Hello Upham Community,

We are ending our first full week back and things seem to be going very well. We are so happy to have your child(ren) back with us both in the classroom and/or meeting via Zoom. Thank you for all your hard work and support to help your child(ren)’s transition. We know that it has not been easy for families at home. I wanted to share some ideas (from our wonderful school psychologist, Dr. Hoitash). You may be wondering what can you do to help your child have a positive school year.

Research has consistently shown that relationships, routines, and resilience are the keys to help protect children from the harmful effects of stress and foster positive development. These factors outlined in an article, “The New Three R’s: Helping Children Thrive During the Pandemic and Beyond” by Pamela Cantor, M.D., and Kate Felsen are exactly what your children are provided while back at school. At school, your children are having opportunities to connect and strengthen relationships with their peers and adults, follow predictable routines and a schedule, and practice self-regulation strategies. Here are some ideas to help you provide the “Three R’s” at home. 



  • Plan regular one-on-one, uninterrupted, quality time with each of your children. Banking time with your children, even 5 minutes per day, can support positive relationships and behavior.
  • Prepare meals and/or exercise together.


  • Use a chart to follow consistent morning and bedtime routines.
  • Have a visible calendar with planned events to look forward to.


  • Prioritize healthy habits, including diet, sleep, and spending time outside.
  • Reinforce healthy coping skills your child already enjoys, such as reading, art, dancing, music, journaling, puzzles, sports.
  • Develop short-term, manageable, and attainable goals to work toward.
  • When challenges arise, practice problem-solving techniques together.
  • Together, reflect on how your child managed stress and/or challenges.
  • Practice relaxation techniques together, like deep breathing, mindfulness, or meditation.   

Back to School Night

Our back to school night will obviously be much different than in the past. The Upham front office will post a welcoming video on the Upham WPS website on October 21. Kindergarten and first-grade parents will use the Zoom Machine from 6:00 pm until 6:30 pm. Second and third grades will use the Zoom Machine from 6:45 pm until 7:15 pm. The fourth and fifth grades have already met with parents to discuss classroom expectations and procedures. The teachers will be sending out the Zoom Machine links for these meetings shortly.

Monday Holidays (cohorts A and B)

Monday, October 12 is Columbus Day. There is NO SCHOOL.

Remember, next Wednesday, October 14 is a full day of teaching, not a half day. Cohort A will meet in their entirety on Wednesday, October 14. 

Below are the Wednesdays that will be full teaching days and the Cohorts that will attend school.

Cohort A: Monday/Thursday in school learning. Cohort A will follow Monday’s schedule on Wednesday for holiday weeks: 10/12, 11/30/20, 1/18 & 5/31/20.
Cohort B: Tuesday/Friday in school learning. Cohort B will follow the in-school schedule on Wednesday for missed in-school days on 11/3/20 and 4/2/21.


I want to personally thank you all for trusting us with your children during this crazy time. It is truly an honor and privilege to be able to influence and direct your children, especially now. It is such a pleasure to greet them each morning and then send them off at the end of the day. Also, Thank You for all of the hard work that you are putting into your children during their time at home. It is not easy balancing family and professional careers during a hybrid teaching and learning model.

Enjoy the long weekend. Thank you for your support.

Dare to Dream,

Mr. Dees

Principal’s Message
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