Superintendent’s Update – June 21, 2023

Summer vacation has arrived! The end of the school year was a busy one for all. In this update, you will find pictures of the many end-of-year celebrations at each of our schools.

As the year comes to an end, I want to take a moment to thank you for your support and patience as I led the school district this past school year. My work was not alone, and could only be done with the strong work and support from an amazing team of administrators, teachers and staff! There have been many changes in the Danvers Public Schools over the past year, and I believe we are in a good place for Dan Bauer’s new leadership.  

As this year comes to a close, there are two areas that we will continue to work on over the summer. One area is refinement of our school safety and communication protocols resulting from the incidents at St. John’s Prep and the accidental alarm at Smith School. We will meet as a new administrative team this summer to review the refined protocols with the Danvers Police Department. If you have questions about our current enhanced lockdown protocols, please feel free to reference the video of our School Safety presentation that took place on September 29, 2022. We will hold a similar School Safety Presentation in conjunction with the Danvers Police Department at the start of the new school year.

The second area of work is the proposed update to the Wellness Policy. It is evident that we need more discussion and potentially a slower implementation of our shift toward this proposed update. The following link contains the proposed revisions to our current Wellness Policy highlighted in red. We are required to review this Wellness Policy every three years and Emily Cook, the Food Services Director, presented the proposed changes to the Wellness Committee, a group consisting of representatives from the Health and PE teachers, School Nurses, DanversCARES, DPS Athletic Department, and DPS administration. We will hold a meeting of stakeholders to discuss our approach to this policy before the August School Committee meeting.

Personnel Update

Assistant Principal at HRMS

We are pleased to announce that Tim McGraw will join the leadership at Holten-Richmond Middle School as an assistant principal for the 23-24 school year. Tim has spent the past 12 years as an 8th grade ELA teacher at HRMS, and has also served as a teacher leader in many capacities, including Team Leader, Teacher Leader, and a member of the district MTSS team. Tim’s years of experience as a dedicated middle school educator and teacher leader will be a welcome addition to the HRMS and DPS administrative team.  

Bus Registration for SY 2023-2024 is now open!

All students (whether new or current students) must register for the bus each year, regardless of fee payment or fee waiver. Students who do not register will not be placed on the approved transportation list. Space availability on the bus is on a first-come, first-served basis. Here is the link to register:

Bus Eligibility

Students in Grades K to 5 that live 1 mile or over from their school are bus eligible. Students in grades 6 to 12 living over 1.5 miles from their school are bus eligible.

Financial Hardship

No student will be denied transportation because of financial hardship. Bus fee waivers are available for students who qualify for free or reduced lunch. 

For further information about school transportation, please refer to this flyer.

DPS Retirees and DEEP

We want to send a special thank you to DEEP for celebrating our retirees on May 31st! 

DEEP Retirees
DEEP Retirees

The DEEP Breakfast of Champions honored the following retirees:

  • Pat Veilleux, Riverside PE Teacher
  • Heidi Nock, HRMS Science Teacher
  • Ellen White, HRMS Reading Teacher
  • Lisa D’Orlando, HRMS Computer Applications Teacher
  • Cherry Bennett, HRMS Drama and Public Speaking Teacher (retires in Oct 2023)
  • Sue DeBenedictis, DHS School Nurse

Two Retirees were also given the honor of being “DEEP Champions”

  • Maria DiChiara, Title I, McKinney Vento, Foster Care and DEEP Coordinator (retires in Sept 2023)
  • Rita Ward, Principal of Thorpe School

We wish our retirees all the best in their retirement!!  We will miss them in our schools and classrooms!

A final thank you to DEEP for all of their support throughout the school year – from their fundraising efforts, to their teacher grants, to the HRMS Spelling Bee, to their financial support of the DECA program, band, chorus and student projects, and finally,  their celebration of our retirees!

New Online Safety Resources for Families

Last week at the School Committee meeting we presented new resources available to families. In collaboration with our partner Linewize, we launched a new Hub for Online Safety. This hub includes articles, videos, and more to ensure you know how to keep your kids safe online. In addition, the Qustodio Parental Control app is also available to manage two personal devices in your home as well as manage your child’s school-owned Chromebook outside of school hours. This app gives you the ability to manage screen time, website access, and more. If you encounter any issues getting started, please email


Danvers High School Graduation took place on Saturday, June 10th. It was a wonderful celebration for our seniors!

Speakers at DHS GraduationStudents walking into DHS Graduation

Students sitting in the audience at DHS GraduationStudent close up in audience at DHS Graduation


Great Oak School

Great Oak 5th graders had their Moving On Celebration and some fun on Tuesday! Go Class of 2030!

Great Oak Class of 2030

Great Oak Class of 30 BannerGreat Oak Class of 30 Outdoor photo of a group of students

Highlands School

Highlands 5th Graders are Moving On!

Highlands Class of 2030 Group picture

Two of Highland’s grade 4 students were honored at the Stone Zoo for Zoo New Englands Spring Gala. Cameron Bastolla and Sadie Bulla were both recognized at the event on June 12th for their creation of Save the Animals Club at Highlands School.

Two of Highland’s grade 4 students were honored at the Stone Zoo

Riverside School

Riverside 5th graders move on to become HRMS Hawks!

Riverside Class of 2030 Group photoRiverside Class of 2030 Banner

Riverside Kindergarten Celebration!

Riverside Kindergarten Celebration group photo

Smith School

The Smith School held their 5th Grade Moving-On Celebration on Thursday, June 15th. Here is a picture of the Smith 5th Graders on the playground.

Smith Class of 2030 Group photo on the playground

Thorpe School

The Thorpe 5th graders will have their Moving-On ceremony on Wednesday morning where they will “walk across the stage.” Last Thursday they took a special trip to Fenway Park – what a fitting last field trip for Principal Ward!

Thorpe Students on the bus to Fenway ParkThorpe Students at Fenway Park

Holten-Richmond Middle School

The 8th Grade Moving On Ceremonies were held on Tuesday with each team having their own ceremony.

Holten-Richmond Middle School The 8th Grade Moving On Ceremonies were held on Tuesday with each team having their own ceremony.

Holten-Richmond Middle School The 8th Grade Moving On Ceremonies were held on Tuesday with each team having their own ceremony.

Holten Richmond 8th Graders at Moving on Ceremony

Salter Bus Company is Looking for Drivers!

Salter Bus Company is Looking for Drivers! Picture of Advertisement


Mass Help Line Contact Information

Massachusetts Behavioral Health Help Line

Massachusetts’ new Behavioral Health Help Line (BHHL) went live on January 3, 2023, offering direct connection to mental health and substance-use care for anyone in the Commonwealth – no insurance needed. Available 24/7, in more than 200 languages, the BHHL is a phone, text, and online chat line whose clinically-trained staff will work with you to determine the care that best fits your needs and directly connect you to treatment, including outpatient, urgent care, and immediate crisis care. Click here to learn more about the Help Line.


If you’re interested in getting mental health or substance-use help, but not sure where to start:

Call or text the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Help Line at 833-773-2445 or chat online at

DPS is Hiring

New positions have been posted for the next school year! Please visit the Employment Opportunities page on our website to view all available positions and apply online.