
Our goal is to help create an inclusive and affirming environment for all students at Kennedy Middle School and we believe these assemblies will help with that goal.
An opt out letter was sent home via school messenger on Friday, December 2nd. Please respond to your student's school counselor by Friday, December 9th to opt out of one or both of the assemblies.
I hope everyone enjoys the crisp, winter air. Happy Friday!
Jodie Cohen, Principal
“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen."
~ Brene Brown
Twitter - @KennedyMSNatick
Instagram - @KennedyMSNatick
Upcoming Spark Kindness Presentation
Mental Wellness During Stressful Times: Your Questions Answered!
Thursday, December 8 at 7pm via Zoom — For parents, caregivers, educators, and community members of all ages
SPARK Kindness has assembled a team of experts to help you survive and thrive during the hectic end of year season. Author and expert Ned Johnson, Licensed Mental Health Counselor Janine Halloran, and SPARK founder Christine Guthery will offer practical strategies to support you and your loved ones. Everyone is welcome!
ASL Interpretation will be provided at this event. Please visit www.SPARKKindness.org to register for this or any of our FREE programs, discover additional resources, and get information about how to get involved with SPARK!
SIX Things You Need to Know
1 - Postural Screenings in the Clinic
Postural screenings will be conducted for all KMS students in grades 5-8 in their PE classes during the week of December 13 - 20, 2022. Most pediatricians perform this screening at your child's annual wellness visit and if you would like to OPT-OUT your student from their school postural screening, please click HERE to complete the required opt-out form. If you have any questions, please contact your KMS nurse at email@example.com or 508-647-6652.
2 - Grade 8 to 9 Transition to Natck High School Timeline
Letter to families from Mrs. Morin, 8th grade school counselor:
Good Afternoon Grade 8 Parents,
Today your child reviewed the Natick High School Transition Timeline of events with their guidance counselor, Mrs. Morin. Students were given a paper copy to take home. We've attached the timeline here for your review and reference as well. While the first "event" doesn't take place until January, many students have begun thinking about their next steps after middle school and have asked how the process for preparing for high school will unfold. Please don't hesitate to reach out to the admin team or Mrs. Morin with any questions.
Here is the link to the Grade 8 to 9 Transition Timeline.
3 - Middle School Tutoring Program at NHS
We are happy to announce that KMS is continuing our collaboration with the high school and running a tutoring program for middle school students at Kennedy and Wilson. There are members of the National Honor Society at the high school who are volunteering to tutor middle school students. Our hope is to create tutoring partnerships that will primarily meet in person at the high school library between 2:30-5 p.m. as it will be monitored by a staff member. Occasionally, sessions can be held via Google Meet as a virtual option. Families will primarily be responsible for transporting their students to the high school for their tutoring sessions. We are providing training for the tutors on best practices for working with middle school students.
If you are interested in signing your student up for tutoring, please fill out this form. The hope is to get students matched with tutors by the end of November.
4 - Picture Retakes, Wednesday, December 7th
For any student who was not in school on our last picture day (October 20th) or for anyone who would like a retake, the photographers will be returning to Kennedy for retakes. The original prints will be sent home before this date for review. You may still order prints on www.coffeepond.com.
5 - Yearbook Orders
The full-color, 64+ page, hard-cover yearbook that chronicles the highlights of the 2022-23 school year is on sale now! We are discounting the book until November 14th. If you reserve your copy before 11/14 the price is only $30. After the 14th, the cost increases to $35. All orders must be placed by January 10, 2023, to be guaranteed a book! Any orders placed after January 10th will cost $40 and are subject to availability. Order your book today! 8th-grade students who qualify for financial aid should speak to their guidance counselor about seeing if they qualify for a free book.
6 - UPCOMING SCHOOL EVENTS for your calendar
- Trimester 1 ends - Friday, December 4th
- Trimester 2 starts - Monday, December 5th
- December 14th - Professional Development Early Release Day - School ends at 11:30am
- December 23rd is a FULL day of school - Dismissal at 2:05pm
- December 24th - January 2nd - Winter Break - NO SCHOOL
- Trimester 2 ends - Friday, March 17th
- Trimester 3 begins - Monday, March 20th
- Trimester 3 ends - TBD (depends on last day of school based on snow days)
Paper - On-Demand Tutoring
Natick Public Schools is excited to announce our partnership with Paper for on-demand tutoring for NHS students. Paper is a secure, online tutoring service that provides students with unlimited, 24/7 academic support. Whether they’re stuck on homework, studying for a test, or need someone to read and make suggestions to their essays, there will always be experts available online to assist students in over 200 subjects and more than 4 languages.
Paper tutors have been specially trained to conduct expert, academic support in a secure, chat-based platform. With a commitment to helping students learn, they’ll never give students answers, but rather interact with them in an encouraging tone to lead them forward.
This is a free service that we’re providing, so students are encouraged to use it as much as they need, whenever they need. Our teachers also have accounts and will be able to review all student activity to see what they’re working on and provide more targeted instruction as needed.
If you’d like to learn more about Paper you can sign up for a Paper hosted Parent Info Session, available in both English and Spanish.
To see Paper and the help it offers firsthand, we encourage you to login with your students. To get started, simply visit PAPER’s student login page, type your school’s name, and log in via Google using your school credentials
We’re thrilled to offer our students the unlimited, 24/7 support that Paper provides and we can’t wait to see what we’re able to accomplish together.
Our Kennedy Middle School PTO works hard behind the scenes to support our school in a variety of ways. They are working diligently to bring great activities to our school community. Please check out their website for more information.
Speak Up, Natick!
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Bullying Incident Report
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View the latest COVID-19 updates from NPS.
- Title I: Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990Title II
- Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990Title VI
- Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964Title IX
- Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
- MGL, Ch.76, Section 5: Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 76, Section 5