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Community Newsletter: Winter 2019

posted Feb 11, 2019, 4:37 AM by Tom Reeve

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1zLs21VzhJ-tMgPBW6HXfB2AbTYIAFtVO

The Winter 2019 Community Newsletter is now available! Read messages from the district administration and principals about the latest at Holliston Public Schools.

The Future of Holliston High School UPDATED

posted Feb 11, 2019, 4:24 AM by Tom Reeve   [ updated Feb 11, 2019, 4:26 AM ]

The Future of Holliston High School: A Community Conversation: 
Tuesday, January 15, 20197 pm, HHS Auditorium

UPDATE: View the slideshow of the forum's presentation

Originally designed in 1965 and opened in 1969, Holliston High School has served our community well for almost 50 years. Although it received a cosmetic renovation in 2000, now, 18 years later, the administration estimates that there are an estimated $10,000,000 in building infrastructure repairs and infrastructure replacements that we can reasonably expect to see in the coming decade. Understanding that our students’ classroom experience has changed significantly from 50 years ago and before investing such a significant amount of money in a 50-year old building, the School Committee asked the administration to review the building’s usefulness and effectiveness as a 21-century learning center. That review revealed a significant number of areas where the physical plant did not support the technology-rich, collaborative instructional model used today.

Given the significance of the anticipated costs over the next decade to maintain the building and the design deficiencies that impede our ability to provide our students with comparable 21st century learning environment available in most MetroWest communities who have already modernized their high school, the School Committee feels that it is time for Holliston to begin a serious conversation as a community regarding the High School and options moving forward.

To begin this discussion, the School Committee is holding a public forum, The Future of Holliston High School: A Community Conversation, on Tuesday, January 15, 2019, at 7 pm in the Holliston High School auditorium. This forum is open to all members of the public. The decisions our community face are important and will likely impact our students’ high school experience for the next several decades. Your attendance and participation as we begin to explore these issues is strongly encouraged.

Extended School Year (ESY) for Summer 2019

posted Jan 17, 2019, 7:05 AM by Tom Reeve

For those of you already thinking summer and actively searching for summer camps, planning day trips or scheduling vacations, we too have begun thinking summer.  We have started our Extended School Year planning.


Extended School Year (ESY) is not Summer Camp; so what is ESY?


At least annually, each student’s Team must consider the need for an extended school year and record its determination in the IEP.  A Team’s determination regarding the need for an ESY program must be made on an individual basis. ESY in Massachusetts, based on federal law, is designed to provide a free and appropriate public education to children with disabilities who would experience substantial regression because of interruption in their instructional program.  ESY services are focused on goal areas included in the student’s IEP and based on their disability.  


Please note, that just because a student has received ESY services in the past, this fact alone will not qualify the student to receive ESY services in the future.  The need for ESY and meeting “substantial regression” criteria must be examined yearly and is typically determined in the spring.


Please click on the following link for further information and guidance on ESY services:

DOE Question and Answer Guide on Special Education Extended School Year Programs


For most of the students with disabilities who qualify,

Holliston’s 2019 ESY dates are July 8th - August 8th, Monday-Thursday.


Please be sure to contact your liaison if you have any questions regarding ESY or if ESY has not been discussed at your student’s annual Team meeting.


It Takes A Community: A Parent/Guardian Education Evening

posted Oct 22, 2018, 6:54 AM by Tom Reeve

It Takes A Community

Tuesday, November 6th, 7:00-9:00

Holliston High School Library



Holliston Public Schools presents, It Takes A Community, a parent/guardian education evening focused on the most recent health/mental health screenings of our students.


  • Dr. Tracy Gladstone from Wellesley Centers for Women will continue the conversation regarding youth depression and suicidal behavior in relation to the Mood Check program.  Mood Check is a an education and screening to Holliston middle and high school students utilizing the Signs of Suicide (SOS) Prevention Program.


  • Lynne Bowler, Nurse Leader for Holliston Public Schools, will speak to the SBIRT health screening programs.  Screening, Brief Intervention Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) is a process to support the health of students, focused on prevention of substance abuse.


  • Jaclyn Winer, Director of Holliston Youth and Family Services will highlight the services available for students and families in our community.  Holliston Youth and Family Services mission is to assess the needs of the community and through a collaborative approach, provide mental health resources to the Town of Holliston.


When:  Tuesday, November 6th, 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Where:  Holliston High School Library

Holliston Public Schools sponsored event


The Beautiful Mind, Student led Holliston High School Group will be on hand to support and continue the conversation on how the community of Holliston can continue to eliminate the stigma around teen mental illness..

Notice of Destruction of Student Records

posted Jul 20, 2018, 8:45 AM by Tom Reeve

The Massachusetts Student Record Regulations authorize public school districts to destroy student records within seven (7) years of a student’s graduation, transfer or withdrawal from the school district. The Holliston Public Schools, Department of Student Services, will be complying with these regulations. The persons affected are those who received special education services in Holliston and terminated services during the 2010-2011 school years. 

The parent/guardian or eligible (adult) student may contact the Student Services Office at 508-429-0661 to make arrangements to pick up their records or you may contact us in writing at the following address:

Holliston Public Schools
370 Hollis Street
Holliston, MA. 01746
Attn: Student Services

Unclaimed records will be destroyed on Friday, September 7, 2018.

Holliston SEPAC Parent Ed Event - May 14th

posted Apr 26, 2018, 7:42 AM by Tom Reeve

Parent Ed Event sponsored by the Holliston Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SEPAC)

Monday, May 14th @ 7pm at Adams Middle School Multi-Purpose Room 109  

What does Assistive Technology in the school setting look like?  With Chromebooks being more readily available to all students, how is it used in the school setting?  What assistive technology is available to all children as well as students with more individualized, including those requiring augmentative and alternative communication (AAC).  From tier 1 -> tier 2 -> tier 3 of AAC?  What does it look like in the school setting and how can I partner with educators to support my student in accessing and generalizing skills?

Panel of speakers on this topic:
Carol Dicruttalo, Student Services Administrator, Placentino Elementary School
Becky Hakanson, SLP/AAC Consultant from Accept Collaborative
Adam Steiner, Technology Integration Specialist, Adams Middle School and Miller Elementary School
Heather Nunes, SLP, Placentino Elementary School
Krissy Gilbert, Special Education Teacher, Miller Elementary School
Marie Reggio, SLP, Adams Middle School

School Choice Applications 2018-2019 Posted

posted Mar 7, 2018, 6:52 AM by Tom Reeve   [ updated Mar 7, 2018, 6:53 AM ]

The Holliston Public Schools will accept applications for a limited number of “seats” for non-resident students exclusively under the State’s School Choice Law. The number of “seats” available has not yet been determined.
  1. Applications for School Choice may be obtained by contacting the Central Office, 370 Hollis Street, Holliston, MA 01746, telephone (508) 429-0654 extension 1139 or by email at “barryd@holliston.k12.ma.us”.
  2. Applications for School Choice will be accepted by the Superintendent of Schools, via the U.S. Postal Service only between April 1 – April 16, 2018. NO APPLICATION WILL BE PROCESSED WITH A POSTMARK DATE PRIOR TO APRIL 1, 2018. Applications received with a postmark after April 16, 2018 will be placed on a waiting list in the order in which they are received. 

    Applications should be addressed to: 
      Office of the Superintendent of Schools 
      School Choice 
      370 Hollis Street Holliston, MA 01746
  3. Admission will be determined by lottery, on a random basis, if number of applicants exceeds the number of available seats.
  4. Students accepted for admission to the Holliston Public Schools will be notified by June 8, 2018. PLEASE NOTE THAT ACCEPTANCE INTO THE HOLLISTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS DOES NOT GUARANTEE PLACEMENT IN A PARTICULAR PROGRAM THAT YOU MAY HAVE REQUESTED. TRANSPORTATION TO/FROM SCHOOL IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE PARENT. SCHOOL BUS TRANSPORTATION IS NOT AN AVAILABLE OPTION. Such acceptance for admission must be submitted in writing no later than June 19, 2018. Failure to do so may result in withdrawal of the acceptance for admission.
  5. Students not accepted who wish to be considered for acceptance in “2019-2020” must reapply.

The School Choice Application is available for download on the Forms page, under "School Choice Application."

SEPAC Event Rescheduled: Wed. Feb 28

posted Feb 12, 2018, 6:57 AM by Tom Reeve   [ updated Feb 20, 2018, 5:20 AM ]

Date:
Monday, February 12th  Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018  in the Adams Multi-Purpose Room 109 @ 7pm

We use our executive functioning skills across all aspects of our day, not just within the academic context of school. Sometimes our students with disabilities present with even more executive functioning challenges in the home setting versus the school setting. “If only she could brush her teeth and hair without a half dozen reminders?” “If only he could actually remember his homework after he does it?”. This seminar will focus on teaching practical methods to ease homework and home routines as well as increase your child’s independence no matter their age or ability!

Presenters: Victoria Briggs, District BCBA , Jessica Smith, School Psychologist

Community Newsletter: Winter 2018

posted Feb 6, 2018, 11:12 AM by Tom Reeve

The new Winter 2018 issue of the Holliston Schools newsletter has been posted online. Please take a few minutes to read about our latest school news, updated calendars, and other important information.

>> HPS Community Newsletter: Winter 2018 issue

Email Update

posted Nov 17, 2017, 3:50 AM by Tom Reeve

Dear Parents/Guardians:

I recently notified the community that we were conducting an investigation into the cause of the email failure that some parents experienced during our email communication with the PreK-8 parent community regarding the October 24th lockdown at the Adams, Miller and Placentino Schools. As background, we solicit parent email addresses each fall as part of the student registration process and store those email addresses in our Student Information System (called iPass). In addition, parents who have access to iPass through the “Parent Portal” can update their email addresses when necessary. Parents who have provided their email address to us in previous years are not required to re-share that information annually. Several times a year, we extract the email addresses from our iPass database and upload them into the database used by our email notification system, called iContact. iContact is a commercially-available email marketing system that offers the ability to distribute emails to large email lists. This functionality is not available in iPass. Our investigation has concluded that some email addresses were inadvertently deleted from our iContact database during a recently-conducted manual periodic-maintenance review of our email lists. After discovering this human error, we performed new extraction of email addresses from iPass and uploaded them into iContact, providing us with an up-to-date email list for each school and the district.

People who were not receiving emails earlier this fall from iContact should now be receiving Announcements in their inbox (they will show on your email server as being sent by:
HPSAnnouncements hpsannouncements@holliston.k12.ma.us via icontactmail3.com ). If this is not the case, it is likely due to one of three possible reasons:
  1. your email address has a misspelling in iPass and your email is being returned as undeliverable;

  2. the “SPAM” filter in your individual email account is identifying the email as “Junk” and placing those emails in your “Junk” folder. If this is the case, you need to reconfigure your email account to allow emails from: HPSAnnouncements hpsannouncements@holliston.k12.ma.us via icontactmail3.com

  3. the firewall on your email server is blocking all emails from iContact. We find this from time to time, particularly if you are asking that emails be sent to a corporate email system (your work email, for example). If you are not receiving emails from HPS on your corporate server, we recommend you contact your corporate IT department and ask them to pass-through emails from iContact, or that you change the email account to which you want emails sent to a private email account through vendors such as gmail, yahoo, hotmail, etc. 

  4. at some point in the past, you may have clicked an “Unsubscribe” link at the bottom of one of the messages, either intentionally or accidentally. Due to anti-spam regulations, Holliston Schools does not have to ability to re-subscribe you when this occurs, but there are steps you can follow to re-subscribe yourself
Moving forward, we recently received funding to purchase a new Student Information System to replace iPass. Relevant to this issue, this new system will not only have the capability to send emails directly from a Holliston Public Schools account but will also include the ability to send text alerts and conduct mass notifications via phone. This new system will be operational by August 2018. For the remainder of this school year, we will continue to rely on HPSAnnouncements and our social media pages to provide timely information to the community. Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hollistonschools or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Holliston_PS


Bradford L. Jackson, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Holliston Public Schools
370 Hollis Street
Holliston, MA 01746

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