I hope everyone had a restful April vacation. The sprint to June 20th has begun and I appreciate how busy these next eight weeks will be for our entire team.
Earlier this week, I was interviewed by two WHS students as part of their senior project compiling a photo-biography book of Town leaders and other members of our community. One of the questions they asked me was what I liked about working in Wellesley? It won’t surprise you to learn that my answer focused on the degree to which this community cares a great deal about providing a world-class education to students. After the interview was over, I continued to think about that question and throughout the week, I have been reminded of some of the diverse learning experiences available to our students.
For example, 36 art students from WHS traveled to Greece and Italy for 12 days to explore the artistic treasures and cultures of both countries. (Thank you Mr. Carter!)
The Masterwork Concert last night at WHS showcased our choral and instrumental students as they performed complex pieces with an incredible level of sophistication and mastery. Listening to Mozart’s Coronation Mass, it was easy to forget that these were high school students! (Thank you Michael LaCava, Kevin McDonald, Sergei Khanukaev, and Steve Scott!)
The WMS Mini-Marathon was held on Thursday, representing a two-mile physical fitness capstone that has become a long-standing tradition at the middle school. (Thank you Mark Ito, the Fitness and Health Department, and to all of the WMS staff!)
The METCO Senior Night was held on Thursday night, in which our seniors shared powerful reflections on their experiences participating in this program. There were hard truths to be heard but there was also a strong sense of the bonds that have been established between and among students and parents. (Thank you Kalise Wornum, Grant Hightower, Cynthia Russell, and Carla Lumley!)
I could go on naming the many elementary field trips (thank you Carolyn Collins for organizing the elementary geology field trips!) and other opportunities for our students just in the past week. The work happening in WPS is truly extraordinary. I hope when you are ever asked what makes this community special, you feel the same sense of pride.
Enjoy the weekend and thank you for all that you do to support our students each day.
4/23 to 5/18/18 Open Enrollment for Health Insurance – see below
4/23 and 4/24/18 – Town Meeting (cont’d) – 7 pm – WMS
4/30/18 – SC Meeting – 6:30 pm – Town Hall
4/30/18 – Deadline to Apply for Summer Programming Positions
5/1/18 – Student Enrollment Application Deadline for Non-Resident WTA Members
Condolences to Lynne Johnson (retired WMS Art Teacher) on the loss of her son, Christopher ‘CT’ Grynkewicz, on April 19, 2018.
Kathy Hood( K-Teacher, Schofield) on the loss of her father, retired judge, Thomas M. Quinn, Jr. on April 25th, 2018.
Important Insurance Open Enrollment Information Sessions Scheduled
Open enrollment for health insurance and employee benefits began Monday, April 23rd. Enrollment counselors will be on-site at Town departments beginning the week of April 23rd and School Department beginning the week of April 30th. Additional enrollment hours (including some early evening sessions) will be available around Town between May 7th and May 18th. The calendar will be released next week.
All of the enrollment information you will need to make your benefit decisions can be found here. The remaining schedule of information sessions can be found here. In particular, please note the April 19th meeting where AFLAC will present the new additional insurance options that are being offered (detailed information on these is included in the linked packet). There is also a session scheduled for April 24th that will specifically address the Health Saving Account (H S A) option available with the new High Deductible Health Plans.
As a reminder, even those benefit eligible employees who do not take health insurance through the Town or School have to attend an enrollment session if they want to participate in any of Wellesley’s other employee benefits (i.e. dental, life insurance, AFLAC or Eyemed).
Countdown to Open Enrollment
Open enrollment for benefit eligible Town of Wellesley employees will be from April 23 through May 18th. This year, open enrollment packets will be emailed to employees through both their work and personal email addresses during the week of April vacation (April 16-20). Open enrollment packets will also be available at www.wellesleyma.gov/OpenEnrollment starting that week as well. Benefit counselors will be meeting one on one with employees to enroll them in benefits. Be on the lookout for more information.
Summer Programming Staff Needed
The WPS Special Education Department is looking for lead teachers, paraprofessionals, teaching assistants, and related service providers to teach during summer programming for all levels (Preschool, Elementary, Middle and High School). Teaching experience and license within content, or related service area required. Familiarity with WPS learning goals preferred. Applicants for positions within academic strands must state their preferred grade level and content area. Times and days may vary based on programming. Please click on the appropriate grade level for job listings, requirements and application form. Deadline to apply is April 30, 2018.
Apply Now to Enroll Children of Non-Resident WTA Members in Wellesley Public Schools
Children of teachers or nurses residing outside of Wellesley shall be entitled to attend Wellesley Public Schools without charge for tuition on a space-available basis (Article 12, WTA Unit A Contract). If you are interested in this benefit for the 2018-19 school year, please click registrar. The Application and Letter of Intent Deadline is May 1, 2018.
White People Challenging Racism: Moving from Talk to Action
May 8 & 15, 2018, 4:00 – 7:00 pm – Wellesley Police Dept. Kingsbury Room
People of all heritages/identities are welcome to join us as we focus on dismantling racism and building a just society. Workshops are led by pairs of facilitators and aim to help participants gain the racial self-awareness needed for genuine participation in multiracial communities. Through readings, exercises, discussion, and real world assignments, participants’ build skills and confidence in confronting racism. We strive to keep the course timely, thought-provoking, and action-oriented. Co-facilitators: Steve Pereira and Michelle Chalmers. Additional information can be found at www.wpcr-boston.org. To register, please email Marie Cleary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Graduate Course Reimbursement
Course reimbursement funding of $30,000 is available to distribute in FY19 among qualified teachers. This funding is for graduate course work done as part of a master’s degree program to fulfill a teacher’s obligations for the Massachusetts Educators Professional License and for course work required to achieve the next stage of licensure culminating in a professional license and/or when a specialist teacher’s immediate supervisor, subject to the approval of the Assistant Superintendent, verifies that there are no further in-district courses available for recertification in that specialist’s field, that specialist may apply for tuition reimbursement. Any Unit A member for whom no DESE license exists, including but not limited to occupational and physical therapists, so long as that member maintains appropriate certification and/or licensure required to perform his or her duties, shall be eligible to apply for tuition reimbursement. To apply for this course reimbursement, please send, by no later June 1, 2018 the completed spruillv. You will be notified of the amount awarded to you sometime prior to the first paycheck in September 2018. Please note: all information must be received by June 1, 2018 or you will be disqualified for reimbursement. All courses must have occurred in the summer of 2017, fall of 2017 and spring of 2018 and have been completed by June 1, 2018. Any courses taken prior to the summer of 2017 will not be considered for reimbursement.
Insurance Benefits Information
Health and Dental Insurance Benefits information is handled by the Town Hall Benefits Office. Inquiries should be directed to Joanne Liburd at JLiburd or by calling 781-431-1019 extension 2244.
WPS Internal Job Postings on District Website
Please be aware that we added a new feature called “Internal Job Postings” under the Faculty tab of the District’s website. We will post all of our internal jobs under this website tab. Therefore, you will no longer see internal job postings in the bulletin. This new way of posting will allow us to post internal positions any day of the week.