• Shawsheen Valley Technical High School

    Principal's Update

    Friday, September 18, 2020


    To Shawsheen Students and Parents/Guardians:


    A Successful First Week!

    Thank you to everyone - students, families, and staff - for a successful first week of school in the face of the many changes that had to take place this year. Students have been complying with health and safety rules, reporting to classes on time, and displaying incredible capacities to be both flexible and understanding despite all of the restrictions and safety measures in place. As a result, relationships are starting to form, rituals are being established, and learning is well underway. As we expected, however, there have been some bumps in the road, and some adjustments have to be made - but we knew this would happen, so we will continue to assess and adjust as the year unfolds. I also want to note that change is difficult, and the changes we have to adhere to this year are not easy or natural for anyone, and as a result, most people are probably feeling quite tired (or even exhausted) as this week comes to a close. I encourage everyone to practice self-care this weekend by taking time to rest and rejuvenate - get outside, spend time with loved ones, and get plenty of sleep!


    Reminders for Next Week, September 21 - 25

    Next week is a Week 1 which means 10th and 12th grade students will report to school for shop while 9th and 11th grade students will connect remotely from home for academic week. The 9th and 11th grade students who have been recommended for in-school instruction on academic weeks will report to the library (9th graders) and gym (11th graders) during homeroom on Monday.

    • For students in grades 10 & 12, please review the procedures for morning drop-off, student entry, dismissal, and student pick-up at the following link: Procedures: Morning Drop-off/Entry & Afternoon Dismissal/Pick-up 
      • Please note that students will not be allowed to enter the building before 7:25am (with the exception of students who arrive by bus prior to 7:25am) and students who are dropped off late can be dropped off at the main entrance. 


    Early Release Day - Wednesday, September 23, 2020

    This Wednesday, September 23, is an early release day for students at 10:43am. Staff will use the remainder of that day to collaborate with one another and with the Ed Tech staff to assess and improve the implementation of our new system for remote learning and to make necessary adjustments to in-person learning spaces based on what we have learned since the start of the school year. We will be following the half-day schedule that can be found in the Student Handbook (and is available below) which will require students to be in 1st period (whether it is in-person or online) for a 7:35am start. Morning drop-off has gone very smooth so far with almost all students being dropped off by 7:30am without any issues. Please make sure students arrive at school and log into 1st period classes by 7:35am on Wednesday for our half-day schedule.

    Half-Day Schedule


    SAT for Seniors - Wednesday, September 23, 2020

    Yesterday, Mr. Baione sent reminders to registered students and families about the SAT scheduled to take place next Wednesday. Registered students will be excused from shop that day and must report directly to the gymnasium by 7:30am where attendance will be taken. Students should coordinate transportation home after the exam that day as it will last beyond the 10:43am dismissal time. If you have any questions, please email Mr. Baione or call him at 978-671-3612.



    Updated Covid-19 Protocols

    On Monday, September 14, 2020, the state updated the Covid-19 Protocols, which we have also updated in our re-opening plan and will be adhering to moving forward. The Quick-Reference Key on page 8 is particularly useful.


    Ed Tech Support

    Our Ed Tech department is available to support students & families experiencing technical issues accessing Microsoft Office 365, Microsoft Teams, and the Aspen Family Portal. Please use the links below to access assistance as needed.


     Athletics Update

    Starting on Monday, we will be kicking off the fall sports season with Girls Soccer, Boys Soccer, Co-ed Cross Country and Golf. Please visit the Shawsheen Athletics Page for the latest information. ALL Student-Athletes interested in playing a fall sport MUST register and upload a current physical on FamilyID, and then complete the online concussion course prior to tryouts on Monday. Drop-off of students who are working remotely is between 2:30pm and 2:45pm in the back parking lot. Please see tryout information for specific locations. If you have any questions, please email the Athletic Office by contacting Al Costabile, Athletic Director, or Jaime Lee, Administrative Assistant, Athletics.


    Late Buses

    Late buses will be available for students at 3:20pm, starting this Monday, September 21. The 3:20 late buses will be available Monday-Thursday but not on half-days. There are no 5:40pm late buses at this point in time.


    Books & Materials

    9th and 11th grades students received books and materials from their academic teachers today, seniors will receive their books and materials on Monday, and sophomores will receive their books and materials by next Friday. Students who are fully remote should coordinate with their Guidance Counselors to retrieve those materials, if they haven't already.


    Free Lunch

    Yesterday, our School Nutrition Director, Mr. Robert Roach, sent home a letter to families about free lunch. You can view that letter at the following link: Free and Reduced Lunch Waiver


    Dressing Warm

    Students should anticipate the the air inside the building will be cooler than usual this year. Many rooms will have windows open (as long as weather permits) and we will be pulling more outside air into the building than we normally would during the colder months. 


    Welcome our New Academic Director, Ms. Danica Johnston!

    I am excited  to inform you that we have appointed Danica Johnston, recently the Assistant Principal at Hudson High School, to become our Director of Academic Programs starting on Monday, September 21st. Ms. Johnston began her career in education as a Mathematics teacher at Littleton High School. After 8 years in the classroom, Ms. Johnston transitioned to the role of Mathematics Curriculum Coordinator for Grades 6-12 in Littleton and then moved on to become the Assistant Principal at Hudson High School, where she has worked for the last three years. In that role, Ms. Johnston has provided instructional leadership for and evaluated teachers; facilitated discipline, attendance, and progress monitoring for students; managed MCAS and ACCESS testing for students in grades 8-12; facilitated curriculum development projects; overseen the new-teacher mentor program; planned and led professional development activities; and led the redesign of a social-emotional program to aid with hospital transitions and decrease student absenteeism. Ms. Johnston brings a blend of experience and expertise to the position that will greatly support the work we do here at Shawsheen. Among other things, she believes in: our mission; the importance of building trusting relationships with students, families, and teachers; and establishing a school culture that celebrates student learning and ensures that teaching and learning is at the core of student success. I look forward to inviting her to our school community!


    Have a great weekend!

    Ms. Cook