I hope you have all had adventurous and healthy summers. Things in the district have been busy. You will all arrive to clean buildings with many new features. The cleanliness of the buildings is due to the hard work of the custodial crews and our summer help. This summer was particularly hot. The custodians deserve a great deal of thanks for getting the buildings ready for you and your students – thank you.
Our three areas of focus this year will continue to be on instruction, technology, and communication. Similar to last year, there will be some changes. While I obviously believe the changes are positive and urgently needed, I am mindful that change – even positive – can cause anxiety. Whenever possible, those impacted by these changes have been (or will be) involved in making the decisions surrounding the change.
Going into detail on all that is happening in the district in this letter will put many of you to sleep. I will bullet some significant items. I plan on going into detail on each of these items on my blog or at individual faculty meetings in the coming months. It seems a better use of your time than to make you sit through a two-hour power point. If any of the topics require a more in-depth conversation, we will have these conversations with the people who are directly impacted to get some direction.
- New Education Reform Laws in Massachusetts including new Common Core (National) Standards.
- Growth Scores included with Student MCAS Scores
- New Anti-Bullying Legislation
- Professional Development Schedule – Addition of Five Afternoon Sessions
- Elementary: Assessment Schedule, Report Card Schedule, Curriculum Councils, Various Subject Area Curriculum Pilots
- Middle: Continued Inclusion, Virtual High School Courses, Math Olympiad, Reading Program Changes
- High School: Web 2.0 Program Expansion, One-to-One Initiative, Dual Enrollment Courses
- Continued Implementation of New Student Management Software – X2
- Expanded Wireless Environments in All Schools
- Continued Implementation of Burlington’s Cloud Environment (BLINK)
- New Music, Language, and Library Labs at the high school
- 30 New Bob Carts in the Elementary Schools
- Continued Expansion of Providing Laptops to Staff
- Expansion of Wall Mounted Interactive White Boards at the Elementary Schools
With all of these new application and products coming on line, professional development will be critical.
- New Memorial Schools scheduled to open next fall
- Middle School renovation and addition scheduled to begin in winter
- Redistricting four elementary schools
Please continue to invite me to your classrooms. The more I understand about what you need to be successful, the better the central office can be at being a resource to you. Visiting classrooms is also the best part of my job.
Our journey together this year begins on August 30st. We will spend a brief amount of time welcoming our new colleagues and singing. Coffee and snacks will be served in the high school cafeteria starting at 7:30 AM. We will gather in the auditorium at about 8:30 AM. After the presentation, I would like to speak with the elementary staff for about 20 minutes. From the high school, faculty and staff should report to their respective buildings. Tuesday, August 31st will be our first, school-based professional development day.
Thank you in advance for all of your efforts and enjoy the last week of summer.