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Remote Learning Plan Guidance for Students and Parents

posted Apr 1, 2020, 2:22 PM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Apr 2, 2020, 8:15 AM ]

Remote Learning Plan Guidance for Students and ParentsStudents and Parents are advised to take a look at the following document which is a guide for getting parents and students through this remote learning process.  This document will not only outline expectations, but also gives some good ideas on how to handle the process.


Schools Closed to the General Public

posted Mar 24, 2020, 5:15 PM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 24, 2020, 5:19 PM ]

An Executive Order issued today by Governor Janet Mills calls for all non-essential businesses and operations in Maine that allow customer, vendor or other in-person services to close their physical locations, beginning tomorrow, March 25 until April 8.

As a result, all Valley Unified offices, including schools and central offices will not be open to the general public for the next 14 days except by appointment for essential services.  For more information, read a letter from Superintendent of Schools, Benjamin Sirois, at https://bit.ly/39mUUFW  or click on the image below.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Letter to Seniors

posted Mar 24, 2020, 6:40 AM by Vincent Vanier

DATE: March 24, 2020
TO: All CHS, MMHS, and WMHS Seniors, Parents, and Guardians 
FROM: Benjamin Sirois, Superintendent of Schools
RE: COVID-19 Impact on Senior Year

Dear Class of 2020,

The final months of your senior year were not supposed to be like this. You were not supposed to be sent home from school for an indefinite period of time. You were not supposed to be entering into a remote learning plan that has never been attempted before. You certainly were not supposed to be separated from one another after all your years of working together, earning the right to experience all the wonderful things that senior year brings. I know this is not what you expected and I know this is unfair. I
t is perfectly understandable to be upset and to feel disappointed. I’m very sorry this is happening to you during your senior year. Although it may seem possible right now, we will get through this. As each day passes, and you have one less day remaining in your senior year, please know that we are working hard to support your needs as you make preparations for your future. We want to ensure that this shift to remote learning does not harm your future plans and goals. Please continue to reach out to your teachers on a regular basis. Please continue to connect with your guidance counselor, your school administrators, and your network of school supports. We are still here for you! Regarding major senior year milestones, such as prom, senior week, and of course, graduation, we will be monitoring the coronavirus impact on our local region before making any changes or recommendations regarding these events. That being said, please know that regardless of when or how, these major milestones will still occur, even if they need to be delayed or if they need to be restructured. As a senior, you have earned the right to participate in these events, so we will find a way to ensure that they happen for you. Thank you for your patience and understanding during these difficult times. Please take care of yourselves. Please support one another. And please continue to enjoy your senior year, making the most out of this challenging situation. You deserve nothing less. 


Benjamin Sirois
Superintendent of Schools/Executive Director Valley Unified Education Service Center

Student Contact

posted Mar 20, 2020, 6:37 AM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 20, 2020, 6:38 AM ]

All students and parents in MSAD27, MSAD33, and Madawaska Schools are asked to connect with teachers today if they haven’t done so. Middle/High School students are asked to check their school email and respond to their teachers today if they haven’t done so yet this week. We need to ensure that we are reaching each student to deliver remote learning. If you are having trouble with your school email, call your school for assistance.

Valley Unified Lunch Plan Info

posted Mar 16, 2020, 5:21 PM by Paul Chasse   [ updated Mar 20, 2020, 6:34 AM by Vincent Vanier ]

bag lunch
Valley Unified is making school lunch accessible while school is closed. Please click the following link for more information. 

Madawaska Schools Closing

posted Mar 15, 2020, 10:31 AM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 15, 2020, 10:35 AM ]

VU Header
March 15, 2020

Dear Valley Unified Parents and Community Members:

Our three Upper St. John Valley School Administrative Units (MSAD #27, MSAD #33, Madawaska School Department) together with other Aroostook County school units, the Maine Department of Education, and the Maine School Management Association, have been closely monitoring the news and best practices regarding the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). After reviewing all of our options, we have determined it is both wise and necessary to take the precautionary measure of closing our schools for the next two weeks, effective tomorrow, Monday, March 16. There will be an emergency meeting of the collaborative boards of MSAD27, MSAD33, and the Madawaska School Committee tomorrow evening @ 6:30pm to share plans and details.

The closure affects all school programming, including before-school and after-school activities, all athletic and extracurricular practices and competitions, and all weekend events. This is not a decision we take lightly. We realize school closures pose challenges for many families in our region. Still, closing schools to prevent the potential spread of COVID-19 will help lessen the burden on local healthcare entities and emergency service responders, if either confirmed cases or a local outbreak should occur.
We are not aware of anyone in our region who has been infected or exposed to the coronavirus. This is a purely precautionary measure to help safeguard our communities. District teachers and staff have been developing and will continue to prepare Remote Learning Plans for our
students. Your teachers will be providing more information soon. If you have any questions, please contact your child’s building principal.

Arrangements to provide individualized services to children identified with special needs will be made by teachers who will be contacting families soon. If you have questions, please contact your child’s teacher or your school unit’s Director of Special Education.

We are making arrangements to continue providing school lunch services at school and community sites throughout our region, with the possibility of bus delivery. We will be making these plans public and providing this service by Wednesday, March 18.

This two-week school closure is a precautionary response. We will continue to monitor news about and consider best practices relative to COVID-19 and will update you on a regular basis concerning our plans for continuity of learning and services for our students moving forward. Updates will be forwarded via our SwiftK12 Message System and will be posted on school, school unit, and Valley Unified social media platforms.


Benjamin Sirois
Superintendent of Schools
Valley Unified Education Service Center

Coronavirus Letter #2

posted Mar 13, 2020, 4:07 PM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 13, 2020, 4:07 PM ]

March 13, 2020

Dear Valley Unified Parents, Guardians, Staff Members, and Students,

As we continue to learn more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and to receive guidance on best practices to slow its spread, we are monitoring closely recommended actions and precautions from the State of Maine and the Maine Department of Education. We are also making careful
determinations regarding upcoming school-sponsored travel, conventions, and any other event that requires students to gather in large groups. Yesterday, Maine Governor Mills issued a restriction on gatherings of 250 or more people; therefore, several of these events have already
been canceled for our students. In addition, many staff members have canceled plans to attend professional development conferences and events.

We realize that families and staff members will still choose to continue to follow through with travel plans as we near spring break. Valley Unified and it’s member School Administrative Units cannot make determinations on personal travel plans, nor will we advise you to avoid or proceed
with travel. Please note that the Governor has advised that all non-essential travel out of state or out of the country should be avoided. The best way to avoid infection is to minimize exposure to infected people.

If you do choose to travel, we ask that upon your return, you use extreme caution prior to entering our school buildings. If you display any symptoms associated with the virus, do not come to school. Staff members have a responsibility to keep their students safe, and parents have a
responsibility not to send their sick children to school. We will be spending a great deal of time and effort on disinfecting our buildings to minimize the risk for infection. Furthermore, we highly suggest that upon return from a trip outside the region, you contact your primary care physician to determine if a self-imposed quarantine is necessary or suggested.

Valley Unified will continue to keep you updated on any new information we learn specific to COVID-19. As new information comes to us, we will share it with you. Please check back regularly on our school websites, or go to https://valleyunified.blogspot.com/ for the most up to date
releases of new information.


Benjamin Sirois
Superintendent of Schools
Valley Unified Education Service Center

Soap Screeners

posted Mar 9, 2020, 7:36 AM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 9, 2020, 7:37 AM ]

Three students represented Madawaska Elementary School at the 3D Design Challenge and Expo at Kennebec Valley Community College this weekend.  Hailey Thibeault, Dasha Danilichava, and Lucy Hartvigsen won a 2nd place prize for their project creating soap screens using the school's 3D printer.  The project was developed to assist local entrepreneur Julie Rayder, who makes nutritional soaps for her company Nutritious Skin.  Julie needed soap screens to create unique patterns she could use to make her soaps.  Mrs. Gina Jandreau's students were up to the task.  They used the engineering design methods learned in class to help come up with their solutions.  Take a look at the YouTube video of their impressive presentation here:  https://youtu.be/Z7EQyP7AQBA and photos of the weekend here:  https://photos.app.goo.gl/m19PCetpUPhTmFVn8

VUESC Meeting #14 Agenda

posted Mar 6, 2020, 7:56 AM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 6, 2020, 7:56 AM ]

The ​14th meeting​ of the Board of Directors for ​Valley Unified Education Service Center​ is scheduled for March 11, 2020​ beginning at ​6:00 p.m.​ at the ​St. John Valley Technology Center​ ​in ​Frenchville.
  1. Call meeting to Order
  2. Roll Call
  3. Adjustments to the Agenda
  4. Period of Public Participation on Items of this Agenda
  5. Approval of Minutes
    1. Approval of the 13th Meeting, February 26, 2020
  6. Executive Director
    1. Update: Valley United Concerned Citizens v. Valley Unified Education Service Center
    2. Valley Unified Administrator Reports
  7. Items of Business
    1. Policy Review
      1. Second read of Policy BDD: Board-Superintendent Relationship
      2. Second read of Policy BE: Service Center Meetings
      3. Second Read of Policy BEDH - Public Participation at Board Meetings
    2. Old Business
      1. Phase 2 Engineering - Architect Concept Design
      2. Legal Representation
    3. New Business
      1. Valley Unified “Think Tank” Plan
      2. Regional School Unit (RSU) Language
      3. Budget Hearing #3: Second Read of Budget
  8. Motion to Adjourn

Anticipated EdTech Openings 20-21

posted Feb 28, 2020, 9:45 AM by Vincent Vanier   [ updated Mar 4, 2020, 6:40 AM ]

The Madawaska School Department anticipates having the following employment openings for various Educational Technician positions at Madawaska Elementary School during the 2020-2021 school year.  Please visit our website to apply online or visit our Superintendent of Schools Office for an application.  

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