August 7, 2014
Dear Stony Brook Families:
Greetings! It is an honor to write to you as an official member of the Stony Brook team. I look forward to serving this wonderful community and doing my part to uphold its rich traditions and strong reputation while helping to guide us all in supporting the students as they prepare for their futures. I hope this message finds you well into the relaxation process so instrumental to healthy development and growth. The start of school is still weeks away or only weeks away depending on your perspective at this point of the summer. While I enjoy the recuperation that the summer months bring, I look forward to being surrounded by the uncompromising energy and unique personalities that middle school students exhibit and the adults in their lives endure on a regular basis. It is a special calling to be a middlelevel
educator and I applaud all of my colleagues here at Stony Brook for the tremendous work they do supporting the students through these ever-changing “Wonder Years” and I am proud to join them in their efforts.
Communication is the foundation of a strong relationship between home and school. It is also a balancing point here with middle level students as we are all trying to support the development of their independence as they are growing more and more responsible; however, students are less dependable at this level in delivering messages or transporting important information between the adults in their lives. Therefore, there are multiple ways in which we facilitate communication between home and school. The iPass system is the primary source for parents to view academic information including grades and schedules as well as all of their individual emergency contact information. All parents are encouraged to set-up accounts in the parent portal of iPass. Schedules for the 2014-2015 school year will beavailable in iPass
on Wednesday, August 20 at 4:00 PM. The best form of two-way communication on a more frequent level or involving simple questions or clarification is email as it allows for asynchronous communication more compatible with each participant's availability. If you have not already signed up for the Stony Brook emails, please do so through our website as I will use that platform more regularly than others and hope not to rely on mailings moving forward. Additionally, updates will be provided regularly on our website and via various social media applications such as Twitter and FaceBook. These tools will be used primarily to disseminate information and celebrate the great accomplishments of the members of the Stony Brook community.
While we live in a digitally connected world, it is important to model the skills our students need to develop in order to be responsible and successful. Let's face it, digital communication is second nature to them while many of us are running behind trying to follow their digital footprints. That being said, nothing replaces the powerful human connectedness of face-to-face conversation. Your opportunities to interface with our faculty will most certainly continue and I look forward to meeting you myself. The curriculum night for 7th& 8th grade is scheduled for Tuesday, September 16 at 6:30 PM while the curriculum night for 6th grade here at Stony Brook has been changed to Tuesday, September 23 at 6:30 PM; our formal parent conferences will be held December 16 & 17.
Additionally, I plan to organize less formal opportunities throughout the year to gather with parents in conversation to receive feedback and provide support. Those events will be posted on our website as well asshared through our social media applications. Beyond those public conversations both formal and informal, I am always happy to meet with families on an individual basis if the need arises. An open, approachable atmosphere is paramount to facilitating effective communication and we look forward to maintaining a strong partnership conducive to student success.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.
Dr. Christopher Chew
Stony Brook School
9 Farmer Way, Westford, MA 01886