Thursday, August 17, 2017

August 2017

Dear Swampscott Families,

On behalf of the Swampscott Public Schools I would like to welcome you to the 2017-2018 school year.   A special welcome to those students and families who are joining us for the first time.  The beginning of school is rapidly approaching and there is much to do as both you and the district are preparing for the the opening of school.

The first day of school for students in Pre-K and grades 1-12 will be on Tuesday, August 29th.  Individual screenings will take place by appointment for our incoming Kindergarten students from Tuesday, August 29th through Thursday, August 31st.  There is NO SCHOOL on Friday, September 1st and Monday, September 4th in honor of the Labor Day holiday.  First day for Kindergarten students is on Tuesday, September 5th.  The school year calendar can be printed from on our NEW website along with a year long calendar of events that is easily accessible for each of the schools. The calendar feature also allows filtering for those of you with students in more than one school: Calendar Link to SPS Website

Shortly after school begins, Curriculum Nights will be held at each of the schools for parents and guardians to meet teachers and learn about the curriculum expectations.  Please mark your calendar as the dates and times of these events are as follows:

Clarke Elementary                              Thursday, September 7th - 6:30pm
Hadley Elementary                             Wednesday, September 6th - 6:00pm
Stanley Elementary                             Tuesday, September 5th - 6:00pm
Middle School (Grades 5 & 6)            Tuesday, September 12th - 6:00pm
Middle School (Grades 7 & 8)            Thursday, September 14th - 6:00pm
Swampscott High School                    Tuesday, September 19th - 6:00pm

This school year, there will be a continued focus on our district priority of Psychological Safety. We will be implementing a middle school version of the highly successful Swift and Harbor Programs that were put into action at Swampscott High School last year.  

In addition, we will build upon the work we began last year in the following curriculum areas: 

Science/STEM (K-12) - We have expanded the middle school STEM classroom with 25 new computers that will run engineering design software, we have added a Science teacher at the high school in order to pair more students with the science classes they seek, and this year we will be working to build a cohesive 5-12 STEM program that is aligned to the 2016 MA Curriculum Framework for Science, Technology/Engineering with the goal of offering coding at the high school level by the 2018-2019 school year. 

Mathematics (7-12) - We have purchased Pre-Calculus textbooks at the high school level, and this year we will be delving deeper into the conversations that began last year around Algebra I classes at both the middle school and high school levels from the placement process to number of levels at the high school. 

Technology/Google (K-12) - The technology department has been busy rolling out 400 new technology devices including devices for the Leadership Team, Teachers, and students and this is just the beginning.  We continue to work on the roll-out of our new website and have planned professional development workshops in Google.  We are also proud to announce that we FINALLY have GUEST wi-fi access at the high school. Just bring your device and sign in as a guest!

I have only scratched the surface of all the great things happening in our district.  July and August are very busy months when countless facility and maintenance projects are underway as we anticipate the arrival of the students and faculty.  Each school year brings a renewed enthusiasm and excitement to our work and each September I am reminded of what a privilege it is to serve this community and an honor to be your Superintendent.