Lockport City School District

April 9, 2020

Message from Superintendent Michelle T. Bradley

COVID-19 Update

ANNOUNCEMENTS


As you know, school closure has been extended until April 29, 2020 by Governor Cuomo.


On April 8, the Board of Education amended the calendar for the 2019-2020 school year to reflect another executive order by the Governor requiring that all school districts continue remote learning through spring recess. As a result, Lockport City School District students have been provided with learning experiences through April 17 with teachers being accessible for student support during this time.


The Board of Education also discussed the 2020-21 budget. In doing so, it was decided that a budget will not be adopted by the Board of Education until at least May 6, 2020 (the next Board of Education meeting) due to the first measurement period by New York State ending April 30, 2020. We are hoping that by the end of April, there will be additional guidance on a budget vote and board election date.


The New York State Education Department has cancelled the June 2020 administration of the New York High School Regents Examination Program in response to the statewide closure of schools and districts to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Because of the cancellation of exams, the State Education Department is making certain modifications to the assessment requirements that students must meet in order to earn high school diplomas, credentials, and endorsements. Our secondary administrators and counselors are fully aware of the requirements for issuing diplomas and will be working with students so that they are not adversely impacted by the cancellation of exams.


An American Red Cross Blood Drive is scheduled for Friday, April 17 in the Lockport High School East Gymnasium. It will begin at 9:00am and end at 1:30pm. Thank you to Todd Sukdolak, director of health, wellness, and athletics, for coordinating this much needed event.


MESSAGE TO STUDENTS AND PARENTS


While a regular school day is between six to seven hours, we all know that we are not dealing with a normal school day. Because of this, we need to reframe how the day looks. We are recommending that elementary students spend at least/about 90 minutes a day on school work, while secondary students spend at least/about 120 minutes a day on school work. The remainder of the day could include such things as activities that promote creativity through arts and music, reading, keeping a daily journal, any type of physical activity (get outside and enjoy the nice weather!), exploring, researching, demonstrating acts of kindness like saying thank you to food service employees, and of course helping with household chores. As we have experienced, these days are less structured than a typical school day, students are needing to be more self-directed, and learning is more student centered and tailored to individual student needs. While it is almost impossible to grade work as we know it, given the current environment, student work should be considered “learning in progress”. The concepts and district policies relating to “new” learning, grading, and marking periods is being reviewed at this time by teachers and administrators in Lockport and should be resolved very soon.


Students…I encourage you to complete assignments that are given to you, and place your focus on, “it’s the learning that counts, not so much the grade”. Take learning seriously so that when school resumes, we will be able to move forward. We expect that you are putting forth your best effort and are engaged in school work on a regular basis. Continue to focus on good health behaviors like hand washing and practicing social distancing, possessing grit during these tough days because tough times don’t last, but LION STRONG people do, and expressing gratitude towards your parents, teachers, and principal. The coronavirus has caused a major disruption and certainly an inconvenience in our lives, and it will be something you will always remember. Please know that the adults in your life are here to support you as the “COVID kids”, and we want you to know that we miss you very much. We hope to be back in school before the end of the school year so that we can determine what you have learned and what support you may need.


Parents…Thank you for making major adjustments to your daily routine. You are making the best of this situation and doing the best you can. Being a teacher is a calling, requires specialization with content, and now, teachers are high on the list of heroes. As parents, you are rising to the occasion, and as educators, we applaud you for your efforts and support of education. Please continue to check email and the website for updates.


For now, we will remain physically apart, but powerfully together, and committed to the mission for teaching and learning in the Lockport City School District.


We believe: All people can learn. Schools create the conditions for success; academically, socially, emotionally, physically, and aesthetically. Teaching and learning are the shared responsibilities of home, school, and the community. Our mission is to assure comprehensive learning so that each person will be a lifelong learner.


Stay safe and be well, everyone!