Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Message from Dr. Hite, Superintendent of Schools

Dear PGCPS Parents, Staff and Community,The last two months have presented challenges in regard to severe winter weather which has placed all Prince George’s County citizens in unfamiliar territory. Most importantly, the December and February blizzards have placed our 129,000 students in the unique situation of missing a total of eight (8) days of critical learning. All of this has had a significant impact on the continuity of learning for all of our students this school year.

As a community, we must now collectively work together to get our students safely back in school as soon as possible. While the County and school system’s operations divisions have done a tremendous amount of work over the past week to clear school properties and roads, there is still much to be accomplished. We need your help! Many sidewalks that our students use to get to school remain not cleared, and impassable. In addition, we need the help of our community in clearing paths for our students to safely make it to their bus stops. As we all know from our own experience in recent days, when we are unable to traverse the two to three feet of snow on the sidewalk, we resort to walking in the streets. This is not a viable option for our children, particularly those that must travel along traffic-laden corridors. Also, please work with our school buses as drivers work to safely transport our students to and from schools. In some instances, roads are still one lane and patience with drivers as they negotiate these roads will be important in the days ahead. Finally and perhaps most importantly, we need all parents to assist your children in getting to and from school safely in light of the current road and sidewalk conditions.

Please look at the area surrounding your house and the school nearest to you – from the perspective of a much smaller, elementary student trying to get there – and do what you can to help carve out a safe path. Neighborhood, civic and public service organizations are being called upon to organize teams to clear the approaches to schools. In addition, our high school students can also join these efforts and earn service learning credit in the process.

Thank you for all you do for our students, and please do not hesitate to contact my office by phone at 301-952-6008 or by email at william.hite@pgcps.org to find out how you can support our schools.


William R. Hite, Jr., Ed.D.Superintendent of Schools

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