“Dear Students, Staff, and Families,
I hope this letter finds you well and having enjoyed a wonderful and restful spring break. As we return to school, I would like to extend a warm welcome back to each and every one of you. As we head into the final stretch of the school year, I encourage our students to work hard and remain focused on their academic goals, and I want to thank all staff for helping them to get there. Let us continue to build on the momentum we have gained so far and bring the year to a close with a great sense of accomplishment.
Safe and Welcoming Schools: Our Responsibility: With spring conditions arriving, warm weather can bring with it a rise in incidents across schools and communities. As we return to our daily routines, help us continue to prioritize safety. Working together, we can contribute to maintaining a safe and healthy learning environment for our students and staff that strives to befree of weapons, explosives, illegal drugs, vaping devices, tobacco products, and physical altercations; these are not, under any circumstances, allowed on school grounds or tolerated. To help keep our schools safe, staff and students need to keep all exterior doors closed and locked, and all visitors must use the main entrances and enter through security vestibules.
Also, a reminder to treat each other, all students, staff and visitors with respect. Recent instances of prejudice and hate must be admonished and called out as unacceptable in and out of school. Do not use bigoted language or deface school property with symbols of hate. These types of actions must end. We will write again soon with a complete update on enhancements to school safety.
It’s Time to Celebrate: Overall, there is much to celebrate and love about our county schools, from the opportunities they provide for learning and growth to the diversity and inclusivity they promote. So many hard-working staff members contribute to providing those opportunities.
As we return from break, please take a moment to give a special thanks to our assistant principals, and Assistant School Administrators, and paraeducators for their hard work and dedication. Last week was National Assistant Principals Week, and April 5th marked Paraprofessional Appreciation Day. I would like to extend my heartfelt appreciation for their tireless efforts in supporting our students and staff as integral parts of the school community.
Make sure you check your child’s school’s event calendar and messages home as the school plans many spring events. Classroom celebrations, spring theater, athletics and so much more highlights our students’ efforts and all they’ve learned in their school experience.
Two important celebrations coming up include:
On April 19th, the inaugural class of Ruth and Norman Rales-Patricia O’Neill scholars will be celebrated. Each scholarship recipient is a graduating senior who will receive $10,000.
On April 24, we will also be celebrating this year’s Champions for Children Awards, including our supporting services professional of the year, administrative winner, our community champion for children, an Athletics R.A.I.S.E. core values winner and our teacher of the year finalists, one of whom will be named the MCPS Teacher of the Year for 2023. The celebration will return to an in-person format this year, and allow us to once again come together for a special recognition highlighting the contributions of some of our most inspiring difference makers in our students’ lives.
All of this and so much more we have to celebrate as we build towards this year’s exciting graduation season and advancement ceremonies. I look forward to working with each and every one of you as we strive toward academic excellence and a safe and welcoming learning environment. Thank you all for your continued cooperation and support. Let us continue to work “All Together Now” towards an excellent and productive rest of the school year.
Dr. Monifa B. McKnight
MCPS Superintendent of Schools“
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