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Bridgeport School District

Bridgeport School District

Bridgeport, Connecticut

Bridgeport School District 16
L to R:  Debbie Reyes-Williams, Fran Rabinowitz (Superintendent), Dolores Mason (District Leader for Partnerships), Debbie Broccoli, Lucia Paolella, Michael Testani

Not pictured: Kathleen Jaeger, Helen Giles, and Marge Hiller

District-Level Leadership for Partnerships:

Annual District Calendar and Handbook

In Bridgeport School District, the Leader for Partnerships (with support from the superintendent and school board) planned to redesign the district/school calendar to improve communications with families about important dates, deadlines, and information. The 12-month calendar included 10 pages of information on the district’s vision/mission statement, department contacts, Board of Education Policies, community resources, and more. Each month’s calendar was accompanied by a page of about six in-color examples of students’ art work and poetry.

All administrators contributed schedules and events for the calendar important to families and students. For example, the Health Director provided critical information about students’ required immunizations and deadlines. The Guidance Director included high school graduation requirements, college fairs to help students plan for the future, and FASFA deadlines for seniors applying to college. The Assistant Superintendent included dates and timelines for the magnet school lottery. The Board of Education, parent and other groups included their meetings and events. Art teachers supplied wonderful work by their students. Poetry on Wheels provided students’ poems. All of the information made life easier for parents and teachers and celebrated Bridgeport’s students.

Annual District Calendar and Handbook is featured in Promising Partnership Practices 2016.

Facilitation of Schools’ Action Teams for Partnerships:

News You Can Use

The Leader for Partnerships, other administrators, and family and community leaders worked together to report news throughout the district, rather than keep district and school accomplishments a secret. In a big, complex district like Bridgeport, many events are known by only a few. Published more regularly than in the past, the improved BPS Parent News and Updates covers topics of interest in English and Spanish. Parents can read the newsletter online at Hard copies are provided to parent leaders at their monthly meetings and are available for parents who prefer print copies.

BPS Parent News and Updates includes some familiar topics that are repeated each month and some topics that surprise and delight readers. Common sections include Attendance Achievements, Principals Matter, Dates to Remember, Construction Updates, Promising Practices, and Monthly Menus for elementary and secondary schools. Timely and unique topics include things like Year in Review and Summer Reading Lists. Each month’s newsletter also features stories and pictures highlighting one school in the district. For example, one month, the featured high school reported its students’ Science Fair projects, the number of books read by students, and other important awards including Inspiration Awards for Civic Leadership, School Leadership, and Teacher Excellence. Without timely coverage, few would know about the positive work of these students.

News You Can Use is featured in Promising Partnership Practices 2016.