MURSD District Update
From the Office of the Interim Superintendent
October 28, 2021
THIS WEEK IN THE MURSD
MURSD STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES FAMILY ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
- October 28: Nipmuc Picture Retakes
- October 29: Miscoe Vollo-ween Tournament and Movie Night
- October 29: Memorial and Clough Costume Parades
- November 1: School Committee Meeting
- November 5-6: Miscoe Hill Youth Theatre Performance
- November 8: Term 1 Ends
- November 9th Parent-Teacher Conferences-Early Release
- November 10th Parent-Teacher Conferences-Early Release
- November 11 No School-Veteran's Day
- November 12-13: Nipmuc Drama Guild Performance
- November 15: School Committee Meeting
Please refer to school websites and newsletters for additional school events taking place.
Thank you to everyone's patience and understanding this week as we navigated the impact of the storm, and subsequent power outage at Clough Elementary School and Miscoe Hill Middle School, resulting in a need for an early dismissal. As mentioned in my follow-up email, I really need to thank all of our school community members who came together to conquer the logistics, communications, and transportation needed to ensure a smooth dismissal.
This week we also received an update from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education that extended the mask requirement until at least January 15th, 2022. Here is a link to the press release from Commissioner Riley. We have received some questions on our current rates of vaccination. Currently, 73% our students at Nipmuc High School are vaccinated and 72% of 8th grade students are vaccinated and 65% of 7th grade students are vaccinated.
Today I spent a full residency at Clough Elementary School and had the good fortune to attend the newly formed Student Council. When asked about what they love about their school that they want to keep, we had a variety of answers ranging from new equipment for recess, relocation of water dispensers, and ways to have older students support younger students. My favorite of all was when one of our fourth grade students said, "I know that many people move here just for our excellent Mendon-Upton Regional School District, so I want to show them how great it is by doing these things." Wow! Our students are just amazing.
Our parent-teacher conferences are coming up in a few weeks and schools will be communicating out regarding the conferences. We are holding the conferences in person and as a reminder face coverings are required in all of our buildings.. If you have extenuating circumstances and would like to schedule a virtual conference, please reach out to your individual teachers.
Finally, we have some exciting athletic tournament games this week we hope the community will join to support our student-athletes. The upcoming schedule is listed below.
Have a great upcoming weekend!
We had two very exciting soccer games at the NEFC turf complex Wednesday. These, coupled with an overtime thriller in our field hockey game the other night gives us three teams vying for Central Mass titles this weekend. Please see the graphic below for details.
Update: Friday, October 29
Rescheduled Games--due to weather
The Boys Soccer Game is now at 10:00am at Milford HS and Girls Soccer is 1:00 at Millbury.
Senior football is now on Sunday at 1pm.
DVC Cross Country--on Monday
YOU INSPIRE ME: Suzanne Ceruti, Memorial School Special Education Teacher
"Suzanne Ceruti is a talented and compassionate educator who goes above and beyond expectations every day to provide high quality learning experiences to ALL students. She is also the ultimate team player who always shares resources, ideas, and information with others, and will support others without hesitation when needed. You are so appreciated, Suzanne! Thank you for all you do."
YOU INSPIRE ME: Rina Manser, Grade 6 Language Arts Teacher
"Rina is a life long learner and strong teacher leader. She is passionate about her content, education, and connections with students, families and colleagues. She leads by example and works tirelessly to ensure her practices are based on current research. She truly empowers all learners, of all ages, to thrive!"
YOU INSPIRE ME: Amy Gilchrist, Nipmuc Math Department Chair
"Amy works tirelessly to keep all of her math teachers up to date and current with information, deadlines, and requirements. We appreciate all she does!"
Snow Day Information
Here is a link to our webpage which describes the process for school closings/delays. I'm sure everyone can appreciate the number of factors that go into making a decision to close or delay school. In a regional school district, it also involves gathering of information from two towns regarding road conditions, which can take a little more time for decision-making than in a single school district. Part of our process is to get feedback on road conditions and plowing from the DPW and police in both towns, as well as our school facilities department. We also communicate with our bus company. Our busses leave the bus yard by about 6:15am, so our goal will be to communicate the information out by 5:45am whenever possible based on the current information at that time. Sometimes it takes longer to assess the situation or new issues arise like the last minute tree down and power outage we had to start this year.
We are still waiting to hear from the Commissioner of Education regarding whether schools are allowed to have the option of remote learning days on a school cancellation day, so as not to have to make-up the day at the end of the year. We will hear more on this in November from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. If this were allowed, it would likely only be used in some circumstances, for example, if we had an extended storm with multiple days out of school.
Personally, I always could appreciate a fun snow day in the middle of the dark winter, filled with moments of sledding, snow angels, and hot cocoa. In that spirit--I have a request that might show up in a surprise capacity related to a future snow day. If you have a favorite picture of your child from a past snow day or that can capture a snow day moment, please email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line Snow Day by Monday, November 1. For our Nipmuc parents, you can send recent pictures or feel free to send younger pictures as well. Thanks!
Additional COVID-19 Resources
- DESE/DPH Protocols for Responding to COVID-19 Scenarios - SY 21-22
- DESE/DPH COVID-19 Guidance for Districts and Schools: Fall 2021-English
- DESE COVID Flowchart on COVID/Exposure/Testing
- DESE Decision-Tree for Identifying Close Contacts
- DESE Extension of Mask Requirements
- DESE Policy on Vaccination Threshold
Social Media Communications
Our district also has a Twitter page. Please follow us for updated postings regarding teaching and learning. Stay tuned for our upcoming district Instagram account which will be launched in November.