Keeping it Positive
ACS – A Triple Threat
The first time I heard the phrase “triple threat” was when the movie Grease hit theaters and the co-stars were both considered triple threats…1) Acting, 2) Singing and 3) Dancing. Since then, the phrase has been used in the film industry, athletics, and in the work place, using different attributes depending on the respective careers being referenced. A Baseball Triple Threat is strongly skilled in three areas: hitting for power, hitting for average, and stealing bases. Likewise, a Triple Threat Publisher is strong in the areas of writing, editing and designing pages/page layout). Many believe ACS is also a triple threat with our quality programs, people and places. As we look deeper into each of these categories, here’s a summary demonstrating what we offer our students.
Program – Certainly we offer all the required and traditional courses needed for graduation, however, we also offer a wide variety of courses and programming at all levels. At the High School Level there are numerous electives in the areas of Art (Media Production, Photography and Digital Arts), Music (Voice, Guitar and Music Production), Technology (Manufacturing Systems, Intro to Engineering and Computer Applications), English (Journalism, Creating Writing and Drama), Science (Environmental Science, Horticulture, and Current Events in Science), Driver’s Education and Lifeguarding to name a few. Our Vocational/Career and Technical Education (CTE) students also have a wide array of course and career opportunities at our BOCES campuses. A sampling of courses include: Animal Science, Auto Tech and Auto Body Repair, Building Construction (skilled trades), Cisco Networking Academy, Criminal Justice, Culinary Arts, Cosmetology, Digital Media, Heavy Equipment and Welding/Machine Trades. Our college course offerings are extensive and provide a real opportunity for expanding learning, a jump start to earning college credits and significant cost savings by reducing the amount of credits needed for a college degree. We also offer 15 ACE classes tuition-free, examples include: Public Speaking, English, Math (multiple courses), Music Theory, Essential Arts, Spanish, Environmental Science (AP), First Year Experience and Professionalism. A great opportunity for those that are college bound!
We offer expanded and varied programming at all grade levels including educational field trips, both virtual and in-person, Career Development Council age-appropriate educational experiences including field trips, guests speakers, career speakers; and job shadows and mock interviews (High School Level only). In addition, we offer numerous athletic and extra-curricular clubs and activities, along with summer programming both in-house and regionally.
Full day Pre-K educational programming taught by our well-trained certified and experienced staff of caring professionals is available for all 3 and 4 year-olds who reside in the District.
People – Our students’ education, school experience, and ultimate success is our number one priority, and having quality staff at every level and in every position/area of school operations is critical. Our hiring practices ensure that we meet this priority.
Our goal is to hire, train, and retain the absolute best and brightest people. This is an area in which we have worked hard and have refined our hiring process over the years to better attract and keep quality people. “Hiring tough” is a key and number one tenet in the overall process. Selecting and working with interview committees on their involvement in the process and defining roles and responsibilities is another key to the successful selection of candidates.
With our instructional staff, the District is working to develop guaranteed and viable curricula for all grade levels and courses using a proven curriculum development process, continuing to implement research and evidence based instructional strategies, develop and implement a balanced and coherent system of assessments, and support students with a multi-tiered system of supports and interventions. These efforts will be applied to academic and social-emotional areas and will be supported by the use of data, professional learning and technology. The primary focus for the 2022-23 school year will be on using the Understanding by Design (UbD) process to begin developing curricula and learning about and preparing to implement restorative practices in response to concerning student behaviors.
Places – The term “places” references our buildings, learning spaces, and facilities. There is a real and research-based connection between quality facilities and learning. These are also spaces that our staff and community spend many hours in as well. With a supportive community, we have been fortunate to upgrade the vast majority of our entire school district, indoors and out. Through our capital construction over the past 15 years we have either newly built or completely renovated the following areas: all classrooms (upgraded teaching walls/technology), power, lighting, furniture, storage and security/communications; all large spaces including libraries, cafeterias, auditorium, gymnasiums, pool, and office areas, along with building access and overall security.
As you can see, Addison CSD is a “triple threat” indeed. We invite and encourage all constituent groups, for the complete benefit of our students, to join us on the journey of keeping it positive…not perfect…but a continual focus on positivity.
Here’s to a great 2022-23 school year!
Superintendent of Schools