Superintendent's Update 10/24/19

Superintendent's Update 10/24/19
Posted on 10/24/2019

October 24, 2019 Community Update


Dear Medway families, 


I continue to be appreciative of the strong partnership between the schools and the town.  One area, in particular, where we have seen a great deal of support and focus has been in the area of school safety.  Over the past five years, the Town has supported significant investments in the infrastructure of our schools in order to improve school safety.  Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a Roundtable Discussion on Safety at Walsh Middle School in Framingham. Panelists at this event included Governor Baker, Lt. Governor Polito, Commissioner Riley, M.A.S.S. President Brad Jackson, and first responders.  The discussion centered around the recent 7.5 million dollar grant opportunity focused on school safety. These grants were awarded to more than 140 school districts. As we have shared previously, the Medway Public Schools received a grant of approximately $60,000 which will be used to upgrade door hardware at McGovern Elementary School.  During this discussion, as other school districts were sharing their work in the area of student safety, I could not help but to be thankful for the work that we have done, in partnership with the Town, to continue to improve the safety of our students.


As always, please find other important information and updates below.


Sincerely,

  

Armand Pires, Ph.D.

Superintendent


Infinite Campus

Thank you to our families who have supported our transition to Infinite Campus.  60% of our families have completed the beginning of year packet [Online Registration]. It is imperative that this information be reviewed and submitted online to ensure our information is accurate and up to date. If you have not yet completed this step, please do so. Directions can be found on our website by clicking here. Scroll to the last page for Online Registration Information. 


We would also like to request that all families check their account settings, specifically the emergency email address. This email address is used to help when a user forgets password. For help with account settings, please visit our directions’ website by clicking here.


For those families with questions or concerns about this new platform, we have identified some dates and times to support you through this process.  Please either complete this process on your own as soon as possible, or select ONE of these times to gain support with this process. Members of our Information Services team will help you navigate the platform in person.  Dates and times are listed below. Please enter through Door #7 on the back left side of Medway Middle School located at 45 Holliston Street to check-in.  


Tuesday, October 29, 2019  4:00-7:00 p.m. 

Thursday, October 31, 2019  11:00 - 2:00 p.m.

Friday, November 1, 2019   7:00 - 10:00 a.m.


All sessions will be held in the Presentation Room at Medway Middle School.  If you have not received a link with initial login information, or need help locating it, please send an email to parent@medwayschools.org.


Shadow a Student Days Continue

As has been past practice, the Dr. Armand Pires, Superintendent, Ms. Gabby Abrams, Assistant Superintendent, and Ms. Kat Bernklow, Director of Student Services, are continuing their practice of shadowing students at each of our schools over the course of the year.  The goal of these shadow days is to ensure that our central office leadership team maintains a current pulse on the student experience in our schools and classrooms. These visits have provided us with important information to inform decision making and have also allowed us to have meaningful connections with our students.


Memorial Plaque Dedication Ceremony

Last Thursday, we celebrated five honorees during the annual Memorial Plaque Dedication Ceremony.  The honorees provided a significant contribution to the Town of Medway and served in elected, appointed, and/or volunteer positions.  Their names have been included on the Memorial Plaque. The inductees are: Richard Coakley, Bettye Reardon, Joanne Senier-LaBarre, Marie Anzuoni and Diane Borgatti.  Congratulations to all the honorees and their families.


2019 MCAS Results and School and District Accountability Information

Each year, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Educator provides school districts with information connected with student performance on the prior Spring’s Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS).  These assessments allow districts to better understand how our work around teaching and learning in the areas of Mathematics, English Language Arts, and Science, Technology, and Engineering are supporting student learning.  Additionally, the Department also provides districts with information on how they have or have not improved based on several indicators including student achievement, student growth, attendance, graduation rates, and advanced coursework.  


Late last month, the Department released the results of the 2019 MCAS and school and district accountability ratings.   The Commissioner has expressed publicly his interest in exploring this new system thoroughly. The full system is explained through the following parent guide:  2019 Accountability System 


Medway Public Schools continues to outperform the state average in all achievement categories and have received a district accountability rating of Substantial Progress Towards (Improvement) Targets.  

  • Medway High School has reached the Substantial Progress Towards (Improvement) Targets accountability rating and, per the 2019 MCAS, is performing in the top 18% of all 9-12 schools across the state.    

  • Medway Middle School and Burke-Memorial Elementary School received the accountability rating of Moderate Progress Toward (Improvement) Targets and, per the 2019 MCAS, are performing in the top 30% and 34%, respectively, of all grade 3-8 schools across the state. 

Individual student results have been mailed from the schools this week and parents of students in grades 3-11 can expect to receive these in the mail before week’s end.  If you do not receive your child’s MCAS report, please contact the main office at your child’s school. 


Screenagers:The Next Chapter Follow-Up 

On October 16, Medway community members and parents, as well as middle and high school students had the opportunity to view the documentary,  Screenagers: The Next Chapter.  This documentary focused on the concurrent rise in teenage mental health concerns and screen use.  If you were unable to attend the screening, but would like to read the tip sheets that were distributed, they can be found here: A Guide For Parents; Screen Time and Screenagers Parent Guide.  Additionally, if your student is looking for mental health support, please contact your school counselor or access  the INTERFACE helpline. 

 

Parent/Community WELLNESS Volunteers Needed!

Medway Public Schools will host its second Professional Day of the school year on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.  After much success last year, the focus of the last portion of the afternoon will be on faculty and staff wellness.  We are looking for community volunteers who work in or have a passion for an area of wellness and who would be willing to volunteer 2 hours of their time to facilitate a session from 12:30-2:30 p.m. at Medway High School on Tuesday, January 21, 2020.  If you are interested in offering a wellness session, please fill out this form.  Depending on the  level of interest, we may not be able to offer all sessions.  We will confirm participation with all interested community volunteers by the end of December. 


Medway High School Trip to Panama

Mr. David List, high school assistant principal, and Ms. Charlsey Gentile, school counselor,  returned from a professional education experience over the long weekend in Panama energized to bring what they learned in Panama to Medway High School.  The purpose of this trip was to support the growth of global competencies in our schools and understand how world travel can help to support the STEM programs in our school. 

 

In regard to Global Competency, they were able to collaborate in workshops with faculty from 12 schools from eastern Massachusetts on developing Global Competency programs. They also had the opportunity to learn with educators in a K-12 Panamanian school about how we all think about integrating Global Competencies into all aspects of a student's education. The highlight of their learning was the time spent working with keynote presenter, Dana Mortensen, who is a thought leader in the area of incorporating Global Competencies into schools.  In relation to the connection of STEM and world travel, they visited the Panama Canal where they learned how this one location touches on all areas of STEM as well as the biodiversity of Panama through a study of the flora and fauna. They then spent time in the mangrove forest grappling with the impact of climate change on our world.  

 

Mr. List and Ms. Gentile were able to network with a wide network of other professionals in the field whom they will be able to use as resources.  They were inspired to come back to Medway High School to implement these new ideas that will be providing valuable and relevant educational opportunities for students.


Turkey Trot

The 9th annual Medway Turkey Trot is scheduled to take place on Thanksgiving morning, November 28. The 5k route will begin at Medway High School at 7:30 a.m.  All proceeds from this annual tradition support Medway Public Schools’ Athletics. To learn more about this Medway tradition and to register, click here.  Register by November 7 to receive a t-shirt!

 

In the news:

Medway in school food pantry weekend backpack program expands to McGovern school

Medway High School students inducted into TriM Music Honor Society

Medway girls convince schools to convert to recyclable trays



Upcoming Events

October 24, 2019

SEPAC Board Meeting,  Medway Public Library, 6:30-7:30 p.m.

October 28, 2019

School Committee Office Hours, Medway High School, 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

October 29, 2019

SEPAC Meet & Greet, T. C. Scoops, 6:30-8:00 p.m.

October 30, 2019

SEPAC Parent’s Rights Presentation, Millis HS Library, 6:30 p.m.

November 1, 2019

MHS Fall Play, Scared Silly, Auditorium, Medway High School, 7:30 p.m.

November 2, 2019

MHS Fall Play, Scared Silly, Auditorium, Medway High School, 7:30 p.m.

November 11, 2019

No School: Veteran’s Day

November 12, 2019

MFPA Meeting, Alumni Conference Room, Medway High School, 7:30 p.m.

November 13, 2019

Meet the Coach Night for Winter Sports, Auditorium, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

November 14, 2019

School Committee Meeting, Presentation Room, Medway Middle School, 7:00 p.m. 

November 18, 2019

School Committee Office Hours, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

Fall Town Meeting, Auditorium, Medway High School, 7:00 p.m.

November 21, 2019

Veteran’s Day Project, Council On Aging, 4:00 p.m.

School Committee Tri-Board Meeting, Presentation Room, Medway Middle School, 6:00 p.m.

MFE Wine and Whiskey Tasting, Pour Richards, 6:30 p.m.

School Committee Meeting, Presentation Room, Medway Middle School, 7:00 p.m. 

November 27, 2019

Early Release- All Schools

McGovern: 12:00 p.m.

Burke-Memorial: 11:30 a.m.

Medway Middle: 11:02 a.m.

Medway High: 11:34 a.m.

November 28, 2019

Turkey Trot, Medway High School, 7:30 a.m.

November 28-29, 2019

No School: Thanksgiving Break

December 4, 2019

MSPTO Annual Pop Up Shop, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

December 5, 2019

Elementary Early Release

McGovern: 12:00 p.m.

Burke-Memorial: 11:30 a.m.

December 10, 2019

MFPA Meeting, Alumni Conference Room, Medway High School, 7:30 p.m.

December 11, 2019

MHS Winter Concert and Art Walk, Auditorium, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

December 12, 2019

School Committee Meeting, Presentation Room, Medway Middle School, 7:00 p.m. 

December 18, 2019

MMS Band Concert, Auditorium, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

December 19, 2019

MMS Winter Chorus Concert, Auditorium, Medway High School, 6:00 p.m.

December 23, 2019-

January 1, 2020

No School- Winter Break


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