SUPERINTENDENT UPDATE: Decisions on MHS principal, assistant superintendent near

Superintendent John Buckey
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Good people of Marblehead Public Schools:

March is a long month. There are no holidays; there are no vacations. It is neither winter nor spring.

On Nantucket, March is not-so-affectionately known as “hate month.” There are a variety of reasons for this, but suffice it to say, when Nantucket Nectars makes a trivia cap about it, it is a fact of island life.

Unfortunately, it seems the plague of March is creeping into Marblehead. At a leadership meeting this week, MHS Principal Dan Bauer was lamenting an uptick in negative, mean-spirited emails being sent to staff. Nods from his colleagues around the table affirmed that this is being felt across the district.

I write to ask that we take a collective step back and stop. Let’s return to a place of assuming positive intent. If there is a concern, reach out to schedule a time to meet face to face and discuss. The last thing our dedicated educators need at the end of a long day is to open a “flam-o-gram” questioning their intentions or integrity.

Email can be both a blessing and a curse. All of us endeavor to give our best to our students and colleagues every day. Mistakes, misunderstandings and miscommunications happen.  Adjudicating those through toxic and accusatory emails will generally not remedy things and almost always serve to increase the divide.

To quote an old song, “What the world needs now is love…” Let’s make March that month in Marblehead.

Search updates

We have made great progress this week with both of our searches, for the Marblehead High School principal and the assistant superintendent for teaching and learning. I am hopeful that next week’s update will potentially announce decisions for both.

I am deeply grateful for the insightful and thoughtful participation of the search committees for these critical positions. We are on schedule to make decisions well in advance of the intended dates outlined in the search processes. 

Public budget hearing

I am beyond grateful for the positive response to Tuesday’s public budget hearing. The catastrophic impact of an $855,000 increase over our FY23 appropriation for FY24 would have on the district is real.

We will present to the Finance Committee on Monday night at Abbot Hall to continue making the case for Article 31, which would be a level-service request, but require a joint override with the town. We appreciate the Select Board’s support in joining with us in the request to voters to support our schools and community.

All of our budget documents and information can be found on the homepage of the MPS website.

Community Art Night

The MHS National Art Honor Society would like to invite the Marblehead Community for a night of arts and crafts. The event will occur on March 31 from 5-8 p.m. in the MHS cafeteria. Tickets are $10 at the door (cash only).

Activities for all ages will include rock painting, canvas painting, jewelry and keychain making, mask decorating, photo booth, face painting and more.

NAHS will also sell crafts, art, and baked goods at the event.

Dollars for Scholars

In its 36th year, Marblehead Dollars for Scholars is sponsoring the third annual “Let’s Eat” during the month of March. Gift cards purchased at eight establishments (Shubie’s, Sea Salt, Caffe Italia, The Landing, Mino’s Roast Beef, Maria’s Gourmet, Soall and The Barrelman) will benefit Marblehead High School graduates. Ten percent of every gift card will go directly to need-based scholarships for undergraduate college students. Each year, close to $200,000 is awarded to graduating seniors and advanced standing students. Please participate. 

Cheers to the achievers

Yesterday was a palindrome date, 3/23/23! March 24 is International Day for Achievers.

Today we celebrate all those who have made significant contributions in their chosen fields and in doing so have made life a little better for all of us. Gold stars to our achievers!

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