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Measure E Passage!, 2021-22 School Year Highlights, Retirements, Board Updates, and Summer Reading Suggestions

Dear LCMSD Community,

Breaking News . . . Measure E (LCMSD’s parcel tax) passed with 76% voting yes! Our schools depend on community funding and we greatly appreciate your support through the parcel tax, SPARK, and PTO/A. Thank you!! I also want to extend great appreciation to our Board of Trustees and CBO, Paula Rigney who began this process over a year ago. Additionally, I want to thank Sara Ryba for chairing the campaign, as well as Annie Sherman, Jaime Heaps, Daniela Kratz, Cate Castonguay, Kate Lowe, Jessica Foley, and Michael Pearce for the key roles they played in the campaign efforts. These election results demonstrate the great support for our community schools - thank you!

It is so exciting to be gearing up for the 8th grade graduation and 5th grade promotions today (yesterday for Neil Cummins!). We wish our 8th graders much success as they move into high school and will miss our families graduating out of LCMSD. As we approach summer vacation, I wanted to take a moment to share my appreciation for all of the students, parents, staff, and community members that make LCMSD such a special place to learn and grow. This has been a great year with many highlights and accomplishments:

  • Hall Middle School was awarded a National Distinguished School (one of two schools in the state to receive this honor)
  • We were amongst the few districts to maintain pre-pandemic student achievement rates on CAASPP state testing
  • Jill Sellers was awarded Marin County’s Trustee of the Year
  • We are very proud of our Golden Bell awardees this year: Nathan Beach, Beth Hawkins, Julia McKee, Amy Benz, Mary Anne O’Keeffe, Linda Tarantino, and the District Leadership Alliance (PTO/A and SPARK)
  • Equity work, led by Kristie Martinez, made significant advancements through regular staff workshops, an audit of practices/programs, parent meetings and listening sessions, and a multi-year plan moving forward
  • Teachers, staff, administrators, and the community continued high levels of collaboration to provide safe school environments
  • Approximately 97% of staff, 90% of middle school students, and 80% of elementary school students are fully vaccinated
  • Provided outdoor education at Nature Bridge for our 5th graders and 6th graders (who missed it last year due to the pandemic)
  • Expanded our robust music program with an award winning 6th grade choir
  • Engaged in a social studies adoption process and will be making a recommendation to the Board next week
  • Reimagined teacher leadership teams through the creation of curriculum council
  • Piloted a successful elementary math intervention program that will continue in 2022-23
  • Reinstated the timely and strategic elementary literacy intervention program
  • Implemented the first LCMSD summer school in 2021 and will be continuing the program in 2022
  • Hosted visitors to observe our elementary Readers and Writers Workshop in action
  • Implemented mental health universal screeners for 4th and 7th grades
  • Shared services and best practices in the business department for multiple districts
  • Reinstated our many important campus activities: socials, assemblies, Hall clubs, dances, athletics, non-cohort based recess, and so much more

Wow - this year has been quite a success! On behalf of the Larkspur-Corte Madera School District, thank you to our Board, teachers, staff, administrators, parents, community members, and of course our students! 

Congratulations on not only persevering through these unprecedented times, but doing an extraordinary job in the name of our children.

With gratitude,

Brett Geithman, Ed.D.  

Below are some end of the year LCMSD announcements:

Retirements

Education isn’t just a job, it is a passion, it becomes your identity, it is the fire inside you to make a difference in the lives of children and families. Thank you for your dedication and service to the profession. Your impact will last for generations. Congratulations to this year's retirees:

  • Jeanne Felton, Hall Teacher
  • Lisa Ferguson, Hall Teacher

Board Updates – Trustee Election

For the November 8, 2022 election, LCMSD will have four open seats on the Board of Trustees; three of which will be four-year terms and one will be a two-year term. Interested candidates may file paperwork with the Marin County Elections Department between July 18 and August 12. Here is information on becoming a Trustee. Additionally, please know you can email bgeithman@lcmschools.org and/or asherman@lcmschools.org for further information. The next Board Meeting is scheduled for June 16 where there will be an LCAP and budget public hearing. Trustees will also vote on the Grand Jury Report, Extended Learning Opportunities Plan, and UPK Plan. A COVID update, as well as a LCMSD/RUSD interdistrict permit update will be provided. On June 17 the Board will meet again to vote on the LCAP and budget. The Board Meetings will be held in person at 6:00 pm (6/16) and 8:30 am (6/17) in the Hall Library; no RSVP required. The meeting will also be live streamed via Zoom (link; passcode - lcmsd). Please know, public comments will only be taken by in person attendees; public comments via Zoom will not be available. We hope to see you there!

Summer "Homework"

I've been asked by a number of parents what students should focus on during the summer. Below is my number one recommendation:

Read, read, and read more! Just because it is summer, that doesn't mean your student should take a break from their 20 minutes of reading per day. Please see the excellent advice and resources below from our LCMSD Librarian, Joy Lynn King.

Reading and engaging with books and text is always important, but perhaps even more so over the summer. According to Booksource, “Students who read during the summer gain an average of 1 month of reading proficiency. Students who don’t read lose an average of 2-3 months proficiency and over time, those lost months add up to years.” Access to books and student choice is key. Students are motivated when they can choose books they are interested in and reflect their personal interests. 

 Have a great summer. So long 2021-22. That’s a wrap!

Board of Trustees

Annie Sherman, President

Eric Schmautz, Vice President

Monica Cañas, Clerk

Amir Movafaghi

Sarah Mueller