Well, it has been quite a busy couple of weeks in the School Committee world as we think about how to reopen Southborough’s public schools. I have been attending loads of meetings; gathering info, data, and opinions on returning to school from medical experts, families, and educators; and replying to parent emails, Facebook messages, texts, and phone calls.

I do not take my role lightly when it comes to the reopening of our schools. Like many of you, my thoughts on what’s best for our students are not 100% clear yet because this virus is new and the data and information keep changing. Nothing is going to be 100% clear as we decide as a district what to do about reopening. But I’m doing my homework to be sure the vote I cast is an informed one.

By now you should have received our superintendent’s email with the draft reopening plan for the public schools of Northborough and Southborough. From what I gather, 1800+ questions (!!!!) have been submitted to the superintendent and school committees, and via the reopening survey form. The questions have been sorted through and categorized, and will be addressed in the forums and through an FAQ document, which will be released in the early part of this week.

School reopening meetings and forums keep getting added to my calendar, so things could change, but as of now, here is what is coming up:

Monday, August 3

Community Forums – I’ll be attending all of these via Zoom

Southborough and Northborough Elementary Community Forum: Reopening
7:00 AM to 8:15 AM
Register in advance for this webinar

ARHS Community Forum: Reopening
12:00 PM to 1:15 PM
Register in advance for this webinar

Southborough and Northborough Middle School Community Forum: Reopening
4:30 PM to 5:45 PM
Register in advance for this webinar

Tuesday, August 4

Families receive links to recordings of Monday’s forums and FAQs about district reopening.

Wednesday, August 5

Student Support Services Forum – I’ll be attending
Register in advance for this webinar

Combined School Committees Meeting
Executive (closed) session to discuss collective bargaining strategy

Combined School Committees Meeting
Register in advance for this webinar

In this meeting we will discuss the reopening plans and vote to approve them. We will NOT be choosing which plan to implement. We will also discuss and vote on the district school calendar. We need to decide whether to delay our school start date to 9/16 to allow for professional development days that will allow the teachers and staff to prepare for whatever reopening model we are implementing, and myriad necessary safety protocols.

Thursday, August 6

Executive (closed) session to collectively bargain with the Northborough, Southborough, and Algonquin Regional Teachers Associations, due to changes in working conditions.

Friday, August 9 at 4:30pm

Deadline to complete the Public Schools of Northborough and Southborough Family Reopening Survey. PLEASE fill one survey for each child in your family. We really need to hear your thoughts and feedback now that the district reopening plan has been released.

Week of August 10

August 11 at 5pm: Executive (closed) session to collectively bargain with the Northborough, Southborough, and Algonquin Regional Teachers Associations

August 12 at 6pm: Combined School Committees will vote on which reopening plan we will implement. Register in advance for this webinar.

August 14: Families will receive a form to select the Standalone Remote Learning Program

August 14 at 7:30am: Combined Policy Development Subcommittee Meeting (I am on SSC’s policy subcommittee)


As usual, you can always reach me via email at jdevine AT nsboro . k12 . ma . us  (my email is written out like that to avoid website crawlers looking for emails to spam).

Thank you for all your communications, and keep them coming!


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