March 7 News

1.  Mrs. Pitrat will be joining Hatfield Elementary School on March 14th.  This will be her first official day.  

2.  We have a Professional Development Day on Friday.  All of our K -6 Teachers will be working with a presenter on writing skills.  Our special educators will be working with Director Bremner and our Pre School Teachers will be working on DESE requirements for reporting.  There is no school for students on March 11th.  

3.  With weather changing almost every hour we encourage students to dress in layers.  It's especially for outdoor play so that they can stay warm and protected from the elements.  Children are always reminded to wear coats, hats, gloves/mittens and boots, but because they get out there running around they get heated up on these warm days.  Older students are encouraged to make good choices, but we won't force them to wear something that makes them uncomfortable.  Younger students will be told to wear their coats and hats.  We never go outside when it is colder than 24 degrees.  

4.  We have had some cold classrooms due to broken heat equipment on our roof.  We are trying to repair it.  I encourage you to always have your kids bring a sweatshirt or sweater in the book bag.

5 . On Wednesday the School Committee will be taking up the matter of masks being optional.  We will announce that decision as soon as possible.  Regardless of this, we are relaxing COVID Management protocols around individual seating in the cafeteria.  We will be going back to tables on Monday, March 14th.  Classroom teachers are also able to seat kids closer than three feet, and there will be no more daily spraying in the classrooms, except for when there has a flu case or a COVID case in that particular space.  We really appreciate everyone's patience and community partnership as we have addressed COVID over this school year.  

6.  There is still DESE Guidance we must follow and here are some of the highlights:

 

 

 

  • Routine Pooled PCR Testing continues to be provided at HPS on Tuesday mornings. Families who have not yet enrolled are invited to submit the CIC Health Consent Form

  • Families are asked to follow DESE DPH Protocol C Guidance for Symptomatic Individuals when students develop symptoms at home.  DESE DPH asks School Nurses to provide rapid antigen testing for those who develop symptoms while in school.  

  • The HPS Contact Tracing and Test to Stay options have ended effective (March 3, 2022) per updated DESE DPH Protocols.

  • The Updated Covid Testing Program for Schools Guidance now includes Weekly Routine Pooled PCR Testing, Symptomatic Testing in Schools, and Home Testing.  The newest DESE Testing option:  distribution of free Home Self Rapid Antigen Test Kits via student back packs on a biweekly basis continues to be offered to all families.  Families who have not yet enrolled are encouraged to submit the State Opt-In Form.

    • Families are asked to test their student when symptoms are apparent and to…

    • Notify their building nurse re: any positive tests.  A Home Test Report Form may be used if more convenient. Positive test report data is sent to the DESE Test Report Database on a weekly basis.

    • If symptom-based tests are negative and symptoms persist or worsen,  families are asked to keep their children home and seek a followup evaluation from their Primary Health Care Provider.

    • Families are also strongly encouraged to routinely screen their asymptomatic children on a weekly basis using these self-tests.  Families are invited to test on Friday mornings as the universal HPS test day.

  • MA DESE DPH continues to require mask wearing in schools under the following circumstances:

    • Individuals who have tested positive and completed the Isolation Protocols will be required to wear well-fitting masks at all times for five additional days except when eating and distanced at least 3 feet from others.

    • Asymptomatic unvaccinated individuals who have been exposed to Covid 19 and who have completed the Quarantine Protocols will be required to wear well-fitting masks at all times for five additional days except when eating meals distanced at least 3 feet away from others.

    • Masking continues to be required in school health offices. 

    • As always, any individual who wishes to continue to mask, including those who face higher risk from COVID-19, will be supported in that choice. 

    • DESE and DPH strongly recommend that unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear masks in school settings.

    • Masks will be provided by HPS for those who need them.

  •