October 25, 2023


Good Afternoon JMS Families,

I hope this update finds you well as we embrace the beautiful fall season and continue our education journey at  Jacques Memorial School.  It is hard to believe that we are almost at the end of October! Here are some important updates and exciting events that will be happening at JMS these next few weeks.

Halloween Celebration: Jacques Memorial School  will be celebrating Halloween this Tuesday, October 31st.  Each classroom will be hosting a class celebration, which may include games, special read-alouds, and crafts.  Further information regarding the specific class festivities will be disseminated through the individual classes.  

Our Halloween parade is scheduled for Tuesday, October 31st at 1:20 PM.  Students are encouraged to wear a costume during this event.  Please have your child bring their costume to school bagged and labeled with their name.  Students should be able to don their parade costume independently with little to no assistance from an adult. Please note that children are not permitted to bring sharp edged props such as, swords, knives, weapons, or wear costumes that feature blood and gore, etc. We also discourage students wearing inflatable costumes.  

Families are welcome to come and watch as our students and staff march in the Halloween parade down Elm St. and around Union Square.

School Policy Regarding Toys:  Please remember toys brought from home are not allowed at school.  This  includes trading cards, electronic equipment, handheld video games, cell phones  or expensive jewelry.  Toys and trading cards are frequently a distraction, and are difficult to monitor.  Bringing toys, collectibles, stuffed animals or articles of value, is not allowed unless they have been brought with teacher permission for a classroom event or teacher directed activity or project.  Jacques Memorial School will not accept responsibility for lost, broken, or stolen items.  More information can be found on page 19 of our parent-student handbook.

Parent Conferences: The success of our students comes from the team of parent, teacher, and student working together to achieve the goals we want to reach. We will be hosting our annual parent conferences beginning Monday,  November 13th  through Friday, November 22nd.  Your classroom teacher will communicate with you and schedule a conference date and time if they haven't already done so. 

Although teachers have information they want to share with you, the best conferences are those where questions and comments come from both sides.   It is appropriate to ask things like; What are my child’s academic, social, and behavioral strengths?  Where do they still need to grow?  Where have you seen improvement since the beginning of school?  What goals should we set for the next semester? 

Please let your child’s teacher know if you have seen changes in your child’s demeanor that worry you.  After the conference, it’s important to discuss with your child his or her progress.  It reminds your child that school and home work together for their benefit.  Praise good news and encourage change in habits if the news is not as enthusiastic.  Help your child plan out a course of change if necessary.  It may be time to reevaluate where or when homework is done.  Bedtime and nutrition are also important areas to review.

School Portrait Retake day:  We will be holding our School Portrait  Retake day on Friday, October 27th for students who were absent or for families who are interested in having their child’s picture retaken.   If you are having your child's portrait retaken, return your original package to the photographer on retake day.  No order form is necessary.  Please note that retakes are only offered for students who paid for a portrait package or who were absent on the school portrait day (September 8th, 2023).

JMS School Council: In an effort to continue to improve our services to all of our students and their families we are looking for volunteers to serve on our Jacques Memorial School Council.  The Jacques Memorial school Council is a collaborative partnership between parents, guardians, community members  teachers, staff and the principal working together to:

  • Provide input and recommendations on school policies and procedures,

  • Facilitate and improve communication between the school and stakeholders.

  • Advocate for the best interests of all students

  • Development of annual school community engagement goal.

If you are interested in joining the Jacques Memorial School Council please email me a letter of interest. The commitment  of our school council members will typically involve meetings one time a month.  Thank you for considering this opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our students. 

We are incredibly proud of our school community. We strive to create a learning climate that encourages student achievement and fosters a positive learning community.  Our goals of academic excellence and providing students with a nurturing environment can become a reality when staff and families work together in an atmosphere of communication.  Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns throughout the school year!

Tim O’Connell