Back to School
From the Superintendent
Kathleen A. Murphy
September 11, 2020
Dear Parents and Guardians,
We have now completed our first week of school in a remote learning environment as well as some students receiving their services in person at the schools. In most cases the students had a successful week. We experienced some glitches with the new Zoom platform, but these issues were solved, and students were back up and working on their studies. The city also experienced some power outages on Tuesday that curtailed some of the student learning time. This week I visited the schools and observed some happy students and teachers who were happy to be back with their peers. The students worked hard to follow the safety protocols that have been implemented in the school buildings.
On Tuesday evening the School Board voted to approve a hybrid model in order for students to return to school in early October. The move to hybrid is based on the recommendations from the Department of Public Health and the low incidence rates in Concord and Merrimack County. The model divides classes in half to accommodate the six-foot distancing protocol. In doing so, the group will be broken into two sections and assigned either A or B group. Each building principal will inform families of the group assigned and we will keep siblings together whenever possible.
“A” group will meet on Mondays and Thursday and B group will meet on Tuesdays and Fridays. Wednesday will remain a Flex day for students’ activities and projects, specialized student services as well as for teacher meetings, planning and training. The option to remain in a remote learning environment is still available.
If you have not yet had a chance to complete our survey for student preference for the hybrid or remote model, please consider doing that as soon as possible, using the link below. The information from the survey will help us as we make our plans going forward.
On behalf of the district staff, I want to thank you for your support, patience, and grace as we faced the challenges of educating your children during a pandemic. We have appreciated your suggestions and feedback, as we developed plans to have students back in school.
As we close out the week, I wanted to take a moment to remember all those men, women and children who died on this date at the Twin Towers in NYC and in Pennsylvania. Every day, I am thankful for the opportunities we have even in the face of many challenges.
Have a nice weekend.
August 19, 2020
Good morning students, parents and guardians,
As you know, the School Board at its August 6th meeting voted to have students begin the 2020-21 school year on September 8th using a remote learning model. The Board will periodically be evaluating that decision and reviewing data from local and state-wide health agencies to determine next steps for the students.
Last night, the Concord School Board deliberated on items that will impact our students and the responsibilities the District has as an educational institution to provide opportunities for the children in the District.
As a result of their deliberations and input from stakeholders in the District, they supported the following recommendations:
Provide in-person instruction at the Concord Regional Technical Center
Allow for athletic and extracurricular programs to run at the high school and middle school following all NHIAA and District health and safety protocols
Provide in-person instruction and support for our most vulnerable populations, including students with individual learning plans and 504 plans, English Language Learners and those students who are homeless.
The District will continue to update information pertinent to the reopening of schools. The elementary, middle and high schools will be holding virtual forums for families to better understand the expectations and schedules that will be implemented for the new school year.
On the Concord District website (sau8.org) under the heading “Return to School 2020” you will find information regarding plans and safety protocols that will be followed in the District, along with a “frequently asked questions” document that you may find helpful.
Thank you for your patience with this process, and please reach out should I be of any assistance to you.
August 7, 2020
Dear Students, Families and Staff,
I am writing to advise you that Concord School Board decided to employ a fully remote learning model for students this fall. In addition, they voted to amend the current school calendar. The first day of remote learning will begin on September 8th. This extension will allow for staff to continue training on the use of the Google tools as well as the Seesaw platform for the primary grades and continue training in best practices for remote learning. This decision will be reviewed weekly by the school board and administration and take any action that will support the needs of our students.
Your school Principal will be in touch with you to share information about the specific plan for your child’s school. They will be holding a “remote” parent forum and will also publish materials on your school website that will answer most of your questions about the plan.
We understand that all of the return to school models will present difficulties for some of our families, and we want to assure you that the Board took into account hundreds of concerns and questions which parents, staff and students have expressed. We appreciate the support shown by our families and want you to know that we rely on your partnership in this unprecedented time to provide the best outcome for our students.
Dear Concord School District Families and Staff:
Thank you for your patience and understanding as our teams work to develop a comprehensive plan for returning our students back to school this fall. Over the past months, with active engagement from many in our school community, we have been actively planning for the re-opening of school in the fall. Within the last week we've received guidance from the Governor, Health and Human Services and the Department of education.
We are also grateful for all of the feedback we've received; we have read your messages, listened to your feedback and, to the extent possible, are incorporating it into our preparations for the coming year.
Kathleen A. Murphy