Thursday, April 13, 2017

Weekly News and Notes

We made it to April vacation! This stretch was busy, with MCAS, music performances, the end of the winter season, the start of spring sports, and the start of graduation planning. We have had our share of challenges, as we have navigated the budget process for next year, began our reaccreditation study, and identified some challenging student behaviors that require support. Additionally, this time of year often brings with it difficulties with all students, who see summer on the horizon and start to develop some bad habits academically - particularly if college acceptances have rolled in.


In terms of academics, we will be meeting with seniors immediately after the vacation if there is a possibility that they may not meet graduation requirements. Additionally, parents have been notified in writing with letters home from counselors. For underclassmen, this is a good time to rally or face the unfortunate reality of summer school or taking additional requirements next year - which could impact a four-year graduation date.

For most of our students, we ask that they keep chugging along, pushing themselves, and seeking out support when necessary. We love the grit and perseverance that many of our students show, even now in the home stretch.


Please make sure seniors  have registered for service distinction! If a senior has done more than 40 hours of community service in his/her time at UHS, please fill out this form so we can recognize the seniors at graduation.

We need to order those cords soon, so please fill it out by the end of the month. Thank you!


Just a reminder that the PSG Grad Night Event Permission Slip and Student Questionnaire are due by May 1.

They can be placed or mailed to the PSG address at UHS. Self-addressed envelopes were included in with the initial paperwork handed out at the 3/31/17 senior assembly.


Across the United States and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, schools and communities have reported an increase in incidents and comments motivated by prejudice or bigotry. At Uxbridge High School, we live by our core values, which includes the acceptance of new ideas and different ways of thought, and our teachers, students, and families frequently reflect these values in our academic work, our co-curricular program, and the conversations we have, both in and out of class.
Recently, our school has dealt with some conflicts between students that have been intentionally hurtful and based on factors over which students have little to no control. Clearly, we denounce any behaviors that show signs of harassment, discrimination, or racism, be it directed toward our minority or immigrant population, students of different sexual orientations, or students facing gender identity issues. At our core, we teach and value kindness, acceptance, and mutual respect; we may disagree at times, but our disagreements should never give rise to acts of hatred, regardless of the factors.
However, simply punishing students does not ameliorate the problem. By and large, UHS students are accepting, kind, and supportive, and, using that as a defining context, we will be reaching out to student leaders, knowing that they find such behaviors reprehensible. And, while we will issue consequences to those found to have engaged in such conduct or behavior, and we know that this message is heard and seen by students across the board, we hope to use these incidents as an opportunity to engage in dialogue, to make this an active conversation for both classrooms and dining room tables, and for people across our community to have an understanding of why some symbols or language generates such strong emotions. We do so to create a more empathetic perspective, understanding that our job is not to force a certain set of beliefs on anyone, but help our students to gain a better understanding of those around them, including the fact that words, comments, and feelings matter.

In closing, we at Uxbridge High School continue to direct students and staff to share responsibility for behavior, to respect others and one’s self, to exercise good judgment, and to accept that many disparate views exist. Please remind students to report signs of wrongdoing to any adult they may trust.  As we continue to work together to help students stay on the right path, we thank you for your support in addressing any signs of disrespectful or hurtful behavior that may arise in the context of conversations or in your interactions with our students, school, and/or community. We know that these goals are really the framework of a supportive society and community, one that links us all together as Spartans.

April Break
We wish everyone a restful and enjoyable April break. We are excited for the home stretch of the school year, particularly as we have so much going on in May and June!

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