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Read Boston school superintendent Brenda Cassellius’s letter to families

Cassellius shared a guideline of what will be effective starting on Monday, May 4.

Boston Public Schools superintendent Brenda Cassellius sent a letter to students and families on the approach for the remainder of the academic year. Craig F. Walker / The Boston Globe, File

Boston school superintendent Brenda Cassellius sent a letter to students and their families on what to expect for the rest of the school year Friday after Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker announced that all schools will be closed statewide for the remainder of the academic year in April.

In the letter, Cassellius shared a guideline of what will be effective starting on Monday, May 4 and will last through the remainder of the school year.

You can read Cassellius’ full letter here:

Dear Boston Public Schools Community,

I hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy.

Since Governor Baker announced that all Massachusetts schools will remain closed through
this academic year, Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Commissioner Jeffrey Riley recently released guidance to schools, underscoring that student
learning will continue, while keeping health and safety as our top priority. We understand that
this is a challenging time for all of us as we balance work, home life, caring for loved ones,
and the education of our children while also working to remain safe during this health crisis.

We know students are missing their classmates, teachers, and countless meaningful events.
We miss them too. While we can’t recreate the full classroom experience during this school
closure, we can provide enriching learning opportunities and connections for our students.

We are prepared to meet the unique needs of our students to continue their learning and
provide support to our families. Our team has been working hard to develop plans and
collaborating with school leaders to ensure students have access to learning opportunities for
the rest of this school year.

The following will be in effect on Monday, May 4 through the end of the school year in June.

Schedule: Every school will share a class schedule with families and students.

Attendance: Teachers will record daily attendance each week. Attendance includes
completing learning activities or interaction with teachers/staff. Teachers in grades K0-5 will
record daily attendance. Teachers in grades 6-12 will record daily attendance by course.

Grading: Students will receive grades and feedback on their assigned projects and tasks.
Elementary students (grades K0-5) will receive a term 3 grade of Meets Expectations,
Approaching Expectations, or Not Yet Meeting Expectations. Secondary students (grades 6-
12) will receive a Term 3 letter grade if it is above their average grade from Terms 1 and 2.
Otherwise, secondary students will earn a grade of Pass or Incomplete and that grade will not
be factored into their final grade.

Advancing to the Next Grade: No student will be held back in their grade. All students will
advance to the next grade and will have opportunities for summer learning and additional
support in the fall. If parents believe their child would benefit from repeating their grade, they
can request a meeting with their teacher.

Access to teachers: Each school schedule will include class times, and a school staff
member will contact each student at least every three days.
Boston Public Schools Boston School Committee City of Boston
Brenda Cassellius, Superintendent Michael Loconto, Chair Martin J. Walsh, Mayor
Students with disabilities: Students will receive services that can reasonably be provided in
a remote learning environment by their assigned team of educators in relation to the goals
identified in the student’s IEP.

English Learners: Students will receive ESL instruction based on their English Development

Graduation: Graduation is a celebration of students, their families, and their school
communities. We are working on several opportunities to celebrate this year’s graduations
citywide and with each school. We look forward to sharing more information soon.

We will continue to assess and shift how we meet our students’ needs during this
unprecedented closure based on feedback. My team and I have convened weekly Equity
Roundtables to hear from educators, parents, social service providers, and community
partners to gather real-time feedback and identify challenges so we can direct resources to
support students and families who need them.

We are so grateful to our teachers, food workers, technology staff, and other frontline workers
who are working tirelessly to get our children what they need to learn and stay healthy. We
care deeply for our students and families and look forward to continuing to build meaningful
connections with all of you as we close out our school year over the next several weeks. If you
have any questions about this information please contact your school principal.

Please continue to practice social distancing, wear a face covering when you have to leave
home, and wash your hands frequently. You can find more information for resources to food,
technology, learning at home, and more at bostonpublicschools.org/coronavirus

I am certain we will only grow stronger and better every day. We are here to support you and
we will get through this together as a community.

Be well and be safe.


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