Superintendent's Update: Friday, December 23

Dear Batavia Families and Community,

I bet this dialogue between you and your child sounds familiar:

PARENT: What did you do today in school?

CHILD: Nothing.

If your children are like mine, that is the response we usually receive, right?

In order to flip that response, I usually ask my children (even my college-aged children) this:

PARENT: What did you learn today?

CHILD: We learned about xx.

PARENT: Oh, and what did you learn about xx?

CHILD: We learned xx.

As a District, this month and next, we are intentionally focusing on an instructional concept known as learning targets with our faculty. In everyday terms, a learning target is essentially what the class will be learning that day about a particular topic. In professional terms, learning targets are concrete goals written in student-friendly language that clearly describe what students will learn and be able to do by the end of a class. Here is an example:

The student can cite textual evidence to support inferences of a text.”

I am sharing this with you because you too can assist at home simply by asking your child what they LEARNED today in school. Give it a try and let me know how it goes by dropping me an email—I would love to hear from you.

Once again, the spirit of giving is alive and well here at BCSD during the holidays. Our schools have engaged in some wonderful service projects to assist our families in need, and I am proud of all of our students and staff for coming together. 

Our wonderful and talented music department treated us all to some festive and joyful winter concerts this season, and winter sports are in full swing, with several exciting basketball and hockey games already in the books. 

We had several key presentations at our Board meeting this past Monday night:

  • Dr. Corey, our Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction, presented our overall achievement data for the recent grade 3-8 assessments, and our district ranked #1 in several categories for similar schools (small cities with similar demographics). In the area where we fell short (and even those where we didn’t), academic plans are well underway to address these gaps.

  • Mr. Sutton and Mrs. McCarthy at John Kennedy reviewed their building goals, high academic ranks, and their efforts to support our students' social and emotional needs.

  • Mr. Bromley, our Athletic Director, updated the Board on a Girls Flag Football proposal. Several of our student athletes have expressed an interest in this new opportunity.

  • We wish our baseball and softball teams well during their respective training trips to Florida this spring, as their trips were also presented and approved.

As I approach my one-year anniversary of serving as Superintendent, I extend my personal and professional thanks to each of you. Over the course of the last year, we have undertaken some significant instructional initiatives and launched shared decision-making teams in each school. I have listened to and responded to your ideas, suggestions, and concerns, and while there is more work to be done, I am confident our upward trajectory will continue.

Finally, please accept my wishes for a continued wonderful and festive holiday season and the wonders and joys that come with this special time of year. 

It continues to be my personal and professional pleasure to serve as your Superintendent.


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

Twitter:  @JasonJasmith & @BataviaCSD