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  • Writer's pictureFranklin PTO Newton

From the Principal - September 3, 2021

Dear Franklin Families,

It was wonderful to see many of you yesterday morning when students came to meet teachers and visit classrooms. The joy of children and adults was apparent as we all gathered back in the building after many months of separation and physical distancing. This week, Franklin teachers and staff members have worked incredibly hard to set up our learning spaces and plan for an engaging return to school with social, emotional, academic, and organizational support for students. We are all ready to meet students where they are and spend these opening weeks building relationships, restoring familiarity with school routines, and establishing strong classroom and whole-school communities that will be the foundation for our year together.

In addition to all of the efforts of our professional team, I want to send a huge Thank You to our PTO for supporting the transformation of our staff room into a comfortable and inviting space for us to gather. Through much needed updates to decor and appliances, the team created a space that feels brand new to match our optimism about this school year. I especially want to thank Jessica Allen, Emilie Chang, Amy Horsman, and Marisa Talarico for the hours they spent planning improvements, selecting items, and decorating the space. We are all deeply appreciative!

If you were unable to attend our Family Information Session on Tuesday evening regarding this upcoming school year, here is a recording of that meeting. When we gathered, we discussed a number of essential health and safety matters. Three that I want to highlight once again are:

  1. The importance of students coming to school with two clean masks each day and a container in which they can keep their mask while they are eating or playing outdoors. Please note that gaiters are not allowed as a face covering.

  2. We will be eating snack and lunch outside as often as possible, so students should please bring an old blanket or towel that can be used for picnic-style dining.

  3. Following our practice last spring, we will continue to be a nut-free school to provide a safe environment for our young students who have life-threatening food allergies.

We also talked about our Arrival and Dismissal procedures, which will return to patterns familiar before the pandemic with a slight time adjustment. Please be aware that:

  • School doors open at 8:10. Please plan for your child to be in the classroom before 8:20!

  • Kindergarten students and students in Mrs. Downing’s class should come to the front door at the right of the building (Door 19) next to the K Wing.

  • All other students in Grades 1-5 will enter through either the front door (Door 1) or the side door (Door 3)facing the playground. Teachers will let you know which is preferred.

  • After 8:20, all students should enter through the front door.

  • The Blue Zone on Derby Street is for drop-off only. No vehicles may be left unattended in this zone during arrival or dismissal times, and children must exit the vehicle on the curb side only. Thank you to everyone for your cooperation in helping us maintain a safe and orderly environment.

I look forward to meeting with many of you at our first Parent Coffee at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, September 24th. We are hoping to plan an outdoor event on that morning, so please watch for updates.

To all of our families celebrating Rosh Hashanah in the coming week, I wish you Shanah tovah! May this new year be one of blessing and peace.

With best fall wishes,

Mark Chitty

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