Hudson Public Schools lays out refined priorities, celebrates low COVID-19 rates


By Justin Roshak, Contributing Writer

Hudson Public Schools lays out refined priorities, celebrates low COVID-19 ratesHUDSON – School officials recently discussed revised priorities for the Hudson Public Schools after COVID-19 prompted major disruptions to the district’s District Improvement Plan, which was adopted in 2017 and planned for implementation between 2018 and 2021.

Pandemic time and resources crunches, indeed, forced the district to prioritize certain aspects of the plan, though, which was found to be too elaborate for execution in crisis conditions. 

“The life of that document was disrupted midway through by the pandemic,” said Hudson Superintendent Marco Rodrigues at the Oct. 12 School Committee meeting. “A number of things did not continue to develop.”

“Along the way we realized that that plan, even though it was ambitious, it was loaded,” Rodrigues continued. “We needed to scale back and be a little smarter.”

Revised plan focuses on initial strategic priorities

For all the changes, the district’s four strategic priorities remain current. Those include improving instruction, social-emotional learning, innovation, and school culture. 

Instructional practices should focus on the student, according to discussion at the Oct. 12 School Committee meeting. This year, the district plans to focus on multilingual learners and the teaching methods that best serve them.

Second, social-emotional learning has gained new importance considering the additional stress the pandemic has placed on students, families, and the entire school community, Rodrigues said.

A special focus moving forward will be on so-called “tier one” solutions: in-classroom interventions that reduce the need to move to more intense, out-of-classroom interventions. 

Third, the pandemic severely restricted the ability of professional improvement groups to meet. A priority this year will be restarting meetings of advisory boards on topics like scheduling and the technology, which largely did not meet last year. 

Finally, a districtwide equity assessment remains a major goal for administrators. It will place special emphasis on identifying ways to support Hudson’s diverse, multilingual school community. Two potential organizations to conduct the survey were interviewed earlier this month, with a third expected soon, according to Rodrigues.

‘This is not a document for show’

As the district lays out its revised plans, some have raised concerns. 

“If you think it’s accessible to a lay person or a parent, in my opinion, I think it’s not,” School Committee member Mark Terra-Salomão said.

“This is not a document for show,” Rodrigues replied. “This is a document that fully guides the work.”

The COVID-19 pandemic is lingering as the district eyes its future. That being said, cases in Hudson Public Schools have been in the low single digits over recent weeks according to district announcements.

In-school testing, meanwhile, has begun. 

Hudson’s tutoring program to aid students who end up in coronavirus related, out of school quarantine is now almost fully staffed, save for one position in the elementary schools which may be filled by a high school teacher, school officials say.


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