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Weekly Information for March 24th

Weekly Information for March 24th
Dear Parker students, families and staff,

Feedback, reflection and revision are central to everything that we do at Parker. As Nancy Sizer wrote in Keeping School, “the emphasis is on growth, on learning from one’s mistakes, cleaning up one’s prose, clearing up one’s understandings.” This requires students to work very hard, to be open to feedback and to try again. We are very proud of our students for engaging meaningfully in this iterative process.

We take a similar approach to adult learning at Parker. This week we hosted Parker teachers and non-Parker teachers from across the state to look closely at student work. We engaged in a protocol-based discussion of various assessments and the degree to which an individual student met expectations. Teachers attended sessions from other domains and divisions, gaining and sharing perspectives as an outsider. For example, AH teachers reviewed a statistics project in MST, Div 1 teachers discussed a research project in Div 3, and Spanish teachers reviewed a Wellness project on substance use. In each case, teachers deeply analyzed student work and shared their expectations of what students should be able to do at each level. By shining a light on the work in this way, we dramatically enhance our ability to define what “meeting standards” means for our students.

This week marks the start of Ramadan, the holy month of prayer, reflection and fasting in the Muslim faith. We support all our students as they celebrate religious and cultural holidays across the year. While Parker does not take religious holidays off, we extend flexibility and accommodations to our students who celebrate. This looks different for every student, so during Ramada, Passover, Easter and other holidays throughout the year, please talk to your advisor or teachers so that we meet your needs.

Enjoy the first weekend of Spring!
This week’s topics:
  • MCAS Schedule
  • Annual “Returning to Parker?” Survey 
  • Spring Musical Tickets on Sale
  • Be a Student Moderator!
  • Health Advisory Council Reminder
  • COVID-19 Information

MCAS Spring Testing Schedule

Reminder Division 1 and 2 students will be testing on various days during the months of March, April, and May, following the schedule listed below. Please make every effort to have students in school and on time for these testing days. All students should eat a good breakfast each day and get a good night’s rest the night before – those two things are the best “test-prep” we can recommend!  Students who miss any of these testing days will make-up the tests on days following the dates listed here.

If you have any questions, please contact Deb Merriam ([email protected]). All tests are untimed, and most students finish by late morning. Parents/guardians and students will get grade/test specific emails with more details that will go home as each test date approaches.

10th Grade:

  • ELA: March 28 & 29
  • MATH: May 16 & 17
  • SCIENCE: (already happened in February)

7th & 8th Grade:

  • ELA: April 11 & April 26
  • MATH: May 10 & 11

SCIENCE (8th Grade Only): May 18 & 19

Annual "Returning to Parker" (Super-Quick) Survey!

Reminder if you have not yet done so, please take one minute and complete THIS SURVEY to indicate your plans for each of your enrolled students for the next school year. Most Parker students return to Parker, but we appreciate your help with this planning step. Please indicate which of the choices on this survey best fits your child for next year.  Please do this survey once for each enrolled student. For obvious reasons, you do not need to do this survey for a current senior!

WORKING: The Musical - artwork by Jae Daly
Artwork by Jae Daly
WORKING: The Musical

Working 2012 is a newly-revised version of the original 1977 musical by Stephen Schwartz, with some additional material by artists like James Taylor and Lin-Manuel Miranda. WORKING adapts Studs Terkel’s famous set of interviews about what ordinary Americans say about their jobs. The show highlights a variety of professional experiences while underlining the elements of shared humanity revealed by the everyday lives of real people.

The show is Thursday April 6 at 7 PM, Friday April 7 at 7 PM, and Saturday April 8 at 7 PM. Tickets are $12 online or $13 at the door. Click here to buy tickets and for more information about the show and cast.

Be a Student Moderator!

Reminder students who are you interested in being a school leader, feel like they can represent the Parker student body, and have ideas about how to keep Parker a strong community while also having ideas about how to deepen student engagement and ownership should run to be a Student Moderator! Each year, the student body of Parker elects a team of three Student Moderators to represent the students and school, meet with school leaders and faculty members to discuss different issues, and facilitate the Community Congress, the legislative branch of student government. We will have elections for the Moderators in the next couple of weeks. If you are interested in running, the first thing you need to do is let Matt Smith know by Friday, March 24th. We will have candidate speeches at the all-school gathering on Monday, April 3rd and voting will happen that week. If you have questions about the Moderators position, want to learn more, and/or want to run for Moderator, contact Matt Smith ([email protected]).

Health Advisory Council Reminder

Reminder the Health Advisory Council (HAC) is planning to meet at Parker on Thursday, March 30, at 3:30 PM in Room 3A in the library. If you would like to join the group, please contact Lisa, the School Nurse and HAC Coordinator, at (978) 772-3293 x135 or [email protected].

COVID-19 Information

The following are positive cases in the Parker community from 3/17/23-3/24/23:

  • Staff – 0
  • Students – 3

Please click here for Current Health Office COVID-19 Protocols and Information.

Sports Schedule

Upcoming Dates of Note:


Mar 28

10th Grade ELA MCAS


Mar 29

10th Grade ELA MCAS


Apr 4

Board of Trustees


Apr 6-8

Spring Musical


Apr 11

7th & 8th Grade ELA MCAS


Apr 12

Junior College Planning Day


Apr 12

Senior Exhibition Night


Apr 14

Noon Dismissal


Apr 17-21

Spring Break

Click here for the online calendar.

Looking for help with or information concerning:

Please contact:

a specific class or assignment

the teacher of that class (see Parker email list)

technical support

email: [email protected]

your family’s or student’s health

email: [email protected]

mental health/emotional support needs

email: [email protected]

food insecurity/free and reduced school lunch needs

email: [email protected]

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The Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School is committed to equal employment and educational opportunity for all members of the school community and prohibits discrimination on the basis of the basis of race, color, gender, pregnancy or pregnancy status, religion, gender identity, age, national origin, sexual orientation, homelessness, or disability, in the operation of the educational programs, activities, or employment policies.

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