TUESDAY, March 2, 2021

Latest Information

Dear Families,

I hope you all had a wonderful break. In this challenging year, I have found myself grateful for these days that allow me to slow down. I was in upstate NY visiting my dad and daughters. It was great to be in their company. My elder daughter had been sick with pneumonia and my dad had a tooth infection. So, as I brought them both to the doctor's office on Monday, I got myself the PCR COVID test as well. I figured three generations in the office, I might as well. Plus, I was able to use those results for my own travel back to the island on Wednesday. As happy as I was to be with them, I was also happy to get back to ACK and have my own little staycation here.

We are very excited to be celebrating Read Across America Spirit Week this week. Thank you so much for helping your students to participate. Here is the flyer

  • Monday - Crazy Hat Day
  • Tuesday - Wear Green
  • Wednesday - Pajama Day
  • Thursday - Wear a Red shirt or a Blue shirt
  • Friday - Wear fun socks or mismatched socks

The goal for Read Across America Week is simply to connect kids to books and celebrate the love of reading. In the past, (for the last 9 years), we have had a big literacy night celebration on Thursday of this week. We linked it to Dr. Suess's birthday. As we are unable to have Literacy night this year, we wanted to be sure we still celebrated the week and reading. So much of what we love about Dr. Suess books has to do with phonics and phonemic awareness. While we have shared some Dr. Suess titles for spirit week connections, in light of our focus on anti racism and diversity, we are sharing different titles in school to be more inclusive. See photos below.

New guidance for school bus ridership: DESE recently changed its guidance on school bus protocols for transporting children, which lifts restrictions on seating space. If all other safety protocols are adhered to (i.e., windows open 2 inches, masks worn at all times, assigned seating, cleaning/disinfecting/hand sanitizing), the buses will be able to transport more students. Thank you to Linda Barrett from Cape Cod Collaborative along with our front office ESPs who have been working on a new schedule that adds in children who were currently on the waitlist for transportation. We also hope that as the vaccination rollout continues, we will be able to put another bus on the road for our students within a month or so. Below is the link for the newest Bus Routes!

It is so important that the children come prepared to be outside. This means wearing boots, gloves, hats, warm coats, and snow pants. It is important that children have these and a change of clothes (in case they do not have snow pants and clothes get wet.) We follow the guidelines of having students go outside if the temperature feels like 15 degrees or higher. The warm clothes are necessary for sure!! But I am hopeful, as the sun is rising earlier, we will be having better weather soon.

I am leaving these reminders listed below as they are so important for keeping our students safe. These reminders have come from our School Resource Officers, our NES School Council, our NES Staff members, and other parents. They are related to safety and student success. These have been shared before, yet they need to be repeated because these actions have started again.

1. The parking lot on First Way behind the school is ONLY for staff. Student drop off or Parent Parking back there is NOT permitted. All of the spots are numbered and assigned to staff. When parents park back there, our staff are unable to get into the building to be ready for working with students. All the spots are assigned. There are no extra spots. This is no place for students to be walking. It is incredibly unsafe.

2. If you are driving into our drop off lanes from Backus Lane, the driver MUST STAY in the car. The child should get out of the car on the right side.

3. Cars should not pull around other cars on the left side in the circles. It is important to model safety and patience. We have observed so many near accidents.

4. If you wish to get out of the car, please park in the lot on Backus Lane and walk your child to their class line.

5. If you leave the state of Massachusetts, your child must receive a COVID-19 negative test result in order to come back to school. If you do not want to have your child tested, they must stay home for 10 days. We have had no school spread because people are adhering to these safety protocols.

6. Attendance =

a.virtually present means the child is online off and on all day, not just for morning meeting

b.virtually absent means the child is not signing on for remote learning

c. physically present means the child is in school present for the day

d. physically absent means the child is not in school at all for the day

7. When children are working remotely, they may need a parent to assist them in signing on. We know you have been doing this. We would ask finally that you allow the children to answer questions. It is okay for them to make mistakes.

I continue to be grateful for all of your support in this very challenging time. I know that this is hard for all of you as it is for us too. I keep reminding myself that things will be better soon. I want to reiterate our need for a partnership in this pandemic. It is critical for you to respond to teachers' emails, phone calls, and remind messages. They know how hard it is for you. They are trying to keep you updated as often as they can. The favor of replies to their efforts to reach out to you would be greatly appreciated.

Our English Language Learners are continuing to take their ACCESS test to measure their progress with English reading, writing, speaking, and listening. It is important for children who are testing to have a good night's sleep, a good breakfast the morning of, and to know that all they have to do is their best! We will also be doing some MAP testing in March with all students to assess their progress to date. Our second trimester comes to an end on 3/19/21. Report cards will be shared on 3/26/21.

Have a great rest of the week and enjoy the February Break!!


Kimberly Kubisch, Principal NES

Our School Counselors and Social Worker (our Student Support Team) have asked me to share this information with you. We are hearing from so many of you about the struggles students are having with remote learning. Here is an article with some friendly suggestions and helpful hints! Also, please visit current and previous SEL playlists in Schoology. There is lots of information about how to help children manage their emotions!

Our school nurse, Meri Lepore, has asked me to share this very important health information with you.

Just some friendly reminders. Please be aware, if you traveled anywhere outside of Massachusetts, and returned to Nantucket anytime after January 3, 2021, be sure to quarantine for 10 days (this is a change from 14 days) or get a COVID-19 test and quarantine until negative test results. See link for travel order. Mass Travel Order . Please send in copies of your child’s proof of test or your quarantine dates. You can email me at The symptomatic testing is at the Hospital and the asymptomatic testing is now at the Nantucket VFW building on 22 New South Road. Nantucket Cottage Hospital TestingThe mandatory requirement for getting the flu vaccine has been removed. It is strongly recommended still, but no longer required. You may get the vaccine by making an appointment with a nurse at Nantucket Cottage Hospital by calling 508-825-1000. If you do not plan on getting your student vaccinated for any recommended or required vaccines (not only the flu) due to religious beliefs or a medical condition, I will need a handwritten note stating it’s against your religious beliefs or a physician’s note.

Please keep safe and healthy,

Meri Lepore


Kimberly F. Kubisch


Kimberly F. Albertson

Assistant Principal


Please be thoughtful and careful when planning travel. It will be necessary for students to quarantine or test negatively if you travel to all states with the exception of Hawaii. This means you must test negative when you return from the other states. The testing negative is important for the safety of all of our students, their families, staff, and their families. Thank you in advance for your attention to this. I have shared a link for current Corona Virus information.

Children with any illness symptoms

Please be sure to review the Home Screening survey with children at home before they come to school each morning. It is very important to not send children to school with any illness or with medications ingested to reduce symptoms.

Home Screening Protocol

Know that we understand and appreciate when you choose to keep your child at home because they have one of the symptoms or don't feel well, not necessarily COVID-19 positive but run down as happens to us all. With a bit of notice and clear communication to your child's teacher, they can work with you to determine the child's participation in synchronous and/or asynchronous work.

Big picture