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Superintendent's letter to the community

September 4, 2020

Good evening, parents, guardians, and members of the Newmarket community, 

It is with great joy and anticipation that we prepare to welcome the students of Newmarket back to school!  

Last February, we could not have imagined the challenges we would face as we begin this new instructional year.  In 2019-20, we were forced to conclude without closure that comes from important rites of passage.  Months of quarantine and remote learning were punctuated by isolation and stress for families.  Newmarket teachers rose to the challenge and have been steadfast in their commitment to students.   Throughout the summer, staff, parents, students, community members, public safety officials, and the School Board worked tirelessly to analyze all possible scenarios for resuming instruction, with the overarching goal of bringing students back to school safely.  Seemingly endless research and planning have culminated in a return to in-person learning for most students and staff. This would not have been possible without the great support and commitment from administrators, teachers and support staff who have been flexible and gracious, willingly making necessary adjustments and concessions. They have been planning and preparing for the past few months, eagerly anticipating the arrival of excited children who are happy to learn amongst friends once again!

As we prepare to open our doors, a great deal of time has been dedicated to redesigning classrooms to allow for social distancing, while being ever mindful of creating spaces that are conducive to learning.  Protocols for entering and moving about the buildings have been put in place and rehearsed, and sterilization plans have been presented and reviewed.  We are committed to focusing on the social and emotional needs of staff and students first, in preparation for meaningful instruction.  Our first days and weeks will be spent acclimating to school, getting to know one another, and processing the events of this past spring.  This will include familiarizing students with safety protocols and new technology.  We are excited to incorporate a variety of games and social emotional learning activities into students’ days, ensuring that schools feel safe once more.  We anticipate a calm and relaxed start to the year, and we are committed to making sure that school is a happy place for our students.

A few items of importance to help you get ready for the big day!

Remote Learners: Next week our focus will be on refining on-campus routines such as arrivals, dismissals, transitions, classroom practices, and meal breaks. During this time remote teachers will continue to organize and prepare remote learning instructional materials. These materials will be available for pick-up at the schools on September 11th when on-campus learners are working independently at home. This means that remote learners will start September 14th after they have received their devices and instructional materials.

Student Leaders - Message on Battling the Coronavirus: Our student leaders at the High School prepared a video to help families and students visualize how school will look when they arrive. Please take a minute to watch their video!

Morning Wellness Checks: Every morning before sending students to school, parents are required to perform a wellness check on their children. The form is available on our school reopening website. If your child(ren) do not feel well for any reason, please keep them home until they are symptom free without medication for 24 hours. 

Arrival and Departure Schedules: Please follow the arrival and departure schedules below and take a drive through the schools over the weekend to familiarize yourself with the entranceways your children will use to access the building. Maps for both schools (NES and JSHS) and bus schedules can be found on our website_ Go to SAU 31, then to Transportation.

Drop Off                                                                 Pick UP
8:00-8:25      Buses                                               2:00-2:20      Buses
8:25-8:55      Parent Drop Off: Last name: A-M    2:20-2:45      Parent Pick Up: Last name: A-M
8:55-9:25      Parent Drop Off: Last name: N-Z     2:45-3:10      Parent Pick Up: Last name: N-Z 

8:30-8:40      Preschool AM session                     11:00-11:10   Preschool Pick up
12:30-12:40  Preschool PM session                      3:00-3:10      Preschool Pick up

Junior Senior High School 
                                                                               Drop Off        Pick up   
Bus Students &n SST Students only                     7:00-7:15       1:50-2:00
Student Walkers and Drivers                                 7:15-8:00       2:05 
Parent Drop Off/ Pick ups                                      7:30-8:00       2:15-2:45
                                                                                                      Student Last Name: A-L 2:15  Pick up
                                                                                                     Student Last Name:  M-Z 2:30  Pick up                  
To help ease traffic congestion and reduce screening lines on campus, please do not arrive prior to your scheduled time.

Menus & Preordering for Meals:  Menus are now available on our website.  Please follow this link to access the Newmarket School District-Food Service Site and let us know by Sunday night each week, what meals you would like to order for children.  Should you have any questions or difficulty accessing these documents, please reach out to Linda Hopey at

Location and Schedule of Meals: On campus learners who place an order will receive their prepackaged meals in the classrooms.  Remote learners can pick up their preordered meals Monday-Friday from 11:00 AM- 12:00 PM at the entranceway behind the Newmarket Elementary School. 

Cost of Meals: Great news! All breakfast and lunch meals for children 18 and under will be free of charge until December 31, 2020 or until current Federal funding is exhausted, whichever comes first. Although meals will be free during this time to all students, it is very important for families to continue to complete Free and Reduced Meals applications as you do each year. These applications are also on the website…just scroll down and you will see them. 

Job Openings

Thank you so much for sending in your applications for monitors and paraprofessionals. Keep them coming. Between the applications we received yesterday, and a few temporary reassignments, we have enough to cover the basics on Tuesday. We still need three more monitors and many more paraprofessionals to fully meet the needs of our entire student population and provide a lunch break for every staff member. If you, or someone you know, is interested, please complete this application and submit it to Patty Banfield (

Paraprofessional, NES, 32.5 hours per week, $13.63-$18.57
Monitors, JSHS, 4-7 hours per day, M-TH, $1$13.50 
Admin Assistant, JSHS, 7:00 am-Noon, M-TH, $15.54-$18.55
Custodian - evening, JSHS, 2:00 pm-10:00 pm, M-F, $13.11-$15.68

September 8th will be an exciting day for our on-campus learners and September 14th for our remote learners, and we are ready and very much looking forward to partnering with you to have an amazing school year in Newmarket! 

Susan K. Givens, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools

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