June 18, 2013
Dear Friends of Gateway:
Here is your current issue of Breaking News -- the weekly e-newsletter of the Gateway Regional School District. Previous issues of Breaking News and past Superintendent’s Corners are posted in the GRSD News Archive (under “News” on the district website). As always, your feedback and any suggestions for improvements are welcome.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK: "Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree." - Martin Luther
SCHOOL COMMITTEE: The School Committee will meet on Wednesday, June 26 at 7:30 p.m. in the high school library. The public is welcome to attend all school committee meetings. Please note that any questions or concerns should first be brought to the appropriate district staff member (i.e. a specific teacher, principal or Central Office staff member). The first agenda item of every school committee meeting is hearing issues that are not on the posted agenda.
THIS WEEK'S EVENTS: Field days are Thursday (Chester) and Friday (Littleville). The final day of preschool is Friday. High school final exams are scheduled for June 20, 21 and 24. The last two days of school (June 25 and 26) are half-days (details in the article, below).
| ELEMENTARY LIBRARIES APPLAUD LONG-TERM VOLUNTEERS; Need is Critical for Replacements!
Both Chester and Littleville Elementary Schools have libraries that are staffed by long-term, experienced volunteers. Unfortunately, all four of the volunteer leaders are leaving at the end of this school year. This leaves a critical shortage of library volunteers, including someone to organize and schedule volunteers at each building. Anyone interested in becoming a library volunteer can download and complete an application for Chester or Littleville.
Photo (right): Chester library volunteer Michele Crane reads to a Kindergarten class visiting the library.
|| STUDENTS TRY 'VIRTUAL WELDING': Gateway welding teacher Paul Atkinson and his students tried their hand at virtual welding last week, an opportunity to test drive some new equipment that the school is purchasing through a grant.
Photo (left): Paul Atkinson takes a turn on the welding simulator as his students look on.
LAST DAY OF SCHOOL: Gateway's final day of school for the 2013-14 school year will be Wednesday, June 26. The last two days will be half-days. Please read the complete article for dismissal times, along with the Wellness Center's summer schedule.
DAYCARE TRANSPORTATION: Parents/guardians who need transportation before or after school to a child's daycare provider are asked to please complete and return a Daycare Transportation Form to your child's school office by Friday, June 21. Daycare arrangements are allowed provided it does not overload a bus or have a bus deviate from its route. Arrangements must be the same each day of the week. Requests will be reviewed and approved by the Business and Finance Officer.
ROGUE 'APRIL 9' ISSUE PUBLISHES ITSELF? For no apparent reason that we, or our webhost, has been able to determine, a past issue of Breaking News decided to send itself out last Friday. Support staff at Sharp School believe this was caused by a bug that they discovered and fixed on Friday.
WEBLINK OF THE WEEK:
10 STEPS TO PREVENT THE 'SUMMER SLIDE': Studies have shown that students can lost up to three months of learning over the summer break, a phenomenon known as the 'summer slide'. The Little Scholars website has a list of 10 steps that parents/guardians can take to guide their children to keeping their brains active and practicing their skills. (These adapt well for older students, too!). Reading through the summer months is key; make it fun by taking part in your town library's "Summer Reading Program".
- 2013-14 BUDGET UPDATE: While the proposed budget passed in the towns of Middlefield, Blandford, Huntington and Montgomery, it failed in the towns of Russell, Worthington and Chester. The School Committee now has 30 days to bring a budget back to the towns, which could be a higher budget, a lower budget or the same budget (updated to reflect changes in costs and revenues since the first budget was voted).
- FALL SPORTS SIGN-UPS: Attention all student athletes currently in grades 6-11: Fall Sports sign-ups will be on Monday, June 17 during lunch. Any student who missed it should see Mr. St.Peter in the Wellness Center after school. Students will obtain a packet at that time, which must be returned by Monday, June 24. Fall sports include Boys and Girls Cross Country, Boys and Girls Junior Varsity and Varsity Soccer and Coed Gymnastics.
- TASK FORCE LAUNCHES SURVEY: $200 cash prize drawn from surveys returned by hilltown residents; survey open to all who live or work in the hilltowns. Early survey results are good, but we know more people need to weigh in! The Southern Hilltown Domestic Violence Task Force has an online survey that will inform upcoming projects. Please help the task force by taking our confidential survey and sharing the link with friends. Results will be used to design a community education and outreach campaign later this year. Hard copies will be available at town libraries, town halls, and at many community events. The survey will take 5-10 minutes. (Click the title at the beginning of this paragraph to get to the survey).
- GATEWAY SAFE SCHOOLS PLAN: In the event of an emergency at your child's school, please do not call or drive to your child's school. We need to keep phone lines and roadways clear in an emergency. Please remain by your phone and wait for information and instructions from school staff, which will be sent using our auto-dialer. It is important that parents keep school secretaries up-to-date with their contact information.
- ONLINE PARENT ACCESS TO STUDENT GRADES, ATTENDANCE: Parents/guardians of students in grades 5-12 are reminded that they can access their student's assignments, homework, grades and attendance online. "A wonderful new feature this year is a 'single sign-in', where parents can view info on all of their children with just one sign-in," reported Technology Director Angela Burke.
- SCHOOL SAFETY HOTLINE: Students, parents and community members can leave a message on the Safety Hotline by calling 685-1050.
IN CLOSING, this week's Superintendent's Corner is now posted. This week, Dr. Hopson and School Committee member Ruth Kennedy discuss their views on unfunded mandates. Please read the entire column for details.
Wendy V. Long, Editor
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“Breaking News From Gateway”
Is published weekly by the Gateway Regional School District
12 Littleville Rd.
Huntington, MA 01050
For questions or feedback, please contact Wendy Long @ (413) 685-1003 or email email@example.com
© 2013, Gateway Regional School District