Latest Update From Superintendent, Dr. VanderJagt

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June 25, 2021

 

Dear Families,

I hope your summer is off to a great start. The warm spring weather was beautiful, and hopefully, the current rainy weather has not caused a damper in any of your summer plans. 

I want to update you on a few items to provide clarity as we enter the summer season. First and foremost, we anticipate entering the fall in a normal fashion. Currently, masks are not required, and other Covid related requirements have been lifted. At this point, masks will be optional for students. We do ask that if your child is not feeling well to take extra precautions and keep them home until their symptoms have improved. We will also NOT be Covid testing students throughout the school year. Some of you have shared conversations you had on Facebook regarding Covid testing students twice a week. These are just recommendations, and we do not plan on testing students unless you as a parent would like your child tested. We are awaiting guidance from the MHSAA regarding athletics and testing requirements. At this point, we have no requirements but only recommendations. Again, we will not be requiring masks or Covid testing students unless required in every school district by the State of Michigan. 

On Wednesday, June 16, we hosted a parent information meeting to share our vision for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging at Hudsonville Public Schools (HPS). Some families have been curious as to why we are prioritizing this work at HPS. The mission of HPS is to educate, challenge and inspire all learners to become contributing, responsible members of a global society.  We are here for ALL students.  We believe in developing our students for the global society they will live in when they graduate from HPS.  We are committed to providing a challenging and engaging curriculum, highly effective instruction, and a positive, supportive environment for ALL students.  We are working to be proactive and responsive to our changing world as well as address the many events that impact our students daily.

As we dive deeper into this work, we understand that there are differing viewpoints regarding diversity in our schools. After listening to feedback, we are evaluating our initiative and approach to the work. We firmly believe that ALL means ALL and will continue to incorporate our professional learning as a staff around this goal. Students need to feel safe in our schools, and we want to ensure we are doing the work to support this initiative. We want to acknowledge diverse cultures and traditions, recognize various abilities, and increase opportunities for students to have shared leadership in creating inclusive opportunities while engaging parents and community members for us to learn together. 

I hope you have a safe and healthy summer. We will be sure to update you later in the summer should our plans deviate.

-Dr. VanderJagt