Welcome Back from Manuel J. Fernandez

Welcome Back from Manuel J. Fernandez
Posted on 09/03/2019

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

Welcome to the all new and improved Cambridge Street Upper School where CSUS Spells Success! We are writing to you in the final week of the summer to welcome you to the start of the 2019-2020 school year, and the inaugural year of the NEW Cambridge Street Upper School building housed at 840 Cambridge Street. We regret that we needed to cancel the new building orientations scheduled for this week. We have also learned that some families did not receive our orientation cancellation updates via Aspen. We have referred this concern to the technology department and we hope the issues have been rectified.

Please be assured that during the week of Sept. 3rd your scholars will be fully acclimated to the building, the school protocols and the culture of CSUS. Our teachers and leadership team will ensure that each scholar is fully orientated to the school including several tours of the facility and grounds. Our staff is mindful of the impact this can have on scholars, especially our rising 6th graders. At the start of each school year, we dedicate the first week of school to building relationships and getting to know one another. This year, that work will include the added layer of getting to know our new space. We will provide ample time and opportunity for scholars to tour the building, practice transitions, and learn the rhythms of middle school life at 840 Cambridge Street. The 6th grade team will take the additional time needed to ensure scholars feel comfortable in their new social community and school setting.

Since the start of our first year in September 2012, we have been looking forward to the day when we would be able to welcome families to our own space - a building with a designated Upper School entrance and Main Office, with corridors built wide enough for middle school transitions, a gymnasium exclusively for our own scholars to use, classrooms organized and outfitted to support scholar learning, and a playground built with adolescent fitness in mind. That day is a week away; we cannot wait to introduce your scholars to all those things and more when they arrive on September 3rd the first day of school.

We are excited to welcome scholars on the first day of school. Scholars that arrive before 8:40AM should report directly to the cafeteria through the 826 Cambridge Street entrance which leads directly to the cafeteria. Scholars that arrive between 8:40-8:55AM should use the same entrance and report to the auditorium. Know that there will be CSUS staff outside on Cambridge Street to direct scholars to where they need to go.

As excited as we are, the start of this school year has also brought a herculean amount of preparatory work for our staff as they hurry to inventory their new space, unpack, and prepare the learning environment for scholars’ arrival next week. We ask your flexibility and understanding as we continue to adjust to our new space, sort out the furniture and unpacking issues that always accompany a move, and continue to perfect our classrooms and workspaces. If you have had the opportunity to drive, bike, or walk past our building on Cambridge Street, you have likely seen the final details of construction and landscaping falling into place - we are almost there!

Every new school year brings excitement along with some anxiety, and we understand that this year brings more change, and possibly more anxiety, than years past. We regret that, due to the needs of builders and project management on site, we are unable to welcome families into the building before the start of school to get to know the space. We look forward to sharing our new space with you, our families and caregivers, at our Back to School Night Block Party on September 19. In the meantime, we would love to hear from you! Our teachers and staff are happy to chat or answer questions via email or phone; please do not hesitate to reach out to us for any reason!

We want to note that while we are packaged in a shiny new state-of-the-art building, we are still the same social-justice-minded, equity-focused, academically driven community you have come to (we hope) know and love. Your scholars can still expect city champion athletics, an astounding arts program, rigorous academic classes with high expectations for all scholars, and a school culture that supports and uplifts all voices in our community. We hope that you are as eager to start the year with us as we are to begin the year with your scholars.

We are pleased to introduce the newest members of TEAM CSUS. Each of them has been chosen because they add something special to our culture of equity and inclusion. We will share a full team list in our first week of school Tuesday Take Home.

  • Joumana Cafferty, French Teacher -7 years as a middle and high school French and Spanish Teacher in Medford and Lynn
  • Eric Chase, Adaptive Physical Education
  • Kasey Clermont, Building Substitute - former Inclusion Assistant in ASD Program
  • Anita Jain, Grade 6 Inclusion Assistant - former Inclusion Assistant in ASD Program
  • Marissa Jones - Inclusion Assistant in ASD Program - former Grade 7 Inclusion Assistant
  • Emily Kronhaus, Guidance Counselor - former CSUS Building Sub and facilitator of CSUS Peer Mediation Program
  • Carlos Loredo, ESL Teacher - ESL teacher from King School and Putnam Ave and in New Mexico.
  • Karolyn Maws, Grade 6 Reading Teacher - former ASD Inclusion Asst. at CSUS, Reading Specialist and Grade 6 teacher at Buckingham, Browne and Nichols
  • Jackie Murphy, Grade 7 Special Educator – former interim long-term substitute in Grade 7 Special Education and ASD Inclusion Assistant
  • Asya Myers, Grade 6 Special Educator – former Putnam Ave Special Educator
  • Jessica Orellana, ASD Inclusion Asst
  • Vincent Orgeat, ASD Inclusion Asst - former Grade 8 Inclusion Assistant
  • Erick Ramirez, Grade 7 Inclusion Assistant
  • Andrea Ruse, Grade 6 Math Interventionist - former Vassal Lane Science Teacher and Math Interventionist and STEM Educator
  • Ashley Simon, Grade 7 Science Teacher – former CSUS Intern, Teaching Fellow/Researcher
  • Sarah Symes, Literacy Interventionist - former CSUS Intern and veteran ESL teacher in several other districts.
  • Nadia Taylor, ASD Inclusion Asst
  • Bart Thompson, Grade 6 Special Educator

Expect updates from us as the days progress and we encourage you to visit the CSUS website or email our Office Manager, Ms. Robinson at [email protected]. Currently our phones are inoperable. We expect them to be functioning before the end of the week. From then on you may call us 617.349.3050. On behalf of TEAM CSUS, thank you for choosing CSUS! We are humbled that you have entrusted us with your child’s education. We recognize that you have choices. We are pleased that you chose us.


Manuel and Christen

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