• School Updates

  • School Updates

    For the latest news and updates, please follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

    The Superintendent/Director and Principal/Assistant Director have sent the following updates on school reopening to families and staff:

  • Principal's January Message

    Posted by Lindsey Pelley on 1/5/2021

    Dear B-P Families,

    Happy New Year, and I wish all of our B-P families health and happiness in 2021! 

     

    Progress Reports

    Progress reports were available online in Aspen on December 23rd and mailed home for any student who is in jeopardy of failing a Term 2 course. Please contact your child’s guidance counselor or teacher of the course, if you have any questions or concerns.

     

    Remote Learning Instructional Changes

    There will be a significant change to our remote learning model. Beginning on our next “A” week, which is Monday, January 11, 2021, students will be required to have their cameras on during any live remote classes (vocational and academic). Students' participation grade(s) will be negatively affected if their cameras are not on during live remote classes. This change is being made for several reasons:

    • Student safety and well-being check. 
    • Students learn better, retain more information and are more engaged with live synchronous learning.
    • It helps build a sense of community within the virtual classroom.
    • Camera use allows teachers to better gauge the need of their classes.
    • It ensures students are appropriately engaged and attending their classes. 

     

    We can completely understand that this may cause anxiety for some students. We ask students to attempt attending courses with changing or blurring their background. Please reach out to your guidance counselor with further concerns. 

    For B-P teachers that use Google Meets - To change your background:

    • Before a Google Meeting - Select a Meeting
      • On the bottom right of your self view, click Change Background
      • To slightly blur your background, click Slightly blur your background
      • To select a pre-uploaded background, click a background
      • To upload your own image for your background, click Add +
      • Click Join Now
    • During a Google Meeting - Click the More button
      • Click Change background
      • To completely blur your background, click Blur your background
      • To slightly blur your background, click Slightly Blur your background
      • To select a pre-uploaded background, click a background
      • To upload your own image for your background, click Add +

    Some B-P teachers are using Zoom meeting -  To change the background:

    • Before a Zoom Meeting:
      • Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
      • In the navigation menu, click Settings.
      • In the Meeting tab, navigate to the Virtual Background option (under the In Meeting (Advanced) section) and verify that the setting is enabled.
    • During a Zoom Meeting:
      • In a Zoom meeting, click the upward arrow (^) next to Start/Stop Video.
      • Click Choose Virtual Background.
      • If prompted, click Download to download the package for virtual background without a green screen. 
      • Video on Virtual Backgrounds: https://youtu.be/3Zq-b51A3dA

     

    Term 3 Schedule Change Form 

    Students are in the midst of Term 2 and no schedule changes can be made at this time, unless there are extenuating circumstances. However, the guidance counselors will take online requests to make schedule changes for Term 3 by completing this form by January 15, 2021. Term 3 begins on January 28, 2021, and we must allow for cafeteria, classroom, and transportation changes to name a few.

     

    Lifetouch Retake & Make-up Picture Day

    Thursday, January 7th, Lifetouch will be at Bristol-Plymouth for anyone in grades 9 & 12 who would like a school photo retake or make-up day for students who were absent on their formerly scheduled picture day this year. Make-up day for grades 10 &11 is scheduled for Monday, February 1st. Parents can pre-order school pictures on the Lifetouch website before Picture Day, and get a free Shutterfly gift with their purchase. The Picture Day ID for 1/7: EVTJWBTT7

     

    Yearbook Information 

    The Senior Yearbook is an important keepsake that we hope you will enjoy looking at again and again in the years to come.  Please note that the price of the book increases as the year goes on, so buy yours early!  A list of prices and dates can be found below.  To order your yearbook, go to our online ordering site, which is YBPay.com, with your code/job number of 8907021. Any questions, please email Mrs. Slavin at aslavin@bptech.org or Mrs. Bennett at ebennett@bptech.org

    Yearbook Prices:

    12/23 - 2/16…….$75 

    2/17 - 4/15…..….$80 

    4/16 - 6/1…...…..$85

     

    Seniors also have been sent numerous forms over the past few weeks so that we can get some memories in the yearbook.  These deadlines have been extended for a few weeks.  Please look at the following forms and if you HAVE NOT submitted a form, please do so using the forms below:

     

    Senior Memories

    Covid Communication

    College or Trade Bound?

    Best Friends

    Senior Quotes

    Help Needed - Sports Candids!

     

    January & February School Calendars 

    The January school calendar has been updated to reflect the announced postponement of the 11th-grade MCAS test administration. The February school calendar does include the school vacation week that will remain on our B-P schedule for 2020-21. These months will follow this year’s normal 6-day rotation.

     

    Flu Vaccine - State Mandate by February 28, 2021

    The deadline for Massachusetts school students to receive a flu shot has been extended. Flu shots that are required for all students in Massachusetts schools, from child care through colleges, the Department of Public Health announced earlier this year. Students older than 6 months will have to be vaccinated by Feb. 28, unless either a medical or religious exemption is provided. The original date was Dec. 31.  Massachusetts has updated immunization requirements for the 2020-21 school year. Current school immunization requirements are listed on the Mass.gov website: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/school-immunizations. New students entering school before March 31, 2021 must have received a dose of vaccine for the current flu season for entry. Students who are home-schooled are exempt from the policy, but health officials said students at elementary and secondary schools that are using a remote learning model are not exempt.

    Please forward documentation of your child's immunization or exemption to our school nurses either through your child dropping by their office, emailing to bpnurses@bptech.org, or faxing directly to the nurses’ office at (774) 299-6102. 

     

    Silver Dollar School Store

    The $ilver Dollar School Store is now open for online purchasing of sweatshirts, shirts, sweatpants, hats, and more.  If your favorite item is out of stock, be sure to check back again soon as the store will be restocking several new items.  

     

    Freshmen Permanent Placement

    Our freshmen students will continue in their exploratory cycles through the next few months. Normally, permanent placement takes place in January, but this year, with the way the cycles were developed with our hybrid learning model, permanent shop placement for freshmen will be on March 19th.

     

    Lockdown Drills

    Our partnership with the Taunton Police Department and our SRO LaPlante will resume in January, if all goes as we have planned around our hybrid learning model and coordinated effort for these practice drills.

     

    GoGuardian Software

    Bristol-Plymouth Tech Support Department is using GoGuardian software on all of the Chromebook and B-P issued devices, which is extremely important to the safety and tracking of all student log-ins, assignments, websites, assessments, etc. that our students are being asked to comply with as B-P students. This tracking technology allows our staff and teachers to stay on top of their students’ work and overall progress, as well as our IT support team, who oversees online student safety. 

     

    Student Council, SRO LaPlante, and Asst. Principal Mr. Mosher

    A special thank you to the B-P Student Council, SRO LaPlante, and Mr. Mosher for organizing this year’s “Giving Tree” project, and a special thank you to our generous parents and community members for their support. This volunteer project allowed our less fortunate families to enjoy the Christmas spirit of receiving this year. 

     

    Free Breakfast and Lunch

    The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is extending the free breakfast and lunch program through the end of the school year.

     

    As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

     

    Karen Guenette, Principal     kguenette@bptech.org   Twitter@BPPrincipalKG

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  • Q and A's

    Posted by Lindsey Pelley on 12/17/2020

    After a recent Safety, Transportation, and Facility Task Force meeting, our parent representative shared some questions that have been posted by our B-P parents that we would like to answer. 

     

    1. Why didn't I get a close contact notification if a classmate or teacher in my class tested positive?

    Contract tracing is conducted by the nursing staff and designated supervisor based on the information presented by the COVID positive person or parent/guardian. Once close contacts are determined, based on state guidelines, those staff/students are notified by the nurses personally or by phone.

     

    2. Why are students in hybrid model marked absent on in-school days while they quarantine if they are virtually in class those days?

    For this school year, the MA Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has set new attendance guidelines for schools to follow based on the adopted learning model that is voted by the School Committee. In Bristol-Plymouth’s case, the School Committee voted on the hybrid learning model (half in-person and half remote) for this school year. With that model being used, DESE has set attendance collection guidelines for this school year, and they are as follows: “DESE (Student Information Management Systems) SIMS reporting change for 2020-2021: This school year, in-person attendance and remote attendance will be collected separately in SIMS. The existing Days in Attendance data element (DOE017) will be specific to in-person attendance. To collect data on remote attendance, two new fields have been added to the SIMS data collection: DOE054 (Days of Attendance Remote) and DOE055 (Days Absent Remote). Districts will need to record daily student attendance and absences in the local (Student Information System) SIS as either in-person or remote, to ensure that these distinct categories are transmitted to DESE in SIMS reporting in the appropriate data elements. If any portion of the school day is in-person, then the day of attendance should be categorized as in-person.” Therefore, if a student is scheduled for their in-person learning day and a parent decides to keep their child home on that day, then they are marked absent (not present in the school building when they are scheduled to be there). These days are treated as any other absent day, where the student can access missed (in-person school work) as make-up work in their Google classroom(s) that the teacher(s) will post for them to complete. This is also a school safety practice for any emergency for teachers to know that the student is absent and not in the building. Attendance is being taken in every class period this school year as well. DESE has access to all of this attendance data reporting at any given time.

     

    3. If I have to quarantine why can't I change to fully remote for that time?

    Depending on the amount of time that you have to quarantine, it is only a temporary amount of time (usually averaging about 3 in-person missed days for most situations), and teachers are not required to teach both in-person and remote learners at the same time. Even though it sounds easy to make this switch, we only have so many remoteonly teachers and classes to put students into, which is why we have the online form for parents to complete. That data then transfers to the guidance department, and they plan for multiple schedule switches such as hybrid to full remote, full remote to hybrid, academics remote/shop hybrid back to all hybrid or academics remote/shop hybrid to full remote. There are so many moving parts in re-working these schedule changes overall that also include classroom seats, bus transportation (still only a maximum of 23 students on a bus), keeping remote classroom sizes low for individual attention and assistance when needed, to name a few of the logistics that go into moving students for a short quarantine period. Thus, we have set deadlines for movement so that all can be accomplished for movement accommodations at the same time. Additionally, we are true believers that our students who are participating in the full hybrid model are thriving with being held accountable for their work when they have their in-person days where they can have teachers really check-in with them on their work, social-emotional health, and overall well-being while in the school building.

     

    4. My students say that they are not socially distant during lunch and it makes them anxious?

    We do not believe this to be true. In the cafeteria, all students are lined up to get their “free” meals in the kitchen and maintain 6 feet apart. The students sit with their shop cohorts in the cafeteria and all lunch shifts are staggered individually by their shop. That means they arrive and leave at a separate time from other shops. They have the same seating area each day and are monitored for taking their masks off and putting them back on whenever they leave their individual desk area. When students are in their academic classes, they collect their lunch from the kitchen area as a class and return back to eat in their classrooms. All individual desks, whether in the cafeteria or classrooms, are maintained at 6 feet apart, which follows the CDC, DPH, and DESE guidelines for maintaining a safe distance away from each other even without masks for eating.

     

    5. Will the school start testing for COVID?

    There are no future plans to have schools in the Commonwealth become testing sites. However, each positive COVID-19 case that is reported to our nurses, must be reported to DESE and the local Board of Health in the town in which the person lives. DESE guidelines have suggested if a school has more than 2 reported positive cases within a two week period from the same area of the school that is reported to DESE, they could send a mobile testing crew/van to our school for rapid testing. That decision would not be made by Bristol-Plymouth, but solely by DESE. As of now, December 1st, we would not qualify for this testing service at our school because we have had no cluster outbreaks of transmission among our staff or students.

     

    6. Can the school take morning temperatures for all in school students daily?

    This practice was initially encouraged last spring, but time has proven that a fever isn’t the only symptom of COVID, and oftentimes in children, not even a symptom of COVID. Thus, DESE decided that this practice was not one to put in place upon entering schools, and we have complied with the guidelines that DESE has provided. We have left the responsibility of taking a child’s temperature to parents at home before sending children to school.

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  • Principal's December Message

    Posted by Lindsey Pelley on 12/11/2020

    Dear B-P Families,

     

    Here we are in December already, and I hope that this email finds you and your family safe and well. During the holiday season, everything seems more beautiful. Although 2020 has had its challenges, you can still see, feel, taste, smell, and hear the magic in the air this time of the year.  Be sure to take time to hug the ones you love and spend time creating happy memories with them.  The one thing you can never get more of is time. 

     

    Guidance Counselors’ Suggestions

     

    When it comes to classes online, we (the world as well as B-P) are experiencing a new frontier of education - "Virtual Education" on remote learning days. The following are the guidance counselors’ suggestions in terms of getting used to the remote learning environment. 

    Suggestion #1: Find a “virtual learning space” that suits your learning environment. Different students learn at different paces and within different environments. For instance, how you study for tests shows what type of study environment you like to study in. The same now goes for your  "virtual" class environment. According to B-P's remote learning plan, you should be spending a  normal school day worth of hours within your "virtual" academic classrooms. Some classes might be easier than others. Find a place within your household that doesn't have distractions and you can focus on your subjects 30 minutes to 1 hour of any given time.

    Suggestion #2: Setup a schedule. On Monday of every academic/shop week - write out an academic/shop schedule for yourself. This can be done as colorfully or plain as you want. You can list out the days of the week and add what assignments are due when; what videos need to be watched; and when and what classroom notes need to be reviewed. After you create this schedule with listed out assignments, you will be able to see what is due when and, as a result, can potentially start creating a check-list of what you would like to accomplish each day of the week. 

    Suggestion #3: Break up your study time. This suggestion is entirely up to the learning style of the student. I, personally, cannot sit down for an entire 6.5 hours and do work. If you can, that's amazing! However, if you're like me, you might want to take on classroom/shop tasks in increments.  By following through with suggestion #2 above, you will be able to take your tasks for the day and easily be able to assign time to them. Maybe you spend an hour on ELA and take a 30-minute break before starting math. Or maybe you spend 20 minutes reading in history and then have lunch for 20  minutes and read the rest of your history work later. Break things up as you can. 

    Suggestion #4: Email your teachers as needed. If you don't get something, email your teachers what your concerns are. All teachers are pretty much "standing by" for student emails. Some are slower at responding than others -which is the reason why we say please allow 24-48 hours for a  teacher response. Sometimes emailing a teacher can produce clarity within an assignment. 

    Suggestion #5: CHECK ASPEN GRADING SYSTEM FREQUENTLY. Your username and password should have been given to you during the first day of school, but if you need to reset it, click here.

     

    Term 3 Schedule Change Form 

     

    Students are in the midst of Term 2 and no schedule changes can be made at this time, unless there are extenuating circumstances. However, the guidance counselors will take online requests to make schedule changes for Term 3 by completing this form by January 15, 2021. Term 3 begins on January 28, 2021, and we must allow for cafeteria, classroom, and transportation changes to name a few.

     

    Winter Sports Season Update

     

    After much consideration, Bristol-Plymouth has decided to cancel the winter sports season. With the large majority of Mayflower Athletic Conference teams deciding to cancel the winter sports season, the gymnasium currently being used as classroom space, the rising number of coronavirus cases across the state, and the school still in a hybrid model (at least half the student population not on campus), we felt it was best to cancel the winter sports season at Bristol-Plymouth. This decision was made with the health and safety of the student-athletes, coaches, and officials as a top priority. Moving forward, we will keep you updated on any potential sports offerings at Bristol-Plymouth.

     

    Updates to MCAS and ACCESS Testing Schedules and Participation Requirements 

     

    In September, DESE announced the initial testing schedule for MCAS and ACCESS tests for the 2020- 2021 school year, including a special administration of the high school ELA and mathematics tests in January-February 2021 for students in grades 11 and 12, as well as for adults who need to earn their competency determination (CD) in one or both subjects. The Commissioner of Education has adjusted the schedules and expectations for MCAS high school testing and ACCESS testing as follows: 

     

    • January-February High School MCAS ELA and Mathematics Tests for students in grade 11 (class of 2022) will no longer participate in testing during the January-February window. Testing for this class in ELA and mathematics is being postponed until later in the year. Students in grade 12 (class of 2021), as well as adult test-takers, will remain eligible to participate in one or both tests beginning in January to earn their CD. 

    The testing window for eligible students is extended through February 12, giving schools an additional week to complete testing. The full testing window will be from January 14 through February 12, 2021. 

     

    • ACCESS for ELLs - The testing window for the ACCESS tests is being extended for several additional months. Schools will be able to administer the ACCESS tests at any time between January 7 and May 20, 2021. Results will be returned in late summer.  

    If you have any questions regarding MCAS, please contact the academic coordinator, Ken Sutcliffe, at ksutcliffe@bptech.org.

     

    January School Calendar 

     

    The January school calendar has been updated to reflect the announced postponement of the 11th-grade MCAS test administration. The month will follow this year’s normal 6-day rotation.  

     

    Important Message from our School Nurses

     

    Recently, parents have called stating that they have been diagnosed with COVID-19, but have sent their child to school while waiting for their results to come in. Please, if anyone in your household is being tested for COVID-19, do not send your child(ren) to school until you know the outcome of your results. In the meantime, you can notify our school nurses of this pending test situation at bpnurses@bptech.org so that they may keep in close contact with your family’s testing outcome.

     

    B-P Parent Council Fundraiser - shopping for holiday gift cards?

     

    Great way to shop remotely for the holidays!!!! This year we want to make our fundraising efforts for Bristol Plymouth Parent Council easier by using an app called FlipGive.

     

    Simply join our team on FlipGive and start shopping through the app or team page and we'll earn money every time you shop with popular brands like Walmart, Starbucks, Dick's, Buffalo Wild Wings, and Mobil.

     

    Join our team now by clicking this link: [https://flipgive.app.link/teams/join?fundraiser_name=Paul-Jenn%20Nadeau&joincode=VWTGXZ](https://flipgive.app.link/teams/join?fundraiser_name=Paul-Jenn%20Nadeau&joincode=VWTGXZ)

     

    If you are prompted for a join code, enter this code VWTGXZ

     

    Remember to use FlipGive before you shop online so we'll earn cashback - make a purchase within the first 14 days of joining and we'll receive an additional bonus! 

     

    If you still have questions, here is a handout that explains FlipGive in more detail: [https://www.flipgive.com/flipgive-getting-started.pdf?campaign_id=253346](https://www.flipgive.com/flipgive-getting-started.pdf?campaign_id=253346)[https://www.flipgive.com/teams/253346](https://www.flipgive.com/teams/253346)

     

    Flu Vaccine - State Mandate by December 31, 2020

     

    Massachusetts has updated immunization requirements for the 2020-21 school year. Current school immunization requirements are listed on the Mass.gov website: https://www.mass.gov/info-details/school-immunizations 

     

    All school-age students are expected to receive the seasonal influenza vaccine by December 31. Please forward documentation of your child's immunization or exemption to our school nurses either through your child dropping by their office, emailing to bpnurses@bptech.org, or faxing directly to the nurses’ office at (774) 299-6102. The only allowable exemptions are: 

     

    • Medical exemption (statement from a physician stating that a vaccine is 

    medically contraindicated for a student);

    • Religious exemption (statement from a parent/guardian if the student is <18 

    years of age stating that a vaccine is against sincerely held religious beliefs). 

    Additional flu vaccine information can be found on the Mass.gov website: https://www.mass.gov/eohhs/docs/dph/cdc/flu/the-flu-guide-for-parents.pdf 

     

    New COVID quarantine guidelines received from the State on Dec. 7, 2020

     

    Persons in Quarantine due to COVID-19 can also be found on our school’s website.

     

    Class of 2021 Cap & Gown Purchases

     

    This year we will be collecting $20 for graduation caps & gowns through Paypal. Invoices have been sent through Paypal to students’ school email addresses.  A Paypal account is not needed to make a payment. Families will have the option of choosing to use a credit card or a debit card.

     

    If you have any questions about cap & gown purchases, please contact Mrs. Pelley, lpelley@bptech.org, in the Main Office.

     

    $ilver Dollar School Store

     

    The $ilver Dollar School Store is now open for online purchasing of sweatshirts, shirts, sweatpants, hats, and more.  If your favorite item is out of stock, be sure to check back after the holiday break as the store restocks items.  

     

    December holiday/school vacation week

     

    Wednesday, December 23rd is a full day of school for all students. The holiday school vacation week at Bristol-Plymouth RTS will begin on Thursday, Dec. 24, 2020, and last through Sunday, January 3, 2021.  We will resume all classes (whether remote or in-person) on Monday, January 4, 2021.

     

    Thanks for your partnership and B-P support, especially to our parent council members who were so generous today in distributing Christmas gift boxes and bags to our entire B-P staff!  My best wishes for a happy, healthy holiday season with your families. As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

     

    Karen Guenette, Principal    

    kguenette@bptech.org   

    Twitter@BPPrincipalKG

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