Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Happy Wednesday,

     As we begin to experience intermittent weather conditions that initiate the signs of winter, I want to be sure everyone interested has the information and awareness of our "emergency communication system -- School Messenger".  As I suggest, this communication system allows the Liverpool School District to send e-mails, text messages, and pre-recorded phone calls to your home - in the event of a building and/or district closure, delay, conditions require us to close early.  The system also can be (and is) used for sharing of pertinent information - that is time sensitive or needs to be broadcast to a wide audience (such as major building events).  If you are not currently participating in the School Messenger system and would like to - please contact the school building personnel for information regarding subscribing.

     Recently, I discussed the necessity for our school district to begin planning beyond our current school year - for several reasons.  Often schools base much of this planning on the current school budget constraints . . . unfortunately, the planning ends up focused on the limitations and constraints of what's affordable in the available dollars . . . rather than long-range thinking, forecasting, program developing.  We have rolled out three committees - which are all charged with specific tasks - as associated with their respective titles:  Strategic Planning; Facility Advisory, and Partners in Business.  Each of these committees are in varying phases of their development and contributions to the long-range thinking of the district.

     Speaking specifically about the Facility Advisory Committee -- this committee has undertaken the responsibility to evaluate and prioritize the Capital Improvements identified by the school district and other professional resources.  As we evaluate the breadth and depth of this task, we understand the complexity of balancing the fiscal responsibility, the economic constraints, the necessity for preserving and maintaining safe and secure buildings, with the accountability to students and their curricular requirements.  The committee will be looking at this equation from 2-sides:  short-term facility needs and long-term program changes necessary to allow students to be College and Career Ready . . .   It is anticipated the committee will be making a recommendation to the LCSD Board of Education recommending a Capital Project Referendum in the near future.

     Finally we have reached a point in the year-long discussions with 60+ participants regarding 3 scenario options for the Re-Districting Committee.  Prior to Dr. John's retirement from the position as Superintendent of Schools - he charged a committee (led by Consultant Ellen Kuno) to provide a recommendation to the Board of Education regarding [long-term] restructuring plans for elementary and middle school buildings - specific to geography boundaries, enrollments, program placements, and other associated constraints which have limited students from attending their neighborhood school buildings.  It is expected that Mrs. Kuno will be ready to present the data to the Board on Nov. 18th.

     Lastly, I would like to extend my congratulations to the following teachers for being named New York State "Master Teachers":  Andrew Calderwood, Wanda Padula,  Jeffry Peneston, Sara Pieklik, Rita Putnam, and Jennifer Terpening.  It certainly is a distinguished honor and each one is an inspiration to us all.

Thanks, Mark Potter