Parents Advocate for Earlier Start for Hybrid Learning at Watertown Schools

Watertown Middle School

The following letter is part of a petition asking the Watertown Public Schools to move the start of hybrid learning at Watertown Middle School from Nov. 30 to the week of Nov. 9.

Last week, the School Committee discussed making that change in the district’s plan to move into hybrid learning, but did not vote on that. They left it up to Superintendent Dede Galdston and the School Administration.

The letter reads:

Dr. Galdston, Watertown School Committee Members & Watertown Public School Staff:

As parents of students in the Watertown Public School system, we appreciate the immense effort in such a difficult time for everyone. We are encouraged that the Superintendent has made the decision to begin Hybrid at the elementary level and is “considering moving our Watertown Middle School students from remote to hybrid beginning the week of November 9.”

This letter is meant to advocate for continued forward progress based on the data. The school’s readiness should not be an issue. There has been ample time to get all the schools in order to welcome students back safely. We feel reasons to delay reopening other than the data published by the State would be wrong.

We believe this is what should determine the students getting back as soon and as much as possible. In addition, Dr. Galdston referred to the data in her presentation to the School Committee on October 19, there are cases and we understand that will happen. The transmission is very low, which tells us the procedures put in place work.

Our children have been extremely patient and have worked very hard to try and keep up while Watertown has been in a low risk state for weeks which is a testament to the diligence of our community. It’s time to not only get back in but to also get in as much as possible. We respectfully ask the schools to be ready to welcome our students prior to the dates set by the Superintendent and continue to move the phasing plan forward as the data allows. Thank you for all of your efforts.

John M. Airasian
Parents of Watertown Public School Students

The online petition can be found by clicking here.

4 thoughts on “Parents Advocate for Earlier Start for Hybrid Learning at Watertown Schools

  1. First, Watertown Public Schools should have had a hybrid set up and ready to go in September not November. By delaying the hybrid they lost two months where kids could have been outside, in classes with windows open, made use of all those tents set up on school grounds and going to school when the covid numbers were much lower. Starting a hybrid now when most medical experts agree that we are close to entering the second wave is both foolish and backwards.

    This letter to school officials should have been sent in September not the end of October. Other districts, private schools and many universities are planning to go entirely remote by Thanksgiving but here in Watertown we are starting up a hybrid plan. That’s insane.

    There is no way to go back and undo the obvious mistake of not opening up in September but that doesn’t mean we continue on a path of bad decisions.

    Sending kids into school now is a bad idea.

    • There was a letter sent in September as well. This letter encourages the phasing plan to continue “as long as the data allows.” I would have rather my 3 children started in September as well. Having said that, I’m thrilled they will get some time in the classroom with their teachers and peers. I’m confident the procedures in place will keep transmission very low. Thank you for your comment.

  2. This is all going south anyways. Poor leadership across the board resulting in the commonwealth scrutinizing our crumbling system even more than before. Citizens of Watertown can thank a spineless and dysfunctional school committee, a politically motivated superintendent and a rabid teacher’s union for this mess which has most assuredly setback our children on their individual paths to success.

    • Fred: has Belmont opened their school buildings to children or the town hall offices for employees to work in? Aren’t you balancing their books from home? Your dissatisfaction for Watertown is tinting the reality that your own employer is managing things in the exact same way. Leo…how do you put up with this whining?

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