District Email Update: May 18, 2021
DPS District Update
May 18, 2021
Yesterday the Baker-Polito administration announced updates to state Covid guidelines, which were followed by updated guidelines from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). These reopening guidelines are a significant change from previous guidance and have not yet been fully reviewed and discussed in conjunction with our local Dedham Health Department which approves our procedures in the Dedham community.
This afternoon DPS Director of Health Services Gail Kelley and I will be meeting with Dedham Health Department officials to review and discuss this guidance. All MA Superintendents have a zoom meeting with the DESE Commissioner of Education tomorrow at 3:00 PM, and I will be making a recommendation to the Dedham School Committee at tomorrow night’s 7:00 PM meeting.
Once we have fully reviewed this guidance and agreed upon next steps, I will announce Dedham Public Schools’ implementation of these guidelines and communicate clearly with students, faculty and staff. Until any changes are approved locally, all current practices in the Dedham Public Schools will continue. This includes mask wearing for all students and staff when on school grounds unless eating or drinking and six feet apart.
Last night at Dedham’s annual Spring Town Meeting, the Dedham Public Schools FY22 Operating Budget was approved by an overwhelming voice vote. This level-service budget is a 4.2% increase over our FY21 Budget and allows us to continue our work with sufficient staffing and funding for all students. I am greatly appreciative of the Town’s continued support of the public schools through the pandemic and beyond.
I will keep the DPS community updated as soon as possible.
All my best,