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GLPS Families,

I usually start these messages by saying something about what a great week it was here at GLPS. However, as we all know, this was a difficult week for many in our community, especially in Wacousta. The volunteers and first responders who spent time searching, the administrators, counselors, teachers, and support staff who were there to support our students who were impacted, and those who donated food and support to the volunteers and first responders all showed the true meaning of caring this week.  As a Wacousta kid myself, I know how tight knit and special that community is, and there clearly has been an outpouring of support for Jermaine’s family and all of those impacted by his death; it is evident how much members of the GLPS family and the community we serve care about one another. I am confident that the community will continue to support the family and those impacted, and our thoughts will continue to be with them.

Even in light of this tragic event, the good work of teaching and learning continued throughout the district this week.  As they always do, our staff worked with your students to help them learn and grow. Over the last couple of weeks, I have asked you for feedback in various forms, including inviting you to be a member of the Caregiver School Improvement Team (CSIT). This team will meet periodically throughout the year to discuss progress on our strategic plan, understand the data that we use to track success, and provide me with input and feedback on our district to help us improve. We will meet on the following Thursdays from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m.: 10/26/23, 11/30/23, 1/25/24, 2/22/24, 4/18/24, 5/23/24. As a reminder, the meeting location will be shared with the group as we get closer, because I would like your input on the location of the meetings. If you are interested in being a part of the work, please take a few moments to complete this form; it will close next Wednesday, 10/18, so I can begin communicating more specifics with team members.

In addition to CSIT, I also asked you for some feedback about what topics you would like me to write about each week. I appreciate all of the input I received, and I am pleased to share the results with you today:

      • 75.90% District Events and Celebrations 
      • 64.70% Curriculum 
      • 58.20% Staff Highlights 
      • 52.90% Instructional Practices 
      • 52.90% Standards/Essential Learnings
      • 50.00% Facilities Planning
      • 48.20% Community Connections
      • 45.90% Bond Progress
      • 43.50% Arts
      • 42.40% Enrollment/Budget Updates
      • 40.60% Strategic Plan
      • 40.60% Athletics
      • 39.40% Technology

Other suggested topics from the survey include: Calendar, Special Education, School Safety, Social and Emotional Learning, School of Choice and Its Impact, Parking Lot Safety, Anti Bullying, Mental Health, and Course Selections.

I will work in elements of each of these into future communications as we move throughout the school year. 

As we wrap up the week and head into what is shaping up to be a rainy and cold weekend, I want to take this opportunity to again thank you for all you do for your kids, for our district, and for our community. I would not want to be a superintendent anywhere else. As always, I am #proudtobeacomet!

Dr. Bill Barnes
Superintendent of Schools