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Belmont Public Schools News

Welcome Back Parents and Guardians - Fall 2022


Dear Parents and Guardians:

We hope you are enjoying your summer days and find relaxing time with family and friends. It is with great excitement we welcome all new and returning children to Belmont Public Schools. Although we have many warm days ahead to enjoy, the start of the school year is right around the corner, and we wanted to take this time to give you some updates and reminders for 2022-2023.

The Belmont Public school staff have been working hard all summer preparing our facilities for teaching and learning in September of 2022-2023. We want to thank the building administrators, administrative assistants, custodial and facilities staff, and all the town departments for their work this summer to ensure a smooth start this fall. Soon, your school principals will be communicating school-specific information before the start of the new year. For your calendars, please see these important back to school dates and district-related information below:

  • School begins on September 7 for grades 1-12 with an early release (no lunch)
  • School begins on September 8 and September 9 for kindergarten students (half of students on the 8th and half the students on the 9th - schools will communicate the student schedules)

The 2022-2023 school year calendar, as well as other information regarding religious holidays and school hours, is available on the BPS website.

New Administrative Roles at BPS:

Last year we announced Karla Koza, former Chenery Middle School principal, would be the new Director of District Configuration Transition. This one-year position will lead the configuration, transition, and staffing work for the district, in collaboration with the Belmont Middle and High School Building Committee (BMHSBC), related to the move of grades 7 and 8 to the new Belmont Middle and High School (beginning fall 2023). This position will also work in collaboration with the school community to lead and facilitate the last component of our configuration change which is moving grade 4 to the Chenery Upper Elementary School for the beginning of fall 2024. This position was presented, outlined and voted on by the School Committee at the June 22 meeting.

Nicolette Foundas, former Chenery Lower School Assistant Principal, is appointed as the Interim Chenery Middle School Principal. Peter Tausek, an educator in Belmont for 14 years, will be the Interim Chenery Lower School Assistant Principal for the 2022-2023 school year, filling Ms. Foundas’ vacancy. Following this school year, Ms. Foundas will become the Chenery Upper Elementary School Principal with the grades 4-6 configuration. In January 2023, we will post for a permanent grades 7 and 8 principal at the Belmont Middle and High School for a July 1, 2023 start.

We also welcome:

  • Marie Penner-Hahn, Director of  World Languages, grades 6-12
  • Jackie Morgan, Food Services Director

Health Update:

The Health Team ((BPS and Belmont Health Department) have been meeting during the summer, and continue to meet weekly during the school year, to discuss guidance from state and local public health organizations. We emailed families and staff the health update presented to the School Committee at the August 9 meeting, and we share this again with you now.

At this time, COVID state guidance has not significantly changed, and the recent CDC recommendations have and will be embedded in the BPS guidelines. Please look for an email by the end of this week from the nursing department giving detailed information and links. This information will also be located in the nursing department website in health notices and news and COVID protocols. The nursing department will continue to email families and staff and update the website with any important information throughout the year.

Please know the Health Team will concentrate on and continue to invest time into holding vaccine clinics during school hours to promote vaccination and booster opportunities for students, families, and staff. The town will also continue their efforts to provide these opportunities for the Belmont community as well. As a precautionary measure, we encourage all families, regardless of symptoms, to obtain their own home tests to utilize over Labor Day weekend to ensure a safe start to school.

Food Service Update for 2022-2023 School Year:

The Belmont Public School’s Food & Nutrition Department would like to update you with exciting news about universal free school meals. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has extended free school meals for all students through the 2022-2023 school year! This means that every student is eligible to receive one free breakfast and one free lunch each day. All additional meals outside the first breakfast and lunch will be charged along with the school’s current meal rates. 

Please note that even though every student may get one free breakfast and one free lunch per day, it is still very important for families to complete the household Application for Free and Reduced Price Meals for the 2022-2023 school year. Our office will start accepting meal applications on Wednesday, 8/31. You can view and complete the application on the district website. You do NOT need to complete an application if you already received an email stating that your child was directly certified for free or reduced-price meals. Please see the entire Free Meals announcement from Food Services for more information.

Concord Avenue/Belmont High School Vehicular Access for School Year 2022-2023:

Construction on the new grades 7 and 8 wing at the Belmont Middle and High School will continue through this school year and is expected to be completed during the summer of 2023. Please see the email sent to high school families from the Belmont Traffic Working Group on August 22 that gives important changes for student parking, drop off and pick up for 2022-2023. What remains the same is the ability for parents and guardians to pick up and drop off on the campus in front of the high school, and the availability of student parking on Concord Avenue. The biggest change is indicated by striping in the middle of the road that supports new bike lanes on Concord Avenue. Please be aware that the traffic on and around Concord Avenue will be very heavy in the morning and afternoons.

Last but not least, we look forward to seeing all of our educators and students fill the halls and classrooms. Below are the following contact numbers in case you may need any assistance or support:

John Phelan, Superintendent, 617-993-5401
Janice Darias, Assistant Superintendent, 617-993-5410
Tony DiCologero, Director of Business, Finance and Operations, 617-993-5430
Mike McAllister, Director of Human Capital, 617-993-5425
Ken Kramer, Director of Student Services, 617-993-5440
Jonathan Libby, Assistant Director of Student Services, 617-993-5440
Chon’tel Washington, Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, 617-993-5422
Karla Koza, Director of District Configuration Transition, 617-993-5444

Belmont Public Schools:
Burbank Elementary School, 617-993-5500
Butler Elementary School, 617-993-5550
Wellington Elementary School, 617-993-5600
Winn Brook Elementary School, 617-993-5700
Chenery Middle School – Lower School - 617-993-5820
Chenery Middle School – Upper School - 617-993-5830
Belmont High School, 617-993-5900

Have a great rest of your summer, and we look forward to seeing you all soon.

Respectfully,

John P. Phelan
Superintendent of Schools
Belmont, Massachusetts






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