School safety – As a school district, we have no greater charge than ensuring the safety of our students, faculty and staff. Now that we have correctly eliminated our “open lunch” policy because of COVID-19, we need to examine that subject post-pandemic. Additionally, we need to ensure that the presence of our safety resource officers is viewed positively by all students while they continue to serve their crucial role in our district.
Teachers – We must continue to fully support our teachers – ensuring they have the necessary resources to be successful, while making sure they are fairly compensated. We must recruit, mentor and retain the best.
We need to make sure we strive to continue providing a world-class education to our students; this includes pursuing the benefits of a racially diverse and culturally comprehensive education for every student in our district. In instances where individuals in our community feel as though we have not listened to their thoughts or concerns, we need to make sure they feel they have been heard. We have taken positive steps to change the gender makeup of our administration (specifically at the Jr./Sr. high school) but need to make further progress in this area from a diversity standpoint across the district.
Welcoming, comfortable and educational for all
No type of racial discrimination in any West Lafayette school or program will be tolerated. We are committed to pursuing the benefits of a racially diverse and culturally comprehensive education for every student in our district. As such, we will provide available resources and energy to best serve our current and future students, parents and community members. As a long-time member of this community, my greatest desire is for our school district to be welcoming, comfortable and educational for all.
Looking back and looking ahead
During the last eight years, we have maintained our outstanding combination of providing our students a world-class K-12 educational experience with a tremendous breadth of co-curricular and extracurricular activities. Thanks to the generosity of our community, we have successfully executed our second referendum effort. And we have been able to significantly improve the physical aspects of our district with building/facility enhancements and new construction.
We must continue to strive for sustained excellence and not rest on our laurels. Our students, faculty, staff and community deserve nothing but our very best, and we owe to them to strive to be even better.
Thanks to the hard work of our administration, teachers, staff and students – and collaboration with the county board of health and doctors – our reopening plan and its execution have been extremely successful. After receiving community feedback to our initial plan, we made modifications to ensure that every family could make its own decision about whether to select in-person or e-learning and allowed them to change that decision during the first two weeks of the semester. Furthermore, all in-person and e-learning instruction is being done by current or a handful or retired West Lafayette teachers, not an outside vendor. We have permitted e-learners to participate in extracurricular activities. In instances where we have had had positive cases of COVID-19, our administration has successfully and swiftly conducted contact tracing for the safety of all involved.