Principal's Message



  • Course content: Because of the inherent challenges in reaching all students with a remote learning model we are not planning to cover the same quantity of content as is typical during face to face instruction. The essential content of the courses will be covered with a review component provided when students return to face to face classes.

  • Quarter 3: The quarter will close on April 3rd. Students who need to make up assignments that were given prior to March 13th should reach out to their teacher. Assignments that are/were completed between March 16th and April 3rd may be used by faculty to increase a student’s grade. Assignments will not be used to decrease a student’s grade, however assignments given during this time period may be required as they are building blocks for work done later in the semester.  

  • High School Quarter 4: Students are required to complete assignments: At the high school level, students will be expected to complete assignments in order to earn credit for the courses they are enrolled in. If students and faculty return on May 4th, incomplete assignments will need to be made up. If the closure continues until the end of the year, students may be required to participate in a summer school program in order to complete the required assignments and earn credit for the course if they have not been actively completing assignments during the school closure.

  • Student email: We are asking students to check their school email and google classrooms at least once a day. A reminder from a family member would be helpful. Students are not used to communicating in this way.

  • Grades: Feedback in the form of comments, scores and/or grades will be provided to students for the 4th quarter, however grades will not be entered into PowerSchool while school is closed, only marks indicating that an assignment was completed. Students should use the grades provided by teachers to assess their progress in the course and their preparedness for their return to face to face sessions. 

  • Determining Credit: At the high school level, teachers will identify summative assignments that will be used to determine whether a student will receive credit for the course or for this portion of the course if we return on May 4th. 

  • Google Meet: Some courses lend themselves to Google Meet (online face to face) sessions. Students are encouraged to attend as many Google Meet sessions as their internet access allows. 

  • Faculty office hours: Each faculty member has one hour of office hours each day to allow students to get clarification on assignments, ask questions, or to just check in. In reality, faculty are checking their emails frequently, but this hour is a time when faculty are consistently available. Faculty have provided students with these office hours and the best way to contact them during this time. As a parent you may reach out to faculty through email. Please check the school website for faculty email addresses under the heading “Staff Directory” on the left side of the page under “Quick Links”. 

  • Support for Students With Disabilities:  The District has been closely tracking state and federal advisories on how to provide equity and access for all learners during the closure period.  Frontier will continue to provide a free and appropriate public education (FAPE) to all students. Working collaboratively, principals, classroom educators, Special Education teachers, related service providers and paraprofessionals will provide resources, supports, and services to ensure access and continuity of learning. Our staff will make many modifications and services available remotely.  

  • AP courses: Faculty will continue to prepare students to take the AP exams that will be offered later this spring. As previously communicated, the College Board is preparing to administer exams in an online format. Additional information is forthcoming in the next few weeks.

  • State Testing: MA DESE has applied for a waiver on end-of-year MCAS standardized testing requirements.  I expect that this waiver will be granted by the state legislature.

In addition to the expectations listed above, Frontier Regional School will continue to abide by the following principles and practices which have guided remote learning since schools closed on March 16:

  • In a variety of creative, and age-appropriate ways, FRS educators will continue to stay connected with families and students using a number of tools and platforms. The relationship between an educator and student is an important source of comfort and stability to all.

  • We recognize that parents/guardians may be juggling work or working from home, taking care of younger children or family members, and/or dealing with illnesses. As such, parents/guardians will not be expected to take the place of our teachers. FRS will make every effort to develop assignments that encourage student independence and self-direction. We recognize that some of our learners will need the guidance of a parent or caretaker to help to initiate tasks. If at any time, this becomes too great of a responsibility for any family, please reach out to us for guidance and support.

  • Educators should provide students with multiple opportunities for success or mastery.  

  • The diverse learning needs of students will, when possible, be met by providing students with appropriate choice.  

  • Remote learning is not synonymous with online learning, nor is it an adequate substitute for the direct, rich experience children enjoy in a traditional classroom setting. 

  • FRS educators will need to balance their continuing professional responsibilities with their own personal and family obligations.  

  • FRS will continue to thoughtfully observe federal and state advisories and the best, applicable practices underway in other communities.  

At this stage, we do not know for certain if Frontier will reopen on May 4. Our administrative team has begun contingency planning for a return on May 4 and, alternatively, for a return in the fall. I have confidence that as we transition to this next stage our educators will continue to respond with professionalism, dedication, and compassion. 

Thank you, Frontier families, for your continued support and flexibility as we make this transition.

Sincerely,

George Lanides

Principal Frontier Regional School

 




4/1/2020


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FRONTIER REGIONAL SCHOOL | 113 North Main Street | South Deerfield, MA 01373
Phone: 665-2118
 | 
Fax: 665-1518