Friday, August 13, 2010

Almost "Go" Time!

As I headed back into town the other day on 690, I noticed that the "Fair Parking" signs are up which means that one of my favorite summer time activities is right around the corner and so is the start of school (not that school isn't one of my favorite activities either!). 

People have asked me if I have had a good Summer. I have had a great Summer. Because I began my superintendent career at such a young age (29), my family and I really have not had the opportunity to travel. This summer we were afforded the opportunity to get as far west as we have ever been; Chicago.  What a cool city. One of the museums had a full size steam locomotive, Boeing 727, and lunar module in it.  The aquarium has an "Asian Lung Fish" that was brought to Chicago for the World's Fair in 1930 and is still alive today. Definitely a worthwhile trip.

This Summer has also been the busiest work wise that I have had in my career. With the uncertainty of the state budget, the changes in assessment scores, and the downsizing that we are trying to accommodate, we have had our hands full.

This is also the Summer where we need to conduct a five year facility plan. This plan is mandatory and has to be completed every five years (hence the name!). An architect walks through each building and helps us to determine what needs to be fixed, updated, brought up to code, etc...  Once the plan is completed (sometime early 2011 would be my best guess) the Board of Education has to decide if we want to take care of the items listed on the plan through a Capital Improvement Project. I will keep you up to date on that as we work through the plan.

We are also going to assemble our anti-bullying task force shortly. I have spent some time this Summer reading and researching different programs. The best idea is just to treat others how you would like to be treated but if we did that a lot of people selling programs to stop bullying would be out of work and the economy would be in worse shape than it already is!

This will also be the year that we really study the concept of full-day kindergarten. We will be looking to see if we can begin and run a program without adding to our facilities first and if that is not possible, we will determine what it would take and cost facility-wise to make it happen. Full-day kindergarten is a touchy subject. There are organizations and schools in our community that depend on their own full day programs, and I am extremely sensitive to that. We hope to be able to present something to the Board for consideration by the end of the school year.

I am getting excited to begin the school year but not before we enjoy the rest of this summer!