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Superintendent’s Message: Working Together for One Goal

Theresa Davidson, Superintendent of Schools

Theresa Davidson, Superintendent of Schools

 In a few days, our school campuses will be buzzing again as students  return to the classroom after what feels like a very short summer break.  The new beginning was clearly eminent last week when nearly 50 new  teachers arrived for a week of orientation to curriculum and instruction  unique to Emporia!

 We will kick off the year for all employees with breakfast and a  convocation sponsored by the Hopkins Foundation on Thursday. This  partnership affords us a new opportunity to energize our staff and offer  a unique collection of professional learning opportunities tailored  specifically for USD 253 employees. Kansas educator Kevin Honeycutt  will deliver a keynote address describing “Trends, Tools & Tactics for  21st Century Learning” and powering up the responsibility that each of  us shares in the mission of preparing today’s students for tomorrow’s  opportunities.

Over the past three years, much work has gone into redesigning our curriculum to align with Kansas College and Career Ready Standards in math, science, social studies and English language arts. Just as that work comes into focus, teachers and district administrators are selecting appropriate resources and building comprehensive professional development to support the instructional design that accompanies these contemporary expectations.  Completing the cycle is a new assessment and accountability system devised to measure individual achievement as well as monitor program progress.

Given the speed at which technology and the body of knowledge are changing, the teaching profession will always require innovation and changing practices. However, for now, the hard work is done!  We are in a fortunate position to refine and build capacity among staff members to move forward in this seamless system of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment that supports student learning for the future.

All this preparation gives us ONE awesome opportunity to make a difference for every ONE of our students.  But it’s really only a success story if every ONE succeeds; so each ONE of us must be empowered to successfully fulfill our unique role in this important job called “learning.”

This fall, as we begin yet another journey, our staff comes together as ONE district with a common purpose, ONE effort demonstrating the importance of education to every single ONE of our students. Whether you are a principal, teacher, bus driver, secretary, parent or community member, we are all working toward the same ONE goal – a vital and prosperous future for Emporia’s kids!

All of us who are a part of the district leadership team are eager to welcome staff and students back for a new school year. We especially want to extend a warm welcome to new teachers and support staff, many of whom are just beginning their professional careers in education and to new families moving to our community.  It’s a privilege to be a part of the POWER of ONE – ONE voice in pursuit of ONE vision, ONE mission and ONE joy of learning!

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