What's Buzzing at the Hive #12

Posted by Jennifer Buller on 3/8/2020 7:00:00 PM

Hello Coolidge Corner School Families and Friends,

We hope that everyone managed to get outside and enjoy the warmer weather and longer light today, more signs that Spring is settling in!  With the time change, it isn’t uncommon for students to get thrown off their routines. It will take a few days for us all to adjust, especially as it goes back to being a little darker as we wake up and get ready for school for the next short stretch of time.  


I want to thank Steve Simolaris, Erin Burke, and Saeed Ola for taking the time out of their schedules this past Friday morning to lead the PTO Coffee and Conversation on transitions and developmental milestones for our students K-8.  We will share their presentation in the coming weeks for families that were unable to attend. 


I also want to thank our PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) Team for organizing and supporting a super fun Bee Day on Friday!  Students were treated to some epic dance parties in the cafeteria including some huge conga lines as part of the celebration for filling our Hive with examples of working hard, being kind, and helping others.  


Below you can find some updates and information about COVID-19, supporting our transition to the Florida Ruffin Ridley School, after school playground expectations, parking in the front loop, and afternoon tea connections. 


COVID-19 Update

Our school  continues to have ongoing coordination with the Brookline Health Department and the Department of Public Health. These departments are the primary point of contact for any communicable disease outbreaks. We will continue to take our lead from their direction and guidance.  

School closures have not been recommended and we encourage all healthy students to attend school. 


The local health department is following people of concern and for whom self-quarantine has been recommended, which is different than that of self-monitor. The Health Department is not involved with people who are self-monitoring.  Per the recommendations of the Health Department, people should stay away from those who are advised to self-quarantine. In the case that there was exposure to a person under self-quarantine it doesn't mean one would be advised to stay home. Exposure to someone who tested positive would result in a  recommendation to stay home. Exposure means within 6 feet of that person and typically for a somewhat extended period of time.  


Our staff is committed to helping reduce exposure and spread of illness at our school.  In light of the recent updates and directives from Dr. Jett and Superintendent Lummis, our staff is working on supporting frequent handwashing, especially before eating, for all our students.  Our nurses have shared an instructional hand washing video with all teachers and asked that they show it to their students. Our custodial staff has increased and intensified their cleaning routines and regimens.  


Please make sure you are reading the latest updates from the superintendent.  

Who can I turn to if I have questions? 

  • Reach out to Jana Young (jana_young@psbma.org) or Heather McMullan (heather_mcmullan@psbam.org)  if you have questions about self-monitoring or health and safety. 
  • Check in with me if you have questions about school operations. I will work with district staff to get answers to questions I cannot answer. 
  • Contact Brookline’s Department of Public Health if you have questions regarding a specific situation related to COVID-19 that is unrelated to school (617) 730-2300. 
  • Please read the most recent press release from the Brookline Department of Public Health to keep up-to-date on the latest community information and guidance, including tips for home preparation.
  • COVID-19 information from the Centers for Disease Control is available here.

Florida Ruffin Ridley display at Coolidge Corner Library

There is a wonderful display about Florida Ruffin Ridley at the Coolidge Corner Library.  It is located near check out desk and will be on display for the month of March. I encourage everyone to stop by and check it out to get more familiar with Mrs. Ridley as we get closer to our official transition to the Florida Ruffin Ridley School on September 1st. 


Florida Ruffin Ridley Curriculum Development

In preparation for our transition to the Florida Ruffin Ridley School a working group has formed to identify tasks, opportunities, challenges, and next steps as we create the road map to the historic September 1st official Renaming Day.  


To support our students and staff in understanding our history and future, Gabe McCormick, the K-8 Social Studies Coordinator, is working  in collaboration with interested teachers on developing lessons and curriculum. Students will engage in some of these lessons and activities prior to us breaking for the summer and some of the work will happen when we return under our new name.  


I will continue to update the community through email as more plans are worked out and organized.  


After school playground expected behaviors

As the weather warms we are so excited to see more and more families connecting and playing on the back play fields and playgrounds.  I wanted to share a few reminders about our outdoor play spaces.  


Everyone’s Play Space

The play structures, fields, and courts (unless permitted through the town) are for everyone to enjoy after school hours.  This includes Coolidge Corner School community members, students and staff participating in after school programming, and other community members and their children.  We are confident that our community members will exhibit our core values of Work Hard, Be Kind, Help Others as they engage with others on the playground. Even after school hours we expect all students and families to show kindness and respect to one another, engage in safe actions and use safe words, and share the spaces.  



All K-2 students are expected to be supervised by an adult on the playground and play fields after school hours.  Our grades 3-8 students are expected to engage in responsible play that follows our school wide expectations. Unsupervised students who exhibit unexpected and unkind behaviors on the playground may be asked to leave and only return with adult supervision. 


As a reminder there is no nurse available after school hours and administrators may or may not be available to intervene and support as situations arise on the playground.  


How you can help build our community after school 

Just as we expect our students to be upstanders in our community (standing up and intervening or reporting when they witness unsafe or unkind behavior), so too do we expect the adults in the community to do the same.  If you notice students who are engaged in unsafe or unkind behavior after school you can intervene by reminding them of the expectations and reaching out to their family (if you know them). If you are uncomfortable reaching out to their family you can ask for their name and connect with myself or any of the vice principals who will follow up with the student and their family.  


We know that by reinforcing positive, kind, empathetic behavior and intervening and supporting when students make mistakes in judgment and choices in after school unstructured situations, that together we can work towards and build a positive community.  


Parking in the Loop

This is a friendly reminder that there is NO parking in the front loop unless you are picking up a sick child, picking up for an early dismissal, or dropping off a student after 8:15a.m.  


When excess vehicles are parked in the loop it makes it difficult for emergency vehicles to access our building.  We had this situation two weeks ago when an ambulance needed to reach the building but was unable due to the number of cars parked in the loop without permission.  


We will begin ticketing and towing vehicles that are parked in the loop without permission outside of the reasons listed above.  The police department will be paying especially close attention to the times around arrival and dismissal when most unauthorized vehicles have been found in the loop. 


Afternoon Tea at Tatte

Thursday afternoons I welcome everyone, students and families, to drop by and connect over a cup of tea and snack from 4:30 - 6:30p.m. at Tatte on Harvard Street.  Most Thursday afternoons I will be at the cafe working offsite and welcome the opportunity to informally connect with all our CCS families and friends. This is a great opportunity for us all to continue to build relationships, share feedback, and strengthen our community.  

This week not only will we all be feeling the effects of the time change, but we have a full moon on the horizon and a Friday the 13th to close out the week.  We are all going to need some extra rest and patience as we gear up for another wonderful week at the Hive! :)