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Belmont Public Schools Update - Wednesday, March 18, 2020


Dear Families and Staff:

We are on day #4 of our school closure. I am writing to provide you an update.

It is with great emphasis that I state to our community the importance of physical distancing.  The goal of reducing the spread of COVID-19 within our community and our country rests in our hands.  However during this physical distancing we encourage to appropriately socialize via phone or text.  Please check in on a family member or neighbor who may be fragile or lonely.  This is a time when strong neighborhood relationships make strong communities;  which in- turn, can positively influence the culture of kindness in our society.

Remote Learning:

The Belmont Public Schools leadership participated in a conference call with Commissioner Riley of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to discuss the goals and guidelines for engaging students during school closure. The Belmont Public Schools will be following the guidelines set forth by the state.

In our work with the Leadership Council and Belmont educators over the last four days we have organized our work with the goal of online educational support and enrichment that gives students options to:

  • Practice skills and content already taught
  • Deepen understanding
  • Enrich what they have learned

Some points of emphasis:

  • Per the Commissioner’s guidelines this is not distance learning; we are not teaching new content or skills.
  • We are giving options to students and families to practice, deepen, and enrich what has been taught.
  • And, probably most importantly, we are providing contact with the teacher to give some sense of social interaction and connection in this time of physical distancing.
  • Principals and Curriculum Directors will be updating our educators on this plan today, Wednesday, March 18.
  • Principals will notify families of the expectations and next steps by tomorrow morning.
  • All families should expect an email from their teacher(s) between Friday morning and Monday afternoon.
  • Please let your principal know if your child cannot access online resources (because they don’t have a device or internet access).

The Belmont Public School leadership team appreciates and values our partnership with the Belmont Educator’s Association during these challenging times.

Food Service Good News!

  • MEAL DRIVE-THRU HOURS: Our meal pick-up window for Wednesday, 3/25 will be 7:30AM to 10:30AM. We want to emphasize this is a drive-thru service and advise families to stay in cars. We’ll load goods into trunk/backseat. This is for our students who access free and reduced lunch.
  • BELMONT HOUSING AUTHORITY: The Belmont Public Schools is happy to announce that the BHA will be providing a free “grab and go” breakfast and lunch, daily from 10:00 am -11:00 am. The BHA is located at 59 Pearson St, Belmont, MA. These are free meals for all community members 18 and younger.  Many thanks to Jackie Martin and her staff at BHA.
  • BELMONT FOOD PANTRY: We will update you on the Belmont Food Pantry hours of operation in the coming days.
  • I would like to thank our Food Service leaders Dustin O’Brien and Gail Mulani and their team for all their hard work!

School Committee:

The next scheduled School Committee meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at 7:00 pm. This will be a remote meeting and no one will be physically in attendance.  In accordance with the updated Open Meeting Laws the School Committee will broadcast this meeting with an opportunity for the community to participate as we normally do during the Citizens’ Concerns portion of the agenda. More information will follow.

Respectfully sent with the hope of good health to all.

Sincerely,

John P. Phelan
Superintendent of Schools
Belmont, Massachusetts






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