Greer Gazette: January 22, 2024

Greer Gazette: January 22, 2024
Posted on 01/22/2024

Greetings CPS Community!

I hope you are settling into 2024 and staying warm.

Budget season is upon us and we have been meeting with all of the departments and schools to discuss their goals for next year and to better understand their needs. We are currently reviewing the data from the school and district climate surveys to identify trends that may require additional resources in this budget. As the budget process continues, I encourage you to participate in the hybrid Community Budget Meeting next week. You can join either virtually or in-person. It will begin at 6PM, with dinner at 5:30PM, and the meeting ending at 8PM.

The Community Budget Meeting is an opportunity to connect with us to promote a broader understanding and constructive dialogue surrounding the budget priorities. The information to register is below.

Other ways you can be involved with sharing your perspective related to improving our schools is to participate in your children’s School Council meetings. Our Principals use this time to share their School Improvement Plans, which outline the goals, actions, and resources to support the needs of the school. I encourage you to get involved at the school level to better understand your school’s plans for improvement and resource allocations related to those improvements.

We presented an overview of the Fiscal Year 25 process at last week’s School Committee meeting. Tomorrow evening, a budget workshop is scheduled for 6PM. We will share the enrollment and budget projections for next year with the Committee. This information informs and impacts the budget for our schools.

Thank you for your continued support.

Make it Great!

Planning for the 2024-2025 Budget

Register Today for Our Community Budget Meeting

We will offer a hybrid (in-person and virtual) community engagement/information session next Thursday, February 1. Students are welcome to participate as well!

When: Thursday, February 1 | 6 - 8PM (Dinner will be served at 5:30PM.)
Where: Cambridge Rindge and Latin School Media Cafe located at 459 Broadway

  • To register to attend in-person or virtually, click here. Please note that we have created two events in the portal. One is to sign up for the in-person option and the other is to sign up for the virtual option.
  • Childcare and transportation will be provided (a list of pick up locations and schedule will be available soon).

The 2024-2025 budget aims to align resources to objectives and initiatives outlined in the CPS District Plan. Your feedback is needed to fully inform budget priorities for the upcoming school year. Together, we will briefly review budget basics and the District Plan; attendees will share their thoughts on budget priorities with Administration.

Tips for Understanding the Budget

  • School Council meetings offer insight into what your school has strategically outlined as a fiscal priority to support learning in their classroom communities. Access upcoming School Council meetings here.
  • Review last Tuesday’s School Committee 2024-2025 Budget Process presentation here.
  • Review Dr. Greer’s Proposed 2024-2025 Budget when it is available Tuesday, March 12.
  • Attend the School Committee Budget Workshop on Thursday, March 14.


Dr. Karyn Grace Named Permanent Assistant Superintendent of OSS

Congratulations to Dr. Karyn Grace, on being appointed as permanent Assistant Superintendent of the Office of Student Services (OSS) after serving as interim since last February.

Dr. Grace is a lifelong educator who started her career as a paraprofessional. Over the years, she has served as a special educator, classroom teacher, middle school co-teacher, and district inclusion specialist. During her time as the interim Assistant Superintendent, Dr. Grace has led the development of the district Excel After School Tutoring Program, re-engaged the name-changing process of the SCALE program (formerly ASD), and leads an integrative, collaborative approach in developing strong systems across the newly restructured department. To read more about her appointment, please visit our website.

Free Webinar: Recognizing and Treating OCD and Tic Disorders in Children and Adolescents

Our mental health partner, Cartwheel, is offering another free live webinar to share how parents, caregivers and staff can identify signs of OCD and tic disorders in youth and help them thrive.

Join guest speaker, Dr. Erica Greenberg, to learn how symptoms can be impairing (or not), how to seek professional help, and best practices for treatment.

  • Wednesday, February 6  |  7 - 8PM
  • Register here for the webinar

Cambridge Preschool Program Application is Now Closed

The application period for the Cambridge Preschool Program (CPP) is now closed for the 2024-2025 school year. Families in need of application assistance should contact [email protected].

If you have submitted a completed CPP application, please see the enrollment timeline below for what’s next in the process:

  • Notification of preschool match in early March 2024.
  • Families have 2 weeks from notification to accept or decline their placement.

For additional information, including updated FAQs, please visit our website. January 16th School Committee Special Meeting Recap

Moving forward, we will include a brief summary of each School Committee meeting that highlights presentations and any key votes that impact district policies and procedures as well as a link to the meeting.

A School Committee meeting was held last Tuesday. Highlights include...

Interested in receiving email notifications about meetings? Join the School Committee listserv.
Kindergarten Lottery Closes Next Wednesday!
The Kindergarten Lottery for the 2024-2025 school year will be open through 4PM on Wednesday, January 31. All registrations must be fully completed, including all language testing to determine eligibility for Program Language Bonus points. To learn more, visit our website.
Featured Events & Opportunities

Free Science Club for Girls…Apply Today!

Science Club for Girls' mission is to foster excitement, confidence, and literacy in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) for girls and gender-expansive youth from underrepresented communities by providing free, experiential programs and by maximizing meaningful interactions with women-in-STEM mentors.

  • Clubs will begin the week of February 26 and run for 8 weeks. Programs will be held virtually via zoom or in-person; to offer flexibility and convenience, participants are able to choose one of six weekly meeting times.
    • Mondays | 4 - 5PM (virtual)
    • Tuesdays | 4:30 - 5:30PM  (virtual)
    • Thursdays | 4 - 5PM (virtual)
    • Fridays | 3 - 4:15PM (Amigos School located at 15 Upton Street)
    • Saturdays | 10:30 - 11:30AM  (virtual)
    • Saturdays | 10:30 - 11:30AM  (Prospect Hill Academy located at 50 Essex Street)
    • Saturdays | 10:30 - 11:30AM  (University Park located at 65 Franklin Street)
  • Space is limited…apply today! **Registering is not a guarantee of acceptance. You will be notified as soon as possible regarding an available space for your child.**

Participants in our virtual programs will use Zoom via a computer, laptop, tablet, or phone with internet access. All other materials will be provided free of charge and distributed at a convenient location prior to the first week of clubs. Health Updates

CPS Policies & Procedures

In addition to our
current COVID-19 policies and procedures, which align with the end of the COVID-19 Federal Emergency on May 11, 2023, we ask that all students, families, and staff remain vigilant. Please continue to monitor for symptoms, use COVID tests as necessary, and stay home when you are not feeling well. Masking and hand washing are also great ways to protect yourself and others against illnesses.

January Free Food Markets

All families are welcome to stop by our free, school-based food markets. They offer fresh fruits, vegetables, and pantry items. Please bring your own bags.

  • ** Next Tuesday, January 30  |  3 - 4:30PM   (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. School/Putnam Ave Upper School)
  • ** Next Wednesday, January 31  |  1:45 - 3:45PM   (Fletcher Maynard Academy)
  • ** Next Wednesday, January 31  |  2 - 4PM  (Kennedy-Longfellow School/Vassal Lane Upper School)
  • See the full list of free food markets for the 2023-2024 school year.

Mock Trial at Moakley for Participating 8th Graders

Congratulations to our Rindge Avenue Upper School students who participated in the final Mock Trial event last December. Throughout the fall, middle schoolers met weekly with their legal mentors, attorneys from Takeda Pharmaceuticals, to prepare and litigate a First Amendment case.

Students presented opening and closing statements and cross-examined four witnesses at the Moakley Federal Courthouse, all this before federal judge Indira Talwani and a jury of community members, including Representative Steven Owens! The Mock Trial Program is offered in collaboration with Discovering Justice. We are thankful for our program partners and our staff who work hard to provide these connected learning opportunities for our students!

Math Equity Lab

The Office of Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (OEIB), the Design Lab, and the Math Department teamed up in the fall to engage K-8 educators in a design challenge focused on the question: How might we create environments that uplift identity and create belonging so that students can explore the context of their lives in powerful ways through the lens of mathematics?

Equity Lab participants from various schools came up with a challenge related to identity, belonging, and math. Equity Lab members designed and tried out a prototype connected to the challenge they identified. Earlier this month, Equity Lab members shared their prototypes, reflections, and learning with educators, coaches, school leaders, district leaders, and community members in conversations about math and equity.

Read more about the Math Equity Lab's exciting work in our Math Equity Lab Booklet.
Key Resources

Mark Your Calendar

Monday, February 19 - Friday, February 23
  |  February Break  (No School & CPS Offices Closed on Monday, February 19)
Tuesday, March 5  |  Staff Professional Development Day  (No School)
Wednesday, March 13 |  Early Release  (Grades JK-8)
Friday, March 29 |  Good Friday  (No School & CPS Offices Closed)

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