Welcome to a new school year and an exciting time in Larkspur-Corte Madera School District!
I hope this reaches you after a great summer enjoying family, friends, and activities that you love. Over the summer I had the opportunity to visit Costa Rica with my family and surf many amazing breaks my son, which was exceptional on so many levels. Upon my return, a colleague shared with me that the definition of “catch the wave” is “to seize an opportunity that is presented to you, especially an opportunity to do something new.” This resonated with me. A new school year is filled with so many opportunities for our students, parents, staff, and community. Parent-school partnerships are essential. Further down in this email, you will find opportunities to become involved in LCMSD and in the coming weeks we will share more options at your school. Thanks in advance for your participation!
We appreciate the hard work and dedication of teachers, support staff, SPARK, families, community members, PTA/PTOs, and school and district support groups who join us in advancing our district goals, also known as the Local Control Accountability Plan (LCAP). Here is our full 68-page LCAP. For the abbreviated version, below are LCMSD’s three goals:
Equity: Close or narrow the equity gap for student groups (English Learners, students with disabilities, BIPOC, and socioeconomically disadvantaged).
Achievement for All: Increase academic achievement in mathematics and English language arts above the rate of similar schools for all students with a focus on narrowing the achievement gap for subgroups through best practices in personalized learning and a multi-tiered system of supports.
Wellness: A comprehensive wellness program will be maintained and improved, which includes social-emotional learning, campus and student safety, growth mindset, and a well-rounded course of study.
To advance this work, we have to continually nurture Goal #3, Wellness, a SPARK funded initiative that impacts each and every student. (click here for annual giving) Connection has to come before content or the student outcomes we are striving for will not be achieved. This starts with responsive relationships, where the emphasis is on students being seen as who they are, respected, and receiving direction and support to reach their goals. When students feel safe and connected to adults and peers, the opportunities for learning are endless.
While all of LCMSD’s schools have the most recent Distinguished Schools Awards, we will never rest. We are in the business of learning and in turn, continue learning and pushing ourselves to provide the very best educational experience for our students. Our team of highly skilled educators and support staff is more energized than ever for the first day of school and a great 2023-24.
Staff members have been busy getting schools ready for students. Teachers participated in many hours of professional development facilitated by our internal leaders such as CGI math with Beth Hawkins, Word Study Workshop with Lisa Capobianco and Kristie Martinez, and Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) with Toni Brown and Matthew Tozer. Additionally, partners from Marzano Research Institute facilitated workshops with Hall staff. Safety is our top priority and LCMSD was the recipient of a $900,000 grant over three years, 2022-2024. Those funds have supported many safety efforts such as our Summer Safety Summit that included the PBIS workshop mentioned above, as well as an active shooter training and simulation facilitated by the FBI. We have also finished a number of summer projects, including resurfacing the playground at Cove, as well as important maintenance projects aimed to keep our schools safe. We are thrilled that our students will benefit from excellent teachers and important site improvements.
We commend the dedication and hard work of each and every member of our staff. We believe that our internal talent, coupled with clarity, purpose, and professional development in support of our priorities will continue to advance our ability to personalize learning and increase overall academic achievement.
We also appreciate the visionary leadership of our Board of Education - Annie Sherman (President), Eric Schmautz (Vice President), Amir Movafaghi (Clerk), Beth Blair and Natalie Medved, who are extraordinary partners and leaders in our commitment to provide the very best education possible to all of our students.
All students return to school on August 23. We encourage all parents, when possible and age-appropriate, to send their students to school walking or on a bicycle. For all parents who drive their students to school, please be mindful of speed limits and other safety measures so that our communities can continue to be safe for all. A more detailed safety newsletter will be sent out during the first week of school.
It is a privilege to serve as your superintendent for a seventh year. I love coming to work each day with an extraordinary team of dedicated people who are passionate about educating students and committed to supporting and serving all students and families. It’s the people that make Larkspur-Corte Madera a great place to live, learn, and grow. I am honored to be part of the LCMSD team.
Here’s to a spectacular 2023-24 school year!
Please see below for other important LCMSD updates.
The purpose of this survey is to identify team members for the variety of this year's District committees. Some of the teams are continuing the work from last year, and others are new opportunities. They all represent the District's commitment to working collaboratively with parents, faculty, and staff to develop action plans in key areas. We encourage existing team members to continue to participate with their team again this year. We also invite new parents to join teams. Our goal is to have a broad representation of school sites and grade levels. In this survey, you will see a brief summary of the focus areas for each team and a list of its scheduled meeting dates for this year. Please indicate which committees you are interested in joining so we can build our teams!