Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy New Year!

2015 is in the Books: When I reflected on the year as a whole it felt like a mixed bag of good and bad.

In the negative column, we lost a wonderful teacher in Mrs. Macaluso, more students and staff had issues with sick or hurt parents and family members than I can remember happening in quite some time, and the state of education in New York State was in as much turmoil as I have seen it in my fifteen years as a superintendent.

In the positive column and through it all, our students performed, our community was supportive, and our employees rose to every challenge.

Looking Forward to 2016: We begin 2016 with a community forum on January 21 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. to help all of us come to terms with a growing substance abuse issue in our community, followed later in the month by our annual and powerful district strategic planning process.

Thanks to a new Commissioner of Education and state leaders who appear to finally be listening, the turmoil that existed last year seems to be heading in a much better direction. It is likely that the amount of testing students will be exposed to will be less and the results of that testing will not have the impact on teacher evaluations that it has for the past couple of years.

Our Capital Project will be in full swing this spring and Onondaga Road Elementary School and East Hill Elementary School will finally have cafeterias by fall, which is great news for students; this also will allow for future discussions about programming.

Will this year be better than last year? That is always the goal. As a leader I can never dwell on the past; I can only learn from it, make what was good even better, and not repeat anything bad that was in my control. Sound easy? Easy or not, here we go! Have a great start to the new year and thank you for your continued support.