June 25, 2020
Dear EPS Community,
Today at noon, Governor Baker’s office and the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will release their initial guidance about reopening schools this fall. We applaud the level of thought and care that went into the development of this guidance, and we share its goal of the safe return of as many students as possible to in-person school settings in order to best meet students’ academic, social, and emotional needs.
This guidance must be appropriately tailored to meet the circumstances and needs of each community. Over the coming days and weeks, we will be reviewing the guidance to begin to understand how it impacts what we can do in Easton. We also acknowledge that these initial guidelines do not address every topic and that there will be additional guidance coming from the state throughout the summer. While some media outlets have released documentation in advance of the Governor’s announcement, I would request that you only use the document we are providing as your source of information. Different iterations may be in circulation, but the one attached is directly from the Commissioner’s Office. The full document can be found HERE, but these are some of the key components:
Current medical research supports a safe in-person return to school - with preventive measures in place - as infection and transmission rates are lower for children than adults.
Preventive measures include masks/face coverings, physical distancing, handwashing, and cleaning frequently touched surfaces.
Masks/face coverings will be required for all students in Grade 2 and above and for all adults; they are recommended for students in Grade 1 and below.
Based upon current medical research, and in conjunction with other preventive measures, a minimum physical distance of three feet has been established.
This is the “Initial Guidance.” There will be further guidance coming to us in July.
The Commissioner indicates that we need at least level funded budgets along with aid for additional costs to make the plan work. This is not guaranteed funding, but we will work hard to advocate for it.
The district is now required to develop three separate plans for submission to DESE; one for return to full, in-person instruction with safety requirements, one for full remote learning, and one for hybrid learning that combines in-person and remote learning. Based upon the current medical situation, the expectation from DESE today is that students will return to full, in-person instruction in September; however, that is subject to change based upon how the medical situation develops.
We want to remind you that the district has already convened seven working groups to analyze each area of need in the district in preparation for this directive. This information was provided in the June 15th message sent to all families and staff. It can be accessed for reference via the district website on the Superintendent page.These working groups will now focus on the guidance received as they make plans and create the reports that will detail how we will operate in Easton. We realize the significance of family and staff planning for childcare, work schedules, etc. in the fall. The plans for Easton will be shared as soon as they are available and updated as frequently as needed due to any changes in the health and medical information we receive throughout the summer.
We acknowledge that there are likely to be more questions than answers at this time, and we will continue to communicate with you in the coming weeks and months. Again, we encourage you to read the full guidance document from the Commissioner HERE .
Once again we find ourselves asking for your support and patience as we navigate this new challenge in unprecedented times. We assure you that the safety and wellness of our students and staff will remain our priority. Thank you for understanding this is an important process that will be difficult and time consuming. We are committed to producing the information for Easton as responsibly and as quickly as possible.
Dr. Lisha Cabral
May 3, 2020
Good Afternoon EPS Families,
As you know, last week, the Governor officially closed all schools in the Commonwealth for the remainder of the school year. On Friday evening, Commissioner Riley came out with what he is calling Phase 3 of the Remote Learning Experience, which provides guidance for districts moving forward. This guidance also highlights specific content that the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has determined to be critical content for students to move from one grade to the next. This content is called “Power Standards.”
The administrators and curriculum leaders met early this week to review the document and decide on guidelines moving forward. It is validating that most of the recommendations that the Commissioner outlined are already in place here in Easton. The four goals that the Commissioner outlined are to:
1. Prioritize meaningful connections with educators and peers.
2. Provide engaging core instruction focused on the content standards most critical for students success in the next grade.
3. Offer opportunities for enrichment, exercise and play.
4. Ensure programming is accessible and communication is streamlined for students and families.
The remote learning plans in Easton have always been driven by the content standards. The plans up until this point have been focused on standards that had already been covered throughout the year. With the new guidance highlighting the Power Standards, we now know the specific standards to focus on.
Over this past week, our educators have been reviewing the Power Standards and placing them into three categories:
1. Standards that have been covered to satisfaction
2. Standards that have been covered but need review whether whole group, small group or individually
3. Standards that have not been covered at all
Upon review, our teams have seen that most of the Power Standards had been covered prior to closing. During the spring, standardized testing takes up much of the time as well as end of year events. Therefore, it is common that many standards would have already been introduced and potentially mastered by the end of March. However, there are a few at each grade level that are considered new. Since the announcement, educators have been working nonstop to once again pivot how they deliver instruction. May 11th will be the earliest date that families can begin seeing new content. In addition to the new standards, some teachers may still be working through standards already covered as they may have determined those standards need further review.
The Power Standards will be what drives our remote learning going forward. Please understand that while all teachers are working with the same content, delivery will continue to vary from teacher to teacher. These methods are carefully considered based on individual classrooms and the needs of all students. Some may see asynchronous teaching, which may be videos from platforms that students are used to seeing. It may also include pre-recorded videos created by staff members from the same grade or content even if it is not your child’s teacher. All staff members are working together as a team to create the learning plans. The Commissioner is recommending using an asynchronous format so that students will be able to watch lessons multiple times as needed while completing assignments as well as providing flexibility with accessibility for those who may have conflicting commitments or responsibilities during the school day. This also allows for our staff to truly differentiate the instruction for all students. The incorporation of asynchronous learning is all being decided by our highly trained teachers.
We understand that all families are in various situations. While our remote learning plans are important, the safety and mental health of everyone is our top priority. Thank you for all of your continued support.
May 8, 2020
Dear Parents and Guardians,
On behalf of the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), thank you for your partnership and for helping make education possible for all children in the state during these difficult times. The importance of students’ and families’ health and well-being is never far from our minds. As a parent, I know that having schools in session, but school buildings closed, can be confusing and upsetting for students. As commissioner of K-12 public education in Massachusetts, my goal is to help all students stay safe and continue their learning.
As you know, in an effort to prevent further spread of COVID-19, the Governor has closed school buildings for the rest of this school year. Teaching and learning continue to take place remotely. The Department has helped schools respond through four phases of work.
1. The first phase began in mid-March, when schools were required to close for three weeks. The Department focused on student safety, nutrition, and other basic needs. Meeting these needs continue to be top priorities.
2. The second phase started in late March, when schools were required to close through early May. The Department provided initial guidance to schools (on March 24) and a letter to families (on March 30) along with a list of educational resources for remote learning.
3. We are currently in the third phase. We now know that schools will be closed through the end of the school year (late June for most schools). Because of this, we released updated guidance on remote learning(download) on April 24 to help schools strengthen local efforts.
4. We are also thinking ahead to the fourth phase, when students and staff will eventually re-enter school buildings. We are working with school leaders, and health and safety experts to plan and prepare for this.
Schools and teachers have been doing their best to support your children with remote learning. In your community this may or may not include online learning (using computers, tablets, phones, etc.), but remote learning can include any combination of resources supported by the school and teacher to help your child make progress in their education while classes are unable to be together.
For more details about the updated remote learning guidance and other resources that may be helpful during school closures, please see the School Connectedness document that follows this letter. This letter will be posted on our Learning at Home web page, and other information is also available there.
Thank you again for all you are doing to help your children learn, connect with their teachers, and continue important daily routines. If you have other questions for us not addressed here, you can email COVID19K12ParentInfo@mass.gov or call (781) 338-3700.
Jeffrey C. Riley
April 24, 2020
The Easton Public Schools is pleased to be able to share with you our new Counseling Website dedicated to parent resources during this pandemic. Parenting can be tough at the best of times, but family life has changed dramatically during social isolation that’s been mandated by COVID-19. The good news is that children thrive in a variety of settings. As parents, it's ok to shift your mindset and priorities while parenting during this unprecedented time. This website was created with the goal of narrowing down the endless websites and articles written to identify key areas of need and techniques to help you respond in these unique times.
On the home page of the website, there is a Contact Us link for each building level. We encourage you to reach out to someone on our counseling staff if you have questions regarding your child or simply just need to talk. The emails are checked daily and someone will get back to you on school days within 24 hours.
As a community, we will get through this, together. You are doing a good job and we are grateful for your support. Please see the link below to hear Alicia Keys' new song, Good Job, in honor of all the essential workers. Parents, you are absolutely essential! Thank you for all that you do.
April 21, 2020 Press Release re: Gov. Baker School Buildings Closed
April 11, 2020 Letter from Dr. Cabral re: MCAS
April 8, 2020 Letter from Dr. Cabral re: 2019-2020 School Calendar
April 6, 2020 letter from Special Services Director Theresa Skinner
Virtual School Committee Meeting Presentation of April 7, 2020
March 30, 2020 Letter from School Committee
March 30, 2020 Letter from Commissioner Riley & DESE
March 30, 2020 Update
March 20, 2020 Update
March 15, 2020 Update
March 13, 2020 Update and Resources
March 11, 2020 Update
February 27, 2020 Update
(Links coming soon!)
Parks & Athletic Fields Phase 1 of the Commwealth's Reopening
Food Service Information
Special Education Resources
Ames Free Public Library Resources
Comcast free internet offerings
District's Expectations of Students and Families for Appropriate Virtual Technology Use
Free Online Performing Arts ClassesParent Guides
Parent Technology Guides and Tips
Parent Support Links
(Please note: All activity/event dates listed below
are postponed until further notice)
Easton School Committee Signs Resolution
in support of increased federal support and
stimulus funding for public K-12 education
Virtual Art Show
School Committee Meeting schedule;
Easton Public Schools Celebrate
Dr. Seuss "Read Across America Day"
“You can find magic wherever you look.
Sit back and relax, all you need is a book.” Dr. Seuss
OA Social Studies Department Chair, Matt Auger
Presented New History & Social Studies Frameworks
As a part of our Equity Series sponsored through Easton University,
we were excited to bring
nationally acclaimed author, Jimmy Casas and
Dr. Tyrone Howard Easton!
shared their plan for supporting mental health
at OA through an outdoor classroom
Mr. Baldino's Wood 1 and Metal 1
students are combining efforts and scrap materials
to make and distribute ice melt scoops
to the maintenance and custodial staff
at all schools in the district.
Catch up on OA's Sports by following
A Thank-You Message
From Easton Public Schools Superintendent Lisha Cabral
Dear Easton Families,
It is my pleasure to announce that voters approved the debt exclusion override to fund the construction of the Easton Early Elementary School on Election Day today.
This is an exciting time for families in Easton. The district’s three current elementary schools are beyond their useful lives and create challenges for our educators in providing the 21st century education that our students deserve.
By consolidating these schools into one state-of-the-art facility, we will continue to offer the high level of education you have come to expect in facilities that will match that quality.
This new school, which will be built on the current site of the Parkview School, will also be designed with the most modern safety and security needs in mind.
Tuesday’s vote is the culmination of years of discussions and planning with the Massachusetts School Building Authority. Residents have been supportive from the beginning, starting with Town Meeting authorizing $1 million to fund the design phase in 2017. Voters then showed their overwhelming support for the project at a Special Town Meeting last month when they approved the borrowing for the project by a vote of 1,029 to 48.
The passage of this project would not have been possible without the hard work of the School Planning Committee, the project and design team from PMA Consultants and Perkins-Eastman, the School Committee and the Town Administration, including the elected Committees and Town Administrator Connor Read.
We would also like to recognize the many staff members, parents, community partners, residents, and abutters who generously contributed their time and efforts in assisting us to create the educational plan, tune the design and provide important feedback and suggestions.
Finally, we humbly thank the voters for their continued support of the Easton Public Schools and the children we are so fortunate to serve.
We are entering an exhilarating time for the district as this new facility becomes a reality. We hope to break ground late next year and for students to move in for the 2022 school year. There will be many important decisions made between now and then, and we encourage residents, parents and Town officials to stay engaged during the entire process.
For more information and a full overview of the project, please visit the
Easton Early Elementary School Project website.
Members of the School Administration, Town Administration,
and School Committee Members met with
Senator Lewis, Senator Timilty, and Senator Brady
to discuss educational funding for Easton
See Dr. Cabral's
FY 20 Budget Presentation
Compliments of ECAT!
Easton Public Schools Pay On Line
Pay Kindergarten, Preschool, and the PSAT Exam