CENTER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

837 LONGMEADOW STREET | LONGMEADOW | MASSACHUSETTS | 01106 | P 413-565-4290 F 413-238-6126

Center Elementary School’s vision for education is foremost focused on fostering a child-centered environment where our students are responsible and respectful members of their learning community. Students develop a strong sense of self and a desire to contribute to their community in a positive manner. Our vision for academic learning is to nurture highly motivated and independent students who approach learning with enthusiasm, critical thinking, creativity, and perseverance. Inherent in our vision is the guiding principle that all students can learn at high levels; and will reach their full potential through the collaborative efforts of their teachers, families, and school leaders.

"All students, regardless of race, color, sex, gender identity, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, or homelessness, have equal access to the general education program and the full range of any occupational or vocational programs offered by the district."


SCHOOL HOURS

8:30 AM - 2:45 PM

TO REPORT AN ABSENCE

PLEASE CALL 413-565-4290

SUMMER HOURS

8:00 AM - 3:00 PM

ANNOUNCEMENTS

June 19th, 2020

Dear Center School Community,

The parade was wonderful and the staff is filled with happiness that we were able to give our students a fun send off for the summer. We'll share the pictures on the school website soon. We’re overwhelmed with gratitude for the creativity, resiliency, and spirit of community among our school family that shined brightly this year. Teachers reflect that “together apart” takes on poignant meaning as they/I have connected with children and families in ways undreamed-of since March 13th.

And our students...they continue to inspire and drive us to realize the very best of ourselves as educators and as the consequential people in children’s lives. Whatever the complicated times ahead might bring, we promise to keep evolving and growing. We’ll turn all that we’ve been through into wisdom to build solutions for the trajectory education may take in the coming year. With humility, we ask for your continued trust, partnership, and perhaps more than anything, shared hope for the best in the days, weeks, and months ahead.

Enjoy the last day of the 2019-2020 school year with all the fun happenings in our classrooms. To all the families who have sent the most beautiful messages my way, please know I’m working on sending each one of you my heartfelt appreciation.

Please check in for communications from the district and from Center throughout the summer months. Class placements will be ongoing as our circumstances evolve; and please know that if you have sent teachers and/or me feedback, it will be thoughtfully considered. Plan on all the information you need to be provided in a timely manner before we begin anew in August. Report cards are in the mail. If your child is on an IEP, progress reports will be mailed separately from the report card.

Now let’s savor some much- needed offline time! Thank-you for keeping your child reading and for all the opportunities you will provide for experiential learning. Summers are for family and friends and I hope yours will be fun, safe, and memorable.

Please reach out to me with thoughts and questions throughout the summer. Email is the best way to reach me. I will be onsite at Center, but our front office is not available until August.

Take good care. Be well. Congratulations and deep appreciation to all....I knew we could do this...

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Countdown to the Finish Line 2020

Hello Center School Families,

It’s been challenging but fun to keep up with all the exciting happenings across each grade level for the past two weeks! I’m touched by all the ways that our teachers and families are finding to bring the end-of-year celebrations to our students. I hope your child is excited for summer days and the summer weeks ahead; and I hope that the celebrations bring lots of joy.

Just a reminder to take advantage of a consultation with Ms. Vigna for your child’s summer reading. Detailed information can be found at Summer Reading Resources. Students have been involved with lessons to prepare for their best summer reading!! Thank-you for your important support and partnership to keep reading momentum strong!

Center's tradition of a 4th grade musical production is a favorite among students, staff, and families. Bravo to our 4th grade teachers, Mrs. Morrisey, and our talented students for their production of The Show Must Go Online, because of course, remote learning will not stop this spirited group from moving ahead with a production! The online show was a time intensive effort and students are enjoying seeing the display of talents in 4th grade. Enjoy the show if you haven’t yet seen it!

Our awesome 5th graders celebrated the completion of their elementary school years on Friday-their “step up” day. Here’s their video graduation celebration. Center School 5th Grade Class of 2020 We LOVED going door to door to deliver their certificates! The step- up parade will be one of our many treasured moments to remember about this cohort. They will be missed.

We look forward to seeing you Thursday morning for the reverse parade! The start time is 9:30 am. Here’s a reminder of the procedure:

  1. Families, please form a one-way carline beginning at the corner of Longfellow. We’ll wave you forward at the start of the parade ! You'll hear the bell toll at the start of the parade as well, to signal the end of the school year and the beginning of summer break!

  2. Families will follow the one-way carline route-the route that's our regular drop off procedure- heading to Williams Street.

  3. Please remain in a single carline.

  4. Students may not exit cars at any time when they pass the staff and the school.

  5. Families will travel at a very slow speed throughout the route.

  6. Please, one family per vehicle!

Enjoy this prelude to summer days.

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal



Reverse Parade at Center!

Posted June 7, 2020

We invite you to Center School’s Reverse Parade!

Your Center Family would love to see our students and families to wish you a happy summer!

Center Staff will stand along the tree belt in front of our school!

When: Thursday, June 18th 9:30 am

Rain Date: Friday, June 19th 9:30 am

Procedure:

  1. Families, please form a one-way carline beginning at the corner of Longfellow. We’ll wave you forward at the start of the parade ! You'll hear the bell toll at the start of the parade as well, to signal the end of the school year and the beginning of summer break!

  2. Families will follow the one-way carline route-the route that's our regular drop off procedure- heading to Williams Street.

  3. Please remain in a single carline.

  4. Students may not exit cars at any time when they pass the staff and the school.

  5. Families will travel at a very slow speed throughout the route.

  6. Please, one family per vehicle!

  7. We’re soooo excited to see you in person !!!!

Please reach out to me with any questions!

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Three Updates from LPS

Posted June 5, 2020

Good Afternoon LPS Families,

I am writing this afternoon with some information on the re-opening of LPS schools and the 2020-2021 school year budget. You might also be interested in the links to the LHS AP art show at the end of this email.

School Reopening - The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has announced that communities will receive prescriptive school re-opening guidance during the week of June 15. I hold out hope that we will have a traditional opening, but I anticipate that we will be expected to follow a hybrid model, with some schooling being provided remotely and some provided in-person. I also anticipate that students will attend on a rotation, with only half the student body attending at anytime. LPS has developed a large, multi-disciplinary Reopening Advisory Task Force with parent/caregiver representation coming from the Parent Curriculum Advisory Council. Students, teachers, town officials, the LPS School Committee and LPS administrators are also represented. Until we are in a position to post the roster, you can email the group your thoughts or feedback at this address: reopening@longmeadow.k12.ma.us. As I have said on other occasions, the LPS community can expect that remote learning plans, should they be necessary, will be more robust next year and will feature clearer time on teaching and learning requirements, and more live interaction. We will also move toward greater learning platform standardization. Other preparations are underway. Professional development focused on the tools and pedagogy of remote learning is being planned. We are also working closely with town officials to secure and purchase health and safety supplies including, but not limited to, hand sanitizing dispensers and electro-static sprayers. Chromebooks will be also made available to all students in grades 1-12.

20-21 School Year Budget - Revised revenue projections announced by the town of Longmeadow recently required the LPS School Committee to revisit the fiscal year 2021 budget. To respond responsibly to these revised projections, LPS needed to identify $350,000 in savings and expenditure reductions on what was a $38,107,246 budget. I have attached the slide deck showing the administrative recommendations that were presented to and approved by the School Committee on Tuesday evening. You will see that the expenditure reductions prioritized health and safety, current levels of direct service and class size. The reductions do, however, mean that the plan to modestly increase elementary library staffing will not be implemented and also that a new career education position at LHS will be implemented mid-year, rather than in September. With the revised budget we were able to protect staffing levels to address 3rd grade class size at Center School and Blueberry Hill and 7th grade at Williams. I should cautiously note that the budget picture is never entirely settled. Staffing requirements and operational costs for next year will become clearer after we sort through the re-opening guidance described above. Additionally, state and federal grant revenue will not be fully known until later this summer. If the situation evolves, I will keep you informed.

LHS Advanced Placement Art Show - For your enjoyment I am pleased to provide you with links below to a 2d and 3d exhibit showcasing outstanding artwork created by LHS senior art students in the Advanced Placement Art & Design courses at Longmeadow High School. The exhibit is a strong testament to the art education students receive in grades Pk-12!

https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/hgodin/courses/ap-2d-art-design/gallery-ap-art-2d

https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/3dimensionalart/3d-ap-studio-art/2020-3d-ap-studio-art-show

AP students work with diverse ideas, materials, and processes to create their art and these portfolios exemplify the rigor, commitment, and accomplishment that AP Art students can achieve, even while working remotely! Thank you to AP Art Teachers Hilary Godin and Mariel Gross for inspiring these talented artists.

My best wishes to all for an enjoyable weekend!

Respectfully,

Marty O'Shea

Friday Shine a Light on Specials

Posted June 5, 2020

Happy Shine a Light on Specials Friday!

Here’s your link to the website and don’t forget to pop into scheduled grade level zoom meetings with our Specials’ teachers extraordinaire! Specials

For a Friday pick me up, here’s the link to the Cardinal Challenge Yourself Day Highlight video. Highlights Cardinal Challenge Yourself Day! 2020 Thanks to Mrs. Capotosto for compiling your highlights!

Great job Team Center School!

Have a good weekend...breathe...one day at a time.

Donna Hutton, Principal

June 1st: Important Curriculum Message

Good Monday evening Center Families,

Friday is Shine a Light on Specials ! Your child will visit the Specials! website throughout the day and focus remote learning on one or more activity from each teacher: Art, Music, PE, Library/Media, and Technology Integration. Students will receive zoom invites from special teachers as well!

SUMMER READING: Please take time this week to focus with your child on preparing for summer reading! Classroom teachers have sent information to families; and lessons from this important unit will take place in the coming days. Literacy coach, Ms. Vigna has developed an exceptional program that includes everything your child and your family needs for a successful summer filled with reading. Intro for Readers and Caregivers Visit Ms. Vigna’s page for Summer Reading Info Sessions These resources are invaluable and worth setting aside the time to delve into before your summer begins. You may even set up consultation time with Ms. Vigna to develop a custom reading list based on your child’s interest! I hope you will explore this program, partnering with your Center educators to help children keep on the path to reading and learning success throughout our break.

Thank-you for the pictures and videos from Friday’s Challenge Day ! Mrs. Gauthier and Mrs. Capotosto are compiling everything to share. Awesome day! Here’s the Challenge Yourself Day video if your child didn’t have the opportunity to try out some of the fun!

Heading to the finish line of the 2019-20 school year...I know you are ready for the promise of some rest from remote learning. We thank you for keeping your child engaged and for hanging in there in the days ahead as teachers still want to take full advantage of every minute with your child before the 19th.

Be well...

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Hello Center School Cardinals and Champions!

Posted May 28, 2020

We hope you get a restful night’s sleep and take on some awesome challenges tomorrow! Friday is Challenge Yourself Day !

Here’s the link for you: Center School Challenge Yourself Day

Please send pictures or short videos to Mrs. Gauthier, Mrs. Capotosto, your teacher, and/or Mrs. Hutton so we can share in the fun.

Looks like a pretty nice day tomorrow...maybe you can plan a picnic lunch like we have on field day right in your own backyards!

Take care my friends and enjoy your Friday!

Warmly,

Your Center Family

CARDINALS' “Challenge Yourself” Day!

Posted May 26th

On Friday, May 29th students will take a break from their remote learning routine for a variety of challenges that will test them both physically and mentally.

Mrs. Gauthier and Mrs. Capotosto created challenges for students at each grade level. Get ready to have some Center School fun! The video will be sent to families via School Messenger before Friday!

Here’s some equipment/supplies that will be helpful.

Not a problem if you don’t have all the items listed below. The items in parenthesis are suggestions that could be used as well.

  1. A timer (phone, computer or stopwatch)

  2. 1 to 3 Balloons (tissue paper or plastic bags)

  3. A variety of balls/different sizes (stuffed animals or balled up socks)

  4. A beanbag (balled up socks)

  5. A hula-hoop (laundry basket)

  6. A soccer ball (a ball that can be used to dribble with your feet)

  7. A jump rope (an imaginary rope)

  8. Cones (items that can be used to represent cones)

  9. A tennis racket (your hand)

Reach out to Mrs. Gauthier and Mrs. Capotosto with any questions!

Return of Library Books

Posted May 21, 2020

Hello Families!

It's a beautiful day today and the same weather is forecast for tomorrow! If you want to swing by the school with library books, we placed a return box right outside the front entrance door. Thank-you! And, you'll be able to see the stunning signs celebrating our LHS seniors on the green! It's special to walk the line and see their beautiful faces!

Best to all,

Donna Hutton, Principal

LPS Update

Posted May 19, 2020

Good Morning LPS Community,

I have three quick items for you this morning

Superintendent Broadcast: I am preparing a video broadcast to update the Longmeadow Community on number of topics including the school budget for the 20-21 academic year, the LHS graduation, current year remote learning plans and some initial thoughts on recovery and reopening. I would like the address to be reflective of your concerns and questions. The Google Form linked here can be used to submit your questions. The form will not collect names or email addresses. Please submit your questions by Wednesday afternoon.

Music for our souls: This Thursday at 7 pm, LCTV will air this year's final Longmeadow High concert on all its television channels, as well as its YouTube channel. The evening will include several virtual ensemble performances, some feature solos by some LHS seniors, and a special tribute to the music department's graduating class. Please tune in!

Digital Citizenship: I am passing along a valuable and timely resource from the Longmeadow Parent Digital Citizenship Coalition. The flyer pictured below might help you thoughtfully engage your child(ren) in an important conversation about on-line digital safety.

Respectfully,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools

May 18th, 2020

Hello Center School Community,

There’s lots of learning continuing and amazing activities happening across grade levels in the coming weeks so let’s keep engaged and connected!!

Ms. Gauthier and Mrs. Capotosto are excited to announce:

CARDINALS CHALLENGE YOURSELF DAY !!!

They’ve created challenges for students at each grade level! On Friday, May 29th students will take a break from their routine remote learning for a variety of challenges that will test them both physically and mentally. Get ready to have some fun!! More details coming your way next week!

Saturday many of us were reminded to continue to look for inspiration in our community, and it happened when most needed. Mrs. Serafino and Mrs. Erricolo ran their first 26.2-mile marathon across town with some double loops past many of your homes where cheering teachers, families, and students lined the route! It was incredible to see...I even chatted with curious townspeople at the finish line who joined us to celebrate! We all need these joyful moments... Here’s a video capturing just some of our Cardinal spirit and the determination of two special ladies! I’ll gradually put together more of the many pictures and videos for everyone to enjoy. Marathon '20, Marathon '20

Finally, if you were unable to pick up your child’s belongings because of your circumstances, please contact me via email before Friday. dhutton@longmeadow.k12.ma.us.

Have a good day and hope you find your inspiration in big and small ways throughout the week.

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

May 15, 2020

Dear Center Families,

It’s very still at Center now on this lovely afternoon...This was a week and certainly a day fraught with strong feelings. For our teachers, packing the students’ belongings was beyond difficult especially seeing classrooms frozen in time since March. And closing a classroom usually comes before the start of summer with anticipation and excitement... For parents and caretakers who came for your child’s bag filled with belongings-I wish I could have somehow found a way to make it feel less strange and emotional.

I heard from parents an ongoing incredulousness at our circumstance. The quietness and the tears as you moved in and out of the school, waving or saying hello was heart wrenching... So many stories of what this day may have meant to you.

To our 5th grade families...if your child is the last student in your family to journey with us or your only child, I promise we will find a time to physically gather with you at Center to say a real good-bye and a heartfelt thank-you- I don’t know when or how but we will gather! If we’ve learned one thing from this moment it’s how much loss we feel for the experiences in our lives that later become our treasured memories. So together we’ll use that wisdom and look forward to creating the opportunity.

I do hope when all our students unpacked bags, they found comfort and joy in the familiar. I heard from some families that it was like a birthday or holiday gift, which made me smile! Kids are so resilient and in these times with no guarantees, that reality gives me strength and hope on the most difficult of days.

Once again I say to everyone, hang in there...lean on your school family if we can help in any way to ease any complexities in the days and weeks ahead. I know we’ll continue to celebrate the creative and extraordinary ways our community is coping with our new everyday lives. Thank-you for the gift of our school community. I welcome any outreach from you if I can return the gift.

With hope and partnership,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Important for Tomorrow's Pick-up!!

Posted May 14, 2020

Hello Center School Families,

Just a couple important reminders and requests when you pick up items tomorrow:

  1. Place library books inside the wooden bin at the main entrance on your way into the building.

  2. If you are returning classroom books, please place them directly outside your child’s classroom. Please place a "post it" on books with your child’s name or place a piece of paper inside the book with your child’s name so teachers can track returns. Kinder families, place the books on a table in the classroom.

  3. The Lost and Found rack is in the entry way for you to check for items.

  4. Nurse Autumn will be here tomorrow for families to pick up any medications or EpiPen’s. She may not be available again for some time, and a nurse must sign off so please contact her for coordination. arodrigues@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

Here is the schedule of times for pick up by your family’s last name:

  • A-F (9am-10am)

  • G-L (10am-11am)

  • M-R (11am-12pm)

  • S-Z (12pm-1pm)

Please contact me with any questions. Enjoy the beautiful sunshine today!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Important! Pick-up of Belongings!

Posted May 12, 2020

Dear Center School Families,

We will provide an opportunity for you to retrieve your child’s belongings this Friday, May 15, 2020. For families who also need to obtain medication from school, Nurse Autumn will be available. Please contact the nurse via email if you will be picking up medication and she will provide specific information and protocol regarding the pick-up. arodrigues@longmeadow.k12.ma.us It’s critical that you take advantage of the medication pick up this Friday because a nurse must be present. Please do not visit the nurse’s office for other issues.

Here is the schedule of times for pick up by your family’s last name:

  • A-F (9am-10am)

  • G-L (10am-11am)

  • M-R (11am-12pm)

  • S-Z (12pm-1pm)

Important guidelines:

  1. Adults only may enter the building at assigned time.

  2. Masks must be worn when entering and throughout the time in the school building. According to CDC guidelines, the best way to protect yourself from germs when running errands and after going out is to regularly wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

  3. Enter through the main doors and go directly to your child’s locker/cubby.

  4. Please do not linger or congregate in the building.

  5. All your child's personal items are bagged and placed inside or in front of your child’s cubby or locker with the name clearly visible. With the exception of kindergarten, where cubbies are in the classroom, you will not enter the classroom. Classrooms will be locked, as will bathrooms.

  6. Exit the building through the nearest exit. You do not have to travel back through the building to the main doors if the classroom is close to an exit.

  7. If you have been recently tested for Covid-19, are experiencing any flu-like symptoms or are ill in any way, please do not come into the school.

  8. We need you to know that items that are not retrieved will not be stored and will need to be discarded or donated.

  9. You may return library books. Leave the library books in the boxes placed inside the main entrance.

We thank our teachers for their work to organize their students' belongings. We greatly appreciate their efforts. As I expected, it was a task fraught with emotions...

Please reach out with any questions.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Mother's Day Read Aloud

Posted May 10, 2020

Good Sunday evening Center School Families,

I hope you found special ways to celebrate moms today. Here is your bedtime story read by Mrs. Glading You Made Me a Mother !

Reminder that the Center School Bedtime Read Alouds are archived so you can listen to favorites again and again!

Enjoy a peaceful evening.

Donna Hutton, Principal

Happy Friday!

Posted May 8, 2020

Good Friday morning Center School Families,

Thank-you for the thoughtful ways you celebrated our staff this week...videos, parades, letters, pictures, chalk art...endless gifts from your hearts to express your gratitude. It feels like intentionally taking the time to send a word of encouragement or appreciation is especially meaningful during this time of upside-down life.

We developed a plan for teachers to come into the school building this week and next to organize your child’s belongings and gather needed resources for the six weeks ahead. We’ll plan time for families to gather left items at dates to be determined.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms in our community and to all the women in our lives who inspire and support us!

Finally, I’m inspired to share our Center School Song- feeling our school spirit! Your partnership and advocacy continues to press us forth and keep us strong...

Be well.

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Voluntary Social Gatherings for Students!

Posted May 6, 2020

Dear Center School Families,

With the extension of the school closure and the potential desire for some additional fun school connections, we would like to offer a weekly 30 -minute virtual social gathering facilitated by a Center School staff member for your child with his/her class. This gathering will strictly have a “social” focus!!

The gathering will be scheduled through Zoom. Please see the attached document with your child’s classroom day, time, meeting ID, and password for you to join. Kindly let us know if you need the phone number for the dial-in option. We will begin the schedule starting with the Thursday groups this week.

The facilitators will prepare activities and/or conversation starters to engage the group. Activities may include Scavenger Hunts, I Spy, Charades, Peaks and Valleys Conversation, etc. Almost like a virtual indoor recess!

Most of our students are now familiar with the virtual platforms being used through remote learning and students are growing their understanding of the “etiquette” needed for the platforms. As always, we have confidence that our students will demonstrate appropriate behavior while engaging with the group. The students should “mute” as they are admitted into the gathering. It will be helpful if students stay on mute when they log-in so the facilitator can introduce the activity quickly and allow the students plenty of time to interact and enjoy the fun!

There is no need to let your classroom teacher know if your child is attending or not. Participation is completely voluntary on a weekly basis. If you have specific questions about the gatherings, please e-mail Juliet Keenan at jkeenan@longmeadow.k12.ma.us. We are looking forward to “seeing” you soon!

Sincerely,

Center School Social Gathering Facilitators

Virtual Social Gatherings Schedule.pdf


Important Information: Report Cards

May 5, 2020

Dear Blueberry, Center, and Wolf Swamp Road Families:

As you know, our elementary educators are committed to standards-based teaching, learning and assessment. Your child’s progress is determined by an ability to independently and consistently demonstrate the standards in multiple ways across curriculum areas. Students are also given many opportunities to demonstrate learning and to receive ongoing teacher feedback on their efforts, a component that is at the heart of standards-based work.

With remote teaching and learning, there is a continued commitment to standards-based teaching and learning with a lens on the Department of Secondary and Elementary (DESE) content standards, as well as more finely tuned essential learning content standards at each grade level. Assessment of remote learning involves “check-ins” and varied formative assessments to provide both academic and social-emotional support. Teachers will continue to provide this feedback on the learning opportunities that closely align with content standards, learning opportunities that you and your child now know as “must do’s”. That stated, the end-of-the-year report card that will be issued will not assess whether your child has met standards during this remote learning period.

Teacher/student interactions that are so much a part of your child’s learning are also vital to assessing progress in both a reliable and valid manner. We simply cannot fully replicate all that occurs in the classroom through remote learning. Therefore, your child’s progress up to March 13th will serve as the baseline for progress on the end-of-year reporting. Importantly, this “baseline” will inform our work with your child for the upcoming year.

When our schools physically open, teachers will work with each child to complete the assessments of progress towards the prerequisite standards. There should be no worry regarding “regression”. Our unprecedented circumstance compels us to commit to “course correct” as needed to meet individual learning needs when we return to school.

The report card will include an indicator of your child’s overall efforts on teacher assigned work during the closure period and will additionally help inform our work when we return. The indicators for teacher developed lessons/activities are as follows:

  • Progressing: Student participated in lessons/activities and demonstrated progression of skills during the remote learning period.

  • Emerging: Student participated in lessons/activities, but not with consistent engagement during the remote learning period.

  • Indicator not determined: Student did not participate in lessons/activities during the remote learning period.

Teachers can be available for a fifteen-minute scheduled conference before June 1st if you would like to discuss your child’s progress as of March 13th. If you choose to schedule a conference, the teacher will share information that would have been shared had conferences taken place. Please reach out to your child’s teacher (s) to request a conference and a time will be provided to accommodate schedules.

We continue to appreciate your partnership and your efforts to support your child’s learning. Please reach out with questions regarding the report card or as always, any issue that we can be of assistance.

Respectfully,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Amy Stec, Principal

Elizabeth Nelson, Principal

Teacher Appreciation 2020

“Work is love made visible.”

May 3rd, 2020

Dear Center School Community,

It’s Teacher Appreciation Week! Hooray to our teachers!! Attached is a Teacher Appreciation Video I created that serves as a “shout out” to our teachers and our entire staff for their extraordinary work. (I so wanted to reach out to Mrs. Giuggio for her expertise; and hope she appreciates my novice attempt here!!!) The video is my humble effort to capture my deep gratitude for our teachers’ work with children.

There are so many roles that everyone is trying to balance these days, and I see our staff accomplish the balancing act with selflessness and dedication. And they work tirelessly with a new resourcefulness unimagined 8 weeks ago... Incredibly impressive and yet true to the people I have grown to know.

I believe one of the strongest traits that our staff exemplifies is humility. Humility allows them to appreciate that they will always have much to learn. Their collaboration and collegiality leads us to shared successes. I consistently see them share their talents and discoveries with each other with generosity and grace and stretch themselves to grow. Humility is at the heart of our work at Center and critical to this moment.

I am appreciative and proud to be Principal of this amazing community.

Thank-you to our teachers, our staff, and all the members of our community who make Center special.

Good job!

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal

My appreciation to the families and students who helped me with pictures for the video. To our entire community, please know these beautiful children represent all our students, just as the staff included represent all our colleagues.


Poem in Your Pocket Day

Posted May 1, 2020

To wrap up National Poetry Month, this week we celebrated Poem In Your Pocket Day - we choose a favorite poem, write it down and keep it in our pockets all day so we can easily share. Here are two Center Cardinals sharing their favorite poems with you!

Poem.mov
Poem In Your Pocket Day!.mov

April 26th Read Aloud

Good Sunday evening Center School Families,

Quick preview of choices for the week ahead...

Here's tonight's read aloud from Mrs. Palazzi: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCD3NIkSDC1uTG3vznfvlfvg

Looking for some PE fun? Target math fitness is a great choice this week!! https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Pb0Fwf4cPIGNDsMrLF4FmoCPKUfzLqHV/view?ts=5ea5c7f4

Music -second grade echo song but fun for all!! https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Og0tjHY33A9l9Hqa3hCjR_MsYdd4oXiU/view

Take a technology tour of this week's activities with Mrs. Giuggio: https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/technologyremotelearningopport/home

And don't forget your creative spirit with some awesome art activities! http://centerschoolart.blogspot.com/

Week seven mantra...breathe...

Be well...school is closed but our hearts and minds are open and here for you.

Donna Hutton, Principal

Reflection April 24th, 2020

Dear Center School Families and Staff,

During any school year, spring is the start of anticipation and planning for many happenings. We anticipate students to be well settled into their routines, but begin to show eagerness and readiness for approaching transitions. We plan celebrations of learning and growth, field trips, step-up’s, and our favorite orientation to welcome our incoming kindergarteners and fledgling Cardinals. There’s always so much left to do in April right through June because teachers never feel there is enough time to accomplish all there is to accomplish with their students. Yet now is the time when there’s also a sense of wonder and gratification at how much children have grown...

So many predictable and familiar rituals mark the seasons of any school year and bring us a sense of security. Consequently, it was an intensely sad moment for so many when Governor Baker announced the inevitable news that we would not return to school this year. My mind flashed to a million different things at once but what overwhelmed me was remembering a picture sent to me by Lily, a 5th grader, where she was holding up a calendar with her hopeful countdown to normalcy with the heading: “Let the 4th be with you”. Lily perfectly channeled our community’s dream that we might be able to somehow will a comeback on May 4th. If only our children’s wonderfully magical thinking could will us to a different place...a different time.

If you are a reader of fantasy, perhaps you are familiar with the unwitting hero of Lord of the Rings, Frodo Baggins. Without digressing too much, Frodo questions why he bears the burden of the circumstance set before him with the ring. He laments, “I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish this had never happened.” The wizard Gandalf with his extraordinary wisdom responds, “So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to do is to decide what to do with the time given to us.”

I grieve with you our losses during this time given to us. Yet, what has been revealed to me about our community helps me cope with the continued hard emotions we may share. Throughout our community and especially in our children, teachers, staff, and families is grace, adaptation, creativity, and resiliency. We are living a story our children and grandchildren will tell. I believe their stories will carry themes of faith in the boundless possibilities realized through the power of enduring solidarity and found hope during the most uncertain of times. This generation of children will also wonder at how masterfully the wise people in their lives supported them, teaching them the importance of caring for others above all else.

So, in this profound moment, we will continue to power forward with you in the weeks ahead. Remote learning resumes Monday and we graciously ask that you continue to support your child, mindful that it should not come at the cost of the social emotional well- being for your family. We encourage you to please reach out for support you may need from us with a promise that we can and will build solutions to the best of our creative imaginings. So much of this work is novel to all of us and we acknowledge that it’s far from perfect, therefore we can appreciate the remarkable efforts taking place and build solutions to our challenges at the same time.

Speaking with teachers, I can convey to you that it means a great deal to each teacher to hear from you. If you have not connected or checked in with your child’s teacher, please take a moment to send a short email expressing this is how we’re doing.

Finally, I also need you to know that our spring plans for traditions that are special and important to kids and families will be reimagined, wanting children to experience them in some form. We will need time and space to figure out all endeavors; and know we will keep you informed along the way. This certainly includes our 5th grade celebration.

For now, let's hang in there together... I wish you a relaxing weekend and endless creative ideas for social distancing that bring your family joy.

With respect and solidarity,

Donna Hutton, Principal

LPS School Closure

Posted April 21, 2020

Good Afternoon Staff and Families of LPS,

Sadly, but not unexpectedly, MA Governor Baker announced moments ago that all schools in Massachusetts will be closed for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year.

This is troubling news that will require great sacrifice, but our steadfast commitment to each other will endure. I have no doubt that the strength of our learning community will continue to sustain us through this troubling period.

Thank you for your patience and support as we prepare direction and information in response to this announcement.

Respectfully,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent


Monday, April 20th, 2020

Hello Center School Families,

No time sensitive information in my message-just sharing new resources and some news to mark some important celebrations this week.

National Library Week is April 19th-25th, and a perfect week to shine the spotlight on Mrs. Mulcahy’s Library Media Remote Learning- from Patriot’s Day to Poetry Month to Earth Day-so many books and resources to enjoy! Additionally, Mrs. Mulcahy registered Center School for Tumble Book Library, which is another great resource if you want more access to ebooks and audiobooks. There’s graphic novels included in the library, too! Book levels span from kinder to 6th grade. No sign up needed! Username: Center Password: trial

Bedtime Read Aloud: The Scarecrow read by Mrs. Hutton

Earth Day Read Aloud: The Loraz read by Ms. Eaton

Earth Day April 22, 2020 While we’re learning from home, please remember to save any markers, pens, or crayons that run out or break. Once we return to school, we'll collect them so we can send them out for recycling! TREX Challenge: Center recycled 351 pounds for the first time entering the challenge! Thank-you to all participants and to Ms. Fritz for helping us to always remember to be “green” Cardinals for our earth!

100 Ways to Play from the Boston Children's Museum

I hope our students enjoyed lots of outdoor fun over the long weekend!

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal


April 17, 2020

Dear Center School Families,

Just a Friday reminder that we will take a pause from remote learning on Monday, April 20th and again on Friday, April 24th. Teachers will be in touch on Tuesday morning, April 21st, with students’ plans for the three- day week.

Spring is blooming around us and I find my peace and solace in looking for these signs of hope. Much gratitude still coming your way from your entire Center family for your partnership and efforts.

Be well,

Donna Hutton, Principal

April 15th, 2020

Good Wednesday morning Center School Families,

No urgent messages except the TREX challenge...just some fun items for mid-week.

Yay, a mid-week Read Aloud/Sing Along story from Mrs. Morrisey!!

Murphy is so hungry these days just like all of us at home! Murphy's Hungry!

Here’s Ms. Vigna's Favorite Picks from the Scholastic Book Fair The Book Fair is open through April 19th.

Thank you to all who have participated in the Trex challenge! The total weight will be submitted on April 15, Wednesday evening at 8 pm. To date, we have recycled 299.8 pounds of plastic film/bags. I know that the plastic bag ban has been lifted due to the circumstances so there may be more out there. If you have any film or bags at home, please weigh them and send the weight to vfritz@longmeadow.k12.ma.us. I have my child get on the scale and record the weight. I then have him get on the scale again holding the bags. I subtract the second weight from the first to get the weight of the plastic. Once you have sent me the weight, you can drop the bags off at the local Big Y or Stop and Shop. There are collection bins at the entrances and Trex picks the plastic up from there. Thank-you for your participation and your efforts to make the earth a cleaner place!

From Close Community: #ChalkofLongmeadow Longmeadow needs to see and feel the love! Let's keep "chalking" about how wonderful our community is and how proud we are to be neighbors in these difficult times. Break out the sidewalk chalk and write an inspirational message or draw a cheerful picture for everyone to see! Place your writing on the end of your driveway or your sidewalks so anyone walking or biking by can see.

No sidewalk chalk? No problem! Be creative with signs, drawings, etc. Or better yet, make your own chalk! https://www.pbs.org/parents/crafts-and-experiments/how-to-make-sidewalk-chalk Take photos of your messages and art work and post them on Instagram, Facebook, or twitter with the hashtag #ChalkOfLongmeadow. We'll collect all of the photos we see online each Sunday on https://www.instagram.com/closecommunity/ until the stay-in-place is lifted and make a mosaic of all the things that make Longmeadow a safe, healthy, and happy place to live! Don't forget to support our brave and tireless healthcare workers, especially! There'll be some prizes for the most creative and most inspiring messages and art, so keep on chalking! PLEASE remember, avoid completing these projects in friend groups and please adhere to the social distancing guidelines.

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal


April 13, 2020

Good evening Center School Families,

As promised, the PTO brings you the Scholastic Virtual Book Fair! Enjoy browsing and shopping with your child until April 19th. Many thanks for your support of our PTO and hope you find some great new titles to add to your collections.

Here’s your Sunday Bedtime Read Aloud from Mrs. Palazzi. Sweet dreams to our Cardinals...I hope the celebrations of Easter were special.

Specials Website: Classroom Teachers will include this link on their remote learning platforms with reminders. Your child can include the special subject class with other remote learning tasks on the day they would have been scheduled for the special.

And just for parents and guardians :Some Good News: John Krasinski If you are a fan of The Office, you know John Krasinski and will likely enjoy his episodes! Episode 2 is not to be missed if you are a fan of Hamilton!

Be well and reach out to connect for anything at anytime.

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

For Our Center School Cardinals

Posted April 9, 2020

Good morning Center School Community,

For our families observing Passover and Easter, may you find wonderful ways to celebrate hope and the promises of spring with the love and support of your family and friends.

I continue to be inspired by your commitment and resilience as we journey through one of the most challenging periods of our lifetimes together. Our promise is to continue to search for the best ways to teach our students and remain connected to their hearts and minds.

I’m sharing a video for you to enjoy with your child(ren) that includes a message from each member of your Center School family. I borrow from the lyrics in the soulful song that plays to express the collective sentiment from us:

Our lives, our dreams are closer than we think...

You are the light beneath the storm...

Our ongoing gratitude and respect for all you are balancing these days and for your extraordinary support for our educators. May the long weekend bring you many peaceful and joyful moments.

For Our Center School Cardinals

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal

*Huge shout out to our LHS colleagues who moved us to create our own video; and to Laura Giuggio and Karen Palazzi for their creative and loving efforts!!

LPS School Calendar

Posted April 9, 2020

Dear LPS Community,

On the afternoon of Friday, April 3, MA school districts received a notice from the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education offering districts the option to use part or all of the April vacation week to sustain learning and teacher-student connections. The announcement gives districts the option of “counting” remote learning days held over April vacation toward state Student Learning Time regulations. In effect, this new MA DESE interpretation means that for each day of instruction held from Tuesday, April 21 to Friday, April 24, the school year will be shortened by one day.

Tonight, the Longmeadow School Committee thoughtfully reviewed and approved a recommendation to schedule three remote learning days over April vacation. This approach will solidify new educational routines and nurture the remote learning connections that have been growing in recent weeks, while also protecting family time with two days off during the week. More specifically, remote learning will be scheduled Tuesday, April 21 through Thursday, April 23. Monday, April 20 (Patriots’ Day) and Friday, April 24 will be days off. This decision also means that the last day of school in Longmeadow will be rescheduled from Wednesday, June 24 to Friday, June 19. On a related note, staff and families should be aware that Friday, April 10 is also a day off from school.

Our goal throughout the closure period has been to prioritize the health and well being of all members of the Longmeadow Learning Community. As such, if the rescheduled remote learning days are not supportive of your child(ren)’s well-being or your family’s unique needs, please use your judgement about how your child(ren) approach the learning expectations and convey the need for flexibility to your child(ren)’s teachers or principal. As always, we respect families as our educational partners, as together we continue to face this crisis with great resolve and fortitude.

Respectfully,

Marty O’Shea

Superintendent of Schools

Remote Learning from our "Specials" Teachers

Posted April 7, 2020

Good evening Center School Families,

Art, Library/Media, Music, PE, and Technology Integration are an important part of your child's day. We realize that your child is focused on the must do's from classroom teachers and perhaps work from our interventionists. That said, we want you to remind you that the special teachers are posting weekly lessons for your child to explore and to keep connected to them! There's some awesome activities on each site!!

A suggestion from the teachers is to go to the site on the day of the week that your child is scheduled for the particular special!

Here's the link to the website. I'll send a message on Mondays as a reminder for the week.

https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/specials/home

Thank-you and enjoy a peaceful evening.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

April 5, 2020

Good Sunday afternoon Center School Families,

Teachers will be communicating with you, if they have not done so already, to provide the information you and your child need for remote learning in the time ahead. Special education teachers and specialists will be in touch with their families and students by Tuesday, April 7th. Thank-you for navigating through the messages from April 1st. We deeply appreciate and are in awe of your ongoing partnership during this disquieting time. Please continue to reach out to us with your feedback and insights.

Thank-you to Mrs. Goldman for tonight’s Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud !

I’m excited to let you know that Mrs. Watson and our PTO are working to bring the Scholastic Book Fair to our students and families -virtually! Your child will be able to shop online for some new books to enjoy. More information is coming your way soon!

The sunshine Sunday was so wonderfully welcomed and needed. I hope you enjoyed some outdoor activities. Sending hopes for continued strength and well-being to all...

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Family Letter Remote learning update April 1.docx


April 3, 2020

Good Friday morning Friends,

When we gather for all school assemblies, we sing favorite songs led by Mrs. Morrissey. Here's your Friday song/sing along for your child to enjoy -a favorite for years!! Perfect for a rainy Friday...we'll keep this on our read aloud page for you to revisit.

Do you let the light in?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPxH9-SO25k&feature=youtu.be

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal


April 1, 2020

Dear Elementary Families,

We wish to provide for you a follow up to Superintendent O’Shea’s communication on March 29th in which he conveyed the district’s plan to frame our students’ remote learning in a manner that will provide refinement in the following areas.

  1. Enhanced Structure: Your child’s Remote Learning will become more intentionally structured. We will adhere to the MA DESE recommendation that students engage in meaningful and productive learning for approximately half the length of a regular school day. We recognize that children need additional time for reviewing assignments and organizing their work. Additionally, it is expected that students have time for play, physical activity, and arts-based exploration. Teachers will provide “teacher directed learning” following these guidelines:

  • Reading: 30 -minute lesson minimum three times weekly.

  • Writing: 30- minute lesson minimum three times weekly.

  • Math: 30- minute lesson minimum three times weekly.

  • SS/Science: The current Learning Opportunities structure will continue that provides a student varied choice to reinforce, apply, and deepen prior learning.

  • Art; Music; PE; Library/Media, Technology: Minimum of three structured learning opportunities per week.

Note that lessons may be presented in many formats and include different components that encompasses 30 minutes.

II. Video Conferencing: Following the guidelines that were issued to families and staff on March 25, educators may have begun using Zoom or Google Meet as a tool to maintain essential teacher-student connections. These tools may be used prek-5, but the decision will be left to the discretion of the teacher. Therefore, lessons in the above areas may be pre-recorded or may be synchronous lessons.

Importantly, we recognize the confounding issues that abound in providing synchronous learning to our youngest students. Many teachers have recorded read alouds, morning meeting messages, and various other activities that help children maintain familiarity and connection to the routines of their school world. That said, we hold no expectation that teachers at this grade span will teach through synchronous lessons. If implemented, we trust teachers will utilize it as they deem developmentally appropriate for children and manageable to families.

III. New material and concepts: While teachers will continue to reinforce, apply, and deepen prior learning across curriculum areas, introduction of new material and concepts will begin. Teachers will collaborate with their grade level colleagues, interventionists, and special education teams to determine new and essential learning in reading, writing, and math creating a flexible scope and sequence that is mindful of the learning standards.

Teachers will inform families of the determined time that will be considered “protected time” to plan with colleagues. Teachers will not be available during this time frame although students will still have Learning Opportunities in place.

IV. Feedback/Assessment: In grades PreK-5, student demonstrations of learning will continue to be shared with the teacher, when practically possible. Additionally, teachers at each grade level will determine and include the number of must do’s each day in reading, writing, and mathematics. The must do’s will be assignments/tasks that teachers will use to provide more specific feedback to students as well as provide for teachers an assessment of learning. Many students are familiar with this term and will understand that the task must be completed prior to other learning opportunity choices.

V. Intervention: Reading and math specialists and tutors will begin more focused intervention with their current students next week. Families can anticipate additional contact from specialists with the necessary information to move forward next week.

VI. Special Education: Special education services will continue, framed with new guidelines. The Longmeadow Public School District has been closely tracking state and federal advisories on how to provide equity and access for all learners. Longmeadow will continue to provide a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) to all students. Working collaboratively, principals, classroom educators, and special education teachers will provide resources, supports and services to ensure access and continuity of learning. Families can anticipate additional contact from special education teachers with the necessary information to move forward next week.

VII. Timeline: We know that families may have seen evidence of the shift described above this week, but plans will not be fully operational until Monday, April 6th, the end date of the original closure period that shaped our initial plans. We kindly ask for your patience as plans take shape. Plans will look slightly different at each grade span as teachers will be mindful of developmentally appropriate ways to facilitate learning in the most optimal way possible under these historical circumstances.

Our educators commit to continue and maintain strong and ongoing communication with families that demonstrates responsiveness to unique needs. As elementary school communities and as a district we are mindful of the disorienting circumstances that we find ourselves and we strive to demonstrate empathy, flexibility, and support to our students and families. We also strive to bring a semblance of normalcy to your child’s school world through our practices and decision making, knowing we provide a sense of familiarity, security, and comfort.

It is critical to us that students continue learning through these guidelines if they are motivated by their work. However, if at any point the learning becomes a struggle for your child or you, please pause, and contact your child’s teacher.

We encourage and welcome your insights and feedback in the days ahead. We send you our deepest wishes for the continued well -being of our precious students and of you our families.

Respectfully yours,

Donna Hutton, Principal Beth Nelson, Principal Amy Stec, Principal

Center School Wolf Swamp Road School Blueberry Hill School

Attach: March 16th Remote Learning Guidelines

Copy of Family Letter

Wednesday, April 1st, 2020

Good Wednesday morning Center Families,

Just a few news items for you and our young friends this morning.

Ms. Fritz vfritz@longmeadow.k12.ma.us wants you to know the TREX challenge ends April 15th. Families can report the weight of any bags they are collecting and she will add it to Center’s total. The total now for Center is 299 lbs- woohoo!! Great job Center recycling!

Here is a Virtual Tribute to Tomie de Paola, a beloved author and illustrator of nearly 300 books, created by Mrs. Mulcahy.

Wednesday’s Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud ! Thanks Mrs. Brydges!

Well, Murph is a busy boy and keeping his person quite active. Look what he’s up to this week! Murphy at School!!

Continue to check out Ms. Gauthier’s and Mrs. Capotosto’s site for ideas to stay active and keep fit! PE At Home Learning

We’re still loving the cardinals! Keep them coming and don’t forget to place the picture in your window!

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

“Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain.”

March 30, 2020

Hello Center Families,

With some rainy days ahead this week, you may need a Plan C on some days. If your child has introduced you to or you are aware of the sometimes-mind-numbing capacity of You Tube, here’s one of many other places to visit that provides a wealth of material for learning at home. Mark Rober is ex-NASA and offers a new video every month where he sets a challenge, researches and builds. What kid can resist a science class that explores why the sky is blue or if farting makes you weigh less...It is a brilliant launchpad for science/engineering exploration and learning. Mark Rober

Math Engaged is filled with fun card games! All you need is a deck of cards!

Here’s your Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud to start the week! Center Read Aloud Library offers a wide- ranging choice of read alouds from your Center family.

Mrs. Goldman's Blog is updated with art activities and lessons for all grade levels.

There is something about being at home that makes us all want to eat more and kids may want to empty the entire fridge before morning snack. Some tips to deal with this:

  • Continue to pack lunchboxes so everyone knows what they have for the day

  • Leave out snacks in a central location for grazing

  • Leave ingredients and a recipe to help keep kids busy and fill them up

  • Rotate who creates the daily meal the whole family will eat from what’s available in your staples.

Keep those beautiful Cardinal pictures coming our way!! When you walk, the pictures will be found in home windows and on windows in the front of the school.

Reminder from Superintendent O’Shea: Beginning Friday, students in grades 3-12, whose parents have not withheld permission, may be invited to Zoom or Google Meet sessions. Parents/Guardians and educators should note that staff may use their own professional judgment when deciding if and when Google Meet or Zoom are appropriate to use during the closure period. Each platform must be used within the March 16 “Guidelines for Remote Learning” primarily to

  • maintain appropriate teacher-student relationships and social-emotional connections.

  • explain or enhance learning opportunities that teachers have developed.

  • monitor student progress or student understanding of the learning opportunities that have been developed.

Also remember that we are “staying the course” with the Guidelines for Remote Learning issued on March 16th while DESE guidelines are thoughtfully reviewed.

Finally, continue to remember to do whatever your child needs to feel safe and secure during this disorienting time and know we are here to help. During google meets with teachers, I learned that they will reach out to individual families whom they have not heard from in some manner in the past two weeks. Thank-you for any reassuring return messages.

Be well.

Donna Hutton, Principal

March 27, 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians...

I walk almost daily at the Quabbin, which is very close to my home. It’s peaceful and provides the quieting of my mind that we all search for of late. A mom and daughter hand in hand were walking to the side of me and the small child broke the silence and asked her mom, “When will it be gone?” Mom questioned, “When will what be gone?” “The virus thing,” she answered. Without missing a beat her mom said, “We’re making the best of it right? Let’s look for the eagle today.” And off they went...sidling up more closely, hand in hand... sure of each other.

Well, life as we know it is upended...I’m confident that the May 4th date prompted hard emotions for all, hard emotions that are common these days...

We think of parents and guardians and caretakers in our school world constantly-as much as we think of the children. Teachers and families share stories with me about what our students’ days may look like; and the stories can be funny and contrastively poignant as you grapple with the demands of this moment.

So, Friday’s message is to say that You are champions to us. Champions if you are essential workers and you have to figure out and structure days for your child without your physical presence. Champions if you are compelled to work from home and help with your kids’ passwords and platforms, meltdowns and calmness, quiet moments and boisterous moments, creative activities, padlets, flipgrid, google classroom...

You also continually navigate the complexity of physical distancing. I know you understand that your child may be experiencing profound loss as you recreate as best as possible the familiarity and comfort of his/her social world. All of this is such arduous and loving work. Such balance each and every day. Days are likely filled with questions with unknown answers like the mom with her precious child at the Quabbin. I’m also keenly aware of the financial burdens that have or may evolve as the days move ahead. I strongly encourage you to reach out to me if this burden is something we might be able to assist you with or perhaps point you in the appropriate direction. I promise the outreach will be discreet.

I offer no platitudes at the end of this second week physically away from the community we all love. I also have no assured list of recommendations that will work well for every family as we continue efforts to help you help your child with learning opportunities.

But please always remember that we get it...your circumstances will determine what your child’s day looks like and the learning opportunities chosen...and there simply is no right or wrong or best practice or need to worry that you are not doing enough, because your best in the moment is enough.

When we are physically together again, the educators in your child’s life WILL help your child at whatever place we land. And I will sustain my hope that we will land softly at the end. Building solutions to help our students meet success when we return is our ongoing work and our commitment to you. Tacit in all our messaging is our deep gratitude for your patience and partnership as remote learning continues and evolves. And no hesitations please to provide us with your story to help us with our work.

Finally, to you our Champions: As you steel yourselves for the weeks ahead, I encourage you and hope and pray that you practice radical self -care each day, radical care for your child’s emotional health above allelse. We are here for you and for our students and wish you continued well -being and resilience.

...Donna Hutton, Principal


March 26th, 2020

Hello Center School Families,

What a beautiful day to enjoy some outdoor time adhering to critical social norms that will continue to keep your family and vulnerable members of our community strong and healthy.

Just a short message to remind you that tomorrow is a Cardinal spirit day. Families can send teachers and me pictures of stripes and polka dots day! If your child wants to dress up a favorite “lovey” or favorite stuffed animal, include them in your photos.

Thank-you and be well.

Donna Hutton, Principal

March 25, 2020

Good Wednesday morning Center School Friends,

Today is a perfect day for a special hello from Murphy with his tail -wagging positivity! Enjoy!

Murphy Says Hello

Murphy Goes Hiking

We begin today to share a "Wednesday" Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud...don’t forget to revisit weekly favorites as you listen to our new additions.

Wednesday Read Aloud

Keep those Cardinal pictures coming our way. We love the expressions of creativity and especially love seeing cardinals in windows when we drive/walk safely and responsibly around our community. You’ll also see the pictures hanging on Center School's front windows in the days ahead...

More messaging to come later today...

Best,

Donna Hutton, Principal

March 23, 2020

Good Monday morning Center School Families,

What a beautiful weekend for walks and bike rides; and I hope you found lots of creative ways to enjoy the outdoors.

While we responsibly practice physical distancing to keep our families safe and well, we want to continue to find creative ways to keep us “connected” to our school community and even continue to show Center School spirit.

This week and beyond, when your child has a moment for some artistic fun, please suggest that he/she draw a Cardinal with a positive word or message and place the drawing on a front window. When students safely take their walks/bike rides with their family, they will see the positive and spirited messages from Center friends around neighborhoods. Also, if possible, take a picture of the drawing and send it to me or to your child’s teacher to use in our messages. We look forward to seeing many unique cardinals, bright and cheerful across the town.

Here's messaging from our special teachers.

Children's Authors doing Read Alouds & Activities

From PE: Hello Center School Cardinals! We wanted to say hello and hope you are enjoying the fun and creative websites and fitness activities we've provided while you are learning from home. Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or if you've found a fitness related website or app that you think we would enjoy. We would also be interested in getting some pictures of how you are being active. We'd love to see those smiling faces! Missing you all. Take care. Mrs. Capotosto & Mrs. Gauthier ecapotosto@longmeadow.k12.ma.us kgauthier@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

From Art: Check out Mrs. Goldman's Blog for some art activities and ideas.

From Music: Mrs. Morrisey's Movement Share

From Mrs. Mulcahy: Ideas from Library

Be well,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Bedtime Read Aloud

Posted March 22, 2020

Hello Center School Community...

Here’s your Bedtime Read Aloud...After the Fall by Dan Santat.

Have a peaceful evening...


Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal

March 20th, 2020

Good morning Center School Families,

Today begins the first full day of spring, a season of newness and hope. Here’s a Spring Read Aloud to enjoy. As the days meld into each other, I hope you find a way to make the approaching weekend a rejuvenating time, while keeping strong and safe.

Teachers are maintaining ongoing contact with one another and with me. Our administrative team communicates daily. Like everyone who is responsibly maintaining social distancing, our communication helps us feel connected to our school world and remain responsive to you. I know teachers are reaching out to you, our families, in many different ways to help you navigate the Learning Opportunities. Teachers are also creating appropriate, acceptable, and impressively creative ways to stay connected with your child. That said, it is very important for us to continue to hear from you, so many thanks for the feedback and questions coming our way. As your child settles into school days at home, we will do what we reasonably can accomplish to ease any challenges you may be facing.

I remind you to continue to check websites and your emails for updates from Center and from the district. We’ll send resources your way and all School Messengers can be found on Center’s website for your review. Center School Website

Have a peaceful day...Perhaps a rainy Friday is a good day for a Virtual Field Trip.

Yours respectfully,

Donna Hutton, Principal


March 19, 2020

Good morning Center School Families,

Our 5th grade announcers begin each day at Center with messages... the Pledge of Allegiance, birthdays, moment of silence, and a “thought for the day”. On Fridays, many students wait for the “Friday” song, which is usually a dance/movement song. Here’s a song for your child to enjoy tomorrow morning: Piano Guys: Friday Song And here's a site to choose a poetry minute any day and any time: Poetry Minute for Elementary Kids

I’m sharing with you a link with resources for supporting students and parents around issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially related to our school closings. The document is sectioned into categories: resources for parents and teachers, resources for elementary school students, middle school students, high school students, and general mental health supports. This resource reflects the collective dedication, care and commitment of our social workers and school adjustment counselors. My sincerest appreciation to Mrs. Connery and her colleagues for their collaborative efforts, as we know this will benefit our entire learning community.

Support Resources (icon located under parent tab on our school website page)

Support Resources for Families and Teachers

If you feel you may have missed any of my communications, we post all messages on the Center School website: https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/new-ctr/home

As always, please don't hesitate to reach out for any reason... Your Center School community misses you and sends our wishes for continued strength and well- being to all.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Two Notices from LPS

Posted March 19, 2020

Good Morning LPS Families,

This morning I have two notices related to our continuing effort to provide support your children during the school closure period.

The first is that Springfield Prep Charter School, located at 594 Converse Street in Longmeadow, has graciously offered Longmeadow children the opportunity to participate in its pre-packaged, pick-up-and-go meal program. Beginning Monday, any child under the age of 18, is able to participate, free-of-charge, during the closure period. This "grab and go" meal service will be provided at the school’s front entrance every weekday between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.. No identification is required to participate.

To assist Springfield Prep with their planning and ordering, all LPS families are asked to fill out this very brief, anonymous survey.

The second notice relates to synchronous audio and video connections between teachers and students. Last night, I instructed teachers that the remote learning opportunities they design should use only pre-recorded audio and video files. Teachers may not use live, interactive video or audio feeds. This is not to say that all lessons need to be asynchronous. For example, teachers might provide synchronous, real-time support to students using other features of google classroom or a shared google document.

I recognize that video is a great teaching tool and an effective way to stay connected with students. However, we must protect student and teacher privacy, be consistent with district policy and adhere to the remote learning expectations that were recently outlined. Please understand that this may cause some teachers to reconfigure some plans that were thoughtfully developed.

On a lighter, video-related note, thank you to Glenbrook Art Teacher Bill Griffin for permitting me to share with you his creative video talents: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DzYKJpc-6a8&feature=youtu.be Bill reminds us that humor helps during times of uncertainty.

Thank you for your understanding and flexibility. As always, we welcome your feedback and questions.

Respectfully,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools


March 18th, 2020

Good morning Center School Families,

The Learning Opportunities Learning Opportunities for each grade level are available at 8:00 a.m. today. May we suggest that you take some time to review the choices and expectations with your child; and begin in ways that are manageable to your child and to your family. We trust you will build in time for play, movement, music, and creativity- much as our teachers do each day.

Teachers welcome your questions and feedback and will be responsive to your needs. You and your child’s insights will be important as you begin to navigate the possibilities that teachers present for engagement.

If you are looking for support for your child in ways to discuss the coronavirus, here’s some possible resources. Your family’s pediatrician can also be a resource. Adjustment counselor Carol Connery is available as well. cconnery@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

Kidshealth. CDC. Childmind. Masslive. MASS GOV

At this time, please know that parent teacher conferences are postponed. We value the important conversations that take place and will let you know at a future time when and how we will hold the conferences.

Send any and all questions , concerns, and successes my way. Thank-you for the countless encouraging messages we're receiving...let's continue to keep each other's spirits high and hopeful.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal.


Tuesday, March 17th

Hello Center School Families,

Here’s your Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud for today. Bedtime/Anytime Read Aloud

I realize you’re taking in a lot of messaging and navigating through lots of resources... That said, with the Leaning Opportunities beginning tomorrow, you may be interested in creating a daily schedule for your child. Attached is a template that you might use or may serve to help you create your own. Sample home schedule.pdf

Mo Willems is a fan favorite at Center! Here’s his daily Lunch Doodle for some creative fun. Lunch Doodle

And one more awesome link filled with possibilities: Excellent Resources for Parents and Kids

Be well and continue to adhere to all the directives that will keep all our beautiful community members and our children safe and strong.

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Remote Learning Guidance

Posted March 16, 2020

Good Evening LPS Parents,

As the entire LPS community prepares to enter uncharted remote teaching and learning waters, I wanted to share with parents the guidance that the administrative team provided to LPS educators this evening. The guidance was provided in collaboration with Longmeadow Education Association President Kathy Russotto and reflects the latest direction we received from the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

The guidance we provided rests on our firm belief in educator professionalism, dedication, and compassion. It also recognizes that our educators will undoubtedly need to balance their continuing professional responsibilities with personal and family obligations.

The guidance we provided to LPS Educators is as follows:

"First and foremost, we want to remind you that students will not have access to their typical learning supports and accommodations during the closure period and that students will have varying levels of support at home. Please be mindful that students will be working in busy homes, sometimes with parents or guardians who are working from home. To the best of your ability, please be sure that students have equal opportunities to access the curriculum. Special Education teachers will check in with families to be sure that students can engage in the activities that have been provided by their general education teachers. If possible, Special Education teachers or Interventionists should provide alternative activities when needed.

A few other thoughts to clarify what is expected of Unit A educators

  • Stay connected with families and students. You are an important source of comfort and stability to children and their families. Do not underestimate the important role you play in their lives.

  • Our expectation is that educators be responsive in a timely and professional manner to students and parents via email. We trust your commitment and your judgment.

  • The goal is to keep students academically engaged.

  • Be consistent in your approach. Routine and predictability will help families at this difficult time. Do your best to work with families to help them achieve a routine that fosters learning.

  • Encourage school counselors or administrators to check in on students that you are concerned about.

  • Focus on learning experiences that reinforce and extend content that is comfortable or familiar.

  • Focus on review, enrichment, skill enhancement.

  • To ease the burden on families, encourage student self-direction.

  • As we noted previously:

    • At the Pk-5 level - student demonstrations of learning will be shared with the teacher and feedback, as necessary, will be provided regularly and upon the students’ return.

    • At grades 6-12 - student demonstrations of learning may be shared with the teacher and assignments may be graded, as necessary.

    • In both these cases, provide students with multiple opportunities for success or mastery.

Lastly, we ask you to be very attentive to the adjustment students will need to make when school resumes. Reassure parents and students that we will meet students where they are upon their return. It is very likely that students will need to be given opportunities to revisit assignments when we return. Flexibility will help you and your students manage through these extraordinary times.

If you have questions, talk to your colleagues and review your plans with your principal.

Take Care,

Marty



Learning Opportunities

Posted March 16th

Dear Blueberry Hill, Center, and Wolf Swamp Families,

We begin by expressing that in this sobering moment, we are spending considerable time thinking of our students and our families and wishing you strength and resiliency. We trust that you will strive to achieve a semblance of regular routines with optimism, as we live through the uncertainty that is our world in the days ahead. Predictability and schedules will be reassuring to our young friends.

Our driving goal for the Elementary Learning Opportunities is to help you achieve a home routine for your child that fosters choice learning experiences that will reinforce and extend content your child has been presented in the classroom.

The opportunities provide online and paper-based choices; and each grade level determined how many tasks your child should choose in each curriculum area each day. That said, if on any day you or your child experience challenges with online resources, please do not let this create angst for your family. You may choose to print some of the attached resources, but you may also create a similar “template” for your child to work with to complete daily written tasks if printing is not an option.

We’ll travel this novel path together with calmness, flexibility, and creativity, remembering the prioritized goal is for children to engage in ways that will sustain learning.

Learning Opportunities begin March 18th. To find your child’s Learning Opportunities, please go to your respective school’s website. BH Center WSRS Once on the website, click on the student tab. You will see an icon for Leaning Opportunities. Click on this icon and each grade level will be found as well as other resources from specialists and special teachers. Attached are hard copy resources for some grade levels as needed.

If your child is on an IEP (Individualized Education Plan), his/her teacher will reach out to you with additional information or you may reach out to her.

Lastly, for now, we are reminded of Fred Rogers’ words: “My mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers — so many caring people in this world.”

Our students can become “helpers” too. Your child might create a beautiful picture and message to mail to an area nursing home because nothing warms the heart like a child’s artwork. Send a thank-you letter to a local supermarket or pharmacy whose workers are recently burdened with the onslaught of shoppers. Perhaps a message of gratitude to a health care worker. Teaching children to appreciate and empathize with others is a way for them to be helpers. This teaching is the heart of our work together. Please consider sharing your family’s ideas with us and with your neighbors. It will take a village.

Our collective wishes to you for family ingenuity, good health, humor, and hopeful spirits when it matters most. Please reach out with any questions, insights, or concerns. Know we will be in touch with updates.

With partnership,

Principals Amy Stec, Donna Hutton, Beth Nelson

Kindergarten Learning Opportunities.pdf

Grade 1 Materials.pdf

First Grade Fundations and Phonics Materials.pdf

Readers Notebook Grade 1.pdf

Grade 2 Resources.pdf

Grade 4 Resources.pdf

Important Information for Remote Learning

Posted March 13, 2020

Dear Center School Families,

As you are aware, Longmeadow Public Schools will be closing from March 16th through March 27th 2020. Remote learning opportunities begin on Tuesday, March 17th for all students at all grade levels. The learning opportunities include online and paper- based activities that will foster engagement, reinforcement, and extension possibilities.

You will receive the resources your child needs via email from the principals on Monday, March 16th . For families who need devices/internet access, our technology department will be forthcoming with information on how to go about signing out these devices.

Only the kindergarten team and the 5th grade team will have additional hard copy resources to pick up at the school on Monday. Also, if your child works with Mrs. Fritz, Mrs. Longo, Mrs. Auerbach, Mrs. Grant, Mrs. Coviello, or Mrs. Erricolo-there are folders with resources for you to collect at school. ALL other grades will access all learning opportunities online.

To collect these materials from Center, the building will be open for students/families on Monday, March 16th from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. For families who also need to obtain medication from school, Nurse Autumn will be available during these times.

Please do not come to the school to pick up any non-essential items. Only the grade levels named and the students who work with one of the above teachers should come to the school for selected resources.

Students/families can arrive at the following times, with the last name initials beginning with:

  • A-F (9am-10am)

  • G-L (10am-11am)

  • M-R (11am-12pm)

  • S-Z (12pm-1pm)

Please enter the building from the main office. I welcome any questions and encourage you to check email and websites for the most current information. Carol Connery, our adjustment counselor will be available during regular school hours and families may reach out to her via email.

We are deeply grateful for the level of collaboration and time intensive work from our educators that occurred today for your children. We also thank you in advance for your support as we move through the coming days. We recognize that our schools are the heart of your child's day to day world; and we trust our collective spirits will remain hopeful and high.

Take good care...

Donna Hutton, Principal

COVID-19 Update

Posted March 11, 2020

Good Evening,

In light of recent COVID-19 related guidance issued by state and town officials including Governor Baker's declaration of a State of Emergency, I am writing to notify the Longmeadow Public School community that, until further notice, large public gatherings hosted in the Longmeadow schools involving more than 50 members of the general public have been cancelled.

This includes the public "Minding Your Mind" events on Wednesday, March 11 and Thursday, March 12. Please note that school-based, school-day Minding Your Mind activities scheduled this week for high school and middle school students will proceed as scheduled. Additionally, this preventative measure includes the cancellation of the evening District-wide concert scheduled for Wednesday evening at LHS.

Out of state field trips are also cancelled until further notice.

I would reassure parents that there are currently no active cases of the coronavirus affecting our community and that other essential school schedules, functions, services and activities can continue as planned. Under the direction of the Emergency Manager, Fire Chief John Dearborn, the town’s multi-disciplinary COVID-19 Task Force continues to monitor developments and manage town-wide preparedness and response.

The LPS Professional Day scheduled for Friday, March 13, will give members of our custodial team the opportunity to diligently sanitize educational spaces and high touch surfaces using recommended cleaning guidelines.

Members of the Longmeadow Public School Community are encouraged to exercise the flu-prevention, hygiene habits that were outlined in earlier messages distributed and now posted at www.longmeadow.k12.ma.us. The Town of Longmeadow also has resources posted to http://www.longmeadow.org/1181/COVID-19-Information

Thank you for your understanding and attention.

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools

Join us Thursday - presentation at 7; food trucks at 5:30

Good Evening -

The Special Programs Committee, the CLOSE Community Coalition and I hope you can attend this special, entertaining event!

Food trucks on site at 5:30 p.m.!!

Marty O'Shea, Superintendent


Week of March 9th

Good evening Center School Families!

I hope you enjoyed the lovely day and the extra sunshine! Here’s your bedtime read aloud for tonight: Bedtime Read Aloud

March 11th 7:00 p.m. LHS; District Band Concert

March 13th: No School Professional Development Day

March 19th Parent-Teacher Conferences ½ day for students: 11:30 Dismissal

March 20th Parent-teacher conferences ½ day for students: 11:30 Dismissal

March 27th Spirit Day - Stripes and Polka Dots

March 31st MCAS Grades 3 & 4 ELA Day 1

April 1st MCAS Grades 3 & 4 ELA Day 2

April 2nd MCAS Grade 5 ELA Day 1

April 3rd MCAS Grade 5 ELA Day 2

Last two weeks to check lost and found for winter items before we donate them. There are snow pants, boots, coats, hats, mittens, and so much more!

Best to all,

Donna Hutton, Principal


March 11 morning event - Just Talk About It and March 12 Evening Event - Secret Life of Tweens

Posted March 5, 2020

I hope you will consider using the link below to register for "Just Talk About It."

"Just Talk About It" is a 90-minute introductory mental health education program hosted by a Minding Your Mind clinician and featuring a young adult speaker. Attendees will learn about the mental health issues facing adolescents and help parents, guardians or caregivers notice the warning signs of stress, anxiety, depression, and crisis.

"Just Talk About It" is scheduled for Wednesday, March 11, at 9:00 a.m., in the large, district office meeting room at 535 Bliss Road (adjoining LHS).

To be sure we have adequate seating and accommodations for this special event, please sign up to attend using the following link:

Google form Registration Link for Just Talk About It

Additional information on this special presentation and the Minding Your Mind organization can be found on the flyer below or at https://mindingyourmind.org/what-we-do/just-talk-about-it/

The Special Programs Committee cordially invites you to attend LPS' second Minding Your Mind event for parents to be held on Thursday, March 12, at 7:00 p.m., in the LHS auditorium.

This dynamic and fun presentation, titled the "THE SECRET LIFE OF TEENS AND TWEENS," will be delivered by Minding Your Mind's Jon Mattleman

Parents who attend will be treated to a presentation that focuses on what children from ages 11-21 are really thinking, what they fear, and why they do not share more.

Thank you for your interest!

Superintendent Marty O'Shea

Week of March 2nd, 2020

Hello Center School Families!

Monday, March 2nd: 8:45-9:45 Central Office Room A15: Raising Good Digital Citizens: At this grass-roots gathering you will meet other parents interested in raising good digital citizens. You will learn some ways that parents can encourage children to have a healthy relationship with technology; and you will pick up some tips, resources and advice to help your children navigate in a technology infused world.

Tuesday, March 3rd: Helping Hands Kindergarten with 5th grade buddies to assist 7:45 a.m. Cafeteria

The Center School Council meets monthly. Here’s a link to the minutes as well as other informative information about the work of the council. School Council

Enjoy this week’s story! Bedtime Read Aloud

March 13th - PD Day- No School for students: Teachers who teach writing will be involved with work that focuses on ways to grow our students’ writing proficiencies, specifically focused on responding to text. Other educators will be involved in varied topics including project based learning, enhancing SEL practices, and other topics pertinent to their roles. Lots of really good work!

March 19th and 20th - ½ Days 11:30 a.m. Dismissal- Parent-Teacher Conferences

Here we are already in spring and looking ahead to the last months of your child’s 2019-2020 school year. As you know, we hold conferences twice annually. The March conference provides an invaluable time to “formally” touch base with families to discuss students’ academic and social emotional learning as well as to discuss areas to continue to grow. Importantly, teachers want to hear your insights, answer questions, and continue to grow partnerships to work together to help your child be the best student possible.

Here’s some helpful ideas to prepare for your conference:

  • Talk with your child about school. What does he/she feel are strengths and growth areas as we approach the remaining months of this school year? Is there any special topic your child wishes you to talk about with the teacher?

  • Time is precious: prepare notes with topics you want to discuss and questions you may have about your child’s learning and progress.

  • Please be on time. The schedules are tight and teachers want every minute possible with you.

  • Respectfully discussing any differences and celebrating successes will help teachers partner with you to find the most effective ways to work with your child. Teachers value and appreciate your insights.

  • Do you want to know ways to continue to support learning at home? Teachers will offer suggestions!

  • Please thank our teachers for their work. I know they will thank you for your ongoing support and advocacy for your child.

  • Provide feedback to your child after the conference. Always emphasize the positives and discuss ways your child can work to enhance his/her work as a student.

What is your child reading this week??

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Digital Citizenship Parent Coalition

Posted Feb. 25, 2020

Good Afternoon LPS Parents,

Bring a friend and a coffee to a meeting of the Longmeadow Digital Citizenship Parent Coalition!

At this grass-roots gathering you will meet other parents interested in raising good digital citizens. You will learn some ways that parents can encourage children to have a healthy relationship with technology. and you will pick up some tips, resources and advice to help your children navigate in a technology infused world.

This meeting is scheduled for Monday, March 2 at 8:45 in a large meeting room located in the LPS Central Office at 535 Bliss Road.

LPS is pleased to support this coalition that is by LPS parents, for LPS parents. For additional information on this event or the coalition, please contact Kristin Seeley at kristinseeley@msn.com

Respectfully,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent

Week of February 24th, 2020

Happy Sunday Center families and welcome back!

Here’s your bedtime read aloud to start the new week...How many things will your child make in a day or in the week ahead? Listen to this story that celebrates the many forms of creativity.

Bedtime Read Aloud

Two promising district-wide events ahead for families:

Please join the Longmeadow community on Thursday, March 12, at 7:00 p.m., in the LHS auditorium for a special presentation by renown mental health counselor Jon Mattleman who will be speaking about "THE SECRET LIFE OF TEENS AND TWEENS. He will deliver a dynamic and fun presentation that focuses on what children from ages 11-21 are really thinking, what they fear, and why they don’t share more.

Additionally, Superintendent O'Shea invites you to register for JUST TALK ABOUT IT, a small group presentation to be held on Wednesday, March 11 at 9:00 a.m. in the large district office conference room located in the LPS offices at 535 Bliss Road.

March is around the corner so here’s some calendar reminders:

March 3rd - Helping Hands - Grade 5 & Kindergarten

March 11th - District Band Concert LHS 7-8pm

March 12th - District Special Programs - Minding your Mind: Secret Life of Tweens and Teens

March 13th - Professional Development Day - No school!

March 19th Parent Teacher Conferences ½ day for students- Evening Conferences

March 20th Parent Teacher Conferences ½ day for students

March 27th Spirit Day - Stripes and Polka Dots

We look forward to seeing everyone tomorrow, rejuvenated and ready to learn and grow in so many ways as we approach spring!!

My best to all,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow Meeting

Posted Feb. 10, 2020

Dear LPS Community:

This important message is from the LPS Parent Special Education Advisory Council:

The Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow (SEAL) is a Parent Advisory Council that offers information, support, and networking opportunities to parents. Please join us for our next meeting on Tuesday, February 11th at 7:00 PM in Room A-31 Pupil Services, 535 Bliss Road, Longmeadow. There will be a presentation By Deborah Finneran on MCAS : Access and Achievement for Students With Disabilities. For the full meeting agenda, and to learn more about future meeting dates and events, visit www.sealma.org.

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools



Bedtime Read Aloud

Posted Feb. 10,2020

Here’s you bedtime read aloud voted by third grade students for their teacher to read! Enjoy and happy reading!

Week of February 10th, 2020

Hello Center Community,

We land this week half way through the school year with our 100th day celebrations on Wednesday! I look forward to the celebration and seeing all the fun ways classes will acknowledge the day.

Our Share the Love Food drive is Tuesday and Wednesday. Please drop off donations on the carline and our 5th grade safeties will assist. Thank-you for your ongoing generosity to the Longmeadow Food Pantry.

Procedures: I realize that I repeat this reminder quite often, but once again I request that families refrain from drop off at the back of the school. Additionally, we are concerned with dismissal time on Longfellow when families allow children to cross where there's no crosswalk. U-turns are also posing safety risks to members of our community on the narrow street. Please help us create the safest environment possible for our community by following our procedures. I have requested help from the LPD so you may see their presence in the days ahead.

Recently with the cold weather, dismissal is taking much longer than expected. So...we are also requesting that drivers not exit their cars on the carline at dismissal. We will happily assist you with seatbelts and getting your child into the car. We’re also asking teachers and families not to spend too much time talking when they walk children to the car...please know that we are not being abrupt or unfriendly, but again, small actions make a huge difference in our efforts to move things along.

Here’s our School Committee’s update for January and February: SC News

Spirit Day is Friday: Wear your pink and red for our Valentine’s Day celebrations. Please check in with your child’s teacher about any treats you might be sending with your child on Friday. All items will be checked by Nurse Autumn.

Winter break is February 17th through the 21st!! I hope families enjoy lots of time together and a little break from schedules and routines!

Have a wonderful week!

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Center School Report Card

February 7, 2020

Dear Parent or Guardian:

Every year, each public school and school district in Massachusetts receives a report card. Just as your child’s report card shows how they are doing in different subjects, the school’s report card is designed to show families how our school is doing in different areas. A link to our school’s report card is available at Center 2019 Report Card.

The report card includes multiple measures of a school’s performance – more than just MCAS scores. It represents a new way of looking at school performance, by providing information on student achievement, teacher qualifications, student learning opportunities, and more.

Report cards are designed to be useful tools for everyone connected to our school. Families can use the information to have meaningful conversations with us about what the school is doing well and where there is room for improvement. Community and education leaders can use the information to better understand how to support students and our schools.

School Improvement Plans geared to improve student achievement in our school can be found at Center School Improvement Plan.

Finally, if your child attends a school that receives federal Title I funds, you also have the right to request the following information about the qualifications of your child’s class room teacher:

  • Whether your child’s teacher is licensed in the grade levels and subject areas they teach,

  • Whether your child’s teacher is teaching under an emergency license or waiver,

  • The college degree and major of your child’s teacher, and

  • Whether your child is provided services by paraprofessionals and, if so, their qualifications.

We appreciate your ongoing support of Center School and invite your continued involvement and participation in our learning community.

For more information about what we are doing to improve student achievement, please feel free to contact us at 565-4290.

Sincerely,

Ms. Donna Hutton

Principal, Center School

To view the district’s complete report card, please follow this link:

Longmeadow Public Schools 2019 District Report Card

5 Quick Facts about the Report Card and Glossary

Center Letter .docx

Important Report Card Information

Posted Feb. 7, 2020

Center letter.docx
heart

Hello Families,

Please click on the links below for two opportunities. One opportunity is for Longmeadow Youth Track and Field sign -ups and the other is for a Parents' Night out on Valentine's Day sponsored by the LHS Drama Club. All the information you need can be found on each flyer!

Track and Field Opportunity

Parents' Night Out 2/14/20!

Dear Center School Families,

I trust report cards presented an opportunity to reflect with your child on his/her work and play as an ever-growing learner and very importantly, a positive member of our school community. We know that praising children when we notice their good efforts and strategies enhances their resilience and overall learning outcomes. One central goal of standards-based report cards is to keep everyone focused on learning goals from the very beginning of the year, including your child! I encourage you to continue to familiarize yourself with grade level standards Family Guides to Standards as well as continue your partnership with teachers to help your child meet individual goals.

Here’s our fun Bedtime Read Aloud for tonight-a must for super bowl/football fans! Bedtime Read Aloud: Super Bowl Edition!

Wednesday is World Read Aloud Day and our student Reading Ambassadors will visit classes to share a story. Mrs. Mulcahy led the students in a mock Caldecott contest once again this year. Caldecott Medal Home Page Both these endeavors provide an opportune time to discuss some favorite reads with your child.

Helping Hands is Tuesday for our first graders at 7:50 a.m. in the cafeteria. Siblings and families are always welcome!

February 11th & 12th - Share the Love Food Drive to support the Longmeadow Food Pantry. You may drop off on the carline in the morning.

February 14th - Valentine’s Day - Spirit Day: Wear your Red and Pink.

Many thanks from all our staff for your ongoing support and your engagement in your child’s learning. Please reach out with any feedback, questions, or just to say hello!

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

MCAS Dates

ELA

March 31st & April 1st: 3rd and 4th Grades

April 2nd & April 3rd: 5th

Math

May 5th & May 6th: 3rd and 4th

May 7th and 8th: 5th

Science

May 14th and May 15: 5th Grade

Teachers nominated for award

Congratulations to our nominees!

(From left to right) Tracy O'Gara, Vanessa Vigna, Paige Anderson and Nate Ferreira have been nominated for the Pioneer Valley Excellence in Teaching Award! This morning they were celebrated at a nomination breakfast with other nominees in the district. Congratulations to our teachers who are being recognized for their outstanding work with our students!



Report Card Message

Posted January 30, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians:

Elementary students will receive their first report card on January 31st. The Elementary Report Card Committee began collaboration on this new report card almost four years ago with the goal of providing more accurate and meaningful information to students and their families on the students’ progress toward meeting year-end grade level standards. The Committee continues to meet to revise and enhance the information on student report cards. Standards represent well-defined objectives in each content area. The standards on our report card are derived from the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks, which can be found at http://www.doe.mass.edu/frameworks/.

A standards-based report card requires a shift away from traditional grading practices. Traditionally, students have been awarded report card grades based on an average of homework, classwork, tests, and quizzes. Conversely, a standards-based approach reflects a student’s learning progression towards meeting specific standards in each content area. Standards-based grading also helps us remind students that learning is a process that requires growth over time. Standards-based grading fosters a growth mindset in students by providing multiple opportunities to demonstrate their learning.

Students have been receiving standard summary sheets throughout the semester, indicating performance on individual assessments. Because the report card standards incorporate multiple objectives, the full grade-level standard may not be reflected until June.

There are several important considerations when reviewing your child’s report card:

  • Not all standards are assessed each semester. (Indicated by a dash)

  • Some standards, as written on the report card, represent a compilation of several standards from the Massachusetts Curriculum Framework.

  • There is no equivalence between traditional grading and standards-based grading. For example, a 100% on one traditional assessment does not necessarily reflect that the student is meeting a standard in its entirety. The classwork you receive weekly from your student is your best indication of your student’s current performance.

  • The performance indicators are emerging, progressing, and meeting.

  • The indicators for the “Behaviors that Demonstrate School Success and Citizenship” are; rarely, with prompting, and consistently.

Please visit the district website for answers to frequently asked questions and a digital tour of the report card.

Sincerely,

The Elementary Report Card Committee &

Susan Bertrand

Assistant Superintendent for Learning

Copy of message: SBRC Parent Letter 2020.docx


calendar

MCAS DATES

Tuesday 3/31/2020 Grades 3 and 4 ELA

Wednesday 4/1/2020 Grades 3 and 4 ELA

Thursday 4/2/2020 Grade 5 ELA

Friday 4/3/2020 Grade 5 ELA

Tuesday 5/5/2020 Grades 3 and 4 Math

Wednesday 5/6/2020 Grades 3 and 4 Math

Thursday 5/7/2020 Grade 5 Math

Friday 5/8/2020 Grade 5 Math

Thursday 5/14/2020 Grade 5 Science

Friday 5/15/2020 Grade 5 Science


Week of January 27th

Hello Center School Families,

Here’s some reminders for the upcoming week:

Wednesday, January 29th: At 7 p.m., in the LHS Michael Mucci Auditorium, the Special Programs Committee will show a powerful documentary film titled "If They Had Known." The documentary focuses on the alarmingly dangerous partying culture that confronts many teens and young adults. For more information, please visit https://www.iftheyhadknown.com/. A panel discussion, led by local experts and allowing for attendee participation, will follow the film. Prior to the film, beginning at 6 p.m., the Special Programs Committee, in conjunction with the CLOSE Community Coalition, will host a resource fair featuring community agencies or support programs such as Learn To Cope, the Western Mass Parent Support Group, Youth Mental Health First Aid, Alex's Army, The Center for Human Development's Goodwin House; The Behavioral Health Network's A-CRA program. Please join this important community conversation!

Report cards will be distributed Friday, January 31st: Website for Families

Girls on The Run is still seeking and hoping for volunteer coaches for the upcoming spring season so Center can have a team!! For more information, please check their website http://www.girlsontherunwesternma.org/or contact the Local Director Molly Hoyt, molly.hoyt@girlsontherun.org, 413-320-1845

Here’s the link for this week’s Bedtime Read Aloud: Bedtime Read Aloud Happy Reading to all!

Helping Hands: Tuesday February 4th: 1st Grade helping hands meet in the cafeteria at 7:45 a.m.

Winter Break: February 17th -24th

Have a wonderful week ahead.

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


If They Had Known

Posted January 21, 2020

Please mark Wednesday, January 29th on your calendars. At 7 p.m., in the Longmeadow High Michael Mucci Auditorium, the Special Programs Committee will show a powerful documentary film titled "If They Had Known." This 35-minute documentary focuses on the alarmingly dangerous partying culture that confronts many teens and young adults. For more information, please visit https://www.iftheyhadknown.com/. A panel discussion, lead by local experts and allowing for attendee participation, will follow the film. Prior to the film, beginning at 6 p.m., the Special Programs Committee, in conjunction with the CLOSE Community Coalition, will host a resource fair featuring community agencies or support programs such as Learn To Cope, the Western Mass Parent Support Group, Youth Mental Health First Aid, Alex's Army, the Center for Human Development's Goodwin House and the Behavioral Health Network's A-CRA program. Please join this important community conversation!

Woman reading to son

Week of January 20th, 2020

Good evening Center School Families,

Here's your Bedtime Read Aloud for tonight! Happy reading to all!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eugnNpvXjho&feature=youtu.be


Kid's stem night flyer

Stem/Parents' Night Out

Posted January 15, 2020

Good Afternoon Elementary Parents and Guardians,

The LHS Robotics Team is hosting a STEM/Parents' Night Out on Friday, January 24th from 6-9 p.m. at Longmeadow High School.

The evening will feature fun Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) activities, movies and snacks for children ages 6-12.

See the flyer for additional details!

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Friday, January 17th

Good morning Center School Families,

This is a reminder that today is a half day for students. Our staff will be engaged in professional learning this afternoon at the high school; and we appreciate your prompt pick up at the 11:30 a.m. dismissal.

With the weekend forecast of snow, you may want to have your child visit lost and found this morning. There are several pairs of snow pants, many hats, mittens, gloves, and a couple winter coats.

Such a change in temperatures...brrr...please drop your child off at the front of the school in the carline-a procedure we consistently request you follow. We will have all students enter the front entrance today including our kinder, first graders, and 5th graders. Please tell your child not to wait on the esplanade.

Have a wonderful long weekend. Hope if we're snowed in, you enjoy some "extra" fun and relaxing family time.

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Message from School Nurse

Posted Jan. 13, 2020

Dear Center School Families,

Cold and flu season is upon us and the schools are already seeing an increase in many contagious illnesses. We would like to take this opportunity to remind families of some important steps that can be taken to limit the spread of illness within our schools. As always, our staff will work with the students to limit the spread of germs within the school by encouraging the following:

  • Frequent and diligent hand washing

  • Avoiding touching of eyes, nose, and mouth

  • Covering coughs and sneezes with the inside of the elbow

  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick

Students exhibiting any signs of illness will be referred to the health office for evaluation. Teachers and custodial staff will implement more stringent cleaning protocols for touchable surfaces.

We additionally ask families to help us limit the spread of illness by adhering to the following guidelines:

Children with one (or more) of the following symptoms MUST stay home until symptom-free for 24 hours:

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Fever greater than 100.4 (without fever-reducing medication such as Tylenol or Motrin)

  • If prescribed antibiotics, children must have a full 24-hour dosage before returning to school.

As a precaution, please consider keeping your child home for:

  • Excessive stuffy nose or nasal drainage

  • Excessive or persistent cough

  • Lethargy or general malaise

  • Low-grade fever

  • Nausea

Thank you for partnering with us to create the healthiest possible environment for our students. Please reach out to your School Nurse with any questions or concerns.

Please read attachments for additional information.

Cold vs Flu Guide.pdf

Flu Fact Sheet.pdf

Flu Guide for parents MDPH.pdf


Week of January 13th

Hello Center School Families,

It was wonderful to complete a full week of learning! I considered it a perfect week because I was able to visit many classrooms-the favorite aspect of my work. I encourage you to continue to engage in your child’s learning by discussing the activities and happenings in the classroom and beyond. The teachers’ communications via newsletters and websites will provide the conversation starters! https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/new-ctr/faculty-staff

As promised, I’m thrilled to bring you the first new Bedtime Read Aloud of 2020! The endeavor fosters our commitment to building and enhancing a culture that promotes a love of reading and ways to share that reading with others. We hope you enjoy a unique time to listen in with your child each time we release a new favorite! Happy reading to all! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUAyJKRNf8U&feature=youtu.be

Here’s the link to the past read alouds- it's always fun to revisit a favorite story! bit.ly/ctrreadalouds

Report Cards will be distributed on January 31st. Just a reminder that this link provides useful information for families: https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/elementarysbrc/faqs . Behaviors that Demonstrate School Success and Citizenship are at the forefront of the standards- based report card at the elementary level. These behaviors promote your child’s success with the academic performance indicators. We encourage you to praise your child and celebrate successes with these behaviors as well as discuss specific ways to grow as learners and citizens. Teachers welcome your questions regarding any indicator assessed on the report card.

Aligned with becoming positive and caring citizens, we have been talking with students about the Peace Builder practice of seeking wise people in our lives. We agree to Seek Wise People when we notice hurts, when we are being hurt, or when others are being hurt, with words and or with actions. In addition, we teach children to Seek Wise People when they see, hear or feel bullying or bullying actions occurring to themselves or to those around them. You can support our work in this area by talking with your child about his/her “go to” wise person (or persons!) at school and the critical importance of reaching out for guidance and help and additional ways to take care of self and others.

Center School night at the Thunderbirds is just around the corner! The deadline to order is Wednesday!! Please contact Katie Force for more information or call in your order at 413-417-2296.

TREX Challenge update: We have collected 165.4 pounds of plastic film packaging and bags!! Keep sending plastic filming to school! Way to go cardinals!

Carline reminders: Please refrain from cutting into the carline from Longfellow Street; forming carlines at the back of the school where there’s a fire lane sign posted; drop offs anywhere around the school except at designated spots. Please remember that all these issues impact the safety of members of our community, most especially our students. Thank-you for your continued patience as we navigate ways to develop the most efficient procedures to get students in and out of school in the safest manner.

Is your child missing a winter hat? Gloves or mittens? A coat or snow pants?? All these items can be found outside the cafeteria for students to find!! The weather is extraordinarily unpredictable-60 degrees in January, oh my! It will likely get cold again so thanks for helping your child dress appropriately for outdoor recess.

Please contact Ms. Turrini or Mrs. Giuggio if your 5th grader is interested in the Green Screen Center School Sightings (CSS) Club. There’s still time to join!

I welcome any feedback or questions about your school community! Thank-you for your ongoing support and advocacy for your child!

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Calendar Reminders:

  • January 17th - ½ Day 11:30 a.m. Dismissal

  • January 20th- Martin Luther King Junior Day

  • January 21st - 4th and 5th Grade Chorus, Winter Concert at Glenbrook 7 p.m.

  • January 31st - Report Cards distributed



Martin Luther King Jr.

Hello Families,

There’s still an opportunity for students to join the following clubs!

Reading Ambassadors: Do you love reading? Do you want to be a leader of reading at Center School? Then join the Reading Ambassadors! The Reading Ambassadors are a group of third through fifth-grade students on a mission to spread the joy of reading at our school led by Ms. Fritz and Ms. Vigna. We’ll be meeting every other Thursday morning from 7:45 to 8:25 in the Community Room. As soon as we get our official roster, we’ll let you know all of the dates. You'll choose from a variety of committees like community readers, surprise book cover door decorating, reading newspaper, and MORE. If you’d like to be a Center School Reading Ambassador, sign up HERE. Check out this Center School Sighting report on Reading Ambassadors or this Center School Sighting report about last year's summer reading assembly for more information.

Green Recycling Club! Do you care about the environment?

This club will organize current collections and generate new ideas for our school to be more earth-friendly! We will meet after school on Thursdays until 3:30. The dates will be sent out once the number of students is determined. If you are interested, please fill out this google form.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1d4L0wTuwi_zs5ldjcApvaJfkVpbYWFFHG5zXc8FCn8I/edit Any questions should be directed to Ms. Fritz: vfritz@longmeadow.12.ma.us

Center School Sightings (CSS) for 5th Graders:

Will you be the next great movie maker? Come be a part of the Green Screen CSS Team and learn how to be all of these:

  • Cinematographer

  • Live-on-the scene reporter

  • Multi-source editor

  • News anchor

  • Director

  • Producer

It’s your time to shine as you get a say in how movies are made at our school, about our school! Center School Sightings newscasts are featured on websites, blogs, LCTV, for the whole community to check out. Join the team! Be behind the camera or live on screen! Club leader: Ms. Turrini. Days: Thursdays 2:45-3:45. Please sign up here: CSS Sign Up and direct questions to cturrini@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

Here’s some calendar dates to remember:

January 17th ½ Day for Students; PD for Staff

January 20th No School - Martin Luther King Day

January 21st Winter at Glenbrook MIDDLE SCHOOL 7:00 p.m.

January 29th District - Special Programs- Clay Soper: If They Had Known

January 31st Report cards go home.


students at assemblyStudents at assemblyStudents at assemblystudents at assemblystudents at assemblyCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel imageCarousel image

Scroll through to enjoy photos from our holiday assembly!

Cardinal in snow

Holiday Wishes

Dear Center School Community,

As we conclude 2019, and approach the winter break, I want to take a moment to express my heartfelt gratitude to all who help make Center an amazing place to be.

Our school is truly a vibrant and caring community; and I’m deeply appreciative of the rewarding opportunities to learn from all of you, especially our students!

I wish you all Peace, Joy, Hope and Happiness during the holiday season and in the new year.

Whatever your beliefs and traditions, and wherever you may be in the week ahead, I hope that you are able to spend an abundance of time with your family and loved ones.

The new year will bring new learning experiences, new challenges, and new fun. I look forward to the adventures that lie ahead for our children and for us as a school community in 2020!

Have a joyful week...safe journeys... and warm memories to all!

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Snowman

Week of December 16th

Thursday, students will enjoy the ballet, Lyra’s Quest, performed by the Artistic Dance Conservatory. There will be lots of holiday celebrations across grade levels throughout the week, including caroling from our 5th grade band. This is a good week for your child to bring home items from cubbies and lockers and check lost and found before Friday.

We’ll end our week with our annual all-school holiday sing-along. Center students explore the history and traditions of holidays around the world. In music class and in the library through literature, children learn about others and share their own stories and family traditions. Mrs. Morrisey and our teachers create musical experiences to share with the whole school, which include singing in different languages, storytelling, playing instruments, and dancing. Mrs. Morrisey and the 5th grade chorus will take the lead for us! Unfortunately, the gathering is a student/staff only event because we can’t accommodate families in the gymnasium. Hoping children will share some songs with you!!

Please reach out with any questions or feedback. Here’s some calendar reminders:

December 23rd -January 1st : Holiday Break

January 7th - Helping Hands Grade 2: 7:45-8:25 a.m. Cafeteria

January 10th -PTO meeting - Community Room 9-10 a.m.

January 17th - ½ Day for Students; PD for Staff

January 20th - No School - Martin Luther King Day

January 21st - Winter Concert Gym 1:15 -2:15 (PM at Glenbrook 7-8PM)

January 24th - Trimester 1 Ends

January 31st - Report cards

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

SEAL Meeting 12/10/2019

Posted Dec. 10, 2019

Good morning:

The Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow (SEAL) is a Parent Advisory Council that offers information, support, and networking opportunities to parents. Please join them for their next meeting on Tuesday, December 10th at 7:00 PM in Room A-31 Pupil Services, 535 Bliss Road, Longmeadow. There will be a presentation by Debra Finneran from Federation for Children With Special Needs - Understanding Basic Rights, 504 plans in Special Education. Brian Smith- Administrative Director from TDS Center for Communication and Social learning to speak regarding starting a local social group. For the full meeting agenda, and to learn more about future meeting dates and events, visit www.sealma.org.

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools


Week of December 9th

Hello Center School Families,

We have full days ahead of us before the winter break. The Holiday Gift baskets will be lovingly wrapped on Thursday and delivered to our special friends. Please have gifts Many thanks for your generosity and gift of time to help us wrap.

The Scholastic Book Fair was a tremendous success. We hope you found some great reads and perhaps some gifts! Andrea Watson, Robin Lewis, and Samantha Root deserve our praise for all their work with coordination of volunteers, schedules, and set up. Well done with $4,900 in new books for the library and teachers' classrooms!!

Helping Hands: 3rd grade tomorrow morning in the cafeteria at 7:45 a.m.

Most of our students have been dressed well for the wet wintery weather. We’re hoping for some outdoor recess this week; and students will need to have boots. Know that wet sneakers/shoes are very uncomfortable for students and if they have PE, very problematic for the gymnasium floor.

Family Writing Night is Wednesday from 6:00 to 7:30 in the cafeteria. Families may park in the back of the school and enter directly through the cafeteria doors. We look forward to a memorable evening!

MCAS 2020 Schedule

ELA : March 31st & April 1st: 3rd and 4th Grade April 2nd & April 3rd: 5th Grade

Math: May 5th & May 6th: 3rd and 4th Grade May 7th and 8th: 5th Grade

Science 5th grade : May 14th and May 15th

NEX TREX School Plastic Film Recycling Challenge: Valerie Fritz, reading specialist and resident environmentalist, has entered center in the plastic film recycling challenge. She met with students to explain the challenge and you’ll see the bins across the school. Here’s some additional information for you to peruse. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hf60y0wRhII&feature=youtu.be trex-school-recycling-challenge-info-sheetpdf.pdf trex-recycling-posterpdf.pdf

Please reach out with any questions.

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Monday Morning

December 9, 2019

Good morning,

ALL students should enter through the main entrance this morning. The ramp, esplanade, back stairwells, and Longfellow sidewalks are slippery. First graders and kinder students will have assistance when they enter through the main doors.

We anticipate a very long carline, and thank-you for your patience. Please move all the way forward to the crosswalk when you drop your child off.

More weekly news later today...

Thank-you,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Book Fair Tonight!

Posted Dec. 4, 2019

Please come to the Scholastic Book Fair TONIGHT!!

6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Center Community Room

Enter through the main doors!

See you tonight for some great book shopping!!

Book Fair Schedule for Students

Thursday 12/5/19

9-9:30 Brydges

9:30-10 McLean

10-10:30 Bombardier

10:30-11 Palazzi

10:50-11:20 Green

11:30-12 Craft/Kadis

12:30-1 McColgan

1-1:30 Serafino

1:30-2 Ferreira

2-2:30 Gildersleeve


Friday 12/6/19

9-9:30 Eaton

9:30-10 Silva

Cardinals

Snow Day #2

Posted Dec. 3, 2019

Hello Center Families,

Just an update on our Book Fair...the Wednesday schedule remains the same and our dedicated committee is ready to go for 9:00 a.m. tomorrow! Teachers will be in touch about rescheduled days and times. Tomorrow will be the night time shopping for our community from 6:00 to 8:00! Don't miss out on an opportunity for finding a new favorite or choosing the perfect book to gift someone for the holiday season!!

Wednesday Book Fair Schedule

9:00 - 9:30- Ms. Wright

9:30 - 10:00- Mrs. Moore

10:00 - 10:30- Mrs. Glading

11:00 - 11:30 -Mrs. Cummings

11:30 - 12:00 -Ms. Iancu

1:30 - 2:00 - Mrs. Salvatore

2:00 - 2:30- Ms.Anderson

Back by popular demand and coming in the new year-Center School Bedtime Read Alouds!! Here's our previous stories for you to revisit while we prepare for the next just right stories for our students. Best to all and hope to see everyone tomorrow! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCD3NIkSDC1uTG3vznfvlfvg/videos

Donna Hutton, Principal

December 2nd

Hello and Happy Snow Day Center Families!

The Book Fair is still on for this week! Teachers will be in touch with families if your child’s schedule is changed because of today or any possible delay tomorrow. The late afternoon shopping is also still planned for tomorrow from 6:00 to 8:00 in the Community Room. Happy book browsing!

We love recess in the snow! PLEASE make sure your child has boots (a must because the playground and field will be snow covered and wet), a hat, warm coat, mittens or gloves so he/she can enjoy the fun in the snow this week. Our younger students will especially enjoy unlimited fun in the snow with snow pants!! We will provide indoor recess for students who are not dressed for the weather.

Snow accumulation brings fewer parking spaces for our school community. While the carline will become longer, please refrain from parking in the teachers’ lot in the back of the school during drop off or pick up; and from parking and drop off on Longfellow. We appreciate you following procedures and dropping your child off in the carline.

We’re excited to offer three school clubs for our students beginning after the winter break. Here’s the choices:

Reading Ambassadors: Do you love reading? Do you want to be a leader of reading at Center School? Then join the Reading Ambassadors! The Reading Ambassadors are a group of third through fifth-grade students on a mission to spread the joy of reading at our school led by Ms. Fritz and Ms. Vigna. We’ll be meeting every other Thursday morning from 7:45 to 8:25 in the Community Room. As soon as we get our official roster, we’ll let you know all of the dates. You'll choose from a variety of committees like community readers, surprise book cover door decorating, reading newspaper, and MORE. If you’d like to be a Center School Reading Ambassador, sign up HERE. Check out this Center School Sighting report on Reading Ambassadors or this Center School Sighting report about last year's summer reading assembly for more information.

Center School Sightings (CSS) for 5th Graders:

Will you be the next great movie maker? Come be a part of the Green Screen CSS Team and learn how to be all of these:

  • Cinematographer

  • Live-on-the scene reporter

  • Multi-source editor

  • News anchor

  • Director

  • Producer

It’s your time to shine as you get a say in how movies are made at our school, about our school! Center School Sightings newscasts are featured on websites, blogs, LCTV, for the whole community to check out. Join the team! Be behind the camera or live on screen! Club leader: Ms. Turrini. Days: Thursdays 2:45-3:45. Please sign up here: CSS Sign Up

Green Recycling Club! Do you care about the environment?

This club will organize current collections and generate new ideas for our school to be more earth-friendly! We will meet after school on Thursdays until 3:30. The dates will be sent out once the number of students is determined. If you are interested, please fill out this google form.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1d4L0wTuwi_zs5ldjcApvaJfkVpbYWFFHG5zXc8FCn8I/edit Any questions should be directed to Ms. Fritz: vfritz@longmeadow.12.ma.us

On December 19th, we are pleased to welcome back the Artistic Dance Conservatory to perform a ballet for our students. This year the ballet is entitled, Lyra's Quest. The students loved the performance last year and we appreciate Erin Lau’s outreach for a return visit. The performance is possible through funding from the PTO...thank-you from your community for the enrichment opportunity!

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal

CALENDAR REMINDERS

December 10th- Helping Hands Grade 3: 7:45-8:25 Cafeteria

December 11th - Family Writing Night 6:00-7:30 Community Room, Center School

December 12th- Holiday Gift Basket gifts due: Holiday Gift Wrapping Community Room 8:30-3:30

December 16th - Holiday Gift wrapping Snow Date


Leaves - Be Kind

Happy Thanksgiving and Thank-you!

Good evening Center Families,

We dismiss at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow to begin the Thanksgiving holiday. The season ahead highlights our community’s spirit of generosity and giving. Many thanks for your donations to the Helping Hands Food Drive; and to Cecilia Gadelhak and PTO volunteers for their coordination and outreach to the Longmeadow Food Pantry, the Springfield Rescue Mission, and Loaves & Fishes Kitchen.

We continue our annual Holiday Gift Basket endeavor to help provide a joyful holiday for local children in need. Letters with information about the child your child’s class will gift to are in your child’s weekly folders. New and unwrapped gifts are due December 12th. We need volunteers to help wrap on the 12th at 9:00 a.m. If you are able to lend a helping hand, please contact Amie Tracy amietracy@me.com

Come to the Scholastic Book Fair!

December 3rd through 5th with a late shopping night on the 3rd

NEW THIS YEAR - eWallet! Set up the account in advance and skip the trip to the ATM eWallet-setuplink

If you would like to volunteer, please sign up using the following link https://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080e4fa8ab2ca2fc1-center1

Don't forget to sign up for Family Writing Night. In this workshop, families will craft a poem together based on George Ella Lyon's poem, "Where I'm From" (listen to the author read her poem here!). After noticing the poem's elements and modeling pre-writing and drafting with revision throughout, families will use the patterns and structure to craft a "Where We're From" poem about their family. Teachers will be available to support families as they work through the writing process before we meet together at the end for the share. I have no doubt that every family will leave with new memories and a treasured keepsake. If your family is interested in attending this event, please register here.

On behalf of your Center School family, I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with the love and warmth of family and friends. Safe journeys to our many families who are traveling this weekend.

With gratitude and appreciation,

Donna Hutton, Principal



Helping Hands food drive


All Ages Family Writing Night

Family Writing Night

Posted Nov. 21, 2019

Hi Center Families!

I'm THRILLED to be hosting an All-Ages Family Writing Night on Wednesday, December 11th from 6:00 to 7:30 in the Center School Community Room. I will run it as a Writers' Workshop, so if you've ever wondered what that looks or feels like, you'll get to experience it firsthand alongside Center cardinals!

In this workshop, families will craft a poem together based on George Ella Lyon's poem, "Where I'm From" (listen to the author read her poem here!). After noticing the poem's elements and modeling pre-writing and drafting with revision throughout, families will use the patterns and structure to craft a "Where We're From" poem about their family. Teachers will be available to support families as they work through the writing process before we meet together at the end for the share. I have no doubt that every family will leave with new memories and a treasured keepsake.

If your family is interested in attending this event, please register here.

Questions? Contact me:

vvigna@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

Happy writing,

Vanessa Vigna


Back to the 80s!

Take a trip back in time with the LHS Senior Class and enjoy some school sponsored childcare. Please take a look at the message from LHS Senior Class President Sophie Lemire!! The attached flyers will explain this all in detail!

Hi Parents,

My name is Sophie Lemire and I am the senior class president at Longmeadow High School. I am pleased to inform you all that the Class of 2020 is putting on a production of the musical Back to the 80s for our senior class play. We would love it if you would join us for a trip back to high school in the 80s, a time many of you got to experience first hand :) Students can purchase tickets at lunch beginning next week. Tickets will also be on sale at the door of each show. VIP tickets (the first two rows) will be sold for $20 and regular admission tickets will be sold for $10. Showtimes include Thursday, November 21 and Friday, November 22 at 7:00 pm as well as Saturday, November 23 at 1:00 pm. The senior class has put time, work and effort into this production and we would love to share it with family, friends and the Longmeadow Community.

Thank you so much for your time and we hope to see you there,

Sophie Lemire and the Class of 2020


Week of November 18th, 2019

Hello Center School Families,

Lots of happenings to share with you, so thank-you for taking the time to read this message!

  • In an effort to gather feedback from our students, Fresh Pick- our food service vendor- developed a survey. Please take a few minutes to complete the survey with your child, especially if he/she buys school lunches on a regular basis. https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/Longmeadow_ES_19-20

  • Here’s a fun family night to consider-Saturday Movie Night sponsored by Longmeadow Baseball: lba_movienight_flyer.pdf

  • So excited our Scholastic Book Fair is just around the corner, coming our way the first week of December! The evening shopping is on December 3rd from 6:00 to 8:00. Here’s the day schedule for your child’s class: BOOK FAIR Schedule Fall 2019_20 .docx

  • The School Committee would like to increase the level of communication with parents/guardians, and community members, so they’ll be sending monthly updates this year. These updates include some of the highlights from the previous month, as well as a link to the meeting minutes for those who wish to read about additional items: School Committee Update Oct-Nov2019.pdf

  • Center’s School Council is reviewing our School Improvement Plan for 2019-2020. The final plan will be shared with the community in December.

  • Lost and Found items will be donated on Friday.

  • Reminder to make sure your child has warm clothing for cold days-hats, gloves, coats, and long pants.

  • Coming your way on December 11th: Family Writing Night with Literacy Coach Vanessa Vigna...more information soon!!

  • The PTO Center School Directory is available on the PTO website: https://www.centerschoolpto.com/directory.html

  • The carline is lengthening on cold weather days. Thank-you for adhering to our procedures and remaining patient with staff and our 5th grade safety members.

Have a wonderful week!

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Operation Gratitude

Posted Nov. 12, 2019

Our gratitude to the Watson family for organizing Operation Gratitude again this year; and to all of our students for donating their extra Halloween candy!! Center collected 445 pounds of candy to send to our troops!!

The three top classes are: Ms. Green 32.7 pounds; Mrs. Bombardier 56.7 pounds; and Mrs. McLean's class with 63.2 pounds.

On the eve of World Kindness Day, it's wonderful to celebrate the generosity of our community!

Enjoy a wonderful week!!

Kind Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Week of November 11th

Hello Center School Families,

At our Open House in September, teachers shared information regarding expectations for your child’s learning for the school year. Teachers touched on grade level standards or learning goals that drive teaching and learning. Educational standards are the learning goals for what students should know and be able to do at each grade level. They are expectations. A curriculum is the detailed plan used to teach students the learning goals embodied in standards. Standards are statements. Curriculum includes many resources: activities, lessons, units, assessments, and can include all the texts used in a particular content area. Standards define what is to be learned by the end of a school year. Curriculum is the detailed plan for day to day teaching. You can think about the difference as Standards are the end. Curriculum is the means. Here is a link to DESE and the family page that provides useful information to help understand expectations for your child’s learning: http://www.doe.mass.edu/highstandards/

Here’s a snapshot of our curriculum...certainly not an exhaustive list of the many resources teachers use as a means to help our students meet grade level standards and reach beyond! More info to come about Art, Music, PE, Health, Technology Integration, and Library Media teaching and learning.

  • Science: Foss Science: students learn science by doing science. Each grade level completes a minimum of three “modules” each year, engaged in meaningful active learning. https://www.deltaeducation.com/foss/next-generation

  • Literacy: Facilitating a workshop instructional model, teachers follow the Units of Study in both reading and writing. Students develop their proficiencies as readers and writers by exploring varied genres with authentic engaging texts.

http://www.unitsofstudy.com/introduction

  • Mathematics: Through Math Expressions students learn through an inquiry-based curriculum focused on: Conceptual understanding; Procedural fluency i.e., know mathematical facts, compute and do the math; and Capacity i.e., solve a wide range of problems in various contexts by reasoning, thinking, and applying the mathematics they have learned. https://www.hmhco.com/programs/math-expressions

  • Social Studies: This year, teachers have access to Discovery Ed, https://www.discoveryeducation.com/solutions/social-studies-techbook/ an online resource and grade levels across the district will pilot a Pearson text as we work to clearly articulate the curriculum to meet the newer standards in History and Social Science.

Additional Happenings and Reminders

  • Wednesday is World Kindness Day: Who doesn’t love Mr. Rogers? Wear your favorite cardigan to school and spread some extra kindness!! World kindess day.jpg

  • November 14th and 15th: Family /Teacher Conferences: Dismissal at 11:30 am. Please be prompt at dismissal so our teachers have time to eat lunch.

  • November 27th: Dismissal at 11:30 am

  • Thank-you to our active duty family members who visited classrooms for Veteran’s Day: very special event for students and of course for their children!

  • Please make sure your child dresses warmly for outdoor recess. Students who like to wear shorts year -round should have warm pants available for outdoors.

  • Please check Lost and found when you’re here for conferences!

  • Please visit Teachers' websites for updates and happenings in the classrooms!

Warmly,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Health Office Notice

Posted November 7, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

Cold and flu season is upon us and the schools are already seeing an increase in many contagious illnesses. We would like to take this opportunity to remind families of some important steps that can be taken to limit the spread of illness within our schools. As always, our staff will work with the students to limit the spread of germs within the school by encouraging the following:

  • Frequent and diligent hand washing

  • Avoiding touching of eyes, nose, and mouth

  • Covering coughs and sneezes with the inside of the elbow

  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick

Students exhibiting any signs of illness will be referred to the health office for evaluation. Teachers and custodial staff will implement more stringent cleaning protocols for touchable surfaces.

We additionally ask families to help us limit the spread of illness by adhering to the following guidelines:

Children with one (or more) of the following symptoms MUST stay home until symptom-free for 24 hours:

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

  • Fever greater than 100.4 (without fever-reducing medication such as Tylenol or Motrin)

  • If prescribed antibiotics, children must have a full 24-hour dosage before returning to school.

As a precaution, please consider keeping your child home for:

  • Excessive stuffy nose or nasal drainage

  • Excessive or persistent cough

  • Lethargy or general malaise

  • Low-grade fever

  • Nausea

Thank you for partnering with us to create the healthiest possible environment for our students. Please reach out to your School Nurse with any questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal


November 6, 2019

Hello Center School Families,

With the start of November, teachers are preparing for conferences next week. As you know, we hold conferences twice annually. We consider conferences to be a valuable time to more “formally” touch base with families to discuss students’ academic and social emotional learning as well as discuss growth areas. Importantly, teachers will want to hear your insights, answer questions, and continue to grow partnerships to work together to help your child be the best student possible.

The elementary report card is “standards –based” and will be distributed in January and June. At the conference, your child’s teacher will discuss progress referencing the standards. Families receive (or will begin to receive, depending on grade level) assessment results with cover sheets that indicate your child’s progress towards meeting particular standards or “learning targets”.

One critical strength of standards-based reporting is communication! Here are additional benefits:

  • Students are offered multiple opportunities and ways through which to demonstrate proficiency

  • Families are aware of exactly what their child knows, is able to do, and next steps for progress

  • Parents know in which curriculum areas their child needs more support or extension

  • Parents are empowered to increase their child's confidence and help their student set goals

While January seems far off, we hope you will visit the Elementary Standards –Based Report Card Site in the coming weeks to help continue to build your knowledge before cards are distributed.

Elementary Standards-Based Report Cards

Here’s some helpful ideas to prepare for your conference:

  • Talk with your child about school. What does he/she feel are strengths and growth areas? Is there any special topic your child wishes you to talk about with the teacher?

  • Time is precious: prepare notes with topics you want to discuss and questions you may have about your child’s learning and progress.

  • Please be on time. The schedules are tight and teachers want every minute possible with you.

  • Respectfully discussing any differences and celebrating successes will help teachers partner with you to find the most effective ways to work with your child. Teachers value and appreciate your insights.

  • Do you want to know ways to support learning at home? Teachers will offer suggestions!

  • Please thank our teachers for their work. I know they will thank you for your ongoing support and advocacy for your child.

  • Provide feedback to your child after the conference. Always emphasize the positives and discuss the action plan for growth areas.

I hope you enjoy lots of extra family time during the upcoming extended weekend. I also hope you take time to continue to talk with your child about Veteran’s Day and find a meaningful way to honor the individuals who have bravely served our country- past and present- including members of our own Center community!

A Few Reminders:

  • Operation Gratitude: Please consider donating extra Halloween candy to our troops by Friday. Students may bring extra bags of candy to school for the collection. Many thanks to the Watson family for organizing the endeavor! https://www.operationgratitude.com/express-your-thanks/halloween-candy/

  • With the forecast calling for the possibility of snow on Friday (!!), here is a brief reminder of the practices, and policies of the Longmeadow Public Schools to govern the closing or delay of school on days when the weather makes traveling for students dangerous. If the schedule is to be altered, we will attempt to make announcements on the television, the Longmeadow Public Schools website and over the School Messenger email and telephone service as early as possible on days of questionable weather. Our judgment in those circumstances will be based on the best information available at that time about road conditions throughout the area. The following situations may occur:

1. A one-hour delayed opening to allow for snow removal during relatively light storms.

2. A two-hour delayed opening to allow for snow removal and traffic clearance during more severe storms. Please stay tuned for school messages following a delayed opening announcement in case of worsening conditions warranting school closing.

3. School closing due to storms severe enough that safe paths to school cannot generally be maintained.

4. Early Dismissal is done only in the event of an unanticipated emergency. On the rare occasion when an emergency dismissal is necessary, announcements will be made on television and made using the School Messenger email and telephone service. Utmost caution will be exercised by school staff in the event of an early dismissal. Please know that in these instances school staff will remain at school until safe travel is provided for all students. Please be sure your family has contingency plans for children sent home due to an early dismissal.

  • With winter weather here already, we have colder days and unpredictable weather. Please support us by helping your child adhere to our winter dress. The students are expected to dress appropriately for cold weather days. We will have outdoor recess unless the temperatures and/or the wind chill factor are such that it is determined to be unsafe or unwise to do so. Generally, 20 degrees or colder is considered to be the threshold. Students must have coats, hats, gloves, boots [during snowy conditions], and long pants to play outside in cold weather. If it is determined that a student is not dressed appropriately and/or safely for the weather, we will provide indoor recess for the student. If your child prefers to wear shorts, please have him/her wear long pants over shorts that can be easily slid on for recess. We also suggest that students keep gloves and a hat either in their backpack or their lockers/cubbies to be prepared for changeable conditions. Names on all items will help us return personal items from lost and found to students!! Please contact me if your family needs assistance for winter weather clothing; and I will help meet your child’s needs with care and discretion.

  • November 11th - Veteran’s Day- No School

  • November 14th and 15th - Parent and Teacher Conferences- ½ Day 11:30 a.m. Dismissal

  • November 27th - ½ Day 11:30 a.m. Dismissal

  • November 28th and 29th - No School- Thanksgiving Recess

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Two Days Left!

Posted November 6, 2019

Good Afternoon,

The window of opportunity to view a video version of the "Challenge Success" talk that was delivered to parents and staff on October 15 is quickly closing. The LPS community has until November 8th to view either the high school presentation linked here or the K-8 presentation linked here. The videos are thought provoking and have been well-received.

The next meeting of the Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow (SEAL) is Tuesday, November 12th at 7:00 p.m. in LPS central office conference room A-31 located at 535 Bliss Road. SEAL is a parent advisory council that offers information, support, and networking opportunities to parents. On Tuesday, there will be a presentation from special education supervisors at Williams, Glenbrook and LHS. Please attend to learn more about special education programming and upcoming SEAL outreach activities. For the full meeting agenda and to learn more about future meeting dates and events please visit www.sealma.org.

Let's hope we dodge the snow on Friday. If we don't and you need information on our inclement weather protocols, please review the attached letter below.

Have a great evening!

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent

Inclement Weather Protocols

Happy Halloween!

Ahoy Mateys! Happy Halloween from your Center Staff! Arrrrr!


Halloween Parade

Posted October 31, 2019

Hello and Happy Halloween!

I know it might be problematic for many families, but we will wait until 1:45 to make a decision about whether the students will parade outside in their costumes at 2:00. Please consider this message the school notice-if you see there is no rain: we'll walk down the esplanade turn left and head towards Longfellow, travel down Longfellow to the playground, walk towards the cafeteria, walk past the cafeteria, travel down the driveway, walk past the front of the gymnasium, and back to the esplanade to enter the building. The green is much too wet and muddy to consider. If the rain continues-NO parade...

Lots of fun and creative activities happening-just saw owl pellet dissection in 2nd grade!

Have a wonderful day!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Week of October 28th

Happy Monday Center School Families,

The 16th annual Halloween Hustle was a tremendous success...the weather was absolutely perfect and many runners ran their personal best time!! So many “shout outs” owed for the success of the day! Katie Wartman chaired the event with her team of helpers sharing the work: Bianca Damiano Gonzalez and Megan Downey served as co-leadership chairs, helping with all aspects of the day; Jen Skelley Duval and Beth Benzaquin did the graphics, design, and illustration; Katie Sullivan helped with race timing logistics and Lindsay Maloni Kuntz was responsible for the decorating. Well done to all! https://www.facebook.com/LongmeadowCenterPTO/

Halloween Parade: The weather looks uncertain for our annual parade at 2:00 on Halloween day. Should the day bring rain, classroom celebrations will be held, but the parade will be cancelled. We will not decide until immediately before 2:00.

I want to introduce you to one of our lunch monitors who began her work with us at the end of last year. Jenny came to us through a new connection with Riverside Industries Inc. RSI is a Partner of Western Mass Employment Collaborative (WMEC). Jenny inspires us each day with her hard work and her love for our students, many of whom she has developed a special connection. Please take the time to read her story! https://www.wmecworks.net/success-stories.php

Calendar Reminders

November 5th - Helping Hands Grade 4; 7:45 a.m. in the cafeteria

November 11th - Veteran’s Day - No School

Parent/Teacher Conferences November 14th and 15th -Students dismissed at 11:30 a.m.

Have a wonderful week!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Teacher Learning

Posted Oct. 28, 2019

Teacher growth is closely related to pupil growth. Probably nothing within a school has more impact on students in terms of skills development, self-confidence, or classroom behavior than the personal & professional growth of their teachers. Roland Barth

Dear Center School Families,

Learning is a never- ending process, not only for our students but for our educators. Research indicates that for professional development to be effective and impactful it has to be directly connected to daily work with students, related to content areas, organized around real challenges of practice, continuous and ongoing, and able to provide teachers with access to resources and expertise.

Enhancing teaching practice is a complex and ongoing endeavor that can’t be achieved by going off to a workshop! Teachers continually work with others on ways to enrich their teaching, which positively impacts your child’s growth and learning. In our district, professional development takes place in varied ways.I want to share with you some ways that teachers grow their teaching craft.

Coaching: Several years ago, LPS invested in literacy coaches at the elementary level. Simplified, coaches help teachers take important instructional concepts they learn and apply them. A gifted coach, such as our own Vanessa Vigna, provides differentiated collaboration and support to teachers. It is well worth your time to visit Ms. Vigna’s blog: A Sea of Literacy Talk, rich with resources for anyone who wishes to enrich the literacy world of a child. You'll gain a deeper understanding of the innovative nature of a coach’s work and see how embedded the work is in our school culture. https://msvigna.com/

PeaceBuilders/CASEL Committee: Representatives across our staff will create a comprehensive crosswalk between CASEL competencies and PeaceBuilders. Collaboration is a powerful form of professional development where we learn from and with our colleagues, working on a similar goal and delving deeper into varied topics. This work will be impactful to our social emotional learning (SEL) work as well as your understanding of the social competencies.

Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Pilot Evaluation Tool Program: A Center team was accepted into a pilot program where we will have an opportunity to use an evaluation tool to take a closer look at the effectiveness of the reader’s and writer’s workshop instructional model. We’ll join 20 selected schools/districts across the state, working under DESE’s How do We Know Initiative: Using, Building, and Sharing Evidence to Improve Student Outcomes. Opportunities to reflect on our practices fosters tremendous growth for all involved.

Foundations of Inclusive Practice: Our Special education team and I will attend an institute that will build our knowledge and approaches for implementing inclusive practice. At the conclusion of our time- intensive work in the institute, we will have a professional development presentation/course to share with our colleagues. The two driving goals for us are to look for ways to improve instruction and support for students with disabilities and to provide educators with powerful professional development on effective strategies.

Our new math specialist, Patricia Woodward, will continue her training in AVMR https://www.mathrecovery.org/ The district will send the elementary math specialists to the AVMR National Conference in November as well. We’re anticipating positive results with the implementation of math recovery as an intervention to increase students’ mathematical understanding and achievement.

Teachers have an opportunity to take Professional Growth Courses after school. The course offerings change throughout the year and are aligned with school and district learning and teaching goals. Additionally, teachers spend three Mondays a month after school working on collaborative endeavors within their teams and/or involved with Principal led training/sharing.

District Professional Development Days: The topics and offerings on these days are also aligned to our teaching and learning goals. On the October day, teachers chose from a menu of workshop topics offered by their colleagues. In the afternoon, Center educators had an interactive presentation with Jennifer Bogin, behavior specialist, focused on strategies for educators when working with children with challenging behavioral needs.

In a few short weeks we will hold parent teacher conferences. I will communicate soon regarding the goals of conferences. We expect to see all our families for this important meeting, so please be sure you have scheduled your time with your child’s teacher.

Your child’s growth and learning depend on our capacity to provide learning opportunities for our educators. It’s an area that we continue to work together to make meaningful and to grow, continually focused on the “real challenges of practice”. While I have tried to capture some of the learning opportunities in our school and beyond, this is not an exhaustive list. Many teachers also delve into learning in other ways through college courses, professional readings, and study groups. A teacher's work stretches far beyond the school day...

That said, know that we learn more in our day- to- day work with students than perhaps any other endeavor! Thank-you for your ongoing trust and support for our work. And thank-you for the privilege of working with your child.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Longfellow Drive Construction

Posted Oct. 24, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

I was informed today by DPW Director Mario Mazza that Gomes Construction will be starting the sidewalk replacement work on Longfellow Drive tomorrow. Mr. Mazza expects the replacement to last about a week. DPW/Police will be installing "No Parking" signs on Longfellow this afternoon.

  • There will be (more) limited parking for staff during this period. PLEASE do not park in the back parking lot in the morning when you drop off your child. We appreciate all families dropping off in the carline.

  • The replacement will be impactful to all students who walk to school via Longfellow. Know that extra safety precautions need to be taken by families and students.

  • Kindergarten families who usually park on Colton and pick up students in the back of the school are encouraged to pick up in the carline.

  • The carline may be longer than usual so many thanks for extra patience.

Thank-you for your understanding and help during the construction period.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Challenge Success Video - Must See TV!

Posted October 21, 2019

Good Morning,

If you missed last Tuesday's Challenge Success presentation, you can watch a very similar recorded version for free by using this link. Click on "rent" and then use the promo code "longmeadow" in order to watch it for free through November 8th. Please note that users will need to create a free Vimeo account prior to viewing.

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools

Week of October 21st

Hello Center Families,

We have a full week of school ahead-yay! - and I know teachers look forward to a dynamic week of learning!

  • Digital Citizenship : A message from parent Kristin Seeley: Please feel free to contact her with questions or for more information. Email Kristin at kristinseeley@msn.com or call/text at 413-426-7240.

In an effort to promote healthy behaviors with technology, we are writing to you to ask for help in creating a parent-led coalition in partnership with our community stakeholders. The mission is to help our school-aged children navigate the complex digital world. We have heard resounding messages and alarmingly frequent instances from our administrators, teachers and counseling staff -- too much time is spent mitigating the effects of social media, screen time and gaming -- they need our help and support. Our elementary schools are already using Common Sense Media programming to demonstrate how students can manage technology time and behave appropriately online -- for example, being kind online, protecting privacy and personal information, creating digital awareness, etc. In a growing digital universe that is pervasive and often invasive, we will strive to help our children grow into productive, healthy digital citizens. We will delve into the specifics of healthy screen interaction and modeling good digital behaviors, and at this time ask that each PTO/PAC volunteer two members to join our Digital Citizenship Panel.

  • Halloween Reminders

Teachers will send families information about grade level activities. As you help your child choose a costume, please remember that Halloween at Center is a day for imagination and creativity. Please refrain from frightening costumes and masks. Parade October 31st at 2:00 weather permitting on the Green.

From Nurse Autumn Rodrigues: Reminders from LPS Wellness Policy:

  • No candy is allowed to be consumed at school.

  • Nothing home-baked OR home-made in any classroom

  • Anything brought into the classroom for consumption must have a clear label, be in original packaging, and list all ingredients.

  • Be mindful of your classroom allergens. If your classroom is nut free, nothing can contain nuts OR be processed in a facility that also processes nuts. That applies for all allergens. Please review your teacher’s website if you are unsure about the allergens in your classroom.

  • Everything brought into classrooms must be cleared by the nurse.

  • Please consider non-food items as treats for all celebrations. Many classrooms have already eliminated food items for celebrations. Some ideas include pencils, stickers, glow sticks, party games, small crafts, etc.

  • Halloween Hustle: October 26th 8:30 a.m. https://www.centerschoolpto.com/hustle.html

  • School Council: Here’s the link to the SC page that includes meeting dates, the School Improvement Plan, and the minutes to our meetings. https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/new-ctr/administration/school-council

  • LHS Halloween Spooktacular: October 26th 5:30-7:30 at Longmeadow High School. This is a fundraiser for Camp Sunshine led by the LHS Key Club. Come and join the fun!! $5 per trick or treater.

  • We are excited to let you know that there will be school- based after- school clubs coming your way very soon!! The clubs will fall under the following categories: Community Service Club; STEAM Club; School Leadership Club. More information coming your way very soon!!

  • My apologies, but another reminder to mark your child’s items with his/her name and encourage your child to check for missing items in the Lost and Found.

Thank-you and enjoy a terrific week!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal



End-of-Week Message

Posted October 10, 2019

Hello Center School Families,

I’m touching base with some end-of-the-week news and reminders:

  • Congratulations to Christina Fleming and Erin Linville. They will join parents Rachel Axtmann and Christopher Morgan on our School Council this year. Many thanks to all the parents who were willing to serve and to Gina Pantuosco, Sarah Smith, and Michael Barresi for their past membership. Here’s a link that provides more information about the role of the council: http://www.doe.mass.edu/lawsregs/advisory/schoolcouncils/

  • Please take a few moments to respond to the district Wellness Survey. Your response will provide helpful information to the work of the Wellness committee. It will take less than 5 minutes, I promise! Wellness Survey https://forms.gle/2L7aFrdiBRzSYjMj6

  • School Committee: During the annual School Committee Retreat, the Committee established a goal to increase their level of communication with stakeholders. This is the first of monthly newsletters that will highlight their important work for our district:School Committee Update.9.2019.pdf

  • Lost and Found items will be donated at the end of the week. Thank-you for marking items with your child’s name and for reminders to your child to check the area for items.

  • Halloween Spooktacular - The Annual LHS Spooktacular will take place on Saturday, October 26th. Please click on this link for the flyer: Halloween Spooktacular 2019.pdf

  • LEEF Gala: Join friends and community members at the 18th Annual LEEF Magic and Mystery Gala at Twin Hills Country Club, Saturday, November 2 at 6:30p.m. Tickets can be purchased by clicking here

October 14th- Columbus Day- No School

October 15th- Professional Development Day- No School

October 16th-PTO Meeting 7:00 in the Community Room: Please join us!!

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal



Week of October 7th

Dear Center School Families,

Here’s some happenings and reminders for the week ahead in our school community:

  • Helping Hands kicks off Tuesday morning with our 5th graders. Here’s the details for the endeavor. HelpingHands 2019-20 (1).docx Many thanks to all who contributed to the food drive for the Longmeadow Food Pantry. We collected just short of 300 pounds to begin to restock the pantry for the months ahead! Well done!

  • Lost and Found: Unhappily the lost and found is incredibly full at the start of the year. Please encourage your child to check the area outside the cafeteria for lost clothing items and lunch containers. It’s helpful if you mark your child’s name on items and we can return them to homerooms. Items that remain for a month will be donated.

  • Reminder about drop off and pick up: Longfellow Street is not a place to pick up or drop off students. We’re seeing students crossing on Longfellow where there’s no crosswalk. This is a significant safety risk for students. Thank-you for working with us to keep our children safe.

  • Allergies and nut-free classrooms: 10 of our classrooms are “nut free” classrooms. You received a letter from Nurse Rodrigues at the start of the year if your child needs to refrain from having a snack with nut products or other allergens that will pose a serious health risk to students in his/her classroom. We deeply appreciate you helping us provide a safe environment for all children by reading the label on your child’s snack choice.

  • MCAS Parent Reports: Families of students who took the test last year will receive the reports that were mailed on Friday. http://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/parents/ Please reach out with questions.

  • Challenge Success: October 15th . ChallengeSuccess 10-15-2019.pdf

  • October 9th: No School Yom Kippur

  • October 14th and 15th : No School: Columbus Day and Professional Development Day respectively

  • October 26: Halloween Hustle

  • October 31st: 2:00 p.m. Center’s Halloween Costume Parade on the Green.

  • LEEF GALA: https://one.bidpal.net/2019leefgala/ticketing

Longmeadow Public Schools adheres to the CASEL framework https://casel.org/what-is-sel/to guide us in fostering the social emotional competencies of our students. We have formed a committee of educators at Center whom are working to articulate to our families the alignment of our PeaceBuilders program with the CASEL framework. The committee is excited for the work and anticipate sharing valuable resources by midyear. In the meantime, please be sure to take the time to read the monthly newsletters sent home regarding PeaceBuilders practices and visit the CASEL website to deepen your understandings of the competencies.

[endif]--

Teachers and interventionists have completed most screenings for the start of the school year. At Open House, teachers explained the WIN block and our RTI model. Here’s a great resource created by our staff and students to enhance your understanding: https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/centerstage/home

Conferences are November 14th and 15th and know our teachers are available and responsive at any time to answer questions and/or share insights with you about your child’s learning.

Thank-you for taking the time to read this message and for your ongoing partnership and support!

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

SEAL Meeting 10-8-2019

Posted October 4, 2019

The Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow (SEAL) is a Parent Advisory Council that offers information, support, and networking opportunities to parents. Please join us for our next meeting on Tuesday, October 8th at 7:00 PM in Room A-31 Pupil Services, 535 Bliss Road, Longmeadow. There will be a presentation from our preschool and elementary school special education supervisors from Blueberry, Wolf Swamp and Center School and learn about special education programs offered at the schools. Following the presentation, there will be discussion about upcoming SEAL outreach activities. For the full meeting agenda, and to learn more about future meeting dates and events, visit www.sealma.org.

Helping Hands 2019-2020

Posted October 4, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

In the spirit of teaching our students about the importance of community service, we will begin our seventh yearlong effort to feed those in need of assistance.

Center School Helping Hands is a school –wide effort that provides our students an opportunity to work as grade level teams to make a difference by making sandwiches to help feed the hungry. Helping Hands is a collective endeavor that depends on the generosity of our Peace Builders community; and we anticipate another successful year!

Here’s how it works:

1. SCHEDULE:

Each grade level will be assigned a month to meet one morning in the cafeteria at 7:45 AM to make sandwiches with their grade level team.The students will go directly to their classrooms at 8:25.

Mark your calendars on the following Tuesdays:

October 8th-5th grade

November 5th-4th grade

December 10th-3rd grade

January 7th-2nd grade

February 4th-1st grade

March 3rd-K & 5th

April 7th- 4th & 2nd

May 5th- 3rd & 1st

June 2nd- all grades

2. WHAT TO BRING:

Each family may voluntarily send in with your child sandwich meat, cheese, and bread to make sandwiches on their designated day. We suggest 1lb. meat; ½ lb. cheese; two loaves of bread, although any donated amount is appreciated. The number of sandwiches delivered each month will depend on donations.

3. WHO MAY COME:

Siblings are more than welcome to make sandwiches too. For example, our first date (October 8th) will be with 5th graders. If you have a 5th grader and a 2nd grader, feel free to send the 2nd grader to help. Parents are welcome to stay as well, the more helping hands the better!!

4. SANDWICH DONATIONS:

Center School parent Cecilia Rosalin Gadelhak (ccrosalin@gmail.com) will be coordinating this effort. She and I will be present with the students while they make the sandwiches; and Cecilia and Amie Tracy will deliver the sandwiches to the Springfield Rescue Mission, Loaves and Fishes Kitchen in Springfield and the Easthampton Community Center.

Thank-you for your generous spirit of giving! A reminder notice will be sent each month.

With appreciation,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Challenge Success

Posted October 3, 2019

Longmeadow Public Schools

Special Programs Series

Challenge Success – The Well-Balanced Student

The Longmeadow Public Schools is pleased to announce the Special Programs Committee (SPC) will host a community engagement program featuring Challenge Success on Tuesday, October 15th at 7:00 pm in the Longmeadow High School Auditorium. In a presentation titled, The Well-Balanced Student, Challenge Success will help community attendees learn research- based strategies for raising healthier youth by reducing academic stress and increasing child(ren)’s resilience, creativity, and well-being.

Challenge Success, a research-based organization working out of Stanford University, partners with communities who aspire to redefine success and create "more balanced and academically fulfilling" lives for their children. Additional information about Challenge Success can be found at www.challengesucces.org.

Also, during the afternoon of October 15th, LPS Middle and High School educators will engage in scheduled professional development with Challenge Success on practices that improve student well-being and engagement with learning.

There is no admission-fee for the evening event.

Challenge Success.pdf

ChallengeSuccess 10-15-2019.pdf

Please join us!!

Challenge Success hosted by the Special Programs Committee

Posted Oct. 1, 2019

The entire LPS community is invited to an evening presentation by Challenge Success and hosted by the Special Programs Committee. Challenge Success, a research-based organization working out of Stanford University, partners with communities who aspire to redefine success and create "more balanced and academically fulfilling" lives for their children. Middle and High School staff will learn from Challenge Success on our October 15 professional development day. Community members are invited to an evening presentation on the same day, beginning at 7 p.m. in the LHS auditorium.


Thank you on behalf of the Special Programs Committee,


Shelly Warren


Two Seats on Center's School Council are Open!

Posted October 1, 2019

Members Needed!

Please contact the PTO https://www.centerschoolpto.com/about-the-pto.html or Principal Hutton if you are interested in serving on the School Council. Meetings held once a month for one hour. Council determines days and times to meet to accommodate members' schedules.

A school council is a representative, school building-based committee composed of the principal, parents, teachers, community members and, at the secondary level, students, required to be established by each school pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 71, Section 59C.

Responsibilities of a School Council:

School councils are to assist principals in:

  • adopting educational goals for the school that are consistent with local educational policies and statewide student performance standards;

  • identifying the educational needs of students attending the school;

  • reviewing the annual school building budget;

  • formulating a school improvement plan.

Thank-you for considering!!

Open House Change

Posted September 26, 2019

Good morning Center School Families,

Because of the likely chance of showers late this afternoon, we’ll set up our PTO social in the cafeteria. For veteran families who have been to prior Open House evenings, this means the format changes and there will not be a “formal” welcome.

We hope you still stop by the cafeteria for a doughnut and cider treat before the first presentation at 6:30 or sometime during the evening as you travel around the school. Also, the music room and reading center are in this area and you’ll have a chance to visit and say hello! There will also be information from the PTO for the Halloween Hustle and LEEF Gala information-two community happenings you don’t want to miss!

Entrances: esplanade doors on both sides; main entrance; cafeteria doors in the back of the school.

6:10-7:45 Cider doughnuts and cider hosted by PTO in the cafeteria

6:30-7:00 1st Classroom Presentation

7:00-7:10 Travel time and opportunity to say hello to different teachers across the school.

7:15-7:45 2nd Classroom Presentation

Thank-you and see you this evening! Gentle reminder, the evening is for adults only!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Week of September 23rd

Hello Center School Families,

Fall Carnival: We had a perfect afternoon for the Fall Carnival!! We may have set a record for the number of families who enjoyed the event. A very big bundle of gratitude to Jen Alvord and countless volunteers, including the Key Club from LHS, for planning, for generously sharing time, helping hands, and fun spirits with our community. Most especially, we thank our 5th graders who are center stage at the carnival each year. Once again, their leadership and smarts were on full display and they awed us with their talents. We look forward to the Halloween Hustle on October 26th, which is the next PTO endeavor.

Biking and Walking to Center: There’s something incredibly special about watching arrival in the morning; and it always makes me smile to step back and observe. Our parents and students on bikes and so many walkers enjoying a healthy beginning to the day is one of the many benefits of neighborhood schools. That said, it’s been brought to my attention that families have concerns about safety along sidewalks both in the morning and at dismissal. I have reached out to our safety officer Carl Mazzaferro for assistance. In the coming days, he will be visible along busy paths to remind everyone of courteous and safe etiquette:

  • All bikers, students on roller blades, and scooter riders need helmets!

  • Tuck and tie shoe laces and pant legs.

  • Importantly: RIDE RIGHT and please -no more than two abreast so students and families don’t get run off the sidewalk!

  • Talk with your child about smart and appropriate speed.

  • Cross at crosswalks and be cautious when passing driveways.

  • When passing walkers, please give a polite shout out “On your left” or ring your bike bell.

  • Remind your child to stay off our neighbors’ lawns. This is an issue of concern when students ride four or five bikes side by side.

  • We have consistently reminded students to travel the sidewalk in front of the school and to never cut down the driveway near the gymnasium. There is a blind spot here that is a strong safety concern. We’re asking parents and guardians to follow this request as well.

Homework: Teachers will discuss the importance of the Homework Guiding Principles at Open House this week. Here’s a link to the document with helpful grade level resources: https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/homework/home You will receive many reminders throughout the year conveying that yes, our students from kinder through 5th grade have homework; and we ask you to partner with us to make sure your child is fulfilling his/her responsibility to read and practice math as assigned by your child’s teacher. Stop in to see our literacy coach Vanessa Vigna or reading specialist Valerie Fritz for some helpful guidance on Thursday evening.

Open House: Attached is the detailed message I sent over the weekend. Just a reminder to visit teachers other than your child’s classroom teacher between the two classroom presentations. All our teachers will not be available after 7:45. 2019 Open House Details.docx

Finally, many members of our community knew Lisa Gore from her time at Center School working in the preschool as a para professional. She died suddenly last week and there will be a celebration of her life tomorrow with services at the First Church of Christ. It feels like an appropriate time to thank all our para professionals for the important work they do for our students. They provide invaluable support to children and, like Lisa, touch many many lives. We remember Lisa with gratitude and fond memories of her gifted way with the little ones in the preschool.

As always, thank-you for your partnership and for your ongoing support of all our efforts.

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Open House 2019

Posted September 21, 2019

Greetings Center School Families,

We’re looking forward to welcoming parents and guardians to our Open House on Thursday, September 26th. Center’s Open House format provides an opportunity for you to meet your child’s teachers, understand the goals and expectations for your child’s year, learn more about your child’s grade level curriculum and classroom environment, walk the hallways your child walks each day, and meet other families in your school community!

Open House Schedule: Note that there are two presentations at different times in each classroom to accommodate families with more than one child at Center.

6:10-6:25 Welcome and social on esplanade hosted by PTO with cider and doughnuts. If there is a chance of showers, we’ll set up refreshments in the café, so please stop in for a treat!

6:30-7:00 1st Classroom Presentation

7:00-7:10 Travel time and opportunity to say hello to different teachers across the school.

7:15-7:45 2nd Classroom Presentation

Important details:

  • Open House is for parents and guardians only. We’ll have other opportunities for family events that include our students.

  • Parent /Teacher Conferences are November 14th and 15th. Gentle reminder to kindly refrain from asking teachers about your child’s individual progress at Open House.

  • Please visit other teachers in your child’s school world:

    • PE teachers Ms. Gauthier and Mrs. Capotosto in the gymnasium;

    • Music teacher Ms. Drysdale- Morrisey in the music room adjacent to the café;

    • Library/media specialist Mrs. Mulcahy in the library;

    • Art teacher Mrs. Goldman in the art room located in the 5th grade hallway;

    • Technology Integration Specialist Mrs. Giuggio and dog assisted interventionist, Murphy, around the corner from the main office;

    • Literacy Coach Vanessa Vigna across from the library;

    • Our resource team, including our special education teachers and interventionists, will be in their classrooms to say hello https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/new-ctr/faculty-staff/support-programs.

  • The main entrance and the side esplanade doors will be unlocked for your convenience.

Please reach out to your child’s teacher or to me with any questions. We'll see you Thursday evening... Happy Fall and I hope you enjoy a wonderful weekend and week ahead !

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Please join your school community today!

2019 Fall Carnival

Posted Friday September 20, 2019

The weather looks perfect!

4:30-6:30

on the Town Green

Bring the whole family for games created and run by our very own fifth graders! Bravo to our 5th grade school leaders!!!

Celebrate the start of the new school year and experience Center School Spirit at its best.

Bounce House, hamburgs, hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, bake sale, face painting, and a ticket store where prizes can be purchased with raffle tickets!!

See you at 4:30!!

https://www.centerschoolpto.com/carnival-942288-396479.html

Walking School Bus Postponed

Posted September 12, 2019

Good morning Center School Families!

Due to the rainy weather this morning, we are postponing our Walking School Bus. We'll plan the walk to school on another day to be announced.

Today is a good day to wear a raincoat and bring an umbrella to school if you will be waiting in the carline at the end of the day! Thank-you for practicing patience if you'll be dropping off and/or picking up in the carline on inclement weather days.

Have a good day.

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Oops...this flyer was not attached to yesterday's message so here it is: Save the Date.pdf


Week of September 9th

Posted September 12, 2019

Hello Center Families,

Please join us to walk, ride, or roll to school on the first Walking School Bus tomorrow morning at 8:10 a.m. We’ll meet at the corner of Hopkins and Longmeadow Streets. The beginning of the year is always a bit overwhelming with so much information coming your way. I find it’s a good time to mark my calendar with important dates. Please see the attached Save the Date Flyer with the many interesting LPS Special Programs Committee events.

Here’s some more happenings that we know you will enjoy:

  • September 20th: Fall Carnival 4:30-6:30 on the green. Click here for details: https://www.centerschoolpto.com/carnival-942288-396479.html

  • September 20th: Cardinal Spirit Day: Crazy Socks Day

  • September 26th: Open House. 6:15 to 7:45

  • October 26th: Halloween Hustle: More detailed info coming at Open House!!

  • November 2nd: LEEF Gala: https://www.goleef.org/gala2019/ Please consider supporting LEEF at their major fund raiser of the year. LEEF funds amazing grants that enrich our students’ learning across the district. One funded project that each elementary school will enjoy is our “sensory paths”. You can travel the path at Open House when you cross our connector! The path provides an opportunity for some very intentional movement breaks for our students...and it’s so much fun! I’ll share more information about movement in our classrooms soon. Sensory Path

As we approach the end of our first full week, I want to share that your children have been delightful! They make us smile each day and it’s been a very good beginning. If you sense that your child might be having any issues with transitions, please don't hesitate to reach out to our teachers for support or to our adjustment counselor, Carol Connery. cconnery@longmeadow.k12.ma.us We can work together on developing strategies that will ease any lingering worries your child might experience...this is a standing suggestion for any time during your child’s journey with us.

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

A Few Reminders...

Posted September 5, 2019

Hello Center School Families,

  • Tomorrow is our first all -school peace rally. Ms. Drysdale Morrisey will lead the students with songs and we'll introduce all our new students. Students and staff are encouraged to wear cardinal red to show our Center School spirit.

  • Don't forget about Food Truck Friday sponsored by Close Community: tomorrow from 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm. Here's the details: Food Truck Friday.pdf

  • Mark your calendars for our first Walking School Bus on September 12th! We'll meet at the corner of Hopkins at 8:10 to walk, bike, or roll to school with community members. Here's the link to Safe Routes to School that provides more details about this community happening: http://guide.saferoutesinfo.org/walking_school_bus/. Please remind your bikers and walkers to follow all safety rules to and from school. Also, students need to be off their pedals and walk their bikes in front of the school.

  • Fall Carnival September 20th!! Please visit the PTO site to order your passes. Our 5th graders are busily planning their games for our annual family night. 5th graders: don't forget to order your class tee shirts! All the information you need can be found here: https://www.centerschoolpto.com/carnival-942288-396479.html

Thank-you for your ongoing support! Enjoy the beautiful weather days ahead!

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Save the Dates!

Posted September 4, 2019

Good Morning,

I hope this email finds your family settling into a happy, new school year! For your planning purposes, I am pleased to provide you with a schedule of talks and presentations sponsored by the Longmeadow Public Schools Special Programs Committee.

Our first event, Food Truck Friday and Community Talk, organized by the CLOSE Community Coalition, is scheduled for Friday, September 6th.

Bring your friends and neighbors and join us for Food Truck dining beginning at 5:30 and a panel conversation starting at 6:30 focused on how we can work together to help Longmeadow youth make healthy decisions relating to alcohol, marijuana, vaping and other substances.

Please note that the flyer below also recognizes events sponsored by our strategic partner, Bay Path University, through its Kaleidoscope Speaker Series.

We hope you are able to attend and participate in the events listed below!

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools

Center School Message

Posted September 3, 2019

Good morning Center School Families,

What a beautiful day to start our week! We had our first fire drill this morning and the students did a wonderful job! 424 students and all our staff exited the building quietly and safely in less than two minutes!! The LFD was impressed.

Our arrival this morning went smoothly as well. Moving our first graders to the Longfellow side of the school for arrival helped tremendously as did having our new 5th grade safety volunteers to assist everyone.

We'll continue to monitor our procedures and work to make things run as safely and smoothly as possible for our community.

Have a wonderful week and know more messages about our beginnings will be coming your way...

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Center School PTO

Posted September 2, 2019

Welcome Back from the Center School PTO!

Whether you are new to Longmeadow, new to Center School or a returning family, we wish you a warm welcome! The Center School PTO consists of volunteers who together work diligently to develop fun events and continue cherished traditions.

There's always lots going on, and we want to make sure you don't miss a thing. We’ve included some important information below to begin the school year.

Back to School Welcome Package

Please take a few minutes to complete the Back to School Welcome Package. The information you provide will help us communicate with you to keep you up-to-date on happenings around the school, and help you communicate with others in the Center School community.

Center School Directory

The Center School PTO publishes an electronic copy of the student directory every year. By providing your information in the Back to School Welcome Package, we'll be able to include your and your child(ren)'s contact information for others in the Center School community. The directory is only available to Center School families, and is password protected for confidentiality.

Weekly News

The PTO distributes a weekly e-newsletter (Monday mornings) which highlights upcoming events, announcements, volunteer opportunities, and keeps everyone updated on where your family contributions are spent. You can find the archive of this year’s e-newsletters on our Center School PTO website!

Upcoming Events

We look forward to hosting some fun events, beginning with the Fall Carnival (hosted by our 5th graders!) Friday, September 20th from 4:30 p.m.-6:30p.m. Stay tuned to our Events Calendar on our Center School PTO Website.

Fundraising and Family Contributions

We are super excited to start the new school year! Each year our PTO depends on fundraising and family contributions in order to provide your student with the enriching school experience that we have all come to expect. We can only meet these expectations with your help.


The PTO funds many cherished Center School traditions like the Fall Carnival, Halloween Hustle, Field Day, 5th grade Memory Books, and the Teacher Appreciation Luncheon, just to name a few (take a look at PTO Dollars at Work for more). Financial support from our Center School families allows the PTO to also pay for enrichment programs, author visits, provide technology upgrades, library equipment, playground gear, classroom supplies, teacher requests, school beautification, and family/community events.

Please consider making a contribution to help us continue supporting our Center School community. Thank - you!

We’re all looking forward to a wonderful school year!


Melissa Butcher and Debbie Farley, Co-Presidents

Lindsey Maloni-Kuntz, Vice President

Cecilia Gadelhak, Secretary

Keri Fazio, Treasurer

centerschoolptoweb@gmail.com

First Day 2019

Posted August 28, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

There was a touch of fall in the air this week perfectly timed to the start of the year. We’ve had a full week and a full day today making final plans for the first days ahead. I wish our families could peek into a teacher’s world …there’s extraordinarily thoughtful work that goes into the details of teaching and certainly into beginnings...and important beginnings it will be when your child-and your family-settle back into the familiar rhythm and routine of the school year.

I loved taking my final walk around the school at the end of our day seeing the “newness” of the classrooms, each unique to the teacher yet so inviting and warm…Now we just need your children with their energy and their spirits and all their hopes and dreams to share with us for the year ahead.

I read a story to our staff on our first day together each year. My choice this year was The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson. The story is beautifully poetic and the message is one that holds our hopes and dreams and encouragement for each student in our care.

There will be times when the world feels like a place that you’re standing all the way outside of...

and all that stands beside you is your own brave self — steady as steel and ready

even though you don't yet know

what you're ready for.

There will be times when you walk into a room

and no one there is quite like you until the day you begin

to share your stories.

Our hopes and dreams are that Center will be a place that “opens itself up a little wider” to make space for each child to grow in many unique and engaging ways. Guiding and teaching children as they learn and grow is the deep joy and honor of our work. We look forward to sharing this amazing journey with you.

The bell will toll tomorrow morning to welcome you at 8:25 a.m.! Please look for bright fluorescent signs with teachers’ names where students will line up. There will be lots of staff to help you. Our 1st and 5th graders will line up near the small playscape and you’ll find all other signs on the blacktop near the basketball courts. How exciting that we have 43 new students across all grade levels joining our community of PeaceBuilders! I know you’ll find ways to reach out and welcome families and students and quickly make them feel that they have a great big space in our school family.

I’m guessing that your child’s excitement is bundled with some nervousness tonight...I’ve heard from both new and veteran teachers that they share these emotions!! We’ll have a wonderful day tomorrow...assure your child that’s our promise!

Hope you can enjoy a peaceful evening and a restful night’s sleep...hard as it may be!

Yours in partnership,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Beginnings

Posted Aug. 23, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

This message is the first of communications to be sent before next Thursday to help you navigate the start of the school year. Please read the arrival and dismissal details carefully to help ensure the safety of our students.

First, we encourage you to review bicycle and walking safety with your child. Please remind your child to be considerate of walkers when riding their bikes to and from school.

We know students thrive with predictable routines. It’s helpful if you develop and discuss the family “pick up” plan with your child i.e., where to meet at the end of the day, pick up on the carline, etc. It’s also extremely important for you to remind your child to stick with the family plan; the plan should never be changed by the student without family knowledge or permission! Each teacher will have her individual communication system in place with families so she/he knows where each student is going at dismissal. We suggest you place emergency contact information in a visible place on your child’s backpack. There are some great tags available that attach to backpacks.

First Day for 1st -5th grades Thursday, August 29th: We’ll see everyone on the playground at 8:25 AM. The bell will toll to signal the start of our new year!! Teachers will be on the playground; look for signs labeled with the teacher’s name. There will be lots of staff to assist you!

Arrival and Dismissal Procedures after Day One:

Arrival: 8:25 a.m. We do not have supervision before 8:25, so while we love our enthusiastic early bird cardinals, please time arrival as close to 8:25 as possible.

Grades 1, 2, 3, 4: Enter through the main doors

Grades K, 5: Enter through esplanade doors –gymnasium side.

Our new 5th grade safeties will walk kinder and first grade students to their classrooms.

All bikers park bikes on the bike racks on the playground. Please do not park bikes near the entrance gate. For our new families, know that locks are not needed.

Bikers walk the Longfellow sidewalk to the front of the school and enter through appropriate entrances. Students should never travel to the back stairwell to enter the building in the morning. We do not have supervision in this area and we're appreciative of families who do not drop off/pick-up in an area that is not our designated drop off/pick-up.

Students should not travel along the driveway on the side of the gymnasium. This area poses a serious safety issue as cars enter here for the parking lot behind the school; there’s blind spots and the sidewalk does not wrap around the driveway.

Dismissal: 2:45 p.m.

Grades 2, 4: Exit main entrance

Grade 1 & 3: exit Longfellow Street doors.

Grade K, 5: esplanade doors gymnasium side.

Teachers will escort their classes to the carline and to the playground.

Kinder families: If you meet your child on the esplanade, please stand near the railings away from doorways. We appreciate when you do not block the exit doors and/or the walkway to the esplanade as teachers have many students to walk in lines to appropriate spots.

Carline families: Please note that cars traveling Longfellow Drive to Longmeadow Street will see a “One Way” sign-right turn only between 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Vehicles exiting out of Green Meadow Drive, Morningside Drive, and Crestview Circle are permitted to travel in both directions.

Students who attend after school programs will be walked to their meeting spots. Teachers will know who is going to which program on the first day.

LUNCH Fresh Picks Cafe https://longmeadow.nutrislice.com/menus-eula will continue as our lunch provider, and offer a wide selection of choices each day that include items such as Market Fresh Salads & Yogurt Parfaits, the Signature Café Entrée of the day and a Downtown Deli Sandwich option. Menus can be viewed by downloading the Nutrislice app. We post the menu to our website when it’s received. The cost of lunch is $2.75. You may set-up an online account using a Credit/Debit card to make deposits into your child’s account. Instructions for setting up your online account are available in print from your Food Service Director and posted on the Fresh Picks Cafe website. If you prefer, you may send a check with your child made payable to the Longmeadow School’s Lunch Program. Please make sure to include the child’s name in the memo line. We encourage parents to either utilize the online payment method or to send in a check. Cash can also be accepted.

SNACKS All students eat snack daily. Several of our classrooms are nut and other allergens free. As a precaution, it may be best to pack a nut-free snack the first day of school until you find out if your child’s classroom is nut and/or other allergens free. If your child is in a nut-free classroom, you will receive a letter the first week of school from Nurse Autumn. Also, all children can bring anything for their lunch that will be eaten in the cafeteria. We do have a peanut free table for any child requiring this space.

As always, I welcome your feedback and any questions. Enjoy a wonderful weekend.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Upcoming Dates to Remember:

  • Today- Class Assignments in the PowerSchool Parent Portal at 3:00

  • August 29- First Day of School, Grades 1-5

  • August 30- First Day of School Kindergarten

  • September 2- Labor Day No School

  • September 26- Center Open House: 6:15-7:45

  • September 30- Rosh Hashanah- No School

  • October 9- Yom Kippur- No School

  • October 14- Columbus Day- No School

  • October 15- Professional Development Day- No School

  • November 11- Veteran’s Day- No School

  • November 14 and 15- Parent and Teacher Conferences- ½ Day 11:30 a.m. Dismissal

  • November 27- ½ Day 11:30 a.m. Dismissal

  • November 28 and 29- No School- Thanksgiving Recess

  • December 23-January 1, 2020 School Closed for Holiday Break

  • January 2- School Resumes


Summer Greetings Fifth Grade Families!

Posted Aug. 20, 2019

Dear 5th Grade Families,

With August upon us, your 5th grader might be starting to think about the new school year ahead. Fifth grade is a year of tremendous growth, responsibility, and leadership. Your child will have the opportunity to take on Center’s traditional leadership roles including safeties and kindergarten buddies. The Fall Carnival is focused on the creativity and resourcefulness of our 5th graders who create the games for the community to enjoy. Please mark your calendar for September 20th for the Carnival, especially if your child is involved in fall sports. We usually have 100% participation from our 5th graders in this fun community event!! More detailed information will be coming your way soon.

Here’s some additional information for you as we gear up for new beginnings:

  • On August 23, 2019 class placements will be posted and live on the PowerSchool Parent Portal for all returning students.

  • Team 5 teachers are: Ms. Emily Green; Mrs. Jamie Quinn; Ms. Skylar Wright

  • If this is your first year at Center School, please join me on August 21st at 9:00 for a tour of the school. We’ll meet in the main office.

  • August 29th: First Day of School!! Please join us on the playground in the back of the school at 8:25 where our students will be greeted by teachers and staff.

  • After the first day, your child will enter the building through the esplanade doors on the gymnasium side of the school.

  • 5th Grade Supply List:

3 spiral notebooks

1 pair of adult scissors

1 accordion folder with 5 sections

1 sturdy folder with 2 pockets

Lined index cards (4 x 6)

Packs of lined paper, college ruled

Packs of Post-its

  • September 26th – Center School Open House 6:15-7:45 p.m.

Finally, here’s a helpful article created for teachers, but with great insights about 5th grade children. Knowing 5th graders.pdf

Please reach out to me with any questions. Email is the best way to reach me before my administrative assistants return in mid August. Team 5 and I anticipate a wonderful year of growth and learning! Enjoy the remaining weeks of summer!

Warm regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Week of June 3rd

Hello Center School Families,

Field Day was awesome!! The students had so much fun showing great sportsmanship and teamwork and we had perfect weather! I trust you heard about all the events and the incredible cardio drumming-terrific interactive assembly! Thank-you to Kristen Gauthier and Erin Capotosto for thoughtful and comprehensive planning. Each year they surpass the success of the year before, which takes incredible effort. We also had 70 parent volunteers!!! Our gratitude to everyone for making the day a wonderful memory for our students. Center School Sightings

It seems this is the time of year to extend lots of appreciation to many special members in our community. Tomorrow morning, Amy Nedwed will hold the final Helping Hands of the 2018-19 school year and it will be her final endeavor as the coordinator. For seven years Amy has passionately and lovingly organized monthly sandwich making with our students and families for communities in need. There’s no "thank- you" that seems big enough for her efforts and all she has taught our students about helping others and all that she has given to our neighbors. Please join us in the morning in the cafeteria and/or have your child attend-all grades are welcome!

Math Olympiads celebrates another successful year tomorrow afternoon. Congrats to all our mathematicians for their accomplishments. Colleen Cummings leads the team with the help of Jessica Reed. One of the main goals of the after- school program is to stimulate enthusiasm and a love for mathematics. Perhaps your child will be a future Olympiad member!

The Spring Concert is Thursday at Glenbrook Middle School at 7:00. Please join us and prepare to be impressed by our talented artists! Ms. Drysdale, Mrs. Lauser, and Mrs. Shrenker have helped grow the talents of our young musicians and singers. Hope to see many families on Thursday! There will be a bake sale at the concert to benefit Center School- thanks for support.

The last day of school is June 18th. The bell will toll at 11:30 when students will be dismissed for summer fun. Please remind your child to check lost and found for items and return library books this week. Please check your child’s lunch account and balance the accounts. Report cards will be distributed on the last day of school. We will not distribute cards before the 18th. Class lists will be posted in August. Final reminder to make sure you have access to the parent portal on Power School where you will go to check your child’s assignment. So many end-of-year reminders-thank-you for your support to help with these “housekeeping” tasks.

Enjoy a wonderful week! Please reach out to us with any questions.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Week of May 27th

Hello Center Families,

What a perfect Memorial Day weekend to begin the summer season! We’re hoping the good weather will stretch to Friday for Field Day 2019!

Field Day Reminders

-Students are asked to wear their field day color shirt and sneakers.

-Feel free to join your child for a family picnic on the town green from 11:30 – 12:00. If delivering food that day, please arrive promptly at 11:30 to ensure your child has enough time to eat.

-Please send along a water bottle with your child’s name on it. Water coolers will be available to refill their water bottle, but we will not be providing cups.

- Parent volunteers who are taking on team leader responsibilities are asked to pick up a packet of information from the gymnasium between 8:30-9:00 Friday morning.

Please direct Field Day questions to Ms. Gauthier or Erin Capotosto : kgauthier@longmeadow.k12.ma.us

Please remember that Field Day lunch is a picnic on the green and we strongly encourage families and students to pack a lunch from home so they can enjoy a full 30- minute break with family and friends without traveling to the cafeteria. The cafeteria has two sandwich options: sun butter and jelly or a cold cut (turkey) sandwich should your child choose to buy. A final count will be taken tomorrow so please help your child with the family decision.

Power School Reminder: Please make sure you know your PowerSchool Student Portal Access Number and ID. As a reminder, parents of students who will rise to grades 1st through 5th will need this information to access classroom assignments for the 2019-2020 school year. If you do not know your access number and ID, please contact the Center School office (via phone) no later than June 7th, 2019. If you do not have your access number and ID and do not check to ensure you have access to the portal, we will not be able to assist you with this information until school resumes. Classroom assignments are posted in August.

END of YEAR DRIVES: We have three collections for the end of the school year. Two collections are an opportunity to do some late spring housekeeping!

Animal Food and Supply Drive: Please help Girls on the Run collect food and supplies for Murphy’s furry friends at The TJ O’Connor Animal Shelter : Collection Dates: Wednesday 5/29 and Wednesday 6/5 during the carline drop off. Girls on the Run.docx

Reading Ambassadors: Collecting gently used books to be donated to our neighboring city schools. Bring in your books any day this week and next week!

Peacebuilders Help Their Community! Center School Peacebuilders will be collecting gently used and clean shoes. Donations will go to the Springfield Rescue Mission. Bring in your donated shoes during the week of May 28 – June 7. All sizes, all types welcome! Please be sure pairs are attached by using rubber bands or ties. peace feet .docx

5th Grade Memories: Mrs. Giuggio shared some fun memories with our 5th graders to help them see how much they’ve grown and how much they’ve learned! Enjoy the CSS that feature our graduating 5th graders through their elementary years!! https://docs.google.com/document/d/1o9IQjosSeVaROtiX3YLMqX0PPwpwDBzzJDk521vo3eg/edit?ts=5ce6cedf

The final weeks ahead are incredibly busy! We hope you and your child enjoy end-of-year traditions and celebrations. Please reach put with any questions and I look forward to seeing you in the days ahead.

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Peace Feet

Posted May 13, 2019

Please consider donating gently used shoes for our community outreach to the Springfield Rescue Mission! Details below!

flyer for peace feet .pdf

Week of May 6th

Hello Center Families,

This is a busy time of the school year. Thank-you for your attention to the information below.

  • PeaceBuilders help others and this practice aligns with the CASEL social competency of social awareness. Your child received a choice board of activities Choice Board they can do to help others at school, at home, and in the community. Help us challenge our PeaceBuilders to complete as many of these activities as they can by the end of the school year. CASEL

  • Center School Peacebuilders will be collecting gently used and clean shoes. Donations will go to the Springfield Rescue Mission. Please bring in your donated shoes during the week of May 28th – June 7th Peace Feet

  • Tuesday and Wednesday: Math MCAS 3rd and 5th Graders

  • Tuesday morning 7:50: Helping Hands in the cafeteria Grades 1 and 3.

  • Thursday and Friday: Math MCAS Grade 4

  • Thursday: PTO Meeting on the playground after school.

  • Please make sure you know your PowerSchool Student Portal Access Number and ID. As a reminder, parents of students who will rise to grades 1st through 5th will need this information to access classroom assignments for the 2019-2020 school year. If you do not know your access number and ID, please contact the Center School office (via phone) no later than June 7th, 2019. If you do not have your access number and ID and do not check to ensure you have access to the portal, we will not be able to help you with this information until school resumes. Classroom assignments are posted in August.

  • Field Day is Friday, May 31st with a rain date of June 3rd. On Friday, teachers took a tentative lunch count for the day. For our new families, lunch is a picnic on the green and we strongly encourage families and students to pack a lunch from home so they can enjoy a full 30- minute break with family and friends without traveling to the cafeteria. The cafeteria will have two sandwich options: sun butter and jelly or a cold cut (turkey) sandwich should your child choose to buy. Thank-you for helping your child with the decision. A final count will be taken on Friday.

  • This week is Teacher Appreciation Week across the United States. While we can thank our teachers each day for their incredible work with students, Center will formally celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week next week-May 13th through 17th. The appreciation luncheon sponsored by our PTO is Thursday May 16th. Don’t forget to thank a teacher!! “One Book, one pen, one child, and one teacher can change the world.” Malala Yousafzai

Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Week of April 22nd

Hello Center School Families,

I hope you’re enjoying a wonderful spring break! We have many happenings in the coming months, so I hope students return rejuvenated and ready for the final months of our school year.

We ended our week before break with a fun spirit day planned by our student Reading Ambassadors. Students and staff dressed as a favorite book character and many brought in a book for a classroom book swap so students had a new book to read over break. Many thanks to our Ambassadors who continue to plan activities for the remainder of the year, so stay tuned!

Our PTO met last week and will begin to transition to a new executive board for the new school year. Please visit the PTO website to keep updated as well as see the many opportunities to volunteer for upcoming events. Center School PTO Site

The spring Scholastic Book Fair is coming April 30th to May 3rd! We are deeply grateful for the generosity of the PTO who allotted over $3000 of the fall book fair profit to our library. Mrs. Mulcahy ordered many new books to update the collection. The PTO also generously gifted each teacher with a $50 book credit to shop for books at the fair. We hope you will support the PTO and our community by browsing for some great new reads for your child or for gift giving.

Friday, April 26th is Longmeadow Walk to School Day. We hope to have a very short carline on Friday and each day when the weather is perfect for a walk or bike ride to school. We will meet near the corner of Hopkins at 8:10 and walk together to Center. Just a carline reminder: PLEASE refrain from cutting into the carline from Longfellow Drive. Many families have contacted me asking that I remind the community that the choice to cut in after families have waited in line can be frustrating. Thank-you for following the drop off and pick up procedures.

Your School Council will be analyzing the climate survey during the next two monthly meetings. We had 68% of our families respond! Thank-you for your constructive feedback and for all the insights provided with your responses. We’ll provide feedback to you before the end of the school year.

PeaceBuilders: We focus on helping students find ways to help others in their lives. This is the last of the six principles we focus on as a PeaceBuilders site. Teaching children responsibility through the practice of helping others is a life-long lesson that prepares them for adulthood. Thoughtful acts of kindness large and small will be explored. This important principle aligns with three of the CASEL core competencies: social awareness, responsible decision making, and relationship skills. Remember that Longmeadow Public Schools use the CASEL core competencies to frame our social emotional learning.

CASEL Core Competencies

Thank-you for taking the time to read this message and for reading all the messages that are sent your way. Enjoy the final days of your vacation. Please reach out with any questions.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Calendar Reminders

5/7 MCAS Math Gr 3 and 5

5/7 Helping Hands Grades 1 & 3

5-8 MCAS Math Gr 3 and 5

5/9 MCAS Math Grade 4

5/9 PTO Meeting on the Playground 2:45-3:45

5/10 MCAS Math Grade 4

5/14 MCAS STE Gr 5

5/15 MCAS STE GR 5

5/16 Teacher Appreciation Luncheon


MCAS 2019

Posted March 28, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

Tuesday begins the first round of MCAS testing in ELA (English Language Arts) for our 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students. The MCAS assessments provide parents and teachers with information about students’ proficiency with specific learning standards in English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Science/Technology. MCAS is administered each spring and the results are distributed to schools and parents in the fall.

While teachers have practiced specific MCAS questions with their students to familiarize them with the format of the assessment, the most important learning has been accomplished daily through core curriculum instruction! The MCAS is an opportunity for our students to apply their learning and demonstrate their proficiency as growing readers, writers, mathematicians and scientists.

This is the third year for administration of tests known as the "Next Generation MCAS”, which are designed to be computer -based and to more deeply assess students’ knowledge and ability levels. Students in Grade 3, 4 and 5 will participate in online testing, using Chromebooks, in ELA, Math and Science this year. All tests are untimed and writing is embedded in tests at all grade levels.

Here are ways you can help:

  • See that your child arrives to school on time.

  • Make sure your child is well rested and eats a substantial breakfast. Don’t forget to pack a healthy snack!

  • Encourage your child to persevere, do the best work possible, and to have a positive attitude!

  • Talk about the test in a positive way!

The testing schedule is below:

ELA

  • 3rd and 5th Grades- April 4th, 5th

  • 4th Grade- April 2nd, 3rd

Math

  • 3rd and 5th Grades- May 7th, 8th

  • 4th Grade- May 9th, 10th

Science

  • 5th Grade ONLY- May 14th, 15th

Note that in compliance with DESE/MCAS test security requirements, parents /visitors are prohibited from the testing areas on testing dates.

We ask for your help in striking a balance between encouraging students to do their best and minimizing test anxiety. We consider MCAS to be one piece of evidence used to measure student growth and progress, and we recognize your child’s individual strengths, passions, and talents may not be reflected in a test score. By working together, we can make your child’s testing experience positive and successful.

If you would like more information, visit http://www.doe.mass.edu/mcas/parents/.

I extend my appreciation for your support and cooperation. Please contact me with any questions.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Please Note: In compliance with DESE test security requirements, students are not allowed to have smart watches, cell phones, or other electronic devices during testing. If your child wears a smart watch, he/she may want to keep it at home. Teachers will collect any watches that are worn to school and return at the end of the school day. All cell phones are kept in back packs in the student’s locker turned off, which is the expectation each day. Thank-you for your assistance with this security requirement.

Week of February 4th

Posted Feb. 4, 2019

Dear Center School Families,

  • I want to share some news regarding the work happening with Social Studies this year. In June of 2108, the Department of Education adopted the new and long- awaited History and Social Studies Curriculum Framework, building on the 2003 and 1997 frameworks. Throughout this school year, the Social Studies committee will unpack the new standards and review the guiding principles, which now include a stronger emphasis on civics at all grade levels. Teachers will review the present resources being used and begin to explore additional resources that will meet the new standards. Here’s a link to the new curriculum frameworks: http://www.doe.mass.edu/frameworks/current.html 4th

4th grade teacher Arlene McLean serves as the district coordinator so we’re fortunate to have her expertise in the building! You can plan on hearing more about your child’s new learning in this curriculum area as the committee work progresses.

  • Please join us this Thursday for our Winter Walking School Bus. We’ll meet on the corner of Hopkins, weather permitting, at 8:10. If you typically drop your child off in carline, feel free to either park your car and join us or drop your child off on the corner of Hopkins. From there, the children can walk to Center with their classmates, school staff, and members of the Longmeadow Police Department.

  • Please support your child’s learning by making sure he/she prioritizes reading each day. Mrs. Mulcahy selects wonderful books to read to your child and is an invaluable resource to help your child choose great reads in our library! Your child’s teacher will offer suggestions as well.

  • PeaceBuilders focus: “Helping Children Notice Hurts”. Family Letter was sent on Friday.

  • The carline continues to be moving much faster. Many thanks for pulling forward and for using family name cards at pick up. These small things are making a huge difference.

  • Please make sure your child wears boots for recess. The playground is wet and snowy and we want children to be able to run and play across the entire area.

Have a wonderful week!

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

February 5th Helping Hands Grade 1 : 7:50 am in the cafeteria

February 7th Walking School Bus 8:10 am weather permitting

Seal Meeting: The Special Education Alliance of Longmeadow (SEAL) is a Parent Advisory Council that offers information, support, and networking opportunities to parents. Please join them for the next meeting on Tuesday, February 12th at 7:00 PM in Room A-31 Pupil Services, 535 Bliss Road, Longmeadow. The Federation for Children with Special Needs will be giving a presentation entitled "Understanding Basic Rights in Special Education (IEP and 504 Plans)". For the full meeting agenda, and to learn more about future meeting dates and events, visit www.sealma.org

February 18th -February 22nd Winter Vacation

Week of January 28th

Posted Jan. 27. 2019

Hello Center School Families,

Friday your child brought home the first semester standards- based report card. You found pertinent information regarding the report card in your child’s report card envelope. We hope that this information will allow you to best understand how your child is measured. We continue to welcome your insights and questions regarding the report card; and you may share directly with me or with your child’s teacher. We value your input and all feedback will be shared with the report card committee.

Monday, January 28th is a half day for students. Dismissal is at 11:30 am with no lunch served. Jetta Bernier, the Executive Director for Massachusetts Citizens for Children (MassKids), will present to all staff members on the topic of child sexual abuse awareness. Please be sure your child is picked up promptly at 11:30 so our professional development can begin in a timely manner.

Arrival time is proving to be problematic on cold and wintry days. While I’ve requested and appreciate that students not be dropped off before 8:25, we’re finding it difficult to begin at our 8:35 start time with ongoing drop off in the carline past 8:35. To expedite the drop off, we will extend the carline to the crosswalk for the remainder of the winter. This will only help if cars pull forward and do not stop and leave a space when dropping off children. Additionally, if we are short safeties, please encourage your child to open the door and hop out. We’ll make sure all children get into the building safely. Thanks for your patience waiting in the line and send me any brainstorms for additional improvements!!

The School Council is developing a climate survey which will be sent to all families at the end of March or beginning of April.

Our kinder through 2nd grade students have enjoyed and benefited (or will soon enjoy) a program from Shriners’ Hospital - “My Pals”- that helps children understand and respect children who are differently abled. Families have inquired about a similar presentation for our older students. We’ll explore what’s available because the Shriners program is only for our younger students.

Please remember that students will be outside for recess in the coming days and recess is close to 30 minutes. Appropriate cold weather dress is needed including hats, gloves, warm coats, and long pants.

PeaceBuilders will focus on the practice of “Helping Children Notice Hurts” in February. You will receive your parent letter on Friday. This practice aligns with and crosses into several of CASEL competencies (CASEL Social Competencies) including : relationship skills, responsible decision making, and social awareness. Remember that CASEL core SEL competencies and the CASEL framework guide our social emotional work with our students.

Thank-you for your ongoing support and I wish you a wonderful week ahead.

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Calendar Reminders

February 1st Super Bowl Spirit Day: wear your favorite Super Bowl Team’s apparel or apparel of team you wish made it to the championship!

February 5th Helping Hands Grade 2

February 7th Walking School Bus 8:15 am weather permitting

February 18th -February 22nd Winter Vacation

2018 Vocal School Climate Survey Results

Posted Nov. 13, 2018

Good Afternoon Longmeadow Community,

I am pleased to provide the Longmeadow community with the results of a survey of students’ perceptions of school climate conducted in grades 5, 8, and 10 as part of the 2018 MCAS administration. Titled the Views of Climate and Learning (VOCAL), this new survey instrument is designed to provide schools with information on student perceptions of three dimensions of school climate: engagement, safety, and environment.

These are important indicators that relate directly to our strategic priorities and student learning. Research consistently demonstrates that healthy school climates positively and powerfully influence learning. Working with parents and students, the staff, administration and School Committee will use this information, along with other indicators of student success, to identify targets for growth and improvement.

Overall, the results are a positive reflection this community’s shared commitment to providing students with safe, supportive and challenging learning environments. As a district, Longmeadow was reported to have "relatively strong school climates," placing us in the top 15% of all Massachusetts School Districts. In districts with the strongest climates (the top 15% percent), students report

  • having inclusive relationships

  • that their teachers have higher expectations for student effort, perseverance, and academics.

  • having fewer bullying experiences

  • feeling that their school is safe and fair

  • that adults are caring and active in helping and supporting them

  • that they feel adults value their ideas and voices

This link will take you to folder with detailed reports that include:

  • Overall, average school climate index scores (with comparative district and state data), and

  • A summary of student responses to each individual survey item

  • Average index scores at each school for the three dimensions of climate: engagement, safety, and environment (with comparative district and state data).

Thank you for your support and interest. As always, I welcome your feedback and questions. Hope to see you at Rick Wormeli, Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. at the Glenbrook Auditorium.

Sincerely,

Marty O'Shea

Superintendent of Schools

Week of November 11, 2018

Hello Center School Families,

The teachers look forward to parent teacher conferences this week. The goal of the conference is to communicate the following about your child:

  • behaviors that demonstrate school success and citizenship;

  • transition to the grade;

  • present areas of strength;

  • growth areas;

  • garner your insights, answer questions, and continue to grow partnership with families.

As you know, the report card is now “standards –based” and will be distributed in January and June. At the conference, your child’s teacher will discuss progress referencing the standards. Families receive (or will begin to receive, depending on grade level) assessment results with cover sheets that indicate your child’s progress towards meeting particular standards or “learning targets”.

One critical strength of standards-based reporting is communication!! Here are additional benefits:

  • Report cards have more meaning

  • Students are offered multiple opportunities and ways through which to demonstrate proficiency

  • Parents are aware of exactly what their child knows, is able to do, and next steps for progress

  • Parents know in what areas their child needs more support

  • Parents are empowered to increase their child's confidence and help their student set goals

We hope you will visit the Elementary Standards –Based Report Card Site in the coming weeks to help build your knowledge before cards are distributed in January.

Elementary Standards-Based Report Cards

Here’s some helpful ideas to prepare for your conference:

  • Talk with your child about school. What does he/she feel are strengths and growth areas? Is there any special topic your child wishes you to talk about with the teacher?

  • Time is precious: prepare notes with topics you want to discuss and questions you may have about your child’s learning and progress.

  • Please be on time. The schedules are tight and teachers want every minute possible with you.

  • Respectfully discussing any differences and celebrating successes will help teachers partner with you to find the most effective ways to work with your child. Teachers value and appreciate your insights.

  • Do you want to know ways to support learning at home? Teachers will offer suggestions.

  • Please thank our teachers for their work. I know they will thank you for your ongoing support and advocacy for your child.

  • Provide feedback to your child after the conference. Always emphasize the positives and discuss the action plan for growth areas.

I hope you enjoy lots of extra family time on this extended weekend. As the proud daughter of a career Marine, I also hope you take time to talk with your child about Veteran’s Day and find a meaningful way to honor the individuals who have bravely served our country- past and present- including members of our own Center community.

Calendar Reminders:

  • From Superintendent Marty O’Shea: Parents will be our partners in learning on this day as Rick Wormeli, a nationally known education consultant, will meet with teachers during the day and with parents in the evening. Mr. Wormeli's Special Programs Presentation is Tuesday, November 13th at 7:00 pm in Glenbrook Auditorium. He will talk to parents about how to authentically nurture their child's learning and academic engagement. Let's pack the auditorium for this compelling conversation!

  • Apologies for the continued reminder but please check lost and found when you are at school for conferences. Also, please write your child’s name on items.

  • The Center School Directory : The 2018-2019 Center School Directory is ready for use. Please check out the digital version on the PTO website, please note that it is password protected -the password is Cardinal: https://www.centerschoolpto.com/2018-2019-directory.html For all those who donated to the annual giving fund prior to 10/15, the printed version we offered as an incentive will be delivered to your child’s backpack in the coming weeks. Congratulations to 5th graders Sophia Crepeau and Siena-Claire Strain whose artwork is featured on the directory. Please see Sophia’s beautiful message!

  • Book Fair will be held Tuesday, November 27 - Friday, November 30th. The Book Fair is a great opportunity to get your holiday shopping completed and support our school. If you even have one hour to spare, please consider volunteering. Signup: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70a094ea5aa23a0f58-fall

Yours in partnership,

Donna Hutton, Principal

"Peace. It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise,

trouble, or hard work...It means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart.”

Center staff greeting students at carline!

Happy Halloween from your Center family!

Willy Wonka, Oompa Loompa, and Charlie

Second Grade Teachers

Third Grade Teachers

Fifth Grade Teachers

Specialists

Dog Assisted Intervention 2018-2019

Posted Oct. 10, 2018

Dear Center School Families,

I am excited to share information regarding the second year of Center's unique endeavor to benefit our students. The practice of using therapy animals in various settings such as schools and health care facilities is becoming more commonplace. Schools are using trained animals to enhance reading interventions and language goals and also for counseling assistance.

Our vision for our dog assisted intervention program is to enhance a student’s social and academic development through engaging lessons with dog assisted intervention developed for specific needs. Yes! We will expand our dog assisted intervention program at Center School.

Here’s some Q & A’ s about Dog Assisted Intervention:

How will students be selected?

  • Students will be recommended for the program through the RTI process, the structure we have in place to identify student needs.

RTI Center Stage

Who is Center’s intervention dog?

  • Murphy is a chocolate lab therapy dog, certified by an AKC registered organization. He has a calm and social temperament and has developed a solid foundation of training. There’s nothing Murphy enjoys more than working with children and the elderly to spread joy as only a dog can for those in need of his assistance. Murphy lives with his people, Mrs. Laura Giuggio and her husband. He feels very fortunate to be working with Center School!

Will Murphy interact with students other than students chosen for intervention?

  • Murphy will only interact with a small number of intervention students recommended for his services during a specific intervention period. When at Center on Wednesdays and Fridays, Murphy will take breaks in his crate.

How will families know if their child will work with Murphy?

  • If a child is recommended for intervention, families will receive a letter and a permission slip before November 1st. Families may opt out of the support. Permission forms will need to be signed and returned before work begins.

Is there a protocol in place for dogs in school settings?

  • The Longmeadow Board of Health has developed a protocol for the Instructional Use of Dogs in LPS classrooms. We are appreciative to Health Director Beverly Hirschhorn, as well as to Superintendent O’Shea and School Committee members Kerrin Morin and Stephanie Jasmin for their supportive guidance and advocacy throughout the process of realizing the pilot, which led us to where we are with the program this year. Please see the attached protocol for your review. Public Health Protocol.doc

There is a wealth of research that supports the powerful advantages of the human-animal bond to improve the literacy and language skills of children. The social emotional advantages such as confidence building, anxiety reduction, and motivation are well documented as well. We look forward to sharing the results of our second year with you.

Please reach out to me with any questions or feedback. Included are just a few links to articles about animal assisted intervention that you might find interesting.

Finally, and most importantly, I extend my gratitude to Mrs. Laura Giuggio. The dedication and commitment required to owning and training a therapy dog is extraordinary. I appreciate that she will share Murphy’s work with our community again this year.

  1. Why Schools Are Going to the Dogs

  2. Making Comfort Dogs an Everyday Part of School

  3. Research for R.E.A.D.


With enthusiasm,

Donna Hutton, Principal


K-8 Student Handbook

Posted Oct. 10, 2018

There was a glitch preventing families from acknowledging review of the handbook. It should be accessible now. Thank-you for taking the time to complete and apologies for the inconvenience.

Dear Center School Parents/Guardians,

Longmeadow Public Schools is pleased to provide the students and families of Longmeadow with a K-8 Student Handbook that articulates parent and student rights and responsibilities and serves as a disciplinary code of conduct. We believe that this handbook is a reflection of our deep commitment to establishing safe, supportive, and orderly learning environments where the expectations for staff and students are clear and widely understood. Additionally, we view this handbook as a reflection of the District’s firm and enduring commitment to creating schools that are welcoming, inclusive and free from discrimination, harassment and bullying. We hope that this document serves our families as a valuable reference and guide to the statutes, regulations, policies and practices that govern the operation of our schools.

The 2018-2019 Handbook is available on the LPS District Website under the Parents tab, at this link:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1zWfDDuI2kp7PjW7RE0K_rP88KFZjzJ1K/view

or under the Parent Tab at our Center School site:

https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/new-ctr/parents

To ensure that this handbook is fully disseminated, we are requiring all families to complete this form to acknowledge that the handbook is accessible and has been reviewed.

Please click on the link below to acknowledge your review of the handbook.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1rFX3_PvdhgB1l33J1H7VOL_MQKy4aOu-8Sg0xilqxRc/edit

Sincerely,

Donna Hutton, Principal


Homework Website

Posted Sept. 27, 2018

Greetings Center School Community!

Last year was the first year that Longmeadow Public Schools implemented our new Homework Guiding Principles for elementary students. The link to the document is attached for our new families and for our returning families’ review. HWGuidingPrinciples.docx The principles represent a child-centered, research-based approach to homework. The principles are the result of the work of a team of educators who researched and discussed the efficacy of homework at the elementary level.

In our first year rolling out this initiative, we placed an emphasis on self-selected, independent reading at home. Through the “Year of the Reader”, students participated in a wealth of activities at Center aimed at promoting reading at home and ultimately growing a love of reading. Activities included: in-class book talks/recommendations, classroom reading challenges, bedtime read alouds, community readers, book tastings and more!

As we move into our second year implementing the guiding principles, we want to make you aware of a new resource available to our community. The Homework Guiding Principles Website contains materials for both parents and teachers. The site includes study tips, ideas for reading at home, book lists, math fluency activities and much more!

The site is arranged by grade level and subject areas correlating with the Guiding Principles. Please take a moment to visit and gain ideas for ways that you can discuss books with your child, practice math facts, and even study together!

If you have any suggestions for resources that might be valuable on this site, please forward them to me to share with the Homework Study Group for consideration.

Your support with the Homework Guiding Principles is invaluable. Thank-you for your partnership as we grow lifelong learners! Teachers will reference the grade level expectations for homework at the Open House tomorrow evening.

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

& Homework Guiding Principles Study Group

https://sites.google.com/longmeadow.k12.ma.us/homework/home

Special recognition and appreciation to Paige Anderson and Erin Craft who created the site on behalf of the study group!

Helping Hands 2018-2019

Posted Sept. 11, 2018

Dear Center School Families,

In the spirit of teaching our students about the importance of community service, we will begin our sixth yearlong effort to feed those in need of assistance.

Center School Helping Hands is a school-wide effort that provides our students an opportunity to work as grade level teams to make a difference by making sandwiches to help feed the hungry. Helping Hands is a collective endeavor that depends on the generosity of our Peace Builders community; and we anticipate another successful year!

Here’s how it works:

SCHEDULE:

Each grade level will be assigned a month to meet one morning in the cafeteria at 7:45 AM to make sandwiches with their grade level team.The students will go directly to their classrooms at 8:25.

Mark your calendars on the following Tuesdays:

October 2nd-5th grade

November 6th-4th grade

December 4th-3rd grade

January 8th-2nd grade

February 5th-1st grade

March 5th-K & 5th

April 2nd- 4th & 2nd

May 7th- 3rd & 1st

June 4th- all grades

WHAT TO BRING:

Each family may voluntarily send in with your child sandwich meat, cheese, and bread to make sandwiches on their designated day. We suggest 1lb. meat; ½ lb. cheese; two loaves of bread, although any donated amount is appreciated. The number of sandwiches delivered each month will depend on donations.

WHO MAY COME:

Siblings are more than welcome to make sandwiches too. For example, our first date (October 2nd ) will be with 5th graders. If you have a 5th grader and a 2nd grader, feel free to send the 2nd grader to help. The more helping hands the better!!

SANDWICH DONATIONS:

Center School parent Amy Nedwed (amynedwed@gmail.com) coordinates this effort. She and I will be present with the students while they make the sandwiches; and Amy Nedwed and Amie Tracy will deliver the sandwiches to the Springfield Rescue Mission, Loaves and Fishes Kitchen in Springfield and the Easthampton Community Center. Kudos to Amy for spearheading the effort once again this year!!

Thank-you for your generous spirit of giving! A reminder notice will be sent each month.

With appreciation,

Donna Hutton, Principal

See the links below to order your tee shirt and also a summary of last year's endeavor.

Tee Shirt order Form

Summary 2017-2018

Center Stage: Cafeteria to Café

September, 2018

Hello Center School Families,

Perhaps you have heard the news from your child about the transformation of our cafeteria. Music plays in the background, which we use as a measure of volume for student talk-if you can’t hear the music, it’s likely the noise level is too high. The walls have been painted tranquil blues with a pop of red for Cardinal school spirit. Curtains are hanging and the walls have art work by Eric Carle. Soon we will have students’ art on our ceiling tiles! And lastly, we have changed from long tables to round tables with bright primary colored seats that seat eight children-lunch buddies who will change consistently throughout the year. We placed all the condiments the students need at the center of the tables.

Transformation of the physical environment of the cafeteria-from blah to warm and welcoming.

Lunchtime should be an enjoyable part of the school day for our students. The lunch period provides a time for kids to relax, socialize with their peers, rest their active bodies and minds, and importantly, become nourished. Most of us agree that “traditional” cafeterias can have an institutional and industrial feel.

After many years of supervising the lunchroom with various attempts at fostering more positive social interactions for all children, I arrived at the realization that the environment needed to be modified to truly make our efforts successful. The broad goal was to design the cafeteria to look more like a café and make it more inviting for our students-a place where our students want to be! Most importantly, research unquestionably affirms that healthy eating and healthy interaction goes hand in hand with a positive cafeteria environment-emotional and physical- where children enjoy the time together and feel safe. While all the changes will hopefully prove impactful, the round tables provide the most consequential change to the space. The tables decrease the number of children in a space and provide a more social place to eat. The round tables ease the movement across the cafeteria and promote important conversation. Like so many experiences in your child’s elementary school years, lunchtime can provide one of the best contexts where appropriate social interaction and behavior is taught and modeled. The goal is to make the café as welcoming as possible so our students will have a more positive and successful day overall.

The transformation of the cafeteria was possible with lots of guidance and support from many community members. Our School Council worked with me to study many improvement possibilities. Thank-you to Rachel Axtmann, Gina Pantuosco, Michael Barresi, and Summer Williams. Superintendent O’Shea provided his support with Tom Mazza who helped secure our district funding.

I also want to take this opportunity to send “kudos” to our PTO for their support. The PTO is funding the purchase for the remainder of the tables, which should arrive by the end of the month. The café tables are only one of many purchases that the PTO has made in the past years, including $20,000 in iPads and chrome books. This is the kind of funding that enriches your child’s experiences at Center School; and I hope you will provide needed support to our PTO with all their endeavors, including the yearly donations’ drive. PTO Donation Page

As you know, we have lunch monitors who help supervise our students during lunch time. We are fortunate this year to also have high school students join us during our kinder lunch to lend a hand to our little ones. The 5th graders will rotate “buddy” responsibilities too and help the kinder children!

We have lots of helping hands, but can always use and will welcome more volunteers. If you are interested in becoming a parent/grandparent lunch buddy, please contact me. If I have interest, we will hold a meeting at a day and time TBA and brainstorm schedules and more possibilities to enhance the lunch and recess experience for everyone.

FYI

11:30-12:15: 1st and 3rd grades

12:00-12:45: 2nd and 4th grades

12:30-1:15: Kinder and 5th grades

We do not begin to dismiss children for recess until 15 minutes into the lunch time period.

Another way you can help? Read this short but important article about etiquette rules to model at home:

3 School Cafeteria Etiquette Rules

Many thanks for your partnership and ongoing support!

Regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

Placement 2018-2019

May 7, 2018

Dear Center School Families,

May is the month when we begin to look ahead to the upcoming year at Center School. The school calendar, staffing, space usage, and even schedules for the 208-2019 school year are planned. Detailed and thoughtful planning in many areas help provide the structure for strong beginnings.

One significant and carefully planned task is the formation of classes. We recognize that students and parents look forward to class placement with anticipation. My goal with this communication is to help you understand or revisit the process used at Center School to place students.

How many classes are planned at this time for each grade level in 2018-2019?

Kinder: 3 classes

1st: 3 classes 4th: 3 classes

2nd: 4 classes 5th: 4 classes

3rd: 3 classes

What is considered when forming classes?

Consideration of the following:

  • Ratio of girls to boys;

  • A balance of achievement levels;

  • Behavior factors regarding students;

  • Compatibility of students with each other;

  • Recommendations of past and present teachers, support staff, principal;

  • Social and emotional needs of students;

  • Learning styles of students;

  • Data from RTI team meetings. (Response to Intervention)

Who will form the class lists for next year?

The person who knows your child best as a learner is usually the classroom teacher. Teachers consult with resource team members. Special subject area teachers provide feedback too. I review class rosters with the teachers with ongoing review throughout the summer; changes are sometimes made based on recommendations and placement of new students.

When will I know my child’s classroom assignment for next year?

The assignment is not named on the report card in June. Assignments will be shared with families in August. You will receive information via School Messenger regarding the specific date that lists will be available in the parent portal of PowerSchool.

What if I prefer that my child have a specific teacher?

We respectfully ask that you trust the school team to determine the best placement for your child. We will not honor requests for specific teachers. We also request that you not place your child’s current teacher in an awkward or unprofessional position by asking her to comment on teachers in the next grade. We also suggest that you not form opinions regarding a teacher based on what you have heard. Each classroom is as unique as each child; and an experience that parents may have had with their child in a class may be totally different from what your child may experience in the very same classroom.

Very Important question: Do parents have input in the process?

YES. Your input began at the start of the year with your relationship with your child’s teacher. You provide insights and expertise about your child at conferences and through ongoing communications with your child’s teacher. You are invited to provide additional input by completing the Family Input Form attached. We also sent a hard copy of the form home with your child. (Please note that parent input forms are optional.) Family Input Form for Class Placement Process.docx

The classroom placement meetings are a time-intensive endeavor. Center School teachers and support staff strive to create learning environments that will support the diverse needs of our students. A “balanced” group of learners helps us achieve our goal of optimal growth and development for each child- both socially and academically.

I welcome any questions regarding the placement process. Thank -you for your support and for the trust you place in us to meet your child's needs.


Kind regards,

Donna Hutton, Principal

FYI MCAS Schedule :

Tuesday, May 8 ~ Math Testing for Grades 3 & 5

Wednesday, May 9 ~ Math Testing for Grades 3 & 5

Thursday, May 10 ~ Math Testing for Grade 4

Friday, May 11 ~ Math Testing for Grade 4

Tuesday, May 15 ~ Science Testing for Grade 5

Wednesday, May 16 ~ Science Testing for Grade 5