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Weekly Information for November 10th

Weekly Information for November 10th
Dear Parker Students, Families and Staff,

As we head into the Veterans Day holiday, we recognize those in the Parker community who serve in the military, past and present. We appreciate all our veterans and their families for their service and sacrifice. Thank you for keeping us safe.

Next week, students and families will receive Progress Reports from the first quarter of the fall semester.  These will come your way as PDFs attached to an email. At this point in the year, students have practiced with their first several projects (“assessments”) of the year in their classes, and they have received feedback from teachers on their work. Students are asked to revise their work, a continual process of reflection and growth central to the Common Principle: Student-as-worker, Teacher-as-coach. As Ted Sizer wrote in Horace’s Compromise (2004), “How are skills learned? By experience. How, then, are they best taught? By coaching.” This requires hard work, feedback and perseverance. Students, if you need help or support, please ask one of the many trusted adults who care about you.

One of our school goals for the year is to make Progress Reports brief, clear and direct while also giving families actionable feedback on student progress. We have made some changes to our reporting format and focus this year, based on input from families as well as on our own reflections of the purpose and effectiveness of Progress Reports. It is our goal to provide direct and accessible feedback to families on how their students are doing; each student should receive comments about both “strengths” and “next steps.” To streamline your experience of reading the reports, we are sharing less general information about the curriculum/projects in order to highlight the specific information about student progress and growth opportunities. Families who want additional information about curricular projects and units of study can visit the OneNote links that were sent to you via email in September. These links will also give you access to your student’s individual rubrics for each project if you want to access more details.

When we send the reports out early next week, we will also send a survey to get your feedback on how well we did with trying to streamline and focus our reporting. Please be sure to complete that survey once you have read the Progress Reports! Please share your feedback as we continue to improve this important communication tool.

Have a great weekend. See you Monday.

This week’s topics:
  • Division 1 & 9th Grade Dance
  • Parent Gathering during Dance
  • Winter Sports
  • LAP (Life After Parker)
  • Info Sessions
  • Parker SEPAC
  • The Parker Fund
  • Workshop Materials
  • Dental Care at Parker
  • TOYS for TOTS
  • Weather Delays and Closings
  • Thanksgiving Absences
  • COVID-19 Information

Division 1 & 9th Grade Dance

Division 1 will be having their first Parker Dance on Friday, November 18, 2022, from 6:00-8:00 PM. The cost is $5 cash or on UNIPAY before the dance, $10 at the door. Pizza, drinks & snacks will be provided. The theme is a Masquerade Party Dance. Students will receive more information in advisory.

Students planning on attending the dance should be sure to have a plan for 3:30-6:00 and should not plan to stay through at school. After-school supervision in the library ends at 4:30.

Parent Get-Together During the Dance

Come meet other parents while your students are at the dance on November 18, at 6:15 PM. Location: Sorrento’s Pizza, 285 Ayer Rd., Harvard; Parent contact: Inna, 617-620-9434.

Winter Sports

All practices will begin on Monday, November 28th, and will be held Mon-Fri that week. Sports offered are Winter Track, Basketball (middle school, JV, and Varsity), and Co-op Ice Hockey through Littleton.  If you have not registered yet, please do so as soon as possible using this form: Athlete Registration. Parents must provide proof of a current physical exam at the beginning of every season of participation. A Sports User Fee of $300 is due prior to the first game. Click here for more information.

LAP (Life After Parker) Parental Notification

IMPORTANT NOTICE for Families of 12th grade students--Life After Parker (LAP): All LAP classes will begin talking about sexuality, relationships, consent, birth control and protection methods and sexually transmitted infections, on Tuesday November 15th and Thursday the 17th. Per Massachusetts General Law, parent(s)/guardian(s) are entitled to copies of our curriculum and can choose to have their child “opt-out” of part or all of the sexuality unit.  If you would like to have your child opt out of all or part of this unit, or you have questions about the content we will be covering, please email [email protected] OR [email protected].

Information Sessions

Reminder the enrollment Information sessions for families interested in applying for the lottery for the next school are in process.  Please share this link with others you know who might like to attend and learn more about Parker:

Parker SEPAC (Special Education Parent's Advisory Council)

Reminder the next meeting is Wednesday, November 30, 2022, at 6:30 PM (REMOTE).  Please join us and learn more about SEPAC! Email [email protected] if you are interested in being a member of the SEPAC Board, or if you have any questions.

The Parker Fund

The PURPOSE of the fund

Parker's personalized education is dependent on our extraordinary faculty and staff.

Parker teachers are more talented and more central to our success than at any other school. Yet they earn far less than teachers elsewhere.
We need your help!

Click here to learn more.

Click here to support Parker teachers today!

An illustration of a rock with the words

Supporting Students in Distress Workshop Materials

Thanks to the almost 100 parents/guardians who joined (in person or remotely) for our presentation on Supporting Students in Distress by Alex Hirschberg recently. Here is a posting of our video of Alex’s presentation from Tuesday night if you would like you watch it when you have time. You can access his PowerPoint slides by clicking here. Resources mentioned in the presentation that you may want to follow up with are below:

Other Related Resources: Lynn Lyons, LICSW (stop the worry cycle)

Dental Care for Students Coming to Parker

Reminder, students are able to receive dental care here at Parker School through the Caring for Kids program on Tuesday, November 22nd. Please read about the program and complete the documents HERE and return to Nurse Lisa as soon as possible. Email Lisa with questions at [email protected]

75th Anniversary Toys for Tots logo

The 2022 holiday season marks the 7th Anniversary of the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program! For over seven decades, this Program has evolved and grown exponentially, having delivered hope and the magic of Christmas to over 281 million less fortunate children.

The toys, books and other gifts collected and distributed by Marines and volunteers offer these children recognition, confidence and a positive memory for a lifetime. It is believed that such experiences help disadvantaged children to become responsible citizens and caring members of their community.

Help Parker support this great cause by dropping off new, unwrapped toys in the TOYS for TOTS donation bin located in the Front Lobby of our school beginning November 16th until December 9th. Please help our effort to bring a ray of holiday joy to a child in need. THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT! For more information, visit

Weather Related Delays and Closings

Reminder when school is cancelled or delayed because of inclement weather, Parker uses an automated phone calling service, the school’s website and voicemail, and local media outlets to inform families of the closing or delay. Because Parkers students come from over forty cities and towns throughout Central Massachusetts, it’s important for Parker families to exercise independent critical judgement, based on observed local conditions, when deciding whether to travel to campus during inclement weather.

Absences Around Thanksgiving

Is your student extending Thanksgiving break? Remember to contact the main office and let us know when your student(s) will be absent. The attendance line (978-772-3293, ext. 1) is available 24 hours a day.

COVID-19 Information

The following are positive cases in the Parker community from 10/28/22-11/4/22:

  • Staff – 0
  • Students – 8

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

Upcoming Dates of Note:


Nov 11

Veterans Day – No School


Nov 18

Division 1 Dance


Nov 23

Noon Dismissal


Nov 24-25

Thanksgiving 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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