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Superintendent's Message

Thank You

June 16, 2022

Dear Families:

We end the school year with a note of deep appreciation for the partnership, collaboration, and cooperation to get through what turned into another incredible journey together.  In the midst of more uncertainty about the pandemic and unexpected issues like a major school fire, we persevered and had a year that was overall very successful.

It is our privilege each year to serve your children.  Thank you for sharing them with us!

Have a great summer!

Best,

Laurie

 

Updates June 12 2022

June 12, 2022

Dear Families:

It is the last week of the school year!  We are so grateful for your partnership and support.

In the Spotlight

Every year, each school writes a School Improvement Plan through the building-based School Advisory Council comprised of teachers, parents, administrators, and community members when available.  The School Improvement Plans reflect the district goals in the 2018-2023 Strategic Plan.  Next year, we will embark on reviewing and updating the strategic plan.  In the meantime, the 2022-2023 School Improvement Plans are listed below and reflect our upcoming work in academics, social-emotional arenas, and belonging.

 

METCO

In March, we were informed by the newly organized Concord METCO Families Collective about their desire to be contributing members of the district’s strategic plan on antiracism and DEI. Subsequently, we became especially disheartened to hear from Boston families about their children’s experience of racism, bias, and microaggressions in our schools. Since March, we have been meeting collaboratively with Boston parents to listen, discuss and hear their concerns and feedback through a Superintendent METCO Advisory Group. METCO Inc. staff, including CEO Milly Arbaje-Thomas, Director of and Student Services Karsten Kash, have participated in the Superintendent METCO Advisory Group meetings. We feel it is essential that Boston families feel supported by the school and METCO Inc. leadership teams.  The Advisory Group’s focus has been on professional development, responding to incidents of hate and bias, and sending messages to eliminate the use of racial slurs.

Additionally, the School Committee has also been part of our meetings with Boston parents since March. One of the priorities from families was a proposal for a METCO non-voting member to serve on the School Committee. This proposal allows Boston families to have access and the opportunity to amplify their voices and be part of the decision-making process. Through the School Committee Policy Subcommittee and our ongoing conversations with Boston parents who are active on the Superintendent METCO Advisory Group, a METCO School Committee Representative Policy was approved last week whereby two non-voting METCO parent representatives will serve on the Concord and Concord-Carlisle School Committee starting this upcoming 2022-2023 school year.

Lastly, in addressing the needs and concerns of Boston parents, we also engaged Boston students, particularly at CCHS, in meaningful and productive conversations about their specific needs and interests. A culmination of those meetings with Boston students is highlighted in a recent METCO newsletter (“Milly’s Monday METCO Message”) provided by Milly Arbaje-Thomas, CEO of METCO. A copy of the METCO newsletter is linked here.

We look forward to continuing the work left to be done in the coming school year.  I offer thanks to Mr. Nyamekye for helping to write this summary.

COVID 

Case counts continue to decline.  Our case counts are kept current on the COVID Dashboard.  Unfortunately, efforts to retain a vendor for a booster clinic have not come together for this spring.

Concord Free Public Library 

This summer “Read Beyond the Beaten Path” at the Concord Free Public Library (CFPL)! The CFPL Summer Reading Program runs from Monday, June 6 through Friday, Aug 12 and is free and open to children of all ages. Visit the Main Library or Fowler Branch to register and collect your prizes. Everyone gets a necklace and brag tag for joining the program. Kids earn beads for their necklace by reading and completing challenges on our weekly bingo boards. Our youngest patrons get to earn cute rubber duckies! Learn more here.

The Concord Free Public Library invites everyone to visit our StoryWalk, newly installed for the season on Main Street, leading to the new Children’s Library entrance. The June StoryWalk features Runaway: The Daring Escape of Ona Judge by Ray Anthony Shepard and illustrated by Keith Mallett. The story is a picture book biography of Ona Judge, a young enslaved woman who escaped the family of George Washington. In honor of Juneteenth, meet the acclaimed author of Runaway and historian Mr. Shepard on Tuesday, June 21 at 10:30am at the Main Library. No registration required. Visit concordlibrary.org for more Library programs.

Open Table- Lunch and Snack Summer Program

Open Table’s program to help families provide healthy lunches and snacks for their children while they attend summer programs is being offered again this year starting June 21. A flyer with complete information is found here.

Enjoy the last days of the school year!

Best,

Laurie

 

 

Updates June 5 2022

June 5, 2022

Dear Families:

I hope you enjoyed the gorgeous weather this weekend!  We look forward to these last days of the school year!

In the Spotlight

Concord Carlisle High School Class of 2022!

Yesterday, we celebrated the Class of 2022!  Graduation is a celebration of an entire system at work.  Parents are critical partners.  The story begins in elementary school and continues to middle school as the foundation for high school is paved.  In my comments to the graduates, I highlighted their passionate commitment to serving their community and the causes they valued.  Each of the items I list below came from direct interactions, actions taken by students, or stories shared with us about these young people.   This list is long and thorough, giving us much hope for the future! I know this same spirit continues in the students returning to our schools for years to come.

We saw you share your passion for equity and respect for those of all races.

We saw you share your passion for mental health and wellness.

We saw you share your passion for the environment and sustainability.

We saw you share your passion for peace and democracy.

We saw you share your passion for equity for LGTBQ individuals.

We saw share your passion for equity between genders.

We saw you share your gratitude for first responders.

We saw you advocate for political and social issues.

We saw you share your passion for safety in schools. 

We saw you serve in student government or leadership positions.

We saw you share your compassion and service for senior citizens.

We saw you share your compassion and service for younger students and children.

We saw you serve your community through athletics and team efforts to serve others.

We saw you serve others by collecting for those in war torn areas of the world like Ukraine.

We saw you advocate for improvements here at CCHS like the skatepark and others.

We saw you serve your community by doing civic work such as at a Town Meeting, volunteering at a local business, another school, or many other spaces in your community.

And finally, we saw you support and tend to your family, friends, pets, school, homes, and each other.

Concord Middle School Project

The Middle School Project is progressing nicely.  I encourage you to scroll through these recent slides that highlight updates to the exterior and interior design of the new middle school.  The slides are linked here.

Concord Free Public Library

Let the Concord Free Public Library be your study haven Sunday, June 12, 2022 from 1-8 pm. Prepare for final exams with snacks, study rooms, and plenty of places to hang out and share your knowledge at the Main Library. Library staff will be present for research questions and help. No registration required.

The Concord Free Public Library is encouraging children, teens, and adults to bike to the Library! Every time you bike to the Main Library or Fowler Branch Library, show us your helmet and we’ll stamp your bike card.  After 10 stamps, you earn a free $5 gift certificate to Bedford Farms! Thanks to the Friends of the Concord Free Public Library for sponsoring this program.

Open Table Offers Summer Kids Lunch and Snack Packs 

Open Table’s program to help families provide healthy lunches and snacks for their children while they attend summer programs is being offered again this year starting June 21.

Concord Race Amity Day Community Potluck

The potluck is this coming Sunday, June 12!  Additional details are found at the bottom of this email.

COVID Updates

Case counts declined last week.  We hope to see that pattern continue. Our case counts are kept current on the COVID Dashboard.    We are in discussion of a vaccine booster clinic at CCHS with the public health leaders.  Please watch for upcoming details.

Enjoy this last full week of school!

Best,

Laurie

Please RSVP to the Concord Race Amity Day Community Potluck which is a week from today on Sunday, June 12th. The event will take place at Alcott Elementary School from 1 pm-4 pm. CLICK HERE to learn more about Race Amity from our students.

 

Cultural Dishes / Desserts

  • Additional cultural dishes and desserts are needed for the event. Families attending, please consider bringing a dish or dessert to share.

Appropriate outdoor games and activities

  • Families attending,please considerbringing along an outdoor game(s) that is inclusive and age-appropriate

METCO Transportation

Volunteers

  • Additional support is needed. Visit this SignupGeniusto see where you can help. Louisa Yamartino will be in touch with volunteers who have signed up to help.

Official Concord Race Amity Day T-shirt

  • An official Concord Race Amity Day T-shirt will be on sale at the event. The cost of the t-shirt is $10.00, and payment can be made in cash or via Venmo. All proceeds will cover the cost of materials. Excess funds will be donated to charity.

 

Updates May 30 2022

May 30, 2022

Dear Families:

I hope you had a wonderful long weekend as we honor those who sacrificed for this country’s freedom.

In the Spotlight

In gathering feedback and data for the past months, DEI Director Andrew Nyamekye led a process to draft a DEI Strategic Plan for the next five years.  The draft is currently under review by a Steering Committee and is being shared with the faculties and School Committee in addition to sharing it with families.

In addition, all of the districts’ DEI documents are captured and posted on the DEI webpage located within the main district website.

Center for Parents and Teachers Dissolving

The Center for Parents and Teachers has dissolved but its’ mission and work will continue as a part of Concord Carlisle Adult and Community Education. Sally Quinn-Reed has been CPT’s Executive Director for 18 years, bringing parents and teachers remarkable expert-lead programs for ongoing and new challenges that face our children and families. Sally has done an incredible job navigating all the challenges from the past years, adapting & pivoting as needed to answer the needs of our community. The incredible impact Sally / CPT programs have had on this community for decades is greatly appreciated and will live on for years to come.

Please submit a thank you message (with your name) to Sally Quinn Reed for her work with Center for Parents and Teachers.The notes that you submit will be printed and put into a book and presented to her upon her retirement in early June. The deadline to submit is June 2.

Thank you for all you have done to support Sally and Center for Parents and Teachers!

Polly Meyer

Board President

Concord Free Public Library

Zine Your Pride – Wednesdays in June Beginning 6/1

June is Pride Month and at the Library Teen Lounge, we celebrate the best way we know how—making! Visit us after school on Wednesdays in June (6/1, 6/15, 6/22, 6/29) for Zine Your Pride, a series of zine workshops that showcase multiple ways to make a zine, art styles, and discussions about the queer history of DIY zine-making and independent publishing. And on Saturday, June 18, from 2-3pm, we are happy to invite members of the Somerville DIY punk band and zine publisher, Sidebody! Program is reserved for teens only, ages 11-18. No registration required.

Cyanotype Workshop – 6/11

Harness the power of the sun! Join Teen Librarian Cary Stough and Artist and Gallery Resident Becky Behar for sunlight photography using cyanotype paper and everyday objects on June 11 from 1-3pm. Using cyanotype photographic printing formula, the process results in a beautiful, enigmatic monochrome print. Materials will be provided for each participant, including materials to make their very own folio sketchbook. Registration is required – register here.

CCHS Finals Study Day – 6/12:

Let the Concord Free Public Library be your study haven Sunday, June 12, 2022 from 1-8 pm. Prepare for final exams with snacks, study rooms, and plenty of places to hang out and share your knowledge at the Main Library. Library staff will be present for research questions and help. No registration required.

Security 

Our hearts are heavy as we watch and hear about the tragedy in Uvalde, Texas.  As a district, we utilize ALICE protocols as a guide in our response plans.  As such, we can direct buildings immediately into a lockdown, evacuation, or shelter in place. We work with the Concord Police Department on all aspects of school security.  This Fall, we will roll out a notification and communication app that has been in process since before the pandemic.  Please watch for additional details and updates.

COVID

A decline in cases at CCHS seems to be underway.  We will continue to watch the case counts this week.  Our case counts are kept current on the COVID Dashboard.

Enjoy the night!
Best,

Laurie

 

COVID Update

May 26, 2022

Dear Families:

I write to share an update on COVID cases this week.  Here is the link to the current COVID Data Dashboard.

We are seeing a spike at CCHS connected to the prom which was held on Saturday night.  We expected that this would likely happen, knowing that other area high schools saw the same outcome.  All CCHS students with even mild symptoms should test and stay home.  Masks are highly encouraged inside.  Principal Mastrullo is communicating about workloads and end of year needs given the number of absences.  We recognize the frustration when COVID causes disruption to highly anticipated special events and are trying to see the positive in that all of the events are running as they did pre-COVID, even if all students are not able to attend.

At the other schools, the patterns are very different.  Sanborn had a number of cases earlier this week as we came out of the weekend.  Otherwise, the numbers have dropped significantly at the K-8 schools.  This is a hopeful sign that this surge is subsiding.

We are grateful for your cooperation as we provide a rich environment to close the school year.

Best,

Laurie

 

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