Superintendent’s Update – January 15, 2021
Dear Malden Public Schools Families,
We are excited to update you on our plans to begin in-person instruction in Malden Public Schools once again.
On Tuesday, January 19 at 6:00 PM, MPS will host a community forum to discuss the timeline and details of reopening our schools for in-person teaching and learning. We invite you to participate in this virtual event:
Zoom Meeting Link
Enter Passcode: 286750
Join by Phone (audio only):
Webinar ID: 988 4732 4731
Also on January 19, a MPS Reopening Survey will be sent to all MPS families. We encourage you to share your thoughts with the district through this survey.
At this time, the district plans to welcome our high-needs students for in-person instruction on Tuesday. On Monday, January 25, our grades PreK-2 staff will return to our buildings, with PreK-2 students beginning a hybrid learning model Monday, February 1.
The health and safety of our students, staff, and families remains our top priority. We are following sound protocols aligned with expert health guidance. A summary of Frequently Asked Questions is available on the MPS website at https://maldenps.org/reopening/faqs/.
We recognize that this return to learning comes on the heels of historic and troubling events within our nation. The violence in the U.S. Capitol building last week occured at a time when our students, staff, and families are already shouldering the educational, economic, and health impacts of COVID-19. This global pandemic has separated us from one another at a time when we desperately need to come together and when our students especially need to feel safe.
Despite these challenges, we continue to address the academic, social, and emotional learning needs of all Malden students. Our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion for every student we serve is unwavering.
To support these efforts, we would like to share a few resources:
National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) – Talking To Children About Violence: Tips for Parents and Teachers
Annenberg Classroom – Understanding Democracy: A Hip Pocket Guide
PBS NewsHour Extra – Facing History and Ourselves
University of Michigan – Guidelines for Discussing Difficult or High-Stakes Topics
I ask for your continued support as we work to create safe and inclusive spaces for children to ask questions, demonstrate empathy in their interactions with others, and develop a variety of opinions and perspectives. Likewise, your support for our collaborative efforts—such as the Massachusetts Partnership for Diversity in Education—to increase diversity in our schools is much appreciated.
On Monday, January 18, there will be no school as we commemorate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in our community and across the country. More than just a day off, MLK Day is the only federal holiday officially designated as a “day of service” for Americans. To that end, MPS encourages our students and families to find opportunities to volunteer and make an impact in the community on Monday.
While the COVID-19 pandemic limits the number of in-person activities in which we can engage, there are still ways you can make a difference. Consider the following:
Make a donation to or serve at a local food bank.
Donate blood, which is much needed during the pandemic.
Serve as a virtual tutor to other students nationwide.
Order or donate to a local business that may be struggling due to COVID-19.
Check out volunteer opportunities available through the United Way or by visiting https://americorps.gov/join/find-volunteer-opportunity.
These are just a few ideas for your day of service. While MLK Day is a great chance to get started with your volunteering efforts, it can also be a springboard that leads to regular community service throughout the year!
Please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s school or contact me directly with any questions or concerns. We also encourage you to visit the MPS Reopening Schools web page, at https://maldenps.org/reopening, for more information.
Thank you for your continued support of our students and teachers during these challenging times.