Category Archives: From the Principal

Principal’s Update

STEAM Day demonstration experiments will be happening on Thursday and Friday in your child’s classroom. For more information click HERE

Vision and hearing screening will be taking place over the next couple months – for every child. For more information click HERE

The English Learner’s Parents Advisory Council (ELPAC) will be holding an evening for parents on Wednesday, November 20th @ 6:30pm. Additional information & RSVP link HERE

Thanks to Erika Downey and the Scholastic Book Fair Committee for last week’s outstanding Book Fair. Nicely done!

FYI: Picture retake day is November 21, 2019.

Have a relaxing Tuesday evening.

Principal’s Update

Tomorrow (Wednesday, October 30th) is an all-school early release day – 12:30pm dismissal for all students ~ No ASCA (After School Creative Arts Classes) in session tomorrow.

Today we held our Safety Day at Memorial-Spaulding. We practiced “Shelter in Place”, “Lockdown” and a “Fire Evacuation Drill”. During our practice, the specific protocol of each drill was explained over the intercom and then we took a few minutes to practice the drill. The Newton Fire Department joined us for today’s Safety Event. We will continue to practice our various drills throughout the year.

Announcing CAS AuthorFest 2019!
Newton Public Schools’ Creative Arts & Sciences is dedicating November 6, 2019 to recognize and celebrate
the importance of books in our children’s lives. We know that students are uniquely inspired when they’re given the opportunity to meet the authors and illustrators of books they’ve read. A wide range of authors and illustrators will be visiting schools across the district during the day to talk about the writing and illustrating process. For further information click HERE, HERE and HERE

Have you checked Aspen (Student/Family information system) to ensure your families information is correct? If not, please click HERE for information on how to do so.

Have a wonderful evening.

Principal’s Update

Dear Families,

From time to time it is essential that we review school safety/security protocols. In this way, we can all take responsibility for keeping our children safe and focused on learning during the school day. I would like to take this opportunity to remind you of several aspects of safety in our school.

School Security: 

Ways that staff can help keep us safe:

  • Office personnel will closely monitor the door cameras prior to buzzing a visitor into the building.
  • Staff should greet visitors in the hallway and direct them to obtain a visitor’s badge.
  • All staff will continue to practice lockdown, shelter-in-place and fire evacuation protocols with students. We will be holding a Safety Day in the coming weeks. This will be a day when we practice/review all our safety drills.  

Ways that parents can help keep us safe:

  • Sign in every time you enter the building during school hours – either in the main office or at the greeter’s desk in the main hallway.
    • Please treat our greeters with respect and follow their directions. They are volunteers and have been instructed to require everyone to sign in and out.
  • When dropping off something for a child, you must leave it with a greeter or in the main office with Francie. Parents are not permitted to deliver items directly to students or to lockers during the school day.
  • Obtain a yellow visitor badge and wear it during your stay.
  • Sign out when leaving the building.
  • Do not hold the door open for others.  (This can seem rude, but it is for the safety of our students and staff.)
  • If you are in the building for any reason and happen to encounter an adult who is not wearing a visitor badge (or NPS identification tag), please ask if you can help – and direct them to the office.

Parking: The staff parking lot is not available for student drop off and pick up. Please do not pull into the staff parking lot between the hours of 8am-3:30pm. 

Food Safety: According to the Newton Public Schools Policy, food is not permitted for student celebrations and children are not permitted to share food during snack and lunch. We have many children with potentially life-threatening allergies. Please help us keep everyone food safe.

Health Safety: Prior to sending your child to school, please be sure he/she has been fever (and symptom) free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication. You can find more information on health safety click HERE

I thank you, in advance, for complying with our safety protocols.

Principal’s Update

Thursday is an early release day (12:30) for all students

A few items for this week:

Given the beautiful weather, children like to stay after school to play on the playground. However lack of supervision can lead to a myriad of problems. If your child will be playing on our schoolyard after school hours, please make sure s/he is properly supervised by a responsible adult.

Should you wish to volunteer in any capacity (from classroom reader to field trips) you must have an up-to-date CORI (Criminal Offender Record Information) check on file. Not sure if your CORI is currently up to date? You should stop by to see Francie in the office to complete your CORI paperwork. You can reach her at 617-559-9600

Flu season is on the way! Click HERE to learn about how you can help your child avoid the flu this year.

STEAM Day Coming!! We are pleased to announce that the First Annual Memorial Spaulding STEAM Day will be held on Sunday, May 17, 2020! This event will be a bit like a traditional Science Fair, but kids are encouraged to choose any topic of interest to them spanning across the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics. Projects will NOT be judged and are intended to be “kid-quality,” and families will be provided with support materials (e.g., project ideas by grade) and one tri-fold presentation board per child. More details are coming soon, but right now, we need VOLUNTEERS! If you have 1 hour of your time to spare, please click on the link and sign up to help out. We are looking forward to a fun and enriching experience for our M-S community!
-The STEAM Day Committee 

Rosh Hashanah – Monday, September 30th – No School

Walk to School Day – Thursday, October 3rd

School Picture Day – Friday, October 4th

Principal’s Update

Dear Memorial-Spaulding Families,

We are settling into our third week of school. Teachers have been working to establish routines and clear expectations with students. We have some tremendous learning happening already!

A few items for this week:

If your child rides the school bus, we ask that you take a moment to look over the Bus Contract with your child. We recently met with all bus riders in order to be clear with expectations for bus behavior and safety protocols. You can find the Contract HERE

Wondering when you should keep your child home due to illness? You should not send your child to school if they: 1) have a communicable disease diagnosis, 2) A cold in the active stages, 3) A sore throat or swollen neck glands, 4) Vomiting, diarrhea or a fever of 100 degrees or greater in the past 24 hours. Should you have questions please contact our School Nurse, Linda Sawyers at:

Preliminary MCAS results are in and it looks like our students did quite well overall. More information will be coming in the next few weeks. As you may know attendance now counts for our MCAS accountability. I have been notified that our attendance has improved from last year. This is great news. Nice work parents!

Lately I have noticed some incorrect family contact (and other) information in our student management system, Aspen. Please be sure to go into the system to check your families information. Directions are HERE

I wish you a delightful evening.

Tom Morris, Principal

Principal’s Update

Dear Memorial-Spaulding Families,

I hope you had a nice Memorial Day weekend and were able to enjoy the beautiful weather. This is a busy time of year. I have a few quick items for you:

Color Day is coming up soon and we need your help. We need volunteers to assist students with games and activities. We also need fruit for healthy snacks. Please click HERE to sign up!

Are you moving from the Memorial-Spaulding community? If so, please let Francie know (617-559-9600 or This information will help us get a more accurate picture of next year’s class sizes.

Looking for a way to honor a teacher? Consider making a donation to the Newton School’s Foundation. More information HERE.

Do you drop off on Clifton Road in the morning? If so, please adhere to safety rules and obey the crossing guards directions. I have asked for increased police presence in this area to ensure everyone is following the rules and our students are safe.

We are still accepting books for our annual spring book swap. If you have some gently used books at home to donate, send them in! The collection box is in the hallway in front of the main office.


Tom Morris, Principal

Principal’s Update

Good Evening M-S Families,

Finally some warm weather! I hope you had a chance to get out in the sun today.

A few short items for your attention:

Field trip season is upon us! All students will be permitted to attend field trips regardless of a parent’s ability to pay. If you find yourself unable to pay the field trip fee due to financial hardship, simply indicate you wish to seek a field trip scholarship on the form and return it to the teacher. Your child’s fee will be covered. Thanks to the PTO for providing additional funding to support all families!

Parent Placement Forms are due THIS Friday, May 10th. You may access the Placement Letter HERE and the Form HERE.

Incoming K and New Family Information Night. Thursday evening, May 16th @ 7pm. If you know of a family who will be experiencing Memorial-Spaulding for the first time in the fall – please encourage them to attend. Agenda: Principal and PTO Presidents present important information for all families to know- then a guided (historical tour) or our wonderful, mid-century modern facility.

Art Show Coming up! May 21st from 5-7pm. Check out the flier HERE

Early Release Day for all students THIS Thursday – 12:30pm. No ASCA, Extended Day will be in session Thursday afternoon.

Principal’s Update

Dear Memorial-Spaulding Families,

A few quick items for this week:

The Memorial-Spaulding Gala is coming up on Saturday, May 11th at the Hilton in Dedham. This is a wonderful opportunity to connect with other parents and build our sense of community – in addition to the money going for a much needed cause. Click HERE for ticket information.

Our Lost and Found in the Main Hall has MANY items waiting to be found! Click HERE to take a look at some pics of our L & F and feel free to come retrieve your child’s items. If you have not done so, please consider writing your child’s name on clothing or other items your child brings to school. This will help us get things back to their rightful owner. In mid-May we will donate all unclaimed items to charity.

For those families who are new to Memorial-Spaulding, or parents of incoming kindergarteners: please join us on Thursday, May 16th @ 7pm in the school auditorium for an informational presentation about our school. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions and we will provide a tour of the building. If you are a M-S veteran parent and know of new families coming, please forward this invite to them.

The 2019 Parent Report/Survey will be closing on Friday. If you have not had a chance to do so, please check it out HERE.

Now that April vacation has passed, it is time to begin thinking about student classroom placement for the 2019-20 school year. To access a Parent Letter about the process, please click HERE, and click HERE to access the Parent Placement Form (due Friday, May 10th). Please note that it is not necessary for you to complete a Parent Placement Form.

Are you addicted to social media? Is your child? Click HERE for information about a presentation at Newton Wellesley Hospital entitled “A Mindful Approach to Managing Social Media”. This presentation may especially benefit those of you who have students in older grades.

Principal’s Update

Dear Memorial-Spaulding Families,

I trust you had a nice April vacation week. As you may know I spent the week in Finland and Estonia, along with thirty-five other Newton educators. The purpose of our trip was to learn about educational approaches in those countries. Our team visited four schools and came away with some interesting ideas to consider. In the coming weeks we will be discussing ways to incorporate some of the ideas into our own work in Newton.

Some items of interest:

The Gala is fast approaching! Please consider joining us on Saturday, May 11th to celebrate Memorial-Spaulding School and raise funds for much needed technology upgrades. Click HERE for more information – and to purchase tickets!

Now that April vacation has passed, it is time to begin thinking about student classroom placement for the 2019-20 school year. To access a Parent Letter about the process, please click HERE, and click HERE to access the Parent Placement Form (due Friday, May 10th). Please note that it is not necessary for you to complete a Parent Placement Form.

Have you had a chance to read the Memorial-Spaulding Interactive Parent Report? This is your chance to learn about improvements we have been making at the school – and an opportunity to provide us with additional feedback. You may access the Report HERE.

Are you addicted to social media? Is your child? Click HERE for information about a presentation at Newton Wellesley Hospital entitled “A Mindful Approach to Managing Social Media”. This presentation may especially benefit those of you who have students in older grades.

Have a delightful evening.

Tom Morris, Principal

Principal Update

Wednesday Early Release Day (12:30 PM) for all students – No ASCA Classes!

Memorial-Spaulding Families,

During this week’s early release afternoon, all faculty and staff members will be engaging in ongoing training called Courageous Conversations about Race. Through this training series staff members explore implicit bias and how it may be impacting teaching and learning within our school – and, of course, how to ensure we create equity for our students of color.  

Please join us for this month’s PTO meeting to be held on Thursday, February 7th at 7pm at the school (Teacher’s Lounge). RSVP if you plan to attend.

The Kids Heart Challenge Fundraiser is taking place during the month of February.  For more information click HERE.

Now that snow, ice and cold weather is here, please be sure your child is appropriately dressed for recess. Hats, gloves, snow pants and boots for play in the snow – otherwise your child will be asked to stay out of the snow.

The International Festival is on the horizon, March 21st!  Click HERE for more information – and learn how to sign up for a table and/or a performance.

Did you know we now have a Friday Morning Concert Series?  This is a time for us to showcase the talent of experienced Memorial-Spaulding musicians – and it takes place during the 10 minute arrival window (8:20-8:30). If your child has achieved a high level of performance on his or her instrument – let me know and I will forward your contact information to the FMCS parent coordinator.  Parents – are you an accomplished musician who would like to share your talent? You are welcome to play on Friday mornings too! Simply respond to this email and let me know!

Considering travel plans during the 2019-20 school year?  Please make every effort to avoid pulling your child out of school.  Click HERE to see next year’s school calendar.

Schoolwide PJ Day on Friday, February 15th. All students are welcome to wear school-appropriate sleepwear that day.

MCAS Testing Dates for grades 3-5: Click HERE

K Screening appointments can now be set up by calling Francie @ 617-559-9600. If you have a child coming into K, you may wish to consider coming to the K Parent Orientation Feb 26 @ Brown Middle School @ 7pm – Snow Date: 27th