A message from Superintendent Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D.
Dear Board Members,
This week, which marks the beginning of our phased reopening plan, has certainly been eventful. On Tuesday, our district was energized by the excitement over our kindergarten students having the opportunity to enter our buildings for in-person instruction for the first time. Additionally, our staff members have been given a measure of hope due to being offered multiple opportunities for receiving COVID-19 vaccinations. The excitement and hopefulness in MMSD will serve to energize our district’s efforts to implement our phased reopening plan for all grades, address educational disparities, and create learning environments where all students, staff and families can thrive.
During Monday’s Operations Work Group meeting, board members had the opportunity to consider how some of our district policies and practices align with our Strategic Framework goals and Core Values. The vigorous dialogue board members engaged in with district leadership around 2021-2022 budget development and proposed enhancements to employee handbook language reflected our efforts to “confront the brutal facts” as recommended by Collins in Chapter 4 of Good to Great. The passion displayed in these conversations illustrates our desire to become more strategic and intentional in the pursuit of our aspirations of equity and excellence.
During this week, we have continued our efforts to create a climate where understanding is enhanced by the rigorous debate of ideas. These efforts were exemplified by conversations during Tuesday’s Reopening Advisory Committee where staff and our health experts critically examined the impact of changing regulations and emerging science on our phased reopening planning. Each conversation helps us to refine our instructional and operational practices as we work to ensure a safe return to in-person instructional and co-curricular options. We look forward to sharing many of the insights gained during tonight’s Facebook Livestream community conversation.
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.