Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Welcome Back Hornets!

Our meetings are complete, our classrooms are prepped, and we are ready for the students! 

As we begin a new year, I would like to thank you for your ongoing support of our students and of our schools.  I encourage you to stay involved.  Schools are a part of their communities and work best when the lines between home and school remain open.

MERSD is committed to continual improvement focused on creating a learning environment that encourages creativity, innovation and critical thinking.   While we continue to perform highly in traditional measures, we have focused our recent improvement planning to increase our capacity in the areas of whole child and social emotional learning in order to support our overarching goal of reaching all learners.  To learn more about our plans, please join us at our fall School Committee meetings, which will feature School Improvement plan updates and outlooks.  (See Upcoming Events)

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact your child's teacher, counselor or building Principal.  I also welcome and value your input, so don’t hesitate to reach out if you need assistance with an issue.
We are excited for the year ahead, and we are looking forward to seeing you and the students tomorrow! 

Meet the New Faculty 
Last week we held our annual New Staff Orientation Day, where all new faculty were invited to spend the morning getting to know the district better.  At this session, we introduce them to the full-year staff, share with them the district Mission and Vision, and provide them an overview of our expectations for teaching and learning.  We have a fantastic group of new staff that will certainly make our team stronger.  Meet the newest members of or faculty.

Checkout the New MERSD Website:  Thanks to the hard work of our tech team, we have launched a new MERSD website.  We hope you like the new look and features - like downloadable calendars! Later this month we will be launching its companion mobile app. 

Japan Visit:  Last year Caroline Kennedy contacted the Memorial School seeking to create a connection between an elementary school in Kyotango, Japan and Manchester.  What’s the connection?  Both towns have a Singing Beach.  Last year the schools exchanged letters and gifts and the relationship developed into a sister-school project and ultimately a sister-city project.  Over the summer, MERSD hosted a delegation from Japan for a two-day visit that included local history, education round table discussions, and expanding the sister school relationship to be a sister city relationship.  The hope is to develop a long-term partnership.  I would like to extend my thanks to John Willis for his work cultivating the sister-school relationship and teaming with Linda Crosby to put together the very successful summer program.

Memorial Building Project Update:  Last Spring the MERSD School Committee appointed a team of Manchester and Essex residents to serve as the Memorial School Building Committee (MSBC).  The MSBC will carry out all phases of the Massachusetts School Building Authority (MSBA) building process, including feasibility, design, and construction, complying with proscribed MSBA procedures and policies and maximizing the District’s reimbursement application for renovations, additions, and/or construction of a new school.  Through this process, the MSBC will work to find fiscally responsible, forward-thinking solutions for the Manchester elementary school building that meet the needs of the District’s current and future curriculum, is mindful of future maintenance and the impact on the environment, serve the school community, and is supported by voters in Manchester and Essex, as well as the MSBA.  For a list of MSBC Members or more information click here:  Memorial Building Project

District Calendar:  The District Calendar  has been updated and is available under the Parents & Students Section of the district and school homepages.  Please note that the last day of school, if all snow days are used, will be June 21st; without the use of snow days, we are scheduled for the last day of school to be June 14th. Should we exceed five snow days, additional make-up days will be added to the end of the year through June 30th.

MERHS Athletic Advisory Committee:  The Athletic Department of Manchester Essex Regional School District is seeking interested individuals to serve on the Athletic Advisory Board beginning in the fall of 2016. The goal of the board will be to engage key stakeholders in a discussion about the direction of the athletic program. This advisory board will meet on the third Thursday of each month beginning at 3 PM at MERHS. The board will consist of the athletic director, parents, coaches and students. Interested individuals should contact the athletic department in writing indicating their interest and why they would like to serve. Please e-mail - Paul F. Murphy murphyp@mersd.org by September 14, 2016.  

Upcoming Events

Fall Open Houses
  • Essex Elementary Open House:  September 8th @ 6:00 pm
  • Memorial School Open House: September 13th @ 6:00 pm
  • Middle School Open House:  September 14th @ 6:30pm
  • High School Open House: September 15th @ 7:00 pm

HS Parent/Guardian Nights
  • Grade 9/10 Living with a Teenager in High School: Sept. 21st @ 6:15

School Committee Meetings – MERHS Library @ 7:00pm
  • Secondary School Improvement Plans - 9/6/16 
  • Elementary School Improvement Plans - 9/20/16