General Information


Equitable Access to Educational Programs

Consistent with Section 427 of the General Education Provisions Act, the Hopkinton School District ensures that all students will have equal access to all educational programs and will address any equity concerns including gender, race, national origin, color, disability, or age. Any person having inquiries concerning the school district’s compliance with the Section 427 of GEPA is directed to contact the superintendent of schools at 746-5186.

School Entry

When a parent or guardian enrolls their child in school, the following will be required: a birth certificate, a completed medical form, a copy of his/her immunization records, and a completed survey of proficiency in the English language. A child entering kindergarten must be 5 years old prior to September 30.

Building Hours

The elementary schools are open from 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM. The SAU office is open from 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM

Insurance

Accident and dental insurance is available through the school to all families and students. ISI New England is encouraging families to enroll online at the following link: www.isi1959.com/student-accident. Forms are are available during the school year at each school’s office. Recently, families have found this coverage especially valuable during these difficult economic times.

Parent Guardianship

In the case of guardianship, the school must have notification in writing with specific instructions for communication. If restrictions exist, the school must receive a copy of the applicable court order. Please keep emergency information up to date by contacting the school directly with changes in address, phone numbers, etc.

Emergency Information

It is important to let the school office know as soon as possible if the family has moved or is planning a move. Please immediately notify the building principal or office manager about a change of address or telephone number. Up-to-date information is vital in the event of illness or emergency. Notification several days in advance of transferring students from the school they are attending allows for the easiest transfer for the child. This also gives the teacher time to prepare grades and other documentation for the student’s permanent records.

Automatic Phone Call System
The Hopkinton School District has implemented an automatic phone call system called Global Connect. The system will be utilized to announce snow day delays and cancellations, unforeseen important events, and communicate time sensitive critical information. School delay and cancellation information will be distributed through regular emails and local media outlets as well. An unplanned mid day release of students would be communicated through the automatic phone call system.

Absences and Tardiness

Regular attendance and punctuality are essential for your child’s success in school. Students are expected to attend school unless he/she is ill or there is a family emergency. Students are expected to be prompt in arrival to school and ask that students not arrive at school prior to 7:30 AM unless arrangements have been made.. Parents are asked to call in absences on the morning of the absence. (The student absence line numbers are listed in the school directory).

Dismissals

Students cannot be dismissed from school without a note/phone call from the parent/guardian requesting release. Students will only be released to parent or legal guardian, unless otherwise instructed. When weather conditions or emergencies make early dismissal necessary, the school will make an effort to notify all parents of elementary age children. If the parent/guardian plans to be away on inclement weather days, their child should know where to go in case of early dismissal.

Pre-Arranged Absence for Extended Leave or Vacation

The district recognizes that there are times when it is necessary that students take extended leave from school. Extended leave arrangements are applicable when students will miss school for three (3) days or more. In such cases, the following procedures will apply.

For Grades K-6

Arrangements for extended leaves should be made with the building administration.

For Grades 7-12

For extended leave for students in the middle or high school, parents/guardians are asked to complete the Pre-Arranged Absence Form at least three (3) days prior to the anticipated absence. This Pre-Arranged Absence Form will be approved by the Hopkinton High School administration and shared with individual teachers who will note the assignments and work to be made up. For all extended leaves, students will have one week to make up the work as noted on the Pre-Arranged Absence Form. The Pre-Arranged Absence Form is available from the Hopkinton High School Office.

Voice Mail System

Hopkinton Schools are equipped with an automated voice mail messaging system. This voice mail system enables parents and students to contact teachers, staff members and administrators directly, as well as to access important information about athletic events, homework assignments and other pertinent school questions, without going through the school receptionist or interrupting teachers. The district encourages the use of the voice mail system as it greatly facilitates the communication process between parents, students and the school.

Email

Email is an excellent way to communicate with teachers and administrators.Email addresses follow the first initial, last name pattern: mhawk@hopkintonschools.org (for staff member Mike Hawk). Voicemail is another excellent way to communicate with teachers. Up-to-the-minute changes in the calendar as well as other important information can be found at the school’s website: www.hopkintonschools.org.

School and district based email list serves are also available at the district and building web sites.If a parent is unable to connect with a staff member, please contact the school administration.

Parent/Guardians Conferences

Parents/guardians may request a conference with a teacher or administrator at any time to discuss student progress. Teachers and administrators may also request a conference with a parent if the need arises. Parent/teacher conferences will be held on October 10, 2013 and (Parents and guardians of
middle school students have access to an additional conference day on October 9 to accommodate the large number of conferences.)
Parent/Guardian concerns may be addressed at this time as well as during the school year. When a parent/guardian has a concern, they are asked to first address their concern with the teacher directly. If the concern is not resolved with the teacher, please speak with the building
Principal; the Superintendent of Schools would be the next step in the “chain of command” followed by the school board.

Notices

Harold Martin School and Maple Street School distribute a weekly newsletter that is given to students to bring home. The newsletter contains information on school events, PTA meetings and programs, and community news. Hopkinton Middle and High School email the Hawk News weekly.

Withdrawals

Parents are requested to complete the student withdrawal form a week prior to withdrawing their child. This will give the school time to forward permanent records to the receiving school and to prepare teacher summaries on student progress. All school records are required to be mailed directly to the student’s new school.

Voicing Concerns

As noted above, parents/guardians who have a concern should make contact with district personnel at the appropriate level. If satisfaction is not reached at that level, an appeal can be made through the following channels: Teacher, Principal, Superintendent, School Board. This insures that a parent
/guardian with a concern first consults with the teacher or staff member to see if the problem can be resolved informally. If satisfaction is not reached, the parent /guardian may present their concern to the principal followed by the superintendent, etc. Similarly, if the concern relates to a matter relevant to the building administrator, the parent should make contact at that level and continue through the process if satisfaction is not achieved.

Telephone Use

The school office and classroom telephones are available for student use in emergency situations only. Messages for students will be delivered in a timely manner. If possible, students should use classroom and office phones in each school to make calls during recess/breaks or lunch.phone use in the school is prohibited in any location other than the office.

Lost and Found

All clothing should be marked with the student’s name. Please check frequently for lost articles in the Lost and Found areas of each school. Unclaimed articles will periodically be donated to local charities.

Articles to Leave at Home

The district recommends students not bring toys, pets, antiques or valuable items to school. When personal items are brought to school, there is a possibility that they can be lost, broken, or stolen. New Hampshire law strictly prohibits knives, guns, or any other dangerous weapons.

Visitors

Parents and community members are welcome to visit schools at any time. All visitors are asked to report to the main offices, sign in and obtain a visitor pass. Educators from other school districts and educational associations are also welcome to visit. Our schools, however, would appreciate a call the day before a visit.Sometimes, children from other schools request to come to our schools as visitors. The Elementary Schools require at least twenty-four hours advance notice of a student planning to visit. All approvals for school visitations are at the discretion of the building Principal.At the Middle/High School, passes for student visitors must be requested at least one day prior to the visit. Students must obtain written permission in advance from the administration and each classroom teacher. Student and guest are to check in at the main office and obtain a visitor pass. Hopkinton students are responsible for making the visitor aware of the school rules for conduct. Students who are on suspension or expulsion from any school will not be allowed as visitors in our schools. Students from other schools that are in session at the time of visit will not be permitted as visitors. Visitors are not allowed during Mid-Term and Final Exams weeks.

Volunteering in the Hopkinton Schools

The district’s volunteer programs offer a variety of options for parent/community of involvement. School volunteers must fill out a “Volunteer Approval Form,” which automatically includes the volunteer in the district liability policy. Forms are available in each school office.If you are interested in assisting in our schools, please complete the form and return it to the school office.

The Hopkinton Schools seek to enhance the learning experience of its students by involving parents and other community members within the life of our school as volunteers. We have won the Blue Ribbon Award for volunteerism from the New Hampshire Partners in Education for many years in a row.

The goal of the volunteer program is to match the needs of the teachers, staff, and students with the talents and energies of our volunteers and to improve communications between volunteersnd the teachers and staff they serve.

What can volunteers do in our elementary schools?

Volunteers are an essential part of our school community. Volunteers provide extra hands to teachers and they use their unique talents for classroom enrichment. Without the efforts of volunteers many special events and programs at Harold Martin and Maple Street schools would not be possible. Opportunities for volunteers include, but are not limited to, tutoring and enrichment work within classrooms, planning for special events, assisting with theatrical productions, baking for class parties, working with student writers in our publishing center, chaperoning field trips, helping out on the playground, providing extra help in the library and assisting in art, music, and gym classes. Volunteers can work in the school weekly, monthly, or give a few hours for a special event. Each volunteer offers a unique set of interests and experience as well as his or her own level of commitment; all contributions of time and effort make a difference to the school and are greatly appreciated.

Who can volunteer?

We welcome parents, grandparents, caregivers, and other community members to share their time, commitment, and special skills with our students within the framework of our volunteer program. There are volunteer opportunities to fit into almost every schedule. Those unable to work within the school will find opportunities to complete tasks at home or after school hours; those unable to commit to any regularly scheduled time will find ample opportunity to help out with special events or programs. No special education or professional experience is necessary to volunteer. The volunteer program thrives because of the great variety of talents and interests within the Hopkinton community. The most important quality of a volunteer is a genuine desire to make a positive difference in the life of our students.

There is a Volunteer Orientation every September. Watch for the date in the Parent Flash and Branching Out.

Our HMS volunteer coordinator is

Erin Crawford
ekilday115@aol.com

Helmets

Any student riding a bicycle or driving or riding on a motorcycle to school is required to wear an approved bicycle or motorcycle helmet.

Parent/Guardian Communication

It is important that each school provides a supportive learning environment. Please keep the schools informed of any health information, which may affect your child while he or she is in school. Please be assured that all information provided to the school nurse is held in strict confidence.

School Cancellations

When hazardous driving conditions interfere with regular school opening, school cancellations will be broadcast on the stations /web site noted below. The district attempts to make decisions on school closing or delays no later than 6:00 AM.

WZID 95.7 FM
WBZ 1030am
WMUR CHANNEL 9
http://www.wmur.com/closings/index.html

If the opening of school is delayed, buses will follow the normal routes, usually two hours later than usual, as announced. There is no early supervision at the school (i.e. on a two hour delay, children should not be brought to school before 9:30 AM.) When it is necessary to dismiss school early, parents or the designated emergency contact person will always be contacted by telephone for all elementary school children. Although each building will send a confirmation email to its designated email lists upon notice of cancellation, please do not use this as a primary method of determining school cancellation. Email often takes several minutes to arrive at its destination, and may be delayed indefinitely during times of server difficulty.

Snow

Safety does not permit throwing snowballs at any time. Students who throw snow in any form or bring it into the building will be referred for disciplinary action.

Fire Drills

Fire drills are held monthly throughout the school year. When the fire alarm sounds, students must stop all work immediately and follow the directions of the classroom teacher. Each student should:
  1. Follow the fire drill route from the classroom to the outside of the building.
  2. Be prompt and orderly when leaving the building.
  3. Leave the building in an orderly manner by walking quickly and quietly to the place the teacher indicates. At the middle/high school, students will meet their Period 1, Day 1 teacher in the assigned area. (Seniors who do not have a Period 1, Day 1 class are to report to their designated area.)
  4. Upon hearing the "All clear," return to class in an orderly fashion.

Lock Down

In the event total security within a building is necessary, all classroom and exterior doors are locked with no entry or exit, or release of students, from the building until the crisis is past. At least one lock down drill will take place annually.

Evacuation

In the event the school must be evacuated, all students and staff will be transported by buses to an emergency relocation site. Once everyone is accounted for, students will be released to a parent or guardian. Parents will be contacted via their designated emergency contact numbers with information regarding the location of the relocation site. Please do not call the school.

School Bus Safety

Each bus driver is responsible for maintaining discipline on his or her bus.
The driver shall make certain that all the pupils inside the bus are seated and all the pupils outside the bus are a safe distance away from the bus before moving it.
The driver shall report all accidents, injuries, or possible injuries immediately to the administration.
The driver shall report all incidents of improper behavior immediately to the principal.
No school bus driver will permit any student to board or leave a school bus except at authorized stopping stations. A note or other request from parents for an exception to this rule cannot be honored.

School Bus Safety Rules

1. Be courteous
2. Cooperate with the driver at all times
3. Stay in your seat
4. Keep bus clean
5. The following are NOT permitted on the bus:
• profane language or gestures
• eating or drinking (except on athletic charters)
• smoking
• damage to bus or equipment
• fighting, pushing or shoving
• pets
• weapons
• flammable materials

The driver or school official may assign students to a seat.

Please remember, riding on the bus is a privilege. Cooperation is appreciated.

Guidelines

Bus transportation will be provided for all students who live one mile or more from the school. Information about bus routes and schedules can be obtained from the SAU, 746-5186 or on the school district web site (www.hopkintonschools.org). Each student is expected to act properly on the school bus and stay in his seat at all times.

A student may be denied the school privilege of riding a bus for inappropriate conduct. The individual will be warned and parents will be notified in writing by the principal for a first offense. A second offense may result in a two-week suspension, during which the student’s parents will be responsible for his/her transportation. A third offense may be cause for suspension of the privilege for the duration of the school year.

Elementary students will need written permission from their parent/guardian to ride a different bus, to get off at a different stop, or to go home with someone other than their parents. Without a note, children must ride their regularly assigned bus or follow their normal routine.
Bus transportation may not be used for groups of children going to parties, etc.

Field Trips

Various field trips will be taken during the year. Permission slips will be sent home and must be signed by a parent/guardian and returned prior to the field trip. The cost of field trips will vary depending on busing costs and admission fees. If financial assistance is needed, please contact the school nurse in each building.

Expectations for student behavior on field trips are the same as when the student is in school. Occasionally, parents are asked to serve as chaperones for field trips, where their role is to help with the supervision of the students. Chaperone help is needed to remind students to listen, keep to their groups, and to address inappropriate behavior. New Hampshire state law prohibits smoking in public schools or on public school grounds. It is school policy that smoking on field trips is prohibited as well. Students are never allowed to drive themselves to or from field trip locations. Parents driving students for any school sponsored activity must show proof of insurance coverage at a minimal level of $250,000 liability, $500,000 bodily and $50,000 property damage and a copy of their valid driver’s license.

It is the district's expectation that all students who participate in field trips ride on district supplied transportation to the activity or field trip location. Parents may submit a written request to transport their son/daughter from the field trip or activity location at its conclusion. Such written request must be approved by a building administrator prior to the field trip date. Parents are the only persons authorized to transport students from field trip activities.

Substitute Teachers

Substitute teachers are present to assist in the absence of the regular teacher. Assignments given to the substitute have been prepared by the regular teacher and will be given to the regular teacher for grading and credit. Students are asked to cooperate with substitute teachers as they would with regular classroom teachers.

Care of School Property

School facilities and equipment belong to the community. It is important for students to demonstrate pride and care in their use. Students who damage school property can expect that their parent/guardian will be notified of their actions and that they will be responsible for cleaning, repairing or replacing the damaged item(s). This applies to textbooks and library books that are loaned to students as well. Students will be expected to pay the cost in cases of loss, willful damage, or destruction. All textbooks which are to be taken home are encouraged to be covered.

Donations

Donations may be made to our school district at any time. Donations of books and materials are an excellent way to recognize individuals or to contribute to the educational program. Donations of equipment, books and materials will be acknowledged by the Hopkinton School Board. Monetary donations may be made to the school district or exclusively to the individual schools under the New Hampshire Learn Foundation. Please make checks payable to the Hopkinton School District.

Bicycles

At Maple Street School, riding a bicycle to school is considered both a privilege and a wholesome form of exercise. Students may ride their bicycles to school once their parents have determined they are sufficiently knowledgeable, skilled, and safe to do so. Participation in a bicycle safety course is recommended. In our mission to keep all students safe, it is required that students wear an approved bicycle helmet when riding their bicycle to or from school. If a child arrives at school on a bicycle and no helmet, the parent will be notified and the student will not be allowed to ride the bicycle home until a helmet is obtained. If you would like to purchase a low cost helmet, or are unable to afford one, please inquire at your school's main office or nurse's office. Students may ride to school only when there are no snow banks to impair visibility. There is a bicycle rack at Maple Street School where students may park and lock their bicycles.

Students are allowed to safely ride their bikes to school at Harold Martin School. There is a bike rack available by the main parking lot.