front of JBS building

January 14, 2022 

Dear JBS Families, 

Happy Friday!  Hope that you are all doing well and have a wonderful long weekend.  

As many of you know, the COVID-19 Guidelines have shifted since we have returned from the Winter Break.  Please read below for the information that was shared with all families by the school district last week. 

As of Thursday, January 6, 2022, BPS COVID contact tracing and quarantine practices have changed to align to the most recent DPH/CSDE guidance.  As we operationalize them, clarification will be given as needed.  While practices have periodically changed, what has remained a constant is that anyone experiencing symptoms of illness must stay home in addition to mask-wearing.  Please note the following that have put been put into place: 

  • Screen and stay is ended

  • The 7-day test-out option is ended, but a test is recommended after 5 days for close contacts

  • Home tests, as well as  lab tests (PCR and antigen), are accepted for COVID+ reporting

  • In-school contact tracing is focused on unmasked close contacts only (lunch periods)

  • Families will be notified by the school, as appropriate by level, regarding COVID+ cases in the school population

  • Quarantine requirements are reduced as follows (see charts below for new return dates)

    • 10-day quarantines are reduced to 5 days

    • 20-day quarantines are reduced to 10 days

Please report any COVID + test results of your child and/or COVID-related information such as your child being identified as a close contact outside of school via email  mclark@branfordschools.org and/or call me at (203) 314-0129.  Thank you all for your continued support, patience, and flexibility during this time of transition. 

If your child is going to be absent from school, please call the main office (203) 481-5386. before 9:10 a.m. on that day.  If a child is unable to attend school for any reason, please call the office to report the child's absence each day that he/she is absent.  Per CT state law, we are required to report unexcused absences. 

Thank you all for doing your part in keeping our school community healthy and safe. 

During the month of January, our school-wide monthly theme is Courage.  This past week, we have been learning about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., his legacy, and ways that we can live out his legacy of being kind to others and demonstrating courage during difficult times.  Our 4th Grade Student Council Members have been reading facts about his life over the morning announcements.  Thank you to Mrs. Melillo, our Library Media Specialist, for coordinating the student participation in the Senator Murphy MLK Writing Contest.  We had seven students participate in the contest across the different grade levels.

Please check your child's homework folder/backpack for our very own JBS Essay/Poster Contest in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  This is due on Friday, January 28, 2022!  This was a great success last year.  We filled our school with posters and essays on how our students demonstrate kindness and courage.  Contest winners will be announced at each grade level in February. 

HIGHLIGHT of the WEEK:  Our instructional coaches and RTI (Response to Intervention) staff play a critical role in supporting both students and staff as well as helping our school reach our elementary school-wide goals of creating a safe learning environment for students/staff and helping our students do their best academically.  Instructional coaches work closely with teachers -- both individually and with grade-level teams to provide them with job-embedded professional development opportunities to help teachers improve instructional practice and reflect on their current practice.  Our RTI Coordinators also work closely with students, families, and teachers to provide differentiated/tiered instruction so that all students are provided with ongoing support in the classroom.  Impact cycles this year have already resulted in greater student discourse, deeper math thinking for students, and continuous improvement in our teaching practices.  

At Sliney, these staff members include:

Alicia DeNuzzo, RTI Coordinator 

Christie Glazewski, Math Coach 

Danielle Lipkvich, Elementary K Literacy Coach

Cathy Miller, Elementary PreK Literacy Coach 

Carol Spinello, RTI Coordinator 

Marisa Tarquino, ELA (Literacy) Coach

Lisa Verzella, Elementary Behavioral Intervention Coordinator 

A huge thanks to the staff members mentioned above for all their hard work, dedication, and growth mindset!  We appreciate all that you do, your flexibility, and all that you do to help Sliney staff and students stand tall and Reach for the Stars!   

Warm regards,
Maria Clark, Principal

John B. Sliney Elementary School


Upcoming Dates to Remember: 

1/17:  Martin Luther King, Jr. Day - No School 

2/2: Early Release Day Students only -- PD for Staff 

2/2: World Read Aloud Day 

2/9: Early Release Day for Students, Elementary Parent Conferences, Day & Evening 

2/16: Evening Parent Conferences Only 

2/18: Early Release Day for Students/Staff 

2/21-2/22: February Recess - NO SCHOOL