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Update for the Week of June 20th
Update for the Week of June 20th
Paul Barrette
Sunday, June 20, 2021

Hello OCRS families,

Happy Father's Day to all of the OCRS fathers and grandfathers and I hope that you are enjoying your celebrations with your families!

This is our last "Weekly Update" of the 2020-21 school year and what a school year it's been! In looking back at how we began this school year on September 14th, so many things have changed and are continuing to change for our school, town, and country. As a Smithfield educator and resident, I am so grateful that we decided to open our schools to "in person" learning right from the beginning and that we offered a virtual learning option for families that needed it. While it hasn't always been easy for teachers, staff, and students' families, through everyone's hard work and cooperation we provided the best learning opportunities possible in very difficult circumstances. That is something that we all should be proud of as we take some time this summer to recharge and prepare for next year. Thank you for everything!

Last Day of School is Wednesday, June 23rd

Our last day of school is Wednesday, June 23rd. After June 23rd, the building and campus will be completely closed to school staff and teachers so that the construction and renovation of the interior of the school can begin. It is really important that all students take home any personal belongings because we will not be able to retrieve them after June 23rd.

Continue to Send Students to School Wearing Sunscreen

If at all possible, please continue to send your child to school wearing sunscreen. All teachers have been taking students outside for breaks and even for some learning activities, so we want to make sure that students are protected from sunburn.

5th Grade and Kindergarten Celebrations on Monday

We have our 5th Grade D.A.R.E. and Step Up Celebration scheduled for 9:00 a.m. on Monday at SHS and our Kindergarten End of Year Celebration scheduled for 1:00 p.m. on Monday at Mendes Field. 5th grade and Kindergarten families will be receiving an email from Mr. Barrette later tonight with a reminder of all of the details.

Summer School Chromebook Use

The district has offered all Smithfield students the opportunity to bring their school Chromebooks home over the summer to continue their learning. The vast majority of OCRS families have taken advantage of this opportunity and their children were sent home with their Chromebooks this past Friday. If for any reason you missed the information about how to agree to allow your child to take their school Chromebook home for the summer, please email your child's classroom teacher and Mr. Barrette so we can help. This is an opportunity, not a requirement, so a family can choose not to have their child take their school Chromebook home for the summer.

Also, please know that Mr. Barrette and the school do not have the ability to limit access to YouTube on the school Chromebooks. If this is a concern for you as a parent, please contact the district's Technology Director, Scott Barnett, at sbarnett@smithfield-ps.org to see if this is an option.

Local Cub Scout Pack is hosting a Story Walk!

The Cub Scouts of Pack 3 Greenville invite you to enjoy a stroll along the Story Walk set up along the red-blazed trail at Mowry Conservation Area in Smithfield running Monday, June 14th - Monday, July 5th. "Why are There Stripes on the American Flag," by Martha E.H. Rustad is the featured story. Do you know why the US flag has stars and stripes on it? What does the flag stand for, and why do we say the Pledge of Allegiance? Join Mr. Gomez's class as they study the flag to find out! They'll learn when the first American flag was made, what the Pledge of Allegiance means, and why we still honor the flag today.

The red-blazed trail is a 1/2 mile loop. Pages of the story have been removed, laminated and attached to yard stakes with permission from the book's publisher. Story Walks encourage family time, increase literacy skills and promote time outdoors in nature. We encourage you to take a stroll and enjoy this book as you learn about the significance of American symbols.

Interested in joining Cub Scouts? Pack 3 Greenville is always looking for new scouts (grades K-5th), and volunteer den leaders. For more information on cub scouting in Smithfield please contact Pack 3 Greenville Den Leader (and OCRS mom), Jennifer LaPreste; jllapresste@gmail.com or visit their Facebook Page @Pack3Greenville.

Preparing for the Return of School Volunteers Next Year

While we don't yet know what guidelines and protocols will be in place for the beginning of the next school year, we want to give parents and family members a head start in getting ready to volunteer at school again. We have really missed having parent and family volunteers working at OCRS this year and we're looking forward to welcoming volunteers back to OCRS as soon as possible next year.

All Smithfield school volunteers are required to have a yearly background check to ensure the safety of all students. The Smithfield Police Department has updated their procedure for obtaining a BCI check for all volunteers who reside in the town of Smithfield. The link to their page to get started with the process is https://smithfieldpd.com/smithfield-school-volunteer-background-check-information/.

"Back to School" Report from Dr. Paolucci

If you have not already read the latest "Back to School" report shared by Dr. Paolucci, please take a few moments to review it at https://www.smithfield-ps.org/article/481705. As usual, there is important information for all Smithfield families.

Upcoming Dates and Events

5th Grade D.A.R.E. Celebration and Step Up, Monday June 21st at 9:00 a.m.

Kindergarten End of Year Celebration, Monday, June 21st at 1:00 p.m.
(Rain Date is Tuesday, June 22nd at 1:00 p.m.)

Last Day of School, Wednesday June 23rd

 

Thank you everyone for your continued assistance throughout this school year. Because of your flexibility and support we have had a safe and successful year for our students. I know that I am speaking for all OCRS teachers and staff and we hope that you have a safe and relaxing summer!

Sincerely,
Mr. Barrette

Scenes from Field Week