Good afternoon and welcome to the weekend!
I hope this update finds you and your family well and ready for a nice weekend. Even though this was a short week, it sure was a busy one for our students and staff and I am sure everyone is excited for the quick break before the craziness of Spring and State Testing begins.
As it has been communicated by each building principal, State testing begins across the district next week and will continue through the end of April. Please make sure your student is well-rested prior to testing. A good night of sleep as well as a quality breakfast will help give your student the needed stamina to take these rather lengthy tests.
Also, in order to help reduce test anxiety, always encourage your student to do the best they can do; but not to get too anxious about the assessments. While it is important to do their best, these assessments are less important than your child’s emotional health.
I personally am disappointed that the State is moving forward with these tests, as the results, in my opinion, will not be valid due to the challenges we faced over the last 13 months. Regardless, we all need to encourage our students to take a deep breath and do their best.
Last night at the meeting of the Board of Education, Mr. Ile, our Director of Curriculum and Instruction, outlined the SCS Extended Learning Plan. This plan was suggested by our Governor as a way for Ohio’s school districts to extend learning opportunities to help offset the impacts we have endured during this pandemic.
A link to this plan can be found here and on our website. As you read through this plan, please remember this is a fluid document and revisions will occur as we move forward.
The general focus of our plan is to provide the needed academic and social/emotional support to our students as a result of the pandemic. This is not an overnight fix and the plan is designed to offer supports to our students over the next few years to address learning gaps. Another priority for our schools is to address the social – emotional needs of students who may have encountered the added stress from not fully participating in traditional school this past year.
Please take time to look at the plan and expect to hear more as we develop and roll out the plan. Thanks to our Federal and State governments, the comprehensive supports outlined in the plan will be funded solely through Federal stimulus dollars. None of the funding will come from our general fund.
Also last night at the Board of Education meeting, I had a discussion with our board members regarding our intentions to open school in the fall on an all-in, five day a week schedule. Additionally, we will offer a very limited choice of virtual learning options similar to what we offered pre-pandemic.
The board of education supports the premise that our students need to be in classrooms, five days a week. Of course we will continue to follow all safety guidelines set forth by the health departments in order to keep our students and staff safe. My Friday Updates in April and May will contain more information regarding the opening of school next fall.
Finally, it is still our intention to bring our K-5 students back to five days of instruction this Spring as soon as testing is concluded. More information will be provided in the coming weeks regarding this schedule.
I hope everyone has had a chance to enjoy the spring weather this week and hopefully we have seen the last of snow for the season.
Remember to continue to be diligent with our safety measures so that we can keep our students and staff safe and in school until summer recess. Have a super weekend and Go Rockets!
R. Michael Daulbaugh