by Superintendent Mitch Wainwright
The second semester is underway as we return to school after Winter Break. It is hard to believe we have been through half of the school year. Construction progress has continued at the elementary building. The new addition is closed in, and dry, while the construction workers begin putting in some of the finished pieces. The most obvious pieces are the painting is being completed and flooring will soon be put down. Electrical, heating, and other control systems are being completed, but most of those are behind or in walls, over the top of ceiling tiles, and out of view.
As that project progresses, the staff across the district are excited to have students in their classrooms. We all want to have the opportunity to work with children in an environment that we know is the best case scenario. By everyone (students, staff, families, and community) working together, and making decisions using what we know to be sound advice, we can continue to have students and staff in our buildings safely. We love our students — your children — and want them working with us in the buildings as much as possible.
While the winter weather season is upon us, we will continue to make decisions that keep the safety of our students in mind. When the weather turns bad and creates poor road conditions, there are a large number of phone calls that get made very early in the morning. I speak with Todd Schmitz, from First Student Busing, and discuss what we know. He has connections to county and township workers and I speak with other area school district administrators and their bus companies to get as much information before making a final decision. The number one factor always comes down to our own families and students. These are not always easy decisions, but when I consider the number of 16 year-olds that are driving to school in the snow/ice for the first time, I think about safety. Todd and I also talk about bus routes that have difficult road conditions, like drifting, and that factors into the decision. Safety sometimes comes in the form of a snow day.
If we have bad weather on a school day this year, we will actually have a traditional snow day. Snow days will not turn into virtual days, unless we reach our maximum allotment and need to make up instructional hours. My hope is that kids will be able to have a “normal” experience. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, and I know we will all be stronger when we get there together as #PointerNation!