School board thanks teachers, families

MILFORD – During a recent Milford school board virtual meeting, superintendent of schools Dr. Jessica Huizenga reported that remote learning for Milford students has been productive and successful thanks to the hard work of teachers, parents and students.

Board chair Mike Hannon acknowledged the dedication of educators who are conducting remote learning classrooms with their students during the COVID-19 pandemic and Governor Sununu’s stay-at-home order.

“The participation of families with our schools and the community really makes you proud to live in such a great town like Milford when you see these things happening and everybody coming together,” he said. “We’ve seen on Facebook some great parents taking the lead in support of our Milford, New Hampshire class of 2020.”

Hannon thanked Ms. T.D. Steele and Mrs. Jaime Morgan, who moderate the Milford Facebook page, “Adopt a graduating senior.”

“I’ve been participating as a parent of a student of the class of 2020,” he said. “And seeing these kids with pictures of some of the gifts that they’ve received – what a great way to recognize these students and put a smile on their face.”

Per a post on their Facebook page, it read, “this idea came from seeing a friend’s high school parents create a similar group to celebrate their seniors graduating this year! I think it would be great to also do this for our Milford Seniors! Family and friends can adopt a senior and help them celebrate with cards, gifts, & unique recognition. It is a private group, and only participating parents can add family and friends (and their graduate).”

As of last week, 80 seniors had been “adopted.”

During her presentation, Huizenga spoke about a detailed email memo that went out to parents and families on May 3.

“I sent out a note to all staff,” she said, “just thanking them tremendously for all the hard work and dedication they have put into this school year and every day with our kids – most especially during this very difficult time and this pandemic.”

Huizenga said remote learning is going to continue in accordance with the school calendar, as voted for by the school board, for students pre-K though 12, which will be May 29. She also announced that all schools received a food waiver to continue the school food distribution program through June.

“The state did submit a waiver for this to continue the program through the summer,” she said. “So, stay tuned – we may be able to continue distributing meals to families through the summer, depending on the state waiver adoption but right now it’s extended through June 30.”

Huizenga thanked Maryanne Gallagher and her food service team, “for their amazing work. They have been distributing thousands of meals and feeding hundreds and hundreds of families every single week.”

The superintendent also said that families will be able to pick up their students’ personal belongings at some stage and that principals at early grades were planning an end of year “send-off” event, which is scheduled for May 29.

“Each principal will be providing further communication regarding this,” she said. “Moving forward, each principal will be communicating to families the process for the distribution of report cards, the return of Chromebooks and hot spots, that we’ve distributed to ensure the equity of access to families who did not have technology or WIFI access.”