Welcome Letter

George H. M
itchell Elementary School

George Mitchell Elementary School

166 Mt. Prospect Street

Bridgewater, MA 02324


August 2017                                                                                                                        

Dear George Mitchell School Families,

I would like to welcome all of you to George Mitchell School, also referred to as, “Mitchell in the Middle.” As September draws near, we look forward to another year of student learning, growth and social skill development. The first month of school is always exciting for students and staff alike as we are all learning about each other. Students will spend a lot of time learning classroom routines, school rules and expectations. Teachers spend a lot of time modeling these important skills and after a lot of practice and friendly reminders, students begin to understand how to work and behave in a school setting.

As administrators and educators, we are aware of the anxiety school can bring to students and their parents. Our job is to work with you to make the school transition seamless. It is not unusual to have students clinging to a parent as we gently guide them into school. Please be aware, that most times, students settle down after 5-10 minutes and adjust fine. We are conscientious of how this can pull at parent’s heart strings, but the sooner the parent can leave, the easier it becomes. Please remember to communicate with your child’s teacher or administration if you have any questions or concerns, as we are always willing to provide you with advice and support.

New Staff & Reassignments:

Every summer, there are many changes that take place because of retirements and reorganization of staff. Our school was impacted with changes this year. Please note the list of staff changes/reassignments below.

Special Education:              Mrs. Cleary (K-3)

Special Education:              Ms. Moran (K-3)

First Grade:                           Mrs. Dudek

First Grade:                           Ms. Brogan

Second Grade:                      Ms. Cinar                                                                              

Arrival and Dismissal Information:

George Mitchell School schedule

8:55-9:05AM        Arrival

9:05AM                  Instruction Begins

3:20 PM               Parent Pick-up doors will open, was at 3:15PM

3:25 PM                 Bus Dismissal begins

During the first week of school, each student will receive a bus tag that needs to remain on your child’s backpack all year.

Kindergarten        Red Bus Tags

First Grade            Yellow Bus Tags

Second Grade       Green Bus Tags

Third Grade          Blue Bus Tags

The purpose of these bus tags is to help us make sure your child gets on the correct bus and is dismissed to the correct location at the end of each day. Your child should come to school from the same location five days a week. All bus transportation is based on your home address, and your child will be picked up and dropped off at a designated stop unless the school and bus company is notified in a timely manner by completing the change in transportation form, which should have been completed already.

We ask for parents/guardians and care takers to be patient the first two weeks of school as the bus routes are new for all and parents tend to take first day of school pictures. Always be at the bus stop 10 minutes early because routes can change and run differently on a daily basis depending on student attendance and especially inclement weather.

Arrival and Dismissal Routines:

The main parking lot facing Center Street, is where parents and visitors may park and walk their child to the gym doors each morning. All visitor parking will be the row aligned to the main office door, where there is a painted crosswalk. This crosswalk is to be used during morning drop off and afternoon pick-up in order to keep pedestrian traffic away from busses. Parents and children will not be allowed to walk between any of the busses during arrival and dismissal times.

Parent Pick-Up:

On a daily basis, many students are regularly picked-up from school by an adult. In order to provide a more safe dismissal for our students, the parent pick-up location is inside the gym lobby on the right-hand side of the main entrance.  

At dismissal, parents are to wait outside the gymnasium lobby doors, until a staff member opens the door.  At this time, parents will line up at one of the two tables and display their license to the staff member on duty, who will verify the parent pick-up person. The student will then be dismissed to the designated adult. This process will allow for a safer dismissal, and we ask that everyone please be patient as we work through the opening of school and this dismissal process. After a couple of weeks, the dismissal procedure will move more quickly.

Please know, this process will be slow at the beginning of the year until staff members learn who the parent pick-up adults are. You are required, at all times, to have a picture ID on hand to show the staff member. Throughout the year, there might be a new staff member assisting with parent pick-up and he/she may not recognize the adult picking up the student.

Lunch and Recess Schedule:

Lunch and recess times changed this year. The Schedule is as follows…

                Kindergarten        Lunch 11:15-11:45PM        Recess   11:45-12:05PM

                First Grade            Lunch 11:45-12:15PM        Recess 12:15-12:35PM

                Second Grade       Lunch 12:15-12:45PM        Recess 12:45-1:05PM

                Third Grade          Lunch 12:45-1:15PM          Recess 1:15-1:35PM

Unified Arts Schedule Rotation:

Mitchell School students receive art and music instruction once a week, physical education (PE) twice a week and computer/library class every other week. Our elementary school will be working on a 5 day rotation schedule. What this means, is that the first day of school, Tuesday, September 5th (for students in grades 1-12). That Tuesday is considered day 1. So if your child has PE on day 3 and 5, that doesn’t mean day 3 and 5 are on Wednesday and Friday.

To start the school year our schedule will look like this:

Tuesday, September 5th

Day 1

Wednesday, September 6th

Day 2

Thursday, September 7th

Day 3

Friday, September 8th

Day 4

Monday, September 11th

Day 5

Tuesday, September 12th

Day 1

*Our goal, as a school is to keep you posted on the daily schedule as well as our classroom teachers. Morning announcements will notify students and staff of what day it is on the rotation schedule and we will also post it in the hallway near the office.

Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS):

George Mitchell School continues to implement positive behavior expectations throughout the school and in a consistent manner. PBIS is meant to be proactive rather than reactive to supporting students in meeting expectations of self-awareness, body control and engaging in safe and appropriate behaviors whether students are in the cafeteria, on the playground or in the hallways.

Class Size:

Currently, our kindergarten classrooms have 25-26 students per class with three of the ten classrooms being inclusion. The inclusion classrooms have full-time paraprofessionals in the classroom. We also have 1.5 paraprofessionals who will assist the other seven classrooms. Our second grade classrooms have 26-28 students with three inclusion classrooms with part-time paraprofessional support. Our first and third grade classrooms are about 23-25 students per classroom. Class sizes change daily all pending on new registrations and families moving into town in addition to those families who do move out.

In closing…

It goes without saying that our school always sparkles and shines because of the dedicated custodial staff that diligently cleans our school each summer to get it ready for September. I consistently receive compliments on how clean our school is and all the credit goes to our awesome team of custodians who take pride in keeping our schools safe and clean.

In addition, our teachers have put in numerous hours to prepare their classrooms so they are warm, friendly and organized. I personally love the start of school, as it is so exciting and fun to see each classroom come together and the whole school buzzes with excitement. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention our outstanding secretaries, Mrs. George and Mrs. Kirkland.

George Mitchell School is a warm nurturing school that encourages parental involvement on a regular basis. We are very fortunate to have GMSPA volunteers support our school by providing family fun nights, assemblies and special events throughout the school year.  GMSPA meetings are open to everyone and volunteers are always needed for many events, such as fundraisers, book fairs and holiday events.

As the year goes on, please look for our monthly school calendar and newsletter that highlights special events at Mitchell School and within our district. We will also send home information regarding Media Release, Student Handbook and the Acceptable Use Policy that you will be required to sign-off on.

As always, please contact us with any questions or concerns you may have as the school year begins and throughout the year. Our goal is to build the bridge between home and school, and we are so fortunate to have so many active volunteers. We look forward to you joining our school community. In closing, we welcome you to the George H. Mitchell School, also referred to as Mitchell in the Middle. We hope your child’s school experiences are positive and memorable.


Mrs. Heidi Letendre             Mr. Kevin Martes

Principal                                                               Assistant Principal



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