As stakeholders, we must attend and engage in order to continue transforming our school system. Believing that schools and communities have a symbiotic relationship, we must ensure that this relationship is mutually beneficial. We must look to our children, families, neighbors, and communities as core texts from which to teach and learn. When we do, we will build a city that values education and everyone’s potential to succeed.
In our many conversations together, we have discussed some strong focus areas.
Budget. A forensic audit of the budget is imminent. Supporting the audit department in understanding where dollars go and how they are spent is the only way we can begin to provide more flexibility and support to clusters and schools, as well as understand where economies of scale make sense.
Birth to Pre-K. Collaboration and communication between the Mayor, the Superintendent, the City Council, the Board of Education, and private and public partners are how we can expand Pre-K to birth. We must ensure that all children receive a quality preschool experience and are “Kindergarten Ready” on day one.
Professional Development. We must invest in strong leaders for our clusters and schools, and promote the fact that teaching is a profession — not an occupation — and like any other profession, demands quality professional development and continual improvement.
Technology. For our children to be competitive in tomorrow’s job market, we must provide them with solid technology foundations in K-12. Teachers also need better tools to assess student performance in real time so as to provide additional instruction when needed. Standardizing hardware and software with quality products that scale well and allow for “Future Proofing” across our various schools is a must.
I hope that you will continue to support me as we continue the good work to ensure that Atlanta Public Schools educate every child.