Director of Instructional Services - Letter to Community
Dear Barker Families,
First and foremost, thank you for your continued support this year. It has truly been a unique and different type of school year. Your flexibility and understanding have helped all of us make it through. At this time last year, I was writing to say we miss seeing everyone and we were looking forward to getting back to face-to-face instruction. While school this year didn’t look like what we were hoping for, we were glad to have kids back in the buildings!
We’ve made a lot of changes this year and will continue with changes for the next school year. The district implemented a 1:1 technology environment. While we hope the COVID guidelines will go away for the fall, our 1:1 device program will not. All students will still have access to a device for school-related work. However, if we are back in school full-time (and let’s hope we are), only 3rd grade students and up will be taking them home. Pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade devices will stay in the classroom.
Teachers will continue to update the curriculum over the upcoming school year to reflect changes to New York State standards in different subject areas. This will take some time and instruction might look different, but this process will help us in achieving our goal of providing a high-quality education to all our students.
For families who have a child receiving Special Education services, thank you begin flexible in transitioning annual meetings from face-to-face to phone conferences. While it’s not ideal, we appreciate everyone working with us. Please know that your child’s education is our top priority. In the fall, we are hoping to be able to hold meetings face-to-face again.
The biggest change to Special Education comes in when we are going to be holding our annual meetings. To stay compliant with New York State law, we are moving to anniversary date meetings. This means we will be running IEPs from annual meeting to annual meeting, not from the start of the school year to the end of the school year. Eventually, we are going to be shifting the annual meeting to around the same time as the reevaluation meeting, each year. This may seem a bit confusing at first, so let me give you an example. If your child was initially classified on November 7th, the annual meeting will be held just before November 7th (this will be phased in). We will be combining all reevaluation and annual review meetings into one, to try to minimize the time you might need to take off work.
Once again, stay safe and healthy. Please contact me if you have any questions or concerns.
Thank you and have a good summer.
Dr. Mariah Fiona Kramer
Director of Instructional Services
Phone: (716) 795-3350
Fax: (716) 795-3394