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Superintendent's Corner

Dr. Shelly Davis-Jones

August 06, 2018

Dear Parents, Guardians and Community Stakeholders,

As Superintendent of Dolton SD 149, it is my pleasure to welcome everyone back for another great school year.  I hope that your summer was relaxing, filled with adventures and good health. We are all excited to have students back in our classrooms and hallways filling them with lots of enthusiasm for learning. It is our mission to improve student achievement, help every child feel welcomed, connected, and a part of the Dolton family.

Please join me in welcoming many new teachers and administrators to our school district family.  Dr. Nicole Robinson will serve as the Principal of the STEM Academy.  She has a plethora of experience from Burbank School District 111.  Dr. Robinson attended Caroline Sibley and graduated from the former Dirksen Middle School.  We are excited to have a product of School District 149 return to us as a principal.  Dr. Robinson has experience spanning grades K-8 and she has worked in transforming education as a teacher and administrator over the past 18 years. 

Ms. Joi Lewis, Assistant Principal from Chicago Public Schools with a background in science and experience as an Area Instructional Coach. She has facilitated and mentored teachers in the development/enhancement of their teaching practices, provided teachers with differentiated coaching support/services and developed, organized, facilitated and managed professional development seminars/workshops and professional learning opportunities for Teachers and Principals. She will serve between Berger-Vandenberg Elementary School and New Beginnings Learning Academy.

This year our theme is “Re-ignite Your Passion.”  In June, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) identified our school to receive comprehensive/targeted supports to accelerate our academic progress in reading and math and to sharpen our focus on the well-being of the whole child.  We will continue our pathway in educating the whole child one-step at a time but with the help of the state.  We welcome this opportunity to build on the great work of our teachers and staff and look forward to including parents, families, and community partners in our efforts.

We at Dolton SD 149 hold high expectations for all students, and the state holds all schools to the same high standards.  For the first time ever, the state’s funding and accountability systems recognize that different schools in different communities need different supports to reach those same outcomes – just as each individual child needs different tools and encouragement to succeed.

The state’s support accountability system has identified our district with summative designations of lowest performing and underperforming schools.  This means we have the highest priority for customized supports and additional resources to provide more and greater holistic support for our students.

Our accomplishments have been monumental and we will continue our focus on improving teaching and learning so our students are ready for the next level of their educational journey.  While maintaining the initiatives already in place, this year we will also focus on addressing targeted mental health and school safety initiatives.  We know that we have work to do, work that requires commitment, focus, continuity and collaboration and we know that we will succeed.

As we get ready to open a new school year, I want to draw your attention to the importance of school attendance. As you know, our schools have focused on improving attendance over the past few years and we continue to work hard to make sure our students attend school regularly, but we need your help! Please make sure your child is in school on time daily.  This will have a positive impact on your child’s academic performance.

This year we are excited about working more collaboratively with you to help strengthen our relationship and bridge the gap between family and school connections.  I believe our children will do better in school if we support them as a team.  We want you to join us in our efforts to build great schools and improve the overall academic success of all children.

I challenge you all to get involved, be visible by supporting your child’s educational activities, and participate in our annual Parent University Program.  Your support and input is critical to the academic and social emotional well-being of our children.

Many teachers spent time over the summer taking advantage of various professional learning opportunities in the district, while others attended graduate courses or worked collaboratively with their team. We are working with the Board of Education to enhance our surveillance cameras and provide more security procedures to ensure the safety of our children.  

Please join us at our Annual Back to School Carnival on Saturday, August 25th from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm at Caroline Sibley School.  The first full day of school for all students is Monday August 20, 2018.

Looking forward to a great school year! If you are interested in serving on any of the Board’s committees please contact my office at (708) 868-7861 or email me at daviss@sd149.org.  The committees are as follows: Parent Advisory, Curriculum, Nutrition, Technology, Finance, Policy, Building and Grounds, Family Engagement and Transportation. 

We Believe… Excellence, Humanization and Pride!

Educationally yours,

Dr. Shelly Davis Jones, Superintendent

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