Monday, September 7, 2015

Welcome to the 2015-16 School Year

As we head into the 2015-16 School Year we are excited about the many new changes that await our students and staff.  Many initiatives, new hires, and our new and improved buildings have increased our capacity for digital learning and technology throughout the district.

One of the most exciting changes for this school year is the addition of Digital Learning Specialists and Digital Learning Paraprofessionals at each elementary school.  Middle school and high school students and educators  will also continue to have the support of a Middle School/High School Digital Learning Specialist and all schools will benefit from a district-wide K-12 Specialist.

Our Digital Learning Team will be providing students and teachers with support in their classrooms with new and emerging technologies as well as offering students a state-of-the-art curriculum in Digital Learning, Digital Citizenship, and Computer Science/Robotics.  

Many of our schools have received additional carts of mobile devices this year and several classrooms have been outfitted with SMARTboards for the first time.  There is increased wireless access in all of the school buildings and our Digital Learning team will be present in each school to support the integration of this new technology for student use.

You may also have noticed that we have updated our email addresses to the domain.  We encourage everyone to begin using the new addresses but will continue to support the old domain as we transition. This new address should prove to be easier for students and parents and more efficient than our previous domain and we look forward to this change.

We are also pleased to announce that a new North Reading Public Schools website will be launching in the coming days.  Our hope is that you find our website a useful place for the latest news and information and that it serves as a resource for providing connections to student work and achievements.  With links to the great photographs and videos, artwork, athletic accomplishments, extra-curricular activities, student projects, and more this new website will surely be the go-to place for connecting with the North Reading Public Schools.

Information on the site is communicated through mega-menus and easy to navigate links.  Of note:

--The "Families" menu includes information that is most pertinent to families and the school community
--Links to the district Twitter and (new!) Facebook page are embedded
--Expanding upon the school calendar link allows you to download our calendar to ical
--The Quick Links tab provides links to important information on our site as well as related sites

In the coming weeks each of the websites for our five schools will also be transitioning to the new format.  We thank you in advance for your patience as we transition and look forward to improved communication that this new tool will provide.

Finally, the North Reading Public Schools continues to have a presence on social media, with our schools and administrators using Twitter accounts to communicate important information to the school community.  We have also recently created a Facebook page as well as another means of communication and look forward to posting information throughout the school year.  

Together, all of the initiatives and advances related to technology and digital learning will continue to support and improve the learning experience for our students.  We look forward to the new school year and all of the many changes and opportunities ahead.

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