The 2016-2017 school year presents us with many exciting new opportunities and innovative solutions for improvement. Our new Attendance Plan is a priority focus for this school year. You may have seen yard signs, outdoor boards and CityLink bus signs promoting our Attendance Plan. Our entire Peoria community supports this effort. Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends – your help is so important in encouraging your students to go to school every day. Our principals, administrators, volunteers, teachers and school staff are here to help you. Working together, I know we can make an enormous difference in our attendance which in turn will raise our children’s reading skills, test scores and graduation rates. Similarly, the District’s new First Day Compliance policy resulted in a significant increase in the number of students fully prepared to start learning from the first day of the school year.
We are also exploring The Peoria Alignment Initiative, an innovation that involves our entire community. Community leaders are solidly on board and I am looking forward to the long term results as we move forward in the coming year.
More than ever our high school students can accelerate their academic progress. Through Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), dual credit, Strong Start with Illinois Central College, the programs offered at Woodruff Career and Technical Center (WCTC) and col¬laborative programs such as Greater Peoria District EDC Career Cruising GP and the Mayor’s Internship Chal¬lenge, our high school students can graduate with college credits, and marketable soft and hard job skills.
This year, the Parent University program is going out and about town. Each month Parent University will be hosted by two schools and held at non-school sites including the Peoria Zoo and Children’s Playhouse, Tanner’s Orchard and the Riverfront Museum. What a wonderful opportunity to show students some sites around town they may not have seen or even known about! Shuttle buses will trans¬port families and, as in past years, there is something for everyone and each evening includes free dinner.
You may also notice on the calendar that we will hold quarterly District-wide PTO Council meetings this year. Volunteering for your school Parent Teacher Organiza¬tion is a great way to meet other parents, get to know the school staff and it lets your child know you care about their education. The PTO Council meetings are one way our District supports school PTOs and their leaders.
The Peoria Public Schools Foundation will be a very vis¬ible presence in our schools through the Horizons Club and the Adopt-A-School program. These partnerships with community leaders and business people give Peoria Public School students outstanding exposure to a wide variety of professional fields and a chance to develop mentoring relationships with caring adults.
As always, please keep in touch with all of the events and activities at your students’ schools and at Peoria Public Schools. Download our app and receive notifications of important news and take the time to read our website, www.peoriapublicschools.org, read The Remarkable Times in your email each week and follow up on social media.
Please take the time to read through the handbook/calen¬dar to become familiar with District policies and rules, and share your ideas with us. You can always email me at email@example.com.