Monday, 5/11/20 - SAU29 COVID-19 Update

Good Afternoon,

I hope that everyone enjoyed their weekend to the best of their ability. The weather was less than cooperative, but it did serve as a little downtime from the day-to-day routines we have throughout the week.

It’s a little surreal to recognize that we are now at the start of our 9th week since we originally shut down our schools and subsequently implemented remote learning. We’re roughly about five (5) weeks away from the end of the school year and it seems a great deal more achievable now than when we first started this journey. Please don’t mistake that as a claim that this has been an easy journey, but more as a reassurance that, together, we can all get to that point in time.  

While I appreciate the various perspectives on shortening the length of the school year, I hope that everyone is also aware of the perspectives that are the opposite of the one they may have.  I have received feedback from some that would like to see the school year shortened and feedback from others that are thankful that we are not shortening the school year.  As I have stated in previous updates, shortening the school year will ultimately hinder the efforts and the ability of our dedicated instructional staff to minimize the inevitable achievement gaps that will inevitably exist as a result of remote learning.  In the end, we have finalized our school calendars that have been published on our website and embedded the link to that here once again.  

Today we begin the viewing of our feature films for Mental Health Awareness Month with the film “Like.”  This is a film that explores the impacts of social media on our youth and how that may play a role in the social, emotional and mental well-being of our children as well. Many may also find that some of the information shared applies to our adult populations as well. We intentionally started with this particular film given the circumstances that we are all learning to navigate through. The reliance on social media and other electronic means to stay connected with others is happening now more than ever and hopefully you’ll find some key takeaways from this film. The City of Keene Mayor shared his thoughts on the value this film (as well as the other films) has for our communities in this embedded link. The details on how to access the film is included below along with the login information you will need in order to access the film and the tools associated with this film.  

Last week’s challenge was issued to both students and parents in conjunction with National Teacher Appreciation Week. Thank you to the many that sent messages to the staff members that have positively influenced your child(ren). I must also confess that I issued students a separate challenge that was sent directly to their school email address. You may have seen some more handmade Mother’s Day cards in your circles this year and from the ones that were shared with me, they were absolutely fabulous!  A new challenge has been issued below and it will be shared with students directly as well.

Finally, there have been nearly 200 responses to the Class of 2020 survey that went out last week. I think that it is really important for these students to be heard and let folks know how they would like to be celebrated. Once the survey closes, the senior class officers, advisors as well as the KHS Administration will get together and discuss what next steps will look like in planning for the recognition and celebration of our soon-to-be graduates!

Be Well,


Remote Learning: If you are experiencing any difficulties or concerns with your child’s remote learning or have questions regarding what is expected, please start by asking your child’s teacher. Our teachers are doing a GREAT job of continuing the teaching and learning process through these adverse circumstances and can provide immediate answers or direct your questions accordingly.

Mental Health and Mental Health Awareness MonthToday we begin our feature films for Mental Health Awareness Month.  Below you will find the link and login information in order to access the LIKE online program.

Link to View "Like"

Login: [email protected]

Password: sau29

The remaining schedule for the films will be as follows:

May 11-15:  Like a film about the impacts of social media.

May 18-22:  Angst a film about anxiety in our youth.

May 25-29:  The Upstanders a film about Cyber-bullying.

A friendly reminder that we have limited viewings for each film, so it is really important that households only access one of the viewings. This will allow more of our families and our staff to be able to watch the films as well.

As always, please reach out to your child’s team of school counselors or school nurses if you need support or assistance during this challenging time. If you are not sure who to contact, please call or email your child's building principal.  If you are unable to reach someone, please contact the Student Services Offices at 357-9001 extension 230 or email [email protected].  


  • The 5 Signs to help you identify and support others who may be struggling more than usual at this challenging time, or at any time.
  • A Mom's Retreat - A podcast on managing anxiety.

School Boards:  Please use the links below to access the most recent school board meetings for your respective school district.

Chesterfield -  CSB Meeting Video

Harrisville -  HSB Meeting Video

Keene - KBE Meeting Video

Marlborough - MbSB Meeting Video

Marlow - MwSB Meeting Video

Nelson - NSB Meeting Video

Westmoreland - WSB Meeting Video

Student Challenge:  This may take a little longer than it looks at first, but here’s this week’s challenge for those that wish to participate.

Please list your favorite(s) to the following, and why:

  1. Non-Fiction Book
  2. Fiction Book
  3. Play
  4. Poem
  5. Quote

You can answer all or part of the challenge as you may not have a favorite for each of the categories. Simply send your response to me directly by email at [email protected], or through a Google Doc.  This challenge will remain open until this Friday, May 15th at 5pm.  

National Teacher Appreciation Week ChallengeThank you to all those who sent their teachers as well as other staff members special notes throughout the week. Your positive support of all of our staff is in large part what keeps us going!

Special EducationThe special education and related services staff continue to provide specialized instruction and related therapies from a distance.  Moreover, our paraprofessionals and tutors are providing important assistance and support with remote instruction. In addition, the special education department is moving forward with the daily business of Individualized Education Plan Meetings (IEP), transition meetings and Extended School Year Services meetings (ESY) for those students that qualify.  As always, please reach out to the Student Services Offices at 357-9001 extension 230 or email [email protected]. Our hours are Monday through Friday from 8:00 to 3:00.  Thank you!

Meals: The order form for meal pick up in the towns is now open for next week, Monday May 18th and Wednesday May 20th. Orders must be submitted no later than this Thursday May 14th at 5pm.  Ordered meals will be available at noon on Monday and Wednesday at the school you selected.. Please use this meal order form link to place your order.


Meal pick up for Keene is behind Franklin School and Keene High School on Mondays and Wednesdays from 7:30-11:30am.  Preordering is not required.


Mondays you will receive 2 days' worth of meals. Wednesdays you will receive 3  days' worth of meals. 


Menus and offerings will vary based on availability

Technology Help desk number, (603)352-0640 ext 3871,  For help with the Home user and remote learning click here

We have Kami as a part of the Google classroom for Teachers and students. Click here for the 1st time login instructions. Click here for the help with getting started with Kami.  

Vetted APPs and Websites:  You can check the online vetted site here SDPC  Look up the App and website by company. We have added more to the list as we get them back from the Vetting team. 

Reporting AbuseIf you see something, please say something.  You can find guidance on the NH Department of Health and Human Services website.  

Additional Resources:

School Calendars: You can use this link to view your district’s calendar:  SAU 29 School District Calendars.  The 2020-2021 school year calendars can also be found using this link.

School Buildings: Building hours are 7:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday for staff only.  All buildings are closed on the weekend.

School GroundsAll school playgrounds, fields, and other outdoor facilities are closed until further notice.  

Social Distancing:  Please refer to Governor Sununu’s Emergency Order 17 for additional guidance.

Contact Information: Dr. Rick Matte is the lead contact person for all COVID-19 inquiries and concerns at all SAU 29 schools and districts.  He can be reached at [email protected]

Governor Sununu has also activated a 24-hour COVID-19 hotline for all related needs and supports. The hotline can be reached by dialing 211.

COVID-19 and Remote Learning Resources:

SAU 29 Top Ten Most Submitted Songs:

Lean on Me - Bill Withers 

Underdog - Alicia Keys

Happy - Pharrell Williams

Rise Up- Andra Day

Believer- Imagine Dragons

Old Town Road - Lil Nas X

High Hopes - Panic! At the Disco

Fight Song - Rachel Platten

Blinding Lights - The Weekend

Champion- Carrie Underwood