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Lower Merion School District

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Upcoming Community Events & Programs

The following is a listing of non-profit, community-based programs/events in Lower Merion and Narberth that have been approved for posting by Lower Merion School District. To submit your non-profit, community-based program/event for consideration, please email the LMSD Communications Office at info@lmsd.org.

COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic Aug. 7 in Ardmore

The Black Clergy of Philadelphia and Vicinity are hosting a Community COVID-19 vaccination clinic for anyone age 12+.

First shots of the Pfizer vaccine will be offered on Saturday, August 7, 2021, from noon to 2:00 p.m. at Bethel AME Church, 163 Sheldon Lane in Ardmore. Second shots will be offered on Saturday, August 28.

To schedule your appointment, call 610-642-8966 or 877-227-8829 or visit bcpv-health.wixsite.com/vax2victory.

Appointments are encouraged, but walk-ins will be accepted, subject to availability. The first 50 people to schedule appointments in advance will be able to claim a gift card upon arrival.

LMSD Response to Recent Community Incidents

Dear LMSD Community,

The past few weeks have been difficult for the Lower Merion School District community. A volunteer firefighter, Sean DeMuynck, died responding to a fire at the home of LMSD students on July 4. A recent alumnus, Layth Evans (LMHS 2019), lost his life to an act of senseless violence on July 10, in the heart of our community near Vernon V. Young Memorial Park. In addition to offering our condolences to the victim's family and friends, we recognize that the alleged perpetrators are LMHS alumni, and that their families and the broader community are also in pain. This past weekend, another firefighter, Tom Royds (HHS 1991), died in the line of duty, responding to an accident on the Schuylkill Expressway. Among the volunteer firefighters seriously injured in that incident were a current LMHS student and another recent alumnus.

The School District offered its facilities for the firefighters' funerals. Members of the Board of School Directors and Administration attended the Community Vigil Against Gun Violence and remembrance of Mr. Evans held in Vernon Park on Sunday, July 18th. The Board also began its July 19 meeting with a moment of silence in his memory.

LMSD regrets, however, that we did not also immediately respond with the offer of counseling for our current students who may be navigating difficult emotions after the shooting in Ardmore, as we did after accident this past weekend. We want to clarify that counselors and administrators will be available at Lower Merion High School this week to offer support to any of our students who have been impacted by these events.

Students who would like to speak with a counselor from the Student Services Department or an administrator are asked to please email Principal Sean Hughes Hughess@lmsd.org, or call 610-645-1819 or 1822. Counselors and administrators will be available to meet with any student in-person, via zoom or by phone this week for support.

The Board and Administration also intend to work with the broader community, on an ongoing basis, to better ensure that youth who are struggling get the support that they need.

Sincerely,

Lucy Klain
President, Lower Merion Board of School Directors

Robert Copeland
Superintendent, Lower Merion School District

LMSD Statement on Belmont Hills Firefighters

The Lower Merion School District community is saddened to learn of the death of Belmont Hills Firefighter Tom Royds (HHS '91) and of the serious injuries to two other firefighters who answered an accident call on the Schuylkill Expressway early Saturday morning and who have close ties to our school district.

The thoughts of our Board of School Directors, Administration, staff and students are with the families of these brave members of our community, who embody our District motto, "Enter to Learn, Go Forth to Serve." We hope for speedy and full recoveries for the injured and for strength and comfort for the Royds family.

Lower Merion High School will be offering counseling to students who feel impacted by this terrible incident. Details will be shared with students and their families in the coming days.

Tree Work at Penn Wynne Elementary School

Weather permitting, representatives from the Davey Tree Expert Company are scheduled to be at Penn Wynne Elementary School starting Friday, July 9, 2021, to perform safety-related tree pruning and removal work on several trees along Suffolk and Trent Roads.

Work will include using a large crane truck on Suffolk Road for removal of a diseased and declining oak tree between the ball field and sidewalk. This tree has been dropping hazardous sections of dead wood on the street and parked cars. Suffolk Road may be blocked for vehicle access during the work.

In addition, parking will not be available along Suffolk Road, between Trent Road and the school parking lot. Neighbors may park in the school lot.

LMSD appreciates the community's patience and consideratio,n as this critical service work is performed.

LMSD Offers Free Summer Meals for Children

The Lower Merion School District Nutritional Services Department will offer free summer meal pick up for children, beginning on June 23, 2021.

14 meals per child per week will be available for pick-up at Harriton High School on Wednesdays between 9:00-10:00 a.m. Harriton is located at 600 N. Ithan Avenue in Rosemont. The pickup location will be outside of the gym, door #4.

To receive meals, please fill out the Appointment Form or call Nutritional Services at 610-645-1990.

School Board Approves Equity Policy

LMSD Approves Equity Policy

At the Monday, June 14, 2021, meeting of the Lower Merion Board of School Directors, the Board approved District Policy 101 Equity. The full Policy, which begins with an explanation of purpose and includes multiple definitions and source citations, can be read here.

Policy 101 states, in part, "Educational equity is a shared commitment to ensure that every student gets what they need to be successful. Practicing equity in this District means understanding the needs of individuals and positioning resources – including funding, programs, policies, initiatives, and supports – to target people's unique experiences and to provide for individual needs so that achievement and opportunity gaps are eliminated on personal and systemic levels."

It goes on to say, "Equity is distinct from equality. While equality entitles that everyone gets the same, equity requires that individuals get what they need."

The approval of Policy 101 is the result of a collaborative effort among the Board, Administration and community stakeholders including students, staff and residents of Lower Merion and Narberth, who contributed to the creation and refinement of the Policy through participation in meetings of CARE (Committee to Address Race in Education), the Board's Ad-Hoc Committee on Equity and Anti-Racism, the Policy Committee and the Achievement Imperative Task Force. Students, who protested for racial justice following the death of George Floyd in the summer of 2020, provided added impetus and urgency to this effort, in alignment with "All Forward," the District's Strategic Plan's Pathway of Student-Driven Schools.

The Policy directs, "The Superintendent and/or designee to identify and remove institutional barriers that result in achievement and/or opportunity gaps for students; and implement policies, practices and procedures that ensure a student's educational success is neither predetermined or predicated by factors such as a student's race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, student with identified disabilities, individual learning needs, social or economic status, or other identity related factors."

Board President Lucy Klain said, "As President of the Board of School Directors, I'm proud of our students, community, staff, and administration who came together to develop this policy following the events of the past year and the heartbreaking reminder that we must continue to work for equal justice. I especially want to acknowledge the students' continuing fight for justice; their activism inspired us, as a Board, to convene our Ad-Hoc Committee on Equity and Anti-Racism and to work on creating this Districtwide Equity Policy. As our current students graduate and move on to serve, their impact will be felt by all of the students who follow."

Board Director Shawn Mooring, Chair of the Ad-Hoc Committee on Equity and Anti-Racism, said, "I am extremely pleased that the Lower Merion School District has taken this step to adopt a formal Equity Policy, thereby institutionalizing our long-held commitment to Equity and Anti-Racism. I am also particularly proud of the high level of engagement with our students, teachers, administrators and community stakeholders in the drafting, vetting, and finalizing of this policy."

In addition to approving the Equity Policy, the LMSD Board approved a proposal from Education Northwest to perform a Districtwide equity and inclusivity audit. (Agreement pending Solicitor review). Additional information about LMSD's ongoing Equity and Anti-Racism efforts is available on the Equity page of the District website, LMSD.org.

June 2021 LMSD COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics

LMSD Second Dose COVID Vaccine Clinics

Second Dose Information:

June 4, 2021
4:00 – 7:00 p.m.
For people who had their first dose on May 14

June 11, 2021
3:00 – 7:00 p.m.
For people who had their first dose on May 21

IMPORTANT REMINDERS:

  • If you registered for your first dose, you are already registered for your second dose.
  • If you were a "walk-in" for the first dose, you may "walk-in" for your second dose between 3:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. on the appropriate date.
  • Students under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
  • Please bring your vaccination card that was given to you when you received your first dose.
  • If your child has a disability that requires accommodations at the vaccine clinic, please contact Terry Quinlan at 610 645-1829. A quiet room is available for vaccination of students who are sensory sensitive and/or students who have special needs.

First Dose Information:

Walk-ins for vaccine first doses will be accepted at both June clinics from 3:30-5:30 p.m.; however, the second dose will not be available at Lower Merion High School.

Individuals who receive their first dose at LMHS on June 4 or June 11 may go to Eric's RX in Horsham, Pa., or may contact a health care provider or pharmacy of their choice to receive the second dose.

VACCINE PROCESS:

  • The Pfizer vaccines will be administered in the cafeteria by LMSD Health Services Staff and other volunteer licensed healthcare professionals from the community.
  • Participants will be required to stay in the designated area of the high school for 15 minutes following administration of the vaccine for observation.

DIRECTIONS:

Enter the high school campus off of Montgomery Ave. at School House Lane. Follow signs to parking lots D or E, depending on available spaces. Do not park in the front of the high school or enter through the high school.

MASKS REQUIRED:

Everyone will be required to wear face masks that fully cover the mouth and nose at all times while on school property.

ADDITIONAL VACCINE CLINICS:

For a list of other vaccination clinics in Montgomery County, click here.

Update on the Superintendent Search

During May 2021, representatives from the search firm Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates (HYA) conducted a survey, numerous interviews and focus group meetings to assist the Lower Merion Board of School Directors in identifying the primary characteristics desired in a new superintendent, upon the retirement of current Superintendent Robert Copeland this fall.

The firm has summarized their findings in two documents, which are available below.

Interested and qualified individuals can learn more about the position by clicking here. Applications will be accepted through June 30, 2021.

Temporary Arnold Field Closure for LMHS Graduation Ceremony

Arnold Field will be closed to community use beginning Monday, June 7 in preparation for the LMHS graduation, which will take place on Tuesday, June 8 at 10:30 a.m. This closure includes the track and tennis courts.

It is expected that Arnold Field will reopen for community use on Wednesday, June 9, unless there is inclement weather. Depending on the severity and duration of any inclement weather, Arnold Field could remain closed through Thursday, June 10 as the rain dates are scheduled for Tuesday, June 8 at 4:00 p.m. or Thursday, June 10 at 10:30 a.m.

Superintendent Search Update: Opportunities for Public Input

Superintendent Search: Opportunity for Input -- Public Forums

As Lucy Klain, President of the Lower Merion Board of School Directors, shared last week, the Board has selected Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates (HYA) to assist in recruiting, identifying and employing a new superintendent upon Supt. Copeland's upcoming retirement. The Board is seeking community input through interviews and focus groups.

The Public is invited to participate in any one of the Zoom feedback sessions listed below:

Monday, May 10 7:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptMonTuesWed


Tuesday, May 11 1:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptMonTuesWed


Tuesday May 11 7:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptMonTuesWed


Wed. May 12 11:15 a.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptMonTuesWed


Thurs. May 13 8:00 a.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptThurSat


Thurs. May 13 1:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptThurSat


Thurs. May 13 6:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptThurSat


Friday, May 14 8:00 a.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptFriMon


Friday, May 14 11:15 a.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptFriMon


Friday, May 14 3:15 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptFriMon


Sat. May 15 9:00 a.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptThurSat


Sun. May 16 2:00 p.m.

http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptThurSat


Mon. May 17 8:00 a.m.
http://bit.ly/LMSDSuptFriMon


HYA is also using a survey to gather the community's perceptions of the District and the importance of various characteristics found in effective school leaders. The data from this survey will be used in determining the desired characteristics of the next superintendent.

The Board encourages all stakeholders –- students, parent/guardians, staff and community members -- to complete the three-section survey, which can be found here. It should take about 8-12 minutes.

The survey link will be available through May 20, 2021. Thank you for your participation in this important process.

Superintendent Search Process Information

On April 29, 2021, Lucy Klain, President of the Lower Merion Board of School Directors, shared the update below regarding the District's Superintendent Search Process:

At the April meeting of the Lower Merion Board of School Directors, Superintendent Copeland announced that he will retire in the fall, after six years of service to our LMSD community. The Board is incredibly grateful for his steady and innovative leadership during the pandemic, as well as his many accomplishments in implementing our Strategic Plan, tackling opportunity gaps, building our new middle school, and his financial and organizational acumen. We will honor him at his retirement in the Fall.

In light of Supt. Copeland's upcoming retirement, the Board has initiated a search for his successor. To assist and counsel the Board through this process, we have retained the services of Hazard, Young Attea & Associates (HYA), a consulting firm that specializes in assisting school boards in identifying and recruiting executive level educational leaders.

A key initial step in this process will be an Ad Hoc Superintendent Search Committee planning meeting scheduled for Monday, May 3, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. Details for attending this Zoom meeting will be posted on the Board calendar page of the District website and in the agenda on BoardDocs. Topics covered during this meeting may include community engagement opportunities, search protocols, and the timeline.

The HYA search process has four phases: engagement, recruitment, selection, and transition. The engagement phase consists of designing and planning a process of engaging the Board and stakeholders through interviews, online surveys and focus groups. Information from these interactions will inform the Board in developing a leadership profile and selection criterion that match the priorities of our community and that meet the unique needs of our students. This disciplined, inclusive, and research-based approach will be designed to ensure all stakeholders have an opportunity to be part of the search process and will provide valuable feedback about the District to assist the search firm in better understanding our District in the broader marketplace.

As an outcome of the meeting on May 3rd, the Board plans to announce opportunities for both internal and external stakeholders to offer input for the development of the desired characteristics of the next superintendent. These may include a community survey, interviews, focus groups and community forums. Given the current environment, most of these opportunities will be provided virtually.

We intend to have the search firm present the results of the engagement phase at a second Ad Hoc Superintendent Search Committee meeting that will be scheduled for Monday, May 24, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. (Information for attending this meeting will be shared in the places listed above). Following the development of the leadership characteristics, the recruitment phase will begin.

We look forward to and encourage community involvement in the engagement phase of the search process. We hope to keep the process transparent through updates on the District website, social media channels, school and HSA newsletters


COVID-19 Vaccine Registration

Montgomery County's COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic registration is now available to everyone age 16 and older.

Click here to register online or call 833-875-3967 Monday to Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

If you have vaccine-related questions, you can email COVID19@montcopa.org.

Foster relationships. Link to resources. Advocate for you. Connect with you.

Do you need help and don't know where to start?

We can help you:

  • Navigate the human services system
  • Better understand services available to you
  • Make referrals to organizations that will best address your needs

We can help link you to resources:

  • Services for seniors
  • Mental health services
  • Drug & alcohol services
  • Employment
  • Child care
  • Housing
  • Food
  • And more!

Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

Phone:610-278-3522 (FLAC)

• Navicates are able to assist by phone or email to maintain everyone's safety at this time.

Free service for Montgomery County residents. Language Line services available. Learn more here.

Montgomery County COVID-19 Testing

Montgomery County is offering COVID-19 testing to anyone who lives, works or goes to school in the County and who wants or needs to be tested, regardless of whether they are symptomatic.

To register, go to www.montcopa.org/COVID-19 and click on "County Testing Information." The registration website opens each day at 7:00 a.m. You can also call 610-970-2937 to make an appointment. That number is open Monday-Friday starting at 8:30 a.m.

The closest testing locations to LMSD are:

Ardmore
114 W. Lancaster Ave. (rear of the parking lot next to IHOP)
Mon/Wed/Fri 9 am - 5 pm
Tues/Thurs 10 am -6 pm

Norristown
1401 DeKalb St. (Norristown Regional Health Center)
Mon - Fri 9 am - 5 pm

Other locations are listed on the County website.

School Facility Usage Restricted on School Days

To protect the health and safety of LMSD students and staff, community use of all school facilities is prohibited from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on school days. This includes all fields, courts and tracks.

Under District Policy 713 Access to District Facilities, District facilities are open to community use as long as that use "does not interfere with the educational-intended purpose of the facility and otherwise does not operate to the detriment of the District."

The Board-approved LMSD Health and Safety Plan restricts access by community groups, visitors and volunteers and outlines the necessary cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting, and ventilating procedures for learning spaces, surfaces, and any other areas used by students and staff.

Limiting public access to school facilities on school days is necessary to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 exposure for students and staff who use the facilities.


Important Information for Families Facing Eviction

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued an order stopping evictions for non-payment of rent from September 4, 2020, through December 31, 2020.

This moratorium applies to families who:

  • Attempted to get rental assistance.
  • Expect to earn less that $99,000 in 2020
  • Lost income due to COVID-19
  • Are trying to make partial payments, given your expenses
  • Would likely become homeless, if you are evicted

To be protected,, you must declare that you qualify for the Federal Eviction Moratorium by signing the Declaration in English and submitting it to your landlord or the court. Before submitting your Declaration, be sure to make a copy for your records.

If you currently have a court hearing scheduled, you should still attend it. And you should continue to try to pay your rent.

You can find more information about this program by calling the PhillyTenant Helpline at 267-443-2500 or by clicking here.