• MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 5/22/2020 2:00:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    I hope this email finds you well.  I am happy to report that Remote Learning Phase III is going well, and we are making solid progress toward our goals.

    • Advance the curriculum in alignment with the Department of Education power standards
    • Deliver Instruction in an audio/visual format either synchronous or asynchronous
    • Increase connectedness with the classroom

    The terms uncertainty and uncharted waters have been used countless times over the past few months, but they remain the best descriptors of what lies ahead.  As we continue on this journey and begin preparing for the multiple scenarios for reopening school in the fall, we will be reaching out to solicit feedback to inform our work.  As we look forward, the MERSD team will do its best to design a flexible program that puts students at the center of our decision making and strives to ensure access for all.

    In addition to the challenge of planning for the Fall of 2020, MERSD is facing a very challenging budget situation.  As you may know, the state of Massachusetts has delayed its budget development process to the summer, and local communities have had to postpone annual Town Meetings.   These two events are critical to the development of the school budget: the state determining school funding appropriations and the town appropriating local assessment dollars.  Although MERSD developed and passed a budget earlier this year, the economic downturn combined with an anticipated 10%  ($360,000) reduction to state aid has required us to revise our budget.   The following MERSD Scool Committee Budget Goals have guided our process for budget development and revision:

    • Develop and deliver a fiscally responsible budget that maintains educational quality, supports District goals, and recognizes the confines of Proposition 2 ½.
    • Manage Enrollment
      • Strive to meet School Committee class size guidelines
      • Serve increasingly diverse student educational needs
    • Exercise fiscal responsibility
      • Seek internal efficiencies to offset growth needs when possible
    • Meet local, state and federal responsibilities while controlling growth

    Throughout this revision process, MERSD has been working collaboratively with the Boards of Selectman and Finance in Essex and Manchester.  Both communities have organized outdoor Town Meetings to be held in June.  Town meeting is the mechanism by which the MERSD budget is formally approved and funds are appropriated by each town. We are hopeful that these meetings will occur, and we will have a formal budget in place to begin the new fiscal year in July.   If you are interested in learning more about our budget and the revisions and reductions we have made, please visit the MERSD Budget page to review our latest documents.

    I hope you have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend and can take some time to unplug and enjoy the wonderful spring weather, as well as to reflect on the sacrifice of those serving our country.

    Sincerely,

    Pam
     ___________________________________________________________________

    Updates & Reminders  - New Items

    Cass of 2020 Celebration 

     

    • Save the Date!  June 5 at 4:30 – Class of 2020 Car Parade: Students will begin to arrive at 4pm.  We are planning a safe environment, yet festive atmosphere,  in the parking lot and then a parade through the streets of Manchester and Essex.  More detailed information soon.

    Pick-Up of Student Materials:  Student material pick-up will take place between May 28th and June 5th.  Principals have created and communicated school-specific plans including dates and times.  If you have questions, please contact your building principal.

    Remote Learning: The MERSD Remote Learning Plan and related documents are available on our Remote Learning Page.  If you have questions or concerns related to the implementation of the remote planning plan, I encourage you to reach out to the school using the  MERSD Problem Solving Quick Guide.

    Food Assistance:
     Free Lunch is available to all who need it.

    School Buildings: All buildings and fields will remain closed per the Governor’s order.

    • No access for students, staff, or the community.
    • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.

    Construction at Memorial School continues under the guidelines for essential construction.

    School Closure:  All Massachusetts schools remain closed and we will continue implementing Remote Learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.  Because we opted to eliminate three days of April Break to continue remote learning through that period, the DESE has advised that we can end the school year on the 181st day of school.  That puts our last day of school at June 19th

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  • MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 5/1/2020 5:45:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    Late last week the Department of Education published updated guidance for remote learning, which included the recommendation that we begin moving the curriculum forward in alignment with the newly developed DESE power standards. Power standards are prioritized academic expectations determined to be the most critical and essential for students to learn between now and the end of the year.   Over the past week, our educator team has been reviewing the K-12 grade-level content standards and has begun to prepare for advancing the curriculum.   On Tuesday evening Julie Riley, Director of Curriculum & Instructional Technology, will be updating the School Committee on our timeline for implementation.  Additionally, we will be sharing the feedback we received from our check-in survey.  Thank you to all who took the time to provide input.  It has been very helpful in planning for Phase III of remote learning.   

    In addition to preparing updates to our Remote Learning Plan, the leadership team has been reviewing options and connecting with stakeholders to develop plans to continue the traditional end of the year student activities and celebrations.   We are optimistic that we will be able to continue most of our activities in a virtual format.  I will be updating the School Committee on our progress on Tuesday evening, and I hope to have the plan included in next week’s update.

    Prin DayI’d like to end the week, by expressing gratitude to our awesome Principal Team for all they do to support MERSD students, faculty, and families. 

     

    Have a great weekend.
    Pam 

     


    Weekly Updates & Reminders

    Remote Learning: The MERSD Remote Learning Plan and related documents are available on our Remote Learning Page.  If you have questions or concerns related to the implementation of the remote planning plan, I encourage you to reach out to the school using the  MERSD Problem Solving Quick Guide


    Food Assistance:
     Free Lunch is available to all who need it.

    School Buildings: All buildings and fields will remain closed per the Governor’s order.

    • No access for students, staff, or the community.
    • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.

    Construction at Memorial School continues under the guidelines for essential construction.

    School Closure:  All Massachusetts schools and we will continue implementing Remote Learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.  Because we have opted to eliminate three days of April Break and to continue remote learning through that period, the DESE has advised that we can end the school year on the 181st day of school.  That puts our last day of school at June 19th.  


    Spring Sports: 
    MIAA has formally announced the cancellation of the spring sports season. Click here for MIAA's formal statement.


    End of Year Assessments

    • MCAS:MCAS is cancelled. 
    • SATs, ACTs & AP Tests:
      • SATS:May/June SATs have been canceled. June administration of SAT has been cancelled.  New administration dates are 8/29, 9/26, 10/3, 11/7 and 12/5. Students can register for these administrations starting in May. MERHS will contact students directly during the week of May 26 to provide an exact date. For each administration, the College Board is preparing to significantly expand our capacity for students to take the SAT once schools reopen. 
        • Students can get early access to register for August, September, and October if they’re:
          • Already registered for June
          • In the high school class of 2021 and don’t have SAT scores
        • ACTs: will offer national test dates on June 13 and July 18. If a test center is not able to open on the national test date, a makeup test date will be provided a week later. The makeup test date for the June 13 national test date will be June 20, and the makeup test date for the July 18 test date will be July 25. See ACT.org for more information
      • AP Tests: AP testing will be administered remotely.  Please click here for AP testing dates and format:  https://apcoronavirusupdates.collegeboard.org/educators/taking-the-exams/ap-exam-schedule#courseSpecific

     

     

     

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  • MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 4/24/2020 3:15:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    I know the closure has been a challenging experience for everyone in the MERSD Learning Community, and we were all disappointed to learn that we will not be returning to campus this year.  In particular, our thoughts are with the Class of 2020 and the fact that they will not be able to enjoy their traditional senior year milestones. Please know that we will make every effort to find a creative way to celebrate their high school graduation. 

    We are all in this together, and it is important to us that we hear from you.  Don’t forget to tell us how things are going for you and your family - MERSD Check-In Survey.

     

    Updates & Reminders

    School Closure: Earlier this week, Governor Baker formally announced that Massachusetts schools will remain closed and will continue implementing Remote Learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.  Because we have opted to eliminate three days of April Break and to continue remote learning through that period, the DESE has advised that we can end the school year on the 181st day of school.  That puts our last day of school at June 19th.  

    End of Year Activities - All Levels: At this time no final decisions have been made with regard to the end of the year student activities and celebrations.  Over the next week, the administrative team will be reviewing options and connecting with stakeholders to develop plans.  It is my hope that we will have plans ready by the first week of May.   

    Spring Sports: MIAA has formally announced the cancellation of the spring sports season. Click here for MIAA's formal statement.

    End of Year Assessments

    • MCAS: MCAS is cancelled. 
    • SATs, ACTs & AP Tests:
      • SATS: May/June SATs have been canceled. June administration of SAT has been cancelled.  New administration dates are 8/29, 9/26, 10/3, 11/7 and 12/5. Students can register for these administrations starting in May. MERHS will contact students directly during the week of May 26 to provide an exact date. For each administration, the College Board is preparing to significantly expand our capacity for students to take the SAT once schools reopen. 
        • Students can get early access to register for August, September, and October if they’re:
          • Already registered for June
          • In the high school class of 2021 and don’t have SAT scores
        • ACTs: will offer national test dates on June 13 and July 18. If a test center is not able to open on the national test date, a makeup test date will be provided a week later. The makeup test date for the June 13 national test date will be June 20, and the makeup test date for the July 18 test date will be July 25. See ACT.org for more information
      • AP Tests: AP testing will be administered remotely.  Please click here for AP testing dates and format:  https://apcoronavirusupdates.collegeboard.org/educators/taking-the-exams/ap-exam-schedule#courseSpecific

    Remote Learning: The MERSD Remote Learning Plan and related documents are available on our Remote Learning Page.  If you have questions or concerns related to the implementation of the remote planning plan, I encourage you to reach out to the school using the  MERSD Problem Solving Quick Guide

    Food Assistance: Free Lunch is available to all who need it.

    School Buildings: All buildings and fields will remain closed per the Governor’s order.

    • No access for students, staff, or the community.
    • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.
    • Construction at Memorial School continues under the guidelines for essential construction.

    Have a great weekend.

    Pam 

     seal

     

     

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  • MERSD School Shutdown Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 4/21/2020 2:45:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    This afternoon Governor Baker formally announced that Massachusetts schools will remain closed and will continue implementing Remote Learning for the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year.  Although this was not a surprise, we are all saddened by the thought that we will not be returning to campus this year.  In particular, our thoughts are with the Class of 2020 and the fact that they will not be able to enjoy their traditional senior year milestones. Please know that we will make every effort to find a creative way to celebrate their high school graduation. 

     

    At this time no decisions have been made with regard to the end of the year student activities and celebrations for all levels.  Over the next week, the administrative team will be reviewing options and connecting with stakeholders to develop plans.  It is my hope that we will have this ready by the first week of May.

     

    I know the closure has been a challenging experience for everyone in the MERSD Learning Community.  It is important to us that we hear from you about how things are going for you and your family.  Please take a moment to complete our MERSD Check-In Survey.

     

    Sincerely,

    Pam

    Pamela Beaudoin

    Superintendent

    Manchester Essex Regional Schools

    beaudoinp@mersd.org

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  • MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 4/17/2020 3:30:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    It is hard to believe that a month has already passed since we’ve had to shut down school.  For the faculty and staff, this has been a very busy time focused on acquiring new skills and adapting to the challenge of remote learning.  I know the closure has been a new experience for everyone in the MERSD Learning Community, and I would like to hear how it is going for you and your family.  Please take a moment to complete our MERSD Check-In Survey.

    Here are a few updates and reminders as we head into the long weekend.

    • April Break: The MERSD School Committee voted to amend the 2019-2020 School Year Calendar to eliminate April Break and to allow for remote learning to continue next week.  MERSD will be closed on Monday and Tuesday with remote learning resuming on Wednesday, April 22.    MERSD Schedule April 20-24  Monday/Tuesday: MERSD Closed & Wednesday – Friday: Remote Learning Days 
    • Shutdown Length: There has been no official word yet on extending the shutdown beyond May 4th, but I am expecting an announcement by early next week. It is highly unlikely that we will return to school in May, although, I believe they are likely looking at the data to determine whether it is possible to return for a bit in June.   As soon as we receive word, we will share that with families.
      • At this time no decisions have been made with regard to the end of the year student activities.  This is dependent on the official end of the school year.
      • MIAA has set the spring athletics season to begin on May 4th pending our return to school.
      • Because we have opted to eliminate April Break and to continue remote learning through that period, the DESE has advised that we can end the school year on the 181st day of school.  That puts our last day of school at June 19th.  
    • Remote Learning: The MERSD Remote Learning Plan and related documents are available on our Remote Learning Page.
    • MERSD Problem Solving Quick Guide - MERSD is committed to meeting the needs of all of our students. Proactive communication between home and school is critical to student success, and if a situation arises where a student or parent/guardian has an academic, social-emotional, or behavioral concern, I encourage you to reach out to us using our  MERSD Problem Solving Quick Guide
    • Food Assistance: Free Lunch is available to all who need it.
    • End of Year Assessments
      • MCAS: MCAS is canceled. 
      • SATs, ACTs & AP Tests:  March/May SATs have been canceled; however, the June 6th SAT is still scheduled.  The College Board is currently targeting administering AP tests during the make-up window, which is the last two weeks of May.  Click here for up-to-date AP information from the College Board.  April ACT testing date has been moved to June 13.  Registered students will receive information from ACT via email
      • HS 3rd Quarter: April 10 ends Quarter 3.  Students wishing to have their Quarter 3 grade, calculated up to March 13th should email their teacher by April 17th.  Grades or credit earned will be posted to the students' transcripts the following week.  April 13th is the first day of Quarter 4
    • School Buildings: All buildings and fields will remain closed per the Governor’s order.
      • No access for students, staff, or the community.
      • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.
      • Construction at Memorial School continues under the guidelines for essential construction.
    • MERSD Weekly is back!  I am hoping to continue the tradition of sharing the good news and information for the district through a recurring newsletter. At this point, we are shooting for an every other week publishing schedule. 

    Don’t forget to complete our MERSD Check-In Survey and please remember we are all in this together

    Have a wonderful long weekend.

    Pam 

    Pamela Beaudoin

    Superintendent

    Manchester Essex Regional Schools

    beaudoinp@mersd.org

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  • MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 4/10/2020 3:45:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,


    It has been a slow news week in terms of learning any new information from the state that will help us answer the many questions we still have about the end of the school year.  Here is the latest information we have on the end of year assessments, activities and events that have been impacted by the shutdown.

    • MCAS: MCAS is currently postponed and potentially canceled.  The MA Department of Education has applied for a federal waiver, and there is state legislation pending that will Seal give the Commissioner of Education the authority to make the final determination.
    • SATs, ACTs & AP Tests:  March/May SATs have been canceled; however, the June 6th SAT is still scheduled.  The College Board is currently targeting administering AP tests during the make-up window, which is the last two weeks of May.  Click here for up-to-date AP information from the College Board.  April ACT testing date has been moved to June 13.  Registered students will receive information from ACT via email
    • HS 3rd Quarter: April 10 ends Quarter 3.  Students wishing to have their Quarter 3 grade, calculated up to March 13th should email their teacher by April 17th.  Grades or credit earned will be posted to the students' transcripts the following week.  April 13th is the first day of Quarter 4
    • Shutdown Length: The statewide school shutdown has been extended through May 4th.  We are awaiting further information from the Governor’s Office as to whether the closure will be extended.
      • At this time no decisions have been made with regard to the end of the year student activities.
      • MIAA has set the spring athletics season to begin on May 4th  pending our return to school.
      • The MA Department of Education has not required that April vacation should be used for instructional time. 
      • At present we are continuing to follow the 2019-2020 school year calendar and our last day of school is scheduled to be June 23rd.  
    • Remote Learning: The MERSD Remote Learning Plan and related documents are available on our Remote Learning Page.
    • School Buildings: All buildings and fields will remain closed through at least May 4th per the Governor’s order.
      • No access for students, staff, or the community.
      • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.
      • Construction at Memorial School continues under the guidelines for essential construction.
    • Food Assistance: Free Lunch is available to all who need it.

    There are some amazing things going on in our learning community.  While we are all anxious to return to the routine of the school day, our new normal has ignited a lot of creativity in our students and faculty.  Here are a few things from the past few weeks that are worth checking out to see how our community is adjusting to the remote learning environment, working to stay connected,  and trying new things.  

    Have a wonderful weekend everyone.  Stay safe and remember to use social distancing if you need to go out.  The more we can do to stop the spread of the virus, the sooner we can all get back to campus.

    Pam 

     

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  • MERSD End of Week Update

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 3/27/2020 3:15:00 PM
    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    I would like to end the week by expressing my gratitude to our outstanding faculty for the innovation and creativity that they have shown in order to get MERSD Online up and running.   Although we are enjoying connecting with our students and families virtually, nothing can take the place of the regular school day.   We miss our day-to-day interactions with our students, and we look forward to the time when the campus is alive with energy again.

    This week we have seen a few new developments that I’d like to share with you.  I have also included a recap of key information previously shared.

    Teaching & Learning

    • Remote Learning:  This week the MA Department of Education issued new guidance for remote learning during the shutdown that includes provisions for special education services. Although MERSD Online already aligns with the majority of the recommendations, we will be thoroughly reviewing the guidance and making any necessary adjustments to our current program.  We hope to have revised plans communicated by the end of next week and implemented the week of April 6th.   Principals and Directors will be communicating school or department specific changes.   In the interim, MERSD Online continues to provide Supplemental and Enrichment Activities to maintain skills and to keep students connected with their school community. The overall goal of our approach is to keep students in contact with the school and to maintain their skills during the closure.  We are not trying to replicate the school day, but we are making our best effort to keep students engaged.
    • MCAS: MCAS is currently postponed and potentially canceled.  The MA Department of Education has applied for a federal waiver, and there is state legislation pending that will give the Commissioner of Education the authority to make the final determination.
    • SATs & AP Tests:  March/May SATs have been canceled; however, the June 6th SAT is still scheduled.  The College Board is currently targeting administering AP tests during the make-up window, which is the last two weeks of May.  There is more information about AP testing expected to be released on 4/3.

    Student Needs

    Operations

    • The statewide school shutdown has been extended through May 4th.
      • At this time no decisions have been made with regard to the end of the year student activities.
    • The MA Department of Education will issue a determination in the coming week as to whether April vacation should be used for instructional time.
    • We will not need to make-up any school days beyond June 23rd.
    • All buildings are closed through at least May 4th per the Governor’s order.
      • No access for students, staff, or the community.
      • During the shutdown, buildings will be cleaned and sanitized.
      • Construction at Memorial School continues unless guidance is revised at the state level.

    Social Distancing:  This is Not a Snow Day.  It is very important that we do our part to adhere to the social distancing recommendations.  If we each do our part, we may be able to shorten the duration of this public health emergency. This is a great resource for understanding why there is a need to close schools and what you can do to practice responsible social distancing while your kids are home.  Social Distancing:  This is Not a Snow Day

    It is my hope that each of you remains healthy and safe during this unprecedented time.

     

    Best wishes,

    Pam

     

     
     
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  • MERSD School Closure Extended

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 3/25/2020 5:00:00 PM

    Good Afternoon MERSD Community,

    As you probably already know, Governor Baker has extended the Massachusetts school shut down through May 4th.  In the coming days, I anticipate receiving updated guidelines for online learning from the Department of Education.  Once received, we will be updating our local online learning plans and communicating changes to the entire community.  As I’ve shared before, there are many more questions than answers at this time.  I am very proud of the faculty's efforts to transition to online learning in such a short period of time, and I’m certain our program will continue to evolve as questions are answered.

    As a reminder, Free Lunch and Grocery Support are available to all who need it.

    Thank you for your ongoing support as we navigate these new challenges.

    Sincerely,

    Pam

    Sig

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  • Essex BOH COVID-19 Adviory

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 3/23/2020 12:30:00 PM
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  • Town of Manchester-by-the-Sea Implements New Restrictions Due to COVID-19

    Posted by Pam Beaudoin on 3/23/2020 12:00:00 PM

    Manchester-by-the-Sea, MA – On Sunday, March 22, 2020 the Manchester-by-the-Sea Board of Selectmen, by recommendation of the Manchester Board of Health, voted unanimously to close all Manchester-by-the-Sea public beaches, all public parks, all athletic fields, all tennis courts and corresponding parking lots. Effective immediately and until further notice.

    Also, the Board of Selectmen unanimously voted to close all personal care businesses in Manchester-by-the-Sea such as hair salons, spas, massage studios, estheticians and small exercise studios including yoga. Effective immediately and until further notice.

    The new measures are implemented at this time to reinforce the recommendations of State (www.Mass.gov) and Federal (www.cdc.gov) Government agencies to encourage the practice of social distancing and to avoid the state-mandated gathering of crowds larger than 25 in order to protect the public’s health. These restrictions will further shield our most vulnerable population from the ongoing threat of COVID-19 as well as preserve the health of our first responders.

    Eli Boling, Board of Selectmen Chair, stated “This is all about public safety in this critical period when we are trying to prevent the rapid spread of COVID 19. As much as we hate to have to do this, the science tells us not allowing people to congregate is one of our best strategies.”

    Any questions or concerns should be directed to the Board of Selectmen or Manchester Police Department.

     

    Seal

     

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