Superintendent’s Update: Friday, September 23, 2022

Dear Batavia Families and Community,

If you recall from my last update, I was going to share with you a brief anecdote about a hedgehog, so here goes:

Hedgehogs are known for their innate ability to do one thing really well: when a predator threatens them, they curl into a ball and protect themselves. They focus on the simple and effective things in life, as opposed to a fox who is constantly darting about, planning, and plotting. I shared this analogy with our faculty and staff on opening day, and BCSD is also in the process of being more like a hedgehog by focusing on key and effective teaching principles:

  • Effective and engaging curriculum

  • Effective teaching 

  • Reading and writing across all grade levels and content areas

The Board of Education and I thoroughly analyzed the Strategic Plan (which you can find here) at our recent retreat and have determined that family feedback (as well as staff feedback) is essential in our efforts to monitor the overall success of the plan, which include the “hedgehog” principles above. To that end, our Board of Education set a specific goal to regularly monitor progress on these District goals and initiatives by reviewing updates, surveys, and data

This goal will take a variety of shapes and forms, but we need your help, and here’s how: beginning with my update on October 7, families will be asked to take one survey question (anonymously) related to our Strategic Plan to provide the Board, as well as BCSD, with feedback on progress, successes, and areas for improvement. There will be only one survey question per update, and to start, the topics will be aligned with our Strategic Plan. In addition, there will also be an opportunity to provide comments related to the questions, and of course, you can leave your name and contact information if you so choose.

Here are some additional highlights and updates across BCSD:

  • We are in the process of reviewing our procedures for collecting bus information to create a more efficient and streamlined approach for next school year. We have listened to your feedback and will seek to make adjustments. 

  • Please be on the lookout for our Household Income Survey which will be mailed to you in the coming days. The data we gather from this is “mission critical” in our District’s efforts to secure federal and state funding for programs, such as the Community Eligible Program (CEP) which provides meals for all BCSD students. 

  • September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. Please click here for important resources available to our community.

  • We have had a great response to our Van Detta Stadium security updates, and we thank you for your continued support and cooperation. Go Blue Devils! Our fall sports teams are off to a great start and be sure to listen to WBTA 1490 on Tuesday, September 27th at 8:30 am to hear from some of our team captains. 

  • For those of you that follow Board of Education meetings, we are in the process of implementing a new tool that will make our agendas and minutes more streamlined and accessible to the community. Look for more information on this around January, but the Board and I look forward to this enhancement.

  • I look forward to celebrating with my fellow BCSD alumni and friends at our Blue Devil Hall of Fame Banquet next Saturday, October 1, at Batavia Downs. Thank you to Athletic Director Mike Bromley and our Coaches Association for hosting this wonderful event, and congratulations to all our inductees. More information may be found here.

We have had a wonderful opening month of school and thank you for your continued support and enthusiasm for our programs and students. Next week, we celebrate Homecoming across BCSD and this is always a special week for our community and students. Each school has some special events and dress-up days planned, so please look for more information so your children can participate and enjoy.

Have a great weekend, and Go Blue Devils and Bills! 

Jason A. Smith
Superintendent of Schools
585-343-2480, ext 1000

Twitter:  @JasonJasmith@BataviaCSD