Woodside School Office
May 18 th, 2020
We still miss you Woodside!
What do you say we get together for a (virtual) pack meeting and camp fire on Wednesday?
See “Peek at the Upcoming Weeks” for details.
Dear Woodside Friends and Families,
Here’s hoping this bulletin finds you doing well and staying healthy. Below, please find a few continued bullet point messages that our elementary schools want to share with you from our Superintendent in a clear and consistent manner.
Food service will continue until June 17, 2020
Teachers will be continuing to contact each family weekly through 5/29.
If parents have questions about any aspect of our remote learning plans please let the classroom teacher or building principal know
If parents need assistance with paper packets, please let us know.
We will be providing more detailed information concerning the last two weeks of school, June 1-12th later this month. Starting on June 1st, we will transition to offering targeted support for those who are furthest behind. Teachers will focus on smaller groups of students and essential learning goals. Students will be requested to engage in this targeted learning support structure based on teacher and/or administration recommendation. Optional learning activities will be available for students who do not need targeted instruction or for families that request them.
The last day of school is not May 29th. The last day of school is June 12th.
June 15th -19th will now be used for professional development for teachers and educational technicians.
The Woodside yearbook club is working away and we will have a great yearbook this year!
Unfortunately, we will not be able to have the yearbooks at school before the end of the school year. They should be available for pick up at the end of June. Pick up details are TBD. Given this year’s unusual circumstances, we will not be able to collect payment for the yearbook until the time of pick up. The cost of the yearbooks will be $15 for students in grade K-4 and again this year all 5th graders will receive a yearbook at no charge. Fifth grades do not need to reserve a yearbook.
If you would like to reserve a yearbook(s) please fill out the attached survey by May 26th.
Thank you Ms. Goodwin, Woodside PTO, and the students of the yearbook club who continue to work diligently to make this a student driven and high quality project.
Lunch Program - Our Superheros!
Our weekly pickups will continue to be held on Wednesdays through June 17th…. Further notice may include information about Summer Lunch Program details. I will provide those here when I know more.
Thank you for your patience during this time of need. We are all in this together!
-MSAD 75 Foodservice
(Click here for a map.)
Link to our district information and official letters regarding COVID-19
Distance Learning Updates:
A few updates on the current distance learning plans:
We have begun a “drop off” program for your completed packets. March and April Packets #1 and #2. You are invited to drop off your completed work (or other learning you are proud of). PLease note, work will not be returned, so if there is anything you want to keep, please do so and let you teacher know about it at your next check-in
Drop-off this week at WES between 7:00a.m.-2:00 p.m.
(If you need to make special arrangements, please call Denise at 725-1243, extension #3 and we will work to accommodate your schedule needs.) There are bins, buckets and extra large paper clips so you can keep the work organized.
Borrowed classroom/library books are also able to be dropped off this week in labeled classroom bins.
Current packets (Round #3 -linked below) are intended to end this week on 5/22.
May 26-May 29th will be the final week of regular remote learning from classroom teacher schedules. Teachers encourage your children to wrap up any unfinished packet work, and we’ll collect the final packets starting the week of June 1st.
Please do practice social distance guides, remain six feet apart and we do advise wearing a mask at drop-off. All bins will remain outside during drop off hours, so no need to enter the building. . Here is an image of what to expect when you drop-off completed packets.
* Please see “peek at upcoming weeks for information on retrieving student personal materials the week of 5/26-5/29. - Mr.D.
DROP OFF UNDER WOODSIDE CANOPY -
THANK YOU TO WAYNE PATTON FROM THE TOPSHAM HOME DEPOT FOR THE GENEROUS DONATION OF BUCKETS AND BINS FOR EVERY CLASSROOM TEACHER.
New At Home Learning Links Can Be Found at this page: (version 3.0 4/27-5/22)
Your Woodside teacher will e-mail you links the weekend preceding the new learning weeks...but you can also find them on our link75.org website.
We expect to have a new Elementary At Home Learning Opportunities site ready to go and posted to our district web site: link75.org
Peek at the upcoming weeks:
5/20/20 - V-PTO Virtual Whole School Pack Meeting - We invite you to Tune in to Woodside Elementary School PTO Facebook live on Wednesday 5/20 at 2:15 in order to view this offering from Mr. Dedek, Ms. Hatch and friends. 2:15-3:00 p.m.
History: Link to First FB Live-Streamed Whole School Campfire Meeting 4/15/20
May 26- May 29 - Personal Item Collection -Woodside students may pick up any left materials and items form the classroom. Teacher will be bagging materials throughout the week of 5/18-5/22 to be pocked up the week of 5/26-5/29. This will allow for a balance between getting personal a materials back to you with the safety of making sure there is ample time between bagging and collection. Please know staff wear masks and gloves when working in public areas. Please also note any items not picked up by 5/29 will be discarded in preparation for Summer Cleaning.
MAY 27th - Woodside / Earth Jams Celebration Concert - Live-streamed from a Virtual Woodside School with Matt Loosigian. Wednesday 2:15-3:00, we’ll host this just like a pack/campfire meeting. Who else but our Crazy Fun and Talented friend Matt Loosigian could help us celebrate an end to a most unusual year! When Matt is around, so are giggles, laughs, crazy voices and fun movement and dance. We’ll also post a link to the recording via e-mail after the concert, so if you can’t watch live you can still join in the fun! Thank you Woodside PTO for sponsoring this event.
May 29th - The last regular instruction remote learning day.
6/1-6/12 - Intervention weeks - K-5 teachers will transition to offer targeted support for students who are furthest behind. Teachers will focus on smaller groups of students and work further with the essential learning goals. For students who do not need targeted instruction, we will offer optional learning activities which families can use with their children.
June 15-19 - No school for students, teacher professional development work.
June 10th (Final Assembly - 5th GradeCelebration) We will share an invite to this final assembly to honor our 5th grade students in the traditional format, but will open up to all grades to watch on Facebook Livestream, or as a link after the event. More information to follow. 2:15-3:15 p.m. (Tentative - stay tuned for more details)
June 11th (Rain date June 12) 5th Grade Drive-up Certificate and Farewell. 5th Grade teachers will be sharing plans with their families in the coming weeks. 9:30-11:00 a.m.
June 11th/12th (Drop off School Chromebooks - table at 5th grade Drive-up Certificate and Farewell. Details will be communicated by your teachers.
June 15th -17th - Drop-Off School Chromebooks for all other grades. (Additional Details in coming weeks.)
Please follow social distancing guides, stay six feet apart, and wear a mask. Adults only to drop off and receive a receipt certifying your return.
K-2 Drop Off June 15th 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
2-4 Drop Off June 16th 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Alternate date June 17th a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Please note, for students in special education ESY (Extended school year) a new chromebook will be distributed to you in July at the Mt. Ararat Middle School.
Woodside chromebooks need to be returned, cleaned, and updated. Thank you, please call 725-1243 ext #1 for any questions.
Connect with Mrs. Dimbleby
Interested in some resources to help with the expected anxiety and stress related to the COVID-19 school closure….
….Please visit, www.mrsdimbleby.weebly.com to connect with resources compiled from our very own Mrs. Dimbleby, resident expert in behavior and emotional supports for our students.
With all the best,
Mrs. Dimbleby 💚
Notes and Q+A from Mr. Dedek
I’ve heard about the teachers ending regular instruction on 5/29 and starting targeted instruction on 6/1. What should my child expect for the final two weeks from 6/1-6/12, 2020.
This is a question that a lot of parents are wondering about. Essentially, as you’ve heard from Superintendent Chabot, elementary teachers are wrapping up their regular remote learning instructional plans on 5/29, and will phase into a targeted intervention model for the students who are furthest behind from 6/1 through 6/12. Teachers will be be identifying students based on their knowledge of the students progress up to and including school closure back in Mid-March.
When should I hear from my child’s teacher about this?
You should expect to hear from your child’s Woodside teacher by Wednesday 5/27/20 if she or he has been identified as a student invited to participate in the two weeks of intervention teaching. You will receive a personal communication that includes the “what, who, when, and why” of the individualized intervention plan.
Wait a minute, aren’t all kids going to be behind? Why are only some kids being invited for this intervention teaching?
As I wrote about last week, all of our teachers know that most of our students will not have mastered this year’s teaching standards...after all, everyone will have missed so much valuable in person instructional time. That having been said, not all kids learn in the same way or at the same pace. Your teachers are experts in understanding this, and identifying students whom they predict will be the furthest behind without extra help is something they are, well, to be blunt, paid to know how to do.
Over the next few days, they will be firming up their invitations, developing plans, and setting schedules around this new work. You can help the process by returning any completed work to Woodside as outlined earlier in the bulletin. While the work packets are one indication of a students current work and level of need, other factors ascertained by your teacher including 1:1 check-in, group distance meetings, as well as previous work and assessments are all considered when creating an intervention plan.
With all that, if we were teaching all the students at the same time, then we would not be performing the job that was requested of us and approved by the school board. So, teachers will only invite those students they determine really need the help, if you do not get an invitation by 5/27, then please feel good that your teacher has determined that it is not needed. If you do get an invitation, please work with your teacher so we can help get the extra time in that your teacher determines is necessary.
Questions: So, are you saying my kid will be ready for the next grade?
Answer: (As I wrote last week….
…And I want to be very clear about this. I expect that every public school student across the nation has been impacted by this necessary school closure to ensure a flattening of the curve from a public health perspective. I believe that here in Maine we have been successful in that, and I also believe that it is not over. So please, continue to practice what we call Universal Precautions at Woodside (hand wash, social distance, stay home if you are sick, and call your doctor if you have a fever that persists...please continue to put your health and the health of our whole community as our utmost important and shared community goal.)
Now to answer the question: “Will my child be ready for next year?” with the yes’s and the no’s:
YES - your child will be ready for next year, all teachers everywhere understand that to start next year we need to be prepared for kids who have missed ⅓ of their previous school year. Your child will be ready to move on, and so will we.
NO - your child would most likely not have mastered all the previous year’s standards. Progress along the expected path of both academic and social milestones was interrupted, we understand this, and will adjust to make sure kids feel comfortable to start the new year.
YES- Your child will have teachers who understand all of this and will adjust both academic and social instruction to meet the needs.
NO - Our standards will not change, but our understanding of the support and time it will take to help kids achieve those standards must change.
YES - Your child and our teachers will make it work together, and we’ll include you open and honest communications that will help you orient as the new school year progresses through an improved and simpler to understand report card and essential parent teacher conferences.
NO - It will probably not look the same, or feel the same when we start back up...there is a lot that so many have experienced, and our school, town, state and nation will need time to work through it all as part of our new normal when we return next school year.
YES - there is no better place that I can imagine to have your child return to than your MSAD 75 public school system. I have children at all three levels, Woodside, Mt. Ararat Middle, and Mt. Ararat High Schools. I truly believe that this school system has a lot going for it, most important to that, the teachers and facilities that this community has invested in are some of the wisest investments a community can make. With continued support from our community, I know that this school system will serve your child right, and together, we will emerge from this time of school closure with a new open mind for what it means to be a healthy community that is focused on growth and learning.
Richard W. Dedek II, Principal - Woodside Elementary School
Article for “The Cryer”
By the M.S.A.D. No. 75 Elementary School Principals:
Rick Dedek, Woodside Elementary
Anita Hopkins, Harpswell Community
Ryan Keith, Bowdoin Central
Chris Lajoie, Bowdoinham Community
Randa Rineer, Williams-Cone
March 16, 2020, marked the start of remote learning in M.S.A.D. No. 75. On that day, elementary teachers from across the District gathered by grade level to assemble the first of our student learning packets. What felt at the time like a strange, frenzied, Herculean effort was really just our first step into the world of remote learning. Teachers have worked with their grade level colleagues many times since - through virtual meetings, of course - collaborating on two more sets of core learning plans that have carried us through the end of the school year. With school buildings shut down and only very lightly staffed, our elementary schools needed to move as much instruction online as possible. Teachers developed lessons online, utilizing Google Classroom and other resources to assign and track student learning. School staff and principals have recorded read alouds and other videos, held virtual class meetings, and called or emailed families weekly. We realized quickly that the top priority for our elementary schools would be maintaining positive connections with and amongst our students. We have missed our kids terribly.
Prior to April vacation, we surveyed elementary teachers and parents to see how things were going. With hundreds of responses providing us useful feedback, we were able to make a few adjustments to our learning plans. It was clear that some families needed to access school laptop computers for their children to participate in class meetings and other learning opportunities. Our Technology Director, Nick Riggie, and his team quickly readied a few hundred devices to be picked up by families. A committee of teachers also started an initiative called Curious Kids, which provides a structure for students to pursue their own self-directed learning project with the support of a family member and a school adult. Whether students have worked on paper packets, online platforms, creative pursuits of their own, or some combination, we recognize and value their learning over the last few months.
We want our elementary school families to know we are up to the challenge of teaching our students in the time of COVID-19. The final two weeks of the school year are focused on targeted instruction for students who are not meeting learning standards, with school staff engaging in a week of important professional development before we break for summer. All teachers will be ready to receive students in the Fall, with whatever skills and knowledge they bring, and move each student forward. We must recognize the parents, grandparents, and other caregivers who have worked incredibly hard to help learning continue for our children. The educators of our district are extremely grateful for your efforts and we look forward to the time when we can rejoin our students back in our classrooms. Until then, we will continue to improve our ability to educate our students from a physical distance, to all corners of our school district
No new stories this week...do you have a favorite on the chart below?
The Read Aloud Story Archive: Try it for the first time, or try it again!
Closing Notes From Mr. Dedek : 5/18/20
As we are all aware, many of the restrictions in our state that have been in place to “flatten the curve” are loosening over the coming weeks. School is no different, in fact, we feel more and more confident that we can safely address certain needs that we have not been able to address before, such as returning student work, returning borrowed school materials, getting student materials back to you, and considering how to honor our 5th grade exiting students. All of these tasks need to balance the priority of safety with desire to do what’s right by the heart.
At the same time, if you or someone you know is a medically at-risk person whether its by age, pre-existing condition, or concern over possible pre-existing conditions….then this is a time of great anxiety. I want you all to have the confidence that as the principal at Woodside I will seek to balance and enforce safe practices with that desire to what it is right.
For myself, I have family members that I’m very concerned for here in Maine, in fact I’m caring for one as I type this. I also have a young relative on the other side of the country who was just tested positive for the virus. While being a five-year-old with no observable symptoms, the virus was only detected because a trip to hospital for surgery triggered an automatic test... I’m sure you can imagine all the implications and feelings that must be going on in the part of the family right now.
So, where do we go from here? For my part, I’ll be helping the district to consider options for re-opening school next Fall. As a district, I believe we’ll seek parent and teacher feedback about this. As an individual with a job to do, I will reach out to hear various perspectives. Ultimately, I want school to re-open. Period. At the same time, I don’t want any unnecessary risks for anyone directly or indirectly connected with the school. Period.
Like so many issues in real life, there are no easy answers, but with civility, talk, understanding, good planning, and ultimately, decisions….we’ll find our way forward. Its my hope that we do so together, with the values and civility that helped make MSAD 75 the community I chose to raise my family, and that allows me to say with confidence that I believe in this community, even in the hardest of times, to persevere and to find a path to thrive.
Take care, and hope to see you soon.
-End of Document.