Dear members of the Steamboat Springs School District and community, I will be stepping down as principal effective March 28. Unfortunately, I had an accident and will need surgery and months of immobility. As I focus on recovery, I feel I cannot dedicate the considerable time needed to adequately fulfill this role.
I would like to thank everyone I have worked with as Chair and School Board Director over the past four years. The work has been both incredibly challenging and deeply rewarding.
I am so proud of what we have accomplished together. We have weathered an unprecedented global pandemic, turning often to ensure we can meet the needs of students. In the process, we learned to be more nimble, to work closely with other local leaders, and to be better connected to our community.
In the face of a significant school culture challenge, we listened, were transparent about the need for change, and moved forward with speed, allocating resources with a commitment to improvement. Despite the challenges our community has faced, we have not lost sight of our long-term goals and are making a major effort to revitalize and update our strategic plan. The district is also focused, through our PLC work, on data-based support for student performance, one of my priorities during my time on the board.
Steamboat is a growing community. During my tenure on this board, the community has been committed to modernizing and expanding our facilities. During the pandemic, we built and opened a new school and expanded the provision of high-quality preschool education with additional preschool classrooms. We support the growth of our English language learner population through the Newcomers program. The strength of our community is the people. It is my desire that as our community grows, we remain committed to education.
Of course, there is still work to be done as the district continually strives to improve. The board will need to rely on this critical data work to make informed decisions to support academic progress. They must support mental health resources as our staff and students recover from the academic, social and emotional impacts of COVID-19. They will need to act decisively to help our amazing staff deal with growing challenges around housing, childcare and work-life balance. The outcome of the strategic plan update will generate a community-created roadmap to provide each of our students with exciting opportunities for a fulfilling future. Advocating for adequate school funding at the state and local level must also be part of the Council’s role if we are to better serve our children.
I trust that another member of the community will step into my shoes, bringing a new and valuable perspective. Once again, I want to thank everyone and wish you the best. It has been an honor to serve our students.
Principal, Steamboat Springs School District RE-2