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District Email Update: November 24, 2020

Hi Folks


We have just about made it to the annual Thanksgiving break, and this fall has been anything but typical. I am sending one last emphatic and targeted plea to all faculty, staff, and students to please do what you all know you need to do to limit your risk during the holiday season.  Celebrate ONLY with people from your own household, and follow these helpful guidelines:

CDC Tips For A Safe Thanksgiving

CDC Guidance for holiday gatherings 


Hopefully you will not be traveling out of state over the holiday.  If you do choose to leave the state, remember the only low-risk states left are Vermont & Hawaii (we should all be so lucky as to enjoy Thanksgiving in Hawaii…)  Also, please remember to review the following guidance:

Know Your Travel Risks

Massachusetts Travel Regulations.  

MA travel form 


If you do travel, you must either produce a negative COVID-19 test administered up to 72 hours prior to returning to Massachusetts or you need to quarantine for 14 days upon return. 


When we return to the schools after the Thanksgiving break, we have only 17 school days until our annual December break.  During that critical stretch, all schools will be slightly modifying their learning schedules on Wednesday afternoons.  As you may already know, this year the 2020-21 district calendar shifted all full and half-day professional development days to utilize the existing “remote Wednesdays” structure.  In order to allow students more flexibility in their learning and allow educators time to collaborate, Wednesday afternoons will be structured such that students can complete assigned work in a more independent manner.  This asynchronous work will still be teacher assigned and directly aligned with content standards, but this slight adjustment will hopefully help reduce the “zoom fatigue” that we have all been experiencing during the many hours spent in front of screens in live mode.  Individual schools will provide more specific scheduling information in the days after break.  This adjustment will only impact 6 Wednesdays from now through February break, but we hope this tweak improves the overall learning experience for students and educators.


Thank you for helping us keep our schools open and our community safe!  Please enjoy a safe, healthy, and restful Thanksgiving break with members of your household!  Wear a mask, stay socially distanced, wash your hands, and remain optimistic that with everyone’s cooperation, we will hopefully return to some semblance of normalcy in the days ahead.  We are truly all in this together and dependent upon one another.


All my best,


Mike Welch