A message from our Principal

Good Afternoon Russell School Community,

I hope that you are all doing well as we move through the second week of closure. Despite the many challenges that your families are facing we continue to receive positive communication from our Russell School families.

Superintendent King’s March 20th update provided information about our continued closure and the framework of how we will conduct school into the spring. The staff at Russell School is working this week to prepare for our move to remote learning. Remote learning will begin the week of March 30, 2020.  During this time, teachers will be using technology-based platforms such as SeeSaw, Class Dojo, Google Hangouts, Zoom, etc., as well as curriculum-based sites to facilitate student learning. Teachers will communicate this with families on an ongoing basis throughout our closure.

Friday, March 27th

Over the last two days teachers have been in touch with the majority of you to determine what materials are needed to best support your students for the remainder of our closure. During these conversations they have gathered important information regarding items that need to be collected here at school. This Friday we will have one final pick-up day for students to gather academic materials and personal belongings based on our conversations. Russell School will be open from 7:00 am – 5:00 pm for these pick-ups.

If you are realizing that you forgot to mention an essential item, please reach out to me directly via email or by calling our school at 657-9620. We are are currently working from home, so please leave us a message. We will confirm receipt of your message via email as soon as time permits.

In an effort to maintain social distancing, and to minimize congestion and unnecessary interaction, we will utilize our bus loading zone as a drive-through. To enter, please pull in beside the MSAD 15 Central Office and pull up to the stop sign near the front entrance of Russell School. There is no need to leave your vehicle. A staff member will gather the materials that have been set aside and will bring them directly to you. We ask that during this time you wait patiently in your vehicles and know we will be with you as soon as possible.

Attendance

In an effort to keep students engaged in their learning and with school, attendance will be taken each day. Attendance will be determined by student/family contact with the school, including participation in an online platform, passing in assignments or email contact with a teacher. Also, please know that we understand that not every assignment, task, or activity will be completed each day. This is new to all of us and we understand that juggling remote learning with working remotely is very demanding on families. We ask that you keep your child as engaged as possible.

Social/Emotional Support

If you find your student is struggling to make sense of this closure, or struggling with their connection to the school community, please do not hesitate to reach out to our staff via email.  Each of us is checking email daily and responding to questions and concerns. Our guidance counselor, Margaret Thibodeau, will be working to support any students in need during the closure.  Please let her know if she can support your family in any way. She can be reached at mthibodeau@sad15.org.

As we move into this next chapter, please be reminded that this is a new venture for all of us. We are all in this together. We are working diligently to virtually support your family during these unprecedented times. We know that some students will need some additional challenges and others will need extra support. Building this system in less than two weeks is far from optimal. We appreciate your flexibility as we determine how to best meet the needs of all students. Watching the Russell School staff rise to the occasion has been amazing and inspiring. These ladies have been working tirelessly to do what they believe is in the best interest of your children. I couldn’t ask for anything more.

I also want to applaud all the Russell School families for making this adjustment as well. I fully understand the changes that have been made to your daily lives. Without your support our efforts would not be successful. Please remember to find time and take care of yourselves and your families through this challenging time. You deserve it. We all deserve it.

Please know we are keeping you in all our thoughts. Please let your children know we miss them. Please tell them we can’t wait to see them soon!

Danny J. Blake

Page updated March 24, 2020