FLINT COMMUNITY SCHOOLS
923 E. Kearsley Street — Flint, Michigan 48503
March 15, 2023
As always, I like to start each communiqué with positive stories from the district. Last week, Neithercut Elementary’s Nancy Vance was invited to the Pistons/Wizards basketball game to cheer on Flint alums Monte Morris and Kyle Kuzma. Mrs. Vance was Monte’s fourth grade teacher and shared great memories of his time as a Flintstone with NBC Sports during the game. We appreciate both Monte and Kyle for their ongoing commitment to Flint, and we thank them for spotlighting one of our dedicated educators. If you have not yet seen Mrs. Vance’s interview from the game, I encourage you to check out the clip posted on the district’s website and social media.
Today is Human Relations Day at all of our buildings. This is an important day for our teachers, staff and administrators to come together for some much-deserved team building and bonding. Across the district, staff at each building enjoyed a day of activities including breakfast, bowling, art therapy, karaoke, fowling, lunch, golf and more. I want to thank our building leaders and their planning committees for making these impactful activities happen for all of our educators and staff. I know this is an important touchpoint for our team and helps renew our focus as we look ahead to the remainder of the school year.
March is Women’s History Month, and I want to recognize all the incredible women who make up Flint Community Schools – including our scholars and families. Women are making a difference here in Flint, and this month is a reminder to learn and celebrate the accomplishments and contributions made by women. Just like Black History Month last month, these lessons do not start and stop this month. We will continue to learn about and celebrate women each day, both in the classroom and in our everyday lives. Please join me in celebrating and thanking the women who help us maintain focus on our shared mission to provide the scholars and families of Flint with the resources they need to thrive.
Each year, schools across the state participate in state standardized testing. Following spring break, we will begin administering our state standardized tests. Scholars across all grade levels will participate in the areas of math, social studies, science, English language arts and writing. State assessments are an important aspect of your child’s education. They create a snapshot of scholar development and achievement, providing our district with valuable information about academic progress. For our high school scholars taking the SAT, this could influence college admissions and help them reach their career goals. State assessments also allow us to evaluate curriculum and programming and make the changes needed to best support scholars’ academic journeys. We encourage families to help their children prepare for state testing by establishing a routine that includes healthy snacks, a good night’s sleep and practice tests, which can be found on the State of Michigan’s website.
Spring means it is time for families to begin planning for the upcoming school year. Kindergarten enrollment for the district is in full swing, and we are hosting enrollment events throughout the district. We ask that current families remind their friends, neighbors and relatives to start the process now. We are thrilled to offer a curriculum and programming that helps our youngest learners build the foundations for lifelong success. If families have any questions about enrollment or the district’s offering, please do not hesitate to reach out to our centralized enrollment.
The district has been in talks with the Michigan Department of Education in an effort to enhance our offerings. Together, we are focusing on literacy and math for our scholars and improving the district’s systems as an overall goal. We hope to have a signed partnership in the weeks ahead, and we will keep the school community posted on these developments. This partnership will be important to our shared success, and we appreciate the Michigan Department of Education for supporting us in these efforts.
I would be remiss if I did not talk about school safety tonight. Our team is laser-focused on creating safe environments for our scholars, families, teachers, staff and visitors. In late February, we launched a survey to gauge feedback on a proposed clear backpack policy. The survey was made in partnership with Michigan State University’s Office of K-12 Outreach. That team will review all responses and develop a report that will be reviewed by the Board and district administration. The Board and administration will not make a decision on the proposed clear backpack policy until we have had a chance to review and discuss the findings. Thank you to everyone who shared their feedback, and we will provide updates as soon as we can.
Last month, I was interviewed about my plans for scholar success as we look ahead to the remainder of the school year and beyond. I shared my enthusiasm for our new curriculum, social-emotional supports, infrastructure updates and more. Despite all the negatives that you see – whether it is here in Flint or on the other side of the world – I see the power of change. We have a team of dedicated educators here who are truly making a difference in the lives of scholars and families, and we are seeing the outcomes of those successes. Trust me when I say that there is more to come – more improvements, opportunities, systems of support and learning spaces. We are in a transformational era for Flint Community Schools, and I am thankful to have you on this journey. As always, my goal is our success, and I want everyone here to know that the Future is Flint. Thank you.