Today marks day one as your new superintendent. I am so excited to be back home and look forward to meeting and working collaboratively with each of you.
Over the past several months since my appointment was announced, I’ve had the immense pleasure of returning to Alexandria periodically as part of my transition. I’ve met with Interim Superintendent Lois F. Berlin and conferred with the School Board, ACPS leadership, administrators, future colleagues and City counterparts. I’ve engaged with staff and families on school tours and engaged with the community through a variety of meetings and events. I’ve had lunch with grandparents and enjoyed “coffee with the principal”—it’s been quite invigorating. I’ve learned so much over the past few months and look forward to the learning that is to come.
Last week, I read about the great achievements of our staff, the legends who have retired from our wonderful profession and our students in the year-end highlights. I am so inspired by your dedication and commitment to student achievement and I’m eager to continue the great work already underway to ensure that Every Student Succeeds.
My first 100 days will be focused on a transition plan that is shaped around the ACPS 2020 Every Student Succeeds Strategic Plan. Through collaboration with school and central office leaders, I’ll be assessing our progress toward the goals laid out in the plan and laying the groundwork for the actions we’ll be taking in year four of the plan.
Using our school division’s metrics, I’ll be analyzing data around student achievement to assess our greatest assets and where we need to grow. Through collaboration with our principals and teacher leaders, I’ll review school education plans with a focus on closing achievement gaps and ensuring equity for all students. And, we’ll launch a Leadership Institute for all school division leaders to address continuous improvement and ensure success for all students.
I’ll spend time in the community connecting with our School Board members, city officials and community groups and organizations to ensure efficient communication and collaboration as we work together in the education of our young people in ACPS.
You’ll see me at community meetings, walking neighborhoods, engaging in “listening and learning” sessions, attending back-to-school nights and school events, and more. And, I look forward to seeing you out there.
Having an exemplary staff is critical to our work, so I’ll also be looking to you in my first 100 days. I’ll be exploring our efforts in hiring and retaining staff members that best meet the needs of all students. Furthermore, I want to ensure that you have the supports you need — such as professional learning opportunities, leadership training and planning, and effective employee relations processes — that will enable you to succeed in your roles and focus your efforts on student achievement and success.
I look forward to meeting, connecting with and learning from each of you. Please join me today, July 2, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. for an informal meet and greet especially for staff with light refreshments in the courtyard at ACPS Central Office.
I hope to see you there!
Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr.
Superintendent of Schools