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February '24 Message from the Superintendent

February '24 Message from the Superintendent
Dr. Alexandra Estrella

Dear NPS Community,

We only have a few short months left in this school year, and they are bound to pass by quickly. As a mother of graduating seniors, I’m trying everyday to hold onto these precious moments with them before they head off on to the next chapters in their lives. I hope that all our families can do the same, whether your little ones are in their final days of school or just starting their educational journey.

I want to thank you all for your continued support for our scholars and our schools. It takes a village to ensure each child receives an excellent and equitable education, and your commitment to that mission whether you’re a parent, a teacher, a social worker, a coach or even a neighbor is much appreciated.

Thank you for taking the time to allow me to address you through this letter, and I hope to provide more of these updates throughout the remainder of the school year.

My team and I are currently evaluating the goals that each department set out for the 2023-24 school year, and reflecting on the progress made thus far. We will present this mid-year progress report at the next Norwalk Board of Education workshop meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 27.

Each district goal works toward one of the priorities set out in the Future Ready for All: 2021-26 Strategic Plan, a plan that we have also been reevaluating at its midway point. While each department works toward its individual goals, the fulfillment of the strategic priorities requires everyone in the district to work together to ensure our schools run efficiently and effectively for the benefit of all students.

We invite the community to attend the workshop and listen to the progress being made and what we intend to achieve by the end of the school year.

I’d also like to encourage your public participation at the Common Council’s Finance & Claims Committee public hearing on Thursday, Feb. 15 to advocate for adequate funding to best support our children and their education. The Norwalk Board of Education has requested an 8.2% increase, and we can’t stress enough that this request is intended only to maintain the same level of quality service and excellence expected by our scholars, our staff and our families.

The city will make its first presentation of the recommended operating budget for the City of Norwalk on Monday, Feb. 12 at the Board of Estimate & Taxation meeting. We hope the city carefully considers our request and understands that anything short of the 8.2% request will be a detriment to our scholars and the future of Norwalk.

As always, we remain cognizant of the impact our budget has on taxpayers and the lives of the community. We are extremely fortunate to work with community partners who are collaborating on projects with us to improve the lives of our scholars. These partnerships have led to the realization of such projects as the new school-based health and wellness centers that have opened in several schools across the district. Thanks to state and federal funding, we can provide these beneficial supports and make it easier for those in our community to access important healthcare services.

Please remember that our February break will span an entire week this year from Feb. 19 to Feb. 23. I hope you can spend this week with friends and family, enjoying your time together and appreciating the moment.

Yours in partnership,

 

Dr. Alexandra Estrella

Superintendent of Norwalk Public Schools