News from the Nest

Cardinal Pride in the Upper Dublin School District

January 8, 2020

Superintendent's Message

Dear Upper Dublin Community,

When I was a child the year 2020 was often described as the "future." In my mind, I pictured flying cars and automation everywhere. Well, 2020 is here - it is no longer the future - and we have seen so many changes in our world over the past few decades.

Education has remained a constant in a world that is ever-changing. I believe education has remained a constant because a high-quality education opens doors for student success in the future. In Upper Dublin we remain committed to providing the very best education we can for EVERY student. To that end, earlier this year we shared a series of statements with the community that articulated our vision for empowering our students through equitable practices and opportunities for EVERYONE.

For several years the District has worked toward closing achievement gaps between and among groups of students. That work is admirable, important, and ongoing but can only be accomplished when we eliminate opportunity gaps for students. Opportunity gaps are the differences in students' exposure and experiences. Our job as educators is to remove barriers that prevent students from accessing rigorous courses and challenging curricula. The question then becomes: What does this look like in Upper Dublin?

Eliminating opportunity gaps for students will take various forms in Upper Dublin. We will continue to employ a host of strategies to ensure that ALL students have the opportunity to grow and to achieve at high levels. These strategies include but are not necessarily limited to:

  • Evaluating instructional programming to ensure that they meet the demands of standards-based curricula
  • Providing greater access to high-level courses (Advanced Placement, Honors)
  • Creating and sustaining opportunities for student enrichment and remediation as needed
  • Adopting curricular materials that capture and mirror the diversity of our student population and greater community
  • Promoting more and better inclusion for students
  • Building capacity in our staff and community about the needs of all student populations
  • Recruiting District employees that are reflective of our student population and community

Our community has our commitment to a high-quality education for EVERY student through equitable practices that eliminate opportunity gaps in our District. We believe that ALL students can and will learn at high levels given the time and support to do so! The future is bright for Upper Dublin.

Happy New Year!

Steve Yanni

Superintendent of Schools

MLK, Jr. Day of Service

The Upper Dublin School District is proud to participate in the MLK Jr. Day of Service again this January. This day provides opportunities for our students and community at large to engage in service activities. We look forward to great participation on January 20, 2019.

From the Corporation for National and Community Service: The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Jan. 20, 2020, marks the 25th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy. Observed each year on the third Monday in January as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK, Jr. Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. The Corporation for National and Community service has been charged to lead this effort for the last quarter century.

Continued Construction of the New SRMS

Significant progress has - and continues - to be made at the site of the new middle school. The pictures and information below were part of an update presented at the December Operations Committee. In addition to the work captured in the photos below, more walls are being built on the site, and the classroom wing of the new building is taking shape.

We have been fortunate, as the weather has been mild and conducive to construction. In the coming weeks, we will see the classroom wing take greater shape and structure steel will start to appear as the skeleton of the new SRMS emerges.

We thank everyone for their patience as traffic patterns continue to change at SRMS. These minor inconveniences are all part of the construction process. At the end of the construction process, we will have a wonderful new building that will serve as a District asset for years to come!

Winter Weather - Schedule Alteration Reminders

Our website, Infinite Campus, our Facebook page, and Twitter remain the most reliable sources of information. Further, the chart below captures important information as it relates to how scheduling alterations will affect UDSD athletics/extra-curriculars as well as community use of our facilities.

Big picture

Farewell to Michelle Clegg, Director of Pupil Services

In mid-December we said farewell to Mrs. Michelle Clegg, our Director of Pupil Services. For almost five years, Michelle provided oversight, leadership, and guidance to the Pupil Services and Special Education departments. We wish Michelle all the best as she enters the next phase of her journey - RETIREMENT!

In lieu of hiring a Director of Pupil Services to replace Michelle Clegg, we have taken this opportunity to reorganize a bit. We are currently interviewing for a third supervisor of special education. Welcoming a third supervisor will mean that each level (elementary school - middle school - high school) will have its own leader. We hope to appoint a new Supervisor of Special Education in the coming week.

Kindergarten Registration

Kindergarten registration for the Class of 2033 will begin soon. Starting this year we will conduct registration online. Stay tuned to information from our District about our online registration process.

In Brief - News and Notes from our Board of School Directors

  • Ms. Amy Francek and Dr. Darlene Davis will serve as Board President and Board Vice President, respectively, from December 2019-December 2020.
  • Board committees shall consist of the following: Education Committee, Finance/Operations Committee, and Policy Committee. Education and Policy will typically meet on the first Wednesday of the month. Finance/Operations will typically meet on the third Wednesday of the month. The Legislative meeting will typically take place on the fourth Monday of the month.
  • The Board identified the following committee chairs: Education (Ms. Titia Scherpbier), Finance/Operations (Mr. Mark Sirota), and Policy (Mr. Jeffrey Wallack).
  • During the December Legislative meeting, the Board of School Directors approved the Act 1 Opt Out Resolution. The Act 1 Opt Out Resolution limits the tax increase to the Act 1 Index. The Act 1 Index for SY 2020-2021 is 2.6%.

Upcoming Events - Mark Your Calendars!

  • January 17, 2020: Professional Learning Day / No School for Students
  • January 20, 2020: Martin Luther King Jr. Day / Day of Service / No School for Students
  • January 31, 2020: Early Dismissal for All Students

Please bookmark our District calendar to stay up to date on the many exciting events taking place in Upper Dublin!