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Madison Metropolitan School District

Weekly Update to the Board of Education 2-4-2021

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

Dear Board Members,
This week, which marks the second week of the 3rd Quarter, is also the first week of our traditionally celebrated Black History month. As our nation continues to celebrate the historic inauguration of Kamala Harris as our first Vice President who is Black, female and South Asian American, this year’s Black History Month presents new opportunities to inspire our students, staff, families and community members to reach their full potential. These opportunities run parallel with movements throughout our community and nation which are addressing concerns about racial injustice, disparities, and social inequalities. MMSD can be at the forefront of these efforts as we work to be innovative while dealing with the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and racial injustice.

During Monday’s Instruction Work Group (IWG) meeting, board members had vigorous dialogue with district leadership and other staff around topics such as reopening planning timelines, athletics, and behavioral education. Our district’s capacity to be intentional, innovative and equitable will determine the effectiveness of our policies and practices as we grapple with these and other critical issues. As adults address these matters, we must also acknowledge the potential for our efforts to be greatly enhanced by listening to the voices of our students. Therefore, we look forward to our Student Senate hosting an Instagram Live session to engage their fellow students in these conversations on February 26th.

As we continue on our journey towards equity and excellence, we continue to highlight and showcase our emerging best practices, talented students and dedicated staff. As such, I would like to highlight Capital High School Counselor Marianne Matt, who has been selected as the School Counselor of the Year for the State of Wisconsin and was formally recognized at today’s Wisconsin School Counselor Association National School Counseling Week Breakfast. Marianne’s accomplishments, as well the many positive stories occurring throughout our district, reinforce the notion - “if it can happen anywhere, it can happen in Madison!”

After our recent meeting with our medical advisory group and noticing our dashboard is turning green in several areas, we are reminding staff to be prepared to reopen soon if things continue to move in this positive direction. We will stick to our commitment to giving three weeks’ notice to everyone.

Thanks for your continued support and partnership. We look forward to providing you with more updates on our district’s progress next week.

Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.


Weekly Update, February 4, 2021