an Update from Dr. Barbara A. Russell 7/13/2022
I am back again this week with a brief but important update as well as some repeated messages from last week.
Earlier this summer, Congress passed the Keep Kids Fed Act which allows school districts to provide free meals to families through the summer of 2022. Beginning on July 28, and continuing on the following three Thursdays beyond, the District will provide 5 free breakfasts and 5 free lunches to families who are interested. The meals will be distributed at the bus circle of the high school (adjacent to the stadium) on Campus Dr. There is no sign up or means of qualifying, just simply show up between the designated hours listed below to receive your 10 meals. We hope this continues to support those who are in need of food for their family.
5 breakfast and 5 lunch meals can be picked up at the high school bus circle on the following dates from 11:00am-1:00pm or 4:00pm-6:00pm:
- Thursday, July 28* (*On this date (7/28), distribution will ONLY occur between 5:00pm-7:00pm.)
- Thursday, August 4
- Thursday, August 11
- Thursday, August 18
As a note, you do not need to enter the high school building to pick up your meals. Staff and/or volunteers will be present outside the main doors with ready-packed meals for pick up.
Stay safe and continue to enjoy summer!
Dr. Barbara A. Russell
Power Packs will continue providing bags of food for students facing food insecurity this week and next. These bags include a week's worth of breakfast and lunch and can be picked up this evening and next week on July 20 at Middle School East between 5-7. Beginning July 28, families can access meals from the District as described above.
Families who are unable to pick up their Power Packs bag during the designated time frame can indicate that on the form linked below and a representative from Power Packs will be in touch with you to make other arrangements.
Complete this form for each student in need of a summer Power Packs bag: Power Pack Form.
Every three years, the District is obligated to develop a comprehensive plan that sets the direction for the district. It serves to offer opportunities to hear from various stakeholders about what's going well and what could be improved in terms of student experiences. The process affords us the opportunity to ask, "What do we need to consider for our students and staff that might be different from three years ago?"
At the June Board meeting, administration presented an overview of the proposed Comprehensive Plan, scheduled to be submitted to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) by August 30, 2022. A draft including all three phases of the plan (Ready, Set, Go) is linked below. The final plan is quite extensive and includes strengths and challenges, priority areas, goals, action steps, and associated professional development and communications. As a note, an executive summary is included if you prefer a shorter version.
In addition, the District is also required to submit additional state reports at the same time as the comprehensive plan. Linked below is a compilation of these state reports which include, an Induction Plan, Professional Education Plan, Student Services Assurances, Gifted Education Plan Assurances, and Academic Standards and Assessments Requirements.
In addition to accessing the information via the links, we will have physical copies available in each school office, as well as at the Schwenksville Public Library. We will also post a digital copy on our website. Please share any feedback you may have with our Assistant Superintendent, Mrs. Laurie Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org, prior to the August School Board meetings. Administration will be recommending the approval of the plan by the School Board in August.
Committee Structure in 2022-23
The Education Committee and the Finance Committee will both become "Committees of the Whole" in 2022-23. This means that the meetings will take place before the entire School Board as part of the work session each month. There will also be some months when one or the other of these committees will meet in its traditional format on the third Tuesday of the month. Dates, times and locations will continue to be advertised so that you can remain up to date with the changes and be involved in these discussions.
You may be wondering, "Why the change?" The purpose for the change is to afford all School Board members access to the information presented in these two committees while continuing to offer interested public the opportunity to participate and have a voice on the agenda items discussed. In the traditional committee structure, only 4 or fewer Board members could actively participate in the discussions and/or deliberations to identify the topics and requests by administration that should move forward and be placed on a Board agenda. Structuring the committee conversations as part of a "Committee of the Whole" in public during the work session, allows all Board members to be involved in the discussions as well as the public.
Administration is also hoping the new format brings efficiency to the work. In the past, an Education Update and Finance Update were both presented during the work session. These will now be replaced with the "Committee of the Whole" meetings.
We believe it is critical for students to foster positive reading habits in order to develop as lifelong learners. The district's Summer Reading Program encourages students to read high-interest, self-selected texts. After all, summer reading is a great opportunity for each student to explore personal interests, various genres, topics he/she wants to know more about while discovering his/her own "just right" books. Visit our website to learn more: Summer Reading Program.
In addition, we are excited to share that our libraries will again be open to our families this summer! Students are welcome to visit and check out books. Mark the dates below to visit our school libraries.
As a district, we are carefully considering the ways in which we communicate with our school community. We are curious to learn your thoughts regarding the Weekly Message, sent from the Office of the Superintendent, as well as District communications at large. Please use this form to share your thoughts: Communications Feedback.
Upcoming District Dates
- Monday, August 1 - Board Work Session at 7:00pm (this meeting will include the Education and Finance Committee meetings) - High School Library
- Monday, August 8 - Board Business Meeting at 7:00pm - High School Library
Having Tech Issues? See Below for Details
In addition to encouraging our students to share questionable or concerning information with a trusted adult, students can submit an anonymous tip through the Safe2Say Program. Tips are typically related to a variety of challenges our students experience or witness, such as bullying, harassment, disrespectful language, safety concerns, etc. When a tip is received, the State (who runs Safe2Say) immediately follows up with the respective building administrator and the information is investigated.