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Madison Metropolitan School District

Weekly Update to the Board of Education 2-25-2021

A message from Superintendent Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.

Dear Board Members,

This week has certainly been eventful, as MMSD continues addressing the ongoing pandemics of COVID-19 and racial injustice. As both pandemics continue to illuminate educational, economic and other disparities in our community and nation, we remain resolute in being guided by our core values and embracing the fight for human decency. This effort requires us to build a culture of discipline in order to increase the intentionality and innovativeness needed to ameliorate disparities and build learning environments where our students, staff and families can thrive.

During Monday’s school board meeting, board members had vigorous dialogue with district students, staff and families around ensuring equity in our external fundraising policies and practices. This topic continues to challenge our capacity for finding innovative ways to implement our policies in alignment with the spirit of our Strategic Framework. While participating in this dialogue, it will be important to deeply reflect on the insights provided by disparate voices, while using our creativity to maximize resources for the benefit of different parts of our diverse community.

Throughout this week, we have continued engaging in collaborative and strategic conversations with MTI, APP and our other partners. These conversations, which reflect our desire to amplify the voices of our staff and families, are even more important during times when it is difficult to reach consensus. However, we remain inspired by the insights of Good to Great, which suggests engaging in rigorous, yet respectful debate, can spur greater organizational efficiency and effectiveness.

As we engage in the dialogue needed to enhance our district's upward trajectory, we must continue to listen to the voices of our students. Their perspectives are critical to refining our efforts to prepare students for college, careers and the community. As such, I am looking forward to engaging with our Student Senate in their Instagram Live event, tomorrow at 5 pm.

Thanks for your continued support and partnership. We look forward to providing you with more updates on our district’s progress next week. During these challenging times, please stay encouraged about the potential of our community to reach unprecedented heights. Remember, everyone marvels at the beauty of the butterfly, but we often forget about the transformation process it must undergo. I remain convinced - “if it can happen anywhere, it can happen in Madison!”

Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.


Weekly Update, February 25, 2021