Superintendent Conrad’s weekly message for September 9, 2022, focuses on Open House Dates; Special Education Director’s Update; METCO Students Lead Tours of Nubian Square; Dial 988 the new Nationwide Suicide and Crisis Lifeline; Free Lunch for All; the Parent Associations for Bedford High School (BHSPA), \Middle School (MSPA), and the Elementary schools (BEST—Bedford Elementary Schools Together); and COVID-19.
Thank you for a wonderful first week of school! As the year progresses the next item on our agenda will be open houses at each school and in some cases for various grade levels. Below is an outline of the dates. Please look for information from your student’s school for specific information.
Open House Dates
- Lt. Eleazer Davis School The Davis School will be holding a Back to School Night for our Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten caregivers on September 28, 2022 and another on September 29, 2022 for Grade 1 and Grade 2 caregivers. Both evenings will be from 6:30 pm until 8:00 pm. In preparation for your visit to the Davis School, you may want to check out this introduction video the faculty and staff produced Davis School Welcome 2022-2023
- Lt. Job Lane School The Lane School will host three Back to School Nights for Grade 3 students and their caregivers on Tuesday, September 20, 2022 from 6:30 pm until 7:30 pm. Grade 5 students and their caregivers are invited on Wednesday, September 21, 2022 from 6:30 pm until 7:30 pm. Grade 4 students and their caregivers are invited on Thursday, September 22, 2022 from 6:30 pm until 7:30 pm.
- John Glenn Middle School Caregivers of JGMS students are invited to Back to School Night on Thursday, October 13, 2022 from 6:30 pm until 8:30 pm.
- Bedford High School Caregivers of BHS students are invited to Back to School Night on Thursday, October 6, 2022 from 6:30 pm until 8:30 pm.
Our Special Education Director Marianne Vines recently published the Director’s Update which can be viewed at Director’s Update Fall 2022. The update is full of wonderful information about our Special Education Department and Programs.
METCO Students Lead Tours of Nubian Square
Please join Bedford METCO students and others to discover the historic treasures of Nubian Square in Boston. The tours feature information gathered by our young METCO scholars. Join students from METCO’s suburban high schools on a walking tour highlighting stories of Black artistry, activism, and achievement you might not have learned before. The FREE tour culminates at METCO’s brand new headquarters with an in-depth exhibit on the history of educational activism in Boston. The tours are being extended into September. To sign up click on the date and time. For 9/10/22 @10AM or 9/10/22 @1PM or 9/24/22 @10AM or 9/24/22 @1PM.
Dial 988 the new Nationwide Suicide and Crisis Lifeline
This summer saw the introduction of the national suicide prevention and crisis lifeline toll-free number. 988 has been created as a resource for individuals needing information or resources to strengthen suicide prevention and mental health crisis services for everyone. For more information please navigate to https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/988
Free Lunch for All
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has decided to support another year of free lunch for all students! The state legislature recently approved funding for school districts to continue offering lunch to all students without charge. Districts will be reimbursed for all lunches served by the federal USDA program as well as by the state to reach the free lunch rate. Districts are required to use point-of-sale cashier systems to document lunches served. Additional a la carte items will be available at a cost. Free and Reduced applications will continue to be collected. For more information go to https://www.bedfordps.org/district/food-services-department
Bedford High School Parents Association (BHSPA)
The BHSPA is a volunteer group of parents and guardians serving the students at Bedford High School. We use donations and sponsorships to organize and support the high school students, faculty, staff, and the Bedford High School community, which includes and embraces Bedford residents, Hanscom residents, and METCO students and their families. The BHSPA can be reached at https://bhspa.org/ or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org To sign up for the BHSPA newsletter click here: https://www.bedfordps.org/district/links/pages/ptobef-mailing-lists
Middle School Parents Association (MSPA)
The MSPA is a volunteer group of parents and guardians serving the students at John Glenn Middle School. The purpose of the MSPA is to facilitate communication and act as a liaison between the Middle School Parent Community and JGMS. We also raise and distribute funds to support programs for the JGMS community. The MSPA can be reached at https://bedfordmspa.wordpress.com/ or by email at email@example.com To sign up for the MSPA newsletter click here https://www.bedfordps.org/district/links/pages/ptobef-mailing-lists
BEST(Bedford Elementary Schools Together) PTO
Please JOIN the BEST PTO 2022-2023 school year! The BEST PTO is excited to start announcing all of the wonderful events planned for Davis and Lane Families! With a new school year ahead of us, the BEST PTO needs your help. In the past, BEST PTO has offered a printed student directory for students in Preschool through 5th grade. Moving forward, BEST will be using Membership Toolkit. This service offers so much for our families such as online classroom directories, PTO newsletters, and a calendar loaded with spectacular events. Plus, you can access the Membership Toolkit through an app on your phone as well as a desktop computer!
Within the coming weeks, the BEST PTO will be sending out information on how to join the Membership Toolkit. Be on the lookout for instructions!
On average, BEST PTO spends more than $50 per student on classroom supplies (teacher reimbursements), field trips, playground and sports equipment, staff appreciation, community events, diversity materials, and more. By joining the Membership Toolkit, BEST can better communicate with you the needs of our teachers and schools. Whether you need to contact BEST, access a directory, or make a donation, we all really appreciate your membership support! BEST aims to have as close to 100% family participation in the BEST PTO Membership Toolkit to better serve the schools and community.
On August 15, 2022, DESE Commissioner Riley and DPH Commissioner Margaret Cooke sent an Update on COVID-19 Matters in K-12 Schools for Fall 2022 in a memo which can be found at https://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/on-desktop.html. The guidance outlines the state’s recommendation for everyone to be fully vaccinated, that masks are no longer required, and that surveillance testing, contact tracing, and test-to-stay are no longer recommended. It also outlines that no asymptomatic individual should be excluded from school activities as a result of exposure, regardless of vaccination status or exposure setting. The nursing department will be considering their options for symptomatic testing and more information will be available soon. Additional information regarding those individuals who test positive for COVID-19 can be found at COVID-19 Isolation and Exposure Guidance for K-12 and others
As a district, we will continue to disinfect all classroom spaces on a regular basis, operate our HVAC system at increased volume, provide HEPA filtration in all occupied spaces, increase outside air wherever and whenever possible (in school buildings and on buses). We will also be providing hand sanitizer and KN95, N95, and paper surgical masks for anyone who needs these supplies. Our positive case counts will continue to be reported directly to the Bedford COVID-19 Dashboard
As always, thank you for your patience, your participation, and your continued commitment to our schools.