Superintendent proud of school year’s successes

Published 11:25 am Saturday, June 7, 2014

by Dr. A. Katrise Perera

Greetings Isle of Wight County Schools Family:

The time has finally come—it’s June! We have officially made it to the end of the school year and what a wonderful year it has been. I am proud of the progress and success that I have witnessed through out our school division. We started off the year in a positive way and it is exciting to see that momentum continue. This year has resulted in improvements implemented at every school by creative teachers, administrators, and staff.

This year our goals were to remain fiscally responsible and to increase student achievement in preparation for college and career readiness. Despite many of the challenges that our school division faced, all of our teachers and staff concentrated on what matters most—educating our students and moving our school division forward. Our Instructional Framework laid the blueprint for us to close achievement gaps and create more opportunities for collaboration. The iSLE 21 program continues to flourish and I am thrilled that we will now have the means to expand the program to the elementary and middle school levels.

Across the school division, we have worked on improving efficiency and reducing costs. Our new energy savings contract with Ameresco, along with the support of Farmers Bank and CIP funding, will allow us to make some much-needed improvements at ALL of our schools. The most visible differences will be made to Hardy Elementary School and Westside Elementary School over the summer. Both schools will receive installations for more energy efficient windows, upgrades to the HVAC system, and new lighting. The work is scheduled to begin as soon as the school year ends and while it may be a bit of an inconvenience for school staff, it will be a refreshing welcome back when we return in September.

These accomplishments and continuous improvement efforts reflect only a few examples of the perseverance and dedication that has taken place throughout the school division. Although there have been budget challenges and constraints, Isle of Wight County Schools remained focused on improvement and finding ways to leverage our resources to continue in our mission of preparing all students for educational excellence. I would like to commend our Finance Department for working diligently to improve our financial situation and helping to build a stronger relationship with the county finance team. We will start the 2014-2015 school year fiscally strong!

Educating our children is important and influential work. Regardless of the school or department that our teachers and staff work in, each of them has made a positive difference for students this year. I would like to take an opportunity to sincerely express how much I value the efforts and commitment of all of our teachers, staff, school board members, volunteers, community business partners, and citizens. For those who are retiring this year , I want to thank you for your years of serving this school division and wish you the best in this next phase of your life. I would also like to thank all of our parents who continue to be actively involved in your child’s education. You play a valuable role in your child’s academics and your support of our school division is instrumental in our success. Together we are all making a visible difference in our students, our schools and our community!

Lastly, I would like to extend a big congratulations to the new graduates of the class 2014! The school community is very proud of each of you. I wish each of you a relaxing summer as you prepare for the next phase of your success. To all staff and rising students—I wish each of you a relaxing, safe, and fun summer! Take this time to re-energize and reflect upon our achievement. I am looking forward to being even more engaged and taking it to the next level for the 2014-2015 school year!

Yours in the pursuit of educational excellence,

Dr. A. Katrise Perera

DR. PERERA is the superintendent of Isle of Wight County Public Schools. She can be contacted at 357-4393.