As the 2012 calendar year comes to a close, there is much to reflect upon specific to both accomplishment and opportunity for the staff and students of the Blaine School District.
With the passage of the Capital Projects Bond in February, we are poised to complete the modernization of the Blaine High School science facility, as well as upgrades to two special education life skills classrooms, by September 2013. These projects adre substantially important to the learning needs of our students. We are greatly appreciative for the support the communities of Blaine, Birch Bay and Point Roberts have shown in approving the necessary funding.
In addition, the four-year Maintenance and Operations Levy, also approved by voters in February, provides for the overall stability of funding for vital programs into the foreseeable future.
Through multiple years of revenue cutbacks at both the state and federal levels, the Blaine School District has been able to sustain core academic and extra curricular services for students at all levels. We are frequently asked how deeply programs specific to the arts have had to be reduced.
The answer is that, as a result of a high level of community support for the Maintenance and Operations Levy, we have been able to sustain existing K-12 program levels in all areas of the arts. It is a privilege to work in a school district where our parents and patrons continue to assure the presence of critical resources.
Our students demonstrate high levels of performance at all levels of the program. We are privileged to have a highly skilled, experienced and dedicated staff in every program and department. As we move into 2013, schools across the state of Washington are mandated to embrace higher academic standards at all grade levels, while also transitioning to a new state mandated system of testing student achievement levels, in addition to implementing a more comprehensive performance evaluation system for teachers and principals.
The list of new requirements is extensive and complex. We are confident that our staff will meet these challenges, and that the result will be a higher level of overall success for all students.
The transition into 2013 brings with it a deep level of sadness and despair over the recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut. Protecting our youth is the paramount responsibility of our society. As we grieve for the loss of young lives, and the lives of school personnel, our heart goes out to the families of these victims, as well as those who represent the broader structure of support within their community.
We will endeavor to learn all that we can in the aftermath of this horrific event, as we work to assure that the children of all communities remain safe. Thank you for your continued involvement in, and support of, your school system. We are proud to be an active part of making a positive difference for students.