ARHS Opening of School Information and Protocols

General Information for Back to School at ARHS 20-21

Hello ARHS community. We want to provide you with more information about the week leading up to the opening of school. We know there is not consensus in our community about the “right thing” to do regarding how school will be done this year. We recognize there are different ways to effectively address the numerous needs of our students, their families, and all of the adults working in our school. Please know that we are committed to doing everything we can to make this year as meaningful as possible. Part of that process will include reflection on our teaching practices, and listening to your feedback. That may mean that our plan will evolve over the course of the year. 

The official first day of school is Wednesday, September 16th. All classes will begin in a remote environment. All students should check their ARPS email for Google Classroom links to their classes which will be conducted via Google Meet. There will be a help desk at the high school on September 14th and 15th or families can email ARHS Librarian Ella Stocker for support with their email accounts. 

We have reserved September 14th & 15th for schedule, Chromebook and materials distribution. Please see the following link to view the distribution schedule. It is arranged alphabetically, by students last name.

Schedule, Chromebook and Materials Distribution Schedule:

9th GRADE 


11th GRADE 

12th GRADE 

Please contact Terry Ominsky with questions about materials distribution. If you are unable to pick up materials at your scheduled time, there will be people available for distribution from 5:00 – 7:00PM on the 15th. Please bring a backpack or another bag to carry all your books and materials in. 

Teaching and Learning 


  • The Block Schedule was designed to ensure students had access to their core academic classes with most students having scheduled at least two 45-day elective courses during the 20-21 school year. For students who needed additional courses to stay on track for graduation, a “D Block” class may have been added. 
  • Questions or concerns about student schedules should be directed to the student’s guidance counselor using these forms. The counselor assignments are located on the student schedule. 

Lisa Zephyr :

Alessandra Mucci-Ramos:

Kelly Larcheveque:

Sherry Balzano:

  • Schedule change priority will be given to students who have errors with  their first semester classes.  
  • Some courses were modified to be taught in a 3×3 Block Schedule. A list of these courses and the course description can be found here: New Course Description.


  • Attendance will be taken at the beginning of each class period: A-period begins at 9:00AM, B-period begins at 10:30AM, and C-period begins at 1:00PM. 
  • Three tardies to class will equal one absence
  • If a student exceeds the absence limit total of 9 per semester in any given course, there will be an Attendance Meeting to determine if the student will receive credit in that course or not.
  • Families will be expected to call the absence line 413-362-1718 if their child will be missing class. Questions about attendance should be directed to Wilnelia Melendez  
  • ARHS faculty and staff will be connecting with families before a student reaches 9 absences in any given class. Families should also reach out to us as soon as they notice any issues with their child’s attendance. 

Student Engagement:

  • Students will need to check their ARPS email multiple times per day for teacher updates.
  • It is strongly recommended that all students remain visible during the synchronous portions of class. Students who can not have their cameras on should communicate directly with their teacher or talk to their guidance counselor. 
  • Backgrounds are ok, as long as they do not interfere with the ability of the teacher to see you when you speak.
  • Students will be asked to mute themselves when not speaking.
  • Please observe good Google Meet etiquette during class time.
    • Join early – up to 5 minutes before the meeting start time
    • Have your video on unless you are experiencing connection issues, or have spoken with your teacher about having your video off during class
    • Find a quiet space without interruptions / background noise, if possible
    • Have a plain background – avoid backlight from bright windows
    • Have good lighting on your face so you can be seen clearly
    • Adjust your camera to be at around eye level if possible – especially take note of the angle of your laptop screen if using the built-in camera.
    • Mute your microphone when not talking
    • Try to avoid talking over / at the same time as other participants
    • Be aware you are on camera and try to avoid doing other tasks, checking emails, looking at your phone etc


  • Students will receive letter grades for their courses
  • Teachers will provide more details about their grading procedures in their course expectations
  • Fall classes will count towards a student’s Grade Point Average, the same way they did before the spring of 2020

Extra Curricular Activities


  • Clubs will be meeting virtually this year. Liz Haygood, Student Activities Coordinator will be sharing the menu of club offerings and meeting times with students during our virtual club fair in late September/early October. Questions about clubs and activities can be addressed


  • Cross Country, field hockey, soccer and volleyball will be held outdoors this fall. Some try-outs and practices will begin September 18th. Football will have practices only. All practices and try-outs will be held between 3:15pm-6:05pm.  Practice and game schedules will be shared by coaches. Questions about sports can be addressed by Victoria Stewart, Athletic Director 

Important Links to Stay Connected

  • Do you have questions about technology? Take a look at our Google Site which is full of distance learning resources and tutorials for students and families. Please note that this site is a work in progress and will continue to be added to throughout the coming weeks
  • If you have not already subscribed, please subscribe to the ARHS PGO Newsletter that features upcoming events and information about ARHS.
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