A message from Superintendent Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.
Dear Board Members,
This week marks the third week of our fourth quarter. Our community, state, and nation continue to wrestle with uncertainty due to staffing shortages, surges in COVID-19 cases due to new versions of the Omicron variant, price inflation, racial injustice, and social unrest. Despite the challenges of our times, we receive inspiration from the accomplishments of our students, families, staff, and community members as they exhibit resilience in pursuit of excellence and equity.
This week, we have witnessed new examples of our students and staff doggedly pursuing both excellence and equity. During this year’s African American History Challenge Bowl, sponsored by Madison’s chapter of the 100 Black Men, Wright Middle School won the junior division, while Memorial High School captured the senior division. Gordon Allen, President of East High School’s student body, was profiled this week in a Wisconsin State Journal (WSJ) article which discussed his acceptance to Stanford University as well as his leadership and advocacy. Our district’s work around antiracism was highlighted in a separate WSJ article, which complemented a powerful social media story about our district administration and Madison Teachers Incorporated (MTI) collaborating on a Big Ideas project to deliver joint antiracism professional development to hundreds of staff this year.
These stories are representative of the many examples of the efforts of our students and staff learning forward together with equity, excellence, and humanity. Their current accomplishments can be magnified by our intentional efforts to refine our policies and practices. Hence, I am delighted to see our draft preliminary budget book, which tells the story of how our core values are embodied by our planned strategic investments, being made ready for public input. Certainly, our ability to inspire efficacy and foster resilience is illustrated by our budgetary decision making. Our ongoing vigorous conversations in this area demonstrates our district’s efforts to be good stewards of our supportive community’s resources.
Thank you for your ongoing support and partnership. We look forward to providing you with more updates on our district’s progress next week.
Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.