April Family & Community Letter (4/6/20)
April 6, 2020
Dear CCSD Families and Community Members:
April has arrived and usually the end of the school year is coming into greater focus as CCSD prepares for our end of school activities and begins our preparations for the upcoming school year. Unfortunately, we are in a different place this year and there is not much that we can predict given the ever-changing climate we are all living and working in. What we do know is that all schools within the state are officially closed until May 1 and that CCSD, along with every other school district in the state, is shifting our K-12 model to a homeschool/correspondence delivery platform. Despite the uncertainty and disruption that we are all experiencing in our daily lives, there are some really good things happening within the district.
First, the Alaska legislature adjourned at the end of March and “fully” funded K-12 education for FY 21. Despite the current tumultuous economic environment, the Alaska legislature passed and transmitted to the Governor flat funding for K-12 public education; there were no reductions to K-12 funding. The Alaska legislature also passed an additional $30 million outside the Base Student Allocation in one time funding to be divided between districts based on our student enrollment. The Alaska legislature treated public education very well during these tumultuous times. If the proposed FY 21 budget goes through, without any vetoes by the Governor, this would be a huge win for CCSD and every other school district in the state. Although flat funding is ultimately a reduction in funding due to the consistent inflationary costs associated with our budget, it does provide us the opportunity to sustain the high level of instructional services we are proud to offer our students.
Next, I couldn’t be more pleased with the level of professionalism, dedication, and creativity CCSD’s staff members have displayed during these difficult times. CCSD’s teachers, instructional support personnel, and administration have done an excellent job of connecting with our families and determining ways we can better support their student’s educational needs. Additionally, CCSD’s kitchen staff have ramped up their efforts and are providing breakfast and lunch meal service for over 180 students each day, Monday through Friday. CCSD fully recognizes that these are difficult times for everyone; our commitment to our families and students is that we will do everything within our power to support each one of our families as we continue transitioning and collaboratively defining our new homeschool/correspondence educational model.
In closing, CCSD thanks our families for your flexibility, patience, and communication with CCSD. These are definitely difficult times, but there is comfort in knowing that we are on this journey together. The strong sense of community that is displayed on POW on a daily basis emphasizes how fortunate we are to live and work on this island.
If there is any additional information that I can share about any of the items noted in this letter, or any other district initiative, please don’t hesitate to contact me at the email address below.
Chris Reitan, CCSD Superintendent