Source: Sherman Publications

Words from the Sup't
Planning, collaboration keys to school success

February 19, 2014

By Dr. Rod Rock

Great things continue to happen in the Clarkston Community Schools. The district is experiencing positive trends in achievement, finance, planning, co-curriculars, and professional development. It is truly a great time to work, live, and learn in Clarkston.

After achieving an all time high in ACT scores at Clarkston High School last year, the district continues to work very hard to improve student achievement in all areas of the curriculum.

We realize fully that student achievement is a prime indicator of a quality education and we expect all of our students to perform at the highest levels. The State of Michigan will soon release our most recent MEAP scores and we look forward to reporting the positive results.

As our district continues to work through funding cuts from the State of Michigan, we anticipate a positive financial forecast, due to the sacrifices made by our employee groups, the fiscal conservatism of our board of education and administration, and the oversight of our finances by all decision makers.

Our priorities remain student learning, class sizes, academic programming, creating the best possible learning and working environments for our employees and students, bringing our technology up to standard, maintaining the community’s resources, and preparing our students for the future.

The administration looks forward to working collaboratively with our board of education to meet these priorities as we move through the budget process over the next few months.

The board of education is in the final stages of completing its five-year strategic plan. Focus areas include student learning, technology, operations, communications, human resources, and finance. The district has hosted a community meeting and sought additional feedback through its Website. We look forward to finalizing this plan and moving forward toward full implementation.

The CHS Drama Club just completed a resoundingly successful presentation of Peter Pan. The performing arts center was full for each performance. The music, choreography, singing, flying, sets and costumes, and special effects were incredible.

Our wrestling, basketball, cheer, swim, dance, hockey, bowling, RUSH Robotics team, Lead classes, and other co-curricular groups continue to perform at the highest levels.

Academic Service Learning and many other community service activities thrive. The Clarkston Foundation recently recognized our students in the areas of arts, science, and mathematics. Our students, staff, and community are the very best.

Ongoing professional learning is the key ingredient in an excellent school system. Clarkston sets the standard, regionally, across the state, and across the nation.

Our literacy, math, and Cultures of Thinking work provide the very best, research-based ongoing learning for our teachers. Our teachers have time to collaborate, which is vital. Our principals serve as instructional leaders, which is their first responsibility, ensuring that every child experiences education according to her/his unique needs and interests.

Clarkston thrives because of our outstanding staff, board of education, leadership, parents, community, and students. We set the highest standards for achievement in academics, finances, human resources, and professional learning.

We will continue to work as hard as we can to meet our ongoing challenges and priorities because our children deserve the very best. Nothing less will do.