Dear Reading School Community:
I hope that your summer experiences have been restful, energizing, and reflective. I would like to take this opportunity to officially welcome you to the start of the 2010-11 School Year. For those of you who are new to the Reading Public Schools, welcome to our community and our school district. Our schools are ready to provide our students with quality educational experiences as we work together to prepare your child for their future. Today was the first day of school in the district and by all accounts, it was a very smooth opening. We hope that it was a great opening day as well for your child. For updated information about your child’s school, please go to our newly revised Edline site at http://www.edline.net/pages/ReadingPublicSchools .
This is my first blog entry for Pathways, a blog that will focus on issues that are important to the Reading Public Schools. My hope is that in this blog, I will regularly share with you activities that are happening in our school district, as well as how local, state, and national issues affect our schools. Some of the topics that I will focus on in the future will include Race to the Top Funding and Initiatives, my transition plan, the new State Anti-bullying law, the FY12 budget process, and the Federal Education Jobs Bill. I encourage you to comment on these items when they appear in the blog.
As always, our district has been a very active place this summer. Building principals have hired a number of outstanding new teachers who have just completed our annual new teacher orientation program. Teachers and administrators have participated in several workshops on a variety of topics including the Teaching of American History Grant, anti-bullying, literacy, technology, professional learning communities, curriculum initiatives, literacy, elementary report cards, and the November Learning Building Learning Communities technology conference. We have had teachers travel with students to the volcanoes of Iceland, the Parthenon in Greece, and perform community service building homes on the eastern shores of Virginia. Our custodial, maintenance, and technology staff has been working diligently to make sure that everything is in order to start the school year, particularly at Killam and Birch Meadow where major energy management system work was completed this summer. Finally, over 400 students and 20 teachers took part in our summer program offerings which included extended year learning camps, the Reading Enrichment Academy, Five Star Theater Camp, Reading Recreation and Club Invention.
I am honored and proud to be working with a community that is invested in public education and with a dedicated team of administrators, teachers, and staff who each and every day strives to do what is best for children. Each year, the challenges seem to get greater as we continue to try to do more with less. However, I am confident that our spirit of teamwork and collaboration that was evident last year during very difficult times will continue to strengthen and thrive. We need to continue to find ways to work smarter and not harder towards our mission and vision. Our teachers, administrators, and district staff look forward to working with you and supporting your child this year. Please know that we will do everything we possibly can to provide the best education for the 4400 students of the Reading Public Schools.
As I enter my first full year as Superintendent of Schools, I will be announcing opportunities for parents and community members to meet with me and discuss the Reading Public Schools as part of my transition plan. I am looking forward to these conversations and hearing what you feel are the strengths of the school district and what areas need to be strengthened. Your input will help me gain a greater understanding of the Reading Public Schools and the Reading community. In addition, I will continue to hold neighborhood coffee hours. If you are interested in hosting one, please contact our office at 781-944-5800 or send an email to Linda Engelson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year I plan to communicate with you using this format and other media to apprise you of different events and accomplishments that are happening in our district throughout the school year. I look forward to working with each of you in my first full year as Superintendent and wishyou a fabulous ending to your summer.