Eye on the Junior High

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August 2023 - Posts

Good afternoon,

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In this weekly memo, I tend to write about things going on at RJ Grey and I often share a bit of an anecdote from the week at school or from my own family. I always end the memo with a list of upcoming important dates. While I happen to think it’s a worthwhile memo to sign up for, I will not feel bad if you choose to streamline the email you receive and not subscribe. If you choose not to receive the email, you can always check out our website to locate back issues of this memo. 

I am writing this edition of Eye on the Junior High after we’ve welcomed our 7th graders yesterday and our 8th graders today! So far, we’ve had a really smooth start to the year - I hope the same is true in your home. We are well aware that team placement can be a struggle when students don’t immediately recognize a good friend on their new team. As the parent of a 4th grader, 1st grader, and preschooler, I saw this happen on a smaller scale with my own kids this summer. Because my kids are young and don’t have their own technology, it was left to the parents to text and figure out which friends were assigned to which classrooms. While my own kids were content with their placements and teachers, there was still a bit of trepidation as they went on their first days of school this week. It is completely normal if the same was true for your 11, 12, and 13 year olds!

We’ve already held assemblies with each grade over the past two days. We introduced them to important adults, we reviewed expectations for behavior, the lunchroom, buses, and other items. I talked to them about the value of community and asked them to really go out of their way to welcome students who are coming to school at AB for the very first time. We have new students from neighboring towns here in Massachusetts, but we also have students from different states and different countries. I applaud those courageous souls who are starting in a brand new school this week. I hope you will all encourage your students to be brave and reach out to someone new and include them. Having each student feel like they belong at RJ Grey is a huge goal for us. When you have small moments with your own kids, ask them about some of the students in their classes and encourage them to include someone new. I appreciate your help with this.

During the spring and summer, we did a lot of hiring of teachers, assistants, and office staff. There is a great energy within our staff this week and we are very excited to include our new staff in our ongoing work. A very important person that I need to highlight works in our Main Office. If you were with us over the past two years, you may have gotten to know Eileen Matarese. This summer, Eileen found a different position to meet her needs and we wish her the best of luck in her new role. We are very fortunate to welcome Ms. Christine Hanley to the role of Main Office Receptionist. She is the one who will answer the phone if you call, will write your child a dismissal pass if they come in with a note, and she will welcome students when they arrive after 8:00 am. Christine worked at RJ Grey for many years as a teaching assistant, then moved on to roles at McT and Conant before returning to us this summer. We are very grateful for Christine’s presence and her positive attitude. Please welcome her when you get the chance!

There is a lot happening to start the year, so please read below for important upcoming dates.

Upcoming Dates

  • Monday, September 4: No School, Labor Day

  • Monday, September 11: Library closed to students after school

  • Wednesday, September 13: Ribbon Cutting at the AB Resource Center

  • Monday, September 18: Early Release at 1 pm

  • Tuesday, September 19: School Picture Day at RJ Grey

  • Wednesday, September 20: iReady ELA Diagnostic Assessment

  • Monday, September 25: No School, Yom Kippur

  • Thursday, September 28: RJ Grey Back to School Night: 7 - 8:45 pm

The following flyers have been approved for distribution by our Superintendent’s Office: 

Take care and have a great Labor Day weekend!

Posted by jmarcotte  On Aug 31, 2023 at 11:57 AM
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