A Word from the School Board
Dear families, students, and community members –
In response to the Youngkin administration’s proposed changes regarding the treatment of students who identify as transgender and non-binary, the Charlottesville City School Board strongly affirms Superintendent Dr. Gurley’s commitment to “continue to support our LGBTQ+ students, staff, parents/guardians, and others within our school communities.”
In this stance, we are supported by federal Title IX legislation, which extends school protections based on gender identity. In addition, our approach is in keeping with Virginia law, which requires the Virginia Department of Education to issue guidance to support transgender students according to “evidence-based best practices.” It’s worth noting that a recent attempt to legislatively overturn this law in Virginia failed. Our approach also follows our own nondiscrimination policy, which since 2013 has protected students based on gender expression and identity. On top of all this, protecting students is the right thing to do.
Nothing like a good book to get you dancing! Watch a video of Buford students and staff grooving to DJ Q while the Free Book Bus gave away 300+ books to 7th graders and their teachers. The Free Book Bus will be back at Buford this Friday for 8th graders.
Our schools continue to practice COVID safety. Due to a classroom at one of our elementaries having four possibly related cases, we have shifted that classroom temporarily to virtual learning. This is the first time this year that a shift to virtual has been necessary, and we hope it will not be a common occurrence. Here are ways families can promote COVID safety:
— Wear masks (strongly recommended if there is a case in your class or when community transmission rates are at medium or high)
— Sign your child up for a booster (the bivalent booster targets both the original virus and the Omicron variant). Vaccines are widely available.
— Sign your child up for our free, weekly COVID testing program
— Follow our COVID dashboard
At the end of October and beginning of November there are several days off of school for students:
— Thursday, October 27 (Professional Learning Day) and Friday, October 28 (Teacher Workday),
—Monday, November 7 (Teacher Workday) and Tuesday November 8 (Teacher Workday; also is Election Day).
Keep up with school dates by subscribing to our Google Calendar.
The committee that is reviewing the names of Clark and Venable elementaries would like community feedback via this survey. The survey explores the possibilities of keeping the names as-is, keeping the names but changing the people the names honor, and finding new names. A virtual community forum about these names will be held on Wednesday, October 19 at 5pm. Register here.
The City continues to make regular, minor updates to bus routes and assignments. They have hired more drivers and will expand bus routes beginning November 9–this will impact all bus riders, and we will send out updated route information at that time. The City has also raised the drivers’ base wage to $21/hour. Families, thank you for your continued patience and support!
Cville Schools has just opened a welcome center to help families whose primary language is not English. The budget-neutral center is a “one-stop shop” to help newly arrived families register for school, submit documentation, complete language-screening tests, and more. Another goal of the welcome center is to orient families to our schools and community with resources such as the “Welcome to Charlottesville” coloring book developed in many languages by Charlottesville’s Free Book Bus. Finally, we’d like to connect newcomers to a friendly face with experience helping ESL families. The welcome center is open at the division’s central office annex at the back of CHS, Tuesday and Thursdays, 8:30am-3:30pm or by appointment. Call 434-245-2421 with questions.
At last Thursday’s School Board meeting, the Board approved the calendar of meetings to develop next year’s budget. Thanks to all who have completed the initial input survey (we’ve received more than 400 responses so far). If you haven’t yet, please fill out the survey by end-of-day tomorrow (Tuesday). Data will be shared as part of the Board’s upcoming work session on October 20. Due to the need to ease our reliance on one-time federal COVID money as well as inflationary pressures, your input is especially valued.
UVA Athletics is offering the Cville Schools community two free tickets per household to the UVA-UNC football game on November 5 (gametime TBD). Additional tickets can be purchased for $10. Request/purchase tickets here.
Our next Family University will be on Thursday, October 13, from 5:30-6:30pm. We hope you can join us to learn more about using the mental health resources our schools offer! The flyer at left is shown in Spanish because we’ll have a Spanish-speaking break-out room, too.
As part of our ongoing efforts to promote safety, we are joining Albemarle County Public Schools and UVA in piloting a clear-bag policy for spectators and audience members at CHS-sponsored ticketed events. The pilot will be in place through the first semester, and if we make any further changes, we will keep you posted. Find details here.
The School Board usually meets the first Thursday of the month at 5pm in the media center at CHS. You can join in person, via Facebook, or via Zoom. Here are mini-minutes from the recent October meeting as well as last month’s September meeting. Interested in future meetings? Sign up to receive notices of School Board meetings.
Yep, that’s a lemon! These three-year-olds in pre-K at Greenbrier tested which snacks would float or sink, then had a taste…science is truly a journey of discovery!
UVA Women’s Basketball players like Kaydan Lawson visited Johnson Elementary to volunteer with math, reading and PE. Thank you, Hoos!
We are so grateful to our custodians! Here are some of the ways our schools said thank you to “the keepers of the clean” for National Custodian Recognition Day on October 2.