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Letter from Mrs. Pepchinski, Principal - August 19, 2020

Dear Parents/Guardians:

I wanted to take this opportunity to welcome you back a little bit earlier than normal to the 2020-2021 school year! Over the past few months, we have been extra busy getting the school ready for a brand new start to a school year that may look different than in previous years, but one in which we are certain will still help our students learn and grow. 

Mr. Kivor and I are fortunate to have such an outstanding staff of educators, support teams, and parents/guardians who are truly dedicated to the well-being of our students.  Together the parents/guardians and staff form a strong team that will help guide our students through their educational journey, whether it be in–person or virtually.   

Milford Brook School is our “home away from home,” and we look forward to working together with you, the students, and the staff to make this year an outstanding educational experience for your child.  By working together as a team, we will continue to create a safe, nurturing and challenging environment and develop the mind and spirit of our students. Our goal is to provide them with the necessary tools needed to face new and difficult challenges with confidence. Even though this year will be unique from traditional school years, we are confident that by working together, we will be able to provide your child with a positive, challenging, fun and safe learning environment that is personalized to meet individual needs.

A lot of information has been disseminated to you through correspondence from the district, Board of Education meetings, and presentations and letters from Dr. Marciante and Dr. Santora.  With that all in mind, I would like to help ensure you have an overall understanding of the plan in place.


Grade K In-Person Students

If you did not elect for your child to be 100% virtual, then he/she is attending school in-person every day for 2.5 hours. You received information from the school via postal mail with an assignment of an AM or PM session. For your child, please pack a snack, reusable water bottle filled with water each day, and an extra mask in a labeled Ziplock bag (just in case the extra mask is needed). A personal pack of tissues is also recommended but not required. Please remember that students are required to wear masks at all times. After placement is revealed in Genesis, the kindergarten teachers will be mailing out their welcome letters to you and your child. 

The times for each K session are as follows:

  • AM Session: 9:20 AM - 11:50 AM (Buses dismiss at 11:50 AM; Parent pickup for students not taking the bus is 11:45 AM)
  • PM Session: 1:00 PM - 3:30 PM (Buses dismiss at 3:30 PM; Parent pickup for students not taking the bus is 3:25 PM)

Grade K 100% Virtual Students

You will receive more information regarding the virtual academy. Please note that this may not necessarily be a Milford Brook teacher.


Grade 1 Hybrid (In-Person) Students

If you did not elect for your child to be 100% virtual, then he/she is following the hybrid schedule.  Students following the hybrid schedule will be assigned either to an A day or a B day rotation.  Here is a document showing this rotation (click here).    The building administrators are working together to coordinate hybrid days for siblings throughout the district who attend different MERS schools. These students will be attending in-person school for 4-hours each day; lunch will not be served. For your child, please pack a snack, reusable water bottle filled with water each day, and an extra mask in a labeled Ziplock bag (just in case the extra mask is needed). A personal pack of tissues is also recommended but not required. Please remember that students are required to wear masks at all times.

After placement is revealed in Genesis, the first grade teachers will be mailing out their welcome letters to you and your child.  In each letter, there will be directions about how to link your child’s school email account to the teacher’s Google Classroom prior to the first day of school.  Email accounts and Student ID (passwords) will be provided in this mailing. September 8th will either be an in-person day for your child or a remote learning day for your child depending on the A/B calendar.  For example, if a student has a hybrid A assignment, he/she comes to the school building on the A days for instruction.  On the other day  -- the remote learning day for your child -- he/she will need to be logged in to the Google Classroom for that day. Students with a hybrid B assignment come to the school building on the B days for instruction. If September 8th is a remote learning day for your child, he/she will need to be logged in to the Google Classroom for that day. Again, the calendar indicating these days is located here. This calendar is consistent for the MERS district.

Important: Grade 1 students are following the hybrid rotation from the onset of school.

The arrival and dismissal times for grade 1 hybrid students (in-school days) are as follows:

  • Arrival: 9:20 AM
  • Dismissal: 1:20 PM
  • Parent pickup for students not taking the bus: 1:10 PM
  • Parent pickup procedures have changed and will be emailed soon to you. 
  • For the remote learning day: The schedule follows the in person schedule. When students in person are dismissing, this is a break for the remote learning students. Google Meet time with the teacher for the remote learning will occur after that break. The teacher will provide you with this schedule on the Google Classroom. 

Grade 1 100% Virtual Students

You will receive more information regarding the virtual academy.   Your child will be assigned to a virtual academy teacher. Please note that this may not necessarily be a Milford Brook teacher


Grades 2, 3, 4, and 5 Hybrid (In-Person) Students

If you did not elect for your child to be 100% virtual, then he/she is following the hybrid schedule.  Students following the hybrid schedule will be assigned either to an A day or a B day rotation.  Here is a document showing this rotation (click here).  The building administrators are working together to coordinate hybrid days for siblings throughout the district who attend different MERS schools. These students will be attending school for 4-hours each day; lunch will not be served. For your child, please pack a snack, reusable water bottle filled with water each day, and an extra mask in a labeled Ziplock bag (just in case the extra mask is needed). A personal pack of tissues is also recommended but not required. Please remember that students are required to wear masks at all times.

After placement is revealed in Genesis, the teachers of students in grades 2-5 will be mailing out their welcome letters to you and your child.  In each letter, there will be directions about how to link your child’s school email account to the teacher’s Google Classroom prior to the first day of school.  Email accounts and Student ID (passwords) will be provided in this mailing. . 

Please remember per correspondence from the superintendent of schools, that for (at least) the first two weeks of school, students in grades 2-5 at Milford Brook School who are on the hybrid plan will be working 100% remotely.  These students will be required to log in to the Google Classroom every day -- starting September 8th -- to receive virtual instruction from their classroom teacher.

Once these hybrid students in grades 2-5 can return to school -- per the superintendent --  students will resume following their hybrid A or hybrid B schedule. For example, if a student has a hybrid A assignment, he/she comes to the school building on the A days for instruction.  On the other day  -- the remote learning day for your child -- he/she will need to be logged in to the Google Classroom for that day. Students with a hybrid B assignment come to the school building on the B days for instruction. The calendar indicating these days is located here. This calendar is consistent for the MERS district. 

The arrival and dismissal times for grades 2-5 hybrid students (in-school days) are as follows:

  • Arrival: 9:20 AM
  • Dismissal: 1:20 PM
  • Parent pickup for students not taking the bus: 1:10 PM
  • Parent pickup procedures have changed and will be emailed soon to you. 
  • For the remote learning day: The schedule follows the in person schedule. When students in person are dismissing, this is a break for the remote learning students. Google Meet time with the teacher for the remote learning will occur after that break. The teacher will provide you with this schedule on the Google Classroom. 

Grades 2, 3, 4, and 5 100% Virtual Students 

You will receive more information regarding the virtual academy.   Your child will be assigned to a virtual academy teacher. Please note that this may not necessarily be a Milford Brook teacher.  


Students in a Self-Contained Classroom Who Did Not Select 100% Virtual

Students who are in a self-contained program will attend school for a full-day. Students will have lunch. After placement is revealed in Genesis, the teachers will be mailing out their welcome letters to you and your child.  

The arrival and dismissal times for students  following this full day schedule (in-school days) are as follows:

  • Arrival: 9:20 AM
  • Dismissal: 3:10 PM
  • Parent pickup for students not taking the bus: 3:05 PM
  • Parent pickup procedures have changed and will be emailed soon to you. 

I know there has been a lot of information to process, so I hope the explanations above provide you with a better understanding of the different schedules as we get closer to the start of school. 

Additionally, please remember that we are a paperless school district and will be emailing you all information. The email in which information is sent to you is the email you have registered in Genesis as the guardian. 


Now that the start of school is approaching quite quickly, I suggest that you check your email often -- in addition to checking the district website (www.mersnj.us) and the Milford Brook website (www.mersnj.us/mb) frequently for updates.  We will be arranging a pick-up for materials for 100% virtual students and 2-5 hybrid students who will be working remotely for the first two weeks of school. More information will be forthcoming regarding such.

While I anticipate new challenges this school year, I do look forward to a year that will be filled with new experiences where we strive to support and bolster one another to help the children achieve success and growth.  I am honored to be your childś principal, and I look forward to a school year filled with inquiry, learning and a variety of memorable experiences. 

Here are other excellent resources to help you:

MERS Reopening Plan (click here)

PK-5 Parent Reopening Handbook (click here)

Home Internet Access -  Information for Families (click here) 

Technology Resources for Parents (click here)

Resources for Preparing Your Child for Back to School - Wearing a Mask (click here)

 

All the best,

Jodi Pepchinski

Principal