Posted by Jennifer Buller on 8/15/2022 12:00:00 PM
Hello Florida Ruffin Ridley School Families and Friends,
We are so excited to get the new school year started in just a few short weeks. It is amazing to reflect on how much we have been through together in the past several years. Our community has weathered the reconstruction of our physical space, the renaming of our school building, and a pandemic all within a decade. Over the years we’ve collectively, and individually, experienced loss, grief, connection, hope, and joy. With each complex challenge before us we were flexible, leaned on each other when things were tough, and found creative solutions to very tricky situations. I am so proud of the work that we’ve done together over the past 8 years and am energized by the work that we have before us as we turn the page into a new chapter together.
I want to take a moment to welcome all of our new families. Our community, the Hive, is one where we are collectively and constantly working towards a more just, affirming, and inclusive space where all our members can grow and thrive. While we have made some significant progress towards achieving our goals and vision of what we desire our community to be, we still have much work to be done and invite all of you to join us in this collaborative effort.
Below and attached to this email you will find some important information about the opening of this coming school year including:
General school information and links
Logging into the Family Portal and Required Student and Health Verification Form
Financial Assistance application
First Week of School
What to expect in the next community update
General Florida Ruffin Ridley School Information
School Hours and Calendar
School begins promptly each day at 8:00am. Students arriving after 8:05am are marked tardy and need to sign in at the main office. Monday - Thursday school dismisses at 2:30pm and on Fridays students are dismissed at 1:40pm. Please make every effort to have your student arrive on time each day and avoid early dismissals when possible.
You can find more information about upcoming events, school closures, and early release information on our school calendar. It is an embedded Google calendar that you may want to consider subscribing to so you have all the up to date information in one place.
School Website and Twitter
You can find a lot of information, including an archive of the bi-weekly What’s Happening at the Hive newsletters, on our Florida Ruffin Ridley School website. There you will find contact information for staff, information from our PTO and after school program partners, and much more. You can also follow us on Twitter @TheHiveInCC where we post reminders, photos, and other up to date happenings around the school community.
Main Office and Clinic Contact Information
Main office phone number: 617-879-4400
Absence call in line: 617-879-4410 (use to report daily absences)
Clinic (Nurse) phone number: 617-879-4404
Logging into the Family Portal and Required Student and Health Verification Form
Earlier today you received notice from the Public Schools of Brookline regarding class placement information and accessing the Family Portal to fill out required back to school online forms.
There are a few steps you will need to complete to get your family ready for the start of the school year. Below are the steps to take and following this list you will find more detailed information about each step
Login to the Family Portal and find your child(ren)’s class placement
Complete the Student and Health Verification form on the Family Portal
Your credentials to the Family Portal involve your login ID (the email address associated with your PSB account and which you are receiving this email from) and the password associated with that account. If you need to reset your password, use the "I Forgot my Password" link on the login page. Follow the directions to reset your password. Please note that your email and the security question are both case-sensitive. If you still can't access the site, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
All existing information will pre-populate. You only need to update new items or pieces that need to be changed. Please note that you must sign, initial, and click “finish” for PSB to confirm you have completed the process.
Required Form in the Family Portal
There is a Student and Medical Verification form that you will need to complete in the Family Portal prior to the start of the school year. In the form you will be able to review, adjust, and confirm the following information:
Student Information, including Homeroom and Student ID
Physical Address, including Affidavit of Residency
Contact Information, including Emergency Contacts
Parent/Caregiver(s) Permissions and Consents
Student and Parent/Caregiver(s) Agreements
Health Information, including COVID-19 attestation. Please note that this section of the form replaces the “Health and Medical Card” we have sent to families in previous years via the back-to-school packet.
Please reference the communication from the district and this guide for step by step directions on accessing the Family Portal and completing the Student and Health Verification Form.
Support for Accessing the Family Portal
If you still need support in accessing the information and filling out the forms on the Family Portal, please consider stopping by our drop-in help session tomorrow (August 16th) from 2:00 - 6:00pm at the library at FRR. You can enter the building through the main entrance off Harvard Street.
Summer Welcome Letters, Supply Lists, and Registering with Membership Toolkit
Once you have located your child(ren)’s class placement head on over to our school website and search for your child(ren)’s teacher(s) by clicking on the CLASSROOMS tab and then opening the corresponding GRADE LEVEL page. There you will find a welcome letter from your child(ren)’s teacher(s) and/or grade level team. Within this letter may also include a supply list if needed. You can then take all this new information and head on over to Membership Toolkit to log in or register your child with our PTO directory and update their class placement assignment.
Our newest members of our staff do not yet have their accounts set up by the district and do not show up officially in our system. As such some classroom placements may read blank or TBD. A separate email will be shared with families in these classes later this afternoon with additional information.
A Note About Class Placements
Our staff devotes many hours to the careful construction of each class and the matching of class cohorts to educators. We begin this work in April (with an option for families to provide additional information to our team) and conclude the process in the summer. Because each class has been carefully balanced for social and academic peers and supports, class placement is finalized at this time.
Financial Assistance Application
In order to maintain their eligibility for the next school year, families MUST submit a new application, along with current supporting documents.Financial Assistance applications can be found here. The form can be filled out on your computer and, with the supporting documents, emailed to email@example.com. PSB accepts photos and scans of all the documents. If you need assistance, please contact Qianna Price at 617-730-2425.
First Week of School
Tuesday September 6th is Election Day in Brookline and our school is a polling location. While we are excited to help support the important civil action of participating in elections, we know that there will be some challenges with our spaces being utilized on the first day of school and the added traffic that will be around our building on this day. If you are able, I strongly encourage walking, biking, scooting, or taking public transportation to our school on this day.
Kindergarten students start their first day of school in smaller cohorts to help ease the transition. Kindergarten classroom teachers will communicate directly about which day each student should attend as their first day (either Tuesday September 6th or Wednesday September 7th). These are shorter days with students being dismissed at 12:00 noon each day. No lunch is served on these days.
Kindergarten teachers and staff will meet students outside for the first few days of school and walk them into the building to help them learn the routines and pathways to the classroom
Grades 1-8 students all begin on Tuesday, September 6th. Drop off is outside of the building and students may use the Stedman Street, Playground, or Harvard Street entrances to enter the building. Mr. Simolaris (our K-2 vice principal) will be greeting students at the Playground entrance, Ms. Burke (our grades 3-5 vice principal) will be greeting students at the Stedman Street entrance, I will be located at the Harvard Street entrance, and Mr. Ola will be in the building greeting and supporting students in the hallways. Additionally there will be many staff members stationed throughout our hallways during the first week to help students locate their classrooms and find their way around the building.
The week of August 29th you will receive one last communication regarding the opening of the school year via email. In that email will be more information about arrival and dismissal procedures, lunch at FRR, health and safety protocols and procedures for the school year, and a link to our newly revised and updated Family/Student Guidebook.
As I mentioned in my previous communication, there is a lot of information to take in at the start of the school. As you move through all of this information, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out. I’ve share our administrative team’s contact information below:
Enjoy these last weeks of summer, stay safe, and don’t forget to READ!
See you all soon!
8/15 Class Placement Follow Ups
Hello 4S Families and Friends,
I wanted to share with you that when you log on to the Family Portal today you will notice that your child’s class teacher is blank. This is because the district has not yet set up accounts in the portal for all of our new staff members.
I am thrilled to share with you that James Smith will be your child’s classroom teacher next year. You can find a welcome letter from Mr. Smith on our school website and update your child’s information in the PTO directory through Membership Toolkit. The class is 4S.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.