A Message from Superintendent Jack R. Smith:
Commitment to our Core Values
Dear MCPS Staff,
As we spend these last few days of summer preparing for the first day of school, let us pause for a moment and think about our roles in relation to the students and families we serve.
Our students come to us from a vast range of economic circumstances; they come speaking languages from around the world, and they come from many different races and cultures. Now, more than ever, it is critical that we care for them and teach them in ways that communicate clearly that they are both safe and valued in our classrooms, this school system and our community. They must know that we, the staff of MCPS, are completely committed to their welfare and learning.
Last year's rise in hate crimes in our county, in conjunction with the recent tragic and horrible events in Charlottesville, underscore the essential nature of our work and highlight why we must hold tight to our MCPS core values of respect, relationships, equity, excellence, and learning. These values are clear and leave no room for hate, malice or violence toward others. These values stand in stark opposition to those groups and individuals in our midst who would speak out or strike out at others because of their skin color, religion or culture.
We must never be indifferent. As we did last year, our students, staff, the Board of Education and community must continue to stand up to hate and violence.
As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. shared in his speech, The Future of Integration, “... we must realize that the time is always right to do what is right.”
Let us continue to work tirelessly to protect and care for our students and to ensure that each one learns and thrives. We can do no less.
Thank you for all you do on behalf of students and families. I am thankful that I live and work in this community, and I look forward to our work together.
Jack R. Smith, Ph.D.
Superintendent of Schools