Greer Gazette: April 10, 2023

Greer Gazette: April 10, 2023
Posted on 04/10/2023

Greetings CPS Community…

I hope you had a restful long weekend and are looking forward to April Vacation.

Tomorrow night, the School Committee will vote on the Fiscal Year 2024 Budget proposalThe vote follows a months-long development process that included several public hearings, budget workshops, and community, staff, and student engagement sessions – all of which helped shape our proposed budget. Your engagement is key in our success. Please know that it is greatly appreciated.

Last week, the School Committee approved the draft version of the School Council Handbook. We deeply appreciate the work of the School Council Working Group, which included a diverse group of parents/guardians/caregivers, students, family liaisons, teachers, and administrators, in developing the handbook in partnership with our Office of Family Engagement Office. We also appreciate the subsequent review of the handbook by the Communications and Community Engagement sub-committee and the additional input and feedback from members of our school community.

As we strive to learn, improve, and close the achievement gap for all students and continue to build welcoming schools, we are excited to share that our school community will have an opportunity to tell us how we are doing in the first District Climate Survey since 2020. The feedback we receive will inform and contribute to our work as we implement our District Plan. We will share more information in the coming weeks. We look forward to hearing from you!

Please note that because of April break, there will be no Greer Gazette next week. The next issue will be on Monday, April 24. I hope you have a wonderful and restful week off.

Thank you for your continued support.

Make it Great!

Dr. Victoria L. Greer


Youth Equity Summit This Week

We are looking forward to this week’s Youth Equity Summit at CRLS! All workshops and events, which were planned by students, are now full. The summit is a partnership between CRLS and the district’s Office of Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (OEIB) and will focus on the theme,“How do equity issues intersect in Cambridge?”

  • WHEN: Thursday, April 13 (during the second half of the school day)

  • Questions? Please contact Sam Musher, OEIB Youth Advocacy Specialist, [email protected]

Informational Meeting on the New Upper School ELA/Literacy Curriculum

We are pleased to share that after a thoughtful selection process, we have chosen Fishtank Learning as the new Upper School English Language Arts (ELA)/Literacy curriculum that will be implemented beginning next school year. The decision was grounded in the department's vision, educators' hopes, and students' needs in alignment with our Research-Based Priority ELA/Literacy Practices.

Next month, families are invited to join our ELA/Literacy team for a webinar to introduce key components of the curriculum and the texts and themes that students will engage with.

April Vacation Week Programs

April vacation is next week! This slide deck has information on fun programs and opportunities for students in grades K-8 to participate in while school is out.

  • Looking for more out-of-school time opportunities?Click here!

April Break COVID Test Kit Distribution

Similar to other breaks, each school will give out a COVID test kit to every student and staff member this week. We ask that you take a rapid test before school on Monday, April 24.

  • If positive or negative but have symptoms, please stay home and notify the school.

  • If negative and do not have symptoms, we will see you at school.

In addition, we, along with the Health Department, will strongly recommend masking at school through Friday, April 28.Please note that this recommendation may be extended as we continue to monitor the data.

MCAS Testing

Every spring, students across the state in grades 3-8 participate in the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS), which are tests that measure the degree to which students are learning the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks relative to the expectations for each grade level.

We strive each year to make MCAS asminimally disruptiveto students and teachers and continue toprioritize a consistent, rigorous, and equitable learningexperience for all students. We know families may have a lot of questions about MCAS.

Advanced Placement Access Award Winners

We are thrilled to share that the College Board has recognized Cambridge Rindge and Latin School (CRLS) with its AP Access Award for its commitment to expanding access to Advanced Placement courses for high school students.

The AP Access Award recognizes districts where at least 40 Black and Latino/Hispanic students or 40 Low-Income students took AP exams in 2022. Schools must also have demonstrated an increase of at least 30% in these groups of examinees from 2017 to 2022. Data from CRLS shows a 51% increase, from 72 students taking AP exams in 2017 to 109 students in 2022.

CRLS offers students a total of 27 AP courses as part of our commitment to prepare students for College and Career Readiness.

Featured Events

Earth Month Celebrations
The City of Cambridge is celebrating Earth Month with a series of events in April. There are two events happening on Earth Day, Saturday, April 22:

  • Finished Compost Giveaway

    • WHAT: 20 tons of free finished compost for residents to use in their gardens.

    • WHERE: Joan Lorentz Park (located at 441 Broadway) | 9AM - 1PM

  • Fix-It Clinic

    • WHAT: Volunteers will help residents repair broken household items.

    • WHERE: Cambridge Public Library (located at 449 Broadway) | 11AM - 2PM

    • Registration is required.

Latin/Hip Hop Dance Showcase

Please join us for a wonderful night of dancing! Fifth grade students from the Kennedy-Longfellow, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Peabody, Morse, and Amigos Schools will showcase their dancing talents and abilities. There will also be special performances by professional STARS Dance Performers!

  • WHEN: Tuesday, April 25 | 6PM

  • WHERE: CRLS War Memorial Building on Cambridge Street (Upper Level Gymnasium)

Free Food Markets

All families are welcome to stop by our free, school-based food markets. They offer fresh fruits, vegetables, and pantry items. Please bring your own bags.

Markets this month:

  • Wednesday, April 12

    • 1:30 - 3PM (Graham & Parks School)

    • 1:45 - 3PM (Fletcher Maynard Academy)

    • 2 - 3:30PM (Kennedy-Longfellow School and Vassal Lane Upper School)

  • Thursday, April 27

    • 3 - 4PM (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. School and Putnam Ave Upper School)

    • 3:15 - 4 PM (Peabody School and Rindge Avenue Upper School)

  • See the full list of free food markets here.


Congratulations to the students in grades 1-5 who participated in the final round of theInaugural Spelling Bee at the Cambridge Public Library this weekend. The scholar from each grade level who spelled the most words correctly won a $100 gift card!

  • Grade 1: Elena Prempeh, Ayla Elias (first place), Jie-Kai Liu (second place)

  • Grade 2: Apple-Blossom Simmonds (first place), Lucille Remington (second place)

  • Grade 3: Annalei Madayag (first place), Kai Baron-Cohn (second place), Lauryn Swain (third place)

  • Grade 4: Jeremiah Dottin-Carter (first place), Dazier Scroggins (second place)

  • Grade 5: Ermias Beyene (first place), Manal Boudi (second place), Eliza Penterman (third place)

The competition, organized by Fletcher Maynard Academy, My Brothers Keeper and Sisters With a Dream, aims to enhance students’ spelling and vocabulary, and promote reading, writing, and delight in the discovery of the expansiveness of words.

Student Wins First Prize in Statewide Monologue Contest
Please join us in giving a standing ovation to CRLS junior Beza Mekonnen, who won first place in this year’s Massachusetts August Wilson New Voices Competition, organized by the Huntington Theater! The contest provides young people with an opportunity to build and develop their performance skills and further the legacy of the late playwright August Wilson.

Beza will represent Massachusetts at the national level in Chicago later this month. Good luck, Beza!

Books and Ballers Returns to KLO

At the Kennedy-Longfellow School, students in the Books and Ballers program are not only practicing dribbling, pivoting, shooting, and teamwork, but they are also reading interesting and relatable books about children like themselves growing up and finding their passions.

  • The Magical Reality of Nadia is about a 6th-grade Egyptian immigrant navigating her new life.

  • STAT is based on NBA’s Amar’e Staudemire discovery of the importance of basketball in his life.

  • Simon B. Rhymin’ is about a 5th-grade aspiring rapper finding his voice.

Mark Your Calendar

Monday, April 17 - Friday, April 21 April Break (No School & CPS Offices Closed on Monday, April 17)

Wednesday, May 17 Early Release Day (JK-8 only)

Monday, May 29 | Memorial Day (No School & CPS Offices Closed)

Wednesday, June 7 | Early Release (JK-5 only)

Thursday, June 8 | CRLS Graduation

Monday, June 19 | Juneteenth (No School & CPS Offices Closed)

Thursday, June 22 | Last Day of School and Early Release for All Grades

Key Resources

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