Monday, September 2, 2013

Supt. Marten welcomes all to the 2013-14 school year

Welcome to the 2013-14 School Year! Those are words that carry a great deal of meaning to me as opening a new school year enforces my belief that we have amazing opportunities to make a difference in the lives of our students.

Supt. Marten
For the past several years, I have been welcoming students and parents to Central Elementary School. As the principal, I understood how exciting the first day was, not only for our students and parents but for every teacher and staff member.

This year as superintendent, I have the honor and privilege to welcome back more than 110,000 students and their families on Sept. 3. I could not be more excited or committed to the work we will do together this year as we build on our past successes under the direction of the Board of Education’s 2020 Vision to create quality schools in every neighborhood.

Over the summer, we have been busy getting ready for Sept. 3. The new leadership team is in place, made up of familiar faces who know the district and the community. With 40 new principals at our schools this year, we have a shared focus on quality leadership and making sure all of our principals have the support and skills needed to lead a quality school.

The focus on teaching and learning will be preparing for the shift to the Common Core State Standards in 2014-15. Our vision is to provide a broad and challenging curriculum that is relevant and high quality so our children will be prepared for success in the workplace and the world.

Across the district, from bus drivers, to custodians; food service associates to secretaries, principals and teachers, we are all committed to making sure our students are on the pathway for life’s success. We are ready!

We are cautiously encouraged about the budget passed by the State’s legislators and the reinvestment in public education. Although we still face financial challenges and will continue to be prudent with our dollars, there is hope. The newly implemented Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) drastically changes the structure of how school districts receive funding from the state level. In very simple terms, the LCFF will shift the focus from funding dozens of state-mandated programs to funding based on local district control and student needs, with extra dollars allotted to low-income children, foster youth and English learners.

As we work collaboratively to assure that each child in our district receives the best education possible, we need everyone to be involved. The start of a new school year gives us a renewed sense of anticipation, hope and enthusiasm. I look forward to working closely with you as we advance the hope and promise of public education in San Diego and across the nation.