Below is an email from Superintendent to District staff welcoming them to the
2016-2017 School Year
Welcome to the 2016-17 school year! I hope this message finds you well and excited for the great things we will do together in support of our students, their families, and our community.
I’ve been a member of the AUSD family for the past 19 years, and a member of the Antioch community for the past 27 years. During that time, I have been extremely proud of the work that we do in AUSD and feel especially lucky to have worked alongside so many of you throughout the years.
As I reflect back on my years in the District and community, it would be easy to think only of the many challenges we have faced together. However, I think of all the great people who make this District a great place to call home. I think of people like Sutter Elementary’s custodian, Levon Edwards. It is clear to anyone who walks onto the Sutter campus that Mr. Edwards takes great pride in his work and in his school. I think of teachers like Dave Neal at Dallas Ranch Middle School who, just two short years ago, thought of leaving the profession only to discover new and innovative ways to reach and teach students. Dave is now one of the most energized teachers I know. I also think of quiet yet incredibly dedicated people like Vehicle/Equipment Supervisor, Karl Steinberg, who often go unnoticed yet do not fail to notice how they can best be of service to others.
And mostly, when I feel I could have done better or tried harder, I think of all of you who still believe that public education is the greatest weapon in the fight against poverty, discrimination, and disenfranchisement.
While we still have areas for growth and improvement, the District is showing positive improvements in several key areas:
- This year, graduation rates increased 6.8% compared to the prior year and the District now outpaces the State average for the number of students graduating on time.
- The number of students graduating ‘college ready’ having met all A-G college eligibility requirements has increased 12% since 2012.
- The percentage of students who ‘drop out’ has decreased significantly from 18% in 2011 to below 7% in 2015.
- The number of days students are suspended each year has dropped 48% since 2011. Additionally, during that same time period, expulsions in the District dropped 65%.
So as you start this new school year, I hope you do so with a sense of renewed hope and encouragement, because the work you do matters! Below, if you have not yet had an opportunity to see it, is a short three minute video I worked on with Deer Valley High School production teacher, Kiel Olff and his students. Its message is essentially that yesterday is the past and it is time to move forward, together, towards the common goal of making sure the future is bright for every child who enters our schools.
It’s a new day Antioch! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYHtkMzt9EI
With sincere good wishes,