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A Message from the CEO: Looking Forward to the 2019-20 School Year

Note: The following is from the Weekly Message that CEO Tony Sanders sends to staff, featuring personal reflections, important updates, staff and student success stories and more. They are also archived to read here

May 30, 2019

Thank you all for a great 2018-19 school year.  For my last weekly message of the year, I thought you might appreciate a glimpse into what you can expect in 2019-20:

  • We are purchasing cell phone holders for every secondary classroom. Now that all 5th through 12th graders will have Chromebooks, I see no reason why students should be on their cell phones during instructional time.  Students will be able to reach their phones in the event of an emergency.  Otherwise, the classroom time will be focused on teacher instruction, discussion and collaboration.
  • Identification will be required for all staff members and for all students in middle and high school worn on the upper torso on the outermost garment. Secondary schools will need to review their process to ensure identifications are worn.  IDs are the only mechanism we have to ensure it is appropriate for someone to be inside our schools and we need to monitor each other. 
  • There will be more administrative support for elementary schools. We have posted 10 new assistant principal positions for Sycamore Trails, Channing, Laurel Hill, Illinois Park, Glenbrook, Lincoln, Heritage, Harriet Gifford, Lowrie, and Oakhill.
  • We will present to the Board and then implement a plan to increase proficiency and measurable growth of students in math for grades K through 6.
  • We will present a plan to the Board to measure and increase the number of teachers and students feeling safe at school, including a timeline for the inclusion of social-emotional learning into the curriculum. Many of you learned more about integrated units this week.
  • Facility utilization will also be a large topic. We will begin a full facility utilization review with the goal of preparing for educational pathways, determining the feasibility of moving 6th grade to middle school, and providing more school choice opportunities. 

These are just a few areas of the work that will begin in 2019-20.  The Board has been explicit in their goals (last several pages of the contract) for me which provide a lot more detail about what you can expect next year and beyond.

Click here to watch a video from our School & Community Relations Department capturing our five back-to-back graduation ceremonies last Saturday at the Sears Centre.

All my best,