Avis Williams smaller

Avis Williams.

BY AVIS WILLIAMS 

Growing up, for many years, summer was my favorite season and the best time of year to be alive. This was most true when I was a child and had the privilege of having summers off. Additionally, I’m a June baby so a birthday party was always on tap. Those were fun times! 

Fast forward to today and like most school administrators, summer is now a time for me to reflect and plan. Not quite as fun but very necessary. This is truer now than ever. 

Consider this. The beginning of our school year was sufficiently uneventful. We had a smooth opening and the year progressed in a very normal way. Yet, as we closed out the year, our scholars have not been in a traditional classroom with their teachers and peers in over two months. To date, we are not sure when or if we will return to those days.   

I have no doubt that this will be a summer to remember. 

As always, June and July will be used to plan and prepare for the upcoming school year.  Yet this will be unlike any other summer. How do we plan for the unknown? 

I am very appreciative of the guidance shared by our state officials and the Center for Disease Control (CDC). No matter how helpful though, we have our work cut out for us.  

The crux of this works includes forming a Remote Learning Project Team. Led by Drs. Margaret Jones and William Powell, this diverse team has already made an impact. Their task is huge but they are up for the challenge. 

Team Selma is prepared to move forward with a district-wide one-to-one device implementation. We are exploring a number of options that all include ensuring that our scholars have internet connectivity. Teachers and parents will need professional learning and support for us to be successful. 

Although eliminating the digital divide is a priority, safety is still our greatest concern. How do we reopen schools in such a way that teachers, staff, scholars and families feel safe?  Answering this question is a must. 

Our team is researching options. Team Selma is committed to ensuring a safe and healthy reopening of schools this fall. We are committed to providing high quality, effective teaching and learning for all of our scholars. Families will also have options unlike ever before. What will that look like? We will reveal details as they evolve. 

This will definitely be a summer to remember. Check out our website and social media outlets for regular updates and please continue to follow CDC and state guidelines. Stay safe and healthy. 

Avis Williams is superintendent of Selma City Schools. For more information, email me at avis.williams@selmacityschools.org

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