A letter from Superintendent Thomas J. Douglas
Dear parents and guardians:
Today, we start yet another exciting school year in the Bethlehem Central School District. I hope that you have had a rewarding summer with your children and are ready for another successful school year. We all look forward to their return today and the new opportunities that we will explore together in the coming months ahead.
Each year brings many new challenges as the state continues with its reform agenda. One of those challenges will be the additional level of pre-testing that all schools are required to complete, at the beginning of each year, in order to fulfill the mandates of the Annual Professional Performance Review system.
This may cause some concern at home because of the amount of testing that will need to take place at the start of the year. I know all of our staff and administration would like to ask for your patience and understanding as we all address this mandate. Please take time with your children to reassure them that this process is in place to assist teachers in knowing where their educational needs are for the beginning of the year. Overall, the testing data will help instructors to better shape the educational program needed to meet or exceed the state standards. If you have any questions, please contact your building administrators for additional information.
I would also like to ask that you assist the district in spreading the word, to your family, friends, and neighbors, about more centralized bus stops this year for our students. This will help everyone be vigilant of our student’s safety as they traverse to and from the designated stops. I would also like to thank you for your understanding as we implement this new routing procedure. There really is no great solution to fit everyone’s requests, however, the transportation department has developed routes which will continue to maintain the department’s exemplary record. I would ask that in the coming days and weeks, please be patient as they fine tune their operations at the start of the school year. It usually takes several weeks to adjust to the ridership patterns, and the department will also make appropriate changes, as needed, to safely and efficiently operate throughout the rest of the school year. Please check the website for building and transportation specific information.
Lastly, I want to thank you for your patience and understanding as we start the 2012 - 2013 school year. The financial times are certainly challenging, however, they will not change what we do in the classroom. I am confident that this year, like years past, will be a great year educationally as we face the challenges together.
Have a great school year!
Dr. Thomas J. Douglas
Superintendent of Schools
Bethlehem Central School District