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Principal's Update - September 16th 2022

  • Shawsheen Valley Technical High School

    Principal's Update

    Friday, September 16, 2022

    Dear Shawsheen Students, Parents/Guardians, and Colleagues,


    We look forward to having Shawsheen parents/guardians join us next Thursday evening for our first ever Parent/Guardian & Teacher Meet & Greet! The schedule will begin promptly at 6:00pm. We ask parents/guardians attending to carefully review details in the Meet and Greet Parent/Guardian-Teacher Night Schedule - September 22, 2022 document (a second page has been added to that document identifying the times guidance counselors will be available in each vocational/technical program), and to arrive & report to their first assigned locations by 5:45pm to ensure they are able to participate in the full schedule. Please bring your student's schedule with you (or have it handy on your phone in Aspen for reference) so that you will know which rooms to report to during the schedule rotations. In addition to the Meet & Greet, please remember that Hope's Trailer will be available in the student parking lot for parents/guardians to visit anytime between 5:30pm and 7:30pm. We have also scheduled a Title I Parent Meeting for 5:00pm that night. Details about that meeting are included below.


    Title I Parent/Guardian Meeting - Thursday, September 22, 2022 at 5:00pm

    All Shawsheen parents/guardians are invited to attend the Title I Parent/Guardian meeting, prior to the start of the Meet & Greet next Thursday, at 5:00pm in the auditorium at Shawsheen. For more information, please read the Title I Parent/Guardian Notification Letter that our Academic Director, Danica Johnston, sent to parents/guardians via email on Wednesday, September 14, 2022.


    Free & Reduced School Meals Form

    Even if you have submitted this form in the past, we request that you fill out and return this Free and Reduced School Meals form for the 2022-2023 school year, by Friday, September 30, 2022. Information on these forms will be confidential and is needed for two purposes: first to determine eligibility for free and reduced lunch and second, as a basis to determine the amount of state and federal education aid our school district receives. Therefore, filling out these forms and returning them in a timely manner has a significant impact on all of the programs offered at Shawsheen Tech. Your cooperation is respectfully requested. Forms can be returned:

    • in-person at the main office.
    • via email to Susan Murphy at
    • via mail to Susan Murphy at 100 Cook Street Billerica, MA 01821

    Please note that all students continue to be eligible for free breakfast and lunch during the 2022-2023 school year. Students will still be required to swipe their school issued IDs when getting breakfast or lunch so that we can track the number of meals provided through the program. Students may purchase additional meals, snacks, or drinks in the cafeteria using funds loaded onto their MySchoolBucks account.  


    PSAT Information for Current Juniors and Sophomores

    The following message is from the Shawsheen Guidance Department:

    The PSAT for 11th grade students is scheduled for Wednesday October 12, 2022 from 7:30am-11:30am at Shawsheen.  The cost is $20.  On Monday September 19, 2022, school counselors will be visiting shops to distribute registration forms.  Registration forms can begin to be turned into the Guidance office beginning Tuesday September 20, 2022 between 7:35-7:50 (Homeroom).  Registration will continue until spots are filled or be closed on October 5, 2022.  Beginning this school year, 10th graders will have the opportunity to take the PSAT 10 in February.  Registration information for the PSAT 10 will be released at a later date.


    National Honor Society - Senior Eligibility

    The following message is from Mr. McIsaac, the National Honor Society Advisor:

    Shawsheen’s National Honor Society (NHS) Advisor, Mr. McIsaac, notified all eligible seniors (via email on Monday, September 12) that they could apply to join Shawsheen’s NHS chapter . To become eligible to apply, seniors must have at least a 3.8 cumulative grade point average. Eligible seniors must apply by Wednesday, October 19. Juniors will be notified of their eligibility after quarter one is completed.

    Currently, Shawsheen has 35 outstanding senior students in NHS that continue to demonstrate their excellence in the classroom, in their vocational programs, and around the community through their volunteering efforts. We look forward to adding new members in the coming months!


    Varsity Home Football Game Information

    The following message is from the Athletics Department:

    Admission for varsity home football games is $3.00 for students & seniors citizens, and $5.00 for adults. Students will not be allowed to enter with open containers. Re-entry into the game and backpacks are not allowed.


    The Ram's Head Dining Room is Open!

    The Ram's Head Dining Room will be open for lunch Wednesday-Friday when school is in session, with seat times at 11:30 am and 11:45 am. To make a reservation or place an order, please call 978-671-3668. Click on the following link to view the full press release: Shawsheen Tech’s Student-Run Dining Room Will Open September 14.


    Consent Required for COVID-19 Testing for Symptomatic Students

    Please review the following message, originally shared with parents/guardians by our School Nurse Leader, Nina Brophy:

    I am writing with information regarding COVID-19 and how it is affecting this school year. Current guidelines (COVID-19 Isolation and Exposure Guidance for Children and Staff in Child Care, K-12, Out-of-School Time (OST) and Recreational Camp/Program Settings | state that “any student with symptoms of COVID-19 can remain in their school or program if they have mild symptoms, are tested immediately onsite, and that test is negative. Best practice would also include wearing a mask, if possible, until symptoms are fully resolved. For symptomatic individuals, DPH recommends a second test within 48 hours if the initial test is negative. If the symptomatic individual cannot be tested immediately, they should be sent home and allowed to return to their program or school if symptoms remain mild and they test negative, or they have been fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication and their symptoms are resolving, or if a medical professional makes an alternative diagnosis. A negative test is strongly recommended for return.”

    With these guidelines in place, Shawsheen Tech has initiated a symptomatic testing program so that students do not have to be dismissed if symptomatic.

    Please click on the following link to provide consent for COVID-19 testing: COVID-19 Consent Form

    If you choose to decline testing, your student will not be allowed to be in school if they exhibit signs/symptoms of COVID-19 and will need to be picked up. Please feel free to call my office or email me with any questions.  Phone: 978-671-3625 -- Fax: 978-671-3649 -- Email:


    Parent Advisory Council (PAC) Meeting Dates for the 2022-2023 School Year

    The Shawsheen PAC will meet monthly during the 2022-2023 school year. Meetings are held at 7:00pm and all parents/guardians are invited to attend! Please click on the following link to learn more about the PAC and to view the full list of meeting dates for the 2022-2023 school year: PAC Meeting Dates-Info 2022-2023.


    Reminder: Interpreters Available at the Parent/Guardian Meet & Greet on Thursday, September 22, 2022

    We will have interpreters available for parents/legal guardians who need them during the Meet & Greet on Thursday, September 22, 2022. Please email Heather Tate if you would like to utilize those services that evening.


    Reminder: Hope's Room - Resource for Parents/Guardians to Identify Possible Signs of Substance Use - Thursday, September 22, 2022 5:30pm - 7:30pm

    Hope's Room is an ongoing hidden in plain sight education campaign run by the non-profit, Team Sharing, Inc. Spearheaded by Gary and Tracy Carter after losing their son Bryant to an overdose, they travel the state and the country bringing a mobile mock bedroom around to educate parents on what to look for and where in their children's bedrooms. Hope's Room is a mock child's bedroom designed to show possible signs of substance use that may go unnoticed in daily life. From indicators to clever hiding places, our goal is to give parents one more tool to keep their children safe from the epidemic of substance use. Your children are growing up in unprecedented times. The pressures and traumas today's children may be facing is beyond anything we've seen historically. This combined with the easy availability of illicit substances is a recipe for disaster. Let's give them every chance they deserve. Early intervention is the key.

    The mobile "Hope's Room" will be in Shawsheen's student parking lot from 5:30pm - 7:30pm on Thursday, September 22, 2022 for parents/guardians to visit while they are on campus for the Meet & Greet.


    Reminder: Student Leadership Opportunities

    Students interested in serving on the Student Cabinet for the 2022-2023 school year should submit the 2022-2023 SVTHS Student Cabinet Application by Thursday, September 22, 2022. We are looking to represent all vocational/technical programs and encourage interested students to apply by the deadline. Click on the following link to view all of the details originally shared about this opportunity: Thursday, September 8, 2022 - Student Leadership Opportunities.


    Reminder: Parent/Legal Guardian Representatives on the 2022-2023 School Council 

    Shawsheen parents/legal guardians interested in serving as Parent/Legal Guardian Representatives on the School Council should submit the 2022-2023 Candidate Form by Friday, September 23, 2022 to have their names included on the ballot. Click on the following link to view all of the details originally shared about this opportunity: Thursday, September 8, 2022 - 2022-2023 School Council Election Process for Parent/Legal Guardian Representatives.


    Student Laptop Reminders

    Students are required to bring their school laptops (fully charged) and charging cords to school every day. Students in some shops might be informed by their teachers that laptops are not required every day during shop weeks - this is the only exception. To ensure laptops are able to function properly each day, students are encouraged to regularly run updates at home throughout the school year.



    Jessica Cook




    Quick Links:



    • Thursday, September 22: 2022-2023 SVTHS Student Cabinet Application is due
    • Thursday, September 22: Title I Parent/Guardian Meeting - 5:00pm
    • Thursday, September 22: Parent/Teacher Night 'Meet & Greet' - 5:45pm - 8pm
    • Thursday, September 22: Hope's Room Trailer in Student Parking Lot - 5:30pm - 7:30pm
    • Friday, September 23: 2022-2023 Candidate Form for School Council Parent/Guardian Representatives is due
    • Friday, September 23: Half-Day - 10:43am Dismissal for Students
    • Friday, September 30: Q1 Mid-Term