Superintendent's Page

From the Superintendent

Welcome back from Spring Break!

I would qualify our Reading Month on Facebook for Maplewood and Fuller Street to be a huge success! We had close to 30,000 views and the numbers continue to grow. I encourage everyone who loves a child to read to them and with them as often as possible. It is the gift that truly gives for a lifetime!

2018-2019 Calendar Adjustments

While the state legislature deliberates if they will waive any of the state of emergency days, we have determined that barring any legislative action, we will be in school until June 14th. We will have full days on June 6 and 7 and half days on June 13 and 14. We will send out notification as soon as possible if  legislation changes that plan. We will still be out of school on April 19th for Good Friday as that is a contractual holiday. We have to adhere to the current state law that mandates 180 days and 1098 hours of instructional time.  

If you are looking ahead to when the 2019-2020 school year will begin, it will be on August 19, 2019. The five year common calendar is posted on our site to help you facilitate future planning for school dates going forward. 

After April 12th, you can look at our Website for our Annual Education Report which provides an extensive amount of information about individual school achievement in the 2017-18 school year as well as our combined results as a school district. 

We are in heavy planning mode at our central office. Preliminary Budget development, preparation for contract negotiations with the teachers and support staff is underway and we are working to support the schools in development of their scheduling assignments for next year. It is a really busy time. We welcome your support as a community to communicate with our legislators the importance of adequate funding for schools. Several credible studies have been done which have revealed Michigan to be underfunding their schools. It is time to support our students, our teachers and by extension our work force.

Governor Whitmer's K-12 school funding budget proposal

Here are some things you should know about that budget:

  • Gov. Whitmer proposed $507 million in additional investment in K-12 school funding, including:
    • Up to $180 per student increase in per-pupil funding
    • $120 million increase in special education
    • $102 million increase for at-risk students
    • $50 million increase for Career and Technical Education 
  • Proposal includes $24.5 million to triple the number of state-funded literacy coaches in schools.
  • Proposal calls for $85 million in additional funding to make preschool programs available to more students across Michigan.
  • Maple Valley would realize a $365 increase per pupil which puts us in one of most highly compensated benefit zones of this proposal.  

This is an intention from Governor Whitmer to begin addressing the funding recommendations that were made in the SFRC School Adequacy Study. For more information about this important study of school funding equity, read more at this link.

https://www.fundmischools.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/School-Finance-Research-Collaborative-Report.pdf

I urge you to contact your legislative representatives to make your thoughts and feelings known on this issue. Governor Whitmer has indicated a strong intention to address the funding deficits that have been occurring in Michigan for the last two decades which has placed us dead last in the nation for school funding adjustments. See this report for more information http://education.msu.edu/ed-policy-phd/pdf/Michigan-School-Finance-at-the-Crossroads-A-Quarter-Center-of-State-Control.pdf

Reading by Grade 3 

Note this is currently the law of the land and information about that law and videos for understanding the implications of that law are available here. There is some discussion that Governor Whitmer may work to repeal that law, so we urge you to be familiar with what this means within your own family and inform your legislators of your opinion on this topic as well.

Read by Grade 3 Guide for FAQs

https://www.michigan.gov/documents/mde/Read_Grade_3_Guide_638247_7.pdf

Short Video Explaining Read by Grade 3 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dyWQMqFQ6x0&feature=youtu.be

Parent Tips Video 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsBO8IhN-gw&feature=youtu.be

Spring Sports are in full swing, and our Seniors leave this month for their Senior Trip to Washington D.C. 

It is a GREAT month to be in the Valley!

Coffee & Conversations on April 9th @ 11 am Vermontville Public Library

Appetizers & Alliances on April 10th @ 6 pm Country Kettle Restaurant                         

If you have points of pride or areas of concern you need to share with me, please contact me at kbertolini@mvs.k12.mi.us.

In partnership,

Dr. Katherine Bertolini

Dr. Bertolini brings 29 years of educational experience to the office of Superintendent. Dr. Bertolini earned a Doctorate in Adult and Occupational Education with a focus on institutional analysis from North Dakota State University, A Master’s Degree in School and Community Counseling from Michigan State University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre/English Education from Michigan State University (go Green!).  Dr. Bertolini has dedicated twenty-five years to educational leadership roles in Gifted and Talented Programs, Alternative High Schools and higher education. Dr. Bertolini believes all children can learn and deserve to be inspired and challenged to fulfill their greatest potential.