Superintendent's Report

June 22, 2020

Going Out in Style!

  • The end of the 2019-2020 school year was unlike any other! Despite the adverse conditions, due to COVID-19, we were able to give our graduating seniors a wonderful send-off, allowing them to fly from the nest with several traditions intact. Individual graduation ceremonies were held for students in Cardinal Stadium, a virtual graduation ceremony was held and, perhaps the best event of all was the gauntlet down Loch Ash Avenue. It seems like we may very well have a new tradition in UDSD!
  • We were also able to celebrate our 5th and 8th graders in style! Each student got their moment in the sun during parades at FWES, JTES, MGES, TFES, and SRMS. Not even COVID-19 could stop us from celebrating with our students!
  • We would like to thank the countless parent/guardian volunteers, staff, and Board members for making each of our send-offs a success!

Coronavirus Communication

  • On Friday, June 26, 2020, our region will enter the "green" phase of Governor Wolf's plan to reopen Pennsylvania. We are cautiously optimistic that we are emerging from the pandemic conditions we have seen thus far in 2020. It will take the continued efforts to ensure the health and safety of our community.
  • Later this week we will share a planning update with our community about the 2020-2021 school year. In this week's update, we will seek some input from families and community members regarding their concerns, at the moment, about COVID-19 and the upcoming school year.
  • We will also revise the schedule previously released about Facebook live chats and other communications from the District about COVID-19 and planning for the 2020-2021 school year.
  • Decisions about safety protocols will be based upon the most current data and research.

Health & Safety Plan - PIAA Junior/Senior High School Athletics

  • This evening the Board of School Directors is being asked to approve a Health and Safety Plan for PIAA Junior and Senior High School Athletics and Marching Band. The approval of this plan is required for sports and marching band to commence.
  • The plan accounts for almost all activities to take place outdoors, with physical distancing, face coverings, temperature checks, health screenings, hygiene protocols, and educational sessions in place.
  • While the plan is being presented this evening, it can and may evolve as additional guidance is provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Montgomery County Department of Public Safety.

Health & Safety Plan - Reopening UDSD

  • Our work continues on the completion of a plan to reopen UDSD safely for students and staff. The plan to reopen schools needs to be approved locally by our Board of School Directors, and it also must be approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE). PDE has not yet provided a timeframe for when districts can submit their plans for approval. Only after the plan is approved by both entities - our Board of School Directors and PDE can in-person instruction resume in UDSD.
  • All Districts across Montgomery County, including Upper Dublin, will conduct Extended School Year (ESY) virtually. We will provide both synchronous and asynchronous instruction for students.

Farewell to Two Familiar Faces

  • Earlier this month we received the resignation of Dr. Jill Clark, Sandy Run Middle School Principal. Dr. Clark served as the "Proud Principal" of SRMS for over five years. She has moved on to a new role in education, serving as the CEO of a charter school in Philadelphia. In her new role, Dr. Clark will oversee the K-8 division of a large charter system, leading the way in which a superintendent of a traditional public school does. We wish Dr. Clark well, and we know she will enjoy much success in the future. We are in the process of interviewing candidates for the SRMS Principal position, and we hope to announce the finalist in the coming weeks.
  • Mr. Phil Vinogradov, our Director of Innovation and Technology, has decided to move on to a private school setting and take on a role that will afford him the opportunity to spend more time directly involved in curriculum and instruction. In his role here in the District, his leadership involves much of the "behind the scenes" workings of technology. An educator at heart, Phil's new role will give him a much more active role in teaching and learning. We wish Phil all the best now and always! The search is now on for our next Director of Innovation and Technology.

Budget and Finance

  • This evening our CFO, Mr. Andy Lechman, will review the highlights from the budget information he presented at last week's Finance Committee meeting. We would like to thank all of our administrators and staff as well as our Board members for the work put in refining the 2020-2021 budget. Given the COVID-19 pandemic and the uncertain economic conditions ahead, crafting the budget for next year was much more challenging than it has been in previous years. We would like to extend our gratitude to Mr. Andrew Lechman and Ms. Jennifer Baldassano for their work in navigating the budget process this year.

Kindergarten & New Student Registration

In Closing...

  • Earlier this month we released a Joint Statement of Unity following the death of Geroge Floyd. We take this opportunity to remind our community that UDSD will never condone racism, bias, and acts of hate.