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Superintendent's Message: August 28, 2020

JP Schools Family,

We look forward to seeing everyone again, whether in person or virtually, on Monday, August 31. This is a very different school year, and we’re doing everything we can to make it safe, enriching and, most of all, special for our students.

There is so much to be excited about as we return to school, including an opportunity to connect with peers, interact with our teachers, and foster new discoveries. While there have been many challenges to opening our schools, I truly believe that we will come out stronger and better for it. 

I would like to take this time to update you on a few initiatives. 

  • Technology: This has been an opportunity to focus our efforts on how we can maximize technology in this era of digital connectivity. We have distributed nearly 13,000 devices to our students who need them for the start of school. We are becoming more efficient with the technology we have. As an example, we are becoming more effective with Google Classroom, which will usher our school system into a new era of virtual pedagogy. The growth we’ve had over the last few months will set us up for years to come.
  • Communication: Since many of our students will be virtual for the start of school, strong communication with our families is ever important. We will continue to message and regularly update our social media pages and the website to ensure all our families stay well-informed and connected. We hope these communications will be uplifting and keep our JP Schools community united. 
  • Notifications: In addition to communication about student education, we also have a process for communicating COVID-19 cases in our schools. The safety of our students and employees is our top responsibility. We want to assure you that all families and employees will be notified when we learn of a positive COVID-19 case in your school. Having this information is critical for families to make the best decisions for their health and safety. We’ve recently updated our FAQ’s with our notification process.
  • Support: We know that as the year begins, you will likely have questions or need support to help your student be successful. If you or your student have questions about academics or homework, please reach out to your teacher or school directly. If you or your student have technology issues related to coursework, please reach out to our Parent and Student Helpdesk Support at 504-365-5304. The Helpdesk is available Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. 
  • Health and Safety: As we prepare for Monday, we want to relay that our schools are taking every precaution necessary to keep our students and employees safe. We all have a role to play in stopping the spread of COVID-19. You can help us by having a conversation with your child about how they are feeling and checking their temperatures before they leave for schools. If your child is sick, please keep them home from school and seek consultation from a medical professional. We rely on our families to reinforce proper mask wearing, hand washing and social distancing.
  • 2020-2021 Academic Calendar: Due to Tropical Storm Marco and Hurricane Laura and the need to postpone the first day of school for students, we will need to update the academic calendar. Please stay tuned for more information. 

Thank you for your patience, support and flexibility as we safely reopen our schools for the 2020-2021 school year. We have an opportunity to be a part of history. If we continue to lead with love and keep our students at the center of everything we do, we will offer them the best opportunity for success. 

Dr. James Gray