August 2019

2019-2020 Procedures For Dropping Off and Picking Up Students - NEW Please Read


Dear Parents and Guardians,

The Dawson staff has been formally trained in A.L.I.C.E to ensure the safety of all the students in our building. The following procedures are aligned to the safety protocols we have learned and therefore will be implemented for this academic year - THERE WILL BE NO EXCEPTIONS.

  • A note to the teacher, properly dated and signed by the parent or guardian is REQUIRED for students to be dismissed early or to be picked up at dismissal time.



  • All students should be dropped off starting at 8:50 in the back of the building.
  • Please maintain one-way traffic flow, entering school property via the access from BAILEY ROAD. Proceed to the rear of the building and around to the entrance at the glass corridor leading to the music and gym addition.
  • A faculty member will open the doors at 8:50 a.m. and students may begin to disembark one vehicle at a time. Vehicles should then proceed off the property by turning right exiting via Salisbury Street (Vehicles SHOULD NOT exit to Bailey Road).


  • NEW THIS YEAR: the walker line is only for students who live within walking distance of Dawson. There will be no exceptions due to safety.

  • Vehicles should follow the same traffic pattern a the morning drop-off.

  • Please display a sign in the front window posting the last names of the children being picked up to facilitate the process for teachers supervising students in the pickup area.

  • Vehicles should pull up to the exit doorway where faculty members will assist students in boarding the first vehicle in line.

  • Vehicles should then proceed off the property by turning right exiting via Salisbury Street (Vehicles SHOULD NOT exit to Bailey Road).


  • The parent MUST report to the Office and accompany the child into/ out of the building. THERE WILL BE NO DISMISSALS FROM THE OFFICE AFTER 3:00.

  • Park your car in the front-drive - PLEASE TURN OFF VEHICLE.

  • A staff member will check you in and out at the cafeteria door.

Massachusetts Attendance Law

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Starting this year, letters will be sent out on a monthly basis for students with more than 5 absences, 5 tardies, and 5 dismissals.

In accordance with M.G.L. c.76, § 1, all children between the ages of six (6) and sixteen (16) must attend school. The Wachusett Regional School District, pursuant to M.G.L. c. 76, § 1B, has a policy of notifying the parent or guardian of a student who has missed five (5) or more school days due to absences in a school year. This policy requires that the school principal, or a designee, make a reasonable effort to meet with the parent or guardian of any student who has five (5) or more absences to develop action steps for student attendance.

Students with chronic absenteeism (10% or more days, regardless of reason) are impacted to a greater degree in their ability to build on educational concepts, learn from classroom interactions and exchanges and keep up with grade-level expectations. Numerous research studies report that chronic absenteeism can translate into third-graders unable to master reading, sixth-graders failing subjects and ninth-graders dropping out of high school. For example, students entering Kindergarten with intact preschool skills that miss 10% or more days each year, by grade 3 score well behind peers on reading assessments. While of course, we understand that illnesses occur and we adhere to our 24 hours fever and diarrhea free rules, we also know that students are late or miss school for a wide range of reasons. We ask that every effort is made to have your child at school and on time.


Mrs. Wallace


  • Letters for new students with their PowerSchool Parent Portal Information (for logging in) have been mailed. Once you receive your letter, if you have any difficulty setting up your PowerSchool access, please email Maryanne Verrier ( maryanne_verrier@wrsd.net) for help. Please note that the portal will not be open before August 12th.

  • The PowerSchool Parent Portal will be open for all parents on August 12th to access and sign-off on the Student Handbook. Link: PowerSchool Parent Portal

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Once again this school year, all families will be accessing classroom assignments through PowerSchool. This practice is consistent with other elementary schools in the District. Teacher assignments will be available starting on *Wednesday, August 21st via the PowerSchool Parent Portal.

*Dates are subject to change depending on technical issues/ concerns.


A reminder that our staff has worked very hard to develop class lists. The grade-level teaching teams and special education staff (when applicable) work together, with administration, to create class lists that are in line with the goal of our WRSD School Committee Policy (“establish classes that will enhance the dynamics of the classroom by bringing students together who will work as a learning team, and challenge and complement one another”). Classroom placement is an important, complex, and time-consuming process that our staff takes very seriously.

A volunteer parent questionnaire was sent home last spring to provide parents an opportunity to offer input related to their child’s learning style and provide any pertinent information that may support Dawson staff in the placement process. Per the School Committee Policy, parental requests for specific teachers are not to be considered in the placement process.

Tips: Getting Ready For School

August 27 is fast approaching and starting a fresh school year is an exciting, yet stressful time for many. Whether your child is entering kindergarten or Grade 5 here at Dawson. I have four tips for a successful school-year that I use with my children:

1. Get Organized- Students can lay the clothes out they are going to wear the night before and try and plan for lunches each week. This helps save valuable time and takes the guesswork out of those busy mornings. Also, I suggest establishing a time for homework each day and prioritize! Organizing papers, and keeping track of important dates on the academic calendar and extracurricular activities in a planner will also help keep students on track for success. When you are organized and prepared, you not only eliminate stress but are more likely to be successful during the week.

2. Rest Up -I strongly believe that this is one of the most important tips on the list. A good night’s sleep is crucial to a student’s academic performance the next day. Getting to bed early and waking up at the same time each day not only establishes a routine, but provides students with the energy, alertness, and motivation to start the day and be their best.

3. Fuel Up - Don’t forget breakfast! Breakfast is the most important meal, jump-starting your day and boosting energy in the early morning. Studies illustrate that breakfast consumption is linked to a better cognitive function related to memory and test grades, better attendance, and better classroom behavior and vigilance which facilitates learning.

4. Positive Attitude - Lastly, a positive attitude is essential to a great school experience. Positivity is contagious; to classmates, teachers, and friends at school. Most importantly, a positive mindset and perceptions affect learning in the classroom. Students that adopt positive thinking exhibit higher learning success. When you believe in yourself and your capabilities, you are more likely to achieve your goals! I believe in each of you so BELIEVE IN YOURSELF!

PTA: Why join the Parent Teacher Association

PTA's mission is to make every child’s potential a reality by engaging and empowering families and communities to advocate for all children.

PTA Values

  • Collaboration: We will work in partnership with a wide array of individuals and organizations to broaden and enhance our ability to serve and advocate for all children and families.
  • Commitment: We are dedicated to children’s educational success, health, and well-being through strong family and community engagement while remaining accountable to the principles upon which our association was founded.
  • Diversity: We acknowledge the potential of everyone without regard, including but not limited to: age, culture, economic status, educational background, ethnicity, gender, geographic location, legal status, marital status, mental ability, national origin, organizational position, parental status, physical ability, political philosophy, race, religion, sexual orientation, and work experience.
  • Respect: We value the individual contributions of members, employees, volunteers, and partners as we work collaboratively to achieve our association’s goals.

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