Dear Monty Tech Community,
As we officially transition into autumn tomorrow, I am happy to say that Monty Tech has made it through the “school opening” phase of the 2021-2022 year, and we have settled in nicely into our weekly routines. Before moving forward, however, I want to take a moment to thank all of our students, parents, guardians, faculty and staff for your efforts to help us get off to a great start. Clearly, once again due to the ongoing nationwide challenges posed by COVID-19, this will not be a fully “normal” school year. However, the days of hybrid learning and only half the students in the building on a daily basis are behind us. Monty Tech has once again come together as a united community, and I am confident that we will make this a great school year.
With that said, I would be remiss if I did not take a moment to remind our students and families that we must remain aware of the challenges posed by the virus. We want to continue to do everything we can to keep our positive diagnoses low, and to make sure that we take steps to keep as many students in the building even when they are determined to be a close contact. Thus, I ask everyone to keep two priorities in mind. First, if your student is not feeling well, and certainly if your student is experiencing COVID related symptoms, then please keep your student home. More often than not, this decision helps us prevent the need to contact trace following a positive diagnosis. In addition, I urge all families to communicate with our Nurses’ Office if the student is exhibiting symptoms or if someone in your household has been diagnosed positive. You can do this by emailing at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling ext. 5219.
In addition, I want to remind families about our Test & Stay Program. While vaccinated individuals who are identified as a close contact are not required to quarantine, unvaccinated individuals are expected to unless they participate in Test & Stay. In that case, the student or staff member can visit the nurses’ office daily for seven consecutive days and receive a BinaxNow rapid COVID test. If the individual tests negative and remains asymptomatic, then they can remain in school. However, for students, this great opportunity to avoid having to quarantine does require parent consent. If you have not already submitted a consent form, you can do so electronically using the following link - https://www.cic-health.com/consent/ma. As always, each of us shares a responsibility for doing what we can to keep the impact of the virus as low as possible. We will be sure to keep the school community updated regularly regarding the state of COVID and its effects on the school.
Moving forward, I am happy to share that we will continue to strive to offer as many of our traditional events as possible, and we certainly have a number of events planned for the next few months. Of course, all parents and community members should remember that all indoor events require masks. Those events include –
Honor Roll Dinners – Each year we pause to recognize the achievement of our students who earn either Honor Roll, High Honors or Principal’s List for all four quarters of the previous year. This will occur over two nights – September 23rd and 30th. Eligible students and families have been contacted at this time. If you have any questions, please contact Sandra Robichaud at ext. 5202.
Tour Day & Career Awareness Night – Each year, Monty Tech hosts our potential 8th grade applicants to the building for a quick informational tour. These students come to Monty Tech as a middle school group. This year, with some new plans in place, we hope to experience an increase in visitors. Hence, we have expanded Tour Day to cover 1½ days. On Friday, Oct. 1st, Monty Tech will dismiss at 11:00am and middle school tours will start shortly after. We will then have our traditional full day of tours on Monday, Oct. 4th, where there will be no school for Monty Tech students. That evening, we will hold our annual Career Awareness Night from 5:00-8:00pm where all vocational shops will be open to both potential incoming 8th graders and their parents, as well as current parents who would like to speak to their student’s instructor. We look forward to seeing everyone on that evening.
Program Advisory Dinner – Each fall, we gather the nearly 400 members of our program advisory in order to review the status of each program’s curriculum, equipment needs and career readiness. This year, due to the sheer numbers, we will not gather together for our traditional meal, but the meetings will continue with “grab and go” dinners available. This will occur on October 6th at 6:00pm.
Quarter 1 Progress Reports – Quarter 1 Progress Reports will be issued at the end of the day on October 8th. While these reports provide our first indicators on student achievement, I always caution parents and guardians to take into account that, with the opening weeks of the school year dedicated to simply settling in, the Quarter 1 Progress Reports often do not reflect too many formal assessments. If a student does poorly, we certainly want to address the scores, but please know that there are often many other grades still to be scored in the quarter.
Columbus Day holiday – There will be no school on Monday, October 11th.
Spirit Week and Homecoming Game – Once again, we will hold our annual Spirit Week from Oct. 12-15th. Theme days will be announced at school soon but, as always, we will conclude with Purple & Gold Day. Also, at the end of the day on Oct. 15th, we will continue our recent tradition of holding a pep rally outside on the football field. Meanwhile, we are tentatively planning on an outdoor homecoming dance for Monty Tech students only on the evening of Saturday, Oct. 16th. Please know that we do not feel that an indoor dance even with masks would be appropriate considering the current state of COVID. Thus, we will be monitoring our plans, and making an official announcement, one way or the other, over the next week or so.
Professional Development ½ Day – On Friday, October 22, students will be dismissed at 11:00am in order for the faculty and staff to complete a ½ professional development day.
Quarter 1 Grades Close – Grades will close for the 1st Quarter on Friday, Oct. 29th with Report Cards being issued the following Friday, November 5th.
Looking ahead soon after Quarter 1, November will bring us our annual Parent-Teacher Conferences on November 16th and 18th. Additionally, we will register students for the Winter Sports season and, of course, celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday break which will begin with a ½ day on November 24th.
For now, once again, I want to thank all members of our school community for helping us launch the 2021-2022 school year as smoothly as possible, and I hope that everyone enjoys a beautiful fall season.
Tom Browne, Principal