Category Archives: GHS

Quarter 3, Quarter 4 grades, and GPAs

Dear Parents, Caregivers, Faculty, Staff, and Students,

 

This morning, a team consisting of 20 teachers, department heads, and Superintendent Jacobs met today to discuss how to conclude the third quarter, progress with the fourth quarter, and calculate students’ GPAs for the year. Our decisions were based on data from surrounding communities (13) and what works best for our students at GMHS. Our discussions were thoughtful and took into consideration all subjects and the diverse needs of our students. In the end, all in attendance agreed to move forward in the following manner:

 

  1. Quarter 3 will be graded on a Pass/Fail basis. Students wishing to make-up missing work from the quarter will reach out to their teaches and have until April 17th to submit completed work. I recommend students contact their teachers as soon as possible to verify and retrieve any incomplete assignments. This is volunteering and not required.
  2. Quarter 4 will be graded on a Pass/Fail basis. It is important students submit all work for Credit in order to receive a passing grade for the quarter. In addition, I strongly recommend students work with their teachers during office hours if they need assistance.
  3. Students’ GPA will be based on quarter 1, quarter 2, and the midterm exams. These quarters and exams were not interrupted and provide a more complete profile of a student.

 

Thank you for your patience during this difficult time. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions. I hope this message finds you all healthy and safe.

 

Best,
Mr. Richards

Schoology Update

Dear Parents, Caregivers, Faculty, and Staff – 
 
I am happy to report that all upgrades to Schoology have been completed and students and teachers should now have full access. We hope there will be no more disruptions in service but if you have any questions regarding Schoology or any password concerns, please email Liz Marchetti marchettil@georgetown.k12.ma.us and Sandra Schwarzkopf at schwarzkopfs@georgetown.k12.ma.us
 
Thank you for you patience during this challenging time.
 
Hope everyone is well and safe.
 
Best,
Dan Richards 

Senior Spotlight

COVID Update #10 – April 8, 2020

Hello Georgetown Families.

I hope you are continuing to stay well and that all of those you love have not been affected by this virus. The experts are predicting things are going to get worse before they get better so I pray that we will all stay safe until we can be together again. I was thinking as I had a moment to enjoy this beautiful weather that I am grateful to be going through this in the springtime when things are blooming and signs of renewal and hope are all around us. I want to extend a warm and heartfelt thank you to all of our parents, caregivers and family members who are first responders, doctors, nurses and other medical personnel as well as others who are continuing to work and put their lives in danger meeting our needs and trying to fight this virus by saving as many lives as possible. You are our heroes and we are wrapping our arms around you with a big Georgetown hug hoping and praying that you stay safe and hopeful! We are Georgetown strong!

1. Remote Learning

We are up and running! I am sending a huge THANK YOU to our staff who worked so hard over the last two weeks to get Georgetown Connects up and running beginning this week. They have put in many long hours to make this possible. It was a huge undertaking and unlike anything we have ever faced in education before. We are proud of Georgetown Connects but accept that we need to continue to work out the bugs. At the MHS, I want to apologize for the fact that Schoology was unable to handle the full capacity on Day 1 of our plan. We have been in the process of moving from the free version to the paid version and the company was simply overwhelmed with all of the requests for service since so many places were moving to remote learning. Our Technology Integration Specialists did everything humanly possible to avoid the problem but unfortunately there were some students who could not access Schoology in the first two days. We regret any concern that this might have caused our students and we have been told by the company that they will transition to the new upgraded version today, Wednesday April 8th. This should ensure that there are no further interruptions in service. Please reassure your children that teachers understand and are going to be very flexible this week as we move to this online system. As I have said before, our main goal is , first and foremost , to take care of the social, emotional and mental wellbeing of our students during this difficult time. The lessons and activities our teachers have designed and posted are to keep our students learning and in the habit of doing school work but is not our intention to increase their stress level. If this situation with Schoology caused stress for staff and students, we deeply regret it and look forward to moving forward so this will not happen again.

At Penn Brook, the transition to Google Classroom has gone well and all issues that have been brought to our attention have been resolved to my knowledge. Please let us know if you have questions or need assistance as the days go on.

Our leadership team and staff continue to appreciate your kind words of thanks and appreciation! They give us strength and brighten our days!

2. April Vacation

The School Committee met on Tuesday, April 7 at 6:30 in a Zoom conference that was open to the public. They discussed three options: (1) continue to hold April vacation as planned during the week of April 20-24, (2) cancel April vacation and continue remote learning April 21-24 (Patriot’s Day off) or (3) Shorten April vacation by two days from April 20-22 and resume remote learning April 23-24. The major considerations were trying to balance the interests of providing families, students and staff with a break from remote learning to regroup and refresh and maintain the momentum of Georgetown Connects after the first two weeks. After considering the pros and cons of each option, the Committee voted 5-0 to keep April vacation from April 20-24 as scheduled on the current school calendar.

3. Camp Kieve – 8th grade trip

The 8th grade trip to Camp Kieve for this spring is cancelled and the deposit will be reimbursed to families. More information on how that process will work will be forthcoming.

Georgetown Connects Update – April 6, 2020

Dear GMHS Parents, Guardians, Faculty, and Staff
Today marked the start of Phase 2 Student Online Learning, called Georgetown Connects.
The middle and high school teachers are using a common platform called Schoology to provide consistency for everyone and streamline the overwhelming volume of enrichment material students have been receiving over the past few weeks.

 

This morning at 9:00 am, our teachers were ready and excited to begin our first virtual sessions to deepen our student learning and engage in discussions with them. During this time, some classes found success connecting, while others did not. When we were notified of the problem our technology integration specialists and the Director of Curriculum & Instruction were immediately informed and they contacted our representative from Schoology. The representative explained that GMHS’s account services are being upgraded to accommodate our expanded needs and this caused the sporadic service. For what it is worth, many other schools are experiencing the same type of sporadic service issues and are also working to resolving it. The representative explained that we may see inconsistent service tomorrow during peak times (8:30 am – 3:00 pm) and recommends students try to log-in before or after these times. The system should be more consistent starting Wednesday, 4/8. 

 

Students should be reassured that any deadlines they received for assignments will be pushed back. Teachers will be in contact with each of their classes to communicate this message and to support our students in any way. I cannot stress enough, students should not be concerned with deadlines and should focus on their social/emotional well being.

 

Finally, let me reassure you our technology team continues to work with our service representative and will provide me with updates, which I will pass on. Thank you for your patience during this difficult time.

 

Best.

 

Mr. Dan Richards

AP Updates for Schools Impacted by Coronavirus

UPDATE – APRIL 6 , 2020.  The College Board is recommending that students have the option to not take the the AP exams this year. Our surrounding districts are honoring College Board’s request and we are doing the same. If students paid for the exam they will be reimbursed. 

 

The health and safety of educators and students are the AP® Program’s highest priorities. As schools and communities navigate the challenges posed by the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, we’ll support AP students with free, optional remote learning and at-home AP testing. These options will give students the opportunity to earn the college credit and placement they’ve been working toward all year.

The AP Program will invest heavily in solutions that are designed to be as simple and lightweight as possible for both students and teachers—without creating additional burdens for school leaders during this time.

AP Exam Administration
Students remain eager to take AP Exams and have a chance to earn credit and placement. We surveyed 18,000 AP students and 91% indicated they want to complete this important step, urging us not to cancel this opportunity.
The AP Program will invest heavily over the next month in the following ways:

• For the 2019-20 exam administration only, students can take a 45-minute online exam at home. Educator-led development committees are currently selecting the exam questions that will be administered.
• Some students may want to take the exam sooner rather than later, while the content is still fresh. Other students may want more time to practice. For each AP subject, there will be two different testing dates.
• AP curricula are locally developed and we defer to local decisions on how best to help students complete coursework. To be fair to all students, some of whom have lost more instructional time than others, the exam will only include topics and skills most AP teachers and students have already covered in class by early March.
• Colleges support this solution and are committed to ensuring that AP students receive the credit they’ve worked this year to earn. For decades, colleges have accepted a shortened AP Exam for college credit when groups of students have experienced emergencies.
• Students will be able to take these streamlined exams on any device they have access to—computer, tablet, or smartphone. Taking a photo of handwritten work will also be an option.
• We recognize that the digital divide could prevent some low-income and rural students from participating. Working with partners, we’ll invest so these students have the tools and connectivity they need to review AP content online and take the exam. If your students need mobile tools or connectivity, you can reach us directly to let us know.
• The exam questions are designed in ways that prevent cheating. We use a range of digital security tools and techniques, including plagiarism detection software, to protect the integrity of the exams. Scoring at-home work for an AP Exam isn’t new to the AP Program. For years the AP Program has received and scored at-home student work as part of the exams for the AP Computer Science Principles and AP Capstone™ courses.

We’ll continue to support students with free resources through exam day. And while we encourage students to wait until closer to the test date to decide, any student already registered for an exam can choose to cancel at no charge.
Information about the reduced scope of content that will be covered on each 2020 AP Exam is currently posted on AP Central®. The specific test dates and the free-response question types will all be posted by April 3. We’ll also unlock any relevant free-response questions in AP Classroom for digital use so students can access all practice questions of the type that will appear on the exam.

Daily Online Review AP Classes
Beginning on Wednesday, March 25, students and schools will have access to free, live AP review lessons, delivered by AP teachers from across the country. The lessons will focus on reviewing the skills and concepts from the first 75% of the course. These mobile-friendly classes are:
• Designed to be used alongside work that may be given by schools.
• Recorded and will be available on-demand so teachers and students can access them any time.
• Not dependent on current AP teachers continuing instruction. We know many AP teachers now face challenges that would make that impossible.

The schedule will be posted online today.

Get AP Updates

As we have additional information and resources, we’ll update this webpage and share updates by email, the online AP communities, and our social media channels.
We appreciate your partnership and all you’re doing on behalf of your students.

Sincerely,

Advanced Placement Program