BWRSD Community Update 3/26/21
Message from Jonathan Brice, Superintendent of Schools
Dear BWRSD community,
On March 25, 2021, the Joint Finance Committee (JFC) passed a budget for the Bristol Warren Regional School District (BWRSD). The budget provides for all requested funding and I would like to thank the JFC for their approval of this budget.
Many members of the BWRSD school community also emailed and communicated with the JFC to encourage them to fully fund our budget request and I thank you for your advocacy for our students, staff, and district. BWRSD will need your continued advocacy as we develop our 2021-2026 Strategic Plan, solidify our Diversity and Equity work so that all students feel safe, supported, and encouraged in our buildings; and develop and expand Career and Technical Education (CTE).
The approved budget allows us to maintain programming but will require reductions, as well. The next several months will be challenging as district administrators and I work together to plan for an estimated $2.3 million in cuts to services, staff, and materials to work within the approved budget. Enrollment in our district has fallen consistently over the last several years and we must implement corresponding reductions in staff. This will result in class size increases at some grade levels (still within contractual limits), and some elective courses may not operate this upcoming year. To address this, we will increase student access to electives and higher level courses through our Edgenuity platform or the state of Rhode Island’s Advanced Coursework Network (ACN). District operations will be consolidated by relocating the district office and centralizing purchasing. As we make these necessary reductions, we remain committed to protecting schools and classrooms, as much as possible, so all students can continue to learn, grow, and thrive.
Despite the challenges our district faces, we will continue to benchmark ourselves against other RI districts. The essence of BWRSD's goal of becoming a Top 5 in 5 years academically performing district is to compare ourselves across a variety of metrics to determine if we are making progress in ensuring all students meet and exceed state proficiency expectations and graduation outcomes. This includes research-based metrics for PreK-12 education such as state assessment results in reading and mathematics in grades 3-8 and 11, and science in grades 5, 8, and 11; in addition to the number of seniors who graduate within 4 years, the number of students who dropout over a 4 year period, and the percentage of students who have not identified a college. These metrics for BWRSD can be found on our district website at www.bwrsd.org. Working together, I know that we can ensure that every student has the opportunity to meet and exceed these rigorous benchmarks.
Thank you for your support.
Jonathan T. Brice, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
Please visit our Back to School 2020-21 web page for important updates and links to our reopening plan and resources.