It is an honor and privilege to serve as Superintendent of Schools for MSAD # 28 and Five Town CSD. People who are involved in our schools are justified in feeling a sense of pride in the quality of education provided in our schools and the accomplishments of our staff and young people. That being said and hopefully continually affirmed, I will lead from the stance that even great schools can get better through an attitude of continual improvement and growth.
In order to get a detailed perspective of the current status of the districts overall, I have initiated a transition plan that includes meeting individually with staff members reflecting a broad scope of roles and responsibilities. I am in the process of setting up a schedule of monthly meetings with all administrators, directors and association representatives. I will make time available in my schedule over the next few months to meet with any staff or community member who would like to provide input, suggestions and ideas. I will be introducing myself to town officials and representatives of community organizations. By the middle of September, I will report to the Board a summary of the status of the districts, detailing areas that need attention.
The notice of vacancy for Assistant Superintendent has been posted, and a screening team will be reviewing applications shortly. We are in the process of filling other open positions. A new staff orientation will be scheduled for August, new staff members are being supported in the respective schools this summer, and a coaching process for new teachers is being established using the framework from The Art and Science of Teaching.
A team of teachers and administrators attended an ASCD conference in St. Louis on June 30 presented by nationally recognized author and researcher David Livingston on the topic of The Art and Science of Teaching. These folks are meeting on July 9th as a steering committee that will be guiding the implementation of this instructional framework in our districts over the next two years. Their initial task will be to identify the content and structure of the August 28 opening day workshop presented by David Livingston. This important professional development is being funded through the Title 1 Continuous Improvement Priority Status (CIPS) plan.
I have been working with chairs Tori Manzi and Bob Lawson to initiate a process for strategic direction setting for the future. Union # 69 superintendent, Tom Marx, has been communicating with us about a possible cooperative planning process for Union #69, MSAD # 28 and Five Town CSD. Tori and Bob will detail ideas and seek input from the Boards regarding this important work.
I have set dates for the administrative retreat (August 8 and 9). The retreat will be held at CHRHS, and a portion of the day on August 9 will be with Union # 69 administrators.
Reports for NCLB are due in August, and will require a substantial amount of my time to complete. Most of our funds for professional development are through the various titles of NCLB for the coming year. We will complete a performance report that details the achievement results of the programs implemented last year, and an application for funds for the coming school year. I will share copies of both reports to the respective Boards when completed.
On the MSAD side, the teachers and administrators have completed the first days of training in using the Everyday Math program (K- 6) with fidelity. Additional trainings for teachers of Everyday Math and Glencoe Math will be held this summer. On the CSD side, a number of teachers have been approved for summer curriculum work to base their instruction on standards, including the Common Core. Many teachers are attending professional development activities throughout the summer.
The Jumpstart Program for incoming kindergarten children has started very successfully at CRES.
All in all, it is a very busy time of year, with much to do prior to the opening of school next month. This is particularly noticeable in each building as staff members work hard to maintain our beautiful grounds and facilities, and to plan upgrades where needed.
We have very dedicated and capable people in all roles and responsibilities who share with our communities a collective commitment to our young people. I am indeed fortunate.