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COVID-19 Update #16
Jeffrey Marsden
Wednesday, June 17, 2020

June 16, 2020 --  

Dear Parents,

On our last official day of school, I want to provide you with an update on our FY21 Budget and the status of reopening in September.

  • Budget- Unfortunately, the Medfield School Committee and I were given the task of reducing our budget request by $1.2 million. This resulted in a salary freeze for all non-union personnel, a 10% cut on all supplies and materials, a $200K technology cut, and a cut of 10.82 full-time equivalent positions. The staffing reduction breakdown can be found here. If the state-level fund's Chapter 70 (state funding earmarked for education), our goal is to restore some of the $1.2 million in cuts. If the state underfunds Chapter 70 by more than 10% then we will need to make additional staffing reductions in July/August. I will provide an update if anything changes.
  • Reopening- Guidance from Gov. Baker and Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is due out this week. It is important to understand the attention that came out of the DESE Summer School/ PPE guidance two weeks ago was not entirely warranted. That guidance was for summer school- essentially going back to school now and not in September. Other than the PPE requirements, the guidance has little or no bearing on what school will look like in September. Last Saturday I was involved in a brainstorming session with Commissioner Riley, several medical experts, and 15 other superintendents from across the state. This session focused on possible models for September while allowing us to give our input and feedback on the practicality of implementation. I'm confident the guidance from DESE this week will be based on student/staff safety and the most up to date medical science and data. Over the next few weeks, we will review the DESE guidance in depth with our leadership team, develop teams of teachers/nurses/staff to help create implementation plans, schedule opportunities for parents to give feedback on the guidance/plans, and continue to work with town officials and boards. More updates will be forthcoming.

Thank you for your continued support of the Medfield Public Schools and I wish all of you a safe and enjoyable summer.

Sincerely,

Jeff Marsden