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September Newsletter — Equity & Innovation for Public Schools

At long last, it’s fall. The season when we’ve typically settled back into our school routines, started itching for Fall Break, and begun discussing Halloween costumes. This year, traditions and routines are in limbo. We’re more than a month into the school year, and the local conversation is still dominated by how and when students will return to their school buildings. It appears that the defining feature of 2020 — uncertainty — will continue to hover over us the remaining months of this year.

August Newsletter — Putting a Stake in the Ground

The 2020-21 school year is unlike any we’ve seen in modern history. As we continue through this time full of unknowns and uncertainties, it is our duty to advocate for equity being at the center of every decision made on behalf of students and families of Atlanta Public Schools (APS). We believe that equity-centered leadership will face some resistance because change is never easy, but in time, it will unite our district and provide the foundation for every school to be stronger throughout the pandemic and beyond.

July Newsletter — We Go Further Together

Summer is often a carefree time, a season associated with less stress than the others. The sun shines for longer, and kids can do what they do best: play.

This summer, of course, is shaping up much differently. Let’s be honest. We’re tired, scared, angry, frustrated, and every emotion in between. Today, we woke up to the news of a triple shooting that injured a 9-year-old victim, and the sickening deaths of Ahmaud Aubrey just outside of Atlanta and Rayshard Brooks here in the City of Atlanta are still fresh in our mind. People are losing jobs and homes, COVID-19 cases are on the rise, and people are still dying from the pandemic. This past weekend, Secoriea Turner, an 8-year-old girl and Atlanta Public Schools (APS) student, was killed in the backseat of her mother’s car, and our mayor (who recently tested positive for COVID-19) is left pleading once again to try to stem the violence.

June Newsletter — In Service to Community

With schools closed for summer and our district in heavy planning due to uncertainties in the wake of COVID-19, we are grateful for the opportunity to reflect on our mission and the ways we show up in and for the community we serve. When students go back to school this fall, they will return impacted by the compounding effects of bearing witness to protest brought on by racial injustice and heightened inequity worsened by the pandemic.

May Newsletter — Forging Ahead in the Time of COVID-19

As many of us continue to adjust to the impact of the pandemic, much has changed and yet many things remain the same.

High school seniors across our district completed their last day of school last Friday, but not at all like they intended when the school year began. Students with plans to embark on their college careers this summer and those with intentions of going straight into the workforce are all facing uncertainty.

April Newsletter — Our COVID-19 Response Efforts Now and Later

Atlanta is facing an economic and educational crisis like none we have seen in recent history. Sadly, but not surprisingly, we find historically marginalized communities suffering the most. Many of the same structural conditions that already disproportionately and negatively impact these families are causing a racial gap in COVID-19 illness and death rates, and there’s an alarming disparity in the ability of families to meet the academic and social needs of their children during school closures.