April 22, 2022
Message from the Superintendent
April 22, 2022
Dear KPS Staff and Families:
Happy Earth Day! As a Native American Proverb states, “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.”
I wanted to inform you that at last night’s Board of Education meeting, I recommended that KPS keep the mask mandate in place and reassess it again at the Board’s May 4 meeting. This recommendation was approved by the Board.
I hope you have an opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy the warm weather this weekend.
Dr. Rita Raichoudhuri
Attorney General Dana Nessel visits KPS
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel asked to visit Kalamazoo Public Schools to learn how the district implemented a grant from the attorney general's office. KPS used the grant funds to update the district's safety communications system with digital radios and outdoor speakers.
Superintendent Dr. Rita Raichoudhuri, Loy Norrix Principal Chris Aguinaga, Kalamazoo Central Principal Valerie Boggan, Phoenix Principal Mark Hill, Chief of Security Don Webster and Executive Supervisor of Facilities Karen Jackson participated in a roundtable discussion with the AG on April 20 in the Loy Norrix High School library.
In addition to sharing and demonstrating the district's upgraded radio system, KPS representatives discussed their shared passion for restorative justice and future school safety needs with the attorney general.
Other guests for the AG's visit included Board President Patti Sholler-Barber, Trustee Ken Greschak, State Representatives Julie Rogers and Christine Morse, Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety Chief Vern Coakley, City of Kalamazoo Manager Jim Ritsema, and KPS representatives Kim Kirshman, Dr. Amy Vondra, Susan Coney, and several students. Nessel thanked KPS representatives for the district's strategic approach to school safety and acknowledged that the work will take multiple years to show dividends.
Earth Day Clean-up at Spring Valley, Northeastern
Thank you to the students of Northeastern Elementary and Spring Valley Center for Exploration for beautifying their campuses today as part of their Earth Day Celebrations!
Community breakfast held at Phoenix High School on April 20
Phoenix High School Principal Mark Hill hosted a breakfast for the community on April 20. Superintendent Dr. Rita Raichoudhuri used the breakfast to share information on six new initiatives in KPS. Phoenix student ambassadors helped serve breakfast and provided tours of the recently renovated building for the guests.
Greenwood Holds Math Day
Greenwood Elementary has celebrated Family Math Night for 14 years, thanks to the efforts of teacher Jami Skinner. This year, because of Covid restrictions, the event was held as Math Day, with students participating in special math activities during the school day. They also are receiving bags with games and math activities to take home, to continue the tradition of family participation in learning.
Place Your Bids in Adult Education Silent Auction
Kalamazoo Adult Education is holding a silent auction to raise money to support field trips for Adult Education students and to purchase school shirts. The auction closes 4 p.m. Friday, April 29.
Teachers and students have created themed baskets to bid on. In the PDF, you'll find photos, descriptions and QR codes for each basket. To bid, scan the QR code with your camera to access the bid form or go to the Google doc listed and complete the form.
The highest bidder will win at the close of the auction. At the end of the auction, Adult Education staff will announce the winners and contact them for payment. If you don't want to bid, but still want to donate simply contact the Adult Education office at (269) 337-0422 and staff can help you. Good luck !
Thank You for Participating in the Teach Upbeat Survey
Human Resources wants to thank all who participated in the spring 2022 Kalamazoo Public Schools and Teach Upbeat engagement survey.
Denise Turner in Human Resources said, "We asked for your valued input and you didn’t disappoint! Thank you! Building administrators and KPS leadership can use this data to develop action plans for improvements where needed, strengthen areas that need just a bit of assistance, and build on continuous improvement throughout the district. Didn’t have a chance to participate in this spring’s survey? We’ve got you covered. We’ve signed a contract with Teach Upbeat for the next two school years (2022-2023 and 2023-2024), with surveys planned for the fall and spring of each school year."
Getting to Know You
Human Resources and Instruction and Student Services held a professional development to help new teachers connect with fellow teachers this week. Thanks to Arbor Credit Union for their generous donation to purchase refreshments.
KC Choirs 'Live and In Color' Cabaret Running Today Through Sunday
The Kalamazoo Central High School choirs will be presenting their 2022 "Live and In Color" Cabaret at 7 p.m. April 22 and 23 and 3 p.m. April 24 at the school. Featuring singing and dancing from the Kalamazoo Central choirs, as well as several student solos and small group acts, this full-spectrum cabaret includes songs that celebrate all the colors of our world and our lives. Tickets, $10 and $8, can be purchased at the door.
Nominate a Teacher for Growlers' Teacher of the Year
Honor Credit Union and the Kalamazoo Growlers are partnering together to honor a Teacher of the Year for 2022. One winning teacher will receive tickets to a game, on-field recognition, and the opportunity to share their story in a mini-movie. Scan the QR code to nominate a teacher.
On May 3, the Kalamazoo community will have the opportunity to vote on a bond proposal. If voters approve this bond proposal, there is expected to be NO increase in the tax rate, and the bond would provide $197.1 million to fund capital improvements in our schools.
Please watch the brief video below. For more about how to vote and the projects planned for each building here.