District Administrator Mike Endreas
We are still here
We’re still here! I realize that’s kind of an odd way to start an article, but that has been my stock answer when people ask how the school year started. That short sentence tells a great deal about the planning and preparation of our administration and all staff in getting ready for the current year. I must also note it could not have been possible without the full support of our Board of Education.
Even though it looks and feels different, I am proud to say we work hard each day to give our students an educational opportunity in an environment that is as risk-free as we can make it. Difficult decisions had to be made to find a balance between faceto- face learning and the virtual arena. I feel very good about the balance that we have created, albeit not how we would prefer to do it, but nonetheless the most effective considering our circumstances.
Our basic philosophy has been to provide opportunities in as low a risk environment that we can. Our smaller cohort groups are putting less impact on each student. As of yet we have had no positive cases in our school, but we do know that when it does happen it will impact a smaller group allowing the remainder of the students to continue on. Our goal is to stay in session face-toface. If the outbreak or need to quarantine gets too great, we may have to shut down our district and go completely virtual. Our current model limits the impact. With other schools having 50-100 students mandated to all virtual, we are hanging on.
On a more positive note, our kids are getting opportunities in our fall sports arenas. Cross country has had many meets while volleyball and football are starting their seasons. To be honest, if you asked me about 2 months ago if I thought this would be the case, I would have responded “No way.”
I feel like this entire school year is going to be a compilation of trial and error. We hope to continually evolve with our offerings as we receive information that we can maintain a low risk level for our kids and adults in the building.
The referendum building project is plodding along. We have had some setbacks in waiting for permits and such but the overall timeline is intact. The dome and conventional building should be enclosed before the major portion of the winter hits in December and then the interior portion will proceed throughout the remainder of winter and spring with an open date of early to mid summer.
We have a camera tracking the progress of the project and can be found on our school website at www.spencer.k12.wi.us. We will also be sending out updates via our Facebook page.
It is great to be back and getting the ability to interact with kids. The old saying “You don’t know what you got until it’s gone” never has rung truer after last spring. I appreciate all you do for our district and want to ask you for patience and understanding as we move forward. The decisionmaking process is rooted in doing what we feel is in the best interest of all or our kids with the information we have. I look forward to continuing to work toward normalcy.
Take care and be safe.