Superintendent's Weekly Update---September 24, 2020

Newsletter Highlights Include:ExpectationsTechnologyPhases of learningMask ProtocolsDPS Weekly COVID DashboardSubstitute teachersCommunity Impact Survey

It has been a month of several firsts. We had our first day of school, our first day with students in the building, our first phased in days, and this week we had our first day with a full cohort in school. I have been in all the buildings and several classrooms these days and I am very pleased with what I have seen from an educational standpoint and with everyone following safety protocols. We have 3 more days to complete this first fully 2-1-2 hybrid cycle and the expectation is that we will have all the kinks and quirks worked out. If you have any issues or concerns please feel free to reach out to any of us.
As you will see from the report below, the data is trending in a positive direction. I do need to emphasize that in order for our buildings to stay open for hybrid or in-person learning everyone has to do their part. We have see…

Mask Safety and Phases of Learning

Mask SafetyThe Douglas Public School District is committed to providing a safe environment as schools reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to public health experts, one of the best ways to stop the spread of coronavirus and to keep members of our school community safe is the use of face masks. Therefore, in accordance with guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), the following requirements are in place until further notice.A face covering that covers the nose and mouth must be worn by all individuals in school buildings, on school grounds, at all school sponsored events, and on school transportation. This applies to all faculty, staff, visitors, and students in grades K-12. The use of gators is not permitted in that it does not safely protect individuals at the same level as masks.Individuals may be exempted from this protocol if they fall under the…

School Lunch Program

Douglas Public Schools2020 - 2021 District-wide School Lunch Program

Welcome back!
This is to inform all parents that we are beginning our school lunch program this school year under the USDA Seamless Summer Option (SSO) program. This federal program allows school districts to offer free meals to all Douglas Public School district students for the offered school lunch and breakfast. Breakfast and lunch are free to all students. If any additional meal or snack is purchased that must be paid for by the student.
This program is approved and funded by the federal government through December 31, 2020. At this time, we do not know if the program will be approved and funded beyond that point. Additionally, there is no guarantee that the program funds will not run out prior to December 31, 2020. Therefore, we will inform parents as the year progresses if there are any changes.
All parents who wish to complete a free and reduced application must still complete the application so that, if eligible,…

Superintendent's Weekly Update September 17, 2020

Newsletter Highlights Include:Help DeskPhases of learningMask ProtocolsDPS Weekly COVID DashboardUpdates Parent Info Sheet School Lunch Program
What a GREAT first day. After close to three months of hard work from everyone, we finally got to see all of our efforts come into play today. Students and staff were safe and following safety protocols and procedures. Relationships were being built and a sense of community in our classrooms and schools were being established. I had the chance to be in schools and classrooms for a good part of the day and the one word that comes to mind is joy. I saw a lot of it and I wanted each of you to know that. Even though we only had 25% of students back to day, I have no reason to believe this will not continue each and every day.
There were and are some kinks to work out. We are aware of the technology glitches that occurred and many of them have been resolved. If you are still having issues, reach out to our tech desk at helpdesk@douglasps.netand…

Superintendent's Weekly Update 9/11/2020

Newsletter Highlights Include:DESE welcome back letterNurse’s Information and GuidanceClass ListsBus RoutesTracking Data
After 4488 hours,187 days, and 26.7 weeks I am thrilled to welcome students back to school next week. It has been a long journey to get to this point and all of us are excited to open our doors to students. The first day of school is always filled with a myriad of emotions: excitement, nervousness, anticipation, uncertainty, joy, and rejuvenation. These feelings are magnified this year as we are returning to a new normal and a new model of education. As I have said over the past 10 weeks, thank you for your patience with us. Please know that we want things to be perfect for students and teachers for their return; if there are issues, let us know and we will address them. I have asked principals to continue meeting with families on a weekly basis and I have also asked for them to hold voluntary faculty meetings every day after school with staff to answer questio…

Superintendent's Weekly Update 9/3/2020

Newsletter Highlights Include:CohortsBack to School InformationNurse VideoTracking DataRemote Professional DevelopmentDLA and Remote DaysBussing
It has been great this week to have teachers back in the buildings. I had the opportunity to be in each of the buildings daily and finally meet many of our teachers. I can say that they are excited to have students back in school. They have been working on setting up classrooms, going over new policies and procedures, learning about different SEL strategies to make students feel safe and welcomed, understanding how to build robust remote lessons, and preparing lessons. We are all excited and eager to welcome students back on September 16th. 
Cohorts: Last week we shared cohorts with you. There were two lists that went out; the first was the list to see which cohort you are in Cohort A (Monday and Tuesday) or Cohort B(9 Thursday and Friday) and the second was to see which day you will come to school as part of our phased in roll out. If yo…

Superintendent's Weekly Update 8/29/2020

August 29, 2020Newsletter Highlights Include:CohortsBack to School InformationNurse VideoTechnologyWebsiteTracking Data
I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. I am very happy that on Monday we welcome teachers back to school. It has been a long 6 months and their return marks a significant milestone to getting students back in school. We are one step closer to September 16, our first day for students.
Cohorts: This week we shared cohorts with you. There were two lists that went out; the first was the list to see which cohort you are in Cohort A (Monday and Tuesday) or Cohort B (Thursday and Friday) and the second was to see which day you will come to school as part of our phased in roll out. Just as a reminder for dates:
September 16: This is the first day for students and this will be a full remote day. Parents and students will receive information from principals and teachers via email and Google Classroom as to expectations for this day.
September 17, 18, 21, 22: For these da…