Category Archives: Administration

Choose Love

On May 21, 2019 Pittsfield School District was proud to welcome Scarlett Lewis, mother of Jesse Lewis. She started the Choose Love Movement to spark kindness, compassion and forgiveness. Her message resonated with our 5-12 graders and our staff. Choose Love has partnered with social emotional learning (SEL) experts to present a preK-12 SEL curriculum, a home curriculum and a set of community resources. 

From the Choose Love website: 

The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ has been included in the first state-wide school safety plan and will be provided to schools across New Hampshire. After collaborating with Scarlett Lewis, Chief Movement Officer of the Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu has made Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) a priority in the New Hampshire School Safety Preparedness Task Force 2018 Report.

 The Choose Love Enrichment Program™ is a year-long, comprehensive pre-K through 12th grade, evidence-based SEL classroom program teaching children how to Choose Love in any circumstance and is available at no cost to educators and schools. Pittsfield School District approved Choose Love as out PreK-12 SEL curriculum on June 4, 2019.

Health Services Updates

The Health Services office would like to share the following resources with families:

If your child is experiencing any symptoms or tests positive for COVID-19, please contact Jessica Strohl at jstrohl@pittsfieldnhschools.org.

Internet Assistance Program

The Internet Assistance Program application is now available (see application below). The Pittsfield School District is now allocating funds to support those with new internet installations at their home for remote learning. Using federal relief funds by way of the ESSER grant (better known as the CARES Act), the school district is able to provide reimbursement for monthly internet costs. To apply for reimbursement, you must be a new subscriber between March 2020 and present day. The school district will provide reimbursement of monthly costs for Atlantic Broadband’s internet assistance package for families with one school-age child or for the high speed internet package for families with two or more school-age children. Please send completed applications to Sally Blanchette at sblanchette@pittsfieldnhschools.org.

PSD Internet Assistance Program Application

State Assessment for 4th and 5th grade

Dear families: 

Each year, students in grades 3 through 8 participate in the New Hampshire Statewide Assessment System (NH SAS). 

Due to the school closure in the spring, students didn’t take the assessment scheduled. So the NH Department of Education is providing guidance and support to public schools by requiring students in grades 4-8 to take the NH Statewide Assessment System (SAS) Interim test.  Three thirty-minute tests (Reading, Writing, Math) will provide a perspective on the needs of students at both the school and individual levels. This assessment will help our teachers prioritize resources and supports, while ensuring that all students have equitable access to instruction.

 This fall, your child will take the following assessments:

Assessment Grade Level Content Testing Window
NH SAS Interim Assessment 4-5* English Language Arts and Mathematics October 19-31

 

*Students will take the previous grade level interim assessment.

Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), Section 1111(b)(2) and New Hampshire law, RSA 193-C:6 requires each school district in the State to implement a set of high-quality academic assessments that includes, at a minimum, assessments in mathematics, reading/language arts and science to be administered in each of grades 3-8 and not less than once during grades 10-12; and in science not less than once during grades 3-5, grades 6-9, and grades 10-12. Furthermore, ESSA sections 1111(b)(2)(B) require State assessments to be the “same academic assessments used to measure the achievement of all public elementary school and secondary school students in the State,” and provide for the participation in such assessments to all students.

State assessments are an important part of a student’s core educational program. They provide an evaluation of student mastery of content and skills in various academic areas, serve as one tool for measuring the degree to which students are on track to graduate high school and be college- and career-ready, and help inform future instruction in the classroom. Along with student work on classroom assignments, projects, essays, and local assessments, state assessment results give teachers and you, the parents, important information about where students are on their path toward academic success. If you choose to exempt your student from the state assessment (permitted in RSA 193-C:6), you must submit a form to the school the student attends. Please contact Pam Miller in the Main Office to receive a copy of the exemption form. Please understand that if you choose to exempt your student from the assessment, no scores or summary of individual student performance, based on the statewide assessment, will be provided to you or your student.  If PES has low participation, we may lose our Title 1 funds.

Student results for the NH SAS (reading/writing, mathematics and science) are generally available within 10 days upon the student completing the test.  Pittsfield School District will send a student’s Individual Score Report home as soon as possible after receiving results.  

Parents may access training tests for the NH SAS by going to the portal at https://nh.portal.airast.org/training-tests.stml

Your child’s classroom teacher will confirm the dates of testing later this spring when they are scheduled. If you have any questions related to this assessment administration, you may contact me. Thank you for supporting your student and encouraging him/her to do his/her best during this assessment administration.

 

Sincerely, 

Danielle Harvey

dharvey@pittsfieldnhschools.org

603-435-6701 ex 1103

Fall Assessment Information

The New Hampshire Department of Education and Governor Sununu have ordered that every student is assessed this fall. The results provide teachers with solid guidelines for instruction. Students in pre-school, kindergarten, and high school will be assessed by classroom assessments. Students K-8 will complete the NWEA MAP assessment.

Our teachers like this assessment because it is adaptive. The assessment gets easier or harder based on how students are doing with the questions. We will administer these assessments starting the week of September 21 and they will continue into early October. If you are a 100% remote learner, please check this website: https://check.nwea.org/ and be sure your device is ready. If not, email psd-support@pittsfieldnhschools.org.

Do you want to know what the test looks like? You can check out https://studentresources.nwea.org/index.html Or go to practice.mapnwea.org; Username = grow; Password = grow. You will need to allow pop ups for that website.

Additionally, the state is requiring all students grades 4-8 to take the New Hampshire State Assessment Interim Assessment for the previous school year. This assessment will take place in mid-October.

Food Services Program

The Pittsfield School District will continue to provide breakfast and lunch during the school closure. All meals are free to children 18 and under. Meals include lunch for the day and breakfast for the following day. Meals are available for pickup each weekday at Pittsfield Elementary School from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. We are also delivering meals to families by request. If you would like meals delievered, please contact the main office or Derek Hamilton at dhamilton@pittsfieldnhschools.org.

Student Centered Learning in Pittsfield

As Pittsfield readers may know, we have been on a journey of redesign of our schools for several years; this work may be thought of as a reinvention of our schools to become more student-centered.  This means that we are becoming more responsive than ever to individual student needs, strengths, and interests.

One of the most important reasons for creating student-centered learning for our students is that we now know more about how people learn than ever before.  Thanks to the discoveries of brain researchers, parents and educators can now offer our children and youth higher quality learning experiences than those that most of us remember from our own school days.

To put it briefly, we are now working to provide our students with learning experiences that reflect new discoveries in how our brains work.  This is why we are minimizing practices like lecturing or assigning workbook page after workbook page.  Instead, we are engaging our students in more firsthand learning, team or group learning, and thinking about their leaning than most of us experienced in school.

For example, I can remember how much I enjoyed preparing a project for my school science fair when I was a middle school student.  It was so much more interesting than reading a book chapter (though I loved reading immensely!) and taking a paper and pencil test at the end of the chapter.  And, I remember learning so much from my own investigation needed to prepare my project, not only about science, but also about time management, presentation skills, and determination.

As our practices in our schools continue to evolve, we’re working to help students enjoy the most powerful learning experiences that we can provide for them.  We’re asking students to take on new, more active roles in their own learning, in ways that are similar to my middle school science fair project.

Rather than asking students to sit quietly and absorb everything they’re told, we’re more and more asking them to be actively involved in researching, experimenting, and talking about what’s important to them in the context of both traditional school subjects and subjects that interest them as they grow to become successful learners in their post-high school learning and in their careers.

By Dr. John Freeman, Superintendent Of Schools SAU 51

This article was featured in the Suncook Valley Sun on May 18, 2016.

Smarter Balanced Testing

New Hampshire children have taken the annual NECAP – the New England Common Assessment Program – assessment each fall for years. The Smarter Balanced Assessment replaces the NECAP.  State and federal law require all schools to give an annual assessment to students in grades 3-8 and once in high school. Starting this year, New Hampshire is using Smarter Balanced for that required annual assessment. The testing schedule will be posted on the website. PES students grades 3-6 will start March 30th and be done before April break. There are two tests for math and two tests for English Language Arts. Students will only take one test per day, so it will be spread out over four days. This is the first time this test will be given and it will be a learning experience. They expectations for this assessment are different, and teachers have been working to introduce students to the test format so that it is not overwhelming. Students will have breaks during the assessment. At this time we don’t know when the results will be available, but we will update you when we know. See the testing schedule here!

National Assessment of Educational Progress

The Pittsfield School District has been selected to represent schools across the nation by participating in the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), the largest nationally representative and continuing assessment of what students know and can do in various subject areas. It is administered by the National Center for Education Statistics, within the U.S. Department of Education. The results of NAEP are released as The Nation’s Report Card, which provides information about student achievement to educators, parents, policymakers, and the public. Students in fourth and eighth will be participating in the assessment. Participation in NAEP is voluntary. If you wish for your son or daughter not to participate, please notify Mrs. Harvey by February 20, 2015

Eagle Scout Makeover of PES Nature Trail

Not everybody knows about the quarter-mile nature trail behind PES. In recent years, brush , tree limbs, and muddy areas have made passage challenging.

Thanks to PMHS 9th grader Kyle Hamel, the trail is now the best it’s ever been. For his Eagle Scout project, Kyle and friends have transformed the trail, brought light, firm footing, and even furniture to our wooded backyard.

Kyle has constructed three wooden benches with views of the wetland and constructed a small amphitheatre, suitable for a class meeting. Barton Lumbar donated building materials. Several scouts and scout leaders donated labor and equipment.

We thank Kyle for leading this project for all Pittsfield residents to enjoy.