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Belmont Public Schools News

An Important Message from the Superintendent

BPS Letterhead

I write to inform the community of an important decision that will impact how school will reopen following the Thanksgiving holiday.

Like all school districts, we are responsible for making a decision regarding the safety of students, educators, and families.  It is not a decision we take lightly.  To date we have:

  1. Communicated with families regarding their travel and hosting plans
  2. Analyzed our staffing data to get a sense of educators’ travel and hosting plans
  3. Coordinated with available substitutes
  4. Sought the advice of the Belmont Health Department
  5. Networked with other Superintendents in the Middlesex League
  6. Discussed this topic publicly at our 11/24/2020 School Committee meeting

The decision for any school district cannot hinge on a single factor, but rather on a consideration of all factors taken together.

After thorough consideration of the elements involved, it is our conclusion that the appropriate course of action is to transition all students to a remote schedule for the entire week following Thanksgiving, 11/30 - 12/4/2020.

Please note the following:

  • All K-12 students and educators will move to remote learning for the week.
  • Pre-K and LABBB will remain in-person for the week.
    • Transportation for those programs will continue as regularly scheduled.
  • Your child’s school principal will communicate scheduling logistics for how the week will flow.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic we have sought to make all decisions in a logical and organized way, beginning always with safety.  This decision is no different.  It is our hope that by being proactive and strategic in the short-term we will avoid difficulty in the long-term.  We also believe this measure is in line with the public health guidance we are receiving from the Health Department.  While we wish we did not have to make a decision, we are confident it is the safest choice during this time of increasing transmission rates, nationally, state-wide, and locally.

My best to all Belmont families and educators for a safe and peaceful holiday.


John P. Phelan
Belmont Public Schools Superintendent

CC: A. Prestwich (School Committee), W. Chin (Department of Health)