I hope everyone is staying healthy and safe. I am so excited that the vaccine is now available for our students, and I am hoping that many of you are taking advantage and getting your student vaccinated.
We are aware that the City of Salem has lifted their indoor mask mandate. However, Salem Public Schools are under the purview of the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). On Tuesday, October 26, DESE announced that after consulting with medical experts and state health officials, their mask requirement in all K-12 public schools throughout Massachusetts has been extended through at least January 15, 2022.
We recognize the desire to “just be done”, but we are still in a COVID-19 pandemic and thus so, we want to keep all our staff and students safe. Wearing is caring, staff, students, and families are required to always wear a mask in our school. Please do your part in keeping us all safe.
I know many of you have heard that we had to close some classes. I want to make sure you hear the information from me. Last week, we had a number of positive cases in our E2 classes. We acted quickly and closed Ms. Levine’s class as there was evidence of school spread in her class. By Wednesday, we realized that there was spread in Mrs. Fischer’s class as well and we closed her class. We believe this to be the same group of students as the two classes work very closely together. We have been using the test and stay method and we feel that we have been able to stop the spread in E2.
In addition, we had a P2 class that had some spread. This class was not to the extent that the upstairs was but felt that we wanted to make sure we were keeping all students and staff (and families) safe, so we closed Ms. Powers’ P2 class. We did ask DESE about closing the school, but they felt that with our safety protocols and the closing of the 3 classes, that we would most likely stop the spread. The superintendent and his team have been super helpful, and I am hoping the worst is behind us.
We have made a couple of adjustments to our classroom routines for the next two weeks.
- We will no longer be using the rug as a place to meet during the day.
- Students will stay at their desks for instruction.
- Students will be kept three feet apart, as much as possible, during the day.
- Students will continue to eat outside unless it is raining. Please make sure your student has layers!
- Students will continue to wash their hands or sanitize every time they enter or leave a room.
We are asking families to remind your students that they must wear their masks appropriately. Masks need to always cover their mouth and nose. If they are eating, they must not be talking. Mrs. Weaver and I went around to classrooms to remind students about proper mask wearing.
Carlton Gear is here:
The PTO has put together a Carlton gear order form. It was sent out today (except for 2 classes) and should be in your student’s backpack. There is a quick turnaround so that the gear can be in before the holidays. If you would like to place an order, please send the order form to school with your student. They are only taking cash or checks for this order. If you have any questions, please go to the Carlton PTO page. If your student is in a class that has been quarantined and you would like to order Carlton gear, please email me and we will try to work something out. Please see attachments for order form and descriptions.
Next week is a short week due to the holiday and I just want to take a few minutes to thank all the Carlton families and let you know how grateful I am to have all of your children. Although the pandemic has caused this job to be much more than I had ever anticipated, I would never change it for the world. Thank you all for your kind words and your never-ending grace you give to all the Carlton staff as we work through the pandemic together. I hope you are all able to spend Thanksgiving with loved ones.
- Friday, November 19th is a half-day. Students get out at 12:00.
- Transition meetings for students moving to the next cohort will be taking place Friday from 12:30 – 2:30.
- Wednesday, November 24th is a half-day. Students get out at 12:00.
- New P1 students begin Monday, November 29th. Please stop by for coffee (outside) and say Hi! to our new families.
- First trimester report cards go home Friday, December 3rd.
- Wednesday, December 8th is a half-day for students. Parent Teacher conferences will be held from 12:30 – 2:30 and 6:00 – 7:30. Please look for more information soon.
- Carlton has No School on Thursday, December 23rd – Friday, December 31st. We return to school on Monday, January 3rd.
Bethann Jellison, Principal