Superintendent’s Corner Column
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do.” Steve Jobs
February 19, 2023
As we turn the corner and run into the second half of the school year, we are pleased to update you on the progress made toward achieving our objectives. We will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that all students receive a high-quality education and are well-prepared for success in the future. We remain committed to expanding opportunities for all students and improving student achievement and growth. We have implemented a number of programs and initiatives designed to improve student performance. Our teachers and staff continue with a dedication to ensure that every student receives the support they need to succeed. Our administration and staff are focused on efforts to foster safe and supportive learning environments for all students with a commitment to social-emotional learning, a positive school culture, and a safe and nurturing learning environment for all of our students.
We believe that strong partnerships between schools, families, and communities are essential to student success. We have worked hard to improve communication and collaboration with our entire learning community with a focus on enhancing opportunities for our students and staff. To that end, we have increased community engagement through feedback sessions in the development of our strategic plan.
Strategic Plan The strategic plan work has made excellent and significant progress. The District’s overarching goals have been established with the input of our community stakeholders. The objectives and initiatives are currently being refined. Our last Steering Committee meeting was held on February 10th, where the team discussed the monitoring of progress toward our strategic direction with established timelines over the next five years. The development of action plans to achieve these goals is underway, and headway will be monitored through regular progress reports. As we finalize the development of the plan, our next steps will be to discuss the outcomes of the strategic plan in our Board Committees with an update to the public this spring.
Energy Savings Improvement Program The District administrative team hosted a kickoff meeting on February 7th as we plan to implement a number of initiatives aimed at reducing energy consumption and increasing operational efficiency. The improvements include upgrades to lighting and heating systems, the installation of programmable thermostats, roof resurfacing, solar installation, and the implementation of a district-wide energy management system. These efforts are expected to result in substantial energy reduction with improvements to our facilities.
NJ QSAC Audit Status The District is currently undergoing its NJ QSAC (Quality Single Accountability Continuum), and the preparation for the audit is on track. While we do not yet have the final results, the recent review of our instruction and program, as well as our facilities walkthrough, was positively received by the Department of Education. The District administration and staff have worked diligently to position our District to meet all of the requirements of the QSAC to achieve a high level of accreditation. The completion of the audit will be finalized later this spring, with results available in the coming months.
School Construction Project Planning The District administration and staff are in the planning stages of a number of future school construction projects at both high schools. The projects will include the replacement of athletic field lights at both high schools, as well as tennis court resurfacing, restroom renovations, the replacement of walk-in refrigerators and freezers, and a new snack stand at Indian Hills High School. The District has been engaged with our team of architects and engineers to design the projects and is working with them to ensure that the project meets the District’s needs and is completed on time and within budget. These construction projects are subject to and planned for public bid in late winter and early spring.
We have much work ahead of us. I am confident that with the support of our dedicated staff, families, and community members, we will continue to make great strides toward achieving our goals and providing the best possible education for our students.
All my best,
Dr. Rui Dionisio
Superintendent of Schools
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