Morse Weekly Family Newsletter: March 6, 2020
Published on Mar 6, 2020 10:33

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March 6, 2020

Greetings from Chad Leith

Dear members of the Morse School community,

Few organizations pay as much attention to managing germs than elementary schools, where we routinely focus on teaching our children to wash their hands and cough and sneeze into their elbows. However, the ongoing Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak has led us to review and enhance our hygiene practices and collaborate more closely with district and city partners to ensure that we are taking every possible step to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff. Here are some of the things that we are doing at the Morse School:

  • We are closely following CPS COVID-19 Preparedness Guidelines, including requiring any child returning from overseas travel to one of the four countries of concern (China, Iran, Italy, and South Korea) to self-quarantine for 14 days, regardless of how the child feels. 
  • Our custodial team is using a special disinfectant on all door knobs, fixtures, and surfaces in classrooms and common spaces, including bathrooms and the Nurse’s Office. I have asked Dan, Neph, and Roberto to reorganize their daily routines to prioritize the careful completion of these tasks each day.
  • We are keeping our bathroom soap dispensers and our cafeteria hand sanitizer dispenser well-stocked so that children are able to properly and thoroughly clean their hands throughout the day. We have also asked each JK-5 classroom to show this handwashing video to their students and take time to answer their questions.

Obviously, this is an evolving situation. Nurse Susan is in daily communication with the CPS Head of Nursing and the Cambridge Department of Public Health, and is closely monitoring guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC). You can expect updated information and guidance as it becomes available. In the meantime, Nurse Susan is a good point of contact if you have additional questions about Covid-19.

Morse Community Events this Evening!
If you are looking for a chance to connect with other Morse School families this evening, please consider attending one of the following events taking place tonight:

  • The Cambridge Public Schools will be hosting a drop-in “Dinner with CPS” event this evening from 5:30 - 8PM in the Community Room at 808 Memorial Drive. Please join me, Ms. Headley, and other CPS representatives for a light dinner and conversation about your children’s experiences at the Morse School. Dinner will be provided, with vegetarian/meat-free options for adults and children. All are welcome!
  • The Friends of Morse will be hosting this month’s Family Movie Night in the Auditorium. Pizza, drinks, and snacks will go on sale at 6PM. The movie starts at 6:30PMm. Please remember that children MUST be accompanied by an adult during the entire event.

NewsFinally, many thanks to the Morse School students who participated in our 2020 Black History Month Creative Challenge! Student projects are now on display in the Main Lobby, as well as outside of our 2nd and 3rd grade classrooms. In all, over 100 students participated in the February challenge! As a special prize, each student who submitted an entry will receive a Cambridge Black Trailblazers bookmark! The 2nd grade students from Mr. Rick’s classroom will also receive prizes for last week’s outstanding Let Freedom Ring performance in the Auditorium. Next time you visit the school, please take a moment to read some of the powerful Black History Month messages still on display throughout our school! (Clockwise in photo from top left: Student Creative Challenge projects on display in Main Lobby, Black Lives Matter display outside of Ms. DeWitte’s 4th grade classroom, African-American authors display near the Library, and an Martin Luther King, Jr. display outside of Ms. Sterling’s JK-1 classroom.)

My very best wishes for a wonderful weekend!


Chad Leith

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2020 Family Survey Available Online

Many of you filled out the Cambridge Public School Family Survey last year to help us learn more about your experiences with the Cambridge Public Schools. Thank you! The Family Survey for 2020 is now available in over 10 languages. We invite you to please fill it out at your earliest convenience. Your feedback will contribute to our ongoing efforts to learn, improve, and support better outcomes for all students. 

Fill out the survey online and find more information >>

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Happy National Nutrition Month!

eat rightDid you know that students who eat breakfast may see increases in their concentration and test scores? Students who regularly eat breakfast also have fewer behavioral issues in the classroom and fewer tardy days. Cambridge schools offer FREE complete breakfast (i.e., a hot meal, fruit and milk) to all students. Maybe it’s time your family gave it a try? Find school menus here >>

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nsbw graphicSchool Breakfast Week & World Food Taste Party

Food & Nutrition Services invites you to join us in celebrating National School Breakfast Week March 2nd - 6th, with an Out of This Country theme. Our theme coincides with World Language Week, in which kitchens will be featuring cultural dishes from around the world at lunch. 

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Last Day of School
The last day of school with one snow day in CPS will be Wednesday, June 17. As in the past, the last day of school will be an early release day for all grades. We apologize for any confusion caused by discrepancies between published version of our calendars, and hope this clarification will be helpful to you.

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Morse Events & Announcements


March 6
Morse Family Movie Night

March 9 | 6-8PM
5th Grade Ballroom Dance Performance
CRLS, War Memorial Building

March 12 | 6:30-8PM
Friends of Morse Meeting

March 18
Early Release Day

Morse & CPS Calendars
Morse calendar >>
District calendar (pdf) >> 

District calendar >>


In Our District & Community

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Looking for things to do in Cambridge? 
Find It Cambridge >> 

Books for Bingo at Morse School (all Cambridge families welcome)
Please join in the fun on Wednesday, March 11, 2020 from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
Families play the game of Bingo – answering questions about children’s books/authors and creating specific patterns and when all the boxes are crossed off in the pattern BINGO is called. Every child leaves with at least 1 new book! 
Details >>

CPS Budget Meetings
–Presentation of the
2021 Proposed Budget:

Thursday, March 12 | 6PM
–Public Hearing on the
2021 Proposed Budget:

Tuesday, March 17 | 6PM

March 14 & 15
For one awesome weekend every March, join over a thousand middle schoolers to take classes at MIT on anything and everything!
Details >>

Free Membership and Family Events at the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA)
In celebration of its 150 birthday, the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) is offering free memberships for new members in 2020. If you attend a free MFA Community Celebration, you can visit a membership desk for a free one-year membership. Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115; 617.267.9300 
Free MFA Community Celebrations in 2020: March 18: Nowruz (free 4 - 10 PM). May 25: Memorial Day (free all day). June 17: Juneteenth (free 4 - 10 PM). Check the MFA website for details. While at the MFA, check out the new exhibit: Black Histories, Black Futures. The exhibit was curated through a partnership with local youth empowerment organizations.

Dig It! 2020 CitySprouts 
Gala/Silent Auction
April 2
Join CitySprouts for a night of food, fun, and fundraising as we celebrate CitySprouts' 19th year.
Details >> 

Invention Convention!
April 25 | 3:30-5:30PM
Fletcher Maynard Academy
This is fun and FREE workshop on inventing, designed for kids in grades K-8! Hosted by the Lemelson-MIT group.
Details >>

Open Spots in Exciting Maud Morgan Arts Spring Classes!!
Maud Morgan offers scholarships based on income up to 100%, students receiving free/reduced lunch automatically receive a 100% scholarship. Scholarships can be applied to more than one class. Contact Lauren to find out which classes have openings at [email protected]
Details >>
The Mind Matters: Families Make a Difference
A 10-session workshop for parents with children ages 3–8 providing educational resources & community support. To Register: Click hereFor more information, please contact Debbie Bonilla at 617.349.6492 or Email DebbieFlyer >>

The 2020 US Census
 is fast approaching and we want to make sure everyone in Cambridge is counted! Learn more about why the 2020 Census is so important, what you need to do, access materials, and more online. Want to help get the word out in Cambridge? Apply to be a part-time Census Outreach Worker to help the City and your community online.

Cambridge Works
Cambridge Works is currently recruiting for our 24th cycle of the program which will be starting this coming March. This 3-month employment and training program offers a paid internship, professional development classes and case management. If you know any Cambridge residents ages 18 - 35 without a college degree, out of work or with limited/no work experience, please have them contact us. Please think of anyone, family members, neighbors, friends, acquaintances anyone you know who may need help with employment.
Details >>

Looking for more events in Cambridge?
Title I calendar >>

Cambridge Girls Soccer
Ages 5-14
No experience necessary
Details >>  

Cambridge in Motion's 
Healthy Snack of the Week

Scrambled egg rolled up in a small whole grain wrap with salsa!

Did You Know There Are Free Markets Around the City?
So much fresh produce as well as grocery items are available to you. All you need to do is bring your own bag!
Details >>

Immigration Legal Clinics (FREE!)
3rd Wednesday each month
90 Third Street, Cambridge
Details >>

Affordable Housing
Open House & Fair

April 25 | 11AM-2PM
Details >>

Affordable Housing
Find out about affordable rental and homeownership in Cambridge.
Details >>
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Morse School
40 Granite Street, Cambridge, MA 02139  •  617.349.6575
CPS Mobile App >>
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