A Message from Dr. Charles E. Dupre, Superintendent of Schools (5/27/20)
Next week, we will celebrate the Fort Bend ISD Class of 2020 and the completion of another year of learning for our students, staff and families. And we have learned a lot!
We have learned how flexible we can be as a learning community. We have demonstrated nimbleness and flexibility. We have learned new technologies that we will continue to use in the future. We have learned how to demonstrate care and concern for others in new ways. We have learned how much we value the personal connections we enjoy in the classroom and workplace.
Online learning has definitely been a positive experience for many of our students, but for others, it has been very stressful – members of our FBISD family have navigated many emotions during these past nine weeks, but they have continued to press forward. I have heard personal stories from some of our struggling learners that have worked hard to overcome challenges to continue learning at home, even though they really miss their teachers and supports provided at school. And I have heard from students who would be happy to continue learning from home on a permanent basis.
After the many updates shared during the past few months, today, it is my hope that you have a safe and restful summer. That without the day-to-day routines of schoolwork, you are able to recharge and prepare for the year ahead, because we know school will continue to look different than it has in the past.
With that in mind, you can trust that we will be planning for the future, keeping your student’s well-being in mind each step of the way. We are also mindful that our decisions will have a direct impact on your family. With so much uncertainty in our state and nation, and so much decision yet to be made, I want to leave you with a few commitments.
Health and safety
We will continue to plan with our families and safety in mind. We are committed to safe, clean learning environments where students can learn and grow together. If we are able to return to classrooms, and it is our hope that we will, we will return with all appropriate precautions in place.
I’ve heard that uncertainty is making some parents anxious and curious about educational choices for their children, including homeschooling. I am also aware that when summer is over and it is time for school to resume, some families will still be cautious, and even fearful about the virus. I want to assure you that we are working on plans to provide a full-time at home learning option that will allow students to remain enrolled in FBISD, allowing us to continue to meet your student’s needs with all the benefits and support available in a strong, large award-winning public school system.
If we continue online learning, or a combination of online and classroom learning. We are committed to learning from our experiences this spring to improve our practices and set clear expectations for a high-quality learning experience this fall. This will certainly mean the use of innovative scheduling and new technology tools. To truly serve students, meeting their academic and social-emotional needs, our students and teachers must feel connected with more time to plan, we know that we can dramatically improve upon our current practices.
We will be seeking feedback from all stakeholders about your experiences this spring. This week, we are conducting focus groups as we continue to evaluate all options for the school calendar, school activities, and what a school day would look like next year. Please continue to monitor the district website and your email for information about these feedback opportunities. Be assured that we will keep you informed all along the way, as decisions are made.
Finally, you can trust that we know education is not and will not be a one size fits all approach. As we plan for next year, we know each school in FBISD might require slightly different approaches to teaching and learning, based on the unique student enrollment at each school. As always, it will be our goal to provide an equitable, differentiated learning experience designed to meet the needs of each student.
In closing, just let me say this: we are thankful for your partnership. FBISD is here to support you. Our students, teachers, staff and parents have demonstrated incredible resiliency over the last nine weeks, and we still have a lot to accomplish together.
Please stay engaged, keep learning, and know that your public-school district will keep working for you.