Dean Stewart Photography
Good Thursday afternoon Wildcats,
As we close in on our sixth full week of distance learning, I wanted to reach out and thank our entire school community for your strength and resilience in meeting all of the challenges of this “new normal.” Since I last corresponded with you a lot has happened in terms of federal and state orders on social distancing and as our community begins to open up a bit from this sort of hibernation, I know there are still more questions than answers for all of us. From a school standpoint, we are working on many things to help close out what has been a challenging school year to say the least. Our bookkeeper, Ms. Kay Beach is working hard on ensuring any and all funds sent to the school for events and field trips are being reimbursed through the county accounting office and her tracking and the expediting of this has been nothing short of heroic. If you’ve not yet received funds that you are due, please be patient as they should be coming shortly. Concurrently with this effort, we are working with our vendors to seek reimbursements and, as you can imagine, that process is slow given that many businesses have been shuttered during this community crisis.
From an instructional standpoint, many of our teachers recently completed the final mid-term grades for the last nine weeks and will begin closing out final grades for the year the week of May 15. I applaud their collective effort once again and cannot say enough about our staff in meeting the needs of students as well as abbreviating a lot of work and submittal deadlines. Additionally, I would like to again thank our parents and students for working feverishly to meet expectations during unbelievably extraordinary times and circumstances. It certainly has not been perfect and frustrations are evident; however, given these conditions I remain amazed at how well all in our school community have handled this crisis. Our entire existence and way of life has been stressed beyond limits, but we continue to push on with a spirit that is inspiring!!!
We are currently working on several plans for the retrieval of instructional materials such as textbooks, uniforms, and computers that may have been checked out as we began this effort. Additionally, we are also working on a plan to gather items students left behind in our PE lockers and hope to communicate these plans in the very near future. Needless to say, it may be rather chaotic in how we accomplish these things, and I humbly ask for your patience and understanding with the plan that we eventually roll out, and I also ask that you follow the instructions explicitly in order to maintain a safe and secure process for all. Once again, please be on the lookout for this plan from Assistant Principal Catherine Halbuer in the very near future.
On a final note, our 2020 Graduation Committee, made up of staff, students, and parents, has had several Skype sessions to review multiple plans for graduation. It has been a monumental task for this committee to amend, adjust, re-adjust, recalibrate, and then re-adjust again based on ever-changing district, state, and federal guidelines on what we are and/or are not allowed to do. We currently have several plans and back-up plans in place. More information may need to be added or adjusted based on factors that are outside our control at the school level. I do wish to thank the committee for its unwavering commitment to ensuring we have some type of meaningful graduation for our Class of 2020 and I am confident that it will happen — with flexibility and adjustments of course.
Please note that next week is Teacher Appreciation Week and if you have some time, please let any and all teachers out there know how much they are loved and appreciated. Our teachers are parents and grandparents like all of us, and they have been balancing a lot in this holistic community effort. Please accept my best wishes for a great weekend and keep an eye out for a lot of news in the near future about all the aforementioned items in this letter.
Rick Fleming, principal