Salem Public Schools Update

News for our families

Welcome to the Summer update series

Salem Public Schools Fall 2021 Opening Health and Safety Proposal to School Committee

Salem Public Schools is making recommendations for consideration by the Salem School Committee for a safe and healthy return to school for the 2021-22 school year at a special School Committee session on Monday, August 9th at 4:00pm.

For information about how to participate in this meeting, please click here.

Read the full recommendation on our website

21-22 School Year Calendars

Welcome to August! We are gearing up for the school year, please note that school calendars for the upcoming school year are on the website. The first day of school is August 31st (PreK+K start on Sept 1) for all schools except for Carlton which starts on September 2nd (K on Sept 3).

This is a change from previous years because this school start date is BEFORE Labor Day.

Reading for Change: Antiracist Summer Reading 2021

We hope you have been participating in Reading for Change: Antiracist Summer Reading 2021.

This summer reading program is a community-wide effort to read one of several common texts. This program is open to the entire community of Salem including our staff, students, elected officials, and more. The books offered through the SHS Library and Salem Public Library for this program are:

Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam

I Was Their American Dream by Malaka Gharib

Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X Kendi

Summer 2021 Reading For Change is a movement to unite Salem in a city-wide read of selected antiracist books. We believe that community-wide reads and discussions will help create a more antiracist Salem. Each of the titles will provide student and adult readers alike with the opportunity to learn about, grapple with and discuss contemporary issues of race and racism in America. Discussion groups will take place this summer, as well as the beginning of the school year about these books.

Our summer reading program is designed to inspire a passion to make Salem a safe, welcoming, and antiracist community. Please join us for one of the following discussion groups:

Monday, 8/23, 6:30pm: I Was Their American Dream

Join Amanda Campbell and Kate Carbone to discuss this book on Salem Common

Thursday, 8/26, 6:30pm: Punching the Air

Join Kristin Pangallo and Adam Colantuoni to discuss Punching the Air on Salem Common

Saturday, 8/28, 3:00pm: Stamped

Join Ana Nuncio and Steve Zrike to discuss Stamped on the lawn behind the Derby House on Derby Street

Are you in? Join us to read for change. Info here:

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Schedule a meeting with Superintendent Zrike

Summertime is here and it is time to get outside, get into the community, and meet and mingle.

Dr. Zrike would love the opportunity to meet with any SPS staff or SPS family who would like to do so. It could be in a park, a coffee shop, your home, or anywhere else.

If you would like to schedule some time with Dr. Zrike, please email Mindy Marino to set up a time and place.

Emergency Rental Assistance Program

Massachusetts renters with a household income of 80 percent or less of the Area Median Income (AMI) that are having trouble covering rent and/or utility payments may qualify for assistance through the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development. The program can pay for up to 18 months of arrears or up to 18 months of prospective rental assistance, or a combination, for costs accrued after March 13, 2020. The program can also cover up to $2,500 of overdue utility bills for renters that became due after the start of the pandemic.

Interested individuals can call 2-1-1 or connect directly with a regional agency here. School districts can support these efforts by informing families that help is available at
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The virtual Backpack

Welcome to the Virtual Backpack. This is a space where we will place items that in the past may have been a flyer in your student's backpack from friends and partners to SPS.

PEM COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic

Download the ParentSquare app today!

A reminder that ParentSquare is the district platform for communication. You will receive communication from the district, your school, and your student's classroom all in one space. You can communicate 1-to-1 with teachers, sign up for parent-teacher conferences, and more.

This is how the schools will communicate with families districtwide going forward. Please be sure you are receiving messages from ParentSquare. If you are having trouble, contact your school's front office. You can visit for more information.

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