Dr. Jeanice Kerr Swift
Welcome to the 2017-18
School Year!It is a great day in the Ann Arbor Public Schools as we join together to celebrate the opening of a brand new 2017-18 school year. We are so pleased you have chosen the Ann Arbor Public Schools; we have missed our children every day of this summer and are excited to welcome the Classes of 2018 through 2031 on Tuesday, September 5, 2017.
During these summer weeks, we have been busy hiring talented teachers and leaders, preparing our buildings and updating infrastructure in anticipation of the return of students and staff. We have also expanded programming to meet the needs of our students and fulfill the high expectations of our Ann Arbor Public Schools parents and community.
Thanks to the support of our AAPS voters, we have been working to replace furniture in more than a dozen schools this summer (a phased process that will include all buildings), replenished musical instruments – new pianos and approximately 5,000 new instruments will be in use by our students this fall. We have replaced 66 school buses over the recent two years, and we currently continue ongoing projects to repair, restore, and update school buildings, performance facilities, elementary playgrounds, secure entrances, and athletic fields. All of this progress is a result of the 2015 Bond, which was achieved at no additional levy to our taxpayers.
We continue to enhance early childhood learning opportunities and other program offerings across the district. We will soon welcome more than 300 Young 5’s students - the Class of 2031 - across fifteen elementary locations. We are excited to offer STEAM learning at every campus in the district through the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) program. Mitchell Elementary, Scarlett Middle and Huron High Schools are now fully authorized as International Baccalaureate Schools, offering the Primary Years, Middle Years, and Diploma Programs. In addition, technology updates are currently in progress for all of our classrooms, PK-12.
As we prepare for the start of a new year, we want to ensure that you have accurate back-to-school information to support a successful transition from summer to school. The AAPS Back-to-School Guide contains detailed information regarding school schedules, registration, immunization and lunch information, curriculum nights and other important District information. School day times, school bus schedules, and the 2017-18 school calendar, are available on our website at a2schools.org.
Additional information regarding flexible start times available for high school students is also shared at a2schools.org or by contacting members of our high school counseling teams. We have recently launched a new A2 Schools Podcast series with Andrew Cluley. It was my pleasure to join him for the inaugural edition. You may also be interested in viewing the AAPS 2017-18 Back-to-School Message.
All are Welcome
As we unwrap the gift of this new school year, we understand that these are challenging days in our community, across the country, and around the world. We know how important it is to ensure our commitment to our AAPS core values of welcome, acceptance, embrace and celebration of all in our community. All are welcome in our Ann Arbor Public Schools.
I know that in the Ann Arbor Public Schools community, our commitment to the safety and well being of our children remains so very strong. We are inspired by our own ability to join together as individuals and organizations, to work together to lift our children and each other above any negative narrative. Our 18,000 children are depending on each of us and I thank you for your partnership in this important work together for our children.
It is an exciting time in the Ann Arbor Public Schools; we are a school district continuing on a path of growth, innovation and success. We are currently extending and enhancing our services, programs, and physical properties as we continue to strive to offer the highest quality education for which our district is well known across Michigan and around the world. Together, we will continue to live our commitment to inclusion, access, equity and opportunity for every child.
Whenever we can assist you in any way, please call on us. We recognize that you have a choice when choosing a school for your children and we thank you for choosing the Ann Arbor Public Schools.
Jeanice Kerr Swift
Superintendent of Schools
Follow me on Twitter! @A2SchoolsSuper