Back to school: A letter from the superintendent

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It is a pleasure to welcome everyone to the new 2008-2009 school year in the Rowan-Salisbury School District.
We are excited to be opening our new Rowan County Early College program on the campus of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. The Early College will follow a different calendar year schedule than the rest of our district. This calendar may be accessed via our district Web site at The first day of school for the Early College students was Aug. 7. We are thrilled to be able to partner with Rowan-Cabarrus Community College in making this opportunity for students a reality. This marks the fourth consecutive year that our district has opened a new school.
The first day of school for students following our traditional calendar will be Aug. 25.We have begun planning for our new two-year District Improvement Plan for 2008-2010, which will reflect the direction of our school board’s vision, mission and core belief statements. These statements may be viewed on our district Web site listed above. All our schools will be creating new School Improvement Plans that compliment the District Improvement Plan and vision of our school board. The teams for both the District and School Improvement Plans are comprised of community partners, parents and staff.
Reflecting upon these statements, we will continue to focus on empowering, inspiring and challenging students to meet their highest potential.
Increasing student achievement and closing the performance gap for some groups of students continues to be our priority.
We are very excited to have recently been notified that our district has been awarded a “Safe Schools / Healthy Students” federal grant in the amount of $6 million. Receiving this grant is a great honor as only a limited number of these grants are awarded throughout the United States.
This grant will enable our district to provide more direct services to at-risk students through school social workers, early intervention specialists, interpreters and working closely with our local law enforcement, public mental health and juvenile justice agencies. These programs will be implemented during this school year.
As a district we are committed to interactive communication with all of our stakeholders. In support of that goal, I plan to continue my weekly Friday Notes (that can be found on our district Web site), op-ed newspaper articles, staff and parent newsletters, participation in civic and community organizations, advisory group meetings with teachers, parents, classified staff, principals, administrators and students, in addition to providing online school board agendas.
I hope you will feel free to contact me if you have suggestions or input regarding this school year and how we can make it the best year ever. I want to thank our community, parents and staff for your contribution to our children’s success. We could not successfully accomplish our mission without all of you!
Dr. Judy S. Grissom