Dear Upper Arlington families,
I hope you’ve had a great week! You can watch my video update here, or continue reading below.
Black History Month
This is the first week of Black History Month, and each week I’d like to highlight important parts of our local history.
By now I hope everyone has heard of the man named Pleasant Litchford, who had been enslaved in Virginia and chose this area to build his business and raise his family. The Litchford family made many important contributions to the area, but today I want to highlight their support of public education. Mr. Litchford and his family donated a portion of their land along Litchford Road (now called Ridgeview Road) for the creation of a school for African-American children where the senior center and athletic fields now sit. Schools like these were often met with great resistance, but the Litchford family placed a great value on education and were dedicated to helping all students access the education they deserved.
This is one of the many pieces of our local history that we’re sharing with students as we work to ensure we are sharing the full history of our community. I look forward to highlighting more of these points with you in the coming weeks.
I want to thank you for your support and patience as our staff worked through the clinics set up to provide COVID-19 vaccinations for approximately 17,000 school staff members from districts in Franklin County. We are incredibly grateful to be among the first districts in the state to receive our vaccines. By prioritizing school staff members, the state is recognizing the importance of education for our children.
As I mentioned last week, we have set a goal of March 23 to transition to all-in learning for all students on our school-based pathway. Our Medical Advisory Team is hopeful we’ll see a significant decline in cases this spring, and we’ve set this goal so that families will have time to prepare for this possibility. To help our community bring down and keep down the number of cases here, it’s important that we all continue wearing masks and maintaining physical distancing from people outside of our households.
We still continue to collaborate with the Medical Advisory Team and keep families updated as March approaches. You can see this week’s data dashboard update here.
Save the dates - Well-being webinar series continues
We are excited to have partnered with the Upper Arlington Education Foundation to welcome bestselling author and educator Rosalind Wiseman, to discuss her brand new publication, The Distance Learning Playbook for Parents. These webinars will support our families and staff members in honing skills to support the social, emotional, and educational well-being of our students.
I hope you have a fantastic weekend. Stay warm, and, as always, go Bears!
Paul Imhoff, Ed.D.
Superintendent, Upper Arlington Schools